We Live Up Here

WXPR's We Live Up Here series is a home for stories that focus on the people, history, and culture that make the Northwoods of Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan such a unique place to live.

You can keep track of We Live Up Here and all of WXPR's local features on the WXPR Local Features podcast, wherever you get your podcasts.

Photo courtesy of Wayne Valliere/Native Arts & Cultures Foundation

Birchbark canoes take a long time to make, but master artist Wayne Valliere from the Lac du Flambeau Band of Lake Superior Chippewa tells us that the process is an important one, and can serve as a metaphor for the value of teamwork.

Mackenzie Martin continues our We Live Up Here series with the story.

Mackenzie Martin / WXPR

When someone lives to be a hundred years old, everyone asks them for the secrets to their longevity.

Trees, on the other hand, live to be hundreds and hundreds of years old. How do they survive?

Mackenzie Martin recently headed to an old-growth forest with naturalist John Bates to learn more.

Photo courtesy of Jim Skibo

Arts and crafts style furniture⁠—first produced in the early 1900s⁠—is considered by many to be the hallmark of American design and artisanship. Original pieces can go for millions of dollars at auction and furniture made in that style today can be sold for tens of thousands of dollars.

Today WXPR contributor Jim Skibo continues our We Live Up Here series with the story of a man in Antigo who has mastered the style at a unique time in his life.

Courtesy of UW-Madison Center for Limnology

If you’re a fisherman in the Northwoods, you’re well aware of the decline in walleye populations over the last few years.

Why is this happening, though? And is there a way to reverse the trend? 

Mackenzie Martin / WXPR

There are several Masonic Lodges of Freemasons here in the Northwoods, but the network has always had an air of mystery.

Recently we received a Curious North question asking us to investigate the history of local Masonic Temples, which led us to wonder… what is the role of a Masonic Temple in a community?

Mackenzie Martin headed to the Rhinelander Masonic Temple and the former Wausau Masonic Temple to find out.

Sa magnuson33/Wikimedia Commons

We’re continuing our series on the historical influence of mining in the Upper Peninsula today, specifically in the Ironwood area, with the story of the Ironwood Carnegie Library. (Listen to Part One about how neighborhoods in the Upper Peninsula got their names here.)

There are Carnegie libraries all over the country, including in Merrill and Rhinelander. While Andrew Carnegie did a lot of good for libraries though, he was a controversial figure.

Library of Congress

We're spending today and tomorrow looking at some aspects of the historical influence of mining in the Upper Peninsula, specifically in the Ironwood area.

Today we'll be answering a listener question. Tomorrow, we'll be remembering Andrew Carnegie and his influence in Ironwood ahead of the 100th anniversary of his death. (Listen to Part Two about the significance of Andrew Carnegie in the Ironwood area here.)

Michigan Technological University

This story was originally broadcasted on NPR's Morning Edition.

Since the 1960’s, a bright white light has appeared outside a tiny town in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula. Some people think it’s a paranormal occurrence, but researchers have another theory.

Mackenzie Martin has the story.

In a region where towns are as small and scattered as the Northwoods, it can sometimes be hard to find people who share your same interests. The Rhinelander Photography Club though has been connecting local photographers since 2013. 

WXPR’s Hannah Reese continues our We Live Up Here series with the story. 

Mackenzie Martin / WXPR

A unique art exhibit has been the focus at ArtStart Rhinelander since May. Layers by artist Phillip Faulkner is on display through Saturday, August 10th.

The exhibit combines appropriated imagery with original work and the artist behind it says he's open to any and all interpretations you might have of it.

Mackenzie Martin has this report from the opening reception in June.

 

 

 

Most snowshoes in the United States are probably in storage right now, gathering dust and waiting for temperatures to drop. In the town of Lake Tomahawk in the Northwoods of Wisconsin though, they're getting a lot of use this summer.

Snowshoe baseball is exactly what it sounds like. It's a game of baseball played on snowshoes, though it more closely resembles a bizarre game of softball.

Michigan Technological University

Climate Change can be overwhelming to think about.

Author Nancy Langston has been researching Lake Superior for over a decade now though and she says local stories of people taking action give her hope.

Larry Lapachin continues our We Live Up Here series with the story.

 

Jim Skibo / WXPR Public Radio

We continue our We Live Up Here series this week with a story of a family-owned fishing lure manufacturer in Antigo that uses squirrel tail hair on their famous Mepps spinners.

Jim Skibo has the story.

Mackenzie Martin / WXPR Public Radio

AUGUST 19, 2019 IMPORTANT UPDATE: The Oneida County Health Department does not recommend drinking from the Crescent Spring because the test for PFAS came back as positive. More information can be found in a report here from WXPR's Mackenzie Martin.

Curious About Beekeeping? Talk to Chris Hansen

Jun 14, 2019
Nate Sheppard. All rights reserved.

As people take up hobby beekeeping and bees continue to succumb to diseases, one Northwoods beekeeper has made it a goal over the years to help educate people about the process.

Nate Sheppard continues our We Live Up Here series with the story.

A bright yellow sign hangs in front of Hansen Honey Farm’s main shop. It shows a cartoon bee with two words written across it: Bee Crossing.

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