Latest Northern Michigan News


Northern Michigan Elections & Government
3:20 pm
Tue March 24, 2015

U.S. Rep. Dan Benishek says he's running again in 2016


Not even five months after winning a third term, the Michigan republican has made plans to run for a fourth.

“I’m happy to serve the people of northern Michigan if they’ll have me," Benishek told IPR News on Tuesday. "And I’ve decided that I’m going to try to stay a little longer.”

Benishek had made a pledge in 2010 in favor of term limits – saying he supported "a three-term limit on members of Congress."

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Dark Sky Park
8:11 am
Mon March 23, 2015

Snogorotchka -The Snow Maiden

Edmund du Lac's illustration of the elderly couple finding the gift of a snow maiden from the winter snows.

This week we can dive headlong into Spring as we follow the waxing crescent moon across the sky, meeting first with Pleiades on Monday night, and then at week's end moving through the region of the sky where we find Cancer and Leo, and the bright planet Jupiter. This time of year, when we're in the first full week of Spring, it calls to mind the story from the Russian tradition of "the Snow Maiden", also known as "Snegorotchka." The story is that there is an older couple that has lived a long and happy life, though somewhat melancholy because they have never had a child of their own.  But then, lo! one Winter, they build a snow maiden out of the snow, who actually takes on a human life. The snow maiden lives happily with them throughout the Winter months, but then with the return of the Spring, she melts away, just as the receding snow line moves through our area in this season. This story is beautifully told by Edmund du Lac, and it's worth reading one full paragraph here that beautifully describes the onset of Spring, as we all get ready for it ourselves: And now the Winter months moved on. With slow and steady stride they went from mountain top to mountain top, around the circle of the sky-line. The Earth began to clothe itself in green. The great trees, holding out their naked arms like huge babies waiting to be dressed, were getting greener and greener, and last year's birds sat in their branches singing this year's songs. The early flowers shed their perfume on the breeze, and now and then a waft of warm air, straying from its summer haunts, caressed the cheek and breathed a glowing promise in the ear. The forests and the fields were stirring. A beautiful spirit brooded over the face of nature;~Spring was trembling on the leash and tugging to be free... So as you watch the Moon getting bigger and bigger this week, you can imagine it as Spring, tugging to be freed from the snow across the land.

Michigan Arts & Culture
12:57 pm
Fri March 13, 2015

Local musician delivering in Nashville

Jimmy Olson talks about pursuing his music dreams in Nashville.
Credit Daniel Wanschura

If you’re ever in Nashville and find yourself ordering dinner for delivery, you just might see Jimmy Olson come to your door. The musician from Northern Michigan is trying to turn his musical talents into a career; and he’s willing to do just about anything to make that happen.   

Olson has been making music for a long time.

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Road Improvements
1:01 pm
Wed March 11, 2015

Chamber endorses sales tax bump for roads

The Traverse City Area Chamber of Commerce supports a sales tax increase to fix Michigan’s roads. That’s good news for the plan that has lost some key support in recent weeks. The higher tax would raise more than a billion dollars a year for transportation spending.

Critics say there was another option, one that did not involve new taxes. But Doug Luciani, President and CEO of the Traverse City chamber, says they looked at that plan too.

“It didn’t address the full load of the transportation needs,” he says. “It fell far short of what the transportation needs are.”

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Michigan Arts & Culture
10:59 am
Wed March 11, 2015

Theater director draws parallel between economic gaps then and now

The Benzie County Players rehearse "God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater."
Credit Daniel Wanschura

Forty-five years ago, Andy Mollema participated in his first readers theater production. He was a graduate student at Central Michigan University. The show was adapted from Kurt Vonnegut’s 1965 novel, "God Bless You Mr. Rosewater."

Today, Mollema is the one directing his own version of the novel, again in readers theater format.

“What’s going on with society today with this wealth versus disparity sort of thing, just brought me to want to resurrect this script,” says Mollema. “It’s absolutely pertinent, if not more so, today than it was then.” 


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