Archive for October, 2009

This Saturday, October 31, is the last Farmer’s Market of the season.  This is your last chance to buy these great items until next Spring.

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This Sunday, October 25, 2009, from 1:00 to 6:00 p.m., the Old Village Association will hold a “Haunted Block Party.”  Here are the event details:

When: 1:00-6:00 p.m.

Where: Liberty Street, between Mill and Starkweather Streets, in Plymouth’s historic Old Village

What: Kids Games – Costume contest at 2:30 p.m. – for all ages – even pets, 50/50 fundraiser drawing at 5:00 p.m., Trick-or-Treating 1:00-4:00 at area businesses, together with a Kiddie Train Ride from 2:00-5:00 p.m.


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On October 30, from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m., downtown Plymouth merchants will be giving treats to costumed trick-or-treaters. Just come on downtown and walk around to the stores. Parents treat yourselves to our local retailers wares.

Also, the annual costume contest will take place in Kellogg Park from 6:15 until 7:00. This event is judged by age group.

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This game has gone viral.  The ontroversial ending is all over the internet.  It is even on Rivals, the premiere websource for high school sports and college recruiting.  I’ve seen the youtube video posted numerous times on Facebook and discussed on spartantailgate.com, one of the most frequented websites in the world and maybe the most notable single team/school college  website on the net.  Below is the link to the rivals article.


As I’ve said before, I’m a John Glenn graduate.  In fact, I played a varsity sport there.  So I’m not upset to see them win the game.  There again, I’m a member of this community now and I support the local schools and teams (but do not really follow them.)  When it comes right down to it, though, I don’t care too much one way or another who won this game.  But I am slightly bothered by Plymouth High’s handling of the controversy, at least the way it is presented in the rivals article linked above.

Here’s a bit from the article that stood out and that I found somewhat disappointing

Sawchuk wants no part of that – or being an Internet sensation. He just wants what he feels his team earned: A victory.

“It’s something that’s a protest in my eyes,” he told the paper. “We won the game. We played our tails off and they (Glenn) should not be happy with the win.”

The “protest” is so strong that the team’s official website has yet to record a final score of the game.

I have no problem with the Wildcats athletic director or football coaching staff lodging a complaint over the play.  They might be right.  Perhaps the refs should have — or maybe did — blow the whistle.  They could have been screwed.  Sometimes, though, being a good sport means accepting with as much grace as one can muster those calls that don’t go your way.  For the coaches to talk like the Wildcats didn’t lose the game is a bit too much.  The game won’t be replayed.  Two weeks later the score won’t be set aside.  The Wildcats will not be declared the winners.  It’s time to accept the situation as is and move on.  The kids on the team will learn that life often requires this.  Some of us have to continuously swallow bitter pills, suffer grave injustices (or at least perceived ones.)  The best thing the coaches could do for the players is to let this matter go and move forward.

That’s easy for me to say.  I didn’t play.  My child wasn’t on the losing side of the field.  I do recognize, too, that the Wildcats did shake hands with the Rockets after the loss, a very dignified and appropriate response.  I applaud them for that.

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I just found a flyer for a talent competition to take place on October 15, from 5-9 p.m. at Kellogg Park
Here are the details:

  • Grand Prize — $300
  • Register — get a form by emailing plymouthrockstalent@gmail.com and return it by mail to PO Box 6409, Plymouth, MI 48170
  • Entry fee — $30
  • Eligible contestants — ages 11 to 25
  • Proceeds — to the new teen center in Plymouth

There’s not much time so register now if you are interested!

This could be quite an interesting event to see even if you aren’t competing.

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An often misquoted and misunderstood biblical phrase, “out of the mouths of babes,” is loosely used to convey the sense that children, perhaps unfettered by world-weariness, often express wisdom that is beyond (or at least forgotten by) their elders.  Sadly, in my experience, that is not often enough the case.

I read a nice article in today’s Plymouth Observer entitled “Sending a Message: Kids divided on texting while driving ban.”  You can read the entire article here:  http://www.hometownlife.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2009910080660

The article is quite an eye opener.  Oh, it’s not shocking that kids would text while driving.  Maddeningly, I see this happening almost daily.  The people who can least afford to be distracted on the road, inexperienced drivers, yack on their cell phones incessantly and text with an alarming frequency.  I’m actually surprised these days when I pass a teen driver that is not on his or her phone. And I’m not exaggerating.

What did shock me in the article is that some of them, knowing the danger they are putting themselves and others in by distracted driving, think a ban on driving-while-texting is a bad idea or it goes too far.  Here are some of the more disheartening quotes from some local high schoolers:

Kristyn Sturtz, a 16-year-old Plymouth High School junior, said she has stopped text messaging while driving, but she opposes a federal ban because “people are going to do it anyway” and she believes the law would be ineffective.

Still, Sturtz said, “I know people who have gotten in crashes (while texting). No one has gotten hurt, but cars have been totaled.”

Ah, the old “people are going to do it anyway” reason for not passing laws.  I suppose we should take the drunk driving statutes off the books because people continue to drink and drive.

This young lady admittedly texts while driving but won’t stop unless the feds step in and ban the practice:

Kara Bongiovanni, a 17-year-old Canton High School senior, said she doesn’t typically initiate texting while driving, but she reads and responds when others text her. “I try to make it to a red light before I respond, but I do read it while I’m driving, though,” she said.

Still, Bongiovanni said she would stop texting while driving altogether if state or federal lawmakers impose a ban — an idea she supports.

Apparently it seems advisable to her only to read texts while driving but not actually respond until she is at a red light.  This is at least a step in the right direction.

This boy perhaps expresses the most startling sentiment of all: he regularly texts and drives but the law should find a “middle ground” to regulate his behavior.  An all out ban, he seems to suggest, would disconnect his poor soul during his commute:

Alex Gravlin, a 16-year-old Salem High School junior, said an outright ban goes too far. He suggested efforts to find “a middle ground” in the controversy, although he isn’t sure what it would be.

Gravlin said he often prefers quick text messaging over formal phone conversations, and he said it’s a practice he engages in “from the time school gets out until I go to bed.” He conceded he texts while driving “every now and then,” but he usually tries to do it when he is stopped at a red light.

I hate to sound like a finger-wagger, but this is a safety issue.  Drivers that feel this way could kill themselves or others.

There’s another issue at work her, too.  People just can’t seem to unplug even for a few minutes, teens in particular.  This thinking is lost on me.  Why is responding immediately to some inane teen jibber-jabber more important than paying attention to the road for a few minutes?

Now this kid gets it.  She seems to have a head on her shoulders:

Amy Paladino, a 17-year-old Canton High School senior, said she has completely stopped sending or reading texts while she is driving, and she supports a ban.“I never text while I’m driving. I just let them pile up until I’m done driving,” she said, adding that she became fearful after seeing stories about people who have died while texting and driving.

“I don’t want that to be me,” Paladino said.

See how simple that is?  If only more of her peers would listen to her.

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Westland John Glenn (my high school alma mater) got a lucky break, on an incredibly controversial play, and beat the Plymouth Wildcats on a last second touchdown at Glenn’s homecoming game last week.

The Wildcats blocked a field goal attempt but the ball did not pass the line of scrimmage. It was picked up by Glenn’s kick holder and, after some confusion on the field, run in for a touchdown. The play was upheld by the refs and the game awarded to Glenn. There’s some dispute over whether Glenn’s #87 downed by the ball by kneeling while in possession, but that was not seen or called by the refs.

A crazy play like this is a tough way to lose a game. It’s also an incredible way to win it. The play is on youtube and you can see it here.

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plymouth_chili_cookoffOur family was able to attend the Chili Cookoff today.  My in-laws came in for the afternoon from out of town, my daughter had a new friend to hang out with and we spent a pretty nice day — except for 10 minutes of rain — downtown.  It was a really nice day and, as usual for the Chili Cookoff, we had some great food.

I have to admit, though, that the private entry portion of the Chili Cookoff was poorly set up, at least as far as I was concerned.  The chilis available at “The Gathering” were only available in stages, some at 1:00, others at 3:00.  We passed more unavailable chilis than available ones.

To be honest, there wasn’t a single private entry chili that really blew me away.  One green chili we had was pretty good.  Another entry was downright awful.  I couldn’t even tell what the meat was and the cooks/participants would only tell me it’s a “secret.”  There’s nothing worse (at an event like this) than eating very gamey “secret” meat.  The cook joked that it was “squirrel meat” and it certainly tasted like what I would imagine squirrel to be.

The restaurant entries, like last year, were pretty good.  I did not have the Picnic Basket’s entry because I eat that chili once every few weeks.  It is part of their daily menu.  The two chilis I enjoyed the most were from the Penn Grill (more known for its partying than chili) and from the 1999 Tavern.  In fact, 1999 Tavern’s recipe got my “people’s choice” vote (all 3) and I purchased a bowl of it.  But Penn Grill’s recipe was a close second.  My family members voted for that.

I do not know if either the Penn Grill or 1999 Tavern carry chili as a regular menu item. If they do, and you like chili, I recommend you give theirs a try. Don’t forget that the Picnic Basket’s chili won an award last year. You can’t go wrong with it’s recipe, which is available daily.

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I saw this in the Plymouth Observer and figured I would pass it along.

The success of the Great Lakes Regional Chili Cookoff, Plymouth’s annual chili festival and motorcycle show, depends heavily on volunteers.

With the growth of the festival, more and more volunteers are needed. Habitat for Humanity provides the bulk of the volunteers.

Anyone wishing to help out at the chili festival, set for Sunday, Oct. 4, should contact the Habitat for Humanity Plymouth office, (734) 459-7744.

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The Penn Theatre starts up its Thursday-themed movie nights with October’s “Shocktober Thursday Classics.”

The schedule:

  • Oct. 8, “The Mummy,” (1932);
  • Oct. 15, “War of the Worlds,” (1953)
  • Oct. 22, “Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein,” (1948)
  • Oct. 29, “Bride of Frankenstein,” (1935)

war of the worlds

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