Saturday, January 19, 2019

Michigan Tech, Finlandia to host Martin Luther King Jr. Week events

Poster courtesy Michigan Tech University Center for Diversity and Inclusion.

HOUGHTON/HANCOCK -- Both Michigan Tech and Finlandia universities will host events to commemorate Martin Luther King Jr. this week, beginning Sunday, Jan. 20, 2019.

Michigan Tech events:

Sunday, Jan. 20: "Let's Talk About Race," in the Copper Country -- A Community-Wide Gathering and Panel Discussion will be held from 4 p.m. - 5 p.m. at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 1100 College Avenue, Houghton. This gathering will be followed by a weekly book discussion.  Participants will read So You Want To Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo. A limited number of books will be available for free at the gathering on January 20. 12 books can be given away for those willing to participate. Meetings will be held at 7 p.m. on Wednesday evenings at Good Shepherd.

Monday, Jan. 21:

MLK Reading Day -- Houghton, Hancock, and Dollar Bay Elementary Schools, 9 a.m. - 3 p.m. If you or your group would still like to volunteer, please email Briana Tucker at MLK children's books will be provided for readings. Personal transportation is required, but carpool options can be arranged

Michigan Tech's 30th Annual MLK Banquet Celebration. in the MUB Ballroom -- Doors open at 5:30 p.m. Program begins at 6 p.m. Tradition at Tech shows the strong community we create and the value we place on the life and legacy of Dr. King. This year's theme is "Living Fearlessly." Michigan Tech alumnus Donzell Dixson '14, is the keynote speaker. Tickets are free, but registration is required. The banquet includes a buffet dinner, award ceremony, and keynote address.

Tuesday, Jan. 22: Fearlessly Facing Fear Panel Discussion -- Memorial Union Building (MUB) Alumni Lounge, 6 p.m. Presented by Speak It Tour, featuring: Donzell Dixson, Elijah Kondeh, and Donte Curtis.

Wednesday, Jan. 23: National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) hosts "What Do You Know about Dr. King?" discussion -- Fisher 138, 6 p.m.

Finlandia Events: 

The fourth annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Day celebration at Finlandia University will begin at 5 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 20, with a brief worship service, continue with the annual day of service and community meal Monday, and conclude on Thursday with the film When We Were Kings.

Sunday, Jan. 20: A brief worship service is scheduled in the Chapel of St. Matthew at 5 p.m. The Biblical Moses and "Moses" Tubman will be celebrated together as we prayerfully reflect on our own vocation to be truly free and instruments of freedom for others. All students and employees are invited!

Monday, Jan. 21: Instead of reporting to class as they usually do on Monday morning, students, staff and faculty are continuing one of Finlandia’s newest and most rewarding traditions -- MLK Day of Service. Students, staff and faculty are volunteering throughout the Copper Country, with a total of 16 service sites ranging from the Barbara Kettle Gundlach Shelter in Calumet to The Bluffs Senior Community in Houghton, and just about everywhere in between.

The day will conclude with an open community meal at 5 p.m. in Finlandia Hall. All students and employees are invited to the café for that meal.

Thursday, Jan. 24: Film presentation: When We Were Kings, 6 p.m. in W303 (Wargelin Hall). Film description: On October 30, 1974, perhaps the most famous heavyweight championship boxing match of all time took place in Kinshasa, Zaire: the "Rumble in the Jungle" between champion George Foreman and challenger Muhammad Ali. In historical footage and new interviews, this documentary explores the relationship between African Americans and the African continent during the Black Power era in terms of both popular culture and international politics, including the brutality of then-dictator Mobutu Sese Seko.

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Third annual Women's March to be held Jan. 19 on Portage Lift Bridge

Participants in last year's Women's March gather near the Houghton waterfront and prepare to march across the Portage Lift Bridge. The Jan. 21, 2018, march in Houghton attracted nearly 500 participants. This year's Women's March will be Saturday, Jan. 19. (Keweenaw Now file photo)

HOUGHTON -- The third annual Women’s March will be held at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 19, 2019, on the Portage Lift Bridge. Marchers will gather on the west side of the bridge near BridgeView Park and walk up to Shelden Ave. to reach the bridge. Hats and signs are welcome.

This march is in conjunction with the Women’s March in Washington, DC, and Sister Marches across the country and around the world.

The first March was held on the day after Trump’s inauguration when our nation’s capital was filled with women from around the country, including a contingent from the Copper Country. Those women led the second annual march on the bridge last year.*

This is an inclusive, non-partisan event. Women of all ages, their partners and children are invited to participate. This march is a diverse, inclusive, and grass roots effort to express concerns for rights, safety, health, justice, dignity, opportunity, and more.

For more information contact Susan Burack at 906-482-3270.

*Editor's Note: See our Jan. 28, 2018, article on last year's Women's March: "Nearly 500 Copper Country residents march across Lift Bridge in anniversary Sister March: videos, photos."

Tuesday, January 08, 2019

January Snow

McLain State Park Winter, by Eric Munch. (Photo © and courtesy Eric Munch)

By Mick McKellar, Midnight Poet
Posted Jan. 5, 2019, on out of my mind...*
Reprinted here with permission.

The breath of Winter's frozen heart released.
Shifting, sonorous, soft blanket of death,
Your grasping samite desert unappeased,
As all fall prey to creeping icy breath.
Your susurration sings of silent sleep,
And icy dreams cascading through the night.
Your shifting dunes on silent cat paws creep,
To sift and drift o'er landscapes lost from sight.
You fill the land -- a vast and soundless sea;
As muted, faint, and hushed, your rivers flow --
And dammed, your frost spray stings, when passing me
On winter winds that always seem to blow.
Your coverlet of frigid, frozen fleece,
Gives all about an icy sense of peace.

Mick McKellar
January 2019

I said to myself: "Say something nice about snow!" Imagine my surprise when I received a reply...

* Midnight Poet Mick McKellar lives in Laurium. Read more of his poems on his poetry Web site, out of my mind...
Learn more about Mick McKellar here.

Tuesday, January 01, 2019

MDEQ to hold Jan. 9 public meeting, comment period on Back 40 Mining Permit Amendment Application

About a year ago (Jan. 23, 2018) the large gym at Stephenson High School was filled with about 500 people attending the four-hour  MDEQ hearing on Aquila Resources' Back 40 mining project application for wetlands permitting. On Jan. 9, 2019, Stephenson High School will again be the scene of a public hearing on the project -- this time on an application for an Amendment to Aquila's Mining Permit. (File photo © and courtesy Emilio Amador Reyes)*

Public Notice from Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ):

MARQUETTE -- The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ), Oil, Gas, and Minerals Division (OGMD), is holding a public meeting regarding the Back Forty Mine Mining Permit Amendment Application from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. CST on WEDNESDAY, JANUARY 9, 2019, at the Stephenson High School, W526 Division Street, Stephenson, Michigan. The Back Forty Project is in Lake Township, Menominee County.

The purpose of the meeting is (1) to inform the public that the MDEQ has received an application from Aquila Resources, Inc., to amend Mining  Permit MP 01 2016, issued under  Part 632, Nonferrous Metallic Mineral Mining, of the Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act, 1994 PA 451, as amended, and how to access documents, (2) to provide information regarding the review process, and (3) to provide interested parties the opportunity to comment on the proposed amendment for MDEQ consideration.

Meeting participants will be asked to fill out an attendance card and indicate intent to speak before entering the meeting area. Oral comment presentations will be limited to three minutes. This limit may be reduced or extended dependent on number of requests to speak. Written comments will also be accepted at the meeting.

MDEQ will also accept written comments regarding the amendment application by mail or e-mail from the day of the meeting until 5:00 P.M. EST, WEDNESDAY, February 6, 2019. Mail your comments to Back Forty Mining Permit Amendment, MDEQ-OGMD, 1504 West Washington Street, Marquette, MI 49855. E-mail your comments to the designated MDEQ mailbox at DEQ-, including "Back Forty Mining Permit Amendment" as the subject. The MDEQ will only consider comments that pertain to the Mining Permit Amendment Application prior to making a final decision. For additional information, contact Melanie Humphrey, MDEQ, Oil, Gas, and Minerals Division, 906-250-7564, or e-mail

The Mining Permit Application Amendment documents may be accessed at the following:
Once you are in the FTP site, select the "Mining" directory, then select the "Back Forty project." The amendment documents are:
R-MP Amendment Volume II EIA_Nov. 2018.pdf R-MP Amendment Volume I_Nov. 2018.pdf

A paper copy may be viewed at the Menominee County Public Library, S319 Railroad Street, Stephenson, MI 49887

Individuals needing accommodations for effective participation at the hearing should contact Tina Coluccio, 906-228-4524 one week in advance of the hearing date to request mobility, visual, hearing, or other assistance.

* Editor's notes: 

Click here to read Keweenaw Now's Feb. 2, 2018, article on last year's hearing.

Click here for links to other documents on the Aquila Back 40 project.