Features

Published March 17, 2015

GROSSE POINTE FARMS — Like a football team gearing up for the big state final, art students at Grosse Pointe South are getting ready for their own culminating moment — ArtFest 2015.


In the days leading up to the artistic showcase, there’s a flurry of activity in the art wing, with Grosse Pointe South art students and their instructors hard at work putting those last-minute touches on their pieces.

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Published March 16, 2015

ROCHESTER — After years of fading into the background, the sounds of bells, whistles, digitized music and flippers hitting pinballs are coming back.


That old arcade mainstay has seen breaths of new life during the past few years, and enthusiasts around metro Detroit are helping put pinball machines back into the spotlight with local leagues running throughout the year, and a four-day annual event — the Michigan Pinball Expo — scheduled for April.

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Published March 16, 2015

ST. CLAIR SHORES — All the world’s a stage, and local thespians are taking advantage of it this month, putting on three different musical productions.


The Lakeview Community Musical kicked off this month with “Happy Days: A New Musical,” with a cast ranging in age from as young as 8 into their 70s. Lakeview Community Musicals are open to all students in grades 4-12 in the district or the parochial schools in the district boundaries, as well as alumni, faculty and their families, and anyone living in the district boundaries.

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Published March 16, 2015

A car with chipping, scratches, fading or worse cannot hide under winter grime forever, but repainting options exist just in time for a spring makeover. 

Allan Edwards, owner of Maaco Collision Repair & Auto Painting in Shelby Township, said drivers get their cars repainted for a number of reasons, such as collision work, corrosion restoration or a simple refreshing.

“A lot of times, they’ve just got older cars looking pretty bland,” he said. “Sometimes they want to do a totally different color.”

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Published March 12, 2015

GROSSE POINTE FARMS/DETROIT — Lunch is such a seemingly simple thing, something many don’t give much thought to until noon rolls around and they consider where they can grab a quick bite before heading back to work.


But for someone who’s homeless, lunch can be an unfilled need. And when those who are homeless are also veterans, it adds another layer of tragedy to this national crisis.

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Published March 12, 2015

GROSSE POINTE CITY — Michigan residents have been terrorized by the polar vortex for the last two winters, but no one has ever seen this elusive menace. Until now, that is.


For “Creatures: Real or Imagined,” the new Grosse Pointe Art Center show, artist Scott Brown, of Grosse Pointe Woods, created a fittingly foul-faced monster who looks more than a little like the angry cousin of the Abominable Snowman of animated holiday movie fame.

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Published March 11, 2015

FERNDALE — “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz” was first published in 1900, and a movie followed in 1939, which quickly became renowned for its music and art production.


Now, 115 years after L. Frank Baum released his novel and 76 years after the movie became an instant hit, theater students at Ferndale High School are hoping to keep Dorothy and her companions at the forefront when they present five performances of “The Wizard of Oz” between March 21 and 29.

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Published March 11, 2015

FRASER — Dorothy and her companions traveled down the yellow brick road to see the Wizard of Oz, and local students recently brought the fairy tale to reality for a young girl’s birthday party.


On Feb. 28 at a clubhouse at Rudgate Clinton, about 27 kids and 20 adults gathered to see a performance of “The Wizard of Oz” that was acted out by students in Fraser High School’s Performing Arts club.


The play and guests were all a part of Olivia’s 6th birthday celebration.

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Published March 11, 2015

The Sterling Heights Public Library holds the keys to a March 26 concert celebrating the swing era and the piano.

Boogie-woogie piano player Matthew Ball plans to bring back his retro style of performing during a free public event for the community.

Jason Groth, the library’s public relations and programs coordinator, said the library is  eager to have Ball back. Groth explained that the library is moving toward adding more musical performances as part of its community activities.

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Published March 11, 2015

EASTPOINTE — This month’s photo, taken during the 1940s, is of the original East Detroit municipal building. The building was located on Nine Mile Road just east of Gratiot Avenue, where the current police and court buildings are located.

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Published March 11, 2015

ST. CLAIR SHORES — The Big Bear Market was located on Greater Mack on the site of present-day Great Lakes Ace Hardware. It was one of the first major grocery stores in St. Clair Shores. Big Bear Markets of Michigan operated 33 supermarkets. By 1957, Big Bear Market changed into a Wrigley store. The brief history of this market in St. Clair Shores comes with an interesting story about supermarket monopolies.

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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

ROCHESTER — A watercolor painting by Rochester Hills resident William Steiner depicts the Detroit United Railway, known as the D.U.R., in 1900.

The painting shows the high-speed electrified interurban railway sharing Rochester’s Main Street with a horse and buggy.

According to Rochester Hills Museum at Van Hoosen Farm records, the D.U.R. traveled from Detroit to Rochester to Lake Orion and Flint. The travel time from Rochester to Detroit was under an hour, which is less than today’s rush-hour drive, museum officials said.

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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

After finishing a musical based on a “tale as old as time,” it’s time for Sterling Civic Theatre to embark on a spring drama camp involving drones with cameras attached.

The theater group will host its Stage Geeks Theater Camp on select days from March 16-April 29, following the troupe’s early March run of Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast Jr.”

According to SCT founder Larry O’Grady, the camp will introduce participants in kindergarten through grade six to a sampling of the components of a theatrical show.

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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 5, 2015

GROSSE POINTE FARMS — Members of most Grosse Pointe Theatre casts get close to each other, but that’s especially true in GPT’s latest production, the outrageous comedy “Don’t Dress for Dinner.”


“Everybody is kissing everybody,” director Rachel Settlage, of Grosse Pointe City, acknowledged of the French farce, which involves an unfaithful husband and his mistress, a series of mistaken identities and a romantic weekend gone awry.

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Published March 4, 2015

FARMINGTON HILLS— Selling 2,015 cookies in about a month might make some crack under pressure, but not East Middle School eighth-grader and Girl Scout Cadette Nyia George, who set this mark as a personal goal this year.

“I usually don’t sell that much, just sell to family and friends, but I wanted to go a little bit bigger,” the pint-size Farmington Hills resident said. “You can sell as many as you please.”

Last year, Nyia sold 750 boxes of cookies; the year before that, she had 880 of the delectable treats under her belt.

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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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Upcoming Events

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Lake Shore Presbyterian Church
Farmington Hills
Summer nature programs
2 p.m.
Heritage Park
Bloomfield Township
Night Sky Paint Along
3-4:30 p.m.
Bloomfield Township Public Library
Harrison Township
Trivia night at the library
6:30-8 p.m.
Harrison Township Public Library
Clawson
Wednesday Afternoon Book Club
1-2 p.m.
Blair Memorial Library

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