Stories of our connected and rapidly changing region.



State Official Went Roaming Around Vermont To Test Cell Coverage Claims

Corey Chase, a state telecommunications infrastructure specialist, went on a road trip to ground-truth cell carriers' claims about coverage. Photo by John Dillon for VPR

A Vermont Department of Public Service employee drove more than 6,000 miles around the state this fall to test the adequacy of wireless coverage. What he found is now part of a detailed challenge before the Federal Communications Commission that officials hope will bring federal dollars into the state to improve the wireless network.

Read More

Remembering The Great Boston Molasses Flood, 100 Years Later

Firemen standing in thick molasses after the disaster. Courtesy of the Boston Public Library, Leslie Jones Collection.

On January 15, 1919, a tank on Boston’s North End burst, releasing a tsunami of hot molasses into the streets. This “Great Molasses Flood” is far more than the Willy Wonka-style accident it appears to be, and its aftermath shaped the relationship between business and government as we know it.

Read More

At Library Art Contest, An Exceptionally Low Bar

Tenth-grader Sarah Fisher's take on Vincent van Gogh's "Starry Night," at a recent night of "bad art" in Belchertown, Massachusetts. Photo by Jill Kaufman for NEPR

For many middle and high school students, the bar is set high for getting good grades, making the team, and landing the lead role in a play. Recognizing that, a library in western Massachusetts recently set the bar really low, offering a carefree event of making bad art.

Read More