Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Rhode Island Stories: "Ballad of Baby Roger" and "Carolina, RI"

The Ballad of Baby Roger, a short documentary written and directed by Jamestown resident Patti Cassidy, tells the fascinating story about a four year old elephant that the children of Rhode Island purchased for Roger Williams Park back in 1893. Baby Roger was the Park's first elephant and the only male elephant in its 139 year history. The South County Independent and The Westerly Sun published stories about the short film earlier this year.

WSBE Rhode Island PBS will show The Ballad of Baby Roger on Saturday, June 18 at 7 p.m. as part of its ongoing series Rhode Island Stories.

Following The Ballad of Baby Roger, WSBE airs part 1 of Carolina, RI: The Smallest of the Small, a film by Carla Ricci about the village of Carolina in Richmond, RI.

UPDATE: Broadcast of Carolina, RI: The Smallest of the Small is postponed until further notice. We apologize for any inconvenience.

A hundred years ago, New England had 2,000 milltowns - and one of them was tiny: 75 houses clustered around one street less than a mile long. But, Carla Ricci says, "don't let looks deceive you: Carolina, RI, has a big story." As mill towns go, it may be the smallest of the small, but this film makes the case that it may be one of the best.

What started out for Ricci as casual conversation between neighbors turned into a seven-year long journey of research and discovery,  poring over historical letters, photos, and documents, as well as hours of captured recollections and reminiscences. What resulted is the woven tapestry of the rich - and almost forgotten - history of remarkable Rhode Islanders from a remarkable Rhode Island village.

This link will take you to a video preview. Don't miss the "Cutting Room Floor" for more stories that didn't make it into the final film.

Carolina, RI: The Smallest of the Small will be shown in two parts: June 18 at approximately 7:15 p.m. and on June 25 at 7 p.m. on WSBE Rhode Island PBS. On WSBE Learn, the film will air June 22 (part 1) and June 29 (part 2) at 10 p.m., June 23 (part 1) and June 30 (part 2) at 5 a.m., and June 24 (part 1) and July 1 (part 2) at 2 a.m.  New air dates and times will be announced when broadcast-quality version of the video is available.