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Shipwreck group presents program about search for the S.S. Michigan

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HOLLAND -- Three years ago, a group of shipwreck searchers discovered the remains of a sunken 230-foot wooden freighter off the Saugatuck coastline.

This year, the same Holland-area group will be looking deep into Lake Michigan again in hopes of finding more historical treasure.

Michigan Shipwreck Research Associates will work with a well-known Great Lakes shipwreck expert this month to survey a section of Lake Michigan bottomland off Holland using side-scan sonar. Their hope is to find the S.S. Michigan, a 204-foot iron-hulled steamer that sank in the winter of 1885 after being stuck in ice for 42 days.   more...

 



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Boater believed drowned on Lake St. Clair

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Michael and Liz Schaefer were enjoying a quiet afternoon Sunday, fishing with their sons on their boat on Lake St. Clair when they heard a woman's cry for help.

"At first, we thought it was just some people goofing around in the water," Liz Schaefer said. "But then the voice grew more desperate and we realized something was wrong."

A couple aboard another boat in the bay near Jefferson by Gino's Surf in Harrison Township was in trouble. A man apparently slid off the deck of his 24-foot Four Winns vessel and fell into the water. His girlfriend jumped in to try to help him. Neither wore flotation devices.   more...


 



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Treaty resolution on its way

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Midland, Mich. — Answers to questions about treaty-guaranteed inland hunting and fishing rights won’t come soon, but they will come.


Rights to hunt and fish on land and on inland waters are claimed by descendants of Native Americans signing treaties in the 19th century. With the U.S., they’ve sued the state of Michigan to recognize those rights.


“This is actually the second phase of a case that began in the late 1970s,” said Mike Leffler, assistant attorney general in charge of environmental, natural resource, and agricultural issues in the Michigan Attorney General’s office.


Michigan is launching this latest step toward resolution.
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Out There: In the heart of a swamp

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Snapping turtleIt is a humbling experience to stand in the heart of a blackwater swamp alone.

I'm not talking about one of those swamps where you can walk out on a boardwalk and keep your feet dry while you look at the pretty trees and interesting wildlife.

I'm talking about a real swamp, a wild swamp, one where you must wade through dank, hip-deep water to reach the sweltering interior, one inhabited by swarms of blood-sucking mosquitoes and thousands of venomous snakes, one where all your perspectives of true wilderness will be forever changed.   more...

 

 

 



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Training ship to take 2-week cruise

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TRAVERSE CITY -- The Great Lakes Maritime Academy's training ship is set to head out on a 2-week, 1,500-mile cruise through the Great Lakes.

The tour begins Tuesday and will take 20 students -- or cadets -- plus alumni acting as officers and academy officials to Lake Erie and Cleveland, then back through lakes Huron and Michigan to Chicago, and back home to its West Grand Traverse Bay dock.

The 224-foot State of Michigan will make stops along the way with open houses in those ports, John Tanner, superintendent of the academy, told the Traverse City Record-Eagle.   more...

 



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It takes money, luck and savvy to find the perfect place to stay in northwest Michigan

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EMPIRE -- If you've ever tried to climb a dune at Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, you know it's like walking uphill in sugar.

Every year, rangers have to rescue a few people who scramble down the deepest slopes and can't get back up. "Usually they're people who climbed the dunes at 20, and now they're 40," says Tom Ulrich, assistant park superintendant.

But there is one thing harder than dune climbing up here: finding the perfect summer vacation spot for your family.   more...

 



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Company plans to keep St. Clair River shipwreck in place

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PhotoPORT HURON, Mich. (AP) — A development company plans to keep a St. Clair River shipwreck in place after it was unearthed by construction crews working on a public walkway at the former Winkworth Transit Co.

The shipwreck, found in January, is on Acheson Ventures LLC's property along the St. Clair River sea wall near the Black River.

Historians believe the ship was sunk intentionally — a common practice used to reinforce or create new sea walls. Historians believe other wrecks of the same type are along the St. Clair River.  more...

 



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Enjoy your boat, keep it shipshape

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ImageSoaring spring temperatures mean America’s most boat-crazy state, Michigan, is flaunting its passion for water and warm weather in a perfectly human way.

People are climbing aboard boats, from Houghton Lake to Traverse Bay to Lake St. Clair. The kick from traversing water with a breeze in one’s face is a thrill so old as to be primitive.

Michigan’s leapfrog game with Florida to determine which state has more boating registrations than the other has seen Michigan remain in front for 2004 with 1.3 million boats registered, according to U.S. Coast Guard statistics. Florida is second with 960,000. Much of that credit goes to boaters on Lake St. Clair, which has the highest concentration of boaters per square mile of any body of water in the world.   more...

 



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Fast Ferry isn’t the biggest ship in the Genesee River

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Cement boat

The fast ferry has been attracting all kinds of attention but it's not the biggest boat in the Genesee River. The Stephen B. Roman cement boat is. They call it a boat but it's really a ship and like the ferry, Homeland Security concerns have become an issue now that Rochester is an international port.


For the last 20 years, the Stephen B. Roman has been the only large commercial vessel to enter the Port of Rochester. It's a regular sight in Charlotte but now the bulk cement carrier has to share the river with another large vessel, the Spirit of Ontario.


The river is wide enough, even with a 25-yard security zone around the fast ferry.   more...

 



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A park and promenade for Dock 32

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A lakeside dock featuring asphalt and a squat warehouse would transform into a park and a tree-lined promenade along North Coast Harbor, under plans unveiled Thursday at City Hall.

City planners say the $2.2 million project to convert seven acres west of the harbor mouth is the first step in Mayor Jane Campbell's plan to connect Clevelanders with seven-plus miles of lakefront. Campbell has made the approval of a 50-year master plan for the lakefront a top priority. Long term, the plan has neighborhoods, parks, walkways and marinas along the shore.

The city has no money to launch grand visions right now. But federal and state funds will likely be available for the work on the seven acres known as Dock 32.   more...

 



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Workers gather to mark 50th anniversary of Mackinac Bridge's start

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ST. IGNACE -- It's hard to imagine today, with the familiar towers and graceful cables soaring above the open water between Michigan's peninsulas, but when 25,000 people gathered here on May 7, 1954, the Mackinac Bridge was still a very expensive dream.

State transportation officials have invited hundreds of surviving bridge construction workers to St. Ignace today, to remember the day when those men and women began transforming the dream into a million tons of concrete and steel reality.

It was exactly 50 years ago that two days of parades, fireworks and speeches marked the start of work on the five-mile suspension bridge that has become the most familiar structure in Michigan.   more...

 



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Events

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Blue Water Spring Salmon Classic: May 15-16, lower Lake Huron and St. Clair River, from Port Huron, Lexington and Sanilac. Registration May 14. Shotgun start at 6 a.m. daily; weigh-ins until 5 p.m. Entry fees: $325 per team up to four people, including captain; $100 additional person if more than four. Prizes worth $35,000, including $10,000 for first place. Headquarters at 2336 Acheson Seaway Terminal, Military Street, Port Huron. 800-255-0508.

Learn to sail: Saturdays starting May 15, 9 a.m.-noon, 8010 Strawberry Lake Road, Dexter. Cost: $115 for four months, $155 for 12 months. 734-426-0920 or www.umich.edu/~umsc.

USCATS Pro Trail catfish tournament: May 22, 7 a.m.-4 p.m., Lake Erie Metropark, Brownstown Township. One- to two-person teams. Entry fee: $200 per team: $225 after May 12. About $44,000 in cash and prizes. 313-478-2894.    more...

 



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Seasons

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Trout: Through Sept. 30 for most streams and lakes.

Walleye, northern pike: Open in Lower Peninsula inland waters, Lake St. Clair, Detroit and St. Clair rivers and in Lower Peninsula Great Lakes, although walleye season is closed through May 31 on Lake Erie. Closed in Upper Peninsula until May 15.

Muskellunge: Open in Lower Peninsula inland waters and in Lower Peninsula waters of lakes Michigan, Huron and Erie. Closed in Upper Peninsula, Lake St. Clair, and Detroit and St. Clair rivers.

Bass: Catch-and-release open through May 28 on Pontiac, Cass and Kent lakes in Oakland County, Holloway Reservoir in Genesee County, Muskegon Lake in Muskegon County and Hardy Pond in Newaygo County.

Lake trout: Through Sept. 30 on Lake Michigan and Lake Huron.

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Ashtabula hopes bridge lights lift its fortunes

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Think of the Ashtabula Harbor bascule lift bridge as an amusement park attraction, lit up in cobalt blue and appearing 3,200 times every summer.

The price of admission to watch the bridge go up and down is free. But merchants lining Bridge Street hope to make money off people visiting the colorful structure, which will officially be lighted Friday night for the first time and relighted every night, dusk to 1 a.m.

For 23 years Petros has watched from her store window the harbor's slow transformation from taverns and boarded-up buildings to what it is today. Along with gift shops, the harbor is now home to a yoga studio, frame shop, coffeehouse, photography studio, home furnishings store and soon a high-quality furniture store.    more...

 



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Sailors originally from Michigan injured in attack ask for prayers for fallen shipmates

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NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — Two Virginia-based sailors injured in a suicide boat attack last month at an Iraqi oil terminal said Wednesday they want the focus of attention to be on their three shipmates who died in the assault.

Petty Officer 1st Class Alan Ray Daily and Petty Officer 1st Class Timothy Allen Carlton are being treated at the Naval Medical Center in Portsmouth for what the Navy describes as serious injuries that are not life-threatening.

A Navy spokesman said both men originally were from Michigan. Their ages and hometowns were not available.

The sailors have declined to speak with reporters but issued a statement Wednesday through the hospital asking that "the service members who paid the ultimate price be remembered with the respect they deserve."   more...

 



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