Letters 10-24-2016

It’s Obama’s 1984 Several editions ago I concluded a short letter to the editor with an ominous rhetorical flourish: “Welcome to George Orwell’s 1984 and the grand opening of the Federal Department of Truth!” At the time I am sure most of the readers laughed off my comments as right-wing hyperbole. Shame on you for doubting me...

Gun Bans Don’t Work It is said that mass violence only happens in the USA. A lone gunman in a rubber boat, drifted ashore at a popular resort in Tunisia and randomly shot and killed 38 mostly British and Irish tourists. Tunisian gun laws, which are among the most restrictive in the world, didn’t stop this mass slaughter. And in January 2015, two armed men killed 11 and wounded 11 others in an attack on the French satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo. French gun laws didn’t stop these assassins...

Scripps’ Good Deed No good deed shall go unpunished! When Dan Scripps was the 101st District State Representative, he introduced legislation to prevent corporations from contaminating (e.g. fracking) or depleting (e.g. Nestle) Michigan’s water table for corporate profit. There are no property lines in the water table, and many of us depend on private wells for abundant, safe, clean water. In the subsequent election, Dan’s opponents ran a negative campaign almost solely on the misrepresentation that Dan’s good deed was a government takeover of your private water well...

Political Definitions As the time to vote draws near it’s a good time to check into what you stand for. According to Dictionary.com the meanings for liberal and conservative are as follows:

Liberal: Favorable to progress or reform as in political or religious affairs.

Conservative: Disposed to preserve existing conditions, institutions, etc., or to restore traditions and limit change...

Voting Takes A Month? Hurricane Matthew hit the Florida coast Oct. 6, over three weeks before Election Day. Bob Ross (Oct. 17th issue) posits that perhaps evacuation orders from Governor Scott may have had political motivations to diminish turnout and seems to praise Hillary Clinton’s call for Gov. Scott to extend Florida’s voter registration deadline due to evacuations...

Clinton Foundation Facts Does the Clinton Foundation really spend a mere 10 percent (per Mike Pence) or 20 percent (per Reince Priebus) of its money on charity? Not true. Charity Watch gives it an A rating (the same as it gives the NRA Foundation) and says it spends 88 percent on charitable causes, and 12 percent on overhead. Here is the source of the misunderstanding: The Foundation does give only a small percentage of its money to charitable organizations, but it spends far more money directly running a number of programs...

America Needs Change Trump supports our constitution, will appoint judges that will keep our freedoms safe. He supports the partial-birth ban; Hillary voted against it. Regardless of how you feel about Trump, critical issues are at stake. Trump will increase national security, monitor refugee admissions, endorse our vital military forces while fighting ISIS. Vice-presidential candidate Mike Pence will be an intelligent asset for the country. Hillary wants open borders, increased government regulation, and more demilitarization at a time when we need strong military defenses...

My Process For No I will be voting “no” on Prop 3 because I am supportive of the process that is in place to review and approve developments. I was on the Traverse City Planning Commission in the 1990s and gained an appreciation for all of the work that goes into a review. The staff reviews the project and makes a recommendation. The developer then makes a presentation, and fellow commissioners and the public can ask questions and make comments. By the end of the process, I knew how to vote for a project, up or down. This process then repeats itself at the City Commission...

Regarding Your Postcard If you received a “Vote No” postcard from StandUp TC, don’t believe their lies. Prop 3 is not illegal. It won’t cost city taxpayers thousands of dollars in legal bills or special elections. Prop 3 is about protecting our downtown -- not Munson, NMC or the Commons -- from a future of ugly skyscrapers that will diminish the very character of our downtown...

Vote Yes It has been suggested that a recall or re-election of current city staff and Traverse City Commission would work better than Prop 3. I disagree. A recall campaign is the most divisive, costly type of election possible. Prop 3, when passed, will allow all city residents an opportunity to vote on any proposed development over 60 feet tall at no cost to the taxpayer...

Yes Vote Explained A “yes” vote on Prop 3 will give Traverse City the right to vote on developments over 60 feet high. It doesn’t require votes on every future building, as incorrectly stated by a previous letter writer. If referendums are held during general elections, taxpayers pay nothing...

Beware Trump When the country you love have have served for 33 years is threatened, you have an obligation and a duty to speak out. Now is the time for all Americans to speak out against a possible Donald Trump presidency. During the past year Trump has been exposed as a pathological liar, a demagogue and a person who is totally unfit to assume the presidency of our already great country...

Picture Worth 1,000 Words Nobody disagrees with the need for affordable housing or that a certain level of density is dollar smart for TC. The issue is the proposed solution. If you haven’t already seen the architect’s rendition for the site, please Google “Pine Street Development Traverse City”...

Living Wage, Not Tall Buildings Our community deserves better than the StandUp TC “vote no” arguments. They are not truthful. Their yard signs say: “More Housing. Less Red Tape. Vote like you want your kids to live here.” The truth: More housing, but for whom? At what price..

Home · Articles · News · Best of NM 2012 · Most Eclectic Gift Shop
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Most Eclectic Gift Shop

Get gifty at Nifty!

- March 26th, 2012  

Downtown TC store offers eclectic gifts


in Grand Traverse County

It’s the moment when your palms begin to sweat, your eyes become crossed and every clock is screaming at you. You glance at the greeting card isle at the grocery store and think/hope, a card will suffice. Then, a cheap, stuffed animal at the gas station catches your eye.

It’s zero hour and you’re running out of time to buy a gift.

That’s when you discover Nifty Things – the store with barbecue utensils for dad, jewelry for mom, a leash for Sprinkles. Heck, you could buy a Michigan stone puzzle for yourself!

Located on Front Street in downtown Traverse City, Nifty Things was voted “Most Eclectic Gift Shop” in Grand Traverse County by Express readers.

“We wanted stuff others didn’t have,” explains Doug Hickman, who owns the store along with his wife, Martee. “The concept was created before the name.”

The Hickmans opened the first Nifty Things store in Alden in spring 2006, followed by a second location in Elk Rapids that October. By 2008, Nifty Things opened in downtown Traverse City, at first as a hot spot for out-of-towners, but the eclectic eventually caught on with locals.

“The first year or so a big percentage of our sales were to tourists,” said Hickman. “It took a while for the locals to find us, but once they did it grew exponentially.”

What everyone discovered was a store that had just about everything. From tote bags and magnets to wine stoppers and sandal straps, Nifty Things could be described as an organized mess of fun.

“People will come in one day and buy something, then come in the following day and say, ‘Huh, you must have just gotten that in today.’ And I’ll say, ‘No, you just didn’t notice it yesterday,” laughed Hickman.

While products are grouped and shelved by theme (example, pet products and collegiate products), it does take a bit of browsing to take in everything.

Hickman thanks the store’s general manager, Kathy Trilla, for keeping on top of not only the diversity of the items, but the amount.

“We really couldn’t do it without her,” he said. “She is a saint when it comes to finding products.”

The number of customers that enter Nifty Things is also high, said Hickman.

“We’re told we’re the most shopped at store in downtown. It’s got to be true because the fire marshal is always yelling at us because there are too many people in our store at times,” he laughed.

It’s likely this is attributed to the fact there is so much to discover in the store – and taking one’s time is the only way to take it all in. So, whether you’re looking for a gag gift for dad or a handpainted martini glass for mom, chances are you’ll find it at Nifty Things.

Nifty Things is located at 143 E.

Front St in downtown Traverse City. Look for them on Facebook or visit niftythingsonline.com.

  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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