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  • The Ypsilanti mystery pooper saga continues

    Ypsilanti police are still searching for the person dubbed the “mystery pooper.” Someone has been, as the Associated Press politely puts it today, “soiling slides at an Ypislanti playground over the last six months.” So, of course, someone purchased an electronic billboard along I-94 near Huron St. at exit 183 that delivers multiple calls for action: For instance,”Help us flush the pooper.” The company that purchased the billboard, Adams Outdoor Advertising, knows how to reach the world in the 21st Century, branding each billboard with a hashtag for the public utilize in its efforts: #ypsipooper. WJBK-TV says the billboard also toggles through other rich lines, such as: “Do your civic doody, report the pooper #YPSIPOOPER” “Help us catch the poopetrator #YPSIPOOPER.” You can have the runs, but you can’t hide. They’re still looking for you, Mystery Pooper.

    The post The Ypsilanti mystery pooper saga continues appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: DJ AvA, Chuck Flask & Keith Kemp preview Movement at Urban Bean Co.

    It’s a really, very cool idea. Paxahau, the good people behind the Movement Electronic Music Festival, are hosting a series of warm-up events, or previews, to the big festival which takes place Memorial Day weekend. On Thursday evening, Movement moved into the Urban Coffee Bean on Grand River in Detroit. While Dj AvA and Chuck Flask & Keith Kemp ably worked the decks, the regular coffee shop goings on continued behind them. It made for an interesting and amusing webcast experience – one guy was taking a nap on camera, while others supped coffee and tappd their feet. It should come as no surprise – the Urban Coffee Co. people have always been big supporters of electronic music. The place includes a DJ stand, and co-owner Josh Greenwood encourages customers to bring their own vinyl and spin on the open turntables. Not on Thursday night though. This being a coffee shop, and it not being particularly late at night, the music remained pretty chill throughout. DJ AvA (real name Heather McGuigan) includes Beth Orton, Madonna, the B-52’s, Daftpunk and David Byrne among her list of influences, so you know that she’s capable of both whipping up a storm and also […]

    The post City Slang: DJ AvA, Chuck Flask & Keith Kemp preview Movement at Urban Bean Co. appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Here is why landlords could do well in Wayne County

    CNN has a message to all prospective landlords: Head to Wayne County! Occupancy and rental rates are increasing, the report says, creating an opportunity for serious returns on investments. In fact, after comparing the median sales price of homes to average monthly rents in nearly 1,600 counties, RealtyTrac found that Detroit’s Wayne County offers landlords the best return on their investment in the nation. Investors who buy homes in the metro area can expect a 30% gross annual return from rents. That’s triple the national average of 10%. RealtyTrac, an online real estate information company, says the county offers investors low prices for larger homes — with a median price of $45,000. “We’ve got some steals here,” said Rachel Saltmarshall, a real estate agent and immediate past president of the Detroit Association of Realtors, told CNN. “There’s a six-bedroom, 6,000 square-foot home in a historic district selling for $65,000.” For more, read the entire report here.

    The post Here is why landlords could do well in Wayne County appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • The Record Store Day Guide for metro Detroit

    This Saturday, audiophiles across the world will venture out to their favorite independent record stores in search of limited releases that quickly become collectors items. The third Saturday of April marks the fairly new international holiday Record Store Day. There are certainly dos and don’ts to know for RSD — like where to shop, and how to shop. That’s right, there is an etiquette to shopping on Record Store Day and violating that code makes you look like a real asshole. In my experience of celebrating Record Store Day, I’ve seen stores use a few different tactics as far as stocking the special releases. Some establishments will set up a table, somewhere in the store, where a few shoppers at a time can flip through records in a calm and contained manner. Other places will have a similar setup, with all the releases at a table, but shoppers ask the store employees for the releases they want. It’s like a record nerd stock exchange. This process gets loud, slightly confusing and incredibly annoying — this is where elbows start getting thrown. Then, there are places that put the releases on the shelves, usually categorized by size — twelve inches with the twelve inches, seven inches with the seven inches and […]

    The post The Record Store Day Guide for metro Detroit appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: DEMF 2014 canceled

    The Detroit Electronic Music Festival, which was supposed to be making a triumphant return this year, has been canceled. A statement on the website says that the festival will be back in 2015. Back in November, Ford Field hosted an announcement party for DEMF, where it was revealed that a new DEMF festival would take place at Campus Martius Park in Detroit over the July 4th weekend. “I’m proud to be involved in the biggest and best electronic music festival in the world,” said Juan Atkins. “The future’s here. This is techno scene.” Not the immediate future, apparently. The DEMF people claim that the M-1 rail construction is partially to blame for the cancellation/12-month-postponement. Read the full statement here. Follow @City_Slang

    The post City Slang: DEMF 2014 canceled appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Metro Times wins heavy at the SPJ Awards

    Despite a turbulent 2013 which saw Metro Times change owners, move buildings and change editors twice, we picked up eight awards at the Society of Professional Journalists Awards on Wednesday night. The big winner was Robert Nixon, design manager, who picked up a first place for “Feature Page Design (Class A)” for our Josh Malerman cover story, first for “Cover Design (Class A)” for our Halloween issue (alongside illustrator John Dunivant), and a second in that same category for our annual Lust issue. In the news categories, our esteemed former news editor and current contributing writer Curt Guyette won third in “General News Reporting” and third in “Best Consumer/Watchdog” – both Class A – for the Fairground Zero and Petcoke Series respectively. Music & Culture Editor Brett Callwood placed third for his Josh Malerman cover story in the “Best Personality Profile (Class A)” category, and former editor Bryan Gottlieb picked up a couple of Class C awards for “Editorial Writing” and “Headline Writing” (third and second, respectively). We were also pleased to learn that our investigative reporter Ryan Felton won first place and an honorable mention for work published while at the Oakland Press. The MT ship is steady now, […]

    The post Metro Times wins heavy at the SPJ Awards appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

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Best of Detroit 2011

Public Square - Readers' Choice

Our local riches, from media to politics to business and more, as judged by our readers

Photo: Photo: Marvin Shaouni, License: N/A

Photo: Marvin Shaouni


Every year we ask: What more could there be to say? What could be new in the 25th anniversary edition of Best of Detroit, that hasn't been said before. But then we print up the readers' ballot and put a version online, and watch as the returns begin. Then we start free associating, opening our eyes to what's around us, letting our ears perk up when someone tells us about a new shop, a new club, a new insight. By the end, this year, we were checking with the production department to see where we might pry loose a little more space. By the end the ideas were flowing. We have to get in the Detroit Party Marching Band, right? And Autotune Karaoke. Got to get that. Tom's Tavern hasn't fallen down yet? Gotta get that. Meanwhile, we're harvesting what 1,000-plus readers have said in our ballots, reminding us of great places, interesting people, important ideas. When we asked for a new slogan for the city, one response was: "A great place to visit, even when you live here." If that makes sense to you, hold on to this as your visitor's guide until we bring you a newer one a year from now.

Contributors: Todd Abrams, Jeff Broder, Curt Guyette. Evan Hansen. W. Kim Heron, Patrick Higgins, Michael Jackman, Jim McFarlin, Megan O'Neil, Marvin Shaouni, Dennis Shea, Jane Slaughter, Brian Smith, Sandra Svoboda, Travis R. Wright

Plus: Detroit Derby Girls & 1,000-plus Metro Times readers

Photos of the Detroit Derby Girls by Marvin Shaouni

with thanks to Eastern Market, Showtime Clothing, Iridescence, Roast, and the Detroit Princess

 

PUBLIC SQUARE - READERS' CHOICE

 

Best Local Music Festival

The Hamtramck Blowout
metrotimes.com/blowout

This coveted award has seesawed in recent years from Movement to Blowout. Both create a weekend festival community at once hip and inviting. After this year's Blowout, your head was spinning from the Hard Lessons' passionate farewell (for now) show, the sonic sprawl of JSB Squad, the Yardbirds-at-Chess vibe of Jeecy and the Jungle, Prussia's odd pop propulsions, the frenetic antics of Carjack, the digable debut of electro-pop duo Phantasmagoria, hip-hop conglomerate Cold Men Young and more.

 

Best Place to See a Mainstream Film

Uptown Palladium 12
250 N. Old Woodward Ave., Birmingham; 248-723-6240; palladium12.com

When there's a blockbuster release, metro Detroiters flock here for the contour-hugging seats and other amenities (Starbucks, Little Caesars, etc.) that make worshipping at the big screen a big event. Here you behold a cinema that delivers the shock and awe that the latest generation of high-tech movies require. This is a temple to the cinema of today as much as, say, the Fox Theatre, 17 miles south on Woodward Avenue, was in its cinematic heyday.

 

Best Place to See an Indie Film

Main Art Theatre
118 N. Main St., Royal Oak; 248-263-2111; landmarktheaters.com

As downtown Royal Oak has revolved around it these past 14 years, this remains a cinematic oasis, not a relic frozen in the past, but a place with a sense of memory — and cinematic mission. It all fits the kind of big screen flicks that are the stock-in-trade on their three screens here — the slightly off-kilter, where the explosions are emotional more often than literal. (And there's even some free parking.)

 

Best Local Film Festival

Ann Arbor Film Festival
aafilmfest.org

As our award-winning film writer Jeff Meyers wrote of the 2011 festival: "Ultimately, AAFF is both an experience and a scene; '40 programs over six days with 188 films, videos and live performances.' Whether it's the after-hours parties or crazed installations or interactive displays, the festival does a damn good job of transforming a corner of downtown Ann Arbor into a celebration of independent cinematic expression. Good or bad, at the very least, it'll be a hell of a lot more interesting than most of the stuff you'll find at the multiplex." And chances are it will be grander-than-usual next year, which will mark the 50th festival for this vital-as-ever institution.

 

Best Place to See Local Theater

Who Wants Cake? Company's Ringwald Theatre
22742 Woodward Ave., Ferndale; 248-545-5545; whowantscaketheatre.com

Fans flock here to to take in the absurd, surreal and sarcastic productions. Most recently, Mercury Fur, starring Jon and Nico Ager, was talk of the town. The company is again taking submissions for their groundbreaking Gay Play Series, which last year featured work by playwrights from across the nation, a reading of Valley of the Dolls and the first Motown MisCast Cabaret. To be or not to be ... there for their next production?

 

Best Bowling Alley

Garden Bowl
4120 Woodward Ave., Detroit; 313-833-9700; majesticdetroit.com/garden-bowl

Sure, it's got history as part of the entertainment complex built just before World War I. While it's got that historic vibe, it's totally up-to-date with 16 recent vintage lanes — compared to the original 10. And where else does sonorous rawk from nearby music mingle with the roll of balls and the clatter of the pins?

 

Best Bingo Night Venue

Drag Queen Bingo at Five15 Media Mojo & More
515 S. Washington Ave., Royal Oak; 248-515-2551; five15.net

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