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Posted on Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:59 a.m.

Township seeks to shut Jenny's Dexter Market following accident; state cites business for violations

By Lisa Allmendinger

Webster Township officials are trying to shut down Jenny's Dexter Market following an accident that seriously injured a worker at the business last month. The state has also cited the market for several food safety violations and restricted what can be sold there.

Township Engineer and Zoning Administrator Bruce Pindzia said he and a Washtenaw County sheriff’s deputy hand delivered the “red tag” cease operations order to market owner Burton Hoey on Sept. 25, one day after a hayride accident seriously injured an employee.

The township’s stop-work order cited the market west of Dexter for nine zoning violations that range from lack of an approved site plan and failure to get a special use permit for some of its activities, to failure to have a certificate of zoning compliance for a building addition.

Separately, the Michigan Department of Agriculture, during an Oct. 7 inspection, found six critical violations of food safety rules — including a lack of proper hand washing and bathroom facilities for employees and the sale of food products processed under insanitary conditions. The state also found one non-critical violation.

Jenny’s owner Burton Hoey said township officials are targeting him unfairly and that he has complied with the state’s orders regarding food safety. He plans to keep operating unless a court orders the business closed.

"The township zoning inspector has nothing better to do,” Hoey said. “He's trying to keep his job and he doesn't like me personally, nor does the township Supervisor John Kingsley," Hoey said Tuesday. "They've been beating me up since the '90s and messed with my daughter, Jenny, when she was selling sweet corn from a picnic table at the corner."

He said he's just trying to run a small business for families. "Webster Township should put their arms around me and welcome me," he said, adding that he brings people into Dexter, and Jenny's "provides products that can't be found anywhere else."

The market is a popular destination, especially on weekends, for families seeking pumpkins, cider, doughnuts, and pony and hayrides.

The state, during its Oct. 7 inspection of the market at the corner of Island Lake and Dexter-Pinckney roads, seized about 75 pounds of baked goods, peanut butter spread and spices valued at $246 “for suspected adulteration due to processing under insanitary conditions” a report states.

Food produced at the market “will be appropriately seized and discarded,” and “failure to cease production of your food product in the location at 8366 Island Lake Road will subject you to enforcement action, up to and including prosecution,” according to the state’s report.

The market had until Monday to correct the violations, the state said.

“It’s still an ongoing investigation,” Heather Throne, a public information officer from the department said Monday afternoon. She said she could not disclose more details.

But Hoey said the state gave the market a clean report on Monday. "All the violations were cleared up yesterday; she (the state inspector) approved everything in question," he said.

Hoey said the township is pushing the state to “harass” him. “We went to court three times and they lost every time, and I didn't even have a lawyer," he said.

He said the township has approved his site plan four times and he doesn't see a need to submit a new one. "I'm not going to spend $50,000 to change my parking. Besides, the plans have been approved four times by Pindzia and the previous zoning inspector, and I haven't made any changes to the footprint."

Pindzia disagrees and said the township may seek a court order if Hoey does not comply with the shutdown request. “We can only get voluntary cooperation. It’s up to the courts to close them down.”

"I guess we'll find out this winter in court who's right," Hoey said.


A scene from Jenny's Market.

Lisa Allmendinger |

Though the business and township have had a long-running dispute regarding compliance with zoning regulations, Pindzia said it was the hayride accident that prompted the township to take more serious action. He stressed that the township would prefer to see Hoey comply with township ordinances voluntarily. He said he doesn't want to force him to close.

“We are seeking compliance with zoning ordinances; we don’t want to see anyone get hurt and we’ve been working with him for years. We weren’t trying to shut down the operation until the injuries occurred last month.” Pindzia said.

A Jenny’s market employee was seriously injured driving a horse-drawn hayride on Sept. 24 when she fell from the wagon and was run over by it. Authorities have not released her name.

On Oct. 9, a 22-month-old child fell off a pony while his father walked beside it at the market. The child was treated at the scene for injuries, then transported by ambulance.

Hoey said he’s not responsible for the accidents. "I wasn't driving the horses. The horses are trained, and the equipment is fine. … . We're just trying to keep the moms and children happy and give them something special to do."

Food safety concerns

In June 2010, the State Department of Agriculture cited Jenny’s Market for food law violations that included a lack of proper toilet facilities and lack of employee knowledge of food safety practices. In addition, the state put restrictions on the market’s license until these and other violations were corrected.

The market is only allowed to sell whole uncut produce and prepackaged food products from approved sources. Employees are not to cut produce or prepare any foods in the facility or package or repackage bulk foods.

“Your firm has a history of food safety violations” the state order says, including “the processing of acidified foods without proper training, record keeping and adequate processing controls to assure that the canned foods manufactured at your facility were safe.”

Hoey said he's complying with the state, that doughnuts and apple cider he sells are made off site and brought to the market daily.

The state found other issues as well, including the use of “the food facility as a living quarters,” which is expressly prohibited by the food code. In addition, the state said Jenny's was allowing companion animals and livestock access to the food facility and cited the business for other sanitation and “lack of active managerial control issues.”

Also, the letter states, “of primary concern to MDA, have been your comments and actions that have been perceived as a threat to our staff’s personal safety.”

The June agreement stipulated that a shotgun should be removed from the facility.

Hoey said he didn't know anything about a shotgun.

The limitations the state imposed in June 2010 are still in effect and, following the Oct. 7 inspection, the Department of Agriculture ordered Jenny’s to “cease and desist any further production and/or repackaging of food products. Any food you continue to make and sell must be produced and packaged in an establishment approved by the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, and in which you hold a license."

Following a review last year of both the water and sewer systems by the Washtenaw County Environmental Health Division, Jenny’s installed a new well on the property and a new wastewater system. According to the county, both were completed and given final approval on Feb. 28, 2011.

However, neither the county nor the township is aware of bathroom facilities with sinks, which would satisfy one of the state’s requirements for lifting the restricted operating license.

Hoey said he's had portable toilets on site for 15 years that have hand-washing facilities. "I put in a new well and drain field and have tried to put in a bathroom but Bruce (Pindzia) refuses to give me a permit; I don't know why I need a permit."


A donkey is one of the many farm animals at Jenny's Market.

Lisa Allmendinger |

Long-running battle

Documents obtained through a Freedom of Information request show that Jenny’s Market has a long history of violations with Webster Township.

Pindzia said the township is concerned about the expansion of the business over a number of years without proper permits.

“Your business began as a roadside stand,” the stop work order says. “Fruits and vegetables were sold by your daughter from a wagon. Since this activity began in the early 1990s, the business has expanded to include processed foods, petting zoo, straw maze, cider mill, concert venues and other activities.”

The township first cited the market with 18 zoning violations in 2008, beginning with sign violations. The township took the market to court and lost the case in March 2010 when Judge Richard Conlin ruled that evidence showed Jenny’s had had similar signs since the early 1980s, prior to the township’s 1985 ordinance. The judge ruled that the signs were “grandfathered in.” The township appealed the decision and lost again in district court.

The buildings, however, were all constructed after the adoption of the current township zoning ordinance. “As such, your land uses require a special use permit … which requires the submittal of a site plan,” an April 20 letter to Hoey states.

There have been sketches of what’s on the site and what’s proposed for the site, but never a professionally prepared site plan, Pindzia said.

The market has applied for the required permits several times but township officials said that all the required information has not been supplied with the paperwork, and the requests have been denied.

Hoey said what he submitted to the township was approved four times and no changes have been made on the property since then.

The township says structures on the 12.3-acre property are too close to Island Lake Road. Aerial photographs show they are only 80-90 feet from the center line of the road, when zoning regulations require them to be 110 feet from the road.

Hoey said the photographs are inaccurate, and he's invited township officials to survey it themselves.

The township also says the business violates off-street parking regulations by allowing parking in the front yard and not having a paved parking or loading area. Township officials have also complained about semi trucks blocking traffic on Island Lake Road when entering and leaving the property and customers parking along the road and crossing back and forth across busy Dexter-Pinckney Road, traveled by about 20,000 cars daily.

According to minutes of an April 12 Zoning Board of Appeals meeting, Hoey said that the parking and loading space was approved by former zoning administrators.

Hoey said the township "picks and chooses who they like to pick on," and "that the township has previously approved everything that it says is wrong."

Lisa Allmendinger is a regional reporter for She can be reached at



Fri, Nov 4, 2011 : 5:54 p.m.

I visited Jenny's one time, several years ago. I adore horses and donkeys and stood watching them at the fence line. ALL of those poor animals had hooves that were 12+ inches in length, cracked and in terrible condition. Some of the animals were already becoming lame. I immediately called and reported this to Animal Cruelty and was actually told that there had been several complaints filed previously. All other issues put aside, intentionally neglecting animals is abuse and on these grounds alone I will never support this business and in truth believe they should be shut down. It truly is a shame because they have a great idea and super location but there practices should not be supported by the community.


Sat, Oct 29, 2011 : 2:30 a.m.

Mr. Hoey saying that the Twp. is doing this to him because they don't like him? Mr. Hoey, you're doing this to yourself. Make good choices in how you run your business, and you will eliminate your problems. It's simple. He uses the excuse of people not liking him and therefore doing things to him as an excuse. It's an easy cop-out, and he goes plenty out of his way to make enemies so that he can continue to use excuses to cover his shortcomings. Take responsibility, Mr. Hoey.

Doctor Fang

Thu, Oct 27, 2011 : 4:19 p.m.

Jenny's has been making donuts on-site for years. Customers can see the donuts being made right through the screen door behind the counter. Yet the article says: "Hoey said he's complying with the state, that doughnuts and apple cider he sells are made off site and brought to the market daily." Eye-witness customers (or former customers) know the truth.


Mon, Oct 24, 2011 : 4:10 p.m.

I've noticed the new signs for Jennys Cider Mill. Strange thing here. It's not a cider mill. Is this just a way to get around charges made to the old name? Hmmm.

Dexter Parent

Mon, Oct 24, 2011 : 3:43 p.m.

JMO sounds like he/she is Hoey's lawyer. Maybe JMO could moonlight as a consultant to farm stands every where. I'm not sure how breaking the law for 30 years (if that is how long its been) is an excuse for allowing it to continue or not enforcing it now. Kind of reminds me of the illegal immigant argument....I'm just guessing but I think JMO might need to change his/her affiliation to the Democratic Party. Good on ya JMO. No reason to kick 'em out now. They've been breaking the the law for 30 years, and they are just trying to make a living for their families. It's possible everyone looked the other way when the business was so small it didn't matter. That's not the case anymore. The last time I was there the animals were so dirty and poorly treated I didn't let my kids get near them. I agree that there is a difference between a working farm and a petting farm. If you are running a petting farm it should be clean. Most working farmers don't have 3 year olds running around under foot while they are working. The expectation is different...and it should be. The Hoey's haven't been running a working farm for the 15 years I've been in Dexter. My biggest concern is the "hay maze" that Jenny's puts together. Has anyone ever inspected that for structural saftey? On the most crowded days it can have 100+ people climbing on top of it while little ones are making their way through the tunnels underneath. What comments will we read when the first child is injured/killed in a collapse? The lack of attention in simple cleanliness requirements indicates how little thought is put into any element of the Jenny's farm stand operation. Negligence and inattention to detail is not something to be proud of and it is not part of quaint country life.


Sun, Oct 23, 2011 : 4:32 p.m.

There's probably a lot more to this story - I'm not even sure of the accuracy of the account of the wagon incident. Certainly, it's clear Hoey won't have outsiders telling him what to do in any situation. He says he didn't need a lawyer in three court cases. Guess he's smarter than everyone else in the county. I think he is lieing in the bed that he made for himself.


Sat, Oct 22, 2011 : 4:44 p.m.

This is sad. I have lived down the road from Jenny's for 10 yrs. I won't lie and say that everything there was wonderful. Parking and lack of sanitation are major concerns. But in this economy maybe instead of condemning these people we should, as a community, try to preserve this wonderful idea and let Jenny's become a thriving business. If we close down Jenny's not only will the town see a financial downfall, due in part that Jenny's pulls in business from other towns and if it closes Dexter citizens will have to take their kids to outside sources in other towns. I say we donate time, resources and fund raise to help fix the issues for the communities sake and try to keep it open!!

Dexter Parent

Mon, Oct 24, 2011 : 9:03 p.m.

Actually Amanda Marilyn has it correct. A few years ago the Hoey's (Burton or someone else) dumped a ton of money into a complete refit of that "big white house". His situation is his own doing. I say he should pull up on his own boot straps.

Amanda Barnes

Sun, Oct 23, 2011 : 9:14 a.m.

Marilyn it seems pretty evident that you have some personal issues with Burton Hoey which is understandable but you don't have all your facts right about him and his situation. Allow other people to have their own opinions.

Marilyn Wilkie

Sun, Oct 23, 2011 : 1:30 a.m.

OMG, no reply possible to this one. Well actually, here's how you can help him. Buy his big white house on the hill for half a million. This man does NOT need charity, and we don't need Jenny's down the road to survive. Give me a break.

A Dexter Person

Sat, Oct 22, 2011 : 4:01 p.m.

Mr. Hoey, if you can't stand the heat, (i.e. pressure to follow rules & regulations), get out of the kitchen. Literally!!


Sat, Oct 22, 2011 : 2:52 p.m.

Random reflections... 1. Hoey reminds me of the Iraqi Minister of Information with regards to his contention that everything is legit and safe at Jenny's Farm Market. At least he's consistent in his disavowal of everyone else's opinions....(OSHA, The Township, the Public). I don't care if he's "a sweet old man" or a cowardly old coot...if he runs an unsafe market and mistreats his animals, he should be shutdown. Jury is still out, but evidence is not in his favor... 2. Anyone notice the subtle namechange in the road signs littering the county? They no longer say "Jenny's Farm Market" but now say "Jenny's Cider Mill". Did they install a brand new mill when we were weren't looking, or is this in preparation for the inevitable legal battle when the woman who was hurt in the accident sues? 3. Still no reason to ever go to Jenny's with all the other -- actual --- cider mills in the county. 4. I'm noticing increasingly less cars in the parking lot at Jenny's... 5. What's with the invisible shotgun in the article?


Sat, Oct 22, 2011 : 5:32 a.m.

I've been to Jenny's a number of times, and I found Mr. Hoey to be generous. On one occasion he put an extra doughnut in our bag to be nice. On another occasion he rounded down the amount for the purchase. He also went out of his way to try to make the hayride enjoyable for our children. If Jenny's does get closed, I will miss it.

Marilyn Wilkie

Sat, Oct 22, 2011 : 12:46 p.m.

Mark, your previous comments showed concern for things. Now you seem happy as a lark about this place.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 9:22 p.m.

Serious question here. How can all the festivals I attend in Ann Arbor, Ypsilanti, and Dexter can have only porta cans, but a seasonal business cannot? I mean, those people giving me food, and drink, probably have to use the same porta can I do. So what gives? One more question, "why was it ok, to sell people unsanitary food, before the young lady's incident; and not now?" I heard Mr. Hoey is not the most friendly person, so this is probably another case of "not kissing the ring finger" of irrelevant township officials. I hope Mr. Hoey wins- just for that alone. Consequently my prayers are with that young woman and her family.

A Dexter Person

Sat, Oct 22, 2011 : 4:17 p.m.

The Township has tried to work with Hoey for years, but he continues with the zoning violations. It's now the state going after him for health and sanitary concerns, who has more authority. Besides, the food servers at "festivals" have to pass strict county health inspections before they start serving and they have hand washing facilities. In fact, they post a certificate from the county saying they pass inspection! This is not a case of "kissing" anything. It's a case of following the regulations every other business has to and does. Hoey's business is not above the law. Your comments make me wonder if you have some personal connection with this faux farm market/cider mill.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 6:50 p.m.

The negative comments seem to have little impact on this business as it's still quite busy everyday. I have been driving past Jenny's for almost 15 years and stop frequently with my 5 year old. He loves it as do I. I'll agree that it's become a bit run-down over the years but I'm sure that the maintenance costs are fairly high. It burns me when I see people tromp in with food from another establishment, proceed to make a mess and then leave without buying anything. This isn't a public park! It's no wonder Mr. Hoey can get foul! As for safety, my son has had many pony rides and the attendant is always cautious to make sure he is comfortable and safe. Accidents do happen and while it's unfortunate, depriving everyone is not the answer. The township needs to find something else to do besides badger a struggling businessman.

A Dexter Person

Sat, Oct 22, 2011 : 4:24 p.m.

"It burns me when I see people tromp in with food from another establishment, proceed to make a mess and then leave without buying anything." Gee how often are you there to see this going on? "The negative comments seem to have little impact on this business as it's still quite busy everyday." Your posting makes me wonder if you have a personal connection with this faux farm market/cider mill.

Marilyn Wilkie

Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 9:28 p.m.

Maybe they saw what the health officials and some of the posters on here did and decided they could get better stuff elsewhere. I agree that some (many?) go there just for the haymound, pony rides etc. I wouldn't want to buy apples that I saw sprayed with Raid like a couple of people on here posted. Some may feel they can get their "home made pie" at Gordon Foods as one employee said.

Marilyn Wilkie

Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 9:23 p.m.

Maybe they leave without buying anything because they saw what the health officials and other posters on here saw. I do agree that many probably go there just for the activities, despite any health or safety concerns. Have you kept up with any of this? They have had problems which he has refused to correct for years. Take your child out to Albers.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 6:01 p.m.

Why has it taken so long to do this if it's so bad? Two things are apparent 1.the joint needs to be cleaned up and rules need to be followed 2.the township,the state,and whoever else is out to get the guy maybe they need a total cleanup and an unbiased monitor on sight Every Day to say yes you can or no you can't.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 2:30 p.m.

Wow - this just wreaks of a personal vendetta against a person people dont care for My question is - if the owner was some sweet old man who everyone liked and he was polite and came from the set of the Waltons, would the same people who want him closed now STILL want him closed? or would there be more "he is a sweet old man, leave him alone" comments separate facts and safety (objectively) from personality and your tastes before you decide you want to put someone out of business


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 6:39 p.m.

If "the community's patience with him was spent long ago" then no need to shut him down! He will have to go out of business. Want to bet on how busy they will be this weekend? Minus the 1 complainers here!

Marilyn Wilkie

Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 3:10 p.m.

A person's reputation proceeds them. People know how this man has operated for many years and have watched him thumb his nose at anyone who tried to stop or punish him. Sorry, the community's patience with him was spent long ago. A sweet polite old man would not get himself in these situations.

average joe

Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 3:09 p.m.

Sweet, nasty, smelly or what ever- I don't want to see the place closed, I want the management to follow the rules & laws that all businesses (& homeowners too) must follow.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 2:46 p.m.

@lumberg48108 This is probably THE single most telling post out of the 230. There is NO doubt that the post would favor a sweet old man!


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 1:31 p.m.

This place has been kept "under wraps" for so long ..... it is nice to see the issues finally being brought forth. And there is a reason that 227 people took the time to comment on this story within 30 hours of it being posted. Obviously some people have very strong opinions about this place and have never had a venue in which to voice those opinions. The people who comment here are the potential consumers for this business ..... they are not the government entities trying to shut down the place. If this article does nothing else other than to provoke thought, I am glad to have learned that I am not the only one with concerns because I honestly thought for a long time that it was just me who felt the way I do about the place.

Marilyn Wilkie

Sat, Oct 22, 2011 : 12:51 p.m.

Tesla, and my agenda would be? I think there have been enough postings on here since the accident on September 24th to make it clear what has happened at the market. There are so many other issues that can't be posted that folks know about. It's not a new problem. Why do you feel so threatened as a business owner? Do you have some problems like this?


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 6:37 p.m.

Dexter is too small of a town for anyone to show up to protest in public! What would the townspeople think?


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 4:32 p.m.

I don't know what you're talking about. I haven't gone on a vacation and that doesn't have anything to do with this topic. It's just pretty obvious from your postings that you have an agenda. I was just suggesting a way for you to get your message out. You could go down there with signs and have your own little Occupy Jennys.

Marilyn Wilkie

Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 4:07 p.m.

Tesla, I see your back. How was your vacation?


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 3:38 p.m.

You do just fine putting your own attacks into words, mam. You seem to be the #1 cheerleader against this business. You should go out and protest the business this weekend. I am sure it's going to be busy with families enjoying a fall fun day. It will be a perfect time for you to get your message out.

Marilyn Wilkie

Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 3:12 p.m.

Interesting, you put into words exactly what I was thinking today. I guess another place would be .


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 2:47 p.m.

You talk like all 227 post are in favor of shutting down this business! That's a stretch.

Barb Pickl

Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 12:55 p.m.

I have visited Jenny's only once-the day of the incident. Having cared for my own horses years ago, I was immediately uncomfortable with what I saw. I went to pet one of the large draft horses and noticed none of the harnesses had been cleaned-or therefore inspected- for a very very long time. The bit in the horse's mouth was rusty; something no honest horseperson would ever allow. I was nervous for these large draft horses-three "teams" of two, hooked up to flimsey hay wagons, were staged directly next to the pony ride and picnic table area, a place filled with families, kids, toddlers and infants in strollers. I saw the ill-fated hayride start off and then was paniced to see the driver signal the team to fun off in a full gallop. I stated to my boyfriend, "..someone is going to get hurt." I asked a farm staff member about this and she replied running these huge animals with people onboard over uneven ground was standard operating proceedure. The first rule of "driving" any team of horses: NEVER run them in full harness! This is not a case of Township against a business owner. That statement is a pile of manure. This is a case of outright neglect and lack of any basic sense-as well as basic horsesense. It is pure simple dumb luck numerous people or animals have not been maimed or killed. The horses might be trained, as stated in the article. But their handlers and the owners obviously are not. And the public has been-and will continue to be-in grave danger given the irresponsible attitude and handling of these large "well trained" animals who can easily become deadly if not handled properly.


Wed, Oct 26, 2011 : 8:15 p.m.

THANK YOU for posting. I have seen only one other person speak to the fact that "The first rule of "driving" any team of horses: NEVER run them in full harness!" When people dismiss the uncaring attitude of Hoey and his business practices, they are not seeing how this same nonchillance carries over into the safety aspect of the business. His 'tough guy' attitude (which I have experienced first hand, in an interaction with him allowing his herding dog to bite the horses for amusement) has added a certain risk factor to Jenny's and unfortunately, an employee fell victim to that risk on that day. BH has a great responsibility to care for all of those animals and the people who work with them, and he has demonstrated that he is not worthy of that responsibility.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 2:54 p.m.

But they did it on Wagon Train all the time. ( Albeit with drastic consequences some times)

Marilyn Wilkie

Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 1:11 p.m.

Thank you for your educated first-hand assessment of this operation. Unfortunately it appears that some people don't care about anything you have said. Other people have given their first-hand and educated opinions on here too. Some people just want a place to take their kids despite anything, it is clear.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 4:41 a.m.

I'd like to see this place remain open. I don't think that it will - I don't see a history of trust between the business owner and his local government, or the people whom he has employed. I see a situation where problems get compounded by negative attitudes. I think he sees himself as a freedom fighter against the corrupt, interferring officials. Frankly, if he's taking short cuts with the food I would share with my kids, then he's actually a type of domestic terrorist. If he's not taking shortcuts, and it's hard to believe much of what he says, and I base this on the numerous interactions which I and my friends have had with this guy, then- more power to him. All of the zoning issues seem workable, if he would choose to get along with people. Just 'cause you've been there forever doesn't mean you can treat food safety lightly. What is the actual deal with re-labeling food here? Why are there any questions about sanitation? Thumbing one's nose at the public - if that's what it is - is not a wise way to make a sustainable profit .


Thu, Oct 27, 2011 : 2:23 a.m.

stomers and community" But then who would buy your ad space?


Thu, Oct 27, 2011 : 2:22 a.m.

"My kids have always had fun at Jenny's Farm Stand, and the pumpkin doughnuts are yummy. But I had an exchange with a young man on the phone there one time-strangest exchange I've ever had with any business--that left me both angry AND humored, if that's possible. My son was abt 7 and had left his kinda pricey walkie-talkie in the hay maze (yeah, call me a "purell-slapping latte sipping A2 yuppie," whatever). I called the same night, after learning what happened. Conversation went like this.: Me: "Hi! I'm calling because my son left his walkie talkie in the hay maze. Did you by chance find it?" Jenny's Market. "Yes." *Click* --Yes! The man immediately hung up on me! I was ticked off but polite when I called right back. Me: "Um, yes. I JUST called. So you have my son's walkie talkie? Can I pick it up tomorrow? Jenny's Market: "He should be more careful with his things." *Click* --Hung up again! Okay then! I guess it worked for the character on Seinfeld..." The post, from below, is no more an unsubstantiated allegation than me sharing my experience where I discovered a hastily removed Jake and Amos label from a jarred product that I purchased at Jenny's. The truth is the truth. Is there some SPECIAL reason you should be removing my post containing my first hand information? Nice work, Don't forget to delete this because I am discussing your giudelines :) Pfft. There is pretty much no excuse for your censorship here.. it's like people gathered in a community (albeit online) and talking. The comments are akin to what would be heard if you were hanging out with a bunch of people who have been to Jenny's . If that's not the point of the comments, interacting with people who share an interest in the same subject... pray tell: what is the point? Are we just supposed to say, "Way to go! Great article! I love how you put stories together!" Maybe I should start a facebook group called "Unhappy Jenny's cu


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 4:26 a.m.

I feel bad for Jenny's. However, I went there once and wasn't sure of the safety of the big hay mountain they have with the tunnel running through the middle. I wouldn't let me kid run through it.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 4:12 a.m.

My kids have always had fun at Jenny's Farm Stand, and the pumpkin doughnuts are yummy. But I had an exchange with a young man on the phone there one time-strangest exchange I've ever had with any business--that left me both angry AND humored, if that's possible. My son was about 7 and had left his kinda pricey walkie-talkie in the hay maze (yeah, call me a "purell-slapping latte sipping A2 yuppie," whatever). Anyway, I called the same night, after learning what happened. Conversation went like this.: Me: "Hi! I'm calling because my son left his walkie talkie in the hay maze. Did you by chance find it?" Jenny's Market. "Yes." *Click* --Yes! The man immediately hung up on me! I was ticked off but polite when I called right back. Me: "Um, yes. I JUST called. So you have my son's walkie talkie? Can I pick it up tomorrow? Jenny's Market: "He should be more careful with his things." *Click* --Hung up again! Okay then! I guess it worked for the character on Seinfeld...


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 2:38 a.m.

Are there any zoning violations for those unsafe crosswalks, mini stop signs, and enacting traffic ordinances in conflict with state law? How about "red tagging" that bizzare "personal agenda" crosswalk ordinance and really perform a public good.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 2:01 a.m.

I don't care whether the front yard setback should be 90 feet or 110 feet, Jenny's Farms is a delightful and charming market that is so partially because it does not follow rigid formula "zoning law" and a "professionally prepared site plan". If you want to shop somewhere with an approved site plan, go have fun at Country Market that features acres of paved asphalt and has all the charm of a gravel pit. I would hope wiser folks at Webster Township have the good judgment to grant Jenny's Farms the approvals they need to continue to prosper because PEOPLE ENJOY THE MARKET, a fact that seems lost here. As far as food prep and bathrooms – the department of agriculture knows full well that their rules will put an end to the bake sale feel of the place….. another instance where over the decades, we as Michigan citizens have slowly granted too much power to "the government" to regulate us in the name of "our own good". There should be an exception in the law for such markets and road side stands, which are not a threat to public health and should be left alone.


Wed, Oct 26, 2011 : 8:01 p.m.

Just lettin ya know: I'm from the city, I went here, I had three or four 'bad experiences' all in one visit, and I am NOT a "delicate, vulnerable suburban animal nut". I do love animals, but I also eat them - so there. Am I an animal nut because I feel a dog should have a bowl of water while tied up in an unshaded area on an 85 degree day?? Juuuuust checkin'. Am I delicate because I felt duped when I got home and discovered a Jake and Amos label (hastily removed) from my jar of "homemade" salsa? The only thing homemade in this place is a whole lotta bullpuckey. Liars are the bottom of the barrel in my book, and I will not be sad to see this place stop taking advantage of people.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 11:28 p.m.

Most of the people writing here are dim wits with some trivial problem that does not matter to me or posers who think they know something about zoning or food service and you're just hysterical. Bottom line is that it's a delightful, charming market that is not for delicate, vulnerable suburban animal nuts or those who get the vapors if required to step off a paved surface. Unfortunately, that covers almost everyone writing here. The FDA is not part of this sport - it's the dept of agriculture. Soon this thriving, charming market that children enjoy will become an empty, muddy corner - and another victory for our hysterical, out of control GOVERNMENT.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 10:14 a.m.

Do you also feel the FDA should stop "intruding" in food safety? Some regulations are necessary for the safety of the community.

Marilyn Wilkie

Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 3:23 a.m.

Your idea of a "delightful and charming market " is strange indeed. Have you read the experiences of people who have been commenting on here for the last 3 plus weeks? They have been giving first hand accounts of what they have experienced as customers and as employees. Did you read the complaints of the officials? Are those conditions delightful and charming? Is rude service delightful and charming? Is seeing a girl writhing on the ground in agony delightful and charming? Is finding out that the food is not homemade delightful and charming? Not in my book.

Joseph Brando

Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 1:25 a.m.

You people act like Jenny's is the bastion of country shopping in Dexter. There are several more in our area. Relax, surf the web and you will find farm's that won't put you and your family's health at risk. In fact, this website has a nice list: <a href=""></a>

Ron Granger

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 11:24 p.m.

With all of the various allegations in this thread, someone should shoot some video of this operation and post it to youtube. Most interesting would be the proprietor's behavior on video.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 10:13 p.m.

The donuts are great and the cider is too. I could care less where they get them. I have never seen the animals mistreated although I'm not there 24/7.. I didn't see signs of abuse. I would hope there isn't and would report them if I found out. I have had the owner wait on me although he seemed a bit rough.. it's his lifestyle and he runs a farm, not a kids tea party. You don't like it dont go..but to sit on here and slam someone's livelyhood which could ruin his life.. is insane. Let the proper authorities do their part and investigate if need be, but to spread rumors/gossip on here is not productive at all.


Wed, Oct 26, 2011 : 7:48 p.m.

Rumors and gossip aside, there are many people who have had first hand experience. I am one of them. Maybe you had a 'lucky trip' and enjoyed your visit... but please do not dismiss all of the actual experiences of other not-so-lucky patrons as rumors and gossip. Where there's smoke, there's fire. And there sure is a TON of smoke...

average joe

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 9:57 p.m.

First, this place isn't a real farm. I'll say it again, it isn't a real farm, &amp; because the owner doesn't raise, grow, bake, or can the majority(or any?) of the products that are sold there, it is actually a commercial non-farm business, not much differant than whole foods, etc. The place is not at all an agricultural business, and is more like a tourist attraction. I would assume that this is really why the township is forcing the owner to comply with zoning laws required for a commercial business. The township is only making the field level for all businesses, no matter how long they had been there, &amp; no matter how many buildings/projects that were added without required permits. As for the health code violations, yes, most restaurants have a few minor/major violations as listed by jcj, but none of those listed have farm animals a few feet from food items. As suggested above, go to Lesser's . An actual farm that doesn't re-label items to make the customer believe that they produced it.


Wed, Oct 26, 2011 : 7:45 p.m.

LOL... that's putting it perfectly. A Kroger stand by the side of the road. Exactly!

Ron Granger

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 11:26 p.m.

When you put it that way, it doesn't sound much different than a Kroger stand on the side of the road.

A Dexter Person

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 9:43 p.m.

If you want the true farm experience, go to a real farm, not an amusement park. Go a few miles further west on Island Lake Rd. to Lesser's Farm for fresh apple cider, made right there on their farm -not bought and resold. (It's the best cider around). They get their apples &amp; peaches off their own trees. Honey from their own hives. Ruhlig's Market sells produce they actually grow on their own land. Rodger's Corners on Dexter-Chelsea sells their own produce plus they have farm animals to pet and look at. Wing Farms on Zeeb sells pumpkins they grow themselves and has a petting zoo. These are the REAL farmers where the whole family works the farm, not &quot;employees&quot;, plus they follow local ordinances and laws! Do you really think Hoey grows, prepares and cans everything he sells???? Read the labels, &quot;Distributed by Jenny'st&quot;, &quot;Packaged for Jenny's&quot;. He doesn't even have a real cider press, yet he advertises that he does! And did anyone notice the line about someone living in the same area food is prepared? Who do you think that could be?? And port-a-potties right next to the walk-in-frig???? Eewww....


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 9:11 p.m.

I was there years ago thinking about buying a &quot;home made pie&quot;-as they listed them-when I saw in the back a woman scooping pie filling out of a large plastic bucket into a pie shell. Obviously, it wasn't &quot;home made&quot; if another company is making the pie filling and shipping it to them. The donuts were good but the animals did not.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 9:02 p.m.

All of the things the &quot;state&quot; found is enough reason to shut them down. Thank you state of Michigan for protecting us. Know I understand why I need to pay taxes. And while you're at it there are lots of other markets and lemonade stands that need you to investigate , fine, and shut them down once and for all. I've had it with all of theses scofflaws. There are also many Amish in this state who sell unregulated products we need to get them too! If you need addresses and locations I can provide them Komrade.....


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 8:36 p.m.

Now it sure is funny when people are complaining about the employees not washing their hands it isn't removed, but when I mentioned it about the LITTLE CAESARS in Saline employess not put on gloves or washing their hands after handling money and driving it was removed. Must be just jump on the little guys.

Ron Granger

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 7:45 p.m.

How dare government regulators intefere with my right to keep farm animals and their fecal waste close to food preparation areas! If you don't like it, stay in the city!


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 6:51 p.m.

I stubbed my toe out there once.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 6:24 p.m.

Having said all that let me say I have been acquainted with who Mr Burton is since the mid 60's and have always thought him to be arrogant. But lets be fair and judge his business as we would any others.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 6:21 p.m.

&quot;during an Oct. 7 inspection, found six critical violations of food safety rules — including a lack of proper hand washing and bathroom facilities for employees and the sale of food products processed under insanitary conditions. The state also found one non-critical violation.&quot; 6 critical and 1 non critical violations RAVENS CLUB (THE) 7/12/2011 a single inspection revealed 8 critical violations and 5 non critical violations SHEESH 23 critical violations in the last 2 years 40 non critical violations Lets shut down everyone! Do a little research on the places YOU eat before going off the deep end!


Sat, Oct 22, 2011 : 3:50 p.m.

Good thing Raven's Club doesn't have a dirty old donkey with some sores oozing hanging out front on Main St...they'd be shutdown for sure!


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 8:26 p.m.

@jcj, I agree 100% with your last sentence in the reply immediately above this one.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 3:12 p.m.

DBH I stand corrected. After looking again I find that the critical violations for some reason are duplicated for some businesses. I was not looking at each one just the number of times critical violation was mentioned. It would appear that the number of critical violations I posted is less for some businesses. I contend my point is still valid. And that is that there are some pretty well known businesses that have critical violations that should raise the same concerns some have with Jenny's.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 3:27 a.m.

Earthen Garden is pretty good, too. ;-) Actually, in my post just above, I miswrote and meant Jerusalem Garden, not Jerusalem Jar. I need more sleep.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 1:32 a.m.

Hah! Couldn't find any restaurants in the ones you previously reported to match the 6 critical violations found at Jenny's at one visit, eh? Had to do a little more digging, huh? All the way down to the S's? These statistics do NOT support your contention that becoming upset about 6 critical violations at a single inspection is unwarranted. What these statistics DO support is close monitoring of these restaurants that have a gross number of critical violations. You may want to look up Vinology as well; they have been pretty consistent, but not in a good way. I have not eaten, do not eat, and will not eat at the restaurants you have listed in your most recent posting. If the multiple critical violations should continue at any restaurant and if the establishment should show continued disregard for public health by having repeat violations for the same improper behavior, if it were up to me, yes, I would shut it down. To expect a food service business to have me pay them money to serve or sell me food that has a significant risk of causing me a food-borne illness and yet remain in business would be callous disregard for my safety. They would be rightly characterized as a menace to society. Other restaurants can do very well without incurring many or any critical violations. Common Grill and Jerusalem Jar are two off the top of my head. If they can do it, why can't others? To be an apologist for Jenny's or other food retail establishments with multiple critical violations is your right, of course. Eat and pay away to your heart's content. Me? I value my health too much. Your postings have been most unpersuasive on this topic.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 7:22 p.m.

Its true, a lot of the restaurants most people frequent have critical and non critical violations. They publish the reports, its not like they are hidden, I am sure if people did more research on the topic, they would want to shut down half the restaurants in Michigan. I have worked in many restaurants, one of which I thought was the most sanitary and clean restaurant with an extremely orderly owner and management system, even this restaurant received some violations, I would have literally eaten off the floor there, and I am a bleach a holic...


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 7:09 p.m.

I would submit if these places did not correct their violations they should be shut down until they are fixed. I want the health department to do all they can to help keep us from eating in a place that might harm me or my family. It is that simple. Oddly enough I have not eaten at any of the places you have listed in your two previous posts about critical violations.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 6:03 p.m.

To answer one question BD'S MONGOLIAN GRILL OF ANN ARBOR 8 critical violations in the last 2 years BLACKPEARL 15 critical violations in the last 2 years BOBBER DOWN 8 critical violations in the last 2 years BROKEN EGG 6 critical violations in the last 2 years BRUEGGER'S BAGEL BAKERY 4 critical violations in the last 2 years CAFE FELIX 11 critical violations in the last 2 years CHINESE TONITE RESTAURANT Chelsea 9 critical violations in the last 2 years CHOP HOUSE 9 critical violations in the last 2 years Need I go on? I only went through a small portion of the list

average joe

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 10:02 p.m.

Ok -justmyopinion- No, they don't 'can'. They don't &quot;jar&quot; either, as in pickles.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 7:06 p.m.

What canning?? Jenny's doesn't can anything.

say it plain

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 6:09 p.m.

You're making a valiant effort to get people to understand how common critical food safety violations are :-) I'm more concerned about how the specific violations at Jenny's (related to repackaging and improper 'canning' and so on it seems) reflect shady business practices and false advertising more than what they reflect about how clean the workers' hands are...though there are of course also allegations about animals and people hanging out where food is being prepared, which to me does go beyond the worry-scope of the 'critical violations' likely found at places like BD's and Blackpearl (there I'd expect some pretty serious opps for unsafe practices regarding raw and cooked food mixing and temperatures and so on, just given the nature of their operations !)


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 6:07 p.m.

Are these the cumulative number of violations in 2 years, or the number of violations at a single inspection, as was the case at Jenny's? If the former, your comparisons are misleading. Since inspections occur on the average every 6 months, if your reported numbers are cumulative, then you would need to divide them by 4 to get a comparable figure.

say it plain

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:55 p.m.

Aren't there laws on the books--besides food safety laws-- preventing people from doing what @valerie claims this &quot;market&quot; does?! Can someone really take like sysco strawberry jam and put it in their own jars that say &quot;Jenny's Jam&quot; with no indication where and by whom it was actually made? I think that's a totally valid reason to that *common* among farm markets?! I'd hope not, gee!


Wed, Oct 26, 2011 : 7:40 p.m.

Yep. Totally ok. Just got off the phone with the MDA because in the past I got a jar of salsa or something that had the old label sloppily removed and the Jenny's label stuck on. I was able to Google the company and found where Jenny's gets their supposedly homemade products. Although they can no longer remove old labels, they can purchase unlabeled products from the manufacturer and apply their label. It still irks me though, since all of the signs say 'homemade'. The only thing they 'make' is an illusion!


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:38 p.m.

You eat a bushel of dirt in your life normally. He's just adding a few handfuls of &quot;dirt&quot; to that. Give a guy a break. He doesn't even sell unhomogenized milk (but if pony's could produce it, he would, I suspect). OH, and the accidents, yeah. Well, accident means it didn't happen on purpose, so they better not start spending my tax dollars to regulate the private sector and oppress the small business man or I'll go berzerk and call you all names. I'm calm. I'm calm. Carry on.


Thu, Nov 17, 2011 : 4:10 p.m.

And I'd be happy to eat dirt. Raid, on the other hand, that is just not acceptable. Raid on the apples. Are you reading??? More than one person has seen this happen.


Wed, Oct 26, 2011 : 7:36 p.m.

Ask a person educated in the horse department. Should you be letting a team of draft horses run while pulling a wagon full of people?? I have a guess at the answer. Can you guess what I'm guessing?


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:49 p.m.

Accidents can happen because totally unpredictable events can occur, and then accidents can happen due to negligence. If an unfortunate event occurs, it can still be an accident due to passive behavior (negligence) rather than due to active behavior (&quot;on purpose&quot;). The question with the injured employee (and, perhaps, the child) is whether negligence was involved. To my knowledge, no one is contending that these people were injured because of something Mr. Hoey did &quot;on purpose.&quot;

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:47 p.m.

no reply necessary or possible to this.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:33 p.m.

What? What?! WHAT?! This business is an area Fall tradition. This sounds personal to me!....How many people will lose their jobs in this vendetta?!


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 5:06 p.m.

Just curious; How many confirmed cases of illness from this business have been reported?


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 9:05 p.m.

Get used to it julie. It's the liberal way to control and regulate everything until there is nothing left to regulate. Amerika.........

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:46 p.m.

It's an area Fall Exhibition! I'm wondering how many under the table jobs will be lost. Read the comments before you make a judgement. Maybe they will enlighten you.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:37 p.m.

Not sure, but I would be willing to bet it would be fewer than those made ill by consumption of food sold at this place. Six critical violations? Give me a break.

say it plain

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:20 p.m.

Omg, the comment count for the latest Jenny's market 'news' is already over 150 for merely 5 or so hours up on the site!! I don't have a dog in this hunt, but do you think Mr. Hoey should get a cut of the click-thru revenue for these stories :-) !?

say it plain

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:22 p.m.

Or maybe can donate a portion of the click-through revenue/advertising revenues for these stories to the poor young woman who was thrown from the wagon?! That would be a nice gesture, wouldn't it?!


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:14 p.m.

When I first moved to Dexter last December, I was warned by several people to stay clear of Jenny's. Instead, I visited them on 3 different ocassions and was disturbed by lax approach the management of business had to food preparation and overall safety. When they errected the 4 bale high Scarecrow in the entrance, I thought and still think it is another accident waiting to happen. As far as I can tell, there are no steel rods securing each bale to the other and they are starting to sag around the edges. As the article describes the history of Jenny's from a simple fruit and vegetable stand to the sparwling business it has become, without permits or necessary safety inspections, I support the township's decision to issue and order to stop business. Other businesses in Dexter must comply, why oh why should Jenny's be exempt? Oh, and to get around the order, they changed the name of the establishment .... nice work management. Do you need someone from your family to get hurt before you listen?


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 9:04 p.m.

We're glad you approve of the treatment Jenny's is receiving. I'll sleep better tonight.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:11 p.m.

I doubt 1/4 of those complaining about the unsanitary conditions could pass an inspection in their own kitchen! And how many restaurants in Ann Arbor failed inspections every month? A few places in Washtenaw County with Critical violations in the last couple years BD'S MONGOLIAN GRILL OF ANN ARBOR BIG BOY OF CHELSEA BIWAKO SUSHI (QUALITY JAPANESE FOOD INC) BLACKPEARL BROKEN EGG BRUEGGER'S BAGEL BAKERY CAFE FELIX CHELSEA COMMUNITY HOSPITAL CHELSEA GRILL CHOP HOUSE CONOR O'NEILLS CRAZY WISDOM BOOKSTORE &amp; TEA ROOM DEXTER'S PUB GRATZI HEIDELBERG JOLLY PUMPKIN CAFE &amp; BREWERY LE DOG/DOBOS INTERNATIONAL MELANGE BISTRO WINE BAR MELTING POT (THE) Need I go on? How many of the complainers here will stop going to these establishments?


Wed, Oct 26, 2011 : 7:33 p.m.

I wonder how many of them spray Raid on their food to keep bees away?


Sat, Oct 22, 2011 : 3:48 p.m.

None of the places with violation listed have wasted maltreated animals mired in their own muck chained out front in the hot sun and cold rain, either. That's why I avoid Jenny's.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 7:15 p.m.

@DBH- The originally posted list from &quot;jcj&quot; are Washtenaw County Health Department Inspected Restaurants, not MDA (which Jenny's appears to be). The WCHD page linked provides the options available to address violations. Flexibility exists based on past experience and the nature of the violation.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 6:03 p.m.

@kmgeb2000, most of the critical violations were not corrected at the time of the inspection by the MDA (not the Health Dept; the link you gave was for the latter, not MDA, though it is likely that the same prompt remedial actions are attempted by the MDA at the time of the inspections). Some of the critical violations were repeat violations.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:53 p.m.

If those places continue to receive violations they too will be shuttered. I understand you can get a great deal on some Colorado cantaloupe, who needs food safety laws?


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:43 p.m.

For clarification the critical violations listed also included a requirement to correct the critical violation if not at the time of inspection, otherwise in a timely manner. This process also includes followup inspections to ensure the correction has taken place and education on best practice to improve food safety. <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a>

say it plain

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:42 p.m.

Sure, @jcj, but if the made *that* clear in this piece (how commonly the state issues citations for things like improper handwashing in our local eateries ), then it would be less lurid page-click generating story :-) I don't doubt, given the comments about this place and this guy, that there is something less than pleasant happening at Jenny's, but heck, don't we vote with our pocketbooks? Is Dexter dealing with a very mean controlling man who bullies the whole town somehow? Sounds like! But there's something about the way these stories come off that sounds so very small-town gossip-y drama... I'd be worried about that shotgun allegation, yikes.... I'll remind myself to avoid that whole area for a couple years ! Insisting on organic farm-produce and avoiding donuts makes it easy, I suppose, lol...


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:34 p.m.

How many of these had 6 critical violations? Personally, if a restaurant has even 1 critical violation, I will not patronize it until it has 0, unless it is a violation that is documented by the Health Dept. as having been corrected on the spot. If a restaurant has had 6 (or more), as the MDA found at Jenny's, they are written off my list unless they change ownership and have a subsequent clean Health Dept. inspection.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:09 p.m.

&quot;Jenny's owner Burton Hoey said township officials are targeting him unfairly and that he has complied with the state's orders regarding food safety. He plans to keep operating unless a court orders the business closed.&quot; The real question that may be posed is how many other small businesses like his are receiving violations from many government sources??? Sanitation rules did not happen because there was nothing better to do that day. If other businesses like his can follow the rules for public safety then why can't Mr Hoey. If not, then he needs to close or be closed for the public good. Is he being unfairly targeted??? maybe a search of the news archives might give an idea if there is are is not a pattern of previous issues.

Nichole B

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 4:28 p.m.

As I have read before and experienced myself, I think the township is justified. I think this owner has a disregard for safety on all levels and should have the proper ramifications for it.

Randy Dieter

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 4:21 p.m.

Another example of government trying to take down another successful business! And they keep saying that we live in a &quot;free&quot; country!! Go figure.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 4:14 p.m.

Is there any update on the young woman's condition and prognosis?

Marilyn Wilkie

Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 1:18 p.m.

Dot, you are the on out of line by defending Mr. Hoey. His words speak for themselves. In the initial article the officer was quoted as saying that she could not move her legs. I did not make that up.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 12:56 a.m.

Marlies - pushing it under the rug? because her private medical info. isn't provided here for your public consumption? It bothers Marilyn because &quot;she would expect Mr. Hoey to know&quot; as if you know that he doesn't. He's not going to share what her family wants kept private. &quot;I don't think it has been said definitely that she is though the officer was quoted as saying she could not move her legs&quot; You are out of line with your rumor and shared gossip - you should be ashamed of yourself! Her family wants privacy from people like you.

Marlies Wandres

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 7:24 p.m.

They seem to push this under the rug....


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 6:58 p.m.

She is seriously injured and her family wants to be left alone. They want their privacy respected and so far, it has been.

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:26 p.m.

That is what really bothers me. I would expect Mr. Hoey to know this. She was his employee. I hope that she is not paralyzed. I don't think it has been said definitely that she is though the officer was quoted as saying she could not move her legs.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 4:05 p.m.

This story was picked up the the associated press (AP): <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a> with a link back to

Rich Rezler

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 4:04 p.m.

More comments containing unverifiable allegations have been removed.

Charlie Brown's Ghost

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 4:12 p.m.

They are verifiable, if you would put a little work into it. Also, how about checking and reporting on the status of the Sheriff's and MOSHA's investigations?

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 3:54 p.m.

Mr. Hoey's comments to the Dexter Leader: <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a>


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 4:13 p.m.

Wow. Thanks for posting.

Charlie Brown's Ghost

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 4:13 p.m.

That guy really needs a PR person to do his talking for him. Every time he says something he just digs his hole a little deeper.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 3:43 p.m.

As a casual visitor to the market for over 20 years, there are some glaring deficiencies in a place that is supposed to be a &quot;farm market.&quot; Situated where it is, it cannot accommodate enough vehicles in its &quot;parking lot&quot; on a busy fall weekend, without causing people to think they should park along the roadside on a fairly busy road. The animals are housed way too close to a place that sells food. I grew up in a rural area, and while there are those who think a lot of the complaints are from city-dwelling, Purell-swabbing, latte-drinkers, I have always felt like the &quot;farm stand&quot; was a bit of a sham. Aside from the unsanitary conditions, there was never any actual farm in view, and the entire enterprise seemed too close to the road, and I guess the Township citations support that observation. The last time we were there, we were looking for Michigan-grown peaches, and what they had didn't look all that great. The guy at the counter gave us a hard time and berated us for not buying any from them. Good way to lose my business forever.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 3:57 p.m.

It's not a cider mill either. That has always bothered me. For the first couple of years we lived here, I thought it actually was a cider mill. Why is that still on every sign you see for them?


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 3:42 p.m.

I don't stop at the market, but I do miss the Percherons and their foals that were always grazing next to the house that is for sale. They always looked well cared for as did the grounds. There is a great cider mill and farm store on Island Lake Road, just west a ways from this location - Lesser Farms. I have passed them many times and just stopped this year. It does not have donuts or a carnival atmosphere, just a peaceful country setting and delicious cider. Also, great farm fresh eggs.

Joe Wood

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 10:26 p.m.

Dale Lesser sells excellent home grown honey, also!

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 8:16 p.m.

Yes, the Lessers deserve people's business. They are a proud, hardworking farm family. Alber Orchards is another one.

Buster W.

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 4:44 p.m.

The Lesser's are a great hard-working family with a long tradition in Dexter.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 3:34 p.m.

For the people who are defending this's no longer about accident incidences happening at the farm. They are being cited for food safety violations. That's a big deal. They don't have proper hand washing facilities...GROSS! It's a farm with all kinds of need to wash your hands before preparing food!!! The health department doesn't just shut you down, you are cited first and have a chance to correct your violations, after several chances...then you get shut down so it's obvious this owner feels the rules don't apply to him. Plus the number of CRITICAL violations this establishment got makes my stomach hurt just thinking about it.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 3:52 p.m.

A minor correction to your comment, if I may. As cited in the story above, the regulating authority for food safety for this establishment is the MI Dept. of Agriculture, not the Health Department. I think the MDA also regulates other types of food establishments such as bakeries, businesses where (I think, though I am not sure) consumption of the food typically is not done on premises. This is why you won't find Jenny's Market in the Michigan's Health Department Restaurant Inspection reports ( <a href="" rel='nofollow'>;LastCty=28</a> ). I don't know if the MDA and the Health Department have different rules for shutting down a business due to repeat violations.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 3:46 p.m.

Yes, a friend once stopped there to get some ice cream why he thought that was a good idea, I don't know). The owner had just come in from the animal area, and without washing his hands scooped the ice cream and sold it to him... my buddy decided it was better to dump the ice cream outside and not complain about it.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 3:33 p.m.

I strongly believe the owner should work with the township and state, not fight with them. Do what they ask, for the right reasons, to protect the Health, safety and welfare of his customers, employees, animals and community. Whatever it takes. I honestly believe doin so will improve not hurt his business. On the other hand there is probably not a business around that would comply 100% with every regulation imposed by our government after over 20 years in business. Give him the opportunity to correct and comply. It sounds like he would rather fight then cooperate, I hope he changes his mind, there appears to be a need for the kind of business Jenny's provides.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 3:23 p.m.

A very interesting article and well written, giving air time to all sides. I went there a couple of times in 2004 and was treated very rudely by the staff, literally &quot;what do you want?&quot; No eye contact, no smile. I vowed never to go back. When I mentioned this in an letter to the editor in the Leader (there have been many articles about him in the Leader) Hoey called me at home and verbally attacked me. I also spoke at that time to the head of the Humane Society in AA and was told that there are numerous calls to her every year regarding the treatment of animals.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 2:25 p.m.

So what is the point? He is rude and a bufoon? So we should shut him down? Dont give him business - that is your right!

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 3:33 p.m.

He called you at home?? Unbelievable?? Not really.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 3:20 p.m.

Fine to have a country market but food safety is paramount - others have to follow rules, do you they! Pretty simple- as for the accidents - they clearly are trying to make $ without concern for saftey, again safety issues. These people cry unfair when other families would have loved this chance and done right by it!


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 3:12 p.m.

Well, glad to hear of other peoples food problems with this place-- Helps quash the bitter taste of the MORE THAN A YEAR OLD cider they sold to me a few years back-- Look, I'm all for the pastoral memories a roadside stand of yesteryear envokes in people, but this place ain't it-- Hell, the home made pies aren't even &quot;home made&quot;, not really.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:40 p.m.

&quot;The June agreement stipulated that a shotgun should be removed from the facility. Hoey said he didn't know anything about a shotgun.&quot; Shotgun? We ain't got no shotgun. We don't need no shotgun. I don't have to show you any stinking shotgun.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:39 p.m.

Mr. Hoey might be better off keeping his mouth closed. I was neutral until I read his comments in this article.

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 8:20 p.m.

Justmyopinion, his previous actions with the government should be taken in account here. They have been more than patient over the years.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 6:55 p.m.

A long line of people will agree with you, but should that affect how he is treated by the local government?


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:32 p.m.

My wife sat at a picnic table not long ago and noticed a strong odor. Seems horses had &quot;done their business&quot; right in the spot where the picnic tables were placed for customers to use for food purchased there. This seems to me to indicate, at best, a cavalier attitude towards hygiene and sanitation around Jenny's.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 4:59 p.m.

Its a farm, ever have a picnik in the park, say gallup park with all the geese? Animal poop whenever, where ever they want. Want a clean place to eat try indoors.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:17 p.m.

As a local business owner, I just hate to see this kind of thing. It's depressing and I don't even know what to say to be honest. The glee in some of the posts here is really bizarre.

average joe

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 10:05 p.m.

@ JMO-&quot;..I do not have any joy in seeing him suffer this way.&quot; If you don't follow the rules, you will eventually &quot;suffer&quot;.

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 8:23 p.m.

&quot;I do not have any joy in seeing him suffer this way. &quot; Mr. Hoey is not the one who is suffering here. The poor 23 year old who may never walk again is the one who is suffering and will continue long after Mr. Hoey sells the &quot;farm&quot;.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 6:54 p.m.

I think Tesla's point is quite valid. The charter assassination, personal anecdotes of how nasty Burt is are really irrelevant in this matter. He should have fair rules applied fairly. I am not sure these are completely fair especially about the set back. More importantly, the joy several of you take at his business being shuttered is truly awful. Weather I like the man or not, I do not have any joy in seeing him suffer this way. That some of you do speaks volumes about yourselves, and it's not complimentary.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:43 p.m.

Do you comply with local/state/federal laws regulating your business? If you do, then why shouldn't Burton? If not, you may be next.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 3:28 p.m.

Why? Am I next?

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:27 p.m.

Where is your local business?

Oscar Lavista

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:16 p.m.

Excellent reporting, Lisa!

medicine woman

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:04 p.m.

I am glad to see &quot;Jennys&quot; under scutiny. If we follow the State of Michigan Cottage Kitchen laws, why shouldn't they? Preparing foods in unclean areas and serving to the unsuspecting public is so wrong. Also, I have noticed myself how poorly the animals are treated and this has bothered me for some time. They even go so far as to cut off the horses' tail because the way they have rigged up the wagon, the driver would get slapped in the face with the tail, so the horse is left helpless to swat flies and insects off it's rear. Not to mention that water for the scraggly looking horses was no where to be found. It seems like inhumane treatment of the animals just to make a fast buck.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:59 p.m.

I think that they ought to allow gravel or crushed concrete parking surfaces.

little bird

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:40 p.m.

This is a relief. I stopped going there after I saw some of the animals injured and bleeding with and still working the good ol' fashioned hayrides. I checked their reviews online and saw that I wasn't the only one mentioning this. Very depressing.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:38 p.m.

@dexterreader We moved here in the last 10 years and I admit that I've been surprised by all the acerbic comments. But finally with this article, there is a printed account of actual violations. Most shocking are the dates and how long the farm has had to comply or even show reasonable progress (which is often acceptable to gain extra time for compliance). I have a feeling the township threw the kitchen sink at him; but that's how the world works. You only get asked nicely so many times and then it's hardball. No surprise there. I think the township is entirely correct to be very clear and quite serious in this matter. Mr. Hoey has always been polite and friendly with me, but I'm not comfortable buying food there until his business passes food safety inspections.

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:31 p.m.

You don't know the half of it.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:54 p.m.

I should say that I'm not the most observant person. If I ever went back to the market, I would look around more at the conditions generally.

Pam Bethune

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:30 p.m.

This just reeks of personal vendata in a small town.

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:32 p.m.

I guess you don't live around here. Come over and stop at the Sheriff's Department, the hardware store, the Feed Mill, and talk to the folks that have lived here for years.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:45 p.m.

I agree it reeks of small town, but not personal vendetta. As Dexter has grown and more people are stopping at the market, it becomes more important to keep things clean and safe. A business that busy needs to lose a little of the &quot;small town&quot; and go a bit more &quot;mainstream.&quot;

Denise Oliver

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:28 p.m.

Will miss this fine little country fun place , many years of memories taking my kids there, stuff happens every where! Good luck to the family and local workers who ran a very fun family place!

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:25 p.m.

The &quot;family&quot; is Burton. His daughter Jenny married and moved away years ago. His sweet mother died a few years ago at the age of 101 or 102.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:43 p.m.

Denise, there are actually clear corrections that Mr. Hoey can make to bring his business into compliance. The question is: will he? If he does, it will actually be a better place to take your children (grandchildren) to. A clean sink and bathroom are good things. Proper sanitizing is simple and effective. If Mr. Hoey works with the county, he may be able to turn this around.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:25 p.m.

I'd like to say something in the defense of a farmer trying to earn a living, except that in my last visit I saw an employee casually spraying raid to keep down the yellow jackets... only feet from open food containers.

Ron Granger

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:02 p.m.

That's absolutely awful. Enough people have said that in this thread that I will never go there.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:24 p.m.

I guess that the Hoeys don't run Dexter anymore.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:24 p.m.

I worked at Jenny's Market. The pickles, jams and the such are bought, and we did...we placed Jenny's labels on all the jars. The cider? It came in jugs and I had to open them, pour them into smaller containers while standing at a back counter with dirt, bees and critters. The doughnuts? Well, we cooked those right there in the back kitchen that was dirty and gross. Washing hands? Just look at the workers' tell me if its sanitary....????? The pony rides? I did that to, the saddles on the ponies didn't really fit, and yes, I actually had a pony bend the carousel trying to get away with a child on his back.

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:34 p.m.

Ron, you can go out to Albers and see and drink their HOME MADE cider. You can pet the animals, go on hay rides, walk through their fields, play in the corn maze.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:31 p.m.

I'm not sure why he only hires young females and hard workers from Mexico. I worked at Jenny's Market for a total of 3 weekends (two years ago) and haven't been back......

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:23 p.m.

Mr. Hoey seems to only hire young women and hard workers from Mexico. Is there a reason? Thanks for the first-hand report.

Ron Granger

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:02 p.m.

So many people buying &quot;cider' have no idea what they are getting. I bought cider at an upstate orchard last week. It was pressed from the apples as I watched.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:19 p.m.

I think it's pretty clear that there is something strange about the place. I commute between AA and Pinckney daily for the past 11 years, and have stopped in many times. One one hand, the guy who is always there(Mr. Hooey, I assume?) was never very friendly, and sometimes pretty hostile. On the other hand, those hot pickles sure are good! Last fall, I stopped with my daughter for some cider/donuts, and there was a clearly distressed barking dog tied up over by the picnic tables next to the parking lot. It was sort of rainy, and I noticed that a damp paper sign had fallen off the post that the dog was attached to. It read something like &quot;Angry dog, Do Not Approach.&quot; We planted ourselves on the picnic tables and watched as every person who tried to cut through to the parking lot was clawed and nipped by the dog. I figured it was only a matter of time before some little kid was bitten on the face, so I went in to where they were selling the donuts to tell someone. I couldn't even get the sentence out of my mouth when I was cut off by the donut chick - &quot;We know - Don't sweat it.&quot;

Ron Granger

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:59 p.m.

Some people would find it very entertaining to watch a dog try and bite hapless people.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:18 p.m.

I have worked with Mr Pindzia and Mr Hoey. I found Mr Pindzia to be respectful, intelligent, knowledgeable of his job and always willing to work with me to achieve solutions that work for the twp and myself. I cannot say the same for Mr Hoey. I cannot post those thoughts as they will be removed due to violations of policy. What does that tell you readers? Every other business has to follow these rules, why should Burton be any different?


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:15 p.m.

Jenny's Market is very expensive. I know you have to make money, but come on. And Burt can't be totally innocent as he claims, I'm sure there are issues that need to be taken care of. And yes, I think the animals could have better conditions.

paul wiener

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:11 p.m.

An outrageous, sickeningly stupid abuse of local authority and prejudice based on trivial, small-minded, petty regulations and suburban vanity. This is one of the greatest farmer's markets in southeastern Michigan and should be celebrated - cleaned up perhaps, but still celebrated for its high quality, diverse, local, and often unique offerings. And we wonder why WalMart is becoming the marketing norm.

sun runner

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:14 p.m.

Take a trip to Detroit and visit Eastern Market if you would like to see a REAL farmers' market. If that's too far, the Ann Arbor Farmers' Market should suffice. Jenny's Farm Stand is a tourist destination.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 3:44 p.m.

Did you not read the article. Critical food violations. Dirty food prep areas, dirty employee hands, no hand washing facilities, improper food production...must I go on? I'd rather eat at a place that I know can pass sanitary inspections...geez

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:19 p.m.

Do you live on the same planet that the rest of us do? How long have you lived around here? Or do you? Do you have blinders on to everything but the cute little market? Thank Gordon Foods for some of the &quot;high quality and diversity&quot;.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:11 p.m.

Frankly I don't like the cost of food at Plum Market, the yellow jackets at the Dexter Cider mill, the lack of help at Dunham's, How do I voice my displeasure? I DON'T go to these places. Unlike all that have posted here and on a related story that CONTINUED to go to Jenny's for years but now jump on the &quot;politically correct&quot; bandwagon! And I agree the FATHER of the child that fell should be coming forward and admitting HIS failure to keep his child safe while in HIS care!


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 12:29 a.m.

SO much traffic for such an AWFUL business makes SO little sense!


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:11 p.m.

My family and I have been going to Jenny's for some years now and have always enjoyed the experience. But reading this article and comments has been pretty eye-opening. It sounds like there have been many issues simmering over the years that have not been resolved. And although I think there's a place for quaint road-side stands, there ARE certain minimum health standards that should be followed if food is being prepared and served. The animal health and welfare issues are very serious though, if true. I really hope that Mr. Hoey and the the planning/health people reach some sort of agreement during the off-season to keep Jenny's running in some fashion. I do think it adds something good to the Dexter area.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:06 p.m.

The one time I visited this place a few years ago was the first and last. It was a dirty place where the food was sold, the animals were poorly cared for, and the clerks were unfriendly. It's too bad it took a tragedy to finally close up this place. Having decades to get their act together and still in violation of health and safety codes is unbelievable. Close it down, the sooner the better, before there is a public health tragedy with the unsanitary food or animals are harmed further. The area doesn't need more unsanitary food processors and sellers.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:12 p.m.

&quot;It's too bad it took a tragedy to finally close up this place&quot; Don't count your chickens yet!

Craig Lounsbury

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:03 p.m.

what jumps out at me is.... &quot;Hoey said..... "We went to court three times and they lost every time, and I didn't even have a lawyer,&quot; If,if,if that is true it says something to me . As to the food violation, that certainly doesn't look good at all. On the other hand I think I remember a time when the old Ann Arbor News stopped indicating the critical/noncritical violations in their Health department reports of area restaurants. They stopped if memory serves me because they felt it was insufficient information that might be misinterpreted by readers and unfairly impact a business. Maybe another old fart can confirm or refute my memory on that.

Brenda Byrne

Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 9:46 a.m.

Yes, I do remember that! Too much big brother in this case. At some point the township will want kick-backs from business.

Craig Lounsbury

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 4:10 p.m.

thanks DBH, That seems as familiar as what I originally was thinking. I was pretty sure somebody tweaked the way the reports were presented once upon a time.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:52 p.m.

My recollection, Craig, is what the Health Dept. stopped doing was assigning numerical values to the violations. I believe it was because they felt the sum total of the values was misleading. A restaurant might have many noncritical violations resulting in a lower (or higher, depending on how you look at it) score than another restaurant with 1 or 2 critical violations where the sum total might be lower but where the risk to the eating public would be greater.

Jim Knight

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:28 p.m.

County restaurant inspections are reported monthly at A link: <a href="">;tag=restaurant%20inspections&amp;limit=20</a>

Craig Lounsbury

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:24 p.m.

Not by the Ann Arbor news because it no longer exists.

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:14 p.m.

Those inspection reports are still published.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:01 p.m.

Good point lumberg48108 How many that have expressed their displeasure with the signs will go on record and complain about all the Realtor signs, Political signs or Church signs?


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:53 p.m.

I know this guy can be a nuisance to some but most of the folks hating on him are for reputation purposes ...the posts above speak to his personality issues in many cases. You want to close him down because of a sign violation????? Please, people, get a grip. If every politican or realtor was closed down for sign violations ... you get the idea. Food safety issues? These are routine and everyone gets them but they are rarely shut down for them. Safety violations? Well, that is a concern (though I fail to see how a child falling off a horse is his concern or how it even made it to the media unless the child was gravely hurt) ... so Dexter (or Webster) - go ahead and hate on the guy or business - but have a little common sense when it comes to shutting him down and make sure you are on the side of a maintaining a free society and simply not imposing your tastes on someone you dont approve of ...


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 5:03 p.m.

Food safety is important - but show me the list of businesses that have been shut down for such violations ... the vendetta is not based on facts nor safety, its people who dont like him and want him to go away ... sorry, that is not how a FREE society works!


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 3:48 p.m.

These are critical food violations that he has had planety of time to correct and failed to do so...shrug it off if you'd like but maybe you should read up on food safety and it's ill effects.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:47 p.m.

@Charlie Brown's Ghost ... Excellent point. I would be willing to bet the majority of the business this place gets comes from people who have moved into the Dexter area within the last 10 years. Many of the rest of us have already made a decision not to shop there based on either past practices or an unpleasant personal experience.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:43 p.m.

It's easy to say that the farm stand should be shut down, but think of how this affects small businesses. I encourage the township to look for a &quot;win-win&quot; that was suggested. Apparently the local governments aren't supportive of small businesses because they require them to have paved parking lots (lots of $$) and other requirements that are unreasonable. However, there are some requirements that are just healthy, and those should be enforced within a reasonable time span. Don't be too hasty to &quot;shut it down&quot; - that could be your small business, and thousands of other small businesses that support families and keep the economy growing. In such hard times, we should be looking for ways to grow the economy right here instead of quash any attempts to keep what little economy we have left from growing or thriving.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 6:42 p.m.

Agricultural business are usually subject to different rules...although I agree on the hygiene citations being corrected.

Ron Granger

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:54 p.m.

When you ignore zoning issues and refuse to comply, eventually you are shutdown. Whose fault is that? If you have a serious accident, that is going to invite scrutiny and enforcement activity - rightfully I think. When your roadside business grows beyond a certain point, you need to comply with laws that regulate larger businesses. Traffic safety and parking are important. Must someone die due to truck or other traffic? Why should this business be above the law when other businesses must comply?

Charlie Brown's Ghost

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:42 p.m.

The funny thing about the &quot;Maybe you should just stay in the city&quot; sentiments is that if we stop coming out there and spending our money Deter will be nothing more than a muddy puddle in a dirt road.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 6:39 p.m.

News flash Charlie Brown, Dexter is doing fine without the Townies, the population is large enough as it is on its own. Feel free to leave the &quot;mud puddle&quot;, we won't miss you. It has been a great place to live for quite some time and without your money. One more point if you plan on continuing your visits: No one here is impressed by city folks who come from outside and fling money around as if it makes them something worthwhile. Around here, people are judged by how they act towards others.

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:08 p.m.

That sounds fine to me. Less traffic. :)

G. Orwell

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:42 p.m.

The two accidents were just that, accidents. Accidents can occur anywhere. The violations cited by the state and township had nothing to do with the accidents. The township should work out any outstanding violations with Jenny's and leave them alone so they can go back to serving the community. Fixing Jenny's to shut down is very heavy handed.


Wed, Oct 26, 2011 : 9:28 p.m.

Accidents do happen. But they are MUCH more likely to happen if you are being careless. Should we eliminate the speed limit on roads? You know, since accidents happen anyway... what's the dif? Stop signs, traffic lights... who needs em? The horse people who have chimed in on these posts have stated that u should never run a team of draft horses in full harness. If that is a fact, then surely you can see that doing so would create an increased risk - unbeknownst to the masses of hayriders who are not schooled in the proper use of horses? Perhaps unbeknownst to the employee who was driving the team when she was injured? There are many questions to be answered. But you surely can't dismiss all 'accidents' as nobody's responsibility. What's the increase in percentages of accidents among drunk drivers? Should they be held responsible, or should we just say, &quot;Hey. Accidents happen.&quot;

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:07 p.m.

As stated previously by others and the article , the township has &quot;worked with&quot; Mr. Hoey for years.

G. Orwell

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:28 p.m.

Correction: should be &quot;Forcing&quot; rather than &quot;Fixing.&quot;


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:32 p.m.

Same old story; Mr. Hoey does as he pleases and the Township fails to follow through with its citations. If the Township is not persistant, In a few short years Mr. Hoey will have a Market that will rival Eastern Market in Detroit. If nothing else this Market is a traffic hazard; yes the traffic has increased over the decades since &quot;the Hoey's came to town&quot;, just as zoning regulations have changed. The Market must go.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:43 p.m.

Judge , Jury, AND hangman has spoken!


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:31 p.m.

Thank you for publishing some of the history of this place so that &quot;newcomers&quot; to the Dexter area can at least be informed and make informed decisions as to whether or not to shop there. I disagree that the township is &quot;picking on&quot; them. There does seem to be a long history of &quot;questionable&quot; business practices. And yes, I was around in the early 90's when much of this was just starting up. There is no excuse for businesses who do not follow the rules or run a safe enterprise.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 3:12 p.m.

Well said!


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:29 p.m.

We have done our preschool field trips there several times. At that time we reported that the person (s) were driving the tractors WAY to FAST. We will talk with them they stated, however, next time we came it was even worse. I myself almost fell off cause they didn't wait to see if everyone was even on. Then we had a pregnant mothers on board and that didn't even matter either. Our students were very scared &amp; so were parents. So unfortunately someone got hurt, had they stopped that wild driving awhile ago maybe this would of never happened. And inregards to the other sanitary stuff, we have gotten things there several times &amp; to be honest it makes me sick to think stuff is not being done the right way. So come Jenny's Farm, get up to code, clean up your place &amp; act. Train drivers &amp; other employees so that you can stay around. But if you don't wanna do this for the safety of everyone &amp; the benefit of your &amp; all your employees then thats to bad as well as your loss. Time will tell what you've decided.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 12:22 a.m.

&quot;We have done our preschool field trips there several times.&quot; clearly wasn't so bad that you didn't go back.

Paul Wehr

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:27 p.m.

I wonder if the business would have elicited more community support if it had not chosen to spam the entire county with illegally placed yard signs year after year.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 12:20 a.m.

it is evidence that the community has other issues (like Marilyn Wilkie above) that are affecting their opinions about what the Twp. should do. Oh, but wait until the strong arm of the twp. law over-reaches to their property and rights.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 6:34 p.m.

Why is that even relevant?


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:26 p.m.

Its about time! My husband and I stopped at Jenny's a couple of years ago to look at some of the flowers that they were selling. We noticed a baby calf tied up on a very short leash to a pole with no food or water. The calf was only able to move about 2 feet. The canned pickles appeared to be store bought, the labels removed and re-labeled with a Jenny's Market label. I will never go back!

Chris Goosman

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 10:43 p.m.

The canned goods are custom labeled by a manufacturer of products for these kind of farm stands. We see the exact same products, with the same font on the label, at a farm stand in North Carolina. There is nothing shady going on in regard to the canned goods.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:39 p.m.

Probably raising the calf for veal.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:25 p.m.

I am so tired of all the character attacks and personal anecdotes about what a rotten person Burton Hoey is here. How well you like the man is 1) irrelevant and 2) gossip. I think the vendetta some have shown here is simply sad and shows their own vengeful nature. People may not like Burton Hoey, but it's irrelevant. Being disliked is hardly a crime. Jenny's Market is not some yuppy market, farm stand or anything else close to perfect. It's one family, trying to make a go of their land, the best way they know how. Are they flawed? Yes, but so are we all. They don't make themselves out to be anything more than what you see, so why is everyone expecting them to be more? Selling pumpkins, Christmas Tree's, donuts, cider and pre-canned pickles is hardly the stuff for a Normal Rockwell legend, nor should it have to be in order for them to continue in their farm Apparently they have some health violations, which should, I agree, be taken care of. The zoning red card from Webster Township, however, is beyond the pale. The place has been there for 30+ years, operating in the open, available to be seen daily, &amp; is now being shut down for zoning violations? I can almost see a lawyer salivating over this one already, the Township will lose. Letting it go for so many years and then trying to enforce a zoning law on an existing farm will cost them, and it should. Its the Hoey's farm, the buildings haven't changed much lately, so this cannot be reasonably considered a &quot;new change&quot; to anyone. The denial of livelihood in delivery of the red card is simply unfathomable to me. Taking a mans means of earning a living away is one of the most serious things any government can do, and should not be done lightly or without fair hearing. This action is outrageous in both its severity and suddenness. Neither citing has anything to do with people getting hurt there, but are obviously being used as tools to punish them none the less. Its just wrong, and bull


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 12:16 a.m.

Marilyn Wilkie at 10:03 AM on October 20, 2011 &quot;He lives in the big white house on the hill which his family previously sweated and paid for. He is asking over half a million dollars for the property. Any takers?&quot; &quot;his family previously sweated and paid for&quot; - now this is definitely NOT relevant Marilyn. Maybe it's the reason why we see such an attitude by the neighbors and locals, and other green-eyed-monsters.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 6:34 p.m.

20 years ago there was far more than a card table and apples being sold and you know it if you indeed have lived here that long, I have too and it was larger than that. I agree it has grown, and I know he can be difficult to work with. I do not believe that in coincidence so I cannot accept that the timing on this from the Township is unrelated to the accidents (which don't appear to have fault on his part) and the folks who believe life should be without risk at all, many of whom have posted their thoughts on that matter here over the past many weeks. That really troubles me as it bodes very poorly for everyone when government uses such a heavy hand. I hope the Township is working as hard as it can to meet Burt more than half way and to overlook any personal issues they have. I may be old, but this one is enough to get me out protesting these actions. It's heavy handed.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:03 p.m.

There is a middle ground - IF ol' Burt is ready to try a little

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 2:03 p.m.

That market has not been operating there for &quot;35 &quot;years. We have lived down the road for 20 and it was tiny when we moved in. Then he started expanding it over and over. Perhaps before that his (very nice) daughter may have &quot;sold a few apples there&quot; at a card table. There is no reason why this man should not have to comply with the rules that other businesses have to comply with. He lives in the big white house on the hill which his family previously sweated and paid for. He is asking over half a million dollars for the property. Any takers?


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:57 p.m.

The twp has been working on this for a long time, it is not &quot;all of a sudden&quot;. Burton refuses to comply with basic rules. Mr Hoey has lost his &quot;means of making a living&quot; a couple of times over the years, because he cannot, or refuses to, follow the rules laid down for all of us.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:56 p.m.

@JustMyOpinion I could not have said it better! As you stated this has not been some clandestine business operating out of the &quot;back room&quot; ! They have been there for all to see for many years. It sounds like they need to clean up some of their food operations, but if you want sterile conditions go to Plum Market LOL ! If all the sanitary freeks could go into the back room at ANY of the &quot;upscale&quot; markets around I am sure they would be appalled . This is a combination of typical small town feuds and out of towners meddling.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:28 p.m.

should have been &quot;bullying&quot; at the end.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:03 p.m.

INsanitary conditions! Bwaa haa haaaa! I knew that place was crazy.

J Johnson

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:01 p.m.

How about if the government township folks work with the business owner to resolve the problems and come up with a win/win situation rather than just trying to shut it down? It is nice to have a business like this in the area (our kids liked to visit there when they were younger) and it seems like it would benefit the community financially and otherwise if things were improved in a mutually beneficial way.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:55 p.m.

They have been doing that for years. Burton refuses to comply with rules everybody else has to follow. How do you expect other people to compete with him when he does not invest in facilities everybody else must have?


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 11:55 a.m.

yeah, lets just put a McDonalds there instead. no more of this one of a kind country market for us, we don't trust it


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:37 p.m.

Because that's the only other option? How about just insisting he comply with the law?

Steve Pepple

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 11:39 a.m.

A couple of comments containing unverifiable allegations have been removed.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 11:35 a.m.

My family used to go there, until we witnessed them spraying Raid over the apples to get rid of a few bees that were in the vicinity. After that incident, we chose not to go there anymore. I was recently talking about this incident with a friend, and they said that they just witnessed the same thing.


Wed, Oct 26, 2011 : 9:17 p.m.

Wow. Is Raid safe for human consumption? Mmm hmmm. Nope. It's not. How much disregard do you have to have for the health and safety of others to do such a thing? The same amount of disregard you have to have to run a team of horses in full harness? Yep. That's how this guy's attitude/practices and the injury to his worker are related. Becaus his disregard for health and safety is at the root of both. They stem from the same place in him.

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:51 p.m.

We've been curious as to why someone comes to spray the pumpkin patch after dark every time. Why not spray those pumpkins in the daylight? What is it they are spraying on them?

Charlie Brown's Ghost

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:24 p.m.

It's just a farm stand. You don't understand. Maybe you should stay in the city. (sarcasm.... I'm with you aasalineparent)


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:01 p.m.

Maybe those were the bee's or wasps they were just cited for. Take your pick people, you cannot have it both ways. If the state wants ultra sanitary, then chemicals are demanded. In fact the citation hits them for not enough chemicals.

Charlie Brown's Ghost

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 11:27 a.m.

Mr. Hoey, have you set up a fund for the paralyzed worker yet? It seems like you want to be seen as some sort of community hero. That might be a good place to start.


Wed, Oct 26, 2011 : 9:11 p.m.

&quot;He already said he would cover her medical bill's, which he doesn't have to do.&quot; Doesn't Workman's Compensation do that and 'have to'? It was a workplace injury, no?


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 10:22 p.m.

Sue Talbert: I know that about Burton Hoey, but why does it matter? I have seen his good side too, but again, why does that matter? I think delving into personal assignations about his behavior is gossip and totally unrelated to the issues at hand. If people don't like him, don't go to the farm stand, but making a comment like the one above is unwarranted; he cannot respond to it and it simply does not matter.

Sue Talbert

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 9:09 p.m.

Unfortunately, JMO, Mr. Hoey has an unpleasant rep in the area and hasn't done himself any favours with people he's offended. I was definitely displeased with an interaction he &amp; I had when I bought eggs from him a few years ago - and began to understand the undercurrent I'd heard in the Dexter/Dexter Twp area. That experience notwithstanding, I don't wish him ill, but if he wants to be embraced, it's easier to (as they say) attract flies with honey rather than vinegar. Maybe a showing of goodwill towards the injured employee would be a step in that direction.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:52 p.m.

He is trying to sell the farm, not keep it going.

Charlie Brown's Ghost

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:09 p.m.

&quot;Webster Township should put their arms around me and welcome me.&quot;


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 11:59 a.m.

Why does he want to be some community hero? Can't he just be who he is? What's wrong with that? He already said he would cover her medical bill's, which he doesn't have to do. He is not a perfect person, but really, these personal attacks making him some kind of ogre are not fair or warranted. He is trying to keep one of the last remaining farms in Dexter going, whats your problem with that?


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 10:57 a.m.

Jenny's Farm Stand has had decades to clean up their act. We'd all love to have a great place for a home-town hayride and to buy our pumpkins by the roadside but this isn't it. The problems we hear about year in and year out just keep coming, and this latest accident is the icing on the cake. Clearly, for whatever reason, the owner isn't able to operate a safe place for employees, animals, visitors to the sight or customers who buy the products. Please, PLEASE, Webster Township, step up and do your job! Jenny's Farm Stand needs to close.

Ron Granger

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:43 p.m.

It isn't a farm, it's a road side business. I don't get to ignore the law in my business. Why should his business be any different? And what's with the inspector's concerns about threats and a shotgun? Do you think they made that up?


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 12:31 p.m.

Why should they be closed? The accidents have nothing to do with zoning or the citations, so are you are encouraging the township to use the zoning laws as a weapon to shutter their farm? That's outrageous. Are you planning to make up their income loss for them? Who the heck to you think you are to demand someones livelihood, and ultimately their land, be taken away from them?


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 11:34 a.m.

Could not agree more!


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 11:21 a.m.

I think these people complainig about the FARM life situations should just stay in the city.They are probably the same ones who complain about the smells associated with a farm.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 10:55 a.m.

It's a COUNTRY MARKET people .. yes its grown, and so has Dexter and Chelsea. 35 years ago you were lucky if you saw more than 3 or 4 cars driving between the two towns. Yes, it is indeed, a tragedy about the young girl and the hayride accident, an absolute tragedy. Unfortunately, acidents happen ... that's why they are called accidents. &quot;a 22-month-old child fell off a pony while his father walked beside it&quot;... now come on ... who's fault was that. The father should never have taken his hands off that small child in the first place. I've been, and taken my granddaughters to the market, several times. Thats what makes the &quot;country&quot; unique, apple orchards, road stands, and country markets.


Sun, Oct 23, 2011 : 5:36 p.m.

...But isn't it the fault of the business when the equipment being used isn't up to the strain of wild hay rides? If the people going there were farm savvy that is totally different, but the stand is marketed to a totally inexperienced portion of the demographic and thus should be made accessible to them, or have the proper warnings about what could happen around animals. The sad part is the unwillingness of the proprietor to try and eliminate the chance of something like this from happening again, which I gathered from the tone of his quotations in the above article, though yes it is only a decontextualized representation it still sounds a bit unpleasant. It would weigh very heavily on my conscience if a person became paralyzed due to the inadequacy of my businesses safety measures...


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 12:03 a.m.

expecting that a 22 month old can balance on a pony, even if the father is walking along and perhaps &quot;holding&quot; the toddler, seems very careless - of the parent. too young for pony rides Dad!

Marilyn Wilkie

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:45 p.m.

Accidents happen - FOR A REASON. Being a grandfather, you should know this by now. If you live around Dexter you should also know other things about why they happen here.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 11:18 a.m.

You are right vg550, that was my first thought when I read the father was with the child. Maybe he should be charged with neglect for letting the child fall.

Smart Logic

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 10:55 a.m.

Sale of food items processed under unsanitary conditions? Isn't it a, uh, farm? Sorry, but produce isn't generally grown in a sterile environment by people using Purell hand sanitizer every 15 minutes.


Sun, Oct 23, 2011 : 6:14 p.m.

But they have put Raid on the apples to scare bees away... now that is just going out of the way to create health issues.


Fri, Oct 21, 2011 : 12:19 a.m.

Their talking about the canned and bake items they sell. Would you care if someone handled feces, didn't wash their hands and made your sandwhich? I think you would!


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 11:22 p.m.

Baked goods are allowed under a Michigan law passed last year. Canned goods and preserves are not part of that law.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 1:16 p.m.

Pies and other baked goods are also sold there. Its not just produce that they sell.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 11:57 a.m.

True, but sanitary does matter, think listeria, cantaloupe and dead people. I don't think demanding basic hygiene is too far, closing them down, yes.

Elaine F. Owsley

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 10:54 a.m.

Over the years the Humane Society of Washtenaw County has found problems at Jenny's as well. Care and treatment of the various animals has been called into question.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 11:33 a.m.

Exactly why my family never patrons this place!


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 10:45 a.m.

What a shame. We've enjoyed stopping there on many occasions.

Chip Reed

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 10:41 a.m.

How long has the Hoey family lived in the area? Dexter was smaller than Delhi Mills when they got here. If Webster Township needs more problems to solve, perhaps they might try to figure out how to save what is left of the Ann Arbor Country Club.

Chancey's mom

Sat, Oct 22, 2011 : 11:41 a.m.

There is a difference between the success, at first glance, of Jenny's Market and the evolving, but slow progressing success of Ann Arbor Country Club. Both have found they need to change. And they must but within the safety regulations of our government! Jenny's has often taken the cheap way out to make an extra buck here (frozen pies as &quot;homemade!&quot;) and there while Ann Arbor Country Club is working to let go of elitist &quot;Country Club&quot; status and attract a new customer base with families. AACC does this without flaunting laws and policies in place to protect the public.


Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 10:40 a.m.

about time!!!!! now he can take all his litter in the form of temporary signs along Jackson rd median down also!!

Charlie Brown's Ghost

Thu, Oct 20, 2011 : 11:25 a.m.

It is funny watching a guy try to defend himself as a legit businessman when he has those illegal signs all over the county. Of course, I'll just be told, &quot;It's just a farm stand&quot; and &quot;you don't understand&quot; and &quot;maybe you should stay in the city.&quot;