The Fourth of July Parade in Mayberry

July 4, 2017

Many people like to think of Milford, Michigan as a modern-day version of the fictional town of Mayberry that was the setting for the Andy Griffith Show Mayberry RFD. There are some seminaries. Milford is a small town in a somewhat rural setting. We have a basically a two block long downtown, with a light at each end (which Mayberry didn’t have). We have quaint little stores and a barber shop in the middle of the downtown. But there the similarities probably end. We have a vibrant set of restaurants within the downtown area, as well as three jewelry stores, an exercise place, a bridal boutique and a women’s store that is known state wide for its “social ware” (think weddings and special occasions requiring a gown and not just a dress).

But getting back to the Mayberry theme, we do have several parades a year, starting with the big Memorial Day Parade, which is one of the biggest and best in Southeastern Michigan for honoring our veterans, and then the Independence Day Parade, which was today and ending the year with the Christmas Parade, which takes place on Thanksgiving weekend. Interspersed before, after and in between are a bunch of minor parades – the Martin Luther King Parade in January, the Little League Parade down Main Street at the start of the baseball season, the Homecoming Parade for the local High School are three that come to mind. There are several other occasions that close down main street; an event that seems to average about one closure per month. That’s small-town America at its finest.

start of paradeSo today we had the Fourth of July Parade. Well over a thousand local people lined Main Street, many staking out their favorite spot by leaving blankets and/or chairs on the sidewalk on main street as early as the night before the parade. The parade didn’t start until 11 AM, but there were people out before 10 AM. Some came much earlier and had breakfast in one of our downtown restaurants before claiming their spot for the parade.  The local AmVets group walked up and down the parade route handing out small American flags, so that the kids and their parents had something patriotic to wave as the parade passed by them. An entrepreneur also walked up and down selling cotton candy to excited kids who awaited the start of the parade. How Mayberry-like is all of that?

The parade stepped off precisely at 11 Am with the Village Police Chief leading the parade. I can just imagine Sheriff Taylor doing the same in his police car in Mayberry. Then came the procession of walking groups, homemade floats, decorated vehicles and Rotary Duck Race kidsbicycles and the horses. This year we had the Huron-Kensington Metroparks 6-horse Clydesdale wagon in our parade, which is like the Budweiser Clydesdales that we see on TV coming to Mayberry. We also had horses from the Cowboy Church of Michigan and from the local Kensington Trail Riders organization.

Of course we also had politics in the parade, with many local politicians marching to remind their constituents to vote for them in the next election for whatever elected position for which they might be running. And this year, we had the pro- and anti-Trump groups, which is something in national and local politics that would have been out of Bridge to Unity floatplace in Mayberry and perhaps was a little too political even for a Milford parade. But we got through it without incident. We also had a fly-over with a single plane from the Tuskegee Air Museum making several passes over the parade route. It was an old T-6 Trainor from WWII, which might have been a modern plane back in the time depicted on TV in Mayberry.

All–in-all, it was a great parade in small town America and the absolute best way for those who came to view it to pause and celebrate this great country. Where else but America could you go see such a parade that is set in, and filled with the small town values of, Mayberry.  Maybe you had a parade like ours, too, in your little piece of Mayberry.


Milford Home Tour heads up fun Milford Weekend events.

September 17, 2016

The 40th annual Milford Home Tour headlines a family fun weekend of events in Milford, Michigan, this weekend of September 17 & 18. The Home Tour, which is put on by the Milford Historical Society, features docent-led tours of five of Milford’s historic homes, 624-n-main-stwith two this year that have never been on the Home Tour before. Several homes will also feature entertainment by various individuals and groups. Proceeds from the Milford Home Tour go to support the operation of the Milford Historical Museum.

Also on the Home Tour itinerary is the Log Cabin on GM Road, next to the fire station, and the Milford Historical Museum at 124 E. Commerce Rd, just one block from downtown Milford. The Museum will feature a special Home Tour display of “Ladies’ Handiwork”, including a lace making demonstration. The Log Cabin will have games and home crafts from the late 1800’s for the kids and whole family.

The Home Tour starts at 11 AM each day running until 5 PM both days. Tickets may be 957-s-main-stpurchased at several downtown Milford locations prior to Saturday – Acorn Farm, Main Street Art, Your Nesting Place and the Milford Historical Museum – or at the homes that are on the tour either day of the tour.  Tickets are $15 for Adults and $13 for seniors. This year’s homes are located at 624 N. Main St, 324 S. Main St, 104 Second Street, 957 S. Main St and 1018 Atlantic St. For more on the houses that are on this year’s Home Tour go to the web site www.milfordhistory.org and click on the Home Tour Poster.

Saturday night will feature a special end-of-season concert called CURRENTS, an evening metal rockerof indie rock at the new LaFontaine Family Amphitheater, from 7-10 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 19. Presented by Huron Valley State Bank and the Milford Downtown Development Authority, the concert is curated by Milford’s own Sean Lynch and will showcase three local and regional bands in one night, including hometown band 800Beloved, Grand Rapids-based Dear Tracks and Detroit’s Missionary. The concert is free to the public and will feature all original music. The LaFontaine Family Amphitheater is located in downtown Milford’s Central Park.

crusin-news-adOn Sunday, September 18, downtown Milford will be turned into a giant parking lot for the 32 annual Milford Car Show – the largest area car show of the year. Cars of all ages and type will be on display with show attendees getting to vote for their favorite cars in several categories from vintage streets rods to modern muscle cars. Over 250 cars are expected for the Milford Car Show which will open to the public at about 10 AM. Cars start showing up much earlier than that ad line up from Main and Commerce Streets all the way down to Central Park. For more on the Car show, go to www.milfordcarshow.com

There is also a Tractor Show on Sunday starting at 11 AM out at the Huron Valley State Bank tractorparking lot at the corner of GM Road and Milford Road. Tractors of all sorts show up for this annual event; from working farm tractors to lawn tractors. There have even been a few steam engine tractors in the past.

So come out to Milford for the weekend on September 17 & 18 and enjoy the historic homes, an indie rock concert, the classic cars and the tractors. Stay and enjoy the many fine restaurants that are to be found in Milford. On Saturday you can also enjoy the great local shops in the downtown area and be sure to stop by the Milford Historical Museum for the lace making display and demonstrations.

We’ll see you in Milford this weekend.


July 4th – Parades, Ducks and Fireworks

May 24, 2016

The 4th of July may seem to be a long way off, but it will be here sooner that you think. Independence Day in the Milford area is always special. One of the three major parades of the year in Milford takes place on that day ( the other two are the Memorial Day Parade and the Christmas Parade). The Independence Day Parade is put on by the Milford Historical Society, which also runs the Milford Historical Museum in Downtown Milford.

RotaryDucksThis year the 4th of July Parade will have a special twist, with the addition of the Huron Valley Rotary Club’s annual Duck Race in Central Park. Here is their Press Release –

Huron Valley Rotary Club (formerly Milford Rotary Club) will be celebrating their annual duck race fundraiser this year on the 4th of July this year following the Parade in Beautiful Downtown Milford.  Designed to be a family fun event right after the parade and held in Central Park, there will be food, games, displays, music and fantastic prizes for the famous Duck Race which will be held at 3 PM.

This year count on games designed to engage the entire family so they can remain downtown Milford after the parade and enjoy the day with family and friends.

One of the Rotary Clubs major fundraisers, proceeds help us to do work with local nonprofits in our community as well as provide scholarships for high school seniors at both Milford and Lakeland High School. Duck tickets can be purchased from any Rotarian, Huron Valley State Bank, and the Carls Family YMCA.  Several other non-profit organizations are also joining in selling ducks and will earn a percent of the proceeds of the tickets they sell. Be sure to go to our website http://www.huronvalleyrotary.com or follow us on our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/DuckRaceFestival/ .

For additional information, please contact Sharon Peterson at sjpeterson@ymcadetroit.org.

The Rotarians have this wonderful family event planned to follow the parade, with food and games and things to do for the whole family – all leading up to the excitement of the annual Duck Race down Pettibone Creek in Central Park. The excitement of thousands of little yellow rubber ducks furiously paddling down the creek to try to be first to the river is not to be missed, not to mention the thrill of having the winning duck which pays the owner an amount yet to be determined; but which has paid as much as $2,000 to the winner in the past.

The theme of this year’s Independence Day Parade is “Celebrating our Freedoms” and all paradelocal organizations are encouraged to enter a float or walking group in the parade. The parade is on the 4th of July and steps off at 11:00 AM, with line-up starting at 10:15 AM. Participants line up on Union, Hickory and East Streets. Groups may obtain the Parade Registration form from the  Milford Historical Society web site – www.milfordhistory.org or by emailing parade co-chairs Rich Harrison or Norm Werner.

There are many area fireworks shows during the 4th of July Weekend, with events at Kensington Metropark and Camp Dearborn being the closest.

So plan on spending much of the 4th of July in Milford at the parade and the Duck Race festivities to follow.

 


Special needs equipment vendor day at Kids in Motion

April 29, 2016

Families caring for special needs children often have their hands full already and anything that can save them time and make things easier is usually appreciated. Mary Hydorn, the founder of  Kids in Motion Pediatric Therapy Services came up with a great idea two years ago to save time for families that require special equipment as part of their care regimen. Families would often have to research several different vendors to find the various devices that they might need.  Mary invited all of the vendors that she could find who have devices that might be needed by the families of her patients to participate in a demo day at her therapy center at in Highland Michigan at 2636 S. Milford Rd., Highland, MI 48357. That vendor day was so successful last year that she is repeating it this year. Below is information from her press release about the day.

Please save the date and share with all who could benefit from our 2nd Annual Equipment Demonstration Day being held Saturday, May 21st 1 -4 pm, rain or shine.

2016 Equipment Vendor Day Flyer

2nd Annual Equipment Demonstration Day being held Saturday, May 21st 1 -4 pm, rain or shine.

Kids In Motion Pediatric Therapy Services, 2636 S. Milford Rd.,Highland MI 48357

Several vendors will be present to demonstrate all different types of equipment for the children who have physical impairments. This is a one stop shop to try out and maybe even get fitted for special needs equipment all at once.

Equipment vendor list flyer

 

Items such as: wheelchairs, standers, walkers, seats, bikes, scooters, gait trainers and some fun stuff & services too!

So save the date and save yourself some time by getting out to this event if you live in the Huron Valley area of Michigan.


Where do you go to learn how to rock…

April 25, 2016

Where do you go to learn how to be a rock musician? Well, in Milford, Michigan, you go to the Michigan Rock School. I’ll bet most of you didn’t know that we had a Rock School in Milford, did you? Well, we do and it just moved to a new location and last week it sent out this press release –

 MICHIGAN ROCK SCHOOL EXPANDS, MOVES TO NEW LOCATION IN DOWNTOWN MILFORD’S MILL VALLEY CENTER

MILFORD, MICHIGAN, APRIL 22, 2016 – After nearly two years operating inside the Suzanne Haskew Arts Center (The SHAC) in Downtown Milford’s south side, Michigan Rock School has moved.  While still in Downtown Milford, the performance-based music lesson studio is now in the Mill Valley Center building, which also houses Starbuck’s Coffee, and Village Bar & Kitchen, amongst others.

metal rockerFounded in May of 2014, Michigan Rock School began offering private lessons on guitar, drums, bass, voice and piano, and integrating rock band rehearsals, songwriting workshops, and other dynamic group programs into the curriculum.  The school caters to both kids and adults, and encourages all students to apply their musical talents through regular performances.  The SHAC’s industrial space provided a flexible environment for the schools non-traditional lesson programs, as well as a nurturing community supportive or music, arts, and creativity.

“As our business picked up and the SHAC also became busier, it became more difficult to operate our programs in the same space.  In the new location we will be able to offer more private lessons, and expand on our group classes and rock band programs.  We even have plans to build a small stage for intimate “coffee house-style” performances,” said John Kozicki, owner/instructor at Michigan Rock School.  “I’m grateful for the relationships that I’ve made on Milford’s south side, but I’m also looking forward to connecting and working with other businesses on the north end of Downtown.”

Michigan Rock School is still working with the SHAC to host monthly open mic nightsgirl rocker inside the arts center, and teaming with River’s Edge Brewing Company for an afternoon of performances on their stage during Milford Memories.   Also on the schedule for the summer is a summer-long beginner guitar class, a two-week songwriter’s camp in July, and rock band camps beginning in June.  Additionally, Kozicki has brought on new instructors for both private lessons and to facilitate group programs.

An open house is scheduled for Saturday, June 4 from 11:00am to 3:00pm at the new location.  Guests are welcome to come see the new facility, learn about lesson programs, enjoy some live entertainment, and play free video games on the classic Ms. Pac-Man machine.  Michigan Rock School’s new address is 525 N. Main St., Suite 100.

For additional information, please contact John Kozicki at (248)766-4220 or via e-mail at mailto:michiganrockschool@gmail.com or visit their web site at www.michiganrockschool.com

Rock on, Milford!

 


The Milford Historical Society Endowment Fund

September 26, 2015

The Milford Historical Society is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization founded in 1973 with the mission of collecting, preserving and sharing the history of the Milford, Michigan area. We are an educational organization with theMHS Endowment Fund Logo Milford Historical Museum in Milford, Michigan serving as the primary vehicle for our efforts to educate the local community about the history of the area. An important part of or mission involves engaging local high school students to share the area history. Students volunteer at the Museum as docents (guides) over their final two years in high school. Those who complete 100 hours of service as docents by the time that they graduate are awarded $1,000 scholarships. We usually award 2 or 3 scholarships each year.

The Milford Historical Society has created a dedicated Endowment Fund which will be invested to provide income for these student scholarships, as well as supporting the operation of the Milford Historical Museum with any earnings beyond that needed for the scholarships. At the current rate of return on conservative investments, we estimate that a fund of $60,000 should be sufficient to provide for the annual scholarships. We have also provided for the naming of each scholarship on behalf of the donors, should any single donation be made at a level of $30,000 or more. Scholarships may be named for individuals or for corporations. Scholarships are awarded at the end of each school year to the graduating seniors who have completed their service requirements at the Museum.

Milfortd Historical MuseumThe Milford Historical Museum is located at 124 E. Commerce Street in Milford, Michigan 48381, and is open from 1 – 4 PM on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays. The museum displays historic  memorabilia that has  been donated by area residents as well as featuring a second floor that is furnished and decorated just as a turn of the century hoe might have been in Milford in the late 1800’s. In addition, the museum staff provides history research for those doing genealogical work or who want to know the background of the Milford home. The Milford Historical Society maintains at the Museum an archive of every issue of the Milford Times news weekly since its beginning in 1871 and also has an extensive photo collection of historic photos and sells reproduction prints of selected photos.

We have established a crowd funding site for this endowment fund on the Crowdrise.com web site – https://www.crowdrise.com/themilfordhistorical

Please consider supporting our mission.


Summertime and the good life in Milford, Michigan

July 3, 2015

It’s officially summer, and that means lots of things to do in the Milford, Michigan area for the next few months.

The annual 4thof July Parade kicks things off, with hundreds expected downtown to watch the parade. Theparade band pic parade steps off at 11 AM in front of the Milford Historical Museum and proceeds down Main Street all the way to Huron Street. Over 45 groups will be participating in the parade with candy and goodies for the kids who are watching. The parade theme this year is “Celebrating the Huron Valley” and signifies that the parade is made up of marchers and watched by spectators from all over the Huron Valley area.  The parade Grand Marshall this year is
Mary Lou Gharrity, a life-long resident of Milford who grew up in Ye Olde HotelMary Lou and MArlene on Main Street  and who, along with her late husband, owned the Milford Times weekly newspaper for many years. Mary Lou is also a founding member of the Milford Historical Society and a “go to” person if you want to know about Milford’s history.

On July 10 & 11 Milford’s Downtown Merchants hold their annual sidewalk sale, with great bargains to be had on a variety of store items, plus entertainment, special prizes and refreshments and other “goings-on” downtown.   On those same two days the Milford Historical Society will be holding its annual Granny’s Attic Sale from garage sale-29 AM until 4 PM both days and features an eclectic mix of donated items and items from estate sales in the area. There are things that Granny pulls out of her attic that you won’t find anywhere else, from glass and china to furniture items. Check it out on your way to and from the Sidewalk Sale.

In August Milford’s big event of the year – Milford Memories – will take placeMIlford Memories poster 2015 over three days from August 7 – 9 – Ranked 41st in the Nation by Sunshine Magazine & Voted 2nd Best Festival by Vote 4 the Best. Over 200,000 guests can’t be wrong! This is a huge event, with hundreds of booths featuring art and crafts and other products. It’s not to be missed. Click here to go to the Milford Memories web site.

In September we have the Home Tour weekend, which is comprised of several events over two day – September 19 & 20.  On both Saturday and Sunday, the Home tour runs from 10 Am until 4 PM and features f of the historic homes of Milford, plus 3-4 other venues for visitors to learn more about Milford’s History. On Sunday only there are three more events going on – The 31st annual Milford Car Show will take place all the way down Main Street and into Central Park. The show runs from 8 Am until 4 PM. and features nearly 200 cars of all types in multiple categories that are judged for best in category by the show attendees.  Click here to go to the Milford Car Show web site.

Also on Sunday we have the annual Tractor Show out at the Huron Valley State Bank location at GM and Milford Roads. The show runs from about 10 AM until 4 PM and features both working farm tractors and vintage collectible tractors.

Finally that Sunday the annual Huron Valley Rotary Club Duck Race is held in Central park. There will be RotaryDucksgames and activities for kids, picnic type food available for the family and other activities leading up to the moment when the 1000+ yellow rubber ducks are dumped into the Creek leading to the Huron River and all frantically paddle away trying to be the first across the finish line down-stream. The duck are sold to raise funds for the work in the community that the Rotary does and a part of the funds collected goes to the owner of the first place duck. In the pasts that was well over $1,000. Click here for more on the Duck Race from 2014. Stray tuned for how to buy your 2015 duck. For a little extra this year duck owners will be allowed to paint their ducks a different color so that it makes it easier to see how their duck is doing in the race (each duck is numbered).

In addition to those special events, the Concerts in the Park series of summer concerts at the LaFontaine Family Amphitheater continue, as do the Friday Might Live Concerts at the Center Street Gazebo. You can go to my web site www.movetomilford.com to see the schedule of acts at those venues. Then there are lots of activities throughout the summer at the YMCA and put on by the Community Rec and Adult Ed program. You can view schedules for both at the Move to Milford web site, as well as click on the Events Calendar for Kensington MetroPark. There’s always something to do in the Valley.