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Local News

Residents feeling more confident about traveling during pandemic

ALPENA — Northeast Michigan residents are feeling more confident about traveling during the COVID-19 pandemic. Wendy LaCombe, owner of World Wide Travel, is booking more trips for people planning to go on spring break than she did last year when all of her clients backed out of their plans ...

Alpena County Sheriff’s Office challenged by police shortage

ALPENA — You don’t see police costumes on Halloween anymore, said Erik Smith, undersheriff at the Alpena County Sheriff’s Office. Once a profession that drew stiff competition, police work has declined in popularity as a job choice, to the point that police departments are scrambling to ...

Coach accused of abuse once honored in Alpena

ALPENA — John Geddert, the USA Gymnastics coach who died by suicide on Thursday shortly after the Michigan Attorney General’s Office accused him of human trafficking and sexual abuse, left a footprint in Northeast Michigan. Before leading Twistars USA Gymnastics club near Lansing and ...

Birch, beech and Bella

Courtesy Photo Bella looks back as her owner Sandy Blumenthal of Alpena snaps a photo of the dog surrounded by birch and beech trees on a path blanketed in fluffy white snow.

DNR: fish kills may be common during spring thaw

After ice and snow cover melt on Michigan lakes this early spring, it may be more likely for people to discover dead fish or other aquatic animals. While such sights can be startling, the Department of Natural Resources reminds everyone that it is normal, since winter conditions can cause fish ...

Online input sessions planned for March

Share your thoughts with the DNR at upcoming virtual meetings. The Department of Natural Resources is committed to providing Michigan residents the opportunity to share input and ideas on policy decisions, programs and other aspects of natural resource management and outdoor recreation ...

Seven new infections reported

ALPENA -- Public health officials on Friday reported seven newly infected or probably infected Northeast Michiganders, including six Alpena County residents and one Presque Isle County resident. As of Feb. 18, local public health agencies have reported confirmed and suspected infections as ...

Cities named Alpena — count ‘em, all four

ALPENA — Numerous cities and villages share the same name across the nation. The World Atlas, for example, shows Washington 88 times, Springfield 41, and Dayton 28. With an uncommon name, however, America boasts just three municipalities and one unincorporated region called Alpena. In ...

Gymnastics coach takes own life after being charged

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — A former U.S. Olympics gymnastics coach with ties to disgraced sports doctor Larry Nassar killed himself Thursday, hours after being charged with turning his Michigan gym into a hub of human trafficking by coercing girls to train and then abusing them. John Geddert ...

Lt. Gov. answers questions from local officials during virtual town hall

Local officials participated in a town hall video conference with Michigan Lt. Governor Garlin Gilchrist on Thursday. Among the local business, education and government officials participating in the meeting were Alpena Mayor Matt Waligora, Presque Isle farm owner Molly Stepanski, Alpena ...

Northeast Michigan communities may benefit from healthcare grant

ALPENA — Northeast Michigan may benefit from a $2.5 million federal grant, which will address healthcare staffing shortages in rural communities throughout the state. The Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity was awarded funding from the U.S. Department of Labor’s rural ...

Washington Ave. eyesore still standing, for now

ALPENA — A burned Alpena house slated to be demolished this week will remain standing, for now, after asbestos was found inside the home, according to Andrea Kares, director of planning and development for the City of Alpena. The out-of-state owner of the Washington Avenue home, which was ...

First one-week stretch without virus-related deaths since November

ALPENA ― Thursday marked the first time since early November that Northeast Michigan has gone a week without a reported coronavirus-related death. Meanwhile, MidMichigan Medical Center-Alpena, which one week ago reported no patients hospitalized with coronavirus infection, now has one ...

Companies submit renderings for proposed medical marijuana shops

ALPENA—The two companies that intend to open medical marijuana provisioning centers in Alpena have submitted renderings of what the new businesses in the city may look like when built. Last year, the Alpena Municipal Council selected the applications from Green Buddha and Lume Cannabis ...

Local schools continue test preparations

ALPENA — Northeast Michigan’s superintendents are not surprised U.S. Department of Education officials want federally required standardized testing to continue this year, although some are concerned that implementing the testing will take away instruction time for kids. The Education ...

Local drivers dealing with higher gas prices

ALPENA — Gas prices have accelerated to their highest in more than a year, and it’s not looking promising they’ll ease off any time soon after a nationwide storm pushed the pedal of a price climb that began as 2020 ended. The recent increase in gas prices shouldn’t take anyone by ...

Police Blotter: 13 traffic stops in Presque Isle County

Recent actions by law enforcement agencies in Northeast Michigan. This has been only lightly edited. PRESQUE ISLE COUNTY SHERIFF’S OFFICE For the period of Feb. 14-20 Complaints handled: 40 Police runs: 24 Persons investigated: 115 Autos investigated: 42 Traffic stops: ...

9 new infections reported

ALPENA -- Public health officials on Wednesday reported nine newly infected or probably infected Northeast Michiganders, including six Alpena County residents, two Presque Isle County residents, and one Montmorency County resident. As of Feb. 18, local public health agencies have reported ...