Letters 11-23-2015

Cheering From Petoskey While red-eyed rats boil fanatically up from the ancient sewers of Paris to feast on pools of French blood, at the G20 meeting the farcical pied piper of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue thrusts a bony finger at the president of the Russian Federation and yells: “liberté, égalité, fraternité, Clinton, Kerry--Obamaism!”

The Other Mothers And Fathers Regarding the very nice recent article on “The First Lady of Yoga,” I have taken many classes with Sandy Carden, and I consider her to be a great teacher. However, I feel the article is remiss to not even give acknowledgement to other very important yoga influences in northern Michigan...

Drop The Blue Angels The last time I went to the National Cherry Festival, I picked the wrong day. The Blue Angels were forcing everyone to duck and cover from the earsplitting cacophony overhead...

Real Advice For The Sick In the Nov. 16 article “Flu Fighters,” author Kristi Kates fails to mention the most basic tool in our arsenal during Influenza season... the flu vaccine! I understand you might be afraid of being the victim of Jenny McCarthyism, but the science is there...

Keeping Traverse City in the Dark Our environment is our greatest asset. It sustains our lives; it drives our economy. We ignore it at our peril. Northern Michigan Environmental Action Council (NMEAC) has submitted letters of concern to both the city commission and planning commission regarding the proposed 9-story buildings on Pine Street. We have requested an independent environmental assessment with clear answers before a land use permit is granted...

All About Them Another cartoon by Jen Sorensen that brings out the truth! Most of her cartoons are too slanted in a Socialist manner, but when she gets it correct, she hits the nail on the target! “Arizona is the first state to put a 12-month lifetime limit on welfare benefits.” That quote is in the opening panel... 

Unfair To County Employees It appears that the commissioners of Grand Traverse County will seek to remedy a shortfall in the 2016 budget by instituting cuts in expenditures, the most notable the reduction of contributions to various insurance benefits in place for county employees. As one example, the county’s contributions to health insurance premiums will decrease from ten to six percent in 2016. What this means, of course, is that if a county employee wishes to maintain coverage at the current level next year, the employee will have to come up with the difference...

Up, Not Out I would like to congratulate the Traverse City Planning Commission on their decision to approve the River West development. Traverse City will either grow up or grow out. For countless reasons, up is better than out. Or do we enjoy such things as traffic congestion and replacing wooded hillsides with hideous spectacles like the one behind Tom’s West Bay. At least that one is on the edge of town as opposed to in the formerly beautiful rolling meadows of Acme Township...

Lessons In Winning War I am saddened to hear the response of so many of legislators tasked with keeping our country safe. I listen and wonder if they know what “winning” this kind of conflict requires or even means? Did we win in Korea? Did we win in Vietnam? Are we winning in Afghanistan? How is Israel winning against the Palestinians? Will they “take out” Hezbollah...

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Region Watch

Monday, August 8, 2011

Group accuses CMU of keeping a lid on survey of controversial wind project/Groundbreaking for Sleeping Bear bike path

Region Watch Group accuses CMU of keeping a lid on survey of controversial wind project
By Patrick Sullivan
A citizens group opposed to a wind farm in Benzie and Manistee counties
says Central Michigan University (CMU) is keeping documents related to the
project from public view.
An attorney for Arcadia Wind Study Group filed a lawsuit last week that
seeks to force CMU to release hundreds of pages of documents.
CMU and Duke Energy entered into an agreement on March 1 to undertake a
study called “Township Views of Alternative Energy and Wind Farms.”
Duke agreed to pay CMU $21,581 for the work.
Monday, July 25, 2011

This Old House Benefit planned for Old Mission landmark

Region Watch Things are generally pretty quiet at the Old Mission House, which reflects
on 169 years of history, dating back to the earliest days of white
settlement in the Grand Traverse area.
Monday, June 6, 2011

Region Watch: Cherry Festival Music, Ken Smith honored, Chicago-Bound, Bear-ly there

The National Cherry Festival has announced its music lineup for the
Bayside Stage this coming July 1-9.
The big acts include:
• Kansas - Wednesday, July 6
• 1964 Beatles tribute - Thursday, July 7
• .38 Special & Brant Lee Gilbert - Friday, July 8
• Josh Graycin, country - Saturday, July 9
Susan Wilcox, media relations & marketing manager, says a $15 pass will
get festival-goers into all four shows, with nightly passes also
available. And, for the first time, premium seating options will also
be available up-front.
“We‘re also very excited about the line-up at the Cherry Blast Stage in
the beverage tent,“ Wilcox adds.
“These will all be free shows by great performers including the Sun
Messengers, the Detroit Pistons House Band, Motown R&B, Joe Caine, Larry
McCray and Thornetta Davis.“
Check out upcoming stories on the artists in the Express‘s Festival
Music and Cherry Festival issues in late June-early July.
Monday, May 16, 2011

Thunder down under/Something to carp about/Choo-choo

Region Watch Please be seated..
At last year’s Traverse City Film
Festival, organizer Michael Moore made a spur-of-the-moment promise based
on an idea from a member of the audience: if the TC Area Public Schools
would officially honor the Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday for the first
time since its inception 26 years ago, Moore said he would lead a campaign
to provide new seats for the Lars Hockstad
Auditorium, located at Central Grade School on 7th Street.
Monday, April 18, 2011

Saving the Great Lakes/New Frontier/Senior Blowback

Region Watch Saving the Great Lakes
Water activists and experts from throughout the Great Lake Basin will
be flowing in for a “Saving the Great Lakes Forever” conference which
kicks off on Friday, May 6, at the State Theater in downtown Traverse
“We take our incredible natural beauty and abundance for granted, but
there are very real threats facing the Great Lakes Basin.” said
environmental attorney James Olson, who serves as executive director of
the Flow for Water Coalition. “If we don’t protect these majestic
waters now, the Great Lakes could be lost for our future generations.
Our goal is to build deep citizen awareness and provide solutions to
make sure that doesn’t happen.”
Monday, October 25, 2010

New fim fest heads into the wild: Calling all hipsters: Solar sharing

Region Watch New film fest heads into the wild
A Wild and Scenic Environmental Film Festival will be screened at the State Theater in TC on Sunday, November 14, from 1 to 4:30 p.m. Headlining the festival is a humorous documentary, No Impact Man, along with five other short films.
Nationally, the Wild & Scenic Film Festival was launched by the South Yuba River Citizens League, a watershed advocacy group that formed in 2003 to fight several dam projects in California. The League eventually won “wild and scenic” status for 39 miles of the Yuba River. The film festival, which offers local presenters more than 50 films to choose from, began touring in 2004. This year the festival will be seen in more than 110 venues. It will be sponsored in TC by the Michigan Land Use Institute (MLUI).
After the films, the action moves to Left Foot Charley in the Village at Grand Traverse Commons, where MLUI hosts a free reception, from 5-6:30 p.m. The evening concludes with a CD release party and performance by Breathe Owl Breathe for Magic Central, benefiting MLUI, from 7 to 9 p.m.
No Impact Man follows a young, eco-guilty New Yorker, Colin Beavans, as he tries living for a year without affecting the environment. The film recounts the challenges he faces, including not using electricity, taxis or elevators; eating only local food; and making no waste. His biggest challenge? Getting his own family on board.
Fans of another entertaining documentary, King Corn, will enjoy Curt Ellis and Aaron Woolf’s follow-up, entitled Big River. The filmmakers track the harm caused by the fertilizers and insecticides they used to grow their now-famous acre of Iowa corn as those chemicals flow down the Mississippi River to the Gulf of Mexico.
Also on the program will be the winner of the Micromovie Competition for Young Filmmakers, organized by MLUI and SEEDS, a TC-based environmental education group. Entries are still being accepted from those 19 years or younger.
Tickets for the festival are $10 in advance and $12 at the door. They are available at www.mlui.org and Higher Grounds Trading Company, Oryana Natural Foods, and Pangea’s Pizza Pub—all in TC. Tickets for the Breathe Owl Breathe CD release party are $12 in advance and $15 at the door. They are also available at the ticket outlets listed above.
Monday, September 13, 2010

Preserving the Pigeon/Energy Guru Nicole Foss

Region Watch Preserving the Pigeon
The Pigeon River has enjoyed the protection of the Little Traverse
Conservancy since 1983 when Agnes A. Andreae donated 27 acres and a
cabin perched along the river.
Monday, June 7, 2010

Couple to seek skydiving record/ Bullies in BAy Harbor

Region Watch Couple to seek skydiving record
Skydive Harbor Springs is hosting a Guinness World Record Event on June
29, with the public invited to come and watch.
Monday, May 31, 2010

Up in smoke/ Stupak‘s view/ Looking ahead

Region Watch Robert Downes Up in smoke: two proposed coal plants in Rogers City & Bay City
Plans for two new coal plants in Rogers City and Bay City were
scuttled last week, raising hope in Michigan’s environmental community
that power companies will pursue a cleaner path to producing
Monday, May 24, 2010

Desperate moms have an option/ Cyclists urged to support Streets bil/ Camp vows to ovrturn healthcare reform legislation/ Paella anyone

Region Watch Desperate moms have an option
The recent deaths of two newborn babies abandoned in the Traverse City
area has prompted an adoption agency to speak out on a state law passed
nine years ago to help out desperate mothers.
Monday, January 25, 2010

Everyone knows it windy/help for Haiti/Food Rescue delivers

Region Watch Everyone Knows It’s Windy
But some lakeshore residents are fearful of proposed wind farm project
A fight over wind turbines is shaping up in Oceana and Mason counties,
where 400 area residents have organized to oppose a proposed wind farm
project on Lake Michigan.
Monday, November 23, 2009

No home? New housing developement offers refuge/Suiting up/Operatics

Region Watch Danielle Horvath No Home? New housing development offers refuge
By Danielle Horvath
Being homeless can happen to anyone, even for former NBA players like David Vaughn who blew through $22 million and ended up sleeping in his Chevy Impala. Or, it can be a single mom with two kids who escapes an abusive relationship and is living in a campground with winter coming and who still has no job. At least 1.35 million children in the U.S. are homeless during the year -- over 200,000 on any given day.
Monday, November 9, 2009

Region Watch: Med pot grower faces jail/ Want to tell a great story?

Region Watch Anne Stanton Region Watch:Med pot grower faces trial/Want to tell a great story?
By Anne Stanton 11/9/09

Archie Kiel, a “caregiver” who grows marijuana plants for himself and several other medical marijuana patients, was arraigned in 13th Circuit Court last week on felony charges for growing more than the legal limit of plants.
He pled not guilty. Kiel has a jury status conference on December 9—the final date on whether he can decide to plead or go to trial.
Charged with manufacture of more than 20 plants and less than 200, Kiel of Rapid City will likely stand trial in December, unless the judge agrees to dismiss his case, said his attorney Ross Hickman.
Hickman says he wishes the prosecutor would just drop the case. “At best, here’s a guy who was trying to abide by the law, and thought he was and made a mistake. It’s certainly possible he didn’t make a mistake. It just doesn’t seem appropriate to hang him out to dry for this,” Hickman said.
Monday, August 31, 2009

Region Watch: Community treasure stolen/Volunteers needed for Schooner Fest/ Calling all Christian rednecks/ Road whales sighted in Europe

Region Watch Region Watch 8/31/09
Community Treasure Stolen
A 125-year-old wrought iron gate on the grounds of the Village of Grand Traverse Commons was so beautiful, photographers often used it as a backdrop for graduation and wedding photos.
But the massive gate was stolen on August 18 with the use of bolt cutters to cut a security chain and most likely heisted in broad daylight.
“It was right across from the K parking lot of Munson Medical Center, but people see trucks there all the time and might have assumed we were having it refurbished. It would have taken four men to carry it, and they’d have to have a flat bed or huge moving truck to carry it,” said developer Ray Minervini, who is renovating the former Traverse City State Hospital into a village of shops, offices, clinics, condos, and restaurants.
“We had intended to restore the gate and the hidden garden behind it,” said Minervini, who said he was devastated by the theft. “It’s terrible. It belongs to the whole community. It’s not Ray’s gate, it’s the community’s gate.”
He called the theft “unconscionable” and plans to contact area salvage yards and architectural resale stores in case someone tries to sell the gate.
Minervini said there’s a reward for information leading to its return: “I’ll buy them dinner, give them a tour of the site, take them to the underground tunnels. If, whoever stole it comes to their senses, we won’t prosecute them.
“We implore anyone who may have witnessed this to provide any information, and beseech those responsible to simply return it to its rightful place in history,” he said.
If you have any information, call Ray Minervini at 941-1900 or go to www.thevillagetc.com.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Standish: Gitmo of the North? Benefit for bass player Jason Kott

Region Watch Express Staff/ Rick Coates Standish: ‘Gitmo North‘?
Small town would reap 340 jobs & $100 million makeover

Some residents of the small Lake Huron town of Standish say they’re more afraid of losing their jobs than the threat of housing 229 Guantanamo Bay prisoners at the Standish Maximum Correctional Facility, which is in imminent danger of closing.
Throughout the town, handmade signs saying: “Save Our Town, Save Standish Max” have reportedly been popping up in the windows of local stores, restaurants and outside the prison itself.
Last week, U.S. Rep. Bart Stupak (D-Menominee) announced that the 640-bed prison is being considered as a possible destination for the detainees who’ve been held at Guantanamo, Cuba for the past seven years. The other site being considered by the Obama administration is Fort Leavenworth, a military penitentiary in Kansas.