2022 in Review: Upper Michigan’s community

Published: Dec. 29, 2022 at 10:42 PM EST|Updated: Dec. 29, 2022 at 10:43 PM EST
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In 2022, Upper Michigan proved once again why our community is Someplace Special!

Bates Township native Nick Baumgartner took home the gold medal in the Winter Olympics for Team USA. The 40-year-old gave back to the community by visiting schools across the U.P. sharing his story of perseverance.

Here at TV6, we said goodbye to longtime anchor Steve Asplund, who retired after 42 years of dedication to the community and his service to the newsroom under many roles. We now call our workspace, “The Steve Asplund Newsroom” in his honor.

Also this year, Bridgefest returned in Houghton and Hancock after two years away due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The festival was even complete with the Portage Lake Lift Bridge being recognized as a national landmark.

Also returning this year was the 42nd annual Hiawatha Traditional Music Festival. Marquette’s Tourist Park played host to the event for the first time since 2019.

Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Yoopers took to fundraising for the people of the country.

In Marquette County, a rally for Ukraine was held at Harlow Park and Marquette Days for Girls took part in a Ukraine emergency project. The Knights of Columbus partnered with Casa Calabria to host a relief dinner for Ukraine aid at the St. Peter Cathedral and Polish Yoopers for Ukraine held a pierogi bar, polish bake sale and 50/50 raffle at Remie’s Tavern. Remie’s owner Russ Modell personally helped deliver aid to those in need in Ukraine and Towners Pastry and Chocolate in Marquette Township sold easter eggs to support the country. The Ampe family in Marquette even took it upon themselves to transport emergency supplies to Ukraine. They have two adopted children from the country who were displaced when Russia invaded. Also, Partridge Creek Farms created a sunflower garden in solidarity with the people of Ukraine, the group Project Lift Ukraine UP hosted a talent show fundraiser and the Marquette City Band paid tribute by playing the Ukrainian national anthem.

In Delta County, St. Joseph and St. Patrick’s Parish raised more than $7,000 for Ukrainian refugees.

In Houghton County, Michigan Tech students held anti-war demonstrations on campus, while a walk for peace took place on the Portage Lake Lift Bridge. The group Yoopers for Ukraine held their first event in Houghton’s Veterans Park, calling it “Unvictory Day.” The group also held an art fundraiser and family fun day at Mont Ripley. At Grace United Methodist Church, people gathered for a pysanka workshop and fundraiser.

In Dickinson County, Saint Vincent de Paul in Iron Mountain donated store proceeds to refugees. The Dickinson County Veteran’s Affairs Office also hosted a benefit dinner.

In Iron County, the Alpha Michigan Brewing Company sold the NATO-styled “Puck Futin” beer to support humanitarian efforts in Ukraine.

And in Menominee County -- the Wilson Creek Cafe in Powers hosted a feast for Ukraine, raising over $20,000.