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Published December 7, 2015

BIRMINGHAM — Officers are still investigating a credit card skimmer that was found on a Birmingham gas station pump last month.

A skimmer — according Detective Todd Gustke, of the Troy Police Department, which is currently in charge of the investigation — is a device that is installed inside a pump that intercepts transmissions of payment data before it reaches the credit card reader inside the machine. While the transaction still processes, the skimmer collects the data to be used or even sold to other parties for fraudulent purposes.

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Published December 2, 2015

WATERFORD — Shopping local has never been more popular with consumers. But small businesses can’t always stay open as long as their big box competitors, and customers sometimes choose between conscience and convenience.

Luckily, the Oakland County Market will host its popular Holiday Shopping Nights again this year, so busy buyers can shop from local farmers and artisans during special evening hours.

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Published December 1, 2015

BIRMINGHAM — Why just deck the halls when you can “put on your dazzle?”

That’s what’s happening at the Birmingham Bloomfield Art Center these days, according to President and CEO Annie VanGelderen, as the nonprofit art center gets ready to open its seasonal holiday shop, loaded with unique handcrafted gifts made by local artists.

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Published November 30, 2015

BEVERLY HILLS — Like so many of us, Joanne Ewald has been busy planning a holiday party. But her gathering, to be held on Friday, will be more than just a celebration of the season — it will be a celebration of hope for those who have gone without.

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Published November 30, 2015

METRO DETROIT — About 20 members of the Osak family, their friends and supporters packed into vans and headed to the Great Lakes National Cemetery in Holly last December.

They went to honor Edward John Osak Sr., the family’s patriarch, a Warren resident who had served honorably as an infantryman in the U.S. Army during World War II. Osak had remained as sharp as a tack through the years. He’d kept his wit, was spry enough to bowl and continued to be an ardent supporter of veterans until his death, just days after his 90th birthday in September 2014.

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Published November 25, 2015

Identity theft schemes are so rampant in an increasingly high-tech world, it seems like we’ve all been solicited at one point or another.

No one is safe from the thieves looking to take your personal information, according to Sgt. James Gallagher, of the Bloomfield Township Police Department. Not even the officers in his station.

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Published November 25, 2015

BLOOMFIELD HILLS — For 40 years, the Cranbrook House and Gardens Auxiliary has kicked off the holidays with its famed Holiday Tables event, with a variety of elaborately adorned tablescapes displayed throughout the historic Booth home.

But the group decided that such a milestone anniversary can’t be observed with the same old celebration. That’s why this year the auxiliary will present for the first time Holiday Splendor: Tinsel and Trees.

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Published November 24, 2015

SOUTHFIELD — It won’t be long before the Potters Market opens its doors for business.

Now in its 40th year, the Potters Market will feature around 35,000 pieces by 140 potters. They’re made to the show’s exacting standards, including many in the $5-$30 price range. It’s an event where you never know what you’ll see next, since the selection changes as items are sold and new items take their place. 

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Published November 24, 2015

BIRMINGHAM — Just in time for the busy holiday shopping season, the city of Birmingham is boasting a new logo to brand its popular downtown district.

Following a strategic planning project conducted last year, the Birmingham Principal Shopping District has launched a new name for itself along with a new logo and motto, called “It’s All IN Birmingham.”

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Published November 18, 2015

According to Lt. Michael Vargas, of the Beverly Hills Public Safety Department, the village typically sees around one or two deer-related auto accidents in a given season.

But there’s a good chance that average could be exceeded this year, since there have already been two such incidents in Beverly Hills — on the same day.

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Published November 18, 2015

METRO DETROIT — Michelle Weiss, marketing coordinator for the Mount Clemens Downtown Development Authority, said she’s noticed something surprising over the past few years. In her neck of the woods, there seems to be more excitement about the Saturday after Thanksgiving than Black Friday.

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Published November 18, 2015

LANSING — During the Nov. 3 election that included races for many city, village and township decision-makers’ seats in Oakland and Macomb counties, only about 20 percent of registered voters cast their ballots across both counties, according to the respective county clerks’ offices.

Hoping to get a better turnout at the polls on election days, state Rep. Robert Wittenberg, D-Oak Park, introduced a resolution Nov. 3 that asks the U.S. Congress to make Election Day a national holiday. Such a move would give voters the day off from work and school.

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Published November 16, 2015

BIRMINGHAM — As cold and flu season descends on metro Detroit, the Baldwin Public Library is celebrating — sort of — with a talk from a local expert on contagious diseases.

Dr. Howard Markel, a Detroit native and noted medical historian, physician and professor, will be at the library at 3 p.m. Nov. 21 to present a lecture called “When Germs Travel: Contagious Crises Across History.” 

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Published November 16, 2015

OAKLAND COUNTY — A new study recently revealed that Oakland County is among the healthiest counties throughout the state, ranking ninth among 82 counties, according to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute.


But Oakland County Health Officer/Manager Kathy Forzley said there’s no time to celebrate the honor. That’s because the annual study is just one indicator the county uses to analyze health, and all the data shows there’s still lots of work to be done.

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Published November 13, 2015

CHESTERFIELD TOWNSHIP —Hundreds of veterans came out to take a stroll through history — and to be recognized for their contributions to it — during a Veterans Day event at Stahls Automotive Museum in Chesterfield Township.

Veterans of the U.S. armed forces, accompanied by family members, friends and supporters, toured the museum on Nov. 11 during special hours set aside to honor those who served their country in times of conflict and peace.

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Published November 13, 2015

Bloomfield Township police are looking for a 14-year-old girl who went missing from Bloomfield Hills High School last week.

Lajoy Ross, a freshman at the school, was last seen on campus at 1:30 p.m. Monday, Nov. 9. According to Sgt. James Gallagher, the teen has a history of running away and was on a GPS tether.

An investigation led police to the 2900 block of Marshall in Southfield, where Ross’ tether was found in the yard. Police believe she is likely still in the metro Detroit area. She has previously been found in Oak Park.

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Published November 11, 2015

OAKLAND COUNTY — Diane Wilks, of Rochester Hills, has been going to Independence Oaks Park in Clarkston for years. The vast natural space is special to her for more than a few reasons.

“It’s just one of my favorite places; it’s awesome. I was going through a hard time years ago, and my boyfriend at the time would take me to that park to go on walks,” said Wilks. “Later, he proposed to me there, and we’ve been married to this day.”

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Published November 11, 2015

METRO DETROIT — Each year around metro Detroit, a few businesses close in observance of Veterans Day. Some residents may head to a local parade or cemetery to pay their respects to the men and women who’ve served our country, and families will go and honor their fallen soldiers in a quiet cemetery.

But those in the United States military did not fight for our freedom one day a year — so why should they only be acknowledged when the calendar tells us to do so?

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Published November 9, 2015

BIRMINGHAM — According to Birmingham Public Schools Superintendent Daniel Nerad, as of press time last week, four of five of the district’s bargaining units had settled and ratified new contracts, putting employees on both sides of the table a bit more at ease than they’d been for the past few months.

Only the teachers union is left, and Nerad said he is hopeful their contract will be settled at the next Board of Education meeting in mid-November.

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Published November 5, 2015

METRO DETROIT — After months of tussling with partisan plans for fixing the state’s troubled roads, Michigan lawmakers moved swiftly on Election Day to approve a package of bills that supporters claim will raise $1.2 billion annually for repairs.

Proponents of the plan, which cleared the Michigan Senate and House of Representatives on Nov. 3, mostly along party lines, say it will fund repairs through $600 million in increased fuel taxes and vehicle registration fees, tempered with tax credits and $600 million in unspecified cuts to the state’s general fund.

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