Model D's greatest hits: All the Detroit goodness of 2009

The year is almost over, so it's time for everyone and every media outlet to wax nostalgic for 2009. In Detroit, we could go on ad nauseam about all of our many ex-mayors from the year, but instead we just suggest you grab a copy of the "Kwame Sutra," sip some eggnog, sit by the fire and ponder all that mess on your own.

The Model D staff is filling our heads, instead, with sugar plums like the renovation of the Green Garage, dreaming of reindeer on the rooftops of artists' $100 houses, and eating Southwest Detroit tacos by the fire.

So raise a Ghettoblaster and reminisce with us about the best stories of the year. And here's to a just as newsworthy 2010.

Best pics
Photographer Marvin Shaouni's photo essay from MOCAD's You're Gonna Die party was killer.

Look to the left for a few more of our favorite pics, in order:
1. Chef Michael Symon of Roast
2. Adriel Thornton of Fierce Hot Mess and Family
3. Jason Huvaere of Paxahau
4. Shooting the "Red Dawn" remake on Woodward Avenue
5. Swimming Belle Isle for the Motor City Triathlon
6. Boxing at the Majestic
7. Piper Carter at the 5E Gallery

Best feature stories

1. Jim Boyle's response to Mitch Albom's big piece in Sports Illustrated was the most read and most commented on story in all of Model D history.
2. & 3. Terry Parris Jr.'s interviews with foreign media put the story of the Detroit story in perspective; and he explored what to do with the city's trash if the incinerator's fires went out.
4. & 5. Kelli B. Kavanaugh gave us a lot to think about with her discussion of what to do with Belle Isle; and her feature about kayaking the Detroit River has us itching for the spring thaw. Model D is even planning a kayak the river event in June. Stay tuned.
6. Dennis Archambault took us to Brightmoor, a neighborhood full of hope and in need of big changes.
7. Clare Pfeiffer Ramsey sought out vendors for locavore carnivores in her meat eater's Detroit guide.
8. & 9. Walter Wasacz introduced us to the fierce hotness of Adriel Thornton; and talked with Mitch Cope and Gina Reichert of the fabled Power House project.
10. Finally, foodie blogger Nicole Rupersburg led us to the taco promised land in Southwest Detroit.

Best development news
1. Dequindre Cut opens, gets murals and an extension in East Riverfront.
2. College for Creative studies moves into the restored Argonaut in New Center.
3. The innovative Green Garage project gets underway in Midtown.
4. Visionary shipping container housing development coming to Woodbridge.
5. Rosa Parks Transit Center opens downtown.

Best videos
Our favorite videos of the year from Model D director/producer Tom Hendrickson
1. Tour De Troit bike event
2. Recycle Here!
3. Rosa Parks Transit Center
4. Mexican-Italian El Barzon in Southwest Detroit
5. CCS's Argonaut Building makeover

Best of Detroit Buzz
1. Assignment Detroit: Time, Inc. purchases Detroit home for writers while they track city. Honorable mention to Dyspathy's drinking game version.
2. When $100 homes aren't always a bad thing -- Toby Barlow in the New York Times.
3. Vice Magazine reporter takes on "ruin porn" and Detroit's media frenzy.
4. Arts and politics mag Guernica goes in depth on Detroit's urban farming movement.
5. Urbanophile blog looks at Detroit as an urban laboratory, the new American frontier.

Tweets of the year
1. @jamilaishere: Monica Conyers is up in the Detroit Fish Market lookin a hot ass mess! Shouldn't she be tryin to get her stuff out the office? For real?!!!
2. @nhlcyclesophist: Ah, Detroit. All the late-19th century charm....but with more grafitti and airplanes!
3. @kendall: I love you Detroit but I have to say, your driving scares me a bit.
4. @Sycloneman: 2 hot dogs and a redpop - $5, conversation with homeless person - $1, lunch along the Detroit River, priceless

And finally, the moment you've all been waiting for, the Tweet that gets the coveted Model D Tweet of the Year honor:
5. @Johnmoz: Sanity reigns in Detroit elections: Good Mayor, council. School bond and council-by-districts. Won't mind city taxes as much.

Thanks for reading. Send feedback here. We'll be back in 2010.
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