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Saturday, November 05, 2011

Honor the Earth: Copper and Iron or Wild Rice and Water?

Posted Nov. 3, 2011, on New Warriors for the Earth*

BARAGA -- New Warriors for the Earth has shared this summary of recent mining projects, posted on Winona LaDuke's Web site, Honor the Earth**:

New mining projects threaten the water, land, wild rice and people of the Great Lakes. Over the past three hundred years, people have spoken out to protect this land and water…

Now is your chance.

Gogebic Mine -- Penokee Mountains, Wisconsin:

Representing up to 20 percent of known iron deposits in the US, around 1-2 billion tons of ore, coal mining giant the Cline Group from Florida has options on 22,5000 acres of mineral rights from Anderson, Mich., to just west of Mellen, Wis. The deposit is buried 350 feet from the surface, and is 20 percent iron, in the form of magnetite, to be extracted with high-powered magnets. The mine would stretch in segments over 21 miles, descend 600 to 900 feet and be 1200 feet wide. Copper and nickel are also likely to exist, and with them the risks of sulfide mining....

Click here to read the rest of this article about this mine and others in the Great Lakes Region.

*New Warriors for the Earth is an Anishinaabe-based non-profit organization dedicated to educating and empowering our communities to take positive action to protect Aki, Mother Earth. Click here to visit their Web site.

** Honor the Earth is a Native-led organization established by Winona LaDuke and Indigo Girls Amy Ray and Emily Saliers in 1993 to address the two primary needs of the Native environmental movement: the need to break the geographic and political isolation of Native communities and the need to increase financial resources for organizing and change. Click here to visit their Web site.

Friday, November 04, 2011

Khana Khazana to serve Middle Eastern cuisine Nov. 4

HOUGHTON -- Khana Khazana (food treasure), a weekly lunch cooked by international students, will feature dishes from the Middle East from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday, Nov. 4, in the Michigan Tech Memorial Union Food Court.

Sara Alian, a graduate student in applied geospatial information sciences, will cook kabab bakhtiari, a Persian chicken and lamb kabob; tomato and green peas rice, a Saudi Arabian dish; tabouleh, a popular Middle Eastern salad; and knafeh, a Middle Eastern sweet made with fine vermicelli-like pastry.

A full meal costs $6 and includes coffee, tea or a fountain soda. Individual entrees are available for $2 each.

Khana Khazana is a collaborative project of international students and Michigan Tech Dining Services.

Thursday, November 03, 2011

First Friday in Calumet to offer art, music, good food -- Nov. 4

Untitled textile sculpture by artist Deb Karppinen. The Vertin Gallery will exhibit Karppinen's work during November, with an Opening Reception from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. on First Friday, Nov. 4. (Photo courtesy Vertin Gallery)

CALUMET -- First Friday, Nov. 4, in Calumet offers several art events -- and music as well -- all free and open to the public.

CCAC to offer holiday workshop

To help you capture the holiday spirit, a holiday ornament / decoration workshop will be held from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 4, at the Copper Country Associated Artists (CCAC) Gallery, 112 Fifth St.

Fabric artists Karen Secor and Millie Little will help you make a very special ornament using several techniques such as fabric fusing, embroidery, and embellishing with beads and buttons. If you have some special items you would like to incorporate into a piece -- perhaps an antique button, a treasure or even a lock of hair from somebody special -- bring them along. Otherwise, all materials will be provided.

Take advantage of this free workshop -- a chance to create an original ornament or decoration that can be displayed, passed on, and cherished as a reminder of the care and thoughtfulness that is put into homemade gifts.

Ed Gray Gallery to host fiber artists

November brings the annual call for entry fiber show to the Ed Gray Gallery in Calumet. This juried show brings in artists from far and near. The opening reception will be held from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. this Friday, Nov. 4. The show will run through Nov. 30.

The Ed Gray Gallery is at 109 Fifth St. in Calumet.

Café Rosetta will be open First Friday evening

Remember to check out the Café Rosetta, at 104 Fifth St., right across the street from the Ed Gray Gallery. See our Nov. 3 article on their good food, great coffee and friendly ambiance. In addition, see their exhibit of paintings by the late Carol Gorgas.

Vertin Gallery to exhibit work by Deb Karppinen

Vertin Gallery is pleased to announce that its featured artist for the month of November is Deb Karpinnen. Her show, "Formations: Dimensional Felt," will open on First Friday, Nov. 4.

Using the ancient technique of wet-felting, Deb creates her textile sculptures from loose, unspun wool. The richly textured surface designs are a translation her garden designs. Years of planning landscapes and examining the interplay of plants and earth have given Ms. Karppinen a keen eye for color and an appreciation for the organic and unpredictable qualities inherent in her materials. Deb has created a number of sculptural felt pieces that celebrate her process.

Deb Karppinen and her husband reside in Lansing, Michigan, and spend their summers in Keweenaw County.

Please join Vertin Gallery at the Opening Reception for Deb Karppinen from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 4. Deb will speak about her work around 7:15 p.m., and refreshments will be served.

Backroom Boys to perform at Omphale Gallery and Café

Music and art lovers, stop in at the Omphale Gallery and Café for hot drinks, treats, and old-time jazz and swing with a New Orleans flair from the Backroom Boys. Omphale has been beautifully re-appointed, and the hardwood floor is wonderful for dancing.

"Last time, Madame Julie and Mlle. Katie Jo put out great snacks, and the crowd was hoppin'," says musician Oren Tikkanen, who plays banjo in this group. "We hope to see you living it up from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. this Friday."

Joining Tikkanen in this popular band are John Munson, clarinet/sax; Bob Norden, trombone; Matt Durocher, bass; and Randy Seppala, washboard/rhythm bones.

Café Rosetta in Calumet offers good healthy food, great coffee, more ...

By Michele Bourdieu

Virginia Secor of Calumet, left, chats with Café Rosetta co-owners (from left behind counter) Carley Williams and Patrick Wright, who now have the help of Tim Wright, Patrick's brother. The Café Rosetta, at 104 Fifth Street in Calumet, is open every day from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. (later on First Friday evening), offering a variety of breakfast and lunch menus as well as great coffee and other treats. (Photos by Keweenaw Now)

CALUMET -- A recent addition to Calumet's historic Fifth Street is the Café Rosetta, just across the street from the Ed Gray Gallery.

"I have my coffee there every morning," says Gray.

He adds that he loves the warm, friendly atmosphere created by co-owners Patrick Wright and his wife, Carley Williams. The family business also includes Patrick's brother, Tim Wright, who helps the energetic young couple with their demanding seven-day week schedule -- serving a variety of breakfast and lunch menus in addition to both French-press and espresso coffee selections -- plus yummy desserts!

The lunch menu at Café Rosetta offers several healthy choices of good, home-cooked food, including some gluten-free items. Breakfast is served from 6 a.m. to 3 p.m. as well. Click on photo for larger version.

Calumet resident Susan Rokicki also comments on the warm, welcoming atmosphere of the café.

"Patrick, Carley, and now Patrick's younger brother, Timothy, are such amazingly congenial people," Rokicki notes. "They take time with their customers, get to know them and make them feel as if they are visiting a friend's home."

Patrick and Carley opened the café last August after purchasing it from Babette Jokela, former owner of the Conglomerate Café in the same location. Jokela seemed happy to be moving on to new endeavors. So far the new owners haven't advertised Babette's famous povatica; but, as Rokicki puts it, they offer a "really good menu -- somewhat different from the usual fare."

One example is a triple-berry scone that is gluten-free! Vegetarians will feel welcome with items like black bean and quinoa soup or focaccia with avocado, tomato and sprouts.

"Their food is about as natural as one can get and very tasty and reasonably priced," Rokicki adds.

Patrick Wright prepares an espresso coffee drink with his authentic espresso machine. The café also serves French-press as their regular coffee and hot chocolate made with milk and dark chocolate.

In case you're wondering about the meaning of "Rosetta," it's the design on the surface of a cup of coffee -- and on the Cafe's logo and tee-shirt.

According to Carley, "It's an art form for making coffee. Baristas have Rosetta competitions."

The Café Rosetta serves this espresso as well as French-press coffee.

On the walls of the café this month are landscape paintings by the late Carol Gorgas, also known as Carol Taipale, who as a young girl lived on Farmer's Block Road in Ahmeek.

Paintings by the late Carol Gorgas are the current exhibit for November at the Café Rosetta.

In a biographical sketch about the artist, Eva Papineau - Anderson writes, "She explored the U.P. with her sister and her sketchbook, picked berries, swam in the lake, ate pasties, and came to call Keweenaw home."

These paintings will be exhibited here through November. Patrick and Carley plan to change exhibits monthly.

The Café Rosetta, at 104 Fifth Street, is open every day from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m. It will be open later in the evening this First Friday, Nov. 4, so stop in during your tour of the art gallery openings.

Click here to visit the Café Rosetta Web site for detailed menus, great photos and blog entries welcoming your comments.

Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Jocelyn Benson of Engage Michigan to meet with concerned citizens Nov. 4

HOUGHTON -- At noon on Friday, Nov. 4, former Secretary of State candidate Jocelyn Benson will be meeting with concerned citizens at the Keweenaw Brewing Company for lunch.

Benson, an author and law professor at Wayne State University, is currently working with a group called Engage Michigan to gather concerns of voters across the state in order to empower them in the political process. She is interested in what you have to say as a Houghton County citizen. The event is free and open to anyone of voting age.

On Nov. 12, 2011, Benson is leading the state party Issues Convention at the Lansing Center in Lansing to engage Michigan Democrats in a statewide discussion about the direction they take as a party.

"She knows how difficult it is for folks in the U.P. to be at party events downstate so she came all the way to Houghton to make sure local Democrats are heard later this month at the Issues Convention," said Brian Rendel, Houghton County Democratic Party co-chair.

Rick Kasprzak has been coordinating the lunch meeting with Jocelyn. He plans to order pizza for folks who attend. If you are in town and available Friday, help welcome Jocelyn back to Houghton and bring your ideas about the direction you want the Democratic Party to take in the coming year. While reservations are not required, Rick would appreciate knowing if you plan to attend -- especially if you plan to have pizza with the group. Email him at

Click here to learn more about Engage Michigan.

Sen. Levin urges colleagues to pass Jobs Bill

WASHINGTON, DC -- Sen. Carl Levin, D-Mich., made the following remarks on the Senate floor today:

The Rebuild America Jobs Act addresses two of our most fundamental responsibilities: first, the need to respond to the urgent jobs crisis, secondly the duty to create the physical framework for economic growth now and into the future. There should be no debate about our duty to fulfill those two responsibilities. And yet once again, we are in a situation where the refusal of our Republican colleagues to compromise, even on consideration of measures they have supported in the past, prevents us from acting on behalf of the American people. I am encouraged by reports that, perhaps, finally, the need to act has convinced some of our colleagues across the aisle to at least consider allowing the Senate to debate this legislation. I hope -- for the sake of millions of people in Michigan and in every other state who are waiting for us to act -- that at least some of or Republican colleagues will relent and allow us to at least debate this measure.

What would this bill accomplish? Simply put, it seeks to create jobs now and in the future. It does so by funding a wide array of infrastructure projects, including roads, bridges, rail transport, mass transit, airport facilities and updated air traffic control systems. These projects would put construction workers on the job immediately. They would, according to estimates by Moody’s, boost economic growth by more than $1.50 for every dollar that we spend. And the benefits would continue into the future, as American companies and workers benefit from the increased competitiveness that modernized infrastructure provides.

Bill would create 12,000 Michigan jobs

In my home state of Michigan this legislation would dedicate more than $900 million to infrastructure projects. It would create about 12,000 jobs. Residents of my state are keenly aware of the need to act, and act now, on the jobs crisis. And they are keenly aware of the terrible costs that we pay if we allow our economic competitors to establish advantages over our workers. In my state, nearly a third of all bridges are structurally deficient or functionally obsolete. More than a third of our major roads are in poor or mediocre condition. About 40 percent of major urban roadways are congested. The people of Michigan want us to act now on jobs, and they want us to act now to maintain America’s competitive edge. ...

Click here to read the rest of Sen. Levin's remarks on this bill.

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Diwali Night to offer Indian cuisine, entertainment at Michigan Tech Nov. 6

HOUGHTON -- The 2011 Diwali Night, which is celebrated all over the world, is scheduled for Sunday, Nov. 6, at Michigan Tech University.

The festival, sponsored by the Indian Student Association (ISA), represents light and prosperity; it symbolizes the victory of good over evil.

Members of the Michigan Tech Indian Students Association (ISA) perform dances during the Parade of Nations entertainment in Dee Stadium in September 2011. The public will have another opportunity to enjoy Indian traditional folk and classical dances at Diwali Night on Sunday, Nov. 6, in the Rozsa Center. (Photo by Keweenaw Now)

The evening will include Indian cuisine, skits, drama, music, dance and lots of fun. The guest of honor is Michigan Tech President Glenn Mroz.

Here is the schedule:

Dinner is from 5 p.m. to 7.30 p.m. at the Memorial Union Commons and Ballroom.

Performances will run from 7.30 p.m. to 9.30 p.m. at the Rozsa Center. The main attractions are traditional folk and classical dances.

Tickets for the dinner cost $16 for the general public; $14 for students; and $12 for ISA members. Tickets for the Rozsa performance are $8.

Tickets are available at these locations:
Memorial Union Commons, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
SDC Ticket Office and Rozsa Box Office
Online at .
On the day of the event, tickets are available from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the Memorial Union.

Monday, October 31, 2011

From the Editor: Help us celebrate our 10th Birthday!

HANCOCK -- Happy Halloween to our readers -- and Happy Birthday, Keweenaw Now! We celebrated 10 years of online news, views and happenings in the Keweenaw Peninsula this month, October 2011.

Our original site, began in October 2001. We changed to the blog format in 2007; but this "blog" site has essentially the same purpose: to offer our readers in the Keweenaw, and beyond, a community Web site covering local happenings and issues affecting the quality of life -- now and for future generations -- in this area and the Lake Superior watershed.

We would like to thank our readers and our advertisers for making Keweenaw Now possible. We invite you to share links to our articles on your Facebook, Twitter and other sites and to spread the word about our work. We are still offering a free month of advertising to new advertisers -- at both our business and non-profit rates.

Please email the Editor at if you would like info about advertising on Keweenaw Now. Help us celebrate our first decade of online news!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Finlandia to host "Uncovering the Sámi Connection" Nov. 3

HANCOCK -- The Finlandia University Finnish American Heritage Center will present a program titled "Uncovering the Sámi Connection" starting at 6 p.m. on Thursday, Nov. 3, 2011.

The short film Suddenly Saami will be shown. The film is about a Norwegian woman who learns as an adult that her family is ethnic Sámi.

Informal discussion will follow, led by Becky Hoekstra, James Kurtti, and Eileen Sundquist. Discussion topics will include the ways in which Sámi heritage is forgotten, even hidden, among Nordic and Nordic-American families, and how this heritage is being rediscovered and reclaimed today.

The use of gakti, Sámi traditional clothing, will be a key focus of this group. Community members are encouraged to share their own stories of becoming "suddenly Sámi," as well as their own gakti, photos, and other related items.

The event is free and open to the public. The Finnish American Heritage Center is located on the campus of Finlandia University at 435 Quincy St., Hancock.

For additional information, contact Hilary Virtanen, programming coordinator for the Finnish American Heritage Center, at 906-487-7505.

Tim DeChristopher's call to join Nov. 6 Tar Sands Action

Posted on Peaceful Uprising, Oct. 29, 2011

From Tim DeChristopher: "As much as I’m enjoying my time in prison, I’m a little jealous of the folks who get to participate in the uprising that’s happening right now. If I wasn’t here, I’d probably either be on Wall Street or Freedom Plaza in DC. But on November 6th, I would definitely be outside the White House to show Barack Obama how many people are committed to stopping the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. There’s a deep instinctual sense of intimidation that comes from being completely surrounded, and that might be healthy for our president right now...."

Click here to read the rest of Tim's message.

Learn about the Nov. 6 protest in DC on