Latest Northern Michigan News


Road Improvements
3:41 pm
Mon January 26, 2015

Franz hosts meetings about tax proposal

State Representative Ray Franz held another informational meeting today about the higher sales tax proposed for Michigan.

Franz says voters are being told it will provide more money for roads and bridges, which is true, but he says the higher tax would increase spending in many other areas.

“It adds another $300 million for schools. It adds another $95 million dollars for local government,” Franz says. “Those are all not roads and bridges.”

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Saturday Radio Diary
11:04 am
Mon January 26, 2015

January and the season of growth

This week the story in the stars in not about what we can see, but what we can know.

We're just about halfway through the Winter season during this last week of January, and it's at this time of year we can begin to consider the 'mystery of agriculture' as it was practiced and understood by ancient cultures.

We have to bear in mind that agriculture, the art of planting seeds into Earth that would then take root, sprout, and eventually bear fruit, was regarded as a sacred practice that could only take place during the proper season.

If we set aside for a moment that Copernican though the Earth is not at the center of our planetary system, then we can begin to imagine what motivated ancient practice.

For thousands of years the understanding was that the Earth was at the center of the universe, and that in certain very specific seasons, forces would stream toward Earth from the spiritual cosmos that would instigate growth forces to rise up out of the Earth.

So when would this kind of encounter take place between Earth and its celestial environment? Around the time of the last week of January. Astronomically, here's what's happening:  The Sun, appearing to move around the Earth, is almost halfway through the season, which means days are growing longer. The Sun came to its standing still moment furthest below the celestial equator at Solstice, which marked the beginning of Winter. 

In several weeks, it will arrive at its Equinox moment, the first day of Spring, when day and night are of equal length.  And just prior to the halfway point on this journey, this period of time occurs, or so it was anciently held, when all the growth forces for the coming seasons had finally arrived at Earth.

Looking into the sky this week, we can see the brilliant planet Venus in the West, about 45 minutes after sunset. Then turning to face East, the spectacular planet Jupiter is rising up over the horizon at the same time. Watch these two as they move closer and closer together throughout the coming weeks and months, until they meet in the West in the evening sky, right at the beginning of Summer, in late June.

5:27 pm
Thu January 22, 2015

How historic Glen Haven became a ghost town

Former Glen Haven Canning Company building.

Ghost towns don't only belong to the Old West. You can find them scattered all over Michigan, including Glen Haven, located in the Leelanau Peninsula right inside the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore.

Marie Scott is a park ranger in the area. She says the town began before the civil war as a stop for steamers to pick up wood for fuel. As the traffic picked up, it grew from only a dock to a fully functioning town.

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Northern Michigan Elections & Government
2:06 pm
Thu January 22, 2015

Northern Michigan's freshmen lawmakers learn the 'intricate stuff' of Lansing

Rep. Lee Chatfield and Rep. Triston Cole

A new session began for state lawmakers last week. 

The newest members of the state House of Representatives and Senate from northern Michigan are settling into new offices and hiring staff, among many other things.

Right now they’re learning about new jobs and about the challenges of getting anything done in Lansing.

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6:07 am
Thu January 22, 2015

Cass Road bridge still alive

Credit Tom Carr

There may not be a “Bridge Out Ahead” sign for Traverse City drivers after all. County commissioners have backed off from a proposal to pull funding for a replacement to a Cass Road bridge.

The run-down, one-lane crossing is to be taken out when a connected dam is demolished next year. Some commissioners feel it is not worth the expense to replace, believing what is needed is a larger bridge just to the north.

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