Macomb Township had a busy 2012.
Several new businesses opened, home construction increased across the township and the November election gave Macomb its first female supervisor.
There was a collective sigh of relief when longtime litigation between the township and The Tavern at Tina's was finally resolved, and residents in northeast Macomb rejoiced at news that their dirt and gravel roads would at long last be paved.
Local students lead countless community service efforts, from cleaning up local roadways and building compost bins for a community garden, to sewing baptismal gowns for families in need and rallying aid for Hurricane Sandy victims.
L'Anse Creuse North's high school football team made its second-ever appearance in the state playoffs, Dakota High School brought the Renaissance back to life with their production of "Robin Hood" and the community mourned the loss of beloved .
The township lost its Kowalski Deli and Sweetheart Bakery locations, but added Rock & Roll Prep School, Envy Nails, a new Taco Bell and the county's first Pita Pit. Somewhat controversial newcomers included Moonlight Hookah Lounge and B'z Ink, the township's first hookah lounge and tattoo parlor, respectively.
We also covered news from the Macomb County Sheriff's Office and Macomb Township Fire Department, including a Flagstar bank robbery, accusations of election fraud and the sentencing of a Fraser man convicted of murdering a Macomb Township grandmother.
Of course, those are only a few of the stories from this past year. Here's a look back at what our numbers show were the 12 most-read stories on Macomb Patch for 2012.
1. Police Say Sam's Club Snickers Thief Caught 'Brown Handed'
Police arrest a Macomb Township man they say was captured on camera five separate times unwrapping Snickers candy bars at Sam's Club and eating them in the store.
2. Dakota High School Put on Lockdown After Anonymous Gun Threat
In the wake of the school shooting in Newtown, CT, administrators placed the Dakota campus under lockdown after a threatening drawing was found in one of the school restrooms.
Retired principal and current L'Anse Creuse Public Schools athletic supervisor, Dave Jackson, suffered a heart attack at his home and passed away in February 2012.
4. UPDATE: Driver and 3-Year-Old Involved in 23 Mile and Hayes Crash Die
A June 25 crash at the intersection of 23 Mile and Hayes roads sent six people, including three children, to the hospital. A 3-year-old Macomb Township girl and the female driver of a vehicle involved in a crash died from their injuries.
5. Macomb Man Leads Modern Whig Party's Revival in Michigan
On May 25, the Modern Whig Party appointed Gregory Schlitt, a Macomb Township resident, lead the party’s revival in Michigan.
6. Inability to Eat Enhances Macomb Girl’s Taste for Life
Four-year-old Kaitlyn Garon was diagnosed with Eosinophilic Esophagitis, a rare and severe food allergy, at age 1. She may have lost her ability to eat, but her smile is stronger than ever.
7. Arson Suspected as Cause of Morning House Fire off 22 Mile Road in Macom
Candles set and scattered throughout the Carlton Drive home started the blaze, which took fire crews approximately 30 minutes to extinguish. There were no serious injuries reported.
8. These Boots are Made for Running: Marine Runs 100 Miles for Heroes
Macomb Township resident and former Marine, Dean Allen Smith, runs 100 miles with fraternal organization Always Brothers to raise money for and honor the fallen heroes of Ohio's Lima Company.
A 42-year-old Macomb Township man was killed when the jack holding up his car flipped, crushing him under the weight of the vehicle.
10. Crews Fight 3 House Fires Caused by Lightning in Macomb Township
As thunderstorms rolled through Macomb July 3, cloud-to-ground lightning strikes ignited the roofs of three township homes.
The November election saw Janet Dunn, a former trustee, unseat Mark Grabow to become the township's first female supervisor.
12. Wandering Parent Forces Cheyenne Elementary Into Lockdown
The school was placed into lockdown after administrators learned a man, later identified as a parent, entered the building through a side entrance.