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Author: The County Journal

Retro Arcade opens inside Eaton Theatre

Crissta Ames Contributing writer After accomplishing her dream of owning the Eaton Theatre, Leann Owen wanted to take it a step further. She has spent the last few months renovating the space they owned next to the theatre and transforming it into a retro 1980s-themed arcade.  The room was previously rented out to Sue’s Tailoring but has been sitting empty for a few years. Owen opened up the wall next to the mural in the theatre lobby, and then added in some black lights and carpet that glows underneath them to add to the experience. There are also plans...

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EASC spaghetti dinner to benefit Christmas Kiddies

Crissta Ames Contributing writer Visit the Eaton Area Senior Center on Saturday, Dec. 15 between 6 and 8 p.m. for a spaghetti fundraiser dinner that will benefit the Charlotte Fire Department’s Christmas Kiddies fund. In addition to the spaghetti dinner, there will be a Touch-A-Truck opportunity with one of the Charlotte Fire Department’s firetrucks. The fire department has been doing the Christmas Kiddies fund since 1906, providing hundreds of children with toys and surprising them with a visit from Santa. Every member of the CFD gives a little bit of their time on Christmas Eve to deliver these presents...

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Local serviceman reunites with wife for the holidays

Crissta Ames Contributing writer Clint Whitney is giving his wife, Stephanie, something very special this Christmas. He is returning home to Michigan after serving five years in the United States Navy, during which he was never able to spend significant time with his new bride.  Whitney enlisted toward the beginning of 2014 and also worked with the Marine Corps and Blue Angels, the Navy’s demonstration team consisting of pilots from the Marines and the Navy. He was deployed to locations in the Asian Pacific. Africa, and the Middle East.  “I spent most of my time deployed with the Marine...

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Beloved Charlotte band leader passes

Crissta Ames Contributing Writer William “Bill” Sutherland, a well-known citizen of Charlotte, passed away Sunday, Dec. 2 at the age of 83. Sutherland was a tremendous influence in the lives of students who were under his wing in the Charlotte High School band until his retirement in 1993, as well as during his time being a junior high director.  Along with directing the Charlotte bands, Sutherland also taught music for 18 years at Linden High School and was the president of the Michigan School Band and Orchestra Association.  As the Charlotte community grieves over the loss of Sutherland, his good friend and longtime CHS colleague Gary Sullivan, reflects on the pair’s work in the following letter addressed to the MSBOA:  “Family, friends, colleagues, the community of Charlotte, and the greater Michigan band community are saddened by the passing of William Sutherland. Bill was a music teacher and band conductor to thousands, adjudicator, piano accompanist and church organist, a mentor to numerous band directors, a stable voice of MSBOA’s leadership (including his role as president), clarinetist in the Lansing Concert Band, and a valued community member who provided service to countless organizations. To me Bill was a trusted friend and colleague. In the summer of 1983, he attracted me to the high school position in Charlotte, where for the first 10 of my 27 years as director, Bill and I...

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Klann cherishes chance to participate in Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

Crissta Ames Contributing Writer While the floats and giant balloons are most households’ reason to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, Charlotte High School senior Ryan Klann was giving this town another reason to tune in to the ever-popular event.  Every year, CHS sends their drum majors to a camp called Smith Walbridge, where the Macy’s Great American Band chooses drum majors based on their performances. The two drum majors that get chosen yearly are chosen based on spirit, performance, and overall excellence. This year, Klann was one of those hardworking students who WAS chosen. “Because of my performance and achievements at Smith Walbridge this last summer, the director of Smith Walbridge and his staff felt I was a deserving candidate for this honor,” Klann said. In rehearsal, Klann said the environment was friendly despite feeling a little under pressure and dealing with the fast-paced nature.  “With so much to accomplish in the little rehearsal time we had, it was awesome to witness what so many focused minds could produce during a rehearsal!” Klann said, believing that the common interest in music helped tie everything together and make it work like clockwork. “I’ve been blown away from the encouragement the community has given me these past few months, and I’m so thankful for all the support and love I’ve received. It was an absolute honor to represent my band,...

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