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Welcome to the New Year! I hope you enjoyed the holidays and are ready to take on the Michigan winter.

I don’t consider myself overly techie, but I also don’t think I’m too far behind the times. So, when I received an Apple Watch as a gift, I had no idea what this would mean.

Understand: I grew up watching the Jetsons, Wonder Woman and ALF. We have some amazing technology these days, but I’m still disappointed I don’t have a jetpack.

I was a little floored with my new watch. I had no idea all the things it can do. It even tells me when to breathe. But the most surprising feature to me is the ability to take phone calls ON A WATCH.

I was putting in a load of laundry and my watch started ringing. My husband and I looked around to see who stepped on a kids’ toy only to figure out it was my wrist. I answered it and we talked to a telemarketer for a while just because IT WAS ON A WATCH.

This thing is straight out of the campy Batman show from my childhood. POW! If only it did the laundry.

Bring in the New Year strong.


Fire & Ice Festival

Looking for a fun winter festival? Look no further than the Fire & Ice Festival in Downton Rochester. Oakland County, Oakland County Parks and Recreation, the City of Rochester and Downtown Rochester come together to host the festival the weekend of Jan. 17 through 19.

Admission and events remain free. Check out the website for information on food trucks, Tastefest, carriage rides and more.

Go Green

Go Green is an initiative by the City of Rochester to encourage customers to select Paperless Water and Sewer Billing and enroll in the Automatic Payments Options.

Paperless billing and payments save time and money and, most importantly, helps the environment. We know you have a busy life and need choices when it comes to making payments for your city water and sewer services. Now, you can select an automatic payment option, so your bill will be paid on time, every time, direct from your checking account.

You will still receive your bill, via email, before the due date, so you will have time to ask any questions before payment is processed.

To sign up for this program, click on Automatic Water and Sewer Billing and Paperless Billing Form and print the application. Complete the form, be sure to date and sign, then mail or deliver it to City Hall. You will need to include a voided check to complete the sign-up process. The automated payment will apply to your next quarterly bill. If you have any questions, call 248-733-3700.

Keep Snow from Hydrants

Whether you plow your own snow or hire a company, when the snow starts to fly, don’t forget to keep the fire hydrants near your home clear. A 3-foot clearance all the way around the hydrant creates a workable space for firefighters if they respond to a house fire.

Writing Contest

There are two writing contests, designed around Women’s Suffrage, open to Oakland County students.

The idea is a celebration of 100 years of the 19th Amendment. One contest (poetry) is open to students in grades kindergarten through 12. The other is for secondary students and is the creation of a PSA.

The initiative is for Oakland County students only. Cash prizes will be awarded.

Rebecca Calappi

Rebecca Calappi

City News Editor

Every Wednesday at Local Business News we'll feature an independently owned business.

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