Federal lawsuit looks for ‘adjunctive relief,’ transgender school policies still important debate in Williamston

After months of deliberation and a slew of meetings trademarked with passionate arguments, the Williamston Community Schools Board of Education passed a pair of policies in November 2017 in relation to transgender youth and their definition, among other guidelines. And despite passing months ago, the debate surrounding the policies have yet to go away. Currently, there’s a pending federal lawsuit that names six of seven Williamston Board of Education members as defendants: Greg Talberg, Christopher Lewis, Sarah Belanger, Nancy Deal, Kathy Hayes and Joel Gerring. The seventh member of the board at the time, Jeffrey West, was the lone vote against the policies, which the school board passed 6-1. He is not named in the lawsuit.

In Williamston, running a business, being a mother is a juggling act

The house at 5108 Barton Road in Williamston looks like any other house. There are trees out front, a few cars parked in the driveway and a garage door wide open, giving people a glimpse of the backyard. All seems normal until the sound of dogs, chickens and alpacas fill the air. Yes, alpacas. In the backyard of this home lies Circle 6 Alpacas, a fiber production farm that houses 30 alpacas, one goat, three horses, two dogs, five cats and 10 chickens.

Williamston’s 304 River Edge Lofts has 17 apartments ready for lease

It’s not hard to find 304 River Edge Lofts while strolling through downtown Williamston. The four-story brick building stands out in the mix of old-fashioned buildings because of its newness and modern aesthetic. The apartment complex was built last summer and opened in October 2017. With 30 apartments, 17 are sitting empty. With one-bedroom floor plans for $1,250 a month and two-bedroom floor plans for $1,510 a month, property manager Katelyn Franklin said this has some residents concerned.

Williamston City Council sees ‘spirited’ back-and-forth, developments in city manager search

What was once a calm Williamston City Council meeting turned into a heated debate within the city hall chambers, pitting the Farmers’ Market Ad Hoc Committee and the Williamston City Council. A “spirited back-and-forth” is how the newly-minted council member Daniel Rhines described it. The Williamston Farmers’ Market is set to run for May 20 to Oct. 14. It’s an annual tradition many residents are fond of — including a number of council members.

Williamston downtown holds ‘quirky’ secrets, sense of inclusion

Wander up the stairs of the Williamston True Value Hardware store, and it has its own storage room. There are remnants from the past, including a run-down kitchen and bathroom from decades ago. But the real treasure lies in the basement. Both the second floor and basement are hidden from the public eye, much like the nested relationship between businesses in the area. It’s there, just unseen.

The Bunkhouse opens in Williamston

It’s been busy inside the bright teal building at 118 W. Grand River Ave. in downtown Williamston. The building now occupies The Bunkhouse, which opened on Feb. 16 and was founded by 141 Design Company owners Chantelle and Brian Deimling. “The Bunkhouse is where paint classes are held and it’s also a fun little store,” co-owner Chantelle Deimling said.

Fireworks Glass Studios is heating up Williamston

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.

141 Design Company creates custom furniture and makes people feel welcome

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.”

141 Design Company opened in September 2016.