Macomb County has places to go during spring break

If you weren’t able to get out of Michigan with your family this spring break, don’t fret. Macomb County has many great places to explore and visit. Below is a list of places guaranteed to provide entertainment for everyone:  

Indoor learners
Learn all about Macomb County’s military history at the Selfridge Military Air Museum with new hours of operation beginning April 1.

Mall madness
2017 April Kids Club Spring BreakMacomb County is home to a few great malls: Partridge Creek, Macomb and Lakeside that can all provide entertainment over spring break. Macomb Mall has just announced its Kids Club, for those 10 and under, will be hosting three events for children on spring break. All events are free, held from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. and are held in the Dick’s Sporting Goods Court.

  • Tuesday, April 4, Puppet Show & Learning How to Make Your Own Puppets
  • Wednesday, April 5, Magic Show & Learning Magic Tricks
  • Thursday, April 6, Life-Sized Candy Land Game & Face Painting

Register on-line at or fill out a sign-up form available at every Kids Club event. For more information, please visit

Parks and recreation enthusiasts
Check with your local Parks and Recreation department to see what seasonal offerings are scheduled. The Warren Community Center boasts an indoor waterpark comprised of a lap pool, pool basketball, waterslide, lazy river and play structure complete with a water cannon and waterfall. Other nice amenities for adults include a sauna, steam room and fitness room. Play miniature golf any day of the week at Jawor’s on Gratiot in Roseville. It has an 18-hole course for kids of all ages and is open year-round.

Get hands-on and join your kid for a skate around the rink. The St. Clair Shores Ice Arena and Mount Clemens Ice Arena both have public skating hours and learn-to-skate programs.

Be sure to head to one of Macomb County’s metroparks. The metroparks are featuring a different spring break activity every day next week. For example, at 1 p.m. on April 3, attendees can learn about owls living in Michigan during Spring Break Hoots at Lake St. Clair Metropark, 31300 Metro Parkway, Harrison Township. Or, head over to Wolcott Mill from April 1-8 for Babies, Babies Everywhere – Farm Center. Attendees can visit baby animals at the farm and an animal handler will be in each barn to answer questions. Attendees can visit from 10 a.m. to noon and from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on the above listed days. The cost is $3. Wagon rides are also available for an additional price. Wolcott Mill Farm Center is located at 65775 Wolcott Road, Ray, 48096.

Indoor rompers
If it’s still cool outside, Macomb County has plenty of indoor entertainment facilities geared toward getting off some steam. Try Chuck E. Cheese in Roseville or Sterling Heights. Jungle Java in Clinton Township is an indoor play center with a sports court and laser maze. It includes a separate toddler play area and a full menu.

Let the kids burn off energy at the Bounce House in New Baltimore, St. Clair Shores or Sterling Heights. It consists of giant inflatable slides, moon walks and an obstacle course along with arcade games that might even entertain mom and dad. Try Airtime in Sterling Heights or Sky Zone Trampoline Park in Shelby Township for open jumping on wall-to-wall trampolines, foam pits, dodgeball and basketball. Although closed during the week right now, CJ Barrymore’s is still open on the weekend.

antonArts and culture supporters
Macomb County offers an abundance of art and culture experiences for youth. Check out some of the performances and classes that may be available for youth during this time of year.
Macomb Center for the Performing Arts (Clinton Township)
Clintondale Community Theatre (Clinton Township)
Anton Art Center (Mount Clemens)
Plaster Playhouse (Shelby Township)

Cinema seekers
If all else fails, a good movie and some delicious popcorn should keep the family entertained for a few hours!
Emagine Macomb (Macomb Township)
AMC Star Gratiot 21 (Clinton Township)
MJR Partridge Creek Digital Cinema 14 (Clinton Township)

Most of all, no matter what you decide to do this break, know Macomb County has you covered!

Sarah (Cormier) Davis works for the Macomb County Executive Office as a communications specialist.

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Macomb County libraries provide bookmarks in childhood reading (Part 3)

Today we continue with our series about book recommendations from Macomb County’s librarians. The following are recommendations from Deborah Motley, head of Public Services at the Romeo District Library:

Any Mo Willems because he speaks to simple emotions that kids can relate to.
The Bear Books by Karma Wilson (Bear Snores On, Bear Wants More, etc.) encompass the repetitive nature in which kids can participate.
Bark, George by Jules Feiffer because kids can participate saying the animal sounds.

AmeliaEarly elementary:
Amelia Bedelia by Peggy Parrish for the sheer silliness of it.
Junie B. Jones by Barbara Park because kids can relate to her experience.
Magic Tree House by Mary Pope Osborne includes history, time travel and adventure! What could be better?

Upper elementary:
Current favorite is War that Saved My Life by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley. Kids like stories of overcoming adversity, and this also has historical overtones.
Wonder by R.J. Palacio for the same reasons as above, and I think kids can relate to feeling like an outsider.
Any Raina Telgemeier graphic novel format because there are situations kids can relate to.

From our teen librarian:

Middle school:
The Girl Who Drank the Moon – Kelly Barnhill
Pax – Sara Pennypacker
The Fourteenth Goldfish – Jennifer Holm
Furthermore – Tahereh Mafi

High school:
Ripple – Heather Smith Meloche
The Reader – Traci Chee
Still Life with Tornado – A.S. King
Eleanor & Park – Rainbow Rowell
A Silent Voice (Manga Series) – Yoshitoki Oima

This post is part of a series that will run through the month of March on the Make Macomb Your Home blog. Deborah Motley is head of Public Services at the Romeo District Library

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It’s time to think spring! The Spring 2017 Tree, Shrub and Plant Sale has begun!

What would it be like to grow apples in your own backyard? Would a flowering dogwood add pop to your front lawn? Is your business looking to add to its landscaping on a budget?

Kay's Appalachian Mist by A. Windham

Flowering Dogwood


Macomb County is excited to announce the Spring 2017 Tree, Shrub and Plant Sale, a new collaboration between Green Macomb and the Sanilac/St. Clair Conservation District. The spring sale provides an opportunity for the public to purchase young trees, fruit trees, flowering shrubs, native pollinator wildflower seed, fruits and vegetables at the most reasonable prices you can find.

Residents of more rural and agricultural communities may already be familiar with the Conservation District’s very popular spring tree sale, a well-established program which encourages reforestation and provides thousands of trees to the public at a discounted rate in Sanilac, St. Clair and northern Macomb County. While historically focused on rural and agricultural areas, this program is expanding in 2017 in partnership with Green Macomb to all communities of Macomb County.

Planting trees provides many benefits including increased property values, cleaner air and water, lower energy bills, more attractive neighborhoods and healthier communities. This sale’s plant selection is specifically tailored to provide these benefits and increase local community tree canopy.

To place an order, mail or email your completed order form with payment to the St. ClairSpring 4 Conservation District by April 6, then pick up your order at Freedom Hill County Park during Arbor Day celebrations from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.  Friday, April 28 or 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, April 29. Remaining unsold stock will also available for in-person purchase during these times while supplies last.

The trees and shrubs available through this sale are bare-root, which means they will not come with any soil. Using bare-root stock is a great way to reduce costs and more quickly establish planted trees and shrubs, but it is very important for long-term success that they are properly planted and cared for. Bare-root stock should be planted as soon as possible. Prior to planting, they should be kept cool (but not frozen) and out of the sun, and never let the roots dry out.

The Arbor Day Foundation has guidance on how to plant bare-root trees, as do many other landscape and gardening companies. The Gardener’s Supply Company in particular has a great description of how to plant bare-root trees and shrubs.

Presale order forms and additional information are available at

 Tree Benefit GraphicUPDATED_March2017

Spring 1 Spring 2

Brent Geurink is an associate planner for the Macomb County Department of Planning & Economic Development’s Land and Water Resources Group.

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Macomb County libraries provide bookmarks in childhood reading (Part 2)

ReadingToday we continue with our series about book recommendations from Macomb County’s librarians. The following are recommendations from Lisa Martin, branch librarian at the Warren Public Library

Some of the most popular choices for children are books with a graphic format, such as graphic novels like Big Nate or chapter books like Diary of a Wimpy Kid.  Elementary-aged children love for their chapter books to have graphics that add to the story’s appeal and enjoyment. New movies or television series also influence the choices for children and teens. Before I Fall is currently showing at the theater, so teens who have never read the book are now interested. Netflix has a Series of Unfortunate Events series, so the book series by Lemony Snicket has become in demand again. Classics like The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Curious George never go out of style for the preschool set. Dr. Seuss books are always popular, but are especially popular during the month of March when we celebrate Reading Month. Sometimes there are only a few Dr. Seuss books left on the shelves during March! Older children also enjoy biographies and true stories, such as those found in the I Survived and Who Was?/Who Is? chapter books.


  • The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
  • Curious George by H. A. Rey
  • The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats
  • Llama, Llama Red Pajama by Anna Dewdney
  • How do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight by Jane Yolen
  • Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Jr.
  • Bear Snores on by Karma Wilson

Early elementary:

  • The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt
  • Pete the Cat (series) by James Dean
  • Junie B. Jones (series) by Barbara Park
  • Magic Tree House (series) by Mary Pope Osborne
  • The Book with No Pictures by B. J. Novak
  • Elephant and Piggie (series) by Mo Willems
  • Those Darn Squirrels! by Adam Rubin
  • Mouse and Mole (series) by Wong Herbert Yee
  • Creepy Carrots! by Aaron Reynolds

 Late elementary:

  • Wonder by R. J. Palacio
  • Dog Man by Dav Pilkey
  • I Survived (series) by Lauren Tarshis
  • Double Down by Jeff Kinney (Diary of a Wimpy Kid series)
  • Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library by Chris Grabenstein
  • Chasing Vermeer by Blue Balliett
  • The Watsons Go to Birmingham—1963 by Christopher Paul Curtis
  • Big Nate (series) by Lincoln Peirce

Middle school:

  • Ghosts by Raina Telgemeier
  • The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan (Trials of Apollo series)
  • Who Was Anne Frank? by Ann Abramson (“Who Was?” and “Who is?” series)
  • Middle School: Escape to Australia by James Patterson
  • The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snicket
  • The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart
  • Al Capone Does My Shirts by Gennifer Choldenko
  • Artemis Fowl (series) by Eoin Colfer

High school: 

  • The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon
  • King’s Cage by Victoria Aveyard (Red Queen series)
  • The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak
  • Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs (Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children series)
  • Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver
  • Noggin by John Corey Whaley
  • The Hired Girl by Laura Amy Schlitz

This post is part of a series that will run through the month of March on the Make Macomb Your Home blog. Lisa Martin is branch librarian at the Warren Public Library

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St. Patrick’s Day: A list of the best Irish celebrations in Macomb County!

Corn Beef SandwichWhether you’re looking to embrace your Irish roots or you just want to don your greenest attire and have a bit of fun, you’ll have your pick of festivities this St. Patrick’s Day. A multitude of bars, restaurants and banquet halls all across Macomb County are preparing to host festive events on Friday, March 17! Not sure where you want to celebrate? Here are a few establishments in Macomb County offering special festivities in honor of St. Patrick’s Day:

Shamrockin’ Mount Clemens
This year, downtown Mount Clemens is hosting two full days of St. Patrick’s Day fun! Shamrockin’ Mount Clemens begins at 10 a.m. on Friday, March 17 at O’Halloran’s Public House where Karen Savelly from WCSX will be broadcasting live. Additional WCSX live broadcasts will occur at Three Blind Mice Irish Pub (3 p.m.) and Not Your Mother’s Bar and Grill (7 p.m.). On Saturday, March 18 WCSX is hosting the best street party around on Macomb Place between Pine and South Gratiot! Kick off the day with the Keggs & Eggs breakfast at 10 a.m. Throughout the day, there will also be live bands and DJs, drink specials, games and bagpipers. Tickets are available at!

Dooley’s Irish Tavern & Wild Woody’s
Dooley’s Roseville, 32500 Gratiot Avenue, opens at 6 a.m. with a live broadcast from the WRIF-FM (101.1) morning show’s Dave & Chuck the Freak and will have a heated party tent set up.

Dooley’s Taverns will provide a free party bus to Wild Woody’s Bar, 45660 Mound Road in Shelby Township, all day long. Mr. Dooleys, their resident leprechaun, will be dancing on the bars, and there will be DJs spinning Irish music, bagpipers, swag giveaways and a breakfast/lunch menu packed with Irish dishes.

Kuhnhenn Brewing Co.
Kuhnhenn is one of Macomb County’s most famous and popular breweries. Both Clinton Township, 36000 Groesbeck Hwy., and Warren, 5919 Chicago Road, locations will release exclusive draft beers and have other St. Patrick’s Day festivities.

On Friday, March 17 the Warren Taproom opens at 7 a.m. for the Feast of St. Patrick – a deliciously handmade breakfast overseen by their own chef that benefits local charities. For only $5 per person, patrons can enjoy blueberry pancakes, corned beef hash, scrambled eggs, breakfast sausage and biscuits and gravy! Live entertainment begins at 5 p.m. with Reggie Smith and the After Party. Every Night in Vegas and St. Thomas Boys Academy will also perform throughout the night.

The Clinton Township Taproom opens at 11 a.m. for your drinking and dining pleasure, featuring some amazing Irish specialties created by Chef Larry.

Three Blind Mice Irish Pub
Three Blind Mice Irish Pub, located in downtown Mount Clemens, is a unique Irish pub offering a variety of fare and craft beer. On St. Patrick’s Day, the bar will open at 7 a.m. and offer a complimentary Irish breakfast buffet until 10 a.m. The bar features two floors and a heated tent. There will be live music all day, including DJ Loki, the Orbitsuns, Bill Grogans Goat and Backtrack. Throughout the day, there will be food and drink specials, bagpipers and dancers! Three Blind Mice Irish Pub is located at 101 North Main Street, Mount Clemens.

Pat O’Brien’s Tavern
Pat O'Briens
Located on the Nautical Mile in St. Clair Shores, Pat O’Brien’s is one of the best Irish spots around. Head over at 7 a.m. for free Irish breakfast and stick around until the tent opens with live entertainment at 10 a.m. Pat O’Brien’s Tavern is located at 22385 E. 10 Mile Road, St. Clair Shores.

Tilted Kilt
Head to the Tilted Kilt in Sterling Heights where Jay Hudson from 89X will broadcast live from 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. Pick up your official limited edition 89X St. Paddy’s T-shirt while you’re there along with 89X swag! Enjoy the heated tent, Live DJs and bands all day. There will also be bagpipers, authentic Irish fare and the world-famous Kilt Girls! Tilted Kilt, located at 44935 Hayes Road in Sterling Heights, will open at 8 a.m.!

Vintage House Banquets and Catering
The Vintage House has developed one of the area’s biggest parties with live music indoors and outdoors, two huge heated tents and a free ride home for those who have a little too much to drink.

Entertainers include Planet of Fun, Parallel Fifth, Meldrum Brothers Band, DJ Godfather, DJ Chrome and DJ Cue – just to mention a few. The brand-new Grizzly Pear from Blake’s Hard Cider Co. will be available, along with the already popular Flannel Mouth. A free breakfast buffet runs 6 a.m. to 10 a.m., and the O’Vintage corned beef sandwiches are back. There is no cover before noon. The Vintage House is located at 31816 Utica Road, Fraser.

Rosie O’Grady’s Irish Pub
Another year-round Irish joint will celebrate with music, Irish fare and green beer. Meltdown from the 101 WRIF will broadcast live from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. There will be plenty of live music and tons of WRIF swag up for grabs including their St. Patrick’s Day shirts while supplies last. Try your luck in the WRIF Pot O’ Gold – pull your coin for a chance to win tickets, movie passes and more! Rosie O’Grady’s Chesterfield Township is located at 30400 23 Mile Road.

Malone’s Tavern
MalonesBagPipersDon’t miss the best St. Patrick’s party on the Eastside! Malone’s Tavern, 32350 Van Dyke Avenue, Warren, will open at 7 a.m. with breakfast, green beer and Irish music. There is no cover and a complimentary shuttle will be offered for parking. Throughout the day, there will be Irish bands, bagpipers and Irish food and drink specials! Meet the Jim Beam ladies and the Guinness mascot, plus have a chance to win Malone’s swag and gift cards or Budweiser bar stools.

Hamlin Pub
Hamlin Pub has two Macomb County locations, 48929 Hayes Road in Shelby Township and 50659 Gratiot Avenue in Chesterfield Township, and both locations will be celebrating St. Paddy’s Day! Celebrate with Screamin’ Scott from the WRIF at the Shelby Township location starting at 5 p.m. Of course, there will be green beer, no cover and Irish fare.

Amanda Minaudo is a senior planner in the Macomb County Department of Planning & Economic Development. She often contributes to the Make Macomb Your Home Blog, writing about the many fun and exciting things to see and do around Macomb County. 

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Macomb County libraries provide bookmarks in childhood reading

March is a month full of reading celebrations, from National Reading Month to Read Across America day which coincides with ­­Dr. Seuss’s birthday on March 2. Macomb County is full of really great libraries that inspire reading in both children and adults. Here at Make Macomb Your Home, we wanted to find out what some of our local librarians recommend to help keep children of all ages – from preschool to high school – engaged in reading.

IMG_5555The following are recommendations from Lisa Mulvenna, head of Youth/Young Adult Services at Clinton-Macomb Public Library in Clinton Township. This post is part of a series that will run through the month of March on the Make Macomb Your Home blog.

Five Little Monkeys Reading in Bed by Eileen Christelow
The mischievous five little monkeys are back in this story where they are caught reading in bed. The catchy rhyme and the fun story show that reading is fun.

 Freight Train by Donald Crews
Not only is this story about the popular preschool topic of trains, but each car in the train is a different color. This is a great story for talking about colors. 

Bark, George by Jules Feiffer
This is my favorite picture book. George goes to the vet because he just can’t make the right dog sounds. The vet soon gets to the bottom of the problem.

 My Heart is Like a Zoo by Michael Hall
While this is a cute story with animals, all of the illustrations are made out of hearts. This promotes shape knowledge for the PreK set. As a fun extension activity, cut out a bunch of hearts and create your own animals!

Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons by Eric Litwin
The popular Pete the Cat has a yellow coat with four groovy buttons. What happens as they fall off one by one?

We Are in A Book! By Mo Willems
Gerald the Elephant and Piggie have a great time making the reader say silly words.

Early elementary
Hi! Fly Guy by Tedd Arnold
A boy and a fly become friends in this story with silly drawings that is perfect for kids just beginning to read.

The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt
While you can read this story to younger kids, the early elementary kids are the ones who will really get the humor.  Each color crayon in the crayon box has quit and writes a letter complaining about how Duncan uses them.

Late elementary
The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate
When Ivan, a gorilla who has lived for years in a down-and-out circus-themed mall, meets PAWS GirlRuby, a baby elephant that has been added to the mall, he decides he must find her a better life.

El Deafo by Cece Bell
The author tells her story in this graphic novel. Cece experienced hearing loss at a young age, and the reader follows as she accepts her disability.

Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library by Chris Grabenstein
Kyle gets to stay overnight in the new town library with other students but finds that he must work with his friends to solve puzzles in order to escape in the morning.

Pax by Sara Pennypacker
After being forced to give up his pet fox Pax, a young boy named Peter decides to leave home and get his best friend back.

Middle school
Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard by Rick Riordan
In the newest series by the author of the Percy Jackson series, Magnus Chase is the son of a Norse god and the Viking myths are true. Magnus must go on a quest to search the Nine Worlds for a weapon that has been lost for thousands of years.

Middle School: The Worst Years of My Life by James Patterson and Chris Tebbets
When Rafe Khatchadorian enters middle school, he teams up with his friend, “Leo the Silent,” to make school more fun by trying to break every rule in the school’s code of conduct.

Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli
In this story about the perils of popularity, the courage of nonconformity and the thrill of first love, an eccentric student named Stargirl changes Mica High School forever.

High school
The Maze Runner by James Dashner
Sixteen-year-old Thomas wakes up with no memory in the middle of a maze and realizes he must work with the community in which he finds himself if he is to escape.

IMG_5317An Abundance of Katherines by John Green
Having been recently dumped for the nineteenth time by a girl named Katherine, recent high school graduate and former child prodigy Colin sets off on a road trip with his best friend to try to find some new direction in life while also trying to create a mathematical formula to explain his relationships.

I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson
A story of first love, family, loss and betrayal told from different points in time, and in separate voices, by Jude and her twin brother Noah.

It’s Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini
A humorous account of a New York City teenager’s battle with depression and his time spent in a psychiatric hospital.

Lisa Mulvenna is head of Youth/Young Adult Services at Clinton-Macomb Public Library in Clinton Township.

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Go Fish! (and find a great place in Macomb County for Friday fish fry dinners!)

fish-1Although Friday fish fries began as a religious tradition, they have developed into a way for members of the community to come together and enjoy delicious food while also supporting local nonprofit organizations like the churches, VFW posts or Knights of Columbus chapters. The tradition is no longer only for Christians, but for anyone who wants to spend time with family and friends, enjoy a delicious meal and give back. Fish fry dinners also provide the opportunity for you to donate your time and cooking skills to these organizations by volunteering.

Macomb County has no shortage of Friday fish fry dinners this Lenten season (March 1 – April 15). Here, we have provided a list of fish fry dinners happening in Macomb County. A link to each organization’s website is included in the list, which provides details on menus and pricing. The dinners take place every Friday in Lent unless otherwise indicated.

Amanda Minaudo is a senior planner in the Macomb County Department of Planning & Economic Development. She often contributes to the Make Macomb Your Home Blog, writing about the many fun and exciting things to see and do around Macomb County. 

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