WILLIAMSTON- From students and staff, to city residents and LGBTQ advocates, the Williamston Board of Education met Oct. 16 as people crowded the halls and filled nearly every seat in the room to discuss the 8011 Transgender and Non-Conforming Student Policy that will reach its final decision on Nov. 6. The meeting began promptly at 7:30 p.m. with citizens’ comments where many members of the community took a stance on the suggested proposal regarding equal protection of transgender and non-conforming students. According to the 8011 Proposal, “WCS shall accept the gender identity that each student asserts reflecting the students’ legitimately held belief once the student or his or her parent/guardian, as appropriate, notifies District administration that the student intends to assert a gender identity that differs from previous representations or records.”
The tension in the room began during the Pledge of Allegiance, as many members of the community did not stand up.
It’s official: Daniel Rhines is the final member of the Williamston City Council, as determined Feb. 26 by the council. He was sworn in after the council meeting, and now, the Williamston City Council has all seven of its members. “Feels good,” Rhines said. “I hope that I can do well for the city and be worth the confidence the board placed in me by picking me.”
As Mayor Tammy Gilroy and the city council moved to its action items on the agenda, the decision to appoint the new council member came swiftly.
With the frigid temperatures and snow-covered streets, one might step inside Williamston’s Fireworks Glass Studios out of curiosity, or to warm up. When they first walk inside, they will still feel the cold wind outside because the studio leaves the front door propped open. When they walk deeper into the studio, the temperature increases and they might even break a sweat. Lining the counter are dozens of hand-crafted glass art. Behind the counter are the people and machines that make them.
Megan Merriman watches people grab cards every day as she sits behind the pharmacy counter. She says getting a card is “tradition” but in today’s age a lot more is needed for this special day. As children, getting a card and a piece of candy on this day was all that was needed, and that concept remains the same but at a much higher price. When couples think of this day, they do not think about chocolate and flowers, they think about the dollar signs. Giving your loved one only a card and some candy doesn’t cut it anymore.
Every day is a special at the Williamston Pub & Grill. Each day corresponds to a different promotion as the restaurant tries to entice diners to visit.
On Mondays, they have Happy Hour from 3- 7 p.m.; Tuesday there is Taco and Trivia; Wednesday is Burger Night, Thursday there is Trivia Night, on Friday, they have all-you-can-eat fish fry; Saturday has live entertainment for those dining in, and finally, Sunday is Fun Day.
Michelle Van Sledright works at Williamston Pub & Grill and says she started working here in March, and moved to Owosso in August. She chooses to make the commute because she loves it here so much.
One must bypass a bright red door before they can step inside 141 Design Company in Williamston. Once inside, they will be surrounded by vibrant furniture that has lived a life of its own. Unlike traditional furniture produced by the masses every day, 141 Design Company creates custom furniture from salvaged wood for anyone who desires it. “We’d like to consider them heirloom pieces,” said co-owner Chantelle Deimling. “These aren’t pieces that you sell in a garage sale in two years; these are pieces that become functional in your home—they’re art.”
Among the trio hoping for the vacant spot on the Williamston City Council, they all have one key aspect in common: They’ve been residents of the town for decades. They won’t hear back from the city council until the Feb. 26 meeting — when the council makes its final decision — so they’re on standby. Otherwise, the three know how the minuscule details of Williamston well; fine-tuned over the course of their tenure residing within the town. Stephen Bartig’s a fourth-generation resident.
While the Williamston City Council welcomed its newest member to its ranks — council member John Bisard — there is one spot still up for grabs. And for at least the next two weeks, it’ll stay that way: Vacant. As is procedure, the City Council met again Monday evening, as it’s wont to do every second and fourth Monday of the month. And as part of the agenda, the public servants interviewed the third and final applicant for the open spot, Paula Curtis. Curtis brings a Williamston-heavy resume, as she said she’s been in the town for the past 55 years.