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‘Free lunch’ to halt at city’s Skyway Marina

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Boaters looking this summer for free mooring at the Toledo Skyway Marina in East Toledo could be out of luck.
 
The Bell administration is planning to end that freebie with the hiring of a dockmaster to run the 77-slip marina off Front Street in East Toledo. The venue is part of the city's Marina District development along the Maumee River.
 
For the last three seasons, people have docked vessels on a first-come, first-served basis at the city's $6.3 million marina for free — complete with water and electricity hookups.  more...


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Seeking volunteer lighthouse keepers to run lakeshore lighthouses

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The Sable Points Lighthouse Keepers Association is looking for volunteers to help at the areas light stations. Interested parties should visit the website, www.splka.org for an application. Sable Points Lighthouse Keepers Association (SPLKA) is seeking volunteer lighthouse keepers to operate its four historic structures.
 
SPLKA is a Ludington-based nonprofit organization that seeks to preserve Michigan's maritime history by promoting and restoring four lighthouses located between Whitehall and Ludington along Lake Michigan.
 
Since 1987, when local Ludington volunteers helped to save Big Sable Point from rising lake levels, SPLKA has been working hard to promote West Michigan's lighthouse restoration. more...


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An Interesting Look At the Soo Locks

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The Daily Journal of the Great Lakes-St. Lawrence Seaway System. more...


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Trying to predict the future of the Great Lakes

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The Great Lakes are incredibly complex. There are just a lot of moving parts.

A new project is taking on a giant task... to try to predict the future of the Great Lakes and what we might want the region to look like.

21 research institutions from the U.S. and Canada are collaborating on the Great Lakes Futures Project

It’s not just a classroom exercise.  Along with researchers and grad students, government officials from the U.S. and Canada are involved, and so are industry and environmental groups.  more...



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Grand Haven now owns 2 lighthouses

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GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (AP) - The city of Grand Haven officially is the legal owner of two lighthouses on the city's south pier leading out to Lake Michigan.

City manager Pat McGinnis tells WGHN the deed from the U.S. Coast Guard arrived last month.

The radio station reports Thursday that a formal deed transfer ceremony will take place during a dinner in a couple of months.  more...


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After 20 years, Maumee Bay starts to freeze again

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Oregon Councilwoman Sandy Bihn, who is also Western Lake Erie Waterkeeper, said winter activities on Maumee Bay once enjoyed by residents are now returning, thanks to cooler temperatures and less heated water being discharged from FirstEnergy’s power plant on Bay Shore Road.

“Most of the Oregon shoreline along Maumee Bay is freezing - at least for now.  What a treat,” said Bihn. “We may be able to once again skate, ice fish, etc.” 

When Bihn’s family moved to their current home on Bay Shore Road in 1987, the ice on the bay was thick.

“We were able to go out on the ice and walk along the shoreline on ice.  It was great,” she said.  “But all of a sudden, we couldn’t do it anymore.”  more...



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Michigan mussels disappear within a child’s lifetime

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An entire group of native organisms is dying off in the lakes and rivers of the Great Lakes region, and  children are noticing.

They are native freshwater mussels, those interesting and long-lived “clams” that lie partly buried in the water bottom.

“It’s kind of sad. They’re part of the lake, part of my life,” said 15-year old Tabitha Sutterfield of Dansville, Mich. As a little girl, she spent many an hour on family vacations following the mussels’ meandering trails through the sand in Houghton Lake, Michigan’s largest inland lake, and then scooping up the native mussels.  more...



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Cold weather means start of Coast Guard icebreaking

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Operation Coal Shovel, as the Coast Guard calls its ice-clearing operations in the southern lakes, didn't take place last winter because it was so mild, Coast Guard officials said. The project is carried out in southern Lake Huron, Lake St. Clair, the St. Clair and Detroit rivers, Lake Erie and Lake Ontario.
 
No icebreaking operations have been carried out in Lake Erie yet because there hasn't been enough ice, said Levi Read, public affairs specialist with the Ninth Coast Guard District office in Cleveland.
 
"Most of the ice is up north," he said.
 
Last year's decision not to carry out Operation Coal Shovel was unusual, and a testament to how mild the winter was, Read said.  more...


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Steady as She Goes

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Inland Seas education programs continue year-round
 
NORTHERN MICHIGAN – With a new year beginning, students, families and others can reap knowledge of the Great Lakes without leaving shore.
 
How?
 
Visit the Inland Seas Education Association Center in downtown Suttons Bay.  more...


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Great Lakes Shipyards Look to Busy Season

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The various projects scheduled for the next few months will require investments that range from $500,000 to almost $3 million per vessel.
 
Two vessels have already undergone their scheduled maintenance, but once the locks at Sault St. Marie, Michigan close on January 15 the winter work program will begin in earnest. A number of vessels will have steel renewed in their hulls and cargo holds and several will undergo their out-of-water survey this coming winter.   more...


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Bay City boat builder, sailor Jan C. Gougeon dies at 67

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Jan C. Gougeon's love of sailing and boat building helped him and his brother, Meade Gougeon, launch GouGougeon+Brothers+1975.JPGgeon Bros., a marine epoxy business that eventually would sell products to all parts of the world, and a sailing career that would launch Jan Gougeon forever into the record books. 

Gougeon died Tuesday, Dec. 18, in Ann Arbor after a long battle with respiratory issues. He was 67.


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A stay at historic Lake Ontario lighthouse to be prize on Price is Right

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An episode of the popular game show The Price is Right will feature the historic Braddock Point Lighthouse bed and breakfast as a prize destination.

The Victorian-era Lake Ontario lighthouse caters to visitors from across world and is one of a handful of lighthouses still in use by the U.S. Coast Guard, said Nandy Town, the establishment’s innkeeper.  more...



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Lock Closures Snarl Mississippi River Barge Traffic

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Last week, the 1,200 foot-long main chamber of Mississippi River Locks 27 near St. Louis, MO was closed for repairs.  Mississippi River barge traffic can still transit Locks 27, but only through the smaller, 600 foot-long auxiliary lock.  This closure is expected to cause significant delays until the main chamber is reopened on or about March 1.   

At the same time, barge traffic between the Arkansas River and the Mississippi River has been stopped at the 10-mile section of the White River that connects the Arkansas River and the Mississippi River due to the closure of Montgomery Point Lock on the White River.  The Montgomery Point Lock may reopen between December 16 and 21, after repairs have been completed.  more...



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Hamilton’s McKeil Marine floating on a wave of momentum

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Crowds in the thousands lined the Welland Canal and news outlets from all over the country paid attention as McKeil Marine towed a decommissioned submarine from Nova Scotia to a museum in Port Burwell. The Daily Planet science show on the Discovery Channel even did a segment on the massive move.

But this bustling and growing Hamilton company isn’t used to that kind of spotlight.

“Normally we do our business with no one seeing or hearing about it or even knowing we exist,” said company president Steve Fletcher.  more...



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LMC: SS Badger will sail in 2013

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The SS Badger will sail next spring even if the EPA doesn’t rule by then on Lake Michigan Carferry’s request for NPDES permit, the company says. The Badger’s current permit, issued in 2008 when the EPA for the first time required it to permit the discharge, nominally expires today. “The Badger will be running in 2013,” according to an LMC statement issued Tuesday evening in response to a Ludington Daily News question. “We continue to work with EPA so that it can issue the draft permit as soon as possible. Under EPA regulations, and the current VGP (vessel general permit), even if the permit is not issued before next season, the current permit is automatically extended until a final decision on a draft permit is made.”  more...


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