Astronomy Night
8:30 am
Fri April 11, 2014

Stargazers Scan the Universe at Public Astronomy Night in Dartmouth

Brian Morris/WCAI

At dusk on a recent Saturday, Professor Alan Hirschfeld and one of his grad students calibrate the large telescope inside the UMass/Dartmouth observatory. They’re setting up for a public astronomy night, a monthly event the University co-hosts with the Astronomical Society of Southern New England, or ASSNE. Hirschfeld said the telescope was designed and built by UMass students in the 1980’s, and went online in the early 90’s. It has a 16-inch diameter, or aperture.

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Shellfish Log
7:40 am
Tue April 8, 2014

Nantucket Bay Scallop Season Does Well, and It Wasn't Luck

Blair and Rachael Perkins after a day of scalloping off Tuckernuck, the small island just to the west of Nantucket, at the start of the five-month season which began in November 2013 and ended last week.
Credit Courtesy photo

It’s the last week of commercial scalloping season on Nantucket, and Max Perkins is shoveling snow out of his dad’s scallop boat at the Children’s Beach boat ramp.

The recent spring blizzard had kept the island’s fleet out of the water for 48 hours, but Max and his father Blair Perkins want to squeeze one last day out of the season.

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WCAI Reporting
1:28 pm
Mon April 7, 2014

Mashpee Gears Up for Arrival of Marijuana Dispensary

This vacant lot on Echo Road in Mashpee is the planned site for a new marijuana dispensary.

95 Echo Road looks ordinary – just another undeveloped lot in the industrial part of Mashpee, where gravel-filled trucks rattle by and small planes from the nearby air force base buzz overhead.  

"It’s just a flat piece of land," said Ron Gangemi, owner of the property." 44,000 square feet. Industrial land, beautiful-looking land -- trees, typical Cape Cod lot."

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WCAI Reporting
12:08 pm
Thu April 3, 2014

Mashpee's Superintendent Brings in Changes, Preschool for All

Mashpee Superintendent Brian Hyde
Credit Mashpee Public Schools website


Mashpee's new superintendent, Brian Hyde, has jumped into his first year on the job with a list of ambitious changes. Most have been well-received, but one in particular, the elimination of the middle school principal position, has met with some opposition.

Hyde got the job last summer after working in Mashpee schools since 1989, mostly as a high school history and social studies teacher. 

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WCAI Reporting
4:25 pm
Tue April 1, 2014

Budget woes may force Wareham Council on Aging to close for good

Wareham seniors attend a recent forum on the future of the Council on Aging.
Credit Brian Morris/WCAI

 After several difficult budget years, many communities are finding that finances are easing a bit. As things become less dire, some towns are even beginning to add staff again  -- but not every town.

In Wareham, officials are wrestling with serious shortfalls as they look ahead to 2015. The future of the Council on Aging and the town's senior center are in jeopardy, and the folks who rely on those services are venting their frustration.


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Battling Addiction
7:30 am
Tue March 25, 2014

Community Forum to Address Opiate Addiction Epidemic on Cape Cod

NOTE: The meeting for tonight has been postponed due to the storm. A new date has yet to be selected.

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Wind Energy
7:43 am
Thu March 20, 2014

Marine Commerce Terminal Will Serve Offshore Wind Industry

Terminal construction site
Brian Morris/WCAI

The Cape Wind project has been ongoing for more than a decade, and the developer says the first of the 130 wind turbines could he installed in Nantucket Sound by early 2015. Outside Massachusetts and along the entire East Coast, interest in offshore wind continues, as projects enter the planning stages in states such as Maine, Rhode Island, and Delaware. But these offshore turbines are massive in scale, hundreds of feet high with footings that go deep into the seabed. They require complex port facilities to assemble, transport and install the enormous blades and towers.

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Civil Rights
3:24 pm
Wed March 12, 2014

Cameras that Record License Plate Data are Raising Alarms

Some are questioning whether data collection by police license plate scanners violates civil rights.
Credit Credit Ross D. Franklin/AP via NPR

Small cameras that record and store our license plate information are popping up almost everywhere, raising alarms around the country. In Massachusetts, privacy advocates are urging the state Legislature to regulate the data. But others say there's something standing in the way – the U.S. Constitution.

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In This Place
10:25 am
Tue March 11, 2014

Captain Richard Phillips to Recognize Local Heroes

Captain Phillips (right) with Commander Frank Castellano of the USS Bainbridge after being rescued.
Credit Wikipedia

The cargo ship captain who survived his ship’s takeover by Somali pirates in 2009 will be presenting awards to local heroes on Cape Cod. 

Captain Richard Phillips wrote a book about the experience of being taken hostage by pirates called A Captain's Duty: Somali Pirates, Navy SEALs, and Dangerous Days at Sea.  It was turned into a movie starring Tom Hanks, called Captain Phillips. Despite all the attention, he says he’s not a hero.

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Public Policy in Action
7:34 am
Mon March 3, 2014

Food-to-Energy Plant To Partially Power Stop & Shop Distribution Center

Interior of Stop & Shop warehouse in Freetown
Brian Morris/WCAI

Come October 1st, new state regulations will change how old and unwanted commercial food is disposed of in Massachusetts. Under the new regulations, any entity that discards a ton or more of food per week must donate or re-purpose the useable food. For spoiled food, one option is to convert it into clean energy. And that’s what Stop & Shop is doing. A Stop & Shop Distribution Center in Freetown is gearing up to install its own on-site system that uses spoiled food from its retail stores to generate electricity.

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