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  • Winners announced for the ‘High Times’ Medical Cannabis Cup

    The High Times Medical Cannabis Cup is more than just a celebration — although with the recent shift in attitudes toward marijuana legalization, there certainly is much to celebrate.  HT‘s Danny Danko described it as “just like any other harvest festival or a county fair where people bring their best produce, their best pigs and horses and cows, and they compete with each other for bragging rights, basically.” Here are a list of winners from this year’s Cannabis Cup: Indica 1ST - Oasis Medical Seeds - Paris OG 2ND - Herbal Solutions - Alien Dawg F2 3RD - Herban Legendz, LLC - Grape OX Sativa 1ST - Arborside Compassion - CATFISH 2ND - Organibliss - Ghost Train Haze #1 3RD - We Grow Education and Collective Centers - MelonGum Hybrid 1ST - Herbal Solutions - Gorilla Glue 2ND - Pure West Compassion Club - Death Star 3RD - Kushman Veganics for Buds & Roses - Veganic Candyland Concentrate 1ST - Mr. B’s Extracts - Raskal’s Lemon 2ND - 710 Savant - Kosher Kush Dewaxed 3RD - Oasis Medical / Vader Extracts / Dab Vader - Candy Jack Shatter Non-Solvent Hash 1ST - NLG - Jedi Kush Ice Wax 2ND - Arborside Compassion - HeadCandy Kush Hash 3RD - New World Seeds Resource Center - Northern Hash Plant Hash Edible 1ST - DepoTown - Captain Kirks’ Lime in the Coconut 2ND - Metro Detroit Compassion […]

    The post Winners announced for the ‘High Times’ Medical Cannabis Cup appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Satanists Leverage Hobby Lobby Ruling In Support of Pro­Choice Initiative

    So is the title of the press release we received this morning from The Satanic Temple. You may recall our interview with Doug Mesner from earlier this year. The Satanic Temple is, perhaps, best known for trying to build a child-friendly monument to satan in OKC: How Mesner and TST are rocking the Hobby Lobby ruling is interesting: The Satanic Temple Leverages Hobby Lobby Ruling to Claim Exemption From State Mandated ProLife Materials Reads the next line of the press release. And then their website: A number of states require that abortion providers give information to patients that maybe inaccurate or misleading. Demands that members of the Satanic Temple, or those who share our beliefs, be subjected against our will to anything but the best scientific understanding are a violation of our religious beliefs. Thanks to rulings such as Hobby Lobby, we can take a stand against these practices. Mesner points out how the Hobby Lobby ruling bolsters their position: While we feel we have a strong case for an exemption regardless of the Hobby Lobby ruling, the Supreme Court has decided that religious beliefs are so sacrosanct that they can even trump scientific fact. This was made clear when […]

    The post Satanists Leverage Hobby Lobby Ruling In Support of Pro­Choice Initiative appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Reports from the ‘High Times’ Medical Marijuana Cup in Clio

    On Saturday we set out to check out the High Times Medical Marijuana Cup in Clio, Mich. — High Times did hold a Cannabis Cup in the Motor City back in 2011, but Detroit police flexing their muscles and making arrests at that event may have been to blame, at least partially, for the choice of a new host city. The event was held this year at the Auto City Speedway, (also known as “B.F.E.” to Detroiters). Nevertheless, the prospect of stopping at the Torch for the best burger in the Genessee County was compelling — and anyway, this was the Cannabis Cup we were talking about. Was it really going to be “work?” It turned out, just a little bit. An inexplicable lack of an on-site ATM meant hiking quite a ways up the road to the nearest gas station, and then waiting for an attendant to restock the ATM with cash. We spoke with plenty of Cannabis Cup attendees at the gas station — everybody knows that the local gas station is a stoner’s best-friend. The two-day festival, for which one-day tickets were sold for $40, was divided into two sections — a general area and a medicating […]

    The post Reports from the ‘High Times’ Medical Marijuana Cup in Clio appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • ICYMI: Forbes rates Detroit #9 on its “America’s Most Creative Cities” list

    Yes, it’s true. Forbes says Detroit is one of America’s most creative cities: “We ranked these places based on four metrics: activity per capita on project-funding platforms Kickstarter and Indiegogo and music sites Bandcamp and ReverbNation. The goal was to capture organic creativity, since many artistic and musical types have “day jobs” outside of creative pursuits.” The Forbes list sandwiches #9 Detroit between #8 Seattle and #10 Oakland, Calif. If you are watching the art and culture explosion happening right now in Detroit, you probably think we should rank higher than #2 Boston and #1 San Francisco, if only for the fact that it’s actually affordable to create here and there is space for everyone to be creative. But hey, those metrics weren’t part of the equation. And there’s always next year.

    The post ICYMI: Forbes rates Detroit #9 on its “America’s Most Creative Cities” list appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

  • Food trucks go to the dogs

    Today, starting at 10am, Milo’s Kitchen Treat Truck will be swinging by the  Cherry Hill Village at Preservation Park on  N. Roosevelt St. in Canton. They’ll be serving the pups (“gour-mutts,” as Milo’s calls them) treats and the dog parents the opportunity of “family portraits.” Milo’s is on a cross-country food truck trip, promoting their “grilled burger bites” and “chicken meatballs” to pup parents from L.A. to NYC, with stops in between, including Chicago, Detroit, Pittsburgh, the Carolinas, and Arkansas. But watch out! Milo’s Kitchen Treat Truck markets “real chicken and beef home-style dog treats” that are are “wholesome” and “authentic” without “artificial flavors or colors-made right here in the USA.” Authentic, processed food that is. Remember what George Carlin said about “home-style”? Their treats are also packed with soy, TVP, wheat flour, tapioca, rice, and sugar–fillers that make the meat go far and aren’t the best for your pup. They’re also packed with preservatives, like sodium erythorbate, nitrates, BHA, sodium tripolyphosphate, and potassium sorbate. Small amounts are probably ok, and no doubt the pup will love it, the same way it’s easy for humans to love carb- and sugar- laden, processed and preserved, treats.  

    The post Food trucks go to the dogs appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.

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

    Coming up on August 16, former Detroit Tigers 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 Former Tigers Dave Rozema and Ike Blessitt to honor Mark “The Bird” Fidrych appeared first on Metro Times Blogs.



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Soul kitchen

It's about the shared inability to afford something as necessary to life as a meal

Photo: Detroitblogger John, License: N/A

Detroitblogger John

The hungry line up for a meal at Crossroads Soup Kitchen.

They stand in line so patiently, you'd never know some of them haven't eaten since yesterday.

The line's so long it winds from the soup kitchen door along the wall and around the corner to the back, then curves down the alley and out to the street on the side. And no matter how hard the wind blows or how heavy the rain falls, they wait politely. By the end of the day, a thousand of them will have stood here.

The crowd is a mix of those who are somewhat poor to those who are desperately so. Some are homeless and have to scrounge every meal, while others are just short on their assistance at some point each month and need a little help. But once in line the distinctions are blurred. They're just hungry people waiting for a meal.

Here is Jean Kahn, 72 and slight, who walked a mile to eat today. And here is Jessica Rodnez, 23, who works at McDonald's and just started nursing school, but whose food stamps don't cover a month's worth of meals for her and her two young children, who've come with her, bundled in winter clothes. Here is glassy-eyed Billy Rogers, 52, who's waiting on a dishwashing job he says he's sure to get any day, though the wait so far has been 16 years. And here is Sidney Lester Williams, a name the 72-year-old offers with aristocratic flourish. He's a well-dressed gentleman who, like some here today, isn't really here anymore in a sense. "My father was a wizard, mother was a witch," he announces.

Inside the door, Saundra Richardson sits alone at a small table, same as every Sunday, waiting for the hungry to pour into the building. She's like the lunchlady and doorman in one, the person who instructs the volunteers making the meals, the one those in line have to see before eating one. And whether it's due to her calm demeanor or the white clerical collar she wears, everyone is soft-spoken and polite when they approach her. 

An Episcopal minister since 1990, Richardson spends her weekdays working at Mariners Inn on Cass, a substance abuse treatment center, and spends her Sundays at this table, inside the Crossroads Soup Kitchen on West Grand Boulevard near 14th Street. The two jobs leave her no time to preach at a church. "My altar is a soup pot," the 63-year-old says.

To eat, each person in line has to get a little paper ticket from the big roll Richardson holds in her hands. Each person gets one ticket, and each ticket gets one meal. A handful of those in line are allowed additional tickets for someone ill or infirm back at home, but that absent person has to be on the extras list. There are so many people in line that if someone takes more than one meal just for themselves, some in line might not get anything at all.

No proof of income or need is required to get food. "We'll take anybody who wants to come in, anybody who wants a meal," says Nicole Harris, the 31-year-old associate director of Crossroads, waiting for the door to open and the room to fill.

About two-dozen volunteers scramble in the kitchen, ladling soup out of massive pots, making ham and cheese sandwiches one by one, pouring coffee or lemonade into Styrofoam cups, and meeting face to face, one at a time, with a thousand single casualties of bad times and hard lives.

"People are people, and they're just a little down on their luck," says volunteer David Schull, 52. "These are just people wanting to make a living, wanting to have a life. And everybody that could possibly pitch in to help them out, if they would, things would be a lot better in this area of Detroit."

Crossroads does a little of everything for the poor, because there are so many ways the poor can use help. 

They offer counseling, employment assistance, a food pantry, a clothes closet. They let the clients, as they're called here, use their copiers and fax machines to try to find work. Sometimes they'll buy someone their prescription medicine for the month, or help with a late utility bill, or cover overdue rent, or buy someone a bus pass to get them to a new job until they start getting regular paychecks. They'll help people get new IDs, work boots, tool belts, eyeglasses. 

So this place becomes the general go-to spot for those who are struggling. Although hundreds of homeless stand in that Sunday morning line, many who come here have simply fallen into poverty but are just one or two factors away from rising above it.

"I would say more than half, if given the opportunity, could make it," Harris says. "If they could get into some kind of job training program, if they could get into some kind of supportive housing program, if they could get support for child care, if they could get their GED, then they could make it." 

Crossroads was founded in 1971 by Father James McLaren, an Episcopal priest at the Cathedral Church of St. Paul at Woodward and Warren, to offer general outreach to the poor of the area. It began in a small church office, moved to a Midtown building when the demand proved too great, and then to this west side location four years ago when even more space was needed. A small office on Jefferson serves the east side too. Everything's funded through donations.

Back in Midtown, the clients were mostly single men. At this building, there are a lot more families and single mothers from the neighborhood. And nobody who visits here is ever forgotten.

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