Williamston residents sound off on COVID-19’s impact on governor’s race

Some residents in Williamston weigh in on whether Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s response to COVID-19 will impact her re-election bid in 2022. At the start of the pandemic when most states around the country mandated lockdowns, Michigan was one of the states to have the most strict and stringent protocols as some appreciated Whitmer’s efforts in keeping the community safe, some such as Williamston business owner Gary Cube, said she may have overstepped.

Williamston City Council says goodbye to city manager

Williamston City Council, left to right, Daniel Rhines, Noah Belanger, Tammy Gilroy, Brandon Lanyon, Tommy Pratt, and Corey Schmidt. This City Council meeting on November 8 was the last one for City Manager Corey Schmidt. SuperIntendent Adam Spina was the first to speak during the public comment portion of the meeting to say goodbye and thank Schmidt. 

“I just wanted to convey … that on behalf of the staff and our district, how much we appreciate his leadership and his collaboration,” said Spina. “One of the awesome things about our community is how we all coalesce around working together to support the children that live here.”

Schmidt resigned to be able to spend more time with his wife and his children. The council approved on Sept.

Williamston Wellness Center is now home to Elemental Acupuncture

The Williamston Wellness Center located at 1235 E. Grand River Road houses Elemental Acupuncture, a new chiropractic and acupuncture office. Elemental Acupuncture is a new business n the Williamston Wellness Center on East Grand River. Credit: Isabella Gorisek

Annie Hass the owner of Elemental Acupuncture rented, just a few months ago, her side of the building from Simone Ranes, a chiropractor who owns the Wellness Center. “Annie came here, after the previous renter tore it down to nothing and made it into a doctor’s space,” said Ranes. “There’s three exam rooms with sinks in them, there’s a front desk, a waiting room, a nurses station, and a lab.” 

After working together in their previous jobs, Ranes left her institution in 2014 where she then rented her half of Williamston Wellness Center.

Zynda’s restaurant is open for business after a year of renovations

Zynda’s restaurant was established in 2020, located in Williamston, MI. New renovations have been added to the building and a new look has been put in place. Credit: Isabella Gorisek

Red Cedar Grill, a restaurant in Williamston, was renovated  during the COVID-19 pandemic and turned into a new establishment, Zynda’s Barbecue Smokehouse. Zynda’s is located on 150 E Grand River Rd., directly across from Williamston City Hall. 

The family owned restaurant worked hard during the pandemic to turn the space around allowing for a brighter environment and rustic feel. Zynda’s closed right at the start of the pandemic to do the renovations and opened up around mid-july


The inspiration of these renovations were fostered by Zynda’s owner Adam Zynda.

An old train depot was repurposed as a museum in Williamston

Just down the road in the small town of Williamston, they turned an old train depot into a time capsule capturing the city’s history. The goal of the museum is to keep the history of the city living for generations to come. The people on the depot board receive artifact donations from the community to help tell the story of the city. Sue Neller, who moved to Williamston in 1964, is a member of the depot board. She said people think the museum is a bunch of old stuff like they have in grandma’s attic, but it is much more than that.

Williamston Library hosts movie club for students

After school movie club at the Williamston Public Library. (Emily Kellogg)

The movie club held monthly at the Williamston Library is a new adventure for kids ages 10 to 17 that gives them a chance to meet new people, hangout with friends and watch movies based on books in the library. 

Amanda Fields, a librarian at the Williamston Public Library and head of the movie club, chooses to show the movie adaptions of these books in an effort to encourage students to read them after seeing the films if they are interested. Another goal of the club is to show the kids that the library is a space for them and adults. Fields wants the kids to become more comfortable with the space by giving them opportunities to get more familiar with it through after-school programs such as this one. 

“When we had a movie program before COVID hit, we had a few kids who would come, and they really enjoyed it,” said Jackie McDonald, an assistant at the Williamston Library. “The kids would also have popcorn along with their movies.”

The movie club has been gaining popularity among the students since Fields started putting it on in September.