Detroit ice cream stores face obstacles amid pandemic, keep moving forward

Courtesy of Zahra Saad of The Custard HutHot Waffle Sandwiches sold by The Custard Hut of Dearborn Heights, Michigan

Zahra Saad was startled by the reactions when she announced the opening of her business, the Custard Hut. “When we opened on April 10, I received multiple death threats, multiple threats on my business and actually had people calling the cops to try to shut me down, but we were allowed to be open,” said Saad. For many people, ice cream is the go-to staple of the summer. But during a global pandemic that limits face-to-face interaction and differing opinions by the public and business owners alike about when the appropriate time is to open a store, the sweet treat has undergone a lot of changes these past few months. Several Detroit ice cream stores were forced to close down because of the shelter in place order that was effective March 24.

Lansing mirrors steady growth seen in national restaurant scene

By Eve Kucharski
Listen Up Lansing Staff Reporter

To some, Lansing’s restaurant scene might not seem like it is doing well. Others view it as an area that has been holding steady. But the truth of the matter is, according to Nielsen, in 2011 Lansing’s Restaurant Growth Index (RGI), was up six points above the national average, and far higher than Michigan’s overall average. And according to an associate professor at the School of Hospitality Business at Michigan State University, Jeffery Elsworth, restaurant growth in the nation is up in general. Elsworth said that the number of restaurants in the United States number close to one million, and in a matter of years will reach that landmark.

Holt looking to define downtown identity through 'Realize Cedar' study

By Austin Short
Holt Journal Staff Reporter

Delhi Charter Township has started an initiative called Realize Cedar and they are looking towards its residents for new ideas on how to improve Holt’s downtown area, specifically the triangle of Cedar Street, Holt Road and Aurelius Road. The study has three ways people can give input; offer a big idea, prioritize goals, and answer poll questions. The former allows people to write the township. Prioritize goals lets residents of the area tell the township what is most important to them. Finally ,the poll lets citizens vote and see the results of important considerations such as retail, bike paths, larger sidewalks and restaurants.

Permits approved for Okemos Chick-fil-A, but company mum about specific opening plans

By Ally Hamzey
The Meridian Times Staff Reporter

Mid-Michiganders still await their first taste of the Southern-based fast-food restaurant chain, Chick-fil-A, on their home front. The company’s plans to open a location on Grand River Avenue in front of Meijer in Okemos were confirmed in November and residents today are anticipating further information on the opening of the store. Meridian Township Director of Community Planning and Development Mark Kieselbach confirms that the special use permits necessary for the addition of the restaurant have been approved by the Planning Commission of Meridian Township. “As soon as they announced they were coming to the township, we had a lot of interest. A lot of people follow them, [have tried] Chick-fil-A in other states and like them,” Kieselbach said.

Pasta with pets? Senators propose letting dogs dine on restaurant patios

By JASMINE WATTS
Capital News Service
LANSING — Canines may be allowed as dinner guests in outdoor restaurant dining areas if a new bill passes. Sens. Margaret O’Brien, R-Portage, Tonya Schuitmaker, R-Lawton, and Wayne Schmidt, R-Traverse City, say they are sponsoring the bill to help increase tourism. Current law allows service animals in food establishments but generally prohibits other animals. The new law would allow pet dogs in outdoor dining areas and give local governments the ability to adopt an ordinance that is more restrictive than the bill.