by E.B Allen, Neighborhood News Hub
(Editor’s note: Several Avenue of Fashion businesses will have an exclusive tent to promote their fashion district at this year’s Chevrolet Grand Prix. Here’s how it happened.)
Detroit’s trend setters got a new trophy car. No, not for keeps … but the sleek Grand Prix IndyCar show car was a real eye-catcher sitting on its perch on the Avenue of Fashion this month.
The first-of-its-kind display on the Avenue was celebrated with a block party. The creative, visionary enthusiasm of participating entrepreneurs matched the boldness of the car’s exterior, not to mention the spirit of the race itself.
The Avenue of Fashion is on a short stretch of Livernois Avenue and is largely populated with clothing, hair care, and art retailers. It is near historic neighborhoods with architecturally distinctive homes such as Palmer Woods and Sherwood Forest.
Volunteers from University Commons and the Avenue of Fashion Business Association helped draw out neighborhood supporters, who were excited to get the opportunity to get a close-up view of the iconic vehicle.
“We just thought it would be a great fit to do something there,” says Grand Prix General Manager Charles Burns. “We wanted to give people the opportunity to see, touch and feel what the race has to offer.”
The IndyCar even impressed a group of adolescent girls from Huntington Woods attending a bat mitzvah. They stopped to check out the action as their chartered bus pulled over to give them a closer look.
The event also resulted in a terrific opportunity for Avenue of Fashion businesses. At this year’s Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix they will have an exclusive tent to promote their fashion district.
Are they revved-up about the opportunity?
“You bet,” says Lolita Haley, University Commons program coordinator and realtor with Avenue-based Prime Financial Plus. “You can’t pay for better advertisement.”
Special race ticket discount codes were among the incentives given to residents as part of the event, which also featured snacks from Avenue neighbors Jo’s Café and Good Cakes and Bakes. But, predictably, even among the community’s popular businesses and friendly residents, the eye-catching, decaled show car was the main attraction.
“It adds a little pop to the event,” says Burns.
For information about the Avenue of Fashion Business Association, call 313. 600.6930. The Grand Prix event will take place May 29-31 this year.