LIVE from Macomb County….it’s the Bicentennial Torch Relay!

torch logoAnticipation is building for the 200-mile Bicentennial Torch Relay. Runners are getting warmed up, communities are readying torch hand-off locations and supporters are planning how they can cheer on the torchbearers. It’s certainly an exciting time in Macomb County. And today, we’re thrilled to share another exciting development – supporters can follow along with the torch relay live! Here’s how you can tune in:

  1. On Thursday, June 21, Make Macomb Your Home will go live on Facebook as County Executive Mark A. Hackel kicks-off the relay in Mount Clemens. Hackel and several community leaders will light the torch at the Macomb County Administration Building and then run it through downtown, handing it off to the next runner at the Mount Clemens City Hall Building. Join us on our Facebook page here at 5:25 a.m. Thursday morning to watch the kick-off live. And if you haven’t already, make sure to like our page for updates!
  2. Starting Thursday, June 21, supporters can also visit the Macomb 200 torch relay page and track the torch’s location in real time as it traverses all 27 Macomb County communities. Follow along to see if the torch is near you and then come out to the route and cheer on our torchbearers! Bring your cameras, noisemakers and flashlights (for the evening portion) and let these men and women know that they are doing a great job. By showing this support, you will not only give these runners a boost, you will also celebrate Macomb County and its 200th anniversary.

For those who haven’t heard about the torch relay, here’s a quick rundown:

To celebrate its bicentennial year, Macomb County will host a 200-mile, non-stop torch relay starting on June 21 and ending on June 22, kicking off the Mount Clemens’ fireworks celebration. Similar to the opening of the Olympics, this event will represent the strong spirit of our community, showcasing its pride and resilience. It will bring people together and honor the individuals who sacrificed and worked hard to make our region what it is today. All told, it will be a spectacular event, made even more special by the 200 residents and community leaders who have volunteered to run and carry one-of-a-kind torches. Over the course of 40 hours, these runners will traverse all 27 county communities, Lake St. Clair and Stony Creek Metropark, Selfridge Air National Guard Base and Macomb Community College. For information about the route, runners and timing for when the torch will be coming through your community, visit the Macomb 200 website.

Megan Ochmanek is a communications specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development.

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Macomb County honors Juneteenth with event

Yesterday was the national celebration of Juneteenth, a holiday that commemorates the June 19, 1865 announcement of the abolition of slavery in Texas, and more generally, the emancipation of enslaved African-Americans in the U.S. To commemorate the occasion, Macomb County hosted a lunch and learn at the Macomb County Family Resource Center Auditorium. The event featured a presentation by MSU-Extension employee Crystal dsc_0203-e1529514433597.jpgWhite entitled ‘Connecting our Ancestry – American History is Woven into my DNA.’ White’s speech included a focus on an heirloom passed down generation to generation in her family. The artifact, a quilt made by her great-grandmother, was previously displayed at the Smithsonian due to its historical importance.

The event also included an appearance and presentation by Nialah Crosby, who was DSC_0275crowned the first Ms. Juneteenth of Michigan in 2016 and then again in 2017. Crosby is an honor roll student at Davis Aerospace Technical High School in Detroit and the granddaughter of Pearl Crosby, a teacher with Macomb Community Action Head Start 0-5. In her capacity as Ms. Juneteenth, she makes appearances and speaks at schools, public libraries, churches, hospitals, city council events, community events and other venues that provide services to children and families. She is also an activist who rallied Congress on behalf of Detroit Public Schools and received the Spirit of Detroit Award for Leadership from the Detroit City Council in 2017.

The Juneteenth lunch and learn was put on by the OneMacomb initiative. Founded in 2012, OneMacomb works to:

  • Promote multiculturalism and inclusiveness by recognizing the importance in advocating for an inclusive community that values and supports multiculturalism.
  • Strengthen Macomb County’s economy by building business connections in the county, region and the state, making the region more attractive and welcoming to immigrants, internationals, trade and investment.
  • Identify multicultural best practices, educate community partners and promote multicultural best practices.

For more information on OneMacomb, visit the initiative’s website or follow it on Facebook and Twitter.

Megan Ochmanek is a communications specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development.

Posted in community, culture, education, events, OneMacomb | Leave a comment

Celebrate the lake at the Bass Brews & BBQ Festival

image003Avid fisherman from across the country agree: Lake St. Clair has some of the best freshwater fishing around. And because of this designation, Fishing League Worldwide decided to bring its 2018 FLW Tour to the shores of Macomb County.

FLW is the world’s largest tournament-fishing organization, providing anglers of all skill levels the opportunity to compete for millions in prize money across five tournament circuits. Headquartered in Benton, Kentucky, the organization and its partners conduct 286 bass-fishing tournaments around the world, including events in the United States, Canada, China, Italy, South Korea, Mexico, Portugal, South Africa and Spain.

Bass-Brew-&-BBQ--Official-logoThe 2018 tour at Lake St. Clair, slated for June 28 through July 1, will feature top anglers vying for more than $125,000 in prizes. The event tries to be as accessible as possible for fans, so organizers partnered with the Sterling Heights Regional Chamber of Commerce, Make Macomb Your Home, the Detroit Sports Commission, Huron-Clinton Metroparks and NASH FM 93.1 Detroit to create the Bass Brews & BBQ Festival. Set for June 29 through July 1, the festival gives individuals interested in the action the chance to see angler weigh-ins and winners up close. A variety of food, drinks, entertainment and activities are also planned for the three-day period, including:

  • Exciting musical acts
    • On Saturday, June 30, The Gobies will perform alt-rock favorites of the ‘80s and 90s
    • On Sunday, July 1, country singer Matt Austin will take the stage.
  • Craft beer (including our custom Lake St. Clair Lager!)
  • BBQ from Dickey’s BBQ Pit, Hog Wild BBQ & Catering, Detroit BBQ Co. and Grillwich Tot Stop
  • Tours aboard the “Pride of Michigan” – an 81-foot former U.S. Navy training vessel
  • Tours of the DIA Away exhibit – a fully-furnished, vibrantly designed 53′ double-expandable trailer that provides a rich educational program beyond the museum’s walls
  • The Metroparks Interpretive Exhibit
  • Shopping opportunities with vendors

All told, the Bass Brews & BBQ Festival will be fun for the whole family. The event has no admission cost and is open to the public. Its hours are Friday from Noon-6:30 p.m., Saturday from Noon-6:30 p.m. and Sunday from Noon-6 p.m. Visit http://living.macombgov.org/living-thingstodo-BassBrewsBBQ for a complete schedule.

Megan Ochmanek is a communications specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development.

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Mobile ‘DIA Away’ experience making stop in Clinton Township

If you’re a Macomb County resident who loves the Detroit Institute of Arts as much as we do, you’re going to be thrilled about this upcoming event. Henry Ford Macomb Hospital and the DIA are teaming up to bring the museum’s newest mobile experience to Clinton Township! DIA Away: Think Like an Artist will make a pit stop at the hospital on Wednesday, June 20 from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

new_dia_away_wrapDIA Away brings hands-on art experiences to schools, community centers, senior facilities, fairs and festivals throughout Macomb, Oakland and Wayne counties. Housed in a colorful, 1,100-square-foot trailer, the mobile exhibit allows the museum to provide rich, educational opportunities outside the normal confines of its building. And visitors will be blown away when they step inside. Adorning the walls dia_awayof the exhibit are digital and graphic reproductions of five works of art from the museum’s collection. Using touchscreens, sliding panels, visual filters and other interactive options, visitors gain insight into how artists think and use creative self-expression. At three stations, they can test the boundaries of their imagination. For example, they can design their own “fantasy transporter” using magnets and white boards to explore how to move through sand, water, air, space and time. The goal of this and the other activities is to inspire new ways of thinking and spark creative ideas.

HFMHStackHOSPITALSNotably, DIA Away is suitable for individuals of all ages. So if you’re looking for a family-friendly summer activity or planning a staycation for yourself, add this Clinton Township pit stop to your calendar. The FREE mobile experience will be stationed near the Henry Ford Macomb Hospital front entrance (15855 19 Mile Road). Parking for visitors is at the Macomb County Community College lot on the north edge of the hospital parking lot. A shuttle will provide transportation to the event site.

If you are unable to attend the Clinton Township experience, the DIA has planned several other stops for the exhibit, including:

  • DIA Away at the Oak Park Summerfest – Saturday, June 16
  • DIA Away at the Manoogian Manor – Tuesday, June 19
  • DIA Away at the Novi Public Library – Saturday, June 23
  • DIA Away at Bass Brews and BBQ on Lake St. Clair – Sunday, July 1
  • DIA Away at the Concert of Colors – Saturday, July 14

Click here for more details on these DIA Away opportunities.

Megan Ochmanek is a communications specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development.

Posted in arts, community, summer | Leave a comment

Pick a bushel of berries in Macomb County

Macomb County is home to many farms and orchards – but did you know that they specialize in more than just apples, ciders and fall-themed events? Five of our hometown venues have fresh u-pick strawberries.  And in my opinion, nothing beats one that is fresh from the field.

pexels-photo-298696My love for fresh berries started when I was young. Every Friday starting in mid-June, my grandma would pull into our driveway at 7:30 a.m. It was early, but my family would all load into her car for our weekly adventure to pick strawberries. When I was a kid, I hated it. You could often hear me saying: “Why can’t we just go to the store and buy strawberries like normal people?” But with age, comes wisdom.  By the time I was a teenager, strawberry picking was different.  Still the same routine – grandma picked everyone up and we would head out to forage for a delicious flat or two of berries.  But now strawberry picking had turned into who could pick more than grandma. I always found it hard keeping pace and spent most of the time just eating the fruit…3 for me, 1 for the box!

smoothie-fruit-beverage-drink-161600Fast forward another 15 years or so and mid-June can never come soon enough.  I can’t wait to get out there and pick a flat of fresh strawberries. I use them for my morning smoothie, in homemade strawberry jam, in strawberry pie and then my favorite, strawberries with homemade angel food cake.  There are so many options!

Based on my experience, I’d recommend starting your own family tradition and heading out for some fresh u-pick strawberries here in Macomb County this summer. Strawberries are usually ready for picking around Father’s Day and the season lasts for about three weeks (pending weather). Check out one or all of the strawberry fields in our area and share your favorite strawberry picking story or receipt!

Did we miss you?  Let us know!

Lauri Cowhy is a senior communications specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development.

Posted in gardening, healthy, orchards, outdoor, summer | Leave a comment

200 years of hometown artists on display at the Anton Art Center

art 1

Cusick Lake by William Woodruff Gibbs (ca. 1890), from the collection of John and Gail MacArthur

In celebration of the bicentennials of Mount Clemens and Macomb County, the Anton Art Center is hosting Art & Design in Macomb County & Mount Clemens, an exhibit of art, artifacts and design created by artists living and working in Mount Clemens and Macomb County over the last 200 years. Showcasing more than 55 items on loan from individuals and organizations across the region, this exhibit includes commemorative glassware, ceramics, portraits, landscapes, photographs, arrowheads and more. Works by Mount Clemens Pottery, Ian Hornak, Franklin Harold Hayward, Paul Blaffert and William Woodruff Gibbs will be on display, as well as historical items, displays and other objects. A free public reception will be held at the Anton Art Center on Saturday, June 16, 2018 from 2-4pm. Art & Design in Macomb County & Mount Clemens will be on display from June 16 – July 20, 2018.

“Art has a rich history in this region, and Art & Design in Macomb County & Mount Clemens is a unique opportunity to see the breadth of artworks created here throughout history,” said Anton Art Center Executive Director Phil Gilchrist. “I’m excited that we are able to mount this exhibit in celebration of the bicentennials of Mount Clemens and Macomb County!”

The Anton Art Center is a registered nonprofit organization located in Mount Clemens, Michigan with a mission to enrich and inspire people of all ages through the arts and a vision to create an open community around creative expression. The Anton Art Center is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10am until 5pm; admission is free and open to the public. For more information about the Anton Art Center, visit us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter or LinkedIn, our website at www.theartcenter.org or call 586-469-8666.

Art 2

Dishes by the Mount Clemens Pottery, from the collection of Mayor Barb Dempsey

Megan Ochmanek is a communications specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development.

 

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Cheer on your community during the 200-mile Bicentennial Torch Relay

To celebrate its bicentennial year, Macomb County will host a 200-mile, non-stop torch relay starting on June 21 and ending on June 22, kicking off the Mount Clemens’ fireworks celebration. Similar to the opening of the Olympics, this event will represent the strong spirit of our community, showcasing its pride and resilience. It will bring people together and honor the individuals who sacrificed and worked hard to make our region what it is today.

torch logoAll told, it will be a spectacular event, made even more special by the 200 residents and community leaders who have volunteered to run and carry one-of-a-kind torches. Over the course of 40 hours, these runners will traverse all 27 county communities, Lake St. Clair and Stony Creek Metropark, Selfridge Air National Guard Base and Macomb Community College. That’s a lot of ground to cover – so we are asking you, the residents of Macomb County, to come out and cheer them on! Give our torchbearers the support they need as they run through your community. Bring your cameras, noisemakers and flashlights (for the evening portion) and let these men and women know that they are doing a great job. By showing this support, you will not only give these runners a boost, you will also celebrate Macomb County and its 200th anniversary. We are all lucky to live, work and play in such a vibrant and friendly area. So come on out to the relay route and demonstrate your community pride.

For information about the route, runners and timing for when the torch will be coming through your community, visit the Macomb 200 website.

Megan Ochmanek is a communications specialist for the Macomb County Department of Planning and Economic Development.

Posted in Bicentennial, community, events | Leave a comment