Coronavirus

Max Johnston / Interlochen Public Radio

Parts of Traverse City's Front Street will be closed to vehicles to make more room for pedestrian foot traffic this summer. The City Commission approved the proposal at a virtual meeting Monday night.

Taylor Wizner / Interlochen Public Radio

 

An inmate at North Lake Correctional Facility in Baldwin has died after contracting COVID-19.

The Federal Bureau of Prisons indicated the death on its website, Friday.

The site shows 27 inmates are currently confirmed sick with COVID-19, while 56 inmates have recovered from the disease.

The prison holds 1,560 immigrants who have been convicted of federal crimes and will be deported following their sentence.

 

  The Michigan National Guard will be on site at two Northern Michigan locations this weekend to assist health departments in administering free COVID-19 tests.

 

The coronavirus testing will be available to any Michigan resident, regardless of symptoms. No appointment is necessary. 

 

Grand Traverse Mall reopens to the public

May 28, 2020

The Grand Traverse Mall is welcoming customers for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic shut down businesses across the nation. 

 

Safety measures have been added, including hand sanitizing stations and frequent cleaning of “high touch areas” by janitorial staff. 

 

Markings on the floor have been added to help customers keep the six foot distance while in line at the food court. But that's not the only change at the food court, according to the Grand Traverse Mall general manager Jonathan Pittman.

Much of northern Michigan reopened Memorial Day weekend as rates of COVID-19 infections continued to decrease in Michigan. However, some communities Up North were left out of reopening in Governor Grethchen Whitmer's recent order.

Max Johnston / Interlochen Public Radio

Some businesses in northern Michigan reopened Friday, with restrictions, under an executive order from Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

While many welcomed the news, some businesses are playing it safe.

Mackinac Island closed for Memorial Weekend

May 21, 2020
Pure Michigan

While most northern Michigan businesses are busy preparing for their grand re-opening this weekend, Mackinac Island will remain closed.

“Mackinac Island will not be open for business for Memorial Day this year,” said Tim Hygh, executive director of Mackinac Island Tourism.  “There will be no ferry service at all Memorial Day, Saturday and Sunday.”

Owners of private campgrounds Up North eager to reopen

May 19, 2020
Taylor Wizner

Ahead of the partial reopening of restaurants, bars and retail businesses in northern Michigan, some private campground owners feel that Governor Gretchen Whitmer doesn’t understand the safety of camping.

"Camping is an extremely safe way to travel and get around, and there’s no reason we shouldn’t be out there enjoying the sunshine and the fresh air,” said Cathy Kuebler, owner of Traverse City Kampgrounds of America. “It should totally be allowed."

Recreational camping for individuals who otherwise have a primary residence is not permitted at this time.

Today on Stateside, what will the impending re-opening of Michigan’s economy mean for public health. Plus, how the pandemic could allow districts to reshape learning in the fall.

Executive Office of the Governor

Governor Gretchen Whitmer says some rural regions of the state can partially re-open Friday, May 22 due to low COVID-19 infection rates. Restaurants and bars will be able operate at 50 percent seating capacity in the Upper Peninsula and 17 counties in the northern Lower Peninsula.

Michigan National Guard

 

Michigan is working with the National Guard to test all inmates in state prisons. It’s one of the first states in the country to do widespread coronavirus testing in prisons, which have become hot spots for the virus.

University of Michigan

The Bay Mills Indian Community announced Tuesday it will intervene in Enbridge’s application to build a tunnel underneath the straits of Mackinac. 

Taylor Wizner / Interlochen Public Radio

Update 5/14/20: IPR has learned the inmate hunger strike mentioned in the following story ended on May 13. 

As several hundred prisoners from California saturate North Lake Correctional Facility in Baldwin, more than 100 inmates started a hunger strike, refusing food until they’re tested for COVID-19.

All of this is happening as cases of coronavirus double at the immigrant prison.

Northwest Michigan Health Services, Inc.

 

Correction: In a previous version of this story IPR inaccurately reported that 22 people tested positive for COVID-19 and 14 were asymptomatic, as earlier reported to IPR by the Northwest Michigan Health Services, Inc. Please read the following story for the accurate information.

More COVID-19 testing is available in Northwest Lower Michigan, even for those without symptoms.

Pure Michigan campaign

Mackinac Island, one of Michigan’s largest tourist destinations, is still over a month away from opening for business due to the coronavirus pandemic, officials say.

State Theater / Courtesy

 

The Traverse City Film Festival is officially canceled. 

Film Festival Founder and President Michael Moore made the announcement Monday, saying there was no way around it amid the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“I’m very, very sorry to announce that we cannot come together this summer to participate in our 16th Traverse City Film Festival,” Moore said in a statement. “We doubt the governor’s order closing our theaters and the festival will be lifted any time soon — and we agree it shouldn’t.”

Interlochen Center for the Arts

 

 

For the first time since 1964, Interlochen Center for the Arts will not be hosting its annual summer Arts Festival.

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