Most Read
  • Detroit’s grand bargain still needs Lansing’s approval

    In this week’s Metro Times we took a look at the state legislature’s role in Detroit’s ongoing bankruptcy — in particular, how it must approve a $350 million pledge for the so-called “grand bargain” to remain intact. And, with last night’s announcement of a significant deal between the city and Detroit’s pension boards and retiree groups, the ball is Lansing’s court now. The new deal, first reported by the Freep, would cut general employees monthly pension checks by 4.5 percent and eliminate their cost-of-living increases. Police and fire retirees would see no cuts to monthly checks, while their cost-of-living increases would be reduced from 2.25 percent to 1 percent. Under the original offer, police and fire retirees cuts were as high as 14 percent, with general retirees as high as 34 percent, that is, if the groups rejected the “grand bargain,” an $816 million proposal funded by foundations, the state, and the DIA to shore up pensions. The sweeter deal for pensions, though, it must be noted, entirely relies on the state legislature approving $350 million for Detroit’s bankruptcy.  And while this broke after Metro Times went to press, that was the focal point of this week’s News Hits column — so, it’s worth repeating: The […]

    The post Detroit’s grand bargain still needs Lansing’s approval appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: Local releases for Record Store Day on Saturday

    This Saturday, April 19, is Record Store Day, and there is plenty going on in metro Detroit and Michigan. Of special interest to us is Chiodos’ 7” single “R2ME2/Let Me Get You A Towel,” Mayer Hawthorne & Shintaro Skamoto’s 7” “Wine Glass Woman/In a Phantom,” Chuck Inglish & Action Bronson’s 7” “Game Time,” Chuck Inglish & Chance the Rapper’s 7” “Glam,” Chuck Inglish & Chromeo’s 7” “Legs,” Chuck Inglish, Mac Miller & Ab-Soul’s 7” “Easily,” James Williamson’s 7” “Open Up and Bleed/Gimme Some Skin,” Black Milk’s 12” “Glitches in the Break,” Mayer Hawthorne’s 10” “Jaded Inc.,” Wayne Kramer & the Lexington Arts Ensemble’s 12” “Lexington,” and best of all, Ray Parker Jr.’s 10” “Ghostbusters.” We wrote about James Williamson’s release this week. Go shop. Follow @City_Slang

    The post City Slang: Local releases for Record Store Day on Saturday appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: Margaret Doll Rod to play EP release show in May

    Margaret Doll Rod will celebrate the release of her new EP, Margaret, with a show at PJ’s Lager House on Saturday, May 10. A statement reads, “The EP contains 3 new original songs and one Chrome Cranks cover with Italian actress Asia Argento singing background vocals. Margaret moved to Italy after the end of the Demolition Doll Rods where she still lives touring and performing festivals in Europe. The Dollrods were a Garage Rock force for over 20 years, opening for Iggy, Jon Spencer, The Scientist, The Monks and The Cramps. Margaret was the front person and principal songwriter for The Dollrods. Her chief musical foil was Danny Kroha, who joined the Demolition Doll Rods after the now legendary Gories called it quits. Margaret’s sister, Christine, on drums, rounded out the legendary trio. Margaret will do a special performance in the round that night with a 360 degree revolving stage and special guest DJ Adam Stanfel.” The bill will also feature the Stomp Rockets and the Volcanos. Follow @City_Slang

    The post City Slang: Margaret Doll Rod to play EP release show in May appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • City Slang: Music review roundup

    Send CDs, vinyl, cassettes, demos and 8-tracks to Brett Callwood, Metro Times, 1200 Woodward Heights, Ferndale MI 48220. Email MP3s and streaming links to Ricky Rat’s Tokyo Pop/Glitter People (New Fortune) 7” single highlights all that’s great about the Trash Brats guitarist, but also his limitations. The man can write a bubblegum rock ’n’ roll song to match anyone in the city and most beyond. He’s also a killer guitarist, ripping out one throwaway riff after another with reckless abandon. He’s a machine. On his own though, without Trash Brats frontman Brian McCarty, his voice doesn’t have enough strength to do the songs justice. Not that you need to have the greatest voice in the world to sing this stuff – you don’t need to be able to perform vocal gymnastics – but you do have to be able to wail the tunes out. Both of the songs on this single are great, but you can’t help but wonder how much better they would sound with McCarty or somebody similar talking the mic. Still, as they are the songs are great fun. We’re just being picky. The Paper Sound’s Trajectories is a dense, atypically dark Americana-tinged album, unrelenting and […]

    The post City Slang: Music review roundup appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Detroit launches website to auction city-owned homes

    “Neighbors wanted.” That’s the message on the homepage of, a new website launched by the City of Detroit today to auction off city-owned homes to prospective buyers who pledge to fix them up and move in. “We are moving aggressively to take these abandoned homes and get families living in them again,” Mayor Mike Duggan said in a statement today. “There are a lot of people who would love to move into many of our neighborhoods. Knowing that other people are going to be buying and fixing up the other vacant homes at the same time will make it a lot easier for them to make that commitment.” The website to facilitate the auctions went live this afternoon. The first auction is scheduled to take place Monday, May 5. Officials said in a news release that one home will be auctioned per day, Monday through Friday. Fifteen homes are available for sale on the site, a dozen of which are in the East English Village neighborhood. Any Michigan resident, company, or organization that can do business in the state can bid, according to the website. Properties will be for sale for only one day, with bidding taking place from 8 […]

    The post Detroit launches website to auction city-owned homes appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Tickets for Steven Spielberg, John Williams summer concert sell out in 15 minutes

    In case you haven’t heard, two of the biggest names in film, Steven Spielberg and John Williams, are collaborating to put on a benefit concert for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra this summer. In case you wanted to go- well, you’re too damn late. The DSO says tickets to the June 14 concert were snapped up in a record-breaking 15 minutes after they went on sale at 9 a.m. today. The DSO has since released this statement to fans who didn’t snag seats: Our apologies to everyone who was unable to buy tickets this morning for our historic benefit concert featuring John Williams and Steven Spielberg. Despite increasing our phone and internet system capacity for the day, a surge of hundreds of ticket buyers purchased tickets in a matter of minutes, filling the phone lines and temporarily maxing out our web servers. After a one-hour pre-sale made available to donors and subscribers at 8am, we released additional seats at 9am to the general public, including seats available for as low as $30. All seats sold out immediately. The concert program seems nothing short of top notch: Williams will conduct the orchestra as it performs some of his most iconic tunes, such […]

    The post Tickets for Steven Spielberg, John Williams summer concert sell out in 15 minutes appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.



Search thousands of events in our database.


Search hundreds of restaurants in our database.


Search hundreds of clubs in our database.

MT on Twitter
MT on Facebook

Print Email


Me and my arrow

Every shot is aimed at creating a better life

Photo: , License: N/A

Eric Tomlinson with his future college students.

Eric Tomlinson loves bows and arrows. Has since he was a kid. And for years, Detroiters into archery had to head to the suburbs for target practice, because there was nowhere in the city for them to go.

So he'd shoot at archery clubs in places like Lake Orion or West Bloomfield, where he'd see parents putting their kids through vigorous lessons, training them like they were trying to earn a spot in the Olympics. 

These parents, he soon learned, weren't just trying to create expert marksmen. It turns out there's such a thing as an archery scholarship at several colleges around the country, and those parents were training their kids so they could earn scholarships at those schools.

There's a lot less opportunity for kids in Detroit to go to college, Tomlinson reasoned, than there is out here among better-off families. Those scholarships could really go to use in the city, where hard-working kids sometimes have good grades but not the means to go to a good school. "I said, man, I'm gonna take that to the inner city," the 62-year-old says.

But archery? In terms of street cachet, it ranks somewhere alongside rowing or fencing. Tomlinson would have his work cut out for him getting kids from Detroit interested in something so foreign to urban culture. 

"You know, it was a battle, because most of the inner-city kids do not even know what archery is," he says.


Tomlinson got his first bow-and-arrow set when he was 9. "My mother wouldn't buy me a gun to play with, and she realized that most kids want to shoot something, so she bought me a bow," he says. 

Before that she'd see him and his friends bending tree limbs, latching a string to them and fashioning arrows from sticks topped by bottle caps that were bent into a cone point. After he got a real bow and arrow, a little fiberglass model from a dime store, he practiced hard, entered tournaments, learned to hunt in the woods with it. 

He got married at 18, worked for a steel company for a quarter-century before hurting his back and retiring on medical grounds, and spent his free time tutoring kids in after-school programs in Detroit.

Then he heard about those scholarships. And it gave him a mission.

In 2004, he rented a building on the west side, set up a target range and a pro shop, and founded Elite Archery, a program whose sole goal was training kids to essentially shoot their way into college. 

But he needed students. Since archery was unknown among city kids, Tomlinson utilized his children and grandchildren as bait to draw interest. "I got at least nine or 10 grandkids or kids that started shooting when they were like 7, 8, 9, and that's who I started with. I said, 'Now what's going to happen is kids see y'all shooting, they're gonna want to shoot too.'"

It worked. Through word-of-mouth Tomlinson had been getting invited to speak at Detroit schools and demonstrate his sport to classes. And he found that when you show something new or different to variety-starved kids from places that don't have the resources to offer things like archery, they go crazy for it. 

"Every school I've taught at, the kids just overwhelm me trying to get into the program," he says. "Every kid wants to get into archery. I love the sport and I want to share it, and I figure if kids don't understand and know what archery is, once I bring it in I knew they were going to love it too."


Only a few years after opening his academy and store, his landlord sold the building. Tomlinson was suddenly a pro shop owner without a shop. He had to haul all the equipment from the store to his house, where he set up the pro shop in his basement, so his students and customers would still have someplace to get their equipment. It still resides there.

"But I needed a place for my kids to practice," he says. To get a scholarship, they're required to shoot in several tournaments a year, earning rankings and showing evidence of long-term dedication. 

Mike Wilson, who knew Tomlinson from the after-school programs they'd volunteered for, had just gotten permission to use a defunct elementary school to host programs there. He told Tomlinson he could borrow a classroom there to teach his students, but on one condition — he'd have to teach an after-school archery class there, too. Wilson realized it could have effects on the kids beyond the sport itself. 

"I saw discipline, I saw self-esteem enhancement, and I saw also teamwork," he says of Elite Archery. "I've seen a lot of kids in the program improve immensely."

Mecca Vance, one of Tomlinson's current students, is all self-esteem. Why does she like archery? "Because I win in it," the 13-year-old says, proudly. "I'm always first place. My whole basement is full of trophies." She's going for the scholarship to become a nurse.

Soon, kids weren't the only ones falling for the sport. Karen Austin, whose 12-year-old son Jesse begged for archery lessons until his mom found Tomlinson, came to her son's first class, saw the archers firing at targets and wound up fascinated. She shoots with the kids twice during the week now.

We welcome user discussion on our site, under the following guidelines:

To comment you must first create a profile and sign-in with a verified DISQUS account or social network ID. Sign up here.

Comments in violation of the rules will be denied, and repeat violators will be banned. Please help police the community by flagging offensive comments for our moderators to review. By posting a comment, you agree to our full terms and conditions. Click here to read terms and conditions.
comments powered by Disqus