Seney, Michigan – All films will be shown in the Visitor Center Auditorium at Seney National Wildlife Refuge. All shows are open to the public and are free of charge. Hot chocolate, coffee, tea and cookies will be provided by the Seney Natural History Association. Please bring a mug. Watch previews of this year’s films on the Seney Website at www.fws.gov/refuge/Seney/Events.html.

If evening activities are cancelled due to weather at Three Lakes Academy or the Tahquamenon Area Schools, the makeup night will be Tuesday, March 31th at 6:30 p.m.

The Seney National Wildlife Refuge is located off M-77, five miles south of Seney, or two miles north of Germfask.

2015 Winter Film Festival at Seney National Wildlife Refuge

2015 Winter Film Festival at Seney National Wildlife Refuge

Strap on your Snowshoes or Skis

This weekend enjoy skiing or showshoeing at the Erickson Center for the Arts in Curtis, MI. Seney National Wildlife Refuge will be encouraging skiers and snowshoers of all ages to hit trail! Have fun on your own or use the “Wildlife in Winter Discovery Booklet,” found at the trail head, to search for and find signs of wildlife in the winter woods.

Seney National Wildlife Refuge will be on-site Saturday, February 14, 2015 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Beginners and experts alike can snowshoe or cross-country ski in the groomed paths around the trails at the Erickson Center for the Arts in Curtis, MI. If you don’t have a pair of snowshoes, no problem, we have a pair you can borrow to try out the fun winter sport. There will be winter activities for families and adults alike. Snowshoe the trails looking for items on the winter scavenger hunt, prizes will be awarded to those who complete their sheet. Have fun building a quinzee snow shelter, try your hand at snow painting, make frozen bubbles, and huddle around the fire. Warm up by watching one of our films in the Art Center. We will be showing “Animal Misfits”, “An Original DUCKumentry”, “The Animal House”, and “Wolverines: Chasing the Phantom”. It should be a romping good time in the snow. Remember to dress in layers for comfort.

The Erickson Center for the Arts offers trails for exploration year round.

MUNISING, Mich. The public is invited to attend the twentieth annual Alger Women of Honor Observance to be held Thursday, August 21. Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore is sponsoring the event.

The program will be held at the Alger County Heritage Center located at 1496 Washington Street in Munising. A social half-hour begins at 5:30 p.m. with the program beginning at 6 p.m.

The roll of honor recognizes Alger County women who have lead enriched lives whether through work, hobby, volunteerism or everyday living. At this year’s event, three women will be honored.

The honorees are Linda Balko, Deanna Boyak, and Mary Jo Cook of Munising.

The Women of Honor Observance celebrates the passage of the 19th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which gave women the right to vote. The theme of this year’s observance is, “Women of Courage, Character and Commitment.”

Log Slide Viewed From Lake Superior

Log Slide Viewed From Lake Superior

(Grand Marais, MICH.) On August 7, rangers at Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore conducted a rescue of a 62 year old female patient on the Log Slide. This patient experienced weakness and exhaustion and was transported by boat to Grand Marais Harbor, where she was treated and released by the Burt Township Ambulance Corps.

“This is the third rescue of this nature that rangers and local rescue personnel have responded to in the last two weeks,” reported Bill Smith, Acting Chief Ranger at Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore.

“The Log Slide is a steep sand slope that can take as little as five minutes to walk down, but over an hour to climb back up,” according to Smith. “Caution is always urged when attempting this climb. Better yet, enjoy the view from the top of the Log Slide.”

Deer Lake Roadside Park Reopened

Aug. 1, 2014 — The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) has reopened the Deer Lake Roadside Park along M-28 in Alger County as of 9 a.m. today. The park had been closed since Tuesday, July 29, because of a nuisance bear in the area.

Newberry Transportation Service Center Manager Pete Paramski said MDOT regretted any inconvenience caused by the closure. “Keeping visitors safe and assuring they have a pleasant experience are the foremost goals of MDOT,” Paramski said.

Staff from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources (DNR) attempted to trap and relocate the black bear that had reportedly been raiding garbage cans at the park. As of this morning, those attempts have been unsuccessful.

“We have had a higher number of nuisance bear complaints in recent weeks than what we would typically see at this point in the summer,” said DNR Wildlife Biologist Brian Roell. “Due to the late start to spring the berry crop is behind schedule, which is leading to bears looking for other food sources, including trash and bird feeders. That is apparently what is happening at Deer Lake.”

The DNR will now request permission from local landowners to place the trap in a nearby location on private land, allowing the park to remain open.

“The bear has not acted aggressively toward humans, but letting a bear become accustomed to people and manmade sources of food can lead to problems down the line, so we do hope that with landowner cooperation we will be successful in trapping and relocating this bear,” Roell said.

Residents experiencing trouble with nuisance bears on private property should contact the nearest DNR office for assistance. If Deer Lake Roadside Park visitors witness a bear in the park, they should call the DNR’s 24-hour hotline at 800-292-7800.

(Munising, MICH.) “Celebrating Wildflowers” week is May 18 through 24. To mark this occasion, botanists on the Hiawatha National Forest and interpreters from Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore will lead wildflower walks along Miners Castle Road.

Saturday Wildflower Walks
Deb LeBlanc, Hiawatha National Forest botanist, will lead wildflower walks on Saturday, May 24, and Saturday, May 31. Participants will meet at 1 p.m. at the Hiawatha National Forest-Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore interagency visitor center. The visitor center is located at 400 East Munising Avenue in Munising. There will be a short overview of the native plant program prior to driving to Miners Castle Road.

The group will stop frequently along Miners Castle Road and take short, easy walks into each wildflower viewing spot. The northern hardwood forest along Miners Castle Road provides one of the most diverse mix of spring wildflowers found in the Central Upper Peninsula of Michigan.

Subjects discussed during this 2 to 2-1/2 hour walk include easy identification tips for area spring wildflowers, unique plant characteristics, the northern hardwood forest ecology including the importance of vernal ponds, and tip-up mound topography. Techniques for photographing wildflowers will also be discussed.

Sunday Wildflower Walks
Andrea Chynoweth, Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore interpreter, will lead wildflower walks on Sunday, May 25, and Sunday, June 1. Participants will meet at 1 p.m. at the Miners Castle Information Station at the end of Miners Castle Road in Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore. This hour-long leisurely stroll will include wildflower identification, northern hardwood forest ecology, and the impact of invasive species.

Comfortable walking shoes recommended for all walks. Be prepared for bugs. Please bring water and your camera.

Celebrating Wildflowers is a National program created by USDA-Forest Service and USDI-Bureau of Land Management in response to public interest in the conservation and management of native plants. Celebrating wildflowers brings awareness to the role our public lands play as a reservoir for much of America’s native plant diversity.

For more information please the interagency visitor center in Munising at 387-3700.

www.nps.gov/piro

Major Discount (left) poses with Jean Moize (right) of Dallas, Texas.  Jean traveled here to help organize the event!

Major Discount (left) poses with Jean Moize (right) of Dallas, Texas. Jean traveled here to help organize the event!

MARQUETTE, MI – 5/17/2014 – Building a healthy future for our kids has become a priority for a lot of people.  Jilbert Dairy Fuel UP Play 60 centered around such a cause.  The Superior Dome welcomed over 500 people Saturday morning, and all were out to have a good time and to be active!

Former NFL players were in attendance such as Tony Fisher, former Green Bay Packer & Mr. Football – Ohio, along with Luther Ellis, a former defensive tackle for the Detroit Lions.  Some local (and national) celebrities were there too, such as Winter Olympian Snowboarder Nick Baumgartner and reigning Dairy Queen Chelsie Kronemeyer of Pickford!

All in attendance had a simple message to today’s youth:  GET ACTIVE!  Just because somebody tells you to go exercise, that doesn’t make it a chore.  Exercise is anything that gets you up and moving.  Go play tag, touch football, stickball, dizzy-bat spins… ANYTHING!  Just get off the couch and get outside.

Who doesn't want a free lunch?  A HEALTHY lunch at that!

Who doesn’t want a free lunch? A HEALTHY lunch at that!

The event was organized by Gordon Mielke, who said he was “very proud” of all the work that went into the day.  He was very excited to have such an array of high profile people come out to support this great cause.  With healthy snacks, drinks (MILK!), and activities, it truly was a great way to spend a Saturday in the Marquette.

We’d like to thank all of our fellow sponsors for this event:  UDIM, Tadych’s Econo Foods, Honor Credit Union, SIR Federal Credit Union, The Screened Image, Care Clinic of Marquette, the NFL and of course Jilbert Dairy!

If you would like to see more pictures from this event, or if you would like to hear interviews with the Major, Luther Elliss, Nick Baumgartner, Tony Fisher, or a myriad of others that took the time to get involved with this great cause CLICK HERE!

Courtney Kotewa Wins Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore Photo Wins 2013 Share the Experience Competition

Courtney Kotewa Wins Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore Photo Wins 2013 Share the Experience Competition

Munising, Michigan – A stunning photograph of Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore is the 2013 Grand Prize winner in the National Park Foundation’s Share the Experience photo competition. Courtney Kotewa of Essexville, Michigan, was named the grand prize winner with her photo of kayaking on Lake Superior along Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

This year’s grand prize winner comes from a family outing. According to Courtney, it almost didn’t happen as she was not sure she would take her phone with her on the kayak trip for fear of dropping it in choppy Lake Superior. Lucky for Courtney, she decided to risk it and bring the phone to document the trip.

Although she grew up in Michigan, this was Courtney’s first trip to Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore, and she described it as being on her mom’s “bucket list.” Both Courtney and her mom are always up for adventure in the outdoors as Courtney describes it best, “Nature grounds you where you can get your perspective on life back. That’s what it does for me.”

“We are very pleased that Ms. Kotewa’s outstanding photograph of Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore will be on the 2015 pass and congratulate her for her grand prize winning entry,” said Lakeshore Superintendent Mike Pflaum. “This latest recognition for the lakeshore will result in well-deserved greater national awareness of the stunning resources of the park.”

The National Park Foundation, the official charity of America’s national parks, ACTIVE Network, and Air Wick sponsor the Share the Experience photo contest. Nearly 20,000 images were submitted in 2013, and the contest had more than 1.7 million photo views. As the grand prize winner, Courtney’s photo will be featured on the 2015 America the Beautiful – The National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass. About 300,000 people purchase this pass each year.

The U.S. Department of the Interior hopes the competition will encourage all Americans to explore inspiring places.

“And don’t forget to take your camera along,” said Interior Secretary Sally Jewell. “The lens of a camera in the right hands at the right place can capture the majesty and magic of America’s national parks, national wildlife refuges and other treasured landscapes like the beautiful lakeshore in Michigan where Courtney took her winning photograph,” Jewel added.

In 2013, second place went to Michael DeWitt of Ashland, Wisconsin, for his photo of the sunset through an ice-covered porthole during a winter canoe trip in Apostle Islands National Lakeshore, also on Lake Superior. Third place went to Darrell Staggs of Mooresville, Indiana, for his illusionary photo that appears to show a hiker walking along the edge of a cliff in Glen Canyon National Recreation Area.

The Share the Experience photo contest is a chance for amateur photographers to submit inspiring images of America’s federal lands, national parks, forests, waterways and historical sites to win cash prizes, outdoor equipment, annual federal recreation passes and hotel packages courtesy of Historic Hotels of America. The grand prize for the winning image is $10,000, followed by $5,000 and $3,000 for second and third place, in addition to outdoor gear and an annual pass. There are also prizes for fan favorites and one each in six categories.

With the announcement of the 2013 Grand Prize, the 2014 competition was launched, and all federal land visitors are encouraged to enter. For more information about the 2014 competition, please visit www.sharetheexperience.org

MUNISING, MICHIGAN – The Tennis match at Marquette v Munising originally scheduled for Thursday, April 24 has been postponed to Friday, May 2 at 3:30 in Marquette

(Munising, MICH.) Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore’s 2014 “Adopt-a-Trail, Adopt-a-Campsite and Adopt-a-Beach” orientation and training session will be held Saturday, May 3, from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. It will be held at the Munising Falls Visitor Center located at 1505 Sand Point Road, across from the Munising Memorial Hospital.

Under this program, interested individuals or groups who enjoy hiking and camping in the park can adopt a section of trail, backcountry campsite or beach segment. Adopt-a-Trail, Adopt-a-Campsite and Adopt-a-Beach volunteers are asked to visit their section of trail, campsite or beach once a month from May through October for light maintenance duties including picking up litter, light brushing, cleaning out water bars, and breaking up illegal fire rings.

Volunteers are also asked to fill out a brief one-page summary and to report on any larger issues that need to be followed up or completed by park staff. The park will provide a volunteer uniform vest and ball cap, basic tools, gloves, and written guidelines on the work to be performed.

“As with many other public institutions, we need the assistance of volunteers to complement and supplement the work of our paid professional staff,” explained lakeshore volunteer coordinator Pam Baker. “With over 100 miles of trail and 14 designated backcountry campsites, this is just as true in the backcountry as it is in the developed areas of the park. We are grateful to the citizen-stewards that participated in this program in previous years, and encourage even more local citizens to become partners with us in taking care of this very special place.”

The park’s trail network has 37 sections that are available for “adoption”. Adoptable sections range from trails that are easily accessible and less than a tenth of a mile to a section of the North Country Trail that is 5.3 miles long. There is something for every ability and level of interest.

“This will be the ninth year for this program, and it has been very successful. We have dedicated and enthusiastic volunteers who love to hike and are happy to do some work along the way, and we hope they will be back with us this year. Most of all we want people to have fun and enjoy their time spent in the park. This is a great way to enjoy the outdoors and to be a part of conserving America’s first national lakeshore, ” Baker continued.

If you are interested in participating in the program, please call Pam Baker, the park’s Volunteer in Park Coordinator, at 387-3700.

http://www.nps.gov/piro

The sight and sound of sharp-tailed grouse dancing on a lek (dancing/breeding ground) is one of natures true spectacles. Males stomp their feet as fast as they can, causing their tails to rattle. At the same time they inflate purple neck sacks, called gular, which produce a unique sound. Meanwhile the females sit back and watch carefully to select their mate. The romance is fleeting and the hen will be left to raise the young on her own. Couple this show with the early morning light of dawn and you have the backdrop for a wonderful and unforgettable morning.

As a citizen scientist you will be asked to hike one mile at first light to make it to the blind by dawn. Like the saying goes “The early bird gets the …” well in the grouse world we are going to have to say hen. After reaching the blind you will take weather readings then rest for a bit before you begin to count. For one hour you will count the dancing grouse and the non-dancing grouse for one minute every ten minutes. The rest of the time is yours to watch, photograph, or video tape the grouse. Stay as long as you like before you hike out again.

Participants are required to watch a video and pass a short quiz prior to participating in the survey. Several dates are still available! Because of the nature of the study, we will try to pair people up into teams if you do not have a partner. However, a partner is not required to participate. For more information or to sign up contact Sara Giles by email: Sara_Giles@fws.gov or call (906) 586-9851 x10.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources’ Eastern Lake Superior Management Unit in Fisheries Division has announced public forums in Newberry and Munising to discuss local and statewide fisheries management activities and concerns.

The forums will be held on Tuesday, April 8 from 7-8:30 p.m. (EDT) at the Tahquamenon Area Public Library located at 700 Newberry Avenue in Newberry and on Monday, April 14 from 7-8:30 p.m. (EDT) at Sydney’s Restaurant located at 400 Cedar Street in Munising.

“Conversations & Coffee with DNR Fisheries Division” will take place in each of the eight management units that oversee Michigan’s fisheries. The purpose of these forums will be to meet managers and biologists, to discuss local issues and management activities, and to get specific questions answered.

These informal forums will also make information available on local and statewide regulations impacting anglers. Refreshments will be provided.

To see a full list of forums occurring throughout the state, visit www.michigan.gov/fishing. For more information on the Newberry and Munising forums, contact Cory Kovacs at kovacsc@michigan.gov or 906-293-5131.

Upcoming Alger Blood Drive April 21st

April 21, 2014: Neenah Papermill (Munising)

The U.P. Regional Blood Center, a service of Marquette General, will hold a Bloodmobile blood drive on Monday, April 21 at the Neenah Papermill in Munising from 12:30 – 3:30 p.m. For an appointment, call Robin Maxon at (906) 387-7556.

TDS® announces the ARRA broadband stimulus project is complete; high-speed Internet service now available to businesses and nearly 1,300 households in areas around Chatham, Au Train.

MADISON, Wis. (April, 2014)—TDS Telecom (TDS®) announces its broadband Internet project in Michigan — around Au Train and Chatham — is now complete. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) stimulus-funded project makes high-speed Internet accessible to just over 1,300 area residents and businesses, about 400 more homes than projected in TDS’ application for funding.

In November 2012, TDS announced a portion of this project in Michigan was completed; the portion around Au Train remained a work in process.

“This was a large and complicated project,” says Joe Kirk, manager of Project Implementation at TDS. “Pulling it all together successfully took the effort of many teams, people, and partnerships.”

Kirk points to the following for their efforts and ongoing support:

· Local TDS team, led by David Moore

· TDS support teams in Madison, Wis.

· CHR Solutions, the engineering firm

· Vendor partners Alcatel-Lucent USA, Calix, Inc., Metaswitch Networks, and R. Roese Contracting Company

· Rural Utilities Service liaisons William Vogt and Kristine Reddy

TDS installed more than 125 miles of fiber optics cabling and 29 cabinets (which protect the advanced network electronics) throughout its Chatham Telephone Company. Customers interested in signing up for services should call 888-CALL-TDS (888-225-5837).

This is one of 44 projects that TDS is receiving funding for from the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Rural Utilities Service (RUS) as part of the ARRA. TDS projected the cost at about $8.6 million, which is funded in part by the RUS grant.

Nationwide, more than 95 percent of TDS customers already have access to high-speed Internet service. TDS is intent on providing as many remaining customers with broadband connectivity as possible. According to TDS, federal stimulus funds are helping to close the gap and deliver Internet connectivity to more than 27,000 customers.

For background information and updates, visit www.tdstelecom.com/stimulus.

ALGER COUNTY, MICHIGAN – The Hiawatha National Forest (HNF) in cooperation with the Superior Watershed Partnership are seeking volunteers to help with seeding a few thousand cells with common milkweed and a mix of pollinator nectar plants on Thursday, April 17th from 10am until 3pm (pot luck lunch at noon) at the Forest greenhouse located at 1030 Wright Street, Marquette.

Common milkweed is an important host plant for the Monarch butterfly and a critical component in our pollinator habitat restoration. HNF is planting milkweed at critical areas for pollinators and has been for a number of years through projects such as the old farm field restoration on Grand Island. There since 2008 through the help of Life of Lake Superior volunteers and others we have introduced back into the landscape nearly 10,000 common and swamp milkweed plants. In order to provide necessary habitat for a suite of pollinator species such as monarch butterflies, hummingbirds, bumble bees, moths and bats we have planned pollinator habitat restoration work the summer of 2014 at Stonington Peninsula where the nationally recognized monarch openings occur, Peninsula Point where we are removing by hand invasive non-native black swallow-wort from known monarch habitat, Sandtown near Nahma where we are removing by hand invasive spotted knapweed from monarch habitat along Lake Michigan shoreline, Grand Island National Recreation Area at the old farm field restoration site and three large grass land openings (Dunklee, Baldy Lake and Ready Lake) where we are introducing a mix of pollinator species plants in order to provide greater plant and future animal diversity within the openings.

Understanding monarch butterflies is truly a mystery and a magical aspect of nature. A few fun facts about monarch butterflies… did you know common milkweed is the host plant for monarch butterflies? The female monarch butterfly lays only one egg per plant on the underside of milkweed leaves. Within roughly 3-6 days a small, creamy colored caterpillar about the size of a pin will emerge and begin feeding on that milkweed leaf. From birth it only takes about 6 hours for the caterpillar to change from its creamy coloration to yellow, black and white stripes. And did you know one caterpillar can consume up to 20-30 leaves before it is full-grown! Monarch caterpillars eat plants only in the milkweed family. In North America we have over 100 known species of milkweed, although monarch’s have been documented feeding on only 27 of those species. Monarchs sequester a poisonous cardiac glycoside from milkweed, thus effectively protecting them from predation. Once they shed their skin (about five times) the caterpillar will be about 2 inches in length and it weighs almost 3,000 times more than it did at birth! After the 5th shed, the monarch butterfly will create its chrysalis. It will take between 9 to11 days for the fully formed monarch butterfly to emerge from its chrysalis. Our adult monarch butterflies migrate nearly 2,000 miles south to Mexico and arrive in Mexico around the first of November.

Interested volunteers may help for an hour or more. No experience is needed because we will work alongside you and explain various aspects of native plant propagation. For further information please contact Deb Le Blanc at 387-2512 (extension 20) / email dleblanc01@fs.fed.us -or- Sue Rabitaille at srborealis@peoplepc.com.


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