The past week held a lot of anticipation about the end of the winter sports season as student-athletes prepared for trips to state finals. Gymnasts from several schools, including Canton and Northville earned a trip the finals next week, for instance. But this week was all about wrestling, as the individual competition ended Saturday at the The Palace of Auburn Hills. Here is a look at how athletes in the Mitten fared:
- Lake Fenton was the big winner this weekend. Three of the school's wrestlers brought home state titles. Seniors Zach Corcoran, Justin Melick and Connor Brancheau each earned first place at the Michigan High School Athletic Association Individual State Finals for Wrestling.
- Anthony Abro became the second wrestling state champion in Canton High School history. Abro finishes the season 60-0 after beating a wrestler from Detroit Catholic Central.
- If Nick Gajdzik had 10 more seconds, he might have taken home a state title for Stoney Creek High School in Rochester Hills. But the junior nabbed a second-place medal, along with sophomore teammate Josh Wood.
- Milan High School's Tim Sims capped his senior year by earning third place finish at the finals.
- Brighton coach Sam Amine was named one of two Division 1 coaches of the year by the MHSAA. And Brighton senior Brandon Hill earned a third-place finished at the finals.
- Hartland also had a third-place finisher in senior John Julien.
- Ferndale's Chavez Farris finished strong in his final two matches to take third place.
- In Macomb, Dakota's Greg Day placed third at 140 pounds.
And here's what else is going on Around the Mitten this week:
Hansen Clarke Introduces Himself to Downriver
U.S. Rep. Hansen Clarke made his first appearance Downriver since beating out longtime Congresswoman Carolyn Cheeks Kilpatrick in November. Clarke visited Southgate and talked about his vision for Michigan's resurgence and gave his thoughts about recently being the butt of a joke on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.
Clawson courts community to approve $4 million school bond proposal
Every school in Clawson will get updated technology if voters approve a 1.3-mill technology bond in May. School faculty, parents and residents gathered Monday night to discuss the $4 million proposal from the Clawson School District. It was the first of many meetings the district plans to hold in its grassroots effort to gain support from the community. Many parents and residents say they will support the school technology millage, but agree that it could be a tough sell for a lot of older residents.
Board Votes to Close Highland Middle School
The Huron Valley Schools Board of Education voted Thursday to close Highland Middle School. The vote ended more than nearly a year of debate about how to address the issue of declining revenue and enrollment. District officials say the closure will save $800,000 annually and allow maximum enrollment in the middle school for new curriculum.
New Baltimore Allows Guns in Parks
New Baltimore reversed a ban on firearms and ammunition in the city parks after reviewing Michigan laws. The city revisited the issue because an Eastpointe-based gun rights group, Michigan Carry Inc., was turned down from marching in last summer's Fishfly Festival.
Township's Switch to Green Energies Expected to Save Thousands
At his 2011 State of the Township address, Macomb Township Supervisor Mark Grabow introduced his plan to reduce the township’s energy costs by 25 percent, saving the township some $200,000 a year on its utility bill. Moving forward with these plans, the township is installing LEDs and a state-of-the-art HVAC control system in its buildings to lower energy costs.
Still No Gas Station for Oakland Township
Oakland Township, which doesn't have a gas station anywhere within its 36 square miles, will have to wait even longer for the convenience after the township planning commission voted unanimously not to recommend a Planned Unit Development amendment that would allow the local Kroger to construct a gas station.
Girl Talk Gets Plymouth Township Moving
Electronic musician Girl Talk played at Compuware Arena Thursday night in front of a massive crowd that filled the arena shoulder to shoulder. The show was a massive party and a wildly good time and, according to the musician himself, the biggest crowd of any show on his current tour.
West Bloomfield Students Get Political Leadership Experience
A new elective course at West Bloomfield High School has given students this school year the opportunity to serve an internship in various legal, law, and political positions within and outside the township.
Bagger Dave's Brings "Legendary" Burgers to Downtown Brighton
Michigan-based company opens fourth location in Brighton, on the cusp of franchising throughout the Midwest. The concept has diners build their own burger, starting with a beef, turkey or veggie black bean patty and choosing from 30 toppings, including french fries, fried eggs and jalapeno peppers. Sweet potato chips, hand-dipped shakes and Michigan craft beer round out offerings.
Berkley Bakery Gets New Name, Hours
The building that housed the former Ballcap Bakery in Berkley reopened for business Tuesday as the Butterfly Bake Shoppe. The new owner held a grand opening celebration Saturday. The new bakery offers all kinds of sweet treats, including fantastical cakes, as well as coffee.
Farmington Hills DSO Member "Cautiously Optimistic"
Larry Hutchinson plays bass for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra (DSO), but he hasn’t performed at Orchestra Hall since last fall due to contract disputes with DSO management. On Tuesday, the musicians’ union offered to go back to work without a contract, pending an agreement by DSO management to move to binding arbitration. Musicians would work under the terms of the most recent contract offer until arbitration is complete. “I think it’s the right thing to do,” he said. “I think everyone is regarding this as an olive branch, and that’s what it is.
After Weeklong Search, Woman Finds Lost Dog in Rochester Hills
Aida Severini passed out a thousand fliers and enlisted the help of a pet detective and a missing dog alert calling system when her German Shepherd, Asha, went missing last week. After walking more than 25 hours day and night, she found the dog, who had crossed from one side of Rochester Hills to the other. The dog is fine.
And that's the news from Around the Mitten this week. See you next Sunday, Patch readers