Saturday, August 18, 2018

DIYpsi this weekend at Corner Brewery

DIYpsi is this weekend at Corner Brewery. And no, I will never call it Arbor Brewing Company Microbrewery. There are over 75 vendors and cover is just $1. DIYpsi is a great place to find local arts and crafts and just see some interesting artists. Think about it like ETSY, but IRL. The event runs Saturday 11-8 and Sunday 12-6.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Shoutout to Ypsilanti Ladies’ Literary Club in JSTOR Daily

The Ypsilanti Ladies Literary Club get's a nice shoutout in the JSTOR Daily. The article, Women’s Groups and the Rise of the Book Club, chronicles the rise of book clubs in the US. The article traces the origins of modern book clubs to 19th century women's clubs:

One of the first such societies, Sorosis, was founded in 1868, when several female columnists were barred from a New York Press Club event honoring Charles Dickens. Journalist Jane Cunningham Croly, who created the club with a circle of professional female colleagues, took the name from a botanical term: Sorosis refers to a type of fruit formed from an aggregate of flowers. Inspired by Sorosis and the New England Women’s Club in Boston, women across the nation began forming similar societies, from the still-running Ladies’ Literary Club of Ypsilanti, Michigan (1878), to the Ladies’ Reading Club of Houston (1885).
The image above is an undated 4th of July picture of the Ypsilanti Ladies' Literary Club.


Thursday, August 9, 2018

Ann Arbor City Council Preview for August 9, 2018

Gentle reader, tonight we are going to be treated to something very special: a rare Thursday #a2council meeting. Here's the agenda.

The agenda starts of with an update on the project to annex the remaining township islands and then we move into a thick consent agenda with 26 items. CA-25 is part of the People Friendly Streets project and would approve the conversion of First Ave and Ashley to allow two way traffic. There is a bike caravan of supporters of this project meeting at the Farmers Market at 6:45 to ride to City Hall for the meeting.

PH-1/B-1 is on rezoning a 0.41 acre parcel at 2455 South Main from R4B (Multiple-Family Dwelling District) to O (Office District). PH-2/DB-1 is on a new site plan for 115 Research Drive.

C-2 adds conditions to the rezoning of the parcel at 1140 Broadway. Given the controversial nature of this project, the discussion of C-2 could be interesting to watch.

Gentle reader, what are you most looking forward to at tonight's #a2council meeting? We are well into campaign season so there may be some political fireworks. Make sure you tune in tonight at 7 to watch CTN's live stream and follow the blow-by-blow action on #a2council hashtag on Twitter.

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

An election night dispatch from Ed Vielmetti

At 10:30 this evening, I received an the following email from Ed Vielmetti:
Ben, for Damn Arbor if you choose.

Larry Kestenbaum is the Washtenaw County Clerk and Register of Deeds. I spoke to him just after 10:00 p.m. on election night at his office in the county building on N Main St in downtown Ann Arbor.

Kestenbaum reported that there was a "huge turnout" in this election, with more than 90,000 ballots counted so far county wide. Most of the ballots remaining to be counted at this writing are a bunch of absentee ballots, with Superior Township and the City of Ann Arbor still waiting for absentee votes to be counted.

The clerk's report is that the state senate race is currently "very close", with Jeff Irwin at a margin of +2 votes. Irwin has a big lead in Ann Arbor absentee voting to this point, with more Ann Arbor absentee votes yet to be counted.

Kestenbaum noted the phenomenon of "temporal displacement" in absentee voting, in which early voters don't incorporate late news into their voting decisions. He noted that Gretchen Whitmer had a large lead in the absentee voting over Abdul El-Sayed, suggesting that El-Sayed's late surge in popularity did not translate into absentee votes.

Friday, July 27, 2018

Learn more about the Core Spaces proposal this Sunday

Gentle readers, friend of Damn Arbor and DDA Board Member, Jessica A. S. Letaw, asked me to share a cool event with you. On Sunday from 12-2 there is going to be a Pop-up Party on the Library Lot. It's an opportunity for the public to learn more about the proposed project at the site. There will be kid-friendly activities, a pop-up art installation, and a full-scale mockup of the building's floor plan! So if you like playing with model buildings, or want to learn more about the Library Lot proposal, stop by.

Friday, July 20, 2018

Best of Craigslist: Barrel of Hair Edition

Do you need a 55 gallon drum filled with human hair? Not just scalp hair, but all types? If so, have I got a deal for you. This add is perfect. First the make/manufacture is listed as "barrel" and the model name/number is listed as "hair." Also I like where the seller specifies that they want to do the handoff in public, because there are some weirdos on Craigslist. From the ad:

Yo ho ho and a barrel of hair. I've been collecting strands of hair for a minute now, and my landlord says I can't bring it in the house. I'm just tryna unload this on anyone that will use it. Some is scalp hair, some is body hair. I didn't separate the types of hair, cuz then theyre would be 2 barrells. Eamil me back to arrange for pick-up. Preferably at a public spot, since craigslist casual encounters can be sketch.
H/T to Redditor /u/fwally who posted this on /r/annarbor.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Art Fair Bingo, classic edition

Damn Arbor reader, Lisa Nichols, sent in these Art Fair Bingo cards from 2005. Lisa was a contributor that year and did the illustrations for "Your Ex-Lover" and "Birkies w/Socks" as well as some of the other squares. The whole project was a group effort that was coordinated online. The precise names of all the contributors have been lost to the sands of time.

Honestly, I think these might be the best Art Fair Bingo cards I have seen. Most of the squares are pretty timeless, except for "Profiteering Kids." Two dollars for a bottle of water isn't exactly outrageous these days.

Thanks for sending these in Lisa. If anyone has any other Art Fair Bingo Cards lying around, please send them in.


Art Fair or Art Fear, 2018 edition

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Art Fair or Art Fear, 2018 edition

Gentle reader, the Art Fairs start Thursday. Are you ready? Here's last year's Art Fair Bingo card:

Made by Umich grad, RJ Cron, this Art Fair Bingo game has tons of great updates for the modern era: double man buns, Jim Harbaugh, and Clinton Kane campaign buttons. It also still has the classics that make Art Fair Bingo great: art on a stick, pan flute musicians, etc. If you're ready for a deep dive, you can check out these classic Art Fair Bingo cards from yesteryear:

First card via

Second via Katy McGrady

Monday, July 16, 2018

Ann Arbor City Council Preview, July 16, 2018

The site for the proposed Cottages at Barton Green. The site plan is the subject of PH-6 and DB-1.

Today is the last #a2council meeting before the August 7th Primary Election. Gentle reader, this means you can expect some fireworks in Council Chambers. Here's the agenda. There are a couple of items on the agenda that are particularly spicy. PH-2/B-2 and PH-3/B-3 are part of the ZORO (Zoning Ordinance ReOrganization) project, which is essentially a cleaning up of the zoning code. This is the second reading of these ordinance changes.

PH-1/B-1 is the second reading of an ordinance change that would modify how fraternities and sororities are defined in the zoning code. When this ordinance has been before council previously there has been a lot of pushback from members of the fraternity and sorority community.

The final spicy item on the agenda is PH-6/DB-1 the site plan and wetland usage permit for the Cottages at Barton Green development. This would be a 225 unit apartment community with 716 bedrooms.

In other parts of the agenda there are a couple of rezonings of township islands. The consent agenda is pretty light with only 10 items. The only street closing is for student move in on Aug. 29th - Aug. 31st.

Gentle reader, what are you most looking forward to at tonight's #a2council meeting? We are well into campaign season so there may be some political fireworks. Make sure you tune in tonight at 7 to watch CTN's live stream and follow the blow-by-blow action on #a2council hashtag on Twitter.

Friday, July 13, 2018

July First Friday tonight in Ypsi

Tonight is the July First Friday in Ypsi. I know it's not the real first Friday of July, but the powers that be decided to move the event because of last week's holiday. You should totally check out the event. I've especially enjoyed the the exhibits they have had at the Riverside Arts Center at the recent First Fridays.