Open Streets Detroit turns major roads into car-free zones

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From street hockey to dance workshops, dog activities, bike obstacle courses, soccer, art, music, and yoga, there is something for everyone at Open Streets Detroit. This international movement, originating in Bogotá, Colombia, had its first debut in Detroit on Sunday, Sept. 25, and will return from 12 noon to 5 p.m. this Sunday, Oct. 2.  Open Streets Detroit is presented by the DTE Energy Foundation, the philanthropic arm of DTE Energy. The event, being led by the Downtown Detroit Partnership, closes four miles of streets to vehicles in Detroit and opens them up to residents and visitors to play, walk, run, bike, shop, and socialize.

More than 75 programming partners will fill the four-mile route on Michigan Ave. and Vernor Ave. and at three key activity hubs at Campus Martius Park in Downtown, Roosevelt Park in Corktown and Clark Park in Southwest Detroit. Open Streets Detroit provides an opportunity for individuals and families to experience the streets in our Detroit neighborhoods in a new way – by engaging in healthy, recreational and cultural activities.

“We are pleased to sponsor Open Streets Detroit, an event to help connect local neighborhoods, residents and businesses and draw visitors from near and far to experience the culture and vitality of our local communities,” said Faye Nelson, vice president, DTE Energy, and board chair and president, DTE Energy Foundation. “Our support of this inaugural event is just another example of how we can help to positively impact the communities where we live and serve.”

A sample of the activities available at Open Streets Detroit this Sunday:

  • Dance workshops, including Dancing in the Streets, a dance troupe that will perform throughout the route; and Bollywood Dance Fusion, providing workshops on the art of Bollywood dancing
  • Cycling events, such as obstacle courses and scavenger hunts; and more
  • Children’s activities, such as sidewalk chalk art, lawn games, and literary programs
  • Exercise classes such as yoga; Zumba; Taoist Thai Chi Meditation, a meditative movement workshop; kung foo lessons from Yellow Tigers Self-Defense; and others
  • Dog training classes, as well as live animals from the Wildlife of Greater Detroit
  • Sporting events, such as street hockey and soccer drills, led by Detroit City Football Club
  • Art events, such as a solar powered pottery studio; Human Scale weaving demonstrations and workshops; and Detroit Doors of Opportunity – an art installation using repurposed doors
  • Live bands and DJs

For a full list of programming partners, visit the Open Streets Detroit website. To get a first-hand look at what the Open Streets experience is all about, check out this video.

What to know before you go
The event is free and open to the public.  There will be designated parking along the route at MGM (1777 3rd St.); Bobcat Bonnie’s (1800 Michigan Ave.); and behind the Secretary of State office (2835 Bagley Ave.).