IN THIS EPISODE:
In this episode of GLN, digging into the future of land use in the Great Lakes as needs grow for both housing and agriculture, then an eFoiling adventure on Lake Huron, and The Catch has news about the lakes you love!
WHERE WE TAKE YOU IN OCTOBER
GREAT LAKES LEARNING:
Explore this month’s hands-on lesson plans designed to help your middle schoolers understand the Great Lakes — all at home or in the classroom. They’re aligned to education standards AND free to download.Lesson Plans
Have a question about the Great Lakes or life in the region?
Ask Great Lakes Now, and if we can answer it, we might loop it into our coverage so others can learn too.Submit Your Question
When to Watch?
Check your local station for when Great Lakes Now is on in your area.
Premieres on DPTV
Wednesday, October 26, at 7:30 PM
STATIONS CARRYING THE SERIES
Bad Axe, Michigan
Bay County, Michigan
Bowling Green, Ohio
Buffalo, New York
East Lansing, Michigan
Grand Rapids, Michigan
Green Bay, Wisconsin
La Crosse, Wisconsin
Menomonie-Eau Claire, Wisconsin
Mt. Pleasant, Michigan
Park Falls, Wisconsin
South Bend, Indiana
Syracuse, New York
University Center, Michigan
Watertown, New York for Ontario signal
Watertown, New York for U.S. signal
Raise Houses or Raise Crops?
SEGMENT 1 | Traverse City, Michigan
Wildfires at a backyard’s edge, sinking coastal habitat, submerged streets – the impacts of climate change are knocking around North America. And that means the Great Lakes region, with abundant freshwater and relatively limited natural disasters, is becoming a highly desirable place to live.
For example: Traverse City, Michigan, where the average residential sales price jumped from about $283,000 in early 2020 to well over $400,000 in the first two months of 2022, according to Northern Great Lakes Realtors MLS.
But the area also is a farming sweet spot. With water scarcity threatening agriculture in the West, Koffi Kpachavi,executive director of the Grand Traverse Conservation District, thinks the Great Lakes region needs to become more agriculturally productive and that means conserving farmland.
“You have to think about food production. You know, just look at what happened during the pandemic. You know, what happened to our food delivery systems,” he said. “And then on top of that, the war in Ukraine. We don’t want to have to rely on faraway places to feed our communities.”
But competition from developers is making it harder to keep farmland in farming. Kpachavi is concerned, “land acquisition is the biggest barrier for a beginning farmer. The cost of land is pretty high.”
Here is other Great Lakes Now work related to land use and community decisions about it:
Grand Traverse group wins praise for preserving key land from development
The Catch: Historic land transfer
Farm Protection: Ontario invests in projects to help farms improve Great Lakes water quality
Chicago educator empowers students to make climate connections in their own communities
What’s an eFoil?
SEGMENT 2 | Tawas City, Michigan
For years, water sports enthusiasts have been riding the wind on the Great Lakes with windsurfing, kiteboarding, even surfing. But now, there’s a new trend called hydrofoiling.
The rider is on a board with a wing that extends into the water and then uses a kite or a hand-held wing to propel it. With hydrofoiling sports like kitefoiling or wingfoiling, the board actually glides above the water.
But even hydrofoiling has something new, something that doesn’t require the wind. It’s called eFoiling and uses a small electric motor to drive the board.
GLN Contributor Ian Solomon traveled to Tawas City, Michigan, to meet Mark Kuban, a watersports instructor, who gives him an eFoiling lesson. According to Kuban, eFoiling is gaining popularity across the Great Lakes region.
“This is blowing up on the Great Lakes,” Kuban said.. “This is super fun on any lake or any body of water.”
Ride along as Ian tries to master this new sport in the chilly waters of Lake Huron.
Read his column about the experience.
Here is other Great Lakes Now work on water sports:
Surfing the Great Lakes: ‘What? People do that here?’
Surfing the Great Lakes: Want to know where to start?
Boating on a Budget: Get off land and onto the Great Lakes
Sporting Uncertainty: COVID-19 casts shadow over Great Lakes sports events
The Catch: News about the Lakes You Love
SEGMENT 3 | Ann Arbor, Michigan; Duluth, Minnesota; Madison, Wisconsin
Keep up with the Great Lakes’ biggest issues. Find out how environmental challenges are impacting your enjoyment of the outdoors and the health of the ecosystem. Go beyond the headlines with reporters from around the region.
This new segment – The Catch – in our award-winning PBS program will keep you in the know. This month, stories about piping plovers, Great Lakes cruise ships and an ancient canoe.
First up, a story from Michigan Radio’s Briana Rice, who has some good news about piping plovers. In 2022, there were 150 fledglings born to 72 breeding pairs around the Great Lakes. That’s the biggest brood of fledglings since Great Lakes piping plovers were listed as federally endangered in 1986. Of the Great Lakes region’s 72 breeding pairs, 48 were in Michigan, and Michigan’s nests produced a record number of chicks. Rice says researchers and conservationists have played a big role in the comeback.
Next, Dan Kraker of Minnesota Public Radio, is diving into a growing part of the Great Lakes tourism industry. The summer of 2022 “was a record-setting year for cruise ships in the Great Lakes, and that meant a lot more tourists coming to the region,” Kraker said “It’s also meant economic development for some small towns.”
There’s been a small Great Lakes cruise industry in the past, but this year saw a big jump with 25 percent growth in the number of passengers since 2019.
Finally, a trip to Madison, where Wisconsin Public Radio Reporter Sarah Leher has been covering the discovery and preservation of an ancient Great Lakes relic. A team of archeologists and divers pulled a 3,000-year-old canoe out of Lake Mendota in Madison in September. It’s believed to be the oldest canoe ever discovered in the Great Lakes region and the second to be found in Lake Mendota.
Click below for other Great Lakes Now work on issues reported in this month’s “The Catch”:
Monty and Rose: Those Chicago piping plovers, where are they now, what are they doing?
Great Lakes Learning: Take a cruise and learn about the lakes
Paddle Battle: International canoe race brings families together
Videos from Episode 2210
Subscribe on YouTube
Ice Climbing and Offshore Wind – Episode 2302
Ice climbing in northern Michigan and a controversial wind energy project on Lake Erie.
Smart Sewers and Sunken Aircraft – Episode 2301
A high-tech solution for sewage and recovering WWII aircraft from Lake Michigan.
Shrinking Winter – Episode 2202 Rebroadcast
The science of shrinking ice coverage, Great Lakes ice fishing and skating on wild ice.
Great Lakes Wildlife – Episode 2211
Seeking a small, venomous catfish, highlighting a Great Lakes docuseries and “The Catch.”
Surf and Turf – Episode 2210
Exploring a debate over Great Lakes land use, eFoiling on Lake Huron, and The Catch.
Finders, Keepers – Episode 2209
Scanning the bottom of the Great Lakes, a giant library of preserved fish, and The Catch.
Poisonous Ponds: Tackling Toxic Coal Ash – Episode 2208
How coal ash is threatening Lake Michigan, ideas for beneficial coal ash reuse and The Catch.
Salamanders, Shipping and Shorelines – Episode 2207
Saving salamanders, how Great Lakes ports fit into global shipping and The Catch.
Homes, Invaders – Episode 2206
Controlling invasive sea lamprey, hazards in our homes, and a Great Lakes news update.
Water’s True Cost – Episode 2205
The Great Lakes News Collaborative looks at the cost of water in the region and beyond.
Mushrooms and Mobsters – Episode 2204
A giant fungus in a tiny Great Lakes town, gangsters vacation “Up North,” and “The Catch.”
Surf and Slide – Episode 2203
Sailing on ice, Lake Ontario winter surfing and three Lake Michigan news stories.
Shrinking Winter – Episode 2202
The science of shrinking ice coverage, Great Lakes ice fishing and skating on wild ice.
Fading Stars and River Bugs – Episode 2303
Citizen scientists chart the night sky, measure the health of a river and The Catch.
I Speak for the Fish: Playing follow-the-leader with diving ducks
A team of ducks leads us to where the invasive round gobies are overwintering and along the way schools us in how to find fish underwater.
Nibi Chronicles: Acknowledging one family’s knack for finding ancient stone tools
The Anderson Collection’s oldest pieces are from the Clovis period of human history—delicately shaped points made of jasper or Hudson Bay lowland chert.
PFAS News Roundup: All fish tested from Michigan rivers contain ‘forever chemicals’, study finds
Catch the latest updates on what’s happening with PFAS in this biweekly headline roundup.
The Great Lakes Now Series is produced by Rob Green and Sandra Svoboda.