Livonia tornado cleanup, app to fight food waste & more: The stories you may have missed this week

Posted at 10:57 AM, Jun 07, 2024

(WXYZ) — Hey, you're busy — we get it.

We know a lot happens throughout the week, and you may not catch all of our stories here at WXYZ. So we've decided to gather the most talked-about stories from the past week all in one place that you can check out during your free time over the weekend.

Have a story idea or tip? Feel free to let us know using the contact form below.

Here are the buzz-worthy stories from the week of June 3:

Michigan Central Station reopens: Full coverage

Michigan Central Station tours begin Friday

It was a big week for Detroit with the opening of Michigan Central Station. On Monday, we got our first look inside the station after the years-long renovation process that cost nearly $1 billion.

On Wednesday, we released our interview with Bill Ford Jr., who talked to us about why he brought the dream to life.

Throughout the week, we also talked to local businesses in Corktown and Southwest Detroit who are feeling the impact of the re-opening, as well as longtime neighbors and former employees who remembered the station and are looking forward to its future.

Finally, on Thursday night, they celebrated the grand opening with a massive concert that featured Diana Ross, Big Sean, Jack White, Eminem and many more. The two-hour concert was broadcast nationally and showed off our city. Check out photos from the concert here.

Now, public tours begin with Michigan Central Station OPEN, with more than 60,000 people expected to tour the station throughout the next week and a half. After the tours end, the station will open on Fridays and Saturdays for self-guided public tours and tickets won't be required.

Spin-up EF-1 tornado hits Livonia, killing 3-year-old boy. What happened?

Livonia residents: Why were there no sirens to warn of tornado? NWS explains why

A devastating EF-1 tornado popped up in Livonia on Wednesday as severe storms moved through the area.

Three-year-old Cooper Drake was killed when a tree crashed into his family’s home, pinning him and his mother Corinne. His sibling, less than 2 weeks old, was also in the home but survived. More than $300,000 has been raisedfor his family so far.

There were no sirens in Livonia to warn of a tornado, as the city said they never received a notification from the National Weather Service. City officials told residents on the city's website that the "NWS called it a spin-up storm which didn’t show up on their radars in enough time to issue a warning."

What is a spin-up tornado? 7 First Alert Meteorologist Mike Taylor talked about them on Thursday. They're known as non-supercell tornadoes and they form differently than commonly-known supercell tornadoes.

These tornadoes are relatively weak and short-lived without a pre-existing rotating updraft (mesocyclone) typically found in supercell thunderstorms. They usually develop along boundaries such as cold fronts, sea breezes, or outflow boundaries where air masses converge and create horizontal rotation. This rotation can be tilted into the vertical by an updraft, leading to the formation of a tornado.

to their small size and short duration, they can be harder to detect with radar compared to supercell tornadoes. They might not show up on radar until they are already on the ground, and by the time the warning is issued...they're already gone.

The 'No Buy' pledge is on the rise. Here's what Metro Detroiters are willing to give up to save money

Voices: New trend called No Buy pledge on the rise

Have you heard of the "no buy" pledge? It's where people who are trying to better-manage their budget cut back on non-essential products or services.

It's a growing trend, and we went out and talked to people about what they're willing to give up.

"My big pledge would be to stop gambling for 2024, that would be the best bet for me," said Andrew, Goralcyzk a 27-year-old Grosse Pointe native.

When we brought up the trend to 25-year-old Berkley native Cameron Dutton, he said he had already been working towards saving.

"It's actually funny you bring it up," Cameron said. "Earlier in the year, I actually committed to not buy alcohol, so I could cut spending, and actually, out money towards passion project like golf."

Walmart expands in-home delivery service to metro Detroit. Would people feel comfortable using it?

Walmart expands in-home delivery service to metro Detroit. Would people feel comfortable using it?

Would you let a person into your home to deliver your grocery items? It's a question we asked people after Walmart announced it was expanding it's in-home delivery service to metro Detroit.

You simply place your order online or through the app, and Walmart associates can deliver items directly in your home if you let them.

The Walmart on 7 Mile in Livonia is one of the locations that will offer the service, and we spoke to customers.

Some people said they'd appreciate the service, while others were worried about the security of it.

Check out what they said in the video above or at the story here.

Ex-Detroit Riverfront Conservancy CFO charged with embezzling $40M dating back to 2012

Ex-Detroit Riverfront Conservancy CFO charged with embezzling $40M dating back to 2012

Nearly a month after the now former Detroit Riverfront Conservancy CFO was placed on leave for a financial investigation, 51-year-old William Smith is now facing federal charges.

U.S. Attorney Dawn Ison announced Smith is charged with bank fraud and wire fraud, alleging he embezzled $40 million from the nonprofit dating back to 2012.

Feds say he did it in two ways. First, he allegedly used Conservancy funds to pay for charges he and his family accrued on an American Express account. Second, feds say he diverted funds to a company he controlled called "The Joseph Group."

You can learn more about what the funds were spent on and the investigation in the video above and at the story here.

'He has never had a Michigan license!' Judge slams Corey Harris as suspended driver is locked up again

New twists in suspended license saga of man in viral video

Our Kimberly Craig has been covering the story of Corey Harris for the last couple of weeks. Harris first went viral for showing up to a virtual court hearing for driving with a suspended license while driving.

This week, a judge in Ann Arbor came ready with the receipts Wednesday when Corey Harris returned to his courtroom for the next chapter of the now-infamous case of driving while license suspended. And by the time the hearing was over, Harris was back in the Washtenaw County Jail.

"He has never had a Michigan license, ever!' said Judge Cedric Simpson, looking to set the record straight in Harris' case.

Harris had tried to blame the fact that his driving record was still listed as 'suspended' on the Saginaw Friend of the Court, saying they were to blame for the suspension not being lifted in a child support case after a judge ordered that the suspension be lifted in January 2022.

Harris was stunned when at the end of the hearing Wednesday when Judge Simpson revealed that Harris has a bench warrant for his arrest.

'Too Good To Go' app helping Detroit restaurants combat waste by selling extra food for half off

'Too Good To Go' app helping Detroit restaurants combat waste by selling extra food for half off

Every year, 22 to 33 billion pounds of food waste are accumulated from U.S. restaurants, and a new app in Detroit is aiming to combat food waste.

Too Good To Go is an international app company that connects food businesses with extra end-of-the-day food to customers, who can buy that extra food through “surprise bags” for half the price.

It's an effort that Cafe Noir owners Asher Van Sickle and Evan Fay are involved in.

"Restaurants, even small cafes are throwing away food all the time," said Van Sickle.

How the app works is very simple: you sign in, you set your location range, and then it gives you options for where you can grab a bag in your area.

Too Good To Go spokesperson Sarah Soteroff says to date the concept has saved 11 million meals from waste across the U.S., and globally it’s saved 320 million meals.

Detroit is now their 22nd city.

"In Detroit alone, we’re not even technically at our launch date yet, and we’ve already saved more than 2.6 thousand meals from waste already," said Soteroff.

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