Spring, 2016 - Downtown Farmington


Spring, 2016 - Downtown Farmington
Farmington Downtown Development Authority
Spring 2016, Volume 13, Issue 1
By April Lark, MSM Writer
From Art on the Grand to Rhythmz in
Riley Park to the Harvest Moon
Celebration, most people who live in
Farmington know our downtown area is a
highlight of living here. We enjoy
community events such as the new
Farmington Second Fridays initiative,
when local businesses stay open late the
second Friday of each month. But did you
know we also have an eclectic blend of
establishments offering classes and events
suited for a variety of interests?
If you are the creative type you can
gather your friends and family for a fun
evening at Painting with a Twist or visit
Tree of Life Holistic Center to create and
learn more about chakra mandalas. Need
some balance in your life? Tree of Life also
offers meditation and Reiki classes to help
you let go of stress.
If you’re interested in yoga we have a
couple studios right here in downtown
that offer classes.
Maybe you are interested in learning to
play a new instrument? Hewitt’s Music
offers lessons beyond guitar or piano.
Perhaps you’d like to take up a new
hobby? We have Baker’s Studio if you
want to start scrapbooking your
memories, Artisan Knitworks for those
who want to learn to knit, or find out
about Cross-Stitching at The Rocking
Horse. At Bead Bohemia you can even
learn to make jewelry.
If you love wine and cheese, The
Cheese Lady offers events where you can
sample wines and cheeses from around
the world and meet other local
connoisseurs. Beer fan? The Farmington
Brewing Company has many networking
nights and other special events.
Whatever your interests, the next time
you are seeking something new and fun to
do, look no further than your own
Pride and Progress in Downtown
Main St. Team Updates | Business Updates
Art on the Grand | Harvest Moon
Farmington Fridays | Rhythmz in Riley Park
Merchants’ Corner
Sponsor Spotlight
By Rachel Gallagher, DDA President
Friday nights are always my favorite in
Farmington. I have a great view of all the
activity from where I work
near the window at Salon
Legato. Most nights I am
there until 8:00, so I have a
chance to see the day pass
and watch the evening
begin. My clients know
that if they sit in my chair,
they are going to see many
friends knocking on the glass, heading to
lunch downtown or the Civic Theater for a
movie or the brewery for a drink or to one
of our many dinner destinations.
On Fridays the pace is faster, more
people and friends walking by to Riley Park
for the concerts or to meet friends and
hang out.
This is Farmington. We all know each
other. No one is a stranger for very long.
With the Downtown Development
Authority (DDA) events like Farmington
2nd Fridays (F2F), even more of my
friends and clients seem to hit the
streets. Although I usually have to
work through most of these
activities, I love when my clients
ask me, "What's going on tonight?'
Yes, I often have a list of things
happening but most of the time
the answer is just, "It's Friday!"
One new business in Farmington is
really going to make my life easier, Fresh
Thyme. I can't wait for it to open. I try to
do all my shopping downtown. But for
years now, as we all know, good groceries
have eluded us. I took a trip recently to the
Fresh Thyme in Northville. I was pleasantly
surprised by how much they had to offer more than 30 ready-made, grab-and-go
lunch and dinner options as well as fresh
soups and sandwiches, mac-and-cheese, a
huge salad bar and great looking pizzas.
As the new President of the DDA, I
wanted to share what ‘makes me tick.’
Now you know a bit about me.
In my next note, I will talk a bit about our
goals - continuing studies to improve
parking in downtown, continuing our
business recruitment efforts and our
continuing activities to engage our
merchants in making Downtown
Farmington a great place to shop, dine and
hang out!
Spring 2016, Volume 13, Issue 1
By Mayor Bill Galvin
A certified Main Street Community
To promote and enrich a
vigorous downtown business
and residential district while
retaining and enhancing our
Main Street atmosphere.
Rachel Gallagher, Pres.
Tom Buck
Stephanie Clement
Mayor Bill Galvin
Kathy Griswold
Dan Higgins
Sean Murphy, V.P.
Agnes (Micki) Skrzycki, Sec.
Meet 6:00 pm, 1st
Wednesday of each month,
Room A, City Hall
David Murphy
Annette Knowles
23600 Liberty Street
Farmington, MI 48335
Find us on Facebook
and Twitter
Editors, Amy Lange & April Lark
Layout, Lydia Shannon
Thirty seven years ago,
Downtown Farmington was
one of my favorite spots. My
friends, family and I would
walk or ride our bikes to the
library, Harmony House
Records, Sanders or the Civic
Theater. Today, it’s still one
of my favorite places. In fact,
Mike at the Korner Barber
still cuts my hair while we talk about
politics and hockey. I gladly take my free
lollipop when I leave the barbershop. Shari
and I often take walks from Chatham Hills
Subdivision to Downtown Farmington
because we will see friends along the way.
As a kid, I took those experiences for
granted. I thought everyone had a local
downtown nearby. Now, I know
differently. I realize the societal, economic
and cultural exchange we call Downtown
Farmington is uniquely ours and
cannot easily be replicated.
Place-making strategies with
events and activities have grown
the demand and increased our
capacity over the years. That is
best exemplified by the attention
to build new housing in
Farmington. The city’s Economic
and Community Development
Department is receiving regular inquiries
from businesses interested in moving to
downtown. When we combine this with
parking management and walk friendly
initiatives, it makes sense why Downtown
Farmington is on the rise.
As more people and businesses take
advantage of the Downtown Farmington
experience, I am confident this will be a
great summer to spend time in Downtown
Farmington where… It’s Happening!
Spring 2016, Volume 13, Issue 1
By Annette Knowles, Assistant to the City Manager
While some were hunkered
down – or hibernating through
the winter, our Main Street
volunteers were busy planning
for Spring and Summer
projects. Now that we have
entered the busy season, here
are a few highlights from the
colder months:
Skate & Date warmed hearts at the Riley
Park Ice Rink on Valentine’s Day. A sunny
yet crisp afternoon greeted the families
that laced up for a few
turns around the rink or
enjoyed a delicious cup of
cocoa. The Riley Park Ice
Rink is becoming the
place to be – an outdoor
destination for winter fun.
Three cheers for volunteers who were
celebrated at the annual recognition event
at John Cowley & Sons on March 8th.
Nearly 100 friends of Downtown
Farmington renewed friendships and met
fellow volunteers for the first time. The
culmination of the evening was the
presentation of the Volunteer of the Year
Award to Farmington resident Valerie
Hoffman. Longtime editor of this
publication, Pat Shelton, was recognized
with a Lifetime Achievement Award.
Planning for the future of the downtown
is a project that necessitated the formation
of a special steering team. The Downtown
Master Plan 2016 will help guide public
and private development and investment
over the next decade. The steering team
has shared its insights
about and experiences in
the downtown. An update
to the existing plan will be
crafted and submitted to
the Planning Commission
later this summer.
Ladies Night Out happened
on April 28th. Celebrating its
fourth event, the promotion
aims to showcase products and
services of participating
businesses in a fun and
engaging way. More than 500
women descended upon
Downtown Farmington to
shop, sip and stroll with friends.
This newsletter, the Main Street
Messenger, underwent
a significant change in
that both its editor, Pat
Shelton, and graphic
artist, Peggy Castine,
stepped away from
production. Pat and
Peggy turned over the publication to a
new crew for this edition, just in time to
enjoy other hobbies and family time. A
heartfelt thank you to Pat and Peggy for
their commitment and creative
contributions throughout the years.
Volunteering for Downtown Farmington
is a valuable experience
that yields many benefits
for the city. Interested in
helping out? Simply
contact the Farmington
DDA at 248-473-7276.
New Businesses
Chive Kitchen
33043 Grand River Ave.
Neu Kombucha
33305 Grand River Ave.
Le Royal Events
32729 Grand River Ave.
Coming Soon
Fresh Thyme Farmers Market
23300 Farmington Rd.
Browndog Dessert Bar
33314 Grand River Ave.
Great Lakes ACE Hardware
33021 Grand River Ave.
The Brownstones at Orchards
Luxury Apartments
33210-33230 Slocum St.
You Pat
Spring 2016, Volume 13, Issue 1
By Lydia Shannon, MSM Writer
Since its early years as a muchanticipated attraction at the
Farmington Founders Festival, Art
on the Grand has blossomed into
an eclectic, family-friendly event,
beloved by both Farmington and
the surrounding communities.
The art fair started out as a 50space installation at the Founders
Festival but quickly grew in
popularity. In 2009 it separated
from the Founders Festival and
claimed its own two days on the calendar when it could take over
Downtown Farmington with 100 spaces dedicated to different
artists from around the country.
Now in its seventh year as an independent event, Art on the
Grand has earned recognition as one of the must-see fairs in
Michigan by local news outlets. It rivals other popular art events
abundant throughout the state in the warm-weather season, yet it
is unique due to its hands-on approach which offers kid-friendly
art activities and demonstrations with the Detroit Institute of Arts.
This time-honored event truly reflects the authentic character of
Downtown Farmington by offering a quality cultural experience
that’s welcoming to
all. Art on the Grand
runs June 4th from
10am until 7pm and
June 5th from 11am
until 5pm.
By Colleen Carnahan, MSM Writer
The light of the Harvest
Moon each September was
used by Native Americans
to help them gather crops
for the coming winter. The
Harvest Moon Celebration
in Downtown Farmington is a gathering of
friends and family enjoying food, dance
and drinks under the moonlit sky. Now in
its 12th year, it has a strong tradition of
volunteer and community support. Held in
Riley Park and the Sundquist Pavilion in the
center of Downtown, it creates an
experience that is known throughout
Michigan. Folks from all over the state save
the date to come experience life in a small
town signaling the end of summer and the
beginning of fall.
The Harvest Moon Celebration
begins on Thursday in September
with a craft beer and wine tasting
event and continues on Friday with
live music and dancing the night
It's a celebration residents like Kamela
Torvinen and Melissa Andrade look
forward to each year. “Downtown
Farmington's Harvest Moon Dance
beautifully blends the hometown feel of
our lovely downtown with contemporary
music, dancing and the opportunity to
celebrate our community and each other
with friends and family," says Torvinen.
Andrade adds, “Harvest Moon isn’t just
an event in our community; it is a spirit of
Dancing, drinking and eating! Some feel
like it’s an annual reunion every fall, one
that Farmington resident, Vera Christina,
says you don’t want to miss, “Always look
forward to the Harvest Moon dance. It's a
great opportunity for adult friends to get
together, enjoy a drink and local food and
relax in good company.”
Tree of Life
Slow Flow Yoga, Mindful
Movement, Reiki classes,
Gong Mediation, Mirror
Mind Zen and lots more
Painting with a Twist
Baker’s Studio
Crop classes for
Paint along with their artist
to create your own work of
art that you will take home
Artisan Knitworks
Classes such as
knitting, crochet,
finishing and design
Farmington Civic Theater
When you don’t feel like “doing” but
would rather kick back and enjoy a flick.
A nostalgic old time theater boasting
vibrant digital projection and dynamic
Dolby surround sound 7.1. The theater
shows popular movies at family friendly
prices that won’t break the bank.
Hewitt’s Music
Teaching flute, guitar/bass,
trombone baritone,
trumpet, oboe, drums,
keyboard, violin, viola cello
Spring 2016, Volume 13, Issue 1
By April Lark, MSM Writer
Shopping Downtown Farmington is a lot of fun, but finding the
time to do so can be a challenge if you work until five or six every
day. Because of this, the idea of
Farmington Second Fridays emerged, led
by the business development committee
of the Downtown Development Authority
“Farmington Second Fridays is a fun way
to showcase Downtown Farmington’s
emerging presence as a social, retail, and
dining destination,” says DDA board
member and project chair, Sean Murphy.
Participating businesses agree to stay
open late the second Friday of the month,
and many offer special deals or discounts not offered at any other
time. The initiative first began in 2015 and has so far had a positive
impact on local businesses who saw an increase in foot traffic.
Now for 2016, Farmington Second Fridays will be bigger and
better than ever - going from June through October and featuring
a new theme each month. Themes will
include Christmas in July as well as the
return of the popular Apple Dessert
Challenge in September, when patrons can
get free samples of homemade apple
desserts and vote for their favorite. Then
October will close out the fun with the
theme of Football and Tailgating, to take
advantage of the crisp autumn air.
Farmington Second Fridays is a great
way to meet other people in the
community as well as check out and
support local businesses, so mark these dates on your calendar to
join us: June 10, July 8, August 12, September 9, and October 14.
By Annette Knowles, Assistant to the City Manager
On Friday nights during the summer, crowds gather to welcome
the weekend in a festive atmosphere at the Rhythmz in Riley Park
concerts. With genres ranging from ‘60s psychedelia to rock-abilly to contemporary tunes, music lovers of all types will find a
concert to enjoy. Concerts attract an average of 500 fans each
Given the incredible popularity of the concerts, most people
may not recollect that they arose from humble beginnings. Prior
to the construction of the Sundquist Pavilion and Riley Park, the
City of Farmington hosted the Friday Evening Concert Series at the
pergola gazebo that is located on the north side of Grand River
Avenue, sandwiched between the Farmington Place Apartments
and the Village Commons. With a limited budget, the season was
only eight performances long and concerts were mainly
populated with residents from the nearby apartment building.
Over time, the general sentiment was that the concerts were
The reinvigoration of the series started in in 2006 as the
concerts were moved to a new location in Riley Park, where
concert goers had unobstructed views and the performers had
improved energy sources and better lighting. Audiences grew
with better visibility and wider access to amenities like restrooms
and nearby eateries.
Fast forward to 2008, event planners felt that the concerts
needed a new approach and a new name to go along with the
new location. The new approach was simple – contract with
performers that offer high-energy shows, that engage the
audience and that compel movement and dancing. The new
name proved just as simple – link it to its location to provide a
natural physical connection to the place. The word rhythms
identified the purpose of the activity. However, a unique twist was
important to the planners, one that would connote a more lively
experience, so rhythms became Rhythmz (with a z).
Now entering its 9th season as Rhythmz in Riley Park, the
concerts continue to attract friends and families for a weekend
kickoff in celebratory style. Shows begin at 7p.m. and run for one
and one-half hours, from the second Friday in June through the
end of August. Dancing shoes are highly recommended!
Spring 2016, Volume 13, Issue 1
By Colleen Carnahan, MSM Writer
refers to a fermented tea that is a nutrient-rich tonic, as
well as a refreshing beverage which dates back 2000
years with Asian origins.
What is a Scoby?
A Scoby is a symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast. It
feeds off the tannins, caffeine and sugar in the tea to
convert to Kombucha.
What are the benefits of Neu Kombucha?
Neu Kombucha is a fermented drink which contains high levels
of vitamins B and C, probiotics, and is full of live enzymes which
are an excellent digestive aid that can help break down the foods
we eat and more efficiently convert them to energy. Drinking Neu
Kombucha can be a valuable asset to overall health and helpful for
processing the leftover waste material that can result from a diet
poor in enzymes.
Does Neu Kombucha contain alcohol?
Like all fermented foods and drinks, Neu Kombucha can contain
trace amounts of naturally produced alcohol, about 0.3% to 0.5%
depending on the length of fermentation time and other factors,
and often adds to its effervescent quality.
What are the Neu Kombucha flavors?
Neu Kombucha flavors are handcrafted, GMO-free, vegan,
organic, and made with love in small batches. They include
Pineapple Ginger, Lavender Lemonade, Super Berry (blueberry,
goji berry, and elderberry), Root Beer, Tart Cherry Ginseng, and
other seasonal flavors.
Owner Jennie Neu says she started making Kombucha at the
Cacao Tree in Royal Oak in 2010, “I was just making 12oz cups
with no bottling involved.” She then began educating herself
on the ins and outs of the fermenting process and soon after
met and fell in love with her husband, Julius. He was the spark
that was needed to start bottling and get Neu Kombucha off
the ground and into their own facility, located at 33305 Grand
River Ave. and open 11am – 4pm, Tuesday through Sunday.
“Please enjoy our ferment and drink to your health!”
Jennie and Julius
AT&T is in town! This internet and TV service provider just
purchased Direct TV and sells cell phones, accessories, tablets and
internet home phone service at their new location in Downtown
Farmington. But that’s
not all! Stop by and talk
to the manager, Greg
Ostrowski, about their
digital life automation
and security service. It’s
highly sophisticated –
enabling users to activate
and control things like
your home’s thermostat
from a remote location.
The retailer is located
at 23328 Farmington
Road and if you mention this article, you will receive 10% off!
Hours are Monday through Friday, 10am-8pm, Saturday, 10am7pm and Sunday 12pm-5pm. Feel free to walk in to pay your bill
there (checks not accepted). Visit their website at att.com. or call
248-477-8177 for more details.
A warm welcome to owner, Suzy
Silvestre, of the charming
Chive Kitchen. A new American
restaurant serving vegetarian,
vegan, Portuguese, California
fusion, and Western European
flavors. Think California,
Mexico and more - a
vegan twist to Midwest
comfort foods. A kids
menu is available, as well
as local beer, wine and
spirits for the adults.
Gluten free items are
served as well.
The restaurant is open
and Wednesday
Vegan Chili Cheese Fries
from 11am - 9 pm, Thursday
from 11am - 10pm, and Friday and Saturday from 11am – 11pm.
Chive Kitchen is closed Sunday and Monday. Stop in to meet the
owner and head chef, Suzy Silvestre, who formerly worked in
business and marketing. Suzy lives in Farmington Hills and has a
flair for seasonal menu changes.
You’ll find no shortage of creative
culinary delights. The restaurant is
located in Farmington’s Grove Retail
Center, just east of the Sundquist
Pavilion and Riley Park. The address is
33043 Grand River. Visit their website
at chivekitchen.com to view a
sampling of the menu and call 248516-7144 today for reservations!
Citrus Tofu Tacos
Smoked Carrots
Spring 2016, Volume 13, Issue 1
By Annette Knowles, Assistant to the City Manager
Farmington residents and the greater community have come to
enjoy attending local events like Rhythmz in Riley Park, Art on the
Grand, the Harvest Moon Celebration and more. Whether it be to
toe-tap to energetic concerts, to meander lazily through artist tents
or to two-step on the dance floor,
events in Farmington help to
cultivate a sense of community
and a positive connection to the
Luckily for the
community, most of the
complimentary or at a nominal
fee to the guests.
Yet, events do not come
without cost. Entertainment,
tables, tents, chairs, marketing,
supplies and maintenance create
demands on general budgets
that are stretched thin because
of other priorities for services. To
have the ability to create an activity that the community will
appreciate, organizations including the Farmington Downtown
Development Authority routinely seek sponsors to help underwrite
a portion, if not all, of the costs associated with operating events.
Without these partners, downtown events truly would not be
possible. In fact, the DDA at this time does not underwrite the costs
of events, other than staff, and relies solely on sponsors and other
event revenue sources to make
them happen.
At the DDA, we are extremely
fortunate that many communityminded
stepped up to contribute to the
success of downtown events.
While most sponsors receive
marketing exposure as a benefit
to their contribution, many have
remarked that what they feel is
the best outcome of their
sponsorship is the opportunity
to connect personally with
event-goers. They want to meet
We want to thank our sponsors for their generosity and
commitment to creating community in Downtown Farmington.
We appreciate you!
Art on the Grand
June 4 - 5
Rhythmz in Riley Park
Fridays, June 10 August 26
Farmington Farmers &
Artisans Market
Saturdays, May 14 –
November 5
Harvest Moon
September 15 - 16
Hosted by the City of
Family Fun in Riley Park
June 22, July 6 & 20,
August 3 & 17
Hosted by Farmington
Community Library
Small Business Saturday
November 26
Greater Farmington
Founders Festival
July 14 – 17
Hosted by the Greater
Farmington Area
Chamber of Commerce
Holly Days
December 3
Hosted by the Greater
Farmington Area
Chamber of Commerce
Downtown Farmington for 165 years
Michigan’s oldest, family-owned funeral and cremation provider specializing in
Traditional funerals, from simple to elaborate
Affordable visitation and funeral packages
Simple Cremation and Memorial gatherings
100% safe and guaranteed pre-paid funeral programs
No-charge Medicaid and Veterans’ benefits counseling
Monuments and headstones
The latest generations of the Heeney-Sundquist organization
23720 Farmington Road (N. of Grand River Ave.), Downtown Farmington
Recent enhancements to our first-class, yet comfortable,
interior design just completed.