Mind Body Green
By Dr. Joel Kahn

I was born in Detroit long ago and have since witnessed its strengths and weaknesses firsthand. I've worked in the city and surrounding suburbs for years, and have cared for its citizens in hospitals, clinics and my office practice.

And I can truly say that today, the spirit and pride in Detroit has never been higher. The greater Detroit area is tailor-made to be a wellness mecca, with its beautiful international waterways, parks and recreational areas to encourage a variety of outdoor activities. Here are some of the best places to pursue health and wellness in the Motor City and surrounding suburbs.

I get outside.

The Dequindre Cut is a former Grand Trunk Railroad line that is now a 20-foot wide paved path for walkers, runners and bikers. It was extended in the spring of 2016 to reach the Detroit Eastern Market and is crowded with families enjoy outdoor exercise. The urban artwork and graffiti provide a local color.

NetworkingOut is group that organizes runs and boot camps in the city with the goal of exercising the body while providing an opportunity to meet other people of similar spirit.

I try out local fitness classes.

Citizen Yoga has a center in Detroit and suburban Royal Oak and has developed a loyal following under the careful teaching of Kacee Must, who spent several years studying on an ashram in Pune, India. The lunchtime classes in Detroit give office workers an opportunity to get on and off their mat and back to work with better energy and mindfulness.

Detroit Body Garage led by Terra Castro is a former bank that has been transformed into a unique community fitness center that offers boot camps, children workshops, yoga, and community events. Castro recently opened her gym to a fun run led by Rich Roll to support healthy plant based nutrition in Detroit.

Click HERE For The Full Article!!! 

The QLINE will depart the Penske Technical Center at approximately 9:35 am and reach the Warren Avenue station around 10:30 am. It will then be attached to a vehicle and towed the full 6.6-mile loop as part of the regular testing protocol. No passengers will be on board.

ZAGAT's 26 Hottest Food Cities of 2016

It was an incredible year for dining across the U.S. in 2016. With chefs from NY, Chicago and SF moving to smaller markets like Denver, Charlotte, Seattle and Charleston (among others), culinary innovation is booming in cities big and small. But which food town had the biggest growth spurt this year? For one final look back, we've asked editors around the country to make a case for the city they believe had the biggest year in food by assessing the number of exciting new openings, award recognition and national media attention. Then we let some of the top food media brass weigh in on which locales were most exciting. 
Image result for selden standard
Photo: Marvin Shaouni
No. 13: Detroit, MI
The Motor City has gone through a lot of, shall we say, changes over the last few decades. Celebrity chef and James Beard award-winner Michael Symon is often credited with kick-starting the city's food revival when he opened Roast in 2008. Now, Roast alums have opened some of the city’s hottest and most critically acclaimed spots, like Selden Standard, which this year garnered chef Andy Hollyday his second James Beard award nomination. Nick Janutol, who cut his teeth at top-rated restaurants like Eleven Madison Park in New York and Ria in Chicago, also picked up a James Beard nom this year for his work at Forest Grill. And Top Chef contestant James Rigato, of Hazel Park's year-old Mabel Gray, also received a James Beard award nomination, and won acclaim from Eater's Bill Addison with a spot on his Best New Restaurants in America list. Adorable new pastry shop Sister Pie got some love from both Eater and Bon Appetit, earning a nomination for their best new restaurant lists. Other big openings in 2016 include ultrahip Thai spot Katoi from chef Brad Greenhill; Grey Ghost Detroit, which was opened by two well-known Chicago chefs (yes, chefs are leaving other cities to come to Detroit now!); and Chinese-American restaurant The Peterboro, opened by the owners of much-loved Motown spots Wright & Co. and Sugar House. And there's more in store: Twice-nominated James Beard Rising Star of the Year Garrett Lipar's new tasting table spot Albena and Townhouse owner Jeremy Sasson's new modern steakhouse Prime + Proper are two of the city's most anticipated restaurants for 2017. Standbys also got their due: Classic Lebanese spot Al Ameer became the first Michigan restaurant to win the JBF America's Classic award this year.
Meanwhile, Detroit's influence elsewhere continues to grow with the rise of Detroit-style pizza in NYC (Emmy Squared, Talde's new Massoni) as well as expats the Sussman brothers opening two Detroit-inspired concepts in Brooklyn, including a short-lived homage to the hometown icon, the Coney Island diner. Will we see more NYC chefs expanding to Detroit? You betcha. It was also announced this year that NYC Italian chef Andrew Carmellini would be in charge of the food at the upcoming Shinola Hotel in Detroit, opening in 2018.
Click HERE For The Full Article!!!!!

5 Industrial Cities Making America’s Rust Belt Shine Again


Shedding its label as Motor City and quickly reimagining its entrepreneurial roots, Detroit is attracting new creative companies like Shinola, a brand that’s reinventing the art of craftsmanship by producing entirely American-built watches and bikes. During a visit, discover the restaurants, bars, and public art facilities shaping Detroit’s future.

Where to Stay
In the next year alone, a host of new hotels are set to open in downtown Detroit: From Foundation Hotel’s renovation planned to finish in early 2017 to The Shinola Hotel, scheduled
 to open in 2018, there’s a reason big hospitality names are inking deals in the city. Basing yourself at the newly opened Trumbull & Porter hotel, enjoy a luxe stay in the city’s first boutique property, located in the historic Corktown neighborhood. Cycle the town using on-property rentals from Detroit Bikes, and visit the hotel’s art-inspired courtyard in the evenings for live music. For the art lovers, opt for a stay at Aloft Detroit, located in the historic David Whitney Building next to Grand Circus Park.

Where to Eat and Drink

Myriad eateries have opened in Detroit in the past three years, elevating the city’s culinary culture one outpost at a time. Book a table at the James Beard–nominated Mabel Gray, in Hazel Park, to eat chef James Rigato’s modern, seasonal cuisine.  Visit another James Beard semifinalist at Selden Standard, where chef Andy Hollyday serves wood-fired-oven fare. Dine on Thai plates at cult favorite Katoi and gnocchi and cannoli at La Rondinella in Eastern Market. Order small plates at the convivial Wright & Company and sip frozen margaritas and down boilermakers at The Skip. End your culinary crawl with a nightcap at swanky outposts like Standby and Sugar House.

Click HERE For The Full Article! 

Now celebrating 44 years, Noel Night will be held Saturday, December 3rd, 2016, from 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. True to its roots, Noel Night continues to be a Cultural Center-wide “Open House,” celebrating the city’s diverse holiday traditions amid the state’s premier arts and cultural institutions, historic churches, galleries, and ever-growing circle of small businesses and restaurants, providing the perfect backdrop for a festive evening packed full of performances to enjoy with family and friends—all free of charge.

Horse-drawn carriage rides, carolers, music, dance, theatre, children’s make & take activities, unique shopping, holiday delectables, and visits with Santa are all part of the evening’s festivities. Noel Night continues to grow each year, now featuring 100 different venues and recently attracted 40,000 visitors in 2015. Over 200 performances are sure to bring the sounds of the season to life.

Click HERE for the Full Noel Night Schedule, Special Installations, Parking & Directions! 

Out of the Box: Detroit’s Bon Bon Bon

Crafting funky chocolates in a Rosie the Riveter bandanna and coveralls, Alexandra Clark of Bon Bon Bon gives froufrou candy-making a Detroit-style update. Here’s how.

She plays nice. And naughty. Alex adored her high school job at a scoop shop. “The thing I really loved about ice cream is what I love about chocolate,” she says. “You get to be with people when they’re being naughty. Not forbidden, not risqué, but a little naughty."

She’s no Forrest Gump. With a box of Alexandra Clark chocolates, you always know what you’re gonna get. Her $3 bonbons are thin chocolate shells (boxes themselves, really) with no top, so the filling is exposed. The design is a metaphor: “We are an open and honest business.” Rather than convey an air of finnicky perfection, her staff shares kitchen mishaps on Instagram, to the glee of adoring fans.

Click HERE For The Full Article! 

The Detroit Guide

Detroit is not unfamiliar with change and reinvention, and yet for all its complexity, the Motor City is often primarily thought of as the land of automobiles. While this is undeniably a piece of Detroit’s fascinating narrative, the city has a great deal more to offer, particularly in the creative arts, which have long played a prominent role in Detroit’s past (from original urban murals to an iconic record label), and in continuing to shape the ever-changing city today. 

Museums like MOCAD share the work of brilliant Detroit artists with natives and visitors alike, while also making the case that Detroit is a destination for a diverse, international range of art. Throughout the city, there are extraordinary examples of storied architecture. In rare record shops, music from earlier decades lives on, while contemporary indie bands play in a mix of new venues and old (outrageously awesome) dive bars. 

Neighborhoods like Midtown (museum district, home to DIA and a transformed retail experience), Downtown (encompasses all of the city’s major stages from economic to operatic and athletic), and Corktown (a hipster dream) have seen waves of new chefs and restaurants come onto the scene. 

Several new boutique hotels are promised to debut in the next year or two. So, while what in part makes Detroit cool is that it doesn’t have all the familiar amenities and trends of frequently touristed cities, it is undeniably a city of reinvention, and we expect this guide to evolve with it.

Click HERE For The Full Article! 

For the second year in a row, the Southwest Detroit Business Association (SDBA) presents Holy Mole! Mexican Mole Contest from 3 to 6 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 20 at Ste. Anne’s de Detroit Catholic Church located at 1000 Sainte Anne St., Detroit. The event celebrates the cooking talents of 15 pre-registered competitors who will each prepare their own rendition of homemade mole sauce, a hallmark of Mexican cooking and culinary symbol of the country’s mixed indigenous and European heritage.

“Last year’s Holy Mole! event was a tremendous success,” said SDBA President Kathy Wendler. “We had a standing-room-only audience that not only enjoyed the competition, but also appreciated the opportunity to purchase a variety of homemade foods and traditional products from local Latina entrepreneurs. This year, we anticipate more people joining us for this wonderful spotlight on Southwest Detroit’s Mexican culture and community.”

Mole is the national dish of Mexico and is most commonly served with meat. The mole is made to be the main focus of the meal, and is traditionally served during special occasions or festivities. The recipe can vary depending on which region it originates. On average, mole includes 28 ingredients and takes several hours to perfect.

Holy Mole! Mexican Mole Contest competitors will be judged on three categories: complexity of the recipe; overall flavor; and texture. Participants can receive up to five points for each individual category. Awards will be presented to the top three places and include: a $500 cash prize for the first place winner; a $250 gift certificate to E&L Supermercado for the second place winner; and a $150 gift certificate to Honey Bee Market – La Colmena for the third place winner.

The event is free of charge and spectators are encouraged to come and watch the contest unfold while enjoying traditional Mexican food items that will be available for purchase, including the mole sauce created by competitors for $10 by the half pound. In addition to the mole sauce, other traditional Mexican food items, such as tamales, empanadas and Mexican desserts, will be available for purchase.

“We are very pleased to have last year’s judges join us once again for the competition,” said Holy Mole! Event Coordinator Martina Guzman. “They include chef and proprietor of El Barzon Restaurant Norberto Garrita, Mexican historian and community activist Maria Elena Rodriguez, and chef and proprietor of El Asador Restaurant Luis Garza. In addition to our judges, we also would like to thank our many sponsors, volunteers and participants who make this event possible.”


Henry Ford Health System will participate in its second-annual #GivingTuesday, a global day dedicated to giving, by hosting an event featuring cheerleaders and players from the Detroit Lions at Hard Rock Cafe.

#GivingTuesday donations and event proceeds will benefit Game On Cancer, SandCastles Grief Support Program and the Henry Ford School and Community Based Health program. Henry Ford Health System aims to raise $50,000 to benefit these programs.

Donations can be made on site during the event, via phone by calling (313) 876-1031 or online at henryford.com/givingday.

7:30 a.m. – 7 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 29, 2016
7:30 – 9 a.m.: Breakfast for a Better Detroit (Invite Only)
11 a.m. – 7 p.m.: $20 all-inclusive meal available at Hard Rock Café, with proceeds benefiting     #GivingTuesday
11 a.m. – 2 p.m.: Guest servers, the Detroit Lions cheerleaders
2 – 4 p.m.: Meet and greet with the Detroit Lions mascot, Roary
4 – 7 p.m.: Past and present Detroit Lions Legends on site for meet and greet, and to answer phone bank donation calls

Hard Rock Cafe
45 Monroe Ave
Detroit, MI 48226
(313) 964-7625

For More Information CLICK HERE!

November 18
5 p.m. - Midnight
Free admission!
A spectacular evening of stage and rink performances featuring award-winning vocalist Aaron Neville, Olympic gold medal figure skaters Meryl Davis & Charlie White!

Preferred Viewing Rink Side
4 – 8 p.m. (Enter on East Plaza)
Admission: $10 donation - Proceeds benefit Campus Martius Park

Spectacular entertainment featuring:

♦ Aaron Neville | Grammy-winning R&B singer and musical icon known as one of the most recognizable voices in American music with hits such as, “Tell It Like It Is.”

♦ Meryl Davis & Charlie White | 2014 Olympic gold medalists and two-time WorldChampion ice dancers, recently featured on ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars.”

Enjoy more holiday entertainment from:

• Opera singer Kisma Jordan • String ensemble NuClassica • The Arctic Figure Skating Club • Fraser Figure Skating Club • Dearborn Senior Crystallettes • Detroit Skating Club • The University of Michigan Figure Skating Club • The Michigan Opera Theatre Children’s Chorus • Make-A-Wish Michigan

Special Features
• Warm up under the big tent with Detroit-based band Lucy’s Brown Seville, food, local and craft beers, and cocktails. | $10 general admission and $5 for kids 12 and under. Tickets at the door.
• The Salvation Army Kettle Campaign Kick-off | 5:30 – 6:15 p.m.
• Channel 955 Official Rink Opening Party | 9 p.m. – Midnight.
• Family Fun Tent, hosted by The Salvation Army
• Free hot chocolate provided by DTE Energy Foundation
• Free cinnamon rolls in the IKEA Varming Tent
• Horse drawn carriage rides
• A variety of Metro Detroit’s finest food trucks
• Visit with Santa

Winter Magic Weekends kicks off on Saturday, November 19th! Themed holiday cocktail parties to enjoy with friends and family. 21+ event.

Ally announced it has placed Ally Lucky Pennies that could be worth $1,000 each in 10 cities around the country. The initiative seeks to demonstrate the importance of valuing every cent, while encouraging Americans to look for opportunities to save. The multi-city search invites people in these cities to be on the lookout for the 100 Ally Lucky Pennies, each of which is redeemable for $1,000.

Beginning today, people in Austin, Texas, Charlotte, N.C., Chicago, Denver, Detroit, Los Angeles, Miami, New York City, San Diego and Washington, D.C. can try to find the Ally Lucky Pennies in their cities. When found, Ally Lucky Pennies can be redeemed online from Oct.18 through Dec. 31, 2016 at AllyLuckyPenny.com. Finders can enter the redemption code located on the back of the Ally Lucky Penny on the site to begin verification as a potential prize winner. Clues to Ally Lucky Penny locations and updates on those already found will be provided on social media throughout the campaign.                                                                    

"Ally's Lucky Penny initiative is a great example of how we Do It Right for consumers by inviting them to be a part of the search, thus raising awareness and creating opportunities for new conversations about money," said Andrea Riley, chief marketing officer. "We hope that people will have fun searching for Ally Lucky Pennies in their cities and that the campaign will inspire people to look at money in a different way."

Ally interviewed passersby in some of the 10 participating markets and asked for their thoughts about picking up pennies off the street. The response was overwhelmingly one-sided. Ally Lucky Penny aims to influence perception around the value of a penny and cause consumers to think twice about leaving any money uncollected. The Ally Lucky Pennies placed in participating cities are slightly larger than a regular penny, with the Ally logo on the front and the number 100,000 on the back, signifying how many cents the Ally Lucky Penny could be worth.

"We believe every penny counts when it comes to saving, and it's important for everyone to understand that routinely saving, even the smallest amounts, is important to generating wealth over time," said Diane Morais, chief executive officer and president of the Ally Bank subsidiary. "As a relentless financial ally for our customers, we focus on offering customers competitive rates and minimal fees as a way to help their money work harder and incentivize good savings habits."

To learn more about Ally Lucky Penny, and for clues and updates on the Ally Lucky Pennies and their locations, visit AllyLuckyPenny.com and follow the hashtag #AllyLuckyPenny on Twitter and Facebook.
Lear's CEO Matt Simoncini and Mayor Mike Duggan 

 Lear Corporation (NYSE: LEA), a leading global supplier of automotive seating and electrical systems, opened a world-class Innovation Center today in downtown Detroit located at 119 State Street in historic Capitol Park.

At this Center, Lear plans to develop new automotive products and technologies, incubate non-automotive business opportunities, collaborate with the College for Creative Studies (CCS) on the next generation of automotive seating and vehicle interiors and work with the Wayne State University (WSU) School of Engineering to develop applications for connected cars and alternative energy vehicles.  

Lear’s president and chief executive officer Matt Simoncini began the grand opening event by welcoming guests Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan, WSU president Dr. M. Roy Wilson and CCS president Rick Rogers.

“We are very excited to be opening a new Innovation and Design Center in downtown Detroit,” said Matt Simoncini, President and CEO of Lear Corporation. “We plan to leverage the rapidly developing infrastructure in the Central Business District as well as the concentration of arts, science, and technology assets in the Capitol Park area to fully participate in the transformation that is underway in the automotive business and to take our Company to the next level.”

Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan commented, "Lear's investment in this new center is another example of how Detroit is building on its history of innovation in automotive design.  Thanks to their partners at Wayne State University and the College for Creative Studies, Lear will be able to provide young Detroiters with practical hands-on experience to prepare them for careers in this cutting-edge field."
Planned as a hub for art, creativity, automotive advanced concept development and hands-on learning for Detroit college students, the building at 119 State Street will serve multiple purposes including focusing on innovation and design, inside and outside the automotive industry; working closely with nearby WSU and CCS; and supporting community organizations.

With almost 90% of its furniture designed or built in Detroit and other Michigan locations and featuring noted local graffiti artists, the Lear Innovation Center’s 35,000-square feet will include an open first floor gallery and showroom, modern office environments and work spaces designed to promote creativity as well as a rooftop garden for special events.

Lear purchased the historic (vintage 1887), six-story 119 State Street building located in the city’s resurging Capitol Park neighborhood last September.  It has been restored close to its original Victorian Romanesque exterior design, while interior renovations exude an industrial, raw, authentic Detroit style and aesthetic.

Click HERE For The Full Article!

By The Lovely Amy Peterson, Co-Founder of Rebel Nell

When I moved to Detroit almost ten years ago, it was an entirely different city than the one I live in today, but the love has stayed the same. I had set up residence in a city deep in the midst of an economic down spiral, facing a dwindling population at the rate of 65 people per day over the past 10 years, according to Detroit Works Project. Those who remained were not doing well, and many women and families were struggling with unemployment and poverty.

Three and a half years ago, I co-founded Rebel Nell with my business partner Diana with a vision of what could be salvaged from the rubble, using art to propel the women in the community forward. Never did we imagine that the brand we started in that tiny workshop in Detroit would grow into something that would be displayed in a museum that Andrew Carnegie once called home on the Upper East Side.

And yet we did. From now until February 26th, 2017, Rebel Nell will be included in the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum’s third exhibition of a series called “By the People: Designing a Better America” that takes a look at the way design is being used to create more inclusive, sustainable, and equitable communities. The exhibit features changemakers like Detroit Future City and creators like Raleigh Denim Workshop, where they engage master pattern makers, sewers and farmers from North Carolina to design classic American jeans while maintaining a small carbon footprint.

Click HERE For The Full Article! 

Click HERE For The Full Article! 

“The Walking Man” is the story of James Robertson, who caught the attention of the national media when it was discovered that he walked 21 miles a day to keep his job in Southeastern Michigan.

For the last decade, Robertson defied sub-zero weather, 90 degree temperatures, three feet of snow, torrential downpours, and encountered physical abuse on numerous occasions, to keep his 9-5 manufacturing position in a region where the jobless rate for African Americans exceeds 25% Robertson’s story received news coverage around the world, and prompted ABC News to name him, “Person of the Week.”

This film was written by up and coming Detroit film producer, Jean-Claude Lewis, who represents the cutting edge among African American filmmakers. Lewis teamed up with twice Emmy-Nominated documentary filmmaker Brian Kruger of Stunt3 Multimedia to produce "The Walking Man." Shooting begins in the fall of 2016. James Robertson’s story is one of inspiration, perseverance, determination and loyalty, and needs be seen by as many people as possible.

Walking Man Films, the production entity formed by Lewis, who as a Disabled American Veteran, looks to raise enough money to not only shoot the film but to also provide a DVD of this film to every middle school, high school and public library in the State of Michigan.

Help make this movie reality by contributing to their GoFundMe page: 

Detroit-based co-working company Bamboo Detroit announced it will open a second location in the Julian C. Madison Building at 1420 Washington Blvd inside the historic The Julian C. Madison Building!

Starting in January 2017, Bamboo Detroit will have dedicated desks, private offices, and 6000 square feet it its brand new co-working space! Detroit's Rocket Fiber, also an original Bamboo member, will provide a Gigabit Internet that is 1,000 times faster than average speeds!

Space design by one of their first members, NXT Design.

"Our new home is a perfect fit," Mike Ferlito, co-founder of Bamboo Detroit and a partner at the Ferlito Group. "The building celebrates (African-American engineer) Julian C. Madison's belief that one has to take their destiny in their own hands to progress in life."

Join Bamboo Detroit's waitlist to be the first to know when the brand new offices are available: https://goo.gl/forms/51uqZX0MDGTSqWbw1

Autumn in Detroit would not be complete without a hayride through the trails and woods at People for Palmer Park's annual Harvest Festival. The free public event will be held on Saturday, October 22 from 1-4 pm. Originally set for an earlier October date, this event was re-scheduled due to inclement weather — this new date means the autumn colors in Detroit's Palmer Park will be much more vibrant and Halloween attire is welcome!

More than a century ago, Senator Thomas Palmer and his wife Lizzie Merrill Palmer would often invite guests to enjoy their Log Cabin Farm, drink freshly pressed apple cider, and enjoy the harvest. Palmer donated the land in the late 1800s to the city of Detroit to serve as a park "for the good of all."

In honor of the harvest and in celebration of the Palmer legacy, the area across from the Splash Park on Merrill Plaisance, adjacent to People for Palmer Park's community garden, will be filled with autumn festivities and free family fun.

Farmer John and his Barnyard Express show and petting zoo will return. Some of the season's bounty will be shared: apple tasting (with five different varieties of heirloom apples); free apple cider and donut holes for the first 500; corn grilling and pumpkin picking. Make a nature crown and decorate mini-pumpkin in PFPP's big blue art arts & crafts tent, and view a special squash display of a wide variety of pumpkins and squash that grow in Michigan. Then try your luck at tug-of-war, sack races and other old-fashioned games.

This will be a fun opportunity for all ages to learn about how our food is grown, the lives of farm animals, and nature in the park. Delicious, healthy food will be available from two new additions to the local food scene, the Nosh Pit Detroit food truck and organic baked treats from the Mason Jar. Bring-your-own picnics are also encouraged.

During Harvest Fest, learn about the very exciting Lake Frances Revival Project. People for Palmer Park, in partnership with the landscape architecture firm Conservation Design Forum, has been working on a plan to revitalize Lake Frances. The benefits of blue/green infrastructure and revitalization strategies for Palmer Park's Lake Frances will be discussed. This initiative is funded by The Kresge Foundation.

The event takes place next to Palmer Park's Splash Park and new playground, on Merrill Plaisance near Pontchartrain, between McNichols and Seven Mile Roads, west of Woodward Avenue. Parking is available at the Splash Park parking lot.

What: Harvest Festival with Petting Zoo, Farmer John Animal Shows and Hayride through the woods
When: Saturday, October 22, 2016, from 1 - 4 pm
Where: Palmer Park, by the Splash Park parking lot, Merrill Plaisance, west of Woodward between 6 & 7 Mile Roads, Detroit
Why: To celebrate and appreciate Palmer Park and harvest
Who: People of all ages, especially children! 
How much: Free

Find out more information at peopleforpalmerpark.org

At a time when many states have failed to extend LGBTQ-inclusive laws and policies, Ann Arbor, Detroit, East Lansing and Ferndale are stepping up to ensure that all citizens are treated equally, according to a report issued today by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation (HRC), the educational arm of the nation’s largest lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) civil rights organization.

 HRC’s 2016 Municipal Equality Index (MEI) shows that around the country cities are fueling momentum for LGBTQ equality -- and often are doing so in states that still don’t have LGBTQ-inclusive non-discrimination laws at the state level.

 In Michigan, Ann Arbor, Detroit, East Lansing and Ferndale earned over 85 points on the 2016 MEI despite hailing from a state without LGBTQ-inclusive statewide non-discrimination laws. Across the country, 37 cities like these set a standard of LGBTQ inclusiveness with exemplary, best-practice policies such as local non-discrimination laws, providing transgender-inclusive health benefits for city employees, and offering LGBTQ-inclusive city services.

 Shining like beacons of hope, Ann Arbor, Detroit, East Lansing and Ferndale earned one of HRC’s 37 MEI “All Star” designations. MEI All Stars are cities nationwide that are excelling by advancing LGBTQ equality without relying on state law. This year, Ann Arbor earned 100 points, Detroit earned 100 points, East Lansing earned 100 points and Ferndale earned 94 points. Last year, Ann Arbor earned 77 points, Detroit earned 100 points, East Lansing earned 100 points and Ferndale earned 97 points.

The average score for cities in Michigan is 69 out of 100 points, which falls above the national average of 55.

The cities researched for the MEI include the 50 state capitals, the 200 most populous cities in the country, the five largest cities in every state, the cities home to each state’s two largest public universities, and an equal mix of 75 of the nation’s large, mid-size and small municipalities with the highest proportion of same-sex couples.

 “This year, dozens of cities across the nation showed they are willing to stand up for LGBTQ people in their communities even when some state governments are not,” said HRC President Chad Griffin. “This builds on a trend we have long observed: that local governments are at the forefront of our fight for equality. Unfortunately, our opponents have witnessed this progress too, and in recent years, anti-LGBTQ lawmakers have pushed spiteful legislation aimed at pre-empting local protections. That’s why it’s so important that we continue to not only fight for equality at the state and local levels, but to enact comprehensive federal protections for LGBTQ people under the Equality Act.”

"Despite another year of legislative attacks on LGBTQ equality, we are not merely holding our ground; we also continue to make significant gains across the country,” said Rebecca Isaacs, Executive Director of the Equality Federation Institute. “The opportunity for further progress is huge, and we are proud to partner with HRC on the Municipal Equality Index, a powerful roadmap for elected officials and community advocates who want to continue down the path to full equality.”

Since the MEI’s debut in 2012, the number of cities earning perfect scores has more than quintupled, and today at least 24 million people now live in cities that have more comprehensive, transgender-inclusive non-discrimination laws than their state or the federal government. And cities that have been rated all five years of the MEI have improved their scores by about 20 points over that time.

Progress on transgender equality has been particularly noteworthy in cities across America this year, continuing a positive trend that the MEI has tracked -- and encouraged -- since 2012. Transgender-inclusive healthcare benefits are offered to employees of 86 municipalities this year -- up from 66 in 2015 and 5 in 2012 -- and the growth of cities offering those benefits to their employees outpaces the growth in the number of cities rated. The MEI’s Issue Brief on Transgender-Inclusive Health Benefits is available here.

For the first time this year, the MEI deducted points from the scores of cities that have non-discrimination protections containing carve-outs prohibiting individuals from using public facilities consistent with their gender identity. It also created a new category of points to recognize cities that are offering transgender-specific city services.

Two special reports are also included in the 2016 MEI: Power Struggles and Preemption details efforts by anti-equality officials at the state level to pass discriminatory legislation like North Carolina’s HB2 law that strip municipalities of their ability to protect their residents and workers with non-discrimination measures. Inclusive and Innovative Approaches to Citywide Bullying Prevention lays out the serious public health issue of bullying, how it disproportionately affects LGBTQ youth, and innovative ways municipalities can protect its young people from bullying. The 2018 MEI will change the way it assesses anti-bullying issues, as described in this brief.

Other key findings from the 2016 Municipal Equality Index include:

87 cities from states without nondiscrimination laws protecting LGBTQ people scored above the overall nationwide mean of 55 points. These cities averaged 80-point scores; 22 scored a perfect 100.
Cities continue to excel even in the absence of state laws: 37 “All Star” cities in states lacking comprehensive non-discrimination laws scored above 85 points, up from 31 last year, 15 in 2014, eight in 2013, and just two in 2012.

The average city score was 55 points. 60 cities, or 12 percent of those rated, scored 100 points; 25 percent scored over 75 points; 25 percent scored under 33 points; and 8 cities scored zero points.
Cities with a higher proportion of same-sex couples, as tabulated by a UCLA Williams Institute analysis of the 2010 U.S. Census, tended to score better. The presence of openly-LGBTQ city officials was also correlated with higher scores.

The MEI rated 506 cities: the 50 state capitals, the 200 largest cities in the United States, the five largest cities or municipalities in each state, the cities home to the state’s two largest public universities (including undergraduate and graduate enrollment), 75 cities and municipalities that have high proportions of same-sex couples, and 98 cities selected by members and supporters of HRC and Equality Federation state organizations.

The MEI rates cities based on 44 criteria that fall into five broad categories:

Non-discrimination laws
Municipal employment policies, including transgender-inclusive insurance coverage and non-discrimination requirements for contractors
Inclusiveness of city services
Law enforcement, including hate crimes reporting
Municipal leadership on matters of equality

The full report, including detailed scorecards for every city, as well as a searchable database, is available online at www.hrc.org/mei

40 New Murals Color Detroit's Eastern Market

Sydney James. Photo by 1xRun

Murals in the Market is a yearly festival in Detroit that peppers the city center with international street art. This year, 1010, Marka27, Felipe Pantone, Dabls, Paula Schubatis, Dessislava Terzieva, Sydney James, Ben Saginaw, Kevin Lyons, and more added splashes of color to the city's Eastern Market. Throughout 10 days in September, they opened up a trippy tunnel, introduced Native American icons, erected a textile chain-link fence intervention, and wrote "Detroit" many ways all over the urban cityscape.

There were tons of standouts, but some of our favorites included Pat Perry's heavily symbolic auto industry-themed marching band, Dabls' smash-up of mosaics and cave paintings, and a stunning collaboration by Mr. Jago and Xenz that looks like misty mountain lanscape attacked by Fauvists and inhabited by Surrealist monsters.

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The Motown Museum is planning a $50 million expansion to create space for interactive exhibits, a performance theater and recording studios at the Detroit tourist attraction, officials announced Monday.

The new space will be designed and built around the existing museum, which includes the Motown studio with its "Hitsville U.S.A." facade. Renderings released by the museum show a new facility behind the existing museum, with an entrance next to the existing studio.

Robin R. Terry, chairwoman and CEO of the Motown Museum, said in a statement that a goal of the project is to "inspire dreams and serve as an educational resource for global and local communities." The museum already is among Detroit's best-known tourist attractions.

The expanded museum "will allow us to narrate and celebrate on a much larger scale what the Motown legacy is recognized for: unmatched creative genius that transcends every barrier imaginable by bringing people together from all walks of life to share in that unmistakable Motown Sound," she said.

A team of designers and architects are collaborating on the details of the expanded space, the museum said.

The Motown Museum is located in the house where record company founder Berry Gordy launched his cultural and commercial music empire. The label started in 1959 and scores of stars and hits were created before it decamped to California in 1972.

"It was about music and so much more, Gordy said. "It brings me real joy, and I am proud and humbled to know that the inclusive legacy of Motown, and the most talented people who are so near and dear to my heart, will have their stories told in this new Museum."

Michael Barrera
Jessi Patuano
Brennan Calnin
Nikita Sanches

Location: Rock City Eatery, Midtown Detroit
Date: October 31, 2016
Time: 7:00pm
Reservations: 313-265-3729
Dress:  Costume (Highly Encouraged)

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The Ghostbusters saw their first ghost at the New York Public Library over 30 years ago and you thought that was the end…

We promise that this Night at the Library Tour will be one of the most exciting evenings you’ve ever had in a Library! With access to the Main Library at night, you can experience its magnificent architecture and see why it's the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man's favorite Detroit hangout since moving from Brooklyn.

The tour is perfect for a date night, an evening with friends or a highlight of a Detroit visit. Our docents will share with you the secrets, backstories and hidden nooks and crannies of Detroit’s acclaimed Main Library. RSVP is required, tickets will not be sold at the event.

On your special night, you can expect:
- Customization: docents pick their favorites and mix them with your interests to make a totally unique tour
- Starlight: step out on the Loggia and experience it under the stars (weather permitting)
- The smallest group size of any tours we offer
- Photo-ops: Social media -worthy Ghostbuster shots to wow your friends
- Snacks and refreshments: wine will be served (MUST BE 21+) And plenty of surprises along the way

*Standard 60min art and architecture tour with a Ghostbusters themed Happy Hour after.

Click HERE To Reserve Your Tickets!

DeAndre Levy has spent part of his time the past few months speaking out against domestic violence and sexual assault. Now, the Detroit Lions linebacker is trying to do something about it.

He's partnering with the Detroit Hustles Harder clothing line to sell "Our Issue" T-shirts. All of the proceeds from the shirts will go to the Enough SAID program in Detroit.

The program, which is a collaboration between multiple organizations and the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office, tries to raise "private sector funding to test more than 11,000 forgotten rape kits, investigate the crimes and prosecute the resulting cases, thus securing justice and closure for victims and ensuring a safer community for everyone," according to the organization's website.

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Detroit Entrepreneur Named 100 Most Influential

Entrepreneur Gwen Jimmere, founder of Detroit based beauty company Naturalicious, was honored this week as one of The Root 100 most influential African Americans. The national honor comes at a time when Naturalicious continues to experience tremendous growth for their organic hair care and beauty product lines.

Founder Gwen Jimmere started the company out of her home in Canton, Michigan, back in 2013. A single mother recently laid off from her corporate position, she took a leap of faith to focus fulltime on her company and taught herself how to file for a patent to protect her product. Gwen Jimmere became the first African American woman to receive a patent in the natural hair care industry. The Naturalicious product line is made in Ponyride, Detroit, and now sold around the world.

“Four years ago, when Naturalicious was a hobby and I still had a full time job, I would tell my friends that someday I would be on the Root 100 list,” said Founder & CEO Gwen Jimmere. “It was a large goal, and a surprise and honor to have reached it. I hope I can continue to inspire more women to become entrepreneurs and take ownership of their inventions.”

The Root, owned by the Washington Post, annually curates a prestigious list to honor the 100 Most Influential African Americans across business, politics, social justice, entertainment, and sports who are “responsible for the year’s most significant cultural moments, social moments and big ideas.” Gwen Jimmere ranks 94 on the the list which also features Beyonce Knowles-Carter, Lebron James, Serena Williams and more. The full list is available online at: http://www.theroot.com/facewall/the-root-100-2016/

Gwen Jimmere first made history in 2015 when she became the first African American women to hold a U.S. patent for a natural hair care product protecting the Naturalicious Moroccan Rhassoul 5-in-1 Clay Treatment that cuts down the amount of time spend on natural hair care. Jimmere is also a recent winner of the Walker’s Legacy 25 Powerful Women in Detroit award. She consults and supports entrepreneurs through her company Pitch Proof.
Photo by Nick Hagen

Open Streets Detroit, powered by Downtown Detroit Partnership and presented by DTE Energy Foundation, is part of a global movement to reclaim public space for people by temporarily transforming streets into paved parks and public spaces. Free and open to participants of all ages, Open Streets Detroit is proposed to temporarily close almost four miles of Michigan Avenue and West Vernor Highway to create space for healthy activities, community building, and connection to local retail.


Open Streets Detroit is a unique opportunity to bring the city and the region together through a celebration of public space that fosters community connections. The positive economic impact of Open Streets programs in other communities has been well documented, with local businesses reporting increased patronage on the day of the event and returning customers afterwards. Open Streets Detroit seeks to produce similar benefits by showcasing the city’s business districts, neighborhoods, parks and cultural institutions.


September 25, 2016
Noon to 5 p.m.

October 2, 2016
Noon to 5 p.m.


The inaugural Open Streets Detroit route will cover 3.7 miles along Michigan Avenue and West Vernor Highway. The proposed route begins at Campus Martius Park in Downtown Detroit, connects through Roosevelt Park in Corktown, and continues through Southwest Detroit, past Clark Park, ending at Boyer Playfield located at Livernois and Vernor.

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Photo: Kyle Evans Design 

Dan Gilbert, founder and chairman of Quicken Loans, the third-largest U.S. mortgage lender, is teaming up with upscale watchmaker Shinola to build the 130-plus-room hotel with about 17,000 square feet of retail space.

Mr. Gilbert’s Bedrock Detroit, the development arm of his family of companies, is credited with helping to revitalize Detroit’s city center by moving thousands of his highpaid employees there and redeveloping mostly vacant skyscrapers into high-tech offices.

Shinola was founded in 2011 in Detroit’s College of Creative Studies with a mission to bring manufacturing jobs back to America, albeit on a much smaller scale than the industrial barons of old. The company has retail locations from Palo Alto, Calif., to Toronto, with most watches selling for $475 to $1,500. It employs about 530 people, of which about 400 are in Detroit.

Executives at the two companies got together a few years ago and decided that they could further the redevelopment of the downtown Detroit area by teaming up to build a new hotel, which will combine Mr. Gilbert’s eagerness to redevelop vacant buildings with Shinola’s pared-down aesthetic.

Their aim is to create a vibrant lobby that can act as a cultural hub for downtown, which is seeing an influx of luxury apartments and office workers.

“We really need a boutique hotel where you can hang out on the ground floor and have these unique experiences on the site,” said Dan Mullen, an executive vice president at Bedrock Detroit, Mr. Gilbert’s development firm.

Mr. Mullen declined to say how much rooms will cost per night, but said it would be a high-end hotel.

The design will combine several vacant historic buildings, along with a new addition and an alleyway with everything from art galleries to noodle bars.

The Noho Hospitality Group, owners of Joe’s Pub and Locanda Verde in New York, will run the restaurants on the site.

The hotel is set to open in the fall of 2018.

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TEDxDetroit Reveals 2016 Lineup Of Speakers

If you had the world’s attention for a few minutes, what would you share? That is the question each TEDxDetroit speaker will answer during the highly anticipated celebration of technology, entertainment and design, on Thursday, Oct. 6 at Detroit’s historic Fox Theatre. With hundreds of applications submitted, event organizers have narrowed down the list and selected local influencers, thought leaders and innovators to kick off this year’s conference, including: History Channel’s Mobsteel Cast Member Adam Genei; HistoSonics Inc. President and CEO of Christine Gibbons and more.

Also joining the 2016 lineup of speakers are:
Kicking off at 8 a.m., conference goers will also draw inspiration from a selection of performers and artists, including: a showing of Anthem of Us, a short film produced by filmmaker Stephen McGhee; as well as performances by bluegrass band Shine on Kentucky Moon, improvisational atmospheric space orchestraBotanical Fortress, local soprano and Kresge Art Fellow Kisma JordanDetroit Bellydance performer Lana Mini, master puppeteer Patrick Elkins and  local poets James Kaymore and Zaira Ware. Legendary Detroit Street Artist Fel3000ft will also serve as the event’s artist in residence, creating a one of a kind canvas piece in the Fox Theatre Lobby throughout the day.