Category: Community Written by Britney Spear
It’s that time of the year again. Whether you’re an auto ‘enthusiast’ or simply looking to check out the latest ‘four wheeled’ fantasies, Detroit’s North American International Auto Show has something for everyone.
Closing out a year of repeatedly ‘bad’ news marked by corrupted officials, diminished politics, and an egregious murder rate, it is refreshing to find that Detroit will be in the media for a positive reason. The Auto Show has been and continues to be a silver lining for the city where automakers, journalists, other professionals, and the public descend upon Cobo Hall to recognize on an international stage the finest in the world of cars.
The show kicks off next week, and judging its latest press, is slated to be the best yet. 2012 witnessed the most successful auto sales jump of the past five years. Such a recovery is sure to encourage auto makers to bring out the best to grace the road this upcoming year. As car companies continue to gain ground in the economy, experts predict that 2013 will usher in even stronger numbers. What a way to kick off a year that is sure to solidify the auto industry’s return to glory.
Press Night opens the show, which will enjoy a 9-day run from January 14-27. It is followed by the Industry and Charity Preview before officially opening to the Public. Last year’s show saw over a half a million attendees who passed through its doors to gain unprecedented access to the latest in auto innovation.
Do not miss out on the auto industry’s most prestigious showcase of the finest in transportation.
For more information on the North American International Auto Show and to purchase tickets, visit http://www.naias.com
Follow Britney Spear on Twitter @missbritneysp
Last Updated on Friday, 11 January 2013 09:26
Category: Community Written by The Oakland Press
DETROIT — Downtown Detroit will be full of new activities for the entire family and exciting entertainment as the 2013 Motown Winter Blast returns to Campus Martius Park from Friday, Feb. 8 through Sunday, Feb. 10.
This year, Quicken Loans, with its world headquarters located in Campus Martius, steps in as presenting sponsor of the annual outdoor event.
"Quicken Loans has been a proud sponsor of the Winter Blast for six years, and we are excited to have the opportunity to support an event that showcases the best of Detroit — this time as presenting sponsor,” said Jay Farner, President and Chief Marketing Officer of Quicken Loans. “Detroit is an exciting town, and by supporting this entertaining family-friendly event, we are helping to provide one more amazing wintertime entertainment opportunity that makes downtown Detroit a great place to live, work and play.”
Originally created as the backdrop for Super Bowl XL, the festival attracted more than 75,000 people in 2012.
This year’s event brings two new activities for families and community members to enjoy. The “Winter Blast-Off,” presented by the General Motors Foundation, features hands-on, imaginative science programs put on by Mad Science of Detroit, a Michigan-based organization that offers children’s science programming throughout metro Detroit.
Children will engage in exciting, themed activities, including the Fire & Ice Show, three science fun stations and science trivia. In fact, kids walk away with their own unique creations. The kid-tested, teacher-approved programs are a must see, and will run Friday evening and all day Saturday and Sunday.
“Science is everywhere ... even in the snow,” said Vivian Pickard, president of General Motors Foundation. “The GM Foundation is excited to bring the ‘Winter Blast-Off’ program to this year’s festival to give kids fun, interesting and interactive ways to discover the world of science that exists all around them.”
Additionally, Flagstar Bank will present the first-ever “S’mores Happy Hour,” a fun activity for Campus Martius-area employees. On Friday of the festival, employees throughout Campus Martius will have the opportunity to make their own custom s’mores from 4:30-6 p.m. during a celebration for all those who work downtown.
“Flagstar Bank is honored to be a part of the 2013 Winter Blast, especially this year as we open our first branch in downtown Detroit near Campus Martius,” said Donell Miles, Flagstar Vice President and Market Leader for Detroit’s new branches. “We hope to meet many of our new neighbors when they come out for some fun around the fire as we roast marshmallows together and kick off the Winter Blast in delicious fashion.”
Specifics on participating in this “S’mores Happy Hour” celebration will be released in the coming weeks.
The 2013 festival will present an exciting winter-themed lineup, including free ice skating at the Campus Martius Park rink, courtesy of Charter One Bank. Winter Blast is the only time during the year when metro Detroiters can skate at no charge in the city’s skating rink.
Other returning favorites include the Flagstar Bank Ice Garden and Greektown Casino Taste of Detroit featuring restaurants from across metro Detroit. Two Detroit dining favorites have been added to the list, as 2013 attendees will be able to enjoy treats from Keego Harbor Specialty Sausage Co. and Mudgies Deli, who will join other favorites including the Detroit Seafood market, Palm Palace and Hudson Café. Also part of Taste of Detroit is musical entertainment showcasing top acts from across the Motor City.
This stage will be one of three planned entertainment venues that will feature up to 50 bands throughout the weekend. Specific acts and schedules will be announced by early February. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan’s ice skating exhibitions and snowshoeing activities, and heated comfort zones also have been confirmed, with additional exciting elements being discussed for the schedule.
For the fourth consecutive year, Motown Winter Blast and Matrix Human Services have partnered in support of “Breaking the ICE on the cycle of Poverty” program. Volunteers from the nonprofit organization will collect children’s books, nonperishable food items or monetary donations at festival gates as part of a special Motown Winter Blast “admission fee.” All donated items will support those in need to fight hunger and promote literacy in metro Detroit.
“Through this partnership with Motown Winter Blast, we’ve been able to make significant contributions to fight poverty and hunger throughout southeast Michigan,” said Marcella Wilson, Ph.D., president and CEO of Matrix Human Services. “With the support of Winter Blast and the caring citizens of metro Detroit, we’re able reach those most in need on a larger scale. Last year we collected 17,000 lbs. of food and books, and more than $15,000 toward our campaign to help those struggling around Detroit.”
Winter Blast is made possible thanks to the generous support of many corporate citizens, including Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, Brown Forman, Charter One Bank, Compuware,
DEGC/Detroit DDA, Detroit Medical Center, Detroit Red Wings, Detroit Regional Chamber, Flagstar Bank, Great Lakes Beverage, Greektown Casino, Honigman Miller, Ilitch Holdings, Marketing Associates, Meijer, Meridian Health Plan, MetroPCS, Michigan Lottery, Pepsi, Quicken Loans, Strategic Staffing Solutions, University Of Phoenix, U.S. Park, Wayne County and Westin Book Cadillac.
Last Updated on Thursday, 10 January 2013 09:42
Category: Community Written by Michigan Chronicle
DETROIT - The Detroit Historical Society’s Black Historic Sites Committee is celebrating the 150th anniversary of the first reading of the Emancipation Proclamation in Michigan with a very special afternoon of events on Sunday, January 6 at the Detroit Historical Museum. This free program begins at 1 p.m. with refreshments, readings of the Emancipation Proclamation by local ministers, poetry readings, storytellers and tours of the new Doorway to Freedom: Detroit and the Underground Railroad exhibition.
The event honors the January 6, 1863 reading of the Emancipation Proclamation at Historic Second Baptist Church in Detroit. The Black Historic Sites Committee, along with the Baptist Ministerial Alliance and Broadside Press, have partnered together to bring attendees an enlightening look at the history of the Emancipation Proclamation.
The program commences with a historical overview and presentation, followed by readings of poetic works created by pioneering African-American writers Dudley Randall, Paul Laurence Dunbar, Albert M. Ward and Robert Hayden. The poems will be read by Dr. Gloria House, Professor of Humanities and African American Studies at the University of Michigan, Dearborn, Associate Professor Emerita in the Interdisciplinary Studies Department of Wayne State University and Broadside Press board member; Albert M. Ward, Broadside Press board member and poet; Lori Allan; andBill Harris, poet and Professor of English at Wayne State University.
Civil rights activist and educator John Hardy will present the story of abolitionist and clergyman Rev. Absalom Jones, an excerpt from one of his sermons, and his civil rights petition to Congress in regard to the 1793 Fugitive Slave Act. Rev. Dr. Kevin M. Turman of Historic Second Baptist Church will conclude the program, leading local ministers in a series of readings of Abraham Lincoln’s January 1, 1863 Emancipation Proclamation.
The hour-long program will repeat at 3 p.m. after an hour break to explore the Doorway to Freedom exhibit and the rest of the newly-renovated Detroit Historical Museum. For more information please call (313) 833-1801 or visit www.detroithistorical.org.
The Black Historic Sites Committee of the Detroit Historical Society, founded in 1971, is a group of volunteers that promotes a greater understanding of the contributions of African Americans to the history of metro Detroit and the state of Michigan.
The Detroit Historical Museum, located at 5401 Woodward Ave. (NW corner of Kirby) in Midtown Detroit, is open to the public Tuesday through Friday from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Admission is free for all, all the time. Parking in the Museum’s lot is $5 at all times. Group tour pricing and information is available by calling (313) 833-1733. Permanent exhibits include the famous Streets of Old Detroit, the Allesee Gallery of Culture, Kid Rock Music Lab, Doorway to Freedom: Detroit and the Underground Railroad, Detroit: The “Arsenal of Democracy,” Frontiers to Factories, America’s Motor City, and The Glancy Trains. For more information, call the Museum at (313) 833-1805 or check out our website at www.detroithistorical.org.
Last Updated on Friday, 04 January 2013 10:59
Category: Community Written by Zack Burgess, Chronicle Senior Writer
While everyone was occupied with averting the “fiscal cliff” – the expiration of another law vital to the health and wellbeing of Americans went under reported: the Violence Against Women Act, or VAWA.
The VAWA was left to expire at the end of the 112th congressional session. The Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives never let it come to an end-of-the-year vote. Therefore, women are left without legal protections.
The Bill was drafted in 1994 by then-Sen. Joe Biden, and provides federal resources for the investigation and prosecution of violent crimes against women. A bill to reauthorize the law was approved earlier in the year with bipartisan support in the Senate, but House Republicans objected to amendments in the law that would have expanded protections for illegal immigrants, Native-Americans and members of the LGBT community.
In a statement last week, Sen. Patty Murray (D-Wash.) called the Republicans’ failure to take up and approve the bill “inexcusable,” noting that it had passed the Senate with 68 votes. “This seems to be how House Republican leadership operates,” she wrote. “No matter how broad the bipartisan support, no matter who gets hurt in the process, the politics of the right wing of their party always comes first.”
There are many who feel that the law’s expiration seemed to escape the attention of many major news outlets, which has motivated some media watchdog groups to speak out. Zachary Pleat of Media Matters for America wrote that news programs on the major broadcast networks – ABC, CBS and NBC – have completely ignored the story.
According to Pleat, a search of LexisNexis transcripts over the past month showed that “none of the morning or evening news shows on ABC, NBC or CBS reported on the Violence Against Women Act and its need to be reauthorized.”
Jeanne Brooks, digital director of the Online News Association, told IBTimes on Thursday that she had begun tweeting about the lack of coverage late in the evening last Wednesday. Not every major media outlet has been silent on the subject – MSNBC covered the story extensively. And many other online and smaller outlets covered the issue as well, including the Huffington Post, Business Insider, Daily Kos and women’s magazine websites such as Ms. and Cosmopolitan.
Sen. Murray wrote a blog post on CNN.com stating that the law’s expirations will have “real-life implications for women who now find themselves with nowhere to turn for help.”
Last Updated on Monday, 07 January 2013 09:16
Category: Community Written by Kate Abbey-Lambertz, The Huffington Post
(photo credit: Facebook)
Get out of the basement, ping-pong players. A new club dedicated to the sport is open for business in downtown Detroit.
Drive Table Tennis Social Club opened its doors for a trial run in mid-December on Woodward Avenue between Clifford Street and Grand River Avenue. Their grand opening is Friday, Jan. 18.
The club, which holds six tables for players to rent by the hour, is currently open from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday,. They plan to extend their hours after obtaining their liquor license, along with adding more staff -- owner Diallo Smith and his wife, Jameel Smith, are currently holding down the fort themselves.
The Detroit natives, who live on the east side with their two young children, moved back to the city in 2008 after more than a decade away.
"We started a family down there [in Texas], but Detroit was always in our hearts," said Diallo Smith. "We wanted to start a business that in our minds would be exactly what Detroit needed … something that's innovative, could build community."
Smith came up with the idea for a table tennis club after hearing about a similar business in New York. He tested the plan in the city last year by hosting several pop-ups at events around the city. Part of the appeal, Smith said, is how many people have played the game at some point in their lives.
"We wanted to do something … that in some way created a melting of all different ages, ethnicities ... that could come together at one time," he said.
Smith considers himself a novice player, though he's trying to brush up on his skills. Others looking to do the same can play for fun or enter the competitions held at Drive, like the Masters of the Basement tournament, planned to take place every Monday evening and geared towards beginners and intermediate players.
The sport also has a low barrier to entry, Smith said, so it is enjoyable to people of any skill level.
Part of Drive's model lets people "play it forward." Each ping-pong table is linked to a nonprofit, both local and national, including the Detroit Zoo, Gleaners Community Food Bank, Forgotten Harvest and Developing K.I.D.S. A small amount of players' rental fees, between one and two percent of the gross income, will be donated to their table's charity.
So far, the zoo has been the most popular. In the first two weeks, Smith estimates over 400 people had played at their tables.
"From the beginning we said we don't just want to be a business in the city," Smith said. "We want to be a business for the city as well."
His aspirations to become a business owner go back a long ways. He remembers walking to the bus stop growing up along the same block of Woodward where Drive is located.
"I can still visualize the businesses that used to be on that block … there used to be a record store, a shoe store, a Woolworth's … I can remember those businesses and patronized those businesses," Smith said. As a child, he remembered thinking, "How cool it would be to own a business downtown."
"My friends would always call me the businessman. I had pictures of Bill Gates all around my dorm room, because that's what I always saw myself doing. Life took me in a lot of different directions, but I kind of came full-circle," he said.
One of those other directions was toward faith. Smith is also the leader of the nondenominational Christian church Awakenings Movement, which he founded in 2008. It is a separate entity from Drive but uses its space on Sundays.
Smith said the space in Merchant's Row is rented from Bedrock Real Estate Services, one of Quicken Loans Chairman Dan Gilbert's companies, on a short-term lease. He said the lease has an option to be extended, which they plan to do.
Though the club had some initial investors, the Smiths are also raising funds for Drive through the crowdfunding website Kickstarter. The campaign to raise $5,500 kicked off in early December and continues through Thursday. They would use the funding to help with the city licensing process and to build out projects inside the space, including a stage for performances. Backers had donated over $3,000 as of Wednesday.
Last Updated on Friday, 04 January 2013 09:39
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