Week of 11.23.15

Welcome to the home of Social Lights. New online reports with photos appear each week on the website and in the monthly print editions for the Birmingham-Bloomfield area and the Rochester-Rochester Hills area at the start of each month. If you are not receiving the print edition by mail, you can purchase a subscription in the upper right index at the top of this page (subscriptions). If you want e-mail notification of when new Social Lights columns are posted to this site each Monday, sign up in the Newsletter Sign Up box at the lower right side of this home page.

OUR Town Art Show & Sale

Forty, early-arriving benefactors ($200, $300, $750, $1,250) were joined by 345 friends ($75) for the Opening Night Party that kicked off the 30th Anniversary of the OUR TOWN Art Show & Sale chaired by Liz DuMouchelle and Janice Degen at The Community House. They were greeted at the entrance by honorary chairs Julie Dawson and Sally Gerak, who have a long history with the event. The show of 361 pieces of art that had been selected by artist Robert Dempster and DIA conservator Barbara Heller was accented for the party by models wearing fantastic fashions created of paper and plastic bags by designer Matthew Richmond, committee member Dana Sorensen’s idea (see photo gallery). In addition to dining on the stroll and viewing and buying art, lots of socializing ensues at this annual event. People also applaud the winners of cash prizes determined by the jurors.
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Lark & Co. general store

09/30/2013 - Michael Collins and David Zawicki will be offering a unique addition to downtown Birmingham in October when they open Lark & Co., 138 N. Maple, Birmingham, which will operate as a modern day general store with a vintage twist. Collins said Lark & Co. is modeled on the general store of the 1940's and 1950's that offered everything from food and clothing to housewares and furniture. "It will offer pretty much everything we can fit in our 1,100 square foot space," Collins said. Collins said Zawicki will run the day-to-day operations of the store and be the face of the shop.

The general store will replace Oliver's Trendz, which Collins and Zawicki operated in the space for the last eight years. Collins said the decision to change from a women's accessory shop to a general store will keep the business nimble and fits into the uniqueness of Birmingham's main street character, rather than an outdoor mall. "I think we need to have a balanced approach. Part of what makes Birmingham so unique is that we have these stores that you don't see in a mall," Collins said. "I'm very much in favor or preserving the brick and mortar stores and the preservation of Main Street America. I believe, and there are studies that show, that every dollar spent in a store like mine ends up going back into the community, but every dollar spent in a national goes to corporate."

Business Matters for the Birmingham-Bloomfield area are reported by Kevin Elliott. Send items for consideration to KevinElliott@downtownpublications.com. Items should be received three weeks prior to publication.

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