Macomb County communities to honor Memorial Day

Memorial Day is a federal holiday in the United States for remembering the people who died while serving in the country’s armed forces. Many people visit cemeteries and memorials, as well as attend events and parades hosted by local communities and organizations. This Memorial Day, six communities in Macomb County will host parades to honor and remember those who have served our country.

SCSCity of St. Clair Shores
Sunday, May 28 marks the 65th annual St. Clair Shores Memorial Day Parade featuring over 150 entries with 50 military groups, marching bands, local dignitaries, celebrities and this year’s grand marshal Brig. Gen. John D. Slocum. Join the city of St. Clair Shores from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday as they pay tribute to our veterans and their families, those who have served, those who continue to serve and the many who paid the ultimate price to ensure our freedom.

Eastpointe marching bands, floats and military veterans will be among the participants in this year’s annual Memorial Day Parade in Eastpointe Monday, May 29. The parade begins at 11 a.m. on northbound Gratiot Avenue in front of city hall and heads north to Stephens (9 ½ Mile), where it will then head east on Stephens to Kennedy Park. A Memorial Day ceremony will be held at noon at Kennedy Park, followed by a community picnic open to residents of Eastpointe. The parade is sponsored by the Knights of Columbus Leo XIII Council in Eastpointe.

NBNew Baltimore
Each year, the City of New Baltimore Memorial Day Parade remembers and honors those who have valiantly served our country. The parade is held on Memorial Day at 10 a.m. New Baltimore invites members of the community to join them in paying tribute to those who have served our country by finding a spot along the parade route and/or attending the ceremony on the front lawn of city hall. Children are welcome to join in the parade by decorating a bike in a Memorial Day theme. The parade marches through historic downtown New Baltimore and ends at city hall. Following the ceremony, a more intimate display happens at St. Mary’s Cemetery and Oakwood Cemetery.

DocumentSterling Heights
The city of Sterling Heights and its Art Commission are proud to present the 38th Annual Sterling Heights Memorial Day Parade to be held Monday, May 29. This parade is one of the city’s great events for residents and visitors to experience. Tens of thousands of spectators line the parade route each year. Marching bands, scout troops, civic groups and individuals are all welcome to march in the parade. Memorial Day activities begin promptly at 9 a.m. in the City Center Courtyard as hundreds gather for a solemn tribute to all veterans who died in the line of duty. At 10 a.m., the parade kicks off and proceeds south on Dodge Park Road to Metropolitan Parkway.

Village of New Haven
The annual New Haven AMVETS Memorial Day Parade will take place on Memorial Day with the parade line-up starting at 9:30 a.m. on Division and Havenridge Street. The parade will begin promptly at 10 a.m. The route will run up Havenridge to Clark Street to the cemetery where a service will follow.

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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City Sneakers continues to leave a solid footprint in Mount Clemens

New schedule, locations slated for 2017

I started running cross-country and track back in high school, and then I continued to run competitively at the collegiate level. After college, a few of my teammates and I Sneakers3decided we would all run one marathon. We signed up and trained for the Chicago Marathon. Twelve years later, 13 marathons, approximately 30 half marathons, a few injuries, and I’m still running.

My most recent marathon was the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington D.C. I ran it in three hours and 38 minutes which was almost 10 minutes faster than my previous best time. This was my second time running the Marine Corps and is still my favorite marathon. It was also extra special because I was able to experience this with my friend, Jen, who I also ran with in college.

Sneakers4City Sneakers, Mount Clemens’ running and walking group, was formed about a year ago. I was so excited when I read about the kickoff event because I had been looking for several years for a run group to join close to home. Prior to this, there were no formal running groups on the east side of Macomb County. My dog, Ruger (my running partner), and I attended the kickoff event not knowing anyone. Over a few Tuesdays, I started to talk with several of the other runners, which turned into friendships. City Sneakers has been a great support group for everyone. We are able to bounce ideas off each other, help each other with training plans and provide emotional support after a bad run.

Sneakers5For me, City Sneakers was not just a Tuesday night run group. It has expanded into group runs on the weekend, holiday parties and backyard BBQs and even included a trip to Boston in April. Several members of City Sneakers ran the Boston 5K on Saturday, and others ran in the Boston Marathon on Monday. For me, without City Sneakers, none of this would have been possible.

Over the course of last summer, I was asked to join the planning committee. In September, we met and decided on a scaled-back winter schedule. Starting in February, the committee began meeting again. We added some new members to the committee and started to brainstorm what the Summer 2017 City Sneakers would look like. We looked at when we should kick off the season and decided what restaurants to go to. We redesigned the walking and running routes and started to attain sponsors. After several weeks, City Sneakers went from a small running/walking group to having several businesses and community organizations support and promote our group. These include the Macomb County Health Department, Macomb Community Action, MyCare, Hunch Free, New Balance, YMCA, Mount Clemens DDA and Sash Graphics.

Tuesdays are a great night to run/walk a few miles and then sit back and relax. Each Sneakersrestaurant has food and/or drink specials for us. The restaurants have been more than accommodating to City Sneakers. Since City Sneakers started, the local restaurants have seen a growth in their Tuesday foot traffic and sales. Last year, we averaged around 70-80 runners/walkers each week. For local businesses, this did not stop on Tuesday. Many businesses saw City Sneakers members stopping in on other nights of the week too.

Sneakers1On Tuesday, the City Sneakers group met at Rec Bowl to kick off the summer season. This free, noncompetitive group offers 2-, 4- and 6-mile routes that you can walk or run. With a record-breaking crowd, over 200 people in attendance, the place was full of energy and excitement. Last year’s kickoff had about 125 people. Families, individuals and dogs were all in attendance. There was even a family with five generations who came to walk together.

Guest speakers Lisa Borgacz, Mount Clemens interim city manager, and Bob Smith, Macomb County commissioner, both talked about their excitement for City Sneakers and the benefits it has had on Mount Clemens.

Every Tuesday, City Sneakers meets at a different restaurant. Next week, City Sneakers will be at Orleans Sports Café in downtown Mount Clemens. For a complete summer schedule, check out or

Lauri Cowhy is a senior planner in Business Outreach and Communications for the Macomb County Department of Planning & Economic Development and serves on the City Sneakers Planning Committee.

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Make Macomb Your Home offers guide to fun on the water

Kayak4-fWith miles of Lake St. Clair shoreline and the Clinton River running through it, Macomb County offers a wide array of opportunities to enjoy the water this summer! Get an insider’s guide for everything there is to do by checking out our website’s On the Water feature.

Spend the day on Lake St. Clair on a fishing charter, pleasure cruise or rented jet ski. View the paddle trail map to find a convenient access point so you can explore the Clinton River by kayak. There’s information about our parks, trails and walkable downtowns right on the water.


You can also learn about the county’s environmental stewardship efforts to protect and preserve these natural assets by restoring natural habitat, reducing invasive species and enhancing place-making initiatives.

Whether you’re looking to dine while overlooking the lake or to participate in one of our communities’ signature annual events, you can find information on all of it at

Caitlin Gerds-Habermas works for the Macomb County Department of Planning & Economic Development, often providing content for the Make Macomb Your Home website.

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Keeping things fresh at Macomb County farmers markets

As a college student, I often find myself resorting to unhealthy meals during the school year. Leftover pizza, PB&J sandwiches and ramen noodles sometimes make up the bulk of my diet. So when I come home for the summer, I’m always craving fresh fruits and veggies. And I know there’s no better place to find picture-perfect produce than at one of Macomb County’s many farmers markets.

When you buy from a farmers market, you help keep your body healthy and your local economy strong. If you’re in search of delicious fruits, vegetables, honeys, syrups, eggs and baked goods, as well as other benefits, (cooking demonstrations, concerts in the park, and more) look no further. Our list of farmers markets gives you fresh options all summer long!

Mount Clemens Farmers Market
Open now: 7 a.m. – 1 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays
141 North River Road

Mount Clemens Downtown Market
From 2 p.m. – 6 p.m. Wednesdays beginning Wednesday, July 19
S. Gratiot and Pine Street


Romeo Farmers Market
Open now: From 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Saturdays
Located in downtown Romeo at the Village Park, one block west of Main Street, off 32 Mile Road.


Shelby Township Farmers Market
From 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. beginning Saturday, May 20 – Saturday, Oct. 21
Packard Proving Grounds, 49965 Van Dyke Avenue


Warren Farmers Market
From 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. Sundays beginning Sunday, May 21
City Square location


St. Clair Shores Farmers Market
8 a.m. – 3 p.m. the fourth Sunday of the month beginning Sunday, May 21
Blossom Heath/Wahby Park on Jefferson


Sterling Heights Dodge Park Farmers Market
From 3 p.m. – 8 p.m. Thursdays beginning Thursday, June 1
40620 Utica Road


New Baltimore Farmers Market
From 8 a.m. – 1 p.m. Sundays beginning Sunday, June 4
Washington Street between Main and Front streets


New Haven Farmers Market
From 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. Sundays beginning Sunday, Sept. 25
57155 Gratiot Avenue


Jenna Russell is an intern at the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development. She is a senior at Oakland University.

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Great summer camps for the artist in every child

This blog is the second in a series exploring local day camps available in Macomb County this summer. For a complete listing, visit our newest resource: Day Camp Fun in Macomb.

art camp 14Does your youngster want to learn something new, have fun, explore their creativity and develop hidden talents? In addition to regular, free art exhibitions, the Anton Art Center in Mount Clemens is offering three different four-session summer camp environments that offer all those things.

Portraits in Clay, ages 6 to 12 – Want to get really hands-on? Kathie Bugajski will help kids wake up their tactile talents as they sculpt a human portrait during this July camp.

Summer Memories: Mixed Media Camp, ages 6 to 12 – In August, instructor Cindy Eichhorst will help kids use a variety of media to create art based on their own memories of their summer of fun and outdoor activities.

summer classExperiments in Animation, ages 8 to 17 – How do you make your art move? Joshua Mulligan will answer this question while enchanting kids with the basics of creating their own animations. This camp will be offered three times during July and August.

All camps will be held at the Anton Art Center, 125 Macomb Place in downtown Mount Clemens.

For details on these delightful and affordable camps and other opportunities, contact Anton Art Center at (586) 469-8666 or email

Maggi Gawel is a volunteer at the Anton Art Center.

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Building community through gardening

Urban Seed pic 2Gardens can be as diverse and creative as you are. Some people plant rain gardens to help filter stormwater runoff. Other gardens are planted to benefit specific wildlife, such as butterflies or bees. Many gardens are simply pretty to look at. One of my favorite ways to garden is at my community garden.

Community gardens are typically fruit and vegetable gardens, and they serve a variety of purposes, such as promoting community spirit, educating the community about gardening, encouraging food security and providing a green space in an urban environment. Each one works differently, but in general, a community garden is land open to the public and cultivated by a community of people.

Urban Seed pic 3Urban Seed’s Eastpointe Community Garden, 16425 9 Mile Road, offers several different gardening opportunities. For $40, I rent a 4-by-4-foot, 12-inch-deep raised bed (only $30 for 6-inch deep). I now have extra gardening space, and the deep bed is perfect for growing root vegetables like carrots and beets. Everything I plant, I maintain myself and harvest when ready.

Gardeners also have the option to donate seeds and plants and to tend to the 20-bed giving garden. The harvested vegetables are donated to local food banks, churches and senior citizen apartments. There is also availability for a company or person to sponsor one of these beds.

Whenever food is harvested at the garden, patrons are asked to weigh and record their bounty as a way to track the garden’s progress, and the information can be used to apply for grants and donations.

Urban Seed pic 1As the garden has developed over the past six years, improvements have been made, such as convenient rain barrels, water lines and spigots, and a garden shed built as an Eagle Scout project. When taking my daughter to the garden, I appreciate other amenities like the Free Little Library, sitting areas, picnic table and butterfly garden.

The garden is an asset to Eastpointe, and in return, it has received great support from the community. Water access was donated by JJ Mich; the Watermelon Man sculpture, shed and tools were donated by Iron Ivy; grants have been received from Eastpointe Rotary and MSU Extension; and residents and business have donated potting benches, soil, lumber, rain barrels, a wheelbarrow and much more.

One thing all community gardens have in common is a need for volunteers. Beyond tending to the beds, maintaining the entire property is a huge task. By volunteering time weekly, you can meet other gardening aficionados and help beautify a green space in your community. Those who want to rent a bed or volunteer at Urban Seed’s Eastpointe Community Garden should come to the garden any Saturday from 9 a.m. to noon. Starting in June, volunteers will also meet on Wednesdays from 9 a.m. to noon.

For more information on Urban Seed’s Eastpointe Community Garden, visit them on Facebook.

Community gardens are popping up all over Macomb County. Here are just a few others:
Center Line – Dale Street (east of Van Dyke)
Clinton Township – St. Luke Church, 21400 S. Nunnely
Clinton Township – St. Peter, St. Hubert, St. Thecla Charity Garden, 43785 N. Gratiot Avenue (behind Kingsborough Castle)
Fraser – Fraser Woods Retirement Center, 17195 Fraser Woods Drive
Warren – Faith Harvest Church, 30200 Schoenherr

Caitlin Gerds-Habermas works for the Macomb County Department of Planning & Economic Development, often providing content for the Make Macomb Your Home website.

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Celebrate what makes Michigan great!

Michiganders have a unique outlook on life. Whether we’re playing euchre, eating superman ice cream, or just using our hands as maps, some of the best things in life are distinctly Michiganian.

Want to show some love to your home state this weekend? Come to the Made in Michigan Show on Macomb Place in downtown Mount Clemens. The fair is going on until 8 p.m. today and from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday.

This year the fair’s vendors are selling everything from homemade salad dressings, to original novels, to hand-crafted furniture. And there are tons of free samples of every product you can think of! The best part is, everything is made right here in Michigan. It’s going to be a sunny weekend, perfect for strolling outdoors, so don’t miss out on this amazing show!


The caramel corn is freshly popped—a delectable sweet treat!


I picked up one of these adorable birdseed wreaths for Mother’s Day!


Stop by this booth for a taste of some incredible basil strawberry lemonade!


Enchanted Oaks Alpaca Farm is selling a variety of products—everything from soaps to scarves!


The fair features so many unique works of art for sale!


Stop in at Bella Donna’s Baubles to ask about her adventures digging for gemstones! Donna makes each pendant by hand, so every item is one-of-a-kind!


Cheesecake in a jar is probably one of humankind’s most brilliant inventions.


A portion of all proceeds from these delicious chips and salsa goes to support veterans!


Hope to see you there!

Jenna Russell is a summer intern with the Macomb County Department of Planning & Economic Development. She is a senior at Oakland University.

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