Category Archives: July

The Violin Monster has been kicked off the streets for Ann Arbor’s Art Fair (UPDATE: He’s Back)

ANN ARBOR, JULY 18, 2013 – Find the Violin Monster at the corner of Liberty and Main at the Art Fair on Main Street, he’s a guest there of the Main Street Area Association.

ANN ARBOR, JULY 17, 2013 – The “Violin Monster” street musician has been having problems at Ann Arbor’s Art Fair with being kicked off the street, but he vows to be back with a new plan on Thursday. (More news to come as it appears.)


As posted to Facebook:

I try to keep my posts upbeat and full of bubbles and sparkles, but sometimes, even monsters have rough days.
I had an extremely disappointing first day at the Ann Arbor Art Fair. Almost immediately, State Street Art Fair representatives told me I was not allowed to perform. The police officers that came were extremely nice, and seemed to be siding with me, but they ultimately had to proceed under advisement from their sergeant.
The best way I can put it is that the Art Fair has effectively bought my beloved city of Ann Arbor during these four days, and has complete authority to do as they wish on its public streets and sidewalks. The State Street organization seemed to be concerned with money – since I hadn’t paid them for space, they didn’t want me there.
Ann Arbor does not require a permit for street performing. I believe that if I am practicing a reasonable code of conduct (which I always do), I have the right to be performing in a public space.
I talked to a few people from the Main Street Association about performing tomorrow, and it seems promising. Thank you all for your continued support, and for sharing this adventure with me. The comments I saw on twitter today were extremely encouraging. It’ll take a whole lot more than a rough day to break my spirit.
~Violin Monster~


Art Fair Bingo, 2013

This graphic is making the rounds; original artist Katy McGrady (happy to give credit where credit is due). And of course it's hot for the Ann Arbor Art Fair, and there's a bit of rain.

More Art Fair bingos, courtesy of Damn Arbor, from Osric; some more commentary from Reddit /r/annarbor.


2013 Dexter Blueberry Farm season starts July 18

From a news release by the Dexter Blueberry Farm:

The Dexter Blueberry Farm will open earlier than planned. We will open July 18 2013.
The early berries are ready, Blue-Ray, Blue-Crop and Northland varieties. Blue-Ray and Blue-Crop berries tend to be larger and slightly tart. The picking will be good. The Jersey will begin in another 10 days.

The price for blueberries is $1.75/lb.
Mon-Sat: 8:00am-7:30 pm
Sunday: Noon-6:00 pm
11024 Beach Rd. Dexter, MI
Phone: (734) 426-2900

Ann Arbor Fourth of July parade, 2013

The Ann Arbor Fourth of July 2013 parade was this morning. Some brief highlights, so I don’t forget them; I’ll include pictures if I have them. In approximate order of the parade route.

Lots of candy, lots of politicians, lots of kids on bikes.

The Star Wars marching band playing the Imperial March, and a bun-headed Leia. Darth Vader was driving the car that towed an R2D2 float.


Councilman Kunselman skateboarding down the street, the only politician who was on a skateboard. “Skateboarding is not a crime.”

The French Dukes precision drill team.

Ring of Steel, a theatrical performance group

The Ann Arbor Ukelele Club, a Meetup group that marched and played ever so softly as they went down the street.

Bo Schembechler life-sized bobble-head

The D3 Fife and Drum Corps closing out the parade. (Photo: Ann Arbor Chronicle)

Lots more photos – most of the parade, indeed – from Ryan Stanton on Flickr.

By point of comparison, Ypsilanti’s parade featured a Jeep-mounted machine gun pointed at the crowd (“terrifying”). (

Early July berry picking report, 2011

U-Pick Strawberry season in the Ann Arbor area is over; it ended June 29 at Rowe's, and June 26 at Whittaker's.

Juneberries are still on the trees, but they are overripe and best left for the birds.

Mulberries are out in full force on the trees and on the sidewalks. Look down for black blotches, then look up for ripe berries.

Blackberries and black raspberries can be found in parks or in the yards of helpful neighbors. 

Wasem's has U-pick red and green gooseberries, red and black currants, and tart (sour) cherries, starting July 7. Not everything is always available depending on ripening, call ahead for details.

Dexter Blueberry Farm is expecting to open July 20, according to their email; the web site says July 25.

See Real Time Farms for more details on local produce. If you have any spare berries, let me know.