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Local News

Updated 12/10/19

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 Tue. Local News Audio

LOCAL NEWS for TUE 10DEC19

The president of the Standish Area Chamber of Commerce will be stepping down.  Standish Chamber president Tara Binder will be leaving as of January 1st. According to the Arenac County Independent, Binder has served as president for the last two years. She joined the chamber board in 2016 serving as secretary and vice-president. Binder will step down to pursue her masters degree in business management at Baker College. Though she will no longer be president, she plans to continue event planning for Relay for Life in Arenac County as well as serving as chairperson for the Arenac Community Funds Group. Current chamber secretary, Shayna Castle, will be taking over the president title when Binder leaves on January 1st.

The Alcona County Commission on Aging has selected their new executive director.  The board held a special meeting to conduct final interviews for the executive director position. According to the Alcona County Review, five applicants were interviewed and two finalists were selected, Lenny Avery of Hubbard Lake and Amanda Zielinski of Lincoln. Each candidate was interviewed again, and after discussing the qualifications of each candidate, the board unanimously agreed to offer the position to Avery. The personnel committee will now meet to discuss a salary and benefit package for Avery to consider.   

Michigan State Police said a Mt. Morris man lost his life on Friday after an ATV he was driving rolled on top of him in Alpena County. According to Up North Live, Troopers identified the driver as 51-year-old William Lafeldt Jr. and said he and a passenger were driving on Cousineau Road near Duncan Road in Green Township. The ATV slid into the ditch, the driver was ejected and the vehicle rolled on top of him. The passenger and a nearby resident were able to lift the ATV off the driver, but first responders pronounced him dead upon arrival. The passenger received no injuries from the crash. Alcohol and icy road conditions are believed to be a contributing factor.

Local Sports

Boys Basketball:
Alcona 44 Posen 41. Leading scorer for Alcona Mason Clark 12. Leading scorer for Posen Cameron Paull 16

Elsewhere:
Hale 67  Rogers City 57
Whittemore Prescott 57  Hillman 49
Fairview 43  Wolverine 30
Midland Bullock Creek 56  Gladwin 26
International Academy of Flint 100  Owendale Gagetown 16

Girls Basketball:
Oscoda 64 AuGres-Sims 24. Leading scorers for Oscoda: Lauren Langley 31 points; Izzy Hulverson 10; Olivia Toppi 9; Macy Kellstrom 8 & Anna Roy 4. The Lady Owls are 2-0 on the season and play in Mio Friday night.

Elsewhere:
Tawas 59  Pinconning 41
Houghton Lake 46  Grayling 36
Deckerville 71  Kinde North Huron 22
Dryden 57  Caseville 23
Owendale Gagetown 50  International Academy of Flint 43
Peck 53  Carsonville Port Sanilac 12

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 Mon. Local News Audio

LOCAL NEWS for MON 09DEC19

The AuSable Township Board of Trustees approved their new budget.  The original budget was introduced during the AuSable Township Board of Trustees November meeting. According to the Oscoda Press, revenue is expected to be just over $793,000 dollars for 2020. The two main sources of revenue will be property taxes at just over $444,000 dollars and state shared revenue at nearly $177,000 dollars. Expenditures are anticipated to be just over $738,000 dollars with the largest expenses being the police department, department of public works and the Treasurer's Department. The AuSable Township board approved the budget for the 2020 fiscal year at the December 2nd meeting.

Harbor Beach officials agreed to subsidies for ambulance service.  The Harbor Beach City Council approved the subsidies to the Eastern Huron Ambulance Service. According to the Huron Daily Tribune, the Ambulance Service told the council that it would be necessary for each constituent to defray expenses for the fiscal year starting on January 1st, 2020. The Council agreed to subsidize the ambulance service five dollars for each person living in the Harbor Beach city limits. Based on the 1,703 people living in the city, the council approved the allocation of $8,515 dollars to the Eastern Huron Ambulance Service.

The Tawas Area Schools Board of Education will meet tonight. On their agenda is the Summer tax resolution, a secretarial unionization proposal and discussion on a Chromebook purchase. The meeting will be held tonight at 7pm in the boardroom of the administrative office in Tawas City.

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources winter auction of surplus public land will start tomorrow. The Department is offering 147 individual parcels ranging in size from less than an acre to 160 acres. Land is available in Alpena, Bay, Cheboygan, Crawford and Iosco counties. The auction is part of the DNR's strategy to efficiently manage public land while maximizing outdoor recreation opportunities. Bids will be accepted through January 8th, 2020. Visit Michigan Dot Gov Slash Land For Sale for auction information, including minimum bid prices, property descriptions and conditions of sale.

Local Sports

Boy’s Hockey Saturday:
Kalamazoo Loy Norix 7  Tawas 1
Mt. Pleasant 5  Cheboygan 2

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 Fri. Local News Audio

LOCAL NEWS for FRI 06DEC19

A 44-year-old Roscommon man was taken to the hospital with significant injuries Wednesday evening after being struck by a plow truck while walking along M-55. According to Up North Live, Michigan State troopers said the man was walking eastbound in the westbound right lane of M-55 when he was hit by the truck, which was traveling westbound in the far-right lane. The pedestrian was wearing dark clothing which made it hard for oncoming traffic to see him in the roadway. The plow truck driver swerved in an attempt to miss the pedestrian, but the right portion of his plow struck the pedestrian causing significant injuries to the Roscommon man.

The Whittemore Prescott School District has returned to using their own water supply.  The district had been relying on bottled water for consumption and cooking since last winter. According to the Ogemaw County Herald, the move was in response to elevated levels of PFAS in its well water. Whittemore Prescott Superintendent Joe Perrera said the school board voted unanimously to switch to bottled water after the Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy tested the wells and reported elevated levels of PFAS. Perrera said tests were taken quarterly throughout the year and water samples showed PFAS contamination under the state's minimum for safety. The school board then voted unanimously to return to its own water supply.


The Oscoda County Courthouse construction project is nearing completion.  The construction project, started three and a half years ago is almost completed. According to the Oscoda County Herald, Board of Commissioners Chairman Kyle Yoder said the deadline for completion is looking good. He said if all goes well, the building should be completed by the end of this month and government departments housed in the building can begin moving in around the middle of next month. Vice Chairman Chuck Varner said there will be a grand opening with the public involved. The county's government offices have been operating out of temporary mobile offices which were rented on a month to month basis.

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 Thu. Local News Audio

LOCAL NEWS for THU 05DEC19

There was a fatal accident in Omer on Monday.  A 71-year-old Omer woman was struck by a vehicle and killed while trying to cross US-23 near Main Street in Omer Monday evening. According to the Arenac County Independent, The pedestrian was identified as Charmaine Ploof, of Omer. Arenac County Undersheriff Don McIntyre said the accident happened at about 6:30pm Monday as Ploof attempted to cross four lanes of traffic and was struck by an eastbound vehicle. Ploof was a librarian at Omer Little Eagles Nest Library. The accident remains under investigation.

Oscoda Township residents will see an increase in their sanitary sewer rates.  The thirteen percent rate increase will take effect January 1st. According to the Oscoda Press, the readiness to serve charge for the sanitary sewer system will increase from $17.51 to $19.79 per month. The commodity charge will increase from $3.57 to $4.03 per one thousand gallons. Superintendent Dave Schaeffer said the figures were derived from a rate study and from the Storm water, Asset Management and Wastewater grant program. Township Clerk John Nordeen said the rates are also based on the funding that is needed to make improvements to the township's sanitary sewer system.

On Wednesday, State Representative Sue Allor, of Wolverine, voted with the State House to reverse the Governor’s budget cuts for monitoring PFAS contamination at municipal airports, payments in lieu of taxes and supporting military veterans. A measure sponsored by Allor, restoring a $15 million dollar program assisting local communities with the cost of monitoring PFAS contamination at municipal airports, was incorporated into the House approved budget plan. The House measure also includes more than $27 million dollars for the payment in lieu of taxes program, which compensates counties for public lands that do not pay taxes. The House proposal also restores $4 million dollars to help connect veterans with the benefits they deserve. For more information contact Allor at her Lansing Office at 517-373-0833.

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 Wed. Local News Audio

LOCAL NEWS for WED 27NOV19

A former Thumb area Michigan State Police trooper has received jail time and probation for his on-duty assault of a female colleague. According to  M-Live, on Monday, Huron County Circuit Judge Gerald Prill sentenced 26 year old Adam Mullin to three terms of one year in jail, plus a fourth term of 93 days in jail. All the terms are to run concurrently. Prill also sentenced Mullin to three years of probation. A jury in October found Mullin guilty of four counts; assault and battery, obstruction of justice, aggravated domestic violence, and assaulting, resisting, or obstructing police causing injury. Mullin became a trooper in 2016 and was placed on unpaid suspension upon his arrest. He was married to another woman at the time of his relationship with the female trooper. The Michigan State Police fired Mullin upon his conviction.

The Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe recently held their two percent distribution ceremony.  During the ceremony a total of nearly $931,000 dollars was granted to Arenac and Northern Bay Counties. According to the Arenac County Independent, approximately $651,000 dollars went to government agencies and about $279,000 dollars went to education. Government agencies receiving funding included Arenac County, cities of AuGres, Omer, Pinconning, Standish and the village of Twining. Also receiving funding were Deep River, Lincoln, Mason, Pinconning, Sims, Moffatt, Standish, Turner, Arenac, AuGres and Whitney Townships. School districts receiving funding included AuGres-Sims, Pinconning and Standish Sterling. The distribution ceremony took place at the Saganing Tribal Center.

The Alcona County Sheriff's Department recently received grant money.  The funds are from the Stone Garden Grant. According to the Alcona County Review, the $75,000 dollar grant will assist the Alcona Sheriff's Department in helping the federal government keep the Lake Huron border safe. The Sheriff's Department will use the funds for equipment and overtime wages for the patrol of Lake Huron. Alcona County Sheriff Scott Stephenson said the county qualifies for the grant because it has 36 miles of shoreline on Lake Huron and 24 miles of international border. Iosco and Alpena Counties also receive the Stone Garden Grant for funding border patrol.

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STATE NEWS for TUE 10DEC19

With 2019 coming to an end, state lawmakers have some big choices in front of them. It's possible the full senate could vote on a package that would legalize sports and online gambling. The house has already passed a similar package and the Governor is expected to sign a modified package that would guarantee money continues to flow to the schools. The state legislature is also expected to put a final ribbon on the state budget later today and restore over 500 million dollars in state service cuts.

In the first week of recreational marijuana sales in Michigan, sales hit about $1.6 million. The Michigan Marijuana Regulatory Agency has only issued 10 licenses and just five of those began sales last week. Michigan is the first state in the Midwest to legalize recreational marijuana but almost 1,500 of the 1,800 Michigan cities have opted out of allowing pot shops. The sales generated about $270,400 in state tax revenue.

-related-

Northern Michigan's first recreational marijuana shop sold out of product Friday on its first day of operations. Lume Cannabis Company in Evart had over 750 customers and sold more than $75,000, with the average customer spending over $100. The company expects to be able to resupply product and have full selves this week

The 2020 Census is coming, and state officials are encouraging every state resident to participate. The 2020 Census will include an option to complete the form online -- starting in mid-March. Ebersole says the there are less than 10 census questions the need to be answered, which should take less than 10 minutes to fill out. Billions of tax dollars are on the line as well as seats in the House of Representatives.

A Van Buren County man will spend a year in jail as a result of his teenage son's deadly drug overdose. 16-year old Cole Birkhead died at a Kalamazoo hospital in 2017 and now Gary Birkhead has been sentenced to a year in jail after pleading guilty to involuntary manslaughter last month. Gary Birkhead has already served about 9 months of his sentence.

A St. Clair County woman is facing animal cruelty charges after more than 80 dogs were seized from her property. Court records show Irene Burns was arraigned on abandoning or cruelty to 25 or more animals. A not guilty plea was entered. The small dogs, which included poodles, Yorkies and Malteses, were taken from wire cages at a St. Clair Township location last month. The charges carry a penalty of up to seven years in jail and/or a ten-thousand dollar fine.

An argument leads to an early morning double shooting in Monroe County. The Sheriff's Department says a 34-year old man got into a fight with another man inside a home on Killy Court near Telegraph and Newport roads during a struggle the gun went off. At some point the 34-year old pulled a gun and, during a struggle, one shot was fired. The 45-year old man involved in the struggle was grazed in the head. A woman he was with was hit in the stomach. The man was treated and released. The woman is in serious condition.

A Southwestern Michigan man who served 20 months in custody for a wrongful conviction is suing police. Ray McCann was repeatedly hounded by police during an investigation of a girl's killing in St. Joseph County. McCann denied any role in the death of the 11-year-old girl but says he felt pressured to plead no contest to perjury. The conviction was thrown out in 2017 at the request of a prosecutor. McCann's lawsuit says his rights were violated during a "corrupt scheme" by police. Another man confessed to killing Jodi Parrack.

An alleged prison drug smuggling ring is at the base of a lawsuit from a Charlotte family claiming 21-year-old Seth Zakora died of an overdose at the Lakeland Correctional Facility in Coldwater in January 2017. Zakora was the third reported overdose at the prison in a three day period. Allegedly a female corrections officer was part of the drug smuggling ring along with a male prisoner with whom she had romantic involvement. The lawsuit claims that inspectors did not investigate nor did prison administrators who knew of the overdoses.

The search for a missing man on Lake Erie is being suspended. The Monroe County Sheriff's Department has identified the missing fisherman as Kenneth Sisk. The search for the 51-year old Taylor man is now being called 'unsuccessful.' Sisk was reported missing over the weekend when the boat he was on capsized off the shore of Monroe Township. Another man, a 28-year old, was found Sunday and is in good health.

A federal judge has granted class-action status on part of a lawsuit involving faulty gear shifts on Fiat Chrysler vehicles including their popular Jeep Grand Cherokees. Some drivers said their cars and trucks rolled away while they were in park. Fiat Chrysler has argued in the past that some of the claims were made too late.

Mark Howell, TSA Regional Spokesperson, will be at Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Grand Rapids on Wednesday, to discuss prohibited items and holiday travel tips for the upcoming holiday. While historically not as busy as the Thanksgiving travel period, TSA is still preparing for heavy volume through the Christmas and New Year's holidays. Passengers are urged to arrive to the airport two hours early and three hours before for international flights.

For just the third time in 2019, the Mega Millions jackpot has surpassed the $300 million mark! The largest prize offered since June 7 will be up for grabs tonight – an estimated $314 million with a $212.3 million cash payout. The jackpot continues to roll after no ticket matched all six numbers drawn Friday night. Just a year ago, the jackpot kept growing in the days leading up to Christmas, until it was won at $437 million on January 1, 2019.

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STATE NEWS for MON 09DEC19

"Voters Not Politicians" is the nonpartisan, grassroots group that led the drive to end partisan gerrymandering in Michigan, is hosting the first of a series of town halls today to discuss Michigan's last-in-the-nation integrity rating and how voters can work for policies that fight corruption. Tonight's town hall meeting will be held in Lansing at 6:30PM at the Capital Area District Libraries on South Capitol Avenue. This event is open to the public.  You can visit the group's website at votersnotpoliticans.com.

Governor Gretchen Whitmer says Michigan has added a texting option to a hotline that allows victims of sexual assault to seek help and support from trained professionals. Victims can text 1-866-238-1454. It’s an expansion to the 855-VOICES4 hotline — which offers free, confidential and anonymous support 24 hours a day, seven days a week to victims, family and friends. Whitmer says she wants every survivor to know their voice and their story matters.

A suspect is in custody after an armed robbery led to a police chase that started in Bloomer Township and ended in Greenville early Sunday morning. Michigan State Police dispatched troopers to Lackmer Road near Carson City Road around 7:30AM. MSP says a 32-year-old man of Illinois went to a residence to buy a dog. An argument ensued and the man fired several gunshots at the homeowner and stole the dog. The suspect fled and the police pursuit ended when his car was disabled on Maple Drive, just south of M-57.

Authorities are investigating a break-in at a Grand Rapids salon early Sunday morning. It happened around 7:30AM at the salon on the corner of Fulton Street and Congress Avenue SE. Officers arrived at the scene to find the window smashed and the front door open. It remain unclear is anything was stolen from the establishment.

The Lapeer County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the drowning of a 78-year-old man. Deputies were called to the 700 block of Lakeshore Drive in Deerfield Township around 8:30 last Thursday when the man's wife reported that he had gone to do some work in a barn on the property and didn't return. Authorities found footprints on the couple's dock to Barnes Lake. Deputies discovered the man's body in five feet of water two houses away. No foul play is suspected

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STATE NEWS for FRI 06DEC19

A body found in a park near Grand Valley State University along the Grand River on Wednesday has been identified. Grand Rapids Police say the victim was 51-year-old James Earl Robertson, who was stabbed to death. His body was found at the Grand River Open Space Park in Tallmadge Township. Police say the stabbing occurred in the city of Grand Rapids, and his body was later dumped at the park. An unidentified suspect is now in custody and is being held at the Kent County jail.

The Department of Natural Resources says a convicted felon has been arrested for shooting a deer in a nature preserve. Officials say in mid-November DNR officers witnessed four men dragging a dear from a no-hunting nature preserve, placing it into the back of a truck and driving away. An investigation confirmed that one of the men, a felon, had shot a large 8-point buck from the vehicle. He returned several hours later with three men to retrieved the carcass. The shooter is being held at Otsego County Jail on a charge of felon in possession of a firearm.

A 20-year-old man in Tuscola County is in custody after police say he attempted to kidnap his girlfriend. Officials say he also fired a gun while spinning circles in a truck. Michigan State Police troopers were called to a residence on Evelyn Drive in Arbela Township Wednesday night. The suspect led troopers on a chase which ended in a rural area, where the man abandoned the truck and ran into the woods. Officials say he was eventually located and was bitten by one of the K9s before he was arrested.

The Ottawa County Sheriff’s Office investigating a case of a woman who was run over by her own car. It happened in Georgetown Township Thursday night on 20th Avenue near Baldwin Street. The 50-year-old woman of Wayland was driving on 20th Street when her vehicle broke down. She was pushing the car with the door open, when she fell, causing her to be run over and injured. The victim is now hospitalized with serious abdominal injuries.

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STATE NEWS for THU 05DEC19


A Grand Rapids man has pleaded guilty to fraud charges in connection with a scheme to coach prisoners how to lie their way into a drug and alcohol treatment program that results in sentence reductions. Tony Pham will be sentenced in March and faces up to 25 years in prison. Officials say Pham ran a company that taught clients to fake drug problems, giving them access to treatment programs and a reduced prison sentence.

A man accused of stealing an ambulance outside a Flint hospital is due back in court today. 33-year-old Raymond Kibby will have a probably cause conference on charges including a dangerous weapon, malicious destruction of fire or police property, and third-degree fleeing and eluding police. The incident happened on November 26th when police say he stole the EMS vehicle at McLaren Flint off South Ballenger Highway and led police on a chase throughout the city before crashing into a tree.

A Port Huron man has been arraigned on charges stemming from the death of a 14- month old who was exposed to fentanyl. 27-year-old Damonte Rice was arraigned on Wednesday and pleaded not guilty to involuntary manslaughter, and controlled substances maintaining a drug house. On August 25th, the mother of 14-month-old child Zai’Ahna Darcel Reddic called police and said her daughter was not breathing. Autopsy results showed the child’s cause of death was intoxication by fentanyl.

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STATE NEWS for WED 04DEC19

Kentwood police have arrested a man for a double homicide. The victims are 34-yearold David Isner and 63-year-old Ed Fuller. Police say the suspect is Isner's roommate 36-year-old George Edward Yzaguirre. 911 dispatchers received a call from a Home Depot on Tuesday morning indicating there was a man who wanted to turn himself in for killing two of his friends. Yzaguirre was arrested and is being held at Kent County jail. Police say the motive remains unclear, but they believe Yzaguirre acted alone.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has confirmed 16 cases of Hepatitis A tied to blackberries sold in Fresh Thyme grocery stores in six states including Michigan. Fresh Thyme brand says it's working with suppliers to identify the source of the contamination. Health officials are urging consumers in Nebraska, Indiana, Wisconsin, Iowa, Illinois, Kentucky, Michigan, Missouri, Minnesota, Ohio and Pennsylvania to throw out any fresh blackberries bought from Fresh Thyme between September 9th and September 30th.

The Ottawa County Sheriff’s Office says a 25-year-old man has been charged with the killing of his father. Kenneth John Boone is accused of beating his father to death in Spring Lake Township. 64-year-old James Kenneth Boone was found Sunday morning in a home on Pawnee Drive after authorities received a call from his son indicating he had harmed his father. An autopsy performed Monday showed the death was caused by multiple blunt force trauma. Kenneth Boone has been charged with open murder and is being held at the Ottawa County Jail.

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Tuesday, December 10, 2019

International Human Rights Day

President Donald Trump holds 'Keep America Great' campaign rally in Pennsylvania

2020 Trail
Joe Biden, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren in Nevada; Andrew Yang and Julian Castro in Iowa

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Wednesday, December 11, 2019

 TIME Magazine Person of the Year revealed

Screen Actors Guild Awards nominations announced

A$AP Rocky performs in Sweden for first time since July arrest

FAA head testifies to House Transportation Committee on Boeing 737 MAX
Hearing on 'The Boeing 737 MAX: Examining the Federal Aviation Administration's Oversight of the Aircraft's Certification', with testimony from FAA Administrator Stephen Dickson

Defense Secretary Esper and Joint Chiefs Chairman Milley testify to House committee hearing on U.S. policy in Syria

Deadline for Israeli political leader to form govt
28-day period expires for Israel's Blue and White party leader Benny Gantz to form a govt * Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who has been in power for the past decade, was unable to form a coalition after September's election ended in deadlock. His Likud party won 32 seats and Gantz took 33. Should the latter fail to form a coalition by today, Knesset members have a further 21 days to choose a candidate to be given the mandate or decide to re-run elections - the third in less than a year

Brenda Lee still Rockin' Around The Christmas Tree on her 75th birthday

2020 Trail
Joe Biden in California then Nevada; Andrew Yang and Julian Castro in Iowa

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Thursday, December 12, 2019

UK General Election
UK General Election, as approved by the House of Commons in October. Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the election date when Members of Parliament refused to fast-track his EU (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill and the Brexit deadline was postponed from October 31 to January 31, 2020.

EU Summit
European Council meeting of EU heads of state and govt, chaired by European Council President Charles Michel, who took over from Donald Tusk on 1 Dec. EU leaders discuss strategy on climate change and the long-term budget

Forbes' most powerful women in the world list published

U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame Induction Celebration

2020 Trail
Deadline for 2020 Dems to qualify for December debate
2020 Virginia presidential primary filing deadline
Andrew Yang in Iowa

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Friday, December 13, 2019

 Senate scheduled to break for the end of the year

U.S. Supreme Court meets in private conference to discuss cases and vote on petitions for review

TIME Person of the Year issue hits newsstands

Pop star Taylor Swift turns 30

Actor Christopher Plummer turns 90

2020 Trail
2020 Michigan presidential primary filing deadline
Joe Biden in Texas; Andrew Yang in Iowa

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-end ABC News futures-


Every year, tons of trash is illegally dumped in Michigan's forests. Want to help clean it up? Join the
Adopt-a-Forest program and help to keep our woods, water and trails beautiful.

Michigan invasive carp challenge announcement

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Tired of the mad dash to get a good camping spot at Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore at Little Beaver Lake Campground, Twelve Mile Campground, or Hurricane River Campground?  These campgrounds now require reservations, after years of a "first come, first served" policy. Since visitation has nearly doubled in the last few years during the summer months reservations can now be made at recreation.gov.

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