On the Ground Ypsi

  • Hosted by Patrick Campion, Sarah Rigg

89.1 WEMU has forged a partnership with Concentrate Ann Arbor to highlight some of the positive things taking place in Ypsilanti. The sponsored-project from SecondWave Media is called, "On the Ground Ypsi." WEMU Program Director Patrick Campion will visit with project reporter Sarah Rigg discuss her observations and interactions while, "On the Ground" in Ypsilanti. 

Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

Just in time for Halloween, we meet one of several horror fiction writers who live in the Ypsilanti area. In this week’s "On the Ground Ypsi," WEMU’s Lisa Barry and Concentrate Media’s Sarah Rigg talk to Ypsilanti horror fiction writer Ken MacGregor about his scary stories and writing career. 


YpsiWrites / ypsiwrites.com

The organizers of "Writers of Ypsilanti," a program sponsored by community writing lab YpsiWrites believe everyone's a writer and writing matters.

WEMU's Lisa Barry and On The Ground Ypsi project manager Sarah Rigg talk to the co-founder of YpsiWrites, Ann Blakeslee, about their mission and belief that the art of writing...in any form...still matters in 2021.


Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

WEMU's Lisa Barry and On the Ground Ypsi project manager Sarah Rigg talk with Keesa Johnson from the Washtenaw County Black Farmers Fund about efforts to encourage and support diversity in farming and why that's important.


Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

This week for "On the Ground Ypsi," our weekly conversation with Concentrate Media's Sarah Rigg and WEMU's Lisa Barry, they talk with Melisa Tasker, the program coordinator for the Washtenaw County "CARES team," about the mental health services they provide to the community funded by a 2018 county public safety and mental health preservation millage.


Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

A collaboration between two Ypsilanti-based nonprofits, Our House and HouseN2Home, has created a "home" for teenagers about to transition out of foster care. 

 

WEMU's Lisa Barry and On the Ground Ypsi project manager Sarah Rigg talk with Natasha Doan-Motsinger, the executive director of Our House, about how they worked together to create this necessary space.


Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

Thanks to an anonymous donor and facilitation by local grassroots organization SolarYpsi, several churches and nonprofits in Ypsilanti have received or will soon receive new solar installations.

WEMU's Lisa Barry and Sarah Rigg from Concentrate Media talk with Dave Strenski from SolarYpsi about the impact that is having on the Ypsilanti area community.


Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

For this week's "On The Ground Ypsi," WEMU's Lisa Barry and Sarah Rigg from Concentrate Media talk with Peter Sanderson from the Washtenaw County Parks and Recreation division about recently completed improvements to Ypsilanti area parks and trails and what else is in the works.


Kalitta Air

Many businesses located in the Ypsilanti area have a global impact even though they are located in Washtenaw County. WEMU's Lisa Barry and On the Ground Ypsi project manager Sarah Rigg talk with Bill Mayer of Ann Arbor SPARK about the many successful local businesses in the Ypsilanti area they've helped support and nurture to reach this level of success.


Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

This week for "On The Ground Ypsi," Lisa Barry and Sarah Rigg talk about the many different beekeeping activities in Ypsilanti, also officially certified as a "Bee City" in the United States.


Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

On this edition of "On The Ground Ypsi," Lisa Barry and Sarah Rigg talk with Jerard Delaney, aviation program coordinator for Eastern Michigan University, about how students benefit from one of several partnerships the university has that give them more hands-on experience as part of their degree.


Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

Though many of Ypsilanti's hair businesses suffered financially during the COVID-19 pandemic, the loyalty of their long-term customers has helped many of them bounce back. Lisa Barry and Sarah Rigg talk to Claire Broderick, one of several local stylists interviewed for this week's story about Ypsilanti's vibrant "hair artist" scene.


Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

This week for "On The Ground Ypsi", WEMU's Lisa Barry and On the Ground Ypsi project manager Sarah Rigg talk to an area mother of one who started her own business. She shares how she stays motivated and involves her young daughter in her work while setting a positive example of having a good work/life balance.


Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

This week for "On the Ground Ypsi,"  Lisa Barry and Sarah Rigg talk with a 14-year old member of the Ypsilanti District Library Teen Advisory Group about a recent grant that allowed them to expand information being handed out to local teenagers.


Ypsilanti Frog Island Jazz Series / frogislandjazz.com

Ypsilanti-area residents will be treated to a series of free weekly jazz concerts throughout the summer, thanks to Ypsilanti-based musician John E. Lawrence. Lisa Barry and "On the Ground Ypsi" project manager Sarah Rigg talk to Lawrence about the upcoming free jazz concert series.

Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

Many businesses struggled during the COVID-19 pandemic, but it has been a time of opportunity for some entrepreneurs in the greater Ypsilanti area. Lisa Barry and On the Ground Ypsi project manager Sarah Rigg talk to one Ypsilanti store owner, Jen Eastridge, who kept an established business running and even opened a second, new store during the global health crisis.

#OTGYpsi: New Police Reform Pilot Program

Jun 9, 2021
Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

This week for "On the Ground Ypsi," Lisa Barry and Sarah Rigg talk with JoAnn McCollum, president of the New West Willow Neighborhood Association in Ypsilanti Township, about a new police reform pilot program she helped create. It's a way to address quality-of-life issues and responding to nonviolent issues happening in the community.

Rachel Cortez / Rolling Hills County Park

From a virtual program centered around writing to outdoor programs with an academic enrichment focus, Ypsilanti-area summer camps are finding new ways to engage with local youth.

WEMU's Lisa Barry and Sarah Rigg from Concentrate Media talk with Liz Garaba, Washtenaw Community College manager of college and career readiness, about their summer camp offering.

Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

Affordable housing and gentrification are just some of the issues addressed by an Ypsilanti arts advocacy program called "Staying Power." Lisa Barry and "On the Ground Ypsi" project manager Sarah Rigg talk with one of the participants, Malik Henry, who shares his experience and one of the poems he wrote as part of the project.

Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

Whether it was performing on the virtual stage or via Zoom, Ypsilanti area theatre groups have had to be even more creative than usual during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Lisa Barry and Sarah Rigg talk with Kristin Danko from Ypsilanti's Neighborhood Theatre Group about how they responded to the global health crisis and still kept the shows going.

Riverside Arts Center / riversidearts.org

Ypsilanti's Riverside Arts Center has launched a new residency to give local artists time and space to create and connect with the community. Lisa Barry and Sarah Rigg talk to Kristen Schrader, chair of the program committee at Riverside Arts Center, about the new program, which is already proving to be popular.

Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

Due to the pandemic, last year's First Fridays program in Ypsilanti took place mostly online.  This year, they're adding some new components and plan to be outside more.  WEMU's Lisa Barry talks with "On the Ground Ypsi" project manager Sarah Rigg and the program coordinator for First Fridays, Mary Dettling, to find out how the community arts program will operate this year.

Untold Stories of Liberation and Love / liberationstories.com

This week on "On The Ground Ypsi," Lisa Barry and Sarah Rigg talk about a zine, which is a project of an Ypsilanti-based poetry collective organized by women of color called "Untold Stories of Liberation and Love."  They are joined by local poet Connstynce Chege, who reads part of one of her poems she submitted to the collective and is being included.


Sarah Rigg / Concentrate Media

In this week's "On The Ground Ypsi," Lisa Barry and project manager Sarah Rigg talk to Scott Heister, Southeast Regional Director for Mi STEM and a co-founder of the American Center for Innovation.  He talks about the proposed program to work with kids and encourage them to pursue real jobs in STEM fields and providing "cradle-to-career opportunities."


Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

Established by Ann Arbor's Leon Speakers and Ypsilanti-based Grove Studios, there is a new Amplify Fellowship meant to support musicians of color living in Washtenaw County.  Lisa Barry talks with On the Ground Ypsi project manager Sarah Rigg and Maia Evans, co-founder of the fellowship, about who and what is involved.

 

Ypsilanti Meals on Wheels

This week, our "On The Ground Ypsi" conversation is about a nearly $2 million gift made to six different Ypsilanti groups and what that means to them.  Lisa Barry and On the Ground Ypsi project manager Sarah Rigg talk with Alison Foreman, executive director of Ypsilanti Meals on Wheels, which was one of the local groups to receive the money.  She shares what they plan to do with the gift and the impact it will have on the community.


Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

This week, "On The Ground Ypsi" is about several local gardening operations that encourage Ypsilanti residents to build resiliency in themselves and their community with the creation of gardens which help provide alternative food systems.

WEMU's Lisa Barry talks with On the Ground Ypsi project manager Sarah Rigg and Bee Ayer, director of programs for Ypsilanti's Growing Hope, about their class for this coming spring and summer.


Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

Sometimes, getting teenagers to share what is on their minds is not that easy.  But in this week's "On The Ground Ypsi," Lisa Barry and Sarah Rigg talk with Gail Wolkoff, executive director of "Educate Youth" in Ypsilanti, about a book of poetry written by local students.  The students were encouraged to express their thoughts and feelings about the pandemic and other world events in poetry, which was put together as a booklet called "Spiritual Warriors."


Michigan Works! Southeast / mwse.org

Navigating the workforce is never easy, which is why organizations like Michigan Works! Southeast (MWSE) are there to help.  MSWE executive director Shamar Herron has taken that mission to a new level with a podcast called "Workplace@Work."  Herron joined WEMU's David Fair and Concentrate Media's Sarah Rigg to discuss the training and employment oppotunities in our area that already exist. 


Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

Even though we're swimming in snow right now, plans are underway for the upcoming outdoor pool season and the reopening of Ypsilanti's refurbished Rutherford community pool.  That's the focus of this week's "On the Ground Ypsi" online article, and WEMU's Lisa Barry talks with Sarah Rigg and Friends of the Rutherford Pool chair Jessica Faul about recent upgrades and looking forward to reopening. 


Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

In this week's "On The Ground Ypsi," Lisa Barry and Sarah Rigg talk to Ypsilanti business owner Julie Palmer about a Washtenaw Community College program called "Renew Your Business."   It helps entrepreneurs in the Ypsilanti area thrive despite the COVID-19 pandemic.


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