Meridian Township named No. 1 place to live in Michigan

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MERIDIAN TOWNSHIP, Mich. – Frank Walsh, the Meridian Township manager, presented the 3rd Quarter 2017 Performance Report at Tuesday night’s Township Board meeting. Walsh revealed that the Michigan Townships Association named Meridian the No. 1 place to live in Michigan out of all 1,600 communities in the state.

Tuesday night’s meeting was held at the Meridian Municipal Building in the Town Hall Room at 6 p.m. Photo by Ashley Fernandez.

“I know that Meridian Township is No. 1 in the state, I have lived here for 36 years,” said Kathy Ann Sundland, Meridian Township trustee. “It is very satisfying to hear that Meridian Township was officially named as the No. 1 township to live in the state by the Michigan Township Association.”

The township has been making strides in their diversity efforts and the report from the Michigan Townships Association stated that this was one of the areas Meridian has excelled.

“The Township received A+ grades for schools, housing and being good for families, as well as, for nightlife and diversity,” the report said. “With its close proximity to Michigan State University, there are so many opportunities to engage in the diverse culture of the area.”

Ronald Styka, the township supervisor, commended the Meridian Township Garden Club for receiving statewide recognition and presented members with their award for the “2017 Garden Club of the Year.”

The award distinguishes them as a “Triple Diamond Club” for completing 4,440 points –  the highest amount for a membership of their size over the course of one year. Their award will be hung permanently in the Meridian Township Hall room.

“On behalf of the club, we certainly appreciate the recognition that [the Township Board] is giving us,” said Madeline Materson, former Meridian Garden Club president. “We especially appreciate the way we can collaborate with the Township. The cooperation and collaboration has been very fruitful and has been the secret of our success.”

The club was founded in 1970 and has continued to grow with 86 current members. The gardens they tend include all those in the Historical Village, those surrounding the township buildings and the Okemos Post Office.

Members are putting together a new garden called “Plant It Pink” to honor victims of breast cancer that will be dedicated on Oct. 16.

“Plant it Pink is a national project with the national garden clubs,” said Jodie Szalankiewicz, current Meridian Garden Club president. “It was something that our members got fired up about, they wanted to build this garden in memory of those lost and those fighting. They went out and secured tens of thousands of dollars in donations and they have done a lovely job.”

All Township Board meetings are broadcasted by HOMTV both online and on Comcast Cable Channel 21. Photo by Ashley Fernandez.

Among other items discussed was Zoning Amendment #17030 to allow golf courses as open space in PUD and PRD ordinances, and the Commercial Planning Unit Development #17014 to redevelop the Haslett Marathon station.

The meeting on Tuesday began with a moment of silence for the victims of the Las Vegas shooting that took place on Sunday night. The next meeting will be Oct. 17 at the Meridian Municipal Building in the Town Hall Room at 6 p.m.