Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thankful Warrendale

Thanksgiving 2008 is almost over; less than 30 minutes remain. Before I head off to bed, I wanted to recount some of the things that relate to the Warrendale neighborhood - and Detroit in general - that I'm thankful for.

I'm thankful for the fact that 8-month long ordeal with former Mayor Kwame M. Kilpatrick's text messaging scandal is finally over. The whole thing went on way too long.

I'm thankful for the fact that we're going to have a special election in February and May to choose who will fill the duration of Mayor Kilpatrick's term.

I'm thankful for El Monterrey, the Mexican restaurant that opened on Ford Rd. a couple of months ago. With their opening, we have a few more jobs in the Warrendale neighborhood and we have at least one stretch of the road with no vacant buildings. This gives us something to build on.

I'm thankful for Gracie See Pizzeria. They were named "Best Traditional Pizza in North America" at the 2008 International Pizza Expo in Las Vegas, proving to the world that some very cool things come from the Warrendale neighborhood.

I'm glad that we seem to have at least hit the bottom with the housing crisis in the neighborhood. We might not be recovering as quickly as I would like, but at least we aren't falling any farther.

I'm thankful for that we have some responsible investors who are buying and rehabbing homes in the neighborhood - creating a valuable product instead of just looking for a quick buck. We still have a lot who just want to flip and don't care about it's impact on the neighborhood. They're a problem, but at least we have a few good guys in the battle.

I'm thankful for the Warrendale Community Organization. They organized a series clean-ups to take care of some of the worst vacant home eye-sores and will do even more in the spring.

I'm thankful for the Warrendale Community Garden. The Ryan Playground has never looked better since it was set-up. Plus, it brings some of the residents who live near the playground out to interact with each other the way neighbors should always do.

I'm thankful for the MMBA crew and the mountain bike train that they re-opened in Rouge Park.

I'm thankful that the horse barn in Rouge Park has been rehabbed this year and is back in use. Warrendale is now the only neighborhood in Detroit where ordinary people can ride a horse.

I'm thankful for the Fred Bear Historical Archery Tournament that was held in Rouge Park earlier this year.

Most of all, I'm thankful that are still people who haven't given up on Detroit or the Warrendale neighborhood.

To all of those people, I simply say, "Thank you". I look forward to having even more to be thankful for in 2009.
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