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Dustin Dwyer · Midwest Memo: Cleaning Up In Indy, Expanding In Grand Rapids And Turning Trash Into Energy In Cleveland
February 6th, 2012
The day after The Super Bowl is over, and now the cleanup process begins for Indianapolis.
Opportunity knocked Reuters looks into what happened to all those clients of MF Global, after the firm collapsed. Turns out two Chicago firms were the biggest winners, bringing in $1.2 billion in new funds.
More ‘Free’ beds The Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital in Grand Rapids, Mich. is planning a $48 million expansion. The expansion will double the hospital’s size.
Gasification fight Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson wants to turn the city’s trash into energy. But environmentalists have raised concerns about emissions from the “gasification” process. And the city council is not sold on the idea.
Going once, going twice, oh never mind … Detroit residents who had their homes taken away because of a failure to pay taxes are getting an opportunity to buy those homes back. The Detroit News reports that thousands of city-owned properties failed to sell at auction. So officials now say they’ll offer to sell the property back to the original owner, or whoever is squatting in the home, for as little as $500.
Not really ‘Made In Detroit’ Last week, we put together a list of all the companies making t-shirts to show your local pride in the Midwest. Today, Susan Tompor looks at one of those companies and asks “Where are those ‘Made In Detroit’ shirts actually made?”
February 3rd, 2012
Politics is front of mind here in the Midwest. We’re also thinking about what to wear, watch, and where our friends went. Here’s a roundup of our top Changing Gears stories this week.
WiSCONSIN: Niala Boodhoo went to Madison, where she showed us how union members are still protesting a year after Gov. Scott Walker eliminated public employee collective bargaining rights. She reported on how they’re faring.
RIGHT TO WORK: Indiana is now the nation’s 23rd Right to Work state, only two months after Gov. Mitch Daniels made the legislation one of his top priorities. Will Michigan be next?
MIDWEST MIGRATION: Our Public Insight team has been tracking the stories of people who’ve left our states. There’s still time for our exiles to call us and leave messages for the folks back home. Meanwhile, read much more on our dedicated page.
T-SHIRTS: If you seek a Midwest t-shirt, look about you. Dustin Dwyer found our states are chock full of small companies making t-shirts that represent our region.
DIY DETROIT: Have you found that all those documentary films about Detroit are starting to look the same? Dustin offers you a how-to kit for making your own Detroit documentary.
Finally, a shout out to Troy “Trombone Shorty,” who sings the Changing Gears theme. He’s been immortalized by the New Orleans Jazz Fest.
The story of the economic transformation in the Midwest is a story about new jobs, new industries and economic growth.
But it’s also a story about how we regain our swagger.
And part of regaining our swagger is reminding ourselves what we love about where we live. There are now countless official PR and advertising campaigns aimed at doing just that. But there’s also a growing movement of young entrepreneurs who want us to wear our local pride. Wear it like a shirt.
The explosion of new businesses selling custom-designed t-shirts is not a local thing. And the growth of the “t-shirt economy” has been going on for at least the last several years.
But here in the Midwest, selling t-shirts with a local message isn’t just a business plan. It’s a transformative idea. Whenever you see one of these shirts on the street, you’re seeing a person that’s invested in the survival, growth and reinvention of our region. At the very least, they’re willing to invest $15 in it.
And wherever you live in the Midwest, there’s a now a t-shirt to show your local pride. Here’s a list of some of the t-shirt companies we’ve found:
Jupmode has mostly university apparel, but there are some designs that show off plain-old local pride. Here’s one that brings back the nearly century-old slogan: “You will do better in Toledo.”
If you live in Cleveland, there’s the CLE Clothing Co.
On the other side of the Lake, Chicago is home to one of the biggest players in the t-shirt business today. Threadless doesn’t really sell local t-shirts, but the company is probably the biggest success story in the Midwest t-shirt business.
Chicago is also home to Great To Be Here. Its sole focus is on local shirts, but the designs aren’t limited to the Midwest.
If both of those companies have too broad of a focus for you, you might be interested in Chicago L-Shirts. The company only sells designs that have to do with Chicago’s transit system.
We’re sure there’s more Midwest t-shirt companies out there, so help us fill up the list. Which company has your favorite shirt for showing off local pride?