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Freep's Dickerson: Same-sex marriage a no-brainer for Michigan

Brian Dickerson's opinion piece in the Freep matches up perfectly with today's lead feature on same-sex marriage

It's filled with numbers -- a near 20 point swing, in fact, over nine years -- that show the changing views of Michigan residents on gay marriage.

An excerpt:

A new survey by the respected Glengariff Group, which has been polling Michiganders’ attitudes toward the issue annually since October 2004, reveals that voters in the Great Lakes State now back gay marriage by a 57 percent-38 percent margin -- an almost exact reversal of the electorate’s disposition nine years ago, when 58 percent of Michigan voters supported a state constitutional amendment outlawing the recognition of same-sex marriages.

Read more here.

Sign up now for Global Great Lakes June 6 event

On June 6, the first Global Great Lakes Network convening is being held in Detroit.

Initiatives from across the midwest will come together to begin to form a collaborative network where best practices and strategies can be shared.  A cohesive strategy will be developed to further connect the midwest to a global economy and move towards a view of immigration as an economic development tool for the region.

The Global Great Lakes Network invites you and anyone else who is interested in being a part of this exciting immigration movement. The June 6 event is at the University of Detroit Mercy School of Law, 651 E. Larned, downtown Detroit.  

For more information and to RSVP, go here.

City Year parties at Fountain Bistro to raise funds

City Year Detroit is partnering with Fountain Bistro to host a fund raiser for the Detroit corps. The party is next Thursday, May 23, 6:30 - 9:30 p.m.

There will be live music, strolling hors d'oeuvres, beer and wine, champagne and a chance to learn about this organization that uses volunteers to make a positive impact on schools and kids in Detroit.

The event is $50. You can register here. Fountain Bistro is inside Campus Martius, 800 Woodward Ave., downtown Detroit.

Belle Isle Conservancy president answers questions about future of city park

The Belle Isle Conservancy is like Switzerland. It will work for the greater good of the island park with nearly everyone who comes to the table.

An excerpt from this Q&A with the group's president Michele Hodges:

It’s important to be open to options and find the model that is going to work best for the city of Detroit. Certainly, one of the models is the Central Park Conservancy (in New York). When they started out in the 1980s, Central Park was in far worse condition than Belle Isle. And they found one project, their Dairy Barn, which was their starting point, and look where they’ve come since then.

They've come a long way, indeed. Read on and watch the video here.

National Bike to Work day gathering at BCBS

On Friday May 17, celebrate national Bike to Work Day in downtown Detroit by riding to a gathering of likeminded cyclists. Food and limited giveaways will be available.

 Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan will host a morning reception 7 - 9 a.m. in the outdoor courtyard of its downtown Detroit Tower headquarters. 

Though registration is not required to ride, BCBS would like to know if you're coming. Go here to sign up.

Listen up: Greening of Detroit Grandmount-Rosedale project on WDET

Browsing the usual suspects for awesome stuff that happened in the past week, we came upon this, a sweet report on WDET on Greening of Detroit doing a planting in Northwest Detroit.

An excerpt:

Dozens of volunteers joined WDET and the Greening of Detroit to plant trees on Saturday in the Grandmont-Rosedale neighborhood. The nonprofit has planted more than 80,000 trees in the city since it first put "roots" down in 1989. WDET’s Pat Batcheller spoke with the Greening of Detroit’s Dean Hay and Trish Hubbell. With all the things Detroit needs, they explain how trees fit into that and how they improve life in the city.

To listen to the broadcast hit the link at the top of this page

Detroit is finalist for Summer X Games

It's official, reports HuffPost Detroit, Detroit impressed ESPN enough to be named a finalist last week for the Summer X Games beginning in 2014.

An excerpt:

ESPN announced the competing cities had been narrowed down to Detroit, Chicago, Austin, Texas and Charlotte, N.C. Organizers Kevin Krease and Garret Koehler, with the support of city administration, business leaders and other stakeholders, submitted their official bid for the project in early April. Good work, guys.

More here.

Detroit 2020: Midtown rolling with momentum

It was nice to see Channel 7's Detroit 2020 focus on the recent successes of Midtown and, in particular, the dedicated vision and leadership of Midtown Inc. president Sue Mosey.

An excerpt: It takes a quick pace to keep up with Sue Mosey.

She’s the dynamo leading the redevelopment of Detroit’s Midtown neighborhood. "It’s taken a very long time to get to the point where acceleration is moving very quickly, but I think we’ve reached that point now," Mosey says.

Read on and watch the segment here.

Detroit Archdiocese relocates to Capitol Park

There are a couple of promising developments in one move here: Capitol Park gets an anchor tenant in the Archdiocese of Detroit; and its vacated properties -- most spectacular among them the gorgeous Chancery bilding on Washington Blvd, adjacent to St. Aloysius church -- are being put on the market. The Freep got the story first but Curbed got the pictures.

Take a look here.

Richard Florida: Redevelop neighborhoods for true urban prosperity

Sure, another day, another verbal transmission from Professor Florida. This piece has some of the usual Detroit suspects: Gilbert, Slows, the 7.2 data. But it also reprises an old creative class chestnut that actually answers the urbanist's chicken or the egg question: what comes first talent or capital?

An excerpt: 

I have long believed that talent attracts capital far more effectively and consistently than capital attracts talent. The most creative individuals want to live in places that protect personal freedoms, prize diversity, and offer an abundance of cultural opportunities. A city that wants to attract creators must offer a fertile breeding ground for new ideas and innovations.

Recent college graduates are flocking to Brooklyn not merely because of employment opportunities, but because it is where some of the most exciting things in the world are happening--in music, art, design, food, shops, technology, and green industry. Economists may not say it this way, but the truth of the matter is: being cool counts. When people can find inspiration in a community that also offers great parks, safe streets, and extensive mass transit, they vote with their feet.

We haven't used the word "cool" in a while. Feels, uhm, a bit nostalgic. Read more here.

Bloomberg: Startups providing entrepreneurial spark in Detroit, NOLA

It may be an old story for us to read about techie entrepreneurs setting up shop in old U.S. cities like Detroit. But it's still some sort of validation when Bloomberg News picks up the ball and runs with it.

An excerpt:

While the bulk of venture capital dollars go to Silicon Valley and New England, cities little heralded for their tech scenes have been successfully coaxing technology entrepreneurs to set up shop in recent years. That includes Detroit, New Orleans and St. Louis, where municipal and private initiatives are attracting newbies and natives returning from the coasts.

Read more here.

Listen to Model D publisher Claire Nelson co-host 'Prosperity Agenda'

Here at Model D, we never tire of listening to Claire Nelson talk about the city she loves. You can do the same by clicking on the link below, which leads you to the 'Presperity Agenda," an hour-long radio program hosted by Dan Gilmartin, CEO of the Michigan Municipal League (the League). The show is sponsored by the League and the Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSHDA).

Nelson co-hosted a recent episode. Check it out here.

Who doesn't like Founders beer? Vote for your fave style in Pure Michigan promotion

With the craft beer craze continuing to sweep Michigan and summer approaching, Pure Michigan and Founders Brewing Co. have teamed up to give fans and craft beer enthusiasts a chance to pick a Founders beer style that best represents Pure Michigan. 

The beer chosen by fans will be featured in the Founders tap room in downtown Grand Rapids throughout July as part of Michigan Craft Beer Month.

Running through Friday, May 3, fans can vote between the following three beer styles – Vanilla Stout, Apple Ale and Wheat IPA. To vote, go here. Individuals 21 and over can vote once a day for the duration of the contest and the winning beer will be announced in May. 

Home to more than 100 breweries, Michigan is fifth in the nation for the number of breweries, microbreweries and brewpubs. Michigan’s craft brewers are also part of a close knit community, promoting all that the Great Beer State has to offer.

Let's get growing: Pot & Box pops up at D:hive

Hey, gardeners and other flora lovers, Pot & Box: Detroit, which is planning on opening a permanent location in Corktown later this year, will be in residence at downtown's D:hive from May through July this summer.

Join the celebration this Thursday, May 2 for a ribbon cutting promptly at 6:15 p.m. with cans of champagne (P&B's signature shop drink at the Ann Arbor location), pizza from Supino, and other treats.

D:hive is at 1253 Woodward Ave., Detroit.

Get more info here.

NYT: Late artist Mike Kelley's mobile homestead coming to MOCAD

We were saddened to hear of the death of Los Angeles-based Mike Kelley, an artist with Detroit roots. Kelley had been working with the Museum of Contemporary Art Detroit on his mobile homestead project for several years prior to his passing.

We've been following the project, still in the works with a launch planned this spring, as has the New York Times.

An excerpt:

The New York The house is a faithful replica of the suburban Detroit childhood home of the artist Mike Kelley, who shepherded the details of its creation up to the final days of his life in January 2012, when he committed suicide at his home in South Pasadena, Calif. Kelley was one of the most influential artists of the last several decades. And though he made his name in the Los Angeles art world, much of the look and feel of his art came from his working-class, Irish Catholic upbringing here, in a city whose affliction he seemed to embody.

Read on here.
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