Week of 11.30.15

Welcome to the home of Social Lights. New online reports with photos appear each week on the website and in the monthly print editions for the Birmingham-Bloomfield area and the Rochester-Rochester Hills area at the start of each month. If you are not receiving the print edition by mail, you can purchase a subscription in the upper right index at the top of this page (subscriptions). If you want e-mail notification of when new Social Lights columns are posted to this site each Monday, sign up in the Newsletter Sign Up box at the lower right side of this home page.

CCS’s Night of Angels Oktoberfest

What started at the Country Club of Detroit in the mid-80s as a joyous but sedate auction and formal dinner party fundraiser changed its stripes big time last month when Sarah Dodge’s Christ Child Society committee put a German spin on the annual Night of Angels. It was obviously an idea whose time had come as Night of Angels Oktoberfest attracted more than 500 ($125, $250, $500 tickets) to the Royal Oak Farmers Market on a Friday night. Many society members brought friends who were new to the organization that serves the needs of disadvantaged children in Detroit and Pontiac. Diversions included a silent and robust live auction, craft brewery stations (see photo gallery), a cigar tent, a hearty buffet featuring German sausages, schnitzel and sauerkraut, and the music of Good Gravy. The festivities paused for Christ Child House executive director John Yablonky to be honored for his 20 years of exemplary service to the at-risk boys who reside there.
This weeks social light photos…

W. Maple ballot petitions to be submitted

Birmingham resident Jim Mirro reported on Wednesday, November 25, that he plans to turn in petitions with 1,426 signatures to Birmingham City Hall on Monday, November 30, requesting a city charter amendment on the March 8, 2016 election ballot to keep Maple Road a four-lane road....more>

Transferring funds to VEBA approved

Funds that had been collected in Bloomfield Township's water and sewer fund, but earmarked for retiree healthcare in a voluntary employee benefit association (VEBA) in 2009, were approved to be moved to the appropriate line item fund at the board of trustee's meeting on Monday, November 23, but not before township treasurer Dan Devine fought that it was not something he was aware of, nor felt it was appropriate accounting, despite finance director Jason Theis bringing it to his attention, and an outside auditor and attorneys affirming it was necessary and right....more>

Committee to study Rail District parking

Birmingham city commissioners, unhappy with recommendations from the city's Multi-Modal Transportation Board for the S. Eton Road corridor, unanimously asked staff on Monday, November 22, to come back with a committee to study the parking capacity in the Rail District. ...more>

Bicycle route for city needs more work

A proposed bicycle route circling throughout Birmingham's neighborhoods with attendant signage was determined to still need more work at the city commission meeting on Monday, November 23, with city manager Joe Valentine saying he will bring it back when it has revisions....more>

New fire station designs criticized

Designs for Birmingham's proposed new Chesterfield Fire Station were roundly criticized by the city's planning board during a courtesy review on Wednesday, November 11....more>

Shell station to become mini-mart

While denied the opportunity to stay open 24-hours, the owner of the Village Shell gas station at Maple and Lahser roads in Bloomfield Township did receive approvals to renovate as a mini-mart with extended hours of 6 a.m. to midnight daily....more>

Arthur Avenue opening Tuesday

Sharing a kitchen with adjacent Birmingham restaurant Au Cochon, Italian restaurant Arthur Avenue will open Tuesday, December 1, at 5 p.m....more>

Winter Markt returns to Birmingham

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas, especially in Birmingham's Shain Park with the sixth annual Birmingham Winter Markt event Friday, December 4, through Sunday, December 6, with European holiday offerings, food and drinks....more>

Irrigation meters may cut wastewater bills

Rochester residents who heavily irrigate their lawns have the option of installing an irrigation water meter, which will "quantify the amount of water going to irrigation and deduct that amount from the sewer costs," according to information recently released by the city's department of public works (DPW)....more>

Council votes on mayor, mayor pro-tem

Rochester City Council voted on Tuesday, November 24, to elect Cathy Daldin for mayor and Kim Russell for mayor pro tem; both positions became effective immediately. ...more>

Rochester Hometown Christmas Parade

"The Sounds of Christmas" is the theme for this year's 64th annual Rochester Hometown Christmas Parade, beginning at 2 p.m. on Sunday, December 6....more>

Rochester applies for CDBG funds

The Rochester City Council unanimously approved an application to the federal Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) program on Tuesday, November 24, to put the $23,766 of available grant money toward the $55,000 project to improve handicap accessibility and maintain the poured-in place playground surface on the west side of Municipal Park. ...more>

Fur vests stolen from furrier

A man walked into a Birmingham fur store on Sunday, November 15, and walked out with two fur vests he hadn't paid for....more>

Two cars stolen from Lavery dealership

Birmingham police were notified that two cars were stolen from the Fred Lavery dealership after having been dropped off or parked there....more>

Rochester Hills man faces child porn charges

William Snody, a 62-year-old resident of Rochester Hills, was arrested on Thursday, November 19, and is facing federal charges of receipt and possession of child pornography. ...more>

Angry ex-boyfriend shatters window

An angry ex-boyfriend allegedly punched and shattered the driver's side window of his ex-girlfriend's car when she locked him out of the vehicle at a parking lot in Rochester Hills, on Thursday, November 12. ...more>

Man stabs own arm, blames woman

After an investigation revealed that a Shelby Township man had assaulted a Shelby Township woman in a parking lot on the 6000 block of Orion Road in Rochester Hills, the man was arrested for felonious assault and filing a false police report, then taken to Oakland County Jail. ...more>

Stolen speaker triggers alarm

A 21-year-old woman from Auburn Hills was arrested for retail fraud at the Rochester Hills Walmart, 2500 S. Adams Road, after an officer found a wireless speaker and its empty packaging in her backpack, on Monday, November 23. ...more>

Detroit man has rental car vandalized

A Detroit man reported to Rochester Hills sheriff deputies that his rental car was damaged while it was parked at The Village of Rochester Hills on Adams Road. ...more>

Boat egged in driveway

A Rochester Hills man reported to Oakland County Sheriff deputies that his boat had been egged while parked in the driveway at the 400 block of Thalia Avenue. ...more>

Sex offender registry

If knowledge is power, then it would seem that knowing the names, addresses and other identifying information of some 38,521 state-registered sex ­offenders in Michigan, including more than 1,800 in Oakland County, would help give the public the ability to keep themselves and their children safe....more>

Challenging local taxes

Before Northland Mall shuttered its doors and fell into foreclosure, it was already costing the city of Southfield millions of dollars, as its owners challenged the city's assessed value, the price a municipality determines for tax purposes what a property is worth. ...more>

Artificial playing fields

Old car and truck tires, pulverized and repurposed, create cushioning in artificial athletic fields nationwide, enabling schools to increase the number of practices and games played, yet the safety of crumb rubber – tiny black rubber particles, called "turf bugs" in the sports community – remains disputed as a purported cause of increased injuries to student athletes. There are also numerous parents, coaches, and physicians nationwide who cite an increase of serious illnesses, including cancer, in those athletes who have played on artificial crumb rubber turf. Yet studies remain ambiguous as more and more school districts add artificial turf to their high school playing fields....more>
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