In The News

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Two northern Michigan musicians audition on The Voice

A Traverse City singer made through several rounds of the singing competition reality TV show The Voice previously, and this year, two are vying for a spot on the show.
Excerpt: Two singers from Traverse City made it through to the blind auditions on the show.
Harringtons in Traverse City was packed with dozens of people rooting for James McNeiece, who is a former employee.
They were also very excited to see Joshua Davis, another Traverse City resident, make it through the first round of the blind auditions.
For the whole story, go here.
Source: UpNorthLive

Chippewa County named airport of the year

An Eastern Upper Peninsula county airport was recognized for its excellence in a recent awards ceremony.
Excerpt: Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) Office of Aeronautics has named Chippewa County International Airport as Michigan Airport of the Year. The annual awards recognize outstanding service to Michigan aviation. This is the 24th year that the MDOT Office of Aeronautics has presented the awards.
The whole story is online here.
Source: EUP News

Snowy owls tracked through U.P. and Midwest

Snowy owls are becoming a more frequently spotted bird in the U.P., and some scientists are finding that handy as they can be captured for tracking to better understand their habits.
Excerpt: Once a rare sight, the birds have begun to move into northern states, including Michigan and Wisconsin, and states in the Northeast, according to the Kalamazoo Gazette. They sometimes create a dangerous nuisance on airports, where they like to perch to watch for mice and voles across the open expanse that may resemble the tundra to them, said Rich Keith of the Kalamazoo Valley Bird Observatory. The large birds, with wingspans of up to five-and-a-half feet, can interfere with flights.
More on the story is available here.
Source: Detroit Free Press

The U.P. attitude toward snow is what makes us different from Boston

This piece from a Wisconsin TV station explores the U.P. approach toward winter snowfall totals in the hundreds and what makes it different from the areas of the country currently in crisis due to snow.
Excerpt: During this time of year, in the Upper Peninsula, you’ll find snow hanging from rooftops, swallowing mailboxes and even trees.
"This is a city of 20,000 people and it spends $1.25 million a year on snow removal," said Mike Coyne, mayor of Marquette, Michigan.
The whole story and video are online here.
Source: Fox 11 Online

MTEC SmartZone adds dozens of jobs in 2014

The MTEC SmartZone in Houghton has consistently been a force for creating jobs in the region, and last year was no exception. The group announced their year-end results.
Excerpt: 2014 proved to be a very successful year for the MTEC SmartZone.
The local business incubator announced this week that they created 83 jobs last year. They were also recognized by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation for the milestone.
For the whole news release, go here.
Source: MTEC SmartZone

Marquette taco truck aims for small business grant through online votes

Dia de los Tacos is Marquette's food truck pioneer, beloved of many. They're in the running to win a small business grant from FedEx--that is, if its supporters get online and vote for them. Find out how below.
Excerpt: How would you use the FedEx Small Business Grant money to make a significant impact on your business?
"Our beloved truck has some issues. It's cold. It leaks. It can't go over 35 mph. We would be able to insulate and heat the interior of the truck, seal all the windows, and replace the transmission. Then we'd be able to expand the size of our service area significantly."
To vote, go here.

Title of snowiest city goes to Marquette

It's official -- right now, Marquette has the most snow in the country.
Excerpt: While the Northeast is getting all of the attention, it's really Marquette, Michigan that's getting all the snow- according to the National Weather Service. Just shy of 150 inches of snow has fallen in Marquette so far this winter - the most in the nation. 

The season started with a mid-November snowfall that dropped up to 40 inches in part of the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. And winter still has a strong grip on the region. 
For more on the story, go here

Filmmakers showcase Michigan ice climbing

Snow biking has already been the focus of one Upper Peninsula-made film, and now ice climbing, another sport gaining ground here, is the subject of another.
Excerpt: During the winter, the water that seeps from sandstone cliffs above Lake Superior in Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore freezes into a blue curtain of ice, while inland waterfalls freeze into towers.
To adventurers, these curtains and towers around the Upper Peninsula city of Munising shout, "Climb me!"
The whole story is online here.
Source: Lansing State Journal

Ski magazine visits Chatham hill

People might think of Colorado or Switzerland as high-end ski meccas. But every kid starts somewhere, and in the U.P., more often than not, it's on a well-loved local hill. In Chatham, that hill forms a center for the community each winter. This piece from a ski magazine's visit to the hill is bound to rekindle childhood memories for those who grew up in the U.P.
Excerpt: Next to the cabin roars a bonfire surrounded by parents bundled up in Sorrels, snowmobile jackets, all cradling an extra layer of adult insulation in hand. That's about it here, and in the absence of everything the purpose of this place resonates easily through the empty hardwoods into my eardrums as the laughter from 30 shiny nosed kids having the time of their lives on a Wednesday evening.
The whole story with photos is here.

Local authors run Kickstarter for book series Return of the Magi

Two U.P. authors are looking for support to publish their original fiction book, Return of the Magi. To do so, they're asking for fans and would-be readers to help them with a Kickstarter campaign.
Excerpt: Can ZoMagi stand in the face of her people, unaccepted and unwanted? Will the child, JunIst, the gift, be protected from the darkness that seeks him? The story begins with the first book of The Magi Saga, Return Of The Magi.
We hope you will help us raise funds to get professional help to publish this book. This is our first writing project together and qualified help from a publisher will cost around five thousand dollars. I am certain that together we can reach the goal of getting this book edited and into print, with at least a limited release of 250 paperbacks.
For more on the project, go here.
Source: Kickstarter

Top five things to do in the U.P. in winter

Mlive has a list of things to visit the U.P. to do this winter--it's pretty clear we have the snow and cold to make lots of winter activities possible this year.
Excerpt: Winter is definitely making itself very comfortable in Michigan and doesn't plan to go anywhere anytime soon. With a projected forecast of more snowfall in February, it's time to embrace the season and find new ways to enjoy it. There is still plenty of time to book a wintery weekend trip to Michigan's Upper Peninsula for fun and excitement.
The list is online here.

Eben native becomes first female sergeant for combat engineers

Women from the Upper Peninsula have been serving in the military for a long time, and being among the first to do so in a number of fields. A U.P. woman was among the first women to become an Air Force pilot in the 1960s. Before that, another pioneered the first women's Air Force auxiliary during World War II. Now, an Army Reserve sergeant from the U.P. is the first woman of her rank with a combat engineer company, a specialty that has been closed to women.
Excerpt: "Receive the report," 1st Sgt. Raquel Steckman ordered the company.

Each platoon sergeant did, taking accountability of Soldiers among their ranks. 

They reported back to Steckman: the first woman in the Army appointed to a combat engineer company as a first sergeant.
But for her, being a woman is irrelevant. When the topic is brought up, she laughs it off entirely.
For the whole story, click here.
Source: U.S. Army Public Affairs

Gear Patrol names Marquette one of the best places to travel

How did Marquette get on the same list as places like Tangier, Morocco and Malmo, Sweden? The folks at Gear Patrol answer that by naming Marquette one of the places not to miss on your 2015 travels. Adventure capital, hey? We'll take it.
Excerpt: The adventure capital of the North, Marquette has everything either within city limits or close striking distance. In the summer, there’s world-class mountain biking, hiking and "sweetwater" paddling on Lake Superior, the largest freshwater lake in the world …
For the whole list, go here.
Source: Gear Patrol

Northern schools turn rural status into an advantage for education

Don't underestimate the most rural school districts in Michigan -- several of northern Michigan's smallest districts scored the highest on a recent education ranking. The keys are tight-knit communities and a focus on quality.
Excerpt: Rural school districts like many in northern Michigan face many challenges -- geographic isolation, a lack of resources, teacher turnover and less attention than urban districts being just a few.
But, that doesn't mean they can't be successful.
For the whole story, click here.

The day the Red Wings played a Marquette prison team

Yes, it's true: the Red Wings played a game in Marquette back in 1954. At the prison. And, probably no surprise, they won.
Excerpt: The Red Wings game on Feb. 2, 1954 was notable for two major distinctions: It was the Wing's first outdoor game, and it was against a team of inmates at Marquette State prison. 

The unlikely match happened when the Wings' general manager Jack Adams and team captain Ted Lindsay visited the maximum security prison as part of a sponsored trip.
More on the story is online here.
Source: Metro Times
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