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.

Saturday, May 05, 2012

Genealogical Society to meet May 8 at Carnegie Museum

HOUGHTON -- The Houghton-Keweenaw County Genealogical Society will meet at 6 p.m. Tuesday, May 8, at the Carnegie Museum, located at Montezuma Ave. and Huron St., Houghton. The meeting will be a work party, with a light dinner of sandwiches provided; bring your own beverage. CDs will be assembled for distribution, and archived Gazettes will be organized. For further information, call 482-4021 or email

Be sure to note the change in meeting time and location from the usual time and place.

Thursday, May 03, 2012

Noteworthy women's chorus to present Pine Mountain Music Festival Benefit Concert series

HOUGHTON -- The women’s chorus Noteworthy will celebrate the music of Broadway legends Stephen Sondheim and his mentor, Oscar Hammerstein II, in its upcoming concert series, "Bling and Sing with Stephen Sondheim."

As a benefit for the Pine Mountain Music Festival, the Noteworthy women's chorus, known for its a cappella harmonies, will perform "Bling and Sing with Stephen Sondheim" at the Calumet Theatre May 12, the Ontonagon Theater May 18, and the Pine Grove Country Club in Iron Mountain May 19. (Photo courtesy Pine Mountain Music Festival)

Noteworthy will perform the concert of familiar favorites at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 12, at the Calumet Theatre. A benefit for the Pine Mountain Music Festival, the program is a prelude to Sondheim’s A Little Night Music, which is on the Festival’s summer schedule.

Noteworthy is also performing the same concert on Friday, May 18, at the Ontonagon Theater and on Saturday, May 19, at the Pine Grove Country Club in Iron Mountain, also at 7:30 p.m.

Tickets are $10 and are available at the door, or by calling Michigan Tech Ticketing Services, 877-746-3999, or online at

Noteworthy, the only women’s barbershop chorus in the Copper Country, is recognized for its lush tonal quality and intricate, a cappella harmonies. This rich array of show tunes has added new depth to its barbershop repertoire.

To mark the occasion, Noteworthy’s members will be adding "bling" by replacing their standard concert garb with fancy dress, including sequins, rhinestones, satin and sparkles.

"We wanted to reflect some of the excitement of this awesome music," said Noteworthy director Joan Petrelius. "We’re also proud and honored to be singing on behalf of the Pine Mountain Music Festival, which brings absolutely wonderful entertainment to our area."

Sondheim songs on the program include the sassy "Let Me Entertain You" and standards "Everything’s Coming Up Roses" and "Together Wherever We Go," from his 1959 musical Gypsy, and "Send in the Clowns," a poignant lament made famous by folk singer Judy Collins. Pianists Susan Byykkonen and Monica Rovano will provide accompaniment for the haunting "Children Will Listen," from the 1986 musical Into the Woods.

A top lyricist and producer, Hammerstein teamed up with many composers, most famously with Richard Rodgers, with whom he wrote many musicals, including The Sound of Music. He also mentored young Sondheim after the divorce of the boy’s parents in what would be one of the most high-impact apprenticeships in musical theater. Sondheim went on to win an Academy Award, eight Tony Awards, a Pulitzer, and the Lawrence Olivier Award.

Noteworthy will sing a selection of songs from The Sound of Music, including "Climb Every Mountain," "Edelweiss" and "The Sound of Music." During the Calumet performance, they will be joined in "Do Re Mi" by several of the members’ grandchildren. Another favorite, "You’ll Never Walk Alone" from the Rodgers and Hammerstein musical Carousel, is also on the program.

Marcia Goodrich will perform "I Know Things Now," Little Red Riding Hood’s reflections upon being eaten by the wolf, from Into the Woods. And Bonnie Horn will sing her own adaptation of "Not While I’m Around," the wistful song of a boy wishing to protect his mother figure, from Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd.

Noteworthy was formed in 1996 under the direction of Theresa Goodell, a retired music teacher. Under her care, the eight-member group grew to nearly 30. Petrelius took up the baton in July 2010, after Goodell’s retirement. A retired band and choral teacher, Petrelius quickly embraced the barbershop style, and Noteworthy has continued to thrive under her direction.

Backroom Boys to entertain at Omphale Café / Gallery May 4

The Backroom Boys play a variety of dance music at the Omphale Café and Gallery in Calumet. (Keweenaw Now file photo)

CALUMET -- The Backroom Boys will be playing traditional jazz and swing at the Omphale Café and Gallery for First Friday, May 4, in Calumet.

"Check out all the galleries and then bring your dancing shoes to the Omph for some oomph -- 7 til 9 p.m.," says musician Oren Tikkanen.

Vertin Gallery to feature art by Laura Maze, opening May 4

CALUMET -- The Vertin Gallery is pleased to welcome their featured artist for the month of May -- Laura Maze of Republic, Mich.

Art by Laura Maze. (Photo courtesy Vertin Gallery)

Her show will be on display at Vertin Gallery from May 4 through May 31. The show's opening is from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. on First Friday, May 4. Please join in welcoming this talented artist to Calumet!

Laura studied printmaking at Northern Michigan University. Her work is a mix of gelatin print, collage techniques, drawing, and painting -- combined in pieces of great depth and visual interest. Laura will demonstrate her method for gelatin printing during her artist's talk.

Laura's work won the "Featured Artist Award" at the Bonifas Art Center's "Northern Exposure" show last November.

The Vertin Gallery is at 220 Sixth St. in downtown Calumet.

110th District Candidate Scott Dianda to address labor leaders, Democrats at May 5 Rally

HOUGHTON -- On Saturday, May 5, Scott Dianda, Democratic Candidate for Michigan's 110th State Representative seat, will speak to a coalition of labor leaders, local activists and Democratic Party members at a rally in Houghton.

On April 17 (tax day) Scott Dianda speaks out against taxes on seniors, working class and middle class citizens, in the Houghton Democratic Party's new office in Hancock. Dianda (who had not yet announced his candidacy) was speaking for Concerned Citizens of Houghton County in reference to Michigan PA 38, legislation, voted in the Republican-controlled State Senate and House and signed by Gov. Snyder on May 25, 2011. Under PA 38, next year families will lose the $600 a year per child tax credit for children, seniors will be taxed on their retirement, homestead credits will be slashed -- while corporate special interest groups will receive $1.8 billion in big tax breaks, Dianda explained. Here he is being interviewed by Gabrielle Mays, Houghton Bureau reporter for WLUC-TV6. (Photos by Keweenaw Now)

The event is both a kick-off to the 2012 election season and a public celebration of May Day, or International Workers’ Day, a holiday that commemorates the efforts of workers around the world who have organized for better working conditions and fair compensation.

Introduced by Dianda at the Apr. 17 media event, Clarence McDonald, right, chairman of United Auto Workers (UAW) Retirees of the Western U.P., speaks about the importance of union benefits for workers. "People don't seem to understand that non-union people benefit from what the unions have negotiated for over the years." At left is Keweenaw County Commissioner Don Piche, who retired recently after working 35 years for the Keweenaw County Road Commission. Piche said it isn't fair that he will have to start paying taxes on his retirement next year just because he was born after 1952.

Rally-goers are to meet at Noon at the Houghton Boat Launch, near the Power House, next to the foot of the Portage Lift Bridge. The rally will be followed by a march on the bridge, and attendees are encouraged to bring signs. A taco social will follow at the Super 8 Motel in Houghton at 3 p.m., sponsored by the Houghton County Democratic Party.*

The May Day Rally is both a celebration of labor history and a protest against the record breaking amount of anti-worker, anti-working- and anti-middle-class legislation that has been passed since the current Michigan legislature took office in 2011.

These are just a few of the things this legislature has managed to do since taking office early last year:
  • Raise taxes on seniors, the middle class, and the working poor -- while giving Michigan's richest corporations an 86 percent tax cut.
  • Reduce unemployment benefit weeks to 20 from 26 -- making Michigan the state with the least number of unemployment weeks in the country.
  • Cut funding to public schools by $1 billion.
  • Drastically weaken workers' compensation laws, making it more difficult for workers injured on the job to seek compensation.**
Dianda also presented Terry LaJeunesse, Michigan Education Association (MEA) leader and retired teacher, who said promises to Michigan public employees, including teachers, are being broken. LaJeunesse said the MEA would be calling on Gov. Snyder and state legislators "to keep the promises their predecessors made to the people who built this state."

Key pieces of the anti-worker agenda were supported by the Copper Country’s own state representative, 110th District State Rep. Matt Huuki, who voted to cut funding to his own district's local governments and schools. State Rep. Huuki also voted to slash the number of unemployment weeks laid-off workers can seek-- and to make it more difficult for workers injured on the job to seek compensation.

*Editor's Note: Michigan Democrats will also hold presidential caucuses Saturday morning, May 5, before the rally. Click here for information.

** Click here to read more about this legislation.

May 5th is also Climate Impacts Day. If possible walk or ride to the Rally Saturday. See

Updated: Michigan Democrats to hold presidential caucuses Saturday May 5

HOUGHTON -- The Michigan Democratic Party (MDP) will hold presidential caucuses in more than 200 locations across the state on Saturday, May 5, 2012. All caucuses begin at 11 a.m.

Houghton County’s Democratic Party Presidential Caucus will be held in the Conference Room at the Super 8 Motel on Lakeshore Drive in Houghton, MI. Registration begins at 9 a.m. Arrive early to register, hear from candidates, and meet fellow Democrats. Sign in before 10:45 a.m. by declaring yourself a Democrat eligible to vote in Houghton County on November 6, 2012. Only those voters who have properly registered by 11 a.m. will be permitted to vote in the caucus. You do not need to be a party member to vote.

Update: Keweenaw County Democrats should vote in the caucus at the Allouez Township Hall.

Marquette County Democrats will also hold Presidential Caucuses this Saturday, May 5, 2012. Voters must go to the particular site for their area. Marquette County will have two sites.

Voters from the City of Marquette and Townships of Chocolay, Ewing, Forsyth, Marquette, Powell, Sands, Skandia, Turin, Wells, and West Branch will vote at the Chocolay Township Hall.

Voters from the Cities of Ishpeming and Negaunee, and Townships of Champion, Ely, Humboldt, Ishpeming, Michigamme, Negaunee, Republic, Richmond, and Tilden will vote at Ishpeming Township Hall.

Interested voters from other Michigan counties can find their Caucus sites by clicking here.

"People do not need to be members of the Michigan Democratic Party to vote," said MDP Chair Mark Brewer. "They simply have to indicate at registration that they are participating as a Democrat. People who voted in the February 28th primary are welcome to vote on May 5th. We also welcome young people who are eligible to register to vote before the November election."

Marquette County Party Chair Ben Bohnsack will conduct the Caucus at Chocolay, and former State Senator Mike Prusi will lead the Caucus at Ishpeming.

"These Caucuses will be short and simple," said Bohnsack. "This begins the process of re-electing President Barack Obama and we are enthusiastic about continuing to have his leadership."

Following the local Caucuses on May 5, delegates to the National Democratic Convention will be chosen at Congressional District Conventions on June 2 and by the Party’s State Central Committee.

Wednesday, May 02, 2012

Artist Ellen Torola to offer watercolor workshop May 4

"Copper Harbor Demo Piece," watercolor by Ellen Torola. (Photo courtesy Copper Country Associated Artists)

CALUMET -- Copper Country Associated Artists are delighted to offer, for First Friday, May 4, a watercolor workshop with Ellen Torola, a self-taught artist in many media, whose favorite is watercolor painting of local flowers and scenery of the Copper Country. She owned and operated the Paint Box Gallery in Calumet for over 30 years. Torola painted and sold her artwork there, did framing for the public and taught art classes in drawing and painting.

Since retirement from the gallery, Torola has continued to paint in her home studio. She will be going to Armenia in May with her daughter Margaret Helminen and granddaughter Joyce. They will visit Margaret's daughter Evelyn, who is in the Peace Corps. Plans are being made for Torola to teach a watercolor class there.

Torola's watercolor classes are taught with care and expertise. Participants will learn many techniques while working on a landscape scene. All materials will be provided. The class will start at 6:30 p.m., with participation on a "first come" basis so it is recommended that you come at around 6:10 p.m. to find a spot if you want to paint. We won't be taking reservations. Because of the individual attention required to teach such a class, the studio will only be able to accommodate 15 students; but others are welcome to watch.

The Copper Country Associated Artists Studio is located in Calumet at 205 Fifth Street, right between the Vertin and the Ed Gray galleries. We are open now from 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. every Thursday through Saturday for our Spring hours. Ask about workshops when you visit.

Expanded Carmody Wildlife Art Exhibit to open May 3 in Michigan Tech's Noblet Forestry Building

HOUGHTON -- Michigan Tech alumnus William Carmody and his wife, Erlene Carmody, have donated 12 new limited edition wildlife prints to Michigan Tech's School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science (SFRES).

They will be on display at a grand opening of the expanded Donald W. Carmody Wildlife Art Exhibit from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday, May 3, in the UJ Noblet Forestry Building. Admission is free, and refreshments will be served.

The exhibit already includes 85 prints and five original watercolors by Michigan artist Dietmar Krumrey, as well as five prints by Roger Tory Peterson and six prints by David A. Maass. Most of the birds and mammals pictured are found in Upper Michigan, among them the wolf, ruffed grouse, gray squirrel, white-tailed deer and bald eagle.

William Carmody graduated from Michigan Tech with a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering in 1961. He is retired from Dow Chemical. His father, Donald W. Carmody, earned a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Michigan Tech in 1935, and William's son, Donald, also attended Tech, graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering in 1991.

"The School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science acknowledges with gratitude the gift of such a fine collection," said Dean Peg Gale (SFRES).

After the grand opening, the exhibit can be viewed in the academic office area of the Noblet Building and the upper level of Horner Hall from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Georgi Tsenov's new exhibit at Ed Gray Gallery honors Ojibwa culture

CALUMET -- The work of Georgi Tsenov, a professional muralist from Bulgaria, is featured in a solo show at the Ed Gray Gallery in Calumet through May 29.

 "Ojibwa Spring," by Georgi Tsenov. (Photo courtesy Ed Gray Gallery)

Through this exhibit, titled "Destination Keweenaw: A Romantic Journey through the land of the Ojibwa," Tsenov shares his communion with this land and its culture. Tsenov is fascinated with Native American cultures and has used his brush to translate his interest into paintings which differ from his previous style.

Artist Georgi Tsenov, right, his wife, Tatiana, and their daughter, Elena, often attend the First Friday exhibits in the Ed Gray Gallery, where several of his paintings (like the one behind them) are exhibited. Here they are at the Jan. 6, 2012, exhibit. An opening reception for Tsenov's new exhibit will be held this Friday, May 4, in the Gallery. (Photo by Keweenaw Now)

Tsenov and his family are in the States due to an affiliation with Michigan Tech. He has used his time in the Keweenaw to his, and our, advantage. He has made his experience here public through his art.

The show opens with a reception from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. on First Friday, May 4. The Ed Gray Gallery is at 109 Fifth St. in Calumet.

Community Arts Center hosts Global City Photo Exhibit through May 5

HANCOCK -- The 2nd Annual Global City Photo Exhibit is at the Copper Country Community Arts Center’s Kerredge Gallery through Saturday, May 5. Twenty outstanding photographs capture life in categories such as the planet, people, sustainability, and "glocal."

"The Joy of Flying" by Subhasish Mandal -- taken in a rural place in the state of West Bengal, India. (Photo courtesy Copper Country Community Arts Center)

The photos are offered for sale to benefit next year’s Global City programs. Global City is a student organization at Michigan Tech dedicated to addressing critical, global issues, especially those that most directly impact developing countries. Its three main goals are these: 1) to foster cooperation and understanding among nationals of different countries, 2) to promote interest in international affairs such as the environment, human rights, technology transfer, poverty, development, and sustainability, and 3) to provide a forum for the presentation of innovative ideas to benefit the university and the world community.

These photos were displayed in April at the Vertin Gallery in Calumet and at the Keweenaw Brewing Company in Houghton. If you missed them or wish to see them again, please visit the Community Arts Center, 126 Quincy Street in Hancock, by this Saturday.

Hours are Tuesday through Friday, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. and Saturday 1 p.m. - 5 p.m.

For more information on Global Cities, visit their Web site.
For more information on the exhibit, call (906) 482-2333.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Empty Bowls Project to fight hunger kicks off at Calumet Art Center

By Michele Bourdieu

At the Calumet Art Center, Iris Johnson, seated, Calumet Art Center Board president, gives advice to Susan Rokicki, Calumet music teacher, on painting a bowl for the Empty Bowls Project, an international effort to fight hunger. (Photos by Keweenaw Now)

CALUMET -- The Calumet Art Center's Empty Bowls Project, in conjunction with BHK Great Explorations, is underway as potters, craftspeople and educators donate bowls and people of all ages come to the Center to decorate them.

The Empty Bowls Project, an international effort to fight hunger, is a community based fundraiser designed to create awareness of food insecurity and to generate income for local food pantries.

Calumet Art Center Director Ed Gray shows Susan Rokicki how to put one color over another while painting. Rokicki said this was her "first time painting."

"We're going to have 400 bowls to decorate here, and we're asking all the professional potters we can find to donate their bowls to the project," said Ed Gray, Calumet Art Center director.

Ed Gray, who is a ceramic artist, displays a bowl painted by placing one color over another. "I painted the whole thing black first, and then when that was dry I added the white -- then the red and then the yellow, using brush strokes and the tip of the brush for the dots," Gray explained.

Groups and individuals -- including children accompanied by an adult -- are invited to come to the Art Center any time it's open -- from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. every day except Sunday -- to decorate the bowls. Beginning in June, restaurants and cafés will be invited to serve soup to customers who donate $10 for one of the decorated bowls, which they can keep. 100 percent of the donation goes to food pantries.

Susan Rokicki proudly displays her first painted bowl. 

The lead-off restaurant donor will be the Café Rosetta on Fifth Street in Calumet. Co-owner Patrick Wright is already planning the gourmet soups he will serve on one day in June, the date to be announced.

"We probably will make two soups -- a ginger peanut stew and a lentil vegetable soup," Wright said. "Both soups will be gluten-free and vegetarian."

Customers will purchase a decorated bowl to keep, but the soup will be served in a restaurant bowl. Those who donate the $10 for a food pantry will be encouraged to keep the bowls as a reminder of those who are struggling to put food on the table for their families.

Susan Rokicki signs her painted bowl. Ed Gray encouraged her efforts, noting everyone is welcome to participate -- no special talent or experience required. 

Joanne Thomas of Allouez Township works on her bowl. After the painting, the bowl is finished with a glaze at the Art Center. Thomas, who enjoys painting, has already purchased her first bowl.

These bowls, donated to the Art Center by artists, were painted by children in the BHK Great Explorations program. Gray is anxious to have more community groups -- both adults and children -- participate in the project.

Calumet Art Center Board President and volunteer Iris Johnson, left, is pictured here with Mary Pohjola of Calumet, an Experience Works employee who works part-time at the Calumet Art Center. 

Gordon Borsvold, an experienced potter who has been doing other types of art for several years, has recently returned to pottery, working in the Art Center and donating the bowls he has made there.

"It's the first time in about 15 years," Borsvold said. "It's nice to get back in the mud."

The Empty Bowls Project has raised tens of millions of dollars for anti-hunger organizations across the nation and in 12 other countries -- one community at a time.

For more information contact the Calumet Art Center at (906) 934-2228 or email Or -- even better -- stop in at the Center at 57055 Fifth Street and paint a bowl!

Portage Library to offer family programs May 1, 2, 3

HOUGHTON -- Portage Lake District Library will offer three evening programs for the whole family this week: "Dig into Isle Royale" for kids on May 1, the Cinco de Mayo Salsa Contest for creative cooks on May 2, and "Mother’s Day and Memorial Day Gardens" on May 3.

Kids can "Dig into Isle Royale"

The Portage Lake District Library continues to host "Explore Your National Park," a series of family programs presented by Isle Royale National Park Rangers Valerie Martin and Justin Olson. These programs offer adventures and activities that are suitable for families and kids ages five to twelve. Programs include a 30-minute show followed by hands-on activities.

The next program in this series will be held from 6:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, May 1.

During "Dig into Isle Royale," kids will become geologists-in-training as they uncover stories that are written in rocks. Participants will time travel into the past with Ranger Justin Olson to discover how molten lava and icy glaciers helped form the landscape we see today. Activities include trying your skills at identifying rocks and minerals and testing your glacier strength.

Friends of Portage Library to host Salsa Contest

If your taste buds begin to dance at the sight of tortilla chips mounded with fresh, homemade salsa, then you’re in for a treat at the Portage Lake District Library.

The Friends of the Library invite everyone to the third annual Cinco de Mayo Salsa Contest from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, May 2. To enter the contest, simply make 8 cups of your favorite salsa and label it mild, medium, or hot. Bring it to the library before 5 p.m. on May 2 so it can be placed next to bowls of chips for sampling and voting by the public. There will be door prizes and prizes for winners in each category.

Participants will also enjoy Mexican and Latin music compiled by local radio host Anthony Daniel for the event. Daniel is the host of Yearbook: the 1960s on WMPL.

Advance registration is not required to enter the contest but it would be greatly appreciated. Contestants may register by calling the library at 482-4570. This contest is open to all, and everyone is welcome to sample the salsas and vote for their favorite one.

Master Gardener Lynn Watson to offer "Mother’s Day and Memorial Day Gardens"

The Portage Lake District Library will host Advanced Master Gardener Lynn Watson at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 3, for her presentation on "Mother’s Day and Memorial Day Gardens." 

Watson will describe outdoor plants that have specific historical meanings in cultures with an emphasis on Victorian England as a world center for botanical gardens. Watson will use Kate Greenaway’s 1884 book Language of Flowers as a source that names over 100 species that grow in the Keweenaw. Many of these flowers are from the countries of Copper Country ancestors. Watson will review these plants and suggest where they can be planted in the home garden or in the cemetery. Michigan Tech’s Student Memorial Garden near the Rozsa Center is an example of this work.

"When these flowers are given as gifts or are planted in remembrance, the gesture is even more memorable," Watson explained.

Watson is the head gardener at Michigan Technological University. She is also the owner of Interiorscapes, a company devoted to professionally helping homes and offices welcome healthy green plants into their living and work environments.

Library programs are free and everyone is welcome. For more information you may call the library at 482-4570 or visit

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Researchers to report on Ash Mortality at public meeting in Calumet May 1

HOUGHTON -- Michigan Tech scientists will be at a public meeting at the CLK Schools to share information and answer questions about the emerald ash borer and its assault on ash trees.

The public is invited. The session is at 6:30 p.m., Tuesday, May 1, in the CLK Schools' multipurpose room in Calumet.

Professor Andrew Storer of the School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science and colleagues will report the results of their 2011 field studies -- as part of a pilot project called SLowing Ash Mortality (SLAM). As well, they will address work planned for 2012 and what landowners can do with ash trees on their property.*

SLAM is funded by the US Forest Service and operates in five counties in the UP: Houghton, Keweenaw, Mackinac, Delta and Schoolcraft. The project is a collaboration between Michigan Tech, Michigan State University, the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, the US Forest Service and the US Department of Agriculture Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.

For more information, contact Anne Collins,

Videos, photos: Finlandia 2012 Spring Concert

Finlandia University's Pride Band musicians play some jazzy tunes during the April 19, 2012, Spring Concert in the Chapel of St. Matthew on the Finlandia campus. The director, Soren Schmidt, joins in on the saxophone. Pianist Carla Phillips is accompanist for the choir and the band. (Photos by Keweenaw Now)

HANCOCK -- Finlandia University's Chapel of St. Matthew was filled to capacity with an appreciative audience on April 19 for the 2012 Spring Concert -- which featured the University Singers, the Finlandia Pride Band and the Keweenaw Youth Symphony Orchestra. Here are some highlights ...

During the April 19 Spring Concert, the Finlandia University Singers perform selections from Ragtime, accompanied by pianist Carla Phillips and percussionist Chisato Ota. (Video clips by Keweenaw Now)

Finlandia student flautists Sarah Schumacher, left, and Rei Hirakawa perform "Trondheimar," by R.L. Oye.

Keweenaw Youth Symphony musicians are joined by cellists Erin Lehnert, right, and Ann Pace during Finlandia's 2012 Spring Concert. The group played some pieces alone, including the Shaker Tune "Simple Gifts," and also joined the Finlandia Pride Band in several pieces.

A closeup of some of the serious young musicians in the Keweenaw Youth Symphony Orchestra, who are directed by Maggie Twining.

For recent news about Finlandia, click here for their April 2012 newsletter.

Gromit the Trail Mutt posts photos of her bike trail adventures

HANCOCK -- Gromit the Trail Mutt has posted photos of her latest adventures on the bike trails. Here are a few samples ...

On Saturday, Apr. 28, Gromit writes, "Today we headed to Churning Rapids for a great little run... but the rest of the pack rode their bike. Why don't they run??" (Photos © 2012 and courtesy Arlyn and Sandy Aronson)

"A water dog can appreciate a cool stop in Swedetown creek!" Gromit says. "We saw a friendly fisherman here."

Last week (Apr. 21) Gromit had a great run on Swedetown Trails in Calumet. Here she takes a break next to Sandy and Arlyn's tandem bike.

On Apr. 20 Gromit and her pack took a trip to Hungarian Falls. "I lean close for security," Gromit notes. "You can't see this but these are over 100 ft tall."

Gromit and Sandy at the Michigan Tech Trails. "We didn't do the Dork screw," Gromit says. "Personally I don't care for the decking with the big spacing; it's not good for all-paw drive."

See more photos of Gromit's adventures on her blog, The Trail Mutt Reports.