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» News Roundup for Saturday July 7, 2007

News Roundup for Thursday July 5 and Friday July 6, 2007

Our Close-To-Home Bassin’

You don’t need to travel far to try some of Michigan’s best largemouth bass fishing if you live near one of our state’s big cities. There is excellent bassin’ just a short drive from Detroit, Lansing and other metro areas.

Here is a look at waters not far from our big cities that have large numbers of largemouths, and there is a good chance you can catch a lunker or two.

[via Michigan Sportsman Magazine]

City Style boutique brings style to Berkley

BERKLEY - When Carrie and Tim Vestrand were creating City Style, their clothing and accessories boutique, there was no question where they wanted to open it.

The Vestrands chose their hometown of Berkley to bring something unique to the city.

City Style offers men’s and women’s clothing, shoes, bags, jewelry and accessories. The majority of the brands, which Carrie describes as urban and sophisticated, are found only in small boutiques.

T-shirts, jackets and hats by Made in Detroit hang next to Sanuks, men’s sandals that look like shoes.

The Vestrands started planning City Style last August and opened in February. Carrie also thought it was the right time to bring new retail downtown since the city recently improved the roads, sidewalks and lights there.

Carrie, a resource manager with an information technology firm, and Tim, a former construction worker, didn’t have any previous experience owning a retail store. However, they said starting City Style hasn’t been too difficult and they’ve been encouraging others to start new businesses.

“If we can do it, anybody can,” Tim said.

[via Mirror]

Let Detroit show NAACP the way

Here’s a prediction: In 10 years, the national headquarters of the NAACP will be in Detroit. The Washington, D.C.-area office will close, saving the organization millions of dollars. And Detroit won’t actually be a headquarters, but instead will be the NAACP’s largest branch, showing other branches across the nation how to fight the nearly 100-year-old fight that must continue because of political and legal assaults on African-American progress.

Lofty prediction? Not really, if you consider Detroit is doing so well that it picked up $800,000 of the $2 million cost of putting on the convention. Not really, if you consider Detroit is Ground Zero for every problem that African Americans face in health, education and wealth, and, by necessity, must be Ground Zero for solutions. Not really, considering the Detroit branch’s programs are developed to help the largest concentration of African Americans in the nation.

[via Detroit Free Press]

New NAACP path urged

An estimated 8,000 dues-paying members will convene tomorrow in Detroit for six days - complete with speeches from civil rights stalwarts and a candidates forum in which many Republican and Democratic presidential hopefuls will be peppered with questions about predatory lending and restoration of voting rights to felons.

[via Baltimore Sun]

Farmer Jack exit spares both stores in Detroit

Farmer Jack will cease to exist by 6 p.m. today following a long battle for survival in metro Detroit that will end with 45 stores changing hands and 21 closing their doors — including several in wealthy suburban neighborhoods.

Meanwhile, the two Detroit stores have buyers, allaying fears that residents would be left with fewer supermarket options and surrounding retailers would suffer from diminished foot traffic.

Sad to see the Farmer go but at least Detroiters will still have a place to shop for groceries. Besides Eastern Market.
[via Detroit Free Press]

Crofoot to bolster Pontiac club scene

Pontiac will soon get a new place to party.

Developers of The Crofoot, an entertainment venue with live international, national and regional acts, announced Thursday the new club will open in mid-August.

Owner Blair McGowan, a founder of Saint Andrew’s Hall and a major player in Metro Detroit’s entertainment scene, says he’s spent 18 months remodeling the exterior of the historic Crofoot building, which was built in 1830 at 1 S. Saginaw St. Inside, he’s developed a large room for live entertainment for 1,000 patrons, a smaller live room that seats 200, two bars and a full-service restaurant that will feature smoked and grilled meats and a vegetarian-friendly menu. Chef Paul Winton, known around the city for his barbecue, will run the restaurant.

Good news for those northern Oakland County types who can’t make it down to downtown Detroit, which still offers to hippest club scene in the metro area.
[via DetNews.com]

Store outfits Detroit with designer wares

DETROIT — Downtown’s revitalizing retail mix can count contemporary home-goods store Mezzanine among its offerings for city shoppers.

Store owner Joe Posch moved his home decor shop from Ann Arbor into a 2,200-square-foot space on the second floor of the Merchant’s Apparel Building in Harmonie Park in May, just as the city’s loft developments are helping boost the downtown market for sophisticated retail goods.

“I always wanted to open a Detroit store,” said Posch, 38, a Grosse Pointe native. “The vibe was here. I want to be in a city that has a store like this. If I have to be the one to open it, so be it.”

Mezzanine’s move to Detroit comes on the heels of the opening of home-goods store Bureau of Urban Living in Midtown. Both stores’ openings bode well for the city, said Michael Poris, principle in McIntosh Poris Associates, a Birmingham design firm.

[via DetNews.com]

Where the Cool Kids Are

If there’s a Chicago sound into hip-hop world, part of it apparently comes from Detroit as usual.
[via Chicago Reader]

Ward volunteers spruce up Detroit

His “troops” are members of Ward Presbyterian Church in Northville Township, and the battle” is blight in downtown Detroit.

Dilley, senior high director at the church, helped mobilize almost 600 members in a volunteer effort in Detroit last Saturday.

Many Detroit neighborhoods need this help (like what Motor City Blight Busters does especially around Old Redford) but I seriously doubt that they were working in or around downtown Detroit. There are already daily crews who clean up the streets and do pretty much anything that a group of volunteers could do. The remaining blight is big stuff like the Book-Cadillac which is being renovated a hotel and luxury condos.

My guess is that they were working somewhere in northwest Detroit, perhaps Brightmoor.
[via Northville Record]

Pact seeks cross-border networking

Detroit Regional Chamber members are about to gain greater access to a business market that is close to home, yet has always seemed distant.

As of July 1, the chamber’s small-business members - those with 100 or fewer employees - can reach across the Canadian border to Windsor through a partnership with the Windsor & District Chamber of Commerce.

About 85 percent of the Detroit chamber’s 23,000 members, 43 percent of which are in Oakland County, qualify. The Windsor chamber has about 1,400 members.

Through this joint venture, called the International Business Builder, members can access both the Detroit and Windsor markets for an additional $150. The program gives businesses access to events from both chambers, online and print listings on international sections of Web sites and chamber publications and increased networking opportunities - perks that executives from both chambers say are worth thousands of dollars.

“This will open up networking opportunities for businesses that they couldn’t afford otherwise,” Detroit Regional Chamber Chief Operating Officer Tammy J. Carnrike said. “All the benefits are designed to lead to more business prospects.”

[via Michigan Business Review]

NE Ohio: immigrants wanted

The Census Bureau has more bad news for Cleveland and other former indus trial giants. The bureau estimates that, as of last year, Cleveland had 444,000 residents; that’s 34,000 fewer than in the 2000 census and less than half the city’s population peak in 1950. The metropolitan area remains the nation’s 15th-largest, with 3 million residents, but it has been stagnant even as the United States has added 100 million since 1967.

The federal government can help, too. Why not target struggling cities like Cleveland, Detroit, Pittsburgh and Buffalo for special repopulation incentives? Make it easier for foreign students who study here to get extended visas to work after graduation. Streamline the visa process for technology firms that open or expand offices in such target zones. Market existing programs that offer foreigners green cards in return for significant investment.

Detroit’s not the only one with problems of population loss. And isn’t the only one who should come up with solutions for it.
[via Cleveland Plain Dealer]

Second time’s the charm

…you’ll be happy to know there are lots of resale shops in metro Detroit. Here’s a look at five

[via Detroit Free Press]

(The Go)

For the past 10 years, scuzzy, grimy Detroit gutter rock has been the hallmark of the Go, charter members of Detroit’s garage scene. So following the band’s unofficial 2-year hiatus, it’s something of a surprise to hear vocalist Bobby Harlow say, “We’ve got more in common with the Jackson 5 than with the MC5.”

Fans will understand where Harlow is coming from after listening to the band’s third full-length record, “Howl on the Haunted Beat You Ride” (Cass Records), which is already out in Detroit and is getting a national release at the end of July.

[via Detroit Free Press]

A hot dog topped with egg? Try it at Juicy Red Hots

There’s more than one way to dress a dog, and Chuck Woodard wants to share as many as he can at his new place in Dearborn called Juicy Red Hots. The restaurant is celebrating the creative ways Americans top their hot dogs.

There’s the now-familiar Chicago style with pickles, peppers and tomatoes, among other items. There’s a Southern dog topped with slaw. The New Yorker comes with sauerkraut and onions. The Texas has grilled onions and peppers. And the Kansas City dog has coleslaw, Swiss cheese, onions and barbecue sauce.

The oddest may be the St. Louis with chili, onion, mustard and a fried egg. Woodard vows he didn’t make that up.

But he does have a Michigan offering, made Jackson-style with chili that’s “loaded with meat, with a traditional chili taste.”

They may not be as well-known as the Chicago dog or the Coney dog, those dogs from Kansas City in St. Louis. But my mouth waters just thinking about them. Don’t forget the Seoul dog that’s sold in Ann Arbor.

The bread at this new restaurant in Dearborn comes from Avalon!
[via Detroit Free Press]

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» News Roundup for Saturday July 7, 2007