Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Dunkin Donuts is Taking Over Weymouth

Founded by William Rosenthal in 1950 in Quincy, Massachusetts, Dunkin Donuts is a global donut and coffee company. Being based out of Quincy, it’s not unusual to see a store or two in surrounding towns like Braintree, Milton or Hingham for example. However, Weymouth tends to have not one.. not three.. but NINE different Dunkin Donuts locations!
            There are four sections of Weymouth: North (a.k.a N-Dub), East (a.k.a E-Dub), South (a.k.a S-Dub… just kidding, it’s just South), and Weymouth Landing (a.k.a the Landing). According to my map, there are at least two Dunkin Donuts locations in each section of Weymouth. Also, I noted the short distance between some of them, not just in miles but also in FEET! It's remarkable how many there are in such a short distance to each other.

            Now,  Bostonians in Weymouth have no need to drive to the nearest Dunkin Donuts locations. They just have to kick on their sneakers and walk to the nearest one, which is surely only a minimum 20-minute walk from every part of town! Or, they could save time and resources and brew their own coffee at home.

**Side-note: Sorry Dr. Hayes-Bohanan for mentioning Coffee Hell **

Thursday, December 1, 2016

South Dakota: A Far & Different Land From New England

Greetings Fellow Geographers,

For this map-blog assignment, I decided to create a map via Google Maps' 'My Maps' option and focus on South Dakota, a place I have not been to before, but will have the opportunity coming next spring.
My focus for this map was to highlight the American Indian reservation lands within South Dakota and plot  locations of interest that connect to these reservations and the Sioux Native American tribes.

Why choose South Dakota out of no-where you may ask? This past month I had applied and was accepted to participate in the BSU Community Service Center's Alternative Spring Break program, was of a lucky few picked to be a part of the ASB's trip to the Sioux YMCA in Dupree, South Dakota. This will be the first time I will be able to immerse myself within Native American culture, visit a reservation and also experience this part of the country. To help spread more information about the Sioux, reservations and the vast space of lands west of the Mississippi River, I thought creating a map to show where I'll be visiting next spring would be helpful. Considering most New Englanders are not familiar with most of the interior of the United States, I thought this map would be beneficial to my classmates.

The map has two layers, one that highlights the areas in South Dakota that myself and my small group of classmates who will be traveling with will mostly be aware of. The other highlights the other Sioux lands bounded in reservations today, as well as an outline of what was the "Great Sioux Reservation", the first treaty-partitioned land made by the U.S. government in the late 19th century.

The first layer includes the Cheyenne River Reservation, the Sioux land my ASB group will visit and live within for the week of spring break. We will be located in the town of Dupree and serve at the Sioux YMCA, which are both located with individual markers. The town of Eagle Butte, just to the north is located, along with the Cheyenne River Cultural Center, which is the center of the reservation's administration.
The first layer also highlights the Standing Rock Reservation, which is another Sioux reservation land that borders Cheyenne River Reservation within South Dakota and continues into North Dakota. This land should be of some familiarity to most Americans, as there has been a substantial protest near the Sacred Stone Camp (also spotted on my map) for several months against a proposed oil pipeline that would affect sacred lands to the Sioux. I simply added these locations to help show the proximity of the two reservations.
The Black Hills and Badlands National Parks are plotted to show nearby non-Native attractions (although both are sacred to Native Americans) and the Mt. Rushmore & Crazy Horse Monuments. My ASB group may have time to visit one of these locations, or other natural attractions before we begin our service week.

I hope this map helps you learn more about South Dakota and the Sioux people! - SB

Ten Interesting Facts About Brockton

Here is a map showing ten interesting things in the city of Brockton, MA. Many of which people may not be aware of, including residents of this city.

Whenever I get a chance to visit a national/state park I jump at the opportunity! Ever since I was a kid I loved taking long hikes through park, it was always interesting to take a new path and see where it led me. state and national parks have always given me a sense of peace in a chaotic world, in these parks it is quiet, serine, and full of wonder.

A cooler, Oakley sunglasses and a Abu Garcia make a great day.

A cooler, Oakley sunglasses and a Abu Garcia rod is all I need to have a great summer day. Salt water fishing is one of my favorite hobbies and every year my brother and I pick a place to visit on our list. On this map are locations where I have friends who also love to fish and are waiting for me to explore that fishing site. The areas in green are chosen places I have already visited and the areas in red are places I have not explored yet. This summer of 2016 while I was away in military training I still managed to sneak in a fishing session out in Virginia Beach and it was a beautiful time. I am hoping to expand this map and locations as I continue to fish every year. When I complete this map I will create another one with newer locations to explore. If you love to fish I highly recommend some of these places as they are the most exciting places to fish in.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Where Did I Come From?

This is a map depicting the ancestry of my family, both past and present. There is quite a lot that is still unknown about my family's past, especially with my paternal grandmother's side as my grandmother passed away at age 50. I hope that viewing the map is an enjoyable experience, getting to see just how diverse my family tree is.


The blue stars represent my Paternal Grandfather's ancestry while the blue points represent my Paternal Grandmother's ancestry. The blue squares represent where in the world my father's extended family currently resides.

The coral stars represent my Maternal Grandfather's ancestry while the coral points represent my Maternal Grandmother's ancestry. The coral squares represent where in the world my mother's extended family currently resides.

The yellow square represents where my soon to be in-laws reside and the yellow point represents where they are from.

The purple points represent my immediate family, where we were born and live today.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Road Trip to Cali

Everyone loves a good cross country road trip. This is a map of a road trip I planned for my best friend and myself to take after graduation. we start in Boston and cross 12 states on our way to California. On the map you can see our beginning and ending locations, our stops- highlighting my love for baseball and her love for haunted places. All together it would take us five days to drive to Las Angeles while stopping at these locations. After crunching numbers for hotels and camp sights as well as the plane ticket back plus all other expenses we would need we decided that to do this road trip we each needed to raise $2,000.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Bridgewater Triangle


Mysterious enough to receive the title, the Bridgewater triangle(Bermuda triangle reference), this area in Southeastern Mass has been home to many bizarre and mysterious events. Supposed UFO and bigfoot sightings along with numerous reports of hauntings, murders and mysterious events, and even cult activity has given this area the unnerving reputation it deserves. The area has several zones where abnormal negative energy exists.

Monday, October 31, 2016

Avast! Happy Halloween

Dr. Hayes-Bohanan, as Captain Ahab, takes a break from a short field trip to look for that white whale!
One of the major themes of geography is the importance of a concept known as "sense of place" -- the ways in which people identify regions and their connections to them. Given the proximity of Bridgewater to the historic whaling city of New Bedford, therefore, Captain Ahab was a natural choice for my Halloween costume this year.

Actually, I do not usually wear a Halloween costume, putting more emphasis on The Day of the Dead for my Geography of Latin America course. But with my increasing interest in whaling (historically and geographically, not in real life!) in general and in New Bedford in particular, I decided to try a Captain Ahab costume. (I left my harpoon at home. Yes, I have a harpoon.)

When Dr. Hellström saw me in the middle of the day, he decided there should be a photograph. I then terrorized his class briefly, as I broke in and shouted "Avast! Avast! Have you seen the white whale?" Dr. Hellström was not surprised at all, but student reactions ran the gamut from amused to puzzled to intrigued to concerrned, maybe a bit scared. Good teaching is all about taking chances, they say.

Later I realized that I would be taking my Honors First-Year Seminar on Climate Justice to have a look at one of our department's several unusually large maps.This one -- located amidst our faculty offices -- is a combination political-physical map that also highlights several dozen of the world's indigenous peoples (out of several thousand that could be shown). Since our seminar topic today was indigenous knowledge, this was a good time to explore the map. And since everyone looks better in front of a map (try it, you'll see!), I asked a student to snap the photo above. Another student helpfully positioned my white whale for the camera.
Following along in my Portuguese edition, between fellow readers State Rep. Cabral and Portuguese Consul Cardeiro.
What does this have to do with geography? Everything. The fictional tale of Moby Dick begins in New Bedford, about 30 miles directly south of Bridgewater (that is, sharing a meridian of longitude). Earlier this year, I had the privilege of participating in the first-ever public reading of a Portuguese version of Moby Dick at the Whaling Museum in New Bedford. The Portuguese version was added to the 20th annual reading of the original English version, taking place at the same time. I was very pleased to be reading a chapter entitled "O Pulpito" -- "The Pulpit" -- describing a fictional structure inside a very real chapel directly across the street from where we were reading. Herman Melville himself attended the Seamen's Bethel, but described a nautical-themed pulpit that did not exist until a century later, for the benefit of fans of the film version of his book.

For the past four years, I have learned a lot about coastal geography simply by spending time on the water in and around New Bedford, as a member of one of the three clubs that regularly row modern repicas of the boats that were used in 18th- and 19th-century whale hunts. I wrote about some of the learning that comes from this hobby in my Harbor Learning blog post when I first started rowing in 2012. Time on the water has also helped me to learn many things about tides, including the fact that I will never really understand them!
Image: Whaling City Rowing
Finally, the Captain Ahab get-up gives me a chance to promote a new course I am offering in the summer 2017 session -- New Bedford Fortnight. Because I have enjoyed teaching Geography of Brockton in the past, I decided to offer this two-week immersion in Whaling City. Each afternoon of the course will begin with a local institution -- such as the Whaling Museum or a community organization -- and then continue with explorations by van, on foot, and on boats. One session will include a visit to my family's "Whaling House" in nearby Fairhaven.

This course will be open to geography majors and non-majors alike. Check the course blog for more information; scheduling details will be posted soon.

~~ Dr. James Hayes-Bohanan, aka Coffee Maven

Monday, April 11, 2016

EarthView at the People's House -- April 20

Our department's Dr. Domingo recently sent this to the teachers of SEMAGNET, the network of geography teachers in southeastern Massachusetts. We reprint it here for wider sharing.

To: Geography teachers, Students of Geography, Friends of Geography
On Wednesday, April 20th  we will display the Earth in the Nurses Hall at the Massachusetts State House as seen below. 
The 20ft tall EarthView will once again be displayed for the public to experience the joy of geography and to go inside the giant inflatable globe and marvel at the features of our planet. We will be in Nurses Hall -- open to the public -- from 9am to 2pm.
We invite you to come to the State House – bring students as well - and we ask that you invite your state Representative and Senator to come on down and talk geography (you can find your representative through the link below). We have two bills in the State House - H.491 and S.291 (links are below) that would establish a Geography Education Commission so that we can talk about the value of geography and why we need to have more geography taught in our schools.

We are looking forward to seeing you at the State House on April 20th, just a few days before Earth Day.

Find the bill:
(The "Miscellaneous" tab indicates sponsors of each bill. If your representative or senator is a sponsor, please thank them. If they are not, they may still be supporters who missed the sponsorship requests last year. You can still ask them to support the bill.)

For a whole host of reasons, it is good to get to know your local state representatives and senators. If you do not know who they are, you can find legislators here:
You can find email addresses, field offices, phone numbers, and office numbers within the State House. You can contact them to discuss any issue that matters to you at the state level -- including geography education. Even if you do not talk to the legislator personally, the job of staff members is to let senators and representatives know what constituents care about enough to call, write or visit. Since most people do none of these things, this is a good way to make a difference.  

Saturday, April 9, 2016

10 Great Places to Kayak in New England

New England has some of the best kayaking destinations in America. The scenery is great and there really is something for everyone. Here are 10 of the finest destinations as recommended by Boston.com. Enjoy.


Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Top 10 Haunted places in Massachusetts

Have you ever wanted to be a ghost hunter and see what really lurks in the night? There are places all over the world that give you the opportunity to take the chance to come face to face with the spirits of those that are passed on, and if you didn't know many of these places are just around the corner from where you live, if not where you live. Here are 10 places in Massachusetts that are said to have some paranormal activity happening. Enter if you dare.

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Top ten Major League Baseball Stadiums

It is spring time in the United States so it means it is time for Baseball season! I feel that these ball parks were chosen for their history and number of fans that visit them during the offseason.  The listicle I found was about the top ten MLB parks that include:
#1 PNC Park home to the Pittsburgh Pirates
#2 AT&T Park which is the home to the San Francisco Giants
#3 Wrigley Field home to the Chicago Cubs
#4 Oriole Park at Camden Yards home to the Baltimore Orioles
#5 Coors Field home to the Colorado Rockies
#6 Fenway Ark home to the Boston Red Sox
#7 Busch Stadium home to the St. Louis Cardinals
#8 Target Field home to the Minnesota Twins
#9 Dodger Stadium home of the Los Angeles Dodgers
#10 Kauffman Stadium home to the Kansas City Royals

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Top 11 Lakes to Check Out in Massachusetts

Now that spring is right around the corner there are some great lakes to check out as the weather gets warmer. Exploring the wooded areas around the lakes or fishing in the lakes makes for a great spring activity. The lakes span all four corners of the State and are no more than 3 hours from anywhere in the state. Many of the lakes are found within driving distance of Bridgewater and make for some great summer fun. The following listicle shows stunning pictures and inspired this post.

Monday, February 29, 2016

Top Ten Wedding Venues in Rhode Island

Rhode Island, also known as the ocean state, should not be underestimated for its size. The places listed are not in any particular order, just the ten best in my opinion. Most of them are near the water, but there are also vineyards, farms, and mansions.

They include:
Providence Public Library
Blithewold Mansions, Gardens and Arboretum
Harbor Lights Marina and Country Club
The Towers
Carolyn's Sakonnet Vineyard
Aldrich Mansion
Sweet Berry Farm
Glen Manor House
Belle Mer

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Top 10 Best Places to Hike in North America

Discover the ten best places to hike in North America! Focused mainly on the west coast of the North America with two locations in Hawaii, these areas show the diverse scenery of North America including places like Yosemite, the Grand Canyon, and Yellowstone.
The original listicle has a gallery of photos to view and includes a travel guide, hotels and things to do in the area. This blog includes a map of where all of these amazing places are located!

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

My Top Ten Golf Courses

There are thousands of golf courses in the United States and it is impossible to experience every single one of them. Instead of trying to rank courses i have only seen on television or have heard about, I decided to make a ranking of only the courses i have played. The interactive map below displays my top ten courses and also several other courses that did not quite make the cut.

Brewery Listicle

This map was made from a listicle of the top ten most visited breweries in Massachusetts. As seen in the map there is a cluster of breweries in and around Boston, including the two most popular Samuel Adams and Harpoon.

Geography of Coffee in Peru

Dr. Hellström and Dr. Hayes-Bohanan are planning a travel course to Peru in 2017, combining high-altitude climate research and coffee.

Welcome to BSU Geography's New Home

Bridgewater State College became a university in 2010. Today our seniors decided it was about time to change our blog address!

If you want to see earlier posts, please visit BSC Geography at http://bsc-geography.blogspot.com/.