Ric Cengeri

Vermont Edition Producer

Ric is a Vermont Edition producer. Prior to joining VPR in 2007, Ric was the morning show host at WNCS in Montpelier. Before that, he hosted the morning show at WOXY in Oxford, Ohio.

Interwoven with his radio experience, Ric has been a senior copy writer and account supervisor for McGuire & Associates, a Florida-based advertising agency. He has also taught media writing classes at Miami University.

An expert in polo and British soccer, Ric holds a B.S. from the University of Dayton and an M.S. from St. Thomas University.

Ways to Connect

A chocolate pig with tiny chocolate piglets inside is just one of the many Easter novelties created by chocolatier, Pier Normandeau, at L'Oeuf in Mystic, QC.
Sally Pollak / Seven Days

There's a little place north of the border that makes you feel as though you've been transported to a small, French village. A Québécois Brigadoon, if you will. It's called L'Oeuf - a French country restaurant and chocolate shop where chocolate takes center stage this time of year.  

Handy with the lot of these? Then you're in high demand for the "Repair Cafe" scheduled for April 28 in Hardwick.
anilakkus / iStock

If you fancy yourself a Mr. or Ms. Fix-It, or maybe you're more of a "Need a Ms. Fix-It" kind of person, we've got a matchmaking event for you! 

The Central Vermont Solid Waste Management District, the Onion River Exchange and the Center for an Agricultural Economy are working together to host a Repair Cafe in Hardwick at the end of April.

Vermont Republican Party, Courtesy

The Vermont Republican Party has a new executive director. Jack Moulton replaced Jeff Bartley, who stepped down suddenly in January after three years in the position.

A Drug Free School Zone sign on a chain link fence with a playground in the background.
duckycards / iStock

As the state continues to battle the opioid abuse crisis, ways of fighting it have taken many different forms — including focusing on drug prevention strategies in our schools.

On this Vermont Edition, we look around the state to learn what's being done to deliver that anti-drug message to our kids and also look at the effectiveness of these efforts.

Hazing in sports can have devastating effects on athletes, schools and communities.
mmac72 / iStock

Hazing is happening in greater numbers than you might suspect. One recent study reported that 80 percent of student athletes experienced some form of hazing during their college athletic career. And 42 percent said they also were hazed in high school.

The mural in Burlington reflects 400 years of Vermont history but has drawn criticism for lacking diversity.
Adam Fagen / Flickr

The mural that graces Leahy Way off of Church Street in Burlington is arresting. It's 120 feet by 14 feet and depicts a 400-year timeline. It's brightly-colored and loaded with many of Vermont's historical figures. And it lacks diversity. So what should the city do with it now?

Chicken dumplings (pictured) served at Double King, a Chinese food pop-up at Montpelier's Kismet restaurant.
Hannah Palmer Egan / Seven Days

From traditional Chinese food restaurants to Asian fusion, from buffets to pop-ups, it all can be found scattered throughout Vermont. In this episode, Seven Days food writer Hannah Palmer Egan shares a few of her favorites.

An empty school hallway with a row of lockers and a door at the end.
Halbergman / iStock

After the shooting in Parkland, Florida, and a threat of violence at Fair Haven Union High School, Gov. Phil Scott has called for safety assessments of Vermont's schools by the end of March. Scott has also requested $5 million over this year and next year to pay for security upgrades for schools.

Lisa Kaiman's Jersey Girls Dairy in Chester has been producing dairy prodcuts, veal, and other value-added products since 1999.
Ric Cengeri / VPR

Lisa Kaiman operates Jersey Girls Dairy in Chester, and the farm comes by its name honestly: Kaiman is originally from New Jersey, and she tends a herd of Jersey cows. Like many small dairy farmers, she says the job isn't easy. But she also says Vermont's dairy regulations don't make it any easier.

The #MeToo movement has shined a light on how men need to change to end the abuse and harassment of women.
Ronniechua / iStock

According to metoomvmt.org, nearly 18 million women have reported a sexual assault since 1998.

The #MeToo movement is successfully raising awareness, but moving forward, how do we cultivate healthier attitudes in men—and boys—to end these unwanted actions?

After learning to bake bread as a child in Germany, Bread and Puppet Theater founder, Peter Schumann, is still rising sourdouogh rye today in Glover.
Sally Pollak / Seven Days

Glover, Vermont, is a strange and wonderful place. There's the self-serve/self-pay Red Sky Trading Company, Currier's Market and Taxidermy, The Museum of Everyday Life and - the epicenter of strangeness - Bread and Puppet Theater.

Vermont's tea culture abounds with many tea rooms around the state including Stone Leaf Teahouse in Middlebury (owner, John Wetzel, in background).
Melissa Pasanen / Vermont Life

There's no doubt the British have a tea culture. But Vermont? Oh yeah, it's a thing!

A screenshot from one of Professor Bongard's videos shows a robot "dreaming" about how to move.
courtesy of Josh Bongard

In order to be as useful as possible, robots need to be able to think and act for themselves. But with that autonomy can come serious concerns about human safety. We're talking about teaching machines how to be smart and independent, without kicking off a robot uprising.

The job school superintendents love to hate is deciding on whether to close school or not in the winter.
Willowpix / iStock

There are two sides to school snow days. You've got the kids who get a day off and a chance to romp in the snow and catchup on the homework they might not have gotten done on time. And then there's the parents who might have to take a day off of work to watch the kids. But beyond that are the school superintendents who have to make the decision to close school.

UVM students recently gathered in the Waterman Building to call on the school to address racial justice, inequity and diversity on campus.
Liam Elder-Connors / VPR FILE

UVM students blocked a main thoroughfare to highlight their demands for greater inclusion and diversity. High school students in Montpelier and Burlington organized to raise the Black Lives Matter flag at their schools. And next week, high school students across the state plan to walk out of class to push for gun legislation.

In Vermont, student activism is alive and well in 2018!

UVM Plant Biologist Eric Bishop von Wettberg displays the domestic and the wild chickpea.
Joshua Brown / UVM

You probably don't often think of chickpeas — sometimes called garbanzo beans — even when you're digging into some humus. And you likely think of the wild chickpea even less. But it's the primary source of protein for about one in five people around the globe, which is why one UVM biologist is turning to wild strains of the legume to keep the chickpea population healthy.

With temperatures bobbing and weaving above and below freezing, Vermont's backyard sugaring is going strong.
Bakinbitz / iStock

Vermonters catch a fever at this time of year. And it isn't necessarily the flu bug. It's the hankering to get outside and start hauling buckets full of sap to the sugarhouse or to wherever they do their boiling. It's backyard sugaring time.

At 106 years old, Warren Patrick credits staying physically busy and making the right choices for his long, happy life.
Ric Cengeri / VPR

He's seen the change from oil lamps to electric lighting, and from the advent of radio to television and the computer. And modes of transportation shift from the horse and buggy to self-driving automobiles. At 106, Townshend's Warren Patrick finds happiness in every new day and gives thanks for it every night. 

Consider planning ahead before traveling to more easily find restaurants that meet your needs once you reach your destination.
Piola666 / iStock

Traveling and eating out usually go hand in hand. But finding an amazing place to nosh while far from home can be a bit tricky, especially when overseas.

Romeo, a Burnese Mountain Dog, owned by Pam Eldredge of Waterbury, competes at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show.
Dalmi Sirabo

One of the major competitions in the canine world took place this week in New York City. The Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show concluded Tuesday, Feb. 13. About a dozen dogs owned by Vermonters were among the field of 3,000 that competed this year. One of those dogs had an excellent show: Romeo, a Bernese Mountain Dog owned by Pam Eldredge of Waterbury.

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