December 3, 2020

Al Parker | Author

Pedal to the Kettle

May 12, 2018

Brian Schultz is rolling his flatbed rig through the Georgia countryside, just north of Atlanta, when he decides it’s time to eat.

But rather than hit a fast-food joint, gamble on a truck-stop hot dog or take time out of his busy driving schedule to visit a sit-down eater... Read More >>

Green Jobs

April 28, 2018


Inside every CEO is an entry-level kid who turned a lil’ elbow grease into a whole lotta work ethic. Wherever you are in your career, you started somewhere — just like these local leaders. We asked them to think back to their earliest paid gigs and share what th... Read More >>

Petoskey’s Roast & Toast

April 14, 2018

Mary and Bob Keedy were living in Georgia and dreaming of being entrepreneurs when they decided to stop the dreaming and apply perspiration to their aspirations.

“We decided that we wanted to start our own business,” said Mary. “We had maps spread out all over th... Read More >>

Baseball Fanatics

March 24, 2018

The March 29 Opening Day for the Detroit Tigers is the earliest in the 19-year-history of Comerica Park. And after a long, cold winter, northern Michigan, fans of the Tigers are looking forward to seeing their beloved Bengals face the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Opening Day is a time brim...

The Secret to a Long, Happy Marriage

Feb. 10, 2018

Couples who have been happily married for 30, 40, 50 years or more have accomplished a feat that almost everyone who ties the knot aspires to: They’ve reached old age together and are happy with their choice of a life partner.

Long-married couples have shared life’s ha...


Feb. 5, 2018

For many in northern Michigan, winter is long, dreary series of months with gray skies and bitter temperatures. But for the folks at Michigan Blood, whose role is to maintain and replenish the state’s vital supply of blood, winter is even worse — a seemingly endless series of ... Read More >>

Drama Mama Rachael Harrell

Jan. 27, 2018

A Michigan native who spent a decade in Los Angeles while working on successful TV shows Survivor and The Apprentice has returned to The Mitten. Her mission: to launch a program that develops confidence and creativity among youngsters in grades one through eight.

“We give ki...

Bier Breaks into Beers

Jan. 20, 2018

A popular Charlevoix-area gallery is hoping to expand from artwork … to ales and lagers.

Adjacent to the Bier Gallery and Pottery Studio noted potter and avid brewer Tyler Bier and his wife, Anna, are planning to open Bier’s Inwood Brewery in a separate building just ... Read More >>

Bespoke Gundogs

Jan. 13, 2018

A Leelanau County man has launched an operation that combines two of his passions — dogs and bird hunting.

“I’ve been shooting over bird dogs since I was 8 or 10 years old – mostly with setters and labs,” said Chris Butz, a self-described “recov... Read More >>

Petoskey’s Historic Bahnhof Sport Makes a Major Change

Dec. 2, 2017

For more than 50 years, Bahnhof Sports has been satisfying the desires of those winter sports lovers who like a little chill with their thrills.

And that won’t change despite the fact that the landmark ski shop is now under new ownership. In November, owners Lindy and Greg S... Read More >>

Bringing Service to Servicemen and Women

Nov. 4, 2017

Steve Chowen’s eyes light up, his voice rising as he describes challenges that America’s military veterans face getting services they deserve, especially health care.

“We’ve got people driving right by five community hospitals to get downstate to be treated... Read More >>

The Long Road Home

Nov. 4, 2017

In a quiet neighborhood, just northwest of downtown Gaylord, is northern Michigan’s only transitional housing community for male veterans facing homelessness.

Patriot Place has been providing shelter and support for veterans since 2010. The cluster of eight single-story home... Read More >>

Tribal Architect Steve Feringa Transforms 4.6-billion-year-old Rock into Tools for Today.

Oct. 28, 2017

Steve Feringa grips a deer antler tool in his right hand and presses down hard against a piece of ancient rock held in his left until there’s an audible snap. A a quarter-inch sliver of the novaculite chips off and falls to the floor. 

He’ll do it dozens of times ...

That Old Rag?

Oct. 14, 2017

Stroll down New Orleans’ famed Bourbon Street, and you can’t swing a string of plastic beads without hitting a musical group playing some toe-tapping traditional jazz.

But you don’t need a plane ticket to the Big Easy to enjoy some of those syncopated sounds. A s... Read More >>


Oct. 14, 2017

Being “Busted” is a good thing at the Michigan Artists Gallery.

That’s the title of one of the most popular exhibits ever offered at the popular Traverse City art gallery, according to owner Sue Ann Round.

An impressive grouping of seven busts created by ... Read More >>

The (Not So) Nutty Professor

Oct. 7, 2017

It could be the setup for a corny joke: A former monk, an English professor and an advocate for senior citizens walks into a radio station.

It’s a joke that only word geeks attached to a long-running radio show would get.

“Words to the Wise” focuses on th...

Tomato Tycoon

Sept. 30, 2017

Any way you slice it, Joe Vanderbosch’s hydroponic tomato farm is a growing enterprise.

At his TLC Farms about five miles northwest of Suttons Bay, Vanderbosch talks about his 1,500 tomato plants with the same bright-eyed zeal that a first-time parent displays when bragging ... Read More >>

Remember this Titan: Traverse City West tight end Ryan Hayes

Sept. 9, 2017

Traverse City West tight end Ryan Hayes has committed to the University of Michigan, and he’s aiming for the pros. Before he goes, local football fans are anxiously awaiting what promises to be the senior's unforgettable final season.

Watching videos of Traver...

Traverse City Athletes Tackle One of Fall’s Fiercest Sports

Sept. 9, 2017

The Traverse City sky alternates between sunshine and a steady light rain as a dozen or so young women gather on a field along Franke Road.

The liquid sunshine does nothing to dampen the enthusiasm of the Traverse City Girls Rugby Team as the players work on an intricate 8-player ... Read More >>

The Great Lakes’ Longtime Nemesis is Going Down

Aug. 26, 2017

When it comes to invasive species in the Great Lakes, efforts to halt the spread of the Asian Carp have generated a lot of buzz.

But there’s been an ongoing, persistent, under-the-radar effort to control an old nemesis — the fish-killing sea lamprey — that’... Read More >>