Current State

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Mid-Michigan's news destination for the informed, the caring and the curious. News and issues, arts and attitudes, and the personalities that make the heart of Michigan beat.

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Radio Made in Michigan
11:18 am
Fri January 30, 2015

Current State #467 | January 30, 2015

Today on Current State: January Month in Review; a new falcon at the Board of Water and Light’s Eckert Power Station; and Live Music Friday with Sally Potter.

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Politics & Government
11:16 am
Fri January 30, 2015

Month in Review: January's biggest news stories

Current State host Mark Bashore with (front to back) Mickey Hirten, Tim Skubick and Kathleen Grey prepare for our Month in Review discussion for January.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

With months to go before the vote, the fate of Michigan’s one cent sales tax hike has been leading the news throughout January.

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Environment
11:11 am
Fri January 30, 2015

BWL falcon family future up in the air

A 2014 image of Viper and Eckert in Lansing.
Credit http://lbwl.com/

Some downtown Lansing residents are being watched intently for signs of courtship. The saga of the peregrine falcons who live at the Lansing Board of Water and Light’s Eckert Power Station continues with some new twists.

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Arts & Culture
11:10 am
Fri January 30, 2015

LIVE MUSIC FRIDAY: Sally Potter

Sally Potter performing live in WKAR's Studio S.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

Today’s Live Music Friday guest on Current State is Sally Potter, a well known folk musician and promoter in mid-Michigan. Sally has the big job of scheduling all of the acts that come to town for Ten Pound Fiddle concerts most Friday evenings.

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Radio Made in Michigan
11:52 am
Thu January 29, 2015

Current State #466 | January 29, 2015

Today on Current State: Counting Lansing's homeless population; Eric and Nancy Schertzing look back at his campaign for Congress; the Hmong people of Michigan; and the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra celebrates the birthday of Mozart.

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Community
11:47 am
Thu January 29, 2015

Volunteers brave cold to connect with Lansing's homeless

Dozens of people led by the Volunteers of America in Lansing scoured the streets early Thursday morning to seek out the homeless and guide them to shelter.
Kevin Lavery/WKAR

Dozens of volunteers have wrapped up an evening out in the cold on the streets of Lansing. Last night, the Volunteers of America in Lansing conducted its annual Point in Time Count, which tracks the homeless in our community.

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Politics & Government
11:39 am
Thu January 29, 2015

Schertzings recall challenges, rewards of congressional campaign

Eric Schertzing ran unsuccessfully for Congress in 2014.
Credit WKAR File Photo

On Monday, East Lansing’s Eric and Nancy Schertzing spoke with Current State to look back on an unforgettable year. 2014 was the year Eric Schertzing decided to pursue a dream:  to represent Lansing and East Lansing in the U.S. Congress. The effort failed. The Democrat lost November’s general election to Republican Mike Bishop, who, today, represents Michigan’s 8th District. Despite the loss, both described the experience of running as an unforgettable honor. Schertzing is again focused on his responsibilities as Ingham County Treasurer and Executive Director of the Ingham County Land Bank. Today, Current State host Mark Bashore talks with Eric and Nancy Schertzing for the second part of their conversation.

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Community
11:33 am
Thu January 29, 2015

EL author shares stories of Hmong resettlement in Michigan

The new book on the Hmong people of Michigan was published by the MSU Press.
Credit http://msupress.org/

In the decades following the Vietnam War, hundreds of thousands of Hmong refugees have settled in the United States. The Hmong, an ethnic minority, were recruited during the war to fight in the CIA’s secret campaign against communist forces in Laos. But while the war officially ended in 1975, the terror was just beginning for many Hmong families. Facing brutal persecution at the hands of the Laotian government, the Hmong fled their villages for refugee camps in Thailand. Over half of the Hmong refugees who came to the U.S. eventually re-settled in Midwestern states, including Michigan.

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Arts & Culture
11:28 am
Thu January 29, 2015

Ann Arbor Symphony celebrates Mozart's birthday

Jeanette Vecchione and Timothy Michling will be featured in Saturday's Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra concert.
Credit http://www.a2so.com/

The Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra celebrates Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart’s birthday week this Saturday at the Michigan Theatre. 90.5FM broadcasts the concert live at 8 pm. The all-Mozart program showcases the great composer’s talent in everything from opera to symphonic form.

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Radio Made in Michigan
11:32 am
Wed January 28, 2015

Current State #465 | January 28, 2015

Today on Current State: Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero prepares for this week's State of the City address; documentarian Candacy Taylor; Neighbors in Action: the Tuesday Toolmen; and pickleball.

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Politics & Government
11:30 am
Wed January 28, 2015

Bernero to unveil BWL plans, responds to early criticism

Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero (right), with Current State host Mark Bashore.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

Tomorrow evening at Lansing Community College, Lansing Mayor Virg Bernero makes his tenth State of the City address. In the speech, which has the theme "Lansing 3.0", the Mayor will review developments of the past year and share his agenda for 2015.

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Arts & Culture
11:25 am
Wed January 28, 2015

What do diners, bullfighting and hair salons have in common? Candacy Taylor.

Documentarian Candacy Taylor speaks in the RCAH Theatre in MSU’s Snyder-Phillips Hall, starting at 7 p.m.
Credit http://taylormadeculture.com/

MSU’s Residential College in the Arts and Humanities continues its Wednesday Night Live series tonight. Candacy Taylor is an award-winning author, photographer and documentarian for the Library of Congress. She owns Taylor Made Culture, a company that produces multimedia projects that examine culture and identity in America.

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Community
11:20 am
Wed January 28, 2015

Neighbors in Action: Tuesday Toolmen | WKAR

The Tuesday Toolmen volunteer to do fixup work for Lansing area senior citizens free of charge.
Credit http://www.glhc.org/

It’s Wednesday and time for our Neighbors in Action segment, when Current State features people and organizations working to make Greater Lansing a better place. Today, we learn about the Tuesday Toolmen, a group of volunteer handymen who offer repairs and safety modifications for low-income seniors in the Lansing area.

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Sports
11:14 am
Wed January 28, 2015

Popularity of pickleball moves north

Pickleball is being played at the East Lansing Hannah Community Center three times a week this winter.
Scott Pohl/WKAR

There’s a new sport catching on in the Lansing area. Its appeal lies in its reliance on physical activity that isn’t too strenuous. Already popular with retirees in the south, pickleball is moving north with indoor play in colder climes.

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Radio Made in Michigan
11:44 am
Tue January 27, 2015

Current State #464 | January 27, 2015

Today on Current State: Teacher preparation in Michigan; the cast of "Master Harold...and The Boys" comes to MSU's Wharton Center; the January Great Lakes Month in Review; the Grand Rapids Symphony Orchestra plays Wagner; and Michigan utility workers head to the northeast for blizzard duty.

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Education
11:43 am
Tue January 27, 2015

Fewer aspiring teachers pass MI's tougher preparedness test

Corey Drake (right), with Current State host Mark Bashore.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

What makes the difference between a successful and a struggling student? Research suggests one of the most important factors is the quality of that student’s teachers. And a big part of having effective teachers in the classroom is making sure they’re prepared before they get there. In 2013, as part of an effort to do just that, Michigan toughened teacher certification tests, but a recent Bridge Magazine article found that a majority of aspiring teachers failed the new exam.

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Arts & Culture
11:39 am
Tue January 27, 2015

"Master Harold" tackles racism and relationships

The three principal actors in "Master Harold and the Boys" rehearse at the Wharton Center. The show runs January 30 and 31. From left: Gavin Lawrence, Shawn Hamilton, and Justin Dietzel.
Credit http://www.whartoncenter.com

The Wharton Center at Michigan State University is preparing to host its next theatrical production this weekend. “Master Harold and the Boys” by Athol Fugard is a story of friendship, racism, and hope. The play will be performed Friday and Saturday at Wharton Center.

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Environment
11:34 am
Tue January 27, 2015

Great Lakes Month in Review: Iowa runoff lawsuit, Flint's water woes

Credit Flickr - NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

At the end of each month, we check in with Great Lakes commentator and journalist Gary Wilson for updates on environmental stories from around the basin. For today’s Great Lakes Month in Review, we look at how a lawsuit in Iowa could have implications for the Great Lakes, the latest in Flint’s water woes, and the problems that microfibers are causing for Great Lakes fish.

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Arts & Culture
11:28 am
Tue January 27, 2015

GRSO plays Wagner

David Lockington leads the Grand Rapids Symphony Orchestra.
Credit http://grsymphony.org/

David Lockington, Grand Rapids Symphony Orchestra music director, is passionate about the music of Richard Wagner. Wagner’s work is the focus of this weekend’s Grand Rapids Symphony performance, "Inspired By Wagner".

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Community
11:27 am
Tue January 27, 2015

Michigan utility workers head to Northeast for blizzard duty

Credit WKAR File Photo

Hundreds of Michigan utility workers are preparing to help restore power to victims of the blizzard out east. Current State host Mark Bashore speaks with Flushing resident Duane Johnson, en route to the region from Consumers Energy in Flint. Johnson was in Bloomberg, Pennsylvania during the phone conversation.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:30 pm
Mon January 26, 2015

Current State #463 | January 26, 2015

Today on Current State: two views on school choice in Michigan; actor John Rubenstein on his original role as "Pippin" and his new role as King Charlemagne; Eric and Nancy Schertzing on their family decision behind his congressional bid and the Spartans men's basketball squad struggles to regain their mojo.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:30 pm
Mon January 26, 2015

Two views on school choice in Michigan

Lansing-area educators are observing National Schools Choice Week.
Credit WKAR File Photo

Educators across the country are hosting discussions in conjunction with National School Choice Week.

There are a number of events in the Lansing area, including the screening of a documentary on school choice at the Capitol on Tuesday morning. That event is sponsored by the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, which bills itself as a nonpartisan research and educational institute based in Midland. 

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:29 pm
Mon January 26, 2015

After 40 years, original "Pippin" plays character's father at Wharton

Actor John Rubenstein talks about his upcoming performance in the Broadway musical "Pippin" in East Lansing.
Credit flickr/Joe Shlabotnik

This week, the Broadway Series at MSU’s Wharton Center presents the touring company of “Pippin” for eight shows, starting Tuesday night. “Pippin” first hit Broadway in 1972, with John Rubinstein in the title role. A revival of the show in New York won four Tony Awards in 2013, including Best Revival of a Musical. The cast coming to East Lansing includes John Rubinstein…not as Pippin again all these years later, but as King Charlemagne, Pippin’s father.

Current State’s Scott Pohl talked with John Rubenstein about returning to the show that made him famous.

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Politics & Government
1:29 pm
Mon January 26, 2015

Schertzings balanced public, private life during congressional bid

Ingham County Treasurer Eric Schertzing launched an unsuccessful bid for Michigan's 8th Congressional District last fall.
Credit WKAR File Photo

For 14 years, Ingham County residents have known Eric Schertzing as the county Treasurer, and more recently, Director of the Ingham County Land Bank.  Last year, they assessed him in a different light: as a Democratic candidate for U.S. Congress.  

The issues and the stakes expanded, as the 52-year old Stockbridge native pursued the soon to be vacant seat in Congress held since 2001 by Republican Mike Rogers.

Schertzing lost to his Republican opponent, Mike Bishop.  

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:27 pm
Mon January 26, 2015

Spartans struggle to rebound from midseason slump

Credit WKAR File Photo

It was a frustrating outing Saturday for Michigan State men's basketball.  The team's performance was lacking in a number of areas in its 79-77 loss to Nebraska.

"Jekyll and Hyde" is the way the Detroit Free Press's Joe Rexrode described both the game and the season.

Rexrode and WKAR's Al Martin comment on where the Spartans stand at this point in the conference season.

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Radio Made in Michigan
11:58 am
Fri January 23, 2015

Current State #462 | January 23, 2015

Today on Current State: UAW Local 6000 legislative liaison Ray Holman on the proposed merger of the state Departments of Human Services and Community Health; stem cell research at UM; the Detroit Auto Show exhibit of a 3D printed car and a look at the new Cadillacs; and Live Music Friday with Rev. Robert Jones.
 

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Politics & Government
11:53 am
Fri January 23, 2015

State workers' union wary of department merger

Ray Holman is legislative liaison for UAW Local 6000.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

On Wednesday, Gov. Rick Snyder’s call for improvements in the delivery of state services included the merging of two, large and important state agencies. Snyder says the Departments of Human Services and Community Health need to become more “people-centric” and less “program centric.” He says that resulting efficiencies will improve services to state residents and, with other reforms, create a "River of Opportunity".

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Health
11:48 am
Fri January 23, 2015

UM expert on Gordie Howe's stroke recovery, stem cell potential

'Mr. Hockey', Gordie Howe, is honored with this statue at the home of the Detroit Red Wings, Joe Louis Arena. Howe has reportedly made great progress since a stroke last year.
Credit Flickr - Kevin Ward

Last October, hockey legend Gordie Howe suffered a severe stroke. His family feared for the worst and assumed they only had a couple of months left with him. But after a trip to Mexico for an injection of stem cells into his spine, Howe has made a remarkable recovery. His son Murray told M-Live that the 86-year-old is now playing driveway hockey with his great grandkids again.

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Business
11:40 am
Fri January 23, 2015

Detroit Auto Show 2015: Printed cars and Cadillacs

The Local Motors printed car at the Detroit Auto Show.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

All this week, we’ve been taking you to the Detroit Auto Show to see what’s new, what’s groundbreaking, and what’s just plain fun. On the main floor of the auto show, you can see a massive 3D printer, and it’s printing a car. And if you venture to Hall E in the Cobo Center, you can see the finished product.

Current State's Scott Pohl talks with Lee Herge, Chief Operating Officer of the Chandler, Arizona based Local Motors.

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Arts & Culture
11:32 am
Fri January 23, 2015

LIVE MUSIC FRIDAY: Rev. Robert Jones | WKAR

Rev. Robert Jones performing live from WKAR's Studio S.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

It’s another Live Music Friday here on Current State, and all this hour we’ve been enjoying hearing from Rev. Robert Jones. Along with Josh White Jr., he'll perform at tonight's Ten Pound Fiddle concert. It’s called “Black Fathers of Folk Music: Josh White and Leadbelly”. The show includes the songs of these two pioneering artists, with Josh and Robert in character…Josh as his father.

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