Featured

Location is Everything

In 1824 thirty-eight-year-old ­Orange Risdon and thirty-two-year-old Samuel Dexter spent four months on horseback exploring mostly uninhabited land in southeast Michigan. At the end of the 2,000-mile trip, they settled within a...

Read More

Going in Circles

Jerry Colone tested trucks at the Chrysler Proving Grounds for ­thirty-four years. Now, he says, the huge complex southwest of Chelsea is “like a ghost town.”Employment at the grounds has fallen from 700 five years...

Read More

Stepping Fancy

Robin Warner sits just inside the door of the Pittsfield Grange Hall, a simple white clapboard building on Ann Arbor–Saline Road, collecting admission. Gray-haired and dressed in a plaid shirt and jeans, he pauses to chat with...

Read More

The Cow Doctor

It’s a brisk but sunny spring day as Jeff Messman pulls his pickup into Dave and Gordon Whelan’s dairy farm near Tipton in Lenawee County. Messman makes the drive from Fredonia to the Whelan farm every two weeks....

Read More

Kaboom!

Things started off badly between Aaron Enzer and Bridgewater Township. And then they got worse. A commercial airline pilot and pyrotechnics professional, Enzer wanted to shoot off some fireworks at his home on East Austin Road...

Read More

Be. Here?

In the dead of winter, about a dozen people gather at Saline City Hall to discuss how to bring new life to the downtown, where nearly half the storefronts are empty.Mayor Gretchen Driskell, fifty, walks into the room and smiles...

Read More

Gossip & Gunpowder

“He’s always liked guns.”Seventeen-year-old Benjamin Lucas is sweat­ing bullets. He’s on the witness stand at the 14A District Courthouse in Pittsfield Township, testifying for the prosecution at the...

Read More

Bridge to the Nineteenth Century

The Bell Road Bridge in Dexter Township is on the National Register of Historic Places. The plaque so designating it, however, is sitting in neighbor Bill Klinke’s garage—because for twelve years the ­nineteenth-century...

Read More

Testing the Wind

Richard and Carole Murphy were driving through North Dakota several years ago when they noticed three enormous metal blades spinning slowly in the prairie wind.”We were curious, so I turned around and drove back until we...

Read More

Pickin’ Chelsea

In this town I could be happy, in this town I’d make new friends—In this town . . . I could start all over again.—The cover of Annie and Rod Capps’s fifth album, In This Town, shows the local folk duo lounging...

Read More

Downtown’s New Buildings

“Why are so many of the buildings going up around town so ugly?” asks Joan Lowenstein. Standing in City Hall’s cramped main entrance, the not-yet-former city council representative isn’t afraid to name...

Read More

One Man’s Dope War

Gershom Avery spent last summer and fall tirelessly gathering signatures to get an initiative to legalize medical marijuana on the Michigan ballot. And during those same months, Avery, fifty-three, says he was waging a secret...

Read More

Upcoming Events