Activities May Ease Alzheimer’s Disease (Part 1)

  • This garden at the Family Life Center in Grand Rapids, Michigan, is designed specifically to help Alzheimer's patients.

About 19 million Americans have a family member with
Alzheimer’s disease. It’s a diagnosis that can send a family reeling.
patients, even simple tasks become increasingly difficult, as the
robs them of their memory. And for families, caring for an Alzheimer’s
patient often becomes a fulltime job. In the first of a two-part
series, the
Great Lakes Radio Consortium’s Wendy Nelson reports new approaches
in Alzheimer’s treatment are offering hope to both patients and their

Alzheimer’s Patients Take Up Gardening (Part 2)

  • Family Life Center founder, Cynthia Longchamps (right), and program participant JoAnn Scott. Longchamps says the sound of this waterfall helps soothe Alzheimer's patients, and its location encourages them to walk farther into the garden.

People have often turned to nature to rejuvenate their spirit –
whether they take a hike in the woods, or just look out the window. Now
there’s a type of therapy that taps into these powers of nature. In the
second of a two-part series, the Great Lakes Radio Consortium’s Wendy
Nelson visits a "healing garden":

New Feed Reduces Toxins in Manure

Large-scale livestock operations face a big challenge: how to
handle all the manure the animals produce. Manure spills and runoff can
contaminate water with nitrogen and phosphorous. The result can be
polluted drinking water, or fish kills in streams and lakes. But now,
Purdue University researchers have found a way to significantly lower
pollutants in hog manure. The Great Lakes Radio Consortium’s Wendy
Nelson reports:

Cockroach Contraceptive

If you’ve ever had cockroaches, you know how hard it is to get rid
of them. Many people turn to exterminators or pesticide sprays. But
often, roach-killing products are made with neurotoxins that may be
harmful to pets and humans. Now, some scientists have come up with a
different approach: a kind of birth control… for cockroaches. The
Lakes Radio Consortium’s Wendy Nelson explains:

Preserving a Piece of Our Heritage

  • Barn preservation groups across the country are working to save old barns - both the common designs, and the more unusual examples, like this one in St. Joseph County, Michigan. Photo courtesy of Mary Keithan, from her book, "Michigan's Heritage Barns," published by Michigan State University Press.

In rural areas across the country, the landscape is dramatically
changing. But while strip malls, subdivisions and mini-marts all
contribute toward urbanization, there’s another type of transformation
going on, as well. The face of our farmlands is changing, as
becomes more modernized. And that’s got some people worried that a
classic symbol of American farming may soon fade away. The Great
Lakes Radio Consortium’s Wendy Nelson reports:


According to a report from the National Institute on Drug Abuse, the economic cost of drug-related crime is about fifty billion dollars a year. Much of that amount goes toward incarcerating offenders. But many of these people are nonviolent, low-level drug users… and now, instead of locking them up, some court systems are trying a different approach. In the first of a two part series, the Great Lakes Radio Consortium’s Wendy Nelson examines the growing trend of drug courts: