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People

Published November 18, 2015

BERKLEY — Margaret Beaudoin is making a name for herself with U.S. Paralympics.

The 15-year-old Berkley High School freshman suffered a stroke while her mother, Christine McNish, was pregnant with her, and it has affected the left side of Beaudoin’s body; she has hemiplegic cerebral palsy.

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Published November 12, 2015

FARMINGTON — Parents who might be having trouble with unruly children and how to deal with them can find help at a parenting fair this weekend at Oakland Community College.

The Parenting Education Fair will take place 7:30 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 21, on the Orchard Ridge Campus of OCC, 27055 Orchard Lake Road. The event costs $15 at the door, and there will be on-site child care if parents wish to peruse without the children. Child care costs $3 for one child and $5 for two or more children.

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Published November 11, 2015

GROSSE POINTE FARMS — A Grosse Pointe South High School alumna is showing her jazzy side. 

Emma Aboukasm, who graduated in 2014, is a finalist in the annual Sarah Vaughan International Jazz Vocal Competition to be held Nov. 15 at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark, New Jersey.

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Published November 11, 2015

UTICA — You may have seen Ted Zimmerman, a six-year resident, zipping around the streets of Utica and surrounding municipalities on his motorized scooter.

Over time, city workers have formed a partnership-turned-friendship with Zimmerman.

“We see him all the time,” said Rick Smith, a jack-of-all-trades at the Utica Department of Public Works. “He lets us know, when he’s cruising around town in his wheelchair, if there’s an issue here, an issue there, if we have a pole that has an issue and different things.”

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Published November 9, 2015

On Oct. 29, Congresswoman Candice Miller, R-Harrison Township, was one of six contemporary and four historical women in the 32nd class of the Michigan Women’s Hall of Fame.

Miller joined the ranks of more than 285 women who have been honored for wide-ranging and lasting achievements by the Michigan Women’s Historical Center in Lansing.

Emily Fijol, executive director of the Historical Center, said the Michigan Women’s Studies Association receives more than 100 nominations each year, which then filter through two rounds of judges.

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Published November 4, 2015

SOUTHFIELD — To celebrate their bookstore’s upgrade to the main floor of the library, the Friends of the Southfield Public Library held a ribbon-cutting ceremony and gala recently.

Library supporters enjoyed food, drinks and entertainment Oct. 22. Proceeds from ticket sales went to benefit the group. 

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Published November 4, 2015

Ever wonder why you can only buy Better Made chips and snacks in Michigan?

Local author Karen Dybis’ book, titled “Better Made in Michigan: The Salty Story of Detroit’s Best Chip,” delves into the history of potato chips in Detroit, which includes the 85-year-old Detroit-based, family-owned Better Made Snack Foods. She tells how Cross Moceri and Pete Cipriano worked during the day and made the chips in their kitchens at night in the ’20s, selling them door to door, on streetcars and in parks, including Belle Isle.

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Published November 4, 2015

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — Growing up with a cousin who has autism, Chippewa Valley High School choir director James Pecar has always had a place in his heart for students with the condition.


As he grew into his musical career as a student and now an educator, Pecar has seen the positive impact that a good tune can have on a child with autism.


He has integrated his teachings and performances to help those with the condition, and for his efforts, he received the 2015 Stephen Tsai award from the Autism Society of Michigan in October.

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Published November 4, 2015

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — Wayne Bibbs is a creative tour de force.

The Clinton Township resident owns his own photography company, has written a screenplay that he hopes turns into a film, and has written random inspirational snippets for coworkers at his full-time customer service position at DTE Energy. He has also acted on local stages for 30 years with the Warren Civic Theatre and the Algonac Community Theatre.

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Published November 4, 2015

GROSSE POINTE WOODS — Author Kyle Prue has a way with words.

As part of his everyday routine, the 19-year-old Naples, Florida, resident makes sure he writes 1,000 words per day. 

Prue is the author of  the young-adult fantasy novel, “The Sparks: Book One of the Feud Trilogy.” He talked about his writing process and much more when he visited Parcells Middle School in the Grosse Pointe Public School System Oct. 30. 

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Published November 4, 2015

DETROIT — Vito Lafata has been playing music professionally since 1976, so one would think he wouldn’t become nervous before an audience anymore.

But an upcoming show is giving him butterflies.

On Nov. 8, the 1976 Denby High School graduate will perform at the Fox Theatre as part of the entertainment for the launch of Mitch Albom’s new book, “The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto.”

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Published November 4, 2015

HUNTINGTON WOODS — Dessert is something everyone enjoys, Huntington Woods resident Joan Schwartz said, whether it be cake, chocolate or any other sweet treat.

So for a three-woman show, “Just Desserts,” that Schwartz is a part of at the Janice Charach Gallery in West Bloomfield, she and her fellow artists decided to sweeten up the gallery with mosaic and mixed-media pieces that depict the vast colors and variety of desserts. The show opened Oct. 25 and runs through Dec. 10.

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Published November 4, 2015

CENTER LINE — In recognition of Veterans Day on Nov. 11, the Kramer Homes Co-Operative collectively wants to give a disabled U.S. military veteran the gift of community.

The management of the historic, privately owned housing cooperative is looking for a disabled vet — one who is interested in moving into a Kramer Homes unit — to thank with an offer of a paid membership in the corporation, closing costs and upgrade fees, worth up to $8,500 total.

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Published November 4, 2015

WARREN — Throughout the month of October, St. Anne Catholic School preschool teacher Rhana Dabish finds different ways to teach students about fire safety.

“We implement our fire safety issues in various ways to make sure we reach out to each child,” Dabish said.

On Oct. 27, staff and students welcomed Stan the Fireman, who presented a home fire safety presentation that included magic tricks, humor, a ride in his mini fire truck and several important lessons. Stan the Fireman has been presenting his program at St. Anne for five years.

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Published November 4, 2015

BERKLEY — Prior to last year, Kendra Montante had never heard of “booing,” at least not the concept of paying it forward around Halloween.

Booing has happened all over the country for more than 30 years, Montante, a West Bloomfield resident, said, and the concept asks families to put together treat bags for their friends and neighbors and then place the bags, along with a description and window-cling ghost, on the porch and ring the doorbell before running away.

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Published November 4, 2015

EASTPOINTE — Starting around the fall of 1982, a group of local video game enthusiasts — calling their club the Activision Addicts, and later, the Video Addicts — decided to help local hospitalized kids for the holidays.

Former Video Addicts club president and Eastpointe resident Ernest Sevener said the club formed around 1981-82. The club would meet at Abbot Video in Roseville once or twice a month to try out the new games and see how they liked them.

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Published October 28, 2015

As a child, Troy Fire Chief Dave Roberts would listen to ham radio, known as amateur radio, in which operators use two-way radios to communicate with each other.

“The police and fire calls piqued my interest,” Roberts said.

Roberts was named to the top post after former Troy Fire Chief Bill Nelson retired last month after serving as fire chief since 1994.

Roberts grew up in Bloomfield Township and joined the Explorers Program for the Fire Department that was offered through the Boy Scouts of America.

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Published October 28, 2015

ROSEVILLE — Eight years ago, Lee Meyer created the ideal fundraiser that would benefit women and girls of all ages.


Meyer, a longtime member of the Soroptimist International of Grosse Pointe, came up with the organization’s Dine Around Town raffle to raise money for scholarship awards.

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Published October 28, 2015

It’ll soon be time to dress up again in Sterling Heights, as one of the city’s most prestigious outings of the year gets ready to begin.

The Sterling Heights Community Foundation’s third annual Puttin’ on the Ritz gala will invite ticket holders to dine, mingle and more Nov. 20 at Villa Penna in Sterling Heights.

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Published October 22, 2015

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — It was the week of Thanksgiving 2013 and young Robert Perkins was just like any other boy.


After a doctor’s visit prior to the holiday for a run-of-the-mill sore throat, Perkins’ parents thought nothing of it.


That was until Robert’s family commented on how slim he looked as opposed to the last time they saw him a month before, and when it came time to delight in desserts, Robert simply opted for multiple glasses of water instead.

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