More flights canceled on Christmas Day amid Omicron COVID surge
The holiday season is being dampened by the coronavirus pandemic again this year. More than 700 U.S. flights are already canceled today and that's on top of hundreds that were called off on Christmas Eve. The holiday travel woes are the latest reminder of just how disruptive the pandemic has become. Michael George has more.news.yahoo.com
U-M: Michigan’s strict public health measures likely saved lives during holidays
ANN ARBOR – Researchers at the University of Michigan said that the state’s “Pause to Save Lives” mandate in mid-November likely saved thousands of lives during the holiday season. According to preliminary findings by the School of Public Health, the measures over Thanksgiving and Christmas might have prevented more than 100,000 cases of COVID-19 across the state. That translates to 2,800 lives saved based on the state’s fatality rate of 2.6%. They also determined that government response measures, including closures, public health efforts and economic supports, had an impact on case prevention. Michigan had the lowest amount of coronavirus cases in the Midwest over the holiday season.
Children receive life-changing procedure at Beaumont Children’s Hospital
Both of the Cologne-Garcia children have spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), a rare genetic disorder that destroys the muscles and nervous system, but a life-saving therapy at Beaumont Children’s Hospital has them incredibly grateful this year. “It just makes us cherish the time that we have with our families so much more.”Beaumont Children’s Hospital is one of just four hospitals in Michigan that offer the infusion therapy Olivia received. They have just been absolutely amazing,” the children’s mother said. New noninvasive heart procedure at Beaumont Health shortens recovery timeImagine heart surgery without anesthesia, breathing tubes and weeks of recovery time. A new noninvasive surgery is being offered at Beaumont Hospital that has the patient awake for the procedure.
Charles H. Wright Museum to stream 7 Principles of Kwanzaa events
A view of the Charles H. Wright Museum for African American History in Detroit during a public visitation for Aretha Franklin on Aug. 28, 2018. (WDIV)DETROIT – Saturday is the first day of Kwanzaa -- a seven day holiday meant to honor the ancestral roots of African Americans. To celebrate, the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History will present the seven principles of Kwanzaa. The museum will stream songs, dances, stories, poetry and more every night at 7 p.m. through Jan. 1. The presentations will be live streamed on the museum’s official website here.
Staffords provide holiday help for families impacted by COVID across Michigan
DETROIT – Every year during the holiday season, Detroit Lions quarterback Matt Stafford and his wife Kelly help several families in need of a pick-me-up. The need is even greater this year due to the COVID pandemic, so the Staffords made it a point to choose families impacted by coronavirus. It was a moment the Wilson family will never forget -- the day Matt and Kelly Stafford connected with them on Zoom. Mott Children’s Hospital in Ann Arbor, but Courtney Wilson and her husband, Chad, also had coronavirus, so they weren’t allowed inside. “Something that’s going to follow us forever and ever.”The Staffords chose ten families impacted by COVID, including frontline workers, people who lost loved ones, struggling businesses and more.
Ann Arbor mom organizes socially distant Santa’s ‘sleigh ride’ in northside neighborhood
ANN ARBOR – The Christmas spirit came alive on Saturday in the Glacier Highlands neighborhood on Ann Arbor’s northside. The Ly family has been welcoming Joe Eadie -- also known as Kerrytown Santa -- into their home for the past nine years. The Ly family with Santa Joe Eadie on Dec. 19, 2020. Santa Joe Eadie surprises children during the pandemic on Dec. 19, 2020. (Carly Ly)Local mothers pose with Santa Joe Eadie on Dec. 19, 2020 in the Glacier Highlands neighborhood in Ann Arbor.
Detroit police give holiday gifts to inner-city children
DETROIT – Don’t be surprised if you see long lines forming around different Detroit Police Department precincts. Detroit police, the DPD Foundation, and the Art Van Foundation teamed up to give toys away to inner-city children who are in need. Children of all ages braved the wind chill on Tuesday, hoping to get something off their Christmas wish list. The options were more than just toys -- officers also offered warmth and support. Watch the video above for the full report.
Focus: HOPE donates thousands of meals to seniors across Metro Detroit
DETROIT – With so many people out of work, the need is great this holiday season. Local organizations -- like Focus: HOPE -- are trying to ease the burden one meal at a time. Loretta Brown is one of hundreds -- yes, hundreds -- of volunteers working with Focus: HOPE to bring food to low income seniors across Metro Detroit. “So we’ll have the turkey, produce, stuffing -- all things for a holiday meal -- and not just for Christmas, but hopefully a few more days before and after that,” said Focus: HOPE Food Program Director Frank Kubik,Saturday, Focus: Hope delivered 1,400 special holiday boxes. “They said, ‘No problem!’ They stepped up and said they’ll do what needs to be done.”You can donate to Focus: HOPE on its official website here.
UK nixes Christmas gatherings, shuts London shops over virus
Shoppers wear face masks as they walk in Regent Street, ahead of the new Tier-4 restriction measures, in London, Saturday, Dec. 19, 2020. Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson says Christmas gatherings cannot go ahead and non-essential shops must close in London and much of southern England as he imposed a new, higher level of coronavirus restrictions to curb rapidly spreading infections. “It is with a very heavy heart that I must tell you we cannot proceed with Christmas as planned,” Johnson said. While London fared relatively well in controlling the virus throughout the fall, the city now has the highest infection rates in England. The move will largely scrap Christmas gatherings in line with the rules for southern England.
7 popular holiday light displays to visit in Metro Detroit
DETROIT – These glimmering Metro Detroit holiday light displays are guaranteed to spark up your holiday season! The Westland based light display includes a magical 4.5 mile drive and is an annual tradition for families across Metro Detroit. It is being hailed as Michigan’s most dazzling new outdoor event and holiday light show. The buildings in Downtown Rochester will be covered with more than 1 million points of glimmering holiday light. It is a holiday light display in Lake Orion that started in 2015.
How Santa is safely meeting Metro Detroit children this year
Sitting on Santa’s lap is a big deal for Children around the world, but this year it’s tough. While he’s no stranger to house visits, he’s just dropping in earlier this year. Canton wasn’t about to let the pandemic stop children from getting their picture with Santa. They arranged socially distanced house visits on families’ front lawns. Just one day after Thanksgiving, the children of the Detroit Youth Choir are spreading Christmas cheer with a new holiday EP.
Rod the Builder vs. Steve Garagiola in classic Italian cook-off (with recipes)
Rod Meloni is turning in his reporter notepad for a Rod the Builder apron and challenging our own Steve Garagiola to an Italian cook-off! ½ cup Parmesan cheeseCroutonsDirections :In a mixing bowl, dice anchovy fillets into nearly a paste. Toasted ravioli :Toasted ravioli (WDIV)If you ever visit St. Louis, go The Hill for Italian food. Mickey said, “Hey, with a little parmesan cheese and sauce, these would be great!”A tradition was born. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese before serving.
Customers support Ferndale store through coronavirus pandemic
One Metro Detroit store decided to put safety first and the response from customers has been more than they ever imagined. Local businesses have had to make some tough decisions over the last few months, but one Ferndale store made the choice to close and customers are rewarding them for it. Emily and John Murray opened Modern Natural Baby on Nine Mile Road in 2009 after having a baby of their own. Their store was able to survive thanks to the loyal customers who shopped online and through social media. John Murray said they’ve been getting orders from customers that don’t have children or grandchildren because they want to support the store.
Family urges others to take COVID seriously after birthday party makes them sick
In spite of the CDC warnings, a lot of people are planning to see family on Thanksgiving. Because coronavirus can be spread while someone is asymptomatic or presymptomatic, there’s no way to know if your family is being infected. After months of carefully following COVID-19 restrictions, the family gathered for a birthday party. Those infected spread the virus to three other relatives who didn’t attend the party. By staying apart, we can fight this virus together.”The family does not have plans to gather for Thanksgiving.
Sales and safety precautions: What to expect on Black Friday
DETROIT – Malls and local stores across Metro Detroit are preparing for what is typically one of the biggest shopping days of the year -- Black Friday. Local stores have had to reinvent themselves with many limiting the number of customers inside, offering hand sanitizing stations, requiring masks and putting safety first. As far as the deals go, many stores and malls will still be offering sales on Friday. Help Me Hank toy test: Testing 2020′s top toys ahead of the holidaysThe Help Me Hank Toy Test went virtual this year to keep everyone safe. We asked two families, both previous Help Me Hank toy testers, to try out some toys at home and give us their opinions.
Rod the Builder competes against Steve Garagiola in Friday’s challenge
DETROIT – We hope you’re craving Italian food this Friday -- and you likely will be with this year’s Rod the Builder challenge. It’s a tradition everyone in the Local 4 newsroom looks forward to on the day after Thanksgiving, as business editor Rod Meloni turns in his reporter notepad for his Rod the Builder apron. This year, Rod the Builder has his work cut out for him as he heads into the kitchen to compete against Steve Garagiola. I don’t know how much Rod cooks but he is Italian. You can watch the Rod the Builder challenge Friday on Local 4 News at Noon, 4, 5 and 6, and on ClickOnDetroit.com.
Despite warnings, travelers take to the skies for Thanksgiving
DETROIT – The highest number of air travelers are expected to take to the skies since the onset of COVID-19 this week. There is such widespread covid activity across the country, air travel is a real risk when it comes to spreading coronavirus. The biggest concern about air travel over the holiday is the gatherings of large numbers of people into indoor areas -- airports, airplanes -- where infected people can more easily transmit the virus. “America’s Thanksgiving Parade presented by Gardner-White,” a holiday tradition that originates from Downtown Detroit, will be a TV and online-only event this year on Local 4 and ClickOnDetroit.com. Themed “We Are One Together,” this year’s parade will honor frontline workers and heroes of the COVID-19 crisis.
Annual Wayne County Lightfest kicks off Wednesday amid pandemic
WESTLAND, Mich. – In a year when familiar holiday celebrations are being disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic, at least one Metro Detroit holiday tradition is sticking around. Wayne County’s annual Lightfest is carrying on this year, officially opening for the holiday season on Wednesday, Nov. 25. The Lightfest operates from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. Wednesday through Friday and 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Click here to learn more about the 2020 Wayne County Lightfest. Whitmer urges Michiganders to follow COVID-19 rules ahead of Thanksgiving
Guide: Deadlines to ship your packages so they arrive before Christmas 2020
To make sure your gifts arrive before Christmas, follow the holiday shipping deadlines for the U.S. USPS holiday shipping deadlinesThe USPS recommends shipping your packages by the following dates if you want them to arrive before December 25. FedEx holiday shipping deadlinesFedEx recommends shipping your packages by the following dates if you want them to arrive before December 25. UPS holiday shipping deadlinesUPS recommends shipping your packages by the following dates if you want them to arrive before December 25. Amazon holiday shipping deadlines will vary depending on where you live, what you’re ordering and if you’re a Prime member.
Quiz: Test your Parade knowledge!
And this year “America’s Thanksgiving Parade presented by Gardner-White” will be a televised and online-only event. So, dust up on your Parade facts and prove to your family and friends that you are the ultimate fan! Take this quiz and see if you truly know what makes The Parade Company and Detroit’s “America’s Thanksgiving Parade” so special. “America’s Thanksgiving Parade presented by Gardner-White” can only be seen on Local 4 and ClickOnDetroit.com (you can watch online from anywhere in the world!). Learn more about WDIV Insider - and sign up here!
Winner of Skillman Foundation float design contest sees drawing brought to life
DETROIT – With a few days left before the annual America’s Thanksgiving Parade, the Skillman Foundation and Parade Company unveiled the winner of the foundation’s float design contest. “The Skillman Foundation is happy to have been able to sponsor a float designed by young people for 29 years in a row,” said Tonya Allen, CEO and president of Skillman Foundation. “We’re excited about it and we’re glad that the Parade Company could pull off this fantastic day despite the pandemic.”The float was designed by 13-year-old John Baker IV. “I’m very fortunate that it got picked because all of the other honorable mentions were amazing,” he said. On Thanksgiving morning, coverage begins at 6 a.m. on WDIV-Local 4 and ClickOnDetroit.com with a special edition of Local 4 News Today hosted by Rhonda Walker, Evrod Cassimy and Brandon Roux.
CDC urges Americans not to travel for Thanksgiving
With rapidly increasing case counts across the country, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Thursday it is recommending against all travel for the Thanksgiving holiday. The CDC is instead urging Americans to stay home and celebrate with only the people in your household. “The safest way to celebrate Thanksgiving this year is at home with the people who live in your household,” said Dr. Erin Sauber-Schatz. “We’re recommending not traveling this Thanksgiving.”Sauber-Schatz leads the task force that wrote the CDC guidelines urging Americans to change their traditional Thanksgiving plans. A recent study found that 20% of Americans still plan to gather with more than 10 people.
America’s Thanksgiving Parade goes virtual for 2020
DETROIT – America’s Thanksgiving Parade presented by Gardner-White will still happen this year, but without crowds and for a TV and web audience only. In order to keep the tradition going, Parade Company President and CEO Tony Michaels said this year’s Thanksgiving Day Parade will be unlike anything we’ve seen before. We’re just getting plans together for this virtual event.”This year’s theme is “We Are One Together.” The parade will honor frontline workers and heroes of the COVID-19 pandemic. “We want everyone to know you’re going to see a great great show with all the great floats and a lot of great things happening presented by Gardener White,” Michaels said. READ: 2020 ‘America’s Thanksgiving Parade’ will be live televised and online-only event this year
Early Christmas boost for 2020
The holiday season isn't canceled! COVID-19 cannot stop us from getting gifts for all of our loved ones, including teachers, grandparents, single friends and even self-lovers. Let our 2020 Gift Guide make your year a little easier. Our editorial staff compiled this report independently. Tribune Publishing may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of the affiliate links.chicagotribune.com
Holiday Season is around the corner, be sure to budget
DETROIT – With the Holiday Season approaching and a new stimulus deal still in the distance, many people are taking a hard look at their finances to budget for lean times. RELATED: How to get help while battle for second round of stimulus checks stalls in WashingtonHaving some type of a budget is essential -- especially as we head toward the Holiday Season, when spending is up for many. Look at your billsTake a look at all your bills and expenses to prioritize and determine what are the “must-pay” bills. Create a budgetAs for holiday spending, set a plan and create a spending budget for each person on your list. Talk to peopleIf you are having financial problems now, contact your landlord, your mortgage company and credit card companies.
Ann Arbor-based EntryPoint releases its 2020 Midwest Shop Local Gift Guide
ANN ARBOR – Nonprofit research institution EntryPoint has released its 2020 Midwest Shop Local Gift Guide in order to boost sales this holiday season at local businesses. Featured Ann Arbor businesses include the Ann Arbor Art Center, Cadence Baby, Cookie Colab, The Getup Vintage, Produce Puns and Poisera, to name a few. “The pandemic makes shopping at local businesses difficult this year, so we’re here to help," reads its website. “EntryPoint’s 2020 Midwest Shop Local Gift Guide is an easy way to buy gifts at any price point during the 2020 holiday season. The guide is also a great resource for discovering more about each company and their work, their leaders, products and services.”Browse the gift guide here.
Santa’s Mailbox to return to downtown Ann Arbor
ANN ARBOR – Here’s a fun, safe and socially distant activity for your little ones this holiday season. The beloved Santa’s Mailbox will return to Main Street right outside Conor O’Neill’s Irish Pub on Nov. 28 for another year of express postage to the North Pole. Drop your mail any time day or night and local businesses will take care getting the letters to the jolly man in the red suit. Submit your letters through Dec. 14 with a return address and you will receive a reply from Santa. Conor O’Neill’s Irish Pub is at 318 S. Main St.✉ Like what you’re reading?
Arbor Hospice volunteers make ornaments for annual holiday fundraiser
ANN ARBOR – Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, one group of volunteers is helping raise funds for a local nonprofit by making handmade ornaments. For 25 years, volunteers with Arbor Hospice have created handmade Hearts of Remembrance ornaments during the holiday season as part of the nonprofit’s signature fundraising campaign, which raises $50,000 annually for the center. Arbor Hospice serves the greater Washtenaw area. “Arbor Hospice and the Arbor Hospice Foundation are so grateful and proud of this team of extraordinary women who’ve continued to work on these Hearts of Remembrance gifts during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Judy Vindici, director of philanthropy for Arbor Hospice said in a statement. Arbor Hospice recommends making a $25, tax-deductible gift for the first heart and $20 for each additional heart ordered together.
White House seeks volunteers for the upcoming holiday season
WASHINGTON, D.C. – President Trump and First Lady Melania Trump are seeking volunteers to make holiday magic happen at the White House this holiday season. Coronavirus concerns are cutting the list of volunteers to allow for social distancing. Volunteers are expected to wear masks. Applications for decorators and entertainers are now being accepted, to apply and for more information click here.
Did Santa give retailers a jolly holiday season?
Did Santa give retailers a jolly holiday season? Consumers and retailers are preparing for the last gasp of holiday shopping this weekend. Jill Schlesinger reports that how well the stores are doing this holiday season depends on who you ask.cbsnews.com