Sarah Wojcik bio image

Sarah Wojcik

C&G Staff Reporter – Royal Oak Review


Staff Writer Sarah Wojcik covers the cities of Royal Oak and Clawson, as well as Royal Oak and Clawson schools, for the Royal Oak Review. She covered Shelby Township and Utica for the Shelby-Utica News from 2013 to 2017. Sarah is a graduate of Oakland University. She has won four Excellence in Journalism awards from the Detroit chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.

Published January 22, 2014

MACOMB COUNTY — Western Macomb County’s 38th Christmas bird count released its official summary report Jan. 8 with, unsurprisingly, lower results than usual, given poor weather conditions, although several all-time highs were set.

Despite heavy snow all day and temperatures ranging from 15-23 degrees Dec. 14, 35 people in the field and another seven at feeders participated to count 53 species and a total of 9,702 individual birds.

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Published January 22, 2014

UTICA — The Utica Public Library’s book sale is one of two annual fundraisers that help support the library, and now is a critical time for revenue — the library cut its 2014 hours because of a 30 percent decline in overall revenue last year.

The book sale is scheduled to take place from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Feb. 8 and 1-3 p.m.  Feb. 9 at the library, which is located at 7530 Auburn Road.

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Published January 22, 2014

UTICA — For the past year, the city has been working to develop a new five-year parks, recreation and open space master plan. The new plan will guide park development and investments in recreation amenities through 2018.

The new plan includes a comprehensive community profile, updated administrative structure, detailed inventory of parks, new goals and objectives, and an action plan for investments and improvements.

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Published January 22, 2014

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — On Nov. 12, one day before his 23rd birthday, Tyler Jenkins, of Shelby Township, was diagnosed with bone cancer.

Jenkins has Ewing’s sarcoma, which is a bone cancer typically found in children and adolescents, and it is rare for an adult to have the condition. A tumor wraps around the front and back of his left hip, and also has metastasized to his right hip, cervical spine, spinal cord, chest, right shoulder, ribs, liver and now his lungs.

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Published January 13, 2014

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — Located across the street from the post office at 22 Mile Road and Van Dyke Avenue, parishioners at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church decided they needed to do something to put themselves on the map, help the community and expand their footprint.

Their answer came in the form of a personal care pantry, which a small group of members kick-started in June 2012. St. Luke’s offers the pantry every Wednesday from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. and draws about 100 regulars.

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Published January 13, 2014

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — Nancy Smith, a third-grade teacher at Roberts Elementary School, Shelby Township resident and fitness enthusiast, launched the Freeze Your Franny 5k Run/Walk four years ago in an effort to benefit local charities and get people active during the winter.

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Published January 13, 2014

UTICA — The Utica Public Library has experienced declining revenue since 2008, but last year’s drastic 30 percent decline in revenue forced officials to reduce the library’s hours in 2014. The reduced hours started Monday, Jan. 6.

The library will be closed on Mondays, but it will add an hour to Wednesdays and two hours to Saturdays. The new schedule will be: closed Sunday and Monday; 11 a.m.-7 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday; 11 a.m.-8 p.m. Wednesday; and 11 a.m.-4 p.m. Friday and Saturday. The library will go from 40 to 35 hours.

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Published January 13, 2014

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — Shelby Township Police Chief Roland Woelkers, who served in law enforcement positions for the last 41 years, will retire this month.

Woelkers, 63, will call the shots for the last time on Sunday, Jan. 26 — 24 years to the day after he began his career with the Shelby Township Police Department as a road enforcement patrolman. He served as chief for the last two years.

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Published January 13, 2014

C&G Newspapers

UTICA/SHELBY TOWNSHIP/WARREN — The historic marker belonging to Gurden C. Leech, the man who in 1833 suggested that the Village of Harlow be renamed Utica, has been missing from the Utica Cemetery in Shelby Township for about 30 years.

Jim Bryant, 49, of Warren, discovered the gravestone when he was 18 or 19 years old — on his way to his favorite fishing pond — in a pile of rubble on the side of the road near 21 Mile and Ryan in Shelby Township. He said it looked like it had fallen off a truck.

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Published January 13, 2014

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — Shelby Township Police Chief Roland Woelkers stood before the Township Board of Trustees a second time Jan. 8 to present another reorganization of the Police Department that would chip money off a projected $1.7 million annual deficit that threatens to wipe out the police general fund’s balance in a few years.

This time, Woelkers presented a reorganization chart with the elimination of an administrative lieutenant position through attrition — which also was in the last reorganization — but kept the narcotics and traffic bureaus.

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Published January 13, 2014

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — The Packard Motor Car Foundation (PMCF) became Cub Scout Pack 92’s chartered organization Nov. 20, 2013.

The PMCF’s sponsorship of the troop will allow the scouts to enjoy the same tax-exempt status as the 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization when purchasing their various service decorations and badges, and, in return, the boys will provide community service at the Packard Proving Grounds.

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Published January 13, 2014

At approximately 6 a.m. Jan. 13, officers responded to calls that a pedestrian had been hit by a vehicle on southbound M-53, near the 22 Mile Road overpass. The pedestrian was deceased at the scene.

Shelby Township Police Chief Roland Woelkers said the pedestrian was a 39-year-old Macomb Township man. Witnesses told police that the man walked out into the highway, lay down on the road and was struck.

The man, a Chrysler employee, is survived by his wife and two children.

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Published January 8, 2014

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — Two months short of 33 years as a naturalist and park interpreter, Mark Szabo — commonly known as “Mark from the Park” — will enter retirement.

His last day at the Stony Creek Metropark Nature Center is Jan. 27.

Szabo said the biggest highlight of his career has been his hand in the new nature center — playing a major role in designing exhibit concepts and writing exhibit text, as well as helping coin the theme, “Waters of Change.”

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Published January 8, 2014

SHELBY TOWNSHIP/UTICA — The Shelby-Utica News interviewed the leaders of Shelby Township and Utica to get their takes on their municipalities’ 2013 accomplishments and 2014 plans.


Shelby Township
Rick Stathakis, the supervisor of Shelby Township, said the township’s taxes and millages did not increase for the fifth straight year. He said the general fund has a surplus of $300,000 this year and a total surplus of $4.6 million since 2009.

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Published January 8, 2014

SHELBY TOWNSHIP — Norm Killop, 75, of Shelby Township, completed his first marathon in 1986 at the state fair grounds — six months after kicking alcoholism — and resolved to live an active, healthy lifestyle.

Since then, Killop ran 31 more marathons, two 100-mile races, four 50-mile races and six 50k races. Last year alone, he competed in eight triathlons. He also has taken gold in the Senior Olympics and has run in almost every race that organizer Michael Ward coordinated in the last 15 years, Ward said.

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