small business

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.

Carlos Franklin
United Way of Washtenaw County /

The Black Stone Bookstore and Cultural Center in Ypsilanti has a mission: To unite all people, regardless of race, religion, or politics, and to highlight the works of authors of color. Bookstore co-owner Carlos Franklin joined WEMU's David Fair to discuss his love of literature and his journey as a Black, small business owner during social unrest and a pandemic. 

Wiki Commons

Starting December 15th, businesses in Washtenaw County affected by COVID-19 can apply to receive funding through a new program led by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation.   

Wiki Commons

The Kerrytown, State Street, and Main Street shopping districts in Ann Arbor have joined forces to help local businesses thrive during the pandemic and the holiday season.  

Hollander's /

The Ann Arbor area community was saddened to hear last January that the Hollander's paper goods store in the Kerrytown area of the city planned to close the following June.  Then, the pandemic hit, and the store was shut down early, and owners Tom and Cindy Hollander didn't really get a chance to say goodbye to the community or feel the necessary, emotional closure after being in business for nearly 30 years.

So, they talk with WEMU's Lisa Barry about what that was like, where they are now, and to thank the community for nearly 30 years of memories and business.


More than three-quarters of small businesses in Washtenaw County have sought out loans as a result of the COVID-19 health crisis.

Debbie Dingell
Wikipedia Media Commons /

Conversations on how best to reopen the economy continue across the country and here in Michigan.  12th District Congresswoman Debbie Dingell made a trip to Washington Thursday to vote on a $484 billion relief package to help get us get through until that happens.  The Dearborn Democrat joined WEMU's David Fair for a conversation about what comes next and the importance of allowing science to help dictate policy. 

Washtenaw County Office of Community & Economic Development

As businesses remain closed and unemployment continues to rise, a growing number of local organizations are turning to Washtenaw’s county government for help.

Evenstar's Chalice /

The coronavirus pandemic has hurt businesses across the country, and small business owners may have felt the effects most of all.  So, some small business owners in Ypsilanti, including Mara Evenstar of Evenstar's Chalice, have had to find new ways to keep their establishments alive during this health crisis.  Evenstar joins WEMU's Patrick Campion and Concentrate Media's Sarah Rigg to discuss her new business actions for this week's installment of "On the Ground-Ypsi."


The co-founder of Duo Security in Ann Arbor and his wife are committing $1 million in short-term, emergency relief grants to help small businesses in our county that are being affected by the coronavirus crisis.  

Paul Hickman
Paul Hickman

It’s been one year since Paul Hickman made the difficult decision to close his creative business Urban Ashes.  As he did on "creative:impact" a year ago, Paul opens up to The Arts Alliance’s Deb Polich and WEMU’s David Fair about his experiences this last year: his unexpected loss of identity and his journey of retooling and rediscovering himself as an artist and designer.  

Jorge Avellan / WEMU

To help empower entrepreneurship through inclusion, capital, and connection, the 2019 Intermitten Conference took place Tuesday at The Ark in Ann Arbor.  89.1 WEMU's Jorge Avellan was there and has the story.

#OTGYpsi: Vacant Buildings In Ypsilanti Find New Life

Oct 10, 2018
Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

Several empty buildings, such as the old Smith Furniture building, could be found throughout Ypsilanti.  Thanks to the Michigan Advocacy Program, small business owners and nonprofit organizations are ready to breathe new life into these structures.  In this week's "On the Ground-Ypsi," WEMU's Patrick Campion and Concentrate Media's Sarah Rigg talk about these business developments with Ann Routt, co-director of the Michigan Advocacy Program.

#OTGYpsi: Bringing Attention To Ypsilanti's West Cross Street Businesses

Jul 25, 2018
Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

Not far from downtown Ypsilanti and Depot Town is the West Cross Street business district.  It has attracted small business owners for years, but a few of these entrepeneurs still believe their establishments are being overlooked.  In this week's "On the Ground-Ypsi," WEMU's Patrick Campion and Concentrate Media's Brianna Kelly talk to two West Cross Street business owners--Jesse Kranyak, who co-operates the Wurst Bar, and Jon Eslinger, who co-owns the branding studio, Do:Better.

Public Domain Pictures /

Ever notice the volume level of music being played at a local restaurant or coffee shop?  There's an effort underway in Ann Arbor to reduce that noise level and make the city a quieter and more peaceful place. 

Lisa Barry

With a lot of people shopping at major retail stores today on Black Friday, there is a growing trend to make Saturday more about supporting local businesses.

Hillary Clinton
Wikipedia Media Commons /

Small businesses are a priority.  That’s the message Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton is sending to Michigan voters.  Clinton released a plan for small businesses Tuesday.