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Stateside: MI economy and border closing; new uses for closed big box stores; Spic and Span history

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"Next City" writer Valerie Vande Penne found communities are coming up with creative ways to repurpose closed big box stores, like the former Meijer that is now an indoor BMX park in Greenville, MI.

 

Today on Stateside, what would a closure of the U.S.-Mexico border mean for Michigan's economy? Plus, how two Saginaw women in the 1930s designed a product to make keeping the house "Spic and Span" a little easier. 

Listen to the full show above or find individual segments below.

 

How a U.S.-Mexico border closure would impact Michigan’s economy

 

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Stateside's conversation with Susan Pozo, an economics professor at Western Michigan University, about the possible ramifications of closing the U.S.-Mexico border.

  • President Donald Trump is threatening to shut down some or all southern border crossings if Mexico cannot restrict a flow of asylum seekers trying to cross the U.S.-Mexico border. That could have major economic impacts here in Michigan.
  • Susan Pozo, an economics professor at Western Michigan University, talks to Stateside about the Michigan industries that would be hardest hit if President Trump follows through on his threat.

How two Saginaw women came up with a better way to clean, and got rich in the process

 

20190403_SS_MHC_Saginaw_Origins_of_SpicnSpan.mp3
Stateside's conversation with Mark Harvey

  • Spring cleaning can be a tedious task, but it's nowhere near as daunting as it was for women in the 1930s. That's what inspired two Saginaw women to come up with a product to make those chores a little easier. They called it "Spic and Span." Michigan State Archivist Mark Harvey tells us about the entrepreneurs, Naomi Stenglein and Elizabeth “Bet” MacDonald, and how 

    they launched a global brand that is still on store shelves today.

  • This segment is produced in partnership with theMichigan History Center.

Grammy-winning harmonicist Peter Madcat Ruth celebrates 70th birthday with Ann Arbor concert

 

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Stateside's conversation with Peter Madcat Ruth

  • Grammy award-winning harmonica legend Peter Madcat Ruth is turning 70 this week. He's marking that milestone with an all-star jam with other musicians he's met during his decades performing the blues and other genres. Ruth juoined Stateside to talk about how he first fell in love with music, his diverse musical tastes, and what's kept him in Ann Arbor all these years. 

Abandoned Meijer in Greenville, MI a model for repurposing empty big-box stores

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Stateside's conversation with Valerie Vande Panne

  

  • What to do with an empty big box store? It’s a challenge for many communities across the country. Developers would often rather skip the cost and headache of knocking down the unwanted building, and build somewhere else. But Next City writer Valerie Vande Panne found that some communities have come up with creative ways to repurpose those large vacant buildings, including a closed Meijer in Greenville, MI that is now a church food pantry and an indoor BMX park. 

Academic standards can be contentious. But do they actually change what teachers do?

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Stateside's conversation with Matinga Ragatz

  • The debate over proposed revisions to Michigan's K-12 social studies standards last year were contentious. Opponents said they were politically-motivated, while advocates said they made the standards more politcally neutral. So, how much do those standards actually shape what happens in the classroom?  
  • Matinga Ragatz, National Hall of Fame teacher and Stateside’s education commentator, joins us to discuss what standards are, who writes them, and how teachers actually use them. 

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