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March 2020

MICHIGAN

COUNTRY LINES Alger Delta Cooperative Electric Association

CLEAN UP WITH

DIRTY GIRL FARM Members Share Cute Kids Photos

Meter Exchange Update Chocolay Raptor Center Rescue Mission


WATERFURNACE UNITS QUALIFY FOR A 26% FEDERAL TAX CREDIT 1

Harness the power of the sun...

...by using the Earth.

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visit us at waterfurnace.com/Reliable

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

Berrien Springs WaterFurnace Michiana (269) 473-5667 gogreenmich geothermal.com

Clifford Orton Refrig & Htg (989) 761-7691 sandusky geothermal.com

Big Rapids Stratz Htg & Clg, Inc. (231) 796-3717 stratzgeocomfort.com

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

Michigan Center Comfort 1/Aire Serv of Southern Michigan (517) 764-1500 aireserv.com/ southern-michigan Mt Pleasant Walton Htg & Clg (989) 772-4822 waltonheating.com

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1. 26% through 2020 and 22% through 2021 • The Reliable Renewable is a trademark of WaterFurnace International, Inc.

Traverse City D & W Mechanical (231) 941-1215 dwgeothermal.com Geofurnace Htg & Clg (231) 943-1000 watergeofurnace.com


In This Issue March 2020 || Vol. 40, No. 3

Michigan’s Electric Cooperatives

Follow Us On Instagram! @michigancountrylines

Celebrating 40 Years

countrylines.com

facebook.com/michigancountrylines michigancountrylines

Executive Editor: Casey Clark Editor: Christine Dorr Design and Production: Karreen Bird Recipe Editor: Christin McKamey 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 are Robert Kran, Great Lakes Energy, chairman; Tony Anderson, Cherryland Electric Cooperative, vice chairman; and Eric Baker, Wolverine Power Cooperative, secretarytreasurer. 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 editor@countrylines.com 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.

FEATURED PHOTO FROM #micoopcommunity:

Frozen jellyfish emerge during Michigan winters #notreally #lookslikeittho. Creative capture by @corey_niedzwiecki (Corey Niedzwiecki.)

Tag us or use #micoopcommunity in your post and your photo could be featured on our Instagram account and printed as the featured photo in our magazine.

ON THE COVER

Heather Rosencrantz, owner of Dirty Girl Farm, offers a line of all-natural skincare products at her holistic apothecary based in Michigan. Today, Dirty Girl Farm has over 400 amazing products. Her belief is to have healthy skin and happy souls.

6 MI CO-OP COMMUNITY

Guest Column: Winter Road Trippin’ With Christal Frost, Media Personality Christal shares her fun winter adventures strolling through Marquette and the Eben Ice Caves. 

10 MI CO-OP KITCHEN Chili Cook-Off

Take home the gold with one of these comforting, delicious chili recipes. Christin McKamey & Our Readers

18 MI CO-OP COMMUNITY Guest Column: Grandma Grace Rik Cryderman, Presque Isle Electric & Gas Co-op Member

Guess Our New Mystery Photo And Win A $50 Bill Credit!

Win $150 for stories published! Guest Column: Country Lines invites members to submit their fond memories and stories. For guidelines and to submit your guest column, go to countrylines.com under the MI Co-op Community tab.

Sugar Cookies

Featured Guest Chef: Try Dirty Girl Farm owner Heather Rosencrantz’s favorite sugar cookie recipe. Enter Our Recipe Contest And Win A $50 Bill Credit!

14 FEATURE

Clean Up With Dirty Girl Farm

Utilizing her botany and farming background, Heather Rosencrantz created a line of all-natural, vegan and cruelty-free skincare products that are safer for both people and the environment. Emily Haines Lloyd

Best of Michigan UP NEXT! Best Pizza: Are you a pizza aficionado? Have you tried every mom and pop pizza parlour in Michigan and know the best stops? Share with us your favorite pizza places to enjoy America’s soul food. Submit your favorites at countrylines.com under the MI Co-op Community tab by March 25, and look for it on our preferred pies list in the April issue.

MICHIGAN COUNTRY LINES

3


Stay In The Know

MARQUETTE ALGER

SCHOOLCRAFT

DELTA

MENOMINEE

Board Of Directors District 1—Big Bay

Darryl Small 906-345-9369 • smallwld14@gmail.com

District 2—Harvey/Deerton

Karen Alholm 906-249-1095 • karenalholm@gmail.com

District 3—Grand Marais

Mike Lawless 906-494-2080 • mclawless79@gmail.com

District 4—Cedar River/Palestine

Dave Prestin 906-424-0055 • cedarriverplaza@gmail.com

District 5—Gourley/LaBranche/Cornell

Ivy Netzel 906-639-2979 • MyAlgerDeltaRep5@gmail.com

District 6—Nathan/White Rapids

Paul Sederquist 906-753-4484 • sedergrove@gmail.com

District 7—Stonington/Rapid River

Kirk Bruno 906-399-1432 • kbruno.algerdelta@gmail.com

District 8—Nahma/Isabella

Ray Young 906-450-1881 • kyoung@uplogon.com

District 9—Hiawatha/Maple Ridge

Doug Bovin 906-573-2379 • dorobo22@icloud.com

Headquarters:

426 N. 9th St, Gladstone, MI 49837 906-428-4141 • 800-562-0950 Fax: 906-428-3840 • admin@algerdelta.com algerdelta.com

Office Hours

Monday–Friday, 8 a.m.–4 p.m. (ET)

Alger Delta Cooperative is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

algerdelta.com Join us on Facebook. facebook.com/algerdeltaelectric

4 MARCH 2020

A

Amanda Seger, Chief Financial Officer

t Alger Delta, we are continually striving to improve our operational efficiency so we can provide the most reliable electric service possible for our consumer-members (that’s you!).

We rely on data for nearly every aspect of our operations, which is why we need your help. By making sure we have your most accurate and complete contact information, we can continue to provide the high level of service that you expect and deserve. Accurate information enables us to improve customer service and enhance communications for reporting and repairing outages. It also allows co-op members to receive information about other important programs, events and activities. Up-to-date contact information can potentially speed up the power restoration process during an outage. For example, the phone number you provide is linked to your service address to our outage management system. This means when you call to report an outage, our system recognizes your phone number and matches it with your account location. Accurate information helps our outage management system predict the location and possible cause of an outage, making it easier for our crews to correct the problem. While we always do our best to maintain service, we occasionally plan outages to update, repair or replace equipment. In these instances, we can provide advance notification to affected members through automated phone messages or email if we have your updated contact information and communication preferences. Keeping the co-op updated with your information also helps us when there’s a question about energy use or billing. Also, discrepancies on your account can be taken care of promptly if Alger Delta has accurate account information. Many of you have been members of the co-op for years, and it’s likely that your account information hasn’t been updated for some time. We recognize that many members now use a cell phone as their primary phone service, and we might not have that number in our system. I want to emphasize that in providing your contact information to the co-op, we will never share this information with any third parties. It is only used by Alger Delta to send important information to you. Please take a moment to confirm or update your contact information by going to algerdelta.com and updating your contact information under the customer service tab. By doing so, you will be helping us improve service and efficiency so we can better serve you and all members of the co-op.


ALGER DELTA ELECTRIC METER EXCHANGE This April, Alger Delta will begin a system-wide exchange of our electric meters. Our current system has reached the end of its useful life and is no longer supported by our vendor. We have made repairs and updates when necessary for the last several years, but we’ve now reached a point where replacing the entire infrastructure will provide the greatest economic and functional value. We estimate that all members’ home or business meters will be exchanged by September. To learn more and to follow our progress, visit our website at www.algerdelta.com and/or follow us on our Facebook page.

Statement Of Non-Discrimination In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, religion, sex, gender identity (including gender expression), sexual orientation, disability, age, marital status, family/parental status, income derived from a public assistance program, political beliefs, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity, in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA (not all bases apply to all programs). Remedies and complaint filing deadlines vary by program or incident. Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g., Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.) should contact the responsible Agency or USDA’s TARGET Center at (202) 720-2600 (voice and TTY) or contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English. To file a program discrimination complaint, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, AD-3027, found online at http://www.ascr.usda.gov/complaint_filing_cust. html and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by: 1.

mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, 1400 Independence Ave., SW, Washington, D.C. 20250-9410;

2.

fax: (202) 690-7442; or

3.

email: program.intake@usda.gov. This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

MICHIGAN COUNTRY LINES

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GUEST COLUMN

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Br

k r oc k

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la c

MI CO-OP Community

ewer y

Also in Downtown Marquette:

oncker

• Delft Bistro • Steinhaus • Boomerang Retro & Relics

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r e D oc

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wing C

r e t n i w ippin’ r T d a o R With Christal Frost

Adventures Through Marquette And The Eben Ice Caves 41

A

s a lower Michigan native, it’s hard not to feel the magic crossing the mighty Mackinac Bridge into the Upper Peninsula. To me, the U.P. feels like an old friend, welcoming me home with open arms. Marquette boasts a unique blend of wilderness, nature and urban luxuries. Take notes on the journey, and get ready to follow in my footsteps!

Donckers Lunch Counter And Candy Store

I loved the Red Rooster—a delicious blend of egg, bacon, roasted red pepper, smoked gouda and avocado spread on a ciabatta bun. We also grabbed a pound of Lake Superior chocolate rocks, which may or may not have made it home. 6 MARCH 2020


Delft Bistro

See Marquette In Action

Christal Frost filmed her Marquette adventure, now available on countrylines.com.

The converted movie theatre restaurant kept the big screen, giving diners a creatively curated meal with the backdrop of cinematic classics.

Ore Dock Brewing Co. The upstairs community space offers rotating artists in addition to an impressive lineup of musicians from across the Midwest. From the taproom, the lead brew-tender chose his favorites for our beer flight—I personally loved the Bramble on Rose. Steinhaus

Blackrocks Brewery

Blackrocks is a house-turned brewery founded by longtime friends, David and Andy. The pair made their homebrewing hobby commercial, with a mission to make the best beer possible while always having fun. Blackrocks was buzzing with locals who literally wore their love of the brewery in the form of hoodies and hats. By the way, Coconut Brown will change your life.

Landmark Inn

Originally opened in 1930 as the Northland Hotel, its history includes visits from celebrities like Jimmy Stewart, Abbott and Costello, and The Rolling Stones. After closing in 1982, the Northland found new life as part of a historic restoration project, reopening in 1997 as The Landmark Inn. We requested Room 502, which was dubbed the “Amelia Earhart room” after Earhart reportedly stayed there in 1932. The Landmark’s meticulous dedication to historic preservation is noteworthy, as is its staff.

Boomerang Retro & Relics

The U.P.’s first retro-chic boutique allows visitors to step back in time with an amalgam of authentic vintage and vintage-inspired clothing, accessories, décor and furniture.

Ebe

ce Ca

s ve

nI

The Steinhaus was recommended by virtually every local I spoke with, and it did not disappoint. I kept it simple with the eggs Benedict, but the Steinhaus delivered an Italianinspired twist, using thinly sliced and fried speck ham. Be sure to order a side of potatoes to soak up the hollandaise sauce.

Eben Ice Caves

The caves, also known as the Rock River Canyon Ice Caves, are located on the outer edge of the Hiawatha National Forest. The trail into the caves is around a mile long, and ice cleats are a necessity. The hike can be challenging, but it is completely worth the effort. The phenomenon of ice sheets surrounded by the blankets of freshly fallen snow was a sight to behold. Michigan’s Upper Peninsula is home to some of the kindest and most genuine people I have ever met. And Marquette, a city surrounded by the waves of Lake Superior, will indeed become your second mother. Don’t be surprised when, weeks after your visit, you feel her calling you to come back.

Christal Frost is a media personality who can be heard on Today’s Country Music-WTCM, The Christal Frost Show on NewsTalk 580-WTCM AM.


Heat Pumps: Start Saving Energy The Smart Way

D

id you know heating and cooling accounts for more than 50% of the energy used in your home? Investing in a highly-efficient HVAC system is therefore extremely important. Heat pump technology is a leading-edge solution for high-efficiency heating and cooling. It can help you save energy, save money, and keep your family comfortable for years to come.

Heat Pump Benefits • Use considerably less energy for heating and cooling • More consistent temperatures equals increased comfort • Superior indoor air quality and dehumidification

Is A Heat Pump Right For My Home?

Learn more at michigan-energy.org/heatpumps.

Just about any home can benefit from a heat pump system, though it is important that your home is well-insulated and air-tight prior to installation to maximize energy savings. Generally, the following are some of the best candidates:

Save now with cash back from the Energy Optimization program! The Energy Optimization program provides cash incentives for both air-source and ground-source heat pumps——as long as the equipment meets minimum efficiency standards. Review the Efficient HVAC program page on the Energy Optimization website for additional information.

• Heated by an electric furnace or electric baseboards • Heated by propane, wood or fuel oil • Looking to add air conditioning • New construction or new room additions • Manufactured homes

For a complete list of residential, business or agribusiness incentives available from the Energy Optimization program, visit michigan-energy.org or call 877-296-4319.

SAVINGS! Grow Your

Save BIG with heat pumps

More than half of your home’s energy is used for heating and cooling. A heat pump system can be a highly-efficient alternative and provides a simple way to introduce air conditioning to your home too!

REBATE RANGE: $250 - $750+ michigan-energy.org | 877.296.4319

Energy Optimization programs and incentives are applicable to Michigan service locations only. Other restrictions may apply. For a complete list of participating utilities, visit michigan-energy.org.


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Snap Shot Share Your Photos! Alger Delta invites members to share their amazing photos. Selected photos will be published in Michigan Country Lines.

Upcoming Photo Topics And Deadlines: On The Farm, due March 20 (May issue) Nightscapes, due April 20 (June issue) Festivals and Fairs, due May 20 (July/August issue) To submit photos, go to http://bit.ly/countrylines

5

Cute Kids 1. My adorable great-great-niece, Elora. By Tina Hiironen 2. A  successful bottle flip from my 5-yearold grandson, Brody. By Sally Way 3. S  onny’s first time snowshoeing in Rapid River. By Sarah Closs 4. S  oaking up sun in northern Michigan fields. By Megan Doher 5. Sour cherries. By Stephanie Bloye

We look forward to seeing your best photos! MICHIGAN COUNTRY LINES

9


Chili Cook-Off Take home the gold with one of these comforting, delicious recipes.

Photos by Robert Bruce Photography Recipes Submitted By MCL Readers And Tested By Recipe Editor Christin McKamey

Winning Recipe!

Taco Soup Chili

Jennie Lewandowski, Presque Isle 1 pound ground beef 1 medium onion, chopped 1 (1.5-ounce) package ranch dressing mix 1 (1-ounce) package taco seasoning mix 3 (14.5-ounce) cans petite diced tomatoes 2 (14.5-ounce) cans black beans, do not drain

2 (14.5-ounce) cans corn, do not drain 1 (14.5-ounce) can cream-style corn ½ bunch fresh cilantro, chopped In a large pot or Dutch oven, brown the beef with the onions; drain grease. Add the remaining ingredients (dump in whole cans, don’t drain). Cook over medium-high heat until slightly simmering and hot, about 10—15 minutes. Serve with sour cream, cheese, and tortilla chips!

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

Trifecta Chili

Frances Painter, Midwest Energy & Communications 1 1 1 2 4 1 1 1 ½ 1 1 1 •

pound lean ground beef pound lean ground turkey pound pork sausage large onions cloves minced garlic chopped poblano or 2 mild banana peppers (15½-ounce) can diced tomatoes can diced tomatoes with green chiles (such as Rotel) cup chili powder (15½ -ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained (15½ -ounce) can pinto or cannellini beans, rinsed and drained (15½ -ounce) can kidney beans, rinsed and drained shredded cheese and sour cream to garnish (optional)

Brown meats together until no longer pink. Add onion, garlic, and poblano or banana peppers and sauté until soft. Add diced tomatoes, diced tomatoes with chiles, chili powder, and the 3 cans of beans. Bring to a boil. Transfer to a large slow cooker and cook on low 5–6 hours, or simmer on stove, stirring about every half hour to prevent sticking. Serve with crackers of your choice (our family likes Cheez-It!).


Smoked Steelhead White Chili

FEATURED

GUEST CHEF

Ronald Andres, Great Lakes Energy 1 1 2 2 1 2 2 1 2 1 1 1 1 1

tablespoon olive oil medium onion, chopped stalks celery, chopped cloves garlic, minced pound smoked steelhead trout* (skin and bones removed), flaked into ½-inch pieces (15.5-ounce) cans Great Northern beans (use liquid) (15.5-ounce) cans cannellini beans, rinsed (14.5-ounce) can chicken broth Anaheim peppers (braised, then seeds and skin removed), diced teaspoon ground cumin tablespoon ground coriander teaspoon dried oregano tablespoon lemon pepper quart whipping cream

Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Sauté onion, celery, and garlic in the hot oil until tender. Add smoked steelhead, Great Northern beans, cannellini beans, chicken broth, Anaheim peppers, cumin, coriander, oregano, and lemon pepper into the pot. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until flavors have blended, about 30 minutes. Stir in the whipping cream. Simmer until the whipping cream is hot, but do not boil. *Smoked salmon can also be used.

If you’re not enjoying the lip-smacking scents of Heather Rosencrantz’s Dirty Girl Farm soaps and body wash, maybe try her family’s favorite sugar cookie recipe. Deceivingly simple, but chockfull of yum. Perfect for special occasions or just a cozy afternoon at home.

All-American Chili Kerri Hanson, Great Lakes Energy

1 pound lean ground beef or ground venison 6 ounces chorizo 2 cups chopped onion 1 cup chopped green pepper 8 cloves garlic, minced 1 jalapeño pepper or poblano pepper, chopped 2 tablespoons chili powder 2 tablespoons brown sugar 1 tablespoon ground cumin 1 (6-ounce) can tomato paste 1 teaspoon dried oregano ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper ¼ teaspoon salt 2 bay leaves 1¼ cups Merlot red wine 2 (28-ounce) cans whole tomatoes, undrained and coarsely chopped 2 (15-ounce) cans kidney beans, drained ½ cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese

Sugar Cookies 2¼ ½ ¼ ¾

Using large Dutch oven over medium-high heat, brown ground beef, chorizo, onion, green pepper, garlic, and jalapeño. Cook 10 minutes until beef and chorizo are browned, stirring to crumble. Add chili powder, brown sugar, cumin, tomato paste, oregano, pepper, salt, and bay leaves and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in wine, tomatoes and kidney beans; bring to boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer 1 hour, stirring occasionally. Uncover and cook for 30 minutes longer, stirring occasionally. Discard bay leaves before serving. Sprinkle each serving with cheddar cheese. This is even better the following day!

Mexican Fiesta: due April 1 Farm to Table: due May 1

Enter to win a

$50

energy bill credit!

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.

¾ 1 2 ¼

cups all-purpose flour teaspoon baking powder teaspoon salt cup cold butter (grass-fed organic butter, if possible) cup sugar  egg teaspoons vanilla extract teaspoon almond extract

Preheat oven to 350 F. Sift together dry ingredients well and set aside. In the bowl of your stand mixer, cream together butter and sugar. Once mixture is light and fluffy, add egg and extracts. Begin adding flour mixture a little at a time, making sure each addition is well incorporated. When dough comes together, turn out onto a lightly floured cold marble surface, roll to ¼-inch thickness. Cut out shapes and bake for 8–12 minutes depending on thickness. Cookie Tips

• Try to use as little flour as possible; adding too much makes cookies tough.

• When mixing your scraps together to re-roll, brush as much flour off as possible. • Cold dough holds its shape better and cookie-cutter shapes won’t distort.

Read the full story about Dirty Girl Farm on page 14, and find this recipe and others at micoopkitchen.com.

MICHIGAN COUNTRY LINES

11


Edison

Thomas Edison “The Wizard of Menlo Park”

vs.

Tesla

NAME

Nikola Tesla

NICKNAME

“Mad Scientist”

Milan, OH February 11, 1847

BIRTHPLACE

Smiljan, Austrian Empire (modern-day Croatia) July 10, 1856

Lightbulb, phonograph, motion picture camera

INVENTIONS

Tesla coil, induction motor, remote radio control

Direct current (DC)

CURRENT

Constant and flows in one direction

CURRENT DESCRIPTION

“Genius is one percent inspiration and ninety-nine percent perspiration.”

QUOTE

12 MARCH 2020

Alternating current (AC) Periodically reverses direction of flow “The present is theirs; the future, for which I really worked, is mine.”


Book Review:

An Electrifying Novel By Paul Wesslund, National Rural Electric Cooperative Association

W

hat if Thomas Edison was an evil genius? A man so desperate to protect his inventions that he would bribe the police (and worse) to prove his electric systems were better than those of his competitors? You’d have what energy-minded writers like me are searching for: A dramatic, can’t-put-it-down story about electricity. Graham Moore’s new novel “The Last Days of Night” tells the fact-based story of the ultra-high-stakes battle between Edison and George Westinghouse over

In the late 1880s, Thomas Edison and Nikola Tesla were entangled in a battle of electrical currents, known as the “War of Currents.” Direct current (DC), developed by Edison, was considered the standard in the U.S. before Tesla introduced alternating current (AC). AC was clearly more advantageous in its ability to convert into high or low voltages, as well as travel longer distances. In an effort to protect his DC patents, Edison tried to discredit AC. He often used Tesla’s high voltage system to put on wild and misleading demonstrations, including publicly electrocuting stray animals, to showcase the “dangers” of AC. Despite Edison’s attempts, Tesla and AC ultimately won the “War of Currents” after AC was selected to electrify the 1893 Chicago World’s Fair.

nothing less than what kind of electricity would power the United States. In the late 1800s, Edison was turning his invention of the lightbulb into a network for electrifying the country, starting in New York City. The Westinghouse company had invented what it felt was a better lightbulb, but the lawsuits claimed it was just a copy of Edison’s invention. The much bigger issue came with how the electricity would be delivered to those lightbulbs. Edison’s system used direct current (DC), which is what comes out of any battery you have in your home. Westinghouse and Nikola Tesla had developed alternating current (AC), aptly named because it actually changes direction about 60 times a second, as a more efficient way to deliver electricity over long distances. Alternating current won— AC is the kind of electricity found in your home today. In the book, Moore (the Oscar-winning screenwriter for the 2014 movie “The Imitation Game”) covers the complexities of generating and delivering electricity, but he does so with a sense of excitement. The story ends on a positive note, making the point that invention and creation require a cast of talents. The book concludes with a tribute to all of the characters: “Only together could they have birthed the system that was now the bone and sinew of these United States. No one man could have done it. In order to produce such a wonder…the world required…Visionaries like Tesla. Craftsmen like Westinghouse. Salesmen like Edison.”

MICHIGAN COUNTRY LINES 13


SPOTLIGHT ON

co-op entrepreneurs

CLEAN UP WITH

DIRTY GIRL FARM By Emily Haines Lloyd Photos courtesy of Vanessa Longuski

14 MARCH 2020

“I

was the weirdo with the weird products helping the weirdos,” jokes Heather Rosencrantz, owner of Dirty Girl Farm, a line of all-natural, vegan and cruelty-free skincare products.

Twenty-five years ago, Rosencrantz looked like a glimpse of the future—a young mother in yoga pants, bringing her fresh herb plants to the local farmer’s market. However, at the time, she was nothing like her contemporaries. A yoga instructor with a botany major in college and background in farming, Rosencrantz had taken a much lesstraveled road a la Robert Frost’s urging. When Rosencrantz’s young daughter’s skin simply did not respond to store-bought skincare products, Rosencrantz took her knowledge and background and created her own solution. “There just weren’t natural skincare solutions in the market. No Whole Foods on every corner like today,” said Rosencrantz. “I realized I had the information and the ingredients in my own garden, so I started making my own.” The products worked so well on her daughter’s tender skin, Rosencrantz started bringing small jars of her Boo Boo Balm to the farmer’s market with her. What initially began as inquisitive questions about the “weird green goo” turned into parents at their wits’ end, sharing their own heartbreaking stories of seeking out salves to treat their child’s or their own sensitive skin.


“I hesitate to say this is my ‘calling,’” said Rosencrantz. “But hearing those stories and knowing I could do something to help people was the absolute beginning of Dirty Girl Farm.” Little by little, Rosencrantz utilized her education and her passion and created a line of all-natural skincare products free from chemicals, toxins, and gluten that are never tested on animals. The Dirty Girl Farm line expanded to over 400 different products, from bar soap and body butters to facial serums and eye creams. Twenty-five years later, what Rosencrantz has spent her career building is no longer considered weird. It’s part of a multibilliondollar industry sought out by consumers around the world.

We can’t change the world all at once. But we can each take small steps in the right direction. I’ve always believed that.

While Dirty Girl Farm remains one small piece of that industry, Rosencrantz isn’t content to simply make a great product that is answering a need. She wants to create products that are as safe for the environment as they are for one’s skin. To that end, Dirty Girl Farm uses cornstarch packing peanuts and cellophane that dissolves in water or can be composted. Plastic packaging is always recyclable, and some wrapping has undergone additional changes to make it more eco-friendly— like its bar soap now packaged in cardboard. The ultimate goal is to make everything in the box safely disposable. When Rosencrantz took Dirty Girl Farm products entirely online, she made another leap to “right-sizing,” as she calls it. “Even closing our physical store has a positive impact on the environment,” explained Rosencrantz. Beyond that, Rosencrantz explained, her days and weeks are becoming less littered with additional travel and worries that come with a physical space. Ultimately, she’d like to build a lab closer to home on her spacious property in Silverwood, Michigan, where she is also a member of Thumb Electric Cooperative. “I’d love to see Dirty Girl Farm in even more cupboards. Just as an acknowledgment that more people are looking closely at what they’re putting on their skin,” said Rosencrantz. “We can’t change the world all at once. But we can each take small steps in the right direction. I’ve always believed that.” So, step by step, Rosencrantz is creating cleaner products that are better for both people and the environment. Each tiny step is proving that what was once weird can be positively wonderful.

@dirtygirlfarm

dirtygirlfarm.com

Dirty Girl Farm

810-618-6466

Visit countrylines.com to see how Heather makes galaxy soap with natural glitter. 15


RESCUING RAPTORS By Yvonne Whitman Photos courtesy of Chocolay Raptor Center

F

or Marquette resident Jerry Maynard, it was the powerful gaze of a golden eagle named Golda that provided the impetus for him to co-found the Chocolay Raptor Center (CRC). In 2011, while with a group of people

observing a demonstration at Wings of Wonder, a raptor rehab center, Jerry became particularly struck by Golda. Golda was an abused bird that had been rescued from another center that had been shut down due to abuse of its birds. Golda singled Jerry out of the group and stared intently at him for a long time. “It made the hair on the back of my neck stand up,” he recalls. “When the demonstration ended, I asked the center manager what more I could do besides donating monetarily. She said, ‘Get your training, get your permits and start saving the birds.’ So, I did.” When Jerry told his good friend Bob Jensen about his plans for a rehab center, Bob decided it was a two-person job, and he and his wife, Peggy, became co-founders and partners along with Jerry and his wife, Suzi. “It took almost one year for Jerry and me to complete the required training and incorporate our nonprofit,” Bob said. “In August 2012, we received our federal and state rehab permits and opened the center, and we’ve worked closely together ever since.” 16 MARCH 2020

Jerry and Bob have treated virtually every species of raptor native to the Upper Peninsula, including many types of hawks, owls, merlins, American kestrels, northern harriers, ospreys, Peregrine falcons and a wide variety of owls. CRC will rescue and diagnose injured eagles, but they do not rehab them. While they would like to be able to do this, “Rehabbing eagles requires special training, permits, and very large flight cages. We don’t have room for the large cages, and there are other good options available,” Jerry explained. If an eagle can be rehabbed, they arrange for transportation to a licensed rehab facility such as Wings of Wonder, located in Traverse City, or Wild Instincts Rehab Center, located in Rhinelander, Wisconsin. CRC had a unique case on December 7, 2019, when a juvenile bald eagle was rescued by the MDNR and transferred to CRC for evaluation. The bird had been observed feeding on a deer carcass but, when approached, did not fly away, indicating something was wrong. An examination at CRC did not reveal any obvious injuries that would have resulted in the bird’s inability to fly, but, according to Bob, “We suspected, given the time of year and just at the end of hunting season that it was lead poisoning.” The bird was transferred to Wild Instincts, where a blood lead

Jerry and Bob releasing a pair of snowy owls that had been in rehab at the same time. The release provided a spectacular and unique sight for a group of interested bird lovers.


level test was performed. Results indicated that the eagle was suffering from acute lead poisoning with results exceeding the instrument’s upper limit of 65 picograms/dL. Anything over 20 is considered clinically toxic, and chelation therapy was started immediately. According to Jerry, “The odds of a bird with that high of a lead level surviving are very small.” However, after just over two months of therapy, the tough “Yooper” eagle recovered completely and was brought back to its home territory and released in Marquette on January 21, 2020. Lead poisoning is a huge problem for eagles and vultures, the only raptor species that get all or a significant amount of their food from carrion. A study by the University of Minnesota College of Veterinary Medicine has documented that 20-25% of the eagles that are treated in rehab have clinical lead poisoning, and most die or must be euthanized. In a multi-state, multi-year study of lead poisoning in eagles in the upper Midwest, researchers found that lead poisoning in eagles peaked during deer hunting season in all the states in the study. Lead tackle (sinkers) in fishing gear is the second most common source of lead poisoning. There are viable alternatives to lead ammunition and tackle, most notably copper. The cost is close to comparable and performance is

excellent in all studies. California has banned all lead ammunition, effective this year, because of its huge impact on the California condor, our largest American raptor. Several decades ago, the population of California condors was down to a few dozen birds. The last remaining wild birds were captured, and a captive breeding program was started. Along with an extensive education program on the toxicity of lead, an initial control on lead ammunition progressed to the total ban effective in 2020. The program has been a success with over 1,000 condors now released back to the wild, and the population is growing and spreading. We can make a difference for these magnificent birds. As Bob emphatically said, “If you love eagles, get the lead out!”

Many people gathered to observe the release of the recovered “Yooper” eagle and to view the magnificent bird up close.

The CRC is totally funded by donations and grants. They are often asked to present educational programs in the community, and while they always ask for a donation for the programs as a speakers’ fee, they never turn down the opportunity to educate people because of a lack of funds. Support for programs at local schools is provided through grant applications to public and private foundations. “The community has been very supportive of our work,” Jerry says. “We are also very grateful for the help and support of our wives and the many volunteers who assist us when needed for special projects.”

For more information on the Chocolay Raptor Center or to find out how you can help, contact the center at 906-249-3598 or follow it on Facebook at Chocolay Raptor Center.

MICHIGAN COUNTRY LINES 17


Guess this photo and enter to win a

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Where In Michigan Is This? Identify the correct location of the photo above by March 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 January issue is Ronald Hart, a Presque Isle Electric & Gas Co-op member, who correctly identified the photo as the Shakey Lakes Dam structure located in Shakey Lakes Park, Menominee County. Winners are announced in the following issues of Country Lines: January, March, May, July/August, September and November/December.

Grandma Grace

By Rik Cryderman, Presque Isle Electric & Gas Co-op member

H

er name was Grandma Grace Christiansen, a moniker gained by her first name and her most beautiful feature—her grace. She was the grandmother of a friend who was like a sister to me, and without a grandmother myself, I enjoyed sharing her. She and her husband had owned and operated a small market in the town of Albion, Michigan, a place I was blessed to call home for eight years. They managed their store in the days where folks ran a tab and left with their goods, saying, “Put it on the bill.” Most paid their bills at the end of every month. Some would sometimes delay, with an explanation quickly accepted by the Christiansens, whose market bore their name. Some couldn’t pay at all. Years after the market had closed and her husband had passed away, Grandma Grace and her granddaughter were in her basement searching for something, when her granddaughter noticed an old file cabinet. “What’s this?” asked my friend Jeri of her grandmother. “Oh, just some old papers from the market— I’ve been meaning to toss those out.” Opening a drawer, Jeri found it filled with papers. Lifting one out, she recognized it as a bill, with groceries itemized neatly. “Grandma, these are unpaid bills—and I recognize these names. You should send out a reminder—it’s been years, but you’re entitled to this.” Her grandmother walked over to the file drawer and lifted a piece of yellowed paper. “Oh, they lost a boy in the war.” She returned the paper to its file. Lifting another, she said, “They put two children through college, and those kids chose to raise their families here.” And she put the paper in its slot. Lifting another, she said “His dear wife had a stroke, very early. He took such good care of her.” And this time, as she put the yellowed bill back in its place, she slid the heavy drawer into the cabinet. “Yes, it’s time to toss this old cabinet. I don’t need anything here, let’s go upstairs.” This was Grandma Grace—a sharp mind with a generous heart. I like to think, if heaven has a basement, there’s an old file cabinet there. I think it holds some papers with my name. And I think a God of Grace slides closed that heavy drawer and turns my eyes toward the light. “Let’s go upstairs.”

January 2020 Photo by Justin Palmer

18 MARCH 2020

ABOUT THE AUTHOR Rik Cryderman is a retired hospital chaplain who worked for Beaumont Health for more than 30 years. He writes a Facebook page called “Pure Lewiston” for the village of Lewiston, Michigan.


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50' 40' 30' 20' 10'

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10'

20'

30' Small Tree Zone: Trees less than 25' tall/spread at least 25' from line

40'

50' Medium Tree Zone: Trees 25'–40' in height/spread at least 40' from line

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March 2020 Alger Delta  

March 2020 Alger Delta