Ypsi Council Voting On Housing Assistance Funding

May 5, 2020
City of Ypsilanti / cityofypsilanti.com

Ypsilanti’s city council will vote on a resolution tonight to create a housing expenditure program for residents who need financial assistance during the coronavirus pandemic. 

Cami Fussey

Based on a Monty Python skit from 1970, a Detroit area resident started recording people on the street in front of her house doing a "Silly Walk" to try and ease the stress of what many are feeling during the current coronavirus pandemic.  Cami Fussey of Ypsilanti liked the idea so much, she set up a similar opportunity in front of her home and has been sharing it on Facebook and Instagram.

WEMU's Lisa Barry spoke with the Ypsilanti woman about her idea and the resulting participation.

Local Organization Helping Seniors Grow Food At Home

Apr 24, 2020

Growing Hope in Ypsilanti is offering a “Home Vegetable Garden Program” to senior citizens during the COVID-19 crisis. 

Ypsilanti Meals On Wheels Staying Connected To Clients

Apr 23, 2020
Ypsilanti Meals on Wheels / ymow.org

Ypsilanti Meals on Wheels has launched a new program called “Only a Ring Away” to help their clients during the COVID-19 crisis.  

New West Willow
Sarah Rigg / Concentrate Media

The coronavirus pandemic has kept people, including those living in Ypsilanti Township, confined to their homes.  It has also made it difficult for local neighborhood associations to keep their residents informed of any events or developments in their respective communities.  For this week's "On the Ground-Ypsi," WEMU's Lisa Barry and Concentrate Media's Sarah Rigg hear about the new ways associations communicate with residents from Jo Ann McCollum, president of the New West Willow Neighborhood Association.

City of Ypsilanti / cityofypsilanti.com

The City of Ypsilanti is putting a hold on setting its budget goals for the next fiscal year until they have a better idea on how the COVID-19 crisis will impact their operations.  

Alize Asberry Payne
Washtenaw County / washtenaw.org

Earlier this month, the Washtenaw County Health Department released data regarding confirmed COVID-19 cases in the county.  The most disturbing information came out of Ypsilanti and Ypsilanti Township, in which there more infections among African-Americans than any other ethnicity.  WEMU's Lisa Barry and Concentrate Media's Sarah Rigg examine why this situation exists with Washtenaw County racial equity officer Alize Asberry Payne for this week's "On the Ground-Ypsi."

  SOS Community Services in Ypsilanti has expanded its services to help people in need during the COVID-19 crisis.

Ypsilanti City Council Meeting To Be Held Online

Apr 7, 2020
City of Ypsilanti / cityofypsilanti.com

The coronavirus pandemic has forced Ypsilanti's city council to meet online instead of in-person. 

Military Health / health.mil

As the rate of COVID-19 cases continues to increase locally, Washtenaw County health officials have broken down the number of cases by zip code and race.  89.1 WEMU's Lisa Barry reports it has highlighted some disparaties in the county.



Evenstar's Chalice / evenstarschalice.com

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."

Ypsilanti Amtrak Plans Derailed For Now

Apr 1, 2020

Plans to build an Amtrak platform in Ypsilanti's Depot Town have been put on hold for now.  

Wikimedia Commons

As the coronavirus pandemic continues, forcing businesses to close and many people to stay home, local libraries are seeing a spike in demand for their services.

Beth Bashert
Beth Bashert

While we adapt to life in a coronavirus crisis, staying engaged and serving others as best we can is of crucial importance.  The Mayor of Ypsilanti is spending some of her "Stay Home, Stay Safe" time reaching out to the community's senior citizens.  Seniors are most at risk in this crisis and are more likely to be disconnected from electronic communication.  Beth Bashert joined WEMU's David Fair to discuss her outreach efforts, community observations during shutdown, and explain current and future city operations. 

Ypsilanti Community Schools
Ypsilanti Community Schools / ycschools.us

School districts across the state of Michigan have closed their doors indefinitely due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Yet, a number of students are now at a disadvantage, especially those who rely on their schools for food and internet access.  So, Ypsilanti Community Schools (YCS) stepped up to help these kids out.  In this week's "On the Ground-Ypsi," WEMU's Patrick Campion and Concentrate Media's Sarah Rigg talk to YCS assistant superintendent Dr. Carlos Lopez about how the district is serving the community during this crisis.

Eastern Michigan University
Lisa Barry / 89.1 WEMU

With more cases of the coronavirus, or COVID-19, now being detected in “younger people,” the call from health officials for them to take it more seriously becomes louder.

WEMU’s Lisa Barry spoke to Eastern Michigan University student Meghann Butchart about what this experience is like from a young adult’s point of view.

Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

Concentrate Media's "On The Ground-Ypsi" this week focuses on "Contacto Michigan" and its internet radio station, "Contacto Michigan Ypsilanti," or CMY.  WEMU's Lisa Barry talks with On The Ground-Ypsilanti project manager Sarah Rigg about the organization in downtown Ypsilanti.

24th Cheesecakerie
24th Cheesecakerie / Facebook

24th Cheesecakerie in Ann Arbor and Ypsilanti is a family-owned and operated business incorporating the concept and culture of family into everything they do.

WEMU's Lisa Barry and John Reyes of Eater.com talk to one of the business's owners, Sean Brezell, who brought several family members with him to the interview about how they strive to bring value--and cheesecake--to the Washtenaw County community.

SOS Community Services / soscs.org

Since its inception at Eastern Michigan University, SOS Community Services has always been there for Ypsilanti residents.  The organization has provided services such as child care, supportive housing, and a food pantry.  Later this spring, SOS will celebrate its 50th anniversary, and its executive director, Rhonda Weathers, talks all about this amazing endeavor with WEMU's Patrick Campion and Concentrate Media's Sarah Rigg for this week's "On the Ground-Ypsi."

Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

There are students out there who face constant struggles in their schoolwork, including here in the Ypsilanti area.  Fortunately, the Student Advocacy Center of Michigan (SAC) is there to provide guidance and mentorship to those who need it.  SAC executive director Peri Stone-Palmquist and former SAC board member Brittany Barros join WEMU's Patrick Campion and Concentrate Media's Sarah Rigg to talk about the center ongoing work in this week's "On the Ground-Ypsi."

Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

This week for "On The Ground Ypsi," WEMU's Lisa Barry talks with Sarah Rigg from Concentrate Media about her latest online story about The Collaborative: Ypsilanti YMCA Child Development Center.  Their guest is Donetta Mazyck, director of the Collaborative, and one of its success stories.

Washtenaw United
David Fair / 89.1 WEMU

Nonprofit Enterprise at Work (NEW) has made it its mission to get nonprofit organizations the help they need.  Their latest endeavor is the "Champions for Change" project, which intends to help achieve racial equity in leadership positions.  Two of NEW's representatives, Melvin Henley and Will Jones III, explain the program in detail in this week's "Washtenaw United" with WEMU's David Fair.

Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

There are plans to revive the ​Ypsilanti Art Incubator​, a project started by a small group of Ypsilanti-based artists in 2012.  The incubator went dormant for several years, but Ypsilanti resident Alexa Dietz is looking to relaunch it in 2020.  WEMU’s Lisa Barry talks with Alexa and Concentrate Media’s Sarah Rigg about what this might mean to area artists for this week's "On the Ground-Ypsi." 

Dessous / dessousannarbor.com

This week, "Art and Soul" is about the culinary arts.  WEMU’s Lisa Barry is joined by Eater.com writer John Reyes, who talks about some Valentine’s Day dinner options in the Ann Arbor area.

Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

Seeing a need for more partnerships and support for younger school students in Ypsilanti, Tim Wilson helped create "Washtenaw Promise."  It's an Ypsilanti-based nonprofit that seeks to remove barriers to success and increase opportunities for children to thrive, starting in early childhood.

WEMU's Lisa Barry talks with Tim and Concentrate Media's Sarah Rigg about the focus of her story in this week's "On the Ground-Ypsi."

Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

When a child ages out of the foster care system, the transition to adulthood can be extremely difficult.  The Ypsilanti organization known as "Our House" seeks to make such transitions as simple as possible.  Our House executive director Natasha Doan-Motsinger explains the organization's work in more detail with WEMU's Lisa Barry and Concentrate Media's Sarah Rigg in this week's installment of "On the Ground-Ypsi."

Riverside Arts Center
Riverside Arts Center / riversidearts.org

After years as development director at the Yankee Air Museum, Elisa Guyton is charged with taking the Riverside Arts Center in Ypsilanti to new heights.  Guyton began work as the center's executive director on December 2nd of last year and is becoming fully ingrained in the center’s offerings and its potential for the future.  She talks community, engagement, art, and passion in this "creative:impact" conversation with WEMU’s David Fair and Deb Polich of The Arts Alliance.

Washtenaw County
Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

The 2020 Census will take place in just a few months.  In the meantime, residents of Ypsilanti and Ypsilanti Township may need to prepare for how the results may affect their respective communities.  Peter Lindeman, who is a communications and policy specialist for the Washtenaw County Office of Community and Economic Development, discusses these potential challenges with WEMU's Lisa Barry and Concentrate Media's Sarah Rigg for this week's "On the Ground-Ypsi."

Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

Gospel music can have a great impact in the community.  The most well-known gospel scene is in Detroit, but Ypsilanti has made its mark as well, particularly at the Second Baptist Church.  For this week's "On the Ground-Ypsi," Second Baptist Church pastor George Waddles, Jr. and the church's minister of music, Johhny Jordan, talk about the world of gospel found in our own backyard with WEMU's Lisa Barry and Concentrate Media's Sarah Rigg.

Doug Coombe / Concentrate Media

Homelessness is one of many problems the Ypsilanti area faces every day.  Out of this sad situation, an organization called "House N2 Home" came to be, whose mission is not only give homeless people a place to live, but to make that place feel like a true home.  Two of the organization's representatives, Peggy Farrell and Ruth Ann Logue, join WEMU's Lisa Barry and Concentrate Media's Sarah Rigg for a conversation about their work in this week's "On the Ground-Ypsi."