LBN Covers Local Business News

Birmingham – March 20, 2019

Birmingham – March 20, 2019

We’d love to know what you think! After you read this week’s City News, please take a moment to answer some quick questions that you will find at the bottom of this page.

Making Sen$e of District Dollars

Join Superintendent Mark Dziatczak and School Community Partnership for coffee and casual conversation around funding within the Birmingham Public Schools on Tuesday, March 26, 8:30 to 10 am at the Birmingham Public Schools Education and Administration Center.

Join City Commission to Review Proposed Development Agreement

The Birmingham City Commission will hold a workshop to review a proposed Development Agreement for the new North Old Woodward Parking Structure and related Bates Street development project on Tuesday, March 26, 2019 starting at 5 pm at City Hall in the Commission Room. There will be a full review of the Development Agreement, but since this meeting is a workshop, no actions will be taken Formal consideration of the Development Agreement will be done at the April 8 City Commission meeting. This meeting is open to the public and the public is welcome to attend. Agenda items for City Commission meetings can be found on the City’s website at

Spring Lifeguard Training

This class will teach participants the knowledge and skills to prevent and respond to aquatic emergencies, including CPR/AED and First Aid instruction. Both full course and recertification are available. Certification allows lifeguard to work at a pool. Participants must be at least 15 years old and able to 1) Swim 300 yards continuously using the following strokes: 100 yards of front crawl using rhythmic breathing & propellant kick; 100 yards of the breast stroke; 100s yard of the front crawl and/or breast stroke 2) Swim 20 yards, surface dive to a depth of 7-10 feet, retrieve a 10 pound object and swim 20 yards back to the starting point in under 1 minute 40 seconds. Swim goggles are not permitted. 3) Tread water for 2 minutes using only the legs, hands under armpits. Class will be eight sessions at Seaholm High School, beginning April 10. Register at or 248.203.3800.


Birmingham Citizen’s Academy

Interested in learning about city government…for free? Applications to attend the 2019 Birmingham Citizens Academy are now being accepted through April 20, 2019. Download the 2019 Birmingham Citizens Academy application form here. This interactive eight-week program is open to Birmingham residents 18 years and older, and is designed to provide a fun, informative learning experience for citizens who want to understand how the City of Birmingham operates. For more information about the Citizens Academy, visit:  or contact Kevin Byrnes, Communications Director, at or 248.203.3800.

Special Siren Test

To promote severe weather safety preparedness, Oakland County will conduct a special test of the Outdoor Warning System on Wednesday, March 27 at 1 pm. The purpose of this test is to raise the awareness level of our citizens and offer schools and businesses an opportunity to test their internal disaster plans during normal business hours. View future siren testing dates online here.

Beth Robinson

Beth Robinson

City News Editor
Clawson – March 20, 2019

Clawson – March 20, 2019

We’d love to know what you think! After you read this week’s City News, please take a moment to answer some quick questions that you will find at the bottom of this page.

Clawson Chamber Spring Oakland County Network Mixer

Join 27 Oakland County Chambers members for a lively mixer on Thursday, April 11, from 5 to 7 pm at the DoubleTree by Hilton at 39475 Woodward. There will be a great crowd, so bring lots of business cards and marketing materials. Cost is $10, payable at the door at the Clawson Chamber of Commerce Table.

Pop Art Studio Wood Project

The Clawson Makers Market is hosting a pop art studio project on Sunday, March 24, from noon to 2 pm. The project is titled “Fresh, Sometimes Frozen Wood and Resin.” The $25 fee includes all supplies, customization with wood engraver and instruction for a 6” x 6” finished project. Feel free to bring snacks and beverages. Get tickets.

Acting Out Kids Spring Classes

Spring classes are starting on April 9. Get your budding star out to learn acting, improv and writing in a fun and accepting environment. Visit AOK for class schedule, fees and registration.

Dog Man to the Rescue!

March is Reading Month – so celebrate the crime-biting canine from a favorite graphic novel series at the Blair Memorial Library on Saturday, March 23. Enjoy crafts and activities inspired by Dog Man, who is part dog, part man, and all hero! With the head of a dog and the body of a human, this heroic hound digs into deception, claws after crooks, rolls over robbers, and scampers after squirrels. Will he be able to resist the call of the wild to answer the call of duty? Howl with laughter with Dog Man, the #1 New York Times bestselling series from Dav Pilkey, the creator of Captain Underpants! Call 248.588.5500 for more information.

Tables of Treasure / Indoor Garage Sale

Come out on to the Senior Center Saturday, April 6 from 9 am to 1 pm at Hunter Community Center to buy or sell. There are 50 tables available for rent, so you can sell your own items. Cost is $15 per table, but if you stay until 1 pm you get $5 back! Space is first come, first served, so get your registration form and money in as soon as possible! We will also have baked goods available for sale that day. All proceeds from table rental and food sales will benefit the senior center. If you can help with baking or working the bake sale table, please call 248.583.6700 or sign up in the Senior Center.


Rebecca Calappi

Rebecca Calappi

City News Editor

To share your news, announcements, and events, please email

Royal Oak – March 20, 2019

Royal Oak – March 20, 2019

We’d love to know what you think! After you read this week’s City News, please take a moment to answer some quick questions that you will find at the bottom of this page.

Residential Rain Gardens Presentation

A rain garden can be planted in any area where rainwater tends to collect. By using native plants and grasses, you can create a lovely addition to your landscape and improve the drainage in these areas. Come learn how with representatives from The Clinton River Watershed Council at the Royal Oak Senior Center Room #3, on Thursday, March 28, from 7 to 8 pm.

Be a Know-It-All For a Cause

Support the Royal Oak Elks’ Blessings in a Backpack effort and dazzle your friends with your trivia talents at Trivia Night to on Friday, April 12, from 6:30 to 9 pm at the Royal Oak Elks at 2401 E. Fourth Street. There will be a cash prize for first place, a 50/50 auction, a silent auction and a cash bar. Tickets are $30 or $275 for a table of 10, and include entry, snacks and pizza. They are available at

The Great Marshmallow Drop

Where can you see 15,000 marshmallows fall from the sky? Worden Park. On Saturday, April 19 at 10 am, a helicopter will drop marshmallows to three different age groups:

  • 4 years and younger and individuals with disabilities
  • Children 5-7 years old
  • Children 8-12 years old

Children only need to collect one marshmallow to exchange it for a prize. For more details email or call 248-858-5267.

Calling All Artists!

The Royal Oak Commission for the Arts is excited to announce another round of the popular Art Explored program. The 2019-2020 Royal Oak Commission for the Arts’ Art Explored program is now accepting applications for work to be included in a temporary display of public art in downtown Royal Oak. For more information please refer to the official call for artists. The application deadline is May 1, 2019.

If you are an artist, non-profit or public school looking for grant information, you may also be interested in their listing of arts and culture grant opportunities

Senior Day at the Zoo

Senior citizens who live in Macomb, Oakland and Wayne counties are invited to enjoy a special free day at the Detroit Zoo. Senior Day features live music, tractor train tours, bingo, zookeeper talks and a senior resource area. Tri-county seniors age 62 and older and a caregiver will receive free admission and parking on Saturday, April 24, from 10 am to 3 pm. For more information, visit Detroit Zoo.

Beth Robinson

Beth Robinson

City News Editor
Troy – March 20, 2019

Troy – March 20, 2019

We’d love to know what you think! After you read this week’s City News, please take a moment to answer some quick questions that you will find at the bottom of this page.

Picking Up After Winter

Yard waste collection starts on Monday, April 1. Troy Residents may take up to 10-yard waste bags daily to SOCRRA Transfer Station free of charge. SOCRRA does not accept yard waste in plastic bags. Proof of residency is required.

Find out how to dispose of all kinds of waste on the SOCRRA Waste Wizard. Visit the socrra website  to learn more. You can also download the free mobile app “SOCRRA Waste Wizard” from your app store.

Troy People Concerned
Spring Pasta Dinner

Troy People Concerned, a non-profit service organization since 1974, supports Troy residents in times of need with assistance, information and referrals.  Troy People Concerned receive calls for assistance from people who have lost their jobs or are facing serious medical or other financial situations. In some cases, TPC helps Troy residents by helping with utility bills, rent or mortgage payments; backpacks for kids in need; holiday food baskets or gift cards to local grocery stores such as Meijer and Kroger.

They will host their Spring Pasta Dinner fundraiser, on Wednesday, April 10, from 5 to 8 pm, at the San Marino Club. The event includes: 50/50 Raffle; Silent Auction; Music; Caricatures by Darrell Swift (Live Art by Swift) & Bill Bryan (Bill Bryan Art); Magician Jason Abbott, face painting fun for the Children; and Cash Bar.  Bring non-perishable food items to donate to TPC’s food pantry and receive one free raffle ticket (1 per family). Tickets: $20 Adults / $5 per child under 10.  For Info call 248.528.9199. Mail ticket request & check payable to Troy People Concerned, 2045 Austin Dr, Troy MI  48083 or purchase tickets online at

Make Your Yard Into A Colorful Work of Art

Whether you want to create a complete paradise in your yard or liven up a few beds, you’ll want to join Troy Seniors for “Continuous Color in the Landscape” at the Community Center on Tuesday, March 26, from 7 to 8:30 pm. Come learn design techniques and gardener’s tricks for extending, stalling, and coaxing repeat shows from flowering plants, from landscape designer and author Janet Macunovich. The program is free. Call 248.526.2608, email or stop by the Community Center to register.

Louisiana’s Way Home

When Louisiana Elefante’s granny wakes her up in the middle of the night to tell her that the day of reckoning has arrived and they must leave home immediately, Louisiana isn’t overly worried. After all, Granny has many middle-of-the-night ideas. But this time, things are different. This time, Granny intends for them never to return. Separated from her best friends, Raymie and Beverly, Louisiana struggles to oppose the winds of fate (and Granny) and find a way home. But as Louisiana’s life becomes entwined with the lives of the people of a small Georgia town — including a surly motel owner, a walrus-like minister, and a mysterious boy with a crow on his shoulder — she starts to worry that she is destined only for good-byes. (Which could be due to the curse on Louisiana’s and Granny’s heads. But that is a story for another time.) Youngsters in grades 6 – 12 are invited to join the Young Adult Book Club at the library on Wednesday, March 27, from 5 to 6 pm to eat snacks and chat about their March book, “Louisiana’s Way Home” by Kate DiCamillo, author of “Because of Winn-Dixie, “The Tale of Despereaux” and other young adult favorites.

Historical Hat Moments

Photo by Sharland/The LIFE Images Collection/Getty ImagesSip a cup of tea while enjoying a slice of history. It’s all about hats and history this month! Linda Hannah of Hat Moments, LLC brings an admired segment of fashion history to life with an enthusing presentation that weaves historical pieces into the flow. View gorgeous, vintage headwear and learn fascinating stories behind fabulous styles. Come to the Troy Historic Village for Thursday Tea on Thursday, March 28, at 2 pm (organizers suggest arriving for the one-hour program at 1:45).

This popular lecture series takes place inside Old Troy Church at the Troy Historic Village. Ticket price is: THS Member: $7/person, Non-Member: $8/person. Call the Village Gift Shop at 248.524.3570 to purchase over the phone or stop by during regular hours. Visit the Troy Historic Village for more information.


Beth Robinson

Beth Robinson

City News Editor
To share your news, announcements, and events, please email
Royal Oak’s Frentz & Sons Hardware: 87 Years of Having “Everything!”

Royal Oak’s Frentz & Sons Hardware: 87 Years of Having “Everything!”

Royal Oak’s Frentz & Sons Hardware: 87 Years of Having “Everything!”


MARCH 2019


LBN Community Series
Royal Oak

When repairmen from Clinton Township’s Hoover Plumbing need a special part for a Dishmaster faucet, they drive miles past the many large-chain home improvement outlets and head straight to Frentz & Sons Hardware in Royal Oak.

“We’d rather come here than the ‘big box’ stores for those parts,” they say. “Frentz & Sons has whatever we need.”



“We hear that all the time,” says Mike Frentz, who owns and runs, along with his brother, John Frentz, the iconic hardware store that was started by their father and grandfather and has been in Royal Oak for 87 years — and has been named Hour Magazine’s Best Hardware Store thirteen years in a row as well as one of the twelve best hardware stores in the country by Popular Mechanics magazine.

“We have 1.2 million items of inventory,” says Mike. “If someone comes in and asks for something and we don’t have it, we try to stock it. And we end up having what people in this area need.”

“And,” he continues, “though people expect our prices to be high because we are a single, small business, customers are always telling us that what they’re buying here actually often costs less than at the big-chain stores.”

“We don’t have a lot of just one thing,” John adds. “We have a few of just about everything.”

“I came in with my husband when he needed a special lightbulb,” says Ferndale resident Gretchen Salsby. “I hadn’t been here in a while, and I ended up staying for almost two hours! Walking up and down the aisles of linoleum tiles and wood and concrete floor, I found so many treasures: large pottery crocks, storage and kitchen tools and gadgets, books, and even craft supplies.”

“I bought an ‘old-school’ enamel Dutch oven,” she says, “in a perfect, small size that I didn’t even know existed! And everything is so neatly displayed.”

“I hadn’t been here in a while, and I ended up staying for almost two hours! Walking up and down the aisles of linoleum tiles and wood and concrete floor, I found so many treasures…”

Mike chuckles when he is complimented on the store’s orderliness.

“Well,” he smiles, “in 2010, we installed our first computer system.”

“From that time on,” he explains, “we no longer had to price items individually, but have prices on the actual shelves. I said, ‘If I have to go through and re-arrange everything anyway, I might as well really organize it!’”

One of those organized areas is the store’s displays of nuts, bolts, nails, and screws.

“We have one of the largest assortments, anywhere,” Mike says.

“Since a lot of it is metric, we have people come in from car dealerships and automotive stores needing a special nut or bolt for a vehicle.”

“We also get lots of woodworkers and flea market shoppers who can find the replacement nails and screws they need for knobs, cupboards, pictures, etc.,” John says. “And we can advise people about what exactly is best to use for their particular picture-hanging project.”

“People come in and sometimes look at the nuts, bolts, nails, and screws for hours. When we offer them help, quite often they say they are enjoying just looking on their own.”

For customers who do need help with products or projects, there is always an associate available.

“Our staff is great,” Mike says.

“When we hire them, we throw them right into the deep end of the pool,” John jokes.

“Since one of us is always here,” he adds, “when someone needs help, we say, ‘Stay with us while we explain, so you learn this.’ They learn as they’re doing.”

Recalling an outstanding past employees, John and Mike simultaneously begin sharing stories about “Mr. B.”

“We give all our employees nicknames,” John says. “We had a worker, ‘Mr. B.,’ whose mom would bring him here on Saturdays when he was just a young child. She’d take him up and down the aisles and pick up things to show him, explaining what they were.”

“Years later,” John continues, “some high school kids were in the store and this now-teenaged kid was asking for a job. When he left the store, his friend approached us and said, ‘You’d better hire him! He’s the smartest kid I know and has helped me get through all my math classes!”

“We did hire him,” Mike says. “Within two weeks, he knew where every single item was. He worked here through college and was hired directly from here, with an engineering degree, to be a steel plant manager. He’s a great guy and still keeps in touch.”

Generations of customers also keep in touch, bringing their children and grandchildren to run up and down the aisles’ small hills that are part of the building’s original floor.

“People have come in and told us, when they buy a new home and will be moving away, that the one thing they are going to miss is our store,” Mike says. “They will travel from Mt. Clemens or Plymouth – or anywhere – to come back to shop here.”

When customers purchase an older home, Frentz & Sons Hardware supplies the items and services they need for repairs and décor.

“We have lots of people who buy our glass doorknobs and skeleton keys for ‘vintage-style’ interior doors,” Mike says.

“And, in our warehouse, we are able to cut replacement glass for older windows — as well as for picture frames. We also have a pipe cutter to replace and thread steel pipes, including for gas lines.”

For older homes or businesses, they offer historic plaques with the building’s date, specially made in Rapid City.

“The plaques are beautiful,” Mike says, “and their sale benefits the Royal Oak Historical Commission.”

“We’ve been here for 87 years. And we’re happy to continue being part of this city’s history and part of the lives of so many customers.”

Frentz & Sons Hardware
1010 N. Main Street
Royal Oak, MI  48067