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March 2020

MICHIGAN

COUNTRY LINES Great Lakes Energy Cooperative

CLEAN UP WITH

DIRTY GIRL FARM Introducing Electric Vehicle Rebates

Meet Your Director, Larry Monshor Sawing For A Sustainable FutureÂ


WATERFURNACE UNITS QUALIFY FOR A 26% FEDERAL TAX CREDIT 1

Harness the power of the sun...

...by using the Earth.

Geothermal gives you the freedom to focus on life WaterFurnace geothermal systems provide reliable operation 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year—rain or shine, day or night, windy or not. They use the stored solar energy in the ground to provide your family luxurious comfort and incredible savings. In fact, it’s the only HVAC system that’ll pay you back—and with the 26% federal tax credit1, now is a great time to switch to the Reliable Renewable. Contact your local WaterFurnace dealer today.

visit us at waterfurnace.com/Reliable

Bad Axe B & D Htg (989) 269-5280 bdheating.com

Caro AllTemp Comfort, Inc. (866) 844-HEAT (4328) geo4less.com

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

Muskegon Adams Htg & Clg (231) 873-2665 adamsheating cooling.com Portland ESI Htg & Clg (517) 647-6906 esiheating.com Sunfield Mark Woodman Plmb & Htg (517) 886-1138 mwphonline.com

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


Board of Directors

Mark Carson Chairman, District 2

01950 Anderson Rd., Boyne City, MI 49712 231-675-0561 • mcarson@glenergy.com

Robert Kran Vice-Chairman, District 6 7380 N. Tuttle Rd., Free Soil, MI 49411 231-464-5889 • bkran@glenergy.com

Paul Schemanski Secretary, District 1 5974 Stolt Rd., Petoskey, MI 49770 231-439-9079 • paul.schemanski@glenergy.com

Larry Monshor Treasurer, District 4 1541 Thumm Rd., Gaylord, MI 49735 989-370-2786 • lmonshor@glenergy.com

Howard Bowersox Director, District 8 23779 8 Mile Rd., Stanwood, MI 49346 219-670-0977 • hbowersox@glenergy.com

Electric Vehicle Incentives Now Available

Paul Byl Director, District 7

Bill Scott, Great Lakes Energy President/CEO

9941 W. Buchanan Rd., Shelby, MI 49455 231-861-5911 • pbyl@glenergy.com

Richard Evans Director, District 3 11195 Essex Rd., Ellsworth, MI 49729 231-883-3146 • revans@glenergy.com

Dale Farrier Director, District 5

2261 Wheeler Lake Rd. NE, Kalkaska, MI 49646 231-564-0853 • dfarrier@glenergy.com

John LaForge Director, District 9

7363 Walters Rd., Delton, MI 49046 269-623-2284 • jlaforge@glenergy.com

President/CEO: Bill Scott 888-485-2537

Communications Director/Editor: Lacey Matthews 231-487-1316 lmatthews@glenergy.com

Boyne City Headquarters 1323 Boyne Ave., P.O. Box 70 Boyne City, MI 49712 Hours: 8 a.m.–4:30 p.m. M–F Phone: 888-485-2537 Email: glenergy@glenergy.com

To report an outage, call: 1-888-485-2537

gtlakes.com Change of Address: 888-485-2537, ext. 8924 Great Lakes Energy is an equal opportunity provider and employer.

facebook.com/greatlakesenergy facebook.com/jointruestream

4 MARCH 2020

E

lectric vehicles have long been seen as bleeding-edge technology, too expensive and not good in the snow, but that’s all changing. At the beginning of the year, General Motors announced plans to invest over $2 billion in a Michigan-based plant to produce electric vehicles (EVs), including an all-electric Hummer. Ford has released plans for an all-electric Ford F-150. There is no denying that EVs are becoming ever more popular and may soon be a common sight throughout our service territory. To support the growing interest in EVs, we are proud to encourage the purchase of EV chargers and electric vehicles through new incentives (see chart inset for details). As an electric cooperative, our interest in EVs is not just due to the fact that they are powered by electricity but also because of the many benefits they offer: • EVs can be less expensive to operate than gasoline- or dieselpowered cars, and they require less maintenance. • EVs have no exhaust. Coupled with GLE’s commitment to providing more than 60% of our power from carbon-free sources, that makes them environmentally friendly. • EVs are convenient, simply plug them in. No more trips to the gas station. • And last but not least, EVs are fun to drive. Since they are battery-powered, there is no engine noise and they are zippy. Great Lakes Energy remains committed to empowering our members on their journey to become more energy efficient. We are excited to offer these new rebates to you, in addition to the many rebates offered through our Energy Optimization program.


Members Who INSTALL A LEVEL 2 SMART CHARGER

INSTALL A LEVEL 2 SMART CHARGER

PURCHASE A NEW ELECTRIC VEHICLE

DO NOT PURCHASE A NEW ELECTRIC VEHICLE

are eligible for a

are eligible for a

+

$1,000 REBATE*

+

$500 REBATE*

For more information, please visit gtlakes.com/energy-efficiency or call us today. *Charger must be installed at the location served by GLE with electric service, verification is required.

Internet at the Speed of Brian

"Farmer Brian" Bates and "Queen Bee Anne" Morningstar, Bear Creek Organic Farms

Fiber opens the door for connection. Brian couldn't believe how easy it was to video chat with Grandma for the very first time. Now that their home and business are equipped with Truestream fiber internet, Brian's family can enjoy the benefits of a fast, reliable connection that powers their personal connections. Our fiber network is expanding throughout the area’s communities—get internet at the speed of you today.

1-888-485-2537 | jointruestream.com *Certain restrictions apply. If construction for your area is completed before you register your interest in Truestream, a $149 in-home installation charge will apply. Construction charges may apply. Visit jointruestream.com for construction timelines.

Register now and you’ll receive free in-home installation* (a $149 value)!

Sign up now at jointruestream.com!


GUEST COLUMN

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MI CO-OP Community

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Also in Downtown Marquette:

oncker

• Delft Bistro • Steinhaus • Boomerang Retro & Relics

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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.

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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.


Most Votes On Facebook!

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GLE Photo Contest Enter to win a

$200

energy bill credit!

3

Submit Your “On The Farm” Photos!

Each month, members can submit photos on Facebook or our website for our photo contest. The photo with the most votes is published here along with other selections.

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Cutest Kids 1. Baby blues—Mitzi Carlson, Ludington 2. Fletcher and Aurora make Frosty!—Erin Randall, Beaver Island

Our March theme is On The Farm. Photos can be submitted by March 20 to be featured in the May issue.

3. Two months old—Leah Holbrook, Rapid City

How To Enter:

4. Christmas cutie—Holly Pattock, Dorr

Visit Facebook.com/greatlakesenergy and click “Photo Contest” from the menu tabs. Not on Facebook? You can also enter the contest at gtlakes.com/events. Make sure to vote and encourage others to vote for you, too. The photo receiving the most votes will be printed in an issue of Michigan Country Lines along with some of our other favorites. All photos printed in the magazine in 2020 will be entered to win a $200 bill credit in December 2020.

5. Enjoying his first snowshoe hunt—Kirsten VandeVoorde, Free Soil 6. Having fun at Grandma’s— Doris Platz, Tustin

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


SAWING For A Sustainable Future By Linda Kotzian

Commercial sawmills are energy intensive—in more ways than one. They require lots of power to run all the equipment needed: the mill itself, chippers, air compressors, debarkers, rip-saws, planers, etc. But what they need the most is people power. The people behind the equipment are the real source of power. They can be found out in the woods logging, meeting landowners to discuss sustainable tree removal, and trying to build sales for the sawmill. It is their hard work that contributes to the success of the business. Bob Mayo, GLE member and owner/operator of Jarvis Sawmill in Shelby, readily acknowledges that. Mayo came to the sawmill business from a construction background in the early 1980s, hired by the late Dale Jarvis, who started Jarvis Sawmill in the 1960s with his father. Bob Mayo, owner of Jarvis Sawmill, stands proudly next to one of the mill’s logging trucks.

12 MARCH 2020

“I thought I’d give it a try,” Mayo remembers of his first day, since he was no stranger to hard work and enjoyed being outdoors.


“Being a business owner makes you realize that it’s important to help make your community stronger so it’s a place that people want to live and work.”

Almost 40 years later, Mayo now owns the mill after becoming Jarvis’ business partner and buying the property where the mill was located. He learned over the years to do nearly every job the mill required, including running the mill and head saw.

These days, Jarvis Sawmill provides products and services such as pallets, furniture grade lumber, flooring/barn lumber, landscape bark and woodchips, sawdust, logging and timber buying. The sawmill is also a Husqvarna chainsaw sales and service dealer. And business is good, Mayo reports. Sometimes the demand for certain products in agricultural-heavy Oceana County, such as apple boxes, makes it advantageous for Mayo to work with another local business, Schmieding Sawmill, to efficiently produce the number of apple boxes needed. “We cut the wood,” Mayo explains, “and they nail the boxes together.”

Capital Credits from GLE Since the mill is on GLE lines, Mayo receives capital credit refunds. The refunds, Mayo says, give him an appreciation of what it means to be a co-op member.

“It’s like a bonus,” he observes, and a bonus he knows that sawmills not served by an electric cooperative don’t receive.

Community and Future Workforce He also appreciates GLE’s community involvement, which he recognizes as an important aspect of his own business. “Being a business owner makes you realize that it’s important to help make your community stronger so it’s a place that people want to live and work,” he notes. Mayo is a member of the Shelby Optimist Club and helps the local Goodfellows organization with fundraising. He’s also a member of the Michigan Association of Timbermen. Among other activities, the group works to generate interest at the high school level in becoming part of tomorrow’s sawmill operations labor force. Mayo notes that while working at a sawmill is still hard work, modern sawmill equipment is now computerized, and sawmill work often requires sophisticated math skills to calculate the most efficient cuts and minimize waste. Cultivating future employees is critical to the “people power” needed to conscientiously harvest timber and meet growing and future demand for all the agricultural, commercial, and residential wood products needed. Jarvis Sawmill is all-in on that.

“I like the people-owned concept,” he states. He generally uses the mill’s capital credit refund to pay toward his next electric bill. 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


Larry Monshor GLE Director, Focused on Learning, Sharing

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ith a career that has ranged from nuclear engineer to licensed CPA, Great Lakes Energy’s District 4 Director Larry Monshor believes in the value of lifelong learning and sharing what he knows to make people’s lives better. Larry has been a GLE member for nearly 16 years and a director for almost 13 of those years. Previously, he worked over 30 years as a power plant engineer/manager, which provided him with unique insight into power production and distribution—a huge asset in his role with GLE. For the past 20 years, Larry has worked with Native American organizations and teaches online auditing and accounting classes for Davenport and Liberty universities. “I sure do love when a student I am teaching has that ‘light bulb’ moment and understands the subject,” Larry remarks. He carries his love of learning into his duties as a GLE director, having attained Director Gold status, the highest co-op director certification available. His financial knowledge provides his greatest strength as a director and includes his recent licensure as a CPA. Larry is treasurer for GLE’s Board of Directors, as well as chair for the co-op’s audit committee, bringing any board concerns to GLE’s auditing firm. He also serves as vice chair of the board of directors for Wolverine Power Cooperative, GLE’s power supplier in Cadillac, as well as on their audit committee. Cooperation, Larry believes, is the best way to get things done. It’s no surprise, then, that Larry chooses “Cooperation Among Cooperatives” as his favorite of the seven co-op principles. “Working together to meet the electrical power needs of rural Michigan is very important,” Larry says, noting that sharing ideas and resources with other electric co-ops helps accomplish that. He cites the area of safety as a good example. “Recognizing major staff achievements—especially in the area of safety—makes me proud,” Larry adds. “Safety at work is an essential part of GLE’s culture.”

Personally Speaking Larry and his wife of 47 years, Linda, live in Gaylord. Together, they raised five sons and three daughters. Their family now includes spouses of their children, along with 14 grandchildren. Larry expresses that he and Linda are proud of each family member.

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Between family, a heavy work and teaching schedule that requires travel, and his obligations as a GLE director, Larry makes time for community activities. He has donated nearly 14 gallons of blood to the Red Cross and volunteered for three years with the Adopt-a-Highway program as part of a crew which cares for the section of M-32 that runs in front of the natural gas generating plant in Elmira. With all his work-related travel, however, Larry says, “There’s really no place like home.” He appreciates every opportunity to spend time with family and fulfill his role as a GLE director in his northern Michigan community.

On Being a GLE Director Larry looks forward to being re-elected in 2020 as director for District 4 (Crawford, Montmorency, Oscoda, and Otsego counties). “It’s truly an honor and a privilege to serve on Great Lakes Energy’s Board of Directors,” Larry states. He feels his biggest challenge in being a director—dealing with member concerns and regulatory issues—is also his biggest reward. “Serving our co-op in a fiscally responsible manner to provide reliable and cost-effective power is what I enjoy doing,” he notes. “I utilize my previous experience along with my recent CPA license to help make decisions which will put GLE on a viable course into the future.” That course lately involves the evolution and growth of Truestream, GLE’s high-speed fiber network. Larry states, “Many want fiber to the home and it is extremely important for GLE’s future endeavors.” “Truestream has taken major effort and time on the part of GLE’s staff,” he adds. “It’s a project that will indeed enhance the quality of life for our members and shows our commitment to serve members in a new way.”


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MICHIGAN COUNTRY LINES 17


Guess this photo and enter to win a

GUEST COLUMN

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$50

energy bill credit!

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

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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

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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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March 2020 GLE  

March 2020 GLE