Thursday, May 29, 2008

Red Bull Air Race comes to Detroit

The third stop of the Red Bull Air Race World Series is still two days away, but preparations for the international event -- which hits Detroit this weekend -- are well underway.

While dining at the Ren Cen last night, I noticed that the Wintergarten has been gussied-up with RB Air Race paraphernalia, and that numerous hospitality tents have been set up outside the building. This morning and afternoon, I had the pleasure of hearing and watching the planes take practice runs along the Detroit River.

New to Detroit, the international, two-day event features 12 race pilots, 12 planes and an aerial race track that requires impeccable precision and intense maneuvers at high speeds. The race in the Motor City will take place on the Detroit Riverfront between Rivard Plaza and Cobo Hall.

There will be two ticketed areas for the race along both the Detroit and Windsor riverfronts, but spectator tickets for the Detroit side of the race are already sold out. Spectator tickets in Windsor are still available (prices start at 10 CAD), as are tickets for the Detroit High Flyer's Lounge, which start at $600 each. To purchase tickets, click here. Andiamo Detroit Riverfront is also offering ticket packages -- which include a Riverfront seat of the races, parking, non-alcoholic beverages, continental breakfast, an Al Fresco lunch and a select dinner menu -- on one or both race days. These tickets range from $175 - $325 each and can be purchased by calling 313-567-6700.

The qualifying rounds of the Red Bull Air Race in Detroit take place on Saturday, May 31. The fastest 8 pilots advance to Race Day, which takes place on Sunday, June 1, and includes Point One (determines 9th to 12th place finishes), Super Eights (determines 5th to 8th place), Semi Finals, Third Place (determines 3rd and 4th place) and the Finals (determines the winner and runner-up). 
Detroit is only one of two cities in the U.S. to host a Red Bull Air Race in 2008 (San Diego is the other). 

For more information on the Red Bull Air Race World Series in Detroit, click here.

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Saturday, May 24, 2008

Memorial Day weekend in the D and beyond

Happy Memorial Day weekend, Detroit!

If high gas prices have you hangin' around the D this holiday weekend, don't fret -- there are plenty of things to see and do right in your own backyard. has a comprehensive list of weekend activities going on in both the city and Metro Detroit, from Movement, Detroit's techno fest, to Memorial Day parades in Ferndale, Dearborn, Flat Rock and more. Check it out here. For additional Detroit-specific events, visit this GreatStuff page.

Have a happy and safe holiday weekend!

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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Movement hits Detroit this weekend

Memorial Day weekend is fast approaching, and Detroiters know that means one thing: the Motor City's annual techno fest is upon us.

This week's edition of Filter D does a great job summarizing what's in store for attendees of Movement 2008 -- which is celebrating its ninth year, and will include performances by Carl Craig, Moby and more. Check it out here.

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Thursday, May 15, 2008

Preservation Wayne to announce new name, initiatives at annual fundraiser

Thanks to my friend Brad, who is a board member of Preservation Wayne, for passing along information on the organization's yearly fundraiser, which hits the Detroit Boat Club on Thursday, May 22.

I already have plans that evening and won't be able to attend, but thought some of you might want to know the nitty-gritty on the non-profit's annual membership event.Here it is, courtesy of Brad and Preservation Wayne:

Come to Detroit's historic Detroit Boat Club for a very exciting event. Preservation Wayne is kicking off a new wave of programming and community involvement starting with the unveiling of a new name. Our name change will reflect an even greater level of activity focused on the core of our region. This new energy will benefit all; a strong Detroit is required for a strong Metro Detroit. To reach this goal, Preservation Wayne will provide an enhanced level of tools to an empowered group of volunteers that will make preservation relevant and vital in today's economy, promoting walkable vibrant urban neighborhoods that all can enjoy.

The evening will feature an introduction to all the ways you can become a part of the solution. Meet our new board members, learn about our new staff and the rolls they will play in the community, see for yourself the many volunteer opportunities that exist and maybe come up with a new idea for what you can do to help preserve and build up Detroit's urban experience.

Located at the entrance to Belle Isle, the current Detroit Boat Club was opened in 1902 and is home to the country's oldest rowing club. The social club left the building in 1996, but the
Friends of Detroit Rowing have kept the building dry and secure, using it daily for training, practice and competition.
The event, which runs from 7 - 10 p.m. on May 22, will feature hors d'oeuvres, a cash bar and a silent auction. Tickets are $35 for Preservation Wayne members and $45 for non-members, and may be purchased here. For pictures from the 2007 annual membership event, click here. Visit Preservation Wayne on the Web for more information.

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Saturday, May 10, 2008

Great art, great prices

Looking to update your home's look for spring, or add something to those bare walls? Now is the perfect time to do it. The Student Exhibition at CCS is right around the corner, and it is a fantastic way to buy high-quality, original artwork and at lower prices than typical galleries.

Ashley Cook, "Thank You I Love You"

Running from May 16 - 30, this year's event will showcase more than 3,500 student works of art, ranging from ceramics, furniture and sculpture to jewelry, paintings and photography.

The 2008 exhibition begins with a special Collectors' Preview and Private Reception, which runs from 5:30 - 10 p.m on Friday, May 16. Tickets are $350 each and give attendees the opportunity to select and buy student artwork first. Ticket purchase also provides access to the exclusive Collectors’ Preview Private Reception.

If $350 is more than you'd like to spend on a ticket, but you'd still like to be among the first to see the artwork and make a purchase or two, consider purchasing a $50 ticket to the General Exhibition Opening and Sale, which runs on May 16 from 7:00 - 10:00 p.m.

Lee Ann Foshee, "Latch Hook Lizzie", Fiber

If you want to attend but don't want to pay for a ticket, the Student Exhibition continues May 17 - 30 for public viewing and sales, and admission is free. Daily hours during this time period are as follows:
Saturday - Wednesday: 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Thursday and Friday: 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.
CCS is a private four-year college offering 11 Bachelors of Fine Arts degrees in 11 majors, and Masters of Fine Arts degrees in 2 majors. The campus is located at 201 East Kirby in Midtown.

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Wednesday, May 07, 2008

MassiV Growth at CAID

Three years ago, the Contemporary Art Institute of Detroit (CAID) and its half dozen members moved into the art program's first home on Rosa Parks after 25 years of nomadic existence.

Now, just 3 years later, CAID is operating four venues throughout Detroit, and the organization has over 500 members.

Celebrate CAID's continued metamorphosis on May 10th, when the non-profit arts organization kicks off its 2008 exhibition season with shows at all four of its venues: the CAID; the Carriage House Gallery; Ladybug Gallery and Studios; and MassiV, the newest addition to the CAID family of galleries.

Opening Reception festivities are free and open to the public, and start at 6 p.m. on Saturday May 10th. CAID recommends parking at either CAID (5141 Rosa Parks Boulevard in Detroit) or MassiV, inside the Russell Industrial Center (1604 Clay Avenue in Detroit) and taking advantage of the free shuttle service to all four galleries.

Each of the galleries will offer a different perspective of CAID's exhibition and education vision and mission. Opening Night highlights of each gallery include:

CAID Main: the Eco Village Student Design Competition. Part of the city of Detroit's latest green initiative, this exhibition includes cutting edge solutions to vacant land usage courtesy of a faculty-led studio of architecture students from Lawrence Tech, University of Detroit Mercy and University of Michigan, who were charged with designing an eco-village on a five-acre site in Detroit's Woodbridge Neighborhood. Guests at CAID will also have the opportunity to attend the Sonic Lullaby 3.0 festival featuring live musical performances by Auburn Lull, Soundpool, Elika, Indian Guides, Crash City Saints, Sunlight Ascending, and Sey Lui. The performances begin at 9 p.m. Admission is to the music portion is $8, but is free to the exhibition.

Carriage House Gallery: the Harvest Gold Club: COLLECTING, CREATING and CLEARING OUT. A collaborative exhibition featuring the work of Madeleine Barkey, Jeanne Bieri, Teresa Petersen, the Harvest Gold Club depicts artwork within an environment that imitates a typical living room or clubhouse. The artists created the environment using material found on the curbside, including furniture, books, appliances, and knick-knacks. These cast-off items are sometimes antique, sometimes charming and sometimes utilitarian, but always worth more than their curbside appearance would indicate.

Ladybug Gallery and Studios: Curator's Choice exhibit. Featuring the work of more than a dozen artists, this exhibition includes paintings, sculpture, photography and video.

MassiV: Chido Johnson: Domestified angst – first recording. This major solo installation of new work by Chido Johnson -- a Zimbabwe-born artist who serves as the current chair of sculpture at the College for Creative Studies -- explores Johnson's personal state of cultural negotiations between Euro-American and South African cultures.

Can't make it to CAID's 2008 Exhibition Opening Night? No worries -- exhibitions at the four galleries run through August 10, 2008. For more information, please visit CAID on the Web.

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Sunday, May 04, 2008

Science Center Breaks Ground on New Addition

The Detroit Science Center, in collaboration with The Thompson Educational Foundation (TEF), broke ground last week on an 80,000 square-foot addition to the museum. The addition will house University Prep Science & Math Middle School, a public charter school that will serve 486 students, as well as a new museum lobby, cafe, gift shop and group welcome center.

The partnership between the Detroit Science Center and University Prep Science & Math (UPSM) will provide a unique opportunity for students and teachers to combine classroom learning with hands-on exhibits, dynamic theater shows and in-depth museum programs on a daily basis. UPSM plans to open a high school at another location in 2010.

The TEF is funding the $15 million middle school construction project and will lease the building to UPSM for $1 per year under an agreement that requires the charter school system to graduate no fewer than 90 percent of its students and send no fewer than 90 percent on to college.

"Our goal at the Detroit Science Center is to inspire children to get excited about engineering, technology and science and to encourage them to pursue careers in those fields. It's a natural step in the evolution of the Detroit Science Center to be affiliated with a school where we can not only inspire these children on a daily basis, but see them apply that inspiration back in the classroom," said Kevin F. Prihod, President & CEO of the Detroit Science Center.

Construction on the new addition is starting this month with a spring 2009 opening. It will be located on the north side of the Science Center building in an area formerly utilized for parking. The architect is Gunn Levine. The general contractor is DeMaria. Both companies are based in Detroit.

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