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Woodward Talk

Published November 4, 2015

ROYAL OAK — The growth and requests to use the city’s farmers market prompted officials at their regular commission meeting last month to discuss the purpose of the destination.

The topic was listed as a discussion item during the commission’s Oct. 26 meeting, following the commission’s Aug. 17 denial to host an Octoberfest event in the market’s parking lot.

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Published November 3, 2015

Familiar faces ushered in election night victories in Royal Oak, while a newcomer will soon take a seat on the Clawson City Council.  

According to unofficial results issued by the Oakland County Elections Division, newcomer Matthew Ulbrich received the most votes for the Clawson City Council during the Nov. 3 election — 854 votes, good for 38.23 percent of the total vote.

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Published November 3, 2015

ROYAL OAK — It is safe to say Jim Ellison knows a bit about Royal Oak.

He has lived here all his life, served on numerous boards and commissions — including the City Commission from 1991 to 1995 — made a successful run at mayor in 2003, attended myriad local events, attended Royal Oak schools and has called the community home with his wife and children.

On Nov. 3, Ellison was re-elected to serve another two-year term as mayor. Ellison ran unopposed.

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Published November 2, 2015

ROYAL OAK — Fire Chief Chuck Thomas credited his firefighters, along with city employees, for handling two blazes that happened within days of one another last week.

No one was injured in either fire, Thomas said.

“In both cases the firemen did a really good job,” he said.

The Fire and Police departments responded first to a condominium fire shortly after 8:30 p.m. Oct. 27 in the 1900 block of Seabright Court — near 14 Mile and Crooks roads — after a woman called 911 to report smelling smoke inside her home.

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Published October 30, 2015

DETROIT — Huge crowds routinely turn out in the chilly November air to cheer colorful floats, marching bands and enormous balloons that line Woodward Avenue for America’s Thanksgiving Parade in Detroit.

The spectator turnout is nowhere near as robust when thousands of veterans, their family members, friends and supporters parade down Jefferson Avenue on the Saturday before Veterans Day.

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Published October 29, 2015

A local man faces up to life in prison if found guilty of shooting to death a 28-year-old Madison Heights man during the middle of the night Oct. 26.

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Published October 28, 2015

ROYAL OAK — City commissioners unanimously adopted an ordinance Oct. 19 to allow local enforcement of state laws that mandate how drivers may transport marijuana legally.

City officials said the measure is similar to adopting the driving while intoxicated city ordinance — taking a state law and adopting an ordinance so the violation could be enforced locally instead of having to go through the county prosecutor’s office.

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Published October 28, 2015

CLAWSON — City officials have said that they will protect the community’s parks, and soon they will have a local law to back their message.

Members of the City Council unanimously approved the first reading of a parks ordinance Oct. 20 that details hours, limits the use of pets, outlines parking and lists sanctions for those caught causing destruction to any of Clawson’s parks. The ordinance is expected to be adopted on second reading and go into effect next month, with an exemption for the Fourth of July.

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Published October 26, 2015

A suspect in the shooting death of a 28-year-old Madison Heights man was arrested Monday afternoon following a nearly 12-hour investigation at a northwest neighborhood home where police said the shooting occurred.

Police said the Royal Oak Police Department Criminal Investigations Division quickly identified the suspect, and an arrest was made at 1 p.m. Oct. 26 in the 6100 block of Henry Ruff in Garden City.

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Published October 23, 2015

ROYAL OAK — Organic farmer Don Cinzori has traveled to the Farmers Market on Saturdays from March through December for nearly 20 years.

Royal Oak is the only market Cinzori travels to from his 300-acre southwest Michigan farm because popular specialty markets like the national grocer Whole Foods purchase his certified organically grown goods directly.

So, why do it?

“The location is fantastic,” Cinzori said. “It’s a beautiful building, great parking and we have really the most loyal customers.”

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Published October 21, 2015

ROYAL OAK — Ford Arts, Beats & Eats executives announced last week that the organization will distribute more than a quarter-million dollars to community organizations from proceeds collected during the 2015 Labor Day weekend event.

This year, $255,802 was raised from gate admissions, beverage proceeds and other festival-sponsored community initiatives that will be distributed to more than 60 nonprofit and community organizations.

In total, $101,382 of the money raised went back to Royal Oak organizations and nonprofits.

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Published October 21, 2015

CLAWSON/ROYAL OAK — When Joan Horton learned of a local family with twins trying to find a Halloween activity that would accommodate one child’s allergies, her aha moment arrived.

“I thought, ‘They shouldn’t have to split them up,’” she said. “How do you say to one, ‘This is fun and you can have all of this,’ and then say to the other child, ‘But you can’t.’”

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Published October 14, 2015

ROYAL OAK — The majority of city commissioners approved a proposal last week from Robertson Brothers Homes to build 47 single-family homes and 78 for-purchase townhomes on 10 acres at the proposed Normandy Oaks Park site.

After appearing before members of the Normandy Oaks Task Force and the City Commission, the known-to-the-area home builders won the bid to develop the land on the former Normandy Oaks Golf Course for $3.85 million. Voters approved the sale of the property last year.

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Published October 14, 2015

ROYAL OAK — Although the aroma of cinnamon sticks and pumpkin spice lattes are at the forefront of people’s thoughts, soon snow will cover city sidewalks.

City commissioners resumed their discussions Oct. 5 on the issue of snow removal, with some hoping to move forward with a resolution toward keeping sidewalks clear.

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Published October 14, 2015

ROYAL OAK — For Thomas Oppat, the life events leading to his appointment as Shrine Catholic High School and Academy principal were filled with sequential divinity.

“It just all fell into place for me,” he said. “When I sit back now, I think, ‘God, you knew what was happening.’”

Walking the hallways of the seventh- and eighth-grade academy and ninth- to 12th-grade high school on 13 Mile Road, Oppat feels at home while he continues to learn about and appreciate the institution’s history and people.

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Published October 14, 2015

CLAWSON — Members of the City Council unanimously adopted the updated International Fire Code last week after working out the details since the summer.

The 2012 IFC was adopted during the council’s Oct. 6 meeting.

“We have had much discussion about this as it was originally presented to us a few months ago,” said Mayor Penny Luebs.

The council began looking at the document in July, when Fire Chief Richard Dylewski presented it to council for adoption.

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Published October 14, 2015

ROYAL OAK — The yard ornament stolen from Joyce Zeleji’s yard isn’t replaceable, and that is why she wants it back.

“My husband bought it for me, and my husband passed away on New Year’s Eve last year, and it’s a real memory for him to have given that to me, and I really, really miss it,” she said.

The ornament was a 4-foot-long double-barreled shotgun made out of copper and brass tubes — not a real gun. It was placed in her backyard below the top of her gate.

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Published October 12, 2015

ROYAL OAK — Getting a drink of water at the Detroit Zoo won’t be as easy as buying bottled water any longer, as the zoo has made the decision to stop selling bottled water in an effort to make better environmental decisions.

Part of the zoo’s strategic plan includes sustainability efforts to guide how the zoo moves forward. While bottled water was found to be the best-selling item in the entire zoo, Manager of Sustainability Beth Wallace said zoo officials also realized that selling so many plastic bottles would make a negative impact on the environment.

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Published October 12, 2015

David Douglas Davis never looked up from the floor as he was charged with the killing of 50-year-old resident Theresa Diamos and told that he is facing life in prison.

Davis, 49, appeared before 44th District Court Judge Derek Meinecke at 8:30 a.m. Oct. 15 while four charges against him were read to the courtroom.

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Published October 7, 2015

ROYAL OAK — When Jonathan Steinberg began proton therapy 32 years ago, he had to move to Boston and face protesters against the then-experimental treatment in an effort to save his life.

“It wasn’t easy being in a strange town and being told that you had less than a year to live,” he said.

The Birmingham resident eventually brought his fight for proton therapy to Michigan, championing the cause until Gov. Jennifer Granholm vetoed restrictions blocking who could provide the treatment in 2008.

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