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Detroit Along the Detroit River

A city in the US state of Michigan

By Rasma RaistersPublished about a month ago 5 min read

Detroit, the biggest city in Michigan, boasts a plethora of attractions for tourists and is renowned for its moniker "Motor City" during the dominance of the automobile industry. Additionally, it holds the distinction of being the birthplace of Motown Records, a label that introduced numerous beloved artists to the masses and delivered exceptional music for everyone's delight.

The Detroit Institute of Arts boasts a permanent collection of over 65,000 artworks showcased in over 100 galleries. Visitors can admire pieces from Africa, Oceania, and Indigenous Americans, as well as art from the Near East, medieval Europe, and American artists. The museum also houses a vast array of Islamic art and a special gallery dedicated to African American artists. In addition, there is a performing arts collection featuring film and theater memorabilia, along with the Paul McPharlin Puppetry Collection.

The Motown Museum is also referred to as “Hitsville USA” and has made its home in the studio where the actual hits with the Motown sound were produced. Visitors can see the actual recording studio where artists like Marvin Gaye recorded their hits. Reserved tours are available.

The Ford Piquette Avenue Plant is the birthplace of the Model T car that revolutionized the automotive industry. This building is now a National Historic Landmark. You can tour the plant and see wonderfully maintained early model vehicles. There is also the “experimental room” where Ford and his team worked on various ideas and includes a drafting table, tools and his mom’s rocking chair.

The Detroit Historical Museum celebrates the city’s past, about how it got its nickname of Motor City and became the center of the automotive industry. There are exhibits of the reconstruction of old Detroit streets, model railways, and dioramas providing an overview of the city and the events that shaped it.

Henry Ford Estate is located in the Detroit suburb of Dearborn. Fair Lane is the former home of the automaker Henry Ford and his family. The ground include a powerhouse hydro-power plant that gave the estate the possibility to produce it own power, heat, and light. There are also a summer home, a man-made lake, staff cottages, gatehouse, pony barn, skating house, greenhouse, root cellar, vegetable garden, peony garden, a “Santa’s workshop”, and 500 hundred birdhouses.

The Henry Ford Museum is also located in Dearborn where Ford established two exhibition complexes. There are many interesting displays among them George Stephenson’s first steam locomotive, some 200 automobiles, the car in which President John F. Kennedy was assassinated, and the Fokker in which Admiral Byrd made his first flight over the North Pole in 1926.

Greenfield Village is an open-air museum with about 100 historic buildings from the 18th and 19th centuries from all over the U.S. There is also the house in which Henry Ford was born, Edison’s laboratory, and the Wright Brothers’ bicycle factory. Shops in the Village Craft Center sell the products of the various workshops in the village.

Fort Wayne was constructed in the 1840s as a five-pointed bastion fortress. Upon arrival, visitors pass through the Sally Port, a fortified wooden door. Within the fort, one can explore the spacious limestone barracks building and take a tour of the first floor to observe the living conditions of soldiers in the 1860s. Additionally, there are restored officer's quarters, the Demilune which previously housed water-facing cannons, and a dry moat. During the summer, a range of events take place, including special tours such as nighttime ghost tours.

Belle Isle, located in the Detroit River, boasts beautiful parkland, hiking trails, and sports facilities. Visitors can explore the Anna Scripps Whitcomb Conservatory, which features palm trees, cacti, desert plants, tropical plants, and a lily pond. Additionally, the island is home to the Dossin Great Lake Museum, showcasing ship models and exhibits detailing the history of shipping on the Great Lakes and Great Lakes cruises. Other attractions include the Belle Isle Nature Zoo, where visitors can interact with deer, and the Belle Isle Aquarium. The island also offers a driving range, bicycle and boat rentals, a giant slide, hiking trails around the park's three lakes, and numerous swimming spots.

Comerica Park is a combination ballpark, theme park, and baseball museum. It is famous for being the home of the Detroit Tigers baseball team. You can see highlights of the teams’ accomplishments and milestones and their “Walk of Fame”. Behind the first base you can take a ride on the carousel and in the third-base section is a Ferris Wheel with seats the resemble giant baseball.

GM Renaissance Center is located along the Detroit River with huge skyscraper complexes which dominate the center which is the central feature on the Detroit skyline. This is a seven-tower complex that includes restaurants and shops. There is an observation deck on the 72nd floor with great views of the city. The most popular attraction is the GM showroom which displays vehicles among them mint-condition early cars and trucks.

Pewabic Pottery was founded by Mary Chase Perry Stratton and her partner, Horace Caulkins in 1903. Today it operates the ceramics museum, gallery workshop, and studio. The studio is a National Historic Landmark has an extensive collection of American ceramics. At the gift shop visitors can purchase genuine Pewabic pottery and Michigan and Detroit souvenir pieces.

The Detroit Public Library has a collection that includes 5,000 books. It has ten departments in the main library and has 23 branches. The building is on the National Register of Historic Places. Visitors can take a one-hour docent-led tour of the building and find out about the architecture, art, and history of the library.

The Masonic Temple of Detroit is classical Gothic architecture that was built with Indiana limestone. It was dedicated in 1926 and is the largest temple of its kind in the world. The building’s three major divisions are the ritualistic tower, the auditorium, and the Shrine Club. The temple hosts concerts and other events. Visitors can get a tour.

The Detroit Zoo boasts a diverse range of animals residing in distinct habitats, each representing different regions across the globe. Within the African section, one can encounter zebras, giraffes, lions, lemurs, and various primates. Journeying to the arctic habitat, visitors will have the opportunity to meet polar bears. The Australian Outback is home to kangaroos and wallabies, while Asia houses pandas and Amur tigers. In the North American habitat, bears, wolverines, and bald eagles can be observed. To explore the entire zoo, one can take a ride on the miniature Tauber Family Railroad.

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About the Creator

Rasma Raisters

My passions are writing and creating poetry. I write for several sites online and have four themed blogs on Wordpress. Please follow me on Twitter.

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Comments (1)

  • Carol Townendabout a month ago

    The imagery through words and pictures in your story is excellent. I felt like I was actually there while reading. I love stories like these, that show me places I have never visited. I hope to read more from you.

Rasma RaistersWritten by Rasma Raisters

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