News

Your connection to northern Michigan news.

Employees for Anthony's Outdoor Services build a 400' long seawall in Manistee. Anthony Ganss, the owner, says they've been busy all winter constructing seawalls.
Dan Wanschura / Interlochen Public Radio

Update 3/25/20, 3:30pm: Due to the coronavirus pandemic, on Monday, March 23, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced temporary requirements “to suspend activities that are not necessary to sustain or protect life” through April 13, 2020. Under that order, limited forms of construction are still permissible, including projects necessary “to maintain and improve the safety, sanitation, and essential operations of residences.” A spokesman for the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy says whether or not that includes shoreline construction “is dependent on the purpose and necessity of the shoreline work, and is case-specific.” He says contractors, their legal counsel and homeowners need to make that determination and if they are still unsure, contact the Governor’s office for more clarity.

 

At a time when many Michigan companies are slowing down due to the coronavirus pandemic, business is booming for contractors working along Lake Michigan’s shoreline.

 

They’re fighting a different crisis — trying to save people’s homes from extremely high water levels. But with so much demand, there’s little to stop unqualified contractors from jumping in on the action.


At this unusual moment in history there is an interesting array of celestial phenomena populating the morning sky and stirring the thought life.

CDC

Leelanau residents are getting phone calls telling them they’re selected for free COVID-19 testing, asking them for personal information.

The caller ID reads as a Leelanau number and looks safe to answer, but it’s not, says County Administrator Chet Janik.

 

Kaye LaFond

 

The Grand Traverse County Health Department repored its first positive case of COVID-19 on Sunday.

The resident is a man in his 20s who has a history of international travel. He is recovering at his home. 

The Health Department says its working to identify and contact anyone the man potentially exposed. 

NPR

The White House is holding another briefing on coronavirus at noon Saturday, March 21.

Hear special LIVE coverage of that briefing on IPR News Radio.

You can also stream the coronavirus briefing LIVE on our website at interlochenpublicradio.org.

Also, watch the LIVE video below. 

CDC

This story was updated at 7:47 p.m. on 03/22/20:

 

Northern Michigan reported 10 more presumed cases of COVID-19 over the weekend.

 

Charlevoix: 2
Clare: 1
Emmet: 1
Grand Traverse: 1
Leelanau: 1
Wexford: 1
Otsego: 2
Roscommon: 1

 

Wexford and Clare counties announced cases of COVID-19 Friday, while officials in Emmet and Charlevoix counties said they have presumptive positive tests Saturday. Grand Traverse and Roscommon announced cases on Sunday.

CDC

The state announced today another 225 presumptive positive cases of COVID-19, bringing the total number of positive cases in Michigan to 549.

Three deaths caused by the disease happened in Wayne County.

The number of positive results has gone up because commercial and clinical labs have begun testing.

The state health department is currently receiving results from two commercial labs and three clinics as well as the state lab in Lansing.

 

 

 

Max Johnston / Interlochen Public Radio

The number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Michigan rises nearly every day. As the pandemic worsens, putting food on the table is getting harder for some people in rural communities.

Now school districts are rushing to feed students that relied on school lunches, and food pantries in northern Michigan are trying to feed the rest.

CDC

The number of positive coronavirus cases in Michigan jumped to 334 people, according to the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

The Detroit Free Press is also reporting that Michigan's death toll has also tripled. 

That brings the total number of people in Michigan who have died due to Coronavirus up to three. 

Grand Traverse County says it has no positive COVID-19 tests yet, although Munson is treating a Leelanau man at its Traverse City hospital.

Michigan communities are organizing to help with needs arising from the COVID-19 pandemic. More than a dozen informal, grassroots networks are operating around the state.

Sometimes known as mutual aid groups, they work alongside government agencies and charities and often coordinate with them. They can help with grocery deliveries, financial assistance, childcare and more.

If you need this kind of help, or if you have time or a skill to offer, browse the map to find a local group to connect with. If you start your own mutual aid effort in your community — let us know. Send an e-mail to kaye.lafond@interlochen.org or digital@michiganradio.org. We'll be keeping track and updating the map.

The Mackinac Bridge Authority will not accept cash for tolls starting this Saturday, March 21. The measure is an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus.
Mackinac Bridge Authority

The Mackinac Bridge Authority will not accept cash transactions starting this Saturday, March 21. Drivers crossing the Mighty Mac will need to pay with a credit or debit card or use a MacPass card or windshield sticker. 

The move is a temporary effort to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Kaye LaFond / Interlochen Public Radio

Senior services in northern Michigan are expanding offerings to older residents during the coronavirus pandemic.

According to census data, there are about 3,000 seniors living in Kalkaska County, many of whom  live at home alone. 

Home meal deliveries, daily check-ins, arranging to pick up a few pantry items, are all happening with frequency at local senior centers.

Conner Desilets / Interlochen Public Radio

In a brief filed Tuesday, federal prosecutors say they have new evidence for a possible retrial of State Rep. Larry Inman (R-Williamsburg). At his original trial last year, Inman was found not guilty of lying to the F.B.I., but the jury couldn't reach a verdict on two other corruption charges.

NPR

The White House is holding another briefing on coronavirus at 11:30 a.m.

You can hear special LIVE coverage of that briefing on IPR News Radio.

You can also stream the coronavirus briefing LIVE on our website at interlochenpublicradio.org.

Also, you can watch the LIVE video below. 

Trust "Tru" Katsande / Unsplash

The state Department of Health and Human Services reports there are 11 new confirmed cases in Michigan. That brings the total number of known COVID-19 cases to 65.

The state is reporting new cases in Jackson, Leelanau and Otsego Counties.

Courtesy Aaron Payment

Update 03/20/2020: All tribal governments in Michigan have closed their casinos in response to coronavirus.

IPR is compiling a list of coronavirus response actions and closures by tribal governments in Michigan — you can find it here.

Ten of 12 tribal governments in the State of Michigan have closed or will close their casinos in response to coronavirus. 

Courtesy

Nurses at Munson Medical Center say the hospital has not provided adequate paid time off for them if exposed or infected by COVID-19.  

This comes on the heels of the first two cases reported at Munson Medical Center, one in Traverse City and one in Gaylord.

The cases were reported late Monday night.

CDC

Two people in northern Michigan have tested positive for COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

One was tested at Munson Medical Center in Traverse City and the other was tested at Otsego Memorial Hospital in Gaylord, according to Munson Healthcare.

Hofbrau Food & Spirits in Interlochen put out a sign letting patrons know they can still order takeout in light of Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's executive order that closes sit-down service at bars and restaurants across the state.
Peter Payette / Interlochen Public Radio

As Michigan’s dine-in restaurants grapple with Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s executive order to stop sit-in service, some are switching to takeout and delivery. 

Noelle Riley

Northern Michigan local health departments are asking residents who recently traveled to Colorado, or were passengers on a cruise ship, to distance themselves from others. 

This illustration, created at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), reveals ultrastructural morphology exhibited by coronaviruses.
CDC/ Alissa Eckert, MS; Dan Higgins, MAMS

Sunday night, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, confirmed there are now 53 cases of COVID-19 in Michigan

No cases have been reported in northern Michigan yet, but health officials say it's just a matter of time before the coronavirus hits northern Michigan.

Is northern Michigan prepared?

Wikimedia Commons

Northern Michigan school districts are trying to help families impacted by the coronavirus pandemic, following an order from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Friday to close Michigan's public schools. 

On top of closures, the following districts have sent messages to students and parents regarding food availability and alternatives to in-person instruction.

Traverse City Area Public Schools:

This illustration, created at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), reveals ultrastructural morphology exhibited by coronaviruses.
CDC/ Alissa Eckert, MS; Dan Higgins, MAMS

Update 3/16/20, 11:30 am: In addition to bars and restaurants, Gov. Whitmer’s executive order also closes gyms, spas and health clubs, casinos, as well as theaters and other performance venues across the state. Order restrictions will remain in place until Monday, March 30 at 11:59 pm.

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer will sign an executive order this morning that closes bars and restaurants in Michigan starting this afternoon. The emergency action is to help slow the spread of the new coronavirus. The ban will only apply to sit-down service.

Royalbroil / CC BY-SA (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)

Update 03/17/2020: The Sault Ste. Marie Tribe of Chippewa Indians will close Kewadin Casinos by 03/22.

Update 03/16/2020: Bay Mills Indian Community will close Bay Mills Resort and Casino by 03/20.

IPR is compiling a list of coronavirus response actions and closures by tribal governments in Michigan — you can find it here.


Center for Disease Control and Prevention

 

Over the weekend, Grand Traverse County officials released guidelines for residents to stop the community spread of coronavirus. 

Administrators say there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Grand Traverse County, as of noon Sunday.

 

Pages