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The Scoop on the Scope

What Grows On in Rhode Island Calendar lists an amazing range of environment-related events for Rhode Islanders.

What "Grows On" in Rhode Island covers the state's 400 miles of waterfront and so much more! Any public event that centers on some aspect of Rhode Island's environment may be listed. [In other words, member-only meetings are not here, unless the public and/or new members would be welcome.]

To give you an idea of the vast boundaries, here are main categories of what's in/not in this Calendar:


  • Water (Bay, lakes, rivers, ponds, watersheds, reservoirs, dams, aquifers, wetlands, drinking, rainwater, wastewater, stormwater, sewers, pollution & contamination, erosion, flooding, etc.)
  • Land use & reuse, development, contamination, impact of commuting on the land...
  • Air (pollution, quality, etc.)
  • Forests, trees
  • Farms, gardens (agriculture, aquaculture, horticulture, landscaping, lawn & garden care, plants, native and invasive species, organic, community gardens, urban farms, etc.)
  • Native & invasive plants & insects, animals
  • Parks, cemeteries, zoos, golf courses, playgrounds, athletic fields (especially public spaces, spaces used by children, such spaces that are
    being considered for development, maintenance of large privately held spaces) BUT NOT events AT these places that do not directly focus on the environment
  • Renewable energy sources (wind, hydro, solar, biodiesel, etc.)
  • Sustainability, green building, "environmentally friendly," environmental problems in historic restoration
  • Recycling and environmental waste (land fill, brownfields, trash reduction & issues, paper, bottles & cans, hazardous waste, sewage)
  • Cooking demos using local food in connection with RI farms, food banks
  • Some sports such as swimming at a beach (BUT PROBABLY NOT in a pool), boating, kayaking, fishing, hiking, biking, when the events emphasize safety and health concerns, or environmental preservation and exploration; BUT PROBABLY NOT sports such as football, tennis, and baseball.

    Event Types:

    These must be open to the public, although there may be a charge to attend:

  • Cleanups & Workdays
  • Plant sales and exchanges run by nonprofits, NOT (at this time)* commercial nursery sales
  • Shows, expos, fairs, festivals (Washington County Fair, BUT PROBABLY NOT an ethnic fair)
  • Tours, cruises, hikes, walks, garden tours BUT PROBABLY NOT house tours unless gardens were a major feature; educational cruises BUT
    PROBABLY NOT (yet)* regularly scheduled commercial cruises of the Bay
  • Professional licensing & certification courses & training
  • Conferences, conventions
  • Workshops, lectures, presentations for the public (1 hour to 1/2 day events)
  • Courses and classes for the public (1 day; multiple-evening series...)
  • Academic courses (continuing education or leading to a degree)
  • Activities geared to children, seniors, disabled, etc.
  • Art exhibits or film series on environmental topics ~ this includes Waterfire
  • Environmental book clubs
  • State & municipal board, committee, agency, commission, etc., meetings, most of which should be public
  • Public hearings, including legislative hearings) on environmental matters

Event Location:

  • In or near Rhode Island, close enough so that Rhode Islanders can attend (i.e., nearby Connecticut and Massachusetts, including major events in the Boston area)
  • Some major events further afield that significantly affect Rhode Island's environment (i.e., regional conferences, coordinating meetings
    with groups in other states)


  • Any size, as long as it's a public meeting and about Rhode Island's environment.

*Regularly scheduled commercial cruises, sales organized by businesses, etc., are not included in January 2015. Eventually some of these may be added. The Calendar focuses on events organized by nonprofit, community, volunteer, government and municipal organizations.