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Weekend America Series


Weekend America's ongoing coverage of the environment. Sustainability reporting is supported by the Tides Foundation.


  • Going Solar Gets Cheaper

    The volunteers form an assembly line

    About three-dozen friends are hanging out on the roof of Kevin Frank's home in Holderness, New Hampshire. They're there to save the environment, and a few bucks in the process.

  • Foraging for Lunch on the Streets of L.A.

    Searching for Greens in the City

    Could you make a meal off what you found growing on the streets of one of America's biggest, most polluted cities? Nance Klehm can -- she takes Bill Radke on a walking tour of L.A., foraging for salad fixings amid the traffic and noise.

  • Is Home Depot Your Pusher?

    Most homeowners do a little tinkering around the house, paint a wall or two. But some take it to a new level, obsessively remodeling their homes for years upon years and spending tens of thousands of dollars to do so. When does the urge to fix up your house become a mania? When does handiness become addiction? We explore the mind of the obsessive remodeler and how it relates to the rapid growth of hardware giant Home Depot.

  • Tough Transitions

    What do we really need, other than food, water, clothing, shelter and oxygen? Last year, the Pew Foundation released findings from a poll where 91 percent of the respondents said they needed a car, 49 percent need a cell phone, and 5 percent need a flat-screen TV. Listener Cheryl Spahr lives in Shaker Heights, Ohio, and teaches a class at New Life Community, a transitional housing shelter, about needs and wants.

  • Downsizing and Driving

    While some people are spending time collecting things, others are actually trying to downsize. High school counselor and listener Chris McNaught of Twin Falls, Idaho, heard the story of a woman who only owned 300 items. This past summer, he realized he has too much stuff - over 1,000 items at the time - and started getting rid of things. So far, he's culled his material possession to a little over 800. McNaught knows downsizing could turn into a lifelong process for him. For now he's happy that when he looks around his home everything he sees or uses has real meaning to him.

  • Where Does It All End?

    Every year it seems that Vegas out does itself. Bigger hotels, better entertainment, more and more luxury. People often suggest that Las Vegas is a microcosm for America. It oozes opulence, but the other stuff is there too--poverty, crime, traffic. If Las Vegas is indeed representative of the rest of the country, then maybe where the city is headed is something we can all learn from. Weekend America reporter Krissy Clark visits Vegas and tries to determine where it will all end.

  • Viva Vegas Weddings

    Weekends are the perfect time for weddings. But in Las Vegas you don't have to wait for the weekend to get hitched. You can go on down to Cupid's Chapel, The Viva Las Vegas Wedding Chapel, or any of the others and exchange vows 24 hours a day, seven days a week. When most people find out a couple has been married in Vegas they don't think the marriage will last very long-not always. So a few Weekend America listeners shared their Vegas wedding stories with us.

  • Las Vegas Now: Controlled Freedom?

    Las Vegas, or Sin City as it's more affectionately known, has branded itself as a place of hedonistic, adult pleasure. Most people think of Las Vegas as the ultimate getaway - a place where everyone lets their hair down. You're free to gamble and you're free to have a drink anytime of the day or night. But is Vegas really the all out, anything goes, Sodom and Gomorrah everyone envisions? Weekend America sent reporter Nate DiMeo to find out.

  • Exploring Springs Preserve

    Las Vegas is synonymous with overconsumption, so it might surprise you that one of the most sustainable places on Earth exists just outside its city limit. Springs Preserve is a cultural and historical attraction designed to commemorate Las Vegas' history and provide a vision for a sustainable future. The site of the Preserve is known as the birthplace of Las Vegas. It was once home to bubbling springs which served as a water source for Native Americans living in the area long ago. We talk with Marcel Parent, a director at the Preserve, about the importance of having a place like this so close to Las Vegas.

  • The Power of Water

    You don't know the power of water until you have been caught in a flash flood. The Las Vegas Springs Preserve, but nothing beats the real thing. Weekend America host Desiree Cooper sits down with Bill Castle of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department to talk about Las Vegas and flash floods. For ten years Castle was part of the search and rescue team for the city. He's plucked his fair share of victims from the raging waters of flash floods and talks to us about the power of water.

  • Nightlife by Day

    Recently, Las Vegas casinos have begun to realize that all those tourists spending money for a night on the town are still in Las Vegas during the day. Thus, there are more and more options for nightlife to be had during the daytime. We sent Weekend America's John Moe down to Vegas for 12 hours-6 a.m. to 6 p.m.-to see if he could have a comprehensive night on the town during daylight hours only. John checked out reports of all night discos lasting past noon the next day, lavish pool parties with lascivious behavior and skimpy bathing suits, and even a few Vegas show options. He made it home safely and filed this report.

  • The Greening of Las Vegas

    The Las Vegas strip can seem like the most excessive place on earth. It's where we go to consume. We can walk from Rome to Paris in a block. The fountains spew water hundreds of feet into the desert air. And the strip is about to outdo itself with its largest project ever - City Center. It's not only huge, it's a radical departure from the older, theme-based casinos like Cesar's Palace and Paris, Las Vegas. The seven and a half-billion dollar complex is the largest green building project in North America. It could "move the needle" on the availability of sustainable building materials, says Cindy Ortega of MGM Mirage, the company behind the project. While Nevada is fostering environmental projects like this through tax breaks, Las Vegas is also a sprawling behemoth in a desert facing one of its worst droughts in history. Reporter Michael May investigates the greening of Las Vegas.

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