The best featured


This semester, the features desk featured scores of people and dozens of events. Here are the top three events and people profiled, as well as summer events to look forward to.


Country concerts
So far in 2013, East Lansing has seen some of the hottest country stars, as Breslin Center was host to Miranda Lambert, Dierks Bentley and Carrie Underwood. Grammy-winning songwriter Lambert and Bentley both rocked Breslin on Feb. 23 in front of a crowd of more than 8,000 fans. The country tunes didn’t leave for long, as Underwood took the stage with fellow country singer Hunter Hayes on April 13.

Katie Stiefel / The State News

The MSU Forestry Club was host to spit and sawdust at the 61st Midwestern Foresters’ Conclave. Among the events was a tobacco spitting contest and the STIHL TIMBERSPORTS Series, which gathered the top-amateur and professional lumberjacks to compete in a series of televised events. Forestry senior Raymond Gurley represented MSU at the County Fairgrounds in Mason, Mich., placing fifth in the collegiate competition.

ATD Fashion Show
After preparing all year, students from MSU’s apparel and textile design program hosted the Apparel and Textile Design Fashion Show in March. Held at Wharton Center, the sold-out show began with FASH Forward, a separate category that featured models who embodied looks from fashion icons of the past, such as Twiggy and Iman, in celebration of the MSU College of Arts and Letters’ 50th anniversary. Although some ready-to-wear outfits were included, most garments were avant-garde and outside the box.


Evan Fiorella
At 2 years old, MSU Community Music School pre-college student Evan Fiorella was in a car crash that left him with permanent brain damage. Doctors told his mother, Ontario resident Alison Fiorella, that he would never live a normal life. Through the MSU Community Music School’s music therapy program, Evan, now 21, has made significant strides in development. He and his stepfather, Chris Calaguiro, travel from Canada every semester and live in a hotel in Okemos, Mich., so Evan can attend school.

Randy Scott
This isn’t your average library staff member. When Randy Scott began volunteering at the Main Library’s Comic Art Collection, there were about 6,000 comics represented. Today, thanks to Scott’s diligence, the collection totals more than 250,000 — making it the largest in the world.

Sherrie Barr
Sherrie Barr became MSU’s director of dance seven years ago, inheriting the challenge of helping the art form become more widely understood in the MSU community. Known for being a tough cookie in her own right, she successfully helped dance become a minor at the university. Barr found herself overwhelmed with the task of handling the program on her own, causing her to submit her resignation over spring break. In her short time at MSU, she has inspired many students to stretch outside their comfort zones.

Summer events

Common Ground
Over the years, Common Ground Music Festival has become known as the concert series of the summer in Greater Lansing. This year’s festivities will be held July 8-14 at 901 N. Washington Ave., in Lansing. Although the entire lineup for the week-long festival has not yet been announced, so far the roster includes Ben Folds Five, Barenaked Ladies, Guster and Slash. Elliot Street Lunatic, a local band from Lansing that is partially made up of former MSU students, will be performing as well.

Lansing Art Festival and Lansing Jazz Festival
Many disapprove of the “City of the Arts” title, but the Lansing area has a lot to offer artistically. The East Lansing Art Festival is now in it’s 50th year, and the East Lansing Jazz Festival will have a lot of high-profile performers this upcoming summer.

Daniel Tosh
Outspoken comedian and star of Comedy Central’s “Tosh.0” is bringing his stand-up routine to Wharton Center as a part of his 25-city “June Gloom Tour.” He will be performing two shows on June 9 at 7 and 9:30 p.m., with all tickets being sold at $59.50 at

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