Thursday, July 27, 2023

Fresh from the farm…

Local farmers markets offering healthy summer produce and more

The Northville Farmers Market at the corner of Sheldon
and West Seven Mile is open on Thursdays until October
and features a variety of fresh produce.
Nearly everyone in this area has access to a local farmers market as the health benefits to residents and to the bottom line of local growers has become a well-accepted feature in communities.

Dieticians praise the effects of fresh produce on health and Johns Hopkins dietician Melinda Cater favors the nutritional value fresh produce provides.

“Produce from local farmers has spent more time on the vine, on the tree or in the ground, so you get better taste and more nutrients,” she said. “When it comes to fresh fruit and vegetables, the shorter the time and distance from farm to sale, the higher the levels of vitamins and minerals.”

Testing of city water samples shows lead content

Just prior to the official warning regarding excess lead in some Wayne
 homes where lead service lines remain, Michigan State Sen. Darrin Camilleri
and State Rep. Kevin Coleman visited the Wayne City Council to present a
check for $4,900,000 to Mayor John Rhaesa. The money was designated in the new
 omnibus bill to fund the replacement of lead water lines in the city.  The funding,
officials said, will be available by or on Oct. 1 which will expedite
the replacement of the water lines. 
Lead in the drinking water of about 400 homes in the City of Wayne prompted a warning from the Department of Public Works last week.

According to a posted warning on the city and police media pages, recent testing of tap water in city homes found the water in more than 10 percent of the 60 homes reached the Action Level as specified by the Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy. The Action Level is a measure of corrosion control effectiveness. The goal for lead in drinking water particles per billion (ppb) is 15. The Wayne results showed 16 ppb, according to the official posting.

History lessons

An opportunity to see why the City of Inkster is at the center of American history and at the heart and hub of Black history is planned during the Inktown Tour, set for 1 p.m. Aug. 6. The tour includes the story of the city from 200 years ago, until today. There will be a midday meal at Clayton's following the tour.

New council member, mayor pro-tem chosen

During a special meeting of the Wayne City Council members on July 17, city resident Don Quarles was chosen to fill the vacant Ward 3 seat until November 2024. The vacancy was created when Mayor pro-tem Tom Porter resigned his position earlier this month. In other business, the council  elected fellow member Alfred Brock to serve as mayor pro tem, a vacancy also created with Porter's resignation.  

Veteran police officer retires from department

Ofc. Eric Keledas
Canton Township Police Ofc. Erik Kaledas has retired from the department.

Kaledas began his 25-year career in law enforcement in 1998, after serving in the 1776th Military Police Company of the Michigan Army National Guard. As a road patrol officer, Kaledas responded to calls for service, provided traffic enforcement, conducted criminal investigations and responded to emergency situations throughout the community, officials said.

In addition to his patrol duties, Kaledas participated in many special units including Explorer Advisor, Evidence Technician, Bicycle Unit, Range and Rifle Instructor, Field Training Officer, and the Search Warrant Team. Kaledas was also one of the longest standing members and team leader of the prestigious department Honor Guard Unit responsible for posting of the colors at various ceremonial events.

Internet survey by Canton Leisure Services is now online

Speeds in Canton Township are being carefully checked, but no tickets will be issued and the response is strictly voluntary.

Officials said that as broadband Internet becomes a more essential and crucial service for those who live, learn and work in Canton, expansion availability may become necessary. In some areas of Wayne County, reliable high-speed Internet is not available, they said, and in an effort to bridge this digital divide, Canton and county representatives need a more accurate picture of the reliability of the internet and which properties do not have the essential internet services.

City council OKs design work for roundabout

Members of the Northville City Council approved preliminary design work for a roundabout at Seven Mile and South Center.

During a recent meeting, council members authorized a contract for professional services with OHM Advisors to provide preliminary design and engineering work for the traffic configuration. The $150,000 fee will be paid from the city Major Streets Fund, following approval of a budget amendment to fund the cost. Officials said a reimbursement for the cost would be requested from  Hunter Pasteur Northville, developer of the Downs property, as part of the development agreement in progress. 

Coffee with the Council prompts traffic questions

Northville City Manager George Lahanas, left, Congresswoman
Debbie Dingell, Marilyn Price and John Carter gather for a group
photo following the July 15 Coffee With Council event. Photo by Liz Cezat 
The second Coffee with Council event in the City of Northville July 15 drew about 10 residents to discuss a range of topics with council members Marilyn Price and John Carter along with City Manager George Lahanas. Special guest U.S. Congresswoman Debbie Dingell attended later in the meeting, noting she was there to listen.  

One of the chief concerns of residents was the effects of the closure of sections of Main and N. Center. Jeff Snyder, a resident of Beal Town, said wayfinding apps are directing people through his neighborhood and along River Street, which has been much busier, especially during morning and evening rush hour. Andrew Daily, a downtown resident and real estate developer, noted that the city is making some good changes in regard to adding new stop signs and pedestrian crossings but said government moves slowly with more to be done.

On the record

Northville Township Records Clerk Melissa Sullivan has been selected to serve on the board of trustees for the Law Enforcement Records Management Agency (LERMA). With more than 25 years of membership, Northville Township has benefited from LERMA efforts to enhance knowledge and efficiency among law enforcement agencies, police officials said. The agency provides a platform for records clerks across the state to discuss common issues and find solutions together, they explained. Sullivan, a recognized expert in records management, will  represent Northville Township with the agency.

Fire hydrants being repainted

Northville Township Department of Public Works employees have been repainting and inspecting township fire hydrants to ensure their optimal functionality. 

The bright red paint is designed to facilitate swift identification by firefighters, according to fire officials who warned residents of the danger of decorating or repainting hydrants in their neighborhoods.  

The distinctive appearance of the hydrants is necessary for efficient emergency response, they said.

Police academy students celebrate graduation

The accomplishments of 19 young residents were celebrated by the Westland Police Department last week as they marked their official graduation from the Westland Police Youth Academy. During the classes, the students experienced comprehensive and hands-on training from department officers and officials from the 18th District Court of Westland. The students gained insights into police K-9 demonstrations, taser training, traffic stops, SWAT procedures, court functions, building searches and evidence technician skills.

Plymouth-Canton offers transition help to families

Students returning to or starting classes in the Plymouth-Canton Community Schools district this fall will have some extra help available.

The district Department of Student and Family Engagement was designed to help with school transitions and staff members work  with parents, guardians and families to ensure Plymouth Canton  students have what they need to learn and succeed. Department counselors can help provide students and families with access to health care services, vision screenings, dental appointments, mental health resources and other wraparound services if needed, including access to food, clothing, toiletries and school supplies, according to a prepared statement.

Board OKs $250,000 for remodeling of cemetery

The “quality of afterlife” will improve at Martinsville Cemetery in Sumpter Township.

Members of the board of trustees agreed at the July 11 meeting to use up to $250,000 of the expected American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding to make improvements at the Willis Court facility.

Township Manager Anthony Burdick brought the proposal to the board members noting that the cost of the planned improvements and repairs were estimated at $150,00 to $180,000 and that he had used the $250,000 number in an effort to offset any unexpected increases in cost and the anticipated rise in pricing for the planned work. He added that state is being “aggressive” with timelines for the proposed use of the federal funding which is being administered by state officials. 

Legal lunch

As part of the Romulus Public Library Summer Reading Kickoff Carnival on June 13, winners in a drawing of "passport" tickets were invited to several visits with city officials. Prize winner Haley won lunch with the police chief, and last week she and her dad, Dave, enjoyed McDonald's with Chief Robert Pfannes. They were also treated to a tour of the police department as part of the prize. 

Community Bike Ride is Saturday

The Fifth Annual Community Bike Ride is set for Saturday throughout the City of Romulus.

The popular event is organized and hosted by the Police and Community Together (PACT) organization; the day will include food, entertainment and a 4-mile bike ride from 2 until 5 p.m. July 29. Riders of all ages are welcome but children should be accompanied by an adult rider, officials said.

The event will begin and end at Halecreek Elementary School located at 16200 Harrison St. Riders can still register for the event at

Thursday, July 20, 2023

School district rejects Canton Chiefs logo, mascot

It may have been the minority opinion, but it was that minority members of the Plymouth Canton  Community Schools Board of Education voted to protect last week.

A student-led effort to retire the current mascot and logo at Canton High School was approved by a 6-1 vote of board members during a regular meeting last week. The decision follows nearly two years of discussion. The board decision follows two requests from student groups who claimed the chief mascot and arrowhead logo were disrespectful and insulting to Native Americans. Students first made the request in 2021 and the same issue was brought to the board by a second group  this year. Months of discussion regarding the issue prompted the empaneling of a citizens advisory committee to research the issue before making a recommendation regarding the proposed change. 

Friendly help

Volunteer group book sale helps fund programs at Romulus library

The Romulus Public Library helped celebrate Juneteenth
this year with a special booth during the city-wide event. 
The Romulus Public Library has some very special friends. A group of 40 or so, the Friends of the Romulus Library fund special programs to enhance and promote the library in the community. The latest effort of the group is a Book and Bake Sale set for next Thursday, Friday and Saturday, July 27, 28 and 29 at the library.

In addition to the books and other materials on sale, group members opted to sweeten up the event with the sale of cookies and quick breads at a bake sale.  Book Chairman Kathy Dick said they hope to add more sweets to the next book sale, depending on the sales this year. The Friends are also hosting a small flea market during the book sale, with some exceptional bargains on gently used items.

New executive director named at Northville Art House

Shannon Karol
The Northville Art House has a new executive director.

Shannon Karol joined the art facility June 12, just before the annual Arts and Acts Festival. No stranger to the community, Karol is a 1999 graduate of Northville High School. She attended the University of Michigan, majoring in English and art history and went on to earn a master's degree in art history from the University of Iowa in 2005. 

She has been a museum educator in art museums for 18 years, including the Kresge Art Museum at Michigan State University (now the MSU Broad Art Museum), the Dallas Museum of Art, the Cincinnati Art Museum, and the Speed Art Museum in Louisville, KY.  Most recently, she served as the director of museum education and community engagement at the Kalamazoo Institute of Arts.

Township Fire Department Battalion Chief retires

Township Battalion Chief Chris Koth
retired from the department last week.
Northville Township Fire Department Battalion Chief Chris Koth's last day on the job was July 15, ending his 30-year-career in public safety. 

Koth's passion for helping others has been the hallmark of his storied professional career, which was spent entirely in Northville Township but not always as a firefighter/paramedic. 

He began as a reserve police officer in 1992 where he was a member of the motorcycle patrol unit and a reserve field training officer. He rose to the rank of reserve sergeant. In 1996, he furthered his life-saving skills by becoming an on-call firefighter and then in 1998, was hired as a dispatcher. Koth continued to work in all three roles until he transitioned to full-time firefighter in 2000 and has worked for the Northville Township Fire Department  since then. 

City of Northville presents 2023 police service awards

Northville Police Ofc. Francis Cerulla was named Officer of the Year, the highest award in the department.

Seven police personnel were honored with a total of 13 awards for their service during calendar year 2022, just prior to the July 4 Independence Day parade in Northville. In addition to the highest award, Cerulla also received the Attendance Award. 

Mayor Brian Turnbull and Police Chief Alan Maciag presented the awards, which included a certificate, and corresponding ribbon of honor. Other city council members and City Manager George Lahanas attended the ceremony in support of the officers.

Nominating petitions are due by Tuesday, July 25

Hopeful candidates for Northville elected offices have until 4 p.m. July 25 to file nominating petitions with the city clerk's office.

Candidate packets containing nominating petitions, signature requirements, affidavits, and other information pertaining to the Nov. 7 city election are available at the city clerk's office, 215 W. Main St. between 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday, according to a prepared statement. Qualified individuals can petition to run for mayor, a two-year term and for two council member seats, each a four-year term. For more information call (248) 349-1300 during business hours. 

State law (MCL 168.737a) requires that all write-in candidates who seek election to a city office file a declaration of intent with the city clerk no later than 4 p.m. on the second Friday immediately preceding the election. 

3 shops cited for cigarette sales to minor

A decoy customer visited eight Canton Township tobacco sellers last week and found that three were willing to sell to minors.

The decoy operation is part of an ongoing effort of the Canton Township Police Department to ensure local shops are compliant with the laws concerning the sale of tobacco. The minimum age to purchase tobacco in the State of Michigan was increased in 2021 from 18 to 21. 

The three shops who sold tobacco or vapes to the police decoy include Sweet Fire Tobacco, 1735 S. Haggerty Road; Wild Bills Tobacco, 5820 N. Sheldon Road and King Tobacco, 44279 Ford Road.

Student is awarded $5,000 scholarship

A love of robotics and aspirations of an engineering career led one Canton Township eighth-grader to a life-changing opportunity. He was selected among the winners of the CollegeBound™ Scholarship and will receive a $5,000 scholarship.

Sayan Shah from Plymouth Scholars Charter Academy was one of four scholars selected from hundreds of applicants from more than 90 National Heritage Academies (NHA) partner schools, according to a statement from the schools.

Each applicant wrote an essay on one of three topics: applying their morals in service to others through community service; situations in which moral focus virtues guided their decision-making process, or how science, technology, engineering, or math (STEM) influenced their decision to pursue a career in those fields.

Safety of Sherwood Pond water concerns trustees

Sumpter Township Manager Tony Burdick has suggested prohibiting swimming in Sherwood Park in the community.

Burdick made the recommendation at the July 11 meeting of the trustees and explained that the ban was in response to weather conditions and an attempt to protect residents from health threats that the water could pose. Burdick said recent high temperatures during the summer season along with a lack of rain make regular testing of the water at the park necessary to ensure it is safe for swimmers. Each test, he told the trustees, costs the township about $150 and the necessity of testing continues to increase. 

Burdick added that the laboratories responsible for processing the tests are also “running up against a time issue” with the level of testing throughout the area.

Family Fun Day is Saturday

The Sumpter Township Parks and Recreation Family Fun Day is planned from noon until 4 p.m. this Saturday, July 22, at Banotai Park on Sherwood Road.

Hot dogs, hamburgers, chips and water will be available. Among the volunteer cooks using the new charcoal grills installed at the park will be Trustee/Deputy Supervisor Tim Rush and Trustee Matt Oddy.

Entertainment will include a fishing contest for those 12 and younger with a prize for the largest catch of the day.

City cable channel features mayoral candidates

Westland voters will choose two candidates to vie for the office of mayor during the Aug. 8 primary election in the city. One of those candidates will be the first new mayor of the city in nearly two decades following the resignation of long-time Mayor William Wild who took a job in the private sector.

Voters will select two candidates from six who will appear on the ballot and those two will move on to the November general election.

Hoping to win voters' favor are Ali Awadi, Kevin Coleman, Jim Godbout, Anthony Jones, Mike Londeau and Ronald Sassak. Each hopes to win the nonpartisan four-year mayoral position which pays about $121,574 annually. 

Awadi, 54, holds a doctoral degree in public administration and works as a consultant. He is a former police chief.

Hitting the high notes

Members of the Plymouth Canton Educational Park Choir recently participated in the Music in the Parks Festival at Cedar Point and took home eight first place awards as well as three individual awards. The individual awards were presented to the Plymouth-Canton district soloist, student conductor and best conductor. The choirs competed against other high school choirs from across the country.  Each of the Plymouth Canton choirs swept their category performing two selections for two judges and received the highest scores and rankings. Lauren Hummer received a medal for Best Student Conductor, Malek Benedict-Blue received a medal for Best Student Soloist and the Plymouth Canton Madrigal Singers achieved Best Overall Choir with the highest point total of 198.5/200 of any choir in the two day competition. All Plymouth Canton Educational Park Choirs are directed by teacher Jennifer Neumann.

Commission members are sought

Plymouth Township is accepting applications from residents interested in serving on the newly created Veterans' Commission.

The commission will have nine members and will be initially led by organizing chairperson Jen Buckley, who is veteran and a current township trustee.

The commission was established in an effort to help foster greater understanding and appreciation for the veteran community and their families, increase visibility of veterans and veterans' issues, inform the veteran community of available services, programs, and resources, and advocate for issues important to veterans and their families, officials said. Requirements to serve include Plymouth Township residency. 

A form to submit interest in the commission is available at CToP_Board-Commission. 

Inkster police hosting community events

The Inkster Police Department is planning several community events this summer. 

The Inkster police and Inkster Housing Commission are planning a ‘cool’ Popsicle Giveaway this Saturday, July 22.

The Popsicle Giveaway will take place from noon until 2 p.m. at the Inkster Housing Envision Center, 4360 Hickory St. There will be free popsicles, juices, games, music and prizes awarded to participants. 

Next week, the police department will present Movie Night beginning at 7 p.m. Friday, July 28. The movie Encanto will be shown at the police department parking lot at 26279 Michigan Ave. The evening includes music, games and prizes, officials said.  

Annual city bike ride set

Next week, the 5th Annual Community Bike Ride is planned in Romulus. An activity hosted by the Police and Community Together (PACT) organization, the day will include food, entertainment and a 4-mile bike ride from 2 until 5 p.m. July 29.

The event will begin and end at Halecreek Elementary School located at 16200 Harrison St. Riders can register for the event at

Officer of the Year

Lieutenant Robert Amore, right, was presented with the 2022 Wayne Police Department Police Officer of the Year Award at the regular meeting of the city council last week. A team of officers from the entire department chose Amore to receive the award.  Amore joined the City of Wayne Police Department in 2005 and is currently a road patrol lieutenant.  Amore was vital in the  recent accreditation of the department by the Michigan Association of Chiefs of Police, officials said. Police Chief Ryan Strong, left, congratulated Amore during the presentation. “Lt. Amore is an extremely hard working member of the department with a consistently positive attitude. We are lucky to have him as part of our team.”

Workshops set at city library

The Leanna Hicks Public Library of Inkster will host Maria J. Edwards-Wheeler, MSW,LMSW,ASCW,QMHP,CPRM,CCJP-M, as part of a mental health lecture series .

Workshops at the library are planned for 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Saturday July 22 and Saturday, Aug. 26.

The event is free and open to the public. No registration is required although seating is limited so early arrival is suggested. Light refreshments will be served, according to a prepared statement.

Bowling event planned

The Romulus Chamber of Commerce and Friends of the Romulus Public Library have teamed up for a fundraiser set for next Saturday, July 22.

Bowling Night is planned at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, July 22, at Romulus Lanes. Check-in will begin at 6:30 and bowling will begin at 7 p.m. sharp, organizers said. Bowlers of all levels are welcome organizers said. There will also be 50/50 raffles, mens and womens's high game prizes and a cash bar will be available.

Thursday, July 13, 2023

Mutual Aid

10 community fire departments battle apartment blaze

Firefighters and equipment from 10 neighboring communities responded to a serious fire at the Waverly Apartment complex in Van Buren Township last week.

Van Buren Township firefighters were dispatched to the 48000 block of Denton Road at about 8:30 p.m. July 5 in response to a report of a possible structure fire. Responding firefighters found heavy fire throughout the attic of the structure which had traveled through the roof of the building, according to official reports.

Van Buren fire officials immediately requested mutual aid from Ypsilanti Township and the cities of Belleville and Ypsilanti in response to the severity of the blaze. Firefighters first verified that everyone was out of the building and then instituted exterior defensive operations, officials said. 

Plymouth Township denies Meijer special use land permit

Members of the Plymouth Township Planning Commission denied a special land use request from Meijer by a 5-1 vote during a recent meeting.

Representatives from Meijer submitted plans for a supercenter on Five Mile Road, west of Beck Road on former Detroit House of Corrections property. Meijer proposed a 159,000 square-foot store and gas station on the 21-acre parcel. Meijer is now prohibited from submitting another plan for the land for one year, according to township officials.

Northville officials agree to opt out of LED lighting program

A recent analysis shed some unfavorable light on the LED conversion program in the City of Northville.

During a recent meeting of the members of the city council, DPW Director Mike Domine recommended the city exercise the buy-out option included in the program agreement. An analysis of the costs demonstrated that the program has not produced the level of energy savings predicted. Northville entered into an agreement in January 2021 with the Energy Reduction Coalition (ERC), an Ann-Arbor based nonprofit, to convert city-owned lighting at the water tower, Northville Yards, and parking lots and structures to LED lighting. 

The agreement included the installation and maintenance of the infrastructure necessary for the conversion at no cost to the city, valued at $149,000, according to officials. The replacement program, completed in March 2021, was expected to generate enough funding in energy savings to pay for the cost of the program. Recent studies, however, demonstrated a far lower cost savings on electric service than projected by ERC representatives. 

Canton Township officially reopens park splash pad

The Grand Re-Opening of the Heritage Park Splash Playground is
celebrated by  Canton Township Supervisor Anne Marie Graham-Hudak
along with elected officials and project contributors, as well as
Wayne County Commissioner Melissa Daub.
Canton Township has a sure cure for the hottest-ever recorded temperatures.

During a special ribbon-cutting ceremony during the Canton Liberty Fest, township officials celebrated the reopening of the renovated Heritage Park Splash Playground. Renovations to the splash park include improved interactive play zone and the installation of a new concrete picnic pad and the addition of four colorful shade structures that will allow visitors to take a break from the sun or share a picnic in the shade; as well as an accessible seating rock; waste and recycling receptacles; a hydration station, featuring both a drinking fountain and water bottle re-filler and signage acknowledging contributing partners in the renovations. The project was primarily funded through a Wayne County Parks millage.

The Tragedy of Macbeth set to take Village Theatre stage

Love is blind, he wrote. And can anything really vanish into thin air as he so vividly claimed? He first used those phrases and others including break the ice; foul play; what's done is done; come what may; too much of a good thing; the jaws of death and brave new world. All were introduced to everyday language by William Shakespeare, who continues to influence the English language today. 

Still considered the best playwright of all time, he sent three witches to prophecy to a proud warrior that he would be king of Scotland - but will it be through his own actions or the decisions of others? A violent and intense tale of controlling ambition and scruples ignored, The Tragedy of Macbeth is one of Shakespeare's most famous and admired works filled with unforgettable speeches, scenes, and characters.

Scholarship winner named

And the winner is…

Alexis Harden, a recent graduate of Plymouth High School was selected by members of the  Canton Township Police Ed Jagst Scholarship Committee as the winner of the inaugural 1,000 scholarship. Harden plans to continue her studies at Lake Superior State University (LSSU) studying forensic chemistry. Scholarship committee member Police Sgt. Dave Eyl said Harden's selection for the memorial award was a strong choice. "I cannot think of a better recipient for the inaugural scholarship award given Ed (Jagst) graduated from LSSU and was an excellent evidence technician. Alexis mentioned in her personal statement discovering this field through the forensic science classes at P-CEP, a class Ed frequently presented to." 

Renovations continue at fire-gutted restaurant

Workers ice blast the interior of the fire-ravaged
Karl’s Cabin in the ongoing remodeling and mediation
work at the 76-year-old building. The Poulos family
hopes for a re-opening this fall.
Renovations at Karl's Cabin, a mainstay of the Plymouth community, are progressing and the Poulos family hopes to reopen the 76-year-old building this fall.

In a social media post, the family said substantial progress has been made with the renovation and “while it's been a long and complex road, we feel like we've turned the corner with the recent completion of the rough framing portion of the project. In the process we added a new kitchen addition to create more space for our back-of-house team allowing us to expand our food selections in the future. We also increased the size of our second floor and back hallways generating a better workflow experience for our front of house staff. We are now officially moving in a forward direction with our remodel,” they said.

Takin' it to the street

The annual Fourth of July Parade down Main Street in Plymouth drew a large crowd of spectators this year, all cheering on the veterans, bands, local officials and multiple other marchers in the annual salute to America's birthday. The parade, organized by the Kiwanis Club of Colonial Plymouth, is followed each year with an Ice Cream Social in Kellogg Park downtown.  

Celebrate America

The traditional Northville Fourth of July parade through downtown streets drew a record crowd again this year. The annual event featured celebrities, bands, floats, officials and fun for all ages. The event was organized by the Northville Chamber of Commerce, already planning for even more patriotic entries next year.

Fire department promotes new lieutenant

Michael Obermiller
Northville Township Firefighter/Paramedic Michael Obermiller has been promoted to the rank of lieutenant.

Obermiller joined the Northville Township department in 2011 and "has consistently shown unwavering commitment and professionalism in serving our community," officials said.

Obermiller earned his bachelor of science degree at Siena Heights University and is currently pursuing a masters degree in health care management business administration at Columbia South University. In 2018, his peers honored Obermiller as the Firefighter of the Year, a testament to his dedication and service, officials said.

Beautification nominees sought

Members of the Northville Township Beautification Commission (NTBC) are taking long and evaluating assessments of landscaping work at businesses in the community.

The group annually evaluates the efforts of local businesses in an effort to motivate proprietors to surpass the mandatory landscape regulations in the township with a formal acknowledgement of their work.

The evaluation process takes place from mid-June to early July, encompassing all landscaping aspects. 

Hope not Handcuffs

Wayne police will host training session for program ‘angels’

The City of Wayne Police Department is seeking some angels.

The department is sponsoring volunteer training for Hope Not Handcuffs “angels” who are part of an  initiative launched by Families Against Narcotics (FAN) in 2017. The Hope not Handcuffs program is a collaborative effort between FAN, law enforcement, and community organizations to find viable treatment options for individuals seeking help to reduce their dependence on prescription medication, alcohol, heroin, or other drugs. 

A person struggling with any substance use disorder can come to any of the participating police agencies or community partners and ask for help. They will be greeted with support, compassion, and respect, according to the organization website.

Volunteers needed to help revive township events

Sumpter Township Deputy Supervisor/Trustee Tim Rush is among the members of the township parks and recreation board hoping to revive several community events impacted by the pandemic.

During the June 26 meeting of the board of trustees, Rush explained that the township and the parks and recreation department were hosting Family Fun Day from noon until 4 p.m. July 22. He explained that while the volunteers and some township employees were already in the process of preparing for the event, volunteers were still needed.

“Anybody who wants to volunteer should contact the clerk's office,” Rush said. “I figure we'll probably start setting up and moving equipment from the parks and rec building probably about 9:30 in the morning,” he added.

Bowling evening planned

The Romulus Chamber of Commerce and Friends of the Romulus Public Library have teamed up for a fundraiser set for next Saturday, July 22.

Bowling Night is planned at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, July 22, at Romulus Lanes. Check-in will begin at 6:30 and bowling will begin at 7 p.m. sharp, organizers said. Bowlers of all levels are welcome organizers said. There will also be 50/50 raffles, men’s and women’s high game prizes and a cash bar will be available.

Animal shelter officially renamed

It is now, officially, the William “Bill” Wadsworth Animal Shelter in the City of Romulus.

Recently, under some threatening skies, the new sign at the shelter at 12300 Wayne Road was scheduled to be officially unveiled. Wadsworth, named as the Greater Romulus Chamber of Commerce Person of the Year in April, was instrumental in the construction of the animal shelter. 

Prosecutor drops child sex abuse charges

Separate charges of sexual abuse of both a Wayne and Westland child have been dismissed by Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy.

James Adam Baird, 44 of Plymouth, was charged in the two separate incidents on Feb. 1. The original complaint alleged that Baird had sexually assaulted a then 10-year-old Westland girl who is now 13 years old. He was also charged with the sexual assault of a then 11-year-old Wayne girl who is now 15 years old. It was alleged that the assaults happened when Baird was working as a school vision specialist and alleged that at approximately noon on March 1, 2018 at a school in the 35100 block of Bayview Street he assaulted the then 10-year-old Wayne victim.  He was charged with one count of first-degree criminal sexual conduct - person under 13. 

Inkster police planning National Night Out festival

The Inkster Police Department is celebrating National Night Out with a special family festival at the police station on Michigan Avenue.

The event which will take place from 5 until 10 p.m. Aug. 1 at the Inkster Police Station will include games, food, music, a bounce house, a video game truck, bowling and face painting. The event is free and open to the public.

“National Night Out is an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make neighborhoods safer, more caring places to live. National Night Out enhances the relationship between neighbors and law enforcement while bringing back a true sense of community.

Blues, Brews and BBQ set in Westland Aug. 4 and 5

The Kenny Parker Band will perform at the Westland
Blues, Brews and Barbeque festival this year.
One of the most anticipated events of the summer will return to Westland in August.

Blues, Brews & Barbecue will return Friday, Aug. 4 and Saturday, Aug. 5 with live music, a 200 drone light show, fireworks, top BBQ pitmasters and ice-cold draft brews. 

Live entertainment set for Aug. 4 this year will include: 5-6:30 p.m. DownRiver Dan; 7-8:30 p.m. Broken Arrow and from 9-11 p.m. Larry McCray.

Thursday, July 6, 2023

State budget includes local project funding

The $81.7 billion state budget awaiting Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's signature includes funding for multiple local projects as legislators seek to use a record surplus for local infrastructure improvements.

Those local projects include $5 million for reconstruction of roads and sidewalks in Canton Township. Canton was also awarded another $2 million to fund a youth center in the township and $7 million for the fire station construction project.The budget also includes a $10 million grant to prepare a site on Five Mile Road for economic development, $100,000 for Northville Maybury park facilities upgrades; $200,000 for Kellogg Park in Plymouth upgrades and $50,000 for a Plymouth Police Department cruiser.

Art In The Park begins in Plymouth tomorrow

Art In The Park, voted “Best Local Event” by the Detroit Free Press and “The Best of Detroit” by HOUR Detroit magazine, is set to return to downtown Plymouth for the 43rd year this weekend. 

Recognized as one of the “Gems of the Great Lakes” by AAA Magazine and ranked #41 by Sunshine Artist magazine, the festival will take place on July 7, 8, and 9, and include more than 400 artists from 36 states.

Visitors to Art In The Park can look forward to strolling along the streets of downtown Plymouth, where they will be treated to an array of fine arts crafted by dedicated artists, organizers said. Each piece displayed at the show is handmade, showcasing the artists' skill. The event not only celebrates the visual arts but also offers an array of activities, including live entertainment, live art demonstrations, and a wide selection of food options, according to a prepared statement.

Top of the class

Plymouth-Canton Community Schools superintendent Dr. Monica L. Merritt has been named as the 2023 Superintendent of the Year. Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist, state Sens. Rosemary Bayer, D-West Bloomfield, and Dayna Polehanki, D-Livonia, signed a special state recognition of Merritt's achievement. “I am truly honored to receive this special tribute from our Governor, lieutenant governor and our two state senators,” Merritt said. “I always say it takes a village to educate a student and I am so pleased and proud to accept this special proclamation on behalf of our entire team at P-CCS.” Merritt (left) receives the special tribute from Sen. Rosemary Bayer during a recent Plymouth-Canton Community Schools Board of Education meeting.

Tickets issued for construction zone violations

There are about 20 drivers who learned an expensive lesson recently regarding disregarding construction traffic signs in Sumpter Township.

During the June 26 meeting of the township board of trustees, Public Safety Director/Police Chief Eric Luke responded to a complaint about road closures from resident Mary Ban who said the poor conditions of the roads and the closures caused her to be late for the meeting.

Luke explained that the police department had been notified of a construction plan by officials from the Washtenaw County Road Commission just days before the current month-long drain improvement project began. Construction is currently under way along Rawsonville Road between Talladay and Willis roads in the township.

Luke explained that despite multiple efforts to notify drivers of the road closures in the area, motorists continued to violate the posted closure signs. He said there were already 20 violations issued to drivers who ignored the signs. The penalty is three points on the offender's driver's license and a $180 fine.


The Inkster Summer Music Festival is set for July 15, 16 and 17 at 2025 Inkster Road, north of Michigan Avenue. Organizers said the annual festival is a weekend of entertainment and is free to the public. The event will feature live concerts, fireworks, food and vendors offering shopping opportunities. There will be a Kidz Fun Zone to entertain all ages, organizers said. The festival is listed as “always open” during the weekend and is hosted by Mayor Patrick Wimberly and Angie Starr and Mason.  For more information call (734) 260-9672 or email

Romulus ‘Sheetz’ store to be first in Michigan

The “ultimate one-stop shop to fuel bodies and vehicles” could open in Romulus next year.

Officials at Sheetz, a 24-hour regional convenience store and gas station, last week confirmed plans to open the first Michigan facility in Romulus, about 4 miles from Metro Detroit Airport. The new store will be at 33380 Wick Road just north of Interstate 94, officials announced last week. The stores are owned by a private company based in Altoona, PA. A tentative opening date was speculated as late fall of next year.

Patriots in the Park city picnic is set for Saturday

Who will claim the honors as Most Patriotic City this year? Romulus is preparing to compete for the title for 2023 during the Patriots in the Park event set for this Saturday, July 8 at Romulus Historical Park.

The picnic will include food and games as the crowd awaits the “Wounded America” charity motorcycle riders pass through Romulus. The annual fundraiser raises thousands of dollars to help local veterans and usually sets a goal of $35,000 for the event.

Food will be provided at the picnic from 11:30 a.m. until 1 p.m. in cooperation with the Romulus Rotary Club.

Veteran police officer retires

Sgt. Jeremy Quinn
Canton Township Police Sgt. Jeremy Quinn has retired from the department.

Quinn served almost four years as a deputy sheriff with the Oakland County Sheriff's Office, prior to beginning his 17-year career with Canton in 2006. During his time with Canton, Quinn graduated from Madonna University in 2009 with high honors and attended numerous specialized trainings and leadership courses. 

Early on, in addition to his road patrol duties, Quinn held numerous special assignments including bike officer, evidence technician, field training officer and detective with the investigations bureau.  Quinn also served several years working with the FBI Southeast Michigan Trafficking and Exploitation Crimes Task Force. As a member of this elite unit, Quinn investigated human trafficking and child exploitation crimes, while providing invaluable resources to the Canton Police Department, officials said.

Graduation day

The young adults who participated in the 2023 Canton Police and Fire Youth Academy completed the week-long program recently. The academy taught students about the daily operations of both the police and fire departments to help participants gain a better understanding of the role local police officers and firefighters have within the community, officers said. The students learned about several special units within each police department as well how to use a fire extinguisher, earned CPR certification, experienced a K9 demonstration and participated in team building activities throughout the week. 

Wayne Mayor Pro-tem submits resignation

Wayne Mayor Pro-tem
Tom Porter has resigned.
Mayor Pro-tem Tom Porter submitted his resignation from the Wayne City Council during the June 20 meeting. 

Porter, who joined the council in November of 2015, had battled cancer during the COVID pandemic. 

A city official speaking for the members of the Wayne City Council and the administrative staff in the city issued a statement regarding Porter's service on the council expressing “sincerest gratitude for his outstanding dedication and service during his tenure on the city council.”  

The statement commended Porter's tireless efforts and unwavering commitment to the welfare of the city as “truly remarkable” and said that he “has consistently displayed exceptional leadership qualities and a genuine passion for improving the lives of our residents. His vision, integrity, and ability to bring people together have made a significant impact on our community.”

Blues, Brews and Barbeque to return in August

The Kenny Parker Band will perform at the Westland
Blues, Brews and Barbeque festival this year. 
One of the most anticipated events of the summer will return to Westland in August.

Blues, Brews & Barbecue will return Friday, Aug. 4 and Saturday, Aug. 5 with live music, a 200 drone light show, fireworks, top BBQ pitmasters and ice-cold draft brews. 

Live entertainment set for Aug. 4 this year will include: 5-6:30 p.m. DownRiver Dan; 7-8:30 p.m. Broken Arrow and from 9-11p.m. Larry McCray.

On Saturday, Aug. 5, performances include: 4-5:30 p.m. The Randy Brock Group; from 6 until 8 p.m. Kenny Parker Band with special guest Jim McCarty and Johnny Bee and from 8 until 10 p.m.  Chris Canas.

Charges of criminal sexual assault of minor children against a Plymouth man have been dropped by Wayne County Prosecutor Kym Worthy.

James Adam Baird, 44, of Plymouth, was charged by authorities on Feb. 1 in connection with the sexual assault of a then 8-year-old Garden City girl who is now 10 years old.  He was also charged with the sexual assault of a then 8-year-old Dearborn girl who is now 11-years old. It was alleged that the assaults happened when he was working as a school vision specialist. 

The original accusations claimed that at about noon in a school in the 6400 block of Hartel Street in Garden City, Baird sexually assaulted the then 8-year-old victim while administering vision tests. He faced the same allegations in another incident at 11 a.m. on a different date with a different child.

Northville now replanting or replacing 51 trees in community

Several residents in Northville have some new neighbors that require special attention.

The city is replacing or replanting 51 trees in the community as part of the effort to retain the status as a Tree City. That designation requires diligent maintenance and care of municipal trees, including replacement and a variety of plants.

Dead trees are being removing by DPW staff members and new plants installed in several areas. Staff members are planting various new trees along city rights of way, including species like fast-growing tulip trees to fall-color-favorite maples and even some lesser-known London planes, swamp white oaks, and the common huckleberry.

Suspect in shooting now facing 14 felony charges

A suspect in the discharge of firearms in Northville Township is now facing 14 felony charges.

Justin Darius Russell, 33, of Detroit was arraigned June 29 in the 35th District Court and is charged with discharging a firearm heard June 13 in the Silver Springs Drive and Eight Mile Road area of the Highland Lakes subdivision. Residents in the area reported hearing the gunshots at 10:17 p.m. and when officers arrived at the scene, they discovered evidence of firearm discharge near the area. No injuries were reported in connection with the Northville reports.