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Woodward Talk

Published August 14, 2013

BERKLEY — When the Berkley Farm Stand opened last September on 12 Mile Road, Laura Uhlianuk and her husband, Lee, had the market operating seven days a week. When Mondays would come around, however, the North

Branch farmers didn’t have any produce left to sell after busy weekends.
Laura Uhlianuk, a Berkley native, said that when the stand opened this year at the end of July, they decided to keep the hours of operation to Friday, Saturday and Sunday to keep the stand freshly stocked all the time.

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Published August 14, 2013

PLEASANT RIDGE — As a young mother in 1987, Sherry Ball was only looking for a part-time postal clerk position with the city of Pleasant Ridge. With her kids in school, Ball responded to a “Help Wanted” ad while dropping off some mail.

Over the next 11 years, Ball served as the city’s water clerk, city clerk and in 1998 she took over as city manager. With 15 years of being city manager under her belt, Ball will retire from her position at the end of the year.

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Published August 14, 2013

FERNDALE — In recent weeks, a new Ford Motor Company billboard went up along northbound Woodward Avenue in Ferndale. The sign includes the usual vehicle and logos, but it is something right in front of the sign that makes it unique.

Placed on the billboard ledge are several lawn chairs with mannequins relaxing in them, watching the two-dimensional car on the billboard as it appears to want to rip itself off of the sign and onto Woodward.

It is time, once again, for the Woodward Dream Cruise.

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Published August 7, 2013

FERNDALE — Aaron Markovitz’s music career has taken the Ferndale native from his hometown to Los Angeles and even to the open sea as he played on cruise ships. But ultimately, Markovitz ended up back at home to see his career blossom.

Markovitz, 26, is the lead guitarist and singer for Escaping Pavement, a Detroit-based Americana band that dabbles in rock, folk and country. On June 26, the band released its first album, “UpRooted,” during a launch party in Ferndale.

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Published July 31, 2013

FERNDALE — Mayor Dave Coulter’s Blue Ribbon Commission on Ferndale Parks was set up in April as a way for the city to improve its parks with help from local organizers. The two main goals were to get public input and find a way to finance any improvements without using tax dollars.

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Published July 31, 2013

FERNDALE — Whenever Amanda Zimmerman has to respond to a medical emergency, the first thing the doctors ask the paramedic when she brings in a patient is if CPR was performed before the paramedics arrived.

Zimmerman, who works for HealthLink Emergency Medical Transportation in Taylor, said a majority of the time, people are too afraid or uninformed to perform CPR before the paramedics arrive, which means the patient may not be breathing for several minutes before they get on site.

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Published July 30, 2013

FERNDALE — The middle of July brought temperatures in Oakland County to the mid- and high-90s, along with a high humidity, making for hot and sticky days. For much of the week of July 15, Oakland County cities were under a heat advisory.

While people went into air-conditioned buildings or homes, silent sufferers had no choice but to sit in the hot temperatures at the Oakland County Animal Control & Pet Adoption Center. Pets had to endure temperatures that got into the 100s, as the building had no air-conditioning unit.

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Published July 22, 2013

HUNTINGTON WOODS — Like so many in the Detroit area, Lauren Mendelson grew up around cars, as her father worked in the auto parts business.

However, while others who grew up around Detroit may have developed a desire to own classic cars, Mendelson’s passion was for something more exotic. From Maseratis to Ferraris and BMWs, Mendelson developed a palate for cars hard to find.

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Published July 17, 2013

FERNDALE — When Rifino Valentine opened his distillery a few years ago in Ferndale, vodka was his main selling point and he quickly made the move from life in New York to a life in his home state of Michigan.

While Valentine Vodka has had great success, with about 3,000 accounts in Michigan, Illinois, Tennessee and New York, Valentine said he always had plans to expand, though he kept it close to his chest on what that meant.

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Published July 17, 2013

FERNDALE — Sharry Bronson turned 40 in January, but she didn’t use that time to reflect on what she had done or have remorse for what she hadn’t done.

Instead, Bronson used the first day of 2013 to run in a race. It was the first of several for the Ferndale resident, who decided to run 40 races for her 40 years of being alive.

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Published July 15, 2013

BERKLEY — In 2002, Jakita White saw her apartment go up in flames while she and friends jumped from the third floor to avoid being caught in the fire. Out on her own for the first time with her 1-year-old son, White had nothing after the fire.

White said she remembers what it felt like to be burned out after a fire, with nothing left to your name and no one to help you get back on your feet. Her dad, Antonio Hayden, also remembers what his daughter had to go through, and he wanted to make sure others didn’t suffer a similar fate.

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Published July 12, 2013

FERNDALE — Ferndale city officials and summer youth campers got their hands dirty planting trees June 25 in what has become an annual tradition for more than a decade at Oppenheimer Park along St. Louis Street.

The city celebrated the community’s 11th year as an official Tree City as part of the Arbor Day Foundation by planting two trees in the park. Department of Public Works Supervisor Shaun Slocum worked with 24 kids from the city’s summer camp program to get the trees in the ground.

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Published July 3, 2013

For many homeowners, remodeling their kitchen is a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

“People are really thinking it through,” said Barb Baker, of Elder Living Construction in Farmington Hills. “They are investing in a little higher quality. They are taking the time to understand the different wood qualities, and they are spending the money to make upgrades.”

Baker said her customers want new cabinets that will look good and last for a long time. They are also looking at new ways of hiding electrical outlets for a smooth, uninterrupted backsplash.

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Published July 3, 2013

METRO DETROIT — Next weekend, metro Detroiters will follow their noses to Romeo for the 11th annual Michigan Lavender Festival July 12-14 at Blake’s Orchard and Cider Mill.

There’s just something about the sight and scent of lavender that can evoke the excitement of summer and instill a feeling of serenity. And like so many seasons before, many Michiganders are once again on the hunt for the herb to use for cooking, cleaning or just plain sniffing.

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Published July 2, 2013

FERNDALE — Now in its 16th year, the Ferndale sidewalk replacement program is making some changes this summer that are sure to be welcome assistance for residents in the current economic climate.

The program splits Ferndale into 10 districts, with each district getting inspected and repaired every 10 years. In past years, residents had to pay for repairs to sidewalk slabs in front of their houses, even if a tree that the city planted in the right-of-way caused the damage.

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Published July 2, 2013

BERKLEY — With summer officially getting under way a few weeks ago, the summer edition of the Detroit Institute of Arts’ Inside|Out exhibit program got into full swing June 26 along Woodward Avenue.

In its fourth year, the DIA’s Inside|Out program places reproductions of nearly 80 paintings from inside the museum into neighboring communities around Detroit. The DIA asks that the pieces be placed outside and preferably in walking or biking distance from one another.

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Published June 26, 2013

HUNTINGTON WOODS — Living in Chicago and away from family Dec. 11, 2009, Ryan Beale was forced to face his finalized divorce by himself.

Less than two weeks later, on Dec. 24, Beale had a new tragedy to deal with — his older brother, Steve, committed suicide at the age of 37.

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Published June 26, 2013

FERNDALE — What was supposed to be a large cycling event for bicycle enthusiasts and newcomers alike has turned into more of a casual ride along the 27-mile stretch of Woodward Avenue.

Despite facing resistance from several communities along Woodward, and mainly Royal Oak, the Gran Fondo (roughly “big ride” in Italian) organizers still planned on running the first dream cruise for bikes from Detroit to Pontiac.

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Published June 26, 2013

BERKLEY — It’s not uncommon for a group of high school teenagers to get together and form a band. While some no doubt have talent, making it big isn’t as simple as just getting together to play music.

F8, a band made up of four Berkley High School students, played five gigs in a two-week period in the early part of June. The sound and dedication of the four band members caught the attention of several music-lovers in the area and the band was booked to open for all three Robina Rhapsody concerts.

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Published June 24, 2013

The Ferndale Public Library is a popular place for readers and people who just need a quiet place. However, the library is also a popular destination for yoga enthusiasts and music-lovers.

As the economy suffered during the past decade, more people have turned to libraries for cheap and even free services. Jessica Keyser, director of the Ferndale Public Library, said the staff in Ferndale saw this as an opportunity to engage the community in more ways than just reading.

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Upcoming Events

Clinton Township
Meetings for those with low/no vision
10 a.m.-noon
Clinton-Macomb Public Library
St. Clair Shores
Sweet Mountain Strings dulcimer concert
6:30 p.m.
St. Clair Shores Public Library
Farmington Hills
Summer nature programs
10:30 a.m.
Heritage Park
Royal Oak
Striped Circus family show
7 p.m.
Royal Oak Public Library
Ferndale
New Orleans-style jazz performance
6:30 p.m.
Ferndale Area District Library

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