Morgan Springer


Morgan Springer is a reporter at Interlochen Public Radio. Her stories have been featured on NPR, Michigan Radio, WHYY's The Pulse and National Native News. Morgan won a 2016 first place national PRNDI award and a 2017 regional Edward R. Murrow Award for her story "Grandmother's letter from the Holocaust." Her story "Behind bars, transformation through poetry" won a first place, national PRNDI award in the soft feature category in 2015.

She has an undergraduate degree in International Studies from Earlham College. After graduating, she did a stint as the constituent services coordinator for the Massachusetts Attorney General's Office before leaving to work at a garden center. In 2014, she went to the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies, bringing her briefly back to her home state of Maine.

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Old Mission Peninsula School - TCAPS Facebook page

Updated January 24, 2017:  The TCAPS board approved the sale of Old Mission Peninsula School to the Old Mission Education Foundation Monday night.

An education foundation is poised to buy the Old Mission Peninsula School. Traverse City Area Public Schools reached a tentative agreement to sell the building to the Old Mission Peninsula Education Foundation for $1.1 million. The sale would go through in 2018.

Boyne Highlands Resort

A man has been charged with second degree arson today in connection with the Boyne Highlands Resort fire in December. The fire injured a dozen people and damaged around 70 rooms.

The defendant, David Soltysiak, from Petoskey, was at the resort on December 11th for an office Christmas party, says Emmet County Sheriff Pete Wallin.  Soltysiak booked a room to stay the night.

Women's March on Washington

A Traverse City contingent will attend the Women’s March on Washington on Saturday. March organizers expect around 200,000 marchers to gather on the National Mall the day after President-elect Donald Trump's inauguration.

Organizers have released a set of guiding principles stressing that "women’s rights are Human Rights and Human Rights are women's rights."

Boyne Highlands Resort

Foul play is suspected in the fire at Boyne Highlands Resort in December. The fire damaged around 70 rooms and injured a dozen people.

Emmet County Prosecutor James Linderman says his office is in the process of reviewing the investigation.

"Since this is an arson investigation and a rather high-level investigation, we did have the assistance of certain agencies," says Linderman. "The primary would be the Emmet County Sheriff’s Office.”

The sheriff's office passed its report on the fire to Linderman last week.

Linda Stephan

Right now, if a children get sick in the Cadillac region, they can be hospitalized as an inpatient at Munson Healthcare Cadillac Hospital. Beginning in May, those kids will be sent to Munson Medical Center in Traverse City or Helen DeVos Children's Hospital in Grand Rapids.

Adler family

Seventy five years ago this month, the United States declared war on Germany during World War II. That declaration had a dramatic impact on a Jewish family living in Austria and their family members who escaped the Holocaust and settled in Traverse City.


Old Mission Peninsula School - TCAPS Facebook page

Update 12/12/16: The board for Traverse City Area Public Schools votes to redistrict Old Mission Peninsula, sending public schools students on the peninsula to Eastern Elementary School in the fall of 2018. At that time, TCAPS will stop running Old Mission Peninsula School.

Public school students on Old Mission Peninsula will likely go to Eastern Elementary School beginning in fall 2018. Officials for Traverse City Area Public Schools could decide Monday whether to formally redistrict those students to Eastern Elementary School.

Morgan Springer


The administration and faculty at Northwestern Michigan College have finally reached a contract agreement. The agreement comes after more than a year and a half of tense negotiations.

Collective bargaining began when the faculty unionized in 2015. Bronwyn Jones, an instructor at NMC and a faculty representative in the negotiation process, says the faculty originally unionized in part because they felt left out of the college's decision-making processes and the faculty's relationship with administration was strained.

Neighbors helping neighbors. That’s the motto of ShareCare of Leelanau County.

Since 1994, ShareCare has been helping seniors stay in their homes. It’s truly a win-win proposition.

Seniors in Leelanau get the support and help they need to live independently, at home. And volunteers get the reward of knowing they’re helping their neighbors.

Northwestern Michigan College

Faculty at Northwestern Michigan College could again report directly to the college board at regular meetings, according to the NMC administration. But the faculty says the offer comes with too many restrictions.

The faculty report agenda item has been a point of contention since 2007. That’s when the college board stopped hearing directly from teachers at its monthly meeting. After that, faculty could speak at board meetings for 3 minutes periods during the public comment section of the agenda.

Morgan Springer

The pressure is on for districts and teachers to have their students reading proficiently. That’s after Michigan’s third grade reading bill passed this month. The bill says that students who don’t read well by third grade might be held back. It would take effect in three years. So for schools that are struggling, that means turning things around fast. There’s a grade school near Traverse City that has been trying to figure out how to do that.


Traverse City Area Public Schools

The superintendent for Traverse City Area Public Schools says it is unlikely the district will find a way to save Old Mission Peninsula School. Last year, Paul Soma recommended the district close the elementary school due to low enrollment. But when an anonymous, private donor offered $800,000 in March toward saving the school, TCAPS officials postponed the decision to close it. 

Since then, a community group has been meeting with school officials to come up with a creative way to save the school using the private money.

Morgan Springer

It was count day in Michigan public schools Wednesday. It's the day where public schools figure out how many students they have and how much money they’ll get from the state. State money is calculated on a per pupil basis.

Preliminary results show that Traverse City Area Public Schools lost 70 students. Last year, TCAPS had 9,594 students. This year there are 9,524.

One school, Old Mission Peninsula School, lost 20 students. Last fall, school officials recommended closing the school due to low enrollment numbers. 

Grand Traverse Sheriff's Office

Last week IPR News Radio reported that police in Michigan are responding to many more incidents today than a decade ago, and they’re doing it with fewer officers. Part of the problem is not as many people want to be police officers these days, and it’s especially hard to hire new officers in northern Michigan.

Morgan Springer

Updated October 5, 2016: The contract agreement was ratified this morning by Traverse City Area Public Schools' board. The teachers union ratified the agreement on Monday.

Traverse City teachers could secure a three-year contract giving them a pay increase into 2020. Officials in Traverse City Area Public Schools have reached a tentative contract agreement with the Traverse City Education Association, the teachers' union.

Morgan Springer

What would it be like if Jesus Christ visited you periodically, and you chatted for a while? G.T. Long imagined just that and wrote about his interactions with Jesus in Facebook posts for the past two years. Then this year, he turned those posts into a book called Another Sunday in Horton Bay.

In one excerpt from August 23rd, Long describes seeing Jesus in his yard playing with wild turkeys. Long says to Jesus, "I thought that was more for kids."

Grand Traverse Sheriff's Office

Police all over Michigan have a lot more work to do these days. The number of incidents they respond to are up, but the number of officers is down in most places. That’s in part why the Grand Traverse Sheriff’s Office has asked the county for funding to hire five new deputies in 2017. But an audit presented to the county board of commissioners last night says that’s not a good idea. 


Emmet County

You can now ride your bike from Lake Michigan to Lake Huron on a fully-improved trail network. The trail system starts in Charlevoix, heads to Mackinac City and then goes down to Alpena. It spans about 140 miles.

Morgan Springer

The family-owned restaurant Hofbrau Steakhouse and American Grill in Interlochen is changing its name after being asked to do so by a German company. The German beer maker Staaliches Hofbräuhaus says the Hofbrau is violating its trademark.

The restaurant owners considered fighting it, but decided the best thing to do was to pick something new. So they're holding a public naming contest. People can propose names for the restaurant, and the winner gets a prize.

Morgan Springer

I’m staying at D. H. Day Campground in Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore with family. My uncle, aunt and three cousins are visiting from New York. It’s a perfect evening – in my opinion –  at Site 15. Somewhat cool; sweaters and socks weather. The sky is flecked with stars, and the peepers are out. We sit around around the fire roasting marshmallows for the classic camping dessert: s'mores. 

Morgan Springer

A plan to create a nonprofit to save the elementary school on Old Mission Peninsula was presented publicly last night. At the joint meeting, board members from Peninsula Township and Traverse City Area Public Schools were asked to work with the soon-to-be-created Old Mission Peninsula Education Foundation to keep the school open. TCAPS had proposed closing it because of low enrollment.

Morgan Springer

Class begins this week for 57 school districts in Michigan, including three districts within the Wexford-Missaukee Intermediate School District. Schools are required to start after Labor Day in Michigan, but these districts applied successfully for a waiver from the Michigan Department of Education.

One district starting early is Manton Consolidated Schools. Their first day is Wednesday, August 24th.

Morgan Springer

This past year, the Traverse City Historical Society received a diary. The diary was donated by a woman from Kalamazoo who bought it at an antique store in Traverse City while on vacation. It was written in 1919 by a 15-year-old boy who lived in town. The author didn't identify himself.  The Kalamazoo woman gave the historical society the diary with one request: figure out who wrote it.

Traverse City Area Public Schools

The group working to save the elementary school on Old Mission Peninsula is ready to go public with its proposal. They began planning after Traverse City Area Public Schools' board held postponed a decision to close the school because of a potential $800,000 donation. TCAPS officials were considering closing the school because they said it was losing the district money each year because there aren’t enough students.

The board will decide tonight if they’re willing to hear the proposal for the first time in a joint meeting with the Peninsula Township board.

Morgan Springer

We all know cigarettes are bad for you, and it’s incredibly hard to quit. It takes most people between five and eight attempts to actually quit, according to a Farid Shamo, a public health consultant with the Tobacco Control Program the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services. Lately, DHHS is focusing on a particular group: people with HIV. Half of them smoke.