Tag Archives: All News

Election Day 2016: Here’s what you need to know

On November 8, Farmington area voters will cast their ballots for leaders at the federal, state, county, and local level, and will help decide the fate of a Regional Transit Authority funding proposal. Here’s what you should know:

Where do I vote?

Your precinct number and location are on your voter registration card. You can also find your polling place by entering your name and address, or driver’s license number, at vote.michigan.gov/MVIC/, or by calling the city clerk’s office in Farmington, 248-474-5500, ext. 2218, or Farmington Hills, 248-871-2410.

Farmington Hills residents can access a new, interactive precinct map: tinyurl.com/FHPrecinctApp, and Farmington poll workers will use a new tablet device to check whether voters in line are at the correct polling place.

When are the polls open?

Hours are 7 a.m.-8 p.m.

Where can I find information about what’s on the ballot?

Sample ballots are available on the City of Farmington website, farmgov.com, and City of Farmington Hills website, fhgov.com, and we have corralled local election information, along with our own Farmington Public Schools Board of Education candidate profiles, here: farmingtonvoice.com/your-farmington-area-2016-voter-guide-000200

Can I still turn in my absentee ballot?

You can, until 8 p.m., but only at your City Hall.

What if I’m not registered?

Then you’re out of luck – the registration deadline has passed for this election.

Do I need a photo ID to vote?

You will be asked for a photo ID. If you’ve forgotten yours or don’t have one, you can still cast a ballot, by signing an affidavit. Learn more about voter identification at michigan.gov/sos.

Long lines?

Count on it. Farmington area voters typically come out strong in presidential years, and this election could bring even more people to the polls.

Can I bring campaign literature into the polling place?

No. Study those materials before you walk in, then keep them out of sight.

What about my cell phone?

You can bring it, but you’re not allowed to use it inside the polling place.

And selfies?

Also not allowed. If you take a selfie with your marked ballot, your ballot will not be counted. If you take an “I Voted” selfie outside your polling place, tag it with #f2hvotes, and we’ll share!

Where will I find local election results?

We’ll publish unofficial results as soon as possible on election night. You’ll also find numbers on Oakland County’s website: oakgov.com/clerkrod/elections/Pages/default.aspx.

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Smith Memorial Fund takes over Farmington Hills food pantry

A Farmington Hills food pantry that closed in June amid controversy has re-opened under new management.

The former St. Alexander Food Pantry doesn’t have a new name yet, but on November 1, the Farmington Hills-based Graham E. Smith Memorial Fund took over operations. The pantry has the same phone number, is located in the same building, and Hills resident Carol Greening has returned as coordinator.

St. Alexander Food Pantry
St. Alexander food pantry volunteers packed holiday food boxes last year for needy families.

The Fund, which also supports the activities of Farmington S.A.F.E. (Suicide Awareness for Everyone), was created by Farmington Hills mayor Ken Massey and his wife, Katherine, after their son succumbed to suicide. Ken Massey said the pantry fits with the Fund’s mission to support the community’s mental health and wellness needs.

“Nothing could be more stressful than not knowing where your next meal comes from,” he said.

Massey first considered getting the Fund involved after he was invited to an interfaith meeting where the fate of the pantry was discussed.

“It became very clear we needed to continue it,” he said. “A lot of the discussion was about finding a different group to run it … Being a person who looks for solutions, I said, ‘Let me talk to the (Fund) board.’.”

Permanent location needed

After getting board approval, Massey said, talks began with Fr. Krzysztof (Kris) Nowak at St. Gerald Catholic Church. That congregation took over the pantry after merging with the Servant Church of St. Alexander. Going through the process with the Archdiocese of Detroit, getting to the right people, moved opening under the new name from mid-July to November, he added.

“The pantry will stay in the same location for right now,” Massey said.

Discussions continue regarding a permanent location, but the St. Alexander site at 27835 Shiawassee in Farmington Hills needs some tender, loving care in the meantime. Volunteers will participate in a clean-up on November 12 (and November 13, if necessary), and issues with the boiler and heating are being addressed as well, Massey said.

There is also some thought toward expanding the food pantry site to include other organizations. The Michigan School of Professional Psychology in Farmington Hills would like to find a location for a community counseling center, and Oakland County Human Services has been looking for a local office, Massey said.

“Personally, I would like to find a way that we can coordinate a number of services in that spot,” he added.

Anyone who needs help, or who wants to volunteer or donate food items should call Greening, 248-474-5748. Monetary donations may be made to the Graham E. Smith Memorial Fund. Learn more at ges-memorial-fund.com.

Clarification: The sentence, “Going through the process with the Archdiocese of Detroit, getting to the right people, moved opening under the new name from mid-July to November, he added.”, was edited to clarify that the pantry was open at the time the new ownership was finalized.

Farmington Hills teen orchestrates fundraiser

Rosie Burns-Pavlik
Rosie Burns-Pavlik will play Romberg’s “Sonata in C Major” during the Orchestrating for Freedom concert. (Photo by Dane Gussin)

Faced with the challenge of organizing a creative service project for an International Baccalaureate class, Harrison High sophomore Rosie Burns-Pavlik decided to orchestrate something special.

Burns-Pavlik and more than a half-dozen of her schoolmates will on November 11 present “Orchestrating for Freedom,” a benefit concert for Freedom House. The Detroit nonprofit provides a temporary haven for people who have escaped persecution in other countries and are seeking asylum in the U.S. and Canada.

“I like music, and I love Freedom House,” said Burns-Pavlik, who has volunteered as a babysitter for immigrants who take classes to familiarize themselves with American customs, traditions, and language.

Freedom House, she added, is one of the few shelters for people seeking asylum, the only one that fully covers legal costs, physical and mental health care, clothing, room and board. It helps immigrants start new lives.

“I love the community aspect of it,” Burns-Pavlik said. “They’re also so appreciative… They are really amazing people who have gone through a lot, and they’re so thankful for everything.”

Concert performers will include soloists playing pieces of their own choosing: Jeff Bell, senior, piano; Perry Kreiss, junior, trombone; Faith Berry, senior, violin; Darius Bonner, senior, cello; Anushka Jain, sophomore, piano; Veena Thamilsivan, junior, violin; Finn Birach, senior, percussion; and Burns-Pavlik on cello.

“We have people who are amazing musicians,” she said. “A couple will be playing their college audition pieces.”

The concert begins in the Harrison High Auditorium at 7 p.m., and admission is $3. Additional cash donations and gift cards from Target, Meijer, and similar stores will be gratefully accepted. The school is located at 29995 W. 12 Mile Rd. in Farmington Hills.

Memory talk closes out 2016 Walk with a Doc

Beaumont Hospital, Farmington Hills will host its final “Walk with a Doc” program of the season, from noon to 1 p.m. on November 17.

Annette Carron, D.O., a Beaumont internist and geriatric medicine specialist, will discuss memory issues in older adults. Walk with a Doc will be held at the Heritage Park Nature Center in Farmington Hills, rain or shine.

Information about the 2017 walk events will be available in March. For more information, call Caroline Schairer, Walk with a Doc coordinator, Beaumont, Farmington Hills, at 248-442-1661.

Press release

Waynewood Boys and more at local libraries

The Farmington Community Library offers free events and activities each week. To learn more or register, click on “Events” at farmlib.org or call 248-553-0300. Find the Main Library at 32737 W. 12 Mile Rd. in Farmington Hills, and the Farmington branch at 23500 Liberty St.

Both branches of the library will be closed on November 11 for staff in-service.
ESL Book Discussion: Nov. 7, 1:30 p.m., Farmington branch

A book club for non-native English speakers. Read One Amazing Thing, by Chitra Divakaruni, a few chapters each week. We’ll answer questions, hear dialogue, and discuss plot developments at our Monday classes. Registration required.

NaNoWriMo: Nov. 8, 7 p.m., Main Library

Join us for our fourth year of participating in NaNoWriMo. Come for inspiration, a quiet writing space, word sprints, word wars, and all the caffeinated fuel you need to keep going.

Open Lab: Nov. 10, 2 p.m., Main Library

Join us in the Main Library Computer Lab to receive assistance from one of our tech gurus. Whether it is help with your personal device, or with your favorite social media network, our experienced techs will be there to help you.

Learn to Find Your Family Ancestors: Nov. 10, 6 p.m., Main Library

Farmington Genealogical Society members will host an evening for guests to learn how to navigate the library’s genealogy databases, including Ancestry.com and Heritage Quest with one-on-one member help. Please bring names, dates and places for the best research assistance. Reservations required.

Creative Writing Night: Nov. 10, 6 p.m., Farmington branch

Do you want to improve your writing skills and have some fun at the same time? Maybe you’re interested in a career or you just need better grades in English. If so, come join us at Creative Writing Night. Program planned by the Teen Advisory Board.

Partnerships with Children – Parent/Child Care Provider Workshop: Nov. 10, 6:30 p.m., Main Library

Participants will learn techniques to enhance caregiver-child interactions and how to play and teach while letting children lead. Registration required– Register online at greatstarttoquality.org or call Nicole at 248-858- 7766 ext.323.

Play & Learn with Me: Nov. 12, 10:30 a.m., Main Library

For 1-3 year olds with adult: Make a date with your child! Turn off your cell phone and follow your child’s lead to play in our fun play stations. Each week an expert in child development, nutrition, or speech and language development will be available to answer your questions during informal conversations, as your child plays.

The Waynewood Boys

Songwriter Sunday: Nov. 13, 2 p.m., Main Library

The Waynewood Boys will be performing their original bluegrass opera “Sawmill Sally.” A collection of tunes mixed with stories, the opera is a complex, funny, and sometimes tragic tale of Sally and the men in love with her. The musical styles include old-timey folk, modern bluegrass, bluesy/folk and a bit of rock.

NaNoWriMo: Nov. 13, 2 p.m., Farmington branch

Join us for our fourth year of participating in NaNoWriMo. Come for inspiration, a quiet writing space, word sprints, word wars, and all the caffeinated fuel you need to keep going.

Farmington schools charity ‘Battle of the Middles’ seeks sponsors

A December 9 charity basketball game featuring Farmington area middle school teachers and administrators needs help from the business community to support Neighborhood House of Farmington/Farmington Hills and the Farmington Area Goodfellows.

Harrison High School will host the 12th Annual Battle of the Middles Charity Basketball Game, which will pit the staffs of Warner Middle School and District Administration against the staffs of Power Middle School and East Middle School. Cash proceeds and donations of toys and canned goods will go directly to Farmington area families in need.

Organizers hope to raise at least $10,000, and three levels of business sponsorship are available. All monetary donations, gift cards, and small gifts will be accepted. Learn more at goo.gl/3U3czc.

Last year’s game raised more than $9,346 and helped more than 200 Farmington area families. Over the past decade, the Battle of the Middles has helped raise more than $57,577 and collected countless canned goods and toys for the two charities. The Farmington Area Goodfellows collects and delivers food and toys to ensure that no child or senior in Farmington or Farmington Hills goes without a Christmas. Neighborhood House, supported by the Goodfellows, operates year-round to help local families and individuals in need.

The Battle will start at 6:30 p.m. with doors opening for the event at 5:45 p.m. Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for students, and $1 with two or more canned goods or free with a new unwrapped toy.

Take cooking, yoga classes at Henry Ford

Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital, 6777 W. Maple Rd., will offer a special Thanksgiving cooking class and free yoga sessions in November and December:

Vegetarian Thanksgiving

November 15, 6:30 p.m.-8 p.m.

Thanksgiving is a time to share a meal with loved ones, but it can present challenges if some guests follow a vegetarian lifestyle. Learn how to plan a meat-free Thanksgiving, or just add some new recipes to your traditional meal. The class will be held in the Demonstration Kitchen. Registration is required, at 248-325-3890, or email dk@hfhs.org.

Seated Yoga for Wellness

November 12, 12:45 p.m.-1:30 p.m.

Whether you are new to yoga or experienced, the therapeutic benefits of yoga improve strength and flexibility in body and mind. Help move your body toward improved health and well-being. The free yoga classes will take place in the Ravitz Foundation Main Atrium. Registration is required at 248-325-3870.

Introduction to Yoga

December 7, 4 p.m.-5 p.m.

Incorporate wellness into your workplace with Lynn Torossian, CEO of Henry Ford West Bloomfield Hospital, and yoga instructor. Learn the benefits of yoga through basic postures, proper alignment, and breathing techniques. Please bring a yoga mat. The free yoga classes will take place in the Ravitz Foundation Main Atrium. Registration is required at 248-325-3870.

Your Voice: Vote for leadership, direction on FPS board

To the editor:

A blast from the past! Blondie in a red dress, has lobbed her school board voting guide over the border as a “service” to our schools. Yet it is her legacy as the promoter, mentor, and practitioner of Board Trustee preemptory resignation to enable the Board to recruit and select their preferred replacement, bestowing upon them the status of incumbency before they have to face the community in an election that has placed our district in the institutionally unintended and precarious position of electing a new board majority, 5 of 7 positions. It is not an example of good governance.

Look at the campaign of the latest beneficiary of the resignation/appointment fix. With the vast experience and tenure of two months on the Board, the less informed and unaware voter is presented with the campaign slogan of “retain” this candidate. Technically true, but at best practically misleading if not deceitful. It is not an example of good governance. Yet the “Trustee” who resigned to make this possible had the audacity to tell you he was providing a service to you.

Our district is compensation poor (staff compensation claims 88% of our revenue before the first day of class), significantly underperforming in effective classroom instruction, and lacking in a well-defined comprehensive curriculum designed for the achievement of state and national excellence across the spectrum of diversity of our students. Vote for Trustees who will provide leadership and direction to the superintendent, administration, and staff to drive change in the above areas of need and hold them accountable for the timeliness and effectiveness of those changes. Glad handing, mutually admiring cheerleaders may generate good feelings and boost self-esteem, but reality is all too transparent for those willing to see and those whose eyes, ears, and minds are open are not fooled.

Dave York
Farmington Hills

FFH Biz: New Rehmann staffer, local lawyer honored

Michele Scharg
Michele Scharg (contributed photo)

Rehmann has hired Michele Scharg, CPA, as senior manager in its accounting, consulting and tax (ACT) department in their Farmington Hills office. She brings more than 30 years of public accounting experience to the Rehmann team.

Prior to her new role, Scharg served as the practice administrator of a four-office oral surgery practice, where she was involved in all aspects of running the company. She has also worked in public accounting within local and national firms throughout her three decades of experience.

“We’re excited to have Michele Scharg join us, as she’ll make an incredible addition to the team,” said Rehmann’s Southeast TAX Department Principal-in-Charge Sharon Berman. “We look forward to utilizing her extensive experience in public accounting and administrative strengths to continue to company drive our company forward to and ensure client success.”

Scharg holds a Bachelor in Accounting from the University of Michigan. She is involved in the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Michigan Association of Certified Public Accountants.

Robert Kaplow
Robert Kaplow (contributed photo)
DBusiness Top Lawyers list includes Hills resident

Maddin, Hauser, Roth & Heller, P.C., announced that 13 of its attorneys have been recognized in DBusiness Magazine’s list of 2017 Top Lawyers.

The recipients and respective categories in which they were honored include Farmington Hills resident Robert D. Kaplow, Shareholder; Trusts and Estates, Tax Law.

DBusiness Magazine’s Top Lawyers list is based on a peer-review survey open to all area lawyers. Thousands of votes were cast honoring excellence in 50 practice areas. There is no commercial relationship to the listings. No payment is required to be listed and listings cannot be purchased.