DBusiness Daily Update: Smokey Bones to Open Utica Restaurant Aug. 8, 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.
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Smokey Bones in Utica is hosting a grand opening event at 4 p.m. on Aug. 8. // Courtesy of Smokey Bones
Smokey Bones in Utica is hosting a grand opening event at 6 p.m. on Aug. 8. // Courtesy of Smokey Bones

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.

Smokey Bones to Open Utica Restaurant Aug. 8

Smokey Bones is expanding its footprint in Michigan with a new location in Utica (45001 Schoenherr Road), the grand opening of which will take place Aug. 8. The event will start at 6 p.m.

“We are thrilled to open our newest location in Utica, as we continue to expand our footprint to bring our meat mastery to more communities,” says James O’Reilly, CEO of Smokey Bones. “We look forward to welcoming our new neighbors to our ‘protein candy store’ and sharing some of our hand-crafted cocktails together.”

The Utica location is a new build and boasts the brand’s new design. The restaurant is designed to create a more intimate dining experience, while the to-go vestibule will include a dedicated entrance, separate menu board, point of sale, a dedicated waiting area with seating, as well as to-go parking directly outside the door.

The back of the house also is redesigned to accommodate Smokey Bones’ two virtual brands, The Wing Experience, and Burger Experience, as well as have a spacefor future virtual restaurant concepts being developed for Smokey Bones’ portfolio. The virtual brands will be available for delivery or pick-up early this fall.

Anyone wishing to attend the grand opening should visit here.

Date Set for 2023 Rocket Mortgage Classic — June 26-July 2

Following Tony Finau’s record-setting victory at the 2022 Rocket Mortgage Classic at Detroit Golf Club, the tournament and the PGA Tour announced that next year’s event will be played June 26-July 2.

“By all measures, the 2022 Rocket Mortgage Classic was a smashing success,” says Jason Langwell, executive director of the Rocket Mortgage Classic. “From the second playing of The John Shippen the weekend before our tournament to the many special events leading into competition rounds and the beautiful Detroit summer weather we experienced all week, we could not be more proud of how everything came together to make it a special week for Detroit.

“We are already looking forward to next year’s Rocket Mortgage Classic and are excited about our dates, which fall during the same week as our inaugural event in 2019 and last year’s tournament, both of which produced tremendous crowds,” Langwell continues. “We’ll land two weeks after the U.S. Open and two weeks before The (British) Open Championship, and that puts us in a nice position to assemble a very strong field of players again.”

Troy’s Motor Unveils Solutions to Connect Third Parties with Shop Management Systems

Motor Information Systems in Troy has introduced two new products to integrate repair order transactions between shop management systems and third-party software and service providers.

This new automotive data suite, Motor Insights, enables shops to easily connect to the cloud and bridge the gap across a variety of service record formats and standards.

Motor Shop Connect helps third-party software and service providers integrate with shops by providing detailed repair order data from the aftermarket via the cloud. By supporting all major aftermarket shop management systems, software and service providers may integrate their community of shops more effectively and join an existing network of more than 20,000 shops. Insights include detailed service and vehicle activity and history, such as service location, description and dates of service and repair, vehicle part details, manufacturer information and more.

Motor Campaign Connect helps third-party software and service providers and marketing companies drive demand to shops with a cloud-based solution that powers marketing campaigns such as service reminder programs, product and service promotions, customer service index (CSI) surveys and more. Insights include vehicle service details plus full VIN, customer name, address, phone, and email.

“These are the first two products to come out of Motor Insights,” says Jeff Nosek, president of Motor. “While these capabilities have been available in the franchise dealer market for over a decade, Motor will now bring similar capabilities to the aftermarket. We are thrilled to add these new services to Motor’s industry-leading automotive data solutions for aftermarket businesses. With the average vehicle lifespan increasing, and subsequent increased demand for aftermarket repair, Motor Insights will be a game changer in enhancing customer and partner relationships.”

For more information, visit motor.com.

Ann Arbor’s Motawi Tileworks Introduces Three Art Nouveau Florals

Motawi Tileworks in Ann Arbor has broadened its art nouveau offerings with the addition of three new floral art tiles: 6×6 Zoom Blooms, 6×8 Crown Quintet, and 4×8 Kolo Rose.

Zoom Blooms ($91) is a 6-by-6-inch tile based on a pattern from English manufacturer T. & R. Boote (circa 1900). Motawi’s version is available in three colorways: blue, orange, and pink.

Crown Quintet ($114) is a 6-by-8-inch tile depicting one of a series of stylized flowers by artist Gustav Marisch, published by the Wiener Werkstätte circa 1912. Motawi’s Crown Quintet is available in black, cream, grey blue, and red.

Kolo Rose ($55) also draws inspiration from the Wiener Werkstätte. The rose signet was designed by Wiener Werkstätte co-founder Koloman Moser in 1903 and became a recognizable Werkstätte trademark. Motawi’s 4×8 Kolo Rose comes in black, grey, and red colorways.

“Lately, I have been working quite a bit with designs from the art nouveau/Jugendstil genre,” says Nawal Motawi, owner and artistic director of Motawi Tileworks. “These are styles I love and enjoy developing alongside our traditional Arts and Crafts pieces.”

Motawi art tiles can be purchased online at motawi.com and in the Motawi gallery (170 Enterprise Dr. in Ann Arbor). Motawi tiles also are sold in more than 300 locations in the U.S. and Canada. They are suitable for installation or display in frames or easels and have notches for hanging.

Lacks Enterprises Places Second in Altair Awards for Toyota Composite Wheel Trim

Lacks Enterprises Inc. in Novi was named the runner-up in the 10th annual Altair Enlighten Award’s Sustainable Product Category for its wheel trim system for the 2022 Toyota Sienna.

Presented in association with the Center for Automotive Research (CAR), the Altair Enlighten Award honors the greatest sustainability and lightweighting advancements that successfully reduce carbon footprint, mitigate water and energy consumption, and leverage material reuse and recycling efforts. The Sustainable Product category award recognizes emissions, light-weighting and safety advances for current production vehicle (or major system modules fitted to a current production vehicle).

“It’s a genuine honor to be recognized for our Lacks Wheel Trim system’s weight-reduction capability,” says Kurt Lacks Jr., executive director of business development at Lacks Enterprises. “This award speaks to the effectiveness of the technology, which is applicable to gasoline-powered and electric vehicles, where weight reduction, without compromising durability, is critical to improving fuel efficiency.”

The Lacks wheel trim system designed for the Toyota Sienna is the only wheel technology of its kind on the market that reduces unsprung weight — the mass of the suspension, wheels, and other components directly connected to them. The system’s light-weighting wheel technology has been recognized in a joint Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) report titled “Midterm Evaluation of Light-duty Vehicle Greenhouse Gas Emission Standards and Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards for Model Years 2022-2025.”

For more information, visit here.

Heber Fuger Wendin Investment Advisors in Bloomfield Hills Acquired by Kansas Firm

Mariner Wealth Advisors, a wealth advisory firm in Overland Park, Kan., has acquired Bloomfield Hills-based Heber Fuger Wendin Investment Advisors, marking the latest in a series of strategic acquisitions that will expand the firm’s scale, expertise and integrated capabilities across the U.S. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

HFW has origins dating back to 1934 and is one of the most tenured registered investment advisors in the United States. Led by President and CEO Dave Barnes, the firm manages $8.6 billion in assets. The addition of HFW expands Mariner Wealth Advisors’ catalog of offerings with its niche focus on advising community banks and credit unions — a previously untapped clientele for the wealth advisory firm.

“Mariner Wealth Advisors fully understands and appreciates their status as a fiduciary who, like HFW, is inspired to act in the best interest of their clients and put the clients’ interests first,” Barnes says. “We’re eager to be progressing to this next stage in our development backed by the support and resources of the Mariner Wealth Advisors team.”

State Land Bank Authority Board Supports Munising Project with $250K Loan

The Alger County Land Bank (ACLB) recently approved a $250,000 loan by the State Land Bank Authority (SLBA) to develop Munising Marketplace, a mixed-used development project led by Renovare Development.

The $18 billion project involves the construction of a three-story building that will house 36 mixed-income residential units and a collaborative workforce center designed to foster job creation and placement for local workers and businesses.

“The State Land Bank Authority is committed to working on creative solutions for community and economic development in Michigan,” says Emily Doerr, executive director of SLBA. “When approached about this exciting project, we were eager to come up with a way to provide funding for this development that we know will have a transformative impact on the local community and region.”

Due to a shortage of housing, Munising has struggled to attract and retain the workforce it needs to support many of its industries, including hospitality, which is its economic mainstay. Local businesses and professional staff at the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore and Hiawatha National Forest, both of which are headquartered in the community, have been significantly impacted.

“The lack of housing is now affecting the ability of employers to expand because they are unable to find housing for workers,” says Pam Johnson, chair of the Alger County Land Bank. “The Alger County Land Bank is proud to partner in the development of Munising Marketplace, as we create a long-lasting asset that will serve many generations to come by providing housing and access to job training to attract and retain talent in the UP. With the support of the loan through the SLBA, we can springboard the funding needed to close the $18 million dollar project.”

Metro Detroit Nonprofits Receive American Heart Association, KLA Foundation Funding

The American Heart Association and the KLA Foundation are providing $400,000 in grant funding to three Metro Detroit organizations and social enterprises through the KLA Social Equity Fund to help improve health outcomes in under-resourced communities.

The Metro Detroit grantees are local nonprofit organizations led by people of color and/or operate in under-resourced neighborhoods:

Black Mothers Breastfeeding Association (BMBFA): A Detroit nonprofit reducing racial inequities in perinatal health support. The BMBFA B’Right Hub is a community-based high-tech mobile and web-based solution created to improve the service and delivery of maternal health groups, particularly parent clubs. Grant funding will support the reach and further development of the B’Right Hub.

Nurturing Our Seeds: A nonprofit urban farm strengthening sustainable food systems within communities of color in Detroit through urban agriculture, produce sales and distribution, and agricultural apprenticeship. Support will expand Nurturing Our Seeds capacity to increase access to healthy food across the city.

JOURNi: A Black-led tech education and training organization focused on developing a talent pipeline for historically excluded Detroit youth and businesses. Grant funding will catalyze the launch of a new young adult vocational program and provide foundational support to scale its social enterprise.

“The thrust of our hyper-local work is to meet communities where they are, honor their history, and create feedback loops by listening to and collaborating with trusted, on-the-ground stakeholders,” says Kristian Hurley, executive director for the American Heart Association Southeastern Michigan Region. “We essentially execute our mission by operating according to a version of the Platinum Rule – we collaborate with our local stakeholders in the ways they most need, rather than by our own design.”

For more information, visit here.

Free Support Classes for Unemployed Metro Detroiters Begins Aug. 15

Gesher Human Services in Southfield will be offering a free series of six Zoom workshops called the Work Intervention Network (WIN) program to provide emotional support to unemployed or underemployed metro Detroiters as they search for work.

Participants will be encouraged to network during the class and continue to connect with one another once the program has been completed. The course will be conducted from Aug. 15-31 on Mondays and Wednesdays from 1-2.30 p.m. and participants are expected to participate in every class.

The new program was designed by psychologists, sociologists, and career counselors.

“Due to the pandemic, looming job losses and now fears about a recession, people really need support,” says Phyllis Scripsick, a licensed professional counselor and a career counselor at Gesher Human Services. “Research has shown that people who do not feel isolated during their job search are more successful at getting employment, so networking is an important part of our program. Our mission is to promote hope during difficult times.”

Space is limited for these free classes. To register, contact Phyllis Scripsick at 248-233-4278 or email pscripsick@jvshumanservices.org.

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