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Published July 3, 2015

The Royal Oak Police and Fire departments are continuing their investigations into what or who caused two vehicles to erupt in flames last week.

No one was injured in either incident, police said.

“We do not know if they’re related at this point,” said Lt. David Clemens, of the Royal Oak Police Department Criminal Investigations Division. “They were roughly a mile and a half, 2 miles apart on different nights.”

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Published July 2, 2015

METRO DETROIT — Ah, the lazy days of summer.

That means afternoon dips in a pool, camping trips, outdoor activities and bonfires to close out the night.

But with the onset of summer, it’s important to remember the various ailments that can arise from a day of fun in the sun. Local doctors have several tips for children, adults and senior citizens to help them stay safe and healthy.

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Published July 2, 2015

METRO DETROIT — In a landmark decision June 26, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that same-sex couples have a constitutional right to marry — a successful outcome for one of the largest civil rights movements in recent history.

The ruling will reverse laws in 13 states that still ban same-sex marriage, Michigan included. Same-sex couples will now be able to marry in all 50 states, plus the District of Columbia. 

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Published July 1, 2015

METRO DETROIT — Whether people are renting inflatable bouncers for parties or are among the more than 40 million carnival and amusement park-goers, real dangers are mixed in with the fun.  

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Published June 30, 2015

With summer heating up, local experts offered advice to save money on energy bills by maximizing efficiency in the home.

“There’s a lot of very simple measures to be more energy-efficient that don’t have to cost a lot of money,” Consumers Energy spokeswoman Deb Dodd said. “You don’t necessarily have to buy new windows or (energy-efficient appliances).”

One measure, Dodd said, is a programmable thermostat, which can reduce air conditioning costs while a home is unoccupied.

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Published June 30, 2015

The fellow in the cubicle next to you has been coming in each morning with red, tired eyes. He’s rubbing his throbbing temples throughout the day and always has a stash of Ibuprofen on hand.

There’s a good chance your cube pal isn’t an all-night partier, but rather, a daily sufferer of seasonal allergies. And he’s not alone. According to the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, as many as 30 percent of adults and 40 percent of children in the United States are affected by nasal allergies.

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Published June 30, 2015

ROYAL OAK —  A new micro development targeted at the millennial generation could be heading to East 11 Mile Road after receiving Planning Commission approval.

The June 9 vote recommended that an Amber Properties development consisting solely of luxury studios — or micro apartments — at the northeast corner of East 11 Mile Road and Rembrandt Avenue be supported by the City Commission.

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Published June 29, 2015

ROYAL OAK — Bringing what officials say is millions of dollars to the community, the 18th annual Ford Arts, Beats & Eats festival will return Labor Day weekend in downtown Royal Oak.

Event producer Jonathan Witz gathered with local politicians and business sponsors June 24 at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Oakland and Macomb Counties in Royal Oak to announce that this year’s event will be bigger, better and feature more community give-back, and that the event will continue for at least three more years.

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Published June 29, 2015

The urge to hurry can put a driver at risk of a speeding ticket or even a traffic accident. But even if a speed limit seems like an inconvenience, there is often a carefully considered reason behind the numbers, according to road and safety experts.

According to a document from the Michigan Office of Highway Safety Planning called “Establishing Realistic Speed Limits,” speed limits are designed to keep all drivers as safe as possible while staying within realistic boundaries of “reasonable and proper” public driving habits.

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Published June 27, 2015

CLINTON TOWNSHIP — Although their eyes were stinging a bit and the smell wasn’t the most appealing, Rochelle Niemiec and Justin Updyke got the job done.

The pair chopped up a tray full of onions on the morning of June 23 as they prepared a delicious lunch from scratch alongside their classmates in the culinary/pastry arts summer teen academy at Macomb Community College’s Center Campus.

Every summer, the school offers a number of week-long academies in different fields to give local teenagers the opportunity to explore various careers.

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Published June 26, 2015

According to researchers, the annual bloom of harmful algae on Lake Erie is on track to be on par with the 2009-10 blooms, though still smaller than last year’s bloom that saw the shutdown of the Toledo water system.


The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released its preliminary report June 15 on what it expects from Erie’s bloom this year, with a more accurate one coming in early July.

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Published June 24, 2015

ROYAL OAK — When Randy and Jan Hunt first saw their Orchard View Drive home, it was the wraparound porch that drew them in.

“My favorite part of the house is the front porch. We love it,” Jan said. “We sit out there all the time, and it was one of the reasons we looked at the house.”

But the couple decided after purchasing the home in 2011 that they really wanted to put their stamp on the inside. From there, they embarked on a three-year remodeling project.

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Published June 24, 2015

METRO DETROIT — Tick bites can have long-lasting consequences.


A specific species of the bloodsucking arachnid, the blacklegged tick — also known as the deer tick — can spread Lyme disease, a bacterial infection that, if left untreated, can cause issues for months or years after the initial bite.

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Published June 24, 2015

METRO DETROIT — The housing market in metro Detroit is still flooded with buyers and sellers, but things may get a little more difficult for sellers as interest rates have started trending upward and more buyers are looking to get into new builds.


Keller Williams real estate agent John Kurczak, based in Sterling Heights, said that just as things have changed in the types of homes that buyers are looking at, so too has the way that homes are sold.

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Published June 24, 2015

METRO DETROIT — Hot, humid days spent sizzling under the summer sun are one of the few antidotes to a long Michigan winter.


Soaking up the heat is fine, of course, as long as it’s not your food that’s doing the sweating.


The Oakland County Health Division recently released a list of food safety reminders as residents get ready to head out for summer picnics. Tony Drautz, environmental health administrator for the division, said they like to give cooks a brush-up on the basics this time of year, when meals tend to migrate outdoors.

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Published June 24, 2015

METRO DETROIT — After the YMCA helped set a Guinness World Record last year for the largest simultaneous swimming lesson, you’d think they’d take a year off.

Think again.

Last week, the nonprofit teamed up again with World’s Largest Swim Lesson — a coalition of national water safety experts and trainers — to try to set the record for the world’s largest swim lesson in 24 hours. Currently, Team WLSL holds the Guinness record for the largest simultaneous swimming lesson, with 36,564 participants in 22 countries around the world.

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Published June 24, 2015

ROYAL OAK — City officials want it known that they will be replacing many trees that will be removed as part of the 2015 downtown sidewalk improvement program.

“In the downtown area, we have determined that we don’t have any choice but to replace the trees,” said City Manager Don Johnson, adding that not all trees will be removed, just those that are marked or already gone.

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Published June 23, 2015

ROYAL OAK — Thoughts of snow and sub-zero temperatures aren’t at the forefront for most residents, but elected officials are discussing best practices to keep sidewalks clear come winter.

The City Commission unanimously agreed June 15 to enact a public information campaign that places emphasis on the importance of keeping sidewalks clear of snow and ice during winter months.

Graduate City Management Intern Kayla Barber-Perrotta presented a report during the June 15 City Commission meeting outlining options for city leaders.

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Published June 22, 2015

METRO DETROIT — Sixteen people around metro Detroit have been charged in what the federal government is calling the largest Medicare fraud takedown in history.

Nationwide, 243 arrests were made as part of the investigation, including doctors, nurses and other licensed medical professionals for their alleged participation in schemes to defraud Medicare of $712 million through false billings. The investigation also led to the suspension of a number of health care providers.

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Published June 22, 2015

CLAWSON — Carrying on a lengthy tradition of revelry, the city is kicking off its weeklong-and-then-some Fourth of July celebration beginning June 24 with an ice cream social and band concert.

Members of the Clawson Lions Club will begin serving ice cream sundaes at 7 p.m. June 24 at the Clawson City Park pavilion followed by a 7:30 performance by the South Oakland Concert band.

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