Leelanau institutions welcome summer

LEELANAU COUNTY - John VanRaalte, owner of Van's Garage in Leland, can tell you the exact moment that summer arrives in Leelanau County: It's when he takes Big Bertha out of storage. Big Bertha is the name of an antique Chevy station wagon belonging to...

Epicurean Classic more seasoned in fourth year

TRAVERSE CITY - For three days on the shores of West Grand Traverse Bay, some of the country's hottest chefs and renowned wine experts will gather to cook, pour, and share their passions for food and drink.The fourth annual Epicurean Classic will be held Sept....

Michigan bakeries share social model for success

TRAVERSE CITY / DETROIT - Two thriving bakeries, one in Traverse City the other in Detroit's Cass Corridor, are worlds away in terms of who they serve, yet they use similar recipes to measure their success. The main ingredient is a mindset that has...

Owners hit pay dirt in worm business

BENZIE COUNTY - Every four days, 2,400 pounds of organic waste-from coffee grounds to shredded office paper-is being recycled by over two million worms and creating over 100 tons of the best organic fertilizer available. Three years ago, Benzie Organic Solutions owners Tim Quick and...

Contaminated property: Worth redeveloping?

REGION - About 130 potential retail or office sites in the region have about every factor imaginable going for them but one: They have seepage from gas, oil or other contaminants from a leaky underground storage tank buried decades before.Across the state, enterprising developers have...

Michigan’s first organic winery coming soon

MANISTEE COUNTY - Douglas Valley is a new ruralism community development envisioned for a prime area of land overlooking Lake Michigan near Manistee. Property owners Cliff and Elizabeth Boomer plan to include a residential development, organic orchards and farming, a winery and a village...

Building a bridge to China, one business at a time

TRAVERSE CITY - In 2001 when consultant Patrick Mosley made his first trip to China, there were a lot of empty seats on the airplane. It was early in the year, before 9/11. Six years later, things have changed dramatically. "Now, those flights are packed,"...