Project 100, a non-profit organization whose sole purpose is to encourage the positive aspects of giving and community participation, announced that over the next 100 days, they will be randomly selecting 100 people who will each receive $100 dollars no strings attached.

“We believe that the act of giving changes everything,” says Jeremy Cybulski, a Project 100 spokesperson, “That’s why over the next 100 days, Project 100 will be visiting various Oakland and Wayne county communities and giving away crisp new $100 dollar bills.”

The organization assures there are no requirements and no strings attached. Jeremy states, “Recipients can do whatever they wish with the money. All we ask is that they think about what they can do to give back to their community — whether it’s volunteering for an event or helping out a neighbor in need. The specific act doesn’t matter because even the smallest act of kindness can create a spark for change.”

Project 100 is encouraging members of the community to visit their website,, where they can sign up to receive a visit from Jeremy’s team and potentially become the next $100 dollar recipient.

Jeremy added, “The website is a great source of information containing a whole section of ideas on how people can get out and volunteer in their communities. Plus if they sign up, They Could Be Next!”

Paul Billeci
The South End

With rental fees of $870 to $1395, does the convenience of apartment living look like a great deal for Wayne State students?

Illya Hudson, leasing consultant for Studio One Apartments, located at 4501 Woodward Ave., is still hopeful.

“Fortunately for Studio One, we are still at 96 percent capacity. It really has to do with the location of the apartments.

“Because we’re so close to Wayne, we have many med students and law students and are still getting applicants to apply for an apartment.”

Jason Peet, leasing manager for the Milton Apartments at 132 W. Willis, said he too hasn’t seen a downturn in rentals.

“I have seen no change in people or students applying for an apartment,” he said. “In fact, I feel more people are applying to rent instead of owning. It’s much easier to rent than it is to apply for a mortgage on a home.”

Living near campus provides students with not only independence, but also eliminates the long freeway drives for suburban students who live at home with family.

However, jobs with flexible schedules are at a premium in this area, and that has affected students, as well as their families.

Lauren Cusumano, 24, a student at Wayne, lived off-campus for some time but had to move back home.

“I had a job when I started renting, but now since I can’t have a steady work schedule because of school, I had to move back home,” she said. “It was easy when I lived near campus and had a five-minute drive, now I have a 45 minute drive from my parent’s home to Wayne.”

Writer, producer and recording artist Leon Russell will heat up the Riverfront Plaza stage on Friday, July 31 for the second concert in the 2009 Rockin’ on the Riverfront classic rock concert series, sponsored by Andiamo Detroit Riverfront and in partnership with Detroit’s Classic Rock Station 94.7 WCSX-FM.

Russell has been a major force in the music industry for more than four decades. He has recorded with or written songs for various artists, including The Byrds, Barbra Streisand, Frank Sinatra and Willie Nelson. Russell is best known for his hits “This Masquerade” (the first song in music history to occupy the number one spot in jazz, pop and R&B), “Hummingbird”, “A Song For You”, “Delta Lady” and the legendary version of “Jumpin’ Jack Flash” from the Concert for Bangladesh.

Rockin’ on the Riverfront will feature classic rock headliners and openers from 8 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. every Friday through September 4, making the Riverfront Plaza THE Friday night destination for food, fun and FREE concerts.

Admission to the concerts is free and no advance tickets are necessary. Viewing space will be on a first-come, first-serve basis and people are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs and blankets. In addition, boaters on the Detroit River are invited to anchor near the riverfront and enjoy the view of the stage from the water.

Food and refreshment concessions from Andiamo Detroit Riverfront will be available at several locations on the plaza. Outside food, beverages or coolers will not be permitted. Andiamo Detroit Riverfront will accept dinner reservations before and after the concert and invites guests to take advantage of its gorgeous outdoor patio overlooking the Detroit River.

Convenient parking is available for $5 per vehicle at the GM surface lot at the intersection of St. Antoine and Atwater, adjacent to the GM Renaissance Center.

For more information, call (313) 567-6700 or visit or

The Detroit Fashion Pages style team took a break from giving their everyday fashion and beauty advice and volunteered their time for the Gleaners Community Food Bank of Southeastern Michigan on Saturday, July 25 at the Kensington Church in Troy.

Depsite the morning rain, volunteers walked nearly 15 blocks and collected ove 6200 lbs of food!
The Panera Bread bakery-cafe located at 23719 Greenfield Rd. in the Clocktower Plaza in Southfield will salute 10 years of fresh bread on Wednesday, July 29. Beginning at 6 a.m. and continuing throughout the day, customers are invited to stop by the bakery-cafe for a complimentary small coffee. The first 100 customers will also receive a mini baguette to commemorate the milestone.

Customers can also enter to win a Via Panera catered lunch for 10 people by dropping their business card in a bowl. The general manager at the bakery-cafe will randomly draw the winner at the end of the day. Hours of operation for the Clocktower Plaza location are Monday – Saturday 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. and Sunday 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Go Green this Weekend At Comerica Park

Associated Press

The Detroit Tigers are showing their green side during this weekend's four-game home stand against the Chicago White Sox.

The team is hosting the free "Going, Going, GREEN!" gathering outside of Comerica Park's main gates from noon to 8 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. It will give people a chance to learn about what they can do to be more environmentally friendly and find out about green efforts by Michigan businesses.

The Tigers play a doubleheader Friday, followed by games Saturday and Sunday. The first 10,000 fans through the gates at Saturday's game will get a Tigers "Going, Going, GREEN!" reusable shopping bag.

President Barack Obama will honor the 2008 WNBA Champion Detroit Shock for their accomplishments both on and off the court at a ceremony on South Portico of the White House on Monday, July 27, 2009. The ceremony will include a gift presentation from the Shock to the president.

Prior to the ceremony, the WNBA and the Shock will join forces with United We Serve – a national effort launched by President Obama to engage more Americans in serving in their communities this summer – to host a special WNBA FIT Clinic at the Richard England Boys & Girls Club in Washington, D.C..

The entire team, along with WNBA Legend, Community Ambassador and fitness expert, Jennifer Azzi, will promote fitness, nutrition, and self-confidence to 80 boys and girls at the club through interactive stations and positive messaging. WNBA FIT is part of the league’s social responsibility initiative, WNBA Cares, which supports educational programming, promotes hands-on community service and inspires young people and women of all ages to learn about the importance of physical fitness and a healthy lifestyle.

Founder of Lesson On, Jeff Lesson, believes that its time to give back to the community that has supported him for many years.

Lesson, a golf talk show host, columnist and enthusiast has assembled some of the area’s finest golf courses in Southeastern Michigan to host a “Free Day at the Links,” in support of The First Tee of Detroit on Tuesday, August 11th from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Participating Lesson on’s “Free Day at the Links” courses, include:

Tanglewood, 53503 W Ten Mile Rd, South Lyon, MI 48178
Moose Ridge,11801 Doane Rd, South Lyon, MI 48178
The Majestic at Lake Walden, 9600 Crouse Rd, Howell, MI 48855
Lyon Oaks, 52251 Pontiac Trail, Wixom, MI 48393
Springfield Oaks, 12450 Andersonville Road, Davisburg, MI 48350
Lakes of Taylor, 25505 Northline Rd, Taylor, MI 48180
Taylor Meadows, 25360 Ecorse Rd, Taylor, MI 48180
Whispering Pines, 2500 Whispering Pines Dr., Pinckney, MI 48169
Highland Hills Golf Club, 2075 Oakland, Highland, MI 48356

Please visit, to view all of the participating courses. To register, please call the selected course and mention “Lesson On Golf’s Free Day at the Links” and secure your tee time. Walking the course is free and for a minimum $20 donation to First Tee, a cart will be included.

The First Tee of Detroit impacts the lives of young people of Michigan by providing learning facilities and educational programs that promote character development and life-enhancing values through the game of golf.
David Kiley
Business Week

Ford Motor Co.’s has topped a quality survey, beating rivals Toyota and Honda for the first time.

The survey is not from J.D. Power and Associates, which has the definitive survey on things-gone-wrong in new vehicles measured in the first few months of ownership [J.D. Power, like BusinessWeek, is owned by McGraw-Hill Co.]. But the results of the survey, by Bloomfield Hills, MI-based RDA Group, shows Ford with the fewest problems among any manufacturer, including Toyota Motor Corp.

“We’ve been tied with Toyota before, but it sure feels better to be on the top!” wrote Bennie Fowler, Ford’s global head of quality, in a memo to employees Friday, a copy of which was obtained by BusinessWeek. “We can all be pleased with the progress we have made in quality, even as we face external and internal challenges in a tumultuous climate. Our progress has come as the result of our union partnerships in the U.S., Canada and Mexico, along with the work of dedicated teams in manufacturing, product development, purchasing, marketing, sales, service, legal, IT and others who follow disciplined, standardized processes.”

In Power’s recently released Inititial Quality Study, Ford placed eighth, but in a statistical dead heat with Toyota. Ford scored 102 things-gone-wrong per 100 cars in the first three months of ownership, versus 101 for Toyota. Honda scored 99 TGW, and Hyundai scored the highest among non-luxe brands with 95.
Curtis Granderson has given plenty of his time to charitable causes over his four years with the Tigers. His next fundraising effort will include a night out.

Detroit's All-Star outfielder, who scored the winning run in last week's All-Star Game, will become a wine taster for the evening, welcoming teammates Edwin Jackson and Ryan Perry for a Passport to the Wines of the World this Thursday at Big Rock Chophouse/The Reserve in Birmingham.

The event will feature over 300 wines from five continents, including local wines from the Detroit area and the state of Michigan, as well as a silent auction of sports memorabilia, wine and entertainment package. The evening includes a bachelor auction, where the highest bid will win an elegant dinner for two with Granderson, Jackson or Perry.

Noted young comic Jeff Dye, third-place finisher in last year's edition of NBC's Last Comic Standing, will perform a standup set and serve as the auctioneer. The Seattle native won the 10th annual Giggles Laff Off in his hometown last year and has performed in the Just for Laughs Festival the last two years, including this year in Chicago. His comedy is clean but has been described as charmingly twisted.

"I am really excited to have Jeff come out and perform at this event," Granderson said last week. "I am positive that all in attendance will enjoy Jeff's comedic style and he will add a great energy to the evening. Plus, he is a big baseball fan, albeit for the Mariners."

The festivities begin with a VIP reception hosted by Granderson, beginning at 6:30 p.m. A 7 p.m. champagne toast precedes the main event at 7:30 p.m. The bachelor auction will start at 8:45 p.m.

Proceeds from the evening will benefit the Grand Kids Foundation, which helps students and schools in Michigan's inner cities by purchasing school supplies and books, establishing baseball programs, providing equipment and helping improve facilities.

Tickets for Passport to the Wines of the World run $85 for general admission and $135 for a VIP package, which includes admission to the VIP reception as well as special VIP wines and a souvenir wine glass. Members of the Detroit Wine Organization receive a $10 discount on both VIP and general admission tickets. Membership is free at

On July 14, President Obama visited Macomb Community College and announced the 12 billion dollar American Graduation Initiative, a historic investment in our community colleges that will help prepare Americans for the jobs of the 21st century. This plan will help an additional 5 million Americans graduate from community college in the next decade.
Gary Graff

A pair of home town stadium concerts over the weekend gave Kid Rock and a couple of his support acts an opportunity to showcase new material for the 40,000 fans who attended each show.

In Rock's case it was a reflective song called "In Times Like These" that he performed as the first encore on Saturday and Sunday at Comerica Park, the usual home of the Detroit Tigers.

Explaining that he usually doesn't play new work until it's been released, Rock told the crowd he felt this was "an important song" inspired by the economic times the country, and especially his home state of Michigan, were experiencing.

"It's the truth, and we hope it's more inspirational than anything," Rock said before performing an acoustic version of the song, whose lyrics contain sentiments such as "I heard them say they're shutting Detroit down/But I won't leave 'cause this is my home town" and "Even though it's bittersweet and brings us to our knees/It makes us who were are in times like these."

Rock was planning to follow-up 2007's triple-platinum "Rock N Roll Jesus" this fall but, as previously reported, has decided to take the project to producer Rick Rubin, which will likely mean a 2010 release. The two are currently reviewing what Rock has in hand, including collaborations with rapper Lil Wayne and T.I., and plan to start recording after Rock and his Twisted Brown Trucker band wrap up their summer tour with Lynyrd Skynyrd.

Rock also rolled out a variety of covers during the homestand, including the Rolling Stones' "Tumbling Dice," Dobie Gray's "Drift Away" (accompanied by video screen images of a selection of deceased music heroes), the Jackson 5's "ABC" in tribute to Michael Jackson, snippets of the Georgia Satellites' "Keep Your Hands to Yourself" and Sly & the Family Stone's "Everyday People" incorporated into other songs, and Bruce Springsteen's "Born in the U.S.A.," which closed each night's show. The concerts were filmed and recorded, but Rock told that he has not made any definite plans for any sort of official release.

Alice in Chains, which played on Saturday's bill in its only U.S. show of the summer, debuted "A Looking in View" from "Black Gives Way to Blue," the group's first album of new material in 14 years. Prior to the show all four band members joined Virgin/EMI executives at Detroit's Fox Theatre to preview the entire album for a gathering of music industry professionals.

On Friday night, meanwhile, Lynyrd Skynyrd offered a pair of songs from its upcoming "God & Guns," which, as previously reported, is also coming out Sept. 29. The group opened its set with "Skynyrd Nation," an uptempo ode to its fans, and also performed the album's first single, "Still Unbroken," a heavy rocker that singer Johnny Van Zant dedicated to deceased Skynyrd members Leon Wilkeson, Hughie Thomasson, Billy Powell and Ean Evans and accompanied with historical photos of the group and its album covers on the video screen.

Ford: Designing Cars with Young People in Mind

Phil Patton
The New York Times

ANTONELLA is an attractive 28-year old woman who lives in Rome. Her life is focused on friends and fun, clubbing and parties.

She is also completely imaginary.

But her influence is definitely real. It is evident in the design of the Ford Fiesta, on sale in Europe now and arriving in the United States next summer as a 2011 model.

Antonella was the guiding personality for the Ford Verve, a design study that served as the basis for the latest-generation Fiesta. A character invented by Ford designers to help them imagine cars better tailored to their intended customers, she embodies a philosophy that guides the company’s design studios these days: to design the car, first design the driver.

Antonella is the personification of a profile created from demographic research about the Fiesta’s target customer, said Moray Callum, executive director of Ford Americas design.

Ford is using characters like Antonella to bring a human element to the dry statistical research drawn from polls and interviews. Based on psychological profiles, these characters are a more modern version of the “theme boards” that designers once covered with snapshots and swatches of material to inspire a design. They are also like avatars, those invented characters used in online games and forums to symbolize a participant’s personality.

“Invented characters get everyone on the same page,” Mr. Callum said. “Personalizing gives context to the information we have. Sometimes the target demographics are difficult to relate to by, say, a 35-year-old male designer.

“We found in the past that if they didn’t understand the buyer, designers would just go off and design something for themselves,” he added.

Murat Yalman, Ford’s director of global advanced product strategy, is a strong supporter of an approach that personalizes the ideal buyer for everyone involved in a vehicle’s development.

“You get a common focus for everyone from the clay modeler to the chief executive,” he said.

The method brings statistics to life. “It creates very memorable ideas that live on after the meeting or presentation,” Mr. Yalman said.

So Antonella is joined by Natasha, Ashley, Kristen and other characters from Ford’s imagination, each depicted in a Dewar’s profile type of write-up, and with images grabbed from the Internet. Antonella has her male counterpart in Anton. Jack is the presiding personality for the 2010 Taurus. Joe and Cal are the ideal characters for future trucks.

Antonella cares more about the design and function of her telephone than that of her car. Her priorities in the Fiesta are visible in the car’s central panel, where controls inspired by those of a cellphone operate the audio and air-conditioning systems. Designers working on the Fiesta referred to the shape framing the dashboard instruments as “Antonella’s glasses.”

Ford’s goal in using made-up characters is that they will help produce cars that transcend national traits and are instead built around international, psychological archetypes. Antonella is an extreme version of a type the Ford designers call the fun-seeker.

“There are fun-seekers in London and Cleveland,” Mr. Callum said.

But the image of the fun-seeker appears sharply etched and more extreme when set in Rome. “In Rome there are lots of small cars,” Mr. Yalman said. “They are always dodging each other. So a car there has to be nimble and it has to look the part. Romans have been conscious of how their vehicles look — all the way back to Caesar. Every little crease of their toga has to be just right.”

Mr. Yalman first found the composite characters useful when he began directing marketing efforts for Ford in Europe. Confronted with many boundaries of nation and language, he said, he looked instead at common values and attitudes, a process he referred to as mindset segmentation. “We did a value and attitude map,” he said.

Mr. Yalman found that archetypes like Antonella, the type he called hedonistic, existed in all countries.

The approach ties in to Ford’s efforts to create the Fiesta and other models as global products, with equal appeal in the Americas, Europe and Asia.

Mr. Callum said the technique could be used to help imagine concept vehicles as well as production models.

Ford’s Lincoln division showed the Lincoln C design study, an idea for a smaller future luxury vehicle, at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit last January. It was built around Natasha, a tech-savvy “social achiever” driver.

The designers imagined her life in detail in a video, “A Day in the Life of Natasha.” Several human models were screen-tested before one, who looks vaguely like Audrey Hepburn, was chosen to appear in the video. The video was also convenient for explaining the car to the press and public. It shows Natasha using a new generation of computer interface for the car’s information systems.

The Ford Transit Connect Family One Concept, shown at this year’s New York auto show, was created around Ashley, a very different character from Natasha. Ashley is billed as “a cool mom” who, like the vehicle, represents an update of traditional family priorities. In her profile, according to Ford’s internal research documents, Ashley’s “friends are part of her family.” She dresses up like her children at Halloween. She shops at T. J. Maxx, H&M and Target.

The concept van offers a vision of a post-minivan, post-S.U.V. family hauler with constant Web access. It includes an electronic tagging system for children’s backpacks, skateboards — and perhaps even dog collars — using the radio-frequency identification system Ford offers in some of its trucks; the tags help contractors assure that tools are collected when the work day is over.

Jack, the inspirational character behind the 2010 Taurus, is “the life of the party,” according to Earl Lucas, head of exterior design for the car. “He cares what his car says about him. He wants to be seen in an American car and he is involved in the community.”

Joe and Cal, the fantasy owners of the pickup truck of the future, are what Mr. Yalman called “the heroes of their neighborhood.”

Using psychological archetypes and patterns is more important when designing for younger people, Mr. Callum said. Some younger buyers invest less emotion in their vehicles than their elders did. “This can be hard for us to understand.”

Ford’s involvement with the technique can be traced to 2002, said Mr. Yalman, when Daniel Kahneman, a cognitive psychologist and behavioral economist who taught at Princeton and other universities, shared the Nobel in economic science.

Mr. Yalman had been following Dr. Kahneman’s work for some time, and the prize marked the ascendance of a wider new emphasis in economics on the psychological side of decision making. Dr. Kahneman is a proponent of “hedonic” choice, which explores ideas of pleasure and preference in buying choices and questions older, rational models of buyer behavior based simply on price or other hard factors.

“What this thinking suggested to us is that emotion played a much larger role than we thought,” Mr. Yalman said.

The new economic theories supported Mr. Yalman’s ideas. The choice to buy is not just about more horsepower per dollar or segment-leading rear legroom; design is critical, Mr. Yalman said.

“Before, all our cars in Europe were taken as Germanic,” he said. “So we dialed up the style.” Ford in Europe rolled out a more emotional exterior design language, called the kinetic look.

“We had done lots of models based on rationality, but now we are recognizing that emotions play a much more dominant role than we ever admitted,” Mr. Yalman said. “In buying a car, you have to fall in love.”

He added: “We now focus quite a bit on aspirations and dreams.”

These can be embodied in products. “Think of someone who has a really high-end parka in which you could climb Mount Everest. But the person only wears it on the train to work.”

So far, sales of the Fiesta have been strong. It is Ford’s best-selling car in Europe, and it was the No. 2 seller over all in that market for the first half of 2009.

The Barton McFarlane Neighborhood Association has decided to take matters of their beloved City of Detroit into their own hands.

Most major cities have hosted Taste Festivals to highlight the cuisine of local restauranteurs and to promote their city. The Barton-McFarlane Neighborhood Association has organized its own Taste Festival, known as " Taste of Soul", to spotlight the work they are doing to make improvements within their own community.

The association which boasts its own citizen radio patrol unit, afterschool tutoring programs,
and a Focus HOPE food distribution service, is putting on the "Taste of Soul" festival to raise funds for a building they wish to purchase to house the associations many programs.

The "Taste of Soul" festival will be held Saturday, July18,2009 at 8222 Joy Road on the corner of Roselawn St., from 10 a.m. until 7 p.m., rain or shine. Participants can purchase food tickets for the delicacies being served by local caterers. Such mouth-watering cuisine as ribs; turkey wings; fish; chicken wings; hot dogs; Italian sausage; red beans and rice; collard greens; jalepeno cornbread; sweet potato pie; pound cake; peach cobbler; sweet tea; soda pop, and water will be available to festival participants.

"For $5.00 you receive 9 tickets, and you get to pick and choose what items you want to eat. All of the food is made from scratch, and is going to be delicious!", states festival organizer Fredia Butler.

The revenue generated to put on the festival was done soley with private donations. "We are not looking to the City of Detroit for money or a hand-out. The City just doesn't have it--the ordinary citizens have the power to make the City of Detroit a better place, this is our message." remarked Butler.

Since the mid-1960's, the Barton-McFarlane Neighborhood Association began organizing via potluck dinners in the homes of its residents. They would meet to express their concerns about the beautification and up-keep of their homes and surrounding common areas; crime prevention and the leisure activities of its residents.

The "Taste of Soul" festival is one of their more ambitious programs in recent years, but certainly not the last. "We intend to set the bar high for other neighborhoods here in Detroit. When a collective group of concerned citizens make up their minds to make change happen--there's no stopping us!", says Butler.

To learn more about the "Taste of Soul" festival, for interviews, vendor and volunteer
opportunities, call Fredia Butler, (313) 934-7048

"Taste Of Soul" Festival
Saturday, July 18, 2009
10am until 7pm
Rain or Shine

The Motor City Becomes Fashion City October 1-2

This October 1 & 2, 2009, the Motor City will transform into Fashion City, as Fashion In Detroit - a two-day fashion show extravaganza to rival other Fashion Weeks around the U.S. - makes its debut in a tented, high-end setting at the Detroit Zoo, in Royal Oak, Michigan.

Created by Project Runway's Joe Faris, of Birmingham, the Fashion In Detroit executive committee is made up of Detroit's heaviest hitters in fashion, beauty and event management: Leslie Ann Pilling, nationally renowned designer and president of Presence II Productions and Leslie Ann Pilling Design, Rino, owner of FIGO salon, Karen Buscemi, editor of StyleLine magazine, Lians, international fashion photographer and co-owner of LM Studios, and K'Kio Hardin, international designer/art director.

"My purpose for spearheading this event is to put a fashion spotlight on Detroit and create a venue that fills the needs of many locally based designers and the Detroit fashion community," says Faris, who will show two of his lines at the event.

The two-day event will include 12 fashion shows by premier designers, a VIP private reception, an Afterglow bash with top-name rock concert and "Made In Michigan" product displays. Each day's admission ticket includes six fashion shows, gift bags, a souvenir guidebook/lookbook and other fun surprises.

Situated between the dates of New York Fashion Week and LA Fashion Week, Fashion In Detroit will feature top models showcasing the best designs of Spring 2010 on a 60-foot runway in a spacious tent with VIP seating, risers and standing room for 500 guests. StyleLine's Karen Buscemi will host the event, with music by some of the hottest artists from Detroit.

In addition to creating a sensational fashion event, the FID executive committee wants to help make a difference for Michigan. A portion of the proceeds from ticket sales will go to a local charity, plus a grant will be presented to one local fashion designer. Recognition will also be given to one person who has made a difference in the Detroit fashion community, with a donation in his or her name presented to the Detroit Zoo.

For more information:

The 2009 Rockin’ on the Riverfront summer concert series, sponsored by Andiamo Detroit Riverfront and in partnership with Detroit’s Classic Rock Station 94.7 WCSX-FM, is ready to rock the ‘D’ by setting the Riverfront Plaza’s scenic stage with some of classic rock’s most unforgettable bands.

The concert series kicks off July 24 and will make the spectacular Riverfront Plaza THE Friday night destination for food, fun and FREE concerts.

Rockin’ on the Riverfront will feature seven sizzling Friday night shows from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m., July 24 through September 4.

Rick Derringer will headline the series on July 24. A seasoned musician and entertainer, Derringer has recorded four blues CDs, numerous jazz hits and has produced and written albums for the World Wrestling Entertainment. He is best known for his big hits, "Hang on Sloopy" (performed with his former band, The McCoys) and "Rock and Roll Hoochie Koo."

Rockin’ on the Riverfront performers include:

July 31 – Leon Russell

August 7 – TBD

August 14 – Classic Rock All Stars

August 21 – Foghat

August 28 – Edgar Winter

September 4 – Randy Bachman

Local bands and performers will open each of the seven shows.

“Summer in Detroit wouldn’t be the same without the Rockin’ on the Riverfront concert series,” said Andiamo President and CEO Joe Vicari. “The beautiful riverfront creates an ideal backdrop to enjoy these free classic rock concerts. We invite everyone out to join us on the riverfront for a memorable experience."

Admission to the concerts is free and no advance tickets are necessary. Viewing space will be on a first-come, first-serve basis and people are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs and blankets.

In addition, boaters on the Detroit River are invited to anchor near the riverfront and enjoy the view of the stage from the water.

Andiamo Detroit Riverfront will provide refreshment and food concessions at several locations on the plaza. Outside food, beverages or coolers will not be permitted. Andiamo Detroit Riverfront will accept dinner reservations before and after the concert and invites guests to take advantage of its gorgeous outdoor patio overlooking the Detroit River.

Convenient parking is available for $5 per vehicle at the GM surface lot at the intersection of St. Antoine and Atwater, adjacent to the GM Renaissance Center.

Valet parking is also available at the GM Ren Cen North Lobby on Jefferson Avenue.

Music, Art and Summer Fun...OH MY! Families, mark your calendars for Second Saturdays on the Riverfront!

The Detroit RiverFront Conservancy has partnered with the Detroit Institute of Arts and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra for this one-of-a-kind summer extravaganza set against the beautiful waterside scenery of Rivard Plaza.

Second Saturdays features...Live music. Art making. Marshall Music's Instrument Petting Zoo. Airbrush and Clown Balloon Artists. Ride the Cullen Family Carousel.

Three great event dates - FREE TO THE PUBLIC!

July 11, 2009 - Southpaw Isle Steelband

August 8, 2009 - Baikuye Percussion Group

September 12, 2009 - The Gratitute Steel Band (no Marshall Music Instrument Petting Zoo)
11 a.m. - 1 p.m.

Parking is available: Surface lot at Atwater St. east of Rivard St. or the River East Parking Structure (entrance on Rivard St. north of Atwater St.)

Saturday, July 11, 2009
Time: 11:00AM - 1:00PM
Rivard Plaza
1340 E. Atwater Street
Detroit, MI

Phone: 313-566-8206

If it’s July 11 or 7/11, then Slurpee drinks must be on the house at 7-Eleven stores. That’s because this Saturday is 7-Eleven's Birtday!

7-Eleven is planning to give away close to 5 million free 7.11-ounce Slurpee drinks to celebrate its 82nd birthday at more than 6,000 stores in the U.S. and Canada.

Click HERE for your local 7-Eleven location!

Students participating in a Michigan State University program in Detroit will learn there is more to Detroit than just making cars.
In a newly developed course in MSU's Freshman Seminar program titled “Art, Creativity and Economic Development,” students will find that Detroiters also make paintings, sculptures and music.

In its first year, the program will offer 14 students a chance to experience the rich artistic, musical and literary history of Detroit.

“Detroit has always been a world-class center for creativity and innovation,” said David Sheridan, a professor in MSU’s Residential College in the Arts and Humanities and the person who developed the Detroit seminar.

Specifically, the program will focus on the arts’ contributions to Detroit’s future.

“Art, music, literature and other forms of creative expression have a rich tradition of fueling Detroit’s economic success,” Sheridan said.

This seminar will explore the relationship between creativity and economic development in Detroit through a multiday, immersive experience in the city.

In addition to the Detroit Institute of Arts and the Motown Museum, students will be spending time talking with artists and other creative professionals working in the Russell Industrial Center.

A plant designed by architect Albert Kahn in the early 20th century, the RIC is one example of how the industrial infrastructure of Detroit can be re-purposed to support creativity. With more than 2.2 million square feet, the RIC now includes studio space for 125 tenants from a wide range of creative professions, including painters, glass blowers, photographers, printmakers and videographers.

Students will stay in a residence hall at Detroit’s Wayne State University in the heart of the city's cultural center.

For additional information on this program, visit

U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack will be traveling to Charlotte in Eaton County next week as part of an Obama administration tour of rural areas to showcase what’s been done with federal stimulus dollars from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to benefit local communities through agricultural development.

U.S. Rep. Mark Schauer, who represents Eaton County and much of south central Michigan, and U.S. Sen. Debbie Stabenow will host Vilsack, a former Iowa governor, at the Monday afternoon event at Country Mill Farm, which will include a forum for local residents to discuss federal agricultural policy.

President Obama will be in Warren at Macomb County Community College on Tuesday for a town hall meeting.
Aileen Wingblad

If an activity-packed outdoor party — full of fun for all ages — sounds like a terrific way to spend the day, Proud Lake State Recreation area is the place to be on July 18.

In celebration of Michigan's state parks and recreation areas' 90th anniversary, Proud Lake invites the community to visit the park's RiverHawk Complex beginning at noon and enjoy live music, exhibits, guided nature walks, canoeing, a walk-climbing wall, inflatables, food and more.

And it's all free.

“We're calling it a hootenanny — the same kind of thing which some people might remember was held out in Highland for many years,” said Bobbi Audette, accountant for the Proud Lake park. “Then we added a bunch of other things — other activities, food, local vendors, artists.”

Judy Aldridge, office manager for Proud Lake, said the event is a great opportunity to see what the park has to offer — and to have an overall great time. “We want people to make memories in the park,” Aldridge said. “More people are discovering this place every day.”

Audette added that Proud Lake has the added benefit of the Huron River, which flows through the recreation area.

“It's a trout-supplied stream that stretches for so many miles, and it's great for canoeing,” she said.

Canoes will be available for rent during the event, or people can supply their own. Audette reminds people to bring along lawn chairs to sit on while they listen to the variety of bands that will be performing on a stage outside the RiverHawk Complex, from 1 to 11 p.m..

Headlining the musical entertainment is Swampside, featuring classic rock music. The group is expected to be on stage around 9 p.m.

“Earlier in the day, there will be softer, acoustic music. Toward the end, it will be harder rock,” Audette said.

Another of the bands set to perform is the alternative rock group, Bars of Gold, which Audette said played gigs at Michigan State University for several years.

Kozmos Koney Island of Milford will provide an assortment of food, available for purchase. People can also bring their own coolers.

The Proud Lake staff will be selling commemorative stuffed bears, coffee mugs, travel mugs and water bottles marking the 90th anniversary.

“This will be an event for the whole family,” Audette said. “You can sit down with your kids and watch the concerts — teenagers will love the music — do the rock climbing wall, just have a great time. Be the Michigan family you are,” Audette said.

The Proud Lake State Recreation Area is at 3500 Wixom Road in Commerce. Follow the main entrance driveway to the RiverHawk Complex. A state park motor vehicle permit, $6 for the day or $24 for the year, is required for entry.

Bill Shea
Crain's Detroit

The $22.5 million Rosa Parks Transit Center at the corner of Cass and Michigan avenues in Detroit opens to the public Tuesday.

The three-story, 25,700-square-foot facility owned by the city will serve as a 24-hour central connection for Detroit Department of Transportation, SMART and Transit Windsor bus routes and the Detroit People Mover.

On site are a waiting area, restrooms, retail space, transit police offices, transit services and a Detroit Police Department mini station. There is also a taxi stand.

The project, begun two years ago, was funded by state and federal grants.

It was designed by Detroit-based Parsons Brinckeroff and the general contractor was DeMaria Building Co.

The Detroit Economic Development Corp. in 2007 approved a $5.5 million contract with USAShade & Fabric Structures Inc. of Costa Mesa, Calif., for the massive seven-peaked canopy structure atop the facility.

The project was built for DDOT by Detroit Economic Growth Corp., which staffs the DEDC.

The 20 DDOT routes served by the center are: Cadillac-Harper, Chene, Dexter, Fort, Hamilton, Hayes, Grand River, Grand River, Jefferson, Joy Road, Linwood, Mack, Michigan, Oakland, Plymouth, Russell, Tireman, Van Dyke, Vernor and Woodward.

Josh Olson
Jackson Citizen Patriot

On a sunny Wednesday morning, football players huddled around Luther Elliss and Lomas Brown in the middle of Dungy Field, eager to hear advice from the former Detroit Lions players.

The younger players listened carefully and then darted off to their next station, the weight room.

That scene played out on the first day of the first Lomas Brown Player Enhancement camp Wednesday at Jackson High School.

The three-day, all-position camp attracted 110 local players, who began the day by rotating through stations, each one focused on a different skill set. The camp is intended to reach beyond football and help educate players on and off the field, Jackson High School athletic director Russell Davis said.

"This is more than just football," Davis said. "It's an enhancement of all the good things you're supposed to have, including character and proper nutrition."

Each day, campers gather for a "chalk talk," during which a former professional athlete gives advice to the players. Wednesday's talk was delivered by Harlan Huckleby, a former tailback at the University of Michigan who went on to play for the Green Bay Packers.

Camp attendees also will be exposed to better eating habits and NCAA clearinghouse rules, which will show players what ACT scores and grade-point averages are required to attend college.

The idea for the camp was hatched when Jackson High School football coach Jack Fairly ran into Brown at a Detroit Lions practice last fall. Fairly inquired about a possible camp, and it resulted in a perfect fit.

"This is my passion, and everything worked out great with Jackson High and the coaches," Brown said.

"It was almost like a match made in heaven."

Brown, an 18-year veteran of the NFL, played 10 seasons at offensive tackle for the Lions and won a Super Bowl in 2002 with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers before retiring. Brown was named to the NFC Pro Bowl seven times in his career.

The camp continues today and concludes Friday. Campers, who paid $75, range from seventh to 12th grade and come from schools throughout the Jackson area.

"I'm real happy with the turnout," Brown said. "I think we have a great group of guys and coaches."

Players said they appreciated the presence of the former Lions and took notice of their commitment and positive attitude.

"It's great to see these guys set a good example," Gus Pack, a sophomore at Lumen Christi, said. "This is one of the better camps I've been to."

This is the first of four camps that Brown will put on. The other three will take place in Fraser, Auburn Hills and Detroit. Other former Lions players are scheduled to appear at the camp later in the week, including former wide receiver Herman Moore and former kicker Eddie Murray.

"If we can make a difference in a couple of these guys' lives, it's well worth it," Brown said.
Mark Newman

"Bran-Torino" is now a joy ride.

Tigers third baseman Brandon Inge and Phillies center fielder Shane Victorino are your choices in the dramatic 2009 All-Star Game Sprint Final Vote, comeback survivors of the closest overall balloting in the history of a four-day event that decided the 33rd and final roster spots for the 80th All-Star Game on July 14 at Busch Stadium.

Fans smashed Final Vote records and ultimately they decided on the two first-time All-Stars whose respective clubs forged a voting alliance after seeing Inge and Victorino in second place on the second day. The Tigers and Phillies called it "Bran-Torino" and those two words would become campaign fixtures.

Inge is an American League All-Star for the first time after holding off Rangers second baseman Ian Kinsler in a battle that was seesaw for the first 48 hours and then close for the final 48. They were followed in order by Angels third baseman Chone Figgins, Rays first baseman Carlos Pena and Blue Jays designated hitter Adam Lind, all of whom drew impressive fan support but not enough.

Victorino now can add a Midsummer Classic to an eight-month party that also includes a World Series championship. He managed to overcome and then outlast a powerhouse campaign for Giants third baseman Pablo Sandoval, the "Kung Fu Panda" from Venezuela who all baseball fans now know if they didn't already. D-backs third baseman Mark Reynolds, who had that home state endorsement from 2008 Republican presidential candidate John McCain, finished a strong third. They were followed by Dodgers center fielder Matt Kemp and Nationals shortstop Cristian Guzman.

It was the first time in Final Vote history that two players won after trailing in each of the first two voting updates. The alliance unquestionably mattered, as fans in Detroit voted heavily for Victorino and fans in Philadelphia did the same for Inge.

This was the year of numerous lead changes and unprecedented suspense, and also the year that Twitter entered the equation as a natural companion. Campaigning reached new levels with that real-time element, as people from McCain to Sandoval's teammate Barry Zito to clubs and local TV stations got involved with tweets. People posted twitpics of images such as Victorino's teammate Chan Ho Park wearing a Vote Victorino sandwich board and Uncle Sam saying "Vote for Pablo" and links to videos and blogs.

This was the year that Kinsler always seemed to be a shoe-in and then was left on the outside looking in. Kinsler was a fixture atop the weekly voting updates at AL second base, but he was overtaken at the end by Boston's Dustin Pedroia and then left off the roster by AL manager Joe Maddon of the Rays. Kinsler was the announced leader in each of the first two Final Vote updates, but he was passed by Inge on Day 3 and finished runnerup.

Mainly, it was the year of Bran-Torino.

It's a sweet ride.

The two clubs encouraged businesses in Michigan and Pennsylvania to allow their workers some time Wednesday and Thursday to vote for Inge and Victorino.

Victorino had mentioned a potential pairing to reporters Tuesday.

"The Giants and Texas did it," Victorino said. "We [were] both in second place. Why don't we join forces and join together?"

Inge said he has talked with Victorino a couple times during his career, but never really got to know him.

"I've spoken to him a couple of times," Inge said. "That's funny, though. What did they call it, Bran-Torino? That's funny."

Inge and Victorino have another thing in common: They are both key cogs for teams that have been in first place for quite a while now.

Inge entered Thursday batting .264 with 19 homers and 54 RBIs, and he is known mostly for his brilliant defense at the hot corner. He hit a big homer on Sunday, right after being announced as one of five nominees in the AL.

"The best part about it is, if it ends well and he makes it, no matter how it got there, he deserves it," Tigers manager Jim Leyland said before the Final Vote ended. "That's the main thing. It's like an umpire getting it right."

Victorino, the Flyin' Hawaiian, also had the backing of governors in his homeland of Hawaii and his home playing state of Pennsylvania. They had bet a friendly wager over which state could cast the most votes for him. So many people campaigned for Victorino, it almost seemed like a heavy political campaign. In the end, though, his own campaigning on the field may have mattered the most. He had four hits in the 22-1 wipeout of Cincinnati on Monday and then may have sealed the deal with a walk-off single Wednesday night.

Victorino is hitting .306 with 22 doubles, six triples, six home runs, 39 RBIs and 13 stolen bases.

Previous winners of the All-Star Game Sprint Final Vote are: Evan Longoria (AL, 2008); Corey Hart (NL, 2008); Hideki Okajima (AL, 2007); Chris Young (NL, 2007); A.J. Pierzynski (AL, 2006); Nomar Garciaparra (NL, 2006); Scott Podsednik (AL, 2005); Roy Oswalt (NL, 2005); Hideki Matsui (AL, 2004); Bobby Abreu (NL, 2004); Jason Varitek (AL, 2003); Geoff Jenkins (NL, 2003); Johnny Damon (AL, 2002); and Andruw Jones (NL, 2002).

The 80th Major League Baseball All-Star Game will be televised nationally by FOX Sports, in Canada by Rogers Sportsnet and Sportsnet HD and televised around the world by Major League Baseball International, with pregame ceremonies beginning at 8 p.m. ET.
By Lester Holmes

Beginning Friday with the First Annual Fashion Show/Party Showcase featuring several Detroit clothing designers, Three Days B4 Fame is a weekend long event throughout metro Detroit featuring some of the most talented emcees, DJs, producers, clothing designers and promoters -- under 30 -- to not gain notoriety just for their talents, but also for bringing pride back to Detroit.

“These kids are really talented and they are right here in Detroit," says 20-year-old Detroit emcee Young Scolla, who is editor of the Scolla’s Word Blog and one of the organizers of the three-day event.

In addition to the fashion show at the Crofoot in Pontiac featuring performances from J-Fin and Yung Good, other events include the 3 Days B4 Fame Pool Party hosted by R&B artists and reality TV star Ray J at the Chandler Park Aquatic Center and a secret VIP party/reception on Sunday.

Scolla, whose real name is Fred Fungue, says he wanted to put together an event to showcase the next generation of Detroit talent as well as “bring something positive” to the city.

He says many 20 to 30 year olds become frustrated because they feel as if Detroit “does not provide that platform for them to go where they want to go” causing some give up their artistic ambitions or take their talents to L.A., Chicago or Atlanta.

“At the end of the day, the main thing is to shine light on kids who thought they would never get attention,” says the Howard University student.

Tyna Logan, a 23-year-old fashion designer who will have some of her clothing featured in Friday’s fashion showcase, says the event will connect young people who have the same goals and spur collaboration and networking. She considers the event a three-day conference for artists.

“It will inspire people -- those who want to pursue fashion or music -- to keep going,” says the creator of the Fanciee Clothing Line, who believes she can make it in fashion in Detroit.
“I’m staying right here. I’m not leaving.”

For more information on 3 Days B4 Fame, or access to Sunday’s Secret Party visit

By Anthony Breznican

Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned. Put that woman on roller skates, and you've got hell on wheels.

You've also got the new roller-derby comedy Whip It, starring Ellen Page as a rebellious teenager who signs up to play the brutal and sexy female sport against her mother's will, finding friendship and freedom among the bruises and falls.

The movie, which opens Oct. 9, was directed by Drew Barrymore, who has been producing films for years (Donnie Darko, the Charlie's Angels movies) but finally decided to get directly behind the camera.

Working with Steven Spielberg on E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial and others on her many films as an adult, Barrymore learned that directing calls upon a lifetime of experiences.

"Everything I've learned throughout my whole life has been going into this piggy bank, and I just smashed it all over the floor for this one," she says.

The story of a young girl pushed in many different directions, and pushing back to find herself, is partly her own story as a child star who struggled in the transition to adulthood.

"I felt pressures that everybody feels, whether it's inter-office, in high school or a small town," Barrymore says. "Everyone relates to expectations others have or what the world thinks. Who am I going to become? What am I going to be in this world?"

Mirror Dog Productions will hold a casting and crew call and celebrity charity fundraiser in Utica on July 12.

The event, called "Dreamin' Big," will include a silent auction to benefit the United Way of Southeastern Michigan.

Producers will also be looking for cast and crew members for the new film "Fair Chase," which will be shot in Michigan.

People interested in the casting call should bring a resume and head shot.

The event runs from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. near Hall Road and Van Dyke Avenue.

For more information, click HERE.
Associated Press

Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit is the first hospital in Michigan to participate in a successful domino donor kidney transplant in which 10 doctors at four hospitals in four states transplanted eight kidneys.

Dan Bruce, 57, of Bad Axe, Mich., received one of the kidneys. In turn, his wife, Sally, donated a kidney to a stranger.

Dan Bruce had been receiving dialysis treatments three times a week for the past 15 months due to kidney failure.

"One thing about dialysis, it takes a lot out of you," said Bruce.

Sally Bruce had originally planned to donate a kidney to her husband. They were just two weeks from surgery when a test found Dan Bruce had built up immunity to his wife's kidney enzymes. That meant Sally could no longer be his donor.

"My heart just sank," said Sally Bruce. "It was very disappointing, and it was more so because I knew he was going to be devastated."

The Bruces asked if there were any other options. That's when a Henry Ford kidney transplant coordinator suggested a paired kidney donation.

Multiple-kidney transplants occur when several people who need transplants have friends or relatives who are willing to donate kidneys but aren't compatible. A chain of surgeries is arranged in which each donor is matched with a transplant candidate who they don't know but is compatible with the kidney being given up. The chain of transplants typically also involve a so-called altruistic donor, who's willing to give a kidney to anyone and is located through a database.

In addition to shortening the wait time for patients on the transplant list, experts said kidneys given by living donors are estimated to have double the longevity of kidneys taken from cadavers.

In this chain, doctors performed 16 surgeries on the eight donors and eight recipients at Johns Hopkins Hospital, Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, INTEGRIS Baptist Memorial Center in Oklahoma City and Henry Ford Hospital.

On June 15, Dan Bruce received a kidney from a donor at Johns Hopkins. Six days later, Sally Bruce donated a kidney to a stranger at Johns Hopkins.

"I hope that more people will get involved in organ donation, it really is a positive thing, and I can't express in words what it has meant to our family," said Sally Bruce.

Dan and Sally Bruce are both recovering well from their surgeries. They don't know who donated Dan's kidney or who received Sally's, but both said they would like to meet those people someday.

"I'd really like to meet her, to thank her in person, if that's possible," said Dan Bruce. "The first chance I get, I'd like to give her a big hug and a kiss."

For more information on the paired kidney donation program at Henry Ford Hospital, click HERE.

For more on the paired kidney donation program at Johns Hopkins Hospital, click HERE.

To learn more about joining the Michigan Organ Donor Registry, click HERE.

Jeremy Selweski
C & G Staff Writer

Four years into a project to help the city operate in a more energy-efficient manner, officials are happy to be making Ferndale a greener place — and saving a big chunk of change in the process.

On June 22, the Ferndale City Council heard a presentation from Siemens Building Technologies, in which company representatives noted that in the past four years, the project has saved the city more than $347,000 in energy costs, including about $102,000 in 2008.

During that period, Ferndale’s municipal facilities have reduced greenhouse gas emissions by 31 percent. According to Public Works Director Byron Photiades, the city has also reduced fossil fuel consumption by an amount equal to removing 343 cars for one year.

“In the past, we were spending so much money repairing our old (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) systems — that’s where the majority of our energy costs were going,” he explained. “We needed to find another way to do it where we could be more efficient and reduce our carbon footprint. So far, it’s been a win-win for us.”

In 2004, the city contracted Siemens to replace obsolete and inefficient HVAC equipment and lighting systems in all municipal buildings, to retrofit 25 traffic signals with LED lamps and to install pedestrian countdown timers at prominent road intersections.

The $984,000 cost, Photiades said, is being paid over a 15-year period through guaranteed energy and operational savings by Siemens. At the pace that has been established during the first four years, however, the city’s savings are poised to easily surpass that principal expense should the equipment reach its minimum estimated shelf life of 15 years.

Photiades pointed out that with this project, Ferndale is also one of five cities in Michigan to be recognized by the Michigan Department of Energy, Labor and Economic Growth for its energy efficiency.

According to City Councilman Scott Galloway, “This is a perfect example of smart management of the city’s resources. Sometimes you have to invest some money in order to realize the long-term benefits of a project like this. … We realized that we could save hundreds of thousands of dollars in the long run, plus the added benefit of being better for the environment.”

Galloway added that at the time the project was approved, Ferndale had recently become a member of the Sierra Club’s Cool Cities — in which municipalities make a commitment to help reduce the effects of global warming — and city officials were trying to live up to the promises they had made to that organization. For that reason, he said, the project was “a really easy sell” to a council looking to be on the cutting edge of environmentally friendly initiatives.

At the June 22 meeting, the council also unanimously approved a partnership with DTE Energy to install and test six LED lights in the western portion of the public parking lot on Withington Street. The pilot project covers an initial term of three years at a cost to the city of about $4,000; the new lights will reportedly save the city a projected $515 annually.

These types of ventures, said City Manager Bob Bruner, are a great way for the city to put its money where its mouth is in trying to become a greener community.

“The bottom line is that we save more money in energy conservation each year than what it costs us to make those payments,” he said. “It’s a one-time expense, but an annual cost savings. … And the savings end up paying for the capital improvements, so it’s really a no-brainer for us.”

In addition, Bruner said that he plans to suggest to the council that the city apply for federal stimulus money — via the U.S. Department of Energy’s Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant Program— to go toward future energy conservation projects.

For Galloway, Ferndale’s pursuit of green initiatives like this has enabled the city to become more environmentally friendly while also staying ahead of the curve financially during very difficult economic times.

“Five years ago when we first approved this project,” he said, “no one ever envisioned $4 or $5 for a gallon of gasoline or the level of energy crisis that we’re seeing now. We could never have anticipated how much money we would be saving because of that. But it’s this kind of forward thinking that has put us in better shape than some of our neighbors.”

After 45 years of Mustangs, the man responsible for the original has launched a commemorative version of which only 45 examples will be made.

Ford Mustangs, despite many having to have their steering wheels switched to the right at much expense, are almost as popular in New Zealand as they are in the United States.

Every day I see examples from just about every decade of their existence on my daily drive - yes, even versions of the awful Mustang IIs of Charlie's Angels fame.

Now, 45 years on from the launch of the original by Lee Iacocca at the New York World's Fair, the man himself - Mr Mustang to many - has announced a new version of the famous car with his name on it. It looks like the kind of car an inveterate Mustang collector would desire above all others.

The Iacocca Silver 45th Anniversary Edition Ford Mustang uses latest Ford performance technology with a strikingly simplified Mustang fastback design. Only 45 so-called "2009 1/2" Iacocca Silver Edition Mustangs will be built, all finished in a special silver chosen by Iacocca.

Nearly two years in the making, the Iacocca Silver Edition Mustang is a collaborative effort by Iacocca, designer Michael Leone, and Gaffoglio Family Metalcrafters, a coachbuilding and design company in California.

The new business venture is called I Legacy, and it will work in concert with the Galpin Ford dealership in offering the Iacocca Silver 45th Anniversary Edition Ford Mustangs to the public.

The car begins life as a 2009 Mustang platform, which is then modified and coachbuilt. While the exterior fastback design of the Iacocca Silver Mustang is compelling, the mechanical underpinnings are true American muscle.

Two power plant options will be offered, a normally aspirated 4.6-litre Ford V8 rated at 320 horsepower (238kW) and an optional supercharged version that delivers a head-snapping 400-horsepower (298kW). Both engines are covered by a factory Ford warranty and drive through a five-speed manual transmission.

The car's suspension has been upgraded, with a Ford racing handling package employing firmer springs and re-valved shock absorbers.

Inside the Iacocca Silver Mustang are Iacocca Diamond Design leather seats with embroidery stitching, an Iacocca signature dash plaque with serial number, a leather- wrapped steering wheel with "I" badge and Iacocca-badged aluminium door sill plates.

The cars will initially be revealed and then made available at a reception next month in California.

The price of the 45th anniversary Mustang is yet to be announced.

Wheelhouse is a proud sponsor of the first-ever Bicycle Film Festival appearance in Detroit. It takes place Friday, July 17 and Saturday, July 18 at the Marlene Boll Theatre at 1401 Broadway. There are two programs a night, with screenings at 7 and 9 p.m. Each program is $8 — and The Hub and Wheelhouse are providing free bike parking!

After the movies, there will be a party each night — Friday at the Park Bar and Saturday at Cass Cafe. Tickets and program information are available here.

After the jump, more details about the Detroit BFF.For the first time in its nine-year history, the Bicycle Film Festival will stop in Detroit for two days of films, parties, and fun all centered around bike culture. On July 17th and 18th, the BFF will show 40 shorts and two feature films at the Marlene Boll Theatre, located at 1401 Broadway in Downtown Detroit.

The Bicycle Film Festival is a cultural phenomenon like no other. Originating in New York City, The Bicycle Film Festival is the earliest voice of one of the most powerful and culturally relevant movements of the past decade — the urban bike movement. The BFF brings many communities together — both culturally (fashion, music and art) and between different genres within the cycling community (track bikes, BMX and road cycling).

“We are extremely excited to bring the Bicycle Film Festival to Detroit in 2009,” says BFF founding director Brendt Barbur. “With its rich history of being a motorist’s town, we’re glad we could give the cyclists a voice here as well.”

Now in its ninth year, the festival has grown to 39 cities worldwide including international partners Sydney, London, Paris and Tokyo. The Bicycle Film Festival, presented by 42BELOW Vodka, will be in 27 North American cities this year and is greatly expanding to include new cities with events in Detroit, Pittsburgh, Washington D.C., and New Orleans.

The Detroit leg of the Bicycle Film Festival will screen films on Friday, July 17 and Saturday, July 18 at the Marlene Boll Theatre, located at 1401 Broadway in Downtown Detroit. Program highlights include the feature-length documentary Where Are You Go directed by Benny Zenga and Brian Vernor, and shorts such as Wolfpack Hustle: All City Team Race 2, which follows renegade Los Angeles night-time street racers; Keirin, a beautifully shot portrait of Japanese track racers directed by the director of Les Ninja du Japan; and Made In Queens, about native Trinidadians that rig huge stereos onto BMX bikes and then treat New Yorkers to impromptu street parties.

Other shorts cover a similarly diverse range of cycling topics, from alley-cat races to candle-lit downhill biking, from BMX tricksters to bike polo, from frame-building to track-racing – something for every taste and disposition. The films are divided into four programs – two on each day. The screenings begin on July 17 at 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. and on July 18 at 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. Tickets are $8 for each program and are available at the door and online at On-site bicycle parking will be provided for free by local bike shop sponsors, Wheelhouse Detroit and The Hub of Detroit.

Following both screenings, there will be after-parties held at nearby venues. On July 17, DJ collective Haute to Death will be spinning at the Park Bar (2040 Park Ave., Downtown). On July 18, The Cass Cafe (4620 Cass., Midtown) will host Petal Shop, Steven and the Reelers and The Rev. Robert-David Jones. Both after-parties are free at the door.

“There’s been a marked increase in bike culture in Detroit in the last few years,” says Detroit BFF organizer Carrie Yager. “It makes sense to showcase films that cyclists will enjoy in tandem with a showcase of great Detroit venues and music – after all, they are certainly inter-connected.” Yager estimates that several hundred attendees will come out for Detroit BFF – a coup for a first-year festival.

That Casey Kasem Show Was More Than Just Reaching for Stars
Mike Hale
New York Times

The Casey Kasem we know was a creation of the baby boom: “American Top 40,” his signature show, went on the air in 1970, and Mr. Kasem had his biggest impact in the ’70s and early ’80s, counting down hits by Grand Funk Railroad and the Bay City Rollers. The ratings were sagging when Mr. Kasem first left the show in 1988 (he would return a decade later), and when he announced his sudden retirement this weekend from the radio franchise he helped create, it felt like the end of an era that had actually ended 10 or 20 years ago.

The funny thing was, Casey Kasem sounded old-fashioned from the start. In the mid-’70s, when I was an “American Top 40” devotee, you already could be mocked for listening to him. His this-land-is-your-land patriotism and weekly shout-outs to Armed Forces Radio were out of tune with the times; his practiced sincerity and his adherence to the Billboard pop charts were uncool; and couldn’t he have made up a better name? (That last part, of course, was unfair to the man born Kemal Amin Kasem.)

After Mr. Kasem’s departure from the countdown business, it would be easy to say that he was always comfort food, that his popularity was based on nostalgia and an appeal to Middle -American values.

That might have been true in recent years. But back in the day — before the Internet, even before “Entertainment Tonight” — there were better reasons to listen to Casey Kasem. For one thing: as bizarre as it now seems, millions of people didn’t know what the No. 1 song was each week until they heard that drumroll on “American Top 40.” It was appointment listening, as much of a weekly communal experience as “All in the Family” or “M*A*S*H.”

And the show stood out for other reasons. As square as it was, by playing the entire Top 40 it gave many people a greater variety of music than they could get from listening to their local radio stations for a week.

It also pioneered a genre that wouldn’t come into its own for another decade or two: celebrity gossip. The tidbits of biography and trivia that Mr. Kasem and his team, including the writer Don Bustany, sprinkled through the show might have been corny, but at the time there was practically nowhere else to hear them. (To my mind, they helped make up for the excruciating dedication letters Mr. Kasem read every week, though I’m sure those had their fans, too.)

All of these functions became less important, or even irrelevant, with the advent of nightly entertainment news and then the Internet. The profile of “American Top 40” shrank, though it benefited from a burst of publicity when Ryan Seacrest took over as host in 2004. (Mr. Kasem continued to preside over several spinoffs.) The show now has an odd double life, as a going concern with Mr. Seacrest and as a nostalgist’s curio: Mr. Kasem’s original 1970s and ’80s countdowns are available in syndication.

So what kept Mr. Kasem counting down the hits for nearly 40 years and continues to keep his creation on the air? Mr. Kasem is known for being a perfectionist — clips of his profane outbursts when things didn’t go right in the studio are popular on YouTube — and I suspect that a related feeling, a demand for order, may explain his show’s longevity. The welter of information and choices we now confront, a condition that has affected the music and radio industries more profoundly than most, may be democratizing, but it can also be demoralizing, and the Top 40 is something to hold on to — a life preserver in the digital sea.

Which was true even in the show’s heyday. A college friend of mine — who went on to become a world-champion video-game player when video games were still six feet tall — listened to Mr. Kasem each weekend and wrote down the Top 40 songs, in longhand. We all thought this was incredibly nerdy and weird. We were also jealous: we wished we had that set of notebooks with every Top 40 list for the last 10 years. It was so weird it was cool.

It was also valuable information. As Mr. Kasem might say, it was something that would help you keep your feet on the ground while you were reaching for the stars.

What do apples, baby food, coffee, desserts, eggs, fruit snacks, granola, hair products, ice cream, juice, kielbasa, lemon cake, milk, noodles, oatmeal, peaches, queso dip, ravioli, sugar beets, Trout Chardonnay, vitamins, woodpecker cakes, X-strength pain relievers, yogurt, and zucchini have in common with Michigan's economy?

Plenty! This A-Z grocery list represents products grown and produced in Michigan towns like Acme and Zeeland, and nearly all points in between. More to the point, buying local Michigan made products is a simple - and healthy - way to boost the state's economy.

In fact, according to the Michigan Department of Agriculture, if each family in Michigan started spending $10 per week of their grocery bill on Michigan products, we would keep more than $37 million in Michigan, EACH WEEK.

To pay tribute to Michigan farmers and businesses and help residents identify Michigan made products, Grand Rapids-based Spartan Stores is launching its MICHIGAN's BEST statewide campaign in its 99 Family Fare, D&W Fresh Market, Felpausch, Glen's, Glen's Fresh Marketplace, and VG's throughout Michigan on July 5, 2009.

Spartan Stores carry over 2400 products grown and produced in Michigan. The products will be identified in all corporate owned stores with the MICHIGAN's BEST logo. In store specials, signage, and easy to fix recipes also will encourage shoppers to consider purchasing Michigan made products.


Family Fare Supermarket/Quick Stop
D&W Fresh Market Supermarket/Quick Stop
Felpausch Supermarket/Quick Stop
Glen's Markets Supermarket/Quick Stop
Glen's Fresh Marketplace Supermarket/Quick Stop
Bathroom Sign

Immaculate, inviting and, most of all, memorable; finalists in the America’s Best Restroom VIII contest, sponsored by Cintas Corporation, have established a new standard for restroom quality.

These washrooms are testaments to their proprietors’ sense of taste, flair and attention to detail, and feature some of the world’s finest materials and customer comforts as well as a few surprises.

Click HERE to vote for The Fox Theater. Voting runs through July 31, 2009. The winner will be announced in August 2009.

If boutique bargains, sidewalk sales and dining deals get your heart pumping for joy, don’t miss downtown Milford’s 50-year shopping tradition, Shop, Rock & Stroll, July 10-11. The two-day event is a celebration of great deals and family fun sponsored by the Milford Business Association.

Expect specials at many of downtown Milford’s restaurants, plus the best prices of the year at Milford’s many retailers. Look for up to 75 percent off the latest merchandise at dozens of clothing boutiques, jewelry stores, home furnishings and more. The downtown shops will be open from 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. both Friday and Saturday for this special event. And while the adults snag bargains, children can enjoy inflatable rides, face painting, a fire truck tour and more.

Enjoy the shopping adventure, but be sure to take a break (or two) and treat yourself to delicious food at any of the downtown Milford restaurants located on Main Street. One restaurant, Gravity, will be offering a food and beer tent and entertainment by local favorite, the Aaron Vaughn Band, starting at 8 p.m. both nights.

“This is a great way for the family to be together, snag some deals and have fun,” said Aaron Goodnough, event organizer and owner of For Feets Sake, one of the participating Milford businesses.

For more information about shopping and dining in the Village of Milford, visit