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Published March 2, 2015

OAKLAND COUNTY — Residents and small businesses in Michigan can once again take advantage of a free, mail-in mercury collection program through Sept. 30.

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Published March 2, 2015

OAKLAND COUNTY —  Road Commission for Oakland County officials will give educational presentations about the upcoming May 5 ballot initiative that would increase the state’s sales tax and provide additional funding to fix roads throughout the state. 

The educational presentations will be free to any group or organization in Oakland County.

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Published February 20, 2015

MADISON HEIGHTS/HAZEL PARK — If the Auto Show is a glimpse of the future, Autorama is a celebration of the past and present.

Now in its 63rd year, Autorama will highlight car enthusiasts and their rides at Cobo Center from March 6-8. Attendees can look forward to nearly 1,000 customs, hot rods, trucks and motorcycles, all polished and fine-tuned to perfection.

Robert Slater, of Madison Heights, will be bringing his gray 1969 AMC Javelin.

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Published November 19, 2014

OAKLAND COUNTY — After the scraps of leftover turkey and mashed potatoes have been tucked into the fridge, it’s like you can feel the seasons instantly shift: Thanksgiving is over, and the time for holiday shopping has begun.

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Published July 11, 2014

MADISON HEIGHTS — Few can claim that their art has left Earth’s atmosphere.

Tanner Barndollar, 13, will soon be able to say just that.

During the school year, when he was a seventh-grader at Wilkinson Middle School in Madison Heights, Tanner submitted a patch design to the Student Spaceflight Experiments Program (SSEP), launched in June 2010 by the National Center for Earth and Space Science Education in partnership with NanoRacks LLC.

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Published February 13, 2014

OAKLAND COUNTY — The Michigan State University Extension is sponsoring a workshop for Oakland County lakefront property owners to create, restore and manage natural shorelines at the Cranbrook Institute of Science 8:30 a.m.-4 p.m. March 8.

“This is an educational program to help homeowners that live along lakes … to understand the importance of a natural shoreline,” said Bindu Bhakta, extension educator with the MSU Extension.

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Published July 24, 2013

TROY/HAZEL PARK — Hamilton Elementary physical education teacher Chad Gurzick doesn’t describe himself as a hero, although others would.

Gurzich, of Troy, and other Michigan educators attended the National Education Association Representative Assembly in Atlanta June 30 through July 7.

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Published June 8, 2012

Look up as you walk the halls at Simonds Elementary, and you’ll wonder how you wandered into a butterfly enclosure.

More than 300 handcrafted butterflies are suspended from the ceiling. Their bodies are wood clothespins spray-painted black, with pipe-cleaner antennae and paper wings dotted with sequins. Each butterfly is one-of-a-kind, reflecting the student who made it, and every kid at the school contributed to the collection.

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Published May 31, 2012

As a boy, he didn’t know his father was a convicted child killer, on the run with his mother who helped his father escape from Indiana State Prison in the ‘70s. But all through his childhood, Chip St. Clair says he experienced the cruelty of the man he knew as David St. Clair, whose real name was Michael Dean Grant.

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Published May 11, 2012

DETROIT — On Eight Mile near Klinger, east of Dequindre, is a gas station and party store, or what remains of it, anyway. The pumps are gone, and no signage remains to give the place a name.

The terrain is cratered, and rainwater pools in the middle, dark and murky. Grocery bags and fast-food wrappers are entangled in the cyclone fencing, while bricks, shards of glass and huge chunks of Styrofoam litter the ground. Weed-choked fields grow unchecked out back, all but obscuring a discarded luggage trunk.

Meanwhile, Eight Mile traffic barrels by, ignoring the eyesore.

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Published April 27, 2012

MADISON HEIGHTS — When spring break rolled around in early April, many of Brooke Heisler’s friends were looking forward to getting away from the rigors of life.

Some were eager to hit the beach in warmer climes like Florida and Cancun, Mexico.

Others were planning to stay at home, sleep in late and enjoy their leisure time.

But for Heisler, a sophomore at Lamphere High School, spring break meant leaving one routine to pick up another, waking up at the break of dawn each day to serve unfamiliar people in a faraway place.

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Published April 27, 2012

MADISON HEIGHTS — Whether it’s an animal shelter or a thrift store for the poor, many nonprofits practically run on air. With finances tight, it’s hard to hire staff that can take care of the day-to-day tasks that come with running an organization. And when they get bogged down in menial work, they become distracted from their mission.

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Published March 16, 2012

MADISON HEIGHTS — To the human eye, a QR code is indecipherable, a checkered mass of black-and-white squares. Scan it with a smartphone, though, and what looks like senseless TV static becomes a link to a website — no typing necessary.

Originally used in the auto industry to track vehicles during the manufacturing process, “quick reference” codes are growing in popularity thanks to the rise of smartphones, which effectively double as barcode readers.

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Published June 1, 2011

Combine talented artisans, good food, live entertainment and a little sunshine, and you have the makings of a great summer festival.

Beginning in June, such events are plentiful in metro Detroit. Here’s a sampling of just a few popular festivals that residents won’t want to miss this summer.

June 11-12
Clay, Glass and Metal Festival — downtown Royal Oak
In Royal Oak, one of the first big events of the season is the Clay, Glass and Metal Festival June 11-12.

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Published May 16, 2011

HAZEL PARK — Before they can start initiatives like turning vacant buildings into art studios, empty lots into sculpture gardens and bare walls into murals, Hazel Park’s ambitious Arts Council needs to raise enough funds to secure 501(c)(3) nonprofit status, the key to securing grants and other connections crucial to its success.

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Published May 11, 2011

Picture a typical senior residence and images of bingo, arts and crafts, and green Jell-O might come to mind.

Walk into a modern retirement community, though, and you may be more likely to see seniors playing video games, heading out with a travel group or performing a sun salutation in yoga class.

Today’s senior living communities are not the stale, dreary places stereotypes make them out to be.

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Published April 4, 2011

HAZEL PARK — When her husband lost his job a year ago, Rose Elaine Clay had to find a way to help her family make ends meet.

But the 46-year-old Hazel Park resident, known to locals by her childhood nickname “LaLa,” didn’t want to simply scrape by doing work she didn’t enjoy.

So when the opportunity presented itself, LaLa leveraged the support of her family and turned hard work, natural talent and a metric ton of passion for baking into a brand-new business: LaLa Cookies & Cakes.

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Published March 4, 2011

MADISON HEIGHTS — Life was just beginning for Jenny when it was taken away.

The Oak Park resident was 22, married two months to the man who’d been her friend since she was 13. So young and so in love — but cancer, ever horrible, didn’t care.

Such is the tragedy that befell Jenny — full name Jennifer Amber Robacker-Bazinet — when her stage 4 colon cancer ended in death. Born Nov. 15, 1987, she passed Oct. 30, 2010, a life all too short, but one that touched the hearts of those around her.

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Published March 4, 2011

MADISON HEIGHTS — When the crowds came out for the Memorial Day Parade last year, they did so with more than the usual patriotic fervor.

The city had cut parade funding due to a tough budget, so businesses and residents privately raised money to rescue the event. As such, spirits were high — it was truly the people’s parade.

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Published February 28, 2011

HAZEL PARK — There’s a new force for good in the neighborhood.

Over the past few months, volunteers from all sectors of the city — church, civic, government, school and nonprofit — have been building a database-driven coalition of services to meet the needs of Hazel Park and its residents.

It’s still growing, but the hope is it will become a reliable safety net for residents.

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Upcoming Events

Sterling Heights
Charity celebration dinner
6-11 p.m.
Penna's of Sterling
Royal Oak
Stagecrafters to perform 'Bug'
8 p.m.
Stagecrafters Baldwin Theatre
Madison Heights
All-Scale Train Show
10 a.m.-4 p.m.
UFCW Local 876 Hall
Shelby Township
Lunch and skate with Moana
9 a.m.-noon
The New Rink Skating Center
Eastpointe
Family dance fundraiser
5 p.m.
Love Life Family Christian Center

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