NHPR Blogs

NHPR's blogs include:

The Sidebar, NHPR's news blog 

News Primers, The stories behind the headlines. 

Ad Audit, Examining political messages and money.

Foodstuffs, New Hampshire's food and food culture.

Next Gen NHPR, NHPR's intern blog.

From The Archives, Looking back at our coverage of news and culture. 

Inside NHPR, featuring news and events from the station. 

The Audio Orchard, Playlists and performances of hand-picked music.

Live From Studio D, Musicians perform in NHPR's studio for Word of Mouth.

Hearken

Thanks for participating in our Community Advisory Board demonstration of Hearken!

Hearken describes itself as a platform for "next-level audience engagement."

Miranda July The First Bad Man
Amor Towles Rules of Civility
Andre Dubus III Townie

Judy Blume - In the Unlikely Event
Daniel Silva - The Black Widow
Chuck Klosterman - But What If We're Wrong?

Paige Sutherland/NHPR

As part of a fellowship with the RIAS Berlin Kommission, NHPR's Paige Sutherland will be traveling around Germany for two weeks - meeting with the country's politicians and policy makers as well as local journalists. The goal of the trip is to better understand how  issues abroad can have an impact on the stories that matter at home in the Granite State. 

Over the course of the fellowship, Paige will be blogging her experiences right here - so bookmark this page and check back to see her photos and find out what she's learned.

Sara Plourde / NHPR

Join us for the second night of our new event series, News & Brews!

These informal meet-ups give you a behind the scenes look at what's going at NHPR. This time around, Morning Edition Host Rick Ganley and Morning Edition Producer Michael Brindley will talk about what goes into making the local news you hear each morning. After a short talk, they will field your questions and stick around to chat!

When: Friday, May 20, 2016 at 5:30 pm

Where: Fireworks, Main Street, Keene, NH

NHPR Staff

The money race has been nip and tuck from the moment Governor Maggie Hassan declared for U.S. Senate in early October:  $4.4 million raised by Hassan; $4.4 million raised by her opponent, Republican Senator Kelly Ayotte. 

This quarter, Hassan's campaign says it collected $2.25 million; Ayotte's campaign, "more than $2.25 million." Yet Ayotte, whose been raising money for 2016 since she was sworn in 5 years ago, has almost $7 million in cash on hand, more than twice Hassan's $2.9.

Sara Plourde, NHPR

Outside/In - Fridays at 2 pm and Saturdays at 3 pm (rebroadcast);  limited run

From NHPR comes an environment show like no other, a show about the natural world and how we use it. Outside/In is inspired by the outdoors, but isn’t just for the outdoorsy. You'll hear about a man possessed by a dock, and one tasked with stirring romance...in moose. A town tangling with trees that stink, and one that could well be the model for the electric grid of the future. Tune in for our five-episode debut season, running April 22 through May 21.

Chris Jensen for NHPR

During a town hall meeting Tuesday night in Bethlehem Republican Presidential candidate Marco Rubio covered plenty of policy turf -- including the New England Patriots.

"Tom Brady should retire, because the Miami Dolphins deserve a chance to win the AFC,” Rubio declared.

Laughter mixed with the tiniest rumble of boos...

“When I’m president, Tom Brady is going to be secretary of the Air Force," Rubio continued. "He knows a lot about throwing stuff and flying…and the Miami Dolphins will have a chance to win the division."

Rhett Sutphin via Flickr CC

Your dad made it look easy...maybe. But carving a turkey is a bit more complicated than you might think. It's a big bird, after all, and not every knife is created equal. (Nor is every bird, thanks to the "spatchcock" craze!)

But never fear, humble home-chef, there's somewhere to turn if you're confounded by the prospect of carving: YouTube. 

Listed below are some of the most informative and easy-to-follow turkey carving how-to videos on the site.

Pro Tip: Watch them in advance of the family arriving and you'll look like a turkey carving ninja come dinner time.

via 2 Teaspoons

Brussels sprouts - talk about a vegetable that gets a bad rap. This cold weather crop is perhaps only second to lima beans when it comes to un-earned disdain. In fact, many people who say they "hate" Brussels sprouts likely haven't eaten them for years, if they've ever eaten them at all.

 The 2016 race for New Hampshire governor is rapidly gathering momentum, even with Election Day more than a year away. Candidacies are being launched by the day, it seems. Pledges made. Priorities listed. Promises floated.

And now we have the first campaign ad of the race. It comes courtesy of Republican Frank Edelblut, a state legislator who's apparently hoping to ride-share his way to the governor's office. 

Michael Jolly / Flickr

The fight continues to add more debates to the Democratic presidential primary calendar. There's even now an official coalition in New Hampshire focused on bringing another debate to the Granite State before the February primary.

Political candidates send lots of emails as the end of a fundraising quarter approaches. New Hampshire Congressman Frank Guinta is no exception – though there’s a bit more to his story than what’s in the message.

As NHPR’s archive intern this summer, my primary responsibility has been to listen back to some of the station’s oldest audio. I take copious notes about the stories I hear – and when I find one especially interesting, it gets shared on our blog.

Marc Nozell via Flickr / Creative Commons / https://flic.kr/p/3MY97U

Every four years, New Hampshire welcomes the national political spotlight in the months leading up to the presidential primary. As the hosts of the first primary in the country, Granite State voters have the opportunity to make their voices heard on the campaign trail, at town hall events, and most importantly, at the ballot box.

But it wasn’t always this way.

The conversation around early childhood education in New Hampshire today is often focused on the availability of half-day versus full-day kindergarten programs.

Governor Maggie Hassan weighed in when she spoke to NHPR in May:

"Full-day kindergarten would be a very important next step in making sure our young people have the kind of education that really prepares them for the 21st century global economy."

However, kindergarten here was not guaranteed until a 2007 law mandating public programs state-wide – making New Hampshire the last state in the nation to fully adopt public kindergarten.

In 1989, NHPR humanities reporter Robbie Honig profiled The Golgonooza Letter Foundry & Press. This small shop in the village of Ashuelot was opened by two poets from Boston who shared a passion for letterpress printing.

“We started with making type for ourselves, for our own poetry books," said Golgonooza co-founder Julia Ferrari. "But also, making a living by making books for other people too. We didn’t want to just go out and have to work somewhere else and then come back and do our art. We felt that if we could possibly do our art at the same time, we would be learning how to get better at what we did.”

By 1989, the shop was producing artisanal books that fetched up to thousands of dollars apiece.

Keep reading after the story for my conversation with Julia. But first, from the archives this week, here’s Honig's report from the Golgonooza Letter Foundry & Press in 1989.


Thomas Fearon

We’ve been listening back to a 1989 report on the state of mental health care in New Hampshire. Last week, reporter Kathy McLaughlin explored the living conditions in the old New Hampshire Hospital buildings, which could be crowded and grim.

Today, we share part two of that report. NHPR’s Martin Murray spoke with Paul Gorman, superintendent of New Hampshire Hospital, who explained how the hospital’s new, community-oriented facility sought to treat patients.

The state of New Hampshire has been officially providing care for its mentally ill citizens for over 170 years. In that time, there have been dramatic changes in the living conditions for patients – and the state’s approach to treatment.

In 1989, New Hampshire Hospital built a state of the art facility that sought to provide individualized care for patients with the most severe symptoms.

To mark that occasion, NHPR produced a two-part report on the history and future of New Hampshire Hospital. In part one today, you’ll hear reporter Kathy McLaughlin chronicle the living conditions in the old hospital buildings. Barred windows, dim lighting, and crowded sleeping wards fostered a rather gloomy environment.

From the archives this week, the inside history of New Hampshire Hospital, from reporter Kathy McLaughlin.


portraits of Thomas Jefferson and Andrew Jackson
Rembrandt Peale, courtesy White House Historical Association/Thomas Sully, courtesy US Senate

New Hampshire Democrats are set to take up a question several other state parties have considered in recent weeks: should the party rename its annual Jefferson-Jackson Dinner?

Spokesperson Lizzy Price says state party chair Ray Buckley brought the question to the party's executive committee, which referred it to another panel. That committee, Price says, will "discuss the issue and offer any recommendations back to the executive committee."

Ron? Rand? At Least They Got the Last Name Right

Jul 24, 2015

Politicians are always looking to get their name in the newspaper -- provided that it actually is their name.

A Laconia Daily Sun headline was at least half correct in reporting which GOP presidential candidate has plans to be in Tilton Saturday.

It is, of course, Rand Paul who will be in the state this weekend, rather than his father, three-time presidential hopeful and former Texas congressman Ron Paul. 

Novelist E.L. Doctorow eschewed the label "historical fiction," though his novels undeniably used America's past to set the stage for the present. While the settings of his book were American history (pre-World War 1 era, the Civil War, the Red Scare) and the characters that populated his books often touted familiar names, his writing style steered well-wide of you high school history text book. His numerous awards stand testament to the relevance of his work.

The condition of New Hampshire’s Great Bay Estuary has been one of the biggest environmental priorities in New Hampshire for decades -- and NHPR has been covering the story extensively.

We were there in 2010, when the Environmental Protection Agency designated Great Bay as officially impaired – meaning it could mandate upgrades to wastewater treatment plants that discharge into the estuary.

Hannah McCarthy/NHPR

The headquarters of the Nashua Soup Kitchen and Shelter on Quincy Street has three stories and 14,000 square feet aimed at feeding people in need. But executive director Lisa Christie thought there was one part of the property that could do even more for the organization’s mission.

American author Erskine Caldwell was born in Georgia in 1903. His most famous novel, 1932’s Tobacco Road, boldly addressed the South’s inequalities during the Great Depression.

“He was writing about racial relations when one did not write about racial relations," said Phillip Cronenwett of Dartmouth College in 1989. "He was writing about the difference between the rural wealthy and the rural poor when one did not talk about that sort of thing.”

This week, we’re taking a fresh look at Caldwell, whose writing depicted what he saw as the realities of society – however unpleasant those realities might be.

ABC Quilts was founded in 1988, at the height of the AIDS epidemic, with the mission to lend comfort to babies born with AIDS. Now, its volunteers also make and deliver handmade quilts to abandoned babies and those affected by their mother’s drug or alcohol abuse.

Ellen Ahlgren of Northwood, New Hampshire began ABC Quilts, delivering six baby quilts to Boston City Hospital, each carrying the inscription “with love and comfort to you.” Soon after, ABC Quilts began to grow rapidly, and has since delivered more than half a million quilts worldwide.

From the archives this week, the story of Ellen Ahlgren and ABC Quilts, from reporter Leslie Bennett. 


Chris Jensen for NHPR

NHPR's Chris Jensen recently profiled the North Country's Frances Glessner Lee, whom many refer to as "The Mother of CSI."

Lee recreated tiny crime scenes that resembled meticulous, macabre dollhouses. She called them "nutshells," as in finding truth "in a nutshell."

Of Lee's twenty original nutshells, eighteen are in still in use as teaching tools and aren't available to the public. One was destroyed. But the final one is on display in Bethlehem, N.H.

Predicting the future of technology is never easy. The incredible capabilities of the smartphone in my pocket today were nearly inconceivable in 1989.

That’s when NHPR’s Leslie Bennett made this fateful comment:

“It seems like telephones have gotten as complicated as they’re ever going to get. I may regret saying that.” 

Ouch – sorry, Leslie. She was speaking from Datatech ’89, a business technology trade show in Manchester. The vendors she spoke with shared their visions for office technology in the ‘90s and beyond:

“These fax machines can talk back and forth to each other. And we do have some that are live, actually hooked up to live telephone lines … We can talk to Japan if we want to, or Russia, or anywhere else.” 

That’s right … fax machines were a hot item in 1989. Makes you wonder, doesn’t it? What exciting gadget from today will be a fossil tomorrow?

From The Archives this week, we revisit Leslie Bennett’s story from Datatech ’89.


NHPR / Brady Carlson

Small Plates is a roundup of New Hampshire food news.

Jacob Carozza /NHPR

In New Hampshire, it’s not easy to find a package of JG Coconut Mushrooms, or a jar of clotted cream, or a can of mushy peas.

“Any dinner you would have with a pie you have mushy peas on the side,” says Stephanie Pressinger, president of The British Aisles in Greenland.

“Someone who hasn’t been to England or doesn’t know the culture would say, ‘Why would you want mushed peas?’”

Pages