Within 48 hours, Hurricane Irene was downgraded from a Category 2 to a Category 1 to a Tropical Storm by the time it passed through New York City. City officials along the East Coast called for historic evaluations, and grocery and home improvement stores were stripped bare in some areas. People prepared for the worst, but the worst never came. Weekends on All Things Considered guest host Laura Sullivan and NPR's Joe Palca talk about why Irene didn't live up to it's billing of a storm that could have caused cataclysmic damage.
On Friday night, Kevin Boyer was at Venter City Beach near Atlantic City with some buddies. They'd just bought a bunch of beer — Yuengling and Miller Lite. But when it looked like Hurricane Irene was going to be pretty serious, he decided to ride the storm out at home, with his parents, who live a block from the beach. They drank his dad's scotch, instead.
This morning, when Tod Clissold walked into Poor Richard's, the bar he owns in Manteo, North Carolina, the first thing he noticed was the smell. Like a lot of East Coast residents, Clissold is in recovery mode after Hurricane Irene left homes and businesses flooded and powerless from North Carolina to Massachusetts. Weekends on All Things Considered guest host Laura Sullivan talks with Clissold and several others, plus the latest from NPR's Jennifer Ludden, Joe Palca and Joel Rose in New York.
Assessing Irene's impact from North Carolina to New England. Many local officials are relieved the damage wasn't worse, but power outages and flooding remain a concern for coming days. NPR's Jennifer Ludden reports on the storm's impact.
As we've been hearing all morning from government officials, Irene had the potential to be a devastating tropical cyclone. No doubt it did damage and it was certainly deadly, but this map from the National Hurricane Center gives you an idea of the wrath that stayed off shore. It also tells you that the Outer Banks of North Carolina were the hardest hit:
With that in mind, the AP has put together a series of videos that give you an idea of the kind of storm this was.
Rex Goodnight went to Afghanistan last year to volunteer on construction projects, but came back frustrated.
Goodnight, chief of engineering with the Kansas City district of the Army Corps, saw a lot of planning but not much actual constructing. When something was being built, it was usually made out of clay and straw.
Irene hit North Carolina Saturday as a category 1 hurricane. That's far less powerful than orecasters had expected, yet even so, Irene hit the area as a massive storm. NPR's Greg Allen reports that in North Carolina, Irene left hundreds of thousands of people without power and many communities flooded.
New Jersey's Gov. Chris Christie on Friday announced mandatory evacuations for his state's coastal residents as Hurricane Irene approached. He said this weekend was not the time to get dinner in Atlantic City, but the Ducktown Tavern in Atlantic City is intent on staying open.
This weekend is the five-year anniversary of the crash of Comair Flight 5191. Forty-nine people died when the plane took off from the wrong runway at Lexington's Blue Grass airport. Brenna Angel of member station WUKY spoke with three victims' relatives about how they continue to cope and what a new memorial means to them.
Early Sunday morning, Hurricane Irene rolled through southern New Jersey. Guest host John Ydstie speaks with Pamela Grites of the American Red Cross Southern Shore Chapter about Hurricane Irene's effects on southern New Jersey.
Tropical Storm Irene is hitting New York City Sunday morning, but Saturday night in lower Manhattan, people weren't quite sure what to expect from the storm. NPR's Caitlin Kenney describes what it was like in her neighborhood.
In Libya, rebels have consolidated their control over the main city, Tripoli. Reports of human rights abuses are surfacing, with reports of apparent retaliatory murders. Reporters Sunday were taken to an apparent massacre site near a military camp held by supporters of Moammar Gadhafi. Meanwhile, a Gadhafi spokesman reportedly offered to negotiate with insurgents. Guest host John Ydstie discusses the latest news from Libya with NPR's Jason Beaubien.
Overnight, Hurricane Irene pounded the East Coast from North Carolina to New Jersey. The National Hurricane Center reports there will still be heavy winds and rain for the remainder of the day, although the storm is weakening. As many as 3 million people are without power. Guest host John Ydstie and NPR's Joe Palca discuss the causes and aftereffects of Hurricane Irene.
Cheating scandals have rocked a number of school districts across the country this year. The publicity is pushing states to look for better ways to detect and prevent tampering with the test results, and some say constant vigilance is required to guard against cheating.
(This live-blog is being updated throughout the day. Scroll down for our latest posts.)
Hurricane Irene made its second landfall near Little Egg Inlet, N.J. and then as it weakened into a tropical storm, the eye hit Coney Island in Brooklyn. That means New Yorkers woke up to howling winds and pounding rain.
At one point, the East River overflowed its banks and some parts of lower Manhattan saw knee-deep water. In New Jersey, two deaths were blamed on Irene. One of them happened after a woman was washed away by a flash flood.
This week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture is expected to release its latest update on the food stamp program. It's an important indicator of the nation's economic health — and the prognosis is not good.
Food stamp use is up 70 percent over the past four years and that trend is expected to continue.
This past week, the cable news network MSNBC chose civil rights activist Rev. Al Sharpton as their new host. Sharpton will begin hosting the network's 6 p.m. hour, starting Monday. The hiring came after weeks of speculation, while Sharpton had been guest hosting in that time slot. The decision has been about as controversial as Sharpton himself.
Parts of New York City are under evacuation orders, with more than 370,000 people ordered to leave low-lying areas as Hurricane Irene approaches the city. But on Saturday afternoon, at least, some residents were making the most of it.
Steve Jobs, the now-former CEO of Apple, holds up an iPhone at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco in June 2010. Jobs announced on Wednesday that he would be resigning as CEO of Apple.
Steve Jobs stepped down this week as CEO of Apple after running the company for nearly 25 years.
The very first Macintosh computer, the iPod audio player and most recently the iPad are just a few of the products Jobs has created that have changed the way millions of people live their lives.
As one of the great American innovators in recent years, comparisons can be drawn between Jobs and other great innovators like Thomas Edison and Henry Ford, both technological titans of American History.
Though rebels have consolidated control over Tripoli, life in the Libyan capital grows more difficult by the day. Residents scramble just to get basic supplies, such as food and water.
The city's tap water normally comes from what Moammar Gadhafi touted as the "Eighth Wonder of the World," the Great Man-Made River. The system channels water from deep wells in the desert to Tripoli and other parts of Western Libya.
Hurricane Irene has forced airlines to cancel more than 9,000 flights this weekend, with the AP reporting 3,600 cancellations on Saturday.
United Continental and Delta Air Lines, two of America's largest airlines, have each announced thousands of cancellations for the period between Saturday and Monday. International carriers, such as British Airways, have also cancelled flights to the U.S. East Coast that were scheduled for late Saturday or Sunday.
"I can't make you ... I'm not going to arrest you."
But please, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) just told 600 senior citizens who live in Atlantic City: Let the state evacuate you before Hurricane Irene slams into the high-rise buildings where you live.
The residents have so far refused to leave.
Christie said the state is going to send buses to the seniors' buildings in the hopes they can be convinced to go to inland shelters.
"Let us walk you downstairs and put you on those buses," he added.