Offbeat

Offbeat

ABC News

LA graffiti artist David Choe passed through Detroit on Sunday and hid money in different parts of the city.

On Sunday he posted on his Facebook page that he "made it into Canada tonight but hid 10,000$ in mostly 1's and a few hundos all over Detroit today."

Why did he do it? Answer: "just becuz - why not?"

Around 7 p.m. he started dropping clues on  Twitter.

From the "Meet the Dumpers" website. This week's featured company.
meetthedumpers.com

Illegal dumping is a massive problem in Detroit. Just drive around for several minutes and you’re likely to see household and industrial trash illegally dumped on street corners and along service roads.

A group in the northwest Detroit neighborhood of Brightmoor hopes to curtail illegal dumping by publicly shaming companies and individuals caught dumping.

Dana Moos / Flickr

On June 23, you can see a moon that's looks bigger than it usually does. It's called a supermoon, and they occur between four and six times every year. 

Basically, it happens when the moon comes closer to Earth than it normally does.

Flickr

In 2013, if you want to let the world know you're someplace having a good time, you might whip out your smartphone and tweet it or post a check-in or status update on Facebook.

97 years ago, you might write a message, roll it up, tuck it in a bottle and toss it into the St. Clair River.

That's what a couple of young Detroiters did when they were having fun one summer's day at Tashmoo. That was a very popular amusement part on Harsen's Island on the northern end of Lake St. Clair.

And why do we know about this message in a bottle? Because Dave Leander found the bottle as he was diving in the St. Clair River.

John Gonzalez, David Kutzko, and Fritz Klug spent 6 days sampling 33 hamburgers to find the best of the best in Michigan. They revealed the winner this morning: Laura's Little Burger Joint in Decatur. A noteworthy finalist was Krazy Jim's Blimpy Burger in Ann Arbor. Blimpy Burger, which took 10th place, will be closing at the end of August. Many locals hope that they will find a new location for sometime soon.

University of Michigan / Facebook

There were four baby peregrine falcons nesting on the roof of University Hospital at the end of April. The University Record reports this is the third year in a row that two falcons nested on the hospital roof.

A contest was held to name the babies. Today, the people running the University of Michigan's Facebook page announced the winning names:

  • Maize,
  • Blue,
  • Woodson,
  • and Howard.

The images of the cute falcon babies got us wondering, 'what can be cuter than these things?'

LinkedIn

As Father's Day is just around the corner, are you thinking about what to get that special man in your life?

Well, ask virtually any wife and chances are she'll tell you that when the man of the house steps outside his designated "manly chores" and does something that would be considered to be in her domain, that man wants praise and plenty of it.

There's something to this: a Pew Research Center survey finds, of the predictors for a successful marriage, sharing household chores is Number Three on the list, just behind faithfulness and a happy sexual relationship.

All of this inspired a Waterford man to put on his "entrepreneur's hat" and come up with a new business: Man Medals, a witty but pointed way for her to dish out praise to him, and for him to take a bow for helping out.

Jim O'Brien is the founder of the Man Medals, and he joined us today in the studio.

Listen to the full interview above.

rawmustard / Flickr

This coming Sunday isn’t just Father's Day -- it is also National Fudge Day.

By most accounts, the first batch of fudge was concocted in Baltimore in the 1880s. By the turn of the century, fudge-making arrived on Mackinac Island in northern Michigan, which today has a legitimate claim as the modern day fudge capital.

Tourists pile off ferries and onto Mackinac Island by the thousands every day during the summer. For many, one of the first stops when they arrive or the last stop before they board a ferry back home, is one of the island’s 15 or so fudge shops. 

Island-wide, the favorite is plain, unadulterated chocolate fudge.

Tim McFarlane / Flickr

This morning, Rebecca Williams reported on the MSU research that found we are still falling down on the job when it comes to washing our hands.

I say "still" because these kinds of studies have been done in the past.

A gay couple marries in Michigan.
Emily Fox

BOYNE CITY, Mich. (AP) - Two men who became spouses at a Michigan Indian reservation in a state that bans same-sex marriages have been invited to the White House.

MLive.com reports that Tim LaCroix and Gene Barfield will be guests of President Barack Obama on Thursday at a reception honoring LGBT Pride Month. LGBT stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender.

The men were married in March by the Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians, of which LaCroix is a member.  Same-sex marriage is prohibited in Michigan, but federally recognized Native American tribes are self-governing and aren't bound by state law.

Barfield and LaCroix say they were shocked to receive the invitation and canceled a scheduled trip to California.

The longtime partners live in Boyne City.

http://www.wnem.com/

School’s out and summer means sun tans, barbeques, beach days, and…searching for Christmas Trees?

The hunt for the state holiday tree has begun. Michigan needs a 65-foot-tall evergreen that can sparkle on the lawn of the Capitol building in November.

“Everyone laughs that the process starts in June,” said Kurt Weiss with Michigan’s Department of Technology, Management and Budget, “But that’s when the process starts.”

C.S. Mott Children's Hosptial / Facebook

It’s a bird! It’s a plane! No, it’s the window washing crew!

Earlier this year, we posted on an unusual window washing trend. At children hospitals across the nation it appears that independent window washing companies and contractors have been donning super hero costumes to spread a little cheer.

This past Monday, superheroes visited the University of Michigan’s C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital in Ann Arbor.

Lindsey Smith / Michigan Radio

Update 5/29/13: This story has been corrected to reflect Wright’s rank as Specialist, not Sergeant. Wright misrepresented his rank during the formal event.  

Memorial Day was particularly special for an injured Iraqi war veteran from Allegan.

Hundreds huddled close at Oakwood Cemetery Monday morning. Some wept as Amy Wright finally pinned a Purple Heart on her husband’s uniform. He kneeled so his 7-year old daughter Torin could pin on the other one.

Detroit Mower Gang / Facebook

These days, services in Detroit are bare-bones—and a lot of the work that does get done is done by volunteers.

The Detroit Mower Gang is just one of the many groups tackling that work.

The group mowed grass, trimmed brush and picked up trash at parks throughout the city during their “Motown Mowdown,” a 24-hour mowing binge that also involved an overnight camp out in one park.

This is from their event announcement on Facebook:

flickr/cseeman

The Irish Hills Towers are a familiar landmark along US-12 in southern Michigan.

But the nearly 90-year-old towers face a potential demolition order … unless years of decline and disrepair can be addressed.

Donna Boglarsky owned the towers for many years.  Now she’s working the save the rundown landmark.

“I know I’ve had a few people who’ve said “Have you gotten an estimate on how much the demolition will cost?’,” says Boglarsky, “That’s not even an option to look at, because that’s not in our vision at all.”

Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio

The summer holiday season is getting off to a cool start this weekend.

There’s a chance of frost tonight in parts of Michigan.   And daytime temperatures will struggle to make it into the low 70’s the rest of the weekend. 

It may feel a little chilly for the first weekend of summer, but weather forecasters say more seasonable temperatures are coming.

But will this be a warmer or cooler summer?

Jeff Andresen is a state climatologist. He says Michigan’s average summer high temperatures range in the upper 70 to lower 80’s.

The Wall Street Journal has this photo essay of a retired boat manufacturer who built a 9,000-square-foot boat house in Michigan. Check the pictures!

The WFUM broadcast tower is being painted

May 24, 2013

WFUM will experience periods off the air today while tower crews begin rigging the tower for next week’s painting. Beginning Tuesday, May 28, WFUM will experience periods off the air while the tower is being painted.  We apologize for the inconvenience.

user: .reid. / Flickr

It's Friday. Your Facebook news feed is stale and if time slowed down any more it would stop. Here are three ways to procrastinate, while simultaneously making yourself think that you're becoming a better person.

1. Curate your LinkedIn profile, iTunes library, and Facebook "Likes"

Steve Carmody/Michigan Radio

Michigan lottery players are dreaming of winning two huge jackpots these days.

More than 700 million dollars is on the line in this weekend’s Powerball and Mega Millions drawings.

Andi Brancato is the spokeswoman for the Michigan Lottery. She says the two big jackpots are pushing lottery ticket sales.

“Maybe you have regular Mega Millions players who think ‘Gee, maybe I’ll get a Powerball ticket as well’,” says Brancato, “and vice versa with the Powerball players.”

City of Flint

When Flint's emergency manager put the city's Santa Claus display up for auction, some local residents decided that was going too far. 

Melodee Mabbitt says her hometown doesn't need more bad news, so she and her husband bid $150 for the jolly old elf, his sleigh and four reindeer that sit atop Flint's city hall during the holidays.

Eran Finkle/Flickr

Failing schools, emergency managers, and problems at nuclear power plants have populated Michigan headlines lately.

Important, but not very cheery.

We thought we'd lighten your Friday by sharing a few stats from Banfield Hospital's State of the Pet report. Here are a few of our favorites.

YouTube

The new "YouTube Trends Map" shows you the most the popular videos by city. It can also be broken down by sex and age group.

What's trending in Michigan right now?

Well, apparently you like your country music in the northern part of the state:

Your dating advice in West Michigan:

Your vampires in southern Michigan:

And in the UP, you are in a time lapse kind of mood:

That's what is trending now. But I venture to guess that it won't be long before this interview with Charles Ramsey becomes the most popular in your area:

H/T to Heather Bryant

missdrumettemajor/flickr

If you bought an engraved brick to help restore the World's Largest Stove, the state of Michigan would like to give it back to you.

The state Land Bank tomorrow  will return 1200 bricks that lined a pathway to the stove at the State Fairgrounds at Cadillac Place in Detroit. The bricks were installed in 1998 as a fundraiser to help restore the stove.

The stove was initially built for the 1893 World's Fair in Chicago, and was later brought to Detroit. The stove was destroyed by a fire in 2011.

YouTube

So much for the "no contact" order from the health department.

These guys suited up and went places they normally can't go:

One commenter asks "That's pretty awesome, but isn't the water disgusting?"

Looks like the fun outweighed the "disgusting" in this case.

H/T Dustin Dwyer

Every college has its traditions.

Some of them become popular nationally. That's what happened in March of 1974 on college campuses around the country.

What were college students doing? Streaking.

If you were in college or remember the spring of 1974, you'll remember that naked explosion on campus. 

The streaking phenomenon at first was not widespread nor was it well known. The first news reports of these events had to define streaking.  The earliest events happened on Florida's campus.

In February and in early March, news networks began reporting the story. It began to catch the attention of the New York Times and that's when streaking was in full swing.

Jim Tobin, a writer and historian, described the buildup of the campus phenomenon at the University of Michigan.

"The wildfire effect that happened in the first week of March was the week that Michigan students were on their spring break, so no one was in Ann Arbor, but all of the students were hearing about it and dying to get back in Ann Arbor to take part," said Tobin. "That Monday after spring break, there were announcements that there would be a couple of events that would take place."

Tobin describes that past streaks were more of a solo thing and that Michigan students wanted to introduce the idea of mass streaks.

By the Tuesday after Spring Break, and after announcements in the Michigan Daily, groups gathered  at lunch and in the evening to streak. The groups had about 70 students Tobin explains, "The real crowd was the 1,000 of students who came to watch the streakers," he said.

With previous streaks being smaller and more spontaneous, Ann Arbor became home to the first mass streak.

Listen to the full interview above.

Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist / Facebook

Sure, the three sisters from Ann Arbor's Dominican Sisters of Mary, Mother of the Eucharist are probably going to beat you in a game of trivia about the Bible.

But you wouldn't expect them to take you on the physical challenges as well.

It turns out Sister Evangeline, Sister Peter Joseph and Sister Maria Suso are pretty darn good at flipping forks into glasses:

user thebridge / Michigan Radio

Why is it so cold this spring?

Jeff Masters, PhD, Director of Meterology at Weather Underground, tried to shed some light on our slow seasons.

MLive / screenshot from video

The Palm Beach Times, ABC, the Guardian, UPI, the Examiner, even "Perth Now" covered the amazing story of Evie Branan.

The 79 year-old woman woke from a five-year semi-coma in the spring 2011 and said "I want to go to a Bob Seger concert."

Two years later, she got her wish. Here she is dancing at last night's concert with a little help:

From MLive's Sarah Schuch:

At 79 years old, Evie Branan still cheered, threw her hands in the air, shook her booty and rocked out the Bob Seger concert Thursday night.

She met Seger and his family, chatted with crew and band members and received VIP treatment at The Palace of Auburn Hills. Complete strangers recognized her after hearing her name or seeing her pushed through the halls of The Palace.

When she came out of the semi-coma in 2011, Branan wrote a letter to "whomever" looking for love.

"I'm full of pep. I like doing things. I love dancing," she said:

Branan lives at the Willowbrook Manor assisted living facility in Flint Township

Wikipedia

The Who's "Pinball Wizard" was an anthem for the baby boom generation who grew up going to arcades where dozens of pinball machines would be lined up.

But, in these days of Xbox and PlayStation 2 there are still young Pinball Wizards.

The Michigan Pinball Expo is coming to Oakland University this week. The expo is a family friendly event which hosts over 125 pinball machines over 15,000 square feet of space. Here's the catch: all of the machines are free to play, so no quarters are required.

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