Sundays 8pm to 11pm on Radio 2

New Episodes at CBC Music

New Episodes at CBC Music

Need more Strombo Show? Head over to our page on CBC Music for new episodes, playlists and video extras.

CBC Music Past Shows



Alt News
Michigan vs. Wisconsin: Who’s The Real Mitten State?
December 8, 2011
submit to reddit

There is an inter-state rivalry developing south of the border between Wisconsin and Michigan. At issue? A tussle over which state most resembles a mitten.

The trouble started with a new ad campaign promoting the many winter tourism activities available in Wisconsin. Accompanying the winter-related content at is a stylized image of a somewhat bedraggled-looking mitten, shaped to resemble the outline of the state map.

The problem is that Michigan has long taken pride in its own mitten-like shape (at least in the part known as the lower peninsula), and some Michiganders apparently feel like their neighbour across Lake Michigan is intruding on their state identity.

According to the Detroit Free Press, Michigan is unequivocally the mitten state: "Always has been, always will be. We have the unique distinction of having our physical state shaped almost exactly the same as, well, a mitten. Two mittens, actually, because of our Upper Peninsula."

The paper claims that this resemblance is a fundamental part of the state identity: "When someone asks us where we are from, we hold up our hand to show them. Or we cheerfully answer 'the Mitten!' "

The Kalamazoo Gazette, which first broke the story, very helpfully provided an illustration by Fritz Klug so their readers could judge the difference. The mitten in the upper left is taken directly from the Wisconsin tourism campaign, while those at the lower left seem to be Klug's strategic placement of the most Michigan-y handwear available:


As you might imagine, the mitten controversy has produced a lot of commentary on Twitter, most of which seems to be irate Michiganders rising to defend their state's honour, deploying the hashtags #mittenlove and #GiveUsBackOurMitten.

As a further taste of the kind of reaction the story has provoked along the southern edge of the Great Lakes, here is a WOOD TV 8, the NBC affiliate serving Kalamazoo, Grand Rapids and Holland in Michigan:

Related Stories on

Marvel Tries To Rip Off DC - Literally

Look Who's Watching Cricket Together

It's Sweater Day!


Kalamazoo Gazette

Detroit Free Press

WISC Madison


Travel Wisconsin


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Submission Policy

Note: The CBC does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comments, you acknowledge that CBC has the right to reproduce, broadcast and publicize those comments or any part thereof in any manner whatsoever. Please note that comments are moderated and published according to our submission guidelines.