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Published March 24, 2015

OAKLAND COUNTY — It’s been 10 years since Jennifer Shields first began training law enforcement officers to spot signs of mental illness. Though it’s been a decade, Shields said she still encounters police who are “blown away” by what they learn from her.

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Published March 23, 2015

The spring starts a new season of construction, but awareness could keep drivers from being barraged by sights of barrels during their commutes — or at least let them plan for a longer drive.

Oakland and Macomb counties’ road commissions have announced several upcoming projects for the spring and beyond.

According to Bob Hoepfner, director of the Macomb County Department of Roads, his agency plans to do about $42 million in roadwork this construction season.

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Published March 19, 2015

WEST BLOOMFIELD — For the first time since 1983, the Michigan Regional Glass Exhibition will be held at the Janice Charach Gallery in the Jewish Community Center of Metropolitan Detroit in West Bloomfield.


The exhibition will be held through April 29, and it kicked off with an opening reception March 15. The exhibit was organized by the gallery along with Albert Young, of the Detroit-based Michigan Hot Glass Works, the state’s oldest independent glass-blowing school.


Young is known for casting glass and steel.

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Published March 17, 2015

Lego lovers rejoice.

Michigan’s first and only attraction based on the world-famous Lego brick is coming to Great Lakes Crossing in Auburn Hills next year.

The schedule calls for construction to begin this summer on Legoland Discovery Center Michigan and for the project to be completed in spring 2016, according to an announcement by Merlin Entertainment, which operates Legoland attractions worldwide.

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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

KEEGO HARBOR/SYLVAN LAKE — As Easter approaches, children in Keego Harbor and Sylvan Lake can enjoy spring festivities before the holiday at the annual community egg hunts.


The Sylvan Lake Easter Egg Hunt, sponsored by the Sylvan Lake Parks and Recreation Committee, will take place at 7 p.m. March 28 at the Community Center.

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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 13, 2015

WEST BLOOMFIELD — The Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Detroit announced in a community briefing March 5 that the Jewish Community Center of Metropolitan Detroit will cease programming and services at the Oak Park facility after Aug. 31.


The JCC is facing a $1.3 million budget deficit this fiscal year, and by halting operations at the Oak Park facility, at least $800,000 in annual loss will be eliminated, officials said in the briefing.

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Published March 11, 2015

METRO DETROIT — A few years ago, when Jason Davidson’s hair was completely shaved off during the St. Baldrick’s Foundation cancer fundraiser, a young girl battling the illness came up to him and said “thank you.”


Touched by her words, “It was hard to come up with a response,” Davidson said.

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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

KEEGO HARBOR — Those who use the public access at Dodge No. 4 State Park in Waterford to launch boats on Cass Lake will face a snag in the line as the park undergoes two construction projects to fix beach erosion and to enlarge parking spaces.


The projects, which are broken into two phases, will begin around April 27 and continue through mid-October; however, the closure dates have not been finalized.

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Published March 11, 2015

METRO DETROIT — The legal team of the lesbian couple from Hazel Park challenging Michigan’s ban on same-sex marriage have filed their briefs with the U.S. Supreme Court. So have plaintiffs in similar cases out of Kentucky, Ohio and Tennessee.

“Regardless of what happens in the next few months, we’re confident these are the briefs that represent the right side of history,” said Dan Canon, one of the counsel for the Kentucky case, during a conference call with legal teams for all four states Feb. 27.

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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 9, 2015

BLOOMFIELD HILLS/WEST BLOOMFIELD — During an era of status updates, “self-destructing” photos, technology and tweets, experts are warning parents to educate themselves on advancements in smartphone and tablet apps.

“Social media is a pitfall for our children,” said West Bloomfield Lt. Curt Lawson, adding that many times, parents aren’t even familiar with the apps their children have downloaded, or parents think an app is merely what it appears to be.

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Published March 6, 2015

METRO DETROIT — A few years ago, when Jason Davidson’s hair was completely shaved off during the St. Baldrick’s Foundation cancer fundraiser, a young girl battling the illness came up to him and said “thank you.”

Touched by her words, “It was hard to come up with a response,” Davidson said.

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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 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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Published March 4, 2015

Right now, there are likely several inches of snow piled up on at least a portion of your deck or patio.

But what will you find when it melts?

Flaking paint chips and nail pops on your wooden deck, moss and weeds starting to grow between brick pavers, or worse.

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Published March 3, 2015

METRO DETROIT — In an effort to help get the Clinton River watershed off the Great Lakes Area of Concern list, the Environmental Protection Agency has pledged $20 million to fund 11 projects throughout the watershed over the next three years.

“This is a big deal for the watershed,” said Jennifer Tewkesbury, of the Michigan Office of the Great Lakes.

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