Dig Michigan SE

Detroit in the words and through the eyes of its people

283/366 Say GOOD things about Detroit! by JVLIVS  ©  ®â„¢
283/366 Say GOOD things about Detroit! by JVLIVS © ®â„¢

While browsing the internet we came across a couple of articles about Detroit that are worth a read over on CNN.com. In light of all the negative news that seems to permeate the national media, these take a look at a cross section of residents and entrepreneurs who love The Big D, The Motor City, Motown, Hockeytown, The-D, The 3-1-3, Rock City and most historical and relevant to Detroit’s modern day resurgence The Great Arsenal of Democracy. Whatever you want to call it we call it a city with great history and a bright future.

From CNN.com

Why I love Detroit: 13 stories

Detroit residents always get asked why they stay. 13 locals answer that question – and reveal their favorite treasures of the Motor City.

Detroit entrepreneurs band together

Local business owners are teaming up to draw shoppers and rebuild Detroit, one business at a time.

More on the photo used for this post by JVLIVS © ®â„¢:

Tryin’ to make these last few days of this 365 as intense as possible. I still say Detroit is home to me, no matter what. There STILL remain some good areas in Detroit that most do NOT know about to this day! Like most of us who are from the 313, I am DETERMINED to prove the naysayers-you know who you are-wrong!

BTW, some of these came various cameras (phones included) that I’ve used over the course of time (apparently).

1. 279/366 The Spirit Of Detroit (refurbished)!, 2. Linville St., 3. Motor Dr and James Couzens, 4. Mr. S’s Deli and Liquor, 5. 269/366 the Mound Road Bridge, 6. Club Elysium, 7. Wayne County Courthouse, 8. Hustlin’ and gettin’ down on the Princess, 9. Detroit Skyline, 10. Made In Detroit, 11. Better Made Potato Chip Factory , 12. Staples, Detroit, Michigan, 13. Detroit skyline, 14. 0801081603, 15. 0819081812, 16. 0819081549, 17. The Manoogian Mansion (our mayor’s mansion), 18. Historical House in Brush Park, 19. 210/366 I’d like to live in something like this one day!, 20. 40 Buick 8, 21. House In Victoria Park, 22. The Redford Theater, 23. Compuware Kites, 24. Ambassador Bridge , 25. Welcome 2 Detroit

Road Trip: Zombie Walk (for a cause)

Zombie Walk Detroit by Wigwam Jones

If you happen to suddenly find yourself surrounded by hordes of flesh eating zombies don’t be alarmed. October 26 is ‘World Zombie Day‘ and around 50 cities including Ferndale and Ann Arbor will be participating in zombie walks. Why you may ask? First of all to have fun but better yet is to help those in need. Zombies as social activists? Thats right, the walks also serve as food drives with participants and spectators being encouraged to bring non-perishable food that will be donated. Food collected from the Ferndale walk will benefit the Ferndale Food Bank and Gleaners and food from the Ann Arbor walk will benefit Food Gatherers a local food bank. Can you feel the zombie love? The third goal to the event is to get into the Guinness Book of World Records for the largest organized walk. Whatever, why not, go for it, def encourages participation…

To get more information on the Ferndale zombie walk visit Zombie Walk Detroit

To get more information on the Ann Arbor zombie walk visit Zombie Walk A2

Road Trip: Labor Day Weekend Around Southeast Michigan

Get the biggest bang for your Labor Day buck by heading to Southeast Michigan and attending one of the many festivals or fairs. All are within an affordable driving distance from one another and each offers a very unique experience.

world's largest stove by detroit am
world’s largest stove by detroit am

August 22 – September 1
Michigan State Fair Detroit
The Nation’s Oldest State Fair was officially first held in 1849, only twelve years after Michigan attained statehood. At the onset it was customary, in fact, for the fair to be held one year in one city, the next year in another, and there was always a hot contest to be the city selected. The Michigan State Fair settled down at the present fairgrounds in 1905.

Popular attractions include the FREE Concerts under the stars in the Band Shell, daily parades, competitions, horse shows, agricultural displays, arts & crafts, racing pigs, rabbits & poultry, dairy exhibits, carnival midway rides & games and the world’s largest stove.

Ring around the Milk Jug by kudzuplanet
Ring around the Milk Jug by kudzuplanet

August 28 – September 1
Michigan Peach Festival Romeo
The five-day festival includes an art exhibit, crafts shows, children’s day in the park, numerous family activities, nightly entertainment, amusement rides, delicious food, Harley-Davidson raffle, multiple parades, 5k run, antique car show, bike night, semi-pro wrestling, baby photo contest, Texas Hold’Em tournament, beers around the world tent, annual used book sale, peach pie stations, fly-in breakfast and end of summer sales at many local merchants.

Throughout the entire weekend visitors can enjoy many varieties of food such as BBQ specialties, pulled pork dinners and sandwiches, spaghetti dinners, ice cream stands, steak dinners, farmers breakfast and of course peach pie, peach cobbler, peach ice-cream, peach tea and many more peachy treats. The variety of food that will be available from the local restaurants, food vendors and charitable organizations is sure to delight the senses.

Mr. Brubeck by Maia C
Mr. Brubeck by Maia C

August 29 – September 1
Detroit International Jazz Fest Detroit
For more than a quarter century, the Detroit Jazz Fest has entertained millions of fans with jazz legends ranging from Herbie Hancock to Yusef Lateef and Ron Carter. Today, it ROARS on six stages over four days, with blues, gospel, R&B, and one of the finest jazz lineups on the planet. The festival also offers educational events, daily second-line parades, fire works, and rare opportunities to meet the artists. And it’s all FREE!

~~ Little Mermaid ~~ by suesue2
~~ Little Mermaid ~~ by suesue2

August 29 – September 1
Arts, Beats & Eats Pontiac
Chrysler Arts, Beats & Eats plays host to a hot line-up of national and local musical acts on Labor Day weekend, August 29 through September 1, 2008. In its eleventh year, Chrysler Arts, Beats & Eats promises the ‘beats’ will reflect the true heart of the metro Detroit area with sounds from nearly every musical genre. With more than 150 local bands and entertainers performing for crowds free of charge on six stages, and well-known acts taking to the Million Dollar Madness Stage, the 2008 musical line-up caters to festival attendees of all ages and musical tastes.

The Million Dollar Madness features high-profile, up-and-coming national acts as well as established international stars. Located again this year on Pontiac ¹s Phoenix Plaza, the official list of confirmed national acts includes headliners Blues Traveler, Rusted Root and Hard Lessons on Friday; Hunter Brucks, Marcel, Stephen Cochran, Billy Currington, Tim Bowman, and Boney James on Saturday; Leighton with special guest Steve Kostan, Beatlemania Live, Loverboy, Back in the Day Band and Chaka Khan on Sunday; and Critical Bill, Rev Theory and Puddle of Mudd on Monday.

Kowality neon! by loungelistener
Kowality neon! by loungelistener

August 29 – September 1
Hamtramck Labor Day Festival 2008 Hamtramck
Throughout the years, visiting historic Hamtramck, Michigan has become a tradition for many during Labor Day weekend. The Hamtramck Labor Day Festival has welcomed more than 500,000 guests yearly as it continually provides the attractions many have come to anticipate during the holiday weekend, including live music, samplings of ethnic food, cultural dancers, carnival rides, and children’s activities. While keeping the traditions alive, the Hamtramck Labor Day Festival anticipates incorporating new features this year.

Held in the heart of the Hamtramck business district – on Jos Campau between Caniff and Carpenter– this year’s festival will be open:

  • Friday, August 29: 6-10 p.m.
  • Saturday, August 30: noon-10 p.m.
  • Sunday, August 31: noon-10 p.m.
  • Monday, September 1: noon-10 p.m.

Proud Handler by Dean S
Proud Handler by Dean S

August 16 – September 28
Michigan Renaissance Festival Holly
Festival is held on weekends and Labor Day, rain or shine. “visitors may also partake in games of skill or enjoy non-stop entertainment where belly dancers, sword swallowers, musicians, comedians and sword fighters provide merriment for all ages. The Festival is best known for it’s awe-inspiring full-contact armored jousting tournaments where gallant knights defend their honor until the last man is standing!”

Labor Day weekend enjoy the Buccaneer Beer Fest and BBQ Competition!

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Ann Arbor Street Art Fair – July 16 – 19

Lucy In The Sky With Diamonds by Amy Loo Who

Established in 1960, the Ann Arbor Street Art Fair is the Original of the now four award winning art fairs together attracting over 500,000 attendees from across the nation. Among the many accolades received by the fair is the Number One Art Fair rating in the country (October 2004) and Top Ten Art Fair (October 2005, 2006 and 2007) by the AmericanStyle readers survey.

The 49th annual Fair will take place July 16-19, 2008 on the Ingalls Mall Lawn by the Burton Memorial Tower, North University, and the Diag on the Central Campus at the University of Michigan. The Fair will feature 170 juried artists, five New Artists from local universities and colleges, the Potters Guild and an array of free art activities and performances for the whole family to enjoy.

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Road Trip: Detroit’s Historic Eastern Market

Grown in Detroit by ellievanhoutte

Since our ‘Michigan History’ article featured the Detroit Zoo today, it made sense (at least to me) that while there you take advantage of another one of Detroit’s great attractions. It seems it would be easy to spend an entire day at the Eastern Market and it’s surround area, so between the two it could be one heck of a fun weekend. Be sure to pack a cooler so you can take home some of the wonderful bounty at the market!

Detroit Eastern Market is the largest
historic public market district in the United

Every Saturday, Michigan’s largest and
most colorful market is host to more than
150 farmers and vendors from Michigan,
Ohio, and Canada offering a cornucopia of
fruits, vegetables, breads, baked goods,
jellies, jams, honey, apple cider, cheeses,
spices, herbs, plants and flowers.

Since 1891, Detroit’s Eastern Market has
been home to an amazing community of
farmers, merchants, restaurants, unique
shops, food lovers and residents. On any
given Saturday, more than 26,000
Detroiters, suburbanites and tourists shop
elbow to elbow, sharing experiences from
generation to generation.

Here is an interesting video on the restoration efforts going on within and around the market – via Model D.


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Michigan History: The Detroit Zoo

detroit zoo by ercy
detroit zoo by ercy

Polar bears frolicking in a glass tunnel surrounded by 300,000 gallons of crystal-clear water; kangaroos bouncing about in a simulated Australian Outback; or hundreds of amphibians living in the world’s only amphibian conservation center–a place the Wall Street Journal described as “Disneyland for toads.” These are some of the experiences visitors can enjoy at the Detroit Zoo.

Celebrating its eightieth anniversary this year, the 125-acre Detroit Zoo is located in the Detroit suburb of Royal Oak and draws one million visitors annually. Special events are planned to celebrate this milestone in August.

When established, it was the one of the first zoological parks in the nation to have bar-free animal exhibit areas. Over the years, it has maintained the same location, while preserving some of its architecturally significant buildings and original exhibits.

Visitors will experience a free-flight aviary, featuring exotic hummingbirds and butterflies; eighteen-foot-tall giraffes against a backdrop of ancient Egypt; two 4,000-pound white rhinoceroses hanging out together; a Kenyan native and a former safari guide who roams the African Veldt exhibit area telling children African tales. Add to that bald eagles, camels, prairie dogs, trumpeter swans and even warthogs.

Meanwhile, parents can feel good about the zoo’s mission today. According to Ron Kagen, director of the Detroit Zoological Society, which owns the Detroit Zoo, “Years ago, [zoos] were just places of entertainment. Now, they’re wonderful sanctuaries for animals. For all of us, the challenge is to make a visit to the zoo something that is wonderfully enriching and healthy for people as well as animals.”

For a visual tour of the Detroit Zoo check out this slideshow from the Detroit Zoo flickr pool.

The Detroit Zoo is one of a many great Michigan attractions featured in Michigan History magazine. For information call (800) 366-3703 or visit www.michiganhistorymagazine.com.

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Road Trip: International River Days – Detroit

Detroit River Days by paulhitz

Starting June 20th and continuing through the 23rd, Detroit hosts it’s annual International River Days, featuring carnival rides, a nautical parade, gigantic fireworks and a wide range of musical performances. River Days is the perfect time to enjoy all the fun that the new Detroit International Riverfront has to offer. Other events include the DTE Parade of Lights, Tall Ship Highlander Sea, Coast Guard Days, Lake Guardian EPA Boat Tours, Diamond Jack’s Boat Tours, Detroit River Cruise, Gold Cup Boat Races Exhibitions, Jet Ski demonstrations, the Detroit Open Bass Fishing tournament and much more!

Don’t miss the 50th Annual Target Fireworks, on Monday June 23rd along the Detroit International Riverfront. Hundreds of thousands of people line the Riverfront to view one of the nations largest fireworks displays.

It takes 5 days for dozens of specialists to load 3 barges with 250,000 lbs. of fiberglass mortars, 100 miles of wire, 500 tons of sand and more than 10,000 fireworks shells for the annual fireworks display.

International River Days is free to the public.

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Bavarian Festival; Frankenmuth June 12 – 15

Frankenmuth by Tony Tanoury

Wilkommen to Frankenmuth’s 50th Annual Bavarian Festival It’s not just an event… it’s a feeling of “Gemütlichkeit“, combined with the warmth and friendship of Michigan’s charming Bavarian Village.

It all started in 1959 with a Grand Opening Celebration of the Bavarian style addition to Fischer’s Hotel on Main Street. Back then “Tiny” & Dorothy Zehnder gambled on “Bavarianizing” their restaurant and re-naming it Frankenmuth Bavarian Inn. Several years later the event out-grew the parking lots of the restaurants. The Civic Events Council of Frankenmuth took over the operation of what has become an annual Bavarian Festival!

Come and enjoy the Gemütlichkeit of Old Bavaria blended with hospitality of Frankenmuth

Frankenmuth, “Michigan’s Little Bavaria”, delights over 3 million visitors annually. Come Experience Another World with unique attractions, shopping, restaurants, hotels & camping, festivals, and family fun! Information on what is happening next in Frankenmuth is only a click away.


The Voice of the Lone Ranger Rides Again

Fred Froy

Who was that masked man?
Hi-yo, Silver away!

Anyone over the age of fifty in Michigan, or anywhere else for that matter, instantly recognizes these phrases. They are the tried and true marks of one of America’s most trusted heroes: the Lone Ranger.

What few people in Michigan know is that The Lone Ranger was a Detroit creation that debuted on WXYZ radio on January 20, 1933-seventy-five years ago. Or that one of the men whose voice rapt listeners heard announcing the show’s famous introduction and narration, Fred Foy, is also a Detroit native-and likely the lone survivor among the show’s talent.

“It was wonderful for me to be part of that show,” said Foy,
eighty-nine, who now lives in Woburn, Massachusetts. Foy became the announcer/narrator in 1948 in Detroit, and remained in that role when the show moved to television in 1949. Foy’s broadcasting career eventually earned him induction into the Radio Hall of Fame.

Nearly forty years after the show left television, Foy marvels at the continuing, nostalgic interest in the masked man and his trusty “Indian” companion, Tonto. “I never expected the show to become that much of a legend,” he said. “To learn over the years that people listened to it religiously while you were narrating, and then you go to the old radio conventions and they tell you how much the show meant to them-my, it was as if you were a real celebrity.”

Fred Foy and the 75th anniversary of The Lone Ranger is the cover story of March/April 2008 issue of Michigan History magazine. For information call (800) 366-3703 or visit www.michiganhistorymagazine.com

Check out the Fred Foy tribute page at the Lone Ranger Fan Club for interviews with Foy and (as an added bonus) when it loads in you hear the whole intro for the show.

Cranbrook House and Gardens – Bloomfield Hills

The Gardens Of Cranbrook by suesue2

Cranbrook House and Gardens stands as a centerpiece of Cranbrook’s 319-acre National Historic Landmark campus. From May through October, visitors can experience the grandeur of both the House and the Gardens with guided and self-guided tours.

The house was designed by the famous Detroit architect Albert Kahn for the founders of Cranbrook George Booth and his wife Ellen Scripps Booth and is now the oldest surviving manor home in the metro Detroit area. It is crafted in the English Arts and Crafts style and the Booths had the finest artists and craftsman of the time do the tiles, handcrafted furniture and other works of fine and decorative art.

Guided and self-guided tours are a wonderful way to get to know Cranbrook House and the 40 acres of breathtaking gardens that surround it. There is a Sunken Garden along with herabaceous gardens, perennial flower beds to the casual beauty of the bog garden. Tended by hundred by hundreds of volunteers through out the year, the gardens are filled with colorful blooms, spacious lawns side by side with exquisite fountains and sculpture.

Annual Spring Plant Sale
Tuesday, May 13th 10am-7pm
Wednesday, May 14th 10am-2pm

You won’t want to miss this exciting event that draws avid gardeners from throughout the area. Volunteers have put together a wide variety of plants for your garden along with gardening items including pots and tools. Click here for more information.

View a slideshow of the Cranbrook House and Gardens over at Flickr.

If you want even more information check out the Wikipedia entry for the Cranbrook Educational Community which consists of the Cranbrook Kingswood School, Cranbrook Academy of Art, Cranbrook Art Museum, Cranbrook Institute of Science, Cranbrook House and Gardens, and Christ Church Cranbrook.