Archive - Jul 2009

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Plus one award, minus one critter

As a mom and a reporter, there are times when I have to be both at the same time. For instance, at the Lenawee County Fair this week, I wrote an reported on the dog show because I was there and because one of the women who run it happens to have a local tie that made a good feature possibility.
Of course, I was there as a parent as well since my daughter, Kiki, was competing in the event. I guess the most difficult part of the ordeal was getting the photographs without distracting our golden retriever, Maggie—not an easy task. She was completely overwhelmed by the fair experience, even if she did well in the competition. It all ended with a third place finish, which I mentioned in my regular column. That would have made for a perfect Sunday were it not for another critter that my daughter held so dear—her hamster named Dani. We came home to find him extremely sick. My initial thoughts, which I didn’t not express at the time to Kiki, were that I didn’t believe he’d make it. As it turned out, my thoughts proved correct. By Monday Dani had gone to the big old hamster wheel in the sky. I had one very distraught tweener on my hands.
She received Dani as a birthday gift last year. We adopted him rather than purchasing a hamster outright, because, as a dwarf hamster, he was the perfect companion for Kiki. She told everyone who met Dani that he was a dwarf like her, which, in fact, she is. When we adopted Dani, we were lead to believe that he was a she. He went by Hannah for the better part of three months until we learned that he was not a she.
Kiki learned to clean his cage and keep him fed with my help and Dani lived a good life for a hamster. Many a night I heard that wheel going and going and going.

July 30th

Tecumseh beats Clinton 3-2 for state title

Tecumseh coach Dave Marko was presented the Little League's 10-11 state championship trophy after his girls beat Clinton 3-2.

In what turned into a great battle for the Little League's 10-11 state softball championship between two local teams, Tecumseh edged Clinton 3-2 to claim this year's title.

You couldn't ask for a better contest, unless of course you're from Clinton. The only thing I found unfortunate about the game was there was a loser. But, while Clinton didn’t receive the first place trophy, they did make quite an impression. Both teams played outstanding ball and represented District 16 extremely well in the state venue.

Watching the two teams during the contest made me think about the potential future of the two close rivals. While Tecumseh is a dominating force in the state Clinton has also made a name for itself as a championship contender. My guess is it isn't going to be the last time you see either of these teams fighting it out for a title. Tecumseh’s two-time state championship varsity softball coach Kristalyn Musselman and Clinton hall of fame varsity softball coach Al Roberts have got to be tickled pink about what’s heading their way in the future. I know I am!

 Tecumseh coach Dave Marko (above) was presented the Little League's 10-11 state championship trophy after his girls beat Clinton 3-2. Photo by MICKEY ALVARADO

Tecumseh wins state title

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In a Little League state championship contest that went down to the final inning on Wednesday evening at Tate Park in Clinton, Tecumseh’s 10-11-year-old softball team was able to hold off a hard charging Clinton squad to claim this year’s title with a score of 3-2.

The large trophy handed to Tecumseh coaches Dave Marko and Jim Hatfield was newly made six years ago and travels with the winning team each year. It has been awarded to Tecumseh five out of the six years it’s been around.

It’s the first year with the team for both Tecumseh coaches. Due to economic reasons, Jim Hite and Ryan Skelton had to step away from the positions after building the team up for a couple of seasons.

“We pretty much stepped into a silk purse,” said Marko.

“It’s not the coaches, it’s the players,” said Hatfield.

The contest was tied 2-2 going into the sixth and final inning. Tecumseh’s Morgan Skelton doubled to start the inning and was replaced on the bag by Cassandra Brown. She was able to steal third base and then score the winning run when Claire Burnett was thrown out at first base on a fielder’s choice.

Clinton pitcher Megan Nelson was able to close out the rest of the inning with no additional runs allowed but the damage had already been done.

Tecumseh pitcher Abigail Marko struck out the first batter in the bottom of the inning but gave up a hit to follow. Clinton’s Sarah Turner then stole her way to third base with just one out recorded. A well-hit ball by Caitlyn Winters looked to tie the contest but Tecumseh’s Whitney Hite snagged the hard shot to record the second out.

July 29th

Charlotte Squires is crowned Queen at the Lenawee County Fair

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If you don’t catch this year’s Lenawee County Fair Queen Charlotte Squires of Macon Township walking the midway in the evening, then you are sure to find her at her regular fair hangout—the horse arena.

Squires, who is the first 16-year-old to capture the crown since the age requirement was lowered last year, has a full week ahead of her as a 4-H equestrian competitor with the Midnight Riders of Tecumseh 4-H Club and vice president of the Lenawee Horse and Pony Board, but she’s taking it all in stride and she’s enjoying her activity-filled week.
“It’s been really exciting,” she said from atop her horse, Tate, as she prepared to compete in the trail riding competition Tuesday. “I didn’t think I was going to win because most queens do it a couple of years before they win.”

The honor means the week is extra busy for the poised teen who has been showing horses at the fair since she was eight years old. She competes in horse events daily from 9 to 5 p.m. and then must cast off her riding gear in the evening and don a cocktail dress and heels to represent the fair during the evening attractions. She admits that she wasn’t prepared to win and said her feet hurt from all the walking in high heels in the evening. She’s been touring the midway each night, greeting fairgoers and has handed out awards and appeared at various events, including Monday night’s Figure 8 Demo at the Grand Stand where she sang the National Anthem. She’ll sing the National Anthem at a couple more events throughout the week and is looking forward to Thursday night when she gets to go back stage and meet the Lenawee County Fair headliner Julianne Hough.

Tecumseh School Board re-elects Johnson-Berges as president


The first order of business for the Tecumseh School Board at 6 p.m. on Monday night was to administer the oath of office to new member Jimmie Rice. The board then went into closed session until 7 p.m. and after coming back into open session,  elected a new slate of officers. The slate was approved with a 5-2 roll call vote, with Lou Englund and Jason Sines voting no.

Debbie Johnson-Berges will serve as president, Karen Januszek as vice president, Dan Gunder, as secretary, and Kevin Packard as treasurer. The board then took care of several resolutions that needed to be voted on as part of its annual organizational meeting, including the naming of depositories.

The board also approved an amendment and extension to its pupil transportation services agreement with First Student, which extends service for five years, including a three year freeze on rates ($833,911 for 2009-2012 for 173 days of service), and a two percent increase the final two years ($850,511 for 2012-2013, $867,768 for 2013-2014).
Prior to approving bids totaling more than $80,000 for seal coating at various Tecumseh school building sites, board member Lou Englund, made a motion to seek bids from more than one contractor, but the motion failed.

Following the regular meeting, the board again went into closed session to conduct an evaluation review and contract review for Superintendent Mike McAran. School employees may request a closed session for such reviews. The board then came back into open session and voted to continue McAran’s employment for the period July 1, 2009 and ending on June 30, 2013. The superintendent will be paid $111,224 for the 2009-2010 school year, with no salary step or percentage increases.

Gary Naugle announces bid for mayor seat


Lifelong Tecumseh resident and third term Tecumseh City Council member Gary Naugle is announcing that he will be running for Mayor in 2010. Mayor Harvey Schmidt has announced his bid for Michigan’s 57th District House of Representatives seat in the 2010 election and would not be seeking the mayoral post.

Naugle also serves as Vice Chair on the city’s Brownfield Redevelopment Authority. He also has served as Commander of the Sons of the Union Veterans of the Civil War, which focuses on maintaining veterans’ graves, and as President of the Friends of the VFW. He also has been Parade Marshal of the city’s Memorial Day Parade and Memorial Services at Brookside Cemetery for 10 years.

Naugle said that he believes the city’s budget will be one of the biggest issues facing council members and city officials during the coming term.
“With the economic trend, we’ve got to work on that, and try to keep our city where it’s at,” Naugle said. “We don’t want to lose ground. We can’t slip and go backwards. We’ve got to do what we can without losing services.”

He acknowledged that this would be a challenge, given continuing declines in state shared revenues and other revenue areas affecting the city’s budget. Naugle said he believes work on the city’s industrial base will play a large role in Tecumseh’s future.
“I think that’s the future of the city, maintaining the industrial parks,” he said. “We have to work on getting more business in the existing park and we’ve got to continue to work toward bringing in a research and development business in the Tecumseh Business and Technology campus.”

He also believes in supporting the communities existing businesses, especially downtown.

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