Monday, May 26, 2008

More on the Community Garden

Carla Thomas was kind enough to write and let me know that I made an error in my earlier post about the Warrendale Community Garden. More than 75 volunteers from ACCESS showed up to help at the garden; not the 30 that I originally reported.

In other news, the Warrendale Community Organization announced the work schedule for the community garden. Regular work days will be every Saturday from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. In addition, the garden is reserved for ladies only from 9 a.m. until 10 a.m. every day out of respect for our Muslim neighbors who wanted to participate.

Happy Memorial Day!

I want to take a moment to wish everyone in the Warrendale a happy Memorial Day. More importantly, I also want to take a moment to express my profound gratitude to everyone who has served our nation and to those who are currently doing so.

Happy Memorial Day, everyone!

Friday, May 23, 2008

Insanely Busy

To all of my regular readers: I'm sorry I haven't been posting as often as normal. I have been insanely busy as of late.

In addition to all my usual duties as president of the Warrendale Community Organization and the other non-profits that I do volunteer work for, I have a couple of grant deadlines that I've been frantically trying to meet for work.

Plus, my production company is involved in the Detroit Windsor International Film Festival, which is now less than 30 days away from happening.

So, yeah. I've been busy. Regardless, I did want to apologize to everyone for not posting more often.

ACCESS Comes to Warrendale

Thanks to the good people at ACCESS, more than 30 volunteers came out to help in the Warrendale Community Garden last weekend. Some of there accomplishments for the day included:
  • Scraping and painting the playground equipment on the Ryan Playground;
  • Raking the lawn clippings so they could be composted;
  • Installing a water barrel near the garden;
  • Tilling the garden area; and
  • Planting our first crops.
The sight of that many people visiting our neighborhood also inspired other residents to get out and lend a hand. Some of the vacant homes in area got their overgrown lawns cut for the first time this season, thanks to a couple of volunteers. There were also several individuals who were inspired to make unsolicited donations to the Warrendale Community Organization to support this gardening effort.

On behalf of the Warrendale Community Organization, I would like to extend my appreciation to everyone at ACCESS, and to those volunteers in particular, for coming out on a Saturday afternoon to lend a hand. I would also like to thank the Red Robin for allowing all of our volunteers to use their restrooms when needed as well as Detroit Synergy for donating a case of bottled water.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Gracie See Pizza on Fox 2

It's always great to see folks from the Warrendale neighborhood accomplish something. Of course, it's also really cool to see them on television.

Sam Costello from Gracie See Pizzeria (6889 Greenfield - 313.581.8070) was on Fox 2 Morning News this morning. He talked about winning top North American honors at the International Pizza Expo in Las Vegas earlier this year.

Congrats to everyone at Gracie See!

Edison Library: Cool Warrendale Thing of the Week

The Edison Branch of the Detroit Public Library has been in existence in the Warrendale neighborhood since December 9, 1948 and in its current location since January, 1955. They have more than enough books to satisfy a young kid in the Warrendale neighborhood who loves reading - even one who might grow up to publish his own novel. (Sorry, I really couldn't resist the plug.)

They also have an impressive series of community events that happen at the library on a regular basis. For example, there will be a children's story time at the Edison Library this evening from 6 - 6:45 p.m.

There will also be a free computer class this Saturday from 10:30 a.m. until noon. This class will focus on using the computer to find a job as well as how to use Microsoft Excel and Powerpoint.

Speaking of computers, the Edison Library is also an excellent place for those without a computer to log-on to the internet.

All of these things make the Edison Branch of the Detroit Public Library the Cool Warrendale Thing of the Week.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Results from the Motor City Makeover

More than two dozen volunteers, plus 6 individuals from the Wayne County Alternative Workforce, came out to clean the Warrendale neighborhood this past Saturday.

The Warrendale Community Organization's efforts were divided between two sites. They cleaned the southbound Southfield Freeway service drive from Joy to Ford Roads, removing approximately 150 pounds of debris from the primary entry path into the Warrendale neighborhood. They also had a crew at the Ryan Playground, painting the playground equipment and preparing the community garden for its groundbreaking this Friday.

On the other side of the Southfield Freeway, members of the Warren Avenue Community Organization spent a portion of their Saturday cleaning up around some of the vacant/ foreclosed homes in the neighborhood.

Groundbreaking This Friday

The Warrendale Community Garden will break ground this Friday, May 16th, at 8:00 am. The garden is located in the Lloyd H. Ryan Playground, (Kirkwood between Faust and Greenview).

A number of local dignitaries and elected officials have been invited including:
Everyone is invited to attend this 30-minute event.

The next garden work day will be on Saturday, May 17th from 9am-3pm. They will prepare the 30 x 30 garden bed to plant vegetables and hopefully making a wheelchair raised bed for our senior community members. The produce grown in the garden will be for the families that garden with us, donation to the local food bank and selling out produce at the Eastern Market downtown.

For more information, please feel free to contact the garden's coordinator Carla Thomas at 313.784.8804.

Friday, May 09, 2008

Motor City Makeover - 2008 Edition

The Warrendale Community Organization will clean the southbound Southfield Freeway service drive from Joy Road to Ford Road as part of the Motor City Make Over. Everything gets started at 8:30 in the morning at the Tipperary Pub (8287 Southfield).

Refreshments will be served. Everyone is welcome to lend a hand.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Eddy's Florist: Cool Warrendale Thing of the Week

Mother's Day is this coming Sunday. Rather than hit the suburban shopping malls for a gift, I recommend Eddy's Florist (19202 W. Warren). They have an abundance of gifts that any mother would love, all at a reasonable price.

In honor of Mother's Day, I'm proud to name Edddy's Florist the Cool Warrendale Thing of the Week.

Rouge Park Appreciation Day

The Friends of Rouge Park, along with the Detroit Aero Modellers, the Detroit Recreation Department and Friends of the Rouge, will host the Rouge Park Appreciation Day on Saturday, June 7, starting at 8 a.m. The day will start with a clean-up of Rouge Park and the river.

Following that, starting at 11 a.m., there will be lunch, a model airplane show, nature crafts and horse rides that are hosted by the Buffalo Soldiers. All of these events are free and open to the public.

A flyer for this event is available here.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

New Membership Chair

The Warrendale Community Organization gained a new membership chair at their monthly general membership meeting last night. Carla Thomas was appointed to fill the balance of Amy Smyth's term as membership chair. Ms. Smyth had to step aside due to scheduling conflicts between the W.C.O.'s schedule and her employer.

Ms. Thomas' appointment was promptly ratified by the W.C.O.'s executive board at a special meeting immediately after the general membership meeting.

Auto Zone Comes to Warrendale

Auto Zone is opening a new retail store in the Warrendale neighborhood. They will be in the former American Council for the Blind Thrift Store location (19322 W. Warren Ave).

I'm not sure exactly when they are opening. There isn't anything in their store windows, nor is there anything on the company's web site. However, they are advertising for help wanted at that location.

If you're interested in working at the new Auto Zone store in Warrendale, you can find the on-line application here.

Board of Police Commissioners Meeting

The Board of Police Commissioners will hold its May 2008 Community Meeting near the Warrendale neighborhood. This meeting will happen this coming Thursday, May 8 at 6:30 p.m. in the Rosedale Park Community House (18445 Scarsdale)

A flyer for this meeting is available here.

Crime Prevention Seminar

The Detroit Police Department, along with Renaissance High School LSCO and others, are hosting a crime prevention seminar at Renaissance High School (6565 W. Outer Drive). This seminar will happen on Saturday, May 24 from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m.

Some of the topics that will be addressed are:
  • Child & senior safety;
  • Drinking & driving traffic safety;
  • Identity theft;
  • Mortgage deed fraud;
  • Police concerns;
  • Summer job programs; and
  • Theft & abandoned cars.
They will also raffle off door prizes. Free Internet Cop DVDs, smoke alarms and 911 cell phones will also be given away.

For a flyer about this seminar, please click here.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Mailbag: WCO Appears Before the City Council

In response to the statement the Warrendale Community Organization made before the Detroit City Council regarding the City's budget, Stella wrote in to say:
Great statement! We are so glad that you are speaking out on this matter. My in-laws reside in the Warrendale area and are determined to remain there. We pray every day for their safety. My husband moved from Warrendale for the very reasons you are citing.
Thank you, Stella. It's great when people read what my remarks and are inspired to comment on them.

If you agree with the sentiments then I encourage you to share your views with various members of the City Council. You can find their names, email addresses, phone numbers and other contact information on the City Council's web site. All you have to do is click on the image of the each council member and you will get their contact information.

Oh, and please extend an invitation to your in-laws to attend the next meeting of the Warrendale Community Organization. It will be this coming Monday, May 5 at 7 p.m. in the School Building at St. Thomas Aquinas Church
, which is at 5845 Auburn, 2 blocks east of Evergreen. Please enter through the middle doors.

Follow Up: Gracie See Pizza

I wrote about Gracie See Pizza recently and, in particular, about how they came in second place at the International Pizza Challenge. That post quickly became one of the most popular ones ever published in the 2 1/2 year history of the Warrendale (Detroit) Blog. It also got a decent amount of coverage on other blogs.

Girl in the D wrote about Warrendale's newly famous pizza makers over on her blog. It's always cool when other bloggers pick up on what's happening in the neighborhood.

Of course, it's doubly cool when the ones picking up the story have won as many awards as Girl in the D has. She was named "Best Culture Blog" by the Metro Times at least once, if not twice. Plus, Ambassador Magazine named her site the best overall blog in 2007.

There very may well be another couple of awards that she's gotten over the past four years. Those are just the ones that I know about.

Not to be outdone, D Tales - a Detroit gossip blog that is written by a major league foodie - published her first ever restaurant review and made it about all about Gracie See Pizza.

I love the fact that other bloggers are writing about my neighborhood. It's just enough competition to keep me on my proverbial toes.

Ryan Playground: Cool Warrendale Thing of the Week

The Lloyd H. Ryan Playground is located on Kirkwood, between Faust and Greenview. Taking up half a city block, the playground provides a safe, green environment for the children of Warrendale.

It is also the future home of Warrendale's community garden, which will be located at the southern end of the playground.

And it is the Cool Warrendale Thing of the Week.