Letters 04-14-14

Benishek Inching

Regarding “Benishek No Environmentalist” I agree with Mr. Powell’s letter to the editor/ opinion of Congressman Dan Benishek’s poor environmental record and his penchant for putting corporate interests ahead of his constituents’...

Climate Change Warning

Currently there are three assaults on climate change. The first is on the integrity of the scientists who support human activity in climate change. Second is that humans are not capable of affecting the climate...

Fed Up About Roads

It has gotten to the point where I cringe when I have to drive around this area. There are areas in Traverse City that look like a war zone. When you have to spend more time viewing potholes instead on concentrating on the road, accidents are bound to happen...

Don’t Blame the IRS

I have not heard much about the reason for the IRS getting itself entangled with the scrutiny of certain conservative 501(c) groups (not for profit) seeking tax exemption. Groups seeking tax relief must be organizations that are operated “primarily for the purpose of bringing about civic betterment and social improvements.”

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Monday, December 28, 2009

Guiseppe‘s Italian Grille

Dining Kristi Kates Charlevoix’s Italian Connection
By Kristi Kates
Opened in December of 1998, Giuseppe’s Italian Grille transformed the previous building’s occupant - the American-cuisine restaurant Alexander’s - into an Italian restaurant, “something we thought the town would like,” says Giuseppe’s Robbin Moffat.
Over 10 years later, Giuseppe’s is still going strong, and is a favorite of both Charlevoix residents - where the restaurant resides on the outskirts, north of town - and Northern Michigan visitors alike.
Monday, December 28, 2009

2010: The Year of the Tiger

Features Kristi Kates 2010: The Year of the Tiger
By Kristi Kates
There are plenty of predictions being thrown around for the year 2010. The year itself is the stuff of legend - it’s not merely the start of a new decade, but a landmark year for plenty of sci-fi novels, videogames, tv episodes, and movies, most famously, 2010: The Year We Make Contact, the famed 2001 sequel film adapted from the Arthur C. Clarke novel 2010: Odyssey Two.
So does “the year twenty-ten” sound like a futuristic time? You bet - but we’re living in that future, a future that some think will end just a couple of years from now in the portentously spoken-of 2012. Luckily, 2010 is also heralded as The Year of the Tiger - a fearless fighting Chinese sign that is said to ward off the three main disasters of a household (thieves, fire, and ghosts), so perhaps we’ll get a head start against all of that potential pending disaster.
Monday, December 21, 2009

4Play: Sting, Johnny Cash, Andrea Bocelli, Bob Dylan

Music Kristi Kates Sting - If On a Winter’s Night -
Deutsche Grammophon
Who better to send out soothing, holiday-friendly vocals than Sting?
The singer and multi-instrumentalist carefully selected an “arc of
songs” for this album that span both the centuries and the various
moods of the holidays, and he selected a three-piece musical ensemble
(fiddle/pipes, melodean, and harp) to accompany him, as well as
several guest artists to add touches of trumpet (Chris Botti),
percussion (Bijan Chemirani), and cello (Vincent Segal). The songs
themselves range from traditional English melodies like “Soul Cake”
and “The Snow it Melts the Soonest” to 14th-century carol “Gabriel’s
Message,” as well as Sting’s own original, “The Hounds of Winter.”
It’s pretty, and seasonally-appropriate, too.
Monday, December 21, 2009

Musical gift from the Smashing Pumpkins

Modern Rock Kristi Kates Musical Gift From The Smashing Pumpkins
A gift of sorts is on the way soon from The Smashing Pumpkins; they recently announced plans for a new SP album that will only be issued online and free of charge. The songs on the set, which they’ve dubbed Teargarden by Kaleidyscope, will showcase the band’s more melodic and psychedelic roots, and will include 44 (yes, you read that number correctly) new SP songs; frontman Billy Corgan says the plan is to release one song at a time until all 44 tracks are online. Corgan also emphasized that each song will be made available for free to everyone at www.smashingpumpkins.com, with no strings attached, and you can download as many times as you’d like. The music will additionally be sold as 11 different limited-edition four-song EPs, especially for the SP collectors...
Monday, December 14, 2009

4Play: Arctic Monkeys, They Might Be Giants, Regina Spektor, theneeno2

Music Kristi Kates Arctic Monkeys - Humbug - Domino
Produced again by James Ford, the Monkeys’ latest set is somewhat heavier and more densely produced than previous albums, as they stretch their danceable, gritty sensibilities into tracks that are slightly more complex. It’s nice to hear them show some growth without abandoning the base of the sound that they do so well; first single “Crying Lightning” doesn’t sound much like the Monkeys of “...Dancefloor” days, but it still has that pep and hook, as do the energetic “Cornerstone,” “Secret Door,” “Fire and the Thud,” and the slow-burner “Potion Approaching.”

Monday, December 14, 2009

Gwen Stefani offers up new rockin‘ fashions

Modern Rock Kristi Kates Gwen Stefani Offers Up New Rockin’ Fashions
Singer-songwriter-fashionista Gwen Stefani has been working on her latest LAMB fashion collection, the most recent installment of which was featured at this fall’s New York Fashion week to great critical and fashion-mag acclaim. Stefani’s newest designed look draws from much of ‘80s fashion, as several of the items in her line include acid-wash denim and off-the-shoulder sweatshirt type tops as well as T-shirt dresses; other influences seem to be punk, from studded suspenders to skinny jeans and plaid. Stefani’s new items will be on sale in early 2010...
Monday, December 14, 2009

The Dutch Oven

Dining Kristi Kates Rustic Meets Gourmet at
The Dutch Oven
By Kristi Kates
Some 70 years ago, The Dutch Oven Bakery and Cafe in Alanson was a
rustic log cabin. Today, it’s a bustling local business where John and
Theresa Sirvaitis offer their locally-legendary baked goods and
breakfast and lunch items, while holding on to their own little piece
of the American dream.
Monday, December 14, 2009

Go Green with your gift wrap

Features Kristi Kates Go Green... With Your Gift Wrap
By Kristi Kates
Okay, Secret Santas and gift-givers - it’s holiday gift wrapping time again. Your gifts are all picked out and purchased (right?), so now all that’s left is figuring out how to wrap them.
With our planet in even more trouble than ever before, what’s really important this year is to wrap your gifts in as environmentally-friendly a fashion as possible, especially when you consider that almost 25 million tons of extra waste are created during the holidays than would typically happen over a regular 10-week period.
Monday, December 7, 2009

4Play: Imogen Heap, The Mars Volta, Matthew Sweet & Susanne Hoffs, MuteMath

Music Kristi Kates Imogen Heap - Ellipse - RCA
Beginning by songwriting in Hawaii and Fiji, and then subsequently recording the album itself in a studio she built in her family’s old home in the UK (with all of the above chronicled in mostly real-time on Twitter), Heap put a lot of detail and effort into her newest album, which showcases the talented musician’s growth and classical skills. Setting her carefully-written songs atop a base of electronica beats and synth beds, she flattens out her work a little with more spare production, which may seem slightly empty when compared to previous efforts, but in actuality leaves more room for the emotional content of impressive songs like “First Train Home,” “Swoon,” and “Half Life.”
Monday, December 7, 2009

Hall of Fame Nominees

Modern Rock Kristi Kates Hall of Fame Nominees
Include RHCP, Stooges, Abba
Next year’s ballot for the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame nominees features yet another diverse roster of artists eligible for induction 25 years after their debut release (which means this crop released their first single no later than 1984.) The final list of inductees will be announced in January 2010, with the ceremony set to be held once again at New York’s Waldorf Astoria in March. The Red Hot Chili Peppers and LL Cool J are up for nomination alongside the likes of ABBA, The Stooges, The Hollies, Darlene Love, and Jimmy Cliff, among others, with RHCP and Cool J making the ballot on their very first year of eligibility; if Cool J gets inducted, he’ll be the third hip-hop act in the Hall, after Grandmaster Flash and Run DMC...
Monday, December 7, 2009

A wild river excursion Up North

Features Kristi Kates A Wild River Excursion Up North
By Kristi Kates
You may already know that the Jordan River is Michigan’s first
waterway to be officially designated as a “Wild and Scenic River,”
with much of the additional area having been proposed as an old growth
forest area.
Monday, December 7, 2009

Top 9 for ‘09: winter fun videogames

Features Kristi Kates Top 9 for ’09:
Winter Fun Videogames
By Kristi Kates
It’s that time again, videogame fans - and luckily, there are plenty of gaming options again this year for those who choose to eschew the great (cold) outdoors and instead spend their leisure time in the great indoors, pursuing this year’s crop of brand new (cool) games.
Monday, November 30, 2009

4Play: The Fireman, Yusef Islam, Ringo Starr, Ian Hunter

Music Kristi Kates The Fireman - Electric Arguments - ATO
The Fireman - otherwise known as some random guy named Paul McCartney - serves as McCartney’s latest experimental music project, in which he teamed up with hipster producer Youth, and in which all of the tracks were written and recorded in a mere day with McCartney playing all of the instruments. McCartney’s impressiveness as a musician simply never seems to wane, as evidenced here by songs like “Nothing Too Much, Just Out of Sight” which recollects some of his more complex Beatles songs; “Sing the Changes” is big and epic; and “Sun is Shining” particularly showcases McCartney’s astounding gift for melody. It’s optimistic, creative, and inherently McCartney.

Monday, November 30, 2009

An old ice house makes history as Stafford‘s Gallery

Art Kristi Kates An Old Ice House
Makes History as Stafford’s Gallery
By Kristi Kates
Getting creative with an historic building was a challenge at first for Stafford’s Hospitality in Petoskey.
Stafford’s purchased the former Longton Hall Antiques building in the fall of 2007, as a “natural addition” to its Perry Hotel, according to Stafford’s Lisa Wilbur. Located adjacent to the Perry’s parking lot, ideas on what to do with the building were many, but a decision had yet to be made.
Monday, November 30, 2009

Airborn Toxic event merges rock & classical

Modern Rock Kristi Kates Airborne Toxic Event Merges Rock and Classical
Indie rockers The Airborne Toxic Event will be presenting a special performance at L.A.’s Frank Gehry-designed Walt Disney Concert Hall on December 4; the band will be performing with the award-winning Calder Quartet (among other special guests) in a cool merging of contemporary music with classical. The show is part of the West Coast Left Coast Festival, a celebration of “the music and culture of California”; The Airborne Toxic Event is the only rock act on the festival’s bill, representing their hometown of East L.A....