Saturday, September 30, 2006

Indoor Activities in Detroit

After another long, grueling workweek, you're probably itching to get out and do something recreational and fun this weekend.

Today's dreary weather has likely put a damper on your outdoor plans, but cool temps and rain don't have to mean a weekend spent in front of the tube. Instead, grab a poncho or umbrella and head to one of Detroit's award-winning museums.

Here are two of my top picks for museums to visit this weekend in Detroit:

Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History:

Opened just two days ago, "Lasting Foundations: The Art of Architecture in Africa" is a new exhibit designed to acquaint museum-goers with African architecture from the country's east, west, central and southern areas. Composed of more than 100 photographs and artifacts from 13 countries, the exhibit runs through December 13, 2006.

Other exhibits of interest include "And Still We Rise", a permanent exhibit located in the DaimlerChrysler Hall, and "A is for Africa", an interactive exhibit designed for children in preschool through the fourth grade.

Admission to the Charles H. Wright Museum is $8 for adults and $5 or children. Tomorrow, October 1, is a Target Free First Sunday at the Wright Museum, so admission is free for all.

Detroit Historical Museum:

Following an $800,000 restoration, the Detroit Historical Museum (DHM) re-opened to the public yesterday and promises to be better than ever. An added bonus is that admission to the museum is free all weekend!

Interesting new exhibits at the DHM include "Digital Dress: Women About Town", a display tracing the evolution of this popular piece of women's clothing from the 1900s through today, and "Treasures of the Collection", a compilation of more than 100 rare artifacts from the museum's extensive collection.

The DHM also has several permanent exhibits, including the popular Glancy Trains, The Streets of Old Detroit and Frontiers to Factories. The museum is located at 5401 Woodward Avenue in Detroit's Cultural Center area.

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Friday, September 22, 2006

A Different Way to Explore the D

When you think of Detroit, urban biking probably isn't the first thing that comes to mind. After all, we are talking about the Motor City here.

Yet, while we Detroiters can't - and won't - deny our love for all things auto, we will cop to the fact that the view from the driver's seat doesn't always cut it, especially if your goal is to explore the D.

Biking, on the other hand - now that's a smart way to scope out Detroit.

As an increasing number of Detroiters will tell you, peddling around the city has several advantages - you'll get an an up-close and personal view that cars can't match, and great exercise to boot. Plus, bikes don't rely on gasoline or harm the environment, and, other than the initial price of equipment, biking doesn't cost a thing.

Thinking about giving bike-riding in the D a try? Read on and learn about three Detroit biking events set for this weekend, and consider giving one of them a try:

Midnight Bike Tour: this non-traditional orientation of sorts is designed to help new students at
University of Detroit Mercy (UDM) get acquainted with the city, but anyone that can ride a bike is invited to join in on the fun.

Now in its 18th year, more than 85 people are expected to participate in tonight's annual UDM midnight ride, including students and members of
Detroit Synergy's Detroit Bikes! group.

Accompanied by UDM's Public Safety Department, participants on this slow-paced, 35-mile ride will meet up at the college's McNichols Campus at 10 pm before heading off on a seven-hour trek that is set to include Detroit neighborhoods like Palmer Park and Palmer Woods, along with unique spots like City Airport and Belle Isle.

Riders will also stop at a true Detroit landmark, Lafayette Coney Island, for hot dogs between 12:30 and 1 am.

Image by K1dS3ns4t10n on BTT forum

Beat the Train ride: If late-night rides aren't your thing, join Andy Staub and the rest of the
Beat the Train in Detroit (BTT) crew at 6 am on September 23 for the group's weekly Saturday morning ride.

Departing from Fort Wayne in Southwest Detroit, tomorrow's ride - sandwiched between UDM's midnight ride and Saturday's Tour de Troit (more on that below) - will cover 30 miles at a 10-15 mph pace.

If you're the gutsy type, join in on BTT's Triple D Challenge, a combo of this weekend's three biking events that, in total, will cover 100 miles.

Tour de Troit: If you're not a fan of late-night or early-bird rides, join more than 250 people at 10 am for Tour de Troit, Corktown's highly-anticipated annual bike ride and fundraiser.

Riders of all ages are set to participate in the 35-mile, police-escorted Tour; it begins and ends at Roosevelt Park near the Michigan Central Depot.

At a leisurely 10-12 mph pace, cyclists will explore areas like downtown, Midtown, New Center, Woodbridge, Arden Park and more. All registrants are invited to stick around after the ride for music from DJ Greg Mudge and Spira, as well as tamales from Tamaleria Nuevo Leon.

Designed to promote biking in the city and support the proposed Corktown-Mexicantown Greenlink, a series of bike lanes and pedestrian paths that will connect the communities of Greater Corktown and Mexicantown/Hubbard to Detroit's West Riverfront, Tour de Troit is a great way to give urban biking a try and make a difference while doing it.

If you're ready to check out urban biking in the D, these three events are a great place to start.

UDM's midnight ride on Friday, September 22, and BTT's ride on the following morning are free; registration for Tour de Troit, also on Saturday, is $25 and begins at 9 am. Helmets are mandatory for all three events.

Happy trails!

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Free Midtown Home Tour this Saturday

In the market for some new digs or just curious about what's been going on inside those newly-remodeled and renovated buildings in Detroit's Midtown neighborhood?

City Living Detroit's neighborhood tour has your name written all over it.

Sponsored by Lasalle Bank and Detroit Home magazine, the Midtown bus tour is Saturday, September 23, from 1 - 3 pm.

Tour-goers have the opportunity to check out four distinct Midtown properties including the 51 loft-condominium units at The Carlton, the newly restored 1882 mansion Edmund Place, the Ellington Lofts at Woodward and Mack Avenue, and the two remaining units inside Lamar Lofts, a 10-unit historic building in Brush Park.

Lamar Lofts

This is City Living Detroit's final tour this season. All tours are free, open to the public and depart from Campus Martius Park at 1 pm. Convenient parking is available near the departure site.

Visit City Living Detroit on the web for more information or to pre-register. Seating is limited.

The Ellington

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Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Detroit's best

Have a favorite Detroit spot that deserves some special recognition?

Here's your chance to spread the word.

Cast your vote for Detroit's best people, places and things in the Metro Times 2006 Best of Detroit Poll.

From the best casino for people watching and the best pool hall to the best place to hear jazz to the best Michigan-made product, MT has outdone itself this year by giving you a whopping 210+ 'Best Of' items to vote on. Don't worry - you don't need to vote on all of 'em; just make sure to complete 20 or your votes won't count.

So, what are you waiting for? Acknowledge the Coney Island restaurant that rescues you at 4 am on Friday nights, or pay homage to that art gallery or restaurant you adore.

Make your voice heard - click here and spread the love for what you consider to be the best of the 313. All valid entires will be entered into a random drawing for a 'Best Of' prize-pack worth $1000 and winner opinions may wind up in MT's Best of Detroit issue, set to hit newsstands and the Web October 18.

The clock's ends at midnight on September 27.

Visit Metro Times for more information.

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Sunday, September 17, 2006

An afternoon on Belle Isle

Although I enjoy capturing new construction projects in Detroit, sometimes it's just as fun to enjoy the city's current gems, the old-standbys that make the Motor City what it is.

This is just what I did this afternoon at Belle Isle, Detroit's magnificent island park.

James Scott fountain

James Scott statue

From the Casino

Mac Arthur Bridge

Skyline from Mac Arthur Bridge

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Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Honigman garners national accolade

Detroit-based Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn LLP was recently named one of the ten best law firms in the country to work for by American Lawyer magazine.

More than 6,500 associates from 175 law firms across the country answered work satisfaction-related questions in American Lawyer's 20th Annual Midlevel Associate Survey, in which Honigman ranked 10th in the nation. Honigman, a business law firm with nearly 600 employees, scored above the national average on 11 of the survey's 12 key questions.

In the past 20 years of the survey, Honigman has been named to the top 25 firms in the nation eight times; only four other firms in the U.S. have a better record.

Established in 1948, the main office of Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn LLP is located in the
First National Building in downtown Detroit. The firm also has offices in Lansing, Bloomfield Hills and Bingham Farms.

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Sunday, September 10, 2006

Detroit Shock take WNBA title

Congratulations to the Detroit Shock, the newly-crowned 2006 WNBA champions!

This is the second title in four seasons for the Shock, who beat out the defending champion-Sacramento Monarchs 80-75 yesterday at Detroit's Joe Louis Arena.

Celebrate the
Detroit Shock in downtown Detroit this Tuesday, September 12, near the Spirit of Detroit statue on Jefferson Avenue.

Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick will serve as master of ceremonies for the event, which is scheduled for noon.

Shock-coach Bill Laimbeer and select players are scheduled to speak at the celebration; the 2006 Shock trophy will also be on display.

Deanna Nolan
had 24 points in the decisive Game 5 and was named MVP of the Finals.

Other key players in the final game of the 2006 post-season included Katie Smith, who scored 17 and Texas Tech-grad Plenette Pierson, who added 16.
Cheryl Ford had a double-double.

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Friday, September 01, 2006

September in Detroit

The Motor City bids Summer adieu this month, but not before a few last hurrahs.

Girl in the D highlights some of your best bets for entertainment, art, sports and culture this month in Detroit:

September 1: Two Funny Fridays, Fine Arts Theatre

September 1 - 3: Palmer Park Presents Carnaval

September 1 - 4: Detroit International Jazz Fest, Downtown Detroit

Detroit Jazz Fest

September 1 - 4: Michigan State Fair, State Fair Grounds

September 1 - 4: Hamtramck Labor Day Festival

September 1 - 9: Metal Fume Fever, C-POP Art Gallery

September 2: D-Tour, Campus Martius Park

September 2: Third Annual Brush Park Parade and Festival, Brush Park

September 2:
Ford Detroit Football Classic, Ford Field

September 2: Chris Tucker at the
Detroit Opera House

September 3: Target Free First Sundays, Charles H. Wright Museum

Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History

September 4: Paxahua 8 Year Anniversary Party, Currents

September 6 - 8: That Dam Box Show auction, Detroit Artists Market

September 7 - 10:
Lang Lang Plays Rachmaninoff

September 8 - 9:
A Night of Song, Situation and Shakepeare

September 9: De Latino Pop en Detroit Artist Reception, Bagley Gallery

September 9: Dally in the Alley, Midtown


September 9: XM Satellite Radio Presents Lost Episode, Bleu Room Experience

September 10: A Celebration of Generations, Wright Museum

September 10: Detroit Lions versus Seattle Seahawks, Ford Field

September 12 - 13:
Detroit Tigers versus Texas Rangers, Comerica Park

September 13: The Big Three in Printmaking, Detroit Institute of Arts

Detroit Institute of Arts

September 14: The Rat Pack Returns, Gem Theatre

September 15 - 17:
Mozart vs. Salieri at the Max M. Fisher Music Center

September 16:
D-Tour, Campus Martius Park

September 16:
CeCe Winans and Donnie McClurkin, Fox Theatre

September 16 - 17: Detroit Tigers versus Baltimore Orioles, Comerica Park

September 19: Java and Jazz, Detroit Public Library Main Branch

September 21 - 23: Scheherazade, Max M. Fisher Music Center

September 22: The Whispers, The Dells, The Manhattans & The Chi-Lites

September 22 - 23: The Tenors – Bringin’ Down the House tour

Detroit Opera House

September 23: City Living Detroit Bus Tour
, South Midtown

September 23: U of D Midnight Ride

September 23: BTT in Detroit Morning Ride, part of the Triple D Challenge

September 23: Tour de Troit, Corktown

September 24: Annie Leibovitz: American Music, DIA

September 24: Nick Lachey, Detroit Opera House

September 24: Detroit Lions versus Green Bay Packers, Ford Field

September 26: So You Think You Can Dance? at the Masonic Temple

September 26 - 28: Detroit Tigers versus Toronto Blue Jays, Comerica Park

Grand Circus Park

September 27 - 30: Dracula, Detroit Opera House

September 29 - 30: Detroit Tigers versus Kansas City Royals, Comerica Park

September 30: Smithsonian Magazine's Museum Day