August 1, 2011
Vol. 17, No. 25
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Great Summer Books

This year's book for summer reading.

Summertime and reading a great book seem to go together like sand, surf, and seagulls. As we head toward the downhill side of the season, we recall those novels or biographies that we have read on the beach or at the camp.

At Tech, the Reading as Inquiry program is in its eighth year, and it gives incoming first-year students a common book to read before coming to campus.

It's a great program. It gets the students thinking about a book in more of a collegiate way, and when they get to campus, they will discuss the book with their class members and even get to hear from and meet the author.

It also involves many people across campus. Current students, faculty, and staff sign up as discussion leaders and work with the new students as they delve deeper into the work. Parents and family members, too, can get involved.

This year, the book is The Glass Castle, by Jeannette Walls. Information about the program and the book is here.

Those new students and our returning Huskies will be here before too long, and many will be sharing this memory of summer, before hitting all those other books.

Dennis '92, '09

At Tech

Plants Thrive in Copper-Tainted Soils with a Little Help from Bacteria

When miners abandoned Michigan’s Copper Country, they left a lot of the red metal behind, and not in a good way. Waste from the mining operations still contains a high fraction of copper, so high that almost nothing can grow on it—and hasn’t for decades, leaving behind moonscape expanses that can stretch for acres. More

Summer School at Tech: A Research Experience for Teachers

High school teachers from across Michigan are doing a little summer school themselves, attending the Research Experience for Teachers on the Michigan Technological University campus. In the program, funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), they are doing multi-disciplinary research in Michigan Tech’s Wood-to-Wheels forest-based biofuels transportation enterprise. More

Alumni Reunion Kicks Off Thursday

Michigan Tech’s annual Alumni Reunion is set for Thursday-Saturday, Aug. 4-6. Everyone is invited to enjoy the wide variety of activities and get reacquainted with old friends and former students. The School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science is hosting a number of events to mark its 75th anniversary. Other special reunion groups include the Varsity/Jazz Singers; the classes of 1961, 1971, 1981, 1991, and 2001; the Golden M’s, volleyball, cross country, track and Nordic skiing alumni; and the Sigma Rho, Theta Tau and Kappa Delta Psi fraternities. More

Alumni Around the World

Alumni Gather at Ford and Chrysler

Michigan Tech alumni working at Ford held their annual pasty picnic at a Dearborn City Park on Wednesday, July 27. Over forty-five alumni enjoyed pasties made at a local bakery as well as pickled eggs imported from the Douglass House in Houghton. Peg Gale, Dean of the School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science talked briefly about the rich history of Ford and the School and how Ford had donated the village of Alberta and surrounding timberland to the University in 1954. Peg described Michigan Tech's commitment to the legacy of Henry Ford in sustaining the village and timber resources.

Pete Cattelino '74, assistant director of Corporate Partnerships, gave a brief update on the University and announced that Michigan Tech was one of five institutions to win a Ford College Community Challenge Grant of $50,000 for a "Sustainable Transit Partnership for Houghton, Hancock, and Michigan Technological University". An alumni steering committee, chaired by Rob Starbowski '91, organized the event and works with Michigan Tech to identify and coordinate activities such as recruiting, research, and funding student projects and scholarships.

chryslerChrysler Event

The Walter P. Chrysler Museum in Auburn Hills was the setting for an event for Tech alumni working at Chrysler on Tuesday, July 19. Over eighty-five alumni enjoyed viewing sixty-five antique, custom and concept Chrysler vehicles while networking and enjoying refreshments including mini-pasties (from local vendor) and pickled eggs from the Douglass House in Houghton. The group was welcomed by Chrysler's Steve Williams '86 who gave a brief overview of the Chrysler-Michigan Tech partnership. President Glenn Mroz '74/'77 then gave an update on the university followed by an ME-EM Department update by Bill Predebon. Several other Tech representatives also made brief presentations about their collaboration with Chrysler. Jen Shute '96 did a great job organizing the event and recruiting volunteers to assist with activities that Chrysler has with Tech.

Hole-in-One Contest Added to Alum Golf Scramble

The Tervo Agency is sponsoring a hole-in-one contest at No. 8 at the MBA Association golf outing during Alumni Reunion. The prize for a hole in one is $10,000 cash, and if more than one golfer gets a hole in one than the $10,000 is divided evenly among the winners.

As far as the golf outing, detailed information can be found at the MBA Association's webpage.

Michigan Tech alumni, staff and faculty members, graduate and undergraduate students from all departments across campus, as well as local community members, are invited. It's a 4-scramble tournament and golfers can sign-up even if they do not have a team. One of our plans is to form/fill teams with less than four players.

There will be prizes to reward the top-three teams ($300, $200 and $100), and three competition prizes worth $100 each (longest putt, closest to the pin, longest drive). We're planning to reward the "worst" performer. We're also planning to have raffle prizes and finally, we'd like to encourage early registration with payment (cash or check) to confirm participation.

Pierre Bekwone '08

Alumni Vets Gather

A group of Vietnam-era veterans started a vets club on campus in 1968. In their heyday, they numbered about 140. Now, says alumnus Rick Rozman '71, "Our ranks are getting thinner." Forty could come to a reunion last weekend, their first since 1993.

"Da' Duck" is their insignia. It features a cartoon duck, biting down on a broken slide rule, pictured with a frothing mug of beer. It's a play on the national symbol honoring veterans, an eagle that is nicknamed the "ruptured duck." The mug of beer is telltale. Let's just say that these men were a thirsty bunch when they held meetings in the old Library Bar and routinely visited the old Bosch Brewery. "We're too old to raise hell now," Rozman says. More

Vet from Class of '71 Stops By

dave schumann
David Schumann '71 visited us at the Admin Building when he was up for the Vets Club Reunion recently. Dave got degrees in electrical engineering and engineering administration before beginning his career. Working in a couple of manufacturing concerns, he was able to retire at age 52 and has been enjoying life ever since. He lives near Athens, Georgia, and was looking forward to more Vets Club activities and a Harbor run, including a visit to the Eagle Harbor cemetery where the legendary Jon Davis is buried.

Fill in the Blanks


An old shot of the Memorial Union lobby. Recall it? It's clickable. Email me.

Pasty Picnic 2006

pasty picnicMaybe you were at the Alumni Reunion Pasty Picnic in 2006. Email me.
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Tech Sports

Guisfredi Recipient of GLIAC Scholarship

Michigan Tech basketball player Angela Guisfredi (Hubbell, Mich./Lake Linden) was recently awarded the 2011 Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) Postgraduate Scholarship. The honor, which awards each recipient $5,000 in aid to the graduate school of their choice, was voted on by the Faculty Athletic Representatives of the GLIAC member institutions. More

Veteran Defense Makes Tech Football a 2011 Contender

If the old saying, "defense wins championships," holds true, then the 2011 Michigan Tech football team will have a chance to be among the top in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference standings come November. The Huskies return 10 defensive starters from last year's unit which ranked first in the league in points allowed and second in yards allowed. Tech held five of its 10 opponents under 14 points en route to an 8-2 record and second-place finish in the GLIAC standings. More

Around the Keweenaw

North Woods Conservancy Opens Center in Ahmeek

For the first time in the history of the 20-year organization, the North Woods Conservancy is a visible presence in the community. NWC has opened a visitor center on the National Scenic Byway in Ahmeek, located in the same building as the Streetcar Station. "This is the first time the North Woods Conservancy has had a bricks-and-mortar presence," said Stephanie Swartzendruber, executive director of NWC. More

Northbound Traffic Off Bridge Street Barred

Citizen's Bank
There will soon be only one way to get onto Quincy Street in Houghton. The Houghton City Council Wednesday approved barring vehicle traffic crossing Montezuma Avenue northbound from Bridge Street, as well as left turns off Montezuma down Bridge. Police Chief John Donnelly said the impending change is being done because of safety concerns. It will take effect once construction has finished, which Donnelly said could happen in the next couple of weeks. More

Celebrating 150 Years Of Keweenaw County

To give proper recognition to the period, Ann Gasperich was wearing a dress and carrying a parasol Sunday, which would have been right in fashion 150 years ago. Gasperich, who was one of the organizers of the Keweenaw County Sesquicentennial celebration in Mohawk, said the event was also a chance to show appreciation to people who gave a similar effort half a century ago. "This event is a celebration of our 150th year," she said. "Along with that, it's an occasion to remember the special people ... 50 years ago and thank them." More

From the Email Bag

Cliff Diving

We spent more than a few spring Saturdays and Sundays jumping off that wall starting in 1990. I don't remember who first told us about Canyon Falls, but there was evidence that people had been enjoying themselves there for years. The usual ritual was to haul a cooler of "beverages" down the trail and and then stare at swimming hole 30 or so feet below. Even after multiple trips, it seemed that we always had to stand there a while and ponder the possibility of a dead head or other submerged danger just waiting to inflict serious injury or cause death. Eventually someone would just jump, and all would be well. I've spoken to other alumni about the place, and it seems a lot of people went there, but every time we went we were always alone.

Eric Jung '95


Hi Dennis,
Some friends and I visited Canyon Falls a number of times in the summer of 1995. We jumped at the “first spot” not too far past the end of the railing, and also at the “second spot” where the jump seemed at least twice as tall as the first… To get back up to the top at the second spot we climbed the cliff with the help of a rope attached to a tree at the top, or else floated downstream a ways until there was a spot to climb out & hike back. That was one of the most exhilarating things I’ve done here at Tech. Am now waiting for my kids to get a little older so we can go again (on a vacation, most likely).

Oh! I almost forgot – my fiance and I also jumped at the first spot in the fall of 1995, but we skinny-dipped… It was a little bit chilly so not many people were there, but I suspect we were spotted even so…


Dulci (Bosma) Avouris ’96, ‘11


I was only able to cliff jump at Canyon Falls once. I spent the summer of 1999 or 2000 (I forget which) up in Houghton taking a few summer courses. It was one hot, by UP standards, summer day. A big group of us packed into two cars and headed to the falls. There were at least a dozen people there already. We spent the better part of an afternoon jumping off the cliffs. It was fun. I would definitely do it again if I was ever in the area during the summer.

Matt Yeager

Bosch Brewery Fire

Bosch Brewery Fire
Hello Dennis:
I remember the brewery fire very well, as I probably took the picture you published in your last newsletter. I was staying in the Alpha Kappa Psi Fraternity house that was located at the foot of the Houghton side of the bridge next to the Clark gas station. One morning in June, 1974 (I can’t remember the exact date) numerous fire trucks went through the intersection past the bridge heading towards the Houghton canal. I thought nothing of it until I heard the announcers on WMPL say the old Bosch Brewery was on fire.

My roommate at the frat house was Alan Johnson, who was a photographer for The Lode, but who was at the time of the fire, in the lower peninsula. Seeing his camera and a roll of film in the closet, I decided to head out to the canal to try and get some pictures.

The building had a concrete/brick exterior with a wooden interior and roof. When I arrived, the brewery was fully engulfed. Numerous fire departments were on scene with about 20-25 firefighters, and it was obvious by then that the fire would totally destroy the structure. I started shooting pictures with Alan’s camera and probably shot a whole roll of film at the brewery.

When Alan returned for the fall session, I told him what I had shot. He developed the film and The Lode published several of the pictures in an early edition during the fall term of 1974.

Let me know if I can provide any additional information.

Glen Wirtanen, Class of 1975

SYP Memories

I was a counselor/instructor on one Bicycling Ecology and Geology trip sometime in the early 1970s, possibly that first year of SYP. Somewhere I have a photo of the counselors and support van driver, four of us sitting on the beach holding up cans of Spam, so you can guess what they fed us! I also co-led a couple of Isle Royale Backpacking Ecology and Geology tours in that same time period – I was usually the one in the rear with the slower hikers. Those were good times and good memories, and I’m glad to see the comments in your newsletter.

Barb Matz, 1974

Alum Seeks Help in Bringing a Barn to Michigan

I'm a tech alumni, Forestry, 1970. I'm the district Forester for Saginaw Conservation District and also work with farmers markets in our area and through our state association. I'm looking for help to have interested folks vote for hemlock so we can bring the barn to Michigan. See the information below.

Here it is! See the stories. Let's start setting our plans to get everyone to vote for Hemlock!!!!

Other ways to vote:

Facebook link -!/event.php?eid=25837322418018

You will also be able to vote at the Hemlock Hub!
Go to:

More information will be coming out soon. All help and suggestions to get votes for Hemlock will be appreciated. Let's bring the barn here to the Midwest. I'll look forward to hearing your ideas if you can help in any way.

Thank you so much.
Dan Keane

Con Ad and Togos

I hope I remember this correctly but I sure me and my friends would drinking black russians and eating fried mushrooms at the Con Ad. Also being from the east coast Con Ad was the only place I could get a good New York deli style corned beef sandwich. It was like a little bit of home.

Does anyone remember the subs at Togo's

Kim Westen

Kim: I still drool over the thought of a cheese steak at the old Togo's. There is still one in Marquette.

Fire in the Late 1970s?

Dennis the place in Gail's Question that Burned was the "DISCO of the North"- Diamond Mikes. It had a better floor than the "Long Shot."

They did have some Live entertainment ever so often and a friend of mine lost his equipment there and in an establishment in Dollar Bay .. In the late 70's and early 80's there were a rash of Tavern fires ... Maybe due to the drinking age being raised to 21 on 1/1/1979 and no grand fathering......

Scott Hartz

We Appreciate the Thanks

Wanted to let you know that I appreciate receiving the newsletter and the various updates it provides.

Jim Kryway, 1969

Old Mug Found

purest sign
Any idea what the initials on the mug pertain to? Photo was forwarded to Joe K who forwarded it to me.

Thank You,

Marty Schendel

Marty: I'm guessing our alums can solve this one.

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