The MSU men's basketball team had T-shirts made as part of their effort to add something positive to the national debate over race relations.

MSU men’s hoops joins national conversation

At Michigan State men’s basketball media day in early October, head coach Tom Izzo recognized the public debate raging in the country. “There are problems in society,” Izzo said. “The issues involving race equality (are) important to me for a lot of reasons: One, my own household. Two, my own team here.”

That statement came two months after the violent protests in Charlottesville, Virginia, and with growing racial tensions across the country. At the time, the members of Izzo’s team did not know what they were going to do.

Q&A: WKAR’s Al Martin on ‘sticking to sports’

Athletes and the sports media have gotten criticism for not “sticking to sports,” instead letting social issues and discussion creep into the sports media. Al Martin, host of WKAR Radio’s Current Sports since April 2013, joined Spartan Newsroom reporter Zachary Swiecicki to talk about the issue. Very cool moment here as @MatthewAbdullah @RoJeSoFly and @MichaelLynnIII receive a Skype call from @Kaepernick7 for deciding to stand with Kaep and take a knee during the national anthem before football games at @lansingcatholic this season. Mad respect. pic.twitter.com/khp1z38TCx
— Al Martin (@AlMartinWKAR) December 3, 2017

Martin has used social media, like Twitter, as well as his hourlong radio show to give his opinion on everything in and around the world of sports.

Old Town hosts a range of ages

By Zachary Swiecicki
Old Town Lansing Times Staff Reporter

While walking along the streets in the heart of Old Town, you could see small children or senior citizens. “I’d say anything from the middle 20-somethings all the way up to boomers and even a little older,” Chad Cottom, the owner of SPIN Bicycle Shop, said of the age range of people he sees walk into his business on a daily basis. With such a wide range of ages, it is a valid question to ask: what brings these people to Old Town? “The key for any place, whether a city, neighborhood or district, is to identify and actively promote its unique assets,” Sarah Nicholls, an expert in Michigan tourism and associate professor at Michigan State University, said. “Old Town’s assets are its boutiques, art galleries, and the independent/local owned eating places and bars,” Nicholls said.

Bicycles growing in popularity, says Old Town bike shop owner

By Zachary Swiecicki
Old Town Lansing Times Staff Reporter

While traveling along Grand River Avenue in Old Town Lansing, you can see CATA buses, cars, trucks, bicycles, motorcycles, or pedestrians walking around. Chad Cottom, owner of SPIN Bicycle Shop, has seen the change in transportation in the eight years his store has been open.  Cottom is passionate about bikes and is committed to providing his bikes to the residents of Old Town. “I would say cycling has become a little more popular,” Cottom said.  “I would hope to say that we’ve helped a little bit to adding to that by having a bicycle shop in Old Town.”

Old Town and Lansing: a sibling relationship

By Zachary Swiecicki
Old Town Lansing Times Staff Reporter
Old Town Lansing.  Even in its own name, Old Town has to share Lansing.  The same can be said at most intersections in Old Town.  Buildings in downtown Lansing can be seen down almost any road in Old Town that leads south towards the Capitol Building. For some, seeing downtown Lansing means more possibilities to help grow Old Town.

Festivals keep Old Town hopping

By Zachary Swiecicki
Old Town Lansing Times staff reporter

While Old Town Lansing businesses see a lull in customer traffic in the colder months, festivals are able to attract large numbers of interested travelers to the area.  

In early October, Old Town was home to Oktoberfest, a smaller, local version of Germany’s popular festival.  This two-day festival brought crowds in the thousands to the northern Lansing neighborhood.  

“This [Oktoberfest] is something we always look forward to in October,” a group of excited visitors said.  “It’s not Germany, but there’s no place we’d rather be.”

Old Town figures out ways to survive

By Zachary Swiecicki
Old Town Lansing Times staff reporter

Old Town, located in the northern region of Lansing, is only a 5-minute drive from the capital building in downtown Lansing. Many workers from the Lansing area are taking advantage of that and enjoying Old Town’s lunchtime and nightlife environment. During the day, Old Town struggles to keep the same amount of attraction as weekends. Around lunch time during the week in Old Town, there is an increase in the flow of people, but few restaurants and businesses are open to anyone passing through the small community. Lambs’ Gate Antiques worker Gail Mackenzie said, “Lunchtime is heavy traffic, then it slows down in the afternoon and then later on it picks back up.