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This Week on One Detroit:

2023 Mackinac Policy Conference emphasizes collaborative solutions with ‘The Power of And’ 

Every year, the state’s top policymakers, C-suite business executives, academics, community and civic leaders head to Mackinac Island for the Detroit Regional Chamber’s Mackinac Policy Conference to discuss the challenges and opportunities that Michigan has before it. This year’s conference is set to explore the theme “The Power of And,” emphasizing the importance of collaboration, innovation and inclusive solutions to shape the future of Detroit and the state.  

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With an array of thought-provoking discussions, interactive sessions and networking opportunities, the 2023 conference is expected to be a platform for meaningful conversations and transformative ideas, much like previous ideas that began at the conference including the bipartisan auto-reform policy, rebounding Detroit from bankruptcy, and more.  

One Detroit’s 2023 Mackinac Policy Conference correspondent Zoe Clark, political director for Michigan Radio, sat down with Detroit Regional Chamber CEO Sandy Baruah and Bank of America Michigan President Matt Elliott, this year’s conference chair, for a preview of the annual conference and what attendees can expect. They talk about the conference theme, the future of work, what each are looking forward to, and how the conference’s conversations affect the daily lives of Michiganders.  

Detroit Public TV will provide live coverage of the Mackinac Policy Conference beginning Tuesday, May 30. Stream key conversations from the conference here.  Plus, don’t miss a special one-hour One Detroit episode from the conference airing at 7 p.m. ET Thursday, June 1.

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Michigan veterans commemorate Memorial Day with reflection and remembrance

Since 1868, Memorial Day has been a time to honor fallen soldiers from every branch of the United State Military. The holiday holds deep personal significance for Michigan’s veterans, as it serves as a poignant reminder of the sacrifices made by their fellow servicemen and women. For individual veterans across the state, the day is a time of reflection, remembrance and honoring the memories of their comrades.  

The annual holiday also serves as a reminder to the broader community of its ongoing duty to support living veterans. It spotlights discussions about the challenges veterans face, from physical and mental health issues to housing insecurity and more, and encourages the community to rally behind them with compassion and resources.  

In recognition of Memorial Day, One Detroit contributor Bryce Huffman sat down with three veterans at the Royal Oak Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) Post 1669 — 103-year-old World War II Army veteran Houston Pritchett, Vietnam Air Force veteran Mike Sand and Vietnam Marine Corps veteran Phillip Smith — to learn what the holiday means to each of them and how they commemorate it.  

Plus, they talk about where each of their military service journeys began, what family and friends thought about their decision to enlist, the impact of survivor’s guilt and whether they’ve felt it personally, and how they choose to honor fallen veterans beyond the annual holiday.  

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Detroit filmmaker premieres ‘Detroit We Dey’ short highlighting the city’s Nigerian community

A captivating new short film, “Detroit We Dey,” directed by Detroit filmmaker Ozi Uduma is set to make its digital premiere June 1 as part of PBS’s highly anticipated “Homegrown: Future Visions” film shorts series. The film’s title roughly translates to “Detroit we’re here,” Uduma said. 

As part of an eight-film anthology presented by Firelight Media and the Center for Asian American Media (CAAM) to illuminate the Midwest experience, the documentary takes a compelling look at the history and future of a social club, called the Old Bende Association, founded by a community of Igbo-Nigerians who immigrated to Detroit in the 1970s and ‘80s. 

Through reflective storytelling and vintage VHS tape footage, “Detroit We Dey” delves into the unique stories, experiences and cultural contributions of Detroit’s Nigerian community, but it also highlights the community’s resilience immigrating to a new country and holding onto its cultural heritage.  

Ahead of the film’s digital PBS release, One Detroit Senior Producer Bill Kubota sat down with Uduma to talk about her film and the history it chronicles. Plus, they talk about how the Nigerian diaspora has come to intersect with Detroit’s larger predominately Black community, how the rise of the internet and social media have helped open Detroit and the world up to Nigerian food, music and culture, the next generation of Nigerian Americans in the city and the importance of documenting the community’s history. 

“Homegrown: Future Visions” is a co-production of Firelight Media and the Center for Asian American Media (CAAM) with funding provided by The Corporation for Public Broadcasting, in association with PBS. 

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One Detroit Weekend: May 26, 2023

Are you looking for some arts, culture, music and family-friendly fun to experience in Southeast Michigan? From upcoming Memorial Day celebrations to the official after-parties for Movement Electronic Music Festival and a performance by award-winning harpist Brandee Younger, Detroit has a lot to offer this weekend. 

One Detroit contributors Peter Whorf and Cecelia Sharpe of 90.9 WRCJ share what’s happening around metro Detroit during the May 26 weekend and into next week on “One Detroit Weekend.”

List of Upcoming Events:  

Award-winning harpist Brandee Younger will pay homage to legendary Detroit harpist Dorothy Ashby and premiering music from her latest album “Brand New Life” at 8 p.m. Friday, May 26 at The Cube at Orchestra Hall.

Learn more about the Korean art form Bojagi and try your hands at making one at the Detroit Institute of Arts drop-in workshops from 12-4 p.m. Saturday, May 27 and Sunday, May 28.

Want to keep the music going after Movement Electronic Music Festival ends each night? Spot Lite Detroit will host the official festival after parties, featuring Louie Vega, Picardo Villalobos, Carl Craig, DJ Minx and more.

Michigan’s oldest Memorial Day Parade, hosted by the City of Dearborn and the Dearborn Allied War Veterans Council, returns for its 97th annual celebration Monday, May 29 to honor veterans and fallen soldiers.

Pay tribute to the legendary Detroit singer, Aretha Franklin, with the Detroit Symphony Orchestra’s “RESPECT: A Tribute to Aretha Franklin” from Friday, May 26 through Sunday, May 28 at Orchestra Hall.

Join singer/songwriter Chris Bathgate for an evening of music, where he’ll be performing songs from his latest album “The Significance of Peaches” at the Ann Arbor District Library on Friday, May 26.

The contemporary story of the lives of the six wives of Henry VIII takes center stage in “Six: The Musical,” presented in the form of a pop concert, at the Fisher Theatre Sunday, May 28 and Monday, May 29.

Explore artist Lillian Schwartz’s career-retrospective exhibit, “Whirlwind of Creativity,” showcasing the groundbreaking multimedia work of her career, on display at the Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation through March 2024. 

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Hear what’s planned for this year’s Detroit Regional Chamber Mackinac Policy Conference. Three U.S. military veterans talk celebrating Memorial Day. A Detroit filmmaker showcase the city’s Nigerian community in a short film “Detroit We Dey.” Plus, check out events happening around the city on “One Detroit Weekend.”
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Stephen Henderson is the Founding Editor of BridgeDetroit, and a former writer and editor for the Detroit Free Press, Baltimore Sun and Chicago Tribune. Winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Commentary,...

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