Featured Articles from Issue 56

Featured Stories and Columns
Ann Arbor Skate Park – A Welcoming Place

When was the last time you pushed your edge in public? Or really connected with your kids learning a new activity together? How often does your tween or teen get excited to turn off the video game and go somewhere and be active? Have you ever wished your son or daughter felt a sense of belonging in a community of peers outside of home or school?

A Family Firmly Planted: HillTop Greenhouse and Farms

On a bitter cold and rainy day in late April, my husband and I were inspired to do our annual trek to HillTop Greenhouse and Farms to plot this year’s garden and bask in the warmth and stunning visuals contained within the expansive space.

Coffee with Maggie Derthick of Girls Gone Vinyl — Detroit’s Annual All-Women Party in the Mecca of Techno Music

Since 2000, thousands of electronic music fans from around the world flock to Detroit during Memorial Day Weekend for Detroit’s internationally known electronic music festival. The festival, now called the Movement Electronic Music Festival, was created to celebrate Detroit's role as the birthplace of electronic (or “techno”) music.

Pockets of Poverty, Shadows of Hope — Luke Shaefer, Ann Arbor Co-Author of $2.00 a Day, Shares Insights into the Story Behind his Blockbuster Book

This is what it’s like to be incredibly, desperately poor in America today: You live in a crowded homeless shelter with nothing but spoiled milk in the fridge. Without a permanent address, potential employers are reluctant to hire you. But you can’t get a permanent address without a job. You find a job, and it seems like a pretty good one at first, paying a little above minimum wage. But the shifts are uneven and the working conditions are unsafe, and you start getting sick. But with a job, you can get a housing subsidy, so you need the money.

Namaste, Katie...

Namaste, Katie — I walk ALL over campus with a lot of text books in my backpack, and my shoulders ache every day. Though I have been going to a gentle yoga class, I am struggling to find any postures that I can do when I get to class, or at home, to relieve that tightness on the front of my shoulders. Any pointers?

Transformation Is Here — Capuchin Ministries of Detroit

Driving on Gratiot headed toward Mt. Elliott Street, I was in the heart of downtown Detroit, just a mile or so away from Ford Field. It seems only small businesses are here, a Mr. Fish and a crowded shop selling second hand furniture, likely for a charity. In this place on this map, blocks of the grid are disappearing. Fallow fields sit waiting in their place. I pulled up to a bright brick church anchored strong amidst open green plots and dilapidated, boarded-up structures. There is a man sitting on a milkcrate. He is sentinel of this corner.

Conversations with the Elements — An Interview with Martha Travers on Bringing Nature-Based Shamanistic Practices to the U of M

Martha Travers is a beloved teacher at the University of Michigan who shares the wisdom of contemplative nature-based practices with her students. Her courses are influenced by her own shamanic practices, and provide a space for students of all walks of life to listen to their inner voices.

The Diamond Approach:  A Path of Embodied Understanding

Imagine a spiritual path which embraces the truth of our interconnectedness with the ground of being, whether it is called God, Tao, the Buddha realm, or the logos. Then imagine a spiritual path that looks at your day-by-day events, mental thought objects, reactions, and expansions to see how they relate to the depth.

The End of an Era in Ann Arbor's Organic Farming and Food Culture

The 2017 planting, growing, and harvesting season will be Annie Elder and Paul Bantle’s last at the Community Farm of Ann Arbor. The two have been the head farmers tending the land and the animals there for more than 25 years.

Coffee with  Zain Shamoon, Co-founder and Host of the “Narratives of Pain” Storytelling Showcase

I was sipping a nitrogen-infused cold brew at Mighty Good Coffee Co. when a purple-splashed flyer caught my eye, “NARRATIVES OF PAIN” boldly emblazoned across the top. At first I thought “Narratives of Pain” was an indie-satirical play on words, or perhaps an improv comedy showcase with a dark twist.

More from Issue 56

Featured Stories and Columns
More Than Just an Exercise: Learning to Breathe with Yoga

By Tatiana Knight | Photos by Tobi Hollander

When yoga became famous in the 60’s in the U.S., it was an esoteric set of poses and breathing exercises to aid meditation. It was initially presented as a map to living our lives by following a kind of yogic 10 Commandments. Not very many people knew about yoga, and those who did were not “normal,” but considered hippies or society’s outliers. 

Art Therapy for Inspiration, Guidance, and Healing

By Sibel Ozer

A non-artist friend asked for help with a painting she had started a year ago. I suggested we do some foraging for inspiration, and we spent a day antiquing, visiting the art museum, stopping by an art store, and hunting for materials in her backyard. Next, we cleared her garden table for a day of painting, where I modeled free expression.


Fresh Air for a Fresh Start

By Melissa Sargent

We've packed up the holiday decorations, our house guests have all gone home, and we are ready to take on our new year’s resolutions. A little power cleaning and a few sprays of a fresh scent might seem like a great way to start anew. But before you pull out the disinfectant or plug in the pine mountain scent, think about what may be sealed up inside the house with you and your family.


Reconsidering the Impact of Grains and Carbs on our Diet

By Gary Merel

Since digestive systems, much like finger prints, are unique, the foods that work for you might not work for someone else. However, there are definitely foods and food groups we should only eat sparingly, or not at all. High on that list are refined carbohydrates and grains.


Namaste, Roshani!

By Roshani Adhikary 

Namaste, Roshani,

These winter blues get me every year! I don’t feel like leaving my house to go and practice at a studio, so I've been following a lot of yoga DVDs. Lately, I find that my knees are really starting to kill. I don’t have an instructor to turn to, so I’m wondering if maybe you can help.

Caring for Your Pet with In-Home Hospice

Death is not an easy topic. No one likes to talk about it, even when it's regarding pets. As a veterinarian, I believe the reason pet parents do not like to talk about death is fear of the unknown. Perhaps they had a bad experience in the past or heard terrible stories from friends, but whatever the case, they are left with a lot of tough questions.

Why I Teach Meditation

In the wonderful Dr. Seuss books that narrate the adventures of The Cat in the Hat, we are introduced to the Cat’s helpers named “Thing One” and “Thing Two.” When he wants to create maximum mischief, the Cat brings out these two little guys. And do they know how to party! Their antics can go on for numerous pages, involving all sorts of outrageous projects, which always lead nowhere.