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Woodward Talk

Published May 22, 2013

Walled Lake Central High School senior Malik Banks is certain that you will hear his name soon.

But it won’t be scrawled across the big screen, stitched across a numbered jersey or listed on the top 100 song charts.

His quest for fame will come from a career path that may lead him to the Big Three automakers.

The 17-year-old soon-to-be-graduate’s goal is as straightforward as his unassuming, confident personality: He wants to become a mechanical engineer.

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Published May 22, 2013

BERKLEY — The assignment was to select four people to represent a personal Mount Rushmore and explain why the four figureheads were chosen.

For most of the 753 high school juniors nationwide who submitted an essay for the 2013 National Council of Teachers of English Achievement Award for Superior Writing, that is probably exactly what they did.

Not Caelin Amin.

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Published May 22, 2013

HUNTINGTON WOODS — It’s not always easy for teachers to engage their students with the lesson of the day or any of the numerous assignments. Despite having been students at one time, Eric Zacks feels some teachers forget what it is like to be sitting at the desk and not standing up front.

Bonsitu Kitaba didn’t get that feeling from sitting in any of the three law classes she had with Zacks at Wayne State University. On the contrary, she feels Zacks, a Huntington Woods resident, tries to make a connection with each of his students.

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Published May 22, 2013

Michigan Week is in full swing, giving residents just one more excuse to revel in all the wonderful things there are to do and see in the Mitten State.

Whether you’re a beer buff or a beach babe, there’s a place for you in Michigan. But with so many regional specialties, it’s hard to choose which area of the state is best for the stay- or play-cation of your choice.

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Published May 21, 2013

WEST BLOOMFIELD — Summer is less than a month away, and plenty of popular and new summer activities are slated for this year in the greater West Bloomfield area, Parks and Recreation coordinator Nancy Keener said.

“We offer something for pretty much every age group for every week,” Keener said.

Summer camp programs begin mid-June, and children who have a hankering for soccer can get their fill at Drake Sports Park Soccer Fields to experience soccer from a British and a Brazilian perspective.

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Published May 16, 2013

West Bloomfield resident Rose Lesson was a ball of emotions during her 100th birthday party.

“It is wonderful because everybody is congratulating me and wishing me good things,” she said. “That is a blessing.”

The silver-haired centenarian blew out her candles May 10, among dozens of loved ones and friends who celebrated with her at Regent Street of West Bloomfield, 4460 Orchard Lake Road.

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Published May 15, 2013

WALLED LAKE — In a small media room, a crowd of Geisler Middle School students one by one read anti-bullying statements like mantras into a microphone connected to a computer and video camera May 3.

“We don’t all have to be the same,” one student read.

“We don’t all have to dress the same,” another read.

“We know that our differences make us interesting and unique,” another student said into the camera.

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Published May 15, 2013

WEST BLOOMFIELD — Nearly blind fifth-grade Doherty Elementary student Griffin Miller is not certain if, given the chance, he would want to see.

Griffin describes this uncertainty in an essay that ranked him — among four others — second place in the national 2013 Breaking Barriers Essay Contest, in which 18,700 fourth- through eighth-grade students submitted essays, according to www.mlb.com.

“I both did and didn’t want to be cured at the same time,” the essay reads.

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Published April 30, 2013

WEST BLOOMFIELD — The West Bloomfield High School winter drumline competed in the Winter Guard International World Championships April 18 in Dayton, Ohio, and although they were not selected in the final round, the 28-member band played their hearts out, their percussion director said.

“When you look at where we were when we started, compared to where we are now, it’s night and day,” West Bloomfield High School percussion director Pat McLaughlin said.

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Published April 30, 2013

WEST BLOOMFIELD — Hillel Day School sixth-grade student Eden Joyrich thinks differently about seniors after participating in Dor L’Dor, an intergenerational program that connects Jewish Senior Life residents and sixth-grade students at Hillel.

“We have a lot in common,” Joyrich told the Beacon recently, “more than we would realize. A lot of us like to read and do art or make jewelry. Things you wouldn’t think they can do, they can do.”

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Published April 30, 2013

DETROIT — The Labor Day weekend is still a few months away, but already it’s promising to be another great one for jazz lovers and the city of Detroit.

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Published April 23, 2013

WEST BLOOMFIELD — Julie Touchette wants people to take a whiff of Michigan the way she smells it.

The 33-year-old Keego Harbor entrepreneur recently created a line of four candles, with scents inspired by the state, from her Lost Bluebird Collection, which will launch May 1 at Lolly Ella Jewelry, 6706 Orchard Lake Road.

Touchette said she wanted to create products that inspire the soul, while still being practical for the pocketbook.

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Published April 18, 2013

WEST BLOOMFIELD — A grandmother’s teary-eyed pleas for understanding were not enough to sway a judge from sentencing Sandra Layne, who shot her grandson six times last May, to a minimum of 20 years in prison.

“I don’t want to die in jail,” Lane, 75, said during her final statement before sentencing April 18. She stood during her statement and spoke about how she loved her grandson, in tones varying from hushed to shouting. The retired teacher will serve 20-40 years in prison, plus two years for possession of a firearm.

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Published April 12, 2013

WALLED LAKE — Walled Lake Northern High School student Morgan Barnett, like the famous character she plays, learned recently that there really is no place like home.

But instead of finding that out after traveling a metaphorical yellow brick road, the White Lake senior had an epiphany during her senior year.

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Published April 10, 2013

After almost 21 years together, the Luddites still haven’t suffered the ubiquitous “creative differences” that have shattered bands less than half their age.

The 11-piece acoustic group will celebrate the release of their fourth CD, “Twisted In,” with a concert starting at 9 p.m. April 13 at PJ’s Lager House. Bass player David Giovannucci, one of the original Luddites from those early days in August 1992 when they started as a five-piece acoustic act, said friendship and mutual respect have kept them going all these years.

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Published April 10, 2013

In the bin

Come garbage day, most curbside recycling bins are stuffed with paper, plastic and glass bottles, cans, and cardboard, but there’s a whole lot more that can be added to the heap.

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Published March 27, 2013

Though spring seems to have lost its way en route to Michigan, it won’t be long before temperatures finally rise and the ground thaws to welcome new plants and flowers into eagerly awaited gardens around metro Detroit.

Just like in fashion boutiques, there will be lots of trends that customers will be clamoring for at their local nursery this year as they plan their landscape design. According to Erma Rhadigan, co-owner of Ray Wiegand’s Nursery in Macomb Township, this year’s most popular bloom choices are going to be bright, warm colors.

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Published March 27, 2013

With spring here — at least according to the calendar — many homeowners look to the state of their houses after the long, dirty winter and aren’t happy with what they see.

Carpets are soiled by salty boots; driveways start cracking from the months-long freeze/thaw cycle; and muddy messes are exposed in backyards that will be used for entertaining, come summer.

Now is the time to fix those problems, according to local contractors, before warm-weather fun beckons and the summer home- improvement rush begins.

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Published March 25, 2013

Bloomfield Hills Schools’ radio station, WBFH 88.1 FM, The Biff, is not only on the air, its award-winning reputation has soared into the stratosphere.

On March 13, the student radio station took first place in the Michigan Association of Broadcasters Foundation’s 2013 High School Radio Station of the Year contest.

In addition, Bloomfield Hills Schools students competed in themed categories and took first place seven times, second place four times and third place six times.

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Published March 12, 2013

WALLED LAKE — Acting students at Walled Lake Central High School will put on their dancing shoes when the school presents the musical “Hairspray” this month, starting March 14.

Director Mary Rashid called “Hairspray” a big show with plenty of dancing, strong music and memorable characters. She also pointed out the perfect timing of the presentation with some of the musical’s anti-racist themes.

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Upcoming Events

Berkley
Armenian music with Ara Topouzian
6:30 p.m.
Berkley Public Library
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An Evening of Roses
5:30-8:30 p.m.
Edsel & Eleanor Ford House
Grosse Pointe Farms
Music production workshop
2 p.m.
Grosse Pointe Public Library
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Pedal the Past bike tour
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Rochester Hills Public Library

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