Torch News Briefs 10.05.11

Ferris Magazine Feature: Renaissance Rocker

Born in Ohio, James Keenan moved to Michigan with his father and attended both Ravenna and Mason County Central High School. After serving in the army, Keenan attended Kendall College of Art and Design of Ferris State University. With his Kendall education, he initially designed interior layouts for pet stores, first on the east coast and then in Los Angeles, where he also did set design before forming the hugely influential band Tool. He also is the star lead singer for the super group A Perfect Circle. Keenan keeps himself busy; he is also a stand-up comedian/actor. As the owner of Merkin Vineyards and Caduceus Cellars, he is the subject of the documentary film “Blood into Wine,” which chronicles the challenges he faces of making high-quality wine in northern Arizona. Tool has become a great success and has toured for the last two years. The band is reportedly writing material for a new album. Keenan also toured with A Perfect Circle last November at sold out venues in western states, including at the iconic Fillmore in San Francisco. Keenan’s dedication to everything he is involved in is impeccable, leading him to be named one of the rock’s more reclusive stars.

Artprize Speaker Series sponsored by Kendall College.

ArtPrize Speaker Series began Sept. 26 and ends Wednesday, Oct. 5, at The Hub on 41 Sheldon Blvd. SE in Grand Rapids. Ferris State University’s Kendall College of Art and Design is this year’s sponsor. Featured presenters in the ArtPrize Speaker Series include art experts, artists and designers who will highlight a diverse range of arts in what has become an increasingly national event. ArtPrize strives to bridge the gap between artists and communities in Grand Rapids. For more information on the speakers and events of each day, the links below:

ArtPrize Speaker Series streaming link: 

To learn more about ArtPrize, visit:

To learn more about the ArtPrize Speaker Series, visit:

Women’s cross country rated third in the nation

The Ferris State University women’s cross-country team was recognized as third in the nation this week in the United States Track and Field/Cross Country Coaches Association (USTFCCCA) Division II National Poll announced on Sept. 21. Another exciting achievement was the Bulldogs passed by GVSU in the USTFCCCA Midwest Regional Rankings and is now the top-ranked team in the region. Ferris State and Grand Valley State are the only teams from the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference recognized among the nation’s top 25 teams, but are joined in the rankings by two other regional schools in Southern Indiana (20th) and Bellarmine (22nd).

The Bulldogs, coached by Steve Picucci, head coach, leaped from seventh in the USTFCCCA Division II Preseason Poll released in August to third after two strong showings to open the 2011 campaign.  

The Bulldog women’s cross country team started up the season by placing four runners among the top seven finishers overall in the non-scoring Ray Helsing Bulldog Invitational (Sept. 10) hosted by FSU at Katke Golf Course in Big Rapids. Three-time senior All-American Tina Muir (St. Albans, U.K.), clocked 17:50.38 in winning the 83-runner field in the 5K event.

In addition to the women’s team’s rise in the rankings, the Bulldog men’s cross country team also climbed from 10th place to sixth in the NCAA-II Midwest Regional Rankings.