Daniel Wanschura

Morning Edition host / broadcast director

Ever since he was young, Dan has been fascinated with radio. From hearing the dulcet tones of John Gordon broadcast Minnesota Twins games, to staying up late listening to radio theater, he was captivated by the imaginative medium. 

In 2012, Dan graduated from Thomas Edison State University. In 2015, he moved from the Twin Cities to northern Michigan to work at Interlochen Public Radio.

Dan has received numerous awards for his reporting including three Edward R. Murrow regional awards and one national PRNDI award. His work has also been heard on NPR, Minnesota Public Radio, Michigan Radio, and KFAI Radio.

Dan enjoys playing volleyball with his wife Erin, driving on Michigan’s renown M-22 highway, and volunteering as a leader in Grand Traverse Young Life. He is also a lover of the Oxford comma — much to the chagrin of his editors.

Michigan Board of State Canvassers

A bipartisan state board has certified the results of the November 3 general election and awarded the state’s 16 electoral votes to President-elect Joe Biden.

Michigan DNR biologist Steve Griffith checks on one of several bear traps set up around Traverse City on November 20, 2020.
Dan Wanschura / Interlochen Public Radio

In October, a black bear was spotted roaming the Meijer parking lot in Traverse City. That bear, now dubbed the "TC Bear" by the Michigan Department of Natrual Resources, is still on the loose.

A black bear wanders through the campus of Interlochen Center for the Arts, just south of Kresge Auditorium on November 6, 2020.
Interlochen Center for the Arts

The number of black bear sightings in northern Michigan is on the rise, according to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. 


sign stands next to U.S. Highway 31 in Grand Traverse County.
Dan Wanschura / Interlochen Public Radio

By the end of the night tonight, President Donald Trump will conclude his 2020 campaign like he did in 2016 — by stopping in Michigan. The Trump campaign has made the battleground state a frequent destination in its effort to retain the White House.

With regular firearm season starting November 15th, the DNR reports a 17% increase in the number of deer hunting licenses sold so far this year.
David Kenyon / Michigan DNR

There’s been a surge in the number of deer hunting licenses sold in 2020, according to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. It likely coincides with an overall increase in outdoor recreation during the pandemic.

With regular firearm season starting November 15th, the DNR reports a 17% increase in the number of deer hunting licenses sold so far this year.

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore unveiled its new mobile visitor center recently.
U.S. National Park Service

Sleeping Bear Dunes is hitting the road. In celebration of its 50th anniversary, the national lakeshore is rolling out a 'mobile visitor center.' The idea is to bring a little bit of northern Michigan to those who haven’t had a chance to experience it.


Above average precipitation is expected over the Great Lakes from December through February, according to NOAA.
Dan Wanschura / Interlochen Public Radio

Michigan could see a lot of snow this winter according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which came out with its 2020 U.S. Winter Outlook on Thursday.


Dan Wanschura / Interlochen Public Radio

This week, hear how high water in the Great Lakes is unearthing Native American burial sites. In some places along Lake Michigan, human remains have been discovered at the beach.

Also, more water isn’t the only reason the lakes are higher, a higher elevation that is. The Great Lakes are still rebounding from the last ice age.

 

And what’s in those holes in your garden?

 

    

 

Search and Rescue missions in the Great Lakes are up from last year by nearly 300.
U.S. Coast Guard

The pandemic, high water levels, and warm temperatures could mean more drownings on the Great Lakes. 

There have been 58 reported drownings so far this year, according to the Great Lakes Surf Rescue Project. 32 of those have occurred in Lake Michigan.

Dan Wanschura / Interlochen Public Radio

Water levels on the Great Lakes might finally start going down.

With the exception of Lake Superior, each of the Great Lakes have likely reached their peak water levels for the year, according to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.


Courtesy Bill Milliken, Jr.

When the late William Grawn Milliken first told his mother about his aspirations to serve in government, she told him to be a “statesman, not a politician.” He went on to be Michigan’s longest-serving governor, make the state a national leader in environmental policy and leave a legacy of civility and bipartisan public service.

Watch a recording of the memorial event on Facebook. 

From left to right, David Chown, Laurie Sears and Miriam Picó released a new album recently called, 'Live at St. Andrews'.
Lancaster Photography

A trio of Traverse City artists are out with a new album called "Live at St. Andrews." It features David Chown, Miriam Picó and Laurie Sears during a 2018 show at St. Andrews Presbyterian Church in Beulah.


Art from U.P. artist Katie Eberts is featured on a billboard on U.S. Highway 2 in the Upper Peninsula. The billboards went up last month thanks to the non-profit, Save Art Space.
Dan Wanschura / Interlochen Public Radio

After crossing the Mackinac Bridge and heading west on US Highway 2 in St. Ignace, I’m looking for something I was told would be just outside of town.

 

Believe it or not, I’ve come to this part of Michigan to look at a billboard.

  

In the mid-19th century, a persuasive Mormon leader named James Jesse Strang led hundreds of followers to Beaver Island in the middle of Lake Michigan. Then he declared himself the King of Earth and Heaven.

 

That’s the story author Miles Harvey tells in his new book, The King of Confidence - A Tale of Utopian Dreamers, Frontier Schemers, True Believers, False Prophets, and the Murder of an American Monarch.

 


Young fans watch a Traverse City Pit Spitters game during the 2019 season.
Dan Wanschura / Interlochen Public Radio

After starting last week, the Traverse City Pit Spitters season has been put on hold. The same goes for the newly created Great Lakes Resorters and Northern Michigan Dune Bears.

Several players recently tested positive for COVID-19 which prompted the pause.

 

 


Lake Michigan waves crash onshore at a beach in Frankfort, Michigan. Lakes Michigan and Huron were almost three feet above the June water level average.
Dan Wanschura / Interlochen Public Radio

Water levels in the Great Lakes continue to remain high. 

Every month this year, Lakes Michigan and Huron have surpassed record-high water levels set in the 1980’s. In June, those lakes were nearly three feet above average. 


"Sunset Station" in Arcadia Township has been devestated by high waters from Lake Michigan pounding its shoreline.
Dan Wanschura / Interlochen Public Radio

Water levels in the Great Lakes are really high right now. Lakes Michigan, Huron and Erie are all breaking records and creating all sorts of problems for communities on their shores.

The Traverse City Pit Spitters announced the creation of two brand new teams on Monday. All three teams will play at Turtle Creek Stadium in Traverse City, which allows the teams to play ball while not traveling during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Whitney Waara

Despite the coronavirus pandemic, baseball is coming back to northern Michigan this summer. On Monday the Traverse City Pit Spitters announced the creation of two brand new teams – the Great Lakes Resorters and the Northern Michigan Dune Bears.

To eliminate travel during the COVID-19 pandemic, all three will play against each other at Turtle Creek Stadium in Traverse City this summer.

 

Piles of debris sit on shore near the Point Betsie Lighthouse in Frankfort.
Dan Wanschura / Interlochen Public Radio

As if shoreline erosion wasn’t enough, communities and property owners on Lake Michigan are now dealing with another problem due to record high water levels — trash. Up and down the lake, large amounts of it are washing up on shore.

Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson
Michigan.gov

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, Michigan elections are still on for Tuesday, May 5.

 

Residents across the state — including some in northern Michigan — will vote on a variety of local ballot initiatives.

 

 


Interlochen Center for the Arts President Trey Devey
Interlochen Center for the Arts

Summer is going to look and sound a lot different at Interlochen Center for the Arts this year. The usual cacophony of music coming from students practicing their instruments all around campus will not happen.

 

Last week, Interlochen canceled its traditional summer arts camp experience due to COVID-19 concerns. Instead, the summer camp will transition to online, virtual instruction.

 

Isolation is one of the biggest triggers for people in addiction recovery, which is why socially distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic is especially hard time for some. That’s why Addiction Treatment Services in Traverse City is ramping up its virtual outreach efforts.

 

“The opposite of addiction isn’t necessarily abstinence, the opposite of addiction is connection,” says Matt Zerilli, Recovery Center Manager at ATS. 

 


Parallel 45 Theatre Company announced it has cancelled it's 10th anniversary season.
Parallel 45 Theatre Company

The show won’t go on for Traverse City’s Parallel 45 Theatre Festival. The group announced Wednesday that it canceled its upcoming summer season due to COVID-19 concerns.


Michigan Legacy Art Park in Thompsonville remains open despite the coronavirus pandemic.
Michigan Legacy Art Park

If you want to look at art during the coronavirus pandemic, your options are pretty limited. Art museums and galleries are considered non-essential businesses and are closed across the state until at least the end of the month.

That’s why Michigan Legacy Art Park in Thompsonville is uniquely positioned at a time like this. It’s outdoors and visitors have plenty of space to socially distance in the park’s 30 acres. 

Sarah Allis works at Leland Mercantile in Leland. Essential businesses like grocery stores are now required to screen their employees for symptoms of COVID-19 and take proper social distancing measures.
Noelle Riley / Interlochen Public Radio

County health departments are asking businesses that remain open to step up their efforts to prevent transmission of the coronavirus.

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