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To find earliest North Americans, scientist follows ice

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Sometimes the answers to the most nagging questions are right beneath our noses.

And according to David Overstreet, director of the Center for Archaeology Research at Marquette University, that's the case when it comes to questions about the first people in North America.

Evidence scattered around Wisconsin shows that people could have lived in the state as far back as 14,000 years ago. And now, two new sites in Door County may add further support to this early occupation - confounding some long-held views of New World archaeology.   more...

 





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Great Lakes shipping hits slump

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A slow economy has brought tough times to the port of Erie.

Less cargo has passed over the port's docks since this time in 2002, and the immediate future doesn't look much brighter, said Sandy Smith, vice president and general manager of Erie Sand & Gravel, the Erie company now owned by shipping giant Oglebay Norton of Cleveland.

Though Smith wouldn't release tonnage numbers, he said the company has brought in less cargo than it did during 2002's shipping season, when a typical 1 million tons of gravel, stone, salt and general cargo was handled at Mountfort Terminal.  
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Environment  

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Amistad visit recalls city's liberating past

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The Amistad and Buffalo are a perfect match.

When the sleek schooner sails into Buffalo's harbor - an event expected to occur overnight Monday or early this morning, depending on winds - it will bring with it a rich cargo of American history.

The Amistad will grace the waterfront all this week, nestling like a jewel of American history in the crown of a city that once built a reputation for guiding enslaved people to freedom.

"This is a wonderful opportunity to carry on a tradition in Buffalo," said William Siener, head of the Buffalo & Erie County Historical Society. "It brings it all to life."   more...

 





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Yachting club volunteers push to preserve lighthouses

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The Grassy Island Range Lights have gotten a reprieve from the scrap heap two times in the past half-century.

After years of work by a group of Green Bay Yachting Club members, the two navigational lighthouses stand as a welcome sign to boaters heading into Green Bay.   more...

 





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Carcinogen spilled into river during the blackout

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Call it another lesson from the blackout. A faulty tube in a Canadian manufacturing plant accidently dumped a potentially dangerous amount of chemicals into the St. Clair River during the mid-August outage.

Normally, alarms would have sounded and the company would have shut down to make the repair before any chemicals made it into the river.

But the alarms are electric. By the time the company figured out what was going on, the chemical was long gone. And communities downriver from the spill didn't know they should protect their water systems until three days later.   more...

 





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The History of the Canada's Cup

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The Canada's Cup has a employed a variety of design types over the last 100 years, from the P-class Universal Rule boats of the turn of the century to the 8-Metres of the International Rule of the 1930s and 1950s and on to the offshore keelboats of the Cruising Club of America Rule and International Offshore Rule of the 1960s through the 1980s.

But design-more to the point, participating clubs agreeing on a design-has long been one of the sticking points to arranging matches.

After the 8-Metre heyday of the 1930s, in which three vigorous series were held from 1930 to 1934 between the RCYC and Rochester Yacht Club, the cup fell dormant essentially for thirty-five years.

A depression and a world war were in part to blame, but trying to decide what sort of design development the cup should foster was a major impediment to keeping the trophy active. A one-match revival in 8-Metres, won by the RCYC, was held in 1954 as part of this Club's centennial celebrations, but another 15 years passed before the trophy returned to regular competition with the switch to offshore keelboats designed initially under the CCA in 1969, then the IOR. Between 1969 and 1988, seven matches were sailed as the contest was held on an almost regular three-year basis.   more...

 



Sailing  

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Canada's Cup Race Schedule

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September 25 - Press Conference at RCYC City Station

September 26 - Opening Ceremonies at 6:30pm

September 27 to October 3 - Racing begins at 11:00am daily

Closing Ceremonies - On the Front Lawn immediately following racing on the day the winner is declared.

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Sailing  

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Team Hollerbach wins the U.S. Match Racing Championship

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Nathan Hollerbach, Matt Shirilla & Mike Hoey Win the Prince of Wales Bowl Detroit, MI (Sept. 6)

Team Hollerbach wins the U.S. Match Racing Championship - followed by Team Dave Rosow, Jr. and Team Benz Faget. Flights took place on the Detroit River where current is a variable. Winds were, for the most part, out of the SSW, blowing 7-12. Racers competed in Ultimate 20s, provided by the host, Bayview Yacht Club, that also hosted the Rolex Umpire Clinic on Tuesday. Umpires were on top of their game and so was Team Hollerbach. Rolex Watch U.S.A. sponsors this event, as well as all US SAILING's Adult Championships.

 

 





Rapid growth in irrigation is putting a strain on some water resources.

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Since 1949, American agriculture has seen a twenty-five fold increase in the use of irrigation. Jim Kleinschmit is with the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy in Minneapolis. He says irrigation and suburban sprawl can strain groundwater supplies, even in the Great Lakes region.

"This loss of farmland combined with the increased irrigation and withdrawal pressure on groundwater is really starting to be a concern, and you're seeing it in places within the basin where there are already, wells are dropping, the water tables are dropping, there's becoming shortages."

And calls for tighter regulation. Michigan, for example, is considering a law to give municipal water supplies priority over agriculture. The move follows recent incidents where wells ran dry during times of heavy irrigation.   more...

 





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ARMY CORPS AND ENVIROS SPAR OVER RIVER LEVELS

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Court battles over the Missouri River have subsided... for now. The debate has focused on whether the Corps of Engineers should drop water levels to protect endangered species... or keep a normal flow to ensure barges would be able to ship cargo. In the end, levels went down, but not for nearly as long as courts had ordered. And as the Great Lakes Radio Consortium's Tom Weber reports, this summer's fight might just be the first battle in a war over the river's management:   more...

 





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SAVING TURTLES FROM TRAFFIC

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Driving on country roads can sometimes be like navigating an obstacle course of wildlife - deer, skunks, raccoons, frogs, and throughout much of the summer - turtles. Turtles like to lay their eggs along roadsides and become easy candidates for roadkill. They live and reproduce for decades, so when an adult is killed prematurely, it can have a big effect on turtle populations as a whole. Researchers are trying to find out how often turtles cross the road and how to help them get safely to the other side.   more...

 

 

 



Animals  

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Fighting West Nile virus with native fish

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One community is trying a different approach to preventing the West Nile virus: increasing stocks of mosquito-eating fish.  more...


Environment  

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Plunging into Ohio's heart

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Seeking pleasure nearby, Clevelanders often turn north to fickle Great Lake Erie and its come-hither islands. Or they scan the mainland for the string-of-jewels park systems.

But now, more than ever, travelers are reminded to turn south on a 110-mile highway of history that plunges into the heart of Ohio, slipping through cities of concrete and steel, moseying through small towns and lingering in the green rhythms of farms and forests.

Time to hit the trail of the Ohio and Erie Canal Scenic Byway, one of 14 scenic byways designated by the state. more...

 



Watersports  

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State weeding out invasive species

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Acre on acre, the dead, gray stems of a foreign weed stand head-high in what once was a lush wetland in St. John's Marsh, just inland from Lake St. Clair.

The plants, called phragmites, have been crowding out native greenery in the popular wildlife area for more than a decade. State biologists are fighting back with a combination of herbicides, fire, giant mowers and water-level controls. more...

 



Environment  

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Park on Whiskey Island mapped out

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Cleveland has put its plans in detailed, color-coded maps: Create a park on Whiskey Island.

It's not enough to convince critics who wonder if the city means what it has put on paper.

The Whiskey Island park is a key piece of Cleveland's plan to redevelop the shores of Lake Erie. It is finalizing an agreement with the Cuyahoga County-Cleveland Port Authority to help create the 20-acre park on the island's eastern edge.   more...

 



Gov Affairs  

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