Letters 10-24-2016

It’s Obama’s 1984 Several editions ago I concluded a short letter to the editor with an ominous rhetorical flourish: “Welcome to George Orwell’s 1984 and the grand opening of the Federal Department of Truth!” At the time I am sure most of the readers laughed off my comments as right-wing hyperbole. Shame on you for doubting me...

Gun Bans Don’t Work It is said that mass violence only happens in the USA. A lone gunman in a rubber boat, drifted ashore at a popular resort in Tunisia and randomly shot and killed 38 mostly British and Irish tourists. Tunisian gun laws, which are among the most restrictive in the world, didn’t stop this mass slaughter. And in January 2015, two armed men killed 11 and wounded 11 others in an attack on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo. French gun laws didn’t stop these assassins...

Scripps’ Good Deed No good deed shall go unpunished! When Dan Scripps was the 101st District State Representative, he introduced legislation to prevent corporations from contaminating (e.g. fracking) or depleting (e.g. Nestle) Michigan’s water table for corporate profit. There are no property lines in the water table, and many of us depend on private wells for abundant, safe, clean water. In the subsequent election, Dan’s opponents ran a negative campaign almost solely on the misrepresentation that Dan’s good deed was a government takeover of your private water well...

Political Definitions As the time to vote draws near it’s a good time to check into what you stand for. According to Dictionary.com the meanings for liberal and conservative are as follows:

Liberal: Favorable to progress or reform as in political or religious affairs.

Conservative: Disposed to preserve existing conditions, institutions, etc., or to restore traditions and limit change...

Voting Takes A Month? Hurricane Matthew hit the Florida coast Oct. 6, over three weeks before Election Day. Bob Ross (Oct. 17th issue) posits that perhaps evacuation orders from Governor Scott may have had political motivations to diminish turnout and seems to praise Hillary Clinton’s call for Gov. Scott to extend Florida’s voter registration deadline due to evacuations...

Clinton Foundation Facts Does the Clinton Foundation really spend a mere 10 percent (per Mike Pence) or 20 percent (per Reince Priebus) of its money on charity? Not true. Charity Watch gives it an A rating (the same as it gives the NRA Foundation) and says it spends 88 percent on charitable causes, and 12 percent on overhead. Here is the source of the misunderstanding: The Foundation does give only a small percentage of its money to charitable organizations, but it spends far more money directly running a number of programs...

America Needs Change Trump supports our constitution, will appoint judges that will keep our freedoms safe. He supports the partial-birth ban; Hillary voted against it. Regardless of how you feel about Trump, critical issues are at stake. Trump will increase national security, monitor refugee admissions, endorse our vital military forces while fighting ISIS. Vice-presidential candidate Mike Pence will be an intelligent asset for the country. Hillary wants open borders, increased government regulation, and more demilitarization at a time when we need strong military defenses...

My Process For No I will be voting “no” on Prop 3 because I am supportive of the process that is in place to review and approve developments. I was on the Traverse City Planning Commission in the 1990s and gained an appreciation for all of the work that goes into a review. The staff reviews the project and makes a recommendation. The developer then makes a presentation, and fellow commissioners and the public can ask questions and make comments. By the end of the process, I knew how to vote for a project, up or down. This process then repeats itself at the City Commission...

Regarding Your Postcard If you received a “Vote No” postcard from StandUp TC, don’t believe their lies. Prop 3 is not illegal. It won’t cost city taxpayers thousands of dollars in legal bills or special elections. Prop 3 is about protecting our downtown -- not Munson, NMC or the Commons -- from a future of ugly skyscrapers that will diminish the very character of our downtown...

Vote Yes It has been suggested that a recall or re-election of current city staff and Traverse City Commission would work better than Prop 3. I disagree. A recall campaign is the most divisive, costly type of election possible. Prop 3, when passed, will allow all city residents an opportunity to vote on any proposed development over 60 feet tall at no cost to the taxpayer...

Yes Vote Explained A “yes” vote on Prop 3 will give Traverse City the right to vote on developments over 60 feet high. It doesn’t require votes on every future building, as incorrectly stated by a previous letter writer. If referendums are held during general elections, taxpayers pay nothing...

Beware Trump When the country you love have have served for 33 years is threatened, you have an obligation and a duty to speak out. Now is the time for all Americans to speak out against a possible Donald Trump presidency. During the past year Trump has been exposed as a pathological liar, a demagogue and a person who is totally unfit to assume the presidency of our already great country...

Picture Worth 1,000 Words Nobody disagrees with the need for affordable housing or that a certain level of density is dollar smart for TC. The issue is the proposed solution. If you haven’t already seen the architect’s rendition for the site, please Google “Pine Street Development Traverse City”...

Living Wage, Not Tall Buildings Our community deserves better than the StandUp TC “vote no” arguments. They are not truthful. Their yard signs say: “More Housing. Less Red Tape. Vote like you want your kids to live here.” The truth: More housing, but for whom? At what price..

Home · Articles · News · Music · Alpenfest
. . . .


Rick Coates - July 11th, 2011
Alpenfest brings a Teutonic touch to Gaylord
By Rick Coates
Something troubling you? Consider the Burning of the Boogg at Alpenfest as your opportunity to rid yourself of your troubles.
The 47th Annual Alpenfest in Gaylord kicks off Tuesday July 12 and the Burning of the Boogg has become an opening day tradition for the popular festival.
“The Boogg is from Swiss tradition where a giant snowman made of cotton is burned to celebrate the transition of winter into spring,” said Meghan Aimoe, president of Alpenfest. “Since it is already the middle of summer we have created a different concept here at Alpenfest. People jot down their troubles and slips of paper they are placed inside of the Boogg and we light it and your troubles go up in smoke.”
The process begins at 7 pm with the creation of lampions followed by the Lampion Parade. Another Swiss tradition adapted by the Alpenfest, lampions are created by cutting designs into the sides and top of a box. The designs are then covered with colored tissue paper or plastic wrap. A flashlight is inserted providing light as well as a handle to carry the lantern. Everyone carries their lampion in a procession that takes the Boogg to its burning site.  About 9:30 is when the Boogg is finally lit. 

Aimoe and the other festival organizers they believe what sets Alpenfest apart from so many festivals are the offbeat events and the fact that so many events are free.
“We have so many unique events like the ladies ankle competition and the mens knee competition or the kazoo competition,” said Aimoie. “Plus we have free food events everyday, free entertainment and free contests and events for kids.”
Alpenfest remains one of Northern Michigan’s greatest entertainment values. The Alpenfest pin that is designed each year by a local artist is still only $3 and gains admittance into several food events.
The free food events (need the button and some events have a nominal charge so get the official Alpenfest schedule when you arrive) kick off on opening night with the ‘Wurst Wagon,” where members of the Michigan State Police Post in Gaylord grill hot dogs for everyone. On Wednesday morning Die Groeste Kaffe Pause – “The World’s Largest Coffee Break” takes place with complimentary coffee, donuts and milk under the Pavilion. At noon check out the Pontresina Suppen Mahlzeit - Alpenfest’s secret soup recipe. Free (with your 2011 Alpenfest pin or $5 without the pin). A pulled pork dinner on Wednesday night is $3 with the Alpenfest pin.
Ethnic highlights for Friday include pfannekuchen und wuerstchen, a pancake and sausage breakfast and a sausage and sauerkraut meal during the dinner hour.
“Most of these events have been a part of the Alpenfest tradition from the beginning. Our visitors like that they can count on these events every year and so do those who grew up here and return each year for this week,” said Aimoe. “Gaylord is still a small town that is growing and will continue to grow, Alpenfest helps to remind us that no matter how big our community gets we still have a connection to each other and our past.”

“A lot of people come specifically for the entertainment offerings,” said Aimoe. “Acts this year include The Alan Turner Band, known for their CMTV video ‘BULL Riding Babe,’” the Young Americans, and four-time Grammy nominee band Restless Heart.
Alpenfest and the alpine look and feel of Gaylord began in the early ‘60s when U.S. Plywood built a particle board plant near town. The process used to manufacture particle board was developed and patented by a Swiss businessman and since the new plant meant employment for many in the area, a gala was planned for 1965 when the plant opened. Originally titled the Alpine Festival the event took off; 47 years later Alpenfest remains a Northern Michigan tradition.
Alpenfest takes place July 12-16 in the village of Gaylord. This year’s theme, “Something To Tweet About,” recognizes the festivals embracing of social media. For details and to download the schedule of events check out www.gaylordalpenfest.com. 

Entertainment Highlights:

Tuesday July 12: Alpenfest Queen’s Pageant at 7 pm.

Wednesday July 13:  The Young Americans make their annual visit to Gaylord at Noon and in the evening country music’s Restless Heart from Nashville perform at 8 pm.

Thursday, July 14:  Alan Turner and the Steel Horse Band perform’s a variety of music at 8 pm.  

Friday July 15: Jonny Diaz a Christian rock musician takes the stage at 8 pm.

Saturday July  16: Is the 2011 Alpenfest “finale”  featuring The Elders  The Elders, performing upbeat Celtic dance music at 8 pm. 
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5