Downtown Association of Ypsilanti


Listen Fridays at 9:20 on the the “Lucy Ann Lance Business Insider”, 1290 WLBY

The mission of the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti is to promote the common economic interests of Downtown Ypsilanti businesses through activities which contribute to the public safety, marketing, growth, culture, entertainment and vitality of the community.  There are many advantages to joining the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti including networking, assistance in business planning, government and city news, local business information and publicity of your existing business.  Relocating a business or planning a new venture? Contact DAY to make the most of a new opportunity in Downtown Ypsilanti.  Visit www.daypsi.com.

 

Current Segment: 

 

Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  It’s Beginning to Look Like Christmas in Downtown Ypsi Thanks to EMU Students – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President - Ypsilanti ushers in the Christmas season with a bevy of activities and fun for the whole family.  This year the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti had members of the EMU Student Council help them decorate downtown as well, as part of efforts to create a better relationship between town and gown.
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Previous Interviews:

 

November 15, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Stocking Stuffer Capital of SE Michigan – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Paul Balcom & Eli Morrissey, Owners of The Rocket If you are looking for some really cool stocking stuffers this Christmas, look no further than downtown Ypsilanti.  The Rocket will take you back in time with its nostalgic candy, games, and novelty items, along with the coolest products around.
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November 1, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Ralph Lange, Ypsilanti City Manager Police from multiple jurisdictions in the Ypsilanti area continue to look for the killer of an EMU football player.  Ypsilanti’s City Manager explains how they have banded together.
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Dave Heikkinen and Mark Ducker

September 27, 2013:   Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Mark Ducker, Ypsi 24 Hour Film Shootout - Crews of filmmakers will set out between Friday and Saturday to write, film and edit a short film in just 24 hours. Entries will be submitted on Saturday night, and the top entries will be screened & honored on the evening of September 29 at the EMU College of Business auditorium at 6 PM.  The winner receives $1,000 and the IPSY trophy!
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Dave Heikkinen and Ty Mopkins

 

September 13, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Puffer Reds  Teams Up with the MLB -– Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Ty Mopkins, Buyer, Puffer Reds – This downtown Ypsilanti store has a national reputation and is known for its relationship with major sports teams.
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Dave Heikkinen and Jake AlbersSeptember 7, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Birthing a Business – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Jake Albers, Manager, SPARK East – Since its launch in 2008, the SPARK East Business Incubator has become a magnet for innovation-based businesses of every size and description – from entrepreneurs and start-ups to mid-sized companies.
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Dave Heikkinen James Dauphine Pastor Edwin FergusonAugust 30, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Praise Under the Tent - Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; James Dauphine, Strong Tower Ministries This multi-cultural block party is a celebration of praise, going back to school, and community involvement.  The community is invited to “Praise Under the Tent” on Saturday, August 31 from 2-7 PM at Strong Tower Ministries, on Spencer Lane near Michigan Avenue in Ypsilanti.  School supplies and backpacks will be given to children.

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Dave Heikkinen and Geoff LarcomAugust 23, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: – Eastern Michigan University Preps for New School Year – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Geoff Larcom, EMU Executive Director of Media Relations Next week is a big week for Eastern Michigan University and Ypsilanti, as students and faculty get ready for the new school year.  Geoff Larcom tells us that EMU’s incoming class of freshmen is expected to break previous enrollment records.   The EMU football team opens its season against Howard on Saturday, August 31 at 6 PM at Rynearson Stadium.
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Justin Jennings and Dave Heikkinen

 

 

August 16, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of YpsilantiThe New Ypsilanti Community Schools - Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Justin Jennings, Principal, Ypsilanti Community Schools High School - The merged districts of Ypsilanti and Willow Run will start the new school year as one.  The new high school principal talks about his background (he played pro basketball), the unique options available for high schoolers, and what it’s going to take to make these programs successful.
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Monique Wells Dave Heikkinen and Joi Jensen

 

 

August 2, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: New School Year Launches New Ypsilanti Community Schools District – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Ypsilanti Community Schools’ Cheerleading Coach/Pupil Accounting & District Enrollment Coordinator Monique Wells, and Booster President Joi Jensen – A merger of the Ypsilanti and Willow Run School districts is bringing many changes to the community.  Among them, a new principal and athletic director will welcome students to the home of the Grizzlies at the high school.
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Strong Tower Ministries

 

July 26, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Gospel Night at DayFest – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Brennon James Dauphine, Strong Tower Ministries An array of gospel singers, dancers, and bands will be featured at Ypsilanti’s DayFest tonight.  Every Friday evening in summer, the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti brings the community free outdoor music, food vendors, and great entertainment at the corner of Washington & Michigan Avenue.
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Dave Heikkinen July 2013

 

 

July 19, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: DayFest – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President Every Friday night on a downtown Ypsilanti street corner you can sway to the sounds of great local music hosted by DAY.
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Dave Heikkinen and Chris Slaughter

July 12, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Michigan Elvis Fest – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Chris Slaughter, Elvis Fest Committee - It’s one for the money, two for the show, three to get ready, now go, cat, go… to the 14th Annual Michigan ElvisFest! This weekend Elvis lives in Ypsilanti.  Check out nine Elvis Tribute Artists, and other amazing tribute entertainers, include: Roy Orbison, The Blues Brothers, and Paul McCartney.
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Rutherpool June 2013

 

June 28, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: New Rutherford Pool Breaks Ground  - Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Leigh Greden, Executive Director, Office of Government and Community Relatiuons at Eastern Michigan University; Lisa Wozniak, Friends of the Rutherford Pool – Two years ago Ypsilanti’s Rutherford Pool closed.  There was no money to fix the pool which had deteriorated after some 40 years of use.  The City of Ypsilanti, challenged with enormous budget problems, didn’t have the resources to maintain the pool but thanks to a community group’s efforts to raise $1 million dollars Rutherford Pool is coming back to life.  Also in the photo are Lisa’s two sons, Ben and Zach Simon, who appreciate the community’s efforts to restore their pool.
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Dave Heikkinen

 

 

June 21, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  Downtown Ypsi Update – Dave Heikkinen, DAY PresidentRetailer Puffer Red’s, which has a national reputation, is coming out with another new shoe this weekend.  Watch for huge crowds to descend on downtown Ypsilanti, as the latest LeBron (the Heat Repeat!) shoe hits the pavement.
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Dave Heikkinen and Katie Johnson

 

 

June 14, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Medical Marijuana - Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Katie Johnson, Manager, StickyYpsi Michigan voters may have approved medical marijuana, but that was just the beginning of what has become a very complicated situation for caregivers and their patients.  Earlier this year the Michigan Supreme Court overruled the Michigan Court of Appeals and limited the role of marijuana dispensaries.  StickyYpsi is a member-based cooperative of caregivers and patients.
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Dave Heikkinen and John Ichesco

 

 

 

June 7, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Fighting Fires and Budgets – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; John Ichesco, Former Ypsilanti Fire Chief In strained budget times, public safety departments are trying to find new ways to maintain services.  In Ypsilanti the firefighters union is fighting efforts to merge the fire and police departments.  We talk with Ypsilanti’s recently-retired Fire Chief about his ideas to solve the budget crisis while maintaining public safety.
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Dave Heikkinen and Donna Debutts May 2013

 

 

May 31, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Donna DeButts, Community Relations Coordinator, Ypsilanti District Library Two granting agencies are committing funding to help Ypsilanti teens “Dream It. Make It,”  the title for this year’s summer library program.  We also find out that after nearly 18 years of service to the Ypsilanti District Library, Donna DeButts is retiring today!  Thanks for Ypsilanti’s Terry Bakery for the delicious treats and retirement cake they sent along to celebrate!
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Dave Heikkinen and Kevin Hill May 2013

May 24, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of YpsilantiDAYFest – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Kevin Hill, DAY Board – DAYFest (formerly Crossroads) is the new name for Ypsilanti’s historic Downtown Summer Festival. Located on North Washington Street, just to the north of the West Michigan Avenue intersection,  DAYFest is entering its 8th season this summer with an exciting entertainment schedule that blends blasts from the past with a variety of new acts as well.  DAYFest happens on most Fridays through the summer months, starting June 14.  Visit www.daypsi.com for details.
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Dave Heikkinen and Mark TeachoutMay 17, 2013:   Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Branching Out to Depot Town – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Mark Teachout, Co-Owner, Café Ollie and the Michigan General Store – The Downtown Association of Ypsilanti champions the downtown area along Michigan Avenue, but also builds connections with its Depot Town business community to the north as well.  There we find a unique collection of businesses and introduce you to two of them.  Café Ollie’s is a “vegetarian, vegan and meat too establishment”, while the Michigan General Store focuses on Michigan products, including beer and wine.
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Dave Heikkinen and Corrine Skikorski

 

 

May 10, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of YpsilantiYpsi Food Co-op  – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Corinne Sikorski, General Manager, Ypsi Food Co-op Located on River Street near Ypsilanti’s Depot Town, the Ypsi Food Co-op is Michigan’s only solar-powered grocery store.  The Co-op sells natural foods with an emphasis on organic and locally-grown and made produce and groceries.
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Dave Heikkinen and Skip Lawver

 

 


May 3, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Gerald “Skip” Lawver, Assoc. Professor, EMU Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance / Washtenaw County Cyber Coalition –
Learn the latest in cyber security and technology to keep your family and business safe.  EMU offers week-long Cyber Quest and Cyber Security camps for high schoolers this summer.  Call Prof. Lawver at 734.487.3170 for details.
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Dave Heikkinen Val Kabat Jennifer Scramstad Lawson Karl Osterland

 

April 26, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  “Liberator” Concert – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Val Kabat, Ypsilanti Community Choir; Jennifer Scramstad Lawson, Daughter of YCC’s Founder Denise Zellner; Karl Osterland, Composer - Ann Arbor composer Karl Osterland debuts his new work commissioned for the 30th Anniversary of the Ypsilanti Community Choir.  It is inspired by the B-24 “Liberator”, which contributed to so much of the Allies’ efforts during World War II.  The free concert is on Thursday, May 2 at 7:30 PM at Emmanuel Lutheran Church on North River Street in Ypsilanti.
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Kevin Hill

 

April 5, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Ypsilanti’s Positive Vibe – Kevin Hill, DAY Board Member / Owner, The Wolverine Grill – We are watching with great interest the resurgence of downtown Ypsilanti, as a number of restaurants and retail shops have opened up over the last few years.  So, what does the future hold?
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Dave Heikkinen Dorothy Kryskowski  Lavonte DavisMarch 29, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: – DAY President Dave Heikkinen, Ypsilanti H.S. Business Teacher Dorothy Kryskowski, and Lavonte Davis, Ypsilanti H.S. Student Lavonte Davis took his Ypsilanti High School Basketball team to the state quarterfinals, and now the community is helping him get to an international business competition.  It’s a story of an exemplary young man and a community who cares.  Read more about Lavonte, the first ever Ypsilanti High School Student to win the Michigan DECA State competition, as he heads to Nationals, here.  Listen to our interview at the link below, as well.
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Washtenaw Camp Placement AssociationMarch 22, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Helping Disadvantaged Kids Experience Camp – Mark Swanson, DAY Board Member/Owner, Terry’s Bakery; Washtenaw Camp Placement Association’s Jane Talcott, Executive Director, and Bill Fennel, Board Member – Washtenaw Camp Placement Association has been sending high-risk kids to summer camp since 1962.  The life skills learned at camp can lead to positive behaviors as the campers return to school and their community.  Learn how the program works and how you can help.  Washtenaw Camp Placement Association is in need of sleeping bags and duffle bags to provide to the young campers.  Donations may be made at the WCPA office at 3135 S. State (near Briarwood Mall) or by calling 734.971.4537.
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Dave Heikkinen

 

 

March 15, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti –– Dave Heikkinen, DAY President - You heard last week about Ypsilanti’s efforts to engage the community in shaping its future.  After participating in some of the community gatherings, Dave reports with his impressions.  For more info about Ypsilanti’s Master Plan, visit www.ShapeYpsi.com.
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Dave Heikkinen Teresa Gilloti Anne StevensonMarch 8, 2013:   Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti – Ypsilanti’s Master Plan – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Teresa Gilloti, Ypsilanti City Planner; Anne Stevenson, Steering Committee, Shape YpsilantiEfforts are underway in the city of Ypsilanti to plan what the town will look like in the future.  Ypsilanti is drafting a Master Plan, the guiding values for decisions about land use, housing, transportation, equity and sustainability.  In addition, Shape Ypsilanti wants your input and is hosting a number of community events.
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Dave Heikkinen and James Dreher

 

 

March 1, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Breakfast with the Easter Bunny – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; James Dreher, Management Development VP,  Ypsilanti Area Jaycees Don your Easter bonnet and get ready to meet the Bunny.  The Ypsilanti Area Jaycees is sponsoring its traditional Easter Egg Scramble and Marshmallow Drop, but new this year as well is Breakfast with the Easter Bunny.  Breakfast with the Easter Bunny is March 16 at the Recreation Park Senior Center in Ypsilanti.  The Easter Egg Scramble and Marshmallow Drop is March 23, 11:30 AM at Frog Island Park.  Click here and watch this video to see the Easter Bunny in downtown Ypsilanti!
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Dave Heikkinen and Bethany Schultz

 

 

February 15, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Bethany Schultz, 350.0rg - A new movement to get residents to support local businesses is designed to encourage less energy use.
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February 8, 2013:  Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Downtown Photography   – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Lindsey Hall, Lindsey Hall Photography Located in downtown Ypsilanti’s Michigan Heritage Building, photographer Lindsey Hall’s specialty is baby and family photos.  Lindsey is the newest member of DAY.
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Dave and Boo Boo –
Photo by Lindsey Hall Photography, Ypsilanti, MI.

 

 

February 1, 2013Downtown Friday with the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Hamilton Crossing   – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Marquan Jackson, Director of Family Self-Sufficiency, Institute for the Study of Children, Families and Communities – In partnership with Washtenaw United Way, EMU’s ISCFC is helping a newly-renovated public housing program make its mark in Ypsilanti.  The work involves providing residents with best practices in social support services.
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January 25, 2013:   Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: The Value of an Ypsilanti Education  – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Emma Swanson, Ypsilanti H.S. Graduate – Home from her first semester at Minnesota’s Macalaster College, we catch up with this Ypsilanti High School graduate whose parents own Terry Bakery.
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January 18, 2013:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Kiwanis Club of Ypsilanti  – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Shataura Clayborne, Kiwanis President/Eastern Leaders Executive Board – The Kiwanis Club of Ypsilanti has been serving the community for more than 90 years.  The good work of these members has extended to helping the Salvation Army, SOS Community Services, Hope Clinic, Meals On Wheels, and many other  organizations.  The Kiwanis Club of Ypsilanti meets every Wednesday at 12 PM at the EMU Student Center and the third Thursday of the month at 7 PM at rotating locations.  For more information, email ypsikiwanispres@gmail.com or visit www.ypsilantikiwanis.weebly.com.
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January 11, 2013:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  The Marketing of EMU – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Ted Coutilish, Associate Vice President for University Marketing and Communications – In its most recent marketing endeavor, EMU goes Gangnam Style, playing off a popular song and hoping for as many online hits as the tune has generated.
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January 4, 2013:  Downtown Association of YpsilantiYpsilanti Youth Orchestra – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Verna Hayes, President, Ypsilanti Youth Orchestra This retired Ypsilanti English teacher was drawn to the Ypsilanti Youth Orchestra after her husband helped to co-found it.  Verna Hayes, also a Kiwanis member, is one of those beautiful community souls who make Ypsilanti a great town.
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November 30, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Morgan Clothing – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Alex Easley, Owner, Morgan Clothing – After opening his downtown Ypsilanti store a few years ago, Alex Easley has become a fixture in the community.  He and his wife have six children, and he teaches bible school, is on the board of the Ypsilanti Huron Braves Pee Wee Football, and was recently named to the Downtown Development Association.
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November 16, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Model Kit Making – Dave Heikkinen, DAY; ModelCave Owners Jon Cassino and Melissa Barnes:  ModelCave on West Michigan Avenue in downtown Ypsilanti stocks thousands of plastic model kits and everything needed to build them.  From the five-foot long model of the WWII Battleship Bismarck to models of Old Spanish Galleons and even Warcraft action figures, the shop is an example of how old-fashioned fun can still be so entertaining.
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November 9, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Kicks & Fresh Threads – Dave Heikkinen, DAY; Puffer Reds’ Daisha Mitchell; Ty Mopkins - They sell the world’s most exclusive kicks and are also known for the season’s freshest threads.  Puffer Reds in downtown Ypsilanti attracts clients from all over the world.
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November 2, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: The Christmas Stocking Stuffer Capital of SE Michigan – Dave Heikkinen (middle), DAY; The Rocket’s Co-Owners, Eli Morrissey & Paul Balcom – They stock their unique downtown Ypsi shop with great stocking stuffers for Christmas.  From novelty toys, kites, books, and candy to animal masks and humorous gag gifts, The Rocket is one of the coolest shops around.
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October 26, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: The Future of the City of Ypsilanti – Dave Heikkinen, DAY; Ypsilanti City Manager Ralph Lange – Earlier this year Ypsilanti residents rejected an income tax and a debt millage request.  Now, the new city manager is being forced to make cutbacks.  Ralph Lange knew when he took the position the decisions he has to make aren’t going to be popular, but he says he’s going to get Ypsilanti on financially solid footing.  He’s set to unveil his 5-year budget turnaround plan on October 30.
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October 19, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Downtown Development Authority – Dave Heikkinen, DAY; Adam Sniezek, EMU Drum Major; Dr. Amy Knopps, EMU Marching Band Director – Founded in 1894 entirely by students of what was then the Michigan State Normal School, the “Normal Band” was a vital part of the rich musical heritage of the University. In 1915, chairman of the Conservatory of Music, Frederick Alexander took control of the Michigan State Normal College Band (the university name was officially changed in 1899), marking the first time a music instructor, employed by the school, directed the band.  The EMU Marching Band has a long tradition of musical and entertainment excellence. The Marching Band performs for all home football games and travels to one or two away games each year.
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October 12, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  Dave Heikkinen, President, DAY – A look at how downtown Ypsilanti is on the rise.
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October 5, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Downtown Development Authority – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Tim Colbeck, Director, Ypsilanti DDADowntown development continues to grow in Ypsilanti with the news this past week that the old Elbow Room will soon become a Mexican Restaurant. We get an update on projects the DDA has helped to fund through its popular grant program, and what the future holds for Ypsilanti’s retail, restaurant, business, and residential properties in the downtown region.
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August 24, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti – EMU by the Numbers:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Kevin Kucera, EMU Associate VP of Student Affairs and Enrollment Service – Eastern Michigan University is one of the best colleges in the Midwest for the tenth consecutive year and a “great value,” in terms of its tuition and education, according to the nationally known education services company, The Princeton Review. Eastern was selected as one of 153 institutions by The Review in its “Best in the Midwest” section of its website feature, “2013 Best Colleges: Region by Region,” on PrincetonReview.com.
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August 17, 2012:  Coming soon!

August 10, 2012:  Taste of Ypsilanti

August 10, 2012:  Today’s show celebrates the foodie culture in downtown Ypsilanti, which is experiencing a tremendous growth and interest in culinary endeavors.  Special thanks to the Ypsilanti Convention & Visitors Bureau and the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti, along with SPARK East, for making our ‘Taste of Ypsilanti’ possible.

Listen to Hour 1:

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Listen to Hour 2:

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SPARK East, where we broadcast today’s show from and showcased Ypsilanti’s diverse restaurants.

Ypsilanti Convention & Visitors Bureau - Celebrates Ypsilanti’s heritage August 17-19 at the Ypsilanti Heritage Festival at Riverside Park.

For more than 30 years, the Ypsilanti Heritage Festival has brought the community together to share its history, culture, food, arts and the company of its neighbors. For 2012, the Ypsilanti Heritage Festival will bring you even more of what makes the Ypsilanti community great!  Click here for details.

This year’s festival will feature Ypsilanti area artists, performers, and musicians, many of whom travel the around the country and around the world, performing for their friends and neighbors. Heritage Fests main entertainment stage will be moving to the Riverside Beer Garden, under the Big Top, where  performers will be on stage all the way until midnight (don’t worry, families are welcome inside!)

 

Kyle DeBord, Manager, SPARK East - Since its launch in 2008, the SPARK East Business Incubator has become a magnet for innovation-based businesses of every size and description – from entrepreneurs and start-ups to mid-sized companies. Here you’ll find work-ready office facilities equipped with the latest technology. Networking events and educational programs. You’ll have access to an amazing array of business development centers, consulting expertise and educational programs. All concentrated within a two block area of downtown Ypsilanti. All dedicated to your success.
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Terry Bakery – Mark Swanson, Owner – Its iconic sign featuring two little bakers with a giant rolling pin is the first clue that you’ve encountered something quite delicious in downtown Ypsilanti.
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B-24′s Espresso Bar Eats & Entertainment – Martha Rumford, Co-Owner – Downtown Ypsilanti’s Expresso Bar opened a new location inside the Ypsilanti Library Whittaker branch, making it the first such venture in Washtenaw County.
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Around the Home: Enhancing Your Home’s Comfort with Minor Upgrades – Pete Nowakowski, Marketing & Communications Director, BRAG Ann Arbor; Laura Spear, Washtenaw Door & Trim – Choosing your doors and moldings is the basis the rest of your interior design will build on.  Washtenaw Door & Trim, a locally owned and managed business, has been considered the “Door and Trim Specialists”, serving the greater Ann Arbor & Ypsilanti area, since 1974.
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Bona Sera Café  “Wonder Woman” and Annette “Bad Fairy” Weathers, Co-Owners:  The latest restaurant to open in downtown Ypsilanti, Bona Serra Café, started as an underground supper club known for its secret dinners that raised thousands of dollars for various charities.  Now an official destination (although the underground supper club continues as well), perhaps it’s time for “Wonder Woman” and “Bad Fairy” to fully reveal themselves, given their superb culinary creations.  (No amount of prodding could encourage “Wonder Woman” to step out of the shadows.)  The 3,000 square foot cafe is located in the Michigan Avenue building once occupied by J Neil’s Mongolian Grill.
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Wolverine Grill – Kevin Hill, Owner; with an interview also by Dean Erskine with Leni Sinclair, Legendary Rock Music Photographer - Kevin Hill has been working on getting the Michigan Music Hall of Fame established in Ypsilanti, so it should come as no surprise that his downtown restaurant is showcasing the work of Leni Sinclair on Saturday, August 11.  Sinclair, once married to John Sinclair with whom she co-founded the White Panthers – created to show support for the Black Panthers during the turbulent 1960s – has chronicled the local music scene through her stunning photography.  This will be a rare opportunity for music fans to meet Sinclair and enjoy and purchase her work.  Sat., August 11, 8 AM-3 PM at The Wolverine Grill, 228 West Michigan Ave.
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Red Rock Downtown Barbecue – Jerry Jefferson, Lead Cook:  Red Rock Downtown Barbecue, seated in the center of Downtown Ypsilanti, offers a new take on the dining experience for the Ypsilanti community. With a 500 lb capacity Rotisserie Smoker hanging out the back, Red Rock is able to offer in-house smoked Pulled Pork, Beef Brisket, Saint Louis Style Ribs, Chicken and in-house smoked Bacon.
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Additional Photos from ‘Taste of Ypsilanti’:

Downtown Association of Ypsilanti’s Kevin Hill and Dave Heikkinen.  Together, along with the DAY board, they have created a new buzz about Ypsilanti and its growing business community.

Dave Heikkinen walking east on Michigan Avenue

 

Sign pointing the way to downtown Ypsilanti’s Crossroads Music Festival, which offers a bevy of musical talent at the corner of Michigan Ave. and Washington Street Friday evenings throughout the summer.

 

The Michigan Heritage Building at 133 W. Michigan was once the site of John Wagner Tailor and was built in 1905.  Today it houses Heikk’s Decorated Apparel, where he creates t-shirts and other printed and embroidered items for the area universities and many others.

 

Inside Heikk’s, Dave shows us the old bank vault (it was the site of the old National Bank of Ypsilanti as well) and a beautiful mural created by Alexander Maestro-Velerio in 1920.

 

The Rocket is a cool downtown Ypsilanti shop that sells fantastic stocking stuffers, retro candy, and great gifts you won’t find anywhere else.

 

Make sure you check out the door of The Tap Room when you enter.  It has a rather unusual history behind it.

 

 

 

 

August 3, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President;  Lois Richardson, Ypsilanti City Councilmember - A champion of Ypsilanti’s downtown, Lois Richardson recalls a time when empty storefronts dotted the landscape along Michigan Avenue.   She is running for another term on City Council in the 1st Ward.  Listen to our previous interview with challenger Steve Pierce, here.  Tyrone Bridges is also running in the 1st Ward and has been invited to appear on a future edition of our program.
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July 27, 2012:   Downtown Association of Ypsilanti15 Year-Old Singing Sensation Dymond Harding: Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Dymond Harding, Winner, Pave the Way Project National Pop Music Competition – This Lincoln H.S. student is fast making a name for herself in the pop music world. She recently performed at the Crossroads Music Fest in Ypsilanti and will also be performing this summer with Carlos and Salvadore Santana! (Photo: Dymond’s dad Rickey Harding & brother Rickey Jr., with DAY’s Davie Heikkinen and Dymond.)
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July 20, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti Crossroads Music Fest: Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Headliner Anne McCue, Guitarist-Singer-Songwriter – Heart’s Nancy Wilson has described musician Anne McCue as “my Aussie clone.”  She makes her home in Nashville by way of Australia and is performing at tonight’s Crossroads Music Festival’s “Folk/Roots Fest.”
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July 13, 2012:  Downtown Association of YpsilantiThe Color Run: Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Deb Locke-Daniels, Ypsilanti Convention & Visitors Bureau – This is one 5K that you are guaranteed to look completely different and perhaps more colorful after completion.  It’s just one of the unique events this summer in Ypsilanti.
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July 6, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY President - Update on downtown happenings.
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June 29, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti – Ypsi Rising: Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Jessica “Decky” Alexander, Assoc. Professor, EMU’s CMTA/Director, EMU Academic Services; Callie McKee, EMU MFA Student/Director of UM Educational Theatre Company - Bread shaping, baking, creativity, and conversation are the hallmarks of a new group known as Ypsi Rising. Community members get together to bake bread at Beezy’s Café while discussing issues relevant too Ypsilanti.
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June 22, 2012:  Downtown Association of YpsilantiMIX Theater: Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Jim & Paul Manganello, Frantegello Theater Company / Creators of The Mute Quire
Before ink meets paper, a printer and his apprentice battle over the soul of poetry, drama, and nonsense as they work to publish the plays of the recently deceased Shakespeare.  Photo:  “Lucy Ann Lance Show” Producer Keiko Collins; Paul Manganello; Dave Heikkinen; Jim Manganello.
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Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Ypsilanti Mayor Paul Schreiber – Marking the 100th episode of our weekly interview with DAY, Mayor Schreiber and DAY President Dave Hiekkinen reflect on the growth of their community, the positive direction they are moving in, and what the challenges are ahead.  The scrumptious cookies and cake celebrating DAY’s 100th episode were made by Terry Bakery in Ypsilanti.  Thank you, Swanson Family!
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May 25, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: A Partnership Between Neighborhoods & Police: Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Steve Pierce, President, Ypsilanti Community Policing Action Council (CoPAC) – The idea of neighbors policing their own neighborhoods received a black eye following the fatal shooting of a Florida teen by a community watch coordinator. However, neighborhood watch programs have been successful at alerting police to potential crimes and keeping communities safe. In Ypsilanti, the Community Policing Action Council brings citizens and cops together to find solutions to quality of life issues with a mission of fostering a safe environment.
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May 18, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Fashion, Funk, & Fame: Dave Hiekkinen, DAY President; Daisha Mitchell, Puffer Reds  Buyer / ’12 EMU Graduate of Apparel, Textiles & Merchandising - Ypsilanti’s downtown is fast-becoming known for its unique fashion sense and the retail stores to go along with it. One of its longtime anchor stores, Puffer Reds, routinely gets lines of customers waiting for the debut of the next superstar sneaker. DAY recently teamed up with its membership and EMU to present a fashion show featuring the local creations and showcasing the talents of students from the Apparel, Textiles & Merchandising department. We talk about the program with graduate Daisha Mitchell, and find out how Puffer Reds is expanding into other fashion lines, as wells as its kicks.
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May 11, 2012:   Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Donna DeButts, Community Relations Coordinator, Ypsilanti District Library – From Crafternoons to Computer Classes, and even Japanese and a GED Study Group, the Ypsilanti District Library is the place to learn.
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May 4, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; and Ypsilanti High School Seniors  Olivia Heator, Emma Swanson, Ariel Powdhar, and Chris Terrell, along with Ypsilanti Public Schools Communications Director Emma Jackson - These 2012 Ypsilanti High School graduating seniors tell us how the Ypsilanti Public Schools have prepared them for college and what they hope to do in the future.
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April 27, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Maia Hardy & Noah Pylvainen, EMU Students in Urban and Regional Planning – These students have tackled what they believe was a disconnect between Ypsilanti and EMU in a unique and creative way. Asking Ypsi gives students and the community an opportunity to have a discussion with one another in a new way.
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April 20, 2012:  Downtown Association of YpsilantiDave Heikkinen, DAY President; ER Couture’s Robin Miller, Assistant, and Edna Shelby, Co-Owner – A stylish new ladies boutique has opened in downtown Ypsilanti and it’s the collaboration of two former dress and design shops.  Together the former owners of Studio Glamour Fashion and Rita’s Designs have a larger, better positioned boutique that combines their experiences and adds to the growing fashion presence in the downtown with the MIX, Puffer Reds, Morgan Clothing, and Heikk’s Decorated Apparel as well.
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April 13, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; John & Shawn Cool, Red Rock Downtown Barbecue - A complete renovation of the building that once housed T.C.’s Speakeasy on West Michigan Avenue in downtown Ypsilanti has turned it into the home of pulled pork, beef brisket, and ribs. Shawn Cool and his parents, John and Nancy, say their focus is on the quality of their food. Red Rock Downtown Barbecue has an in-house smoker and a full liquor license.
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April 6, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Angela Barbash, Founder/Chief Consultant, Reconsider – Aligning Finances with Values: Angela Barbash at one time managed people’s money as a licensed securities investor. Now she helps them become educated and informed stewards of their assets by offering financial consulting services through her new company called Reconsider. Her mission is to attract and engage people passionate about their community, education, and economics who want to support an independent, resilient, and sustainable local economy. You may recall that Angela is also with the New West Willow Neighborhood Association board, a community that has worked aggressively to make their homefront safer through citizen patrols and other vigilante efforts. We ask her about her take on the death of Trayvon Martin, who died after an encounter with a Neighborhood Watch person in Florida.
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March 30, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Bethany Schultz, Managing Director, and Jesse Morgan, Co-Founder, Community Records: Community Records L3C (CR L3C) is a social mission organization that builds community by bringing together diverse populations through collaborative participation in music & music education. They offer teambuilding and creativity workshops, group songwriting classes, instrumental music lessons, as well as community concerts.
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March 23, 2012:   Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Kevin Hill, Owner of The Wolverine Grill -This chef and downtown Ypsilanti supporter is combining his two loves in his latest venture. When The Wolverine Grill on Michigan Avenue closed last fall, Kevin Hill decided to buy it. He reopened its doors this weekend with a newly refurbished interior and a fresh menu that utilizes local ingredients. In addition, The Wolverine Grill will pay tribute to Michigan’s rich musical heritage throughout its decor. Kevin is also the founder of the Michigan Music Hall of Fame.
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March 16, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti: Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Dr. Derrick Gragg, EMU Athletic Director – EMU’s Athletic Success Growing: Facility improvements, a football MAC trophy, and four wrestlers and the Women’s Basketball team all participating in NCAA tournament events this weekend, illustrate how Eastern Michigan University’s athletic program is achieving success.
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March 9, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Heather Freeling, Owner of Thomas Blondi Salon- Heather Freeling has one of the most diverse backgrounds as a business owner that we have ever encountered.   Trained as a cosmetologist, she studied at the Vidal Sassoon Academy, but she also has experience in fire fighting and law enforcement.  A year ago she bought the Thomas Blondi Salon in downtown Ypsilanti and is now garnering a reputation for being able to serve an eclectic client base who value creativity and a cutting-edge approach to hair care.
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March 2, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  The Corner Health Center – Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Julie Seagraves, Corner Health Center Development Director; & Dr. Kathryn Bondy Fessler, Corner Health Center Medical Director - The Corner is Michigan’s first, largest, and most comprehensive teen health center.  Serving primarily young people ages 12-21, the Corner’s mission is to increase their access to health care, reduce risk-taking, and understand the long-range implications of their health behaviors.
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February 24, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  The Masons in Ypsilanti – Jimmy F. Moore, Past Master; Charles E. Slater, Past Master/Current Junior Deacon; Roosevelt Barrett, Worshipful Master; Dave Heikkinen, DAY President - How the Masons, an organization often thought of as a secret society, are building community in Ypsilanti.
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February 17, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; James Mann, Historian/Author of Wicked Ypsilanti -

The author of Wicked Ann Arbor and Wicked Washtenaw is back with an upcoming book on Ypsilanti’s wicked past.  He regales us with stories about  the nearly 200 year-old town.
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February 11, 2012:  Downtown Association of YpsilantiDave Heikkinen, DAY President; Brian Brickley, Tap Room Ypsilanti’s long time downtown bar is known for its great food and music, as well.  Its open mic night on Thursdays is legendary, and the Tap Room has been featured in several movies.  But do you know why the handle to the front door is only 3 feet high?
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February 3, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Ypsilanti City Councilperson Ricky Jefferson – City Income Tax Proposal; Water Street Property Millage:  Ypsilanti voters will be deciding whether to approve a city income tax, as well as a Water Street debt retirement millage.  Councilmember Jefferson explains it’s indicative of tough financial times for the city.
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January 27, 2012:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti (DAY):  Dave Heikkinen, DAY President – Each week on the DAY segment, we meet pioneering business people who are working hard to make Ypsilanti a great place to enjoy.  This week Dave gives a look into a business that is just in its infancy, as he shares his idea to manufacture and sell high quality music boxes.
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January 13, 2012:
Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Kent Baumkel, Kent’s Confections:  The New Normal – Making a living by putting together a blend of opportunities, Kent Baumkel’s eclectic career path is the result of her various jobs and being a graduate of the MEDC Shifting Gears program.  She calls it the “new normal” for today’s work world.
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January 6, 2012:  Downtown Association of YpsilantiDave Heikkinen, DAY President; Victor Swanson, Owner of “A Touch of Soul by Biggies” – This downtown Ypsilanti restaurant recently moved to its new location at Harriet & South Huron after the former building he was in foreclosed.  Victor holds a BA in Business from EMU and knows what makes the downtown tick.
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December 23, 2011:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Debbie Swanson, Co-Owner of Terry Bakery & Ruth Ann Jamnick, Former State Rep/Township Supervisor/Treasurer – There aren’t as many family-owned bakeries left in our region, but Terry Bakery in downtown Ypsilanti is thriving thanks to a delicious product line and a lot of hard work. Click & Listen:

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December 16, 2011:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Kevin Hill, Chairman, DAY Board / Founder of the Michigan Music Hall of Fame – It appears that grant funding for both the Rutherford Pool and the pedestrian bridge under Michigan Avenue will help make both a reality. Dave and Kevin talk about the impact improvements on the surrounding area have on the downtown region.
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December 9, 2011:  Downtown Association of YpsilantiDave Heikkinen, DAY President; Ypsilanti Community Choir:  Christmas Concert – Since 1983 the Ypsilanti Community Choir has been part of the local arts community, providing diverse music and community service to the city of Ypsilanti.  It’s hard to believe when you hear how professional they sound, but the Ypsilanti Community Choir accepts anyone with an interest in music without audition.  On Thursday, December 15, the Ypsilanti Community Choir joins forces with the Washtenaw Community Concert Band for their annual Christmas Concert.  (7:30 PM, Pease Auditorium)
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December 2, 2011:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Leslie Leland & Bonnie Penet, Owners of MIX & the new MIX Marketplace
After launching the successful MIX store and theater in downtown Ypsilanti, Penet and Leland have teamed up once again to create a marketplace of gourmet artisan and cottage foods, farm products, art, gifts, and crafts.  Currently open selected weekends, plans include a permanent installation for the concept.
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November 25, 2011:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY President – Shopping today?  Why not head to downtown Ypsilanti, where Dave Heikkinen tells us a bevy of unique stores await to be discovered and enjoyed.  Dave gives us a tour.
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November 18, 2011:  Downtown Association of YpsilantiDave Heikkinen, DAY President; Stefan Graf, Owner of Illuminart – This Ypsilanti company is lighting the way for companies such as General Motors and Walt Disney Imagineering, & Ford Motor Land Development.  They offer cost effect lighting design solutions to the architectural community nationally and internationally.
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November 11, 2011:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY President
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November 4, 2011:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Nick & Reyes Arreola, Owners of Dos Hermanos – Ypsilanti’s Downtown Grocery Store
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October 28, 2011: Dave Heikkinen, DAY President; Dr. C.Keith Harrison, Professor of Sports Management at the University of Central Florida’s Devos Sports Business Management / EMU Scholar-Baller Team
- Scholar-Baller’s mission is to inspire youth and young adults to develop leadership skills and to excel in education and life by using their cultural interests in sport and entertainment. Saluting student athletes for their academic and sport achievements, the Scholar-Baller program started by Dr. C. Keith Harrison collaborates with more than 50 universities, including Ypsilanti’s EMU.
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October 21, 2011:  Kevin Hill, DAY Board of Directors; David Strenski, Solar Ypsi:  Ypsilanti’s Solar PowerCity Hall, the Ypsilanti Food Cooperative,  River Street Bakery, and Adams S.T.E.M. Academy all operate with solar powered panels through the efforts of SolarYpsi.  The man behind it is Dave Strenski, who has reached over 1500 people with his solar presentation at SolarYpsi.org.  The mission of the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti is to promote the common economic interests of Downtown Ypsilanti businesses through activities which contribute to the public safety, marketing, growth, culture, entertainment and vitality of the community.
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September 30, 2011:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY Chair;  Ty Mopkins, Puffer Reds – After phasing out its CD products, this popular downtown Ypsilanti store has expanded its offerings of “kicks.”   Puffer Reds has a nationwide reputation as a premier store for Nike, Adidas, Reebok, Puma, and Timberland.  
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September 23, 2011:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY Chair; & Robert Belous, New Principal at Ypsilanti H.S. - Ypsilanti H.S. has undergone a redesign that the district hopes will improve its outcomes.  The transformation includes dividing into two distinct areas:  Global Leadership and Public Policy Academy and the improvisational Academy of the Arts.  Belous shares with us his goals and vision for the future of Ypsilanti High School, and why he thinks its poised to become a success in the community.
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September 16, 2011:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY Chair; & Tim Colbeck, Ypsilanti Downtown Development Director – Beautiful upgrades are underway in Ypsilanti, including the downtown area.  Tim Colbeck tells us it’s all thanks to the Facade Grant program and the forward-thinking of the business owners spearheading these improvements.
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September 9, 2011:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY Chair; & Max Cassino and Melissa Barnes, Owners of Model Cave:  Another business is opening up in downtown Ypsilanti.  The owners talk about their passion for models and why they chose Ypsilanti.
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September 2, 2011:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti – Dave Heikkinen, DAY Chair; & Summer Medel, Owner, Good OmensFrom new and used books to antiques and even a tarot card reading, Good Omens is as eclectic as the town it resides in.
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August 26, 2011:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti – Dave Heikkinen, DAY Chair; & Eastern Michigan University Football Coach Ron English - After a tough season last year, EMU Football Coach Ron English is confident his team is on the right track this year.  He tells us about the challenges ahead and who he’s counting on to get the job done.
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August 19, 2011:  Downtown Association of Ypsilanti:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY Chair; & Eric Maurer, Maurer Management

After renovating many historic buildings throughout Ypsilanti, Eric and his wife Karen recently announced that  they would not be acquiring any more properties.  He talks about what’s behind the decision, and emphasizes their commitment is still solidly in Ypsilanti.
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August 12, 2011:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY Chair; &
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August 5, 2011:  Dave Heikkinen, DAY Chair; & Kathy Asani, Owner of Abe’s Coney Island – Abe’s Coney Island:  It’s as famous for its legendary breakfasts as it is for once hosting President Clinton.  Abe’s has been a fixture in downtown Ypsilanti, and is especially noted for being the only 24/7 business in Ypsilanti.
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