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Special Reports

IED
Audio Slideshow:
Soldiers learn to spot IEDs at Ft. Drum
Improvised explosive devices, or IEDs, kill more American soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan than any other weapon. David Sommerstein visits a hands-on IED training exhibit at Fort Drum near Watertown.
amish school
Audio Slideshow:
Ian Coristine: Thousand Islands photographer
Todd Moe visits photographer Ian Coristine on Raleigh Island, his seasonal home. River residents and visitors have probably seen Coristine aloft in his red ultralight aircraft searching the Thousand Islands for the perfect photo.
oiled heron
Audio Slideshow:
The Slick of '76: Looking Back and Forward
This summer marks the 30th anniversary of the “Slick of ‘76,” a 300,000-gallon oil spill in the heart of the Thousand Islands. The event re-shaped the way a generation views its relationship to the river. David Sommerstein reports.
prairie smoke
Audio Slideshow:
Chaumont Barrens: the North Country's Prairie
David Sommerstein takes a nature walk on this unique Nature Conservancy land that contains some of the nation's easternmost prairie habitat.
La Duchesse
Audio Slideshow:
Aboad La Duchesse in Clayton
La Duchesse is a 110-foot Gilded Age treasure that's become the crown jewel of the Antique Boat Museum's collection in Clayton. Todd Moe tours the historic houseboat.
La Duchesse
Audio Slideshow:
At a Grindstone Island Square Dance
Only 11 people live on Grindstone all winter, but when the weather changes, families who’ve spent generations of summers there return. On Saturday nights, the place to be is the big dance at Dodge Hall, especially when some fiddlers and callers get together for an old-fashioned square dance.
Audio Slideshow
Preserving the Indian River Lakes
Between the high profile destinations of the Thousand Islands and the Adirondacks, there's a hidden gem of a region. It's called the Indian River Lakes. David SOmmerstein sends an audio postcard.
Audio Slideshow
Iraq Through a Camera Lens: Watertown Daily Times Photojournalist Mark Dye
Mark Dye, a photojournalist with the Watertown Daily Times, spent a month in Baghdad earlier this winter. He was embedded with troops from Fort Drum, and sent daily photos and stories documenting the lives of soldiers and civilians in Iraq.
Audio Slideshow
Kayaking: The Blackwater Challenge
The U.S. Freestyle Kayaking Team trials in preparation for the world championships this winter in Australia, was held on the "Route 3 Wave" on the Black River near Watertown. Kayakers have 45 seconds to add up points for each trick they make. If the whitewater flushes them downriver, they can paddle their way back to the wave until time runs out. David Sommerstein reports.
Animated Film Videos & Audio Slideshow
Art Without Borders: Carmen D'Avino
Carmen D’Avino began his career as a painter in the 1930s. He’s been a World War II military filmmaker, a sculptor, and an avant-guarde animator in New York City. For many years he lived in an old farmhouse in Hammond. David Sommerstein stopped by for a visit. This special report features nine videos of D'Avino's film work, most unavailable anywhere for decades. The artist died later in 2004.
Audio Slideshow
The Joy of Junk: Beachcombing with Captain Honk
A North Country angler and artist who spends most of his time on Lake Ontario turns junk found along the shoreline into fish sculptures. It's just one of the hobbies that keeps Tom Bintz, aka Captain Honk, busy as he divides his time between fishing, travel, art and demolition derby competitions.
Photo/Audio Essay
Inside Dark Island's Castle
On the St. Lawrence River near Chippewa Bay, a representative for the buyers of Dark Island and its historic castle gave David Sommerstein a peek of what visitors could see as early as next summer.

State looks for input on ?rooftop? highway

State officials hope to accelerate a plan for a rooftop highway with a series of public meetings across the North Country this week. The idea of a highway between Watertown and Plattsbrugh is more than 30 years old. Martha Foley has more.

Schedule of meetings:

11/14, 7 pm: Best Western University Inn, Canton
11/15, 7 pm: Franklin Co. Courthouse, Malone
11/16, 7 pm: Old County Courthouse, Plattsburgh  Go to full article

"Rooftop highway" meetings, revisited

State officials hope to move along a plan for a rooftop highway across the North Country this week with a series of public meetings. David Sommerstein reports.

Schedule of meetings:

11/13, 3 pm: Lowville town hall
11/13, 7 pm: Dulles Office Building, Watertown
11/14, 7 pm: Best Western University Inn, Canton
11/15, 7 pm: Franklin Co. Courthouse, Malone
11/16, 7 pm: Old County Courthouse, Plattsburgh  Go to full article

Windmills spark jobs and power

A developer submitted an application for a wind farm in Cape Vincent last week. According to the Watertown Daily Times, AES Acciona Wind Power NY wants to erect 65 wind turbines south of the village along Route 12E. The company will set up an escrow account to pay expenses as the town conducts an environmental review. Cape Vincent planning board chairman Richard Edsall told the Times, "we have the right to outside professional expertise, and we intend to use it." Two wind farm proposals in Cape Vincent have sparked controversy over how far turbines should be allow to be built from homes, roads, and the St. Lawrence River.

A boom in the wind power industry nationwide is helping the St. Lawrence Seaway. Freighters are carrying loads of turbine blades and tower pieces from Denmark and other countries in Europe to ports in the Great Lakes. In fact, wind energy developers are ordering so many windmills, they're running into a supply problem. Now there are plans to build factories to produce windmills in the U.S. It's all happening in spite of inconsistent federal support. The Environment Report's Stephanie Hemphill reports.  Go to full article
Tom Mitchell

About Holiday Road

Tom Mitchell, the lead performer with Holiday Road, has written so many songs that he decided he better do something about getting them out for the public to hear. He credits...  Go to full article
The American eel

Eel release "grand experiment"

Biologists in Canada are taking extreme measures to prevent the disappearance of a mysterious and fascinating fish. For the first time ever, they've stocked the St. Lawrence...  Go to full article

Ft. Drum explores training buffer

The construction boom around Fort Drum has military planners worried about keeping open space for the base itself. Earlier this month, Army officials met with agriculture...  Go to full article
Congressman John McHugh (R-Pierrepont Manor)

McHugh, Johnson spar on foreign policy

Congressman John McHugh and Democratic challenger Robert Johnson sparred often in a debate at Massena town hall last night. The candidates for the 23rd district disagreed on...  Go to full article

Botulism spreads in Great Lakes

A disease that has killed tens of thousands of birds is spreading throughout the Great Lakes region. The latest die-off occurred along a Lake Michigan shoreline. Linda...  Go to full article
Assembly-woman Dee Dee Scozza-fava (R-Gouverneur)

Candidates espouse views from "foothills"

The race for the 122nd Assembly district is a rarity these days - no dueling polls, no mudslinging, and relatively small amounts of money. Republican DeDe Scozzafava is...  Go to full article

US Proposes Border Card, like EZ Pass

The Department of Homeland Security sparked controversy earlier this year with a proposal to require passports or similar documents at the US Canadian border. Critics say it...  Go to full article

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