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Boating industry sees measurable growth

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Detroit Boat Show expecting attendance and sales increase

LIVONIA, MICH. – January 24, 2012 – The Michigan Boating Industries Association (MBIA), producer of Michigan’s big three boat show shows, the Detroit Boat Show, Spring Boating Expo and Boating & Outdoor Festival – reports growth in exhibit space and sponsorship sales at the upcoming Detroit Boat Show at Cobo Center, Feb. 11-19. Consumer attendance and boat sales are expected to grow as well as the boating industry reports positivity and growth over the last 12 months. more

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Key West: Fantasy Island

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Key West Race Week delivers an environment impossible to compare with any regatta in the world. Personally, it felt like someone dragged Reno, Nevada to the oceanfront, and ran one of the most amazing spectacles in sailing: bull riding, carny activities, jet pack rides, pirates heckling you on the street. . . I found myself in the middle of the spectrum between Mad Max and the Real World. For our team, West Marine Rigging, it became a story of amazing success and survival.  more...


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'Lake Effect Lace' on display at Erie Art Museum

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So we finally have some snow, in northwestern Pennsylvania, in January. And, the only thing crazy about that sentence is the word finally.

The snow hasn't been AWOL, it's just been lurking in an unexpected place. The Erie Art Museum has been an interior winter wonderland for the past couple of months, what with the excellent environmental photo/painting exhibit "Double Exposure/The Politics of Snow" and an even more intimate look at our flaky winter friends in the Ronald E. Holstein Gallery.

Local artist Carol Posch Comstock has coined a new term for the billions of icy crystals that both bedazzle and bedevil us and our surroundings this time of year: "Lake Effect Lace." Not that there's any demonization going on here; as photographed and presented by Comstock, snowflakes are intricate, elegant little gems that look far too fragile to cause the kind of frenzy they sometimes do when they congregate in snow showers, squalls or blizzards.  more..



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Builder hopes to blow winds of change, lift ban on wind turbines

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The province is in no rush to approve a massive wind energy project that holds the promise of hundreds of jobs for Hamilton companies.

The Ministry of Energy says a provincial moratorium on wind projects enacted almost a year ago will remain in place until the province is satisfied such projects are safe. It is currently studying an offshore wind turbine development in Sweden and another planned pilot project in Ohio and will not approve any projects in Ontario until results are known, a spokesperson said Wednesday.  more...



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Underwater guns, traps, aim to shake up Great Lakes invaders

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Nestled in the northwest corner of the Lower Peninsula, the Grand Traverse Bay has experienced declining native fish populations for decades. And all-too-common perpetrators are largely to blame — aquatic invaders.

But a new federal and state partnership seeks to bolster the bay’s native fish populations. Officials will use traps and seismic guns to clear rusty crayfish and round gobies from spawning reefs, where they hang out and eat fish eggs. more...



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Quagga mussels least known, most dangerous invader

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The little-known quagga mussel is taking over vast stretches of the Great Lakes, dramatically reducing populations of game and commercial fish and presenting a much more immediate danger to lake ecology than its more famous cousin — the zebra mussel — ever did.

In fact, the quagga mussel is outcompeting and replacing the zebra mussel.

“Without question, the quagga mussel represents the greatest threat to the Great Lakes of any invasive species,” said Tom Nalepa, an emeritus research biologist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory in Ann Arbor and recognized expert on the invader. more...


Environment  

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50 Rules to Sail by in 2012 - Week 4

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Every day we race sailboats we take with us a foundation of experience unique to each one of us. That’s one of the beautiful things about our sport. Sailors race in small boats by themselves, and small boats with other people, or big boats with tons of other people, and sometimes big boats by themselves. They race on odd little lakes as well as massive expanses of freshwater. They sail on the clear blue of the ocean as well as the nasty culs of the sea. Some race against the tidal currents while others dodge airplane jet outflow.

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Kilroy's 'Samba Pa Ti' Maintains The Melges 32 Key West Lead

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Key West, Fla. - After having the day off on Wednesday due to lack of breeze, the 19-strong Melges 32 fleet rallied back into action on Thursday at Quantum Key West 2012, adding three more races to the board. Standing firm, and officially in the lead is John Kilroy and tactician Lorenzo Bressani aboard Samba Pa Ti. In second overall, only four points behind, is Benjamin Schwartz and tactician Ed Baird on Pisces. Bob Hughes’ Heartbreaker with Tovar Mirsky on tactics is third.

After a short, yet expected on-the-water postponement, PRO Peter 'Luigi' Reggio sent the fleet racing under warm temps, sun-shiny conditions and a light breeze. Over time, an approaching cold front ushered in more wind making for the perfect start to Race One of the day. At the top, with about 8-10 knots of breeze, Steve Howe's Warpath took the lead, followed by Hughes in second and Kilroy third.  more...



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Sunny Skies and Strong Breezes for Quantum Key West 2012

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Key West, Fla - Quantum Key West 2012 got off to a roaring start as strong breeze and sunny skies greeted the fleet of 112 boats in 12 classes. Northeast winds that started off at 15 knots and built to 20-plus challenged crews on the opening day of the 25th anniversary regatta, organized by Premiere Racing.

 

  "It was a classic Key West day - beautiful weather with breeze on," said John Kilroy, skipper of the Melges 32 Samba Pa Ti. "These are the type of sailing conditions we all come down here for. We'd love to have a few more days like this."

 

   That's because Kilroy and the Samba Pa Ti team performed extremely well in the heavy air, winning both races in the talent-laden 19-boat fleet. The California entry got a great start and led wire-to-wire in Race 1 then won a great battle with Hedgehog and Pisces in Race 2.  more...



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Conchin’ Good Time

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One of biggest complaints from European and US teams at Key West in previous years was the early start times which had sailors headed to their boats in pre-dawn darkness and pushing off the dock just after sunset to prepare for a day of racing.  Throw in a late night on Duval Street, and by weeks end many of the teams had the look of a tourist from Alabama trying to figure out a jet-ski instead of a top notch racing program.  more...


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Race Ready at Quantum Key West 2012 --- Big Breeze and Blue Skies for the 25th Anniversary

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There's been a flurry of activity at the various marinas around the Conch Republic as boats and crews prepare for Quantum Key West 2012.

 

     Tourists disembarking from the cruise ships have been gawking at the high-tech big boats berthed at the docks in front of the Westin Hotel while crews tune rigs and load sails. Vacationers renting jet skis in front of The Galleon have dodged the many Melges 32s heading out of Government Cut to go practice. Couples having lunch at the Half Shell Raw Bar have watched Farr 30 teams return to docks of Historic Seaport after a day on the water.  more...



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State might require warnings at beaches

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A bill making its way through the Michigan Senate would leave swimmers looking for the all-clear before slipping into any of the Great Lakes.

The bill, co-sponsored by Sen. Phil Pavlov, R-St. Clair, calls for installing a system of flags at the entrance to public beaches on the lakeshore advising visitors about the swimming conditions. The system is modeled after a program already in place in Florida.

"It is intended to drive information on water conditions," Pavlov said. "The DNR already adheres to a defined standard for beach conditions; this would just expand it to all beaches on the Great Lakes."   more...



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Upper Peninsula lake is quietly becoming ice fishing hotbed

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From left, Timbers Resort o.JPGTim Long is a fan of Lake Gogebic, the Upper Peninsula’s largest inland lake, which in early 2012 was one of the few water bodies in Michigan with safe ice.

Long guides for walleyes on Gogebic, a walleye and perch fishery that has caught the attention of anglers like walleye pro Mark Martin of Twin Lake, who hopes to offer one of his popular ice fishing vacation/schools there in 2013.   more...



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Grant Award for Innovative Technology May Help Native Fish in Grand Traverse Bay

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After decades of fewer native fish in Grand Traverse Bay, important species like lake trout, whitefish, and lake herring may have a fighting chance to increase their numbers, thanks to a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Great Lakes Restoration Initiative grant recently awarded to a partnership led by The Nature Conservancy, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Central Michigan University, U.S. Geological Survey and Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians.  more...


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2012 Bell's Beer Bayview Mackinac Race

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Happy New Year!  With the new year comes the time for planning your 2012 Bell's Beer Bayview Mackinac Race, the 88th consecutive running of this Blue Water Classic and the Jewel of July.  We have some exciting new changes in store.   more...



Sailing  

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