Traverse City Record-Eagle

October 22, 2012

Cheers and Jeers


---- — Cheers

n To Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network for relocating its area sales and service center as well as about 30 employees to a downtown Traverse City office. The insurance company has done the same in other Michigan cities, including Lansing, Grand Rapids and downtown Detroit, where 3,000 suburban workers were moved downtown.

n To the National Park Service for organizing an avian botulism task force of volunteers to keep an eye on area bird die-offs. Their volunteer work has been grim and tragic of late. One volunteer found 99 dead loons on a Benzie County beach last week. Another buried 83 dead loons, on another Benzie beach.

n To the Frankfort Film Festival for its 4th annual film festival that started Thursday and ended Sunday. Not only did the festival screen 13 films, including seven foreign films, it also offered an opportunity to show off the art-deco Garden Theatre and the continuing restoration work done by the theater's four owners and its band of dedicated volunteers. Renovations since the last festival include a new $75,000 digital projector, a surround sound system and restoration of a 40-foot-long mural on the back interior all.

n To the Children's House, an independent Montessori school along North Lake Road for its kitchen classroom that chooses six children a week from the lower and upper elementary grades and takes them through the step of washing, preparing, cooking and presenting healthy meals. They also help prepare 60 to 90 lunches a day and snacks for the school's 230 students.

n To Frank Noverr, the 2012 winner of the TART Trails' Jim Mudgett Trail Pioneer Award. Noverr was instrumental in the development of the Leelanau Trail in 1995. More recently, he funded a successful $37,500 challenge match to help reach the $500,000 campaign goal to pave the trail. The Jim Mudgett Award was created to honor and pay tribute to individuals who have shown leadership and passion for local trails.


n To the vandal or vandals who caused the deaths of 5,700 coho salmon at the Platte River Fish Hatchery this month. Workers found 5,130 adult salmon and 570 small jacks, or yearlings, dead in a maturation pond Oct. 5. Investigators found a club, heavy-duty fishing line and large treble hooks near the pond. Hatchery manager Ed Eisch said authorities suspect that someone trying to catch a fish spooked the salmon into blocking a fresh-water source, which deprived them of oxygen.