2008 October

The Lonely Republicans

Nothing brings out voters like a presidential contest—and even by that standard, the November 4 vote is shaping up to be exceptional. County clerk Larry Kestenbaum says his office is preparing for the largest turnout in Michigan...

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Brandywine Cemetery

On Halloween, Robert Beech’s yard has no fake blood, chain saws, or decapitated children. But the “haunted attraction and art installation” outside his southeast-side home does feature plenty of gargoyles and...

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The Lovell Sisters

I think I want to play the bassoon. Really, really well. I know, everyone says it’s one of the hardest instruments to play, but I figure if I make a plan and stick to it—you know, maybe start with some DVDs, take some...

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The Many Lives of 210 E. Huron

The building at 210 East Huron first shows up on a city map from 1853. Although only a block from the Washtenaw County Courthouse, which was then the center of Ann Arbor’s commercial district, that stretch of Huron was...

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North by northwest

Autumn pushes us outdoors to tank up on the sun and sky before we hunker down for winter. This year, instead of one last run to Harbor Springs, we decided to stick closer to home—up north, but just barely: Pinckney and Hamburg,...

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Hell and Back

Don Vettese remembers the first time he saw hell. “It was an accident, literally and metaphorically,” says the Jesuit priest. “It started in 1994 when I gave a talk about service to the seniors at St....

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The Hatch Act Strikes Again

An obscure 1939 federal law originally designed to curb rampant patronage in the post office, the Hatch Act is now being used as a blunt political object to force candidates out of elections—or jobs.The act’s changed the...

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StoryCorps

In September the national StoryCorps visited the U-M’s Silver Club enrichment program for folks with dementia. The corps’s goal: recording people’s stories before the memories fade. A Georgia-born...

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Hit and Run and Monkey Blood

“Here comes one!” a voice whispered, and six pairs of eyes turned toward the intersection of Gralake Avenue and Lakeview Drive. A rush of adrenaline spread through the shrubbery that concealed a pack of pranksters,...

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Barn for Sale

For travelers on Ann Arbor’s west side, the big red barn with “M GO BLUE” boldly emblazoned across its roof marks the spot where the city ends and the townships of Lodi, Scio, and Pittsfield meet. Standing on...

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Talladay Farms Corn Maze

The Observer listing is specific—”Possibly Washtenaw County’s most baffling corn maze, this vegetable labyrinth features over ten miles of paths that form intricate space-themed designs.” Sounds like fun,...

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Pacific Rim

What’s your favorite restaurant in Ann Arbor?” I get that one a lot. For me, and I assume many others, the short list has long included Pacific Rim by Kana. Even when newer eateries turned my head, Pacific Rim was...

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Saline Marketplace Changes

For eight years, Caffe Dolce has been tucked into the back corner of the Country Creek Plaza. This fall, it’s finally expanding. Owners Alex and Michelle Petrut need the room. On a recent day at lunch, their little...

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County clerk Larry Kestenbaum

If Larry Kestenbaum is biting his nails on election night, it won’t be because he’s worried about his bid for a second term as Washtenaw County clerk and register of deeds: Kestenbaum, a Democrat, is unopposed. Four...

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Medical Celebrities

Hey, aren’t you the doc in the commercials?”Robert Bartlett gets asked that a lot these days. The surgeon and researcher has long been hot stuff in his professional world—he invented a life-support system called...

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Haifa Falafel opens

Haifa is the biggest port in Israel—in big contrast with Haifa Falafel. The sandwich shop, which was scheduled to open in the Glencoe Crossing shopping center in late September, seats only fifteen.The name and the photos on the...

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Arcadian Two heads south

“It’s amazing exposure. It’s a stand-alone. It has a cute, unique, homey feel—a beautiful courtyard,” says Rhonda Gilpin. And the parking. Don’t even get her started on the parking: “There are...

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Crop Crackdown

In September market manager Molly Notarianni ordered Fusilier Farms to stop selling cherries and peaches at the downtown market. Another grower, Glenn Heim of Chelsea, was expelled outright. The sanctions grew out of a new farm...

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Mutter plays Bach

Two years ago, German violinist Anne-Sophie Mutter told Musical America she planned to stop performing “when I reach my forty-fifth birthday,” that is, in June 2008. Shortly afterward, however, she told the...

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