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Published October 3, 2017

METRO DETROIT — You don’t have to howl if you don’t want to, but Halloween is coming, and for many it’s a time of excitement that circles around with the annual changing of the seasons.

The month of October allows many people to celebrate being a kid again with costume parties or surrounding themselves with cute or spooky Halloween décor.

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Published October 2, 2017

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — The Shelby Township municipal grounds will be home to a proposed 20,200-square-foot district court building, a 42,000-square-foot Community Center and an 8,000-square-foot Police Department expansion.

The township announced the preliminary layout Sept. 20. Officials say the expansions, additions and improvements are necessary for one of the “fastest-growing communities in metro Detroit.”

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Published October 2, 2017

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — On Sept. 26, the sun shone bright and hot on a local first-grader’s big day — the unveiling of a larger-than-life photo of herself smiling between two Shelby Township firemen in Gene Shepherd Park.

The 6-by-10-foot photo board — attached to the door of the new fence obstructing the park’s dumpster — will greet families as they enter the parking lot and turn the corner to the location where the township plans to install a splash pad next year.

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Published October 2, 2017

SHELBY TOWNSHIP/TROY — Fazullah Khan, 56, of Troy, owner of Fazal Khan & Associates — a civil engineering, surveying and construction management firm based in Sterling Heights — has been indicted by a grand jury on four counts of bribery.

Shelby Township has contracted its engineering services through Fazal Khan & Associates for years.

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Published September 29, 2017

METRO DETROIT — Chris Tait offers a sober assessment of his outlook in 2011, after all the years he spent touring with bands and living a rock and roll lifestyle fed by booze and drugs.

“I’ve torched so many relationships. The shame and guilt. I didn’t want to die, but I didn’t want to live anymore, either,” said Tait, of Hamtramck, who plays keyboards in the Detroit-based Electric Six.

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Published September 26, 2017

FRASER — The restaurant business is, and has always been, a family business for Eugene Kasapis.

Throughout high school, he worked in his dad’s restaurant in Greektown alongside his brothers Steve and Gus Kasapis. And three months before graduating, he and his brothers opened up their own restaurant in downtown Detroit.

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Published September 25, 2017

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — At approximately 5 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 23, Shelby Township police and fire personnel responded to a single-vehicle crash on 23 Mile Road near Sandshores Drive, between Dequindre and Ryan roads.

The driver, a 29-year-old Sterling Heights man and the only occupant of the dark-colored Jeep, was trapped inside the vehicle, and first responders pronounced him deceased at the scene of the crash, according to Shelby Township Police Lt. Jeff Daniel.

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Published September 25, 2017

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — On Sept. 14, the Shelby Township Board of Trustees voted unanimously to keep the township’s 2017 tax rate at 9.29999 mills. The millage rate has remained unchanged for the past 11 years.

Township Assessor Matt Schmidt said all local units of government that levy a property tax millage must send an annual tax rate request to the state, whether or not the millage rate changes.

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Published September 25, 2017

UTICA — On Sept. 12, the Utica City Council unanimously approved the Utica Heritage Association’s request to install two approximately 3-by-5-foot reader boards along the city’s hike-and-bike trail.

The UHA budgeted approximately $5,000 for the signs, which will feature historical information about the city and will fall in line with the celebration of the city’s 200th anniversary this year.

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Published September 25, 2017

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — On Sept. 18, the Macomb County Prosecutor’s Office issued a press release saying that Prosecutor Eric Smith had charged a 56-year-old Shelby Township man with two counts of embezzlement of $100,000 or more.

Ernest Julius Romer III, an investment broker, was arraigned Sept. 21 at the 41-A District Court in Shelby Township. The felony charges carry maximum 20-year prison sentences.

Romer allegedly embezzled $220,000 each from two Macomb County senior citizens who had been his clients for more than two decades, according to the release.

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Published September 25, 2017

UTICA — The Suburban Library Cooperative and Utica Community Schools recently entered into a partnership that will allow all of the district’s 28,000 students the opportunity to, at no cost, become virtual library card holders.

The ConnectED initiative allows each student to access a variety of online content, including downloadable e-books, audiobooks, magazines, music, personal tutor services and more, at the click of a mouse or touch of a finger.

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Published September 22, 2017

MACOMB COUNTY — State Sen. Jack Brandenburg, R-Harrison Township, was recently awarded the first Michigan Library Association Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his leadership promoting libraries in Michigan.

Brandenburg was recognized during a reception held at the Chesterfield Township Library on Sept. 8.

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Published September 21, 2017

METRO DETROIT — Breweries from all over Michigan are well-known, and well-regarded, across the country. But you don’t have to travel far for a pint of quality craft beer.

In metro Detroit alone, there are more than 100 craft breweries within a short drive.

Scott Graham, executive director of the Michigan Brewers Guild, estimates that there are more than 300 breweries in Michigan. But it wasn’t always such a large industry.

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Published September 20, 2017

On Sept. 18, the Macomb County Prosecutor’s Office issued a press release saying that Prosecutor Eric Smith had charged a 56-year-old Shelby Township man with two counts of embezzlement of $100,000 or more.

The felony charges carry a maximum 20-year prison sentence.

The investment broker in question allegedly embezzled $220,000 each from two Macomb County senior citizens who had been his clients for more than two decades, according to the release.

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Published September 18, 2017

Betty Anne Knudson, of Waterford, speaks during the full military honors ceremony for Nathaniel Squire, an American Revolution patriot and first Utica settler in 1817, at the Utica Cemetery Sept. 17. Knudson is Squire’s second great-granddaughter.

Officials unveiled the memorial grave marker from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs for Squire, who served in the American Revolution, during Squire’s full military honors ceremony. Ten years of research had gone into proving that Squire is buried in the Utica Cemetery, since records do not reach that far back.

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Published September 18, 2017

UTICA — According to organizers, people were outraged last year when the city opted to forgo its annual living dead event for a variety of reasons. So this year, the DDA is amping up its fifth Zombie Festival on Saturday, Oct. 7.

The entire day will be full of zombified events, beginning at 11 a.m. with a spooky storytime at the Utica Public Library and concluding with a zombie pub crawl at 9 p.m. The pub crawl will begin at the JKN Riverwalk Park.

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Published September 18, 2017

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — After 24 years with the Shelby Township Solid Waste and Recycling Committee, Chairwoman Marietta Crabtree decided not to opt for reappointment when her term ended. Her last day was Sept. 18.

At the Sept. 14 Board of Trustees meeting, the township presented Crabtree with a resolution honoring her more than two decades of service to the township.

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Published September 18, 2017

UTICA — What’s in a name? Much and more, as Juliet found out about her lover and community members found out about their park.

On Sept. 12, a work session ran late and City Council ultimately decided to table the matter of a park renaming request so that an ad hoc committee could gather more information and, hopefully, offer a recommendation.

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Published September 14, 2017

At 12:05 a.m. Sept. 14 — 9:05 p.m. on the West Coast Sept. 13 — Amazon announced that it will build a 1 million-square-foot fulfillment center at 23 Mile and Mound roads.

Inventory at the fulfillment center, slated to open in 2018, will include household decor, sporting equipment and gardening tools.

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Published September 13, 2017

METRO DETROIT — It’s sometimes easy to forget in our modern, often comfortable lives that something could throw a wrench into our routines and bring life as we know it to a screeching halt.

September is National Preparedness Month, a timely educational effort amid the wildfires, hurricanes and flooding that have been filling the news of late.

Local experts weighed in on what residents in the metro Detroit area can do to make sure they are ready for emergencies, such as water main breaks or power outages, or disasters, such as tornadoes or flooding.

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