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    The post Kid Rock ordered to produce dildo in ICP sexual harassment lawsuit appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Henry Cavill and Amy Adams spotted at Pig & Whiskey

    Fans of the latest Superman franchise got a treat at Pig & Whiskey this weekend. Actors Henry Cavill and Amy Adams were spotted amid the crowds of the festival that took place in downtown Ferndale as well as a local restaurant. Cavill, who plays the man of steel in the upcoming Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice, stopped to chat with fans, take pictures, and sign autographs on Saturday afternoon and evening. He was wearing an inconspicuous black polo shirt as well as a signature Superman-style ‘do. Other fans spotted Amy Adams at Ferndale’s Imperial on Saturday night, some were even seated next to her at the restaurant’s communal benches. Adams reportedly was slightly annoyed that patrons continuously asked for her photo, but she smiled while cell phones snapped images nonetheless. The Zach Snyder film the two are starring in together is currently filming in Birmingham. Ben Affleck, who plays Batman, has been spotted around town with his wife Jennifer Garner recently as well. The closed movie set is under intense security and Brett Callwood attempted to infiltrate the filming last month, but was forced to give up his camera’s memory card, lest he make off with telling photos.

    The post Henry Cavill and Amy Adams spotted at Pig & Whiskey appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Shop Talk: Harvard and Duke students moderate panel discussion in Detroit

    The Social Club Grooming Company, a metro Detroit-based environmentally conscious company that focuses on health and beauty as well as education, will host Shop Talk this Thursday, a special in their on-going event series that will bring students from both Harvard and Duke for a panel discussion about the social-entreprenurial climate and business innovation happening in Detroit. Detroiters like Burn Rubber’s Rick Williams, fashion photographer Piper Carter, Crain’s Detroit’s Eric Cedo, Mission Throttle’s Jamie Shea, and campaign manager Bryan Barnhill will come together to discuss how to create change in the city’s economic landscape through innovation and entrepreneurship. Of course what makes this panel discussion unique is the way in which it will take place. As The Social Club is a barber shop, each panelist will be receiving a haircut while speaking, the trimmings from which will be used for their nitrogen content to help grow plants in the city. Part of a series that will help Detroiters meet city leaders, voices, artists, activists, and business owners, Shop Talk’s objective is to help young people understand their role in the city’s ever-changing economic system. “There’s so much positive energy in Detroit right now,” says Sebastian Jackson, The Social Club’s founder. “It’s […]

    The post Shop Talk: Harvard and Duke students moderate panel discussion in Detroit appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Just to clarify, Olympia hasn’t ‘finalized’ financing details on promised Detroit ancillary development — yet

    Yesterday, the Detroit Free Press and Crain’s Detroit Business reported on the remarkable concept Olympia Development of Michigan, the real estate arm of Detroit Red Wings owner Ilitch Holdings Inc., has developed for the proposed “catalyst development project.” (The basics of the project can be found here.) Baked into the details offered by the Freep was this: Arena plans announced earlier called for development to grow up around the arena over ensuing years. But the Ilitches decided to do it all at once: A large part of the infrastructure and construction associated with the retail and residential projects will rise out of the ground along with the arena — and be ready by 2017. Christopher Ilitch said construction of the residential units, restaurants and other new development around the arena was moved up because of its importance to Detroit. He estimated the development would create at least $1.8 billion in total economic impact over several years, 8,300 construction and construction-related jobs, and 1,100 permanent jobs. As Crain’s reported, Olympia would develop 300 apartments in “two buildings on what currently are the surface parking lots between Comerica Park — home of the Ilitch-owned Detroit Tigers — and Woodward Avenue.” Crain’s writer Bill Shea also notes a new building across Adams Street […]

    The post Just to clarify, Olympia hasn’t ‘finalized’ financing details on promised Detroit ancillary development — yet appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Sidewalk Festival of Performing Arts comes to Artist Village Detroit

    On August 2, the annual Sidewalk Festival of Performing Arts makes its way to Detroit’s Redford and Brightmoor Neighborhoods. The event,, which runs from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m., features an array of performers, from music (Passalacqua, Tunde Olaniran, Duane the Brand New Dog) to dance (Wild Spirit, Studio Detroit, Dawn Xiana Moon and Kamrah), theater (Shakespeare in Detroit, Nerve, Rumpusroom), and art (installation by 555 Gallery, Armaggedon Beach Party, Colleen Parsons). Check out the website for the full schedule of events.

    The post Sidewalk Festival of Performing Arts comes to Artist Village Detroit appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Watch Now: Al Jazeera’s ‘Informants’

    Live on Al Jazeera English’s YouTube Channel, Informants explores the shifty world of undercover agents, FBI-concocted terror plots, and more–in, among other places, Toledo. Read our review here, or watch now:

    The post Watch Now: Al Jazeera’s ‘Informants’ appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.



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Rites of spring

An otherwise outdated ceremony for girls brings life to lost traditions

Photo: Photos: Detroitblogger John, License: N/A

Photos: Detroitblogger John

Photo: , License: N/A

The debutantes huddle backstage before the dance.

The debutante steps into the spotlight, and a hush falls over the room.

She wears white satin gloves and white pearls and an airy, white billowing gown, and she shines as she stands under the light, at the edge of the ballroom and at the center of attention.

Her tuxedoed father has just escorted her down a marble staircase into the full gaze of the crowd assembled inside the lavish Crystal Ballroom of Detroit's Masonic Temple.

It's the Debutante Cotillion Ball, an old-fashioned Southern ceremony, the unlikeliest of events, held in the ragged Cass Corridor, the unlikeliest of places.

As the pair slowly walks the long floor to the stage, the announcer reads off the debutante's credentials — her academic achievements, her volunteer activities, her athletic accomplishments, her goals. Each of the girls being honored here on this spring evening has a list just as long. To be selected for this night, they have to be achievers in academics and athletics, and successes in their still-short lives.

Once on stage, facing the hundreds in the crowd, she descends slowly to the floor in a perfect curtsy that makes her long gown spread out gracefully at her feet.

And the crowd bursts into applause for her, for the night, for what this formal gesture represents.

"It goes back to our basic principles of returning social grace, poise, elegance to our lives and to our youth," says Renita Barge Clark, 42, the founder of the Cotillion Society, the group behind this evening's event. "It increases their self-esteem. It helps make them well-rounded individuals. Most of them have been exposed to some things, but here, we take it to another level."

A cotillion
or debutante ball is the formal presentation of young ladies to polite society. Based on English tradition, it flourished in the American South after the Civil War. Back then it signified that a girl had reached maturity and was now ready to be courted for marriage by eligible bachelors of similarly high social status.

Nowadays they serve mostly to sustain these quaint old customs, to pass on lost traditions and forgotten ways of behavior. For years the Cotillion Club of Detroit hosted such balls, so nationally renowned that Ebony Magazine devoted a four-page photo spread to it one year. Though the club began in 1946 as a social group for black businessmen and evolved over time into a political organization fighting for civil rights, every year it offered young black women the chance to participate in the Southern traditions their migrating parents brought north with them.

But it folded in 1996. Clark, a local physician who'd gone through her own debutante ball as a teenager, didn't want to see these coming-of-age celebrations vanish from the area. A few years ago, she and a friend did some research, traveled the country to observe debutante balls, organized a nonprofit educational foundation and last year held their first cotillion.

For the high school juniors and seniors selected as debutantes, the road here is long and hard. "It's almost like a mini charm school," Clark says. There are the twice-weekly waltz practices that become weekly as the ball draws near. Months of etiquette lessons. Cultural outings like Brunch with Bach at the Detroit Institute of Arts and tickets to the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater at the Detroit Opera House. Volunteer tutoring at the Sickle Cell Center in Detroit. Afternoon tea at the Townsend Hotel in Birmingham. Facets of culture that most girls nowadays don't get to experience.

"It really is sad," she says. "But hopefully as time goes on we as a whole society will feel the need to reinstate some of these traditions, because I believe there was true meaning and a purpose to them."

The escorts
gather behind a set of French doors, just outside the ballroom. Their heads tilt toward a crack in the door, as each waits to hear his name called.

Each debutante has her own escort, a teenage boy who is called to the ballroom floor to stand in the spotlight under the scrutiny of the audience. His achievements will be read aloud, he'll solemnly bow, and he'll walk up to her father and formally ask for a dance with his daughter.

This is a lot to think about now, and the waiting escorts break the tension by clowning around, acting unconcerned, but every few minutes they fall back into expressions of mild nervousness as they listen in silence to hear their names.

That's the look worn by Blake West, 16, as he watches the escorts called before him and assesses what awaits him.

A University of Detroit Jesuit High School and Academy student, he will be majoring in engineering or business at Howard, Columbia, Morehouse or Georgetown, he declares with the assurance of someone whose future is already mapped out. The program for the evening spells out his record: track and field team, member of the Business Club at school, treasurer of Detroit Kappa League, volunteering with Toys for Tots, tutoring at night, and so on, a kid with more responsibilities than most adults.

Like the others, he too went through the etiquette lessons, the dance practices, the instruction on table manners. "I think this is a very valuable experience because when I grow up I may have to go to an event with the president, and those are some things to know," he says, already thinking big.

These are the kids who go to the good schools in town, come from good families, have high aspirations. Tonight is about celebrating them for simply doing good things with their lives.�

"I'm very blessed," West says about his school, where most of his achievements have taken place. It's a nod to his awareness that fortunate circumstances make a difference too.

The announcer's voice echoes through the old hall. It's hard to discern her words from outside the ballroom. But one thing comes through clear. "Blake West." And with that he goes through the door and steps into the spotlight.

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