Jan. 2023 Cherryland

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MUSIC TO OUR EARS Big Water Creative Arts Bringing Music Education to Northern Michigan COUNTRY LINES January 2023 MICHIGAN Cherryland Electric Cooperative Youth Tour Returns A Snowball Effect 2023 Energy Efficiency Calendar

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Big Rapids

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Hart Adams Htg & Clg (231)873-2665 adamsheating cooling.com

Indian River M&M Plmb & Htg (231)238-7201 mm-plumbing.com


Candor Mechanical (517)920-0890 candormechanical.comm


Top Notch Htg, Clg, & Geothermal (231)350-8052 Topnotchheatandair.com

Michigan Center

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Traverse City

D&W Mechanical (231)941-1251 dwmechanical.com

Geofurnace Htg & Clg (231)943-1000 geofurnace.com

visit us at waterfurnace.com WaterFurnace is a registered trademark of WaterFurnace International, Inc. 1. 30% through 2032, 26% through 2033 and 22% through 2034

2. EPA study “Space Conditioning, The Next Frontier” (Report 430-R-93-004)


Michigan’s Electric Cooperatives


EDITOR: Christine Dorr


RECIPE EDITOR: Christin McKamey

COPY EDITOR: Yvette Pecha


PUBLISHER: Michigan Electric Cooperative Association

Michigan Country Lines, USPS-591-710, 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: Tom Sobeck, Presque Isle Electric & Gas Co-op, chairman; Gabe Schneider, Cherryland Electric Cooperative, vice chairman; Chris O’Neill, HomeWorks TriCounty Cooperative, secretary-treasurer; Craig Borr, president and CEO.

CONTACT US/LETTERS TO EDITOR: Michigan Country Lines 201 Townsend St., Suite 900 Lansing, MI 48933 248-534-7358 editor@countrylines.com

CHANGE OF ADDRESS: Please notify your electric cooperative. See page 4 for contact information.

The appearance of advertising does not constitute an endorsement of the products or services advertised.

Instagram Contest

Recipe Contest


Guest Column

Mystery Photo


Contents January 2023 Vol. 43, No. 1 /michigancountrylines /michigancountrylines countrylines.com
#micoopcommunity Instagram contest winner Upper Peninsula of Michigan @kaushik0805 (Kaushik Sur) 6 GET IN, GET OUT, GET TO WORK
10 MI
Arts bringing music
Alpena Community College
offers a certificate program for line-clearance arborists.
CO-OP KITCHEN Healthy Living: Feel good from the inside out.
Water Creative
Northern Michigan. 18 GUEST COLUMN The reluctant Boy Scout— A co-op member reflects on how his experience turned out to be one of the best things he has ever done.
enter contests, submit reader content & more, visit
MI Co-op Community To
Win $200
See details on page 18.
details on page 10. Vegetarian due Feb. 1; Breakfast For Dinner due Mar. 1 Win a $100 bill
Use #micoopcommunity for a chance to be featured here and on our Instagram account. Win $100 for photos published!
details on page 18. Win a $100 bill credit!





David Schweitzer, President 231-883-5860


Melinda Lautner, Senior Vice President 231-947-2509


Gabe Schneider, Secretary 517-449-6453 gschneider@cherrylandelectric.coop

Tom Van Pelt, Treasurer 231-386-5234 tvanpelt@cherrylandelectric.coop

Valarie Handy, Director 231-392-4705 vhandy@cherrylandelectric.coop

Terry Lautner, Director 231-946-4623 tlautner@cherrylandelectric.coop

Dean Adams, Director 231-642-0014 dadams@cherrylandelectric.coop

General Manager: Tony Anderson Co-op Editors: Rachel Johnson Courtney Doyle: cdoyle@cherrylandelectric.coop


Monday–Friday 7:30 a.m.– 4 p.m.

TELEPHONE NUMBERS 231-486-9200 or 1-800-442-8616 (Mich.)


P.O. Box 298, Grawn, MI 49637


Cherryland Electric Cooperative office 5930 U.S. 31 South, Grawn MI, 49637

Cherryland Electric Cooperative is an equal opportunity provider and employer.


Co-op Board Holds Public Meetings Regarding Rate Change

This month, Cherryland’s board of directors will hold two special meetings at the cooperative office in Grawn regarding a proposed rate change. The rate change is slated to go into effect in March of this year.

A meeting will be held on Wednesday, Jan. 18, at 5:30 p.m. to provide information regarding the proposed rate change and allow members to ask questions of Cherryland staff and board members while offering feedback before the official public meeting.

An official public meeting will be held on Monday, Jan. 23, at 9 a.m. before the monthly board meeting. Members are welcome to provide public comments to the board during that time. For more information regarding the proposed rate change, visit our website, www.cherrylandelectric.coop/rate-change.

Cooperative staff will meet with you or your civic group, neighborhood, or home association at any time to discuss the proposed rate change and answer your questions.

Serve On Cherryland’s Board

Any qualified Cherryland member can be elected to serve a three-year term on the cooperative’s board of directors. Two directors will be elected at this year’s Annual Meeting, including one at-large and one Leelanau County director.

To be nominated in 2023, candidates can file a petition with the cooperative’s administrative assistant starting the first day of March until 4 p.m. on the last business day of March. Nominating petitions are available on our website and at the co-op office in Grawn.

Review Article III of the co-op’s bylaws on our website for more information regarding board nominations and the election process.

Cherryland Cares Awards $15,000 To Four Nonprofits

At its third-quarter board meeting, the Cherryland Cares board awarded grants to four local nonprofit organizations: Boots for Kids, Acme Christian Thrift Store & Food Pantry, 5 Loaves 2 Fish, and Newton’s Road Northwest.

The Cherryland Cares board is comprised of five volunteer Cherryland members. The funds distributed by Cherryland Cares result from members electing to round up their monthly bills to the nearest dollar. Members can contribute to the Cherryland Cares fund by calling 231-486-9200, signing up through SmartHub, or emailing us at cec@cherrylandelectric.coop.

If you are an area nonprofit agency seeking financial help, grant applications for the first quarter of 2023 are due Friday, March 17. For more information, please call Dawn Garrock at 231-486-9234 or email her at dgarrock@cherrylandelectric.coop.

Cherryland Offers Five Scholarships

Cherryland offers five scholarships—three worth $4,000 ($1,000 for four years) for high school seniors and two for $1,000 each for adult scholarships (post high school).

Applications for both scholarships are available on our website. The deadline for applications is Friday, April 7.

4 JANUARY 2023

A Snowball Effect

Iwrote about Cherryland’s upcoming rate increase a couple of months ago. I covered the “what” regarding residential availability, energy costs, and how an average member will be affected. In today’s column, I will try to get into the “why.” Reliability, metering, materials, and power supply are all coming together to form one snowball that gets larger the further it rolls down the mountain.

To keep the lights on reliably, Cherryland typically invests $3 million to $4 million annually in upgrades and rebuilds across our 3,000 miles of overhead and underground distribution system. The need for this will not change in the future. Halting or cutting these investments would save money today, but it would only delay the improvements to a later time when costs will be even higher. Our distribution system isn’t much different than your house. Keeping up on maintenance and upgrades will

avoid bigger infusions of cash in the future.

The cost for all the parts and pieces involved has changed significantly since the start of the pandemic. I find myself wishing that material costs “only” went up at the rate of inflation. An 8% increase is simply wishful thinking. Underground cable is up 49%. The overhead conductor is 88% higher. Transformers have increased by 32% (if you can find them). Bucket trucks have a three-year lead time and price tags that are 28% higher than a few short years ago.

In 2006, we started installing Cherryland’s first-ever automated meter reading (AMR) system. That system is nearing its end of life. In 2023, Cherryland will begin installing the newest generation of AMR meters. This 3- to 4-year project will cost approximately $7 million. This will be on top of the $3 million to $4 million in regular reliability improvements.

Supply chain issues have required us to order all these parts and pieces more in advance than in previous years. Once upon a time, you could walk around our warehouses and pole yard, and there would be $500,000 in inventory on hand. Now, this number has more than doubled and may soon be tripled. The days of one phone call and 30-day delivery have given way to multi-year planning with lead times of widely varying lengths.

Higher prices, longer lead times, and more stock on hand lead to more borrowed money at higher interest rates. Investments in the distribution grid lead to higher depreciation of assets on our books. Interest and depreciation expenses round out Cherryland’s top-five costs after power supply, wages, and tree trimming. Oh, by the way, power supply, wages, and tree trimming have all increased too!

Now, I know this accumulation of factors may come off as a bit of “gloom and doom.” Please don’t take it that way. This rolling snowball of financial issues is simply the state of affairs for your cooperative at this place and time. You have a board, management team, and employee group capable of handling the future.

Stop and think. With everything I listed above rolling at us, the rate increase I wrote about previously is still only 2.7% for the average member. If that isn’t taking a bat to a snowball and crushing it, I don’t know what is. When the snowball gets to the bottom of the mountain, we will still be standing and ready for whatever rolls down next.

“When the snowball gets to the bottom of the mountain, we will still be standing and ready for whatever rolls down next.”

Get In, Get Out, Get to Work

Tornados in Michigan are unexpected and rare—but they can, and will, happen. Proof is the EF-3 class tornado that tore through Gaylord, Michigan, in May of 2022, leaving a swath of destruction and claiming two lives.

After the tornado, area residents were left without power. That is when the utility lineworkers and line-clearance arborists rolled in to begin the massive restoration process.

What is the difference between lineworkers and line-clearance arborists? While the lineworker focuses on the equipment related to the electrical conductor, line-clearance arborists focus on the vegetation surrounding energized systems. Neither can function properly without the other.

Utility companies and line-clearance contractors both constantly scrutinize weather forecasts and right-of-way maintenance in anticipation of events. When an outage occurs, the power company is dispatched to assess the damage while line-clearance arborists are alerted to clear the trees and vegetation from the damaged power lines after the utility company de-energizes them. It is a true team effort.

The second significant difference between the two job titles is training. Traditionally, if someone wanted to become a line-clearance arborist, they would apply at a tree service company, go through their orientation, and then complete close to one year’s worth of on-the-job training. Conversely, lineworkers often undergo substantial classroom and field training, over an extended period.

Tree service workers in general face many hazards in the course of their work. Those hazards increase further

for line-clearance arborists whose work involves electrical lines. That’s why proper training is so important. Alpena Community College (ACC) has taken its mastery of training lineworkers and expanded it to offer a safety-centric certificate program for line-clearance arborists. This new, noncredit, one-semester Utility Arborist Line Clearance Program is designed for those interested in working in this industry, allowing students to complete the required training and have the potential for job offers in just four months. Work in the program is coordinated with the established Utility Technology Certificate Program and allows the Utility Line Clearance students to build skills around de-energized primary wires, which is not offered by similar programs at other institutions.

Making a living as a line-clearance arborist has many of the same draws as a utility lineworker: excellent compensation, opportunities to grow, the freedom to work outside, a team environment, the ability to help people—and the thrill of climbing. The ACC program is built for those who like to work outside, are adventure seekers, are up for a challenge, are able to work in a team, and do not want to sit in an office.

For more information on how to become a line-clearance arborist or to register for the training program, contact Program Director Walter Wiltse at 989-358-7284 or wiltsew@alpenacc.edu, or visit https://discover.alpenacc.edu/ programs/degrees_and_programs/ utility_arborist.php.


• Anyone 18+ who likes to work outside

• Thrill/adventure seekers

• Up for a challenge

• Physically fi t

• Able to work in a team

• Doesn’t want to sit in an offi ce

• All training required to be a utility arborist

• Chainsaw safety

• OSHA 10

• First Aid/CPR certifi cate

• Knowledge to pass pesticide application test

• Preparation for CDL training

• Electrical Hazard Awareness Program training

• Aerial rescue training

• Highly qualifi ed instructors

• Alpena Community College, Alpena, Michigan

• After program completion, job opportunities anywhere in Michigan

• Many career options such as management, equipment operator, right-away operator, and leadership opportunities

• First cohort of program— all students were offered a job with at least $40k annual salary plus benefi ts


2023 Energy Efficiency Calendar

There are so many ways you can save energy! Saving energy helps reduce your family’s monthly bills—and it helps our environment. Change your energy use habits by following the monthly tips below. Keep this calendar on your refrigerator to remind family members to be energy efficient throughout the year.


Turn off ceiling fans when you leave a room.

Instead of turning up the heat, put on an extra layer of clothing or stay cozy under a blanket.

Turn off lights when you leave a room.

Plant a tree away from power lines to help shade your home in the summer.

Decorate your backyard or porch with solarpowered lights.

Take short showers instead of baths.

Dry heavy linens outside on a clothesline instead of using the dryer.

Schedule a reminder to change the A/C filter every 60-90 days.

Turn off running water while brushing your teeth.

Unplug energy vampires, like chargers, gaming consoles, and cable/ satellite boxes.

Remind family members to use cold water when washing clothes.

Decorate your home with energy-saving LED holiday lights.

8 JANUARY 2023

Cherryland Electric Cooperative Is Looking For The Next Generation Of Leaders

What do 1,500 high school students, our nation’s capital, and electric cooperatives have in common? The Electric Cooperative Youth Tour, of course!

Youth Tour was established with one thought: to inspire the next generation of leaders. Since 1964, more than 50,000 young Americans have taken advantage of this unique opportunity offered by their electric cooperative. And after a brief hiatus due to COVID-19, Cherryland Electric Cooperative plans to send two more students this year!

It all takes place in June when hundreds of electric co-ops across the country send participants to Washington, D.C., for a chance to learn about the cooperative business model and several days of sightseeing.

While in D.C., participants have a chance to meet with elected officials and discuss important issues back home. Without a doubt, Youth Tour has grown into an invaluable program

that gives young Americans an experience that will stay with them for the rest of their lives.

Applications to attend Youth Tour 2023 are open now until Feb. 28!

If you are a high school junior interested in traveling to Washington, D.C., to experience the trip of a lifetime, please get in touch with us for more information.

Perhaps you know of an exceptional student who would be a great candidate for the program. If you do, please share this article with them.

Youth Tour is so much more than a sightseeing trip. Students have repeatedly shared that this experience has helped them grow into successful professionals. It has also benefited our local communities. Youth Tour participants return home with a deeper understanding and skill set of what it takes to be leaders, and as a result, they put these skills to use right here in our community.

Please help us find the next generation of leaders by sharing the Youth Tour experience with a promising student. For more information about Cherryland’s Youth Tour program, call (231) 486-9200 or visit cherrylandelectric.coop/youth-tour.

When: June 14–18 Cost: FREE! Application deadline: Feb. 28



Kerri Hanson, Great Lakes Energy

2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats (not quick-cooking oats)

2 cups almond milk or milk of choice

1 cup plain Greek or nondairy yogurt ¼ cup chia seeds

¼ cup pure maple syrup or honey

Topping Options:

• Blueberry: blueberries (fresh, frozen, or dried) and chopped walnuts

• Pina Colada: pineapple tidbits, 1 tablespoon coconut, ½ teaspoon vanilla

• PB&J: jam on bottom, peanut butter on top

• Pear: diced pear, ½ teaspoon cinnamon, and chopped pecans

• Caramel Apple: diced apple, caramel sauce, and chopped peanuts

• Chocolate Raspberry: raspberries (fresh or frozen), 1–2 teaspoons cocoa powder, mini chocolate chips

To make the base, in a medium bowl, mix together the oats, milk, yogurt, chia seeds, and maple syrup/honey. Stir until combined. Portion 1-cup servings into 4 wide-mouth, 16-ounce canning jars (or another airtight container) and top with any additional toppings as desired.

These toppings can be stirred into the base recipe, or customize each jar by putting them separately in the bottom of the jar before filling. The possibilities are endless. Place lids on and refrigerate overnight. When refrigerated, these overnight oats can last for up to 5 days.

Watch a video of this month’s winning recipe at micoopkitchen.com/videos

Photos by Robert Bruce Photography || Recipes submitted by MCL readers and tested by recipe editor Christin McKamey
CO-OP Recipes
Recipe Contest Win a $100 energy bill credit! Vegetarian due Feb. 1, Breakfast For Dinner due Mar. 1 Submit your favorite recipe for a chance to win a $100 bill credit and have your recipe featured in Country Lines with a photo and a video. Submit your recipe at micoopkitchen.com , or send it via email (include your full name and co-op) to recipes@countrylines.com HEALTHY LIVING Feel good from the inside out. 10 JANUARY 2023



1 cup quinoa

2 cups low-sodium chicken broth or water

1 can drained medium ripe olives, or 1 cup pitted kalamata olives

1 can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed

1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved

½ cup green bell pepper, diced

½ cup diced celery

1 cup feta cheese, cubed or crumbled

½ cup walnuts, halved


½ cup olive oil

½ cup red wine vinegar

1 shallot, diced

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon sugar

1 teaspoon dried oregano

Cook quinoa in broth according to package directions. Combine dressing ingredients and add to the cooked quinoa while still warm. Add the rest of the salad ingredients and stir until combined. Enjoy!

6–8 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

• olive oil or butter

• salt and pepper, to season

1 onion, thinly sliced

2–4 garlic cloves, minced

2 cans chopped Italian-style tomatoes

½ teaspoon oregano

¼ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon black pepper

¼ –½ cup feta cheese

1 can black olives

2 cans quartered artichokes

Preheat oven to 350 F. Brown chicken breasts in oil or butter in frying pan. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to baking dish. Add more oil or butter to pan; sauté the sliced onions and garlic. Add the canned tomatoes and blend the spices in with the onions and garlic. Bring the tomato mixture to a simmer, then pour over chicken breasts in baking dish. Bake for 30 minutes. Remove baking dish from oven and sprinkle feta cheese, olives, and artichokes over the top. Put back in oven and bake for another 15 minutes. Serve with orzo, couscous, or rice.



2 tablespoons olive oil

1 medium white onion, chopped

3 stalks celery, chopped

4 large carrots, peeled and chopped

3 medium Yukon gold potatoes, cut into ¼ -inch cubes

3 cloves garlic, minced

6 cups chicken or vegetable broth

1 cup tomato juice

1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained

1 head green cabbage, cored and chopped

1 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

½ teaspoon sugar

½ teaspoon dried thyme


teaspoon celery salt

1 bay leaf

Heat the olive oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Once simmering, add onion, celery, carrots, and potatoes. Sauté until the vegetables start to soften, about 5–7 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another minute, until fragrant. Pour in broth and tomato juice and stir. Add the diced tomatoes, cabbage, salt, black pepper, sugar, thyme, celery salt, and bay leaf. Bring contents to a boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer. Simmer for 30–40 minutes, until the cabbage is wilted and the vegetables are soft. Remove bay leaf. Enjoy!


Judy Bergeski, Presque Isle

1 tablespoon brown sugar

2 tablespoons seasoned salt (Lawry’s) or homemade seasoning mix (below)

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 head of cauliflower, leaves removed, cut into 1-inch thick slices *cut from top down, so the slices look like cauliflower “trees”

• fresh parsley, for garnish

Homemade Seasoning Mix:

½ teaspoon onion powder

½ teaspoon garlic powder

½ teaspoon paprika

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

½ teaspoon dried dill

Mix together the brown sugar and seasoned salt (or homemade seasoning mix). Preheat grill to medium-high heat (can also use a panini maker) and lightly oil/spray the grill. Brush olive oil on one side of each cauliflower slice. Then sprinkle the sugar/seasoning mix over top. Repeat on other side. Save leftover spices for the next time. Place on grill or in panini maker and close lid. Cook 2–3 minutes per side. Check for doneness; should be forktender, but not mushy. Transfer to plate and sprinkle with fresh parsley (optional). Serve with ranch dressing for dipping, or balsamic glaze. Goes well with diced tomatoes and some crusty bread.

Joan Bissonette, Great Lakes Energy Virginia Czarnecki, HomeWorks Tri-County Finedell, Great Lakes Energy

Rate Change and You

For the 95% of Cherryland members who are residential members, the proposed rate change would include a $10 increase to the availability charge. However, that doesn’t necessarily mean you would see a $10 increase in your bill.

The average residential member on Cherryland lines uses roughly 700 kWh/month, with a monthly bill of around $107. Under the proposed new rate, there would be a slight decrease in the energy charge, and the Power Supply Cost Recovery (PSCR) would initially be reduced to $0.0000. When you factor those elements into the increased availability charge, the average member can expect a roughly $3 increase on their monthly electric bill.

Learn more about the proposed rate increase at www.cherrylandelectric. coop/rate-change, with resources including:

• Residential rate calculator

• “Rate Change 2023” episode of the Co-op Energy Talk podcast

• Rate proposal FAQ

Usage (kWh) Present Rate Proposed Rate Difference 0 $18.00 $28.00 $10.00 250 $49.78 $57.25 $7.48 500 $81.55 $86.50 $4.95 700 $106.97 $109.90 $2.93 1,000 $145.10 $145.00 ($0.10) 1,500 $208.65 $203.50 ($5.15) 2,000 $272.20 $262.00 ($10.20)

More questions about the proposed rate change? We have the answers on the Co-op Energy Talk podcast


The amount of the charge varies utility to utility depending on the number of people served. For example, for every mile of line a municipal utility serves, they may be able to divide their cost of service over 30 people. Rural cooperatives, on the other hand, may only be able to divide that cost over 10 people in the same mile

Whether a person is served by a municipal utility or cooperative, the cost of the mile of line stays the same.


to run a successful

The co-op’s COST OF SERVICE STUDY evaluates the cost of providing electricity to all of Cherryland’s

classes, THE STUDY DETERMINES SERVICE COSTS across all types of members, including residential, commercial, agricultural, and industrial class is their availability charge

HOW IS THE AMOUNT SET? availability charge of an Our energy rate includes wholesale power supply and any of our costs that vary depending on how much you use ENERGY CHARGE? How does it differ from an While an availability charge covers the cost of delivering and maintaining electric service to a member, an energy charge is the cost of the actual electricity a member uses An availability charge is a monthly everything needed to deliver switch, including.. 24 7 MONTH COMPARE How does Cherryland’s availability charge to others? =$ =$$

and supplies
...poles, wires, and transformers that make up the co-op’s infrastructure. electric
facilities and equipment needed to repair and maintain the distribution system.

Big Water Creative Arts Bringing Music Education

To Northern Michigan

So many of us have fond memories of art and music classes in our school days. So often, it was a chance to decompress from math, science, English, or history, but the arts in learning have always been about a bit more. Studies have shown improvements in math, reading, and critical thinking can all be linked to engagement in artistic or creative endeavors.* So, it is not just a sense of melancholy that makes it upsetting that so many school systems have had to decrease funding for art programs and sometimes eliminate them altogether.

It’s this reality that spurred Michelle Chenard and Pete Kehoe of Big Water Creative Arts to turn their passion for music into a bigger purpose.

“Music has always given Michelle and me so much,” said Kehoe, director of the board at Big Water Creative Arts. “It felt like time for us to return the favor.”

Chenard and Kehoe are longtime friends and sometimes creative partners who have enjoyed their own lives as musicians. Chenard, originally from the Upper Peninsula, took her talent on the road working the music circuit in the southern United States and finally back to Michigan. Kehoe, from Gladwin, has been in Petoskey since 1999. While they’ve worked on songs together and played in Michigan for decades, it was a songwriting workshop they were holding on Mackinac Island that was the first step in creating Big Water Creative Arts.

14 JANUARY 2023

“We had been doing this threeday songwriting workshop for a few years, but never quite got in the black,” said Kehoe. “Then we started talking and realizing we wanted to also do something that had a more far-reaching impact.”

The two were keenly aware that school music programs had been losing funding year after year, with many rural communities in their own backyard with no programming at all.

It started with a songwriting workshop for Mancelona Public Schools. Music programming spread to Petoskey, Pellston, Gaylord, Cheboygan, and so on. Today, Big Water Creative Arts offers multiple programs for arts education for elementary and middle school students, as well as senior and adult special education programs.

While BWCA offers these music classes free to all students, they depend on grants, donations, and fundraising from their

annual event in September. As interest grows amongst students and school administrators, the strain on the nonprofit’s budget increases.

“We are always looking for community partners who want to help bring music education to Northern Michigan,” said Kehoe. “We want to take the cost barrier out of the equation so it can be available to all.”

This is what the folks at Big Water Creative Arts do. They see a need, look at their resources, and make musical magic happen in their community.

“It’s our dream that every kid who wants to play, sing, or express themselves musically can do that without worrying about economics or funding,” said Kehoe. “Music is a right for everyone. It makes for more engaged, confident, and happy people. And that just makes the world better.”

If you’d like to help support Big Water Creative Arts, here’s how:

To donate: bigwatercreativearts.org smile.amazon.com (BWCA) bigwatercreativearts@gmail.com Big Water Creative Arts, Inc. P.O. Box 124, Petoskey, MI 49770

For more information: /bigwatercreativearts /bigwatercreativeartsinc


*Source: President’s Committee on Arts and the Humanities, 2011

“Music is a right for everyone. It makes for more engaged, confident, and happy people. And that just makes the world better.”
Photos by: Jessica Wynder Photography (top of page 14), Johnny Ulibarri (left), and Alex Childress (cover and top right)

Your Board In Action:


• The board discussed the proposed rate increase, which includes a $10 increase to the residential availability charge, adding an auxiliary meter rate, and an optional time-ofuse rate.

• Cherryland’s chief financial officer reported that the co-op was $1 million over budget on power supply costs. The co-op continues to be very careful with other managed expenses to offset power supply cost pressures.

• The board received a report on a recent market analysis of cooperative employee wages. The cooperative used an outside contractor for that project to draft a compensation plan.


• The board received a special report on a metering system upgrade project from the cooperative’s engineering and operations manager and metering supervisor.

• The cooperative’s chief financial officer and engineering and operations manager presented the cooperative’s capital budget for 2023. The board reviewed and approved the budget.

Members have the opportunity to provide input to the board prior to any regularly scheduled board meeting. To have your comments included in a monthly board packet for review, please submit them to Dawn Garrock at dgarrock@cherrylandelectric.coop a minimum of three business days before the monthly board meeting.

Notice to Members of Cherryland Electric Cooperative

A Special Public Hearing is set for Jan. 23, 9 a.m., at the cooperative’s Grawn office.

The board of directors will consider changes to the cooperative’s rates at its meeting on Jan. 23, 2023, to be held at the cooperative office at 5930 U.S.-31 South, Grawn, Michigan. The meeting will start at 9 a.m. and is open to all members of Cherryland Electric Cooperative.

The session will begin with an opportunity for members to provide direct input to the board of directors. Members are asked to come to the lobby by 9 a.m. and request to speak to the board. Members are asked to keep their comments to five minutes or less.

The following items will be considered:

Revisions to the cooperative’s rates to meet current and future financial needs, based on a cost of service study. Notice of changes or additions to the cooperative’s rates or service rules shall be sent to all members, as required by P.A. 167, by publication in Michigan Country Lines at least 30 days prior to their effective date.

Breakdown Of Proposed Rate Change

Cherryland’s board of directors will consider a rate change proposal at its monthly board meeting on Jan. 23. The proposed rate change includes:

• $10 increase in the residential availability charge.

• $9.50 increase to the general service single-phase availability charge and $12.50 increase to the general service three-phase availability charge.

• The creation of a residential auxiliary rate to better classify additional meters at residential locations. For example, if you have a pole barn, garage, or other structure on property near your home that uses single-phase service, this new rate will apply to you. Prior to this new rate class, these meters fell under general service.

The proposed rate change would go into effect in March of 2023. For more information, please attend one of the upcoming member meetings (see page 4) or contact us at 231-486-9200 or cec@cherrylandelectric.coop.

Notice To Members Of Data Privacy Policy

The Cherryland Electric Cooperative Board of Directors has adopted a policy governing the collection, use, and disclosure of member account information and usage data. A full copy of the Data Privacy Policy can be found at: cherrylandelectric.coop/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/ Member-DataPrivacy-Tariff.pdf. If you would like a hard copy of the Data Privacy Policy, call our office at 231-486-9200 or email us at cec@cherrylandelectric.coop.

16 JANUARY 2023

To enter the contest, visit cherrylandelectric.coop/photo-contest or visit facebook.com/cherrylandelectriccoop for a link to the current photo contest. Enter your picture, cast your vote, and encourage others to vote for you as well. If your photo is printed in Country Lines during 2023, you will be entered to win a credit of up to $200 on your December 2023 bill.

4 7 3 6 1 2 Enter to win a $200 energy bill credit!
Your “Pets” Photos By Jan. 20!
By Jan. 20! Submit your best photo and encourage your friends to vote! The photo receiving the most votes in our Facebook contest will be printed in an issue of Country Lines, along with some of our other favorites. Our January theme is Pets! Photos can be submitted through Jan. 20 to be featured in our March issue. Enter Your Photos And Win A Bill
PHOTO CONTEST 5 MOST VOTES ON FACEBOOK 2. “The hobbit pathway!” Tammy Jarvis 3. “Captain and crew.” Lillian Dotzlaf 4. “Peaceful.” Laurie Johnston 5. “Kids in the country enjoying the colors with some good company.” Syrena Bean 6. “Water break at Guernsey Lake.” Shari Stelzer 7. “Wagon ride.” Kayla Morrison 1. “Anna Wood’s big catch!!” Christina Woods
Congrats to
Forward for winning the 2022 bill credit! She submitted this photo of her great-grandmother’s parents for the Generations photo contest last February! Outdoor Adventures 17 MICHIGAN COUNTRY LINES
2022 Photo Contest Winner

Where In Michigan Is This?

The Reluctant Boy Scout

Inever considered Scouting until my father told me I was going to become one. My younger brother decided he wanted to be a Cub Scout and my dad figured I could be very useful keeping tabs on him. I really didn’t think it was for me, but I dutifully joined Troop 57 at the local school. This turned out to be one of the best things I have ever done.

I was a year older than most of the “Tenderfoot” Scouts, but I quickly qualified for 2nd and then 1st class scout and eventually became den chief for my brother’s pack. Our family was already into camping, and the Scouts camped several times a year at Rota-Kiwan in Texas Corners. There were canoe trips, jamborees, the Klondike Derby, and plenty of other events that I loved.

My best friend, Rod, was my assistant when I became the leader of Hawk Patrol. Eventually, my brother joined us, along with several other boys. Our Scoutmaster, Mr. Brown, was an outstanding leader, and several other parents were great mentors and teachers for all of us. In less than three years, I was a Life Scout working on Eagle when I was chosen to join The Order of the Arrow.

Scouting opened so many doors for my brother and me. Our record score and time in the 1964 Klondike Derby still stands! I was big for my age, and soon the other boys began to call me “Hoss” after the Bonanza character played by Dan Blocker. To this day, some of them still greet me that way when I see them. The camping, boating, swimming, crafting, first aid, and other skills I learned during those years still serve me well. I am so grateful that my parents decided to help me on my way to an experience I will never forget.

About The Author: James is retired from a career in the audio/video business. He was also a DJ for more than 40 years. He and his wife enjoy gardening, reading, listening to music, and spending time with their children and grandchildren.

They have performed recorded music at nearly 500 wedding receptions and parties, beginning in 1973. Nov./Dec.
2022 Winner! Our Mystery Photo winner is Leslie Miller, a Thumb Electric Cooperative member, who correctly identified the photo as Hartwick Pines Chapel in Grayling.
are announced in the following issues of Country Lines: January, March, May, July/ August, September, and November/December.
MI CO-OP Guest Column Guest Column Win $200 for stories published! Share your fondest memories and stories. Win $200 for stories published. Visit countrylines.com/community to submit. Mystery Photo Win a $100 energy bill credit!
Identify the correct
to win a $100 electric bill credit. Enter
18 JANUARY 2023
location of
photo above by Jan. 20
be entered into a drawing
your guess at countrylines.com/community
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Travel to Washington, D.C., to explore monuments and museums, meet with a member o f Congress, and make lifelong friends with other students from across the country. You'll discover leadership lessons from our nation's history and be immersed in the cooperative spirit that built our nation, with all expenses paid by your local electric cooperative. Yeah, that's pretty amazing. Are you up for it?

cherrylandelectric.coop Tour Dates: June 14-18, 2023
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