Small coastal communities spiff up their resumes

Capital News Service
LANSING — Small coastal communities are laying the groundwork to bring cash to their waterfronts. Community members, researchers, designers, engineers and others are helping six small harbor communities plan for the future. And the effort, coordinated by Michigan Sea Grant, could have a statewide impact by modeling development strategies for other coastal communities, creating safe harbors for recreational boaters and spurring tourism. Four communities last year participated in a program that helps to develop five-year  plans for their waterfronts: Ontonagon, Pentwater, Au Gres and New Baltimore. Two more – St.

Dark sky preserves could boost tourism

Capital News Service
LANSING — A new law designating dark sky preserves in Michigan is expected to pull visitors from all over the world, advocates say. “It was a natural fit,” said Rep. Peter Pettalia, R-Presque Isle. Pettalia was behind the law meant to protect northern Michigan state parks from artificial light pollution. “It’s such a neat experience to witness celestial happenings all around you,” Pettalia said. The law specifies Rockport State Recreation Area, in Alpena and Presque Isle counties, Negwegon State Park in Alpena and Alcona counties, and Thompson’s Harbor State Park in Presque Isle County.