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by Devon Kessler Monday, December 21st 2020 Any Michigander struggling to pay their energy bills due to the pandemic are encouraged to seek assistance. (WICS) MICHIGAN (WPBN/WGTU) -- State officials are reminding citizens of resources available for households struggling to pay their energy bills due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, the Michigan Public Service Commission and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services are joining together to emphasize the availability of flexible payment plans and financial assistance for households struggling to pay bills for electricity and home heating now and after the holidays. “As we continue fighting...

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December 21, 2020 Gary Bigger Northern Michigan’s longest-running winter festival is being postponed until February because of state coronavirus restrictions. Tip-Up Town USA is an annual event in Houghton Lake that was supposed to happen in January. But the Houghton Lake Chamber of Commerce says current restrictions only allow them to have 25 people attend outdoor events. Those restrictions are set to last until Jan. 15—one day before Tip-Up Town is set to begin. With no reassurance that those restrictions will be lifted, the chamber decided to postpone the event until Feb. 27 and 28. They say if those dates still...

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That Guys BBQ in Bay City delivered some delicious BBQ to the folks at McLaren Hospital.Courtesy Photo, used with permission. By Amy Sherman | asherma2@mlive.com Spreading just a bit of holiday cheer to our frontline health care workers, our Feeding the Frontlines initiative will share some welcome meals thanks to help from our generous sponsors. As Covid cases continue to rise across the state, once again we’ve paired with some of our Michigan’s Best family of restaurants, along with these amazing community sponsors to provide a welcome food hug for our frontline health care workers on Monday December 14. Our...

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Coffee is one of the most traded agricultural exports in the entire world. It supports an utterly enormous industry. In 2018, global coffee exports alone were worth $30.9 billion, according to the OEC. It supports the livelihoods of hundreds of millions of people around the world, and is a hugely important driver of economic growth.  However, just like any industry, it is not without its challenges. Among the difficulties that coffee production faces are low prices, climate change, pests and disease, lack of access to labor, and more.  To learn more about these challenges and how we can address them,...

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Is there any better way to wake up in the morning than to the aroma of a perfect cup of coffee with the backdrop of your favorite song? Throughout history, music and coffee have fueled the work of the people and inspired our dreams, our passions and our hopes for a brighter future. For the past decade, May Erlewine has been a musical ambassador for Higher Grounds Trading Co. From Chiapas, Mexico to Yirgacheffe, Ethiopia, May has traveled to coffee origins with Higher Grounds to engage in a number of transnational collaborations including Guitars for Chiapas, Chiapas Water Projects, and Run...

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