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Michigan City business owners and homeowners can apply for renovation grants –



A mural in downtown Michigan City is shown.
Urban Enterprise Zone business owners and homeowners can apply for grant funding to update, paint or otherwise improve their property this year.
The Economic Development Center Michigan City and the Michigan City Urban Enterprise Association are inviting property owners to apply for funding. 
Grant money can help pay for repairs and work to exteriors and interiors. Business owners can use the grants to help pay for building upgrades, signage, machinery or equipment. 
Any business within the Urban Enterprise Zone, which encompasses most of the city’s north side, can qualify for up to 50% of $7,500 expenses.
Homeowners can get financial assistance with improvements to siding, roofing, fencing, painting or electrical systems. Residents who have lived in a single-family home in the Urban Enterprise Zone for at least three months can get a 100% match up to $5,000 for work such as exterior painting.
“The goal of this grant program is to enhance the UEZ areas by offering a helping hand to those who live and own businesses within this district,” said Gabriella Ratliff, economic development coordinator at the Economic Development Corporation Michigan City. “Helping these community members with repairs and improvement projects creates beautiful new spaces and boosts the vibrancy of our city.”
Any projects must be pre-approved by July 31, 2022. The work must be finished by Dec. 31.
Guidelines, including eligibility, can be found at
For more information, call 219-873-1211 or email
A new toy store in Valparaiso specializes in Legos and collectibles.
Miller’s Toy Box opened last fall at 3512 Calumet Ave., near El Salto in a busy strip mall with a coffee shop, pizzeria and hair dresser. It offers rare Legos, like one would find at a Lego store, a Legoland or a Lego Discovery Center.
“To find a store like ours you would need to go to the western suburbs of Chicago, Detroit or Indianapolis,” owner Jason Miller said. “There’s also one in Water Tower Place. We specialize in stuff you’re not going to see at Walmart.”
Miller has been in the collectibles business since 1989. He’s traded collectibles at a number of places, such as NWI Comic-Con and the Brickworld conventions, including the forthcoming one in Indianapolis.
He eventually came to see there was an under-served demand for Legos.
“I did Star Wars and Hot Wheels, but wanted to come back to do something you don’t see every day,” Miller said. “We had one or two, or half a dozen, sets when we started, but ended up showing up at toy shows with entire booths of nothing but Legos. We’ve been strictly Legos and got a reputation of finding the stuff nobody else had. We just got some ‘Home Alone’ sets for Christmas that were gone in a few days.”
Miller eventually wanted to turn the business into a brick-and-mortar store. 
“We’ve got Star Wars stuff, a bunch of ultimate collectors series that sell for between $400 and $1,000,” he said. “We’ve got Harry Potter stuff. We’ve got Avengers, Batman. We’ve got the old pirate sets and castle sets from the 1980s and 1990s. We’ve got an original Millennium Falcon. It runs the gamut across the board. We’ve packed as much as we can in here.”
Miller’s Toy Box also carries Lego sets, such as the city skylines.
“Right now we’ve got New York, London and Tokyo,” he said. “We specialize in Legos you’re not going to find in most stores, though. We’ve got mini figures that were only available at San Diego Comic-Con.”
The toy store has a create-your-own mini-figure station. Kids can create their own from a set of different heads, hats, torsos and weapons for $5 each or three for $12.
“Kids love rummaging through the table,” he said. “There are endless possibilities.”
The 880-square-foot store sells used Lego sets, guaranteeing they have all the parts.
“We go through every set to ensure there’s nothing missing,” he said. “If you find a piece that’s missing or damaged, we will replace it.”
Miller’s Toy Box also carries a wealth of loose Lego bricks people can sift through if they need a specific part to finish a project or complete a set.
“I have storage tubs at home with various collections and odds and ends,” he said. “I’m constantly working my connections down in St. Louis and Indianapolis and on the lookout online on different selling sites looking to buy things constantly. Whatever it is, we’ve got connections and will try to find it.”
Legos have enduring popularity, capturing the imagination of several generations.
“The bricks haven’t changed much,” he said. “You can use bricks from 30 or 40 years ago with ones made today. They’re so versatile. There are thousands of different combinations. The possibilities are endless.”
Lego also has stayed current with popular culture.
“They have superheroes, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Indiana Jones and so many others,” he said. “It’s amazing. You can’t even imagine how many mini figures there are now. There’s a mini figure for everything.”
Miller expects it will draw collectors from far and wide, while also appealing to kids, parents and more casual customers.
“Right now the majority of items we have are Legos,” he said. “If someone wants to sell vintage ‘Star Wars’ or Hot Wheels collections, we’ll take a look to see if we could buy it and move it along. We have a small display section with baseball cards, sports cards and action figures. But Legos are our main focus. It’s to the point where other toy stores send people our way because they know Legos are our bread and butter.”
Miller’s Toy Box is open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and from noon until 6 p.m. Sunday.
For more information, call 219-299-2186, visit or find the business on Facebook and Instagram.
Yknot Treasures recently opened at 427 S. Calumet Road suite B in downtown Chesterton.
“We are a resale store and get new items weekly,” owner Romona Oliver posted online. “We have clothes, purses, coats, shoes, appliances, electronics, furniture, household items, sporting goods, books, DVDs, CDs, lamps and more at 50% or less of retail.”
The resale store carries an array of products like dinner tables, plant stands, vases, armoires, benches, living room chairs, shadow boxes, dresses and small appliances.
For more information, call 260-239-7467 or email
The Renegade Resale Shop opened in downtown Chesterton.
The store at 108 N. Calumet Ave. buys and sells “anything from music to furniture, books, records, DVDs, sporting goods, hardware, appliances computers and anything else that is legal.” One can find Marshall Field’s glasses, vintage pocket knives, Atari games, turntables, speakers, oil paintings, Louis L’Amour book sets and other collectible items.
It sells vinyl records for $2 and up, with 3,500 inventory changes daily.
Renegade Resale is open by appointment as well as most mornings and early afternoons.
For more information, call 219-561-1218 or find the business on Facebook.
The Starbucks on U.S. 30 in Valparaiso temporarily closed for a renovation. The coffee shop at 2160 W Morthland Dr will reopen in February.
Deep Blue Seafood and Chicken is serving up the freshest catches in Portage.
The restaurant at 5455 U.S. 6 in Portage specializes in seafood boils with items like crab legs, shrimp, Andouille sausage, potatoes and corn on the cob. One can add a variety of seasonings like Cajun, Old Bay, garlic parmesan and lemon pepper.
It also has a variety of dishes like shrimp ravioli, shrimp parmigiana, lobster and shrimp mac and cheese and its signature gumbo. Sandwiches include lobster rolls, deep-fried blue soft shell crab sandwiches, po boys and a surf and turf burger with Angus beef and a lobster. 
One can also get fried cod, catfish and tilapia with fries, coleslaw and a roll.
On the poultry side, it has wings. Southern sides include shaved Brussels sprouts, fried okra and fried deep green tomatoes.
Deep Blue Seafood hosts private events and offers catering.
The restaurant is open from 1 p.m. to 8 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday and 3-8 p.m. Sunday.
For more information, visit or call 219-841-9514.
If you would like your business to be included in a future column, email
NWI Business Ins and Outs: Capriotti’s, Downtown Delights, Pi City, crepery and former Indianapolis Colts quarterback’s firm opening; Chop Hou…

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Joseph S. Pete is a Lisagor Award-winning business reporter who covers steel, industry, unions, the ports, retail, banking and more. The Indiana University grad has been with The Times since 2013 and blogs about craft beer, culture and the military.
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TOP 4 Essay Writing Services in the USA: 2023 Edition



essay writing services reddit

As an increasing number of students seek assistance with their academic assignments, the demand for reliable essay writing services continues to grow. With so many options available, it can be challenging to identify the best service providers. To help you make an informed decision, we have compiled a list of the top 4 essay writing services in the USA for 2023. These services have been carefully evaluated based on their reputation, quality of work, customer satisfaction, and affordability. Read on to discover the top essay writing services that can provide you with the support you need to excel in your academic journey.

essay writing services reddit

essay writing services reddit

What Makes a Great Essay Writing Service

Before delving into the top essay writing services reddit, it’s essential to understand the criteria we used to evaluate them. A great essay-writing service should possess the following qualities:

  • Quality of Work: The service should deliver well-researched, original, and high-quality essays that meet academic standards.
  • Professional Writers: The service should have a team of qualified writers with expertise in various subjects who can handle diverse topics.
  • Timely Delivery: The service should be reliable and capable of delivering essays within the given deadline.
  • Customer Support: The service should provide excellent customer support, ensuring effective communication throughout the writing process.
  • Affordability: The service should offer reasonable pricing plans that are affordable for students while maintaining the quality of work.

Now, let’s explore the top 4 essay writing services in the USA for 2023.

TOP 4 Essay Writing Services in the USA: 2023 Edition

2.1 EssayPro

EssayPro is a highly reputable essay writing service known for its commitment to quality and customer satisfaction. They have a diverse team of experienced writers who can handle a wide range of subjects. EssayPro offers a user-friendly platform, allowing students to place orders easily and track the progress of their essays. Their pricing is competitive, and they offer additional features such as plagiarism reports and unlimited revisions.

2.2 Grademiners

Grademiners is a popular choice among students due to its excellent track record and reliability. They have a team of highly skilled writers who are proficient in various academic disciplines. Grademiners ensures on-time delivery and provides 24/7 customer support to address any concerns. They also offer free revisions and a money-back guarantee, ensuring customer satisfaction.

2.3 Ultius

Ultius is known for its exceptional writing services and commitment to customer privacy and security. They have a rigorous writer selection process, ensuring that only qualified professionals handle the essays. Ultius offers a wide range of writing services, including essay writing, editing, and proofreading. They also provide a mobile app for convenient communication and order tracking.

2.4 EduBirdie

EduBirdie is a trusted essay writing service that offers a unique feature called “choose your own writer.” Students can browse through profiles and select a writer who matches their requirements. This personalized approach allows for effective collaboration and ensures that the final essay meets the student’s expectations. EduBirdie also provides 24/7 customer support and guarantees 100% original and plagiarism-free content.

How We Evaluated the Services

To evaluate the essay writing services, we considered several factors, including:

  • Reputation and reliability
  • Quality of work and adherence to academic standards
  • Customer reviews and satisfaction
  • Pricing and affordability
  • Additional features and guarantees
  • Customer support and communication

By carefully analyzing these aspects, we identified the top 4 essay writing services that offer outstanding support to students.


Choosing a reliable essay writing service is crucial for students seeking academic assistance. The top 4 essay writing services mentioned in this article – EssayPro, Grademiners, Ultius, and EduBirdie – have proven their worth in terms of quality, reliability, and customer satisfaction. Whether you need help with an essay, research paper, or any other academic assignment, these services can provide you with the support you need to succeed in your studies.

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