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Friday, April 22, 2005

Five Things You Need to Know for Friday, April 22, 2005

Michigan History Magazine informs us that on this day in 1938, an expansion of Navin Field was completed and renamed Briggs Stadium (home to the Detroit Tigers and Lions for many years).

Earth Day in Michigan
Today is the 35th Earth Day. Here's some links for you...
Earth Day Calendar from the Michigan Environmental Council
Visit EarthDay.gov
Earth Day Network

Great Lakes Drilling Ban Blocked in US House
The Detroit News reports that the House Rules Committee refused to let the full House vote to put the drilling ban into an energy bill. Wednesday's action killed a plan to permanently ban oil and gas drilling on the Great Lakes, the source of one-fifth of the world's fresh surface water.

Pistons Start Title Run
The Detroit News reports that the defending NBA champion Detroit Pistons are ready to start their 2005 title run. The Pistons meet Philadelphia & NBA scoring champ Allen Iverson starting Saturday at 3 PM. The Pistons chose to leave rookie Carlos Delfino off the playoff roster.
Pistons vs. Sixers 1st round schedule from the Freep

Detroit Historical Museum Adopt-a-Class Program
The Detroit Free Press reports that in an effort to help cash-strapped schools, the Detroit Historical Museums & Society is offering a program for Detroit Public Schools (and other districts) that will reduce the cost of a visit for students and districts that qualify.

Lake Huron Salmon Disappearance Explained
The Detroit Free Press reports that 5 years ago, about 15% of the chinook salmon that biologists sampled from Lake Huron were wild fish, and the other 85% were produced by hatcheries in Michigan. Today, just 20% come from hatcheries and the rest are wild, mostly spawning in Canadian streams. The drop in salmon is due to these fish returning to Canada to spawn (disappearing from the Michigan side) plus the fact that the large population has reduced alewives. On the bright side, the disappearance of salmon seems to be resulting in a big increase in the number of lake trout in Lake Huron.

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# posted by farlane @ 10:33 AM 0 comments links to this post
Thursday, April 21, 2005

Five Things You Need to Know for Thursday, April 21, 2005

Feeling blue in West Michigan? Why not drop by Clowns of America International Convention in Grand Rapids today.

Michigan Education Association Joins No Child Left Behind Suit
The Lansing State Journal reports that on Wednesday, the Michigan Education Association went to court with other unions and school districts to challenge President Bush's "No Child Left Behind" program. The 20 plaintiffs from across 10 states claim that the federal government isn't providing enough money to pay for the testing and other efforts it is demanding.

Michigan's Big 50 Companies
It's apparently "list week" at the Detroit Free Press. The latest is their listing of Michigan's top 50 publicly traded companies. GM & Ford (#1 & #2) accounted for As a group. the 50 businesses performed better in terms of revenue and earnings in 2004 than 2003.

Sustainable Manufacturing Can Pay Big Dividends
The Michigan Land Use Institute has an engaging feature that explores how "sustainable" manufacturing (which aims to slash expenses, boost profits, and bolster company image by paying extremely close attention to environmental performance) can positively impact a company's bottom line. An example is an $8.50 brass nozzle that saved a large manufacturer $10,000 a year.

MHSAA May Get Answer Soon on Appeal to Supreme Court
The AP reports that the Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) could know within a few weeks if it will be forced to change next year's prep sports seasons. The US Supreme Court will decide whether or not accept MHSAA's appeal to lower court decisions the Michigan schedules discriminate against girls because it forces them to more often play in less advantageous seasons than boys.

Frederick Meijer Gardens Celebrate 10th Anniversary
WZZM TV-13 Grand Rapids reports that the Frederick Meijer Gardens in Grand Rapids is now the second leading tourist attraction in the Michigan with 600,000 visitors a year. 2005 is the 10th anniversary and special events include 10 days of birthday cake, the release of a book on the gardens and a special birthday party on April 27.

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# posted by farlane @ 11:57 AM 0 comments links to this post
Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Five Things You Need to Know for Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Darko gets first start for Pistons, scores 16.

2005 Motor City Music Conference Guide
The Detroit Free Press has unveiled a guide to the inaugural Motor City Music Conference featuring more than 600 events at 50-plus venues that will be held in downtown Detroit & Hamtramck this Wednesday through Sunday (April 20-24, 2005). You can view the schedule, band profiles & photos and even download MP3s from performers.
Go to the Freep Music Section for complete coverage

Access Diminishes as Upper Peninsula Tracts Sold
Associated Press writer John Flesher writes that for years, mining and timber companies owned most of the land in the UP's Keewenaw Peninsula and received state tax breaks for keeping it open to the public. Now as the companies are selling off prime real estate and dividing large parcels, access to those forests, rivers, lakeshores is diminishing.

Michigan Catholics React to New Pope
The Detroit Free Press reports on the reaction of Michigan Roman Catholics to Pope Benedict XVI (German Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger). A related story profiles several Michiganders who work at the Vatican including Vatican astronomer Brother Guy Consolmagno, who charts the heavens from Castel Gandolfo and through the Vatican Advanced Technology Telescope.
Also see EXPERTS IN LAW, SPORTS, ASTRONOMY: Michigan clergy will have role in pontificate in the Freep

DEQ Effective, Needs to Improve Cleanup Cost Recovery
The Detroit News says a report released Tuesday by the Michigan Office of the Auditor General that while the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality is effective at identifying and addressing environmental contamination, it needs to do a better job identifying the sources of the pollution and making the owners of those facilities cover the state's costs. The audit covered late 1999-2002.

2005 Detroit Area Golf Guide
The Detroit Free Press has published its annual guide to the top 10 public courses in the Detroit Area. The Orchards (18 holes, 7,036 yards, par-72, designed by golf architect Robert Trent Jones Jr.) is ranked No. 1 out of over 150 public courses in metro Detroit. #2 is Salem Hills in Northville followed by Dunham Hills in Hartland.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:22 AM 0 comments links to this post
Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Five Things You Need to Know for Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Campaign bloggers beware! The Houghton Daily Mining Gazette tells us that under a pending Federal Elections Committee rule, you just might be making an "in-kind" donation to the candidate's campaign. Read it!

Natural Resource Challenge to Share Science Data
The UP Mining Journal has an interesting feature on a new National Park Service project at Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. The NPS is working on a new initiative to gather and share natural science information with the public. Other Michigan parks in the project are Isle Royale and Sleeping Bear Dunes. Eventually, species photographs & other information will be available through NPS web sites.
Visit the NPS Natural Resource Challenge web site

GM Posts Worst Losses since 1992, Experts Recommend Job & Plant Cuts
The Detroit News reports that General Motors lost $1.1 billion ($1.95 per share) in the first quarter of 2005 as the automaker was hit with sliding sales in North America and rising health care costs -- the company's worst quarterly loss since first quarter of 1992. In a related story, auto industry experts say carmaker has to cut more than 20,000 jobs and close four assembly plants.
Also see GM must shrink to stop losses, analysts say

East Lansing Recording Studio gets a Piece of Music History
The State News reports that since January, Glenn Brown's East Lansing recording studio has been the proud owner of the vintage Neve 8068 recording console that once belonged to the infamous Muscle Shoals Sound Studio in Alabama. The studio (and the console) recorded artists including James Brown, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton and Jimmy Buffett.

State Input Sought on Granholm Business Tax Plan
mLive.com reports that Republican-controlled legislative panels considering Gov. Jennifer Granholm's proposed business tax reforms will host a series of hearings around the state to get input on her plan from businesses. The article has a list of locations and dates for the hearings.

Coal-Burning Plants Proposed on Lake Michigan
The Great Lakes Radio Consortium reports that environmentalists are concerned about two new coal-burning power plants to be built on the shores of Lake Michigan.
Also read State Supreme Court justices feel rushed to decide on power plant in the Journal Times

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# posted by farlane @ 10:55 AM 0 comments links to this post
Monday, April 18, 2005

Five Things You Need to Know for Monday, April 18, 2005

So now there's Google Video, where you can search free TV and other video. For example: Michigan video. Does anyone else get the feeling that Google won't stop until you can search the contents of your fridge??

Michigan Second to Last in Gender Pay Equity
The PR Newswire reports that Michigan women are further from pay equity each year. According to the Michigan Pay Equity Network, Michigan women earn just 67 cents for each $1 Michigan men earn. Michigan is 49th among the 50 states when men's and women's wages are compared and ranked. Nationally, women average 77 cents for every $1 men are paid.

Michigan Representatives Jetsetting on the Lobbyists Dime
The Lansing State Journal has a revealing story about a Gannett News Service review of records filed by members of mid-Michigan's congressional delegation for travel in 2003 and 2004. It showed trips taken by lawmakers and their aides to attractive destinations, all paid for by outside interest groups (common among lawmakers and allowed under House and Senate ethics rules).

Student Laptop Program May be Eliminated
Detroit Free Press technology writer Mike Wedland reports that Michigan's grand vision of equipping every sixth-grade student in the state with a laptop computer may be no more. The program (which educators describe as a huge success) will be eliminated if Gov. Jennifer Granholm gets her way.

University Student Use of Internet a Growing Concern
The Detroit Free Press reported Friday that although alcohol is often blamed for low grades on campus, it ranked last in a 2004 survey by the American College Health Association of the top 10 impediments to academic performance. Only 8% of students on 74 campuses said alcohol got in the way of their studies, compared to 13% who reported computer gaming and Internet surfing as a problem.

Mason Tract Drilling Appeals Filed
The Traverse City Record-Eagle reports that Tim Mason, grandson of George Mason, an automotive executive and legendary local outdoorsman, submitted a last-minute appeal (that the service lost for a time) to the U.S. Forest Service's decision to allow drilling near the Mason Tract. Six appeals were filed with the Forest Service regional office in Milwaukee, including objections from the Mackinac Chapter of the Sierra Club, Michigan Council of Trout Unlimited and Anglers of the AuSable.

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# posted by farlane @ 8:56 AM 0 comments links to this post
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