Pure ‘Virtual’ Michigan, Nature Lab and Flushing Advice

For Friday, April 3, 2020

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1 – While people are cooped up to avoid the coronavirus, Pure Michigan is inviting folks to experience the state virtually. 

alpena michigan lighthouse water
A view of Alpena. Credit: NOAA/GLERL

That includes live cams of beaches and virtual tours of exhibits.

Pure Michigan reps say new virtual experiences will be posted regularly on the tourism program’s Facebook, Instagram and Twitter channels as people are encouraged to stay home to combat the spread of COVID-19.

Virtual experiences being highlighted around the state include: 

There’s also a 360 virtual guided paddle tour into the St. Mary’s River where you can see Great Lakes freighters on their way to and from the Soo Locks.

And Manistee County in Northern Michigan can be explored through a Visit Manistee Natural Wonders Tour.

More information is at michigan.org.

2 – With schools shut down in Michigan, The Nature Conservancy also has launched a new online learning resource to engage youth

It’s called Nature Lab, and was developed by more than 500 scientists to help students learn about how nature works. 

A variety of courses are available for grades K-5, 6-8 and 9-12. 

There’s a bonus feature called Virtual Field Trips that includes videos and guides on rainforests, coral reefs and renewable energy. 

See nature.org.

3 – When you’re taking a break from online experiences, the state environmental agency reminds you to flush only toilet paper when using the bathroom. 

Officials from the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy say only “toilet paper, pee and poo” should ever be flushed down the toilet. 

The agency says that during the coronavirus pandemic, many stores are finding it hard to keep toilet paper in stock. 

So some people have turned to alternatives such as so-called “flushable” wipes — which are not flushable despite the marketing slogan. 

Officials say flushing anything other than toilet paper and No. 1 and 2 can clog public sewer systems. 

Paper products including “flushable” wipes do not break down effectively in the sewer system, officials say, which can result in raw sewage backups in basements and expensive plumbing repairs.

Non-toilet paper products should be thrown into the garbage and not flushed down the toilet.

– Mr. Great Lakes is heard Friday mornings in Bay City, Michigan, on Delta College Q-90.1 FM NPR (now streaming). Follow @jeffkart on Twitter #MrGreatLakes

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