Eastern Market After Dark

Eastern Market After Dark is becoming an annual outing and I couldn't be happier. There's just something about exploring a city at night; there’s so much to do and see, especially when you find yourself surrounded by art galleries, food trucks, and people. 

The AIA Detroit Celebration of Art Fashion Show was lit up with LED lights, from the models outfits to the sporadic lighting in the shed. It was truly an architecture-inspired fashion show.

The shed outside was filled with food trucks, performers, and giant swings. They’re called the L’Arramee Sail Swings by Laavu Studio and were developed to recreate the childhood experience of swinging—the sail even create a ‘whoosh’ sound! I had time to stop by my favorite food truck, Treat Dreams, and tried out a new flavor called Batman, salted caramel and dark chocolate (my new favorite).

We wanted to stop by Red Bull House of Art, but we arrived just as it was closing…it was a bit disheartening, but I do know they have a lot of events throughout the year, so I’ll be going back soon. We did, however, get to see the graffiti along the walls of Winder Street and some of the street performers again! On the way back, we stopped at the Detroit vs. Everybody store to check out the merchandise.

By far, my favorite part of the time were the L’Arramee swings. Who knows, maybe this time next year, I’ll be on the other side of the EMAD experience as a volunteer.

If you want to look back at last year’s trip, check it out here

Thanks for reading lovelies!

Posted by : Maheen Asghar

Heidelberg Project

For the past 28 years, the Heidelberg Project has withstood the test of time, the elements, and arsonists. Tyree Guyton started the Project at his grandfather's encouragement when he returned to Detroit’s East Side after losing three brothers to street violence. They transformed abandoned lots into works of art with the help of paint, abandoned items, and neighbors.

From “The Number House” to the “Obstruction of Justice House", each lot is aptly named after the motif that adorns it. At a first glance, the homes are seen to be decorated with clocks, dots, and lots of paint while the abandoned lots are covered in piles of seemingly disjointed items. However, walking down Heidelberg Street, I couldn’t help but feel a sense of harmony among the chaos. What started out as a small idea of painting an abandoned house led to an entire street that inspired hundreds of thousands of visitors to come visit it every year.

The Heidelberg Project aims to improve the lives of people and neighborhoods through art. Their mission is “to inspire people to appreciate and use artistic expression to enrich their lives and to improve the social and economic health of their greater community.” 

But is it art? I believe that you can't really define art. What is considered art at one time and in one culture may not be considered art in a different time or place. Throughout the Heidelberg Project’s history, there have been two Mayors of Detroit who didn't believe it to be art and had it partially demolished. In more recent years, it has faced a plethora of arsonists intent on burning it down. However, despite the destruction it has faced, the Project still stands stronger than ever with the help of volunteers. If the Heidelberg Project is able to bring out such strong reactions in people, then what can it be, if not art? 

Before we left, a school bus pulled up on the street behind us and dropped off a group of children. One young boy started singing as he walked down Heidelberg Street and welcomed us to his neighborhood. I couldn’t help but smile at his friendliness. I leave hopeful of how the Heidelberg Project will evolve and I look forward to my next visit. A big thanks to my cousin for taking these wonderful pictures and as always, to you guys for reading! Til next week!

Posted by : Maheen Asghar

Le Petit Zinc

I’ve been meaning to visit Le Petit Zinc for two years now, so it was thrilling to finally stop by! It’s a little French café located in Corktown. The owner, Charles Sorel, was raised in France and opened up Le Petit Zinc in early 2009 with the help of fellow Detroit businesses. On the website, it states that the café uses only organic flour and local produce from the Eastern market. “Le Petit Zinc” is French slang for a local bar and in addition to wine, they serve crêpes, salads, sandwiches, ratatouille, and coffee.

With bright yellow walls and a hand painted mural, I couldn't help but fall in love with the quintessential decor. There were fresh flowers at every table and I could see a garden alongside the patio. I went with a group of friends and we ordered both savory and sweet crepes. I ordered the Quiche Florentine, a crêpe filled with spinach and feta cheese that also came with a salad. For dessert, I split the Chocolat crêpe, which was surprisingly simple and a little disappointing. I really, really enjoyed the savory crêpes, but I prefer the sweet crêpes from Good Girls Go to Paris (located on Kirby St). I thought it was charming how the water was served in empty wine bottles with little mason jars used as cups.

As we left, our waitress told me the sign for Le Petit Zinc actually lit up for special events like wedding rehearsals or dinners. I know I’d love to stop by if they were open late, but the current hours are from 10 am – 4 pm, except on Sundays, when they're open from 9 am – 3 pm. Le Petit Zinc is located on Trumbull Street (not too far from Green Dot Stables).

On our way back home, we saw two murals. The first was painted alongside a nondescript building across the street from Le Petit Zinc, while the second was Summer in the City's famous "Welcome to Woodbridge" mural that was featured in the Super Bowl's "Imported from Detroit" video.

I highly recommend stopping by Le Petit Zinc if you ever are craving a crêpe and are in Downtown Detroit. Thanks for reading and I'll see you guys next week!

Posted by : Maheen Asghar