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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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Opening Day Issue

Inge Season

The Tigers third baseman, Detroit and Opening Day

Photo: Cover illustration: Justin Rose, License: N/A

Cover illustration: Justin Rose

2011 Opening Day Issue

It's probably unholy this week to ask Brandon Inge what he'd be doing if he weren't a baseball player.

"I'm not sure," he haltingly answers. "Probably something in extreme sports."

Not that the Detroit Tigers third baseman doesn't use the quickness, balance and strength he'd need as, say, a ski racer, mountain biker or, dare we imagine, skateboarder in his current infield play.

Inge, 33, is considered one of the most classically athletic and versatile on the Tigers roster. He's mostly a fan favorite for his reliable fielding but sometimes the source of angst for his less-than-stellar batting.

As the player with the longest tenure on the Detroit roster this year, Inge is the guy with the most Detroit Opening Days, which is more what the first week of April is about than career stats.

A native of Virginia, Inge is still struck by the energy, enthusiasm and loyalty the Detroit fans bring each season, never more so than on Opening Day. When Inge and his teammates take to the green grass and smooth infield of Comerica Park on Friday for the home opener against Kansas City, the stands will be full. Fans will peer through the fence in the outfield. Nearby bars will be packed by those who just want to be close to the game action. Offices will lose productivity as those stuck at work will follow on the Internet.

Contrast that to the first game of the 2011 season the Tigers played at Yankee Stadium March 31. It takes a lot to shock a veteran major league player, but Inge noticed something amiss in New York.

"I could not believe it. I was looking around and was saying to the third base coach, 'Can you believe the empty seats?'" he says.

Inge had 4 hits in 11 at bats in the three-game series against the Yankees. The Tigers came out of that series 1-2 with a big win Sunday, then headed to Baltimore Monday, where they lost to the Orioles. Inge scored the lone run, hitting a double and reaching home plate after back-to-back singles.

Fans follow Inge also because of what he quietly does off the field. He's one of the only Tiger players who makes Michigan his year-round home. He and his wife are Children's Hospital of Michigan advocates, and have founded a charity that raises money for families whose children have lengthy hospital stays.

Inge, at the ballpark, is without ritual or superstition, except for changing his jersey from No. 12 to No. 15 after a bad start with the team his first year when he batted .180. "I said, 'Screw it,' and 15 was the only number available," he says. The number doesn't have any other significance to him.

Inge recognizes what the Tigers, and especially their home opener, mean to the thousands of loyal Detroit fans. He spoke with Metro Times about it by telephone from New York before Sunday morning's batting practice.

Metro Times: What is the mind-set of starting the season on the road and having a couple opening days in different cities?

Brandon Inge: It's good; you actually get to enjoy three of them. We got one here in New York, one in Baltimore, and then, having had two opening days at the road stadiums, we'll get to come home and have the one that we really want — and that's the one at home for us.

MT: So Detroit's Opening Day keeps its luster over the years for you?

Inge: It is something starting the season at home. No matter how long I've been here and no matter what kind of team we'll have, I've never seen a better one than Opening Day in Detroit.

MT: What is it, the crowd? The ballpark? The Michigan April weather?

Inge: All of the above. Let's put it this way, it's not a knock against Yankee Stadium — I've got a lot of respect for a team that has tradition — but their opening day was kind of boring. I'm just comparing it to Detroit. I'm not knocking anyone, but the Detroit fans, when they come out, it's almost like they're excited because it's a glimpse of the summer weather coming. It's also that Detroit is a long-standing team. It's over 100 years old, just the tradition there of families, from a grandfather to a father to a son. It's just the people that come out in droves and it's the unbelievable energy when they come out. It's not like they're just sitting there and bringing the corporate crowd out and they're going to watch a game. It's a group of friends and families and everyone in Detroit.

MT: As far as what's happening on the field, how is that different now compared to your previous seasons here?

Inge: There has been a lot of transition. We had a terrible team a couple years, and people stood behind us. I think the players actually recognize that the fans came out and still supported us. But I think the fans had a good response the following year.

MT: But that's like the city and state too, right?

Inge: The city is going through some turmoil. Mr. Ilitch has done a good job cleaning up the downtown area with the Red Wings and the Tigers and the Fox Theatre. I think the fans have an appreciation for that. The economy, as bad as it's been for the last couple of years in Detroit, we've tried to stay on our owner to try and keep ticket prices pretty reasonable for a family of four to come and see a ball game. I think that between the fans, the players, the owner, I think it has a lot to do with why this team is so popular and why Detroit Tigers baseball continues to be popular here.

MT: The players the fans are coming to see are making millions. Is that ever a conflict as you, the players, think about the fans and the challenged city where you're playing?

Inge: I try and think of it from a fan's perspective. If I was a fan and I was going to spend my hard-earned dollars to watch baseball, I would want the owner of the Detroit Tigers to put a great team on the field so I could watch something good. And he's put a good quality team together here.

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