Radio Made in Michigan
12:44 pm
Mon May 4, 2015

Volunteers make recommendations for MI foster care children

The state of Michigan has recently conducted its annual training for Foster Care Review Board volunteers. The program is run by the Michigan Supreme Court.
Credit WKAR File Photo

Last Friday, we aired an interview with Jose Carrera, the director of clinical services at St. Vincent Catholic Charities in Lansing.  Mr. Carrera spoke of an ongoing program at St. Vincent that evaluates an at-risk child’s physical and emotional well-being.  Some of those children are in foster care.

Today we look at a different facet of the foster care system. 

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:15 pm
Mon April 6, 2015

Former juvenile inmate's story highlights justice system flaws

The Michigan Council on Crime and Deliquency is hosting a forum in Lansing Tuesday entitled "Youth Beyond Bars."
Credit Tim Pearce / Flickr

In the 1990s, many states, including Michigan, began getting tough on juvenile crime.

That meant harsher sentencing and sending more youth to adult prisons.

Between 2003 and 2013, Michigan sent thousands of youth under the age of 18 to serve time in adult prisons.

But many are beginning to question the effectiveness of those “tough on crime” policies.

Advocates for reform say that sending a young person to an adult prison can have devastating consequences.

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11:31 am
Tue March 10, 2015

SXSW to showcase Michigan’s creative economy

Tens of thousands of music and movie fans will descend on Austin, Texas next week for the South by Southwest festival. The festival’s line up features a number of Michigan musicians, but they won’t be the only ones representing the Mitten state. Joining them will be a team from the arts advocacy group Creative Many, formerly ArtServe.

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Politics & Government
11:34 am
Mon March 9, 2015

Michigan Calling: Gov. Snyder takes your questions

Credit Courtesy Michigan Radio

The Michigan Public Radio Network presents "Michigan Calling."  Governor Rick Snyder answers listeners' questions on a variety of topics.  Hosted by MPRN Statehouse Bureau Chief Rick Pluta.

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Politics & Government
1:38 pm
Tue February 24, 2015

U-M survey shows local officials hungry for more state road money

Credit WKAR File Photo

One in four local government officials around Michigan say the roads and bridges in their jurisdictions are in poor condition.  But there appears to be little agreement among those same officials on how to generate the billions of dollars needed to repair that infrastructure.

Those are among the findings in a new survey out of the University of Michigan.

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8:37 pm
Sun January 18, 2015

VIDEO: Lost for Words - MSU / Iowa Wrap-Up | Current Sports | WKAR

 Aerial Powers had 16 points and 11 boards for the Michigan State women's basketball team in a close loss to No. 22 Iowa Sunday.The Spartans kept the high-powered Hawkeye offense (79.8 points a game) in check but couldn't come up with a final key play down the stretch. Suzy Merchant's team falls to 9-9, 1-6 in the Big Ten.

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Lifestyle & Recreation
12:22 pm
Wed October 22, 2014

Author finds something special in every Michigan county

Barbara VanderMolen is the author of "Discovering Michigan County by County: Your A-Z Guide to Each of the 83 Counties in the Great Lakes State."
Credit Scott Pohl / WKAR

There are 83 counties in Michigan, and a local author thinks there's something interesting about every one of them.  In fact, Barbara VanderMolen has written a two-volume set of books called "Discovering Michigan County by County: Your A-Z Guide to Each of the 83 Counties in the Great Lakes State."

Current State's Scott Pohl speaks with the author, who says it's for anyone who likes to explore every nook and cranny of the state.

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:41 pm
Fri October 17, 2014

Election 2014: Democratic AG candidate Mark Totten

Democrat Mark Totten is challenging incumbent Bill Schuette to become Michigan attorney general.
Credit Courtesy Mark Totten for Attorney General

If the flyers, phone calls and door knockers haven't tipped you off yet, it's election season in Michigan.

But before you hit the polls, you need to know a little bit about what and who is on the ballot.

As part of Current State's "Election 2014" series, we speak with the Democratic candidate for Michigan attorney general, Mark Totten.

Totten is a former federal prosecutor and a professor of criminal law and ethics at Michigan State University.  

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Radio Made in Michigan
12:33 pm
Fri October 17, 2014

Michigan hunting program gets disabled sportsmen into the field

Credit Courtesy Tom Jones, Michigan Operation Freedom Outdoors

We're well into deer bow hunting season in Michigan.  While most hunters must wait until November 15 to bag their trophy bucks with firearms, a special event is happening this week for some firearms hunters.

The "Independence Hunt" allows people with physical disabilities to enjoy firearms hunting.  It's sponsored by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.

Current State's Kevin Lavery speaks with Bryan Wilkinson, a disabled hunter who spent the first day of the hunt at Sharonville State Game Area in Jackson County.

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2:27 pm
Thu October 16, 2014

Current Sports #341 | October 16, 2014

Al and Alex start today with in-depth discussion on the Kansas City Royals' playoff run. They also give a brief preview of MSU basketball for this season. Chris "Doc" Love, color commentator from 92.1 Big Country, discusses the high school football season with Al and reveals his aspirations in sports broadcasting. To close the show, Al gives the lowdown on the occurences on this day in sports.

10:56 pm
Tue September 23, 2014

High School Football Rankings: Weekend Review 9/22

Seven area schools were ranked in the Michigan AP Poll for Sept. 16. Tomorrow’s AP rankings should see some shuffling; not every ranked team won their game on Friday.

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Lifestyle & Recreation
12:06 pm
Tue September 2, 2014

AUDIO POSTCARD: 2014 Mackinac Bridge Walk

The Mackinac Bridge Walk first took place in 1958. Each year, it draws tens of thousands of participants from across Michigan and the U.S.
Kevin Lavery/WKAR

Thousands of people flocked to the Straits of Mackinac yesterday for the 57th annual Mackinac Bridge Walk. It’s one of those things that truly brings a cross-section of our state together at one time.

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12:22 pm
Thu August 14, 2014

Michigan's obesity problem: Balancing societal costs, individual choice

Michigan ranks 10th in the nation in obesity rate.
Credit Flickr/Paull Young

Michigan is bursting at the seams. We’re one of the most obese states in the nation, with nearly one third of Michiganders being classified as obese, and 65 percent who are considered overweight or obese. With all that extra fat comes substantial costs to society, from rising health care expenses to lost worker productivity to lower GPA's among youth.

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Arts & Culture
1:36 pm
Thu August 7, 2014

Michigan wines getting better with age

Guest wine judge Courtney Casey samples a collection of local wines at the 37th annual Michigan Wine Competition at MSU.
Credit WKAR/Kevin Lavery

As the farmed cherry harvest in Michigan is finishing up, viticulturists are preparing to collect grapes in a couple of weeks. Michigan’s wine industry is in a state of steady growth. 

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Arts & Culture
12:36 pm
Wed July 30, 2014

RoadBelly offers colorful coverage of Michigan food and drink

The cover of RoadBelly Magazine's fourth edition.
Credit roadbelly.com

The passions of farming, cooking, brewing and much more are all a part of RoadBelly Magazine. The Grand Rapids based publication is about to enter its second year as it expands its scope beyond western Michigan.

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12:59 pm
Tue July 29, 2014

Charter school official addresses accountability and transparency

Central Michigan University is Michigan's largest university charter school authorizer, and one of the nation's largest.
Credit cmucso.org

Several Michigan charter school authorizers from around the state journeyed to Lansing yesterday. They met with state schools Superintendent Michael Flanagan about more vigorous oversight of the state’s charter schools. 

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1:32 pm
Thu July 17, 2014

Country music with a kick at Faster Horses

Brian Lorente and the Usual Suspects played at last summer's Faster Horses country music festival at Michigan International Speedway in Brooklyn, Michigan.
Credit Courtesy - Kristen Leigh Smith

Michigan’s biggest country music festival of the summer is in Brooklyn this weekend. Michigan International Speedway will host the Faster Horses Festival, which includes three days of music, camping, and fun in southern Michigan.

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Lifestyle & Recreation
12:16 pm
Tue June 10, 2014

Despite intense winter, Michigan tourism warming up

Michigan summer tourism remains unaffected by cold waters.
Credit Flickr - Kristy

Michigan had one of the most brutal winters it has ever seen, and unfortunately its impacts are still lingering.  As people begin to plan their summer travels, there may be some residual effects from this winter.

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Lifestyle & Recreation
1:19 pm
Fri May 23, 2014

'Oddball Michigan': Tridges, concrete kitsch, and trees from space

"Oddball Michigan: A Guide to 450 Really Strange Places" is a recently published book which seeks to catalog all of the oddball tourist destinations throughout our state, and there are plenty of them.

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Politics & Government
11:45 am
Wed April 16, 2014

Michigan stakeholders rely on non-partisan ‘Tax Outline’

The Citizens Research Council of Michigan recently released its Michigan Tax Outline, a report that summarizes tax data.
Credit Flickr - Ken Teegardin

There are 59 different taxes yielding nearly $40 billion in public revenue. That is a snapshot of current Michigan tax levies contained in a comprehensive new report. The money is used to pay for police and fire protection, Medicaid coverage, state employee salaries, schools, roads and lots more.

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1:14 pm
Thu April 10, 2014

New MSU project expected to help create thousands of Michigan jobs

The Food Processing and Innovation Center is raising the funding for the estimated $5.5 million project. It’s expected to consist of a mix of federal and state dollars, along with a commitment from MSU and five industry partners. It will be located on Hewlett Road.
Credit Courtesy - Michigan State University

There are plans to build a new center here at MSU that, if realized, proponents say could have a substantial economic impact on the state of Michigan, including the creation of potentially thousands of new jobs. Current State's Joe Linstroth talked with Chris Peterson, an agricultural economist and the head of MSU’s Product Center, who says there are more than 600 mid-sized food processors in the state of Michigan. Many of these companies’ facilities are maxed out, meaning that if they want to create a new product, they don’t have the capacity to test the product or its manufacturing and packaging techniques to see if it’s economically viable.

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Arts & Culture
11:45 am
Mon April 7, 2014

Local poet explores sights, sounds of Michigan

Jean Van Wieren is selling 'This Mitten Is Tightly Knit' primarily through her Facebook and Etsy websites.
Credit Scott Pohl/WKAR

Poetry, art, and Michigan. All have inspired local writer and artist Jeanne Van Wieren. The Williamston Enterprise columnist has published a book of her art and poetry called “This Mitten Is Tightly Knit”.

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Lifestyle & Recreation
12:42 pm
Wed April 2, 2014

From Newfoundland to Georgia: trying to map the Midwest

Cartographer Bill Rankin compiled several maps of the Midwest into one image, finding that the definition of the Midwest is not necessarily as simple as one might think.
Credit Courtesy of www.hshm.yale.edu

If you live in Michigan, you live in the Midwest, right? Well, maybe not. While the U.S. Census Bureau defines the Midwest as a 12 state region between Ohio and North Dakota, many other organizations and individuals have their own definitions.

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3:57 am
Sun March 16, 2014

MSU and Michigan Meet in the Big Ten Tournament Championship | Current Sports | WKAR

MSU topped Wisconsin on Saturday, moving on to the Big Ten Final! It's the first time in the 17 year history of the Big Ten Tournament that MSU and Michigan will meet in the Big Ten Tournament Championship game on Sunday afternoon! WKAR's Al Martin reports from Indianapolis on just what this means to the Spartans and how this one could be a bit of payback for the team.

2:14 pm
Fri February 21, 2014

Michigan School Board President: EAA not ready for expansion

John Austin says that the EAA is making headway in some schools, but there has been a host of problems in other schools.
Credit Flickr - controltheweb

Michigan’s failing schools will be expanding future turnaround efforts by collaborating with various partners, not just the state’s Education Achievement Authority.

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Politics & Government
11:50 am
Wed February 19, 2014

Michigan Office for New Americans to focus on employer education

Bing Goei is the new director of the Michigan Office for New Americans.
Credit Flickr - Dave-Johnson

During his State of the State address last month, Governor Rick Snyder pledged to create the Michigan Office for New Americans. He did so on January 31, and named Bing Goei, of Grand Rapids, to run the office. The idea is to attract and retain highly skilled immigrants in Michigan.

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Arts & Culture
1:22 pm
Mon February 17, 2014

Exploring Michigan’s decades-long relationship with Japan

Biwa Lake in Shiga, Japan
Credit Flickr - rockriver

In 1968, Michigan Governor George Romney signed an agreement with the governor of Shiga Prefecture, which is one of Japan’s 47 state-like territories, to create a sister state relationship. The cultural partnership between the two states is one of the longest-running in the country and is still going strong today.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:51 pm
Wed February 12, 2014

State proposes local control of backyard livestock

Credit Flickr - Lost Albatross


An important debate over urban farming in Michigan continues today in Lansing. Officials from the Department of Agriculture and Rural Development and others will discuss proposed rule changes governing farm animals in developed, residential areas.

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Radio Made in Michigan
2:03 pm
Wed February 5, 2014

State's high court seeks more language interpreters

Justice Bridget McCormack
Credit www.courts.mi.gov

The American legal system is littered with ancient Latin terms. Phrases like “habeus corpus,” “ex post facto” and “pro bono” are common in our courts. Many of us who are not lawyers and judges have some idea what they mean, but imagine trying to grasp what’s happening in a courtroom when English is not your first language. At best, the experience can be stressful and even frightening without an interpreter.

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Radio Made in Michigan
1:57 pm
Mon February 3, 2014

State, homeowners, retailers respond to propane shortage

Credit Flickr - jackcarrozzo

Thousands of Michigan households and businesses that use propane gas continue to be squeezed by a shortage of the fuel.

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