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Published March 11, 2015

METRO DETROIT — They have a certain austere beauty and create remarkable sculptures when they begin to thaw and refreeze around trees, bushes or just the ground, but those large icicles growing from your roof could be an indication of a larger problem — ice damming on the roof.


An ice dam is a buildup of ice on roofs caused by melting snow that refreezes around the eaves of a house; it is usually quite easy to spot, experts say, because of the large icicles and pieces of ice that form on the edge of the roof of the house.

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Published March 11, 2015

METRO DETROIT — Bored with barbells and sick of stair climbers? You’re not the only one. More and more people are making dance a part of their regular workout routine — and they’re having a great time doing it.


Ivy Mitchell, of Clawson, knows how effective it can be to take exercising out of the gym and onto the dance floor. She teaches Zumba fitness classes in Clawson and Eastpointe, guiding students through interval-style full-body workouts masked as upbeat dance routines.

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Published March 11, 2015

METRO DETROIT — The legal team of the lesbian couple from Hazel Park challenging Michigan’s ban on same-sex marriage have filed their briefs with the U.S. Supreme Court. So have plaintiffs in similar cases out of Kentucky, Ohio and Tennessee.

“Regardless of what happens in the next few months, we’re confident these are the briefs that represent the right side of history,” said Dan Canon, one of the counsel for the Kentucky case, during a conference call with legal teams for all four states Feb. 27.

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Published March 9, 2015

Even if you haven’t felt that sinking feeling on the road yet, two county road agencies say you can expect to drive over some potholes soon.

According to Road Commission for Oakland County spokesman Craig Bryson, potholes form when rain or melting snow gets inside road cracks. As temperatures dip, that moisture freezes and expands, creating a cavity under the road. When the frozen water thaws, the road’s structural integrity is compromised, causing the affected portion to collapse into a pothole when a vehicle rolls over it, he said.

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Published March 6, 2015

METRO DETROIT — A few years ago, when Jason Davidson’s hair was completely shaved off during the St. Baldrick’s Foundation cancer fundraiser, a young girl battling the illness came up to him and said “thank you.”

Touched by her words, “It was hard to come up with a response,” Davidson said.

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Published March 6, 2015

METRO DETROIT — Do you have what it takes to be a World War II paratrooper?

Wait, back up. Let’s not even get into the fighting they encountered. That’s a separate issue, one you’re certainly not prepared for.

The same goes for their basic training. Suffice it to say it was grueling, agonizing and spread over weeks. It wasn’t for the faint of heart, mind, body or spirit.

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Published March 4, 2015

One of the best parts of parenthood, for many, is that for a few precious years the refrigerator will never be lacking in color.

Artwork created by little ones is not only a point of pride for caregivers and educators — it’s also an important part of a child’s early learning and development.

Pam Rush, owner of The Learning Experience daycare and preschool center in Shelby Township, has been integrating art into the curriculum for 25 years.

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Published March 4, 2015

Right now, there are likely several inches of snow piled up on at least a portion of your deck or patio.

But what will you find when it melts?

Flaking paint chips and nail pops on your wooden deck, moss and weeds starting to grow between brick pavers, or worse.

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Published March 3, 2015

METRO DETROIT — In an effort to help get the Clinton River watershed off the Great Lakes Area of Concern list, the Environmental Protection Agency has pledged $20 million to fund 11 projects throughout the watershed over the next three years.

“This is a big deal for the watershed,” said Jennifer Tewkesbury, of the Michigan Office of the Great Lakes.

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Published March 2, 2015

While millions of Michiganders shiver through the winter, other people have temporarily fled for warmer climates down south.

But auto experts say those who choose to travel to more affable temperatures by car should pay attention to the challenges that both colder and warmer weather may bring to the road and to the vehicle.

According to AAA Michigan Public Affairs Director Susan Hiltz, Michigan has quite a few “snowbirds” who dwell in the southern states during the winter months.

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Published February 27, 2015

METRO DETROIT — By now, schools should be putting the final topping on the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s new nutritional standards in the national school lunch and breakfast programs.

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Published February 26, 2015

You know, not all beloved pets let out a woof or a purr.

Some of the very best friends have scales, tails or even eight legs. The world of small pets is vast, and it can also be pretty darn convenient for on-the-go animal owners who don’t have tons of time to devote to a little pal.

Mike Palmer, owner of Premier Pet Supply in Beverly Hills, said there can be lots of benefits to owning a smaller animal like a hamster, a gerbil or — believe it or not — a rat.

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Published February 25, 2015

NOVI — Coming in on the heels of the Detroit Boat Show, the eighth annual Cottage and Lakefront Living Show taking place this week in Novi will reinforce the belief of many Michiganders that the state’s spring and summer months are the best in the country.

The Great Lakes State offers almost unending choices of outdoor recreational activities during the warmer months — though ice fishing during the winter also has a huge following — and that especially holds true for those who live or own a cottage on one of those great bodies of water.

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Published February 25, 2015

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — When Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. called for civil rights supporters to meet in Selma, Alabama, in March 1965 for a peaceful march, Detroit homemaker Viola Liuzzo didn’t hesitate.

The white activist felt so strongly about the Civil Rights Movement that she left her five children and husband, got in her Oldsmobile, and made the trip to demonstrate for the rights of black Americans.

It ultimately cost Liuzzo her life when she was gunned down by members of the Ku Klux Klan.

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Published February 24, 2015

As temperatures recently fell below zero across metro Detroit, the arctic air has taken a toll on some vehicles too, according to AAA.

AAA Michigan Public Affairs Director Susan Hiltz said her association has seen an increase in service calls during a particularly cold night and morning following the Valentine’s Day weekend and culminating on Presidents’ Day, the Monday afterward.

“We had a 154 percent increase in the morning for service calls compared to the same time period last week,” Hiltz said.

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Published February 18, 2015

In the last decade, Safe Kids Worldwide Director of U.S. Programs Tareka Wheeler said that there has been a 31 percent increase in the number of children who have been killed or injured by TV tip-overs.

“We know we can prevent these things. Many families just don’t think about it. It’s an emerging issue — we call it a hidden hazard — in homes, but there are simple things families can do,” Wheeler said.

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Published February 18, 2015

Heavy layers of clothes, heavy layers of snow and heavy layers of blankets.

It’s no wonder that when it comes to food, many diners are longing for something that’s anything but heavy.

As soon as temperatures begin to take a dive in September, restaurants start pulling out their repertoire of comfort food recipes chock full of spices, rich flavors and hearty ingredients designed to keep your tummy full and your body warm.

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Published February 16, 2015

A Detroit man’s hours-long walking work commute is over now that he can put his foot on the accelerator of a new Ford Taurus, courtesy of Suburban Ford of Sterling Heights.

James Robertson, who regularly walked more than 20 miles when he ventured out to his Rochester Hills employer and back to his Detroit home because he owned no car, recently shared his story to local media.

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Published February 9, 2015

The North American International Auto Show’s exhibits and displays have left Detroit’s Cobo Center until next year, but some local dealerships say the intense public interest has made an impact on selling award-winning vehicles in the showroom.

At the most recent auto show in January, the Volkswagen Golf won the award of 2015 North American Car of the Year, and the Ford F-150 took North American Truck/Utility of the Year. The announcement was made at a Jan. 12 press preview day.

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Published February 4, 2015

METRO DETROIT — Many adults probably remember coming home from school in their youth, slinging their backpacks on the kitchen table and then getting a start on their homework.

While some children and adults still do that today, it’s not as prevalent as it used to be.

It really comes down to how a house is divided. Older homes are notorious for not offering the abundance of space that new homes today have, especially in the form of cabinets and countertops.

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