'Shark Tank' Update: The Sharks' Sour Reaction to a Vinegar Company Now Tastes Sweet
Photo: Shark Tank
Just because an entrepreneur walks away without a deal from the billionaire moguls on Shark Tank doesn’t mean the pitch was a failure. In many cases, the effort to get Mark Cuban, Lori Grenier or even Kevin “Mr. Wonderful” O’Leary to invest can itself turn out to be a huge success.

That’s what happened to Jess Sanchez-McClary. The CEO of Detroit’s McClary Bros. originally pitched her drinking-vinegars business on the season premiere of the ABC-TV reality show in late September, seeking $100,000 for 15 percent of the company.

Her product was drinking vinegars, a modern version of a colonial-era cocktail and soda mixer made with natural and organic ingredients. She came up with it while studying preservative techniques at culinary school, and told the sharks that her mixes are aimed at the growing craft cocktail movement.

The Sharks weren't initially impressed. Not only did she not get an investment, she got an aggressive dismissal from O’Leary, whose criticism went over the line in the opinion of guest shark Ashton Kutcher. The reason: O’Leary's comment to Sanchez-McClary that, “Let’s be honest -- it’s four guys and dog that drink this stuff. Why are you doing this to yourself?”

Kutcher actually called him out: “You’re belittling people and that’s not OK,” he told O’Leary. “She gave you an answer, and if the answer’s not suitable, that’s fine, but you don’t have to belittle people.”

That may have buoyed Sanchez-McClary’s spirits. But what happened immediately after the Friday episode aired probably did even more: McClary’s website took in 1,000 new orders the very next day. By Monday, Sanchez-McClary was able to say, “We have done now, on the website, as much in sales as we did on the website the whole of last year.”

In the three months since, things have gotten even better. Sanchez-McClary now says she’s doubled her full-time staff from three to six people, reopened a tasting room to draw in retail customers, connected with several distributors and grown the business so much that she’s opening a second production facility next month.

And her bottom line? She estimates today that sales prompted by her Shark Tank appearance have brought in $200,000 – more than she was seeking from the sharks in the first place. “Before the holidays started, we had already done more than twice in revenue than the amount we had requested from the sharks,” Sanchez-McClary says. “I really don’t need an investor anymore.”

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While school is out for winter break, curious minds of all ages will enjoy plenty of fun and educational activities at the Michigan Science Center (MiSci). Highlighting December’s activities are MiSci’s 3rd birthday celebration, showings of Jerusalem in the IMAX® Dome theater, gift making workshops, holiday camps and more.

“We’ve put together a range of engaging STEM programs for kids and adults that really make you look at STEM in a different way!” said Dr. Tonya Matthews, president and CEO of the Michigan Science Center. “Combined with our five theaters, live stage shows, and interactive exhibits, a visit to MiSci is a great way to spend time with family and friends this holiday season.”

MiSci’s Birthday Celebration
A big draw in the coming weeks will be MiSci’s 3rd birthday celebration, taking place from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Dec. 26. Sponsored by MGM Grand Detroit - Touching Communities, Touching LivesTM, this celebration gives back to the community with free general admission. The party will feature a community birthday cake and special activities.

“We’re thrilled to give the gift of free admission and to brighten up the holidays with a bit of science cheer,” said Dee Dee McKinney Odom, director of public affairs for MGM Grand Detroit. “As a dedicated community partner, this is just one of many ways we’re making a difference locally.”

The immersive IMAX® film, Jerusalem, plunges audiences into the ancient alleys and vibrant neighborhoods of Jerusalem’s Old City and explores how archaeology is uncovering secrets of Jerusalem's past. Additionally, viewers get the chance to discover why this tiny piece of land is sacred to billions of people, through stories told by members of the three major religions who call Jerusalem home.

The film runs at MiSci through Jan. 3, at the following times:
5 p.m. on Dec. 21, 22, 23, 28, 29, 30 and 31
6 p.m. on Dec. 19, 20, 26, 27 and Jan. 2-3
Cost to see just the film (includes film only, does not include general admission) is $3 for members, $6 for children ages 2-12 and $8 for adults.

Gift Workshops
With the festive spirit in mind, MiSci is hosting gift-making workshops, Dec. 19-20. Surrounded by the fun and inspiring environment of Toytopia, a limited engagement exhibit, participants will become toy builders by creating a holiday present for somebody special. There will be four to six gift options for attendees to choose to build, which cost $5 or $10 to make. Kids also will get the chance to wrap their presents during the workshop.

Holiday Adventures
In addition to gift-making workshops, MiSci will be engaging kids with Holiday Adventures at MiSci the week of Dec. 28. First through third graders can participate in Toy Adventures, Dec. 28-Dec. 31, while discovering and building antique toys, creating light-up jewelry, exploring the world of electricity, playing brain games, experimenting with silly putty and more. Fourth through eighth graders have a larger task at hand, with the chance to learn about simple and complex machines, while building a refurbished bike to take home. With the assistance of Detroit Eastside Community Collaborative and Back Alley Bikes, attendees will learn how a bike’s levers, gears, axles and wheels function.

First through third graders have the choice to attend one or all days, while fourth through eighth graders must attend all four days in order to participate. Both camps include lunch, exploration time in MiSci’s exhibits and other hands-on activities. Visit the MiSci website for more information on Holiday Adventures.

Last Chance to See A T. rex Named Sue
The largest, most complete, best-preserved T. rex ever – A T. rex Named Sue – which has been on display in the museum’s ITC Gallery since early October, will be leaving MiSci on Jan. 3. Dinosaur enthusiasts won’t want to miss their last chance to see the life-sized skeleton cast of Sue, or the separate cast of Sue’s 5-foot long skull that roars and growls, among the other interactive activities incorporated into this awe-inspiring exhibit.

MiSci After Dark: Holiday Mixology
MiSci invites science fans, age 21 and over, to spend their third Thursday at After Dark, MiSci’s monthly happy hour. From 5 - 8 p.m. on Dec. 17, After Dark will feature demos with a mixologist, vintage video competitions, extreme dot-to-dot challenges and more. Cost is just $10 per person and includes one drink ticket. Additional drinks are available for purchase. Purchase tickets online or at the door.

Extended Holiday Hours
While schools are out for holiday break, the Science Center has extended its hours of operation. Hours over the holiday are as follows:
10 a.m. – 5 p.m. on Dec. 21, 22, 23, 28, 29, 30, 31
10 a.m. – 6 p.m. on Dec. 26 and Jan. 2
Noon – 6 p.m. on Dec. 27 and Jan. 3
Closed Dec. 24, 25 and Jan. 1.

This is a HUGE Win For Detroit!

Detroit has become the first U.S. city to receive the “city of design” designation from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization.

It will join 47 other cities from 33 countries as a member of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network, which is made up of cities with a strong legacy in one of seven creative fields, from gastronomy and literature to design.

Member cities commit to collaborate, promote creativity and cultural industries, share best practices, strengthen participation in cultural life and integrate culture in economic and social development strategies and plans.

Becoming a member of the network enables Detroit’s design community “to learn and exchange best practices from network cities worldwide, amplifying our existing efforts to build a better city and region through the power of design,” said Ellie Schneider, interim executive director of the Detroit Creative Corridor Center, which led the effort to secure the designation to promote growth in the city’s design industries.

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“In hdl we trust”
Dequindre Cut. Photo: Hygienic Dress Leqgue

Port Austin is becoming an art destination. In 2013, the Port Austin community teamed with Detroit street artists hygienic dress league (HDL) on an open-air, large-scale installation using two sides of a 60-foot barn in Port Austin. In 2015, the Port Austin community worked with internationally-renowned Detroit artist, Scott Hocking, on a second barn project. For the project, Hocking disassembled a quickly deteriorating large barn, using the materials to invert the structure and construct a site-specific, ark-like sculpture. These installations garnered national press and have attracted visitors to Port Austin from around the nation.

The projects have helped position the Port Austin area as a progressive rural innovator for creative place making, fostering increased economic development through tourism – all while placing the artists and their work in the national spotlight. After two successes, there is great momentum for further large-scale, site-specific projects.

Port Austin has set a goal to complete 8 installation art projects in the next 8 years for a total of 10 large scale installations. Goals for this grant are to continue this momentum, including: • Enhance livability and increase visitation for the area through creative place making. • Drive positive economic-impact outcomes through increased tourism and population growth. • Provide opportunities for Detroit-area artists to apply their work in a new context and reach new audiences, both in the area where their new work will be located and through national/international media attention. • Provide a platform for a unique cultural exchange of ideas between urban and rural communities that will benefit both through deeper understanding of each other.

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Over the past few years — buried by high rents and intimidating mortgage rates — many young creatives have dreamed of packing it up and moving to Detroit, where they seem to be giving away real estate. Some intrepid folks have actually made the move, and (as often happens in creative “it” towns of the moment) a hopping food scene has developed.

One such bold spirit is Marc Djozlija of Wright & Company — recently nominated for the James Beard Award for Best Chef, Great Lakes Region, 2015. Though Djozlija is a Detroit native, he booked it out of town as soon as he turned 18, and started his career with Wolfgang Puck. After an 11 year stint in Las Vegas, the Wolfgang Puck crew told him they wanted to open a restaurant in Detroit. At first, Djozlija couldn’t imagine anyone wanting to build a restaurant in his hometown (who would come?), but once back home, he quickly decided there was no place he’d rather be.


Located in an old building that looks like a castle, Parks and Rec serves innovative takes on breakfast items. They are not afraid to push the boundaries with interesting ingredients. They share a kitchen with Republic, their sister restaurant, which specializing in nose to tail dining.

Smoked leek strata, eggs en cocotte with bacon jam and the corn cakes are my personal favorites. I like the fact that they offer some of the dishes in smaller portions so that you can try many things. Be prepared to wait though, as their 32 seats fill up fast.

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A photo posted by PM (@elsuperbob) on

Best Places to Travel in 2016

To compile our annual list of the best places to travel in the upcoming year, T+L editors thoroughly and meticulously consider a variety of factors. Which under-the-radar gems are most exciting to our network of contributing writers and global correspondents? Which destinations are our A-List travel specialists fielding requests for? Which classic vacation spots are starting to emerge—but for entirely new and compelling reasons? Which global events and changes in travel restrictions have made certain destinations easier to get to?

This year’s list ranges from the Andaman Islands, off India (which impressed even the most discerning ocean-lover, Jacques Cousteau), to an unspoiled stretch of the Caribbean, and nine other beach destinations with sun, sand, and beautiful views. For food lovers, we’ve got everything from Ghent, Belgium (where a group of young chefs is leading the culinary revolution and plans for a massive food hall are under way), to the canal town of Aarhus, Denmark, which is stepping out of Copenhagen’s shadow with three Michelin-starred restaurants of its own.

Closer to home, once-overlooked spots have proven themselves worthy of another glance. The bike-friendly town of Richmond, Virginia, has standout architecture, a burgeoning art and food scene, and a brand-new design hotel. Detroit’s renewal has been on our radar for a while, and with signs of life springing up in its abandoned buildings—including a hotel that set up shop in a historic fire-department headquarters—it’s finally earned a much-deserved spot on this list. And in San Antonio, the Roman and Williams–designed Hotel Emma, in a former brewhouse, sits at the heart of the restaurant- and shopping-packed Pearl district.

27. Detroit, Michigan 

In a few short years, Detroit has gone from being a cautionary tale to a success story, and now bills itself as “America’s Great Comeback City.” This is more than just clever marketing—formerly desolate stretches of the riverfront, city streets, and buildings have been resurrected for locals and visitors alike. The first Aloft hotel in Michigan is open in the historic David Whitney Building, and the Detroit Marriott at the Renaissance Center recently unveiled a $30 million renovation. And the historic fire department headquarters across from the Cobo Center will be reborn as the boutique 100-room Foundation Hotel in early 2016. Aside from increasing its hotel offerings, the city has several other new draws: the West Riverfront Park, great for biking, running, and fishing; and the DNR Outdoor Adventure Center with a freshwater aquarium and man-made waterfall and climbing tree. Almost 100 new restaurants, along with breweries and distilleries, opened in the past two years (such as Detroit Water Ice Factory, a dessert shop from writer Mitch Albom, and Kuzzo’s Chicken & Waffles, former NFL cornerback Ron Bartell’s effort to continue to revamp the Livernois Avenue of Fashion), with more on the way. Now that retailers like John Varvatos and Carhartt have opened outposts in the city, and Nike is making plans to join the fray, Detroit might not be able to sell its comeback story for much longer—it’s decidedly back. —Corina Quinn

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The 43rd annual Noel Night will take place on Saturday, December 5th, from 5:00-10:00 p.m. in Detroit’s Midtown District.

Over 70 institutions, including the Detroit Institute of Arts, the Michigan Science Center, the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History, the Detroit Historical Museum, and the Detroit Public Library, will open their doors to the public free of charge during this Cultural Center-wide holiday open house.

Activities include horse-drawn carriage rides, holiday shopping, family craft activities and performances by over 200 area music, theatre, and dance groups, and other special performances.

The evening’s festivities culminate with a community sing-along on Woodward Avenue led by the Salvation Army Band—a long-standing Noel Night tradition. Noel Night activities take place in Midtown Detroit, and free shuttle service is offered between participating venues.

Convenient parking is available in area lots.

Noel Night is produced by Midtown Detroit, Inc., a nonprofit community development organization that supports economic growth in Detroit's Midtown district.

Call 313-420-6000 or visit http://www.noelnight.org/ for additional information.

More than five years ago, 11,341 unopened, untested rape kits were found in a Detroit Police Department storage unit, representing thousands of unprosecuted sexual assaults, thousands of sex offenders still on the streets and thousands of victims without the justice they deserve. 

Enough SAID (Enough Sexual Assault in Detroit) was formed to bring victims that justice.

To date, 10,000 rape kits have been tested—identifying 2,616 suspects and 549 serial rapists. But, there’s still so much more to be done. 

Help Enough Said raise the money to test the remaining kits, investigate and prosecute the cases. Let’s remind victims they will not be forgotten, they will not be abandoned, and they are not alone.