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Friday, August 19, 2005

Five Things You Need to Know for Friday, August 19, 2005

Michigan History Magazine reports that on August 19, 1951 The Detroit Tigers pitched to the first midget, Eddie Gaedell and the Christian Science Monitor reports that web access may be as close as an electrical outlet. Electric Midget ... band name?

Celebrate Great Lakes Traveling Show
***An Absolute Michigan Editor's Choice***

The Saginaw News reports that on Sunday (Aug 21) at 3 PM, Ann Arbor's Attic Theatre will perform Celebrate Great Lakes 2005. The show sweeps through Michigan events from 10,000 years ago through the late 1990s and features folk band Song of the Lakes, historians Larry & Priscilla Massie, singer/songwriters Kitty Donahue & Claudia Schmidt, dancer Sheila Graziano, storyteller LaRon Williams and a group of American Indian drummers/dancers/storytellers from the Munsee tribe in London, Ontario. The show is based on the touring Chautaugua shows from the 1800s and early 1900s that incorporated history, local singers, dancers, actors and story-tellers into each city's script. The other 4 performances are Sep 2 @ Sault Ste Marie's-Sesquicentennial Celebration-Brady Park (12 Noon), Sep 4 @ Connections Festival- Ann Arbor (11am and 5pm), Sep 10 @ Wyandotte Heritage Festival (11am and 3pm) and Sep 11 @ Howe Field-Eaton Rapids.
Visit the Celebrate Great Lakes 2005 web site for details

Web Site to Highlight Ethnic Diversity of Copper Country
In the first of two articles helpfully archived by CyberMichigan, the Houghton Mining Gazette has a feature about Michigan Tech University's work on building a web site called An Interior Ellis Island: Ethnic Diversity and the Peopling of Michigan's Copper Country. The site is funded by a Michigan Humanities Council grant and will be launched this fall feature about 2,000 images from the 100,000 photo MTU archives
MTU Archives & Copper Country Historical Collections

Michigan Author Uses Internet to Self-Publish
The Hillsdale Daily News reported on Jonesville author Susan Carpenter's self-published fantasy novel Curse of the Lyrestone that has been riding a wave of positive reviews after she self–published her book via the internet in May.

Junior League World Series in Taylor
The Detroit News has a feature on the Junior League World Series baseball tournament (played in Taylor since 1981) and the hundreds of volunteers who make it possible. It's under way at Heritage Park, has grown from four teams to a 10-team international showcase. The International final is at 5 p.m. today, followed by the U.S. final at 8. The championship game will be at 5 p.m. this Saturday.
Junior League World Series info from LittleLeague.org

Metro Detroit Sees (online) Job Market Increases
The Great Lakes IT Report tipped us off to a report from internet job site Monster.com that found the Detroit metro area saw the greatest month-to-month increase in online job availability in July, rising three points and continuing a two-month growth trend. White-collar jobs within management; business and financial operations; and computer and mathematical occupations all saw strong growth in online job demand in the Detroit market, while production occupations remained flat.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:03 AM 1 comments links to this post
Thursday, August 18, 2005

Five Things You Need to Know for Thursday, August 18, 2005

News Nuggets: Chrysler to reduce horsepower in favor of mileage, Michigan Airports are preparing for a strike, Michigan's economy is flat, but outlook is promising.

Wainright School Retooled as Business Magnet School
The Lansing State Journal has a feature on Lansing's Wainwright Leadership Academy, a retooled K-8 school that will be a magnet school with the mission to build young people's character. The nearly 300 students at Wainwright will wear uniforms and be expected to use "business language" as opposed to slang.

Tour de Vine ~ Wednesday, August 24th
The Lansing HUB reports that the Michigan Tour de Vine will be held on August 24 at Uncle John's Fruit House Winery in St. Johns. The event will feature 24 Michigan wineries pouring their favorite vinos with the goal to raise money for WineCAM (Wine Consumers Across Michigan), a lobbying group is working to stop the passage of laws that would restrict how wine is sold in Michigan.
Visit Michigan Vine for much more event & wine info
Wine Consumers Across Michigan web site

Michigan Soul, Funk & Jazz CD Coming
Jazz News reports that the label Luv N' Haight will be releasing About Searching For Soul: Rare and Classic Soul, Funk and Jazz From Michigan, 1968-1980, a collection of rare and classic 60's & 70's Michigan soul, funk and jazz. It includes rare tracks from The Black Aces of Soul, Eyes of Ebony, Wendell Harrison and many others and looks like an amazing collection!
Luv N' Haight site

Big Animal Farms Raising Environmental Concerns
The Detroit News reports that hundreds of new mega farms with thousands of animals have emerged around the Great Lakes over the past decade. The size of these operations is causing concern from environmental regulators and neighbors who have documented hundreds of cases in which manure and other waste has tainted nearby waterways that flow into the Lakes. Detailed article!

Lake Erie Steelhead Fishing Gaining Recognition
The Press & Guide has a feature reporting that Lake Erie, known for its population of walleye, perch, and smallmouth bass, is starting to take its place alongside the larger Great Lakes as a steelhead hotbed. Although steelhead caught from Lakes Michigan, Huron or Superior can reach 20-plus pounds, the typical fish taken from Lake Erie is in the 8-12 pound range.

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# posted by farlane @ 10:28 AM 0 comments links to this post
Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Five Things You Need to Know for Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Continuing our obsession with frozen summertime treats, we're linking to this Detroit News feature on the history of the popsicle (or "Epsicle").

Knowledge Jobs Grow in Michigan
Buried in the statistical gloom surrounding Michigan's economy is this gem from CrainsDetroit.com: U.S. Census Bureau data shows Michigan added 91,077 professional, scientific and technical services jobs from 2000 through 2003, second only to California. The "knowledge-based" sector includes legal and accounting services, engineering, environmental consulting, scientific research and development, graphic design, architectural services, custom computer programming and advertising.

Water Technology Hot, Plans to Capitalize Not
The Great Lakes Bulletin News Service reports that with 1.4 billion people worldwide without access to clean drinking water, a worldwide market for new knowledge and expertise that improve water resource management clearly exists.However, plans to open a world-class water laboratory, the Global Enterprise for Water Technology, in downtown Grand Rapids are receiving little support.

Gas Prices Impacting Tourism
The Detroit Free Press reports that while early data on the number of tourists and their spending shows this July was better than July 2004, it's not as good as expected. Don Holecek, director of Michigan State University's Tourism Resource Center says that the economy may be to blame as 60%-70% of Michigan tourists are residents and our unemployment rate is among the nation's highest. The UP and Mackinac Island appear to be slumping while Traverse City is having a great summer.
Also see WHAT HIGH FUEL COSTS?: Travelers go with the gas-price flow in the Freep

Kayakers Dance with Waterspouts
WZZM TV13 Grand Rapids has a report on the harrowing of the 8 men kayaking in the Kayak for a Cure crossing of Lake Michigan got caught in a storm and were surrounded by 8 water spouts. They made it and raised $25,000 for cancer research.
For more see Kayaking Across Lake Michigan for a Cancer Cure from the Absolute Michigan archives

Michigan Students' ACT Scores Above Average
WOOD TV-8 Grand Rapids reports that the 69% of Michigan graduates taking the ACT college entrance exam once again performed better than the national average. Michigan's students averaged a 21.4 compared to the national mark of 20.9 (scores range from 1-36).

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# posted by farlane @ 8:45 AM 0 comments links to this post
Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Five Things You Need to Know for Tuesday, August 16, 2005

The Great Lakes Radio Consortium has a report on how beach combers and beach owners are reacting to the Supreme Court's beachwalking ruling. Speaking of radio, here's a podcast of Ernie Harwell talking about the '68 and '84 Detroit Tigers and baseball's current state.

Gas Prices Hit Michigan Hard
The Detroit News reports that soaring gas prices are taking a heavy toll on Michigan's economy due to our heavy reliance on manufacturing (and SUV sales).

The Detroit Free Press reports that according to AAA Michigan, a gallon of gas in Michigan costs an average of 64.1 cents more this week than it did at the same time last year. The statewide average for a gallon of self-serve, unleaded gasoline was $2.55. Our crack team of gas price experts reported gas prices of $2.79 in both Lansing and Leland.
Also see Michigan gas prices hit record levels from the Freep
AAA Michigan's Daily Fuel Gauge Report
Also see MichiganGasPrices.com (a much more comprehensive site)

Straw Bale Project Model for Low Income Housing
The LSJ's HUB has a feature on Corunna's Keith Wright and Roland Mikan, owner of NextGen Hybrid Homes Inc. of Durand. The pair are converting a 40- by 80-foot dairy barn and its two silos into an energy efficient dwelling using straw bale construction. They hope that the project will provide a model for low income housing. Fun Fact: a straw house has a factor of R50.

Michigan Government Technology Awards
MITECHNEWS reports that Gov. Granholm will be showcasing the work done by IT professionals in Michigan state and local government organizations by presenting the first Michigan Excellence in Technology Awards. The awards will honor innovators, programmers and visionaries and will be presented during the Michigan Digital Government Summit on October 12.
Michigan Excellence in Technology Awards info and nomination forms
Michigan Digital Government Summit Event Information

Cool Cities Update
The Traverse City Record-Eagle has a well-done AP feature on how the nineteen projects across Michigan received $100,000 grants in the first year of the "Cool Cities" program are doing. The story reports that some cities are enjoying new parks, riverwalks and art centers while others are still trying to get projects off the ground.
Michigan Cool Cities web site

Michigan Ice Cream Stands
The Detroit Free Press has a feature on on metro-area ice cream stands that includes a photo gallery. (I wish they'd do this state-wide, because the stand in Suttons Bay with Moomer's ice cream deserves a mention .. so does The Chocolate Vault in Tecumseh)

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# posted by farlane @ 9:51 AM 0 comments links to this post
Monday, August 15, 2005

2005 Great Lakes Folk Festival Photos

Originally uploaded by abmich.
Absolute Michigan's Lansing Bureau has some photos from last weekend's Great Lakes Folk Festival.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:40 AM 0 comments links to this post

Five Things You Need to Know for Monday, August 15, 2005

Bad news: Siberia is melting ... fast. New Scientist article describes an "ecological landslide that is probably irreversible and is undoubtedly connected to climatic warming". Bummer.

We also have a great feature on Peaches (with recipes) from Taste the Local Difference and Sojourner Truth, the latest feature from Michigan History Magazine.

Special Report on the Great Lakes
The Sunday Detroit News had a special feature taking an in-depth look at each of the myriad ways in which the Great Lakes are under pressure: invasive pests, shoreline development, pollution, industrial waste, water diversions and sulfide mining. The report also contains a number of photo galleries and video tours and is heartily recommended.

Old Growth White Pines Stand Amid Controversy
The Chicago Tribune reports that the 49 acres of old-growth forest at Hartwick Pines State Park hold the only virgin pine trees left in what once was a land of giant conifers stretching from Lake Michigan to Lake Huron. Some of the white pine trees are more than 300 years old and forest managers are readying a management plan for the Huron-Manistee National Forests (almost 1 million acres of public land east and west of Hartwick Pines) that environmentalists and loggers will likely both oppose.

Michigan Home Schooling Provokes Criticism
The Detroit News reports that with home schooling on the rise in Michigan, critics say that because Michigan has one of the nation's most liberal homeschooling laws (requiring only voluntary registration) there is no way to monitor how many children are involved and whether they are getting a better education or any education at all. For the 2004-05 school year, 943 households reported educating 1,566 students.

Finn Fest Sauna One for the Record Books
The Mining Journal reports that about 600 people, led by St. Urho, the patron saint of Finnish immigrants, took part in the World's Largest Sauna at Finn Grand Fest 2005 Saturday afternoon. The amount should be enough to shatter the current Guinness World Book of Records entry of about 220.

Lansing Farmer to Leave Legacy for Ag Research
The Detroit Free Press reports that David Morris, a Lansing-area farmer, has announced that he'll donate more than $7.5 million from his estate to endowment funds for agricultural research at Michigan State University. Morris said MSU research helped him raise beef cattle and grow corn, wheat and soybeans.

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# posted by farlane @ 9:08 AM 0 comments links to this post
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