Beaver Island News on the 'Net, May 19-26, 2008

Donna Gillespie Benefit a Resounding Success

Beaver Island, Michigan – May 21, 2008 – Donna and Doug Gillespie, Liam and Marilyn Racine, along with Stoney Acre Grill & Donegal Danny's Pub staff would all like to extend a heartfelt “thank you” to all who helped make the special benefit for Donna on Friday, May 16 th such a wonderful success.

The benefit to help defray Donna's medical and travel expenses included a taco buffet with all the trimmings, homemade, donated appetizers and desserts, and live music all night by Island Soul, Rigormortis, John McCafferty, Brian Roman, and The Boodlers . The music was as grand as the turnout of caring Island folks.

Appreciation abounds for all those who donated their time, energy, food and talent. “It's the way the Island is,” said Yvonne Crandall, organizer of the special benefit, “we're family.”

Donna and Doug wish to send their gratitude to all who participated, and hope that everyone enjoyed the evening as much as they did. They will be heading back to Ann Arbor for another surgical procedure and will take along all of your warm wishes, thoughts and prayers.

Photo From Frank Solle

If the robin is a sign of spring, does that mean the oriole is a sign of summer?

Not today. Brrr...rrrrr...rrrrr.

Welcome to Our Newest Business Supporter

Welcome to Ryan Smith Construction!

Beaver Island Community School Holds Awards Ceremonies

On Tuesday, May 20, 2008, BICS held three separate awards ceremonies, Elementary, High School, and Middle School. The elementary awards were presented beginning at 12:30 p.m. The high school awards were presented beginning at 2 p.m. The 7th and 8th grade middle school awards were presented beginning a 7:30 p.m.

Each of these pages has video links on them. Remember, you must have a Quicktime Player to be able to view these videos. Each of the many videos is now in Streaming format, which should allow them to be seen in a much quicker time period since the video plays very quickly and continues to download in the background. (See Updated article on video clips below) Please let me know what you think about this kind of news format. Email

Elementary Awards Page

High School Awards Page

Middle School Awards Page

AMVETS Memorial Day Breakfast

This fundraising event and community service is offered on Sunday, May 25, 2008, at the Holy Cross Hall. It begins at 8:30 in the morning and continues until noon. Let's all go out and support our AMVETS by attending this breakfast. They will be serving the usual pancakes, eggs, and sausage with coffee and juice and a fruit cup.

Beaver Island Christian Church and Holy Cross Schedule Baccalaureate Services

The Beaver Island Christian Church will honor the graduating class of 2008 in a Baccalaureate Service scheduled for Sunday, May 25, 2008, at 10 a.m.

The Holy Cross Baccalaureate Service will honor the graduating class of 2008 on Sunday, June 1, 2008, at 10 a.m.

For further information, contact the churches individually.

Beaver Island Community School to Hold Awards Ceremonies at Holy Cross Hall

In preparation for the building project to begin, the BICS has schedule its awards ceremonies at Holy Cross Hall this Tuesday, May 20, 2008. Everyone is welcome to come to help celebrate the many accomplishments of our community school's students. The Pre-K through sixth grade Awards Ceremony begins at 12:45 p.m. The High School Awards Ceremony begins at 2 p.m. Later in the evening at 7 p.m., the Grades 7 and 8 Awards Ceremony and the 8th Grade Graduation will take place.

High School Graduation Ceremony will take place on June 7, 2008, at 1 p.m. For further information, contact the school office at 231-448-2744.

Side by Side Comparison of TDS and CSYIP

Beaver Island News on the 'Net has been running both of these services side by side for the last eight weeks. Each program has its positives and its negatives, and several people have asked the editor which service they should go with. This editor cannot answer that question for them. They are going to have to sit down and make a list for themselves, but here is my list:

This information was updated with new information received in the mail on 5/19/08.

Item for Comparison CSYIP TDS
Installation requires professional installation, free with a commitment given in the month of May. requires homeowner installation with a set of easy instructions to follow.
Equipment costs requires purchase of equipment which may be paid for over time with a time payment plan equipment is sent without charge, except for a shipping fee.
Reliability two or three interruptions of service every third or fourth day. Has not failed once since installation.
Download speeds Depends on the plan, lowest plan is 256. Download speed faster with basic plan.
Upload speeds Depends on the plan. With 512 reciprocal plan speed, uploads here are faster. Takes a little less than twice as long to upload same files.
Availability Towers not set-up at this date. June 2008 suggested date for implementation of out of town and down the Island service Provides service to limited areas. Unlikely to increase service area due to large required investment.
Ability to Upgrade timeframe unknown at this time timeframe unknown at this time

It would be really nice to be able to go online and upgrade or downgrade my service directly, but so far neither service has that ability. Suppose you had a really important business project to complete and had a short time frame in which to complete the project. It would be nice to be able to upgrade your service (even if there was a fee) directly online with a couple to clicks and entry of some credit card information.

So, who would I go with if I had the choice to make right now?

The answer is simple. It depends.

Do you need and want Internet service right now?

If available in your area right now, either one will work for you. If not available in your area, it doesn't matter. If DSL is not available in your area, then you have to wait for CSYIP to do the tower installs.

Do you want something much faster than dialup with faster download speeds without concerns for upload speed?

512 is the fastest upload speed you will be guaranteed with TDS on Beaver Island, but TDS will give you a faster download speed right now than CSYIP. CSYIP is providing a faster upload speed for all their accounts than TDS.

Do you basically want to view video, view pictures, and view text?

Then TDS is sufficient for your needs.

Do you need to be able to upload video and pictures frequently?

Then CSYIP is going to provide you a faster service for these uploads.

If both services are available in your area, is the cost of service an issue for you?

Under the new pricing structure for CSYIP, a residential account that provides 256 reciprocal speed is $14.95 per month. The TDS residential plan starts at $39.95 per month, but has download speeds six time faster. It's hard to compare apples and oranges.

What about the speeds of the two services? How do they compare?

With a promised upload speed of 512 and a download speed of 512 with a CSYIP account and with a promised 512 upload speed and a 768 download speed from TDS, these were the results of one test:

Speed tests using SpeedTest.Net showed the following speeds to Iron Mountain Upload: TDS 350 CSYIP 478 Download: TDS 735 CSYIP 508. These tests were done on the same day about two minutes apart with 8 tests on each ISP..

Speed tests using SpeedTest.Net showed the following speeds to Jacksonville, FL: Upload TDS 280 CSYIP 374 Download: TDS 580 CSYIP 490 These tests were done on the same day about two minutes apart with 8 tests on each ISP.

You have to judge the above information based upon your needs and your budget.

Does this help you answer your questions? More questions or comments? Post them on the News Forum or Email them to:

Cost of Regular Gas Goes Up


The cost of regular gasoline went up on the Island this past week from $4.99 per gallon to $5.19 per gallon at Island Energies' Station at the Four Corners. The cost of diesel fuel is $5.08 per gallon. Beaver Island Marina sells gas also, but with a gas card, you get a 4% discount on the price, which is also $5.19 per gallon.

Benefit Buffet Held on Friday, May 16, 2008

There was a Benefit Buffet for Donna Gillespie to be held at Stoney Acre Grill on Friday, May 16, 2008, from 6-8 p.m. The was charge at the door, but there was a requested free-will donation.

There was a large variety of music on this night at Donegal Danny's from three different Island bands. The music started early and continued well into the night.

Donna's husband Doug works for the Charlevoix County Road Commission here on the island. Doug is the brother of Marilyn Racine (owner of Stoney Acre/Donegal Danny's). Donna is a waitress at Stoney Acre Grill.

Donna is having medical problems, and she and Doug have been traveling back and forth to Ann Arbor. The Benefit is to help with medical and travel expenses.

If you would like to make a donation but were unable to attend the Benefit Buffet you can send a check to:
Donna Gillespie
C/O Stoney Acre Grill
26420 Carlisle Road
Beaver Island, MI 49782

Beaver Island EMS Prepares for Summer Season

With most of the BIEMS volunteers working in jobs that are influenced by the summer tourist season, they must get as much of their training completed before that summer season starts. You may see each of the ambulances being loaded onto the boat as each one is sent off to get a good mechanical inspection and any defects repaired. Courses that are being offered to BIEMS members include the following: Advanced Cardiac Life Support and Basic Airway Practical skills on May 24th. Advanced Airway Practical skills on May 25th. On May 26th, there is a CPR Instructor Update class. On May 29th, there is an all day Pediatric Advanced Life Support Class. On May 31st and June 1st, there is a Central Nervous System Injury and Backboarding class. Last, but not least, on June 13th, 14th, and 15th, there will be a driver's training update for all EMS members.

Signs of Springtime

There are many different signs of spring that different people use to judge its arrival. Some use the morel mushroom as an indicator. Some use the arrival of the robin. Some use the melting of the last shaded snow pile. Here are a few more signs that Beaver Island is getting to suggest that the summer season is just around the corner.


What is that large stork-like bird flying over Beaver Island's marshes? If it's huge and the legs and neck are outstretched to the front and back, it is most likely the sandhill crane. Cranes can be heard from long distances away, making a clacketty-clack and bugling call. Have you ever heard this sound? You can find sandhill cranes throughout most of North America, nesting from the sub-arctic regions of Canada and Alaska, south to the Gulf States. This might be one suggestion that the summer season is upon us. Having never gotten close enough to one to get a close-up photo, it was necessary to get one from the Internet.

Thanks to Will Cook for this excellent photograph.

The successful flowering of the dandelions that cover the grassy yards and the golf course.

For some, it is the ducks in the harbor......For others, the forsythia in bloom...or the plums in blossom

Others think of the nesting loons on Barney's Lake

And for others, the hunting of the terns flying off from the lake with food in their beak to who knows where.

For yet others, the opening of Daddy Franks is the sign that spring is here, and that the "ice cream craving" can be satisfied.

Mixed (Man-Woman) Team Invitational

There will be an upcoming Mixed (Man-Woman) Team Invitational on May 25, 2008 at 1:00 p.m.

Format:  Alternate shot (men drive on #1, #3, #5, #7, & #9, women drive on #2, #4, $6, & #8.
Following the drive, team members will alternate shots until ball is Holed.
2 teams will tee off at each hole.
Entry fee is $15.00 + green fees if not a BIGC member.
Prizes based on entry fees collected.

1st place 40%
2nd place 30%
3rd place 20%
4th place 10%

Winter rules will apply on all fairways, mowed areas including paths.  Out of bounds along right fence line #1, to the right past the pond on #7, and along the left side of #9. If a team member's drive is out of bounds the team's second member will drive from his or her Tee
box and add a 1 stroke penalty.

Sign up by calling the golf course at 448-2301, sign up on the sheet on the desk at the golf course, or call Buck Ridgeway at 448-2680.


All teams should be at the golf course by 12:30 p.m.  Meeting in front of the Club House at 12:45 p.m.  


Men's Golf League Starts This Wednesday

The very competitive men's golf league begins this coming Wednesday, May 21, 2008. The schedule has been professionally prepared by Buck Ridgeway on his computer. The handicaps have been calculated. Everything is ready to go. The golf course is in the capable hands of John Works, Jr.

The greens may be a little challenging at the beginning of the season, since John has been working diligently on all nine greens with sanding and aerating. The fairways are growing grass in the spring rains. It should be a great golf season.

Senior Luncheon

This monthly get-together has been taking place at the Shamrock Bar and Restaurant for the winter months. It has been well attended. Sunday's lunch was no difference with 75 seniors attending the luncheon, and few more stragglers coming in just as the last lunch was served. It is no wonder that they go to this social event. The food is excellent. The price amazing.

Cole slaw, peas, turkey, and mashed potatoes, and........DESSERT!

Even for those who are not over 60 years of age, the price is very reasonable, $6.00. For those 60 years of age and older, the price is only $3.00.

The Shamrock was packed with seniors enjoying a wonderful meal and enjoying the conversations. Every seat was taken in the restaurant with several seniors sitting at the bar to eat. Some are reluctant to have the word "senior" attached to them, but, with a deal like this, who knows what age you are? The only one that knows is Jean Palmer who looks at the sign-up sheet to count the attendees.

Dredging and Repair Work and Low Water and Ice

(An editorial by Joe Moore)

The reports continue to state that the Great Lakes are going through a cycle and that eventually the level of the lakes will come back up. One source attributes the low lake levels to lack of ice in the wintertime allowing continued evaporation. This theory states that this evaporation over the winter is the reason for the lower lake levels. Another source attributes the low lake levels to dredging in the southern Great Lakes claiming the water is flowing out to the ocean. Yet another source suggests that water is being diverted out the Chicago River to help supplement the flow of water down the Mississippi to keep the paddle wheel boats capable of navigating in that river. It seems to be a matter of who to believe, but no matter who or what is responsible, the Lake Michigan levels around the Beaver Archipelago are close to the lowest ever recorded. Some sources even claim that the lowest level ever has already been passed.

What does all this mean for Beaver Island? It means that the Beaver Island Boat Dock and the EW Marine have to dredge to allow safe and easy docking of their boats. It means that Beaver Island Marina has to continue to work on leveling their docks and hoping that boats will be able to make it to their dock without going aground. It means that the new St. James Harbor Master will need to have factual information to provide boaters who come to the Island about safe passage in the shallow waters of the harbor. But with the high cost of fuel, maybe the low levels won't make any difference. Maybe we won't get the boaters due to this high cost of fuel.

Dock work to begin..............Dredging already begun

Will Beaver Island lose the Great Lakes tour boat business when they can't get to the dock? When will a governmental agency actually take the time to figure this out and work to fix the problem? Pretty soon there will be additional lakefront lots for sale in front of those that thought they owned waterfront property.

Island Treasures Resale Changes Hours

The Island Treasures Resale Shop is now open four days a week from noon until 4 p.m.

The four days are: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Saturday.

Watch for the Wii Raffle coming this summer!

Softball Anyone?

Softball will be offered this year on Wednesdays starting May 21, 2008, at 7:00 pm, and then on Tuesdays in June and July.

Ages: Incoming  9th graders thru adult are welcome. If you have any questions please contact Kerry Smith at 448-2601.

Reminder About Video Clips

There are several video clips on this website and part of the 'News. Remember that some of these video clips can take more than a minute to download over a high speed Internet connection. Dial-up ISP subscribers may not want to attempt to download them. We are going to try a different method of providing these videos called "Video Streaming." Currently, the only format that is available in our software is the Windows Media Video codec. There will be a learning curve to get this up and running, but it is supposed to help get the videos to display faster. In other words, the video will start to play and finish downloading in the background. You'll be updated on this when it is up and running.

Update: Quicktime is the standard that was established and will continue to be used for now.


The learning curve on this video, especially the streaming video, was quite daunting. However, the standard that has been established on this website was previously Quicktime, so switching to Windows Media was not the answer. The videos are now, for those interested, in Hinted Movie H264 format, which allows streaming video to occur. This is the most up-to-date streaming video format that is cross-compatible between Windows and MacIntosh computers.

Instead of waiting more than a minute for the video to start playing for those with a high speed Internet connection, the video begins to download and then starts playing much quicker while the rest of the download takes place in the background while you are viewing. This may not be a completely accurate description, but its the only way that this editor can explain it. For the techies out there, a video is converted from DV to AVI to QT movie to QT Hinted movie format, and then uploaded to a streaming video server. The QT player with the link is then embedded into the website page.

When you click on the link, it automatically takes you to a page, which automatically starts the video streaming flow from the streaming server. As soon as this connection is negotiated and as soon as there is enough of the file to begin playing the video clip, the video clip begins playing. There will be some more learning and testing occur over the next week or two to see how this effects the dialup customer.

If you are a dialup customer and want to help with this process, give the video clips a try and keep track of the time it takes for the video to start playing, then email me your information and tell me if you can view them over your dialup connection.

4th of July Parade Theme Chosen

The Chamber of Commerce board of directors has selected, "Beaver Island's Hidden Treasures" as the theme for the July 4th parade. So start thinking of which "hidden treasure" you would like portray in your addition to the parade.

Chamber and Wildlife Club Sponsor MOWA

Chamber of Commerce and Wildlife Club members are looking forward to hosting Michigan Outdoor Writers Association (MOWA) members June 6-8, 2008. Jeff Powers and Eric Hodgson chair the events committee that will coordinate volunteers intent on showing these influential people a Beaver Island good time.

"We have been working for three years to host a MOWA meeting on Beaver Island. As they return to their offices and write about Beaver Island in the coming year the advertising value will be substantial, likely over $200, 000 if purchased." said chamber director Steve West.

Chamber member businesses are donating and discounting services in order to entice as many as possible to attend the Beaver Island meeting. The Beaver Island Lodge will serve as the headquarters location.

Jack Cull Memorial Concert

On Sunday, May 25, 2008, at 8 p.m., the Jack Cull Memorial Concert will take place at the Holy Cross Parish Hall. Contact Barry Pischner for further information.

News from the Transfer Station

Do you have some materials that might be considered hazardous? Do you have a question about what to do with those materials? Do you have some common household hazardous wastes? Then Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day has been designed just for you. This is designed for Beaver Island residents and will take place on Saturday, May 31, 2008, from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. This is BY APPOINTMENT ONLY. Please call 448-2228 for your appointment.

Here are some of the materials that they will take. It will include:

drain openers......................oven cleaners.................metal cleaners and polishers......grease and rust solvents

brake fluid..........................carburetor cleaners..........fuel injection cleaners...............starter fluids

air conditioning refrigerants....paint strippers and removers.....adhesives....................photographic chemicals


swimming pool chemicals............mercury thermometers


COMPUTER COMPONENTS $3 EACH; TVs UP TO 24" $3, LARGER $5; MICROWAVES, ALL SIZES, $3.00. These new prices are because of a wonderful new arrangement with Charlevoix County Recycle Commission.

News from the Chamber of Commerce

Room Finders Program Will Start In June

Accommodations members should call with July-Aug openings starting about June 1. If you're not familiar with this program please contact the office for a review.

Media Report & Visits

Beaver Island got great St. Pats day coverage in mainland newspapers and a nice piece in Traverse Magazine. Steve West did a 2 minute spot on WOOD TV / Grand Rapids on April 25th about gas prices. The Editor of Michigan Traveler Magazine will visit in June to do a three part Beaver Island story. A large group of Michigan Outdoor Writers (MOWA) will hold a meeting on the island June 6-8.

Great Positive Spin On High Gas Price Story /pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080506 /OPINION03/805060382

Your Chamber of Commerce helps spin a high gas price story in the Detroit News into a positive Beaver Island story. Neal Rubin's column said, " On an island where a three-bedroom, three-bath beachfront house with room for eight rents for all of $1,300 a week, inquiries and bookings are running ahead of last year."

The message: Beaver Island is a bargain family vacation destination!

Beaver Island Chamber of Commerce

Beaver Island Electric Car Show Preview

The Island will host its first electric car show on Friday, June 27, 2008, and Saturday, June 28, 2008. Two mainland electric vehicle (EV) dealers will bring over a total of thirteen cars from four different manufacturers. The cars will be shown on the brick paver section in front of the the Shamrock and Harbour Market. More

Floor Plans for BICS New Building Here

BICS Building Project Plans and Updates

These are the most up-to-date plans available for the building.

2008 Beaver Island Community School Calendar Changes

Where's This?

Last Week's Question and This week's Where's This?

Every one of these has been in town previously, so it was time to do one in Peaine Township. No one correctly answered this one so it will stay for another week.

And add on another one???

Email your answers to

Bible Camp Coming This Summer

This camp is for all children who live on or are visiting Beaver Island with a variety of wholesome activities which will include music, crafts, games and age appropriate lessons focusing on Christian values and teaching children what life was like in the time of Jesus. Attendance is free. This is a great way for children to make new friends. All materials will be provided as well as daily snacks and a picnic lunch on the last day of the school. Currently scheduled for July 1-3, you can plan your vacation around these dates.

Parents interested in having their children attend the school should contact Deb Robert at 448-2048 or by email at .

Music, Art, and Drama Camp

MAD Camp will take place during the same week as Museum Week this coming July. The dates are July 21-25, 2008. You can get more information about this by going to their web site at

There are also applications available at the Beaver Island Community School office. Be sure to register early for the early registration discount.

Beaver Island Trivia

Last Week's Question:

Which Dominican Sister was the last Dominican nun to be the principal of the Beaver Island Community School?

There was only one correct answer to this question this week. Congratulations to Sheri Timsak on coming up with the correct answer. The last Dominican Sister to be principal at the Beaver Island Community School was named Sister Dennis Marie Kirt, but she goes by a different name now, and she still visits the Island once in a while.

This Week's Question:

Several years ago, some bowling lane equipment came off the boat, and there were plans to build a bowling alley for Island residents and summer visitors. Can you name of the business that the owners of the bowling equipment are operating now? (Hint: It's not a bowling alley. By the way, is this still planned to happen?)

The first correct answer will earn a gift subscription to News on the 'Net for the months of June, July, and August for the person of your choice, anyone who is not already a subscriber. Email your answers to:

Public Meeting on Phragmities Planned

Shoreline owners and interested individuals are asked to attend a public meeting on June 24, 2008 at the Peaine Township Hall at 7.p.m. This meeting is to discuss the proposed 2008 Phragmities Eradication Plan (Save Our Shores Program). A letter will be mailed on June 1st to all shoreline owners outlining this year's process. John Works, Peaine Township Supervisor, Don Vyse, St. James Township Supervisor, Brian Mastenbrook, DNR, and representatives from the Beaver Island Association (BIPOA) will be on hand to answer questions. We would also like to take this opportunity to thank those property owners who reviewed the information on Phragmities and participated in the treatment program.

More information on Phragmities and treatment can be found at:

BIA (BIPOA) Plans Meeting

The Beaver Island Association (formally BIPOA) will hold their Annual Meeting on Monday, July 14, 2008 at 7:30 p.m. at the Peaine Township Hall.  Election of officers, Treasurer's report, committee reports and other business will be conducted. Open to the general public.

Meeting Minutes

The minutes of all public meetings will be posted as soon as they are received. News on the 'Net welcomes minutes to all public meetings. Please email them to

Peaine Township Board Minutes

BIRHC Board Meeting Minutes

St. James Township Meeting Minutes

Beaver Island Community School Board Meeting Minutes