DBusiness Daily Update: New Planet Fitness Location to Open in Bloomfield Hills, Motor City Car Crawl Charity Gala Tickets on Sale Now, and More

Our roundup of the latest news from metro Detroit and Michigan businesses as well as announcements from government agencies, including updates about the COVID-19 pandemic. To share a business or nonprofit story, please send us a message.
Runner on planet fitness treadmill
A new, 30,000-square-foot Planet Fitness is slated to open in Bloomfield Hills on or around July 1. // Courtesy of Planet Fitness

Our roundup of the latest news from metro Detroit and Michigan businesses as well as announcements from government agencies, including updates about the COVID-19 pandemic. To share a business or nonprofit story, please send us a message.

New Planet Fitness Location to Open in Bloomfield Hills this Summer

Northville-based PF Michigan Group, one of the nation’s largest franchisees of Planet Fitness health clubs, is planning to open a new location in Bloomfield Hills on or around July 1.

The 30,000-square-foot facility location, at 1935 S. Telegraph Road in the Bloomfield Village development, is near Menard’s, Aldi, the Henry Ford Medical Center, and other restaurants and shopping in the area.

“The entire team at Planet Fitness is looking forward to opening our brand-new facility in Bloomfield Hills,” says Bryan Rief, co-owner and CEO of PFMG. “Although we experienced a few delays due to COVID-19, we are happy to begin serving the residents of Bloomfield Hills and the surrounding area this summer.”

Planet Fitness memberships starting at just $10 per month and feature a wide array of cardio, strength, and core training equipment along with a designated spa area for PF Black Card members, which feature HydroMassage beds, massage chairs, Total Body Enhancement booths, and multi-level tanning.

Currently, Planet Fitness is offering special deals and discounts that are available to new members in Bloomfield Hills on its website. Members can join for as little as $1 on a classic $10 a month membership, or get a PF Black Card, and all the perks that come with it, for $0 down for a limited time. A grand opening event will be scheduled for a later date.

Motor City Car Crawl Charity Gala Tickets on Sale Now

Tickets for the Motor City Car Crawl Charity Gala, featuring a performance by singer-songwriter and nine-time Grammy Award winner Sheryl Crow, are now on sale for $250 per ticket here.

The Charity Gala, 6-10 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 7, is part of the first-time Motor City Car Crawl, produced by the Detroit Auto Dealers Association and the Downtown Detroit Partnership, a free, outdoor, walkable event that will kick off at noon on Thursday, Aug. 5 and conclude on Sunday, Aug. 8.

The event will take place downtown Detroit at Campus Martius with a stage and viewing area for guests located on Woodward Avenue.

In addition to a performance from Sheryl Crow, strolling appetizer options and beverages will be available. Those attending are encouraged to visit and dine at local downtown restaurants and bars before and after the show.

The gala will raise money for nine Detroit children’s charities including:

  • Boys & Girls Clubs of Southeastern Michigan
  • Boys Hope Girls Hope Detroit
  • Children’s Center
  • The Children’s Foundation
  • Detroit PAL
  • Judson Center
  • March of Dimes Metro Detroit
  • University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital
  • Detroit Auto Dealers Association Charitable Foundation Fund, a fund of the Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan

Battery Show and EV Tech Expo Return to Novi Sept. 15-17

Registration is open for the 2021 Battery Show and the Electric & Hybrid Vehicle Technology Expo, Sept. 15-17, at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi.

The Battery Show is North America’s largest and most comprehensive advanced battery technology event. The Electric & Hybrid Vehicle Technology Expo is the only trade conference exclusively dedicated to electric and hybrid electric vehicle (E/HV) drivetrain and power systems.

At these events, more than 500 suppliers across the expo floor will showcase the raw materials, components, cell makers, testing, recycling, and the latest solutions across the transportation, stationary, portable, and industrial sectors. Attendees will include engineers, R & D, product development, and executives networking, exploring innovations, and keeping ahead of the competition.

“As much innovation has occurred over the past year, we are thrilled to be welcoming companies across the globe back to Novi to connect face to face,” says Jenny McCall, director of the shows. “In addition to the hundreds of exhibitors that will be found on the expo floor, attendees will have the opportunity to access high-quality education and to network with peers, leaders, and visionaries.”

To register for The Battery Show, visit here.  To register for the Electric & Hybrid Vehicle Technology expo, visit here.

Consumers Energy Urges Michigan Residents to Protect Themselves Against Energy Fraud

Consumers Energy in Jackson is sharing information so residents know how to recognize and report criminals pretending to be from Consumers Energy and other utilities try to scam people out of money and personal information.

“At Consumers Energy safety is always our top priority, and that extends to our customers and the public. We want everyone to be protected against energy scams,” says Chris Bush, director of corporate security for Consumers Energy. “The best defense is to learn the signs of possible scams and what to do if you think a scam is occurring. This can help keep you, your personal information and your money safe.”

Bush noted that scams involving utilities keep popping up in Michigan, with recent reports of in-person home solicitations in Lansing where a large Consumers Energy natural gas enhancement project is taking place, as well as scam phone calls occurring across the state with demands that energy bills be paid immediately or service will be shut-off.

Signs of possible energy scams include:

  • Phone call demands payment within a short period of time, usually within an hour or two. There are times when Consumers Energy does have to shut electric and/or natural gas service off to a home for safety, security, and non-payment reasons, however, employees will never threaten to shut off service if you do not comply with immediate demands.
  • Caller insists payment be made with specific form of payment, like a pre-paid credit card. Consumers Energy does not require payments be made with this type of card.
  • Visits to your home without an appointment and solicitor requests energy bill and/or personal information.
  • Phone may be “spoofed” making it appear as if the call is from Consumers Energy, or an 800 or 888 phone number to call that isn’t one your utility provided.

Bush offered the following tips to help protect yourself against energy scams:

  • Do not pay your energy bill over the phone using a prepaid credit card.
  • Never share personal information, such as a social security number, energy account information or money to anyone you don’t know.
  • If you receive a call or at-home visit and think it may be a scam, call Consumers Energy at 800-477-5050 or your utility provider immediately. Also report the situation to local police.
  • Do not let any solicitor in your home that you do not know.
  • A contractor or employee for Consumers Energy wears a company identification badge and will gladly show it upon request. If someone comes to your door representing Consumers Energy, ask to see their ID badge. You can verify the person is employed by Consumers Energy by calling the 800 number above.

Lawrence Tech’s Centrepolis Accelerator Part of New Energy Innovation Partnership

The Centrepolis Accelerator at Lawrence Technological University in Southfield is one of four organizations selected to receive more than $900,000 from the Energy Program for Innovation Clusters (EPIC), sponsored by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Technology Transitions.

The other institutions in what’s being called the Midwest Regional Innovation Partnership are mHUB, a manufacturing business accelerator in Chicago; the Chicago-based green energy investors Clean Energy Trust; and Spark Innovation Center in Knoxville, Tenn., an initiative of the University of Tennessee Research Park.

The partnership will support new and existing programs for venture acceleration of energy hardware startups in the Midwest. The partners plan to support more than 360 startups and small businesses via the tailored programs, which include both virtual and in-person events, sector-specific curricula, mentorship, prototyping resources, and connections with industry.

Beneficiaries of the program will be a diverse array of founders from across the region, including those from universities, low-income communities, and urban areas.

Two of the DOE’s Lab-Embedded Entrepreneurship Programs, Chain Reaction Innovations based at Argonne National Laboratory and Innovation Crossroads based at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, will serve as project affiliates, along with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.

“The Midwest Regional Innovation Partnership program enables a unique and more direct collaboration between accelerators, national labs, investors, and other key stakeholders to advance clean-tech hardware technology,” says Dan Radomski, executive director of the Centrepolis Accelerator. “This program allows Centrepolis to offer our services more broadly throughout the Midwest including utilizing our unique product development, prototyping, and manufacturing readiness capabilities.

“This includes making our annual C3 Accelerator and its $1.65 million seed fund available to support cleantech, climatech, and circular economy technology companies throughout the Midwest to drive the launch of more domestically manufactured cleantech hardware products and at the same time deploying these innovations to support our nation’s decarbonization goals.”

North American Car, Truck, and Utility of the Year Awards Make $40K in Donations

The North American Car, Truck and Utility Vehicle of the Year Awards has made $10,000 donations to four charities as part of its commitment to support youth education, veterans, and people suffering from dementia.

In its second year providing charitable donations, NACTOY’s jurors voted to donate a total of $10,000 each to the following charities:

  • Alzheimer’s Association, which leads the way to end Alzheimer’s and all forms of dementia.
  • Big Brothers, Big Sisters of America, which helps children realize their potential and build their future.
  • Gary Sinise Foundation, which honors America’s defenders, veterans, first responders, their families, and those in need.
  • Indspire, a Canadian charity that helps give indigenous youth access to higher education.

“As our organization has evolved and its reach has grown, we have been able to expand our mission and purpose each year,” says Gary Witzenburg, president of NACTOY. “As automotive journalists, we are privileged to drive, test, and evaluate the finest new cars and trucks each year, and for the second consecutive year, we have been able to give something back with these charitable donations.

“This year, our American jurors voted to award $10,000 donations to three of the most worthy nonprofits in the U.S. after narrowing the list of recipients down to five finalists, while our Canadian jurors voted unanimously to award $10,000 to Indspire,” Witzenburg says.

The donations were made in partnership with the Detroit Auto Dealers Association (DADA) with each organization providing $20,000 in funding.

“NACTOY has always supported the Detroit auto show by announcing its annual awards at our show,” says Rod Alberts, executive director of DADA. “We value that partnership and are thrilled that we were able to help make these charitable donations possible once again this year.”

For more information, visit here.

Michigan Cannabis Companies Hosting Career Fair Saturday

TouCanna and Vangst are partnering to host a free virtual career fair and conference to connect people with career opportunities within Michigan’s legal cannabis market. The virtual event will take place on Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Pre-registration is required here.

For more information, contact Cree Robinson, co-founder of touCanna at cree.robinson@toucanna.io.

Butzel Long to Host Corporate Blockchain Transaction Webinar June 15

Detroit law firm Butzel Long is hosting a free webinar titled “So, You Want to Buy a Blockchain Company: Considerations for Corporate Transactions,” from noon to 1 p.m. (EST) on Tuesday, June 15.

Presenters will offer practical guidance regarding the sale and acquisition of DLT companies, from identifying key issues and risk, preparation, negotiation, and memorialization of key terms.

Speakers include regulatory expert William J. Krause, digital media specialist Jennifer Dukarski, and M&A and nonprofit attorney Laura E. Johnson.

Dynami Foundation Debuts Wine & Wellness Virtual Tastings

The Plymouth Township-based Dynami Foundation, founded by Flora Migyanka, is offering to host a series of virtual Wine & Wellness corporate tastings where companies of all sizes can customize themes, wines, and health topics.

Hosted by Madeline Triffon, the first American woman — and the second woman in the world — to pass the Master Sommelier exam, with her colleague Advanced Sommelier Michelle DeHayes.

Potential themes include: Au Natural (Caring for Ourselves and our Planet), Discovery (Blind Wine Tasting), Women in Wine (Trailblazing Women Leading the Industry) and Food & Wine Harmony (A Culinary Tour). All tastings will include an optional wellness component presented by a member of the foundation’s Medical Advisory Board, some of the world’s foremost thought leaders in the field of breast cancer.  These experts can kick-off the tasting by discussing breast cancer prevention, genetic risk factors, or ways to lower stress and your risk.

The Dynami Foundation coordinates every step from wine selection and coordination, attendee communications, event hosting, and IT.

These events can be used to entertain a client or foster team building. Sommeliers will lead participants through an interactive virtual wine tasting featuring hand-selected bottles, delivered seamlessly to their doorstep, all while funding breast cancer research.

“We’ve hosted a number of private virtual tastings with Madeline and Michelle over this past year,” says Migyanka. “It’s a wonderful outlet for learning and connecting with others and we are so pleased to be offering it in a corporate setting this spring.”

A portion of proceeds from every Wine & Wellness event goes to the Dynami Foundation’s breast cancer research initiatives funding Invasive Lobular Breast Cancer.  Those interested in learning more are invited to explore the Dynami Foundation’s website or email flora@uncorkforacure.org.

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