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Boreal Community Media

The Shore Thing Podcast Created to Share and Review Cook County News

Jan 19, 2024 09:31AM ● By Content Editor
Photos provided

From The Shore Thing Podcast Team - January 19, 2024

News travels fast in Cook County. From events and happenings at the local schools, the hospital, the courthouse, the Gunflint Trail, and all corners of the county, there is a desire from those who live here to know what is going on. 

The dawn of social media, including local “community” pages specific to Cook County, has made the ability to share news and information about the region more widespread and engaging. It’s also muddied the water between facts and opinions. 

In 2024, Steve Fernlund and Joe Friedrichs, two longtime local members of the press, teamed up to create a platform for sharing news and information about Cook County. The platform is a podcast called The Shore Thing. Most episodes will be posted on and shared by Boreal Community Media. (Note: The views and opinions shared in the podcast do not necessarily reflect those held by Boreal Community Media.) "All of us at Boreal Community Media are excited about this partnership with Joe and Steve, and thrilled to be able to act as a local platform for the podcast to bring the community more Cook County news," said Laura Durenberger-Grunow, Digital Content Editor for Boreal Community Media. 

“We saw there was an absence of in-depth analysis when it comes to important issues that impact Cook County and the people who live here,” Friedrichs said. “Everyone can have an opinion, of course. The community is better served, however, when those opinions can be supported with facts. And that’s the job of the press, to inform. Between Steve and I, we’re talking about decades of experience in local media.”

The podcast debuted this month. Episodes will be shared publicly on a recurring basis, though not a strict schedule. Some of the first episodes include conversations with Cook County Commissioner Dave Mills, a separate interview with Commissioner Deb White, and an analysis of the situation at North Shore Health following the firing of Dr. Bruce Dahlman. 

Indeed, The Shore Thing is a platform for analyzing important topics that impact residents of Cook County. It’s also a space where objectivity collides with opinion, subjective analysis, and fact-checking. In short, the podcast is where local discussion moves from the coffee shop, pub, or social media, and into the newsroom.

“These podcasts are meant to give in-depth exposure to issues and ideas along the shore,” Fernlund said. “Joe and I look at the problems of the day to get truthful information from the newsmakers on these issues to our listeners.”

Fernlund is currently a columnist for the Northshore Journal based in Silver Bay. He is the former publisher of the Cook County News-Herald in Grand Marais. 

Friedrichs is the publisher of Paddle and Portage, a local media company that focuses on storytelling from the Boundary Waters. He was the news director at WTIP radio for the past decade, winning an honorable mention for the Journalist of the Year in 2023 by the Minnesota Society of Professional Journalists. 

You can find published episodes here (, or by following:

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