Peter Payette

Michigan residents have a new potential roads fix to consider, after the state Senate passed a series of bills last week. State lawmakers have been debating how to pay for fixing Michigan's crumbling roads for years. The initial plan, Proposal 1, was voted down by voters last May.

The Senate plan promises to raise $1.5 billion using a combination of tax increases and budget cuts. But as the Michigan Public Radio Network's Rick Pluta explains, the bills are controversial for both Republicans and Democrats.

Tom Carr

A thousand people are expected in the woods near Mesick this weekend as part of a Rainbow Family gathering. Several hundred are already there to sing, hug and meditate for world peace.

And if you show up at the gathering in the Manistee National Forest, you’re going to get hugged.

There are drum circles, campfires, people yelling “Welcome home” and “I love you” to strangers.

The Rainbow Family has been around for about 40 years and their gatherings are like Woodstock without electric guitars. This one is tucked away deep in the woods south of Mesick.

National Writers Series: An evening with Jeff Shaara

Jul 3, 2015

On this program from the National Writers Series, Jeff Shaara explains why General Sherman was so successful in the American Civil War. Even though Sherman is known for his "total war" strategy, Shaara says his tactics weren't as harsh as many people believe. Jeff Shaara is the author of six works of historical fiction about the Civil War. The latest is called "The Fateful Lightning." He talks this hour with Ed Tracy, CEO of Roxbury Road Creative.

“Weird Al” Yankovic has been making people laugh for more than 30 years.

On Sunday, he’s stopping by Traverse City with his “Mandatory Fun” Tour.

Hear how he came up with the idea for his song Foil, which parodies the pop song Royals by Lorde.

Thank you!

Jul 2, 2015

THANK YOU! We surpassed our Summer Fund Drive goal with incredible community support! We couldn't do what we do without you.

DRust / Flickr

The state Senate has approved its $1.5 billion plan to boost road funding.

Lt. Gov. Brian Calley cast two tie-breaking votes on bills to gradually raise Michigan’s gas tax by 15 cents over three years. Calley says those votes were meant to move the process along toward reaching a final compromise on road funding.

“I think this was a positive step toward actually getting our roads fixed,” Calley told reporters shortly after casting the rare tie-breaking votes.

Arrow to the sun

Jun 29, 2015
Patricia DeLisa

There's a terrific tale from the Pueblo people of the southwest region that can easily be linked to what's happening with Venus and Jupiter in the sky this week!

Levi Meeuwenberg and his fiancé Brenda Baran, of Realeyes Homestead in Traverse City.
Christopher Chemsak

In 2006, Levi Meeuwenberg left Michigan to perform and tour with Madonna as a parkour artist. 

Yes, the Madonna.

Singer's sorrow makes the joy richer

Jun 25, 2015
Jetty Rae sits with her 18-month year old son, Beck.
Daniel Wanschura


This weekend marks the 10th anniversary of the Big Ticket Festival, in Gaylord, Michigan. The music festival features over 60 artists spread out over 6 stages. 

One of the artists performing on the main stage Friday, is Charlevoix resident, Jetty Rae.

Aaron Selbig

If you’ve picked up a box of fresh strawberries recently from a local grocery store, there’s a good chance they were handpicked by a migrant farm worker.

The workers have been coming up from their homes in Mexico or Texas for generations. But in recent years, local farmers have noticed there are fewer workers coming to northern Michigan. They’re saying the problem is likely to get much worse.

Steve Bardenhagen grew up on his family’s farm in Leelanau County.


Classical Music & Culture

Michigan Writers on the Air - June 2015

On this episode of Michigan Writers on the Air, Terry Wooten reads from his new collection of poetry and talks about the Stone Circle Gatherings. Plus, Jill Beauchamp provides some background about the Riverside Shakespeare’s production of Measure for Measure. Also, Cari Nogi explains the process of revising a self-published book to meet the requirements of a commercial publisher. Finally, Fleda Brown provides an audio essay on American poet Margaret Gibson.
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