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Flash Gordon 6 Wins Rolex Farr 40 Worlds

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Chicago architect Helmut Jahn has won the 2012 Rolex Farr 40 World Championship after nine races across four days of competition on Lake Michigan.
With the race committee hoping to run three races for the final day of the series, the first race of the day got underway in a westerly breeze of 13 knots with gusts to 24. John Demourkas, on Groovederci (USA), led the fleet around the first two marks of the 6.4 nautical mile course, only to be overtaken by Hasip Gencer on Asterisk Uno (TUR) who cruised on to cross the finish just four hundredths of a second ahead of him. Enfant Terrible (ITA) was third across the line, followed by Charisma (USA) and Barking Mad (USA). Standings leader Helmut Jahn, on Flash Gordon 6 (USA), was sixth which was enough to both keep him in the lead and also increase his points cushion from 10 to 13.   more...

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Law Enforcement Arrives at Betsie Bay to Close Fishery at Mouth of River

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At about 5:15 Monday, the Alert got word from county commissioner Don Tanner that law enforcement officials were headed to the crowded scene at the east end of Betsie Bay to put a stop to both the fish saving and fish snagging taking place there.
 
Per the DNR’s September 14 press release, the area to be closed to fishing lies between the red lines in the image below.
 
Tanner said Justin Vanderlinde, Benzie County’s game warden, said the 21-day waiting period for the fishing closure to take effect was under review.
 
“The biggest problem that Justin has is that people are not listening to them. So they’re sending law enforcement over there to put a stop to all this.” A relative of Don Tanner’s was fishing in a boat Friday and said, “I’m down there at O-dark-thirty and here comes a bunch of guys with nothing but landing nets, no fishing poles at all. They’re taking stringers of fish out of there. That kind of crap needs to stop.”  more...


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Coast Guard asks boaters for navigation buoy advice

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In a few months the U.S. Coast Guard cutter Hollyhock will head out to Lake Huron and the St. Clair River to pick up buoys for the winter, and replace them with navigational markers that can endure the ice and harsh conditions.
 
Before then, officials want to know what mariners think of the navigation tools.
 
The Coast Guard is conducting a study of the St. Clair River, the first one done since 2007, to determine if the navigational aids strung along the river are placed most effectively. more...


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Dive in and connect with nature

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In 18 hours you can drive from Milwaukee to Dallas. If you break a few speed limit laws, you can get from Toledo to Orlando. You can even drive from Detroit to Chicago three times—and still have a few hours to spare.

Or, you can stay close to home and swim in all five Great Lakes in one day. That is exactly what three friends and I did this summer.

I got the idea from a post in the Pure Michigan blog about two women who completed this challenge in May. I knew it was something I had to try.  more...



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Toxic-algae warning Lake Erie’s first this year

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The state is warning some swimmers to steer clear of the Maumee Bay State Park beach on Lake Erie after a water sample turned up toxic algae.This is the first algae warning this year at Lake Erie.

“We continue to monitor (the water) and post signs to make sure the public knows and can make wise decisions,” said Bethany McCorkle, a spokeswoman for the Ohio Department of Natural Resources.Similar warnings have been posted at Grand Lake St. Marys in western Ohio and at three beaches at Buckeye Lake in central Ohio. more...



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Clean beaches and water free from sewage: It’s up to us

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Twenty million patrons visit Chicago’s beaches each summer.

That factoid from the Chicago Park District’s website got my attention earlier this year as I was researching another commentary.

I wondered, did I read that right, 20 million? I checked the site again because the number was far more than I would have guessed. It was right.

On reflection it starts to make sense. more...



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Local leaders participate in Great Lakes conference

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Local representatives addressing a conference on the Great Lakes in Cleveland this week said they will return to the region with a host of topics to discuss with area leaders.

The leaders participated in this week's annual meeting of the Healing Our Waters-Great Lakes Coalition in Cleveland. 

Kay Nelson, environmental director for the Portage-based Northwest Indiana Forum, participated in discussions surrounding Asian carp and other aquatic invasive species in the Great Lakes.  more...



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MAKING A FRESH WATER SPLASH

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Since the launch of the first Farr 40 in 1997, this high-octane grand-prix class has grown to 160 boats sailed in 20 countries.  The well-organized class is run like a business, and the ensuing international competition has led the fleet around the globe to race in many of the sailing world’s most iconic venues:  San Francisco, Miami, Porto Cervo, Newport and Sydney.  From September 17-20, 2012, the 40’ high-performance one-design yachts will contest the Rolex Farr 40 World Championship in Chicago, notable as an international hub for finance, commerce, industry, telecommunications and transportation.  The 20 yachts, representing eight nations (Australia, Canada, Germany, Italy, Mexico, Monaco, Turkey and the U.S.A.), will compete on fast-paced and technically demanding courses, with the first starting signal scheduled to be given daily at 11:00 a.m.   more...


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Warm State or Cold State? Why Boats Wintered in Either Need "Freeze Coverage" Insurance

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ALEXANDRIA, Va. September 10, 2012 - Boats stored for the winter in regions with consistent below-freezing temperatures in heated storage facilities have it best, except when winter storms bring power outages and the heat goes off. Suddenly, the boat's motor, which is often not winterized or prepared for freezing temperatures, becomes a liability as water in the engine block freezes, destroying it. And for boats stored in warmer states, an unexpected cold spell can lead to ice damaging the engine block. That's why no matter where you keep your boat over the winter, Boat Owners Association of The United States (BoatUS) recommends having ice and freeze coverage on your boat's insurance policy. more

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Boaters Overstaying Their Welcome Could Find Themselves in Hot Water with the Tax Man

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ALEXANDRIA, Va., September 11, 2012 - Staying too long in one place can ruin a good thing. At least that's the case with boaters making lengthy journeys, who are finding themselves targets of cash-hungry states when they stay too long and are subject to various taxes. But how can boaters prevent overstaying their welcome? Boat Owners Association of The United States (BoatUS) has online state tax information at www.BoatUS.com/gov/states that will help keep them on the right side of the law and out of hot water with the taxman. more

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Water Runs Through Us: Muskegon leaders spent decades assembling the city's vast Lake Michigan beaches

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Muskegon residents sometimes have a way of looking around at their lakeshore neighbors with an envious eye toward what they’d like their community to become. No doubt the fine folks of Acme, Mich., would look at the city of Muskegon and its beloved Pere Marquette Park beach in the same way.

Acme Township, just north of Traverse City on U.S. 31, has about a mile of the East Arm of the Grand Traverse Bay that community leaders would like to assemble as a destination and signature attraction for their community.  more...



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What will candidates do to protect the Great Lakes?

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Representatives of the two presidential campaigns are expected to address a Great Lakes conference in Cleveland on Thursday morning. They'll no doubt ask for support at the Great Lakes Restoration Conference, but they also need to spell out what their candidates are prepared to do to protect and restore the natural habitat of the lakes.  more...


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Scientist warns of heavier storms, more Great Lakes algae

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An increasingly warm climate is worsening the problem of harmful Great Lakes algae blooms by boosting the intensity of spring rains that wash phosphorus into the waters, a scientist said Wednesday during a conference for advocates and policymakers.

The trend is likely to continue over the coming century, heightening the urgency to control runoff of dissolved phosphorus that promotes excessive algae growth, said Don Scavia, director of the University of Michigan's Graham Sustainability Institute.  more...



Environment  

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Star Class North American Championship day 2

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Day two of the Star Class North American Championship on Hamilton Harbour saw a number of obstructions which included a large freighter and a barge loaded with grain, but nothing that the Star fleet and race committee could not handle.  more...


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Rolex Farr 40 World Championship kicks off with Farr 40 Pre-Worlds

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Farr 40 Pre-Worlds 2012 kicks off tomorrow when twenty teams from eight countries will be lined up to race for two days in the opening act of next week's 2012 Rolex Farr 40 World Championship held at Chicago YC. And while the Pre-Worlds marks the beginning of the Worlds, it also is the last two days of racing in the five-event North American Circuit leading up to this final showdown. Eleven teams entered this series, which started at Quantum Key West in January, went to Miami in March, Annapolis in May, Newport in July and now will finish in Chicago.  more...


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