Producers Shawn “Jay-Z” Carter, Will & Jada Pinkett Smith presents the hit multiple Tony Award-winning Broadway musical FELA! at the historic Music Hall Center for the Performing Arts, opening Tuesday, February 14th, with performances through March 4th, 2012. Fela! is the musical, based on the life of groundbreaking African composer, performer and activist Fela Anikulapo-Kuti.

Fela! opened at the Eugene O'Neill Theatre to critical and audience acclaim in 2009 and subsequently received 11 Tony Award nominations. Ultimately winning three 2010 Tony Awards®, including Best Choreography, Best Costume Design and Best Sound Design.

Fela! is the true story of the legendary Nigerian musician Fela Kuti whose soulful Afrobeat rhythms ignited a generation, is a triumphant tale of courage, passion and love, featuring Kuti’s captivating music and the visionary direction and choreography of Tony Award-winner Bill T. Jones.

Inspired by his mother, a civil rights champion, Kuti defied a corrupt and oppressive military government and devoted his life and music to the struggle for freedom and human dignity.

The Music Hall performances will feature the best of both the Broadway and London casts as the theater will be transformed into the set of a Fela Kuti stadium concert in 1976. The kinetic and sensual Afrobeat rhythms provide a mesmerizing soundtrack which help tell the story of this phenomenal musician, composer, agitprop firebrand, human rights pioneer and husband to as many of 27 wives, who not only changed the face of music, but also his home country of Nigeria.

*FELA! Performance Schedule*

Tuesdays -- Fridays at 8pm, Saturdays at 2pm & 8pm, Sundays at 3pm & 7:30pm

Tickets are $30, $40, $50, $75, $100
Music Hall Box Office 313 887-8501 or

For more information vista for all things Fela! Detroit

Music Hall Center for the Performing Arts Jazz Café
350 Madison Detroit, MI 48226 (313) 887-8501

First-of-its-kind app will be used to give away thousands of prizes during this Sunday's big game

Detroit Labs, a new tech company that creates web, iOS, and Android applications for businesses ranging from local startups to Fortune 500 companies, today announced it developed Chevrolet's "Chevy Game Time" app that will be used to give away thousands of prizes during this weekend's big game. The eight-month-old startup used its passion for Detroit, incredible technology talent, and ties to local companies to win the opportunity to build the app.

Chevrolet and its advertising agency, Goodby, Silverstein & Partners (GSP), pursued the idea for a large-scale mobile app that would engage consumers during the game and commercials through trivia, polls and drawings for 20 cars from Chevy and thousands of prizes from other game sponsors. When it came time to select a company to develop the app, GM and GSP chose Detroit Labs because of their experience and connection to Detroit, the city where the companies are located.

"It's been great to work with another Detroit-based company to bring this first-of-its-kind initiative to people across the country," said Joel Ewanick, vice president, Global Marketing, General Motors. "Detroit Labs has an experienced team that helped Chevy bring a great idea to life with the Chevy Game Time app."

GSP and Chevy representatives stopped by Detroit Labs' downtown offices multiple times a week to collaborate on the project. GSP created the look and feel of the app, while Detroit Labs was responsible for the development.

"It was exciting to partner with the talented teams at Goodby and Chevy. Their commitment to this project's success, and to keeping work in Detroit, made the end result possible," said Paul Glomski, CEO and co-founder of Detroit Labs.

GM and GSP also selected another Detroit-based company, ePrize, the largest interactive promotion agency in the world, to handle the instant win prize drawings.

In addition to the Chevy Game Time app, Detroit Labs has completed projects for a wide-range of companies including Caesars Entertainment, Stryker, Quicken Loans, Made in Detroit, and more, and has grown from four to 16 team members in just eight short months.

The company, one of many new tech startups calling downtown Detroit home, received an investment from Detroit Venture Partners (DVP), a venture capital firm that is rebuilding the city through entrepreneurial fire by funding early stage tech companies. Both companies are housed in Detroit's M@dison Building, a creative tech hub that opened in late 2011 and is home to a large assortment of promising local entrepreneurs and their budding projects and companies.

"Company co-founders Paul Glomski, Dan Ward, Henry Balanon and Nathan Hughes could have taken their startup to Silicon Valley, Chicago, or one of many other entrepreneurial hot-spots in the country," said Josh Linkner, CEO and Managing Partner of Detroit Venture Partners. "Instead the four were eager to stay in Detroit so they could do their part to help develop an innovative, tech-focused urban core where people want to live, work and play."

"In any other city we would have been one of thousands of startups just hoping to get noticed," said Ward. "Here, we're helping rebuild downtown and getting noticed by big companies that are also committed to Detroit."

The Chevy Game Time app is available in the Android Market, Apple's App Store and at For more information about Detroit Labs, visit
Daily Candy 

Motor to Motown

Honor & Folly Detroit’s rap belies its many awesome alter egos (Motown, Motor City, Paris of the West). The city buzzes with energy, thanks to a recent revitalization. We tapped Meghan McEwen, a former CS Interiors editor who now calls Detroit home, to get her picks for a perfect weekend (and threw in a few of our own). The newest, most charming place to stay is Honor & Folly. Helmed by McEwen herself, the tiny Corktown inn displays pieces designed by artists based in Detroit and throughout the Midwest.

Supino For pizza, head to Supino Pizzeria in Eastern Market. For a little bit of soul, Sunday Dinner Company serves comfort food with a side of good while employing people affected by crime and poverty (6470 East Jefferson Avenue, 313-877-9255).

71 Pop The rotating pop-up indie art shop hosts a rotating lineup of emerging artists and designers.

Click HERE to read about the rest of the places Daily Candy visited!

Detroit City FC is a minor league soccer team that will play its inaugural season in 2012 in the National Premier Soccer League's Midwest Division. Detroit City FC will create a product that will reflect, attract, and incorporate the diverse segments of our community.

Click HERE for the game schedule!

Click HERE for tryout information!

In a unique, non-competitive show about weight loss “Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition” documents the amazing makeover of courageous, “super obese” people who, in an unprecedented 365 days, set out to safely lose half of their body weight, ultimately revealing an amazing metamorphosis. The term “super obese” is used to define those who exceed their estimated ideal weight by approximately 225 percent and who are roughly 200 pounds or more overweight.

Trainer and transformation specialist Chris Powell (“The 650-Pound Virgin”) guides each of the eight participants through their transformation process by moving into their homes with their families or loved ones. By assuring that they have the proper nourishment and exercise movement, Chris will provide a fresh perspective to individuals whose lives have become unmanageable because of their weight.

In each of the one-hour episodes, the participants undergo a transformation not only of their bodies, but of who they are as individuals. “Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition” will chronicle each participant’s journey in a stand-alone episode as they go about reclaiming his or her life.

We're beginning a nationwide tour to 9 cities across the country in search of participants for season 3 of the show. Along the way we will be stopping in Chicago, Detroit and Milwaukee. Although this may not be in your immediate area, we are hoping to have some candidates travel the short distance to meet with us in an attempt to change their lives.

Candidates are asked to either attend an open call in one of the cities or send in a home tape.

Information about how to apply can be found on the official casting website at

Casting call attendees should bring a non-returnable photo. Casting Call Applications will be provided.

Our open call in Detroit: 
February 4th, 2012 
Gardner White Furniture 39453 Ford Rd. Canton, MI 48187 10am-4pm

Thursday, February 9, 2012 — February 9, 2012 
6PM - 9PM Dino's Lounge 
22740 Woodward Avenue Ferndale, MI 48220 

We’ve all had that embarrassing moment at work. You know, the one that makes you think ‘did that really just happen” while your body sweats like mad and your face turns tomato red simultaneously? Now, thanks to your friends at AIGA Detroit and Ad Craft, you can put those moments to good use at the third annual industry flavored storytelling event, themed “my most embarrassing moment on the job.”

Contestants will be given 5 minutes to tell the most awesome, hilariously embarrassing moment ever surfaced within their career. A panel of mock judges will score the stories, and winners will be given awesome prizes. Don’t feel like telling a story?

Come anyway, take in a drink (or several), cheer on our contestants and socialize with other industry dwellers.

10 dollars for Members, 15 dollars for non-members and this includes your first drink!
Register here: 

Think you have the perfect story for this? Reserve yourself a spot by emailing Alex Harvilla at 


Krush industries is building a full scale gladiator assault course in Detroit, complete with high-powered tennis ball gun, Massive obstacles, rocket launchers, tons of spandex, and WE NEED YOU!! We are going to have several qualifying events all leading up to a massive Gladiator Assault Detroit Main Event. This is art, sport, and healthy entertainment combined with more than a little humor. Come see us and our facility at Techshop Detroit.

Please send inquiries about the project to


Material cost: $4,000.00 (Steel frames for the tennis cannons, Aluminum tube for barrel assembly, air regulator and valves. This amount will cover the cost of building 4 guns.)

Obstacles and Flooring: $10,000.00

Rewards: $4,000

Advertising and PR: $2,000.00

Labor and Fees: $5000.00 (This money will provide 2 individuals $500.00 per week for 2 weeks, also will cover the 8% Kickstarter and Amazon Credit fee.)

Misc. funds.: $2500.00

Click HERE to bring Gladiator Assault Course To Detroit!


"An Empire State of Fashion"

Arte Fuse relentlessly gives you what’s the latest on all visual arts with coverage on gallery opening receptions, special museum exhibits, art fairs and the like but we love to mix things up here. In honor of upcoming Fashion Week in February, Arte Fuse decided to make a cameo appearance at an Art-Fashion Event held at the Empire Hotel last January 27, 2012. The Art of Fashion and Herbert Fox Productions with collaboration from DMA Productions, LLC held a rooftop extravaganza of an art reception featuring juried artists and two young fashion designers with a runway show.

The artworks presented were various representational or abstracts from a lively set of young artists. Presenting such works in a venue of the hotel’s rooftop can be quite a challenge but it gets the work seen. Nowadays, one must think outside of the box when it comes to organizing and having a group show. The gallery format is not the sole dictator of how art gets shown in the city. It takes an entrepreneurial spirit and ingenuity to stage an event where art can be seen in unlikely venues. The Art of Fashion used to have a steady venue at the Hotel Chelsea on 23rd Street but once that sold and became a private condo, the entire show must move on. This has transcended to a more daring leap into searching for other venues where even for a special one-night event can showcase the youngest and freshest talents in the New York art scene.

Clothes are a mode of self-expression just as artists express themselves through their work. It is not an unlikely pairing to have fashion be a tandem to art on this very night. The Young Designer’s Showcase featured the work of two designers on the cusp of staking their claim on the glamorous but tempestuous world of New York fashion. First is a fresh talent motoring her way from Detroit, Michigan is the unique funky styles of Fotoula Lambros Design. Her garments can be worn in infinite possibilities plus it is made from sustainable/organic fabrics. The whole design firm is based in Motor City and they plan to make a major presence in the Empire State. Second to present is a local designer from Brooklyn – Bianca Frazier of Strange Vixens Inc. Her take is the Mod inspired 1960’s with her playful lingerie ensembles and party wear. Fashion models were booked by DMA as well. It felt officially the start of Fashion Week and it just whets your appetite.

A lot of the common stories from the people attending is that they’re all from the other parts of the country but chose to follow their passions. This is the American way and very much the drive of why a lot of hopeful creative types take their chance here in New York City. Art & Fashion are two worlds intricately woven into the glittering tapestry of what makes this city so alluring.

Event was held at rooftop of: The Empire Hotel. 44 West 63rd Street. NYC, NY 10023 (between Columbus & Broadway)
CNN Money

Ford reported its best annual earnings since 1998 on Friday, making 2011 the second most profitable year in the company's 109-year history.

But much of the profit was attributed to a non-cash gain, as it put a large tax credit from past losses on its balance sheet that will shield it from taxes in the future. Excluding that credit, the carmaker posted full-year and quarterly earnings that fell short of last year's profit as well as analysts' forecasts.

Shares fell 2.7% in pre-market trading on the earnings miss.

The company's 2011 net income of $20.2 billion, up from $6.6 billion in 2010, was the best since 1998, when it received a large one-time gain from the sale of The Associates financial unit. About $12.4 billion of the latest profit came from the accounting gain.

Excluding special items, Ford (F, Fortune 500) reported operating income of $6.1 billion, or $1.51 a share, down from the $7.6 billion, or $1.91 a share, it earned on that basis in 2010.

Fourth-quarter operating earnings of $787 million, or 20 cents a share, were down from $1.2 billion, or 30 cents, a year earlier, as flooding in Thailand that shut suppliers' plants hurt its results in its Asia-Pacific region. Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters had forecast earnings of 25 cents a share.

Pretax earnings for the quarter and full year improved in Ford's home North American market due to increases in both the pricing and the volume of vehicles sold. The company's profit margin in the region also improved.

The strong North American results mean that the 41,600 members of the United Auto Workers union will be getting larger profit-sharing payments for 2011.

Full-year payments to the factory workers will average $6,200, up from $5,000 in 2010. But the workers already received more than half of that money in December due to the new labor deal reached in the fall.

The company announced earlier this month that its white collar workers would get both bonus payments and merit raises for 2011, the first time in four years they've received both.

Click HERE to read the rest of this article!

Detroit4Detroit is your opportunity to be one of 150 people starting a movement of citizen philanthropy to impact the city they love. If you have the passion to impact your community, we’ve got the tools and support needed to make you the fundraising leader for your Detroit cause.

Our community projects give you the opportunity to partner with one of a diverse range of high-impact organizations that are changing lives in Detroit. Anyone can be part of Detroit4Detroit. Now’s your chance to be the spark that starts a movement. Join the 150 and have an impact where it counts.

Learn more about Detroit4Detroit HERE!

At the Detroit Tigers caravan stop at Comerica Bank’s new Michigan market headquarters today, Comerica announced it will expand its Grand Slam Grant program for 2012 to include Central and West Michigan.

Last year, the inaugural program offered a $10,000 grant to create, expand or improve a metro Detroit high school’s baseball or softball program. This year, Comerica will award two $10,000 grants – one in metro Detroit and one in the Central/West Michigan region.

“As many school districts continue to face budget cuts, the Grand Slam Grant helps ensure our future all-stars have the resources they need to experience the game of baseball,” said Thomas D. Ogden, president, Comerica Bank-Michigan. “After 162 years in Michigan, Comerica remains committed to supporting its hometown teams.”

The grant recipients will be recognized on the field during the Detroit Tigers 2012 opening weekend game on April 7. In addition to the grant, each winning school will also receive 60 tickets to the opening weekend game.

Public high schools in Comerica’s markets of Southeast Michigan and Central and West Michigan are eligible to apply for the Grand Slam Grant.

One grant recipient will be chosen from each region. The funds can be used for field improvements, equipment, training camps, or other baseball or softball-related expenses.

Grant applications will be reviewed for a variety of criteria including overall need, creativity, and school and community impact. The grant recipient will be selected by the Comerica Bank Grand Slam Grant Selection Committee, consisting of representatives from Comerica Bank and Detroit Tigers outfielder Brennan Boesch.

Eligible schools can complete the grant application online at Once complete, the application, along with supporting materials such as photos or videos must be submitted via email to by 5 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 10, 2012.

Last year, the baseball team at Renaissance High School in Detroit was awarded Comerica Bank’s inaugural Grand Slam Grant and used the funds for equipment, a new scoreboard and a travel showcase youth clinic.

The College for Creative Studies’s Center Galleries is pleased to present the new exhibition “Grid List,” opening with a public reception on Fri., Jan. 27, from 6:00 until 8:00 p.m., and running through Sat., March 3, 2012.

“Grid List” presents a new take on Geometric Abstraction with a focus on the individual artist’s idiosyncratic relationship with the grid. Co-organized by artists Mark Sengbusch and Patrick Morrissey, the exhibition includes the work of 16 artists from London, New York, Detroit and Atlanta.

“Grid List explores the influence of the grid on artists. Tracing back the source of geometric abstraction’s past Josef Albers and Sol LeWitt take it to a more personal and direct place,” says Director of Center Galleries Michelle Perron. “Nature, sports, math, science, film, graphic design and video games are just a few of the square wellsprings these artists draw their right angles from. In addition to the artists in the show, there will be "non-art" examples of the grid.”

The exhibition includes recent graduates of CCS: David E. Peterson, Fine Arts ’02 and Mark Sengbusch, Fine Arts ‘02. Other exhibiting artists include: Joseph Bernard – Detroit, Paul Corio - NYC, Nate Ethier - NYC, Francis Farmer – Sussex, England, Stacy Fisher - NYC, Linda Francis - NYC, Hanz Hancock - London, William Hughes – London, Jeffrey Mathews - NYC, Patrick Morrissey – London, Allie Rex – NYC, Karen Schifano - NYC , Ian Swanson - NYC, and Tracy Thomason – NYC. (IMAGE: Paul Corio, “Toga Tiger” 2009 acrylic on canvas)

Be on the lookout for the owners of Detroit's finest Mex/Asian Fusion Restaurant, Maria's Comida!
AuthorScott Lasser 
The New York Times

Excerpt from "When The Lights Go Down In The City"

I’ve lived all over the country, and the idea that Detroit is somehow different, that what has happened there can’t happen anywhere else, seems faulty at best. Drive the bumpy streets of Los Angeles, wait for a subway in New York or pay income tax in Chicago, and you learn that there are budget problems everywhere. The troubles in Detroit seem worse simply because Detroit has fallen so far.

Once the center of American industrial might and economic power, Detroit was, from 1920 to 1950, the country’s fourth most populous city. It called itself, without irony, the Paris of the Midwest. When I was a kid, my dad worked in steel and then as a Ford buyer, a midlevel job that provided a decent living, free medical care and, of course, cars. My stepfather had been temporarily paralyzed in a kamikaze attack at the end of World War II, but he recovered, put on a suit and went into the steel business. “You couldn’t help but make money,” he told me. “It must have been like selling drugs today.”s

The exact causes of Detroit’s decline are still open to debate, but suffice it to say mismanagement within the auto industry, racial strife and bad, often confrontational and sometimes corrupt government played major roles. When General Motors and Chrysler finally succumbed to bankruptcy, it was the result of excessive debt and promises to retirees that could not be met. That may sound like someplace else, but our federal government is running an annual deficit of over a trillion dollars, and will have around $40 trillion in unfunded retiree liabilities. Detroit is not someplace else; it’s America.s

Are we doomed? Hardly. But to go forward we might do well to look at, well, Detroit. The city simply has no time left to dither or filibuster or ignore a problem because the solution is unpleasant. If Detroit needs to turn off the lights, they’re going off. If it needs to raze decrepit buildings, it will fire up the bulldozers. This is a city where, once, I met a Ford man who had just turned down a lucrative job with a management consulting company. “I can’t work for a company that doesn’t make something,” he explained.s

Detroit is a city used to the hard work of creation. It reminds us that necessity is the mother not only of invention, but of hope. And hope is necessary for action.s

And Detroit is moving forward. There’s a long way to go, but the city’s efforts have already brought an influx of young artists and entrepreneurs drawn by cheap rent and programs that provide start-up capital. A lot of brainpower is being deployed to imagine the Detroit of the future. Crime is down overall. Even the auto business is coming back to life, as witnessed by the excitement at this year’s Detroit auto show.s

Detroit has been in dire straits before. In 1805, roughly a century before Henry Ford built his first assembly line, a huge fire burned the city to the ground. This gave rise to Detroit’s Latin motto, “Speramus meliora; resurget cineribus” — “We hope for better things; it will rise from the ashes.”

Click HERE to read the full article!

Check out Fotoula Lambros Design HERE!

For more information about attending this event, click HERE


When architect Louis Sullivan began cultivating Chicago’s vertical growth with some of the world’s first skyscrapers, he famously cloaked his steel high-rises with images of vegetation. Embellishing the tops of his multistory buildings with iron-cast flora, Sullivan sought to evoke the image of a novel breed of architecture sprouting upwards from the fertile American soil. He quickly recognized how the skyscraper would change the experience of the city, how a soaring building would be read from street level, and how Americans could gaze upwards and project their nation’s values of collective advancement onto the towering facades of his “form follows function” designs.

Almost a century later, Detroit-based photographer Dennis Maitland has conceived of a new way to see the city, turning the experience of the skyscraper up on its head. In a series called “Life on the Edge,” Maitland climbs atop some of the highest perches in his hometown, dangles his feet precariously over the edge, focuses his lens downwards, and snaps a photo that is sure to induce perspiration. Maitland not only documents his personal overcoming of a fear of heights, but he captures views of Detroit that elevate city streets from their quotidian designation and paint a new image of our built environment.

Click HERE to check out more of Dennis Maitland's photos!
Slider Image

The Detroit Knows Cars is a fine art exhibit to premier in downtown Detroit that will feature works from some of the best-known automobile artists in the country. Setting this exhibit in the Chase Tower Building lobby will give the exhibit high visibility as it will be launched on January 6, 2012, continuing the duration of the North American International Auto Show and through January 29, 2012.

The exhibit will draw attention to the rapidly re-developing downtown Detroit, and is a fitting location for this exhibit that will become the newest legacy for the city that put the USA on wheels.

Why is this event the next big thing in Detroit?

Detroit knows cars -- it will be held in downtown Detroit – along historic Michigan Route 1 (Woodward Ave.) in January to be promoted during the 2012 North American International Auto Show at Cobo Center, offering a new, unique destination for art and automobile enthusiasts.

This opening exhibit is the prelude to creating a major international automobile art competition beginning in 2013 offering cash prizes for “Awards of Excellence” – attracting the art world to Detroit much like the ArtPrize competition did to Grand Rapids.

Invited artists include Tom Hale, a founding member of the Automotive Fine Arts Society (AFAS) along with AFAS members Jay Koka and Charlie Maher, popular young artist David Chapple, historic scene specialist Gerald Freeman, former combat artist Michael Goettner, vintage automobile photographer Jim Haefner, and sculptor Alex Buchan.

The Motor City Automobile Art Exhibit will be on display every day from 8 AM - 6 PM in the lobby of the Chase Tower Building, and is free and open to the public.

On March 3, 2012, Detroit Harmonie will host it's signature event, the International Experience, at the Virgil Carr Center located in the heart of Detroit's Harmonie Park.

The International Experience is Detroit Harmonie’s second annual signature event celebrating the diversity and future of metro Detroit with live entertainment, food, and music representing several cultures in the community. The evening will include two competitions where Detroit Harmonie will deliver $50,000 in philanthropic funding to five social entrepreneurial organizations making the city of Detroit an attractive place in which to live, work, and play.

Click HERE to reserve your tickets!

The port on the Detroit River could have a big effect on Michigan’s economic future.

This Thursday, a roundtable discussion regarding the Great Lakes and Michigan’s Economic Future will be held in downtown Detroit.

John Jamian, director of the Detroit Wayne County Port Authority, will speak at the event.

“This is the time to work with the rail industry, the trucking and the highway industry – we have a world class airport and of course our port and bringing everything together in our own backyard we have a magnificent waterway that is capable of importing and potentially exporting anywhere in the world rights from our docks in downtown Detroit,” said Jamian.

Click HERE to read more!

From Feb. 23-25, the Royal Oak Modern Skate Park invites rollerbladers, trade companies and professionals to one of the biggest contests in the rollerblade community, Bitter Cold Showdown XII. All ages are welcome, but competitors under 18 must fill out a Modern Skate Park waiver and competitors are required to wear a helmet.

Starting Thursday, the rollerblade session will run from 9:30 p.m. to midnight for $7. The contest will continue on Friday with an industry meeting at 6 p.m., competitor practice and warm-up from 8-9:30 p.m., Bitter Cold Showdown qualifications from 9:30-10:30 p.m. and a late night session from 10:30-1 a.m. Saturday will begin with the official industry trade show from noon-3:30 p.m. The amateur Bitter Cold Showdown contest will begin at 3:30 p.m., followed by the professional contest at 6 p.m. The night will end with a final skate session from 9 p.m.-midnight. Admission is free for spectators on Friday, and $15 on Saturday.

The Bitter Cold Showdown was organized in 2011 by a group of bladers who wanted to strengthen and expand the rollerblading community. In 2009 it became a part of the World Rolling Series, which also focuses on the growth, global recognition and promotion of rollerblading. The Bitter Cold Showdown has become one of the largest events for sponsors, companies, professionals and rollerbladers to share and celebrate the passion of rollerblading.

Modern Skate & Surf has provided skate gear and accessories to the Metro Detroit area since 1979, with locations in both Royal Oak and Lansing. Modern Skate carries a large selection of products, including skateboarding, snowboarding, inline-skating and wakeboarding equipment. The Modern Skate Park in Royal Oak welcomes all ages and all skill levels. The park ranked No. 1 best skate park by Best of Real Detroit in 2010, so you’re guaranteed a skate thrill. Membership packages, protective gear rental, private and walk-in lessons and park rental packages are available. For more information on Modern Skate or Bitter Cold Showdown XII call (248) 546-7275.

Pop-Up: The Ghost City
Wall Street Journal 

Everybody knows what went wrong with Detroit.

The early 20th-century boom town went bust as U.S. auto makers struggled through a half-century of retrenchment; whites fled and the civic order exploded. More than half the city disappeared: It's now home to just over 700,000 people, down from its 1950s high by more than 1.1 million. Urban planners have blamed a lack of public transportation. Businessmen have blamed bloated unions and sclerotic corporations. Good-government types have blamed corruption. The races have blamed each other. Everybody knows what went wrong with Detroit because everybody sees in the city problems that trouble the rest of the country.

Detroit serves as a metaphor for broader societal problems—it seems to register the ravages of civic decay like an urban Portrait of Dorian Gray. Every once in a while, we sneak into the attic to gawk. This grim fascination has inspired several recent books of photography.

Andrew Moore's 'Detroit Disassembled' (Damiani) concentrates primarily on the factories that formerly drove the economy, now falling apart or gone back to nature, like the Ford office (bottom right) whose floor has grown over with moss. 'The Ruins of Detroit' (Steidl) by Yves Marchand and Romain Meffre provides a slightly broader view, documenting abandoned hotel lobbies, office towers, schools and apartment buildings: Once vibrant, these public sites are now filled with abandoned furniture and broken fixtures.

Click HERE to read the rest of this article!

American Public Media

We travel to Detroit to meet the civil rights legend Grace Lee Boggs. We find the 96-year-old philosopher surrounded by creative, joyful people and projects that defy more familiar images of decline. It's a kind of parallel urban universe with much to teach all of us about meeting the changes of our time.

Who is Grace Lee Boggs?

Grace Lee Boggs (b. 1915) is an activist, writer, and speaker whose seven decades of political involvement encompass the major U.S. social movements of the past hundred years. A daughter of Chinese immigrants, Boggs received her B.A. from Barnard College (1935) and her Ph.D. in Philosophy from Bryn Mawr College (1940). She developed a twenty-year political relationship with the black Marxist, C.L.R. James, followed by extensive Civil Rights and Black Power Movement activism in Detroit in partnership with husband and black autoworker, James Boggs (1919-93).

Grace Lee Boggs’s published writings include Revolution and Evolution in the Twentieth Century (with James Boggs, Monthly Review Press, 1974; reissued with new introduction by Grace Lee Boggs, 2008); Conversations in Maine: Exploring Our Nation’s Future (with James Boggs, Freddy Paine, and Lyman Paine; South End Press, 1978); and Living for Change: An Autobiography (University of Minnesota, 1998). Her writings and interviews with her have also been widely disseminated through newspapers, magazines, websites, and academic journals.

At the age of 96, Grace remains much in demand as a public speaker and exceptionally active as a community activist and weekly columnist for the Michigan Citizen. Her many honors include honorary doctorates from the University of Michigan, Wooster College, Kalamazoo College, and Wayne State University; lifetime achievement awards from the Detroit City Council, Organization of Chinese Americans, Anti-Defamation League (Michigan), Michigan Coalition for Human Rights, Museum of Chinese in the Americas, and Association for Asian American Studies; Detroit News Michiganian of the Year; and a place in both the National Women’s Hall of Fame and Michigan Women’s Hall of Fame.

Discover endless riches when an extraordinary lineup of stories from the Disney animated film vault comes to life right in your hometown in Disney On Ice presents Treasure Trove!

Produced by Feld Entertainment, Disney On Ice presents Treasure Trove is performing at The Palace of Auburn Hills, March 14-18. Showtimes are 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, March 14 to Saturday, March 17; 11 a.m. Friday, March 16; 11:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Saturday March 17; and 1 and 5 p.m. Sunday, March 18.

Get tangled up in Disney’s 50th animated feature with Rapunzel and Flynn and enter the worlds of your other favorite Disney princesses –Tiana, Cinderella, Jasmine, Ariel, Sleeping Beauty, Belle, Mulan and of course, the one who started it all, Snow White. Ahoy, Mateys! Set sail with Peter Pan, the always sassy Tinker Bell and the cantankerous Captain Hook and his pirate pals on an adventure beyond Never Land! Trek the wilds of Africa with Simba, Nala, Pumbaa and Timon as they discover the true meaning of the ‘Circle of Life.’ Tick-Tock! Tick-Tock! Don’t be late to a very important date with Alice and the Mad Hatter as they march with the Queen of Hearts’ Army of Cards. Relive magical moments in this ultimate Disney animation celebration coming to Auburn Hills! Don’t miss Port Huron’s Justin Williams and Deford, Mich. native Katelyn Walter, both ensemble skaters in the show.

Ticket Prices: $65, $50 VIP, $26, $21 and $15. Tickets for Disney On Ice presents Treasure Trove are available at the Palace of Auburn Hills Box Office, all Ticketmaster locations, The Palace Locker Room Stores and To order tickets by phone, call 1-800-745-3000. Group calls 248-377-8638

Showtimes: · Wednesday, March 14 and Thursday, March 15 at 7:30 p.m. · Friday, March 16 at 11 a.m. and 7:30 p.m. · Saturday, March 17 at 11:30 a.m., 3:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. · Sunday, March 18 at 1 p.m. and 5 p.m.

To discover more about Disney On Ice, go to, or visit us on Facebook and YouTube.

The Detroit Symphony Orchestra (DSO) is thrilled to announce it will perform at Carnegie Hall for the first time in 17 years. The DSO is one of six orchestras that will participate in the third annual Spring For Music festival. On May 10, 2013, the DSO will perform all four Charles Ives Symphonies in one extraordinary three-hour program, becoming the first orchestra to do so for New York audiences.

“We’re taking the Orchestra back to New York at a very special time for the DSO and for Detroit,” said Anne Parsons, DSO president and CEO. “Our appearance at Carnegie Hall is at once a celebration of the thriving Leonard Slatkin/DSO era and Detroit’s renaissance, exemplified by our robust arts and culture scene.”

Spring For Music is a six-day festival that features six major American orchestras, all selected based on the imaginative nature of their proposed programming and how it aligns with the philosophy of each orchestra. The affordable, general admission ticket price, just $25, is designed to make adventurous repertoire available to anyone and everyone. In 2013, the DSO will perform along with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Albany Symphony Orchestra, Buffalo Philharmonic Orchestra, Oregon Symphony and the National Symphony Orchestra.

“We are thrilled to welcome the Detroit Symphony to Spring For Music 2013,” said Spring For Music Artistic Director Thomas W. Morris. “Their program of the four symphonies by Charles Ives embodies perfectly the creativity and innovation in programming that Spring For Music stands for, and represents Leonard Slatkin and his orchestra’s commitment to American music.”

Music Director Leonard Slatkin chose an immersion into Ives in pursuit of showcasing the strength, sound, ensemble and style that is uniquely Detroit. Long known for celebrating American repertoire through recordings and commissions, telling Ives’ biographical story through the consecutive performances of all his symphonic works serves as a tribute to both Slatkin’s affinity for American compositions and Detroit’s longtime acquaintance with the American school. Slatkin, who considers Ives to be one of America’s most progressive composers of his time, imagined the four-symphony program as a way to acquaint the audience with his style.

“For our first trip together to New York, the DSO and I are proud to present a landmark musical event,” said DSO Music Director Leonard Slatkin. “To our knowledge this is the first integral performance of the four symphonies by Charles Ives anywhere. The opportunity to participate in Spring For Music made it possible not only to perform at Carnegie hall, but also to make a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience for our own audiences in Detroit.”

In support of the Orchestra, a Detroit contingent will be accompanying the musicians to New York. For more information about joining us, call 313.576.5147.

Patrons may reserve their ticket now at the Max M. Fisher Music Center box office (3711 Woodward Ave.) or by calling 313.576.5111.



Rank: 10 (Previous rank: 29)

What makes it so great? 
Employees of the online mortgage lender take immense pride in its move from the suburbs to downtown Detroit: "We're taking [the city] from its lowest point and bringing it back to the spotlight it deserves."
1050 Woodward Avenue Detroit, MI 48226
2010 revenue ($ millions): 1,300

Click HERE to read the full list!

USA Today 

The Detroit Tigers stunned the baseball world Tuesday by reaching agreement with Prince Fielder on a nine-year, $214 million contract, the fourth-largest deal in baseball history.

The deal was first reported by Yahoo Sports.

The Tigers, who learned last week that they would be without designated hitter Victor Martinez for the 2012 season because of a torn knee ligament, replaced him in lavish fashion by luring one of the game's top sluggers to Detroit. It's unknown whether Fielder will play first base or DH since All-Star Miguel Cabrera is entrenched at first. They could share time at both positions, but Cabrera is a former third baseman.

The deal was orchestrated quickly, and likely with owner Mike Illitch heavily involved. General Manager Dave Dombrowski said last week on a conference call that they wouldn't be involved in the bidding for Fielder.

Earlier Tuesday, the Texas Rangers, one of Fielder's top suitors, indicated they were out of the bidding for the three-time All-Star.

Fielder follows in the footsteps of his father, Cecil, who played seven years for the Tigers in 1990-1996 and hit 51 home runs for them in 1990. Prince even hit an upper-deck homer at the old Tigers Stadium as a 12-year-old hanging out with his dad.

Fielder, who was also being courted by the Washington Nationals and Texas Rangers, has averaged 37 homers and 106 RBI the last six years with the Milwaukee Brewers.

For the past few seasons, Fielder and Ryan Braun created perhaps the game's most daunting left-right combo in the middle of an order. Now, he has exchanged Braun for Cabrera, who has averaged 35 homers, 115 RBI and a .974 OPS in four seasons with the Tigers.

What's more, the Tigers will pay more than $44 million through 2015 for both Fielder and Cabrera.

Barring a trade, they will add Martinez to the mix in 2013, and Cabrera may be forced to move back to third base or, perhaps, the outfield.

MLKAndrew Feldman
The Daily Orange

With the same prowess he displayed on the basketball courts almost 50 years ago playing for the Syracuse Orangemen, Dave Bing served Syracuse University once again as the keynote speaker for the 27th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration.

On Saturday night, while the men's basketball team was on the road facing Notre Dame, the Carrier Dome hosted the celebration, themed "A Living Legacy: The Fierce Urgency of Now." There were 2,180 seats provided in the Dome for the event, according to a Jan. 19 article in The Daily Orange.

Marissa Willingham, program associate in the Office of Multicultural Affairs and chair of the event, said the underlying purpose of the theme was to continue contributing to King's vision and overall world peace. A soul food dinner was served in accordance with the theme and based on African-American heritage. Bing spoke after the dinner, followed by a presentation of the Unsung Hero Awards and performances by the Dance Theatre of Syracuse and the SU MLK Community Choir.

Bing graduated from SU in 1966 with a bachelor's degree in economics, while also standing out on the basketball court. He earned the first pick of the 1966 NBA Draft to the Detroit Pistons on his way to a Hall of Fame career. Bing was elected as the 62nd mayor of Detroit in May 2009.

In his speech, Bing spoke about his own life on campus and how he felt being a minority in a time where discrimination was rampant and the civil rights movement had only begun to formulate, he said. Bing spoke of the importance of self-acceptance and ways to better the world.

When Bing was recruited to play SU basketball, he was the only black individual on the team. Football players like Ernie Davis, John Mackey and Billy Hunter worked to help recruit Bing to come to SU.

When Bing came to Syracuse from his hometown of Washington, D.C., only about 100 students of the 14,000 who attended the university were colored, and of those, 75 were male, he said.

"Everybody that I lived with and around, played with and against looked just like me. So coming to Syracuse was a new experience in several areas," he said.

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Emma Brown
Interview Magazine

Rachel Grady and Heidi Ewing's new documentary, Detropia, is a sobering film that examines Detroit as a microcosm of American history and identity. The documentary duo's second film to premiere at Sundance (following Jesus Camp in 2007), Detropia leads us through majestic buildings turned vacant and crumbling, to Union meetings, where autoworkers grapple with yet another pay cut, and to the last performances at the Detroit Opera House. We are told that one family departs Detroit every 20 minutes; that 10,000 homes are being demolished. In short, Detropia is not exactly light-hearted family fun. But this is hardly surprising; while once a thriving metropolis, a promised land of prosperity for southern farm workers, and the home of Motown superstars, these are no longer the associations that come to mind at the mention of Detroit today. Detroit's decay has popped up in Michael Moore's Roger and Me, Ben Hamper's frightening memoire Rivethead, T.J. Sugrue's college course staple The Origins of the Urban Crisis, and, of course, Eminem songs and 8 mile.

We spoke with one-half of the film's directing team, Rachel Grady, about what she hopes Detropia will add to the public perception of the city, and how she stays objective when dealing with such an emotionally charged subject matter.

EMMA BROWN: Hi! I just saw Detropia.

RACHEL GRADY: You saw it? Oh cool! What did you think? We just finished it.

BROWN: It was heartbreaking.

GRADY: Yeah, it's very sad, but I hope that the characters leave some hope with you, because they do with me. They're so strong.

BROWN: That just made it all the more disheartening! How did you first become involved in documentary filmmaking and working with your partner, Heidi?

GRADY: We met working for another filmmaker and I just thought [making documentaries] would be the coolest, best job in the world, and it kind of is! It's sort of like being a journalist: you get to change your topics; it's an education on so many different things all the time. And that's great for curious and short attention span-type people like myself.

BROWN: [laughs] I can relate to that! What made you choose Detroit as a subject?

GRADY: A few reasons; it's my co-director's home turf, she grew up outside of Detroit, her family was born and raised in Detroit and she saw it happen before her eyes and told me about it. Then I had to go there a few times for work, it's shocking, it totally blew me away.

BROWN: What struck you the most?

GRADY: I didn't understand where the people were! It was empty, and that is a very strange thing for a modern metropolis with skyscrapers. [The city] is 140 square miles, it's huge, and it's lost half of its population so it just feels deserted. The question begged was "Why?" It seems so sudden, although [the exodus of people] was in huge spurts, it feels abandoned.

BROWN: The devolution of Detroit is not a new topic—what did you hope to add to people's understanding of what's going on?

GRADY: The humanity, that's what we were hoping to bring to it; the people who are still reeling from what has happened to their city, their identity. I see [Detropia] as a film that makes people question the American identity: what we are going to be, what we are going to call ourselves, how we are going to act and how we are going to treat each other in the next 100 years. You see the history of the United States in the city—it was short, it was dramatic, our arc was pointed and volatile and Detroit very much embodies that. I think it's a very relevant place.

BROWN: How did you find your subjects?

GRADY: We just canvassed the city. Heidi's from there, so we had a base of names and numbers, friends of friends, and we just started talking to people. Good old-fashioned journalism.

BROWN: Your past documentaries have been praised for the "even-handed" manner in which you present your subjects, especially your more controversial subjects such as the Pentecostal children's ministers in Jesus Camp. You meet people at such vulnerable points in their lives, how do you manage to stay uninvolved?

GRADY: It's a matter of trying to get to the story that people want to tell. You don't have to prod much, people will tell the story that they think is important, and that's the story you should be telling, not the one that you think is important. [Our subjects] have much more interesting things to say about the issue, so just let them go, create an environment that is comfortable and let them be themselves, and you will always you get your strongest material.

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 Start Watching at the 16:00 Minute Mark

Indie Wire

"DETROPIA" is a documentary about the economic changes in Detroit.

What's it about? Our film explores the city of Detroit, the country's fastest shrinking city. Is it an isolated case or the canary in the American coal mine?

Directors Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grady say: "We are describing this film as a cinematic tapestry in the sense that we float between multiple characters and situations in order to paint a picture of the city - and the country - today. We hope that we've captured the mood of a city, of the country and its people.

"We had never endeavored to make a film about an entire city. Usually we find a tiny story in an unknown place and eventually the greater meaning emerges. In this case we chose an epic city that we felt we could learn a great deal about this moment in American history. Because we chose the location before the characters, the development process was much longer and our shooting ratio was worse than normal. Going on a gut feeling to a place and then asking it to speak to you is terrifying and required us to go outside our filmic comfort zone in a big way. Thank God, Detroit finally spoke up and told us what to do.

"We feel the film can be a real conversation-generator about this crucial moment in time for all of us. What the hell happened to Detroit to bring it to this desperate place? How did we get here? What will it take to get out of the collective mess we are in, and not just in Detroit? What will the next 100 years of this (fading? challenged?) empire look like? We hope to get a conversation going about the changing American identity and our willingness - or resistance to - adapt? Oh yes, indeed, lots to talk about. Let's get it going!

"It takes years to make a film, countless hours on location and in a dark edit room, sharing your work with so few people. And finally to take it public, to experience it with an audience, to take both criticism and praise - this is where a film takes flight. This is what we look forward to at Sundance. Plus, we love seeing other filmmakers' work and celebrating their accomplishment with them. Also, let's be honest, a distribution deal would be sweet!"

Click HERE for Screening Information!

Erik Prouix, Filmmaker, Lemonade Detroit

What is Detroit‘s Brand?

If you’re not from there, you might only think of Detroit as the city with the massive population contraction. Or the one abandoned by the auto industry. Or the place with all the racial tension.

Or maybe when you watched the Super Bowl last year, you were introduced to a Detroit you hadn’t considered. You saw Eminem driving a Chrysler 200 through a hard-nosed, never-say-die, lunch-pail city with the Joe Louis fist suspended proudly by the riverfront (ironically located just outside of General Motors’ headquarters).

Whatever your impression of Detroit, I can tell you that if you’ve never spent any time there, it’s wrong. You may think you know about the city’s grit, but unless you meet gritty Detroiters, you don’t. You may think you understand the concept of reinventing blight into opportunity, but until you walk through the Russell Industrial Center or the Heidleberg Project, you don’t. You may think that as an enlightened white person, you understand the psychology of blacks who are just a few generations removed from slavery. But until you walk through the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, you don’t. (And even after that, you don’t.)

I’ve spent the better part of two years traveling to The Motor City to film “Lemonade: Detroit,” allowing myself to be absorbed by its zeitgeist, trying to find stories of reinvention that accurately reflect its brand . . . A brand I could have never fully – nor even partially – grasped without the first hand experience of being there.

There are anecdotes of promise everywhere you look that belie what you think you know. I coudn’t begin to list even a tiny fraction of what makes Detroit’s brand so resilient, so proud, so inspiring.

But here are a few stories that have been on my mind lately:

The Green Garage, which what was once an abandoned Model T showroom, has been reinvented into a collaborative workspace for sustainable Detroit entrepreneurs.

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A coalition of 55 small businesses and individuals recently donated $3,500 to purchase a billboard featuring the work of Miguel “BeloZro” Yeoman, the artistic half Detroit based creative firm BeloZro Visual Energy.

The painting, titled “The Rebuild,” displays a trio of futuristic sibling laborers inspired by Ford, Chrysler & General Motors; GM triangulated around the globe working in unison. Along with the art, the billboard features the faces and logos of project funders along with the phrase “Imagine, Detroit working together?”

Due to concerns about potential lawsuits or other forms of retaliation from the Big 3, Lamar Billboard Company required that the logos of Ford Chrysler and General Motors be completely covered before displaying the painting.

The billboard was erected Friday January 13th, and will remain for four weeks. It overlooks I-94 at Second Avenue, and is visible to eastbound travelers on I-94 well as Lodge travelers.

This billboard is the first project by Imagine Detroit Together, is an initiative that was launched this summer by James Feagin and Jerry Paffendorf to find ways to share inspiring ideas and bring Detroiters together.

James is the head of Marketing & Strategic Management for BeloZro Visual Energy, a creative firm based on the Yeoman’s artwork. Jerry Paffendorf’s other projects include Loveland,,, and raising $67,000 to build a statue of Robocop.

The project raised $3,500 to purchase the billboard through The San Francisco based focuses on ‘amplifying ideas that matter” by securing major media outlets such as billboards, television commercials, and bus signs at a discount to broadcast the messages of successful projects.

For more information on the project, visit

Top Tenz


As a country, the United States is probably better characterized by suburbia than by urbanity, by sprawling office parks rather than by dense commercial districts. Nevertheless, the concept of a “downtown”, or a centralized and distinct commercial district, first came into use in America, as cities developed along lines that created stark divisions between the 19th century urban core and the newer, less dense, residential neighborhoods of the 20th century.

The United States boasts countless defined city centers; some of which are small and derelict, while others are among the most impressive in the world. To further examine those commercial cores that tend towards the latter, here is a list of the top ten American downtowns. This list is based on size, vibrancy, architecture, businesses, and general aesthetics. While many smaller cities may boast impressive downtowns, this ranking focuses only on major metropolitan areas.

#9 Detroit

It’s no secret that the city of Detroit has fallen on tough times. Its downtown core has fared much better than the surrounding neighborhoods, but still has its share of vacant buildings and a frequent dearth of foot traffic. Nonetheless, Detroit’s downtown is one of the most architecturally impressive in the country, largely because the city began to decline before others began urban renewal efforts. These efforts would ultimately scar the cores of those cities. Detroit’s downtown, then, is a remarkable architectural testament to pre-World War II styles of construction. It also remains a center of employment in the greater metro areas, and it has revitalized in recent years with the addition of restaurants and sports facilities. And you can’t forget the legendary automobile manufacturing meccas of Ford, General Motors, and Chrysler, the original symbols of 20th century American innovation.

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For More Information, Click HERE!  This is an event you don't want to miss!

Why I Love My City: Downtown Detroit's Big Booster

Nate Berg
The Atlantic Cities

Dan Gilbert has deep roots in Detroit. And deep pockets. The founder and chairman of Quicken Loans is a third generation Detroit native and has become a major force in the city, bringing thousands of his employees into new headquarters downtown and helping to incubate new start-up businesses in the city. In addition to Quicken Loans, Gilbert is also the majority owner of the Cleveland Cavaliers basketball team, and, after a recent spree of purchases, he now owns more than 1.8 million square feet of property in downtown Detroit. This makes him the third largest land owner in Detroit, behind only General Motors and the city itself, according to Crain’s Business.

Gilbert chatted with us about why he’s so involved in downtown Detroit, what he sees for its future, and how his approach to rebuilding the city can benefit his business and others.

You’ve been buying up a lot of property in downtown. Why the focus downtown?

People in their 20s and 30s, the best and brightest coming out of our universities, the vast majority of them want to be in a cool urban core in a hip city. Period. So, if we’re going to retain and maintain talent in our companies and have innovative creative people, we’ve got to make sure that we’re in the right locations that are going to generate the interest of those people. All of our businesses are Internet-related, technology-related, entertainment-related businesses. So thinking we’re going to do that in a suburban setting where people have to walk a couple hundred yards across asphalt in the middle of winter, it’s probably not going cut it for the kind of folks that we’re trying to attract. Kids don’t leave suburban Detroit to go to suburban Chicago or suburban New York or suburban L.A. They’re going to the downtowns. Most of the activity and the kinds of areas and the companies that are attractive to people who are the best and brightest in our view want to be in the urban core.

How are you getting others to follow you downtown?

We created this non-profit academy that trains entrepreneurs called Bizdom U, and another way is through a venture fund we started called Detroit Venture Partners that Magic Johnson, myself and two other local Detroit guys partnered on to fund companies and startup businesses with a big Detroit bent and a Detroit bias. We will invest in other businesses, but primarily it is Detroit companies. And funding Detroit-based ventures for startup businesses. And then we’ve got our real estate piece of it. One of the things people don’t realize about Detroit is that a lot of young people are moving back to downtown, but the inventory is very, very low. Occupancy is at about 98 percent. You can’t find a lot of lofts and apartments and places to live in, so there’s a huge opportunity for real estate developers to actually build residential because there’s just not the inventory. A lot of people think, ‘oh there must be so many vacant places. There isn’t. So we’re looking to do stuff there and partnering with developers on that front as well.

Why do you love Detroit?

I was born here and raised here. My father was born here, my grandfather was born here. I find myself in a fortunate position to be able to, I think, contribute to help leading the city back. And I feel like that’s a great thing to do for the city, but it’s also a great thing to do for our business. We have a “doing good by doing well” strategy here. And the investment in Detroit is one that’s significant and growing, and we’re doing it again so we can help tie all the threads here in Detroit and bring back the kind of downtown that people envision or even maybe have never seen here. We’re also trying to make good investments, and we’ve got values of property that are low by any historical standards. So we’re very excited about it. We think it’s just the beginning. We’ve got about 4,000-plus people we’ve moved down here in the last 18 months. And were going to continue to move more down here and bring in more businesses and do everything we can with a bunch of other people who’ve been working very hard even before we got here and try to make Detroit the comeback city of this decade.

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For more information about "The Next Urban Chef Detroit," check out their Facebook Page HERE!

I love stats, especially ones projecting good news.

According to an annual report based on "80,289 Interstate and Cross-Border Household Goods Relocations from January 1, 2011 through December 31, 2011 by Atlas," Michigan "Migration" is balanced.

What does that mean exactly? For the first time in 6 years, the inbound and outbound is 55% or less of total shipments.

In plain english: the amount of people moving out of Michigan is roughly the same as those moving in.  This has not been the case since 2004.  Now that should put a smile on your face!

Add these findings to a recent article  I posted in late October about Detroit being the predicted leader in the nation for travel in 2012 by TravelClick, this should make the Michigan real estate and hotel industries feel very warm and fuzzy.  Well all of us for that matter :).

Pop culture trivia nights will benefit the Society’s Past>Forward campaign to fund new and expanded exhibits, technology upgrades and more

When did Diana Ross leave The Supremes? Can you name three Bad Boys-era Detroit Pistons?

Shake off the winter blues by testing your Detroit pop culture knowledge. It’s time for 313 Trivia.

The Detroit Historical Society will host 313 Trivia, three upcoming trivia nights at Hard Rock Cafe, 45 Monroe in Detroit, benefiting the Society’s Past>Forward fundraising campaign.

On the first Wednesday of each month from February to April, the public is welcome to team up and vie for the title of unabashed Detroit pop culture experts. 313 Trivia will begin at 6:30 p.m. on Feb. 1; March 7 and again on April 4. There will be a $10 suggested donation per person at the door.

Participants in 313 Trivia may choose to register as a team of three to five people, or register solo and be paired with a team of players. The games will feature five rounds of 10 trivia questions each. The team that takes first place in the competition will receive a complimentary Hard Rock Cafe tab for the evening, gift cards to the Hard Rock Cafe Detroit and two free admission passes each to visit the Detroit Historical Museum.

Second and third place team members will also take home prizes. All 313 Trivia players will enjoy drink and appetizer specials at Hard Rock Cafe Detroit.

Funds raised during the evening will go towards the Detroit Historical Society’s $20.1 million Past>Forward campaign, funding new and expanded exhibits, technology upgrades, educational offerings and enhancements at the Detroit Historical Museum, Dossin Great Lakes Museum and the Detroit Historical Society Collection. Detroit 313, the Society’s young professionals fundraising effort, is concurrently seeking 313 new members who will each pledge a total of $313 over the next three years to the Society as part of the Past>Forward effort.

“The Detroit Historical Society is committed to the continued growth of Detroit and the region, and we see 313 Trivia as another exciting way to celebrate the music, sports and pop culture events that bring us all together in the Motor City,” said Lisa Anga, director of development at the Detroit Historical Society. “It seemed a natural fit to host our trivia nights at Hard Rock Cafe, a destination for music and memorabilia in Detroit.”

To participate in 313 Trivia, players may register online at or at the door.

All trivia questions will center on Detroit-based music, sports or entertainment, topics which directly tie into one of the Detroit Historical Museum’s upcoming additions. In 2012 the Society will unveil the Allesee Gallery of Culture. Visitors will recognize items in the exhibit as fundamentally Detroit – from Hudson’s to Gordie Howe, Motown to Albert Kahn. The gallery, established by local philanthropists Bob and Maggie Allesee, will also feature an interactive Culture Lab where guests will be able to make music, poetry or a video montage.

Learn more at

Watch at the 26:30 mark
Detroiters now have a dining choice that not only nourishes the body, but the local economy as well.

As of Tuesday, Jan. 10, COLORS-Detroit will serve up an eclectic lunch and dinner menu that offers superbly and ethically prepared meals at 311 East Grand River, Detroit, across from Paradise Valley (formerly Harmonie Park).

It is the second such restaurant in the country. The first COLORS restaurant was opened in New York City in 2006 by restaurant workers from the World Trade Center who were displaced by the 9-11 tragedy.

The Restaurant Opportunities Center of Michigan (ROC-Michigan) founded the restaurant and training center to help hundreds of Detroiters secure living wage jobs, promote access to fresh and healthy food, including sourcing food from the city’s flourishing urban farms, and to incubate collectively owned food enterprises.

“We are committed to improving the working conditions for Southeast Michigan’s 134,000 restaurant workers, many of whom work for low pay with little to no benefits,” said Minsu Longiaru, director, ROC-Michigan. “COLORS-Detroit is just one way we can champion better working conditions for restaurant workers.”

While diners will enjoy knowing they’re supporting a novel community effort, at the end of the day, the food needs to taste great – and COLORS-Detroit delivers.

“We are celebrating the wonderful multicultural cuisine in our community while highlighting local ingredients,” said Phil Jones, executive chef and general manager, COLORS-Detroit. “For example, our Greek Meatballs are a tribute to the history of Detroit’s Greektown community made from local grass-fed beef and lamb, feta cheese from Zimmerman’s Creamery and fresh herbs sourced from GROWN IN DETROIT and D-Town Farms.” Jones continued, “Although our menu is international in scope, it’s accessible. It is an opportunity to expose metro Detroiters to food with international flair in a non-intimidating way.”

COLORS-Detroit was made possible by grants from the W. K. Kellogg Foundation, the C.S. Mott Group for Sustainable Food Systems, Detroit LISC, the Detroit Regional Workforce Fund, the Hudson-Webber Foundation, the Kresge Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Keeping the Dream Alive (the UAW Foundation) and the United Way of Southeast Michigan.

About the Restaurant Opportunities Center of Michigan With over 750 members, the Restaurant Opportunities Center of Michigan (ROC-MI) is the state’s largest organization of restaurant workers. ROC-Michigan is an affiliate of ROC-United, a national restaurant worker organization founded after September 11, 2001 by restaurant workers displaced from the World Trade Center. ROC-United seeks to improve wages and working conditions for the nation’s low-wage restaurant workforce. ROC-United is the only national restaurant workers’ organization in the United States. Despite having more than 10 million restaurant workers and an economic impact of $1.7 billion annually, the restaurant industry is less than 1 percent unionized nationwide. Until ROC-United’s growth and development, the lack of organization left millions of restaurant workers vulnerable to abuse and exploitation around the country. Through participatory research and policy work, employer engagement, workplace justice campaigns, membership and leadership development, and more, ROC-United has become a powerful national vehicle for restaurant workers to lift their collective voice on issues affecting all low-wage workers, including the minimum wage, paid sick days, compliance with basic employment standards, and lack of health care. For more information on ROC-Michigan please visit,
Detroit Creative Corridor Center (the DC3) Director Matthew Clayson will travel abroad this week to share the best practices being used to accelerate Detroit’s creative economy as part of the North Africa Partnership for Economic Opportunity “Creative Industries” delegation to Algiers, Algeria and a panelist for the 2nd Annual U.S.–Maghreb Entrepreneurship Conference in Marrakech, Morocco.

Clayson departs Wednesday for Algeria as part of a four-person “Creative Industries” delegation that includes Marete Webster from Americans for the Arts, John Cimineo from Creative Leaps International, amongst others. As part of the “Creative Industries” delegation, he will provide entrepreneurial training to Algerian creative practitioners. His topic of focus will be digital marketing and tools to reach a global audience.

Then, on January 16, 17 and 18 Clayson will be presenting at and participating in the Conference which has the goal of bringing together private, social, and cultural sector entrepreneurs to identify and implement specific projects and programs in the areas of entrepreneurship, arts & culture, education & research and science & technology.

“Believe it or not, Detroit and Algiers share similar assets and challenges,” said Clayson. “I look forward to sharing the best practices the Detroit Creative Corridor Center is using to accelerate our creative economy in Detroit in hopes of providing relevant examples of resources, tactics and strategies that can help advance the work of creative practitioners and grow creative economies in the Maghreb.”

The U.S.–Maghreb Entrepreneurship Conference is sponsored by the U.S. State Department, U.S. North Africa Partnership for Economic Opportunity (NAPEO), Partners for a New Beginning (PNB), and The Aspen Institute. To learn more visit

About Detroit Creative Corridor Center 
Detroit Creative Corridor Center (DC3) was established in 2010 to energize the creative economy in Detroit. Offering a suite of services and initiatives designed to accelerate the growth of creative sector industries and practitioners; DC3 is striving to transform Detroit into a global center of creative innovation. DC3 is a joint venture between Business Leaders for Michigan and the College for Creative Studies.

In another positive sign for the U.S. auto industry, General Motors took the top spot in China sales in 2011, displacing Japanese automaker Toyota to take a dominating share of what the Detroit automaker called its biggest international market.

GM sold 2.547 million vehicles in China in 2011, up 8.3% from the same period a year ago. Toyota, on the other hand, sold 883,000 vehicles in 2011. At 4% year-over-year growth, that’s Toyota’s slowest sales increase in China since 2004.

Ford’s China division posted 2011 sales of 519,390, up 7%.

After many years in the gutter, U.S. automakers seem to be on the rebound. As Forbes’ Joann Muller noted from the North American International Auto Show, “[U.S. automakers are] gaining market share, raking in profits, cranking up production, and welcoming consumers who are finally in the mood to spend.” Detroit’s Big Three are on the comeback after GM and Chrysler were bailed out in 2009, while Ford was on the ropes. Now, they seem to be dancing around the ring.

On the losing side we find Toyota. The large Japanese automaker suffered the effects of the massive earthquake-cum-tsunami of early 2011, which disrupted its production and reduced its market share. As it repairs its supply chain, Toyota aims to take its China sales north of one million in 2012.

GM is the clear outperformer in China. The largest of the Detroit automakers, GM sold one truck or car every 12 seconds in 2011. The company operates 11 joint ventures in China and two wholly owned foreign enterprises, and counts with more than 35,000 employees. It has expanded its dealership network to 2,700 and now covers all of China’s mainland provinces.

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