Our roundup of the latest news from metro Detroit and Michigan businesses as well as announcements from government agencies. To share a business or nonprofit story, please send us a message.
Michigan Science Center Debuts ‘Electric Playhouse Travels’ Exhibit’
The Michigan Science Center (MiSci) will open “Level Up,” an 8,000-square-foot, prototype exhibit featuring the traveling exhibit “Electric Playhouse Travels” on Oct. 19.
The installation, which connects playing games to problem-solving in daily life and potential careers, is designed for families and students and demonstrates the acquired skills behind what kids love most — video and analog games — to create interactive, immersive learning experiences.
Electric Playhouse Travels is made possible by General Motors Co. and will be available through Jan. 3, 2023. Level Up will remain at the Michigan Science Center through the school year.
“As a STEM engagement hub, we use informal learning approaches to demystify challenging concepts and place them into everyday contexts in ways that help to augment K-12 education,” says Christian Greer, president and CEO of MiSci. “With the generous support of General Motors, we can connect youth with STEM on their terms, igniting their awareness of the value of play in imaginative thinking and creative problem-solving.”
“In today’s ever-changing economy, problem-solving skills are becoming an increasingly critical component for building a successful 21st-century career,” says Terry Rhadigan, vice president of corporate giving at GM. “The Level Up exhibit does a wonderful job showing how play inspires cognitive development and we’re certain it will inspire students to find a new or renewed interest in STEM.”
Electric Playhouse Travels is the premiere traveling exhibition-experience and is a joint venture between Exhibits Development Group and The Electric Playhouse. This digital hands-free experience is a mix of games, artistic interactives, and experiences that are ready for exploration. Using projection mapping and sensors, movements are tracked for interactions without the need for headsets or other wearable devices.
Visitors enter an exhibition of interactive experiences designed to promote healthy, active play that surprises, delights, and inspires movement all themed to feel like visitors are fully immersed in a digital universe. Visitors are invited to interact with the space themed landscape of puzzles, challenges, and wonder.
Level Up also consists of the following game zones:
Console or Video Games — Research indicates action gamers are better skilled at using models to solve problems outside of games. In Portal 2 for the Xbox, players must come up with a question, design experiments, and implement solutions while applying advanced physics. Multiplayer modes allow players to collaboratively problem-solve to work toward a collective win against the game.
Virtual Reality Games — Featuring Oculus Rift headsets, this zone will transport you to different worlds and places. You will also learn how this technology is being used in healthcare settings.
Analog Games — Board games teach hands-on STEM skills without the need for a tech component and appeal to a wide age range. Large-scale games in Level Up will allow players to learn design and game mechanics.
Arcade Zone — The final zone will incorporate a dedicated space for guests to play classic arcade games plus winning games from the Games for Change (G4C) student challenge competition and games in a virtual playground with floor and ceiling projection where students use their body as the game controller.
The Ames Room — A special room designed to challenge your perceptions of reality by removing all the visual cues we usually use to determine an object’s size. This effect causes objects and people in a seemingly ordinary room shrink or grow depending on their position in the room. When we look at someone inside an Ames Room, our brains are fooled into thinking that the room is a regular square; in reality, the room is trapezoidal, with one corner farther away than the others. MiSci’s Ames Room also will feature a selfie station for those who want to share their experience.
Level Up featuring Electric Playhouse Travels is included in MiSci’s general admission price. Reserve tickets at www.mi-sci.org. MiSci is located at 5020 John R. Street in midtown Detroit and is open from 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday.
Road Project in Ferndale and Pleasant Ridge Creates Opportunity for a Walkable Woodward
A road construction and city enhancement project, starting Oct. 17, will repave Woodward Avenue in Ferndale and Pleasant Ridge to dedicate six lanes to vehicle traffic and one lane on each side to bikes and people traveling without cars.
The project, called Woodward Moves, will provide re-pavement of the street itself and the chance to improve the citys’ safety, foster economic prosperity for the entire community, and provide diverse and accessible opportunities for people to explore Ferndale.
Work for Woodward Moves is scheduled to take place in two phases, with most of the work taking place in Spring-Fall 2023. The construction is being led by the Michigan Department of Transportation in partnership with the Southeast Michigan Council of Governments, the city of Ferndale, and the city of Pleasant Ridge. The left lane of Woodward Avenue will be closed in both directions starting October 17. Nightly double lane closures are expected this fall as well.
Project work on Woodward will include:
- Resurfacing of Woodward from Eight Mile Road to Oakridge Street.
- The reduction of a travel lane on each side of Woodward in Ferndale.
- Improved visibility at intersections.
- Targeted improvements to curbs.
- Implementation of accessible curb ramps.
- Shortening of pedestrian crossings.
- Protected bike lanes.
- Bus islands.
- Drainage improvements.
“This is a pivotal moment for this community,” says Ferndale Mayor Melanie Piana. “Streets and communities where walking and biking is safe and accessible are areas where people thrive. This project is about letting Woodward Avenue evolve to meet the needs of the current and future residents, businesses and visitors.”
The Ferndale Downtown Development Authority (DDA) is leading the effort to keep local businesses updated and engaged.
“We understand the beginning of a project like this can be confusing and stressful.” Says Lena Stevens, executive director of DDA. “In times of frustration, it will be important to remember our end goal. Enhancing the overall experience along Woodward will ultimately bring more foot traffic to Ferndale and encourage people to spend more time exploring all the city has to offer. We like to say, ‘It not a road diet, it’s a lifestyle change.’”
For more information on Woodward Moves visit woodwardmoves.com.
Ahee Jewelers to Mark Diamond Jubilee Throughout Grosse Pointe Woods
Ahee Jewelers in Grosse Pointe Woods will mark 75 years in business with a series of customer appreciation events to commemorate the diamond anniversary. To kick off the November celebration, Ahee has committed to paying for all parking meters in the city, Nov. 1-Dec. 31.
“This November marks 75 years of business and we were exploring different ways to both give back to, and celebrate with the community,” says Andre Ahee, vice president of the company. “Grosse Pointe Woods has been our home and a large part of our success. This is a way to say, ‘thank you’ for the support for all these years.”
Decorative bags with the store’s logo will be placed over 900 parking meters in the city, offering free parking as a gift to residents and guests, something that has never been done in the community.
Additionally, AHEE will host free, in-store events throughout the holiday season to surprise and delight customers and the community alike. Activities include:
- 11, 4-8 p.m.: Holiday Trunk Show featuring rare creations from coveted brands Roberto Coin and Mikimoto.
- 2, beginning at 6 a.m.: News/Talk 760 WJR LIVE Paul W. Smith Show broadcast in-store with meet and greet opportunity.
- 3, noon-5 p.m.: Santa will be in the Ahee Showroom to visit with children and distribute special treats.
- A jazz band will perform on various Fridays and Saturdays in November and December, paying homage to the 1940s era, when the store was founded.
For more information, visit ahee.com.
Uncork for a Cure Returns Oct. 22 at M1 Concourse in Pontiac
The 7th annual Uncork for a Cure celebration, a fundraiser for breast cancer, is taking place Oct. 22 at M1 Concourse in Pontiac.
Uncork for a Cure is hosted by The Dynami Foundation, which raises funds for scientific research, education, and patient support surrounding breast cancer.
This year’s event features a new line-up of restaurant talent including four new restaurant additions: Bar Pigalle, Basan, Barda, and Oak & Reel. The evening also will feature culinary talent from Mabel Gray, Chartreuse, Freya, SheWolf, Grey Ghost, Marrow, Karl’s, Rebecca Lamalfa, Motor City Seafood, Cantoro Italian Market, and more.
Wines will be hand-paired and curated by Master Sommelier Madeline Triffon of Plum Market and her colleagues. Möet Hennessy USA, Michigan Team is curating a stunning Moët & Chandon Ice Imperial Champagne Lounge and a Bubbly Bar, featuring Veuve Clicquot, Moët & Chandon, and Ruinart Champagnes.
Additionally, metro Detroit artist Mike Han will be on-site painting a canvas for auction while Nicole Jarecz Illustration live sketches attendees. Other auction items include vacation experiences, luxury wine packages and more. A selection of classic and special interest cars will be on site for viewing, featuring a fleet of Ferraris from Cauley Ferrari in West Bloomfield.
“This year marks my 10th year being breast cancer free and I’m even more energized to help local women in need through Uncork for a Cure,” says Flora Migyanka, founder of the event. “I’m so thankful for our partners, chefs, and supporters who have helped us along our journey. We cannot wait to feel the energy next month at the M1 Concourse.”
General admission tickets for this year’s Uncork for a Cure are $375 and are available here.
Matrix Mission Fundraising Breakfast Returns to DAC Nov. 2
The Matrix Human Services’ Mission Fundraising Breakfast is returning after a three-year hiatus from 7:30-9 a.m. Nov. 2 at the Detroit Athletic Club.
Presented by Flagstar Bank, the Mission Breakfast convenes 250 business and community leaders for premium networking, a delicious plated breakfast, and a deep dive into the critical work Matrix is doing to transform communities in Detroit.
Matrix’s focus is educating children, supporting families to achieve self-sufficiency, and rebuilding neighborhoods in Detroit. In addition to learning more about our programs, guests will have the opportunity to directly support our efforts through a free-will request for donations.