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AV Club visits Ann Arbor, pays tribute to The Stooges

The A.V. Club brings the band Protomartyr to Ann Arbor, visits where The Stooges once lived and stages a live concert at the Michigan Union Ballroom.
Watch the video below.

It's Veg Week in Ann Arbor

Put down that steak knife and embrace seven days of meat-free living! April 21-27 has been proclaimed as Veg Week. Paleo devotees, it's gonna be a looong week.


"Over 20 local restaurants are offering special Veg Week menu items and/or discounts, offering vegetarian and vegan alternatives to support people taking the pledge or just wanting to reduce the amount of animal foods they consume."

Read the rest here.

Portland food and travel writer sings praises to The Ravens Club

Writer Jennifer Heigl came home to Ann Arbor too attend to family medical issues. It was a tough time. Taking a break she and her mom dropped into The Ravens Club. It was such a fabulous experience she just had to write about it.


"In between hospital visits, I booked a table at The Ravens Club, a local restaurant I had kept an eye on for the last year or so. Their offerings, it seemed, rivaled those you would find in Portland or San Francisco, including a robust cocktail selection and whiskey pairing dinners. Amid the anguish, I wanted to be comforted in the ways that have become so familiar over the last few years – with food and drink and celebration of life and laughter.

It was good to be home, to wander the streets of Ann Arbor as I had for so many years during my teen years. My Mom and I made our way to The Ravens Club on South Main for dinner, settling into a back booth offering a full view of the restaurant – ‘the Godfather booth’, as nicknamed by managing partner Jeff Paquin. I ordered a variety of things off the menu, to get a full taste of the plates presented."

Read the rest here.

Ypsilanti's untold Native American past

Local blogger Mark Maynard has a fascinating interview with local historian Matthew Siegfried about Ypsilanti's indigenous past and the burial site found on the city's Water Street property. 


"It’s important to emphasize that these groups had, and made, their own history. We know, for instance, that smallpox decimated the local Potawatomie villages 1752. And, in 1787, the disease struck the Wyandot villages. And another epidemic in 1813 further weakened an already hard hit population.

And the groups around Ypsilanti would have been active in the defining events of that era. They debated how to use the rivalries between the French, English, and later Americans, to protect and further their own interests. The Wyandot were particularly divided over these questions."

Read the rest here. It's pretty amazing stuff.

Ann Arbor has one of the best Jewish delis in the U.S.

Read the headline. Can you guess who they're talking about? Yup, Zingerman's gets yet more love.
"In Ann Arbor, Mich., crowds have been flocking to Zingerman's Deli, opened by Paul Saginaw and Ari Weinzweig in a historic building near the Ann Arbor Farmers' Market in 1982. The deli's widespread sandwich menu might seem overwhelming to new visitors, but also encourages guests to sample the products before purchasing - it even allows a sampling of its $200 olive oil. All of its bread is homemade in its bakery, creating a freshness for its sandwiches that is hard to beat."
Read the rest here.

Ypsilanti Library gets graphic novel grant

You know grpahic novels (aka comic books) are finally being accepted as valid works of art when libraries get grants to start offering them.
"The Ypsilanti District Library announced Thursday that it was one of two libraries in the nation to receive a $7,000 grant to increase its selection of graphic novels on the shelves.
The district was awarded the Will Eisner Graphic Novel Award from Eisner’s family foundation."
Read the rest here.

State earmarks $6.6M to seed tech startups

The state plans to invest a whole lot of simoleans in up and coming tech firms, seeding Michigan's entrepreneurial ground with promising startups.
"As with the state’s first Pre-Seed Fund, which is fully invested and managed by Ann Arbor SPARK, the money for the fund announced today has been allocated by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC). Paula Sorrell, the MEDC’s vice president of entrepreneurship and innovation, will take a seat on Invest Michigan’s board along with Martin Dober, a former MEDC exec and current vice president of business development at Invest Detroit; Mark Bennett, an attorney and serial entrepreneur; Marianne Fey, an advertising executive, entrepreneur, and angel investor; and David Gregorka, a partner with Baird Capital in Ann Arbor and advisor on technology transfer to state universities."
Read the rest here.

Local blogger takes on anti-transit groups

Blogger and Ypsilanti resident Mark Maynard is no stranger to Concentrate's pages. His sporadic Exit Interview series is about as good as it gets for a ground-view perspective of living in our communities. Lately, Maynard has cast his ear and eye on the fight over whether Ann Arbor Area Transit Authority should expand its service and those who oppose the idea.
"I should know better than to try to make sense of the arguments being offered by the rag tag band anti-tax activists who have come together to fight the AAATA millage we’ll be voting on next month, but, when I heard that they’d launched a website, I thought that I’d check it out, and see if maybe they’d figured out a way, in the time since we last discussed this, to better articulate their concerns.
What I found, though, was an absolute mess… an intellectually inconsistent barrage of unsubstantiated nonsense."
Read the rest (and comments) here.

Eberspaecher expands locally, to add 100 jobs in Brighton

A global exhaust system company is making a big investment in Michigan, to the tune of $122 million.
"The first phase of expansion will begin in Brighton, Michigan, where the company will nearly triple the size of its current 110,000 sq. ft. plant. A minimum of 100 jobs will be added to support the manufacture of exhaust systems and catalytic converters for commercial vehicles in the short term. The search for additional manufacturing capabilities in Michigan is underway and further expansion is anticipated."
Read the rest here.

Smart urban planning and mass transit could curb climate change

Resource effeciency, pooled transportation efforts, denser living, these are the practices that lower our carbon footprint and thus are most likely to help stem the increase of climate change.
Now the world's leading scientists are suggesting that those same cities in harm's way could help drive solutions to climate change.
A draft report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says smart choices in urban planning and investment in public transport could help significantly lower greenhouse gas emissions, especially in developing countries.
Read the rest here.

Local violin maker proves modern violins can outclass legendary Stradivarius

Ann Arbor violin-maker Joseph Curtin (who we've covered in this magazine) shows ina research study that much like the blind Coke-Pepsi test, worldclass violinists prefer newer instruments to the classics. We at Concentrate strive to show that sometimes the common wisdom of the past isn't really the best choice for the future. That applies to business, urban design and, now, world-class instruments.
"In actuality, expert soloists pick new violins over antiques in blind tests, the research finds. What's more, the soloists performed no better than chance at guessing whether a given violin is newly manufactured or more than a century old."
Read the rest here.

Big House to host Real Madrid-Manchester United soccer match

You'd think in a nation where half the elementary school kids play soccer that we'd embrace the sport the rest of the world loves so deeply. For a brief moment this summer - August 2nd to be exact - Ann Arborites can get a taste of the that action.
"This match promises to be an exciting event for players and fans alike. Tour matches of this nature provide great preparation for the team as we look forward to the 2014/15 season," said Manchester United Group managing director, Richard Arnold. "This will be the team's first ever match in Michigan and playing at the iconic Big House will be a memorable experience for all involved. United has over eight million followers in the US and I look forward to welcoming many of these fans to this historic fixture.""
Read the rest here.

The enormous benefits of setting the right parking price

Less congestion, increased transit use and more tax revenue - who wouldn't want that for their community? Well, smarter pricing policies about pdowntown parking can provide those things.
"First comes a close evaluation of SFpark, San Francisco's world-class effort to match the price of parking with real-time demand. SFpark changes the cost of street spaces in commercial areas to maintain an average occupancy of 60 to 80 percent. By making sure the streets are never completely full, the program hopes to reduce circling and thus congestion on city streets."
Read the rest here.

Cinetopia Film Festival to link Ann Arbor and Detroit through movies

Where political leaders fail, art organizations hope to succeed. AnnArbor and Detroit have long maintained their separate cultural bubbles. Russ Collins and Elliot Wilhelm (of the Michigan Theater and Detroit Film Theater respectively) hope to bridge the I-94 gap by bringing world-class cinema to both cities under a single film festival: Cinetopia.
More than 100 screenings of 45 films are planned. "We will be expanding the Cinetopia Film Festival to at least five screens in Ann Arbor, and at least four screens in Detroit," the event site says."
Read the rest here. Check out the Cinetopia website here.

Really big pow wow comes to Ann Arbor this weekend

Skyline sounds kinda native American, doesn't it? Too much of a stretch? Nevertheless the Ann Arnor high school will be the scene for the 42nd annual Dance for Mother Earth Powwow. THe event will "host some 200 competitive dancers, 10 drums and singers, and more than 40 vendors and artisans to celebrate Native American cultures and languages, traditions and foods from around the U.S. and Canada."
Now one of the largest university powwows in the nation, the 2014 Dance for Mother Earth Powwow continues to provide an important opportunity for Native Americans to celebrate and share the diversity of their indigenous cultures with one another and with the broader community.
Read the rest here. For ticket information and dance registration, visit the Dance for Mother Earth Powwow website
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