Letters 07-27-2015

Next For Brownfields In regard to your recent piece on brownfield redevelopment in TC, the Randolph Street project appears to be proceeding without receiving its requested $600k in brownfield funding from the county. In response to this, the mayor is quoted as saying that the developer bought the property prior to performing an environmental assessment and had little choice but to now build it...

Defending Our Freedom This is in response to Sally MacFarlane Neal’s recent letter, “War Machines for Family Entertainment.” Wake Up! Make no mistake about it, we are at war! Even though the idiot we have for a president won’t accept the fact because he believes we can negotiate with Iran, etc., ISIS and their like make it very clear they intend to destroy the free world as we know it. If you take notice of the way are constantly destroying their own people, is that living...

What Is Far Left? Columnist Steve Tuttle, who so many lambaste as a liberal, considers Sen. Sanders a far out liberal “nearly invisible from the middle.” Has the middle really shifted that far right? Sanders has opposed endless war and the Patriot Act. Does Mr. Tuttle believe most of our citizens praise our wars and the positive results we have achieved from them? Is supporting endless war or giving up our civil liberties middle of the road...

Parking Corrected Stephen Tuttle commented on parking in the July 13 Northern Express. As Director of the Traverse City Downtown Development Authority, I feel compelled to address a couple key issues. But first, I acknowledge that  there is some consternation about parking downtown. As more people come downtown served by less parking, the pressure on what parking we have increases. Downtown serves a county with a population of 90,000 and plays host to over three million visitors annually...

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Thursday, January 25, 2007

Art as therapy

Art Danielle Horvath “The artist is a receptacle for emotions that come from all over the place; from the sky, from the earth, from a scrap of paper, from a passing shape, from a spider’s web.” ~Vincent Van Gogh

By Danielle Horvath

Self-expression has long been used to “unlock” emotions, resolve conflict, reduce stress, increase self-awareness and gain personal insight. In Benzie County, self-expression and the healing power of art are themes of a new show focusing on mental health.
Art as therapy is used to help children deal with grief; it is used in hospitals to aid patients in the healing process; in prisons to help inmates see another side of themselves; as a treatment in halfway houses and homeless shelters.
Thursday, November 30, 2006

Reinventing Elberta

Features Danielle Horvath The renovation of an industrial wasteland is sure to be the talk of Northern Michigan in 2007 when the small town of Elberta undergoes one of the largest waterfront renovation projects to be seen in the region in years.
Thursday, August 10, 2006

Coho Cafe

Dining Danielle Horvath I feel more like the chairman of the board than the new owner,” Steve Tebo says with a smile. “The customers and community are so vested in this business that they wanted to have a say in who the new owner was going to be. At first we were worried, but I think we passed the test!”
The Coho Café has been a downtown Frankfort mainstay for locals for several years, and a summer destination for tourists looking for quality Northern Michigan fare. Steve and his wife Kristin Glass purchased the Coho Café last year and have kept much of the same food and atmosphere that customers have grown to expect.
“We will make decisions based on what the people in the Frankfort area want, we hope to stay open longer each season if we can survive,” he says. “We know this is a favorite place for many and we will make changes a little at a time.”
Thursday, August 10, 2006

Catch a Reinbow

Features Danielle Horvath The first time Rorie Asplet went horseback riding, he screamed from the parking lot to the doors of the arena. Rorie has cerebral palsy and has spent his life in a wheelchair and had a fear of animals, especially large ones, because he had always come face-to-face with them.
It took a few more attempts before Rorie began feeling the positive effects riding had on his muscles, while also developing a friendship with both the horse and its owner. Rorie, now 21, is now going on his seventh year participating in the Catch A Reinbow therapeutic horseback riding group and his parents are very glad they made that first trip.
Thursday, July 13, 2006

On a Roll...benefit concert for the Benzie Bus System

Music Danielle Horvath A millage election will be held on August 8 in Benzie County for residents to decide whether to fund a new public bus service. A benefit concert by the popular local band Song Of The Lakes to help support the Benzie Bus Initiative is set for Saturday, July 15, 7:30 p.m. at the Elberta waterfront band shell. Admission is free and donations are welcome. A silent auction will also be held that includes a season ski pass from Crystal Mountain Resort.
Ingemar Johansson, a member of Song Of The Lakes, has been involved in the issue of public transportation – or the lack of – in the county for years. Here are his thoughts on the need for busing in Benzie.

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Betsie Bay Inn...Historic Inn Reborn

Dining Danielle Horvath Originally built in 1867, it burned down in 1925, and was rebuilt during the Depression, and was renamed a few times over its long history. Today, the Betsie Bay Inn in downtown Frankfort is enjoying another rebirth through the hard work and dedication of its new owners, Geoff and Leslie Perkins.
During a vacation at their cottage near Chimney Corners last year, the Perkins were having lunch across from the former Hotel Frankfort and saw that it was for sale.
“We actually joked at the time about buying it,” Leslie explained. “We were thinking about owning a small restaurant or business, and when we found out a few months later that it was still available, we started to seriously consider it.”
The Perkins relocated from the Ann Arbor area, closed on the sale last July, and began the extensive renovations.
Thursday, May 4, 2006

Belly Dancing Bounces Back

Art Danielle Horvath Belly dancing is not something you typically see in Northern Michigan. Just mention it and you’ll probably raise some eyebrows. Years of misconceptions, rumors and too many Hollywood movies with visions of women in harems running around half naked trying to please the sultan, have led many Westerners to see it as something sexually inappropriate.
Thursday, June 23, 2005

Gallery 31 aims for big city quality and small town atmosphere

Art Danielle Horvath S
isters Holly Nelson, 25, and Erin Fisher, 27, grew up in their parents’ Platte River Printing business, so when it came time to look for a place to showcase local artists, they once again turned to their roots. Along with Erin’s husband, Todd Fisher, 27, they remodeled the front of the family business near Honor to make way for a new art gallery and named it for its location on US 31.
Benzie County’s newest art destination, Gallery 31, opened on May 6 to rave reviews. Holly has gallery experience from her work from the past four summers at Les Sirenes Galerie D’Art in Frankfort, which features nationally-known batik artist Terri Haugen, among others.
Thursday, May 19, 2005

‘We take hard cases‘ A. C. Paws celebrates with a pet reunion

Region Watch Danielle Horvath For the past nine years, A. C. Paw has rescued over 3,000 cats, dogs, puppies and kittens in Northern Michigan which would have otherwise been destroyed. This often means animals that have been abused, neglected, sick or when there is no room at the local shelters.
To celebrate their successes, they are having their second annual “Family Reunion” day on Saturday, May 21, 11 a.m. 5 p.m. at PetSmart in Traverse City. Anyone who has adopted a pet through A.C. Paw is encouraged to bring their animal, or a picture of them to the reunion. Highlights of the day will include door prizes, a display, and a raffle of specially-built dog houses to support the Gimme Shelter Project. The event will be broadcast live by Steve Cook from WTCM.
“This is a chance for all our volunteers to see the results of their hard work and dedication,” says Brian Manley, co-founder of A.C. Paw, along with partner June McGrath.
Thursday, March 31, 2005

THE HOFBRAU: A Prizewinner for all Seasons

Dining Danielle Horvath Looking for a real up north tavern with the ambience and variety of a big city restaurant? Travel no further than Interlochen to the newly expanded Hofbrau, where owner Brian McAllister, who makes his rounds most nights, will probably meet you with a hearty handshake at the door.
In this year’s Best of Northern Michigan contest, Northern Express readers awarded The Hofbrau multiple prizes, including Best Tuesday Night Hangout, Best Waffles, Most Kid-Friendly Restaurant, Best Brunch, Best Seafood, Best Steak and Best Fajita.
With its large cedar paneling, two stone fireplaces, newly expanded dining room, and choices that range from a hearty Hoffy burger to a slab of ribs to a stuffed chicken breast to a Surf & Turf combo, the Hofbrau has earned a reputation for good food at a fair price since McAllister bought it in 1998.
With a well-seasoned, friendly staff, menus that change with the seasons, popular winter specials and now seating for 250, the Hofbrau fills up most weekends year around. And in the summer, especially after a concert at nearby Interlochen Center for the Arts, it’s packed.
“Our cooks are very talented,” McAllister offered. “It’s the staff we have that makes everything work. We try to invite people in like we would into our own home. Everyone is friendly and nice and works hard to give our customers what they want.”
Thursday, March 24, 2005

Cabin Fever Offers a Cure in Honor

Features Danielle Horvath Do you wistfully stand at the window and watch it snow while imagining a beach volleyball game? Are you watching way too many Friends re-runs? Does it seem like everyone but you is going somewhere for spring break? It might be the dreaded Cabin Fever Blues, a common affliction in Northern Michigan this time of year.
But in the village of Honor, there’s a place called Cabin Fever, and it might offer some relief. Full of one-of-a–kind toys and games, a full cappuccino and espresso bar and featuring their own homemade fudge, it just might make you forget it’s the middle of winter.
Rachel Black relocated her unique store from California to Benzie County three years ago. She started the concept shop nine years ago with “cool games for cold nights.” “These are not games you will find at Wal-Mart or Target, there’s no Hasbro toys here,” Rachel said. “I like to think we offer different things from mindless to mensa.”
Thursday, February 3, 2005

Hoping for a Miracle: Home for Addicted Mothers & Kids Struggles to Re-open its Doors

Features Danielle Horvath Stacie was homeless and carrying everything she owned in a few backpacks when she landed on the steps of Miracle Manor, a halfway home for women on State Street in Traverse City. She was on the verge of losing her five-year-old son; she was an alcoholic and drug user who knew something was wrong but didn’t know what it was. She only knew she was a failure as a mother, daughter, sister and friend who had lied, cheated, manipulated and made excuses for her life for years. “I put my son through five years of hell and I knew, deep down, I needed help.”
Stacie also knew that if she went for help, she might lose her son forever.
Theresa was pregnant for the fourth time, with her first three children born with fetal alcohol syndrome. Putting her in jail was the only choice the court had to keep the unborn child safe, which meant her other children would probably be split up in foster care homes.
Miracle Manor offered an alternative and the judge jumped at it. Theresa and her boys moved in together and three months later, she delivered a healthy baby girl.
Despite having three other children, Theresa could not bond with the newborn. She held her at arm’s length, like a doll. She couldn’t bathe her, cuddle her or rock her. Through therapy, Theresa was discovered to have been molested as an infant. She couldn’t rock her baby girl because she herself needed to be rocked, a measure of love she didn’t get as a child and didn’t have to give to her baby.
Kim was facing jail time for her third DUI and her three children were facing being placed in foster care homes. Miracle Manor meant a chance for the family to begin the healing process together. The children returned to school, the family received much needed medical and dental care, and through intensive therapy, Kim began to realize what her alcohol addiction was doing to her children and started taking steps to get her life back on the right track.
Thursday, January 13, 2005

A Woman‘s Touch: Wedding Photographer Chandra Demers Seeks Informal Elegance

Features Danielle Horvath If a picture is worth 1,000 words, capturing the moments of someone’s wedding day is worth millions. And finding someone who understands what that day means to you and how you want it to be remembered is priceless.
Chandra Demers works hard to be that someone for area couples as owner of Hitching Post Photography and co-owner of Leelanau Weddings, Inc. A lifelong photographer who started with family pictures when she got her first camera at 11, Demers prides herself on finding those once-in-a-lifetime moments that capture human emotion and feelings.
“I’m definitely more of the journalistic style of photography, not just the typical posed shots. I try to find a different angle while still preserving the wedding traditions,” Demers said. “I might lie on the ground, or stand on top of something. I’ve climbed on roofs. In trees - I’ve balanced myself on all kinds of things to get the right shot.”
Thursday, October 7, 2004

Creating a Fusion

Features Danielle Horvath Bobbiesee and Vachong Ku searched from Grand Rapids to St. Ignace for the right spot for the business they always wanted. “We grew up in family restaurants and knewB someday we’d have our own,” Ku explained.
The couple opened Fusion Restaurant in the heart of downtown Frankfort last January. The first Asian restaurant in Benzie County, it quickly drew the locals out of their winter hibernation and the flow of customers didn’t stop through the summer.
Thursday, August 12, 2004

Get Your Kicks with Steel Toe

Music Danielle Horvath Driving rhythms, strong guitar licks, full harmonies and just the right amount of angst is giving the Traverse City-based band SteelToe a place on the Northern Michigan rock scene. Made up of three guys with strong musical backgrounds, they are stretching the limits of local rock audiences by doing only original songs.