Have you ever met someone from Michigan?
I have a few Michigan friends and they aren’t just proud of their state… they are extreme FANS of their hometowns.
The first thing you do when you meet a new acquaintance from Michigan is hold up your right hand (palm up) and ask them to point out where on the ‘mitten’ they’re from!
You’ll look like a #PureMichican expert!
And that’s another thing – what is the deal with the #PureMichigan or #PureDetroit lingo? It’s a recent PR campaign that has taken off with a #Hashtag BANG! Locals are thrilled to use the tag when they use social media especially Twitter and Instagram (look for copycats from many other loyal staters—it’s a trend popping up everywhere).
Detroit is in rebuilding mode.
Economy. Motor Companies. Urban Renaissance. I had the chance to visit Detroit in November. Specifically I was there to see all the new OnStar innovations. But when you go on a downtown Detroit scavenger hunt with OnStar as your guide, you’re bound to see not just a city in transition, but the BEAUTY of a city with a bright future.
You’ll see #PureDetroit.
Reasons to Visit Detroit & Facts You Didn’t Know
Did you know Detroit is the only place in the U.S. where you can look SOUTH and see Canada?
While standing on Belle Isle Park, if you look directly south across the Detroit River you are North of Windsor City, Canada! Take a picture, you might never see that again.
There’s a Salt Mine Below the City.
Detroit Salt Company operates a salt mine that’s really more like a city under the city.
“The salt mine’s 100+ year history with the city of Detroit encompasses decades of effort, manpower and technological advancements. The fruit of this labor is apparent in the phenomenal salt city now standing 1,100 feet beneath the bustling city life. It is very much a part of the history and fabric of Detroit, with a story that began millions of years ago.” –DetroitSalt.com
The salt mine is located below Dearborn roughly south to Allen Park, Mi. Public tours are not available, but imagine having a huge party down there!
Fun Fact: 2014 marks the 313th birthday of Detroit… which is also home to the 313 area code!
Detroit is home to 4 Major Professional Sports Teams
Just like the fanatic fans of their cities and states, Detroiters are also fanatics about their teams. The Lions, the Tigers, the Pistons and the Red Wings all see sold out stadiums even in low winning seasons these fans are never-say-never supporters. Comerica Park is located literally in the middle of downtown Detroit.
Belle Isle is the Largest Island Park within a City
Belle Isle is about 3 miles east of downtown Detroit and it was purchased by the city of Detroit in the 1800s from the Campau family for $200,000. The island park was designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, who also helped design Central Park in New York City. See above, this is the park where you can look South to Canada!
New and Notable Cafes, Shops and Buildings in Detroit!
- Good Girls Go to Paris—A midtown crepery, not far from the Detroit Institute of Arts
- Melt—New Gelato Shop in Detroit
- The Renaissance Center (Ren Cen)—Also known as the tallest hotel in North America until 2 years ago, and home to General Motors. The building was recently renovated and worth a tour right on the riverfront, Renaissance Center.
- Shinola—besides being the best new name of a shop, great new products, Detroit Proud including Bicycles and Watches? Yup!
- Westin Book Cadillac Detroit—Renovated and simply amazing! Including the new Roast Restaurant.
- Great Lakes Coffee—New!
- Angelina Italian Bistro—Near theaters and perfect for a group or cozy dinner
Summer Reasons to Travel to Detroit
- Woodward Dream Cruise—The world’s largest one-day automotive event, drawing 1.5 million people and 40,000 classic cars each year from around the globe.
- Detroit International Jazz Festival— One of the world’s premier jazz festivals on Labor Day Weekend
- Diego Rivera’s Murals “Detroit Industry”—Located in the Detroit Institute of Arts Museum, I would LOVE to see this masterpiece in person!
- Concours d’Elegance of America—Luxury Car Show
- Onsted Mustang 50th Anniversary Celebration—A show just for Ford Mustangs summer 2014
The Coney Dog was Invented in Detroit
No trip to Detroit is complete without visiting the rival Coney Dog restaurants located side by side in the heart of downtown Detroit. American Coney and Lafayette Coney both serve coney dogs, perfectly ‘popping’ hotdogs topped with their own signature chili.
Ask the owners and wait staff to give you all the history and juicy details about the Coney rivals and then decide for yourself.. which coney dog is the best?
Motown Means Both Motor AND Music City Museums
Motown might refer to Detroit being a Motor City for one hundred plus years, but the Motown record label is equally known around the world. The Motown Historical Museum is located near downtown and worth a visit year round. And of course the whole area is filled with Motor history as well:
- The Henry Ford Museum
- Ford Rouge Factory Tour
- Walter P. Chrysler Museum
- Automotive Heritage Tour (3 day Self Guided)
Funky Food Items Local to Detroit (and Michigan)
Vernors Ginger Ale
Better Made Potato Chips
Sanders Hot Fudge Sauce
Faygo Pop (NEVER called soda in Michigan.)