Letters 10-05-2015

Bravo Regarding the Sept. 28 Northern Express letter “Just The Facts” by Julie Racine, opinion column “E Pluribus Unum” by Thomas Kachadurian, and Spectator column “Fear Not” by Stephen Tuttle: Bravo. Bravo. Bravo....

Right On OMG. Julie Racine’s letter “Just the Facts” in the Sept. 28 issue said everything I was thinking. I totally agree. Amen sister...

Kachadurian’s Demeaning Sham Thomas Kachadurian’s opinion piece “E Pluribus Unum” is a very ill-informed perspective of American history. He attempts to portray our past as a homogenized national experience that has transcended any ethnic and regional differences with “the understanding” that our differences shouldn’t really matter...

Opinions Disguised As Facts Freedom of speech is a founding principle upon which our country prides itself, and because of this we all have a right to our opinion. It is when opinions are disguised as facts that we allow for ignorance to spread like wildfire...

Reject Your Own Stereotypes In his “E Pluribus Unum” column of 9/28, Mr. Kachadurian starts calmly enough with a simple definition and history of that famous motto from the Great “from many, one” seal of the U.S., but soon goes off the rhetorical rails. Alas, this heritage-sharing chat with neighbors soon turns into a dirty laundry list polemic, based on an us vs. them worldview...

Thanks For Just The Facts Thank you sooooo much to Julie in Marion for laying out the laundry list of right wing fabrications in her letter last week...

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Friday, October 2, 2015

A Red Wine Odyssey

Features Patrick Sullivan Marty Lagina is on a lifelong treasure hunt. He made a fortune discovering natural gas in the ’90s, turned wind into electricity with large-scale turbine development, and his search for actual buried treasure on Canada’s Oak Island is the subject of a History Channel television show.
Saturday, September 26, 2015

Northern Michigan’s Woodstock

Two Decades After The Party’s End, Nostalgia for Castle Farms’ Wild Years Still Grows

Features Patrick Sullivan It’s been 20 years since armies of halter top- and mullet-clad heavy metal kids took over Charlevoix on summer weekends, jamming up roads and leaving beer cans, whiskey bottles and cigarette butts in their wake. For most locals, the era was a bad dream they hope will never return. For the revelers, it was a beautiful time; thousands of people follow a Facebook page dedicated to those long-gone days.
Saturday, September 19, 2015

Have Food, Will Travel

Catering Industry Thrives in Northern Michigan’s Destination Wedding and Event Boom

Features Patrick Sullivan Labor Day used to mean the return of a more relaxed pace for almost every business in northern Michigan, but this is no longer the case in many of our region’s industries – especially when it comes to food...
Friday, September 11, 2015

Traverse City’s Tobacco Stalwart

If You Happen To Smoke Cigars, Thank Mike Nolan For Being Able To Do It Inside

Features Patrick Sullivan Walking into a smoke-filled bar with ash trays on every table feels like stepping back in time, but that’s what you’ll find at Nolan’s Cigar Bar on Front Street in Traverse City.
Friday, September 4, 2015

Mindless Senseless Destruction

Reward In Cadillac Vandalism Case Is Raised To $1,000

Features Patrick Sullivan

It was a frigid Tuesday morning in January when Rick and Tammy Grant arrived at the back of a building in downtown Cadillac they’d entered a thousand times before – and something wasn’t right.

A burgundy and white cap sat at the top of the stairs leading to the basement; it was a foreign object. They didn’t know immediately, but that hat signaled their lives were about to change.

Friday, August 28, 2015

Thinking About Killing Yourself? Read This.

Features Patrick Sullivan

People who work in suicide counseling say the biggest factor contributing to someone’s life or death is whether that person is able to overcome the stigma associated with mental illness and ask for help.

If you live in northern Michigan and you’re thinking about killing yourself, call one of these numbers: (231) 922-4800 or (800) 442-7315. They connect to the Third Level Crisis Intervention Center suicide hotline.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Sun Frog

Fast Growing New Company Could Turn Gaylord into the T-Shirt Capital of the World

Features Patrick Sullivan

In a nondescript industrial park on the outskirts of Gaylord, young workers have their fingers on the Internet’s pulse. For instance, take their approach to March 14, 2015.

“I didn’t think anything of Pi Day, but when Pi Day hit, we sold tens of thousands. I’m going to guess we sold 50,000 Pi Day T- shirts, and that just came out of left field,” said Josh Kent, founder and CEO of Sun Frog Shirts, an online T-shirt store. “I was like, ‘Wait, what’s Pi Day? Oh yeah, the day of Pi, 3.14.’ I love it when they go viral.”

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Welcome Aboard the Floating Classrooms of Grand Traverse Bay

Features Patrick Sullivan “I was doing that and going to college, trying to figure out what I was doing with my life, and I saw this unique experience occurring and I just loved it. I watched kids learn and all I could think about was, ‘Man, why wasn’t school like that for me?’ I hated school,” Sitkins said.
Friday, July 31, 2015

Local Food

An Industry Made From Scratch

Features Patrick Sullivan “I think people are definitely becoming a lot more aware of where their food is coming from and I think that has definitely opened up the potential,” he said. “With water shortages out west and all that, pretty soon, it will be a necessity to source all food locally.
Saturday, July 25, 2015

Gay From Gaylord

A Coming-(Out)-of-Age Story

Features Patrick Sullivan This winter, Ryan made a short documentary with some classmates about his transformation called “Gay From Gaylord.” The film can be seen on YouTube and it will be shown as part of the Traverse City Film Festival on July 30 at 6pm at the Inside Out Gallery.
Friday, July 17, 2015

Brownfield Dollars

Features Patrick Sullivan There’s never been a time when so many large-scale developments were proposed, or in progress, in Traverse City. The incredible number of projects that could develop in the next year — and the requests for Brownfield funding expected to accompany them — means development and public incentives are slated to be a hot topic.
Friday, July 10, 2015

Licensed To Perform

Permits No Longer Required to Sing and Play in TC

Features Patrick Sullivan Maayingan and Kewayden Brauker’s grandmother had enough one day last June. She told the teenagers to get out of the house and do something. The brothers took acoustic guitars to the Jay Smith Walkway on Front Street in Traverse City. Maayingan played while Kewayden listened. They didn’t have a guitar case open on the ground to collect money; they were just hanging out.
Friday, July 3, 2015

A Piece of the Pie

Features Patrick Sullivan The tin used to bake a one-time world record pie sits proudly on the southern edge of Traverse City, just as the tin used to bake Charlevoix’s record-setting pie sits at its border, but these records are no more.
Saturday, June 27, 2015


Features Patrick Sullivan The Michigan Land Use Institute celebrated its 20th birthday in an unconventional way: by changing its name. Now called Groundwork Center for Resilient Communities, Executive Director Hans Voss said he hopes to continue the same nonprofit advocacy work the organization focused on during its first two decades.
Friday, June 19, 2015

Iconic Northern Michigan

Features Patrick Sullivan Phil Balyeat lives in a different northern Michigan than the rest of us — one where the sun always shines, the colors are richer and the lines are sharper.