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  • Detroit Tigers Dave Rozema and Ike Blessitt to honor Mark “The Bird” Fidrych

    Coming up on August 16, former Detroit Tigers greats Dave Rozema and Ike Blessitt will team up with the Navin Field Grounds Crew and Metro Times‘ own Dave Mesrey to honor legend Mark “The Bird” Fidrych. The festivities, known as the annual “Bird Bash,” will be held at the infamous Nemo’s Bar & Grill, and will benefit The Bird’s favorite charity, the Wertz Warriors, and also the Mark Fidrych Foundation. For more information, check out their website or Facebook page.

    The post Detroit Tigers Dave Rozema and Ike Blessitt to honor Mark “The Bird” Fidrych appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • First Little League game at Navin Field today

    Today Navin Field (the Old Tiger Stadium) hosts its first Little League game on a new field made just to host the youngsters! Here’s a photo of the game happening right now, courtesy Tom Derry and Metro Times‘ copy editor extraordinaire, Dave Mesrey: Stop by the site (corner of Michigan and Trumbull) today to watch history in the making!

    The post First Little League game at Navin Field today appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Twerk du Soleil shakes up Detroit

    Former American Idol contestant Vonzell Solomon weighs in on twerking, natural hair & CEO status. In 2005, recording artist Vonzell “Baby V” Solomon embarked on a journey that changed her life. At the age of 20, Vonzell made it to the top three on American Idol before she was eliminated. But that was not the beginning nor the end of her journey to stardom. Vonzell is one of more than two dozen artists on tour with YouTube sensation Todrick Hall, who is a former Idol contestant as well. Todrick gained notoriety for his fast food drive-thru songs and also for producing parody videos  —  based on popular Broadway musicals and songs. His tour, uniquely entitled Twerk Du Soleil (translation: twerk of the sun), is a combination of his popular YouTube spoofs. Both Vonzell and her ratchet alter ego,Boonquisha Jenkins, made an appearance in Twerk Du Soleil,which stopped in Detroit July 23 at Saint Andrews Hall. Boonquisha opened the show by facilitating a twerking competition among the audience. Next, Vonzell made a reappearance singing a fan favorite – Whitney Houston’s “I Have Nothing.” Later, Boonquisha came on stage screaming “It’s so cold in the D! You gotta be from the D to […]

    The post Twerk du Soleil shakes up Detroit appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Poll shows Bob Ficano behind in Wayne County Executive race

    If a poll released this week is any indication of how the August 5 primary election will turn out, current Wayne County Executive Bob Ficano has reason to worry, Fox 2 reports. Ficano, who’s seeking a third term, polled in fourth place — behind former Detroit Police Chief Warren Evans, Westland Mayor Bill Wild and Wayne County Commissioner Phil Cavanaugh, according to Fox 2. The poll by Strategic Solutions LLC, showed 6.7 percent of respondents said they’d vote for Ficano, which isn’t so bad: He finished ahead of County Commissioner Kevin McNamara (who came in at No. 6) and someone literally described as “a candidate not named here” (who polled at No. 5.) If you’re planning to head to the polls — which you should! — and need some input on the candidates and ballot proposals, you can read for our election coverage in this week’s Metro Times.

    The post Poll shows Bob Ficano behind in Wayne County Executive race appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • A Mad Decent Mixtape

    Mad Decent Block Party will roll through town on Saturday, August 16, bringing to town artists like Dillon Francis, Diplo, Flosstradamus, RiFF RAFF, Keys N Krates, and Zeds Dead. Thugli, a Canadian duo, will perform on the Toronto leg of the tour and they put together a 45 minute mix that features songs by some of the tour’s featured artists as well as a host of others.  Listen to it here. 

    The post A Mad Decent Mixtape appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Tangent Gallery to host Breaking Borders

    Detroit’s Tangent Gallery will host a special event this Saturday, July 26 in hopes of raising money for the local faction of an international nonprofit, Burners without Borders Detroit. Breaking Borders is a one-evening-only event that will feature live music, performance, and art. Satori Circus will perform along with spoken word artist ZakAndWhatArmy. Music by Tartanic, Dixon’s Violin, and Servitor. Fire dancers, hoop performers, and acrobats will provide a certain mysticism to the ambiance as old Victorian steampunk and tribal art is shown in the main gallery. There will also be a runway fashion show and the evening will end with a dubstep rave featuring DJ Forcefeed and Dotty. Truly, there’s something for everyone. Perhaps more importantly, there will be a full service bar. The event is open to those 18 and older and IDs will be checked at the door. Admission is $25 at the door, or $20 with the donation of a canned good. Doors open at 7 p.m. and the party goes until 2 a.m. A 20 percent commission will be taken from all art sold at this event and donated to Burners without Borders. The Tangent Gallery is located at 715 Milwaukee Ave., Detroit; 313-873-2955; tangentgallery.com.

    The post Tangent Gallery to host Breaking Borders appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

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Eat

The Detroit food pyramid

How to eat like a real Detroiter.

Photo: Courtesy photos., License: N/A

Courtesy photos.


Apologies to the USDA, but there are all manner of food pyramids. Beyond the simple triangles designed for mere civilians, there are pyramids for vegetarians, vegans, superfooders. Too often they’re imbued with a kind of subliminal scolding, that if only you could find the right fuel mix, you’d shed pounds and be able to do the 50-yard dash without pulling a ligament and throwing up all over the finish line. In these pyramid schemes, foods aren’t delicious or comforting; they’re things to be used, two or three times daily. In short, food pyramids are a drag.

So we endeavored to come up with our Detroit food pyramid. It comes with no health promises (and should probably be stamped with a big, red Surgeon General’s warning), but it will help you compose a daily diet of Detroit, healthful and otherwise.

Coney Dogs: Detroit’s diners, known throughout the region as “Coney Islands,” aren’t that much different from diners far and wide. They serve your usual greasy spoon fare, including burgers, fries and hash browns (no “home fries” here!), but the singularly famous confection they serve is the Coney Island hot dog, or “coney dog.” It’s an all-beef frank in a steamed bun, nestled beneath a mound of beef chili, showered with diced onions and given a topping of yellow mustard. As regional dogs go, the coney dog doesn’t get much national respect. That honor goes to Chicago dogs, Philly Po Boys, New York franks, Southwestern Sonorans and Hawaiian “puka dogs.” With the national media increasingly training its sights on Detroit in recent years, that may be changing. In 2012, Painted Turtle published a book by Katherine Yung and Joe Grimm called Coney Detroit, all about the coney dog and its history as a humble component of our local culinary heritage. You can get them almost anywhere, with large local chains such as National Coney Island dotting the map. But the burning question is downtown, where coney-hounds argue over which historic joint is better, American Coney Island (open since 1917) or Lafayette Coney Island (founded in 1924). Gird your stomach and take the taste test.

Detroit deep-dish pizza: Not as deep and gooey as Chicago-style deep dish, and squared off instead of round, Detroit deep dish is a metro Detroit tradition. Local lore says the creation was born at Buddy’s Pizza in the 1940s, when the former speakeasy was looking for a dish that would bring in more customers. How successful was it? The place is still there, on Conant in an otherwise disinvested area. It became so popular, in fact, that Buddy’s inspired a second generation of Detroit-style pizza joints, each slinging their own versions of the fabled classic. You can now get it at Cloverleaf in Eastpointe, Ypsilanti’s Tower Inn Café and at Loui’s in Hazel Park, where you can dine on it amid hundreds of empty Chianti bottles, amid waitresses who might still call you “hon.”

Better Made Chips: Among its many fabled virtues, Detroit has been known as the potato chip capital of the world — though we’re not sure by what measure, production or consumption. The city still hosts a number of potato chip brands, but they’re all distant runners-up compared to Better Made. Magician, comedian, author and potato chip expert Penn Jillette, writing for Maxim magazine, declared Better Made among the best chips in the country, writing “These are American chips exactly as they should be: not too crunchy, a little bit mushy. You can get a lot in your mouth at once. They also don’t have any ridges or added flavor … just salt and cotton-fat goodness.” They come in regular, barbecue, salt and vinegar, and more, but an even guiltier pleasure awaits: the “Rainbow” chips, cooked to a darker hue and slightly sweeter. Better Made churns out a whole lot of other bagged snacks, including cheese corn, popcorn and cheese doodles, but when you drive by the factory on Gratiot Avenue in Detroit, it’s potato chips you smell wafting into your car. Now that’s pure Detroit.

Faygo: Also on Gratiot Avenue is the Faygo Beverage company. Started by the Feigenson brothers, the flavors mimicked the cake frostings they also sold. The soda business took off, and Faygo has become a multimillion-dollar family business, one synonymous with Detroit picnics and the good old days. It’s also become synonymous with something else: the Insane Clown Posse. The local rap duo has turned Faygo into a countercultural sacrament, baptizing crowds in the sticky sweet soda pop — tapping an international market for the 2-liter bottles of Redpop or Rock and Rye so ubiquitous in local stores. Strangely, the Feigensons and ICP are at cross purposes, the hip-hop group evangelizing for the Juggalo lifestyle, and the Faygo folks hoping to appeal to another kind of “family” demographic altogether. “We wish they would do a limited-edition Faygo pop run with us,” Violent J once told Metro Times. “But whoever’s in charge now wants to steer clear of Insane Clown Posse. They consider themselves a family product. I guess they don’t make it to throw at each other.”

Boston Cooler: Named not for Boston itself, but for the historic Boston Edison district in Detroit, this soda float is another hometown innovation. You drop two scoops of vanilla ice cream into a tall glass and top it off with a generous pour of ginger ale, then attack it with a spoon and straw. You could make this treat with any old brand of ginger ale, but it was traditionally made with Vernors Ginger Ale. Created in 1866 at James Vernor’s Detroit pharmacy, it’s regarded as the oldest soft drink brand in the United States. According to lore, when he returned from service in the Civil War, Vernor discovered some syrup he’d accidentally left aging in a barrel was spectacular enough to sell. Sadly, the Vernors of today is a pale imitation of what it once was: a super-effervescent beverage that could induce a sneeze during that first drink from the can. For the ice cream, a classic Detroit brand, such as Stroh’s, will help score points for authenticity.

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