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AnnArbor.com's News section covers government, crime, education, health and the environment across Washtenaw County.

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    Melanie Maxwell | AnnArbor.com file photo

    Editor's note: With the long winter finally coming to a close and with people looking to get out to the golf course, we are introducing a weekly golf advice column from contributor Kyle Dobbs. Dobbs is a former professional and University of Michigan golfer. He grew up in Ann Arbor and won the individual Big Ten title for the University of Michigan men’s golf team his senior year in 1997. Hopefully his expert advice can help you maximize your potential on the course this season.

    Spring time is when the links play to their historical reputation: nay wind nay golf aye laddie! Finding your spring game is challenging enough, compound this with gusty winds and you are facing a strong challenge.

    Back in my days of competing professionally, I was on my way to Denmark for an event. As the plane descended over the countryside, a strange humming noise could be heard throughout the cabin to the point of almost shaking the plane. You could hear the murmurs of passengers commenting on noise and the curiosity of its source. As we broke through the cloud layer, I could look out and see the plane's wings chattering up and down so fast against the cross winds they were just a blur! Touching down, we were informed of 70 mile-per-hour winds with higher gusts.

    Golfing wasn’t quite as daunting a task as landing a plane in such conditions - shout out to the pilot for successfully managing that - but it was no picnic.

    My first bit of advice would be to run for cover and stay as far away from a golf course as possible if there are 70 MPH winds outside. But the same strategies I used in those conditions can be applied to a gusty Michigan day.

    Here are few techniques that every golfer can use to adapt to a windy day:

    1. Grip the club lighter: A natural tendency is to grip the club tighter and swing faster on a windy day, but that can prove counterproductive. Make a mental note to grip the club lighter and swing easier in the wind. Manage this thought in your practice swings. Take two or three practice swings slower, extra soft with the hands and this will help alleviate the temptation to tighten the grip and swing faster in the wind. As a golfer, tension is the last characteristic we want in our game. The more we can relax and swing easy, the better results we will have.

    2. Build a wider stance: Stand wider than you’re accustomed to, especially when putting. Gusty conditions knock the balance off of your swing and stroke. Building a solid foundation gives you the ability to withstand the gust and maintain balance that is needed for a sound fundamental swing.

    3. If competing, don’t rest the club on the ground: In competition, if you address the ball and it moves as a result of an outside agency - such as the wind - you are penalized a stroke. A way to avoid this is to simply not rest your club on the ground before taking a shot on a windy day. Hovering the club off the ground, by the rules of golf, defines you as never addressing the ball, so if the ball moves it doesn’t matter because technically you never addressed it. Not having your muscles in a static position will also help you maintain balance should a sudden gust of wind come your way.

    This last strategy can really come in handy if you’re playing against a rules stickler on a windy day. A couple penalty strokes can quickly throw a wrench in your run for a club championship.

    Jack Nicklaus liked the feel of never placing the club on the ground so much that he incorporated the strategy to his game permanently. It certainly seemed to work out for him.

    Try these techniques the next time you are at the driving range or playing a round. The key is to cognitively recognize wind creates tension and to slow the entire process down with a wider stronger stance.

    Contact your local golf professional and them assist you in developing your game.

    Feedback

    Have any questions for Dobbs about his advice or want some more tips? Leave questions in the comments below and he'll gladly help you out.

    Kyle Dobbs is a former professional and University of Michigan golfer. He grew up in Ann Arbor and won the individual Big Ten title for the University of Michigan men’s golf team his senior year in 1997. He can be reached at kdobbsgolf@gmail.com.


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    View River Street in a larger map

    The opportunity for redevelopment along the Huron River on Water Street is limitless, according to consultants who are helping to update Ypsilanti's master plan, but the city needs to figure a way to connect the entire city to the property.

    That connectivity can be achieved by connecting River Street to Factory Street, with a bridge over the Huron River.

    shapeypsilantiphoto1.jpg

    Discussions about Water Street continue to evolve throughout the master plan process. Officials have talked about extending River Street through the property to Depot Town and creating a dedicated public space for events.

    Courtesy Shape Ypsilanti

    "Right now River Street dead ends at Michigan Avenue," said Mayor Paul Schreiber. "It can bisect the Water Street property if it goes all the way to Factory Street. It would have to be a bridge over the river and it would tie in the southern part of the city to the rest of the city. It seems like that’s a huge thing."

    River Street, which already runs through Depot Town, would serve as a connecter to the Water Street property.

    The street would be equipped with both pedestrian and vehicular capabilities and the bridge would likely be right where Catherine Street intersects with Factory Street, said Planner Bonnie Wessler.

    "You could go from Depot Town and get on River Street and go all the way down to Factory Street," Schreiber said. "That’s a great connector we don’t have right now."

    Schreiber said drivers use a series of one-way streets to connect to the other side of town. The connectivity that would come from creating a bridge would also make access to Interstate 94, officials said.

    Consultants also are proposing the creation of a public gathering spot that could be used for events or other purposes. It may lure developers who envision it evolving into a high-traffic area.

    Ian Lockwood, a principal transportation engineer with AECOM, Inc., said the city should value its waterfront property and have a public edge all along the public waterfront.

    "There are opportunities for wonderful redevelopment along the river," Lockwood said during a Wednesday joint Ypsilanti City Council and Planning Commission session.

    "It's important for buildings to be fronted and we want to pull the value of the water," Lockwood said. "The idea is to create a highly walkable edge. Imagine the street all the way up to Depot Town, that makes a really nice relationship."

    Planning Commission member Gary Clark previously served as the chair of the Ypsilanti 20/20 Task Force, that looked at ways to improve the city over a long period of time. Clark said part of their vision was to extend River Street through the Water Street property.

    "I'm delighted to see it's part of it," he said. "There's a beautiful part of the river back there. ... It all goes together. You've reinforced what we thought was important and doubled the frontage."

    However, the placement and form of the proposed $12 million Eastside Recreation Center and $1.2 million Family Dollar developments will shape the rest of the 38-acre property.

    Lockwood said the city needs to consider establishing standards for the entire property to help guide future development. Lockwood said while he has no issues with the use of the proposed recreation center and Family Dollar, he is concerned with their forms and location.

    Lockwood is proposing moving the potential location of the recreation center further off Michigan Avenue and deeper on the Water Street property.

    "No one has a quarrel with the use of the rec," he said. "I would just like you to think long and hard about the form. If it's on Michigan Avenue, it's isolated."

    Former Ypsilanti resident Wanda Wiser isn't a fan of the idea. Wiser just moved one block out city limits into Ypsilanti Township.

    "I’m not real thrilled with moving the rec center down and further off the Michigan Avenue corridor, mainly because it will bring people into the city," she said. "You have a bird in your hand, the rest of it is all possible development. If you make it harder for the rec center, you may lose them and then you’ve got nothing, which is what's been happening over and over in this area since the Water Street project started."

    For the Family Dollar, Lockwood suggested adding more windows to the front of the property and urged officials to think about requiring this before the structure is built.

    "Chances are the Family Dollar will change in maybe five to 10 years from now, but what goes in second will contribute to the area," Lockwood said. "If they follow the rules, you'll get a predictably nice place, if they don’t then the developments don’t work together and adjacent buildings should work together."

    By establishing standards now, Lockwood said it creates a sense of predictability that developers like.

    09272012_NEWS_EastsideRec_JT_06_display.jpg

    A large part of the city's master plan update process has been how the 38-acre Water Street property will look over the next 10 to 15 years.

    Joseph Tobianski | AnnArbor.com

    "They can go in knowing that their neighbor is going to be held to the same standards," he said. "If they see the vision and predictability, it's much more likely for investment to come in because they know you have a vision and you're sticking to it. If they’re holding you hostage to the form, then you’ve undermined predictability. It just needs to be built in form that respects urbanism."

    In March, Ypsilanti postponed its decision on the proposed $1.2 million Family Dollar development until April after council members and residents expressed concern over aspects of the project, including the form and design.

    Council Member Daniel Vogt was one of the council members concerned about the Family Dollar design. Vogt said he agreed with Lockwood's analysis.

    "I think the presentation about the dollar store is spot on and think it's something council will need to consider very carefully," he said.

    City Manager Ralph Lange said council will have a tough decision to make about Family Dollar and cautioned that the city could potentially lose out on what would be Water Street's first redevelopment.

    "We've come to the hard decision of if Family Dollar will not budge to your desires, is it all or nothing?" he said. "Would we let $1 million go away? That's the hard reality the council is going to have to face."

    Lange also inquired about how the city would pay to extend River Street throughout the entire property. Lange said that could potentially cost $1 million to do and he wasn't sure if the city can afford to make that investment at this time.

    Former Mayor Cheryl Farmer, who was mayor when the city assembled the 38-acre site, said the city should consider the negative impact the Family Dollar may have.

    "One of my concerns is that is a brand name that may brand the whole parcel in a negative way and make it more difficult to market the entire parcel," Farmer said.

    Planning Commission Chair Rod Johnson said the discussions about Water Street are important to have and that this is the first time the city will have a basis to go off on for future developments.

    "The whole Water Street redevelopment zone provides a means of communication between the city and developers about what may or may not work," Johnson said. "It's very important to have a basis for the master plan for all of us, so that we can look at undeveloped land and effectively engage a developer on what will work and what will not work."

    Katrease Stafford covers Ypsilanti for AnnArbor.com.Reach her at katreasestafford@annarbor.com or 734-623-2548 and follow her on twitter.


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    Lorraine_Lasalle.jpg

    The intersection near Scarlett Middle School where police say a high school student assaulted a middle-schooler.

    John Counts | AnnArbor.com

    It’s a parent’s worst nightmare.

    An older student attacks a younger student in broad daylight while other students look on, some recording with phones the punch that breaks the boy’s teeth.

    This is what happened to a 14-year-old Scarlett Middle School student as he walked home from school last December. The incident led to an assault charge for a 16-year-old Huron student, who is scheduled to appear in juvenile court Friday, according to Ann Arbor police.

    The 16-year-old was officially charged in juvenile court with aggravated assault when a petition was filed last month. AnnArbor.com does not name juveniles involved in criminal cases unless they're tried as adults.

    The 16-year-old seemingly chose the 14-year-old victim at random, according to the police report, obtained from Ann Arbor police via the Freedom of Information Act. The boy also told an accomplice, a 15-year-old Huron student not charged in the incident, to record the fight, according to the report.

    The 16-year-old had been suspended from school earlier that day and witnesses told police he was looking for anybody to fight at the bus stop.

    “He was going to make sure he did something to be suspended about,” a witness told police.

    Ann Arbor Public Schools is not legally able to comment about any student's discipline record, said spokeswoman Liz Margolis, so the details of the fight in the hallway are unknown. It's also not known whether the student was suspended after the attack on the 14-year-old.

    Margolis could say that to date 23 students at Huron High School have been suspended this school year, but that there have been no expulsions, which means the 16-year-old wasn't kicked out of school after being charged with assault.

    ‘Get that little kid'

    The 16-year-old and 15-year-old Huron students were dropped off around 3:30 p.m. on Dec. 12 at a bus stop near Scarlett Middle School, where the 14-year-old was leaving for the day, the report states.

    Crowds of students were along the streets on their way home in the area of Lorraine and LaSalle streets, the intersection within sight of Scarlett Middle School, where police were dispatched to a half hour later for an assault.

    Witnesses told police the 16-year-old and 15-year-old walked up to groups of students at the corner. The 16-year-old started talking about how he wanted to make his suspension worthwhile and chased several kids in the group, attempting to strike them, the report states.

    “He would confront them and say he was going to punch them and they would run away,” a witness told police, according to the report.

    Then the students called to the 14-year-old boy, who was walking a different way home than he usually takes, his parents said.

    “…Let’s get that little kid and go punch him,” a witness told police the 16-year-old said.

    The 15-year-old boy told police the 16-year-old also asked him to record the fight on his phone.

    Bleeding and unconscious

    The 14-year-old boy told AnnArbor.com his recollection of the incident is a bit fuzzy.

    “I don’t remember getting punched,” he said.

    He does remember walking home from school using a different route than he normally took when a kid he recognized, possibly the 15-year-old, called him over.

    “I don’t know what he was really trying to do, I think he was trying to lure me by saying stuff like he was going to give me his iPhone,” he said.

    “As he was walking along, he could hear his name being called. He remembered that they had asked him to come over and hang with them,” Ann Arbor police Det. William Stanford wrote in the report.

    All of the witnesses interviewed by police confirm the 14-year-old was coaxed over to where the older boys were standing with an invitation to hang out. The 14-year-old said he would have to ask his mother.

    It was then that the 16-year-old suddenly hit the 14-year-old with a closed fist one time in the face, knocking him to the ground, according to the report.

    The Huron students ran. The 15-year-old had captured part of the punch on his phone. The 14-year-old boy lay bleeding on the ground, unconscious. He later told police he never had a problem with the two boys in the past and that he had “no idea why these guys attacked him.”

    Urgent care

    Edward Broom, Scarlett’s assistant principal, was driving back to the middle school when he saw a group of students on the corner of Lorraine and LaSalle, so he slowed down to see what was going on, the police report states.

    He noticed a woman was helping the 14-year-old, who had obvious injuries to his face. Broom then drove the boy, who had regained consciousness, back to the middle school where his parents and police were contacted.

    "My mind was just completely disoriented,” the boy said. “I was just trying to figure out who I was, basically.”

    His parents were both unable to immediately come to the school, so the boy’s uncle arrived and took him to the St. Joseph Mercy Hospital for his facial injuries.

    "His lip was the size of a golf ball on the right side,” the 14-year-old's father told AnnArbor.com. “He had some teeth broken out.”

    In the police report, the officer who visited the boy in the urgent care unit afterward noted he had a very swollen upper lip, swollen right cheek with redness, a small laceration on the right cheek below the eye and a bloodshot right eye. The boy also suffered a concussion.

    “It just felt numb,” the boy said.

    Police began investigating immediately.

    Boy charged

    The 16-year-old admitted to police he punched the boy when interviewed by detectives. He told police that while on the school bus, he heard someone had been picking on his sister.

    He said he walked up to the 14-year-old boy, whom he thought was the culprit, and asked him nicely if he wanted to hang out, then hit him in the face with a closed fist “as hard as he could,” according to the police report. It wasn’t until later that he discovered it was not the 14-year-old who had been picking on his sister, he told police.

    “He indicated he was very angry about what had occurred at school about being suspended, and he was looking to get his frustrations out and he was using (the 14-year-old) as a way to get these frustrations out,” Stanford wrote in the report. “He felt very bad for his actions and took responsibility for them.”

    A petition, the equivalent of a warrant, was signed March 8 for a charge of aggravated assault, a misdemeanor punishable by one year of incarceration or a $1,000 fine. The 16-year-old will make his first appearance in court Friday.

    Police also interviewed the 15-year-old boy who recorded the punch, but he was not charged. The boy said he hadn't posted the video to Facebook and erased it from his phone in the presence of police, according to the report, but not before investigators retrieved the video for review.

    Aftermath

    The 14-year-old boy was treated at the emergency room and released that same day. He did miss a couple of days of school while his face healed. His father said the Scarlett community really rallied around his son at that time.

    “They sent a packet of cards and letters,” the father said. “It was touching … to know that people really care.”

    The boy, who likes video games and science fiction novels, said he received a lot of positive attention after the incident.

    “I usually hang out with a small group of people," he said. "Most of the kids at school don’t really acknowledge me. I was acknowledged a bit more.”

    Now a few months later, the boy's face is healed and he's ready to move on. The family has been frustrated by the lengthy legal process, but doesn't plan on attending Friday's hearing.

    “I’m slightly interested, but I don’t feel like I should intervene,” the boy said, though he is interested to know what happens to the 16-year-old accused of hitting him.

    The boy doesn't harbor any anger toward the 16-year-old, nor does his family.

    “It seemed pretty typical of the kind of harassment that goes on between bigger kids and littler kids,” his father said. “I feel bad for the (suspect).”

    John Counts covers cops and courts for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at johncounts@annarbor.com or you can follow him on Twitter.


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    The development team behind a 251-unit apartment project proposed for Ann Arbor’s Traverwood Drive met with about a dozen community members Thursday night to detail plans and receive public input.

    The majority of attendees at the citizen participation meeting raised concerns about how the development, proposed for a vacant property at 2225 Traverwood Drive, will affect or eliminate the site’s natural features.

    first_martin_site_concept.jpg

    A site concept for the project shows the three buildings on the north end and 13 on the south end. Stapp Nature Area is to the north and Leslie Woods Nature Area is to the west.

    Lizzy Alfs | AnnArbor.com

    “This is a magical portal right in the middle of Ann Arbor,” long-time Ann Arbor resident Tanya Brown told the developers. “There are habitats of animals out there. You’ve been sitting on this land for (more than 20) years. You know it is precious, precious land.”

    Ann Arbor’s First Martin Corporation has owned the land since the 1990s and is proposing the project. It's divided into two parts: the north end of the property would have three four-story buildings, and the south side would have between 11 and 13 two-story buildings. Existing wetlands and a community building would separate the north and south sides.

    Plans are still in the preliminary stages, but the project would have about 251 one-and-two-bedroom units that would range in size between 550 square feet and 1,250 square feet. Pricing has not been determined.

    Two parking spaces would be provided per unit in either attached garages or interior parking underneath the buildings. A portion of the site would require a rezoning from office/research to multi-family.

    First Martin’s Mike Martin told attendees that the timing is right to build apartments.

    “The occupancy rates across Ann Arbor have been very high…I also think there are a number of people saying the area is expected to grow from an employment standpoint,” he said.

    Mitchell Bleznak, co-founder of Bleznak Real Estate Investment Group and the owner of apartments in the area, said a project like this is “definitely needed.”

    cpm_first_martin.jpg

    About a dozen residents attended the meeting to provide feedback on the apartment project proposal.

    Lizzy Alfs | AnnArbor.com

    “I think you’re doing something very useful for the community and I think it’s a good thing,” he said. “It’s very well needed and there is growing demand.”

    Because the property neighbors both Stapp Nature Area and the Leslie Woods Nature Area, some attendees at the meeting requested that First Martin reduce the scale of the project.

    “My major concern has to do with the trees to the north of the site,” said attendee Clark Charnetski. “I would personally rather have you go to greater height on the buildings on the south end in order to eliminate some of the buildings on the north end…because then you’d be able to keep more of the trees.”

    James Sharba of Hobbs + Black Architects showed attendees a variety of building layouts the developers considered for the site, but said the attached garages and interior parking was the best way to retain some natural features.

    Added the project’s civil engineer, Earl Ophoff of Midwestern Consulting: “It’s about where is the financial feasibility as well as the physical feasibility.”

    Another attendee asked if First Martin would consider donating the land instead of developing apartments. The company donated the Stapp Nature Area property to the city about a decade ago.

    “It would be very good karma,” Brown said.

    first_martin_site.jpg

    Courtesy photo

    Nearby resident Lisa Dusseau pointed out that residents have been utilizing the First Martin property as a park area for years, and to have that taken away is “really disappointing.”

    Other concerns raised by attendees included:

    • Whether there is demand for more apartments in the area

    • Traffic impact

    • How Ann Arbor is becoming overdeveloped

    “I’m not against the development; it’s your property. But along with our other pleas for the trees and stuff, sometimes smaller is better,” said Peggy Rabhi, a park steward for Leslie Woods. “And again…are we going to wind up with some of these buildings empty?”

    Brown added: “I’d just like First Martin to remember that Ann Arbor is tree town. It’s tree town for a reason, and we really don’t have that many trees left right here…we are your neighbors. I sure would like to be able to go back there and visit the trees and the animals.”

    Martin told AnnArbor.com the development team will consider residents’ feedback and how to incorporate it into the plans. He said they likely won’t remove the buildings on the north end of the site, but might try to rearrange them so there is less impact to the nature area.

    Lizzy Alfs is a business reporter for AnnArbor.com. Reach her at 734-623-2584 or email her at lizzyalfs@annarbor.com. Follow her on Twitter at http://twitter.com/lizzyalfs.


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    Mary_Sue_Coleman_041813.jpg

    Mary Sue Coleman during a April 18 Board of Regents meeting.

    Melanie Maxwell | AnnArbor.com

    Mary Sue Coleman announced she will step down as leader of the University of Michigan in July 2014, and as the search for a successor begins officials agree Coleman is leaving a legacy that will be hard to match.

    "She leaves very big shoes to fill," said regent Mark Bernstein. "This is a different institution than when she started as president."

    Over the course of 11 years, Coleman has raised billions for the school, overseen dozens of major construction projects and championed entrepreneurship— all the while watching as the Ann Arbor school steadily gained credibility and international recognition.

    Here are five of her top accomplishments during her tenure:

    1. Fundraising

    Coleman is credited with being a great fundraiser.

    She was central to exceeding fundraising goals during the last capital campaign, when ended in 2008. About $3.2 billion was raised during the four-year Michigan Difference campaign, which surpassed the original $2.5 billion goal. Roughly 365,000 people contributed to that campaign.

    "She may be the best fundraiser in higher education," said U-M regent Mark Bernstein. "She has a combination of intelligence and tenacity and an ability to identify opportunities for philanthropy that is extraordinary."

    Added Andrea Fischer Newman, vice chair of the Board of Regents: "How good has she been? Phenomenal." U-M Provost Philip Hanlon called Coleman "terrifically persuasive."

    Coleman has laid the groundwork for a campaign set to begin in the fall that will likely last between five and seven years. Its focus will be distinct from the Michigan Difference, with an eye toward people and scholarships and less on buildings. There were 22 building projects in the last campaign. U-M has placed a heightened emphasis on student aid. Since 2007, the school has increased its centrally-awarded aid from $99 million to $145 million.

    U-M has received a handful of eight-figure donations recently, including a $50 million donation for the Health System, a $32.5 million donation for the art school and most recently a $110 million gift —the largest in university history— from Charles Munger. Munger attended the university, but did not graduate. He has also gifted more than $20 million to the law school.

    snyder_coleman_commencement.jpg

    Mary Sue Coleman with Michigan Governor Rick Snyder during the 2011 commencement.

    Melanie Maxwell | AnnArbor.com

    "That is a gift that took years to close and a relationship that she developed almost single handedly," Bernstein said of Munger and Coleman.

    2. Entrepreneurship and start-up empowerment

    The past decade has seen a marked increase in entrepreneurial activities and initiatives at the university, including the creation of the Center for Entrepreneurship, Office of Technology Transfer and the Zell Lurie Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies.

    The school in 2012 produced 368 new inventions, a U-M record. Coleman has partnered with Wayne State University and Michigan State University to establish a research cluster that rivals those in Massachusetts and California and contributes a $15.5 billion economic impact to Michigan each year.

    Spinning inventions off into companies has been a point of emphasis for the university for the past decade, with 98 new start-up companies using technologies that were first developed in an academic setting.

    Under Coleman's guidance, the school has agreed to invest $25 million of its endowment into its own spinoffs. U-M's Venture Accelerator, launched two years ago, has helped roughly 20 U-M spinoffs get their start.

    "She has had the vision to understand the importance of really escalating creativity and innovation on campus and supporting mechanisms which elevate that," Hanlon said. "She understands that a great university is all about pushing frontiers."

    Coleman said the university has streamlined its internal process to make entrepreneurship easier for faculty and students. She said entrepreneurship has "ramped up" over the past decade. The emphasis was partly driven by the state's economy and the region's need for economic activity.

    "We accelerated our efforts because the state was undergoing such an economic collapse," she said. Coleman serves as co-chair of President Barack Obama's National Advisory Council on Innovation and Entrepreneurship.

    In a 2010 Forbes column, she emphasized the importance of promoting entrepreneurial activities among students and said U-M was setting an example for the higher education community. Universities, she said, need to support students and "what some might call their 'crazy ideas.'"

    3. Purchase of the ex-Pfizer site and creation of the North Campus Research Complex

    In 2009 Coleman made the final decision to purchase the 2.2-million-square-foot, 28-building Pfizer complex for a staggeringly low price of $108 million.

    The complex, which sits on 174 acres in Northeast Ann Arbor, was turned into the North Campus Research Complex and is operated chiefly by the medical school, engineering school and researchers in the science disciplines. More than 2,000 employees now work at the complex.

    The complex has helped alleviate a space crunch for the university and administrators say it has increased collaboration among U-M researchers.

    "The development of the North Campus Research Complex is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity," Coleman said in 2012. "Universities never have the chance to purchase 2.2 million square feet of space and all this land at pennies on the dollar. And so for us it was just a tremendous, tremendous opportunity."

    4. On-Campus housing changes

    Coleman launched the Residential Life Initiative in the mid-2000s and has spearheaded the renovation of the campus' oldest residence halls, most of which were built in the early- to mid-1900s. The renovations have transformed aging dormitories into state-of-the art living spaces that are designed to incorporate collaboration and education.

    "We wanted people inside the residence halls to be in an intellectual environment and not just a living space," Coleman said during a Thursday interview.

    Prior to launching the initiative, the university had not build a new dormitory or substantially renovated an existing one for more than 30 years.

    The school announced Thursday plans to build a $185 million graduate student dormitory near South Division Street. Newman said Coleman championed the project, knowing full well that graduate dorms are rare in higher education.

    Barack_Obama_Mary_Sue_Coleman_spring_2010.jpg

    Mary Sue Coleman and President Obama at the 2010 commencement.

    White House

    "[She understood] the need for it," Newman said. "It's not something universities are able to put aside money for and it's due to Mary Sue's leadership that we're now going to have this phenomenal legacy."

    Student housing projects during Coleman's tenure.

    • Graduate Housing Dormitory: $185 million approved by regents Thurday
    • West Quadrangle: A $114.5 million renovation approved by regents
    • South Quadrange: A $60 million renovation is scheduled to begin this summer
    • Lawyer's club: Undergoing a $39 million renovation
    • East Quadrangle: Undergoing a $116 million renovation
    • Vera B. Baits Houses II : Underwent a $12 million renovation in 2012
    • Alice C. Lloyd Hall: Opened in 2012 after a $56 million renovation
    • Couzens Hall: Reopened in 2011 after $49 million renovation
    • North Quad: Opened in 2010 after $75 million construction project
    • Stockwell Hall: Reopened in 2009 after a $39.6 million renovation
    • Hill Dining Center: Reopened in 2008 after $21 million renovation
    • Mosher Jordan Hall: Reopened in 2008 after $44.1 million renovation

    5. A stronger national profile

    U-M is regularly ranked among the top public universities in the nation.

    In the fall, U.S. News ranked U-M 29th nationally for undergraduate education and fourth among public institutions. The school also maintains a top spot in the 2012-13 QS World University rankings, which rate U-M 17th globally, and the Times Higher Education rankings, which place U-M 20th internationally.

    "If you look at the last decade, all of our measures of academic quality have gone up. Our reputational ranking [is high]," Hanlon said. "The number of undergraduates each year and their quality has skyrocketed. We have risen to No. 2 in [federal] research funding."

    Since 2002, enrollment has increased from 38,600 to 43,400 and freshmen applications have reached more than 43,000. The school accepts just over 40 percent of undergraduate applicants.

    U-M is also considered one of the best colleges to work for, according to a Chronicle of Higher Education survey.

    U-M's $7.7 billion endowment is the seventh-largest of any university in the country. The school conducts the second-most federally funded research of U.S universities. The federal government awarded U-M $825 million in research funds in fiscal 2012, amounting to nearly 67 percent of the school's overall $1.24 billion research budget that year.

    "I left the university a better place than when I came," Coleman said "I was particularly concerned, with the support of the board, to make the experience better for students and for faculty."

    Kellie Woodhouse covers higher education for AnnArbor.com. Reach her at kelliewoodhouse@annarbor.com or 734-623-4602 and follow her on twitter.


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    Ann Arbor school board members are on their own if they would like to reflect on Superintendent Patricia Green's untimely departure.

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    Trustee Simone Lightfoot talks about debriefing on the superintendent's resignation at Wednesday's Board of Education meeting.

    Danielle Arndt | AnnArbor.com

    The idea of debriefing on what caused Green to tender her resignation on April 11 was brought up by Trustee Simone Lightfoot at Wednesday's Board of Education meeting.

    Lightfoot would like to know: "What the heck happened?" she said.

    Green's announcement that she would be retiring this summer, despite signing a five-year contract with the district and making verbal commitments that she was in it for the long haul, stunned board members and shocked the school community.

    Green has been with the Ann Arbor Public Schools for less than two years and earns a base salary of $245,000.

    At Wednesday's meeting, the board was tasked with initiating a conversation on how to proceed with launching yet another superintendent search, the district's fourth since 2002.

    Early on in the conversation, Lightfoot referenced her military background and said after a mission, there is always a debriefing to discuss "what could have been better, what should be better, who did what when, and how can we do things differently next time?" before moving forward.

    Trustees Christine Stead, Susan Baskett and Andy Thomas also expressed seeing some value in this discussion. However, they were conflicted about the best avenue for the discussion to take place.

    "Being able to reflect is a good idea," Stead said. "This is a major event for our organization and ... reflecting on the past couple of years before moving forward, I think, is a good step to go through."

    Lightfoot asked the district's legal counsel, David Comsa, whether this type of reflection and evaluation was something that could take place in a closed executive session.

    "I would rather not all of our conversation be public matter... I'd like for us to have the opportunity to have those ... frank discussions," she said.

    Comsa said because of the nature of the discussion, he would not advise it.

    "You can have an executive session for personnel matters if the person you are talking about requests that that be done," he said, but added this would be a little different because the topic of discussion would not be related to contract negotiations, disciplinary measures or other adverse actions the board might take. "I would be cautious about doing anything in executive session."

    Trustee Glenn Nelson, who had no personal interest in publicly or privately reflecting as a group on the superintendent's departure, suggested the board simply hash it out right then.

    "Given my personal goal in wanting to wrap up the (superintendent) profile (for the search firm), I want to get things out of the way that could inhibit that," he said. "So if this conversation has bearing on that, then I want to have it done with before that profile process begins (Wednesday). Because if we don't, it will hold up the profile and hold up the search."

    However, Baskett and Thomas were opposed to debriefing publicly. Baskett said in terms of the positiveness and productivity the board wants moving forward with the superintendent search, she felt it would be in the trustees' best interests to meet in small groups for coffee or to have telephone conversations about what the board might have done differently to obtain a different outcome. Thomas concurred.

    "I'm glad to share my opinion on this ... but I think it has the strong possibility of spiraling out of control, if we try to have this set as a topic of a meeting," he said, adding the topic has the potential for being very contentious, potent and destructive to the board's goal to attract a new leader.

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    Superintendent Patricia Green speaks at an ACLU community forum at the Peace Neighborhood Center in January 2012.

    Danielle Arndt | AnnArbor.com file photo

    The board agreed trustees could meet in small groups of three or less or speak over the phone to debrief and reflect on what happened. Stead added board members could contact any members of administration, including Green, if they have additional questions about the superintendent's departure or would like to reflect with them on the past two years as well.

    Green was quiet during the discussions on the superintendent search process. She declined to comment on her reasons for leaving, the timing of her retirement as well as her perceptions of strengths and weaknesses of the school district. She said she already issued a public statement.

    In response to why she dedicated a paragraph of her two-paragraph resignation letter to zero-based budgeting, Green said because she thinks it is really important. Green explained the district's budgets were lacking in detail and moving to line-by-line accountability, the first stage of zero-based budgeting, will improve the district's budget process and allow school officials new ways to find savings.

    "I love this district. I believe in this district. (Line-by-line accountability) is the key to financial survivability. I want this district not just to survive but to succeed," she said.

    Green added that her emphasis on zero-based budgeting in her resignation letter should not have been a surprise. She said she stressed it in her interview; she has stressed it throughout her tenure at the AAPS, including in her goals and objectives for the 2012-13 school year; and it only made sense to her to stress it as she left as well.

    It was past 1 a.m. April 11, when Green gave her resignation letter to board President Deb Mexicotte. The handoff occurred about halfway through a discussion on whether to place a conversation about the Roberto Clemente Student Development Center on an upcoming meeting agenda, Mexicotte said.

    A few minutes after receiving Green's resignation and immediately after Vice President Stead finished her remarks about why she supported a separate discussion on the proposal to close Roberto, the board president abruptly called the question, a parliamentary procedure she rarely, if ever, uses.

    Calling the question is a motion to end deliberation on a specific topic. It requires a majority vote for approval. The trustees passed the motion to cease the discussion 7-0. It also approved placing Roberto Clemente on an upcoming agenda 7-0.

    After both motions passed — Mexicotte hesitating in the second motion for about 18 seconds before voting — the president excused herself for an oddly-timed, 5-minute break.

    Mexicotte waited outside the Fourth Floor Conference Room of the Ann Arbor District Library for a trustee to leave the board room for either a restroom or snack break. She said then she told each trustee individually or in groups of two that they needed to stay after the meeting so she could speak with them. Once the trustees had been asked to stay, the president reconvened the board meeting for about 1 minute, 30 seconds before adjourning for the night.

    Mexicotte then again rallied one or two trustees at a time and told them the news of Green's resignation.

    Mexicotte admitted her behavior for the last approximately 30 minutes of the meeting was unusual.

    "I had to evaluate in the moment the best course of action," she said. "And I felt that would be the most appropriate way to handle it... I was thinking that it was important the trustees hear this news from me as soon as possible, but in a way that they could process it and prepare for what was going to be a difficult Thursday."

    In the clip below from the final minutes of the April 10 meeting, Mexicotte paused to collect her thoughts for about 18 seconds prior to voting "yes" when her name was called to place the Roberto Clemente topic on the agenda.

    She said she had to take a moment to regain her sense of what the board had been weighing, adding she had a lapse in attention following the superintendent's resignation letter.

    "I had not been able to follow much of the conversation in the way I typically would ... in trying to determine how to apprise the trustees of what had happened quickly and within the letter of the law," she said. "When it came to me, I had to set myself for a second and collect my thoughts instead on what we were voting on."

    Mexicotte added she could not speculate on Green's timing for submitting her letter of resignation.

    Watch the clip from the April 10 meeting below, courtesy of CTN Ann Arbor, which records all of the regular school board meetings.

    Danielle Arndt covers K-12 education for AnnArbor.com. Follow her on Twitter @DanielleArndt or email her at daniellearndt@annarbor.com.


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    Torrential rain was the problem Thursday in Ann Arbor, but Friday it will be winds gusting to 50 mph.

    Melanie Maxwell | AnnArbor.com

    After a stormy day Thursday, the Ann Arbor area Friday faces a day of high winds followed by a night of rain and snow.

    The National Weather Service has issued a wind advisory that’s in effect from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday for Washtenaw County. The weather service says wind gusts will reach 40 to 50 mph with sustained winds of 25 to 30 mph from the west-southwest.

    The high winds Friday are coming on top of storms Thursday that at one point knocked out power to about 10,000 DTE Energy customers in Washtenaw County. About 3,000 remained without power Friday morning, DTE said. Areas with outages can be seen on the DTE Energy power outage map.

    The winds Friday could cause more power outages and bring down large limbs or trees. Soft soils as a result of recent rains increase the likelihood for uprooted trees, forecasters said.

    DTE crews Friday were continuing their repair efforts from Thursday, when at one point, 70,000 DTE customers were without power in southeast Michigan.

    Spokesman Scott Simons said it’s not clear exactly when power will be restored, since the wind is likely to complicate repair efforts and cause more outages.

    Along with the wind, showers are likely Friday, mainly after noon, though precipitation is not expected to amount to more than a tenth of an inch. Temperatures will fall throughout the morning to around 43 by about 11 a.m.

    Friday night, a mix of rain and snow showers is possible before 1 a.m. With the low dropping to around 28 degrees, snow showers are possible throughout the night, but less than half an inch of accumulation is expected. Winds will gust to around 39 mph.

    Saturday, it will be partly sunny with a high near 43. Winds will gust to 26 mph.

    It will be cold again Saturday night, with the low dropping to 25. Winds will die down.

    Sunny skies return Sunday, and it will be warmer with a high near 49.

    For updated conditions and forecasts anytime, check AnnArbor.com's weather page.


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    Mary Siciliano and Jack Robbins will join forces to honor the memory of their violin/piano student Caleb Lei with a Benefit Recital for the Caleb Lei Memorial Award to be held at the Kerrytown Concert House on Monday.

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    Caleb passed away suddenly in 2012. The proceeds of the recital will fund the memorial award to benefit a violinist or pianist in the Student League.

    Robbins will play violin and Siciliano will play piano. The program will feature sonatas by Leclair, Debussy and Saint-Saens.

    If you are unable to attend either recital but would like to make a donation, send a check payable to “Tuesday Musicale of Detroit” with “Caleb Lei Memorial” on the memo line and send to: Velda Kelly, 22839 Maple Ave., Farmington, MI 48336.

    Monday, April 22, 8 p.m. $10. Kerrytown Concert House, 415 N. Fourth Ave. Reservations: 734-769-2999.


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    U-M grad Darren Criss was one of the actors performing U-M grad Jeff Marx's new song "You Have More Friends Than You Know" on "Glee."

    University of Michigan grad and Tony Award-winning composer/lyricist Jeffrey Marx ("Avenue Q") contributed (with co-composer Mervyn Warren) a new song performed on the episode of "Glee" that aired on Thursday, April 18 - and fittingly, fellow U-M grad Darren Criss was one of the actors who performed the song, called "You Have More Friends Than You Know."

    According to BroadwayWorld.com, "The song was written for a show centered around the 'It Gets Better' campaign. A portion of the proceeds from digital sale of the tracks will go to support The Trevor Project - the leading national organization providing crisis Intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning youth."

    You can also listen to Marx performing the song:

    Jenn McKee is an entertainment reporter for AnnArbor.com. Reach her at jennmckee@annarbor.com or 734-623-2546, and follow her on Twitter @jennmckee.


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    A woman and her daughter were arrested Thursday afternoon after they hit a woman with a frying pan and sprayed her with a “chemical agent” during an argument about a parking spot, police said.

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    Ypsilanti police responded at 1:40 p.m. Thursday to the 200 block of Ferris Street after a 31-year-old woman reported she was assaulted by the two women. Police said the women were arguing over a parking spot.

    The 31-year-old woman was hit with a frying pan and sprayed with a chemical agent, police said. They did not specify what type of chemical agent was used.

    The 31-year-old woman was transported to St. Joseph Mercy Hospital with non-life threatening injuries. The 34-year-old woman and her 19-year-old daughter were both arrested and taken to the Washtenaw County Jail. Police said they had had previous disagreements with the other woman.

    No felony charges were filed as of 10:30 a.m. Friday morning.


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    Kyle Feldscher covers cops and courts for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at kylefeldscher@annarbor.com or you can follow him on Twitter.


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    The city of Ypsilanti will plant 500 trees Friday and Saturday on the Water Street property, ahead of Earth Day.

    Rain or shine, volunteers are planting trees in the the Ypsilanti Tree Nursery located in the southeast corner of Water Street redevelopment area, at the Old Gilbert Park Baseball Diamond.

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    The city cleared the former Gilbert Park on the Water Street property to install a tree nursery.

    Tom Perkins | AnnArbor.com file photo

    The nursery can be accessed at the intersection of Park Street and South Street, off of Michigan Avenue, or by crossing the pedestrian bridge on the Water Street trail. Parking is available down side streets and also at the Water Street park.

    Volunteers are still needed for the event and can participate in the following shifts on both days: 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. or 1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.

    Organizers are asking volunteers to bring shovels, rakes, hand pruners, pitch forks, 5-gallon buckets and wheelbarrows. Children are welcome, but must be supervised by an adult.

    "Mother nature does not always agree with producing the ideal weather conditions when we plan events," City Planner Teresa Gillotti wrote in an email. "Please dress appropriately for the weather and shoes with a closed toe are required for this event."

    The city is working to revitalize its "urban forest" and in 2011, the city completed an inventory of its existing public trees. Ypsilanti has about 8,835 trees, stumps, and planting sites not including private backyard trees. Ypsilanti has partnered with ReLeaf Michigan, a nonprofit tree organization, to help recruit and train volunteers to help plant and tend the nursery.

    About 125 volunteers are expected to help plant the trees.

    Katrease Stafford covers Ypsilanti for AnnArbor.com.Reach her at katreasestafford@annarbor.com or 734-623-2548 and follow her on twitter.


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    I am a record-store geek.

    I spent most of my 20s in record stores. When I wasn't selling records at Schoolkids' and Encore or buying music for the Borders chain, I was digging through crates in metro Detroit and across the country, searching for those elusive items on my "holy grail" list.

    There's very little that can compare to the fun of pawing through stacks of vinyl. The smells, the colors, the pulse-quickening thrill of finding that long-sought-after rarity in near-mint condition. It's a thrill that I feared was lost thanks to the advent of iTunes and file-sharing.

    But fear not. According to a 2012 New York Times article, turntables are en vogue "as a hipster essential, like cocktails with artisan bitters and skinny jeans with rolled cuffs over oxfords without socks."

    And of course, with turntables come records. Vinyl sales are at their highest levels since the late 1990s. This vinyl renaissance has gotten so big, it's even inspiring critics to speculate that the whole movement has jumped the shark.

    But what's wrong with passionately seeking new music, regardless of the original motivation? I love the idea of people lining up to shop for records; discovering and sharing new favorites with friends.

    And this, my friends, is why I love Record Store Day.

    Record Store Day was originally launched in 2007 as a way to celebrate independent record stores and record store culture, and to encourage people to shop in their local, hometown, physical music shops. Record labels release limited-edition, collectible vinyl recordings just to participating indie retailers on the day of the event.

    Three Ann Arbor record stores are participating in this year's sixth annual Record Store Day, taking place on Saturday: Wazoo Records, Underground Sounds and Encore Records.

    Wazoo owner John Kerr says the event has gotten bigger each year.

    "The first year it was kind of a non-event—it was kind of an idea that never really took off," said Kerr. "It was initially kind of disappointing. But the second year, all of a sudden people were streaming in asking 'do you have this?' 'do you have that?' So then by the third year, I was ready."

    Kerr says he feels like he has a good read on what his customers are looking for in this batch of Record Store Day exclusives. Based on the phone calls he's been getting over the past few weeks, he expects a 7-inch single of Pink Floyd's "See Emily Play" and a David Bowie "Aladdin Sane" 7-inch picture disc to go quickly.

    "It happens so fast," said Kerr. "I'll open at 10 as usual, and by noon it starts to die down. Really most of it goes in the first hour."

    Wazoo Records, 336 1/2 S State St., will be open from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. on Saturday. 734-761-8686.

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    Underground Sounds, 255 E Liberty, Suite #249.

    Jessica Webster | AnnArbor.com

    Underground Sounds owner Matt Bradish tells of a line that got up to 4 hours long, snaking down E. Liberty to Kilwins last year.

    "I only have 550 square feet, so we only let 10 people in at a time. But this year we've got a POS (point of sale checkout system) so it should be much faster. We won't have to write each title down when we sell it like we had to do in the past."

    Bradish likes Record Store Day because it helps to encourage people to record collect. The limited releases and giveaways get people in the door, but the hope is that you'll see those people again and again throughout the year.

    Some of the big titles for Record Store Day at Underground Sounds are predicted to be a limited release of Phish's "Lawn Boy," The Cure's "Kiss Me Kiss Me Kiss Me" and Tame Impala's self-titled EP.

    Underground Sounds, 255 E Liberty St., will be open from 9 a.m. - 9 p.m. on Saturday. 734-327-9239.

    Up the street at Encore Records, the staff there is looking forward to their first Record Store Day as a participating retailer.

    "We're just sort of putting our toe in the water," explained Barnaby Root, Encore's self-described Record Store guy. "We're not doing a whole lot. Just trying to fill a bit of a gap with some of the less mainstream titles. They're not the ones people are going to be lining up for, but it's stuff we think we can sell."

    Encore Records, 417 E Liberty St., will be open from 11 a.m. - 8 p.m. on Saturday. 734-662-6776.

    Jessica Webster leads the Food & Grocery section for AnnArbor.com. Reach her at JessicaWebster@annarbor.com. You also can follow her on Twitter or subscribe to AnnArbor.com's email newsletters.


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    Ypsilanti police arrested a 25-year-old man after he was accused of taking out a handgun during an argument and firing a single shot into the air Thursday morning.

    Ypsilanti police responded at 1:25 a.m. Thursday to the 300 block of Jarvis Street. Multiple people reported the man took out a handgun during a dispute.

    Police reported he fired one round into the air. No one was injured, according to police.

    The man was arrested and police recovered the gun. He was taken to the Washtenaw County Jail to await potential charges.


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    Kyle Feldscher covers cops and courts for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at kylefeldscher@annarbor.com or you can follow him on Twitter.


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    The Ann Arbor Public Schools has scheduled two community forums on the budget for May. Meanwhile, the last budget dialogue hosted by the Board of Education will take place Saturday.

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    Parents, teachers and school board members gather at Huron High School for a community forum on the 2010-11 Ann Arbor Public Schools budget in this file photo. Forums were announced this week for the 2013-14 budget.

    Melanie Maxwell | AnnArbor.com file photo

    The Ann Arbor school board took a new approach to hearing from the community this budget cycle with a series of four community dialogues.

    The dialogues have been spread out across the district at multiple schools and at various times of the day. Board Treasurer Glenn Nelson said the events have been well attended, with between 60 and 120 people showing up to each one.

    He said the trustees leading the dialogues give a 10- to 15-minute introduction on the district's budget situation and the initial potential cuts that have been costed out by school officials. Then the group as a whole spends time talking about what community members came desiring to talk about, Nelson said, adding the dialoguess have been quite successful and the board appreciates the input it has received on the budget.

    Saturday's budget dialogue will take place from 9-11 a.m. at Scarlett Middle School, 3300 Lorraine St. The trustees scheduled to lead the discussion are Nelson, Susan Baskett and Deb Mexicotte.

    Central administration will present its proposed budget, complete with cuts, to the Board of Education at Wednesday's regular meeting, which begins at 7 p.m. at the downtown Ann Arbor District Library. According to the district's most recent revenue projections, AAPS officials will need to cut approximately $8.67 million from the district's operations in order to balance the budget for the 2013-14 academic year.

    Initially, officials projected they would be working with a $17 million to $20 million hole plus a $2.5 million current-year deficit. However, Superintendent Patricia Green enacted a spending freeze for the remainder of the 2012-13 school year and decided not to fill the deputy superintendent of operations position after Robert Allen left. In addition, the teachers union agreed to about $3.4 million in pay cuts.

    After the administration presents its proposed budget to the board Wednesday, it will offer two community forums on the budget:

    Danielle Arndt covers K-12 education for AnnArbor.com. Follow her on Twitter @DanielleArndt or email her at daniellearndt@annarbor.com.


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    The Skyline High School boys baseball team knows how to close out a win.

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    Skyline has won its second Team of the Week title, after its lacrosse team won our first one.

    Daniel Brenner | AnnArbor.com file

    As of Wednesday, the Eagles were in a close race with the Chelsea girls track team for our third Team of the Week title.

    By the time our poll closed at noon Friday, Skyline had pulled away for a convincing win. A total of 639 votes went to Skyline, more than 54 percent of our total. This marked by far our largest Team of the Week poll, with 1,181 votes.

    That means Skyline baseball will be our Team of the Week for April 22-27. We’ll have game coverage, feature stories, photos and more from the team’s week of competition. Hopefully the weather is a little more agreeable than it was during the Pioneer girls tennis team's run as team of the week.

    The Eagles have three SEC doubleheaders scheduled for next week: Monday at Chelsea, Tuesday against Adrian (a rain makeup) and Thursday at Pioneer.

    Last season, Skyline went 19-16 overall and finished fourth in the SEC Red. The Eagles lost a close 1-0 extra inning game to Pioneer in the district tournament.

    Our next Team of the Week poll will open Monday, with five new teams to choose from.


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    Police in tactical gear arrive on an armored police vehicle as they surround an apartment building Friday in Watertown, Mass., while looking for a suspect in the Boston Marathon bombings.

    Charles Krupa | AP Photo

    University of Michigan employee Lindsay McCarthy was startled when she woke up Friday morning to a text message from her brother, who lives in Watertown, Mass., telling her that before she turned on the news, he just wanted to let her know his family was safe.

    "We all woke up in the morning without realizing what was going on," McCarthy said. "Without knowing what was going on, my first thought was, 'Oh my God, what is happening? Why are you telling me you're OK?'"

    McCarthy said she went straight to Twitter around 6 a.m. for the latest updates and that's when she realized the horror of what was happening.

    The Associated Press reported that two suspects in the Boston Marathon bombing are accused of killing an MIT police officer and throwing explosives at police in a car chase and gun battle overnight.

    One suspect was killed and the other is on the loose, authorities told the Associated Press Friday. Thousands of officers were swarming the streets Friday in a manhunt that has nearly shut down the Boston area.

    McCarthy said the gunfight happened right on her brother's street, which is located in a small, quiet suburb in Watertown.

    "They woke up to what they described as a massive gunfight down the street," McCarthy said. "He said it sounded like an explosion and saw about 20 SWAT team members sprinting down the street. He described it as pretty intense. He said the air smelled like gunpowder."

    McCarthy said she and her brother grew up in Pennsylvania and were used to hearing gunfire at times because of hunters in the area, but her brother said he had never heard the sound of automatic machine guns before.

    McCarthy said her brother told her he saw "more cop cars than he ever saw" before.

    McCarthy said she isn't quite sure at what time it all began, but her brother has been posting updates and descriptions of what's happening on his personal family blog. McCarthy said the first post was at 1:13 a.m.

    "At 2:20 a.m., he posted he heard a bomb robot rolling outside," McCarthy said. "It's not something you expect to read about in a small suburban neighborhood."

    McCarthy said her brother, his wife and their small child were huddled in their basement Friday with their bags packed and waiting for an update and an opportunity to leave the area.

    "They can't leave Watertown because the streets are all shut down," McCarthy said.

    The Associated Press reported the suspects were identified by law enforcement officials and family members as Dzhokhar and Tamerlan Tsarnaev, brothers from a Russian region near Chechnya. The brothers lived near Boston and had been in the U.S. for about a decade, an uncle told the AP.

    McCarthy said she's comforted to know that her family is OK, but the thought of something like this occurring is frightening.

    "They're a little shook up," McCarthy said. "It's not something you expect in a small quiet suburb in Boston. It really brings home what some people in other parts of the world have to deal with."

    Katrease Stafford covers Ypsilanti for AnnArbor.com.Reach her at katreasestafford@annarbor.com or 734-623-2548 and follow her on twitter.


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    Having known and met many professional craft brewers, it's safe to say they have a type. They are often bearded, burly men dedicated to their product.

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    A still from "The Love of Beer."

    But if the ladies in the film "The Love of Beer" have anything to say about it, the face of brewing companies will become more diverse. The Wolverine State Brewing Company will show the film on Thursday at its Do Something Reel Film Festival.

    E.T. Crowe, part-owner of Wolverine State Brewing Company and known as "A2 Beer Wench," will offer her perspective on the state of the craft brewing industry in Michigan, as well as a quick lesson in "why lagers?" after the film.

    Participants can enjoy samples of some of Wolverine brands and E.T. will lead brewery tours and answer questions.

    Thursday, April 25, Doors open 6:30 p.m., movie starts at 7 p.m. Admission: $5. All proceeds benefit Slow Food Huron Valley. 2019 W. Stadium Blvd., Ann Arbor. 734-369-2990.


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    Local filmmakers Keith Jefferies and Jeff Meyers will screen four original short films—which have played at film festivals and earned awards—at the Michigan Theater screening room on Monday, April 22 at 5 p.m.

    “Tommy Button” and all three episodes of the TV/Web series “Felix Graves” will be shown, and the screening is free.

    Check out the trailer for "Felix Graves" (contains adult language), a polite, responsible hit man.

    Jenn McKee is an entertainment reporter for AnnArbor.com. Reach her at jennmckee@annarbor.com or 734-623-2546, and follow her on Twitter @jennmckee.


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    Mike Glennie has stepped down as Dexter High School's’s football coach a little more than a month after taking the job, according to a letter sent from Dexter Athletic Director Mike Bavineau to the parents of football players.

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    Mike Glennie

    AnnArbor.com file

    According to the letter, Glennie informed Bavineau Wednesday evening that he was stepping down. A search for a new coach will begin immediately, the letter said.

    "My commitment, as Dexter Athletic Director, is to build a first class organization. Coach Glennie’s departure does not change our course of action and commitment to that goal," Bavineau's letter states.

    Reached by phone Thursday afternoon, Bavineau confirmed the district had spoken to Glennie regarding the position, but didn’t comment further and wouldn’t confirm that he had ever been hired. Glennie did not return a call seeking comment.

    Dexter Touchdown Club announced Glennie’s hiring on March 4.

    Glennie coached at Saline for 10 years, through the 2011 season, and spent last year as the offensive coordinator at Pioneer.

    Glennie’s resignation is the latest in what’s been a year of turmoil for Dexter athletics personnel. Since longtime coach Tom Barbieri was dismissed following the 2010 season, three coaches have come and gone. Brian Baird coached the team in 2011, but resigned in early September following a blowout loss to Pioneer. Ryan Fisher filled in for the remainder of the season on an interim basis. Last year, Barbieri was awarded $10,500 and other perks as part of a settlement with Dexter Community Schools stemming from a grievance filed following his dismissal.

    "We met with the football team this morning. We did not want rumors to rule the day. We wanted to be upfront with our student athletes and let them know what our next steps would be," Bavineau said in the letter. "We discussed the fact that decisions people make often impact all us of but we can only focus on what we call the “Controllables”."

    The district has also had three athletic directors in the last year and five since the end of the 2009-10 school year. Brian Steele resigned last April after six months on the job because of a disagreement with administration. In August, his replacement Darren Kecskes quit after two weeks to take a job in a different district. Bavineau became interim athletic director following Kecskes' departure and according to DexterPatch had the interim tag removed in March.

    Kyle Austin covers sports for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached at kyleaustin@annarbor.com or 734-623-2535. Follow him on Twitter @KAustin_AA.


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    A series of lane and ramp closures are planned on Interstate 94 around Ann Arbor this weekend and early next week by the Michigan Department of Transportation for sign replacement work.

    From 9 p.m. Friday to 11 a.m. Saturday, the right lane of westbound I-94 near Huron Street at exit 183 in Ypsilanti Township will be closed, as well as the ramp from Huron Street to westbound I-94.

    From 10 p.m. Sunday to 5 a.m. Monday, the right and center lanes of eastbound I-94 will be closed just west of Michigan Avenue in Ypsilanti Township. The off-ramp from eastbound I-94 to Michigan Avenue will also be closed.

    From 10 p.m. Monday to 5 p.m. Tuesday, the right and center lanes of westbound I-94 near Michigan Avenue in Ypsilanti Township will be closed.

    Beginning 9 p.m. Tuesday, the right lane of eastbound I-94 at Kalmbach Road near Chelsea will be closed until 5 a.m. Wednesday.

    From 9 p.m. Wednesday to 5 p.m. Thursday, the right lane on westbound I-94 will be closed at M-52 near Chelsea.

    From 9 p.m. Thursday to 5 a.m. Friday, the right lane on eastbound I-94 at M-52 will be closed at M-52 near Chelsea.


    View I-94 lane and ramp closures, 4/19-4/25 in a larger map

    Amy Biolchini covers Washtenaw County, health and environmental issues for AnnArbor.com. Reach her at (734) 623-2552, amybiolchini@annarbor.com or on Twitter.


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