COUNTRY LINES HomeWorks Tri-County Electric Cooperative JAKE INGLE:
Building Dreams OUT OF SNOW
Three Directors Seek Re-election In 2019
Rita Owen Retires After 17 Years With Co-op
HomeWorks Achieves Gold Shovel Standard Certification
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In This Issue January 2019 || Vol. 39, No. 1
Michigan’s Electric Cooperatives
countrylines.com facebook.com/ michigancountrylines
Executive Editor: Casey Clark Editor: Christine Dorr Copy Editor: Heidi Spencer Design and Production: Karreen Bird Publisher: Michigan Electric Cooperative Association Michigan Country Lines, USPS-591710, is published monthly, except August and December, with periodicals postage paid at Lansing, Mich., and additional ofﬁces. It is the ofﬁcial publication of the Michigan Electric Cooperative Association, 201 Townsend St., Suite 900, Lansing, MI 48933. Subscriptions are authorized for members of Alger Delta, Cherryland, Great Lakes, HomeWorks Tri-County, Midwest Energy & Communications, Ontonagon, Presque Isle, and Thumb electric cooperatives by their boards of directors. POSTMASTER: SEND ALL UAA TO CFS. Association ofﬁcers are Robert Kran, Great Lakes Energy, chairman; Mark Kappler, HomeWorks Tri-County Electric, vice chairman; and Eric Baker, Wolverine Power Cooperative, secretary-treasurer. Craig Borr is president and CEO. CONTACT US/LETTERS TO EDITOR: Michigan Country Lines 201 Townsend St., Suite 900 Lansing, MI 48933 248-534-7358 email@example.com countrylines.com
CHANGE OF ADDRESS: Please notify your electric cooperative. See page 4 for contact information.
MEMBER GUEST COLUMN:
A Multitude Of Experiences
Rick Fowler, Great Lakes Energy member
7 SAFETY Portable Generator Safety Tips 10 MI CO-OP KITCHEN Tasty And Filling Pasta Recipes Christin McKamey & Our Readers
Enjoy our featured Jubilee Bean Turkey Chili, compliments of Bill Van Gilder, an FIS technical halfpipe delegate and an owner of Van Gilder’s Jubilee Restaurant in the Pocono Mountains, Pennsylvania. Enter Our Recipe Contest And Win A $50 Bill Credit!
14 FEATURE Jake Ingle: Building Dreams Out Of Snow Emily Haines Lloyd
18 MI CO-OP COMMUNITY MEMBER GUEST COLUMN:
Oliver And My Father Karen Reilly, Midwest Energy & Communications member
The appearance of advertising does not constitute an endorsement of the products or services advertised.
Guess Our New Mystery Photo And Win A $50 Bill Credit!
ON THE COVER Petoskey resident Jake Ingle is the brain and brawn behind many of the famous snowboarding half-pipes and super-pipes across the world, including this one (pictured above and on the cover) at Colorado’s Copper Mountain and the highly-praised half-pipe at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. Learn more on page 14.
Win $150 for stories published!
Guest Column Country Lines invites members to submit their fond memories and stories. Guidelines 1. Approximately 350 words 2. Digital photos must be at least 600 KB 3. Submit your guest column at countrylines.com under the MI Co-op Community tab
MICHIGAN COUNTRY LINES
Portland office/Mail payments to: 7973 E. Grand River Avenue Portland, MI 48875 Open 8 a.m.–5 p.m. Monday–Friday Blanchard office: 3681 Costabella Avenue Blanchard, MI 49310 Open 8 a.m.–5 p.m. Monday–Friday Night deposit box available at both locations. Electric bill/account questions: 517-647-7554 or 1-800-562-8232 Pay by phone, anytime: 1-877-999-3395 Service questions/outages: 517-647-7554 or 1-800-848-9333 (24 hours for emergency calls) Tri-County Propane: 1-877-574-2740 HomeWorks Connect 1-800-668-8413 homeworks.org Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Board of Directors District 1 — John Lord 2276 Plains Rd., Leslie, MI 49251 517-974-2518 email@example.com District 2 — Jim Stebbins 7139 Peddler Lake Rd., Clarksville, MI 48815 616-693-2449 firstname.lastname@example.org District 3 — Luke Pohl Chairman 15560 W. Hanses Rd., Westphalia, MI 48894 989-292-0427 email@example.com District 4 — Kimber Hansen 6535 N. Wyman Rd., Edmore, MI 48829 989-506-5849 firstname.lastname@example.org District 5 — Corinna Batora Vice-Chairman 7655 N. Watson Rd., Elsie, MI 48831 517-256-5233 email@example.com District 6 — Ed Oplinger Secretary-Treasurer 10890 W. Weidman Road, Weidman, MI 48893 989-644-3079 firstname.lastname@example.org District 7 — Shirley Sprague 15563 45th Ave., Barryton, MI 49305 989-382-7535 email@example.com Editors: C harly Markwart Jayne Graham, CCC
Join us on Facebook. facebook.com/homeworks.org 4 JANUARY 2019
Work Plan Projects Help Keep Your Power Reliable By Chris Jensen, Manager of Engineering Services
Recently, I presented our four-year construction work plan to the HomeWorks Board of Directors, reviewing with them the projects we plan to complete over the next few years to continue upgrading our electric system and make your power even more reliable. A good work plan helps us to proactively address parts of our system that need repair or replacement, as well as areas of growth where we need to construct new infrastructure. It also helps to ensure that we are keeping our system in safe operating condition, and it provides preventive measures to monitor and maintain voltage levels, minimize outage severity, and reduce blinks. The work plan is a subset of our long-range system plan, which extends over a 20 to 25-year horizon and covers transmission, substation and distribution system needs. A work plan is typically a two-to-five year look at the areas where we feel we can improve our adequacy of service, reliability, or cost-effectiveness. Our engineering department came up with our 2019–22 work plan, with valuable input from our lineworkers, after thoroughly evaluating each circuit of our system. Here’s a look at some of the top priority projects we identified for 2019: • Rebuild two miles of the overhead line along 5 Mile Rd. in Hinton Township, from 120th east to 100th Rd. This portion of the system is built through heavy woods and over a river, and rebuilding will decrease line loss and increase reliability. • Rebuild one mile of the overhead line near Bullhead Rd. in Rodney. This section of line services 85 members, including Cran-Hill Ranch. This section of line runs through a large swamp and would be difficult to access and restore during an outage in wet conditions. This project will relocate the line closer to the road and rebuild the line from 1-phase to 3-phase. • Rebuild a half-mile of the overhead line off 20th in Fork Township. The line here crosses a heavily wooded and swampy area near a river and is very difficult to access. A rebuild will increase reliability. • Rebuild 3.5 miles of 1-phase line along Parks Rd. near Hubbardston to 3-phase. This project will decrease line loss, add line strength, reduce blinking light issues, and increase reliability. Overall, our work plan has us rebuilding 82 miles of line over the next four years, at a total capital cost of $21.2 million. This is a great example of how we work to reinvest your dollars to continue to improve the electric system that serves you. Like our general manager Mark Kappler likes to say, “it’s what we do every day” at HomeWorks, and it makes a noticeable difference in the reliability of your power.
2019 Board Election Dates Lord, Batora, Sprague Seek Re-election To Co-op Board John Lord of Leslie (District 1), Corinna Batora of Elsie (District 5), and Shirley Sprague of Barryton (District 7) have announced they will seek re-election to HomeWorks Tri-County Electric’s Board of Directors this year.
John Lord—District 1
Corinna Batora—District 5
Shirley Sprague—District 7
Each of the three directors was first elected in May 2016. District 1 includes members in Eaton, Ingham and Jackson counties. District 5 includes members in Gratiot and Saginaw counties, along with Bingham, Duplain and Greenbush townships in Clinton County, and Bloomer, Crystal and Evergreen townships in Montcalm County. District 7 comprises members in Mecosta and Osceola counties. The nominating committee in each district consists of the district’s officers (listed on this page), elected by members at the district meeting held in the previous May. Each committee is required by the co-op’s bylaws to nominate at least one candidate on or before Feb. 5. Candidates may also be nominated with a petition signed by at least 25 members from within the district. Petitions must be turned in by Feb. 20. Names of nominees will be posted at the cooperative’s offices by Feb. 28.
New Election Timeline Nominating Committee submits candidate names to Co-op. . . . . . . . . . Feb. 5 Candidate credentials reviewed, names posted at Co-op . . . . . . . . . . . Feb. 15 Nominations by petition (25 signatures) due at Co-op. . . . . . . Feb. 20 Final candidate list posted at Co-op. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Feb. 28 Ballots mailed in Michigan Country Lines magazine to members in election districts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . early April Members may vote instead at district meeting. . . . . . May (dates to be announced)
Who Makes Up District Nominating Committees? District 1: Eaton, Ingham and Jackson counties Patricia Zimmerman, Chair 1885 Flanders Rd, Charlotte MI 48813 517-543-6736 email: firstname.lastname@example.org Miner Roth (Grand Ledge), Vice Chair Drouscella Halsey (Charlotte), Secretary
Interested In Seeking A Board Seat? If you’re interested in running for a HomeWorks board seat, Article VII, Section 2 of the cooperative’s bylaws (available at homeworks.org) states you must be an individual member of the cooperative in good standing, at least 21 years old, residing in the district which you are to represent, and a U.S. citizen. To become or remain a director, the bylaws state, the candidate must have the capacity to enter into legally binding contracts; comply with standards of conduct as laid out in the bylaws; and meet all reasonable conflict of interest qualifications found in Article VII, Section 3. Also, within the 10 years immediately prior to becoming a director, a candidate shall not have been convicted of or pled guilty to a felony or misdemeanor crime involving issues of moral character. If you meet these qualifications and would like to be nominated, contact your district nominating committee, listed on this page, or call HomeWorks Tri-County Electric at 517-647-1211 for a nominating petition.
District 5: Gratiot and Saginaw counties, plus Bingham, Duplain and Greenbush townships in Clinton County, and Bloomer, Crystal and Evergreen townships in Montcalm County Carl Bornemann, Chair 7560 Woodbridge Rd, Ashley MI 48806 517-881-4467 (cell); 989-862-5139 (home) Reginald Stevens (Saint Johns), Vice Chair Nichole Klekotka (Bannister), Secretary District 7: Mecosta and Osceola counties Jean Chapin, Chair 6235 5 Mile Rd, Blanchard MI 49310 231-972-8623 Don Passolt (Hersey), Vice Chair Connie Gibson (Evart), Secretary MICHIGAN COUNTRY LINES
MI CO-OP Community
A Multitude Of Experiences Can Be Fulﬁlled Within 20 Minutes By Rick Fowler, Great Lakes Energy member
Russian-born comedian Yakov Smirnoff’s shtick includes his catchphrase, “America, what a country!” As a life-long resident of Michigan if I ever ﬁnd my way onto the outdoor speaking venue my shtick would be along the lines, “Northwest Michigan, what a beautiful piece of America!” Why wouldn’t I want to brag about this little area of our country? Within 20 minutes of stepping out my door, I can ﬁsh for lake trout, brook trout, brown trout, walleye, pike and panﬁsh. Within 20 minutes I can ply the woods for deer, bear and grouse. Plus, I am only a few minutes away from paddling on exceptional kayak and canoe waters or hopping on a boat and going through a lock. Essentially, I have the ability to travel anywhere in the world on the waters which touch the shores of nearby lakes and rivers. A few miles down the road from where I live, I can get lost on a two-track road. It’s not a panicky lost, but an exhilarating lost. Knowing that the little-used road will eventually lead me somewhere makes me want to keep advancing and not turn around just from the fear of being lost. I go slowly because if I go faster the sound is not the
same. With additional speed, this venture would be more like a ride. I don’t just want a ride, I want an adventure. This is magical! THAT’S WHAT WE ALL CAN DO within minutes of our homes—seek the magic that waits in northern Michigan. Within 20 minutes of my home, I can awaken all of my senses. It might just be the smell of wild grape hidden amongst the tag alder and aspen, decaying moss, leaves and grass or the essence of wildﬂowers wafting in the air. It might be the crash of some creature ambling through the woods, the sight of ﬂocks of birds, rolling hills and the Windex blue of any of the lakes only minutes away. Beautiful scenery, bountiful opportunities and a slate that can be ﬁlled every day without too much effort. How could anyone who lives in this two peninsula state ever utter the word boring?
Rick taught high school English in Boyne City for 34 years. For the past 25 years, he has been an outdoor freelance writer.
NO BARRIERS ADVENTURES FOR RURAL VETERANS—APPLY BY FEB. 28 Michigan electric cooperatives believe there should be “No Barriers” for veterans with disabilities. That’s the name and idea behind CoBank’s No Barriers initiative. Michigan cooperatives are looking for qualiﬁed veterans* from our local community to participate. No Barriers is a ﬁve-day, all-expenses-paid, expedition in Colorado, designed to help veterans with disabilities transform their lives through curriculum-based experience in challenging environments (climbing, rafting and hiking). If you are a disabled veteran, or you know of a disabled veteran in our community who would like to participate in the No Barriers program, please complete the form on our website:
countrylines.com/nobarriers *Must have VA disability rating to be eligible.
SAFETY TIPS Carbon Monoxide And Ventilation
• Using a generator indoors can kill you in minutes. Exhaust contains carbon monoxide, a deadly, poisonous gas you cannot see or smell. • NEVER run a generator indoors or in partly-enclosed areas, such as garages. • ONLY use outdoors and far from windows, doors, vents, and crawl spaces, and in an area where adequate ventilation is available and deadly exhaust gas cannot accumulate. • Using a fan or opening doors and windows will not provide sufﬁcient ventilation. • It is recommended that you install battery operated carbon monoxide alarms/detectors indoors according to manufacturer’s instructions/recommendations.
Gasoline, Fueling And Burn Safety
Always read the owner’s manual and instructions for your generator. Do NOT cut corners when it comes to safety. These tips are merely supplemental and are not intended as a substitute for reading the owner’s manual.
• Do not overﬁll the fuel tank. Always allow room for fuel expansion. • If the tank is over-ﬁlled, fuel can overﬂow onto a hot engine and cause ﬁre or explosion. • Never add fuel while the unit is running or hot. Allow the generator and engine to cool entirely before adding fuel. • Never store a generator with fuel in the tank where gasoline vapors might reach an open ﬂame, spark or pilot light. • Many generator parts are hot enough to burn you during operation and while the generator is cooling after turning off. Avoid coming into contact with a hot generator.
• Use the proper power cords. Plug individual appliances into the generator using heavy-duty, outdoor-rated cords with a wire gauge adequate for the appliance load. Overloaded cords can cause ﬁres or equipment damage. Do not use extension cords with exposed wires or worn shielding. • Do not operate the generator in wet conditions such as rain or snow. • The generator must be properly grounded. If the generator is not grounded, you run the risk of electrocution. Check and adhere to all applicable federal, state and local regulations related to grounding.
Electrocution Hazard And Electrical Shock Hazards
• Allow at least ﬁve feet of clearance on all sides of the generator when operating. • Generators can be used during a wide variety of weather temperatures, but should be protected from the elements when not in use to prevent shorting and rusting. • Operate the generator only on level surfaces and where it will not be exposed to excessive moisture, dirt, dust or corrosive vapors. • Inspect the generator regularly. • Always disconnect the spark plug wire and place the wire where it cannot contact the spark plug to prevent accidental starting when setting up, transporting, adjusting or making repairs to the generator.
• Do not connect your generator directly to your home’s wiring or into a regular household outlet. • Connecting a portable electric generator directly to your household wiring can be deadly to you and others. A generator that is directly connected to your home’s wiring can “back feed” onto the power lines connected to your home and injure neighbors or utility workers. • Only start or stop the generator when no electrical loads are connected. • Overloading your generator can seriously damage your valuable appliances and electronics. Do not overload the generator. Prioritize your needs; do not operate more appliances and equipment than the output rating of the generator. A portable electric generator should be used only when necessary and only to power essential equipment.
Generator Placement And Operation
Source: American Red Cross with technical advice from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Fire Protection Association (publisher of the National Electric Code®) and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.
MICHIGAN COUNTRY LINES
Prioritize Energy Efficiency In 2019
Tired of high energy bills? Now is the time to take action! Getting started is easy with the Energy Optimization program. Cash incentives are available to help offset the upfront cost of energy-efficient equipment—which can help you save energy and money for years to come. A few of the energy-saving opportunities currently available include:
FREE Farm Energy Assessment:
To begin understanding more about your farm’s energy usage, take advantage of our free assessment. The complimentary assessment will help identify where and how to implement practical, energy-saving alternatives to outdated, inefficient equipment.
Incentives For Energy-Efficient Products And Equipment: Receive cash back when you purchase and install energyefficient measures such as: • • • • • • • •
Low-energy livestock waterers Fans and controls Milk-handling equipment Variable speed pumps and controllers Dairy refrigeration tune-ups Irrigation system upgrades LED grow lights and poultry lights Long-day lighting systems
Incentives For Custom Projects:
Have an energy efficiency project in mind, but don’t see it on our list? The Energy Optimization program will work with you to provide incentives for innovative and unique energy efficiency projects designed to meet specific needs. Contact us to discuss your ideas!
Learn More Read about how your neighbors have utilized Energy Optimization program incentives to improve the energy efficiency of their agribusinesses at michigan-energy.org/testimonials. Relevant articles include: • “Coulter Farms Harvest Big Savings” • “Coveyou Scenic Farm Market Flourishes with Energy Savings” • “Award-winning Labor Housing Reaps Great Savings for Friske Orchards” • “Sklarczyk Seed Farm Shines Bright with LED Grow Lights” Get started today. View all farm services incentives at michigan-energy.org or call 877.296.4319 for details.
ENERGY SAVINGS ARE ON THE HORIZON The Energy Optimization program provides Michigan farmers with energy-saving incentives and solutions that can improve your bottom line: • FREE energy assessment • Cash incentives for energy-saving lighting, fans, pumps, and more • Custom rebates for large or complex projects
michigan-energy.org P H O N E : 877.296.4319 ONLINE:
Energy Optimization programs and incentives are applicable to Michigan electric service locations only. Other restrictions may apply. For a complete list of participating utilities, visit michigan-energy.org.
Snap Shot Cutest Kids
1. Patti Hicks of Blanchard said, “My great-nieces Breese, left, and Brinley Paulsen, love to dress alike and especially when they can pose for pictures. Breese’s unicorn shoes are a favorite and Brinley loves her owl slippers.” Their grandpa, Duane Paulsen retired from HomeWorks Tri-County Electric in Blanchard. Photo is by DeAnn Paulsen. 2. Elizabeth Vetter of Portland shared this Snap Shot: “The kids had an idea for a picture in the front yard. I said, ‘Okay, smile!’ That’s when Zoe (top) made a goofy face.” Randy is on the bottom left, Blake on the right, and Amber is in the center.
3. Brooke Crouse from Vestaburg sent in this photo of Alane Crouse (17 months) playing dress up with her one-year-old cousin, Walter Crouse. 4. Kim Vanderkolk from Canadian Lakes sent in “a fun moment with our grandchildren——Claire, Hannah and Abby——playing in the snow.” 5. Monica Ketchum of Big Rapids shared this photo of Zeke Elliott, left, and Charlie Rey enjoying the tub in their new home.
Upcoming Snap Shot Contest Topics And Deadlines “Food and Drinks,” Deadline: Jan. 15 (March issue) “Beautiful Birds,” Deadline: Feb. 15 (April issue)
Enter to win a
energy bill credit!
Go to homeworks.org and select Country Lines under the Electric tab to submit your photos and see additional themes. It’s fast and easy. To send by mail: include your name, address, phone number, photographer’s name, and details about your photo. Mail to Attn: Country Lines Snap Shots, 7973 E. Grand River, Portland, MI 48875. Photos will not be returned. Do not send color laser prints or professional studio photos.
Submit Your Photos! Submit Your Photos! Contributors whose photos we publish in 2019 will be entered into a drawing. Country Lines will choose two winners for a bill credit of $100 each on their December electric bill, due in January 2020!
5 MICHIGAN COUNTRY LINES
Pasta Perfect Quick, tasty and ﬁlling pasta recipes. Photos—Robert Bruce Photography
Gigi’s Famous Farfalle And Sausage Pasta Gigi Bozzano, Midwest Energy & Communications
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 1 pound Italian sausages (sweet or spicy), casings removed before cooking ¼ to ¾ teaspoon dried crushed red pepper (optional according to taste) ½ small onion (red or white), finely chopped 2 to 3 garlic cloves, minced (optional) 1 can (28-ounces) crushed tomatoes (with puree) ¾ cup heavy whipping cream 1 pound farfalle (DeCecco brand works well) • salt for pasta water: 1 tablespoon table salt or 1.5 tablespoons kosher salt ½ cup packed fresh basil, chiffonade right before serving • grated pecorino Romano or Parmigiano-Reggiano Heat olive oil on medium heat in a large (12-inch) heavy skillet. When simmering, add Italian sausage and crushed red pepper. Sauté sausage until no longer pink, breaking it up with a wooden spoon while it cooks for about 5–6 minutes. Add chopped onion and garlic; reduce heat. Cook until soft but don’t let brown, 3–4 minutes. Add tomatoes and cream and reduce heat to a simmer (so the cream doesn’t curdle). After about 5 minutes, taste. If the sauce is a little acidic, add ½ teaspoon sugar. Meanwhile, ﬁll a large pot with water. Add salt and bring to a boil. When boiling vigorously, add pasta and cook until it still has a 10 JANUARY 2019
“bite;” undercook it by about 3 minutes, as it will ﬁnish cooking in the sauce in the skillet. When the pasta is ready, reserve and set aside 1 cup pasta water. Drain pasta or remove with a large slotted spoon and add to sauce/sausage. Toss pasta and sauce over medium-low heat and toss until all the sauce coats the pasta. Add pasta water by ¼ cups to ensure the sauce stays creamy and coats everything. The dish usually requires at least ½ cup of pasta water. After 2–3 minutes, taste pasta for doneness, and if it’s “al dente,” remove from burner. Taste for seasoning. If you think it needs salt, remember that cheese adds salt. Transfer to a large serving dish and chiffonade* and add fresh basil. Toss pasta with basil. Serve the grated cheese on the side. Gigi’s Tip: Basil chiffonade Pile basil leaves on top of one another and gently roll into a cigar shape. With a sharp knife, cut basil into thin strips. I’ve been making this for 30 years and it’s my most requested dish. Buon appetito a tutti! (Enjoy your meal!)
Watch a video of this month’s winning recipe at micoopkitchen.com/videos
Pasta Salad With Lemon Vinaigrette
FEATURED GUEST CHEF
Laura Burke, Great Lakes Energy 8 1 2 1 ¼ 3 1
ounces uncooked small shell pasta pint grape tomatoes, halved cups coarsely chopped fresh spinach yellow bell pepper, chopped cup red onion, chopped tablespoons chopped fresh dill package (4 ounces) crumbled feta cheese
Lemon Vinaigrette ¼ cup fresh lemon juice 1 teaspoon dijon mustard 1 large clove garlic, minced ¼ teaspoon salt ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper ½ cup vegetable oil
Cook pasta according to directions; drain. Toss pasta with remaining ingredients. For dressing, whisk together ﬁrst ﬁve ingredients. Gradually add oil in a steady stream, whisking until blended. Toss pasta salad with dressing. Serve immediately or cover and chill up to 8 hours. Enjoy.
Jake Ingle knows it takes a team to create a successful snowboard half-pipe and it helps when a member of that team knows how to warm everyone up with something hot and delicious at the end of a day. Bill Van Gilder is an FIS technical delegate at half-pipe Grand Prix events. His family owns a restaurant in the Pocono Mountains——Van Gilder’s Jubilee Restaurant. So, when Bill is cooking up something——everyone knows it’s a meal that is not to be missed.
Mostaccioli Bake Susan Miner, Cherryland 8 1½ ½ 1 1 1 1 ½ 1 1 1 ¹⁄8 1 2 ½
ounces uncooked mostaccioli pounds hamburger cup chopped onion clove garlic can (28 ounces) diced tomatoes can (8 ounces) tomato sauce can (6 ounces) tomato paste cup water teaspoon salt teaspoon sugar teaspoon basil teaspoon pepper bay leaf cups shredded mozzarella cheese cup fresh grated parmesan cheese
Preheat oven to 350 F. Cook mostaccioli. In a saucepan, cook beef and onion until done.
Jubilee Bean Turkey Chili
Add garlic; cook 1 minute and drain. Stir in tomatoes, tomato sauce, tomato paste, water, salt, sugar, basil and pepper. Add bay leaf and bring to a boil; reduce heat and simmer, uncovered for 30 minutes. Remove bay leaf; stir in mostaccioli. Spoon half of the meat mixture into a 9x13 pan and sprinkle with mozzarella cheese; layer with remaining meat mixture. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese. Cover and bake 30–35 minutes. Let stand 5 minutes.
Appetizers and Snacks: due February 1 Breakfast and Brunch: due March 1 Submit your favorite recipe for a chance to win a $50 bill credit and have your recipe featured in Country Lines with a photo and a video. Go to micoopkitchen.com for more information and to register.
Enter to win a
energy bill credit!
1 1 3 ½ ½ 28 28 14 14 14 14 14 2 1 1 • • •
lb. ground turkey medium onion cloves of garlic yellow pepper orange pepper ounces crushed tomatoes, undrained ounces diced tomatoes, undrained ounces black beans, drained ounces kidney beans, drained ounces pink beans, drained ounces Northern beans, drained ounces black-eyed peas, drained tablespoons chili powder tablespoon coriander tablespoon cumin dash of cayenne pepper salt and pepper to taste olive oil
Heat oil in pan on stove top. Sauté the garlic, chopped onions, and peppers until they begin to sweat. Add ground turkey until cooked through and mix. Move mixture to large pot. Rinse and drain all beans and add all ingredients to the pot, including the beans. Mix thoroughly. Simmer on low heat for 1.5 hours, mixing lightly as needed. Salt and pepper to taste. Chili can be frozen as well. It’s always better the next day! Read the full story about Jake Ingle and his half-pipe expertise on page 14 and visit micoopkitchen.com to ﬁnd this recipe and others. MICHIGAN COUNTRY LINES
People Fund Provides Six Grants On November 14, six grants totaling $7,489.96 were awarded to the following organizations and individuals: • $1,259.96 to Project Starburst, Big Rapids, to buy a computer needed for their client database; • $1,500 to Red-Line Paraclete Ministries, Saint Johns, to purchase items for their food pantry; • $1,800 to the Clinton County Senior Center, Saint Johns, for recruitment activities; • $1,000 to EightCAP Foster Grandparent & Senior Programs in Orleans, to re-stock their emergency needs community closet; • $1,000 to Montcalm Heritage Village, Sidney, for roof repairs; and
How To Apply For A Tri-County Electric People Fund Grant The Tri-County Electric People Fund provides grants to individuals and organizations in the co-op’s service area for food, shelter, clothing, health, and other humane needs, or for programs or services that benefit a significant segment of a community. Write to 7973 E. Grand River Avenue, Portland, MI 48875, for an application form and grant guidelines, or visit the People Fund tab at homeworks.org. Note: Applications must be received by Jan. 15 for the January board meeting, and by Feb. 26 for the March board meeting.
• $930 to a Montcalm County family for housing expenses.
Your Board In Action Meeting at Portland on November 26, your board of directors: • In a special Open Member meeting, authorized a new Power Supply Cost Recovery ceiling factor of $0.00 per kWh, and a billing factor of ($0.00214) per kWh. • Reviewed and approved the 2019 operating and capital budgets. • Heard a presentation on the 2019–2022 work plan, including projects to improve efficiency and reliability, as well as normal upgrades and member-requested projects. • Reviewed and approved insurance coverage for 2019, including property, vehicles, cyber-security, and other coverages, and voted to keep employee benefits at the same level as in 2018. • Learned how the HomeWorks Connect fiber business is progressing. • Authorized writing off $82,146 in uncollectible accounts for the 12 months ending in December 2017. • Learned there were 119 new members in September. • Acknowledged the October safety report, listing employee training as well as minor employee and public incidents for electric and propane.
12 JANUARY 2019
Time Set Aside For Members To Comment Before Cooperative Board Meetings The first 15 minutes of every board meeting are available for members who wish to address the board of directors on any subject. The next meetings are scheduled for 9 a.m. on Jan. 21 and Feb. 18 at Portland. Members who need directions to the meeting, or wish to have items considered on the board agenda, should call 517-647-7554.
Notice to Members of HomeWorks Tri-County Electric Cooperative November 26, 2018 Open Member Meeting The HomeWorks Tri-County Electric Cooperative Board of Directors, at a Special Open Meeting held November 26, 2018, has in accordance with P.A. 167: Established a ceiling Power Supply Cost Recovery factor of $0.00 per kWh, and a billing factor of ($0.00214) per kWh, to take effect in February 2019. For specific details of any HomeWorks tariffs or fees, please call us at 800-562-8232.
Rita Owen Retires After 17 Years With HomeWorks After 17 years with the Cooperative, you can’t fault billing specialist Rita Owen for feeling a little bittersweet about her retirement this month. “I think I’m probably going to miss everything about this place,” she said. “It’s really become like a second home to me.” Owen came to HomeWorks in 2001, after 15 years as a home daycare provider. At the time, she was ready for a new challenge, and the Westphalia native says she found that and more at the Cooperative. “The timing was perfect,” she reflected. “It was a good change for me, and it happened at a good time in my life. Right from the start, everything here has just been great for me.” And that feeling, according to HomeWorks Customer Service Manager Missy Robson, is mutual. “Rita’s dedication and hard work is one of a kind,” Robinson said. “She has been an asset to the billing team and we will really miss the knowledge that she is taking with her. She has been such a wonderful co-worker, employee and friend.” It’s those friendships she has forged with her colleagues at the Cooperative that Owen said are the hardest part about saying goodbye. “I’ve learned a lot from everyone I’ve worked with at HomeWorks,” Owen said. “You learn and you grow together, and you become like family. I will miss everyone for sure, but I plan to stay in touch and come back to visit.” Not that she will be lacking for other things to do. An avid adventurist, Owen is looking forward to spending her retirement traveling to new places with her husband, Mike, spending time with their three children and families, including six grandchildren, and volunteering as much as possible. “I’m most excited about just being able to do what I want— when I want,” she said. She’s also excited about the opportunity to join an exclusive club made up entirely of the HomeWorks retirees who have left the co-op before her.
Rita Owen celebrated her retirement with her Halloween costume last year, when she prepared to “bloom into retirement”.
“ I’ve learned a lot from everyone I’ve worked with at HomeWorks. You
learn and you grow together, and you become like family.” —Rita Owen
Taking over for Rita in the HomeWorks billing department will be Randi Vanas. Randi is moving to the billing position from the HomeWorks customer service team. She came to the Cooperative in August of 2017.
“They’ve already invited me out with them,” she said. “Now I get to see if I can keep up with the retirees.”
MICHIGAN COUNTRY LINES 13
Building Dreams OUT OF SNOW
By Emily Haines Lloyd Photos courtesy of Tripp Fay
The Zaugg pipe monster is the machine used to rough carve the super-pipe at Colorado's Copper Mountain.
ike all sculptures, creating a masterpiece begins with an artist’s vision. Then the artist expertly makes use of the tools he or she has learned to use, and cuts, chips, and scrapes away at the material until beauty is revealed. For artists like Petoskey resident Jake Ingle, his material of choice is snow, his tools are anything from a giant snowcat dozer to a handheld shovel, and the result is an enviable living work of art called the half-pipe.
Jake Ingle uses the Red Number 9 to help build a legendary half-pipe for Olympic athletes. This machine was “the best snowcat” in South Korea, Jake attests.
“You live for these moments. To give these folks an amazing ride. For me, it was the perfect experience.” — JAKE INGLE
Skiing and snowboarding half-pipes, like the ones Ingle creates, are expertly-crafted, snow-made ramps with a U-shaped cross-section. This shape allows winter-loving athletes to perform remarkable aerial jumps and maneuvers that defy the general public’s imaginations. The journey to creating and building these massive canvases started in a much smaller way for Ingle. It began with a love of outdoor and winter sports that Ingle shared with his whole family, as well as a mentality to “thrive, not just survive” the cold Appleton, Wis., winters. It eventually meant heading off to college at Gogebic Community College in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula to study ski area management. That led to an internship at Copper Mountain in Colorado, which led to building some of the most enviable half-pipes in the country and, as they say, things snowballed from there. “I just loved to snowboard and thought I’d go be a ski bum after high school,” said Ingle. “It would have been impossible then to imagine what I’d be doing now.” His half-pipe-building work got national attention when the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association approached him, Ingle said. From there, Ingle
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Top left: A view from the ﬁnish-line area of Jake and his team's super-pipe and boarder-cross venues at the 2018 Olympics in South Korea. Top Right: A spectator views the Mammoth Mountain Grand Prix Olympic Qualiﬁer super-pipe all lit up and in its glory. Left: Jake Ingle and his wife, Clare, prepare to watch one of the fruits of Jake’s labor——the Grand Prix super-pipe event in Snowmass, Co.
started working on U.S. Grand Prix and FIS World Cup events—building massive half-pipes, as well as a reputation for himself. Working on these large competitive events eventually led to a recommendation from Roberto Moresi, the World Cup race director, to build the half pipe for the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. Along with Ingle’s partner Mark Pevny and Austria-based colleague Alli Zehetner, the trio set out to create a work of art for the largest sporting stage in the world. “There were deﬁnitely some nerves. The half-pipes at both the Vancouver and Sochi Olympics had gotten a lot of negative feedback,” said Ingle. “The weather was brutal and made building and maintaining the pipe so hard. You really feel for those guys who worked on those pipes when there’s so much out of your control. ”Ingle and his team began their plans well in advance with site visits, measurements, drawings and a picture in mind they hoped would live up to the reality. The building of the pipe itself is half construction site, half science experience. The team of 70 used huge construction dozers, taking days to build the ﬁrst wall alone, followed by half-pipe cutter machines, and huge snow blowers. Following these massive tools, Ingle and crew pulled out the shovels and more than a few specialty tools that he has developed as a result of his experience.
We use “centimeter-accurate equipment,” Ingle said. Ingle and his partners completed their work of art in a little over two weeks and with more than a little pride. In the end, the half-pipe at the Phoenix Snow Park in Pyeongchang was 650 feet long with 24-feet-tall walls and 82.5 degrees of verticality. It surpassed even their own wildest dreams. Feedback from the Pyeongchang games was remarkably different than the previous two Olympics. Rave reviews of Ingle’s half-pipe came in from snowboarding gold medalist Shaun White’s coach and 2012 bronze medalist, JJ Thomas, as well as Mike Jankowski, head coach of the U.S. Freeskiing and U.S. Snowboarding teams. “You live for these moments,” said Ingle. “To give these folks an amazing ride. For me, it was the perfect experience.”
Watch a video of Jake Ingle building the half-pipe for the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea at countrylines.com.
MICHIGAN COUNTRY LINES 15
LOOKING FOR RELIABLE HIGH-SPEED INTERNET? Earlier this month, HomeWorks Connect took members of the Michigan Public Service Commission on a visit to a member’s location where our fiber internet had been installed. The goal was to hear what he had to say about the service we are providing him:
“I have a home office, and I rely on high-speed internet for my job. I need to transfer large files quickly and HomeWorks Connect gives me both the downloading and uploading capabilities to do that. Jobs that would take me 30 or 40 minutes to transfer, with HomeWorks Connect, will take me 3 or 4 minutes. It’s not just the speed that I love so much though—so far it’s been stable! That’s what I needed. Would I recommend it to a friend? Absolutely! I’m trying to sell it to my neighbor right now!” - Scott S., member Don’t miss out on free installation! Visit Join.HomeWorksConnect.com and pre-register so you’ll be notified when it becomes available in your zone. This service is not regulated by the Michigan Public Service Commission.
HomeWorks Earns Gold Shovel Standard Certification
Safety is the number one priority at HomeWorks Tri-County Electric, and leaders at the cooperative took steps to make the workplace even safer recently when they completed the process to achieve Gold Shovel Standard certification. Gold Shovel Standard (GSS) is a nonprofit organization committed to promoting safer digging practices and protecting the integrity of buried infrastructure, including power and gas lines. The organization strives to promote the use of common safety management systems specifically tailored for damage prevention to achieve the industry-wide goal of zero accidents. GSS also seeks to achieve universal adoption of the one-call process, in which industry workers and members of the public are asked to call 811 to check for buried lines before digging. “To become Gold Shovel certified, a company has to commit to a high standard of proper digging education with not only their employees, but with every single contractor they work with as well,” said HomeWorks Manager of Engineering Services Chris Jensen. “This certification means our members can feel confident that we are hiring contractors who are fully educated in safe digging practices. That’s going to keep the members and the workers safe. On top of that, it should also reduce outages and interruptions in service, which is a great thing.”
Know what’s below. Call 811 before you dig.
Goals of the Program: FEWER INJURIES Improve workforce and public safety by ensuring that those who work around buried infrastructure are educated in damage prevention.
TRANSPARENCY Achieve greater transparency in damage prevention through performance measurements, technology, and universally recognized standards.
REDUCED OUTAGES Protect the integrity of buried infrastructure, resulting in fewer outages and service interruptions caused by damaged underground power lines.
Guess this photo and enter to win a
MI CO-OP Community
energy bill credit!
Oliver And My Father Where In Michigan Is This? Identify the correct location of the photo above by January 20 and be entered into a drawing to win a $50 electric bill credit. Enter your guess at countrylines.com or send by mail to: Country Lines Mystery Photo, 201 Townsend St., Suite 900, Lansing, MI 48933. Include the name on your account, address, phone number and the name of your co-op. Our Mystery Photo Contest winner from the November/December 2018 issue is Paul Bosker, a Great Lakes Cooperative member, who correctly identified the photo as the underside of the Mackinac Bridge. Winners are announced in the following issues of Country Lines: January, March, May, July/August, September and November/December.
By Karen Reilly, Midwest Energy & Communications member
My father, my hero, was a jovial man who loved to share stories of the past. I especially enjoyed hearing about life on the family farm in Dowagiac. This is a story I captured from him nearly 20 years ago from his point of view. “Back in the 1940s, life around the family farm in Dowagiac really began to change. The outhouse hole was filled in and, for the first time, we had running water in the house. This made everyday chores, such as dishwashing and bathing, much easier. However, the biggest innovation of the decade for us was the gasoline-powered tractor. My first tractor was a shiny green one built by Oliver. At the front base of its long body were two small tires. In the rear were two large tires with thick treads. Compared to the small wheels on the family Buick, these were some of the biggest tires I ever saw! The tractor had the strength of 10 horses. The plow, planter, disk, brush chopper and trailer that attached to the back of the tractor revolutionized life on the farm. Work could be done in a fraction of the time, and with the bright headlamp on the front of the tractor, we could work past daylight, if needed. We planted larger plots of land and harvested greater quantities of crops. I had to save for that new Oliver—$800 was a lot of money back then. But, she was worth every penny. I sold the tractor in the late ’40s for $1,000; I wanted to buy a Chevy convertible. In the late 1980s, I heard my old tractor was once again looking for a home. By then I had newer, more powerful machines, but for old times’ sake, I decided to take my Oliver tractor back to the farm and fi x her up. She doesn’t do much farm work anymore. Like me, she’s retired. She sure looks good, though, in that shiny, new coat of green with the little wheels in the front, and the great big ones in back. I think I will hang onto her for a while.” The original family farm in Dowagiac still stands and will turn 100 years old in the next few years. My dad built his farm just down the road from it and it remains our home today. And the Oliver tractor is also still in our family.
Photo courtesy of Thomas Mann
18 JANUARY 2019
Karen is a co-op member who is a nature-lover at heart and enjoys bird-watching, exploring woodlands, gardening and long walks. She is a dean at a community college and lives at and runs her father's farm with her husband.
AFFORDABLE GEOTHERMAL HEAT & COOL YOUR HOME FOR HALF WITH YOUR WELL WATER
You can add a Well-Connect to your home for about the same price (after incentives) as a conventional HVAC system. A typical installation is completed in 1 day.
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Applications Due Feb. 28 Tour Dates: June 15–20, 2019
Youth Tour WILL INSPIRE YOU, JUST KNOW THAT IT WILL. THERE’S NO TELLING HOW
From the battleeelds of Gettysburg to the halls of Congress in Washington, D.C.,
Youth Tour will explore the leadership
lessons of our nation’s history and immerse you in the cooperative spirit. Learn more about this FREE leadership travel opportunity, sponsored by the electric cooperatives of Michigan, at CooperativeYouthTour.com.