The benefit of every sale at Exodus Upscale Thrift is twofold: while customers tow home a stash of gently used clothing, furnishings, and accessories, local halfway home Exodus Place inches closer to its goal of sheltering the area’s homeless. As of June 23, 2010, Exodus Upscale Thrift had helped more than 100 men find housing, according to an interview with CEO Robb Munger in a Michigan Live article, and continues to provide educational resources and access to work-service agencies for Exodus Place residents. “It’s great to accomplish things, but…[w]e have to continue working and creating and doing,” said Munger. The store’s ever-expanding collection, which also includes jewelry, toys, and sporting goods, accepts donations and returns the favor with tax-exemption vouchers and warm, fuzzy feelings replicated only by nuzzling a loofah.
Fruit Basket Flowerland’s 20 acres of nursery space contain beautiful hanging baskets, annuals, and perennials. The nursery has seen those perennials bloom dozens of times since it opened back in 1949, and today the business has blossomed out to three locations. Home gardeners can peruse a huge selection of soil, fertilizer, and plants, or sign up for instructive gardening classes, which teach participants to care for their plants and to exterminate weeds without running afoul of weeds-rights activists. Fruit Basket Flowerland also houses a vast selection of patio furniture and three lines of Weber grills.
After Prohibition, many American home brewers had lost the threads connecting them to the nation’s long history of home brewing, opting instead to hang up their brew kettles in favor of the big brand lagers. The knowledgeable staff members roaming the floor of HomeBrew & Hydroponics Hobby Shop are working to ensure that the art of home brewing flourishes again, supplying at-home brewers with the skills and supplies necessary to conjure their own suds. The shelves showcase a variety of easy introductory kits that invite guests to try their hand at brewing beer, making wine, or growing hydroponic vegetables to save valuable soil for dad's morning mud mask. For serious enthusiasts, the shop curates a comprehensive menu of the equipment, soil systems, and supplies needed to set up full-scale brewing endeavors and indoor gardens at home.:
The Michigan Brewers Guild wanted something very specific when it turned 15: it asked the state’s breweries to concoct a 15th-anniversary ale for its summer beer fest. Chef and home brewer Amy Sherman, host of Great American Brew Trail, went behind the scenes at the celebration, where she interviewed local breweries’ staff members about their celebratory brews. Reports like these are typical of her show, Great American Brew Trail, for which she travels to microbreweries across the country and unveils the creative and culinary processes behind beer.
The cooks at Le Kabob prepare an assortment of Mediterranean and Middle Eastern specialties, pairing juicy, charbroiled halal meats with herbal salads and creamy sauces. They grill skewers of shrimp, fry crisp falafel, and roll lamb shawarma into pitas with tomatoes, onions, parsley, pickles, and tahini. Diners can also sip fresh-squeezed juices or rich arabic coffee while seated in the restaurant's ornately decorated interior, or in the sunlight on its outdoor patio.