Taking a rest

Apple Tree

I haven’t been saying much lately here, but I am writing and blogging a lot elsewhere.

Catch me 6 days a week on my photoblog Michigan in Pictures where I post photos and words about Michigan.  The blog is almost 8 years old and probably my favorite web project ever – I learn something new every week.

With my love Laura I started eatdrinkTC, a guide to the culinary culture of Traverse City, Michigan. It’s a ton of fun to work on and lets us share our love of good food and drink and the wonderful people in our town who make that happen. I even got to interview one of my very favorite food writers, Michael Ruhlman.

Let me know what you think (about anything) at these places or in the comments.

The photo was taken by my father of the apple tree in the back yard of the house I grew up in. 

Rex Dobson and the Ruby Ellen Farm

12-rex-hay

I just finished up the new website for the Rex Dobson Ruby Ellen Farm Foundation. It’s a 160-acre farm on the Leelanau Peninsula that was preserved in perpetuity by owner Rex Dobson. Rex was certainly an anomaly : a single farmer who was successful in what is definitely a family dominated field. What’s more, he was one of the pioneers of farmland preservation and collected a TON of farming artifacts.

One of the coolest things about the project is that I was able to bring back to the internet a video produced by my childhood friend and bad-ass photographer Carl Ganter (now the mastermind of Circle of Blue) called With These Hands. Rex had a starring role – enjoy!

1/5 of 5k

Wow. Photo by Marco of the huge crowd. Well over 4000!

We had a giant crowd for the 2012 Traverse City Wine & Art Festival, and while the numbers aren’t final, we had nearly 5000 folks at the Grand Traverse Commons to see Rusted Root (who were great!) and enjoy the offerings of 27 wineries, 20 artists, 8 restaurants and some extremely hard-working volunteers and staff.

This was nearly double last year and the biggest party I’ve ever thrown. Marco who helped me keep the production rolling snapped this shot and when I got on stage right before Rusted Root I was blown away to see how our vision of 4 years finally materialized.

Check out some of the photos right here.

PS: Got an idea for a 2013 headliner? I’m all ears!

Looking forward to SuperDre at Electric Forest

SuperDre is one of the Michigan artists who I have yet to see. That sorry state will end at the first-ever Electric Forest*. EF is sponsoring Absolute Michigan, and I’m working to help promote the festival in Michigan. We are giving away a pair of tickets to the Electric Forest Festival this weekend as the kickoff to our Festival Summer promotion, through which we’re going to give away as many tickets to Michigan festivals and events as is humanly possible.

All you have to do is be on our mailing list. Seems easy enough…

*check out Bob’s interview of Jeremy Stein, founder of Electric Forest and its predecessor Rothbury.

ArtPrize is AmaZing

ArtPrize has returned to Grand Rapids for the second year. For my money, this is hands-down the most amazing event I’ve ever been to. I’m in GR right now, ready for a day of exploring this multi-venue art explosion. We’re featuring ArtPrize on Absolute Michigan once again too – here’s the montage video I made for ArtPrize 2009 – I’ll try to do one for 2010 too!

Michelle Shocked in Grand Rapids TONIGHT

One of my absolutely favorite musicians is Michelle Shocked and she’s in Grand Rapids tonight at 8 PM. If you can get there, don’t miss  at the Wealthy Theatre. She’s looking for some progressive, community organizer types in Grand Rapids to help stimulate discussion about the plight of the American worker and will feature her  1992 album “Arkansas Traveler.”