2018-03-01 / Columns

Looking Back...

5 YEARS AGO February 28, 2013

Tiny Leelanau may be well represented at a Brownfield Redevelopment convention in Atlanta, Ga, although the Board of Commissioners on Tuesday appeared ready to pull back county attendance. Commissioners were in the midst of a request to add a fifth member to the county delegation approved to attend the conference when questions about the level of county participation started to crop up.

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The Leelanau County Sheriff’s Office found a sophisticated marijuana-growing operation in the in the basement of a Maple City residence after being called to an apparent suicide at the home. Deputies were called to what was a suspected suicide at 5:20 a.m. Friday, according to Sheriff Michael Borkovich. They arrived to find the 55-year-old owner of the home lying in the driveway about 30 feet from the home, where he died of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound, Borkovich said.

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Marjorie Iseler, of Maple City, is the proud owner of a burgundy-colored decanter and two matching glasses that once belonged to her mother and probably came from a great aunt. The decanter always held slivovitz, or plum brandy, and anyone who came into the house was given a shot, or so the story goes. “You took off your shoes, you came in, you had a shot of plum brandy,” Iseler recalled.

10 YEARS AGO February 28, 2008

After more than 25 years of service on the Cleveland Township Board of Review, tree farmer Nello Valentine said he expects next month’s township Board of Review meetings to be especially interesting. “People have been hearing the news about how real estate prices all across the nation have crashed and burned and homes aren’t selling – and it’s all true,” Valentine said. “But I know that some taxpayers are also going to be wondering why their property taxes haven’t gone down this year as a result of the decline in home prices – and that’s going to be a little more complicated for us to explain.”

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Here’s a question: Who does Leelanau County call for emergency 9-1-1 funding? The answer may be local property owners, who are presently footing the more than $900,000 bill to run the county’s 9-1-1 dispatch service. The Leelanau County Board of Commissioners last week reversed an earlier vote, deciding not to seek permission from the state to tap telephones — both land lines and cell phones — with a $3.64 monthly surcharge.

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Lynn Sparling of Northport is celebrating her 17th birthday Friday. But she’s a “very mature” teenager. “I was Sweet Sixteen for quite a while,” said Sparling, who is one of a handful of county residents whose birthdate only comes once every four years on Feb. 29.

35 YEARS AGO March 3, 1983

The State Department of Natural Resources could issue a court ordered closing down Leelanau County’s public landfill as soon as April, a DNR staffer told county officials last Wednesday. Mark W. Stephens, a resource specialist with the DNR’s Lansing Resource Recovery Division, said the county land will be closed by Sept. 1, 1984 unless it complies with the expensive state requirements.

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The historic 2-ton bell at St. Mary’s Church in Lake Leelanau, damaged in a near-disastrous fire at the church Oct. 18, may never toll again. Fr. Arthur Mulka, the church’s parish priest, said Friday that church members have decided to purchase a new bell rather than effect expensive repairs on the 95-year-old, copper-clad bell.

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A labor contract giving 36 unionized County Road Commission workers a $200 lump-sum settlement bonus, up to three more vacation days a year, a $260-a-year eye and dental insurance policy and wage boosts of between 5 and 6.3 percent over the next 18 months was approved Tuesday by the commission.

60 YEARS AGO March 6, 1958

Glen Lake Community Schoold defeated Lake Leelanau, St. Mary’s 54 to 36 in the District basketball tournament opener at Glen Lake Tuesday. The victors will meet Leland Thursday. Glen Lake, “D” conference champions in regular season play had the crowd of over 800 people.

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Major Kenneth Joyce, popular commandant of Empire Air Station has received orders and will be leaving his Leelanau County post in the latter part of May. Major Joyce, who has been at the Empire station for slightly over a year is well known throughout the county for his contributions to the community.

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The oil tanker, Chicago-Socony, with 1,070,000 gallons of fuel oil and gasoline aboard, plowed through the ice around Northport Point and into Grand Traverse Bay early Tuesday morning. The Coast Guard ice breaker Sundew, scheduled to break a path through the ice for the tanker first detoured into Northport, at the request of local fishermen.

125 YEARS AGO March 2, 1893

The steam barge Alice M. Gill will be made into a passenger boat this spring.

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Captain Oleson crossed over from North Manitou Island last Monday on the ice, and four hours later the lake was clear of ice.

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A few days of soft weather has settled the snow considerable.

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