October 2022 Cherryland

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HORSEPOWER A look inside Grand Hotel Stables COUNTRY LINES October 2022 MICHIGAN Cherryland Electric Cooperative Co-ops To Benefit From Direct Pay Incentives Barb’s Backyard Birds Takes Flight In Interlochen Highlights: Northwestern Michigan Fair
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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: Robert Kran , Great Lakes Energy, chairman; Tony Anderson , Cherryland Electric Cooperative, vice chairman; Eric Baker , Wolverine Power Cooperative, secretary-treasurer; Craig Borr , president and CEO.


Michigan Country Lines

201 Townsend St., Suite 900 Lansing, MI 48933 248-534-7358


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.


MI Co-op Community




A look inside Mackinac Island’s Grand Hotel Stables.


Hunting with Dad: The embarrassment of Gari Nowland’s first hunt was quickly replaced by her father’s love and pride.


Instagram Contest

Use #micoopcommunity for a chance to be featured here and on our Instagram account.

Recipe Contest

See details on page 10.

Win a $50 bill credit!

Guest Column

See details on page 18.

Win $150 for stories published!

Hugh and Julie Covert inspire others while living the dream.
Baked Goods: Comforting recipes straight from your oven.
Contents October 2022 Vol. 42, No. 9 /michigancountrylines countrylines.com/michigancountrylines
Instagram contest winner A star-filled sky in a frame of trees @glenrobertsonphoto (Glen Robertson)
submit reader content & more, visit countrylines.com/community


/cherrylandelectriccoop @cherrylandec


David Schweitzer, President 231-883-5860


Melinda Lautner, Senior Vice President 231-947-2509


Gabe Schneider, Secretary 517-449-6453


Tom Van Pelt, Treasurer 231-386-5234


Valarie Handy, Director 231-392-4705


Terry Lautner, Director 231-946-4623


Dean Adams, Director 231-642-0014


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.


October Board Meeting Rescheduled For

Monday, Oct. 17.

As a reminder, the October board of directors meeting has been changed to Oct. 17. The board voted to move the board meeting from Oct. 24 due to scheduling conflicts. Members are always encouraged to provide input by email, phone, or in person. To have your comments included in the monthly board packet for review, please submit them to Dawn Garrock at dgarrock@ cherrylandelectric.coop.

Cherryland Buys And Donates Two Pigs From Members At The Northwestern Michigan Fair

In August, the co-op purchased two pigs at the Northwestern Michigan Fair 4-H livestock auction. Cherryland member Hattie Hays, daughter of Jennifer Hays, and Elizabeth Hagelstein, daughter of Brad and Andrea Hagelstein, sold their pigs to Cherryland. The pigs were donated to Goodwill’s Food Rescue and The Father Fred Foundation. Congrats to all on pigs well raised! For more highlights from the Northwestern Michigan Fair, check out page 12!

Members Support Local Nonprofits Through Cherryland Cares

Cherryland Cares distributes funds to local nonprofit organizations in need of financial support. The funds distributed by Cherryland Cares come from generous 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 cec@cherrylandelectric. coop. If you are an area nonprofit agency seeking financial help, please contact Dawn Garrock at 231-486-9234 or email dgarrock@ cherrylandelectric.coop. The deadline for fourthquarter applications is Friday, Dec. 9.

October Is National Cooperative Month

Cherryland is one of over 900 electric cooperatives powering over 20 million American homes, businesses, farms, and schools in 48 states. Thank you to all the co-op members and employees that keep Cherryland and the cooperative tradition alive and well.

4 OCTOBER 2022

Direct Pay

Since the beginning of our shift towards more renewable energy in 2006, for-profit developers have captured government incentives in one hand and energy sales to cooperatives like Cherryland and its power supplier, Wolverine Power Cooperative, in the other hand. The incentives were reductions in income taxes. Since Cherryland and Wolverine do not pay income taxes, we have never been able to capture (or pass on) any of the tax advantages.

Wolverine has moved its portfolio of wholesale power to more than 62% carbon-free while negotiating with these for-profit entities. It was impossible to build anything on our own at a cheaper cost to our members. Whether you like government incentives or not, every member of Cherryland has benefited from the programs over the years.

For a long while, our national trade association, the National Rural Electric

Cooperative Association (NRECA), has been seeking a legislative solution that would put electric cooperatives on the same playing field as for-profit developers. Recently, they were successful in getting language into the budget reconciliation bill that Congress worked on for over a year.

For the first time, this bill creates a direct payment option for electric cooperatives. While the amount of the incentive is the same regardless of taxpaying ability or not, the payouts are different. A for-profit developer gets a reduction in income taxes. A notfor-profit electric cooperative gets a check. Thus, the playing field is even.

The investment tax credits and production tax credits can be used for solar, wind, carbon capture, nuclear, manufacturing of clean energy components, and other clean energy technologies. Electric cooperatives will now be able to build, own, and control the carbon-reducing facilities

of their choice. Cooperative members will benefit from lower-cost projects because the incentives will be used to lower the price of the projects rather than increase the balance sheets of private developers.

I get it if you don’t like government incentives. I understand the arguments. However, it’s the job of every cooperative to play the game that is being played. NRECA did a great job of getting us into the game for the good of every member. Keeping rates affordable is a core electric cooperative mission. This is a huge step in affordability as we go into a future with an ever-increasing demand for a carbon-free generation.

Utility-scale wind and solar can quickly get into the range of $100 million. This legislation can potentially take $25 million off that price tag. This will be $25 million that doesn’t have to be recovered in an energy charge to a cooperative member. This is a whole new ball game for electric cooperatives at a time when building new generation is paramount to preventing future problems.

NRECA works on behalf of 900 electric cooperatives across the country. They have dedicated staff working in the halls of Congress daily. This national trade association, founded in 1942, is a great example of cooperation among cooperatives that allows electric cooperatives of all sizes to have a unified voice on national issues.

“This is a whole new ball game for electric cooperatives at a time when building new generation is paramount to preventing future problems.”





For anyone who has considered moving to an island to pursue a passion for sailing, take inspiration from Hugh and Julie Covert. After making a “bucket list” on New Year’s Eve in 2010 and pondering it for a couple of years, the couple transformed their dreams into reality.

Julie met Hugh in Baltimore in 2009, and describes the encounter as “essentially love at first sight.” Shortly thereafter, she learned to love sailing as much as he did. Hugh spent 20 years captaining tall ships on both the East and West Coasts, through the St. Lawrence Seaway to the Bahamas. When skippering a schooner in Traverse City, he searched for property to support his dream of having a place where he could moor a sailboat in his backyard. He had purchased a property in 2003 and built a house on Shelter Island, a small island just off Drummond Island.

In 2010, they moved to Shelter Island and began to fulfill their dream of building their own schooner. Great timing and happenstance supported their dream when Julie learned the local paper, the Drummond Island Digest, was for sale. Purchasing the paper in 2014 aligned with her writing and photography interests, plus the paper would serve as a tool for communicating progress on the schooner’s construction.

“I kept hoping someone would bring a tall ship to Drummond Island,” says Hugh. “Then I decided it could be me.”

By the time the couple moved to Shelter Island, Hugh had built seven

boats. Sailing since age 4, Hugh had both sailing and engineering in his genes. The Coverts knew the logistics of getting materials and volunteers to Shelter Island would be challenging, whereas Drummond Island would allow friends and neighbors to view progress as they constructed the schooner. They purchased property on Drummond Island, then built a structure that included a 30-by-72-foot workshop and an insulated room to keep epoxy glue and paint warm, plus power to run a chop saw and drills.

For two and a half years, the couple worked seven days a week to construct their own schooner. They were assisted by more than 50 volunteers (both residents and seasonal visitors) who swept floors, painted the hull, or donated trees for

the project. Julie reported progress in a monthly blog.

Constructed of 18 types of wood and epoxy, the 78-foot Schooner Huron Jewel yields sleeping quarters for Captain Hugh, First Mate Julie, two deckhands, and six passengers. Its name reflects its birthplace and Hugh and Julie’s initials. Cedar trees harvested from Drummond Island formed the gaff and boom. The Schooner Huron Jewel was christened with 15-year-old rum amid a crowd of island residents in 2018, then set sail for the start of many adventures as the Drummond Island Tall Ship Company.

The location for Drummond Island Tall Ships offers an ideal vantage point for all the excursions they offer aboard the Huron Jewel. The

The Drummond Island tall ship on a day sail.
B y A l l i e B r a w yel
6 OCTOBER 2022

island’s surroundings are a labyrinth of channels, inlets, and harbors.

Each season, Hugh and Julie also provide the opportunity for two deckhands to learn to sail the waters surrounding Drummond Island and Canada’s North Channel. To train deckhands trying to gain experience to work on bigger schooners as Hugh did, they’ll take deckhands with no experience but enthusiasm, curiosity, and willingness to learn.

Hugh believes that writing down dreams is essential versus just talking about them. “You have to actually do it. You have to make it happen and there’s no time better than the present,” he says.

After the pandemic gave them time to reflect on what is important, Hugh and Julie were even more motivated to encourage others to follow their dreams. They set out on a ninemonth voyage this past August to sail from their homeport through the Great Lakes to the St. Lawrence Seaway, then south along the eastern seaboard. They plan to participate in

Left: First Mate Julie Covert and Captain Hugh launched the Drummond Island Tall Ship Company in 2018 with sailing trips on their handcrafted Schooner Huron Jewel.

Right: First Mate Julie Covert and deck hands raising the sails.


the Great Chesapeake Bay Schooner Race and Annapolis Sailboat Show, and most importantly, at each port of call, they will encourage people to live their dreams. They’ll continue south for the winter spreading their message, and return to Drummond Island in Spring 2023. On their “dream inspiration tour” of over 8,000 nautical miles, their mission is to share their story with thousands of people to inspire others to live their dreams.

Sailing with the Coverts and crew is a relaxing yet adventurous experience. It’s also as interactive as you wish. Passengers can assist with raising and lowering sails and even taking the wheel under Captain Hugh’s watchful eye. The Schooner Huron Jewel is allowing the Coverts to live out their motto, “sailing the dream,” while sharing their experience with passengers with great delight.

For the blog, more photos, and schedule, visit:

Flag: United States

Rig: Gaff rigged

Model: Schooner

Homeport: Drummond Island, Michigan

Waters: Great Lakes Season: June–September

Built: Drummond Island, Michigan

Designer: Hugh Covert

Length: 60 ft. on deck, 78 ft. overall

Beam: 14 ft. 8 in.

Draft: 4 ft. 4 in. with centerboard raised; 9 ft. with board lowered

Rig Height: 60 ft.

Sail Area: 1,700 sq. ft.

Displacement: 40,000 lbs.

Spar Material: Wood

Hull: Wood, epoxy, and fi berglass cloth

Power: Twin 100 hp Yanmar diesels

Hull Speed: Estimated 10.3–14 knots

Passengers: Six passengers plus crew; sleeps six plus crew comfortably

Crew: Sails with two crew

Ownership: Drummond Island Tall Ship Company

/DITallShip ditallship.com 7MICHIGAN COUNTRY LINES

Barb’s Backyard Birds Takes Flight In Interlochen

Barbara Ezell loved birds. She loved birds so much that she decided to get a job helping others admire birds. Now, there’s a shop in Interlochen with her name on it, dedicated to sharing her beloved pastime with anyone who walks through the doors.

For seven years, Barb battled ovarian cancer. “She did great for seven years. She responded positively to all the treatment,“ explained her husband of 50 years, Stephen Ezell. During that time, she would daydream about opening a birding shop of her own with co-worker and naturalist Dan Kerby.

“He’s probably the foremost bird authority in northern Michigan. My wife worked with him for about 10 years, and they became good friends. They had always dreamed about spreading their wings a little bit, no pun intended,” chuckled Stephen.

As soon as their dreams started taking flight—Barb relapsed. There wasn’t much more doctors could do. But she wasn’t about to give up on her dream. Stephen said, “I scheduled a little meeting with Barb and Dan, and literally on her death bed, we said, ‘Dan, if you want to back out, we understand due to the circumstances.’ And to his credit, he did not. He wanted to move forward, and that’s what Barb wanted too. She wanted us to make this happen.”

8 OCTOBER 2022

Barb passed away on May 20, 2022. A few short months later, the doors at Barb’s Backyard Birds opened in Interlochen at the southwest corner of U.S. 31 and J. Maddy Parkway.

“That was hard,” said Dan. “Barb was just such a great person, and we had a lot of fun working together. When we started talking about it, I thought, wow, that would be pretty cool. In all honesty, I didn’t think it would happen, but here it is.”

“Dan and I became partners out of fate, I guess you could say,” explained Stephen, and they have big plans for Barb’s Backyard Birds. While they offer all kinds of bird feeders and seeds— they also want to create programs for guided nature walks and educational opportunities for local schools. They hope they can create a space for birdwatchers to come together and share their stories.

There’s a growing bird-watching, or birding, community, and Stephen

says it’s linked to the pandemic, as more people turned to exploring the great outdoors. Dan says new technology, like Cornell University’s Lab of Ornithology’s eBird and Merlin apps, have also helped boost interest, especially among younger generations. “It makes it more fun for young people. It kind of makes it more of a challenge,” Dan explained. The eBird app allows birders to track when, where, and what kind of birds they spot. The Merlin app will listen to your surroundings and identify the different bird chirps and songs.

“You’ve got to be exposed to something before you know if you like it, so come in and check things out. It may spur interest, and it’s something you can do whether you’re strolling through Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore or sitting on your back deck,” said Stephen.

Both Dan and Stephen agree, “This was Barb’s dream, and we’re committed to making it happen.”

As Barb’s Backyard Birds’ resident expert, Dan has some tips for getting started this fall!

You’ll want:

1. Platform or hopper bird feeder

2. Seed mix that’s high in black oil sunflower seed

Dan says expect to see a number of species. Fall is a transition time so as many of our summer birds head south, new birds will be passing through—and hopefully making a stop by your new bird feeder!

“This was Barb’s dream, and we’re committed to making it happen.”

Win a $50 energy bill credit!



Healthy Living due Nov. 1

National Cherry Month due Dec. 1

Submit your favorite recipe for a chance to win a $50 bill credit and have your recipe featured in Country Lines with a photo and a video.

Submit your recipe at micoopkitchen.com, or send it via email

(include your full name and co-op) to recipes@countrylines.com.



Carr, Midwest Energy

cans crescent rolls

ounces cream cheese, room temperature

cup sour cream

tablespoons Miracle Whip or mayonnaise

package dry ranch dressing mix

teaspoon garlic salt

teaspoon garlic powder

cup broccoli florets, finely chopped

cup cauliflower florets, finely chopped

medium carrots, finely chopped

cup cherry tomatoes, halved Preheat oven to 375 F. In an ungreased 9x13 pan, lay crescent rolls flat. Press the dough on the bottom and sides of the pan to form a crust. Bake for 10 minutes. In a bowl, mix together the cream cheese, sour cream, Miracle Whip/ mayo, ranch dressing mix, garlic salt, and garlic powder until well combined. Spread over crust evenly. Arrange broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, and tomatoes evenly over cream cheese layer. Serve immediately or refrigerate 1–2 hours before serving.

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 MI
CO-OP Recipes
GOODS Comforting recipes straight from your oven. 10 OCTOBER 2022


2 cups flour

1½ teaspoons baking soda

2 teaspoons baking powder

1½ teaspoons salt

2 teaspoons cinnamon

2 cups sugar

¾ cup buttermilk

¾ cup canola oil

4 eggs

2 cups raw grated carrots

1 (8½ -ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained

½ cup chopped nuts

1 (3½ -ounce) bag flaked coconut


1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened to room temperature

¼ cup butter, softened to room temperature

2 teaspoons vanilla

1 pound powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350 F. Combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl. Add sugar, buttermilk, canola oil, and eggs. Mix well. Add carrots, pineapple, nuts, and coconut. Mix well. Pour into a greased 9x13 pan. Bake 20 minutes. Turn temperature down to 275 F and bake approximately 45 minutes longer until cake tester comes out clean. Be careful not to under or overbake. Let cake cool to room temperature. Beat cream cheese, butter, and vanilla at low speed until fluffy. Add powdered sugar gradually until light and fluffy. Spread on cake. This cake is delicious, and is even better the next day.


1 (4-ounce) package regular saltine crackers

1 stick butter

1 stick margarine

1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed

1 (12-ounce) package semisweet chocolate chips

1 cup chopped pecans

Preheat oven 350 F. Line the bottom of a cookie sheet with saltines, salty side up. Place butter and margarine in a saucepan over low heat and stir until melted. Add the brown sugar and stir until ingredients are well blended and a sauce-like consistency. Pour the brown sugar syrup evenly over the crackers, smoothing with a wooden spoon.

Place in oven 6 to 8 minutes (mixture will bubble on top of saltines and form a toffee layer underneath). Remove cookie sheet from the oven; realign the saltines with a wooden spoon (they get out of line as they bubble). Pour chocolate chips evenly over saltines and put back in oven for 2 minutes to melt. Remove from oven and quickly spread melted chocolate chips as if you were frosting a cake. Sprinkle evenly with nuts and place in freezer for 10-15 minutes. Remove from freezer and cut into squares with a sharp knife. Cover with foil or store in a container in the refrigerator or freezer. Makes 30 squares.


Cindy Thome, Alger Delta

½ cup butter

½ cup vegetable oil

1¾ cup sugar

2 beaten eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla

2½ cups flour

4 tablespoons cocoa powder

½ teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

½ teaspoon cinnamon

½ teaspoon ground cloves


½ cup soft butter

½ cup soft cream cheese

1 teaspoon vanilla

3 cups powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 325 F. Grease and flour a 9x13 pan. In a large bowl, mix together all cake ingredients until combined. Pour into the pan. Bake for 40–45 minutes. Cool completely before frosting. To make the frosting, in a small bowl, combine all of the frosting ingredients and beat in a mixer for 2 minutes. Frost the cake and enjoy.


Cheryl Dillenbeck, Great Lakes Energy

2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1½ cups sugar, divided

½ cup butter, cubed

1 cup flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

¾ cup milk

1 egg, lightly beaten

Preheat oven to 350 F. Combine berries with the lemon juice and ½ cup of the sugar.

Bring to a boil, take off from heat and set

aside. Add butter to a 11x7 baking dish and melt in the oven. When melted, remove from oven. In a smaller bowl, combine the remaining 1 cup sugar, flour, baking powder, salt, milk, and lightly beaten egg. Pour this batter over the melted butter in the baking dish. Pour the blueberry mixture next, but don’t stir. Bake 40–45 minutes or until golden brown. Serve warm or at room temperature. Top with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream. I love this recipe because I can use fresh or frozen berries.


Cherryland purchased member Hattie Hays’ pig, Russel, at the 4-H livestock auction. Pigs are donated to local food pantries for distribution to their clients. Way to go, Hattie!

Goin’ To The Northwestern Michigan Fair!

Every year, Cherryland Electric Cooperative is proud to sponsor and volunteer during the Northwestern Michigan Fair! From flipping flapjacks at the annual pancake breakfast to getting competitive and passing out prizes for Special Kids’ and Kids’ Day to purchasing pigs from local 4-H students—it’s an event we look forward to every year!

Here are just a few highlights!

Cherryland’s 1941 Ford pickup greets festival goers at the fair’s entrance.

12 OCTOBER 2022

Kids toss bean bags to win prizes on Special Kids’ and Kids’ Day!

Tammy, Courtney, and Alli ready to play some games and give out prizes at the co-op tent on Special Kids’ and Kids’ Day!


Your Board In Action: August Board Meeting

• The board discussed the date of next year’s Annual Meeting. The tentative date is set for Thursday, June 15.

• The co-op’s IT administrator gave a presentation, highlighting the latest cybersecurity concerns and the plan in place to protect Cherryland from cyberattacks, as well as the co-op’s response plan.

• The co-op’s chief financial officer presented the results of the National Rural Utilities Cooperative Finance Corporation’s (CFC) key ratio trend analysis. The analysis compares the financials of cooperatives nationwide in a variety of categories. For instance, Cherryland was ranked first amongst similarly sized cooperatives nationwide in efficiency, with 659 members for every one Cherryland employee. The national average for cooperatives of similar size is nearly half that, with 368 members for every one employee.

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 Board Assistant Secretary Dawn Garrock at dgarrock@cherrylandelectric.coop a minimum of three business days before the monthly board meeting.

@CherrylandEC @CherrylandEC
out our social media for more Fair fun: 13MICHIGAN COUNTRY LINES


A look inside Grand Hotel Stables

If you’ve ever visited Mackinac Island, there is a familiar sound unique to the gorgeous vacation destination—the clip-clop of horse hooves along the streets. Automobilefree for over a hundred years, it’s the majestic horses of Mackinac that make things move on the island. And none quite so beautiful as the naturally high-stepping, flashy Hackney horses of the Grand Hotel Stables.

The heavily-muscled, wide-chested beauties move gracefully through the streets and along the drive leading to the Grand Hotel’s majestic white pillars. They carry VIP guests and those looking for an exceptionally breathtaking view of the island from one of the Grand Hotel Stables’ Hackney-drawn carriages.

Unlike carriage horses you might see in city streets, the Hackneys of Mackinac Island benefi t from fresh air without working alongside cars or trucks and their noxious fumes. Horse experts agree that horses that are well-cared for, with proper shoeing and fi tting equipment, are in their element pulling carriages. The breed is desperate for purpose and has developed for just such a task over the centuries.

While the Hackneys love to work hard, they are treated like royalty at the Grand Hotel’s 8,700-squarefoot working stable. One can only describe the barns as pristine, with well-tended stalls and fresh air for their resting time. In fact, as staff speak about the horses, it’s as if they are describing any other co-worker, with knowledge of their personalities, peccadilloes, and preferences.

14 OCTOBER 2022

“He has a thing for women, it’s terrible,” Mosley said. “Like, he’ll walk away from you to go see a girl.”

Another stable lover is Scotty, who is not above resting the side of his face against Mosley’s shoulder to get some special attention.

“I’ve never seen a horse right from the start in love with everybody,” Mosley said. “He’s super comfortable with everyone he meets.”

While the relationships with the horses and the staff are strong, it’s not a lifetime occupation for the Hackneys. A decade is about as long as most work as carriage horses on the island, and then the stable manager’s job is to find appropriate retirement gigs for the equine employees. A recent

retiree was having a harder time with Michigan’s cold winters and, through the Hackney grapevine, found a perfect warm-weather fit with a woman in Savannah. She hooks him up and drives with him occasionally, but otherwise, he lives a life of leisure.

Another found his way to a woman in California and is still doing a little pleasure driving and prancing in the ring for a horse show or two every year. His new owner just loves him.

“The two of them seemed to hit it right off,” Mosley said. “It was one of those things where you felt like you were a matchmaker, and they just kind of clicked.”

The adoration of the horses is clear. Everyone seems to fall in love with the Hackney horses of Grand Hotel Stables, from the staff to retirement owners to the guests who excitedly climb into the carriage.

On your next visit to the island, stop by the 8,700-square-foot working stable to learn more about these iconic animals, and take a free and interactive self-guided tour of the approximately 30 antique sleighs and carriages. It’s free of charge and open to all Mackinac Island visitors. grandhotel.com

Stable Manager Ben Mosley regales folks with tales of the horses like Chief, the local ladies’ man.



Enter to win a $200 energy bill credit!

Submit Your “Outdoor Adventures” Photos By Oct. 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 October theme is Outdoor Adventures! Photos can be submitted through Oct. 20 to be featured in our January 2023 issue.

Enter Your Photos And Win A Bill Credit!

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 65 31 2
1. Beautiful black swans share nesting duties.—Laurel Riley 2. Bird’s eye view!—Tammy Jarvis 3. Ruffled feathers.—Holly Wiltse 4. So hungry!—Meilin Ferguson 5. Beautiful feathered chicken named Peeper.—Robert Lenox 6. Proud and majestic.—Chris Johnson

Leelanau Energy Helps Members Go Solar AND Save Money!

Agroup of like-minded Leelanau County locals has been working together to promote renewable energy and energy conservation for years. The nonprofit goes by Leelanau Energy and prides itself on playing matchmaker for energy-efficient opportunities and the necessary resources to take advantage of them. Most recently, they’ve been granted $60,000 in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding through Leelanau Township, and they plan to use that money to help Cherryland members in need. We sat down with Leelanau Energy Board Director Joe DeFors and Leelanau Energy Member Beth Verhey to find out how.

members will save $0.10 for every kilowatt-hour produced by that solar panel. Those savings are passed on directly to the member in the form of a bill credit. A win-win for Leelanau Energy—not only meeting their goal of boosting the region’s use of renewables but also saving members money along the way.

considered qualified for this program. So, I think that is also extremely helpful.” NMCAA says a household is automatically qualified if they’ve received State Emergency Relief (SER) energy assistance in the last year or if at least one person in the home receives Supplemental Security Income (SSI) through Social Security.

What’s the catch?

The approved ARPA funding will be used to expand Cherryland’s existing low-income community solar program, by purchasing community solar subscriptions on behalf of Leelanau Township members in need of some financial assistance. DeFors explained, “The panels are $600 each for a 15-year lease. Our concept is to allocate 10 solar panels, so $6,000, to 10 households, which equals the $60,000 from the ARPA funding.” For each panel subscription, Cherryland

First, members must live in Leelanau Township. From there, Leelanau Energy has partnered with the Northwestern Michigan Community Action Agency (NMCAA) for the application process. Through this process, members will apply for NMCAA’s Weatherization Assistance by filling out a referral form. The form will ask for information about the applicant’s income, homeownership or landlord agreements, and the condition of their home. From there, an intake specialist will reach out to discuss your application. If you qualify, NMCAA will make sure your home is as energy efficient as possible! Then it’s time to talk solar! Verhey says, “If you’ve already qualified for other health and human services programs, you are automatically

There really isn’t one. This program not only helps you optimize your home’s energy efficiency but also helps you lower your monthly electric bills. “This is a great example of agencies and the township partnering on shared goals. It’s just been excellent. There are folks and organizations out there that care and are concerned and are willing to work to help make a difference,” said DeFors. Verhey agreed, saying, “It’s about understanding a living wage and the true cost of living, how much we need a viable workforce on the peninsula, and how to make it affordable. With the right puzzle pieces together, it can be done!”

Funding a program like this through the American Rescue Plan is a model that both DeFors and Verhey say can be replicated by every township. “It’s a fairly simple model, so we’re just hoping it might be replicated through the county.”

To apply for this low-income community solar program, visit https://www.nmcaa.net/energy.asp

If you have other questions, suggestions, or ideas regarding renewable energy in Leelanau County, visit leelanauenergy.org. To learn more about Cherryland’s renewable energy programs, visit cherrylandelectric.coop/renewable-energy-programs

How will this funding help Cherryland members?
Who qualifies for this assistance, and how do I apply?

First Time Bow Hunting With Dad

Every fall, I have the same warm and wonderful memory of my first year of bow hunting with my dad. My dad put me in his usual tree stand, a pine tree at the edge of a field. He said he was certain I would see deer in this spot.

The first thing I realized is I’m terrified of heights, but I stayed up in the tree, knowing my dad wouldn’t put me in a spot that wasn’t safe and the best chance to see deer. My determination to push past my fears was rewarded soon. I had deer coming out regularly. I had six arrows. I had let my first one fly. I missed. Then I let my second, third, fourth, and fifth arrows fly as well. Missed every time. Who knew how much a pine tree moved in the wind, or how different it was shooting down, instead of straight across?

Well, I was learning with every arrow. Crazy enough, the deer kept coming back in, I was given one more chance, so I pulled back, waiting for the swaying to line up, held my breath, and let it fly. Finally, I got one!

What I remember most is my dad’s face lighting up with pride when he saw the trail of the one I did hit. Oh, he laughed that I used every arrow and thankfully only hit the one. I actually ended up making a great shot on that one, and it helped feed our family. Seeing my dad smile at me as he did with such pride, mixed with humor, is my most cherished memory with my dad. It’s moments like that, that I learned even embarrassing stories can hold the most loving memories. My dad took the time to teach me how to hunt, track, clean, and process a deer. It was my dad who first taught me to appreciate, honor, and care for nature.

As it can help care for us, in many ways. I tend to think of my dad more often when I’m outside, as my love for nature started with him.

Gari was the last of five children in her family and is named after her dad. She enjoys fishing, hunting, watching nature, reading, writing, and crafting.


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Guest Column
“Seeing my dad smile at me as he did with such pride, mixed with humor, is my most cherished memory with my dad.”
18 OCTOBER 2022

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