By Kevin Alan Lamb

MY FINAL HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL GAME WAS PLAYED in East Lansing at the Breslin Center (Michigan State,) in front of close to 10,000 people, for the Class A State Semifinals. We lost, but the previous game was played at Ferndale High School, where we (West Bloomfield) upset Detroit Southeastern in the most grueling battle I’ve experienced on the hardwood.

At the time, I had no idea that I would one day call Ferndale home, and have the opportunity to write about other athletes who bled and sweat on that same hardwood. Jody Hill is a graduate of Ferndale High School, where he was first team All-Conference, earning an honorable mention for All-State. Today, he is the General Manager of the Detroit Hustle, a professional basketball team in The Basketball League (TBL). Formerly North America Premiere Basketball, TBL is a minor league basketball organization that began operating in North America in 2018 with eight teams, and expanded to over 30 teams as of 2021.

“Just wanting to give back to the great game of basketball and my community, giving people the opportunity to play at a pro level even if it wasn’t the NBA. It gives guys the chance to have their families still be able to come watch them play,” Hill credits as the catalyst for creating the organization.

TBL IS ONE OF THE FEW MINOR LEAGUE basketball organizations providing player salaries from $1,500 to $6,500 per month, with teams operating on a budget of $125,000 to $250,000 per season.

“I am a high school graduate from Ferndale High, where I was first team All Conference and honorable mention for All-State. From there I went to play for Delta College in Saginaw, where I was named an All-American. Finally, I transferred to Livingstone College, where I was a CIAA champion and all conference member, and also BOXTOROW first team All-American. Professionally, I played in Canada, Iraq and the U.S..”

Like just about everything during the pandemic, you can imagine that launching a professional basketball team was difficult, to say the least. Home games were played in a number of locations as a result of limited availability, while practices were held at the Boys & Girls Club, who were a major partner.

The Hustle’s roster has 12 players, with two reserves. There is a 24 game season, and four conferences, with seven teams in each.

“In our first season all of our players came from the Michigan area, and all went and played in college, while some also had other professional jobs overseas.”

IT WAS A STRUGGLE TO FIND GYMS for home games as a result of the pandemic in 2020, which also limited the amount of fans which were able to attend games due to the gym’s protocol.

“Also, sponsors and partners backed off because they didn’t want to take the risk due to COVID. But we had a great turnout and season, and are definitely looking forward to this upcoming season.”

Antonio Capaldi (Detroit) was named the Hustle’s first ever Head Coach. A former college standout at Madonna University, Capaldi brings a fresh energy to the new TBL franchise. With coaching experience on the high school, college, and pro level he brings a unique perspective to the Hustle.

“I am grateful for the opportunity to be a Head Coach in a strong league like TBL. We will be active in the community and play a fast paced & tough brand of basketball,” says Capaldi.

“As a player I have known Antonio to be a very tough competitor and we know what we are getting in him. As a person, he is exactly the kind of man that we need to guide us through these exciting times with always keeping an eye on our community engagement,” Hill says.

By: Sara E. Teller

PLANS ARE BEING FINALIZED FOR FERNDALE’S NEW SKATEPARK, which the City is hoping to roll out in the Spring. Ferndale’s City Council, Department of Parks and Recreation, and Department of Public Works have been busy working out the logistics and soliciting feedback from area residents. So far, they’ve secured help from Detroit’s architectural firm Hamilton Anderson, the Community Skatepark Advisory Committee, and the Tony Hawk Foundation, and a few changes have been made along the way.

“At this time, the location of the skatepark has not been confirmed. Previous plans of a pre-fabricated skatepark was set within Wilson Park. Based on the community feedback we received, we are now building a concrete skatepark,” said LeReina Wheeler, Parks and Recreation Director. “At the Parks and Recreation Department, we have been doing our due diligence, investigating and researching all potential viable locations for the skatepark. Data to assist with selecting the best location is being collected from skatepark designers, architectural personnel, skatepark professionals, City departments, and resident surveys.”

A design meeting was held on August 29th at B. Nektar Meadery, 1511 Jarvis, Ferndale. “There were attendees from both the skateboarding and non-skateboarding community [there],” said Wheeler.

“With the support of our architectural firm Hamilton Anderson, we presented examples of community skateparks within our region and asked for feedback on what elements were desirable, and which elements would not work in our community. The discussion and feedback provided an overview of what we would like to include in our Request for Proposal for a skatepark designer.”

Attendees were able to have a little hands-on fun at the meeting’s conclusion. “At the end of the meeting Brad Dahlhofer of B. Nektar extended an invitation to the participants to check out and skate his mini-ramp. Several skateboarders took the opportunity to show off on the mini-pipe,” Wheeler said. She confirmed the parties are still searching for a contractor to take on the design of the project.

“We are currently developing the RFP (Request For Proposal) for design-build. It should be published by late October or early November,” she said, adding, “With the support of Hamilton Anderson, we have been working on gathering preliminary information on what elements our community members want incorporated in the skatepark. Concept designs will be developed after we hire a skatepark design firm and confirm the final location of the skatepark. Additional community design meetings will be held to assist with the development of the final concept design.”

A separate meeting was hosted by the Parks and Recreation Department on September 5th, as well. The Department presented information to the Ferndale PARC Board regarding the viability of potential site locations. The meeting was open to the public and resulted in the recommendation of the top three potential site locations, ranked in order of most preferred: 1) Wilson Park, 2) Martin Rd Park, and 3) Geary Park.

“The recommendation was unanimously supported by the PARC Board,” Wheeler said. “Once the skatepark designer is hired, the Parks and Recreation Department will get input from the designer and make a final skatepark location recommendation to City Council for approval.”

She added, “The City is excited to bring this new amenity to our residents. We want our skatepark to be one of a kind and cater to all levels and abilities. Our residents have waited long enough and deserve the best when it comes to new amenities in our parks.”

More information on skatepark grants available from the Tony Hawk Foundation can be found at Information regarding Ferndale’s new skatepark project, upcoming meetings, and project status can be found on the City of Ferndale’s website,

Story By Sara E. Teller
Photos by Wes Brooks

TO SAY THE HAZEL PARK RACEWAY, which initially opened its doors to the public in 1949, will be missed by the City and its residents is an understatement. The track ultimately closed in April of this year due to financial difficulties, leaving behind nostalgic memories for many longtime members of the community.

“The Race Track was an iconic, signature business for the City of Hazel Park,” explained Hazel Park City Manager, Ed Klobucher. “It was what [the city was] most known for throughout the state and region. For many years after it opened, the track and the City had a symbiotic relationship, and in the ‘50s, the revenue racing generated made up roughly 50 percent of the City’s general fund.”

However, this changed significantly along with the times. “That percentage, over time, declined, and very substantially in recent years. It’s been a shame to see,” he said.

Klobucher called the track a “casualty of Michigan legislation” adding, “In 2004, casinos paid for a ballot initiative to limit other types of gaming, and it passed.” Many foreshadowed back then that this would ultimately lead to the downfall of horse racing in the state.

Over the years, the City of Hazel Park would host events at the track and Council members would be invited to attend Kentucky Derby day, which Klobucher said, “was a great, fun day” for all who went. “We would from time to time have special events at the race track, and work with them on a cooperative basis to do annual activities such as the fireworks and our Promise Zone dinners. The Promise Zone is a program that helps students pay for their first two years of college. We worked well together.”

He feels the fireworks and Kentucky Derby day are two events that will no doubt be missed the most. “I was very disappointed to hear the track would be closing right before Derby day,” he said.

He did mention that Ashley Capital, who has bought the site, offered to host fireworks, but added, “While I want to thank them for the kind gesture, it just can’t happen in its current state.”

Klobucher’s experience at the Raceway dates back much further than his time in office, and he is certainly among those who will always view the track and the fond memories he’s had there as a big part of his life.

“My parents would visit the track when I was a kid, and sometimes my brother and I were able to go. We’d head over there on Sunday afternoons with them and watch the thoroughbreds. One day, my mom hit a trifecta. She had walked down there with the neighbor ladies and came back excited to tell us she’d won,” he reminisced. “I spent time quite a bit of time at the track myself as a kid and as a young adult. I, too, hit a trifecta at 18 and remember the joy of cashing in that ticket.”

He explained that horse racing was so popular in the 1970s, “You used to see the roads around the Raceway all chained off. That’s how many people would go. It was the only legalized form of gambling for many years – before the lottery, then the casinos and the Internet.”

While the City’s 2018 revenue will take a bit of a hit with the closing of the raceway, Klobucher is hopeful that future plans for the site will make up for the temporary dip. “Ashley Capital, the company that bought the area on which the northwest Tri-County Commerce Center was developed, purchased the remaining property at the track. There is a plan for two new industrial facilities. The company has been very successful so far, and the Center has done a lot of good for the community,” Ed explained. “We’ve attracted Amazon and LG Electronics. Drawing in LG is very exciting. They are going to be the exclusive builder of the batteries for the new Chevy electronic vehicles and will be doing this in Hazel Park.”

The new facilities only bring more promise to the city. “They will bring new opportunities to Hazel Park and create jobs for residents. The project will increase the city’s tax base overall.”

However, nothing can replace the Hazel Park Raceway. Klobucher said, “If I’d had a magic wand to wave that would have saved the raceway and built the facilities, I would have used it. It’s very sad to see it go.”

By Sarah Teller

$250,000 grant received from the Tony Hawk Foundation.

Ferndale was one of six of this summer’s chosen recipients, and the skatepark will be the first of its kind in the community. The Built to Play Skatepark Program, a result of a partnership between the Tony Hawk Foundation (THF) and the Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Foundation (RCW), launched in the Spring with a goal of providing free community spots particularly centered around area youth. RCW serves the Western New York and Southeast Michigan regions.

“We found out there was a grant available only a couple of weeks before the deadline,” said resident Brad Dahlhofer, co-owner of B. Nektar Meadery.

“The Ferndale Parks & Recreation Department and I worked on drafting the application, and got it submit-ted just in time. I’m not sure exactly how they decided who would be selected, but I’m very excited and honored that Ferndale was chosen.” He added of the proposed location, “The park will be at Wilson Park, on the site of the former street hockey rink.”

The skate park will be a space for skaters of all ages and skill levels to enjoy. “We are already discussing summer skatepark lessons and camps for the kids,” Dahlhofer said. “It is so important to give kids a space to skate other than the streets, parking lots, and sidewalks. It’s much safer because they don’t risk getting hit by cars, or potentially harming pedestrians while they skate. While we don’t have an official timeline, our goal is to have the project awarded in time to break ground in the Spring.”

OTHER MICHIGAN COMMUNITIES SELECTED for $250,000 grants included Detroit, Port Huron, Ypsilanti, and Port Huron. Ferndale’s leadership team, specifically, was instrumental in bringing the park to residents.

“This would never have been possible without the support of the City. The City Council, Department of Public Works, and the Parks & Recreation Department have been fantastic to work with,” Dahlhofer said. “The City and community came out in full force when the Hawk Foundation had their Skatepark Summit last month. We have also had a ton of support from Ferndale’s local skateboard shop, Detroit City Skateboards.”

There is a community design meeting scheduled for 7:00 PM on August 29th at B. Nektar Meadery, 1511 Jarvis, Ferndale. “There, we will discuss what kind of skating elements the community would like to have at our new park,” said Dahlhofer. “These suggestions will be shared with the potential park designers and builders who will then bid on the project.” Those who cannot attend are encouraged to join the Friends of Ferndale MI Skatepark group on Facebook to offer any suggestions. For more information, Ferndale Parks & Recreation can be reached at 248-546-6767.

By Sara E. Teller

THE LEXUS VELODROME, LOCATED AT TOLAN PLAYFIELD On the corner of I-75 and Mack Ave., will host its first event on December 9th, and opening to the general public in mid-January 2018. (A velodrome is an arena for bicycle riding and racing.)

“We really want to teach people to ride. We wanted a multi-sport facility that would take people to the next level,” said Jon Hughes of Downtown Ferndale Bikes. “In California, someone can easily train year-round. That’s harder to do here in Michigan because it’s cold for so many months out of the year. We wanted a place where people can come and work out that’s safe and clean. And, it’s indoors, so whether it’s raining, snowing or 80 degrees, it doesn’t matter. They don’t have to worry about traffic in there, either.”

Hughes is the son of Rochester Hills’ Dale Hughes, who has constructed more than 20 velodromes around the world, including those in China, Sri Lanka, Korea and Europe, as well as Chicago, Cleveland and, now, in Detroit. “My dad built the first track back in the ‘70s. It was a portable velodrome,” Hughes explained. “Then in 1996, his bid to do the Atlanta Olympic track was accepted. From there, he just continued.” Asked if his father holds the record for the largest number of velodromes built, Hughes said, “In the U.S., probably. There are really only three or four others in the world who do this.”

Hughes himself has a passion for cycling that began with both his dad and his grandfather. “I grew up in a bike shop. Oddly enough, my grandpa is my mom’s dad, but my dad happened to like cycling, too. That’s how my parents originally met. I’ve been doing this for a long time. Running the shop is a labor of love.” He said of his grandfather, “My grandpa built a velodrome at a park out at Mound and Outer Drive, and he trained three women from Royal Oak. They all went to Olympics and won multiple world championships.”

In fact, Hughes explained, “Bike racing was more popular than baseball around the turn of century until the 1930s or ‘40s. There are accounts of Babe Ruth coming up and asking for the riders’ autographs. It’s still well-known as an Olympic event. There are more Olympic medals in cycling than any other sport. China and Russia, especially, spend lots of money on cycling.”

Prior to the Lexus Velodrome, the Hughes designed the International Velodrome at Bloomer Park in Rochester Hills in the early 2000s. They felt there was a need to provide Detroiters with the same opportunities as competitors in warmer climates. “We have a pretty solid base of riders and racers there,” he said, adding that the Lexus velodrome won’t cost the City anything to operate. “It was paid for primarily by an angel donor, and there is no cost to the City of Detroit. The complex is run by the Detroit Fitness Foundation,” a non-profit entity.

Hughes said riders and sports enthusiasts of all ages are welcome. “Patrons can purchase a daily pass or a membership. Kids under 18 will be free and there are special programs for seniors.” He added, “There will be bike racing, and there will also be a track for walking and rollerblading. Once a month we will have rider competitions. Riders can sign up and sign a waiver. Initially, they’ll have to take a safety class that runs about an hour long, just teaches them track etiquette. After that, we can fit them with a rental bike, special shoes, helmets, and all the proper safety gear. We’ll walk them through the whole process. If they really get into it, we can help them at the Bike Shop, too.”

The primary goal of the facility is to train new riders. “We want to teach people how to race, or even just be a better rider,” Hughes explained. “We are recommended by the UCI, which is the governing committee for cycling, for riders preparing for a major event like the Olympics,” and teaching new riders is what he does best. “I tell everyone, to be in the NFL you’ll work super hard and dedicate your entire life to the sport. Still, there’s a slim chance, one in a million maybe, you’ll play professionally. With cycling, you still need to train and dedicate your time, but there’s not as big of a pool to get into. It’s a great opportunity for those aspiring to be in the Olympics. There will be open track times at the new velodrome. I encourage everyone to come down and try it out!”


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By: Maggie Boleyn

TEN HUT! THE FERNDALE HIGH SCHOOL MARCHING BAND IS PREPARING TO TAKE THE FIELD AT FORD FIELD THIS NOVEMBER,participating in the Michigan Competing Band Association (MCBA) State Championship Contest.

Many people have seen high school marching bands in action, but few watching the performance know how much hard work and long practice hours that staff and students put in to reach the state-level competition. “Marching Band at the highest level has become music theater on a football field,” says FHS Marching Band Director Elon J. Jamison. “The kids play, march, dance, sing, act, and so on. It is a monumental physical, mental, and emotional activity.” Jamison has been on staff at FHS for 20 years, serving more than a dozen years as FHS Marching Band Director.

FHS typically does very well in MCBA statewide events. “Ferndale has brought home top honors nine of the last 13 years,” says FHS assistant band director Audrey Langley.

There is quite a process in achieving a slot competing at the state level. Each spring, MCBA member bands are divided into four flights of competition based on school enrollment numbers taken from the second semester school count. The four MCBA competition flight levels range from schools with less than 728 students to greater than 1436 pupils.

Owing to enrollment numbers, FHS was moved into Flight IV competition for a couple of years. Under cur-rent criteria, FHS is again competing as a Flight III school. Langley, who served as volunteer for seven years prior, said “We have placed first in Flight IV the last two seasons and now the stakes are a little higher with our return to Flight III.”

To advance into the MCBA State Championship con-test, bands pay a $150.00 fee and must compete in at least two of the 20 or more contests that MCBA holds each year. A band must attain scores at MCBA contests placing it among the 12 highest scoring bands in its flight competition. Judging categories are weighted between musical, visual and overall general effect.

Despite the highly competitive nature, participating in marching band brings new awareness to students and fosters cooperation among students. “It really changes your perceptions of what is possible,” Langley said. “The band, staff, and parents literally create a show from nothing. Every single person involved has their sights on one goal – creating the best show possible. It unites people.”

No matter the size of the school, the competitive spirit is strong. “The competition is still quite stiff coming from the west side of the state,” Langley said. “Historically our biggest competitors in the Flight III category are Stevensville Lakeshore and Byron Center.”

ASIDE FROM ACHIEVING HIGH SCORES, music education in general and marching band participation particularly carries many benefits for students.

“Music educates the soul in a way that nothing else can,” Jamison said. “Music and music education teaches and expresses what cannot ever be properly expressed in words or pictures; it has to be heard, seen and felt to properly appreciate it. I often use the analogy that if, as they say, ‘a picture is worth a thousand words,’ a recording or live performance is worth a million.”

Langley adds, “Learning to play as a band teaches teamwork and selflessness. Working on a piece requires focus and determination. The kids learn to lift each other up. Students who participate in ensembles think more about the whole rather than just them-selves.” Langley went on to say, “This activity is the determining factor of success in many kids’ lives.”

Jamison notes students who participate in marching band also get an intense physical workout. “There has been research done that when marching band kids at this level are in the midst of a performance, all their vital statistics are maxed out: heart rate, lung capacity, mental activity – everything.”

Asked what she wished more people knew about FHS Marching Band, Langley replied, “I wish people knew how much we get done with very little funding, how much we are dependent upon the parent volunteers, and how dedicated the staff is to the students. They don’t get much limelight but are the reason the students are able to compete at the highest level. It isn’t just a bunch of kids marching around a field; it’s about the kids experiencing being a part of something bigger than themselves.”

INTERESTED COMMUNITY MEMBERS CAN HELP THE ARTS at FHS through the non-profit group FAB (Ferndale Fine Arts Boosters) which supports the march-ing band and other programs. “Marching band is a large subcommittee of FAB run by a handful of dedicated parents,” Langley said. “Without them, we would not be able to function at the level we do. They are wizards of finance.

“FAB meets the second Tuesday of every month in the Ferndale High School Media Center at 7:00 P.M. You need not have a student in the schools to be a member; all interested adults who wish to support FAB are welcome. A $5 donation or more helps continue the Fine Arts Program at FHS. Donations are tax deductible.

Ferndale Fine Arts Boosters – FAB 881 Pinecrest Ferndale, MI 48220

By Ferndale Schools Superintendent Blake Prewitt

The 2016-2017 school year is off to a great start! We’ve had so many exciting things happening around the district, it is hard to pick just a few to highlight! We look forward to more positive and impactful things and events happening throughout next semester as well!

Our Ferndale High School Golden Eagles Marching Band headed to Ford Field in early November to defend their state championship title. With a score of 91.65, the Golden Eagles clenched their second straight state championship title, bringing their total number of state championship wins up to nine over the last 13 years.

In addition to an overall win the Golden Eagles won all three caption awards; Out-standing Music Performance, Outstanding Visual Performance, and Outstanding General Effect. While it is wonderful for the band to have earned their 9th State Championship in the last 13 years, “I am particularly proud of this year’s band because over a third are first-year marchers, and yet the group as a whole ‘showed up for work’ every rehearsal and got incrementally better each time. That’s hard for any group to do, even far more experienced bands,” said Marching Band Director Elon Jamison

The Ferndale Eagle Football team also had an impressive season, finishing out 7-2 and making it to the State Playoffs! The Eagles went head-to-head with Detroit King at the end of October and, although they lost the game, the journey getting to that point is one worth noting. When Coach Royal started with Ferndale, there was waning interest in the program and as a result he had to move all interested junior varsity players up to the varsity team. Those 10th graders who moved up two years ago are the biggest reason for the team’s turnaround this year. “This 2017 class have set the bar high; they set the expectation for success. The three years they spent as varsity players taught them a lot. Through their hard work and preparation, they have shown the underclassmen what it takes to be successful,” said Coach Royal.

Coach Royal was also recognized for his work by being named “Coach of the Year” for Region 16 by the Michigan High School Football Coaches Association.

Story by David Wesley
Photos by Bernie Laframboise

Dave Mesrey is one of the many torches in Detroit helping to keep the city alight and colorful. His work is appreciated but not noted nearly enough to show the gratitude he deserves for his efforts. He’s a great reflection and representative of the city: he’s gone through bleak times and weathered the storms of change to prove things like cities and lives can be destroyed but never defeated. At 47, Dave Mesrey has become something of a local presence in the last few years with his work at Metro Times and at Navin Field. His past is shrouded in mystery, but I managed to pull the curtain back on his persona — with his permission of course.

David confesses to Ferndale Friends on his first run-ins with Metro Times: “I’d been reading it off and on since about 1989. I was a fan of Curt Guyette’s and Michael Jackman’s work, as well as Larry Gabriel, Jack Lessenberry, and the great music writer Brian Smith. I knew I wasn’t in their league, but I thought maybe I could trick ‘em into hiring me as their copy boy. It worked! From 2013-2015, I got to work alongside some ff-jj-dm-papermajor young talent like Ryan Felton and Lee DeVito. Prior to that, I even got to work in their Greektown office for a spell. In the ’90s I studied creative writing at WMU under Jaimy Gordon, who went on to win the National Book Award for Fiction in 2010. I’ve got a story about her, but it’s not for print.

Currently, I’m working on a short story for inclusion in Aaron Foley’s new Detroit neighborhood anthology for the Rust Belt Press. Aaron asked me, and I was honored. I lived for 24 years in Detroit’s Morningside neighborhood on the Far East side. I’ve got a lot of stories from my old neighborhood. I’ve never really had to travel far to find a good story.

When his history in downtown Detroit is mentioned, I ask him about his work at historic Navin Field. “Navin Field​ is the historic name of Tiger Stadium, which opened at the corner of Michigan and Trumbull on April 20, 1912.  Ty Cobb scored the Tigers’ first run by stealing home in the bottom of the first, but it was actually another guy who scored the very first run there in the top of the first inning: none other than Shoeless Joe Jackson. That’s why I like to say Navin Field is the real field of dreams.

“Six years ago, a local mailman named Tom Derry founded the Navin Field Grounds Crew, an all-volunteer group that restored and maintained historic Navin Field after Tiger Stadium was demolished in 2009. I thought Tom had the right idea, and I still do. He’s been a real inspiration for all of us. For six years, Tom led the effort to preserve the Tiger Stadium site and restore it to playing condition. It was really a labor of love.

In addition to my volunteer work with the Navin Field Grounds Crew, I’m a freelance writer and producer, and recently helped produce a segment for Channel 4 about Motown, Marvin Gaye, and his landmark album, WHAT’S GOING ON. I also interviewed former Detroit Lion Lem Barney for a piece in Metro Times. I also throw a birthday party every year for the late, great Mark ‘The Bird’ Fidrych in Corktown. We call it the Bird Bash.”

Dave has the candor and color of a rainbow and our chat pinballs from subject to subject. Ferndale pops into the conversation quickly, between bumpers of beers at Anita’s Kitchen. “I lived in Ferndale for four years, and I loved it. I like shopping at the Food Patch, I always take my bike to the Ferndale Bike Shop, and I love eating here at Anita’s. Joe and Jen Wegryzyn make you feel like family. I also have a penchant for sheltering wayward creatures. I’ve long been something of a wayward creature myself. To that end, I’ve turned my house into a mini animal rescue. It’s still a work in progress. Aren’t we all?

Our mutual writing projects come up, and he tells about a historical piece he’s working on about the history of the Hazel Park Racetrack. In 1980 his father died of a heart attack in the back of the grandstand. “The track has always been a magnet for me. Ever since my father first took me there in 1974. There’s something really spellbinding about the track for me. I’ve never been to Santa Anita or Churchill Downs. Hazel Park is the only track for me.” He says he will have been in the grandstand for opening day. “I wouldn’t miss it for the world.” he says.

As we wrap up our talk, and Woodward streaks and shines beside us with rush-hour traffic ten feet away, he gives me a parting punchline of good faith, “If you were to ask me what I want to be when I grow up, I’d probably say, ‘Good question. I’m still trying to figure that out.’”

If something happened with our heartiness, 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 disfunction. Learn more about “sildenafil“. What folk talk about “viagra stories“? The most substantial 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 heartiness problem such as heart 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 dysfunction. Even though this medicine is not for use in women, it is not known whether this treatment passes into breast milk.

Story by Sherrad Glosson | Photos by Ed Abeska

Sport Clips is a barber shop like no other. From the outside you might think it’s just like other shops that offer a haircut and a shave. Walking in, though, you find yourself in a sports mecca. You can watch various sports on big screen TVs scattered throughout the facility. There are lockers around the barber chairs. The seats say, ‘Ask for an MVP.’

ff11648_Page_1_Image_0001I had the opportunity to sit down with owner Mike Williams, and that was the first thing we spoke about. “I wanted to set myself apart from other barber shops around. I wanted to offer more than just haircuts but more of an experience. So I offer my customers an ‘MVP’ experience. My stylist are paid hourly like a regular job, and they get W2s just like everyone else. I didn’t want them to have to be private contractors. Ferndale is a very diverse town, and I want to provide for the community and offer jobs to people locally.”

ff11648_Page_1_Image_0004As the conversation went on, he explained to me that instead of providing just a haircut to his customers, they also get a hot, steamed towel treatment, a massaging shampoo treatment, and a neck and shoulder massage. I had the pleasure of seeing for myself, and I can report that Sport Clips is indeed more than just a cut and dash.

ff11648_Page_1_Image_0003I was led to the back room and a lovely lady sat me down in a chair. The lights were dimmed and she laid my head back to rest. In my head, I was under the impression that this only happened in hair salons, but I was mistaken. She told me to close my eyes and I relaxed as she placed a hot towel around my neck and began to massage my scalp. Total bliss. I didn’t want to get up! Moments later we were done. While sitting in the barber chair I had the chance to catch the Lions game on a big screen TV directly in front of me. I had the best time of my life while getting a haircut!

ff11648_Page_1_Image_0005During our conversation, Mike made mention of something I thought vitally important. “I don’t want people to have the misconception that this business is a part of a corporate chain. This location is solely owned by me. Although there are 1,500 Sport Clips nationwide, all but 40 are individually owned.” Mike hires local employees, and also sponsors local schools and events throughout the city of Ferndale. Mike is an entrepreneur and firm believer of giving back to the community, and not just pulling money from it.

In closing I asked Mike about his goal and mission statement, and here’s what he said: “I want to continue to offer the community a championship haircut experience for men and boys in an exciting sports environment.” Through personal experience, I can assure you that if you want a haircut experience like no other, Sport Clips is the way to go!

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 impotency and other states coupled to erectile disfunction. Learn more about “sildenafil“. What folk talk about “viagra stories“? The most vital aspect you have to 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 dysfunction include 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 treatment passes into breast milk.

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Story by Kevin Alan Lamb

“In the end, it’s about the teaching, and what I always loved about coaching was the practices. Not the games, not the tournaments, not the alumni stuff. But teaching the players during practice was what coaching was all about to me.” – John Wooden

Mindy and Dirk Vandermeer have spent the last 15 years volunteering as soccer coaches for the Ferndale Recreation Department. More important than the outcome of any game, however, is a coach’s ability to form meaningful connections with players and instill the values of hard work and cooperation.

“You don’t have to like, or be best friends with each other, but learn to work together. We all have to deal with that in life,” Dirk says.

At a young age competitive sport teaches children to value others based on their effort, attitude, and passion. In many ways a team is like a family; its ability to communicate, sacrifice, and endure hardship will determine its success.

“With coaching, it gets hard having time with my wife and the kids, and work, but I can’t stop yet because I did it for all of them.”

Named Volunteer Soccer Coaches of the Season (2013) by the Ferndale Recreation Department, the Vandermeers continue to run into players they coached over the years.

“It’s great when you see older kids that I coached, now having babies of their own at 24. Some still call you coach, but not many. You get to know so many kids, but you can’t remember them all, and they don’t all remember you. Certain kids will always stick out.”

If you have spent time around sports there’s a good chance you’ve heard the phrase, “Those who can’t play, coach.”

In the case of these two Ferndalians, we see that there are two sides to every coin.

“I was awful at soccer. Mindy was good, really good. She played with the men’s high school team because there wasn’t a team for girls. She talked me into coaching. We have a 23 year-old, Madison, and a seven-year-old who should be the last one.”

Coaching your child is a special experience. While I have no children, I was a competitive athlete blessed enough to spend a number of my developmental years with my dad as a coach. We traveled from town to town, staying in hotels where I came to recognize the smell of chlorine as a sign of vacation. If you’re interested in coaching your child’s team, but lacking some abilities, let Dirk be your reminder and permission to coach anyway. The coaches I remember most are the ones who helped me be the person I am today.

“I’m not a great coach by any means, but I teach a love for the game. Winning is great, but if you win half the games it’s a good season. It’s not good to pound kids, so it’s good to be somewhere in the middle.”

Life is a numbers game: Get your kicks in and eventually you will score a goal. While winning offers a reward for our sweat equity, learning to be a good person is the gift that keeps giving.

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