DBusiness Daily Update: Detroit Sports Legends to Headline Celebrity Scramble at Rocket Mortgage Classic, and More

Detroit golf course
The AREA 313 Celebrity Scramble pits six four-player teams against each other in a three-hole exhibition match over holes 14 through 16 at Detroit Golf Club. // Photo courtesy of the Rocket Mortgage Classic

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

Detroit Sports Legends to Headline Celebrity Scramble at Rocket Mortgage Classic  

The worlds of professional golf, football, hockey, basketball, and wrestling will collide at 5 p.m. June 27 when the AREA 313 Celebrity Scramble tees off as part of the Rocket Mortgage Classic’s Detroit Community Days at the Detroit Golf Club.

Pro Football Hall of Famers Barry Sanders and Calvin Johnson, Red Wings all-star forward Dylan Larkin, and Naismith Basketball Hall of Famer Tom Izzo will return to the Celebrity Scramble and will be joined by two newcomers to the marquee event — former Michigan and NBA star Chris Webber and WWE Superstar “The Miz.”

The AREA 313 Celebrity Scramble was named the PGA Tour’s Best Special Event after its debut in 2019. It is one of the many special events taking place during Detroit Community Days, which offer complimentary admission and parking to the Rocket Mortgage Classic on Tuesday as well as Wednesday, June 28.

The AREA 313 Celebrity Scramble pits six four-player teams against each other in a three-hole exhibition match over holes 14 through 16 at Detroit Golf Club (AREA 313). PGA Tour stars captain each squad and are grouped with celebrity athletes and entertainers, players from The John Shippen National Golf Invitational presented by Rocket Mortgage and corporate partners. Additional Celebrity Scramble participants will be announced in the coming weeks.

“We’re looking forward to introducing a new twist to the AREA 313 Celebrity Scramble by adding Chris Webber and The Miz to our field,” says Jason Langwell, executive director of the Rocket Mortgage Classic. “It’s always fun to see Detroit sports legends up close and personal testing their golf games alongside PGA Tour pros and having a professional wrestler in the mix this year will make it even more entertaining.”

For more information and tickets to the tournament days, visit RocketMortgageClassic.com.

Stellantis Equips 1.8M Vehicles with V2X Emergency Alert System

More than 1.8 million Chrysler, Dodge, Ram and Jeep brand vehicles on the road in the United States and Canada give drivers an in-vehicle notification of an active fire truck, ambulance, or other nearby roadway hazards with the Emergency Vehicle Alert System (EVAS) feature of the Uconnect connected-vehicle platform.

A standard feature of Uconnect that keeps drivers of 2018 model-year and newer vehicles safely aware of the environment around them, EVAS is an innovation that emerged from the Stellantis Star*Up program that nurtures and rewards employee innovation.

“The widespread deployment of EVAS in North America demonstrates how Stellantis is harnessing the power of V2X connectivity and in-vehicle technology to make mobility safer for our customers,” says Yves Bonnefont, chief software officer at Stellantis. “Care for our customers that is second to none in every market where we sell is the foundation of our transformation to a mobility tech company. We’re proud to be the first global automaker to make V2X digital alerting a standard safety feature for our connected customers, and we are continuously looking to expand its capabilities.”

EVAS alerts come from HAAS Alert’s Safety Cloud platform, a vehicle-to-everything (V2X) and digital alerting solution used by thousands of public and private roadway fleets in North America. In addition to emergency vehicles, Safety Cloud receives and delivers notifications from tow trucks, disabled vehicles, work zones and arrow boards, highway gates and other connected assets and equipment on the road.

Building on the EVAS foundation, Stellantis is now evaluating a next step in V2X active driver safety notifications with Hazard Enhanced Location Protocol (HELP), working with Emergency Safety Solutions Inc.

HELP delivers warnings to drivers approaching a disabled vehicle. Disabled vehicles stopped on the shoulder or roadway pose a significant danger to other drivers, particularly at night or when weather conditions reduce visibility – a situation that in the United States contributes to a crash an average of every seven minutes and kills or injures more than 40 people per day, according to research published in Accident Analysis and Prevention, a peer-reviewed public health journal.

Detroit Tigers Add Meijer Patches to Uniform Sleeves

The Detroit Tigers announced Thursday that Landmark-level sponsor Meijer will serve as the club’s first jersey patch partner.

As part of a multi-year extended partnership, the Grand Rapids-based retailer will have its brand marks featured on the sleeves of Detroit’s home and away jerseys, beginning with Thursday’s series opener against the Chicago White Sox.

“The Detroit Tigers and Meijer are synonymous with the state of Michigan, and we’re thrilled to extend our partnership with an organization that has a common vision about community engagement,” says Ryan Gustafson, executive vice president and COO of the Tigers. “These are two of the most iconic brands in the state, creating millions of memories for fans and families each year. We appreciate Meijer’s support and partnership and look forward to working together serving our great fans and customers for years to come.”

As part of the new “Striking Out Hunger” initiative, Meijer and the Tigers will contribute $100 every time a Tigers pitcher strikes out an opposing batter to the Meijer Simply Give hunger relief program. Simply Give has helped feed families across the Midwest by helping local food pantries keep their shelves stocked since November 2008. The program has generated more than $80 million in donations to food pantries thanks to the continued generosity and support of Meijer customers, team members and food pantry partners, who are committed to helping those experiencing food insecurity.

Oakland County Revitalizes Youth Programs Affected by COVID-19 with $4.8M Grant

Oakland County, in partnership with the United Way for Southeastern Michigan, has awarded a $4.8 million grant to 30 organizations with programs focusing on children and teenagers.

The Out of School grant, which will serve more than 11,000 children, supports multipurpose activities such as clubs and afterschool care, specialty programs such as coding, music, sports, and academics such as reading or math tutoring and summer learning programs.

“Having healthy residents is one of Oakland County’s strategic goals and that includes behavioral health for our residents,” says David Coulter, Oakland County executive. “The Out of School grant is part of an unprecedented $24 million investment to improve and expand mental health services to all residents in Oakland County.”

Joining Coulter at the announcement at Lawrence Technological University (LTU) in Southfield were Tarek M. Sobh, president of LTU, and other leaders of youth programs throughout the county.

LTU’s more than $100,000 grant will fund 100 full scholarships to its summer science, technology, and design camps for students from 10 different communities in Oakland County.

Students who live in Hazel Park, Holly Township, Keego Harbor, Madison Heights, Oak Park, Pontiac, Southfield, Walled Lake, Wixom, or Royal Oak Township can use the code “Oakland” at checkout for the full scholarship, a value of up to $950. The registration deadline is June 10. For the full list of options, visit here.

Overall, the Out of School grant is also estimated to provide opportunities to more than 5,700 children living in cities with households earning below the federal poverty level or below the ALICE Threshold (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed), including Pontiac, Hazel Park, and Southfield.

Presidential Cannabis Launches Products in Michigan

Los Angeles-based Presidential Cannabis Co. has announced its expansion into the Michigan, Arizona, Nevada, and Oklahoma markets. This milestone marks Presidential’s entrance into its first states beyond California as the brand celebrates 10 years in the cannabis industry.

Presidential’s offerings in Michigan will feature the brand’s signature slow-burning and potent Moon Rock product portfolio, created using high-quality flower infused with premium THC distillate, then coated in top-tier kief.

Consumers will have the opportunity to choose between Presidential’s original, individually wrapped 1g pre-rolls and 1.5g blunts and the brand’s PeeWee line, which offers packages of three 0.5g pre-rolls and three 0.7g blunts. The initial rollout will include Grape, Peach Mango, Strawberry, and Watermelon flavors.

“After a decade of building our brand and reputation in cannabis, the Presidential team could not be more excited to continue our momentum in four new markets,” said Everett Smith, co-founder and CEO of Presidential. “These beautiful states exhibit a rapidly maturing cannabis space, making them the perfect next steps for our company as we strategically reach new markets.”

Detroit Opera Resident Artists to Inaugurate Great Lakes Chamber Music Festival June 11

On June 11, Detroit Opera’s 2022–23 resident artists, the opera stars of tomorrow, will perform in a collaborative chamber performance of Act I of Mozart’s “Così fan tutte” to open the Great Lakes Chamber Music Festival’s 30th season at 5 p.m. June 11 at the Seligman Performing Arts Center (22305 W. 13 Mile Road) in Beverly Hills.

The five Resident Artists — sopranos Melanie Spector and Elizabeth Polese, mezzo-soprano Gabrielle Barkidjija, tenor Leo Williams, and baritone Ben Reisinger — will be joined by bass-baritone Nathan Stark and Detroit Chamber Winds and Strings.

Francesco Milioto will conduct the concert at Seligman Performing Arts Center in Beverly Hills. The program will include Mozart’s Piano Concerto No. 21 in C major, K. 467 with pianist Alessio Bax as soloist, and the Abeo Quartet and Hesper Quartet also will perform.

Mozart’s “Così fan tutte” is a comic opera that explores themes of love, fidelity, and the nature of human relationships. First performed in Vienna in 1790, it is known for its beautiful music, intricate ensembles, and witty libretto. Despite its controversial subject matter at the time of its premiere — a plot that revolves around two young men disguising themselves to seduce each other’s girlfriends, in order to prove that all women are by nature unfaithful — the work has become one of Mozart’s most popular and enduring operas.

The Great Lakes Chamber Music Festival, now in its 30th season, runs through June 24.

For a complete schedule of performances and tickets, visit here.

Corvias’ Detroit-based Employees Supplies to Veterans

The Detroit-based employees of Corvias Property Management in Rhode Island delivered trunk loads of supplies that included a microwave, bath towels, bedding, pillows, and more to local veterans who recently transitioned to permanent housing.

“Our team members have shared with us how important it is that our giving back programs support our partners, employees and the members of the communities we serve,” says Chris Wilson, CEO of Corvias. “Giving them time off to volunteer, matching their charitable contributions, and supporting community efforts are some of the ways we endeavor to make a lasting, positive impact.”

In 2022, Corvias team members volunteered more than 625 hours nationwide and donated more than $120,000 to nonprofit organizations in honor of Corvias’ commitment to giving back.

Gilda’s Club of Metro Detroit Receives $30K Grant from Simon Foundation

Gilda’s Club Metro Detroit, based in Royal Oak, has received a $30,000 grant from the Donald R. and Esther Simon Foundation to support Mindful Living programming.

At Gilda’s Club Metro Detroit, there is a high demand for healthy activity programming and this funding provides “mindfulness-based therapy.” Mindfulness is a powerful practice of cultivating awareness and living in the present. Individuals who incorporate mindfulness into their daily lives report heightened levels of happiness, patience, acceptance, and lower levels of stress – resulting in more positive recovery outcomes.

The grant enables Gilda’s Club to offer a comprehensive suite of virtual and in-person mindfulness programs and workshops, ensuring programming is accessible to as many individuals as possible, regardless of their location or circumstances.

“By incorporating mindfulness into the lives of cancer patients and caregivers, we equip them with valuable tools to manage anxiety, cope with uncertainty and navigate the complexities of a cancer diagnosis,” says Megan Nikolich, program director at Gilda’s Club Metro Detroit. “We’re so grateful for the support of the Donald R. and Esther Simon Foundation for making this programming possible.”


Amway Grand Plaza Hotel in Grand Rapids Honored for its Ceiling and Chandeliers

The historic Amway Grand Plaza Hotel in Grand Rapids has been included the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Historic Hotels of America list for its Czechoslovakian chandeliers and gold-leaf lobby ceiling.

Opened in downtown Grand Rapids as the Pantlind Hotel in 1913, the Amway Grand features three chandeliers from Czechoslovakia, made of Austrian crystal, each weighing approximately 4,000 pounds that hang from the lobby ceiling.

The 7,000-square-foot domed ceiling glows with hand-applied, tissue-thin gold leaf. It is the largest gold leaf installation in the United States.

Beneath the ceiling, a tiered copper fountain is the focal point of the lobby, and features an ornate pineapple spigot, a symbol of hospitality. The lobby also features a wooden, gilded sunburst, which hung for more than 150 years in the ballroom of Palazzo Moroscini, the palace of a wealthy merchant in Venice, Italy. Under the sunburst is an elegant Sheraton sideboard from the late 1800s, along with numerous other Duncan Phyfe and Adam style period pieces.

For a full list of historic hotel ceilings, visit here.

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