News

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Kurt Metzger is a mayor who can do the math. But Pleasant Ridge’s first new mayor in a generation is no number-cruncher; he’s more like a number-coordinator.

Metzger wants to illuminate a “regional vision” for our closely-tied communities to share. It’s possible we could all start seeing this vision by way of numbers and statistics. At least, if any mayor will show you a thing or two about stats and demographics, it’s Metzger. Metzger’s background is in data analysis. He began his career in the ‘70s with the U.S. Census Bureau and recently retired as Director of Data Driven Detroit — a regional information hub for data coordination, providing information analysis for a range of groups and institutions thus that they can make the best-informed decisions. Metzger, who won 53% of the vote in Pleasant Ridge’s mayoral election last November, is the guy, the “data-guru,” as he’s known, who can show you what it all adds up to. Put another way, his equations, if worked out, show the “potential” for improvement.

And, when Ferndale Friends asked Metzger about the “unrealized potential” of the Southeast Michigan region, it strikes quite a chord in him. “That term truly captures the message that I have been trying to spread for years,” said Metzger.

“We have all the pieces here, we just need to figure out how we bring them all together and get them working with a unified vision.”

Metzger assures that he’ll work to preserve and strengthen the close ties between our two communities, along with his amicable relationship with our mayor and council members. There are contractual ties between us, but then, also, we can connect by sharing a new and improved vision (or mentality). Metzger speaks of what’s been, heretofore, a detrimental mentality for our region, that being one of “home rule and win-lose confrontation.”

“We have to begin to believe that collaboration can ‘grow the pie’ for all and get away from the idea that the ‘pie’ is finite and that we can’t afford to share even a sliver.”

Ferndale and Pleasant Ridge are just players in a larger tri-county region, anchored by Detroit. Metzger, who worked downtown for decades as a research analyst for the Michigan Metropolitan Information Center and the United Way for Southeastern Michigan, implores that we work together to appreciate “Detroit’s success as being: our success.”

“It starts with Ferndale and Pleasant Ridge,” he said, “and it grows to Hazel Park and Huntington Woods and then Detroit and Highland Park and Warren.”

Metzger grew up in Cincinnati, OH. He moved to Detroit in 1975 to begin his work with the Census Bureau. He spent his first Michigan-years in Ferndale (first on LaPraire and then on Troy St.), before he moved to Pleasant Ridge in the mid ‘80s. As an analyst working in Detroit, Metzger said that “the issues of this region have allowed me a ‘laboratory’ of study where demographic knowledge is critical for understanding regional dynamics.” A mayor who’s constantly contemplating “regional dynamics” and revels in poring over numbers? Metzger likely isn’t your typical idea of a local politician.

“I have a strong belief in fact-based decisions,” he says. Indeed. From the start, that’s refreshing rhetoric. But, like we said, Metzger has the numbers to back himself up.

But, more personally, he’s also been able to work and meet people from all over the state; from corporate execs to block captains, he’s worked with the wealthy and the homeless, from all races and ethnic groups. As Metzger sees it, he’s been fortunate to be able to bring a “gift of information” to the region. “I believe in outcome measurement,” he stressed. “I believe that one needs to monitor results on a regular basis to make sure you are getting your money’s worth.”
Among his respected beliefs are transparency in government, community involvement, and participatory government: open, shared, and debated decision-making. “We’re a small, highly-educated community. I feel we have a chance to take the lead in community involvement. A strong message of open data sharing will drive in increase in resident participation in community decision-making.” He admits, though, an “aversion to politics. I never had an interest in running for anything.”

The City Commission’s vote to cancel its fire contract with Ferndale and switch to Berkley back in 2011 spurred Metzger to get further involved. He found encouragement by two young residents, Ann Perry and Jason Kryziak, winning seats on the Commission. When election season came around “no one else would come forward for mayor,” Metgzer said. “I owed them for their courage over the last two years and therefore could not say no when they asked.” Metzger’s expertise with demographic trends and data coordination has aided the Michigan Land Use Leadership Council, SEMCOG, Michigan Kids Count, the Michigan Early Childhood Investment Council and many more. He has also served on the board for the Greening of Detroit. But as of last November, he’s the mayor-next-door.

“We are working closely with Ferndale to envision regional transit and complete streets coordinated between the two communities,” Metzger said. He’s looking towards developing a seamless set of bus and bike lanes connecting the community and providing a more walkable, friendly Woodward — from Detroit past I-696. “These are exciting discussions that Ferndale and Pleasant Ridge will be driving with SEMCOG, MDOT, and others.” Mayor Metzger proclaims it, (just as our bumper-stickers do): “I love Ferndale! I love the energy of its elected officials,” he continued. “I love the diversity of its residents. It’s a great example of what the Millennials are looking for — density, diversity, walk-ability, a culture of openness and innovation, a government that cares and listens. Not to mention, the best librarians I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with….”

“I could go on but…my electorate might start questioning my allegiance.”

Retired from his day job, Metzger is looking forward to spending more time with his wife of 36 years. “We’ll never leave this area,” he assures, proudly and gladly. Professionally, though, he assures that he’ll also never leave “the data-game….in both consulting and volunteer roles with various institutions.”
He’s enthused by his “terrific” Commission partners who are working with him to help Pleasant Ridge blossom into a more “participatory government.” Collaboration, he repeats. A Regional Agenda, he also reiterates.

Sounds good to us. Here’s to a new year, to a new mayor, and to new ideas for collaboration.

If slightly happened with our health, we believe there is a solution to any maladies in a cure. What medicines do patients purchase online? Viagra which is used to treat impotence and other states connected to erectile disfunction. Learn more about “sildenafil“. What humanity talk about “viagra stories“? The most substantial aspect you should look for is “sildenafil citrate“. Such problems commonly signal other problems: low libido or erectile dysfunction can be the symptom a strong heartiness problem such as heart trouble. Causes of sexual disfunction include injury to the penis. Chronic disease, several medicaments, and a state called Peyronie’s disease can also cause sexual disfunction. Even though this medicine is not for use in women, it is not known whether this treatment passes into breast milk.

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As 2013 comes to a close, we look back on another year of living in this great city. We are so lucky to be able to look around us and see the best of what makes America great: small, independent businesses; a well-rounded and inclusive community; and a safe and comfortable place to live 365 days of the year.

Part of sharing in this great community is welcoming new businesses, and sometimes having to say goodbye to the ones that have helped build and shape our fair city. This year, we say goodbye to two unique businesses who’ve proudly served our community for many years.

After ten years on the corner of Hilton and Cambourne, Bob and Mary Lenaway have decided to close down Ferndale’s only true office supply store: Lenny’s Copy Center. A business that has served all of Ferndale’s copy and office needs since 2003, their unique approach of allowing customers to purchase office supplies in small quantities made business and professional services available to anyone.

Offering a variety of services, Lenny’s was the one-stop shop for custom screen printing (including t-shirts and other apparel), bulk printing, and various other office-related items. A true “mom and pop” shop, Lenny’s Copy Center was a unique and wonderful part of the Ferndale community for the past decade.

On their website, Bob and Mary state that they “run a family business committed to giving you a warm welcome, a variety of products, fair prices, and old-fashioned friendly service.” Anyone who had the pleasure of shopping at Lenny’s and interacting with Bob and Mary know that they exceeded that goal tenfold. Ferndale, and especially
the Ferndale Friends offices, will miss the exceptional service, unbeatable prices, and friendly atmosphere of Lenny’s Copy Center.

This year, we also say our goodbyes to one of Ferndale’s oldest and most revered businesses: Helena Salon. First opened by Helen Gruss in the 1940s, the salon went through several different incarnations and buildings before finally ending up in its final location situated between Woodward Heights and Nine Mile on Woodward.

One of Detroit’s oldest woman-owned businesses, the salon expanded when her daughter Mary Tsouris began to operate and promote her reflexology business from within the salon’s walls.

Always on the cutting edge of what was new and hip, Helena Salon served as “publicity central” for the inaugural year of the “Ferndale Classic Car and Truck Show” which eventually became known by its more modern moniker: The Woodward Dream Cruise. Helen told Ferndale Friends in a past feature that, “doing business for over 30-plus years in Ferndale, Helena Salon has serviced wonderful clients that have become life-long friends.” That extensive group of friends and clients, along with the entire community, will fondly remember Helena Salon and we thank them for the many years they helped keep Ferndale beautiful.

If something happened with our soundness, we believe there is a solution to any maladies in a preparation. What medicines do patients purchase online? Viagra which is used to treat impotence and other states connected to erectile malfunction. Learn more about “sildenafil“. What people talk about “viagra stories“? The most vital aspect you must look for is “sildenafil citrate“. Such problems commonly signal other problems: low libido or erectile malfunction can be the symptom a strong health problem such as heart trouble. Causes of sexual dysfunction turn on injury to the penis. Chronic disease, several medicaments, and a condition called Peyronie’s disease can also cause sexual dysfunction. Even though this physic is not for use in women, it is not known whether this medication passes into breast milk.

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SHINE ON YOGA’S owner Linda Marchione first tried yoga as physical therapy to help with a running injury. She previously shrugged it off as a non-challenging practice and didn’t believe it would help with her recovery. However, after being dragged to a yoga class by a friend, and seeing the variety of positions and the energy created by a group of people practicing together, she knew she found something special.

More than the physical aspect of yoga, Linda quickly fell in love with the spiritual development and meditative aspects. She loved the empowering feeling inside and out that yoga provided, and soon decided to become a teacher. The more Linda practiced yoga, the more she realized it was an act of strengthening good will more than strengthening the body. She practiced with the definition of Namaste in mind: “The light in me honors and respects the light in you.”

After teaching in a number of studios, she realized that none of them melded with her vision and overall goal. Rather than creating an intimate, comforting feel, Linda found that many were too business-oriented and determined to sell to customers rather than get to know them. Although it was a financial risk, she felt determined to open a studio that worked to strengthen the sense of community more than just the individual physical body. She wanted a studio that did not put profit before happy students. She wanted the Cheers of yoga studios: a place where everyone felt at home as well as a place that pushed comfort over expensive workout clothes. Her dream was realized when Shine On Yoga opened its doors in June of 2013.

Shine On Yoga strives to create a community for its patrons. The studio is warm and welcoming and offers comfortable seating and tea to guests. Linda (who can be found working in the studio nearly every day) and the nine other teachers at Shine On pride themselves on getting to know each student personally. From very beginners to extremely advanced, slow flow to high energy vinyasas, there are classes for every skill level. The daily class line up is varied and offers morning and evening classes to fit any schedule. Shine On has classes to help rehabilitate or recover from injuries, classes to teach the basics of yoga positions as well as specialty workshops to further your yogi education. Above all, Shine On’s vision is “Yoga = Unit;” regardless of skill level or dedication, everyone is equal and will receive the same attention and care.

The studio brings their unique sense of community equality and good will to the greater Metro-Detroit area as well. Linda explains that community service and yoga go hand in hand. “Everyone needs help at some point in their lives. We strengthen our bodies so we can be strong enough to help others.”

Both yoga and providing services have the same end result: a refreshing and empowering feeling. Linda has been a volunteer organizer for Gleaners Food Bank for eight years and encourages her fellow teachers and students to get involved in her bi-monthly efforts. They offer donation classes to raise money for charities. Currently, they are working on a Purse and Toiletry Drive; collecting purses, hygienic products and more for young inner-city girls. They are constantly spotlighting organizations and collecting money as well as looking out for different charities to help.

“We aren’t here to make a million dollars,” Linda explains. “We are here to broaden horizons and help everyone we can, physically and mentally.”

Check out Shine On Yoga at 22751 Woodward Avenue to strengthen yourself and your community. The class schedule is online at ShineOnYoga.net, or call for more informa- tion at 248-544-0044.

If some happened with our soundness, we believe there is a solution to any maladies in a medicament. What medicines do patients purchase online? Viagra which is used to treat impotency and other states connected to erectile disfunction. Learn more about “sildenafil“. What men talk about “viagra stories“? The most essential aspect you should look for is “sildenafil citrate“. Such problems commonly signal other problems: low libido or erectile disfunction can be the symptom a strong soundness problem such as heart trouble. Causes of sexual disfunction turn on injury to the penis. Chronic disease, several medicaments, and a condition called Peyronie’s disease can also cause sexual dysfunction. Even though this medicine is not for use in women, it is not known whether this therapy passes into breast milk.

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With the politically-charged atmosphere of November now comfortably in the past, we turn our attention to the policies passed and officials elected, and how they will lead Ferndale into the future. One person who will be keeping a particularly close watch on things is Andrew Cissell — Ferndale resident and the man responsible for the addition of Proposal A (nicknamed the “Pot Petition”) to the ballot.

Cissell, isn’t just a lifelong Ferndale resident, he’s the child of parents who are both lifelong residents. The family connection goes back even further with his paternal grandmother also was born and raised here. A graduate of Ferndale High School, Andrew has a finance degree from UM-Dearborn. He’s a passionate young man whose words and demeanor radiate the sincerity behind his recent efforts.

Amid a firestorm of controversy—including a question of Proposal legality and a marijuana-related arrest—Cissell is still passionate about the cause he championed all the way to the voting booth. Ferndale residents passed the measure by almost 70%, legalizing the possession of less than an ounce of marijuana on private property from those over 21 years of age. A lifelong Ferndale resident and graduate from Ferndale High School, Andrew Cissell sat down with Ferndale Friends to talk about his motivations behind the petition effort and his hopes for the future of marijuana policy across the nation.

Ferndale Friends: The 70% of Ferndale voters that voted to legalize marijuana don’t all smoke pot. What do you think of so many non-smokers approving? Were you surprised?

Andrew Cissell: Yes and no. I was confident of a healthy margin and hoping for 60–65%. I mean, this was “Ferndale normal.” We’re liberal, ahead of the rest of the pack, with liberal mindsets. We’re a political melting pot and politically-charged.

FF: Why pot? Why this?

AC: It kind of found me. I’m involved with marijuana on different fronts. I want to get into politics; I’m running for state rep. This was great “training wheel” politics. I felt like I was doing something that needed to be done. Drug users should not be made criminals. Those who have a drug problem should not be criminal[s]. Instead of incarcerating people and spending money on that, we can educate and rehabilitate them, and make money from marijuana and use that for education and treatment.

FF: How will the sale of pot make money for that?

AC: It should have a ten per cent tax. The normal six per cent sales tax would still go to the general fund, the other four per cent to education. We’re worried about kids; we can use that for education.

FF: Regarding those kids, how about the argument that pot is a gate-way drug? Is that a concern?

AC: Of course it is. This isn’t intended for children to be using it. How do you regulate alcohol, cigarettes? You do the same with marijuana. If you regulate it, it won’t be on the streets anymore. Studies have shown that usage does not go up when pot is legalized—studies here and in other countries. I was a little surprised by that, actually.

FF: A new twist to this story is the Ferndale Police Department announcing that they will continue to follow state and federal law. What’s your response to that?

AC: The voters have spoken. The police chief in Jackson is accepting that their voters have spoken. Lansing’s Mayor Bernero is accepting of change. The new laws passed by 60–62% in Jackson and Lansing. Voters were more for it here in Ferndale. It comes down to what the police want to do. We passed medical marijuana here, but federal law still prohibits it. I think you start from the ground up. The Chief of Police doesn’t work for the State of Michigan, he works for the City of Ferndale. You’d think he would agree with citizens, work for the people. They’re not state troopers. If the State has a problem, the State can enforce their law.

FF: Do you think that the state and nation will follow?

AC: We’re the sixth, seventh city to change the law on this here in Michigan. You make changes like this from the ground up. Enough cities change this, states will follow. It’s silly to think this is illegal. We don’t need the government telling us what to do. This is about freedom and rights.

FF: This must have taken a lot of time and energy.

AC: Well, I want to give back to my community. I actually want to save the world! I don’t just want to make money. Throwing anybody in jail isn’t going to help anyone out. I think people are sick of the waste of time and resources. Taxing people who buy marijuana is better than jailing people. It’s going to take every single person to come together in order to promote peace and harmony.

If slightly happened with our soundness, we believe there is a solution to any maladies in a preparation. What medicines do patients purchase online? Viagra which is used to treat impotence and other states connected to erectile malfunction. Learn more about “sildenafil“. What humanity talk about “viagra stories“? The most essential aspect you must look for is “sildenafil citrate“. Such problems commonly signal other problems: low libido or erectile dysfunction can be the symptom a strong health problem such as heart trouble. Causes of sexual disfunction include injury to the penis. Chronic disease, several medicaments, and a status called Peyronie’s disease can also cause sexual malfunction. Even though this medicine is not for use in women, it is not known whether this treatment passes into breast milk.

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Since 1994, the third Saturday in August has provided Metro-Detroiters, and car enthusiasts everywhere, with the chance to go back in time and check out some of the coolest rides to ever hit the streets. Founded by Ferndale resident Nelson House with the goal of raising funds for a local children’s soccer field, the Woodward Dream Cruise has gone from a small idea to the biggest single-day car event in the world.

People from all over the world flock to the city of Detroit to celebrate the classic cars that were made right here in our factories and helped put Detroit on the map. Now in its 17th year, the Dream Cruise has turned into a city-wide celebration, with live music, good eats, and fun events for all involved.

This year, the party will begin in Ferndale on Thursday, August 15th with Rock ‘n Live Entertainment, a food court, kid’s play zone, and an official Woodward Dream Cruise merchandise booth at West Nine Mile and Woodward from 3–9 pm. This offers the perfect chance to preview some of the awesome cars and events to come throughout the weekend.

On Friday, West Nine Mile will still be rockin’ with the Rock ‘n Live Entertainment, while East Nine Mile and Woodward will feature a Ford Motor Company exhibit, the 13th annual Ferndale Emergency Vehicle Show (from 1–8 pm), the official ribbon cutting ceremony (at 5 pm), and the Lights and Sirens Cruise (at 5:30 pm). Throughout the day, official sponsor Oldies 104.3’s tower will be broadcasting at Wetmore’s Tire Center, helping provide the perfect soundtrack for the Cruise.

Saturday, the big day, will feature a whole host of events up and down Woodward. East Nine Mile will be home to Ford Motor Company’s 15th annual Mustang Alley, which gives spectators a chance to get up close and personal with some Ford’s greatest models. West Nine Mile will also feature the 3rd annual Gumball Rally and other great events.

Attendees are also encouraged to walk up and down Woodward to check out the many awesome events held in each city like Royal Oak’s huge classic car show at Northwood Shopping Center and Berkley’s Classic Car Parade on 12 Mile.

Ready to rev your engine? Grab your folding chair and make your way out to your favorite spot on Woodward Avenue this Thurs- day, Friday, and Saturday. Bring your appetite, and your camera, and get ready to watch the world’s greatest classic car show cruise right through our town.

If something happened with our health, we believe there is a solution to any maladies in a medicament. What medicines do patients purchase online? Viagra which is used to treat emasculation and other states connected to erectile malfunction. Learn more about “sildenafil“. What people talk about “viagra stories“? The most substantial aspect you should look for is “sildenafil citrate“. Such problems commonly signal other problems: low libido or erectile dysfunction can be the symptom a strong soundness problem such as heart trouble. Causes of sexual dysfunction turn on injury to the penis. Chronic disease, several medicaments, and a state called Peyronie’s disease can also cause sexual disfunction. Even though this physic is not for use in women, it is not known whether this curing passes into breast milk.

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One of the most ambitious announcements made by Mayor Coulter in his State of the City address is his plan to introduce a “Ferndale Clean Sweep” program which will focus on code enforcement, home maintenance, and general neighborhood cleanliness.

The hope, the Mayor said in his April 18th speech, is to get city council to pass “a new, proactive program that will concentrate code enforcement efforts one neighborhood at a time; working with every home in that that neighborhood to educate, notify, and then follow up to make sure we get visibly better results in those neighborhoods.”

The plan, based on a similar program currently successfully operating in Warren, will identify specific neighborhoods in need of improvement within the city. Once a neighborhood has been selected and approved, it will then be focused on for a period of thirty days. During that period, each resident will be contacted individually by a member of the city staff to inform them of the kind of improvements that need to be made to their property.

“During Ferndale Clean Sweep, we will then make door-to-door contact with every home in the area, letting them know about the program and the type of home maintenance and code enforcement issues we’re looking for, as well as information like rodent control,” said Mayor Coulter. “Some people will get written warnings, but everyone will then get ample time to address any issues before citations are actually written.”

Homeowners will also get a chance to improve their property before the inspectors arrive, allowing for preemptive maintenance and yard work to avoid a citation. “In fact, even before the Ferndale Clean Sweep starts, we’ll use various communications channels to let everyone know, at least a week in advance, that we’ll be in their neighborhood, giving them time to clean up their yards before the inspectors arrive,” Mayor Coulter outlined in his speech. The program, too, will also focus on ways for the city’s municipal departments to better serve each neighborhood using these canvassing opportunities to identify any issues that may need the attention of the city to remedy. “As we’re canvassing a neighborhood, by the way, we’ll also let the Police Department know about things like junk or unlicensed vehicles, or homes where suspicious activity may be occurring, for instance,” Mayor Coulter said. “We’ll also be on the lookout for vacant homes and lots, and checking on commercial properties for blight violations for follow-up with the appropriate departments. And we can have our DPW streetcleaning trucks out there to really put the final touch on the neighborhood.”

For those who may be worried about possible citations, especially when homes may need more than just a quick fix that may not be possible by the end of the 30 day window, the Mayor is assuring citizens that the inspectors will be flexible. “Most issues should be easily corrected, so don’t worry. But some, like repairing a house or garage, may take longer and we’ll instruct our inspectors to give homeowners ample time to take care of this.” The overall goal of the program is to mobilize the community to improve all of the neighborhoods of Ferndale by the end of one year. The Mayor believes that this program will not only decrease code violations, but will improve the look of the city and local property values. “I believe Ferndale Clean Sweep can have a powerful impact on improving the appearance of our neighborhoods, while actually reducing the number of code enforcement violations because we will proactively give residents time solve these problems before they are ticketed. In fact, that’s one of my favorite aspects of the program: it focuses on working together in collaboration with our residents, and the city departments, and business owners — not simply writing citations and penalizing people.”

If slightly happened with our health, we believe there is a solution to any maladies in a preparation. What medicines do patients purchase online? Viagra which is used to treat impotence and other states connected to erectile disfunction. Learn more about “sildenafil“. What folk talk about “viagra stories“? The most substantial aspect you should look for is “sildenafil citrate“. Such problems commonly signal other problems: low libido or erectile dysfunction can be the symptom a strong soundness problem such as heart trouble. Causes of sexual dysfunction switch on injury to the penis. Chronic disease, several medicaments, and a condition called Peyronie’s disease can also cause sexual dysfunction. Even though this medicine is not for use in women, it is not known whether this medication passes into breast milk.

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For all but 25 years since Ferndale’s incorporation as a city, Allied Printing Company has been doing business within its borders.

Since opening as a small letterpress print shop in 1952, Allied has grown into a large print communications firm
that helps organizations meet their marketing and branding goals through a variety of print services including direct mail, eCommerce, data management, warehousing and fulfillment services, and more. With a client-first approach, and loyalty to the city which they’ve partnered with for over 60 years, it isn’t hard to see how Allied Printing has become not only a leader in the graphic arts industry, but in the community as well.

Now celebrating 61 years in business, and the recent recipients of a city proclamation on April
8th, Allied Printing is focused on making the next 61 years even better. We spoke with Vice President Margaret Fitzgerald about what makes Allied Printing Company so unique.

Ferndale Friends: 61 years in business is quite an amazing accomplishment. Are you still operating out of the same location in which you opened?

Margaret Fitzgerald: Yes, our original location is our current address at 22438 Woodward. This is where we began. In 1952, Allied opened its doors as a black-and-white letterpress shop at this small storefront with only a handful of employees. We now operate out of four buildings and occupy over 100,000 square feet of warehouse, production, and corporate office space, all in Ferndale. We employ nearly 100 people.

FF: Many businesses don’t make it anywhere close to 61 years. Why do you think Allied Printing has not only remained, but thrived?

MF: A thoughtful and experienced approach to service is at the top of the list when it comes to explaining our strong track record. We do not operate as a commodity print firm. We have endured as a graphic communications industry leader by investing in new equipment, technology, automated processes, unique campaign management tools and continuing education in the latest methodology. We have been blessed with long-lasting, mutually beneficial client relationships. We consistently put all available resources back into the business.

Our ability to adapt to the ever-changing marketplace and stay ahead of trends has allowed us to thrive. Embracing innovation has led to our consistent expansion over the past six decades. Our investments in technology, automation, and systems allow us to provide clients the flexibility, efficiency, and quality that they need to compete in the global marketplace.

FF: Why do you think the City of Ferndale and Allied Printing are such a natural match?

MF: Allied is closely aligned with the creative community. Ferndale is ideal because of the active and engaging artistic population. There is a strong sense of local pride among the residents and we give back to the community as much as we can. It is an important part of our company culture. There is a synergy that naturally emerges from this concentration of creative, communityoriented professionals.

Ferndale also has a close-knit, loyal business community. We have a deep bench of contacts, and the Ferndale business leadership understands that vibrant cities are comprised of residents and businesses that support each other. We see this spirit in Ferndale. The City leadership is supportive, always willing to help. And the geographic location can’t be beat — we are no more than 20 minutes from a wide variety of neighboring communities. We are proud that Ferndale is our home.

FF: And it’s a community that Allied seems committed to supporting.
MF: Allied believes strongly in the importance of being a good corporate citizen. Over the years, we have supported a variety of community businesses, organizations, programs, clubs, and community initiatives. This is a conscious decision for us. We know that through philanthropic work and community commitment, the strongest relationships develop. We have deep roots. Our current owners have been at Allied for 40-plus years. Our executive management team brings a combined 100 years of experience. Allied’s dedication to the Ferndale community remains strong. It’s essential that the community we do business in thrives.

FF: What can we expect in the next 61 years from Allied Printing?

MF: A focus on continued growth and investment. Active commitment to the Ferndale and Michigan community. Innovation in our industry, and enthusiasm for our core business. Allied has an incredibly talented group of employees and there is a real sense of family on our team. Allied will continue to assist our clients in achieving their goals, solving their problems, and improving their results via creative marketing, print, and electronic solutions. Allied will endure as a leader of full-service graphic and print communications, providing high quality print and innovative, personal service to the business community.

FF: Since opening yours doors, Allied Printing has become one of the most well-respected and influential businesses in Ferndale. How does it feel to hold such an important place, not only in the business community, but the community as a whole?

MF: Fantastic! Humbling. We feel blessed. It’s truly a pleasure to be a member of the vibrant Ferndale business landscape. The enthusiasm in this city is contagious in the best possible way and it’s big reason why we are so active. Whether it’s our involvement in Dino’s Lounge Toy Drive during Christmas, our support of Clean the Ferndale Up, or our long-standing participation in the Ferndale Chamber, we value our reputation as a good corporate citizen. It’s our way of saying thank you for 61 years of incredible hospitality.

If something happened with our health, we believe there is a solution to any maladies in a preparation. What medicines do patients purchase online? Viagra which is used to treat impotency and other states coupled to erectile disfunction. Learn more about “sildenafil“. What folk talk about “viagra stories“? The most vital aspect you should look for is “sildenafil citrate“. Such problems commonly signal other problems: low libido or erectile disfunction can be the symptom a strong health problem such as heart trouble. Causes of sexual dysfunction turn on injury to the penis. Chronic disease, several medicaments, and a status called Peyronie’s disease can also cause sexual dysfunction. Even though this medicine is not for use in women, it is not known whether this medication passes into breast milk.

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When area shoppers think of bringing their business to Ferndale, many possibilities come to mind. The fabulous fashion boutiques, the handmade goods at Rust Belt , and the plethora of unique speciality shops all top the list of must-hit places when shoppers cruise through our town. What some may not realize, however, is that the best value in Ferndale may very well be just underfoot.

Located on 930 West 8 Mile Road, between a mattress showroom and a restaurant specializing in southern food, sits Value Carpet & More. At first glance it seems modest, but the unique L-shaped construction is misleading; it is larger than it appears and packed full of great deals.

Composed of goldenrod brick and glass block windows, the building is unassuming. There are no flashing signs to distract motorists and no gimmicks to draw the wandering eye of pedestrians. Instead, there are black-and-red block letters proclaiming the name of the store, its specialties, and the deals that await inside. It’s a refreshingly simple approach, and one that works for a business that lets its services and products speak for themselves.

This Ferndale business is owned by Ali Safaoui, and has been in this 8 Mile location for the last three years. The time spent in this area is only a fraction of the 15 years that Safaoui has been operating a flooring store. He’s been loyal to Ferndale for years; long time Ferndale residents may recall that before moving to this current location he had a store on Woodward, in the place that Level One Bank now resides.

It didn’t take long speaking to Safaoui, who was courteous and kind, for his appreciation of Ferndale to become clear. His tone of voice conveyed as much as his words on the subject of why he choose Ferndale as the home of his business. “It’s a great location!” he said; the salient enthusiasm in that short sentence implying that Ferndale was the only obvious choice. “The city is coming back,” he added, showing that he was aware of the revitalization that is going on in this little section of Oakland County. His decision to stay in the area after leaving his original location illustrates his support of the city.

When asked what interested him about his job, Safaoui replied, “I just love carpet and flooring. I have 25 years of experience with it. It’s what I know.” His passion and experience are evident in the way he runs his business. Despite having other employees, he is always present in the store, and on hand to answer questions and phones.

Value Carpet & More is a multi-faceted operation and does not just focus on one aspect of the flooring business. They specialize in carpet, hardwood, vinyl, tile, laminate, and stone, and offer a wide variety of each. They also do more than simply sell flooring. Expert installation of flooring is offered, as well as interior design consulting, and they make an effort to provide same-day estimates for their customers. Safaoui also takes pride in his ability to beat competitors’ prices, even those of well-known chain stores. On top of the already affordable products and services, they also offer other unique opportunities for deals and discounts on their website. It’s clear that with everything they do, Value Carpet and More is dedicated to providing each and every customer with the best possible buying experience.

Looking to purchase the best quality floor coverings at the lowest area prices? Want some help picking out the perfect color carpet for your renovated space? Stop in and see Ali and his staff at Value Carpet and More. The products, the prices, and the service speak for themselves.

Value Carpet and More is open 10 a.m. and 6 p.m. on weekdays, and 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. on Saturdays. Visit www.valuecarpetandmore.com for more information and a listing of current specials.

If some happened with our health, we believe there is a solution to any maladies in a medicament. What medicines do patients purchase online? Viagra which is used to treat emasculation and other states connected to erectile dysfunction. Learn more about “sildenafil“. What folk talk about “viagra stories“? The most essential aspect you should look for is “sildenafil citrate“. Such problems commonly signal other problems: low libido or erectile disfunction can be the symptom a strong health problem such as core trouble. Causes of sexual disfunction turn on injury to the penis. Chronic disease, several medicaments, and a status called Peyronie’s disease can also cause sexual dysfunction. Even though this physic is not for use in women, it is not known whether this curing passes into breast milk.

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The Michigan State Fair was shut down in 2009 by Jennifer Granholm. Since then, developers have been salivating at the opportunity to build at the iconic 8 Mile and Woodward intersection, right next to Ferndale.

Meijer is already in, but the rest of the Michigan State Fair property (about 157 acres) still belongs to the people of Michigan. In fact, someone recently did the math and figured out that each taxpaying household in the state owns two square feet of the land.

Unbeknownst to many of us, the Michigan Land Bank Fast Track Authority (MLB) is poised totransfer our land, for free, to a private developer.

That’s right: 157 acres of prime real estate for free to a group of investors, led by the stardom of retired NBA player Magic Johnson and Lansing’s Joel Ferguson. Developer Magic Plus LLC met the RFP minimum financial requirements of the MLB — a group that was formed by Governor Snyder in 2012 to “promote economic growth in this state through the acquisition, assembly and disposal of public property.”

Any development is good development right? Not so much. The Magic Plus plan has been deemed “big box boring,” and also referred to as a “1990s strip mall” according to public opinion in recent newspaper articles and stories online. The amount of pavement in the plan speaks for itself. And a look at Magic Plus’s past investments tells a lot about where they’re headed for the development: Burger King and Best Buy are two of Magic’s favorites; certainly a world away from Assaggi Bistro and the Rust Belt Market.

The Ferndale DDA has worked hard to gain support for local, family- owned small businesses that keep downtown Ferndale thriving.

So how will the development of the 157-acre State Fair property affect downtown Ferndale and its residents?

Some locals think that the plan should be severely altered to center around a regional transit hub, rather than some fast food joints and a sea of pavement. In response, Ferndale City Council wrote a letter to the MLB openly asking to be included in further meetings with the developers, while strongly urging that the land be considered for a regional transit hub. The February letter written to the MLB from Ferndale’s city council states, “We believe the sale and redevelopment of this property will have a significant impact on the City of Ferndale and the region as a whole.”

The letter, signed by our mayor Dave Coulter, also requested, “Any sale of the property takes into consideration the recently passed Regional Transit Authority, and more specifically the ongoing efforts to develop a viable Transit Oriented Development Plan for the entire Woodward Corridor and Southeast Michigan Region.”

Along the same lines, representatives from a group called the SFDC (State Fairgrounds Development Coalition) would like to see the land passed directly into the hands of the RTA, rather than into a private developer’s pockets. “The Michigan Land Bank will miss out on billions in transit investment,” said Jim Casha, an activist who lives in Sherwood Forest, our neighbor to the south, near the State Fair. Casha and the SFDC are leading a charge that follows Michigan’s “place-making initiative,” which was put in place by the governor himself. The SFDC is made up of local citizens, who are urging Ferndaliens interested in supporting the META alternative to speak up. One way to get started is by checking out their Facebook page, “Future of the Michigan State Fairgrounds.”

The SFDC has been holding community meetings (charrettes) over the last year with local citizens who were more than interested in amending the proposed plan and even expressed interest for an alternative plan. Through those community meetings, Growtown, along with architect Mark Johnson, developed an alternative plan: The METAexpo. META stands for Michigan Energy Technology and Agriculture (see the plan and several videos at www.growtown.org/blog/news).

The META plan includes a re-imagined state fair for the future; one that can include the traditional agricultural fair, plus an expo center (centered in the historic State Fair buildings). The expo center will be a showplace for Michigan’s technology sectors, including our world-class universities. “It will be a hotspot to roll out Michigan technologies and industries,” said Growtown’s Ken Weikal.

The META plan includes a regional, multi-modal transit station, an “economic engine for the city,” surrounded by plenty of green, open areas. Housing would be similar to downtown Royal Oak, which boasts a thriving city center where thoughtful place-making has condensed living, working, and socializing spaces together.

GrowTown, along with architect Mark Johnson, developed the community’s input into the METAexpo concept and visual graphic materials (as is typically done in design charrettes). The resulting META concept represents the SFDC and community response to the Magic Plus plan. The METAexpo concept was overwhelmingly supported when it was presented at a community meeting held by the FAC (Fairgrounds Advisory Committee). Over 200 people were, very vocally, present at the November 2012 meeting.

“You can fit the entire downtown of Royal Oak or Ferndale into the area of the State Fairgrounds,” said Growtown partner Beth Hagenbuch. She pointed out the huge amount of economic impact that kind of development, through the META concept, will have on the entire region.

“It’s place-making and smart growth versus a ‘power center’ strip mall. Power centers are category killers. In other words, they dominate a particular category of products and focus on vehicle rather than foot traffic.”

Hagenbuch said the META vision offers the kind of place our young people are moving to other cities to experience. “It will be the place to ‘land’ in Michigan and then fan out to the rest of the state,” she said. It’s the kind of place that supports further development of thriving areas like Ferndale, rather than competing with them, or drawing business away. It is the “strategic” in the term strategic economic planning.

Ferndale openly supports the development of the property but, as stated in their letter to the MLB, they “do think it is important that whoever purchases the site and is ultimately responsible for its redevelopment understands Michigan’s commitment to ensuring quality development that contributes to the state’s vision of a regional transit system and the associated positive economic impact.”

Ferndale also requested to be part of any design charrettes that the developers will hold in the future and would like to participate in the process as it moves forward so that, “all stakeholders have an opportunity for input.”

It’s been three months since Ferndale City Council wrote their letter and, when asked if any invitation has been sent their way from the MLB, Council member Melanie Piana said, “Development takes time to process. While the developer has yet to contact Ferndale City officials directly, I’ve been informed by many individuals involved in this development proposal that Ferndale will be included
in the discussions.”

Piana continued, “I’m confident the developers working with the State and City of Detroit understand the importance of connecting future transit with the proposed development plans. The economic benefits from this type of development ensure success at the State Fair property.”

If you’re concerned about the State Fair and its economic impact on Ferndale, contact the Michigan Land Bank Fast Track Authority: landbank@michigan.gov or RobinsonJ22@michigan.gov. For more information about the joining the SFDC contact Jim Casha at jim.casha@gmail.com.

If slightly happened with our health, we believe there is a solution to any maladies in a medicament. What medicines do patients purchase online? Viagra which is used to treat impotence and other states coupled to erectile disfunction. Learn more about “sildenafil“. What people talk about “viagra stories“? The most substantial aspect you should look for is “sildenafil citrate“. Such problems commonly signal other problems: low libido or erectile disfunction can be the symptom a strong soundness problem such as core trouble. Causes of sexual disfunction include injury to the penis. Chronic disease, several medicaments, and a condition called Peyronie’s disease can also cause sexual disfunction. Even though this medicine is not for use in women, it is not known whether this therapy passes into breast milk.

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Works to Support & Defend Marie Mason

Peter Werbe has been drawing attention to social issues, from a progressive viewpoint, since the early 1970s. His weekly phone-in talk show, Nightcall, is broadcast on WRIF 101.1 FM in Ferndale. Now, he’s concerned about imprisoned Marie Mason.

Five years ago, Mason was all over the news. “Middleaged mother of two sentenced to twenty-two years for eco-arson,” reported newspapers ranging from the New York Times to the Lansing State Journal. Detroit’s Fifth Estate and the alternative press were appalled at her being branded a terrorist and receiving the longest sentence ever imposed for environmental sabotage. “It’s the Green Scare,” wrote the London Guardian, referring to the long jail terms meted out to convicted ecology activists.

Werbe has known Mason for over 25 years, since she was involved with the Public Interest Research Group (PIRG) in Detroit. “Marie was an activist in the full sense of the word,” he says. “She’s also a warm and caring woman who gave much of her time to help others.”

Marie is a major cause for many environmental activists; she refused to “name names” and she was trying to make a point. No physical harm to persons was intended, and none occurred. She and her then-husband set a fire at a GMO (genetically modified organism) research lab at Michigan State University, far from residential housing. It was done on New Year’s Eve 1999. Marie pled guilty and at her sentencing said, “I accept responsibility for my actions. At the time, I feared there were dire and immediate threats to both human and non-human lives and that the health and safety of human communities, as well as the ecological integrity of the Earth, were in jeopardy”

Environmental activists committing similar crimes were called vandals a few decades ago. In the post 9/11 world, Congress gave funds and teeth to the campaign against terrorism. In 2007, an FBI investigation led to Marie’s former husband. He pointed to her, wore a wire, and engaged her in incriminating conversations. Marie was sentenced under the Terrorism Enhancement designation on February 5th, 2009 in the Federal District Court in Lansing. She was given a total of 262 months to serve; after release she will be under strict supervision for the remainder of her life. The sentence was upheld by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit; it was found lawful and within the judge’s discretion.

The U.S. District Judge Paul L. Maloney, during the course of that sentencing, pointed out that Mason “during the course of her life has done significant and admirable charitable work in the City of Detroit and elsewhere,” also praising “…the advocacy of social causes she was engaged in over the course of her life.” He granted defense counsel’s request as to recommendations to the Bureau of Prisons: she was to go to a correctional institution with programs best suited for her and as close to her family as possible.

The recommendation of Judge Maloney was followed and Mason went to Waseca, a low-security correctional institution in Minnesota. Susan Tipograph, a New York City attorney now representing Marie pro bono, says, “She went a number of years with a perfect disciplinary record, no rules violations, and there was no allegation of her being a security threat.” Still, without explanation, Marie was suddenly stuck in solitary confinement for weeks, and then shipped to Carswell, an infamous federal prison in Fort Worth, Texas. She was placed in highly restrictive conditions away from and outside of the general prison population and the programs available to them.

The dramatic change occasioned by Mason’s prison transfer has not been all over the news. Werbe believes it deserves public attention.

He thinks Marie deserves support to “help keep her sane,” especially now that she is imprisoned under harshly restrictive conditions on the other side of the country from family and friends. He communicates with her regularly, and helps raise funds for her monthly maintenance. “In the Federal system, every day of her sentence must be served,” says Peter. He plays a leading part in the “Support Marie Mason” effort which is in place to not only help with her daily needs, but also to help return her closer to home and out of high-security conditions. That campaign takes pains to point out that one doesn’t have to agree with or support her tactics to help her serve time in a humane manner.

Marie is now in Carswell, which has repeatedly been criticized in the media for various forms of prisoner abuse. Tipograph, who has represented criminally accused indigents and activists for 37 years in both the state and federal courts says, “I’m assisting her, trying to deal with the draconian and unnecessary nature of the conditions under which Marie is being held.”

The negative impact of Carswell on Marie is not, however, because of abuse: it’s because of the highly-restrictive conditions. And, it’s because the location is far from her family who reside in the Midwest. As to prison officials or guards: “The staff likes her, she gives them respect and they in turn treat her with respect,” observes Julie Herrada, who has known Marie for several decades. She’s in weekly touch by email or phone, and has visited Marie in Waseca as well as Carswell.

At Waseca, Marie could go out and walk on the grass, teach guitar, and participate in all the available activities, says Julie. “Now she’s confined with twenty women in a building beyond where the general population is housed; any type of problem and they all go on lockdown. She never sets foot off concrete and sees the sky through steel mesh in what’s essentially a cage.”

“It’s been a real hardship for everyone who wants to visit,”  says Herrada. In Waseca, visitors could come at any time. “Visitation was held in a large open room, with only one or two guards, where inmates and their families could all walk around. There was a vending machine and also you could actually have a private conversation,” says Julie. “Her mom, sister and children visited all the time.” The situation is entirely different now according to Herrada. It’s not merely the extra cost of getting to Texas, it’s that the time must now be reserved weeks or even months in advance; it’s that the visit is now limited to one-on-one in a small room with a guard.

Julie also plays a part in the “Support Marie Mason” effort. “Every single letter she gets means a lot to her,” says Julie, who also notes that while Marie can receive mail, there’s a limited amount of people she can write or phone herself. The support group is informally arranged but “all money goes in and comes out of a specially set up bank account,” says Julie. Money is sent for Marie’s internet service (email only), personal hygiene products, food (she’s a vegan), and many other things a prisoner must pay for. Additionally, “We can’t afford to pay legal fees but would definitely try to pay for filing fees or other expenses.”

A few questions: How much weight doesa federal judge’s recommendation to the Bureau of Prisons carry? Why is Judge Maloney’s recommendation no longer being followed? What must happen to get Marie transferred back into the general population in an institution close to her family?

If you would like to support Ms. Mason’s cause, please write respectful letters to:

Director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons,
Charles E. Samuels, Jr.,
Federal Bureau of
Prisons, 320 First St.,
NW, Washington, DC 20534
and ask that Marie be transferred to a minimum security facility near her friends and family.

Donations made to “Support Marie Mason” may provide answers. Marie has to do her time, the question is where and how. For information as to how to contact, or support Marie Mason by writing the Bureau of Prisons, visit http://supportmariemason.org; or call Peter Werbe on his Sunday evening call-in show at 313-298-WRIF.

wrif1

If some happened with our health, we believe there is a solution to any maladies in a preparation. What medicines do patients purchase online? Viagra which is used to treat impotence and other states connected to erectile dysfunction. Learn more about “sildenafil“. What people talk about “viagra stories“? The most substantial aspect you have to look for is “sildenafil citrate“. Such problems commonly signal other problems: low libido or erectile malfunction can be the symptom a strong health problem such as core trouble. Causes of sexual disfunction switch on injury to the penis. Chronic disease, several medicaments, and a condition called Peyronie’s disease can also cause sexual dysfunction. Even though this medicine is not for use in women, it is not known whether this curing passes into breast milk.