This article assesses the nature of the sarcoplasmic reticulum (SR) in uterine smooth muscle. Modern imagining techniques have revealed new information about the location and density of Ca storage and release. Release mechanisms, including IP(3) and Ca itself, via ryanodine receptors (RyR), as well as possible roles for cyclic ADP ribose, and the contribution of the SR to relaxation are detailed. The role of the SR Ca-ATPase in both decay of the Ca transient and maintaining Ca homeostasis is reviewed. Recent data on the role of local Ca signals from the SR in contributing to membrane excitability and contractility are discussed, along with interactions with ion channels in lipid microdomains.