Ya wanna root for your hometown hospital, but the latest ratings released by a national nonprofit group that measures hospital safety gives you pause.
Leapfrog Group rates hospitals based on factors like infections, bed sores, falls, embolisms, staff hand washing, leaving objects in a patient’s body during surgery (yikes), and…(gulp) avoidable deaths.
Eighty Michigan hospitals were ranked by Leapfrog. Twenty-six of them got A’s, 13 got B’s, 37 got C’s, 3 received D’s, and one received an F.
Sad to say, UP Health System Marquette was one of the three to get a D.
Which places it just ahead of UP Health Portage, the only one in the state to get an F.
A spokesman for UP Health System says rating methodologies can differ and some hospitals do well in one ranking and poorly in another.
True. But still…a D? And an F?
Leapfrog estimates that 206,000 avoidable deaths occur in U.S. hospitals every year, and that 33,000 of those lives could be saved if all hospitals had an A rating.
UP Health System Marquette has hired a patient safety officer and an infection prevention officer. Looks like they have some work to do.
OKAY, PUT DOWN your glass of Chardonnay for a minute and let’s talk about Marquette’s soon-to-be wine bar on Front Street.
It’s still on schedule with owner Dan Rutz assuring us it’ll open this summer. Early, mid, or late? He can’t say. Too many variables.
The name? The Zephyr Bar. Zephyr, as in a “soft, gentle breeze” which Rutz tells us is great for vineyards and delightful on a lake. So it’s a perfect name for a wine bar located across the street from Lake Superior.
Zephyr will have two floors, each seating about 35 patrons, along with an outside patio for another 20. The decor will be “friendly modern” with the downstairs section more cozy and cellar-like.
They’ll feature wine, of course, but don’t worry, beer-drinkers, because they’ll also offer eight craft beers on tap along with about 30 other bottled brews. Something for everybody.
Including small plates, and a couple of soups and salads. The kitchen’s being built as we speak.
Zephyr will be open either 6 or 7 days a week, they’re not sure, and initially just for the dinnertime crowd.
It’ll be Marquette’s first wine bar. And the latest entrant into the town’s increasingly competitive and delightful dining and drinking scene.
Oh, one more thing. The opening of Zephyr will not affect Everyday Wines, which Rutz also owns and operates, one bit. It’ll remain open, likely prospering from the synergy with the new wine bar down the block.
DON’T EXPECT A community boathouse in Marquette anytime soon.
The controversial plans by the Upper Peninsula Community Rowing Club to build a boathouse on the Lake Superior shoreline are off for now, even though they were approved by the City Commission.
The reason? Money.
The club had planned to build on the beach right near the Hampton Inn but turns out that area is less than pristine. Plenty of industrial waste just below the surface that would have to be removed. Much more than expected.
The club had hoped to remediate the soil and build on the site for maybe $800,000. Turns out it would be more like $1.5 million.
Too rich for their pockets.
Other sites for the boathouse?
- One Marquette Place, the apartment complex with a restaurant and parking garage due to break ground this summer near the Hampton. The rowing club has considered buying a ground floor condo for their boathouse here but the price appears to be beyond their budget.
- Teal Lake. This option would take the club to calmer waters but it would be far from the homes of most of their members, and membership (currently 137) would likely drop. Not only that, but they’d have to buy a safety launch boat with an electric motor. Gas-powered boats are forbidden on Teal Lake.
- Clark Lambros Beach Park, which has just broken ground and should be mostly completed this summer. Seems ideal except for this: club members think the Lake Superior waters are rougher here than they are by the Hampton Inn. That would limit the number of days they could row, even in the summer.
So for now, they’re stuck with storing their boats outside. Deb Cook, the new president of the club, has a background in nonprofits and fundraising, so a grant could be a possibility. Or maybe a rowing enthusiast with an extra million dollars languishing in the bottom of her purse could step in and help out.
Meantime, the very vocal opponents of any development on the Lake have to be smiling.
FURTHER EVIDENCE OF the shrinking of Presque Isle.
The photo at the top, compliments of Tom Buchkoe, shows how that little peninsula south of Sunset Point looked back in the Eighties, complete with an arch.
This one below on the left was taken just last fall. The arch had been washed away and all that was left was a rock mass.
And the photo on the right was taken just a few weeks ago. The mass is gone. Just the base is left.
That damn Lake Superior is stealing our land.
TALK ABOUT ELECTION apathy.
No, we’re not talking about the American public. We’re talking about NMU students.
The recent election for president, vice president and other positions drew exactly 208 students to the polls. Two hundred and eight.
That’s one quarter of the number who showed up for the last election, and the lowest since 2002, according to the North Wind, the student newspaper.
Ah, you say, but all the positions were uncontested! So there was no need to vote. That further proves the point. The students aren’t even bothering to run for office.
Maybe there’s a message here. Maybe student electoral politics has virtually no effect on the average student’s college experience.
ONE OF THE U.P’s iconic little businesses is growing.
Trenary Toast was bought by Andy Reichert ten months ago. Since then, production of the little treats has climbed to 3600 a week–an increase of about 10%–and four additional workers have been hired. That brings the staff to 21.
More distributors as well–not only in the U.P. and downstate, but also Wisconsin, Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota, along with increased online sales. The website’s now being revamped.
And there’s more! Trenary Toast just introduced a new cardamom toast and is working on various chocolate varieties, along with a vanilla toast.
The company’s been operating since 1928. That’s longevity.
Let the West Coast have their Facebooks and Googles. We got Trenary Toast and Stormy Kromer.
SKATEBOARDS AND ART. Not a likely mix.
Unless you’re the folks who run Culture of Cult, Marquette’s recurring art show that appears at the Ore Dock every few months.
The last show featured Star Wars art. This one, Board to Death, offers us art on skateboards. Forty artists from all over the country creating little masterpieces on the surface of skateboards.
They’re all for sale. You can bid on them now online or, better yet, go to the Ore Dock Thursday evening for the big auction. Throw down a brew or two or three, and you might help jack up the winning bids.
Which would be good. Proceeds go to make some much needed repairs at Marquette’s skate park.
You got news? Email firstname.lastname@example.org