David Cassleman

Morning Edition Host, Reporter

David Cassleman is a reporter and Morning Edition host for IPR News Radio. He got his start in public radio at WDET in Detroit, and joined Interlochen Public Radio in June 2014. He’s a graduate of the University of Michigan.

Michigan Democratic Party

The race for northern Michigan's congressional seat is starting to take shape. In March, Rep. Dan Benishek said he would run for a fourth term, despite his pledge of support for term limits in 2010.

Now, Lon Johnson – the chair of the Michigan Democratic Party – says he might run, too.

"A number of people have asked me to consider running for Congress," Lon Johnson told Rick Pluta, Capitol bureau chief for the Michigan Public Radio Network last week.

"I'm considering it."

Linda Stephan

 

Yana Dee is not your typical seamstress.

She doesn’t use pins. She doesn’t use an iron very often, and she doesn’t use patterns in the traditional sense. She now has a store located in Traverse City’s high-rent downtown. Hear how she makes women’s clothing by combining retro ways with modern trends. 

When you think about rattlesnakes, you might picture Arizona. Or Texas. Somewhere out in the desert. But one snake’s rattle doesn’t come from the deserts of the Southwest. It’s from the pine forests of Michigan.

In fact, Michigan is a stronghold for the eastern massasauga rattlesnake.

Brett Levin / Flickr

In the last presidential election, voters in Colorado and Washington both said 'yes' to legalizing recreational marijuana. Those were the first two states to do so in the United States. Now, three groups in Michigan are trying to do the same in the 2016 presidential election.  Two of those groups have already started collecting signatures to put the issue on the ballot. 

Jake Neher, Capitol bureau reporter for the Michigan Public Radio Network, says support for legalizing marijuana has been growing over the years and many see the 'writing on the wall' for approval in the 2016 election.


Aaron Selbig

 This week on the Green Room: Shakespeare’s ‘As You Like It’ gets a folk music makeover. Courtney Kaiser-Sandler, instructor of the singer-songwriter program here at Interlochen Arts Academy, talks about creating the play’s original score.

Plus, street art becomes fine art. A skateboard art exhibit opens at the Dennos Museum in Traverse City.

 

 

 

 

Paul Maritinez/Flickr

State lawmakers passed a budget of $13.9 billion for schools last week. The headlines say funding per student is going up across the state between $70 and $140. But Rick Pluta, the Capitol bureau chief for the Michigan Public Radio Network, says the story is more complicated when you get beyond the headlines.


Daniel Wanschura

Charlevoix boasts some unique houses. Often referred to as mushroom, Gnome, or Hobbit houses, the homes attract hundreds of tourists during the summer months. A new documentary film, The Wizard of Boulder Park, celebrates the architectural legacy of Earl Young, the man who built them. With limited architectural training, Young designed the homes to integrate with the natural landscape. 

Nicole Farrell

If you listen to Interlochen Public Radio in the morning regularly, you won't need an introduction to Bob Moler. He has been teaching listeners about the sun, the moon and the stars on IPR for 40 years. This week Bob started his 41st year Ephemeris, a daily one-minute diary of the night sky.

Here Bob Moler remembers some of the most exciting objects to pass through the sky in the past 40 years:


Prison fence.
WFIU Public Radio/Flickr

There's a new plan to reopen the so-called 'punk prison' near Baldwin, and to bring 300 high-security inmates from Vermont to northern Michigan. The prison used to house juvenile offenders, until it was closed in the mid-2000s.

Supporters of the move say it would lead to 300 new jobs in Lake County, but opponents say it's a dangerous idea.

Aaron Selbig

Musician Rachel Brooke has been compared to Loretta Lynn, Emmylou Harris and Neko Case. She spends most of her time on the road these days traveling the country, but she loves to be writing songs at her home is near Grayling. We catch up with her during one of her recent hometown gigs.

Plus, artist Rufus Snoddy has collaborated with his daughter, Maya James, on an exhibition at Twisted Fish Art Gallery. James is a spoken-word artist. The exhibit, called Hybrid runs through June 28.

Traverse City Whiskey Company

Small distillers in northern Michigan would get a big tax break under a bill introduced in the U.S. Senate last week by Sen. Gary Peters (D-MI).

He visited Traverse City Whiskey Company on Tuesday to promote the legislation, which would lower the federal excise tax on liquor from $13.50 per gallon to $2.70.

Traverse City's Joshua Davis has advanced to the final round of NBC's singing contest 'The Voice.' Now it's up to his supporters to get out the vote to try to bring him a victory.

Plus, 'The King and I' is once again selling out on Broadway, nearly 65 years after its debut. But you don't have to go all the way to New York City to see the musical – it's on stage in northern Michigan at Interlochen Center for the Arts.

If you're worried about the oil pipeline that runs under the Straits of Mackinac, you may have a tough time finding detailed information about it. Much of the oversight is handled by the federal government, and the records are often kept secret.

A bill that's in the state house right now would go even further to exempt oil and gas pipelines from Freedom of Information Act requests.

Tom Carr

Pete Farmer isn’t opposed to playing with other musicians, but it can be a pain to coordinate. Sometimes he just wants to play by himself – and that’s why he created a drum contraption that turns anyone into a one-man or one-woman-band.

Plus, author Stuart Dybek is a genius – at least according to the MacArthur Foundation which gave him one of its so-called 'genius grants' a few years back. We hear from him in advance of an appearance in northern Michigan next week.


svadilfari/Flickr

Last week Governor Rick Snyder rolled out a plan to turn around the state's largest school district – Detroit Public Schools – which is deep in debt and has been under state oversight for years.

The governor wants a fresh start for Detroit students by creating a new district for them, and he's suggesting diverting money from all the other students in the state to pay for the spinoff.

Michigan Public Radio's Rick Pluta breaks down the plan:

Leland Public School isn't afraid of breaking necks or slitting throats, they're performing Sondheim’s dark, Victorian musical Sweeney Todd. Hear why they didn't shy away from the Demon Barber of Fleet Street. Plus, who said vinyl is dead? Hear why it’s making a comeback. Also in this episode, we hear from Joshua Davis as he tells us about one of his favorite green rooms.


Peter Payette

On Tuesday, Michigan voters decide whether to raise taxes in the state to pay for roads and bridges. A 'yes' vote on Proposal 1 would raise more than $2 billion in new taxes in 2016.

A 'no' vote would send legislators back to the drawing board.

But while most people in Michigan agree the state needs more money for roads, they aren’t likely to vote yes next week. And the result could be more frustration with state government.


Paul Maritinez/Flickr

Many adoptions in Michigan are handled by private agencies – and many of those agencies are religiously affiliated, such as Catholic Charities. State lawmakers are considering a bill that would give these agencies the right to deny service to couples based on its own religious beliefs.

Supporters say the bill would protect these agencies' first amendment rights. But critics say the bill would lead to discrimination against same-sex couples.

Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park

Welcome to the Green Room, a weekly arts journal from Interlochen Public Radio. Listen below to this week's episode about the arts, artists and performance.


U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Traverse City

Lake Michigan is dotted with shipwrecks, and many of them lay in a stretch of water off the coast of Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore called the Manitou Passage. The U.S. Coast Guard recently released photographs showing what some of these shipwrecks look like from a helicopter.

Shipwreck hunter and author Ross Richardson says some of the wrecks photographed may have been previously undiscovered.


Automobile insurance rates are expensive in Michigan. The state regularly places in the top ten for highest rates in the country.

But Republicans in Lansing say they have an answer that could lead to lower premiums. The state Senate passed a bill last week that would overhaul Michigan's no-fault insurance system by targeting the way insurers deal with healthcare providers, among other changes.

Rick Pluta, the capitol bureau chief of the Michigan Public Radio Network, explains how the plan would work:


Joffrey Ballet

Welcome to the Green Room, a weekly arts journal from Interlochen Public Radio. Listen below to this week's episode about the arts, artists and performance.


Aaron Selbig

Affordable housing is hard to find up north. If you want a vacation rental for a week, it's not too difficult to find one. But it can be tough to find an apartment or house to rent in the long term, especially if you're lower or middle-income.

And, of course, affordable is a relative term.

Wayne Erreca

Welcome to the Green Room on Interlochen Public Radio, our new weekly arts journal. Join us to hear about the arts, artists, and performance.

Why is it called the Green Room?

A green room is a space where performers hang out between the dressing room and the stage. It's a place to relax, that usually has a couch and some snacks. So think of the Green Room on Interlochen Public Radio as your backstage pass into the world of the arts each week.

Researchers in Traverse City will check a small stream for E. coli this summer.

Mitchell Creek tested positive for high levels of the bacteria in 2009, when scientists with Michigan State University monitored eight sites along the waterway.

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