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North Shore Morning

AM Community Calendar/photo by masochismtango on Flickr

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News & Information

News and information, interviews, weather, upcoming events, music, school news, and many special features. North Shore Morning includes our popular trivia question - Pop Quiz! The North Shore Morning program is the place to connect with the people, culture and events of our region!

 


What's On:
Woodcock

Sunny's Back Yard: A Chubby Little Bird

The American woodcock is a spring visitor in the north woods...a chubby little bird with a distinctive call and courtship display.

Sunny has lived off-grid in rural Lake County for the past 17 years and is a regular commentator on WTIP. Here she shares what's been happening in Sunny's Back Yard.

(Photo by Biodiversity Heritage Library on Flickr)

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{Insidestory /Flickr}

Bike Commuting, Cook County Style, May 13

The Cook County YMCA hosts a Wednesday Night Wellness Series.  This month Moving Matters joins them for ‘Bike Commuting: Cook County Style’.  Folks that already commute by bike will share strategies and solutions.  RSVPs requested to the Y at 387-3386.  WTIP volunteer Mark Abrahamson spoke with Maren Webb of Moving Matters on North Shore Morning.
 

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Peter Mayer in concert, Saturday May 16

The North Shore Music Association hosts Peter Mayer in concert this weekend at the Arrowhead Center for the Arts.  WTIPs Jana Berka spoke with Kate Fitzgerald of the North Shore Music Association on North Shore Morning.  Tickets available at the door or in advance at tix.com.  Peter's website is petermayer.net.

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Minnesota State Capitol {MCAD Library /Flickr}

'Indians and Public Art: Changing the Image' reception May 14

‘Indians and Public Art: Changing the Image’ is now open at the Grand Portage Community Center.  A reception with the artists is Thursday May 14th from 3 to 5pm. WTIP volunteer Julie Carlson spoke with art instructor Belle Janicek about the young artists and the larger project.  More information from Belle at Oshki Ogimaag at 475-2112.

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{VerdeSam /Flickr}

Care Center Celebrates: Anniversary Gala, Volunteers and more

This May the North Shore Care Center is celebrating their 50th anniversary with a Gala on May 11th; and celebrating their volunteers, current and former, with a reception on May 20.  Staff Helena Blake, Kay Rosenthal, Hilja Iverson and resident Bernice LeGarde all share the month's activities.

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Superior National Forest Update: May 8

Hi.  I’m Paulette Anholm, Information Receptionist on the Superior National Forest, with this week’s edition of the National Forest Update - information on conditions affecting travel and recreation on the Tofte and Gunflint Districts of the Forest. For the week of May 8th, here’s what’s going on around the Forest.
First off, this is the start of our real recreation season.  The fee campgrounds on both the Tofte and Gunflint Ranger Districts have their water systems turned on, which means that they are also now accepting reservations and collecting fees for camping.  Of course, the rustic campgrounds are still free, but have no water supply.  We want to remind people that campsites must be occupied the first night.  No putting out your stuff ahead of time to claim a site for the weekend, then going home to sleep.  There is also a fourteen day limit for campsites, except for a few long term sites which are available.  If you like camping with all the comforts of home, be aware that quiet hours are from 10 pm to 6 am, which means generators and other noise making equipment need to be off during the night.
A lot of the campers this weekend will probably be fishing.  It is the opener, and it looks like a good one.  Ice has cleared off even Gunflint and Saganaga Lakes.  Almost all of our campgrounds are near good fishing spots, and barring unforeseen problems, all the docks should be in the water this weekend.  Many of our lakes are free of invasive pest species.  Be sure to clean your boat and trailer between lakes to keep them that way.
On your way to the lake, you may start to encounter logging traffic.  At the time this was recorded, weight restrictions were still keeping the trucks off the back roads, but those should be lifted soon.  Expect trucks near the timber operations at Harriet Lake and at Shoe Lake as soon as the restrictions end.
Our fire people have been busy.  An 80 acre fire spread over 5 miles was on the west side of the Forest near Sand Lake.  This fire was small patches along a road, leading to the thought that something traveling the road started the fire patches.  Despite occasional small showers, the forest is dry and things haven’t started to green up fully.  That means it is easy for fires to start.  Green is beginning to appear though, and if we get through the next few weeks, the fire conditions will become a lot better.  Some of the fires on the Forest this past week have been intentional prescribed burns.  This is a good time of year for fire crews to use prescribed burning to reduce the amount of fuel on the ground for wildfires.  It may seem strange to start a fire to prevent a fire, but it is a method that works very well.  You may want to check at a ranger station for prescribed burns coming up so you know where you may see smoke, and you can avoid driving through the middle of an operation.  On Monday, May 11th and Tuesday, May 12th you can attend a fire open house to learn more.  Those are from 4 to 6 pm at the Gunflint Ranger Station on Monday and at the Poplar Lake Fire Hall on Tuesday.
Fire crews aren’t the only busy ones in the spring.  Wildlife biologists are surveying all sorts of species.  Two surveys that started this week are woodcock counts and frog surveys, and fish surveys will begin soon as well.  We get volunteer help from citizen scientists for some of these counts, so we’d like to thank all our wildlife, and other, volunteers.
Even if you aren’t an official wildlife counter, this is great time to get out in the woods and set up a tent, or drop a line in the water, and listen to the birdsongs, grouse drumming, frog choruses, and all the other sounds of spring.  Have a great weekend!
Until next week, this has been Paulette Anholm with the Superior National Forest Update.
 
 
 
 

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Sierra Club shares concerns about coal burning on the North Shore, meeting May 12

There will be a public meeting with the Sierra Club, Tuesday May 12th from 6:30 to 8:00 pm at the Cook County Community Center, to discuss the health and environmental costs of burning coal in northeast Minnesota. There will also be an opportunity for citizens to weigh in on decisions about the future of the Taconite Harbor coal plant.  WTIP volunteer Joey Detrick spoke with Jessica Tritsch, Senior Organizing Representative with the Sierra Club.  
 

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Trails for Tails, Saturday May 9th

Trails for Tails is a Troop 4070 fundraiser for Arrowhead Animal Rescue.  It's Saturday May 9th, registration at 9am at Sawtooth Mountain Elementary in Grand Marais.  WTIP volunteer Marnie McMillan spoke with Girl Scouts RaeAnne Silence and Riley Goettl on North Shore Morning.  
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The Girl Scouts are sponsoring a "Trails for Tails Fun Run/Walk" to benefit Arrowhead Animal Rescue, on Saturday, May 9. Everyone is invited to participate with or without a pet. The event starts at the Sawtooth Elementary School parking lot, with registration beginning at 9 am, blessing of the animals by Pastor Kris Garey at 9:45 am, a 2k race at 10 am, and a half-mile race on paved trails at 10:15 am. More information is available from troop leader Michele Silence at 370-9958, or on facebook.

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Black Bear (wanderlingnome /Flickr)

West End News: May 7

 
Recently, I looked back in the WTIP archives of West End News for this week in 2010 when my dad, Frank Hansen, was still the West End correspondent.  Among other things, he wrote about the Commercial Fishing Museum and the temporary Post Master position in Tofte.  Five years along, both those stories are still in the news.
 
The Commercial Fishing Museum in Tofte recently held their annual meeting and elected a new board of directors.  They are looking for a couple of more directors, so if you’re interested in local history, stop in at the museum and let them know.
 
Also at the annual meeting, long-time museum director Don Hammer announced his retirement from the museum.  If you know someone who is interested in a part time job preserving the history of commercial fishing in the West End, have them keep an eye out for the upcoming job listing.
 
Five years ago, Frank also reported that an announcement of a permanent postmaster for Tofte was due any day.  That day has yet to come as the U. S. Postal Service struggles with providing rural postal service all across the country.  Our current temporary postmaster, Edward Taylor, has been on the job for a couple of years now, but he tells me that the new permanent postmaster will be arriving any day.  Morgan Johnson, who has been the temporary postmaster in Lutsen, will be taking over in Tofte – possibly by the end of the month.
 
I’m sure I speak for many in the community when I say that we will miss Edward when he leaves us.  Even though he commutes in from Two Harbors, he has established himself as a friendly and helpful member of the West End community.  Edward isn’t sure what his future holds.  He has a couple of more years before he can retire from the postal service, but is at least looking forward to a long, well deserved vacation when his duties in Tofte end. 
 
The Birch Grove Community Center is Tofte has started up the popular weekly pizza parties that have been happening during the summer months since the outdoor, wood-fired pizza oven was constructed a couple of years ago.  Every Wednesday night, from now until September 30th, starting at 5 pm, the pizza oven will be hot and ready to go.  The dough and sauce are provided and you just bring the toppings that you prefer.  There is a small dough-nation suggested to cover the costs. You can enjoy your pizza rain or shine thanks to the beautiful timber framed picnic shelter.  It is a good idea to let them know that you are coming by calling 663-7977 or email bgf@boreal.org.
 
The woods are in a state of suspended animation right now as dry weather has held off the green-up temporarily.  The up side is that without the leaves out, you can see into the woods and spot animals that are normally hidden.  This week I’ve seen a fisher, one cow moose with a collar and one without, and yesterday a little bear eating grass along the roadside.  It was so absorbed in it’s meal that it didn’t hear my truck as I coasted up to within 20 feet or so.  I quickly broke out my phone and recorded the sound of my dog, Roy, barking and video of the startled bear running off.  Roy continued to mutter about the bear for about another ten miles down the road. He gets pretty concerned when he sees a bear.  I suspect he’s had some close encounters that we didn’t ever know about.
 
Even though Roy sees them as a dire threat to public safety, I like having the bears around.  It’s a big part of what make life here in the West End so sweet.
 
For WTIP, this is Bill Hansen with the West End News.

{click here to see a short video of the bear}
 

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Hydra (Helen Cook /Flikr)

Northern Sky: May 2

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NorthernSky_20150502.mp35.66 MB

Deane Morrison is a science writer at the University of Minnesota. She authors the Minnesota Starwatch column, and contributes to WTIP bi-weekly on the Monday North Shore Morning program through "Northern Sky," where she shares what's happening with stars, planets and more.

Full Flower Moon on May 3rd; Jupiter traveling westward, Venus, Saturn and a rare glimpse of Mercury; and Hydra, the water serpent, the longest of constellations.