Auto show’s Charity Preview brings big giving to annual event

For over a century, in one form or another, Detroit has hosted an auto show. In 1987, the show took on a more worldly view instead of focusing only on regional collaboration, and the event became what it is known as today: the North American International Auto Show.

Obviously, the point of the show is to focus on automotive business. For over two weeks, the public is invited to marvel at the old and the new ideas that have come about from an industry that has brought in $7.37 billion in investment to Macomb County alone. Experts provide their opinions as to which automobiles are the prettiest, fastest, and safest – the award list goes on.

What many might not know though is the North American International Auto Show also raises millions of dollars for charity every year. In fact, it is the largest single-night fundraiser in the United States!


Just from the event last year, $5.2 million was donated to several children’s charities such as The Boys & Girls Clubs of Southeastern Michigan, Boys Hope Girls Hope of Detroit, The Children’s Center, Children’s Hospital of Michigan Foundation, Judson Center, Detroit PAL, March of Dimes, and the DADA Charitable Foundation Fund – a fund of the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan.

Presenting sponsor of the Charity Preview for the second year in a row is Axalta Coating Systems, one of the country’s leading suppliers of liquid and powder coatings, based in Mount Clemens. In 2014 and 2015, Axalta received General Motors’ Supplier of the Year award for going above and beyond GM’s requirements, providing customers with the most innovative technologies and the industry’s best quality. The company enjoys the auto show and wants to make sure they play a role in giving back.

“Axalta’s first-year sponsorship of the 2016 Charity Preview was a great way to support our community,” said Steven Markevich, Axalta’s executive vice president and president of Transportation Coatings and Greater China. “This time, we expect to make our presence even brighter as we partner with the NAIAS to benefit the children in our community.”

chp1This year’s North American International Auto Show Charity Preview will be held from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. tonight. To purchase tickets, visit

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

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Macomb County celebrates MLK Day 2017


Martin Luther King Jr. Day is an American federal holiday that, technically, marks the official birthday of one of our country’s greatest civil rights leaders, Martin Luther King, Jr. But, here in Macomb County, that day means so much more. Our county is particularly diverse in culture, something that we welcome with open arms.

In fact, we have an initiative here called OneMacomb that, much like Dr. King, shares the vision of a community that welcomes all people and celebrates their unique contributions. As such, OneMacomb’s main mission is to facilitate and support collaborative and community-based activities which promote this type of environment.

There are three events in particular OneMacomb will play a role in celebrating this MLK Day (Monday, Jan. 16).

The Macomb County Ministerial Alliance will hold its annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Breakfast at 9 a.m. at MacRay Harbor, 30675 N. River Road, Harrison Township. OneMacomb is a sponsor of this event, which has a theme this year of “Safe Policing in a Diverse Community,” featuring guest speaker Macomb County Sheriff Anthony Wickersham. Wickersham and other officers from Macomb County police agencies will discuss bringing the community together in a safe environment. Other sponsorships are available, or, individual tickets can be purchased at $30 per adult and $10 per youth. Contact (586) 469-4974 for tickets.

In the afternoon, the Saint Clair Shores Youth Council is holding the Martin Luther King Jr. Day Celebration 2017 at 1:30 p.m. at South Lake High Auditorium, 21900 E. Nine Mile Road, St. Clair Shores. OneMacomb’s very own Rhonda Powell will be the keynote speaker at the event. For more information, visit or

Also sponsored by OneMacomb that day is Interfaith Center for Racial Justice’s 30th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday Celebration of Macomb County at 6:30 p.m. at Dakota High School, 21051 20 Mile Road, Macomb, 48044. The theme, “A Sense of Justice,” will be highlighted by keynote speaker Jocelyn Benson, current CEO of Ross Initiative in Sports for Equality and former dean of Wayne State University Law School. Prior to the event, at 5 p.m., attendees will be allowed access to view pieces from the 2017 MLK Holiday High School Art Contest, as well as other exhibits. For sponsorship opportunities, email or call (586) 463-3675.

As much as we would like to, OneMacomb cannot be involved in all of Macomb County’s MLK Day celebrations. Here are a couple more we encourage you to attend, if this subject is of interest to you. (There are also countless other events throughout southeastern Michigan if you find yourself somewhere other than Macomb County that day.)

2017 Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service
This is Macomb Community College’s largest volunteer event of the year. Several hundred students, faculty and staff will volunteer in their local communities through different opportunities provided by the college. There are two days where those interested can participate: Saturday, Jan. 14 or Monday, Jan. 16. For any questions or information, email

MLK Jr. Day Story Time at the Roseville Public Library
Rosie Chapman, aka “Miz Rosie-The Storyteller,” tells the story of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s life through the eyes of his wife, Coretta Scott King. Story time is from 11 a.m. to 11:45 a.m. at 29777 Gratiot Avenue, Roseville, and the cost is free. Call (586) 445-5407 to reserve a spot or for more information.

MLK Day is one of many activities OneMacomb is a part of throughout the entire year. Stay tuned to our website, Facebook and Twitter to keep up to date on what we are engaging with in 2017.

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

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Why you should attend the 2017 NAIAS


NAIAS-HOME-2-1.jpgThe 2017 North American International Auto Show is here, and with it is a whole lot of well-deserved hype. This year’s show looks to be the largest concentration of the world’s top automotive and technology executives, designers and engineers and presents a global opportunity for our local companies to debut brand-defining vehicles and industry-shaping announcements.

Last year, the 2016 NAIAS featured more than 60 vehicle introductions, a majority of which were worldwide debuts. Since 1989, there have been 1,528 vehicle introductions unveiled to the world at the NAIAS. It’s a big enough deal that more than 5,000 journalists from countries all over the world come to cover the latest and greatest happenings our industry has to offer.

as1Last year, more than 815,000 people turned out to see the show! The event has a tremendous economic impact on our region, bringing in $430 million each year for local businesses.

As for this year, there is a lot to write about. The auto industry is fueling significant economic growth in Macomb County. Since 2010, $7.4 billion has been invested in Macomb County facilities through 121 separate investments. These are a clear signal of the commitment that our companies have made to turning out the best product possible in a highly competitive global marketplace.

as2Consumers are excited to see what is on hand, and the numbers show it. For the second straight year, U.S. automakers reported their highest annual sales ever, as sales have grown every single year since 2009. In 2016, 17.5 million vehicles were sold, surpassing the record set in 2015. Not only are volumes increasing, but so are car prices. According to Kelley Blue Book, estimates for the average transaction climbed $2,121 (6.4 percent) from 2015 values to $35,309. These increased margins have been a boon for local companies. If you’re considering buying a new car in 2017, attending the NAIAS should be your first step.

There are plenty of other perks at the auto show this year as well. Featuring daily activities, the auto show features events from organizations such as the American Red Cross and the Parade Company, and there are days dedicated to the military, families and more groups.

Come on down to Cobo from Jan. 14 through 22 to be a part of the massive celebration of the automotive industry. If you have never been, this is a great year to check it out. Even the Detroit Tigers will be on hand to marvel at our region’s innovation!

bentNick Posavetz is a senior planner for Macomb County, often providing content for the Macomb Business and Make Macomb Your Home websites and associated social media accounts. If you have something you’d like to feature, reach out to him at

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Make Macomb Your Home’s best blogs of 2016

Part of the purpose of Make Macomb Your Home is to help promote all the positive things that happen in Macomb County throughout the year. Our blog helps to illustrate this goal by enlisting community members to help create the content. We figure who better to know best about the great things going on in the county than those personally experiencing its successes?

Below is a list of our best blogs from 2016. Take a minute to enjoy them and reflect on all of the great things that have happened here this year. Most of all, don’t forget to stay tuned to the blog in 2017, as we plan to continue to spread Macomb County’s accomplishments.



New Baltimore teen shows she’s proud to make Macomb her home through artwork

2016 Auto Show a must see

MLK Day at Macomb Community College engages 400-plus students and staff members


New coffee haus in the Clem

Macomb County continues avid support for March of Dimes and the March for Babies    

Gus’ Coney Island offers gift of giving


Giving little ones a “Head Start” by reading to them



Melodies & Memories: A Macomb County must for Record Store Day

What does Macomb County government do for you?

Recycle Often. Recycle Right in Macomb County

Take note – Macomb County schools enter into performance season




Celebrate music in Macomb County

It’s time to Make Macomb Your Home!

Opening Day at Jimmy John’s Field on May 30



Armada Board and Bike project starting to skate to completion

OneMacomb celebrates National Immigrant Heritage Month

Macomb County native to play on Big Brother reality show

New running club takes stride in Mount Clemens


Macomb County teams up with Macomb Food Collaborative to promote local food economy

Celebrate Lake St. Clair Appreciation Day today

Music to your ears – Macomb County lists local music venues

Macomb County a hot spot for Pokemon Go users


At the corner of Auburn and Moscone

Classic cars are a Macomb County tradition

Danny J’s Brick Tavern is a home run in Utica

Why Macomb County is my home (even though I don’t live there)


Explore Macomb with help from new Attractions Map

St. Clair Shores a hot spot for first-time homebuyers




The Great Donut Debate: Who won?

Macomb County’s Head Start gives local children a head start

Find classic fall fun and fare at Miller’s Big Red

Nine new reasons to shop on 9 Mile

A new project takes root in Warren

Macomb County home to great pumpkin patches

Where is your favorite place to find fresh produce?





Fall in Love with Macomb County’s Blake Farms

Giving Thanks

Improve river access and Mount Clemens park through donating on #GivingTuesday

Macomb Community Action offers matched savings for first-time homebuyers

Macomb County remembers its veterans


Local artists’ work for sale at Starkweather Holiday Shop


A special thank you to all who contributed to the Make Macomb Your Home Blog this year. It is because of your efforts we are able to offer a fresh, inside look into positive happenings around Macomb County.

We would like to continue the blog’s success in 2017. If you have anything you’d like to contribute, email Sarah Cormier at

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

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Celebrate New Year’s Eve in Macomb County


No matter how 2016 was for you – the best year yet, or maybe you are just glad that it’s over with – it’s time to celebrate. Staying local on this big holiday has its definite advantages, and luckily, Macomb County has a variety of spots available right here where partygoers can enjoy fabulous eats, refreshing drinks and a hip groovin’ tune or two. Below is a list of just some of the great places one can ring in 2017. Oh, and always remember not to drink and drive! (UberShamrock Cab Co., Suburban Cab and Sterling Cab are just a few local places to call if you find yourself unfit to get behind the wheel that evening, or any time for that matter.)

We recommend pre-purchasing tickets for any of the above events, as all will sell out before New Year’s Eve! Tickets for each event typically include drinks, dinner and dessert, as well as a variety of live entertainment.

Amanda Minaudo is a senior planner in the Macomb County Department of Planning and 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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Wonderful lights to be seen in Warren

As Christmas approaches, many Macomb County residents are getting into the holiday spirit. There have been tree lighting ceremonies to attend, and local shops are decorating their windows. Undoubtedly you’ve also seen some amazing light displays in your neighborhood.

If you drive down Eiffel Avenue in Warren (north of 12 Mile Road and west of Schoenherr), you will see a row of houses that is going all out on their holiday decorations. The effort to light up the neighborhood grows every year and involves neighbors working together.

Take a stroll under the glowing multicolor archway that spans the sidewalk and you will see all the effort these residents have put into making a spectacular display. There are thousands of lights, giant nutcrackers, gingerbread men, snowflakes, candy canes, snowmen and a full nativity scene atop a roof. Some of the houses even play music. Perhaps the most impressive is Santa’s workshop, complete with elves making toys, a reindeer and sleigh and Santa himself waving hello.

Have you seen awe-inspiring decorations around Macomb County? Post your favorite pictures on our Make Macomb Your Home Facebook page.

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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Library’s Christmas tree a real page-turner

library1As an avid reader, I love all things related to books. So when I saw a photo of Sterling Heights Public Library’s Christmas tree made of books while I was surfing Facebook one morning, I got super excited. I immediately shared its photo on my book club’s online page and decided this was for sure something cool that the Make Macomb Your Home blog needed to highlight. To some, it may seem silly, but to me (and I’m sure others), it’s beautiful! It’s something that makes Macomb County unique, and I think anything that gets our children (and adults!) into our local libraries is a good thing.

According to Jason Groth, public relations and programs coordinator for the library, the tree has actually been a holiday mainstay at the library the last three years (so I guess I’m a little late to the party!).

“In mid-2014, several staff members saw examples of a book tree at various online sources. One person saw it in a library magazine (possibly ALA Direct, but she can’t remember), another was emailed a picture by a friend, and yet another saw an example on Pinterest,” described Groth. “Everyone agreed that it was [a] neat, library-related alternative to the classic Christmas tree we usually put up. The first book tree went up in December of 2014. Patrons loved the tree, so it’s become an annual decoration.”

Staff members Catherine Les and Joseph Vitale built the tree in a little over four hours on a Friday morning before the library opened for business. The tree, which stands 5 feet tall and is 4 and a half feet wide, was created with an inner core of cardboard boxes stuffed with 30 books for stability. The outside of the tree is then made up of 330 books layered around the boxes to complete the look.

“Size and weight were given priority for books near the bottom,” said Groth, describing what books were used in the making of the tree. “We wanted a solid foundation! As the tree grew in height, color and shine became increasingly more important than weight.”

Groth said every book used was donated to the library by patrons. He added once the tree is taken down, all the books will be available for purchase in the Used But Sterling Bookstore. All proceeds from the sale of those books will go back to the library.

The book tree provides many other advantages for the library.

“It … draws attention to Used But Sterling Bookstore. Many patrons approach our staff wanting to buy a particular book on the tree,” said Groth. “Finally, it’s just downright cool. Patrons enjoy our fun, artistic displays year-round, and the book tree is really just an extension of that day-to-day creativity.”

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

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