Grosse Pointe Theatre, BluFin, Sanders

21 Jan

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The Grosse Pointe Theatre is now in its 64th season. I saw my very first live theatre production right here when I was a young girl of 8, it was Fiddler On The Roof, and I have loved live theatre ever since. The Grosse Pointe War Memorial is the former home of the Russell Alger Jr family, it was built in 1910, and donated to the community in 1949 following the death of Russell.  The home was donated to serve as a memorial to Grosse Pointers who served their country and to be used as a center for charitable and educational purposes. Designed in the Italian Renaissance style by Charles Platt, the home is elegant, graceful and refined.  The addition of the Fries Auditorium and Crystal Ballroom gave the War Memorial more public space and versatility.  In 1961 Fries Auditorium became the permanent home of the Grosse Pointe Theatre.

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It just so happened that we saw an advertisement for Jekyll &Hyde The Musical; opening day was Sunday, one easy phone call reserved our tickets.  We took our seats, not knowing exactly what to expect from a musical version of the story. The auditorium was buzzing with the anticipation and excitement of opening night as many friends and family of the cast filled the seats. The lights dimmed, the curtain opened and we were off. The first musical number came quickly, the  orchestra sits in front of and below the stage,  don’t you just love live music? One by one we were introduced to the characters, the sets were extremely well done, the costumes, superb, and the performances……let me tell you, they were awesome! Everybody was wonderful, the Dr Jekyll/Mr Hyde character was intense, the two female leads have incredible voices, this was community theatre at its best. The story moved along effortlessly scene to scene, song to song, love, murder and betrayal, the tension building. There was one 15 minute intermission which gave us a chance to look around a little, upstairs in the Crystal Ballroom there was a Chamber Music concert going on. The room is enclosed in glass overlooking Lake St Clair, Oh What A View! The lights flashed in the lobby, our cue the second act was about to begin. We resumed our seats, and watched the conclusion of the show.  Jekyll & Hyde The Musical runs until January 28. If you can’t catch this show, be sure to click on the website for the upcoming season. The Grosse Pointe Theatre offers a great theatre experience in a lovely venue at a fair price. Check it out ! 

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Mack Ave is lined with restaurants, retail and service businesses, BluFin Sushi resides on Mack in Grosse Pointe Farms. This unassuming little storefront is identifiable by its thatch roofed awning and lionesque figures flanking the door. Inside is a cozy space with seating for 22, the focal point being the sushi counter. If you don’t like sushi, that’s ok, the menu also caters to seafood and meat-eaters, with several categories to choose from such as appetizers and sliders. It was difficult to choose; we had selected off the regular menu only to see the specials board afterward. One quick chat with the sushi chef, and we were all set. We had four different rolls, besides the cucumber/avocado roll, we don’t know the names of the others, as we had let the chef decide for us. The platter arrived and we immediately dug in, each roll being different in flavors and textures, they were all delicious. We’d go as far as to say it was some of the best sushi we had ever eaten. This is not the place to go when you have a big group, but for a quiet night out it’s perfect.

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If you grew up in Detroit you have surely heard of Sanders; for many, the first thing that comes to mind is their delectable Hot Fudge Cream Puff. Since 1875 Fred Sanders genius of making candy and fudge toppings have brought smiles to millions of faces. His original retail shop was located in downtown Detroit, in addition to the fountain service they also made light lunches. At its peak Sanders ran 57 stores in the metro area. I guess like many things the popularity ran its course and the stores began to disappear. Over the last decade there has been a bit of a resurgence and Sanders stores have begun to re-appear (lucky for us!) As a matter of fact there is a Sanders on Kercheval in The Village of Grosse Pointe; it seemed the perfect way to cap off a great afternoon. We already knew what we were getting, a Pecan Titan  with Butter Pecan Ice cream: 2 scoops of ice cream topped generously with hot fudge, hot caramel, and toasted pecans….so good! This retail store carries a full line of Sanders candy, toppings and baked goods, doesn’t a piece of Bumpy Cake sound good right about now? We polished off our sundae and glasses of water, content as could be. There are several stores throughout the metro area again, Sanders is a true Detroit original.

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