September 23, 2020


Forged In Fire

Michael Lahti took the helm of a Traverse City food company just as the pandemic was starting
By Craig Manning | Sept. 19, 2020

As the new managing director for Traverse City’s Tamarack Holdings, Michael Lahti is helping to lead a company that is one of the biggest players in northern Michigan’s food and agriculture industries. And it’s a job that, had things gone a little differently, he might not ever have taken. “I can say that if I knew COVID was going to happen at the time that I was offered the position, I may ... Read More >>

The Democracy Lottery

Thirteen Michigan voters won what was essentially a lottery this summer. Now they have to get work: they must spend the next year or so working toward a more fair democracy in the state.
By Patrick Sullivan | Sept. 19, 2020

Mary Burget, a retired Northwest Michigan College math instructor, thought her math skills might be useful in redrawing Michigan’s gerrymandered electoral districts. She was among the 9,000-plus Michigan residents who applied for a seat on the Michigan Redistricting Commission, the independent commission of citizens created as part of the passing of Ballot Proposal 18-2 (aka Voters Not Politicians). The ballot, an effort to stop gerrymandering, was greenlighted by Michigan voters in 2018. ... Read More >>

Could Delivery Save NoMi Eateries?

Some local restaurants undecided on the “Door Dash debate”
By Ross Boissoneau | Sept. 19, 2020

What was once the exclusive province of pizza and sandwich joints has become a means for some restaurants to thrive. But even as outdoor seating — and with it, customer numbers and gross receipts — threatens to shrink with the cooling weather, not all restaurants are ready yet to board the delivery train. Steve Morley, general manager at Bob Evans in Traverse City, is a believer. He said his restaurant uses Grubhub ... Read More >>

No Barriers

Teen in a high-security juvenile treatment facility in Grayling nabbed second place in a nationwide competition.
By Jillian Manning | Sept. 12, 2020

Since 2017, Wells Fargo bank and No Barriers — a nonprofit whose goal is “to fully unleash the potential of the human spirit” — have teamed up to offer a unique program: the Global Impact Challenge. The program is focused on diversity and inclusion and is open to educators and students in grades 5­­–12. This past year, a group of Northern Michigan teens finished in second place in the nationwide competition. Kristen ... Read More >>

Fall Fashion 2020: The New Casual

Warm, chic, and ready for anything.
By Lynda Wheatley | Sept. 12, 2020

Fall 2020’s fashion essential? Clothes that are comfortable, cozy, and cut to flow easily between whatever autumn scenes you find yourself: at-home office, virtual classroom coach, well-spaced coffee date, or sipping hard cider by the bonfire. Here, our picks for flexible, high-performance fall items you can dress up or down — all available at local retailers. Flattering as your favorite skinny jeans, refined as your go-to slim pants, Watson Velvet Jeans are ... Read More >>

Get Your Fair Share

Hate NoMi's roads? Want better schools? Get counted.
By Lynda Wheatley | Sept. 12, 2020

So we loathe the suddenly accelerated Census response deadline of Sept. 30, 2020. Seeing as it’s tough to accurately count people in normal times, forcing a faster count during a pandemic strikes us as silly and, well … a bit scary. Money for our schools, roads, and social programs are on the line here. And, red alert, y’all: If we miss counting folks, the amount of federal funding (you know, the money ... Read More >>

Resale is the New Black

The post-shutdown surge of secondhand shopping
By Craig Manning | Sept. 12, 2020

It’s a common tradition at this time of year: parents flocking to clothing stores in the last weeks of summer to get their kids new duds for back-to-school time. But what happens when the economy is in shambles, when many people have been out of work since March, and when the return of in-person, face-to-face schooling is a tenuous proposition at best? For many parents the answer has been simple: Skip the ... Read More >>

What First Robotics Teams Did on Their Summer Break

Saved lives by creating PPE
By Ross Boissoneau | Sept. 12, 2020

When the coronavirus pandemic first hit, masks, face shields, and other personal protection equipment, aka PPE, were hard to come by. As the federal government and states scrambled to gather what they could from manufacturers of all industries, the state of Michigan also put out the call to a less obvious but equally capable sect of engineering and production minds: the students and advisors of the state’s First Robotics teams. Among those ... Read More >>

Listen In: Two Global Health Experts — one in TC — to Talk Pandemic

Northern Express interviews TC resident and dean emeritus of U of M's School of Public Health Dr. Kenneth Warner
By Patrick Sullivan | Sept. 12, 2020

This week, the Traverse City International Affairs Forum at Northwestern Michigan College opens its 27th season with a topic on everyone’s mind: global health crises. The Wednesday, Sept. 16 event, “Grappling with Pandemics: Global Health Policy in the 21st Century,” brings Northern Michigan an expert with an impressive resume: Dr. Julio Frenk, the president of the University of Miami, former minister of health in Mexico, a former senior fellow at the Bill and Melinda Gates ... Read More >>

Hall of Fame Athletes: Where Are They Now?

We track down some of the North's greatest jocks.
By Craig Manning | Sept. 5, 2020

Some became Olympians, some became doctors. Some were the stars of their college sports teams, others chose to focus on other things. Northern Michigan’s former standout high school athletes have taken a multitude of paths over the years. And while the region has had no shortage of resounding athletic success stories, we picked out seven to highlight — and tracked them down to find out what their lives look like today. ALISHA ... Read More >>

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