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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Sandra Serra Bradshaw

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Thursday, December 9, 2004

Hattie‘s: New Owners, Same Standard of Dining Excellence

Features Sandra Serra Bradshaw Hattie’s is known in gourmet restaurant circles as one of the top 10 fine dining establishments in the state. The restaurant recently changed owners and they aim to keep both the record and perhaps even surpass it.
Sam and Michelle Hybels of Suttons Bay officially took over on October 12. “I left for Lansing to get our liquor license after the real estate closing and 40 minutes before opening our first night, I got back with it,” said Sam with a grin.
The restaurant does indeed continue to serve liquor as well as fine wines, including an emphasis on those of local vintners. But what Hattie’s is known for is consistent attentive service, attention to detail and wonderful food exquisitely prepared. Much of the restaurant’s success is due to chef Patty Hickman.
Owner Sam had read about Hattie’s national credentials 12 years ago in a culinary publication while he was still at the Pennsylvania Culinary Institute. Since then, he has worked as a chef in cities including Chicago, New York and LA. Locally, he has been a chef at LaBecasse, Key to the County and Sugar Loaf. In between chef stints he worked in the orchards “to pay the bills.” Often Hybels drove his tractor past Hattie’s with a tug at his heart to perhaps one day work there.
Eventually, he was hired on. “It was great to work in such an establishment with a strong culinary representative quality kitchen. It raises an eyebrow on a resumè,” he said. Now, as new owner, Hybels credits former Hattie’s partners/owners Jim Milliman and Rob Giffer. “They made this restaurant the success it is.”
Launched in the late-’80s, early ‘90s, Hattie’s was named after Jim’s grandmother, who inspired his own efforts as a chef.
Thursday, November 18, 2004

Tempting Treats at the Village Cafe in Cross Village

Features Sandra Serra Bradshaw The drive to Cross Village via the historic Tunnel of Trees along M-119 makes the trip up to this tiny town near the tip of the Michigan mitten all the more impressive.  And it’s worth the journey, for here you will find the Village Café, which offers a taste of Polish cuisine along with a unique niche in introducing European pastries to up north diners.
As I was driving to the café, an Oldies 107 radio disc jockey reported, “This is National Grouch Day.” Well, that afternoon the little restaurant was bustling with a steady drove of customers - and everyone who walked through the door was smiling and greeted as if family.  No grouches in sight.
Thursday, October 28, 2004

Sip a Coffee & Connect: WiFi Technology Energizes Petoskey Coffeeshop

Features Sandra Serra Bradshaw From Philadelphia to Los Angeles, Detroit to Harbor Springs and throughout the world, Internet coffee cafés are the new “buzz.” In fact, Internet cafes.com shows a database of 4,260 Internet cafes in 140 countries. It’s definitely a growing trend worldwide as well as right here in Northern Michigan.
For Pete Lambeth of Petoskey, it’s been a dream of his to open his own coffee shop for a long time. “I have wanted to start up my own coffee shop for many years,” he explained. “It just seemed like the timing was never right. And now so many people use the Internet. Well, I just knew that not only local people but people who travel like to have access to the Internet to keep in touch with their business and families.”
The owner of Pete’s Pipe & Tobacco Shop in downtown Petoskey, his dream was finally realized with a bit of an added New Millennium twist. Set two doors down from his first store – which he had started in 1996 – Coffee & Connect opened this past July and is being very well received.
Thursday, June 24, 2004

Men of Vision: Recapturing Erhardt Peters‘ Photo Odyssey

Features Sandra Serra Bradshaw Erhardt Peters was a prolific and talented photographer in the Ludington and Leelanau areas throughout much of the 20th century. During his career he generatedEE thousands of black and white photos of Northern Michigan, but Leland and Fishtown were his particular favorites.
Thursday, April 8, 2004

The Air We Breathe: Monitors Sniff out Pollution on the Great Lakes

Features Sandra Serra Bradshaw It used to be when driving “Up North“ from the big cities, one could expect bright blue skies and refreshingly clean air. But today, it is nearly impossible to escape air pollution anywhere on the earth. Traces of toxins are even found in Antarctica. Even though the Grand Traverse region has relatively few point-source pollution sites such as factories and coal burning plants, air transfer knows no boundaries. Pollution travels so to say, “with the will of the wind.“
Thursday, October 3, 2002

Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. -- The Riverkeeper of the Hudson Spawns a Waterkeeper Alliance now Growing World-wide

Features Sandra Serra Bradshaw “In ten years Grand Traverse Bay will be completely different than today,” stated Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who serves as president of the Waterkeeper Alliance, chief prosecuting attorney for the Hudson Riverkeeper, co-director at the Pace Environmental Litigation Clinic in New York and senior attorney for the Natural Resources Defense Council.
Thursday, October 3, 2002

The Watershed Center Appoints a Full-time Baykeeper to Help Residents Protect Grand Traverse Bay

Features Sandra Serra Bradshaw Our region has been blessed with an abundance of water, which for many is what draws us here to live year ‘round. In particular, Grand Traverse Bay is thought to have the highest water quality of any of the larger bays on Lake Michigan. With the Great Lakes containing approximately 18 percent of the world‘s freshwater supply, protecting its purity is of utmost importance. Yet, the draw of its beauty brings with it an influx in population, opening a sort of Pandora‘s box. Increased developmental pressure means that more natural resources need protection. Yet, we now have hope in the name of a newly appointed Grand Traverse Baykeeper, John A. Nelson.