See our right-hand column for announcements and news briefs. Scroll down the right-hand column to access the Archives -- links to articles posted in the main column since 2007.

Friday, July 09, 2010

Stephanie Trevino to offer Pinhole Camera class July 17

HANCOCK -- Make your own pocket-sized pinhole camera using common household materials and ordinary 35mm film that can be developed at any one-hour lab! Learn the special properties and techniques particular to pinhole cameras from instructor / photographer Stephanie Trevino and be inspired to see the world in a brand new way.

"Windows," a photograph made with a pinhole camera by photographer Stephanie Trevino, who will offer a Pinhole Camera class Saturday, July 17, at the Community Arts Center in Hancock. (Photo courtesy Community Arts Center)

Pinhole photography creates unique, dream-like imagery and is fun and accessible to everyone, regardless of previous experience.

The Pinhole Camera class will be held from Noon to 3 p.m. on Saturday, July 17, at the Copper Country Community Arts Center in Hancock. The class fee of $36 includes materials. Please register for the class by Wednesday, July 14.

Call the Arts Center at 482-2333 to register or to obtain more information. The Copper Country Community Arts Center is located at 126 Quincy Street in Hancock.

Portage Library to feature travelogues July 13, 14

HOUGHTON -- On Tuesday, July 13, and Wednesday, July 14, the Portage Lake District Library will host travelogues featuring two of earth’s hottest and coldest climates. Both presentations will be held from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. They are free and open to the public.

On Tuesday, July 13, Rekha Ambardar will show slides of her recent trip to India. Included will be her visit to Delhi, Bangalore and Chennai and the vast diversity of India’s culture and languages. She will also explore India’s phenomenal economic growth in recent years and its role in the global arena. Artifacts from the country will be displayed and recipes will be shared.

Ambardar is the author of two novels and over ninety stories, articles and essays in print and electronic magazines. She is an assistant professor of business at Finlandia’s International School of Business. Among the courses she teaches are international marketing and global economy.

On Wednesday, July 14, the public is invited to come aboard a Norwegian polar expedition ship with Tom and Mimi Merz for their "Antarctica Voyage November 2009" presentation.

The Merzes boarded the vessel and departed from Ushuaia, Argentina, the southernmost city in the world. It took 44 hours to cross the Drake Passage before arriving in Antarctica, where they made six landings. This was not a cruise but a scientific expedition. Scientists aboard the ship explained what they were going to see and experience. The Merzes were in Antarctica during the penguin breeding season and saw thousands of penguins up close.

Everyone is invited to hear about their remarkable experiences and learn more about this place on earth that is full of mystery and awe.

For more information, please call the library at 482-4570 or visit

Michigamme Gallery exhibits new work by Jens T. Carstensen

MICHIGAMME -- The exhibit "Summer Serenade: New Paintings by Jens T. Carstensen" continues through July 31 at the Michigamme Moonshine Art Gallery, 136 E. Main, Michigamme, Mich. A reception will be held from 2 p.m. - 5 p.m. on Sunday, July 11. Refreshments will be served.

"Glacier Lake," by Jens Carstensen. (Photo courtesy Friederike Roach)

For painter Jens Carstensen, dedication and desire go hand in hand, so it is no surprise that he paints every day. According to Carstensen, the craving to paint is there all the time.

"It’s under my skin," says Carstensen. "Knowing that people really love [my] work provides me a great deal of satisfaction," he adds. "Over the years I have been fortunate enough to meet people who truly respond to my paintings."

Carstensen’s distinctive approach to painting has been featured in many shows around the Midwest, most recently as the inaugural exhibit at the new Mary Anne Beckwith Gallery at Central Michigan University. He will also be the subject of an upcoming article in the Wisconsin State Journal.

For more than a decade, Carstensen has come to regard the Upper Peninsula as an ideal place to paint. For some time, his "second home" in Michigamme has served as a studio where the artist is able to devote a great deal of time to his art. His newest work embraces his focus on scenes around Lake Superior.

Gallery Hours are 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday through Sunday and Tuesdays by appointment. Call 906-323-6546 for more information.

Chassell Strawberry Festival offers food, music, family activities July 9, 10

By Josh Norsen*

CHASSELL -- The 62nd annual Copper Country Strawberry Festival is underway today, Friday, July 9, in Chassell and offers activities that appeal to all ages: food, parades, live music, wagon rides, arts and crafts -- and, of course, plenty of strawberry shortcake. The festival runs through Saturday afternoon, July 10.

Events kick off Friday morning at Centennial Park with strawberry shortcake, brats, ice cream and other delicious treats all day until 9 p.m. Arts and crafts are being exhibited and sold in Centennial Park, while Holy Trinity Lutheran Church is hosting a quilt show (all day until 6 p.m.) that benefits the Copper Country Humane Society. Other events today, Friday, include the following:

Noon - 6 p.m. -- Chassell Heritage Center open house.

2 p.m. - 5 p.m. -- Horse-drawn wagon rides.

4 p.m. -- Enjoy the fish boil. (It is strongly recommended to purchase $9 tickets in advance).

5 p.m. -- Strawberry judging.

6 p.m. -- Children's Parade begins.

7 p.m. -- Adult and Youth Citizens of the Year are recognized, with the sounds of the strawberry auction in the background.

8 p.m. -- The Strawberry Festival Queen will be selected from a field of 13 candidates and crowned.

9 p.m. -- Dance at the Chassell VFW.**

"One of the more popular events is the queen crowning," said William Leonard, Chassell Lions Club member.

Leonard said the judges base the contest on personality, talent and community service. Queen candidates serve the community during the festival by preparing berries for shortcake and have been doing so since 1949.

Saturday, July 10, will also feature a variety of activities:

6:30 a.m. - 10 a.m. -- Pancake and sausage breakfast in the firehall.

9 a.m. - 4 p.m. --Arts and crafts exhibit and another full complement of food available in the park.

11 a.m. -- Strawberry Parade with cash prizes awarded to the most creative entries. BBQ chicken will be served after the parade by the fire department and first responders.

11 a.m. - 4 p.m. -- Quilt Show at Holy Trinity Lutheran Church.

Noon - 3 p.m. -- More horse-drawn wagon rides along with live music by The Country Drifters.

Noon - 4 p.m. -- Chassell Heritage Center open house.

1 p.m. - 4 p.m. -- Free 45-minute excursions for children age seven and older on the scientific research vessel Agassiz.

2 p.m. -- Friends of Fashion vintage fashion show; children's games.

3 p.m. -- Open mic at the pavilion.

The Strawberry Festival draws participants from far and near with its activities and entertainment; yet, according to organizers, it accomplishes much more.

"It raises money to do projects and puts money back into the community," said Leonard, who, with his wife, Nancy Leonard, has helped organize the festival for several years. "I think it creates a general good feeling from everyone working together."

*Editor's Note: Guest reporter Josh Norsen is a student in David Clanaugh's summer journalism class at Michigan Tech University. This is the first of several articles students will be contributing to Keweenaw Now during July and August.

** Setting it straight. Keweenaw Now's editor, not the above author, mentioned in this schedule that the band playing Friday night would be Cheap Therapy. This was an error we copied from another Web site. We apologize to Mr. Norsen and to our readers for this error, now removed from the article.

Thursday, July 08, 2010

Portage Library to host wellness class on essential oils July 8

HOUGHTON -- The Portage Lake District Library will host the second monthly program in the natural health and wellness series from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. TONIGHT, Thursday, July 8.

Professional Massage Therapist Angel Janssen will present "Everyday Use of Essential Oils." She will teach participants how to use oil of lavender, oregano, lemon, peppermint, frankincense and tea tree oil to treat many conditions including burns, insect bites, headaches, motion sickness, eczema, fever, rashes, indigestion, sinus problems, acne, stress, stretch marks, scars and more.

Janssen will also show how these essential oils can be used as a sleep aid and mood elevator, how they can work to enhance memory, improve mature skin, strengthen the immune system, assist in cell waste elimination, and be successful as an anti-inflammatory, antiviral, antifungal and antiseptic remedy. Participants will receive handouts that include detailed instructions for using these oils for each remedy as well as specific recipes that treat certain conditions.

Janssen is a licensed and nationally certified massage therapist with practices in Toivola and Hancock. She is also a certified instructor for LaStone Therapy and volunteers her time at Portage Hospital doing massage for people living with cancer.

This natural health and wellness series is held on the second Thursday of each month. Janssen will also teach Strategies for Relaxation and Pain Relief on August 12 and Self-Reflexology to Boost Your Immune System on September 9. All programs begin at 6:30 p.m. They are free, and everyone is welcome. No pre-registration is required. For more information, please call the library at 482-4570 or visit

Group to hold discussion of biomass power plants July 8 in Marquette

MARQUETTE -- A meeting to discuss the impending biomass-burning power plants in the Upper Peninsula will be held at 7 p.m. TONIGHT, Thursday, July 8, in the Lion's Room at the Peter White Library in Marquette.

The meeting will include a brief presentation and informal discussion on why biomass is the opposite of green energy, how it's being driven forward by billions in government subsidies and how citizens can stop these plants before they get started.

The meeting is being organized by Save the Wild UP and Jeff Gibbs, who organized a group who put a stop to up to five of these plants being built in Traverse City.

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Copper Island Beach Club to offer waltz music July 6, 8

HANCOCK -- The Copper Island Beach Club in Hancock will offer two evenings of waltz music Tuesday, July 6, and Thursday, July 8, featuring Pasi Lautala on accordion Tuesday and the Duo Tupelot (Pasi Lautala and Ana Gawboy on accordion and concertina, respectively) on Thursday.

Ana Gawboy and Pasi Lautala play a duet of Finnish tunes at the July 2009 Aura Jamboree. Click on photo for larger version. (File photo © and courtesy Gowtham. Reprinted with permission.)

Music will be played from 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on both nights and, according to Pasi, "hopefully continue the music with guests way after that."

The Copper Island Beach Club is located at 101 Navy St, Hancock, between Tezcuco St. and US-41, near the waterfront and Porvoo Park.

Keweenaw Krayons to offer Altered Box Workshop July 7

MOHAWK -- Keweenaw Krayons continues its Ripple Effect Summer Recycled Art Classes and Open Studio time with an Altered Box Workshop from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. this Wednesday, July 7, at Keweenaw Krayons in Mohawk.*

Artist Rachel Sommer will assist participants in creating personalized boxes in which to keep favorite treasures such as stones, shells, photos, recipes and more.

Cost for the workshop is $5 which includes all supplies including boxes. Participants are also invited to bring their own special box and items to use in decorating it. The class is open to all ages. Youth under six years of age are asked to bring an adult or teen with them. Family discounts, bartering and scholarships are available.

Open Studio time will be held from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on Thursday, July 8, so participants can continue working on their boxes or another art project. It is hoped that participants will learn the art medium and be able to teach it to others, including family members and friends, thus continuing the "ripple effect."

To register or to obtain more information on the workshop call 337-4706 or email

To see what other great classes and workshops are offered this summer, including Yupo Watercolor, Writing for Youth, and Garden Art visit

The Ripple Effect Art Workshops and Open Studio time are funded in part through the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs, Copper Country Community Arts Council and the Denise Marth Memorial Grant through the Superior Child Abuse Prevention Council.

* Keweenaw Krayons is at 110 Stanton Ave., Mohawk (corner of Stanton and 2nd Street). Click here for a map.

Monday, July 05, 2010

Dance, sing at French-Canadian Soirée July 7 in Chassell

CHASSELL -- Dance, sing and celebrate the opening of the Copper Country Strawberry Festival at a French-Canadian Soirée, or traditional evening dance party, at 8 p.m. Wednesday, July 7, at the Chassell Centennial Park pavilion (3rd Street).

Dance to live music by the Thimbleberry Band -- Libby Meyer on fiddle; Anna Gawboy on concertina; Oren Tikkanen on guitar, banjo and vocals; Coleman Segal on mandolin; Matt Durocher on bass; and David Bezotte on piano, accordion and vocals.

Come early to attend a free workshop at 7 p.m. in the park pavilion. Learn French-Canadian folk dances to add to your enjoyment of the evening (taught by Hester Butler), or learn "response" songs in French to sing along with the band (taught by David Bezotte assisted by Maple Sugar Folk).

Admission is free (donations appreciated). Refreshments by Baxter’s Heavenly Hotdogs will be available for purchase.

The event is sponsored by the Chassell Lions Club and the Chassell Historical Organization. For more information, contact David Bezotte at or 482-4956.