Archive for Events/Happenings

The Major “Get” of 2015

October 2015 BE Culturally Exposed, the organizer of the garden at Nolan Elementary-Middle School, participated in the Detroit Community Development Awards “People’s Choice Awards” which was presented by Comerica Bank.  This was the first year of the People’s Choice Award and the winners would come from 7 geographically defined districts in the City of Detroit.  Each winner would be given $1000 and would be determined by an online voting program where supporters could vote as often as they’d like, once a day, during a 15-day period.


Winning out of District 3 was BE Culturally Exposed!  We contribute our success to the online efforts of friends, volunteers and supporters, you know “people who know somebody that knows somebody”.  We used every social marketing tool that was available for us to use to reach out to our constituents to get them to vote not just once but as frequent as the rules allowed.  It was a social networking miracle that enabled us to compete with other “more recognized or established” programs.  But like the little engine that could…we did, we won and it couldn’t have come at a better time.


We were vandalized at the end of the year by some individuals that do not appreciate what we are doing for the students of Nolan, the school, families and the community immediately adjacent to the school and several of the beds were in need of repair.  That’s where the award money is going…new raised beds!  New beds will be easier and safer for the young gardeners to manage.  Plus, we suspect they will be slightly more durable.  Lastly, they are modular, so we should be able to come up with some unique bed formations that may fuel their creative minds.


We also received a sizeable donation from Michigan First Credit Union toward the repair of the beds.  Lowe’s Home Improvement then stepped up big time by selling us some beds at cost, donating several more and providing soil upgrading materials at cost. We were able to feed and upgrade the soil conditions of each bed, including the new ones!


So a Big THANK YOU to all of our friends and supporters (the people that know somebody) that voted and helped us win the $1000 award.  Thanks to Michigan First Credit Union (Andy Daily) for their continued support and thanks to Lowe’s Home Improvement for their timely contribution.


This was so much fun, let’s do it again!


Bonnie Odom-Brown

B.E. Culturally Exposed


Maura Ryan-Kaiser

MIFCU logo and tagline

Andy Daily, Bus. Development/Community Dev.


Arthur Littsey


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Happy Holidays!!!

This year the sponsors of the Nolan Elementary-Middle School “Planting The Seeds” garden decided to spread a little holiday cheer.  With the help of the school administration two families were picked to receive gift certificates to buy food for their holiday meals.

Thanksgiving Gift Certificate Recipient & Bonnie Odom-Brown

Thanksgiving Gift Certificate Recipient & Bonnie Odom-Brown

Christmas Gift Certificate Recipients & Bonnie Odom-Brown

Christmas Gift Certificate Recipients &
Bonnie Odom-Brown



Bonnie Odom-Brown & Family

B.E. Culturally Exposed

Sandra Tomlin

Michigan First Credit Union

Maura Ryan-Kaiser & Family

Snelling Staffing Services

Mazin Shina 

Imperial Supermarket

Arthur Littsey

Project Sweet Tomato

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Pot Luck Picnic 2013

2013 Summer Potluck Picnic



Elementary-Middle School

“Planting the Seeds”

School Garden

on Saturday, July 27th


@ 12:00 noon3:00


will be provided!

Bring a dish to pass around!

2013 at the garden was full of changes…a lot of them.  Our student base was younger.  The support was stronger…more consistent over term.  Our goals were a little higher.  One thing we really wanted to do was to change the dynamic of the mid-season picnic. Because of the extended school semester (another change) we foresaw an opportunity to get more parents involved by having a good old-fashion “potluck” picnic.  Each young gardener took home a flyer to their parents seeking permission to attend because it was on a non-school day.  The turnout…students to parents, was better than previous years and we all had a great time.  It was nice to see the kids take their parents out to the various beds and tell them what they were growing.  If they were even a little bit like me, they were planning future dinner menus as they strolled through

 It was also significant for us to have our teacher, Ms. Carrie Hahn and the school principal, Angela Underwood and her family show up.  This reflects the new attitude that Principal Underwood and her teachers represent.  They do everything they can to reach all of the positive touch points they can.  This means that they are always pretty busy.  Busy yes, but there is no shortage of sincerity in their efforts.

There were plenty of candid moments, some that the cameras didn’t capture.  The sampling of Ms. Hahn’s homemade Kale Chips for starters!  Babies were pampered, it didn’t matter whose baby it was, on this day we were all family.  The kids, as they proudly introduced us and the garden to their parents.  There were the moments where we could talk directly to each parent about how well their child was doing and how hard they worked.  There were compliments from the parents as well.  You could see how proud they were of their little munchkins as they showed off their hard work!

Mazin Shina (Imperial Super Market) & Bonnie Odom-Brown

Mazin Shina (Imperial Super Market) &
Bonnie Odom-Brown

2013 Summer Gardens 151

One of our garden families!

Principal Underwood getting a tour by her students

Principal Underwood getting a tour by her students

Two of our garden superstars!

Two of our garden superstars!

Ms. Hahn with her students and her brother

Ms. Hahn with her students and her brother

I'm talkin' about love...L-O-V-E!

I’m talkin’ about love…L-O-V-E

Does she like what she sees?

Does she like what she sees?

Bonnie's always working!

Bonnie’s always working!

Picnic Central!

Picnic Central!

A Special Thanks to Our Food & Supplies Sponsors…

Mazin Shina

Imperial Super Market

(8 Mile & Dequindre/Detroit)


Maura Ryan-Kaiser



Sandra Tomlin

MIFCU logo and tagline********************

Bonnie Odom-Brown

B.E. Culturally Exposed



Arthur Littsey


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Events/Happenings: Easter Egg Hunts @Metroparks

A Cute Little Bunny With Some Eggs

A Cute Little Bunny With Some Eggs (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I can remember when I was a kid one of the things that I wanted to do the most was the one thing I never did…go on an Easter Egg Hunt!  I would see the video clips on television on the annual hunt at the White House and was just turned inside out with jealousy.  To be honest it wasn’t so much the event but my desire for hardboiled eggs.  I just loved those eggs and I still do.  To me heaven was a basket of dyed eggs at home and being at the hunt where I could collect as many eggs that I could.

Nowadays, if the itch were to scratch me, I could take advantage of the egg hunts at several metroparks in the metro Detroit region.  Let’s take a look…

Saturday, March 23rd

Annual Egg Scramble                      1:00p.m.

Stoney Creek Metropark Nature Center (near Washington Township/Rochester)

Meet the Easter Bunny; make an Easter craft and more.  The Egg Scramble will be grouped by age.

Fee: $4 per child.  Pre-registrations are required.

More Info (or to register):  Call (586) 781-9113


Easter Egg Scramble                      10:00a.m.; 1:00p.m.

Willow Metropark (near new Boston)

Egg hunt, crafts, games, and a petting farm.

Fee: $5 per child.  Advance ticket purchase is required.

More info: (734) 782-3956


Sunday, March 24th

Farm Egg Scramble                      12:00 noon to 3:00p.m.

Wolcott Mill Metropark Farm Center (Ray Township)

Visit with farm animals; make a craft, scramble for eggs, visit with the Easter Bunny, laugh with Rosco the Clown and stop by Bunnyville to see the bunnies!

Fee: $5 per child.  Advance ticket purchase is not required.  Wagon rides and food will be available to purchase.

More info: (586) 752-5932


Easter Egg Hunt                 12:00 noon to 2:00p.m.

Hudson Mills Metropark (near Dexter/Ann Arbor)

Children ages 12 and under can watch the Farmer John and the barnyard Express animal show, join in fun activities, hunt for eggs and meet the Easter Bunny while waiting for their age group to be called.

Fee: $4 per child in advance and $6 per child at the door.

More info: (734) 426-8211


Thursday, March 28th

Fun on the Farm Egg Hunt             10:00a.m.

Kensington Metropark Farm Center (near Milford/Brighton)

Meet the Easter Bunny and take part in an egg scramble.

Fee: $5 per child. Babies between 12 months and under are free.

More info: (248) 684-8632


Saturday, March 30th

Easter Egg Scramble with Rosco the Clown    10:00a.m.; 1:00p.m.

Environmental Discovery Center of Indian Springs Metropark (near White Lake)

Share some laughs with Rosco the Clown, face painting, spring crafts and an Easter Egg Hunt scheduled by age.

Fee: $5 per child in advance.  Pre-registration required.

More info (or to register): (248) 625-7280


Easter Egg Scramble                                  10:00a.m.; 1:00p.m.

Wave Pool Complex @Lake Erie Metropark  (Brownstown)

Hunt for eggs in the children’s play area, take a hayride, meet the Easter “Muskrat,” have a light lunch, do some “egg-citing” crafts and pet live bunnies and farm animals.

Fee: $5 per child in advance only.  Tickets can only be purchased at the park office.

More info (or to register): (734) 379-5020


The Great Egg Hunt                             10:30a.m.

Maple Beach at Kensington Metropark (near Milford/Brighton)

Pose for pictures with the Easter Bunny, watch Farmer John and the Barnyard Express animal show (10:30 and 11:30a.m.). The Easter egg hunt will be held at 11:00a.m.

Fee: $5 per child, payable at the event.  Children 12 months of age and under are free.

More Info: (810) 47-PARKS


A vehicle entry permit is required to enter any Metropark and is $25 annually for regular admission, $15 annually for seniors, or $5 daily.  General information can be found at or by calling (800) 47-PARKS


Have fun and Happy Hunting!

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Southeastern Michigan Family Events: Feb. – Apr. 2013

Looking for something to do with your kids?  Here’s a list of fun and educational things you can do that are close by.

All events within 50 miles of Detroit
Call each event to make sure it has not been cancelled or postponed.

Sesame Street Live – Elmo Makes Music – Detroit

Date(s):  1/24/13 – 2/18/13

At:  Fox Theatre

Jenny, an enthusiastic new music teacher, arrives on Sesame Street only to discover “instruments” Elmo and his friends never knew existed.


Motown Winter Blast 2013 – Detroit

Date(s):  2/8/13 – 2/10/13

At:  Campus Martius Park

Motown Winter Blast is a unique combination of hip and fun winter events that are centered on Campus Martius Park.  This year we are celebrating Motown with a fun celebration you will not want to miss.  For more information see website.


Richmond Winter & Ice Festival 2013 – Richmond

Date(s):  2/8/13 – 2/10/13

At:  Richmond Area Chamber of Commerce

Experience the taste of Richmond, chili cook-off, FREE Family Fun Festival, live entertainment, ice-carving demonstrations, dog sledding exhibit. Ice sculptures around town.  For additional information call (586) 727-3266


Chelsea’s 5th Annual Chocolate Extravaganza – Chelsea

Date(s):  2/9/13

At:  Chelsea Area Chamber of Commerce

Pairing chocolate and shopping together for a fun, winter family day.  Over 30 businesses will offer chocolate tastings, gifts with purchase, drawings, and free kids activities from 10 am to 5 pm.  For more information call (734) 475-3539


Detroit Boat Show – Detroit

Date(s):  2/16/13 – 2/24/13

At:  Cobo Center

The Detroit Boat Show is the original, biggest and best boat show in the state of Michigan, featuring the premiere showing of hundreds of new 2013 and new non-current model boats, motors, trailers, accessories and more.


Peter Pan – Monroe

Date(s):  3/23/13 – 3/24/13

At:  River Raisin Centre for the Arts

Soar through the clouds, fight the pirates and relive your childhood with The River Raisin Ballet Company’s production of Peter Pan, a coming of age tale that pits Peter and the Lost Boys against Captain Hook and his outrageous band of pirates.


Scooby-Doo Live! Musical Mysteries – Detroit

Date(s):  4/13/13 – 4/14/13

At:  Fox Theatre

The much-loved Scooby-Doo and the Mystery Inc. Gang take center stage in an all-new family musical.  For information call (800) 745-3000


Peter Pan – Performance – Detroit

Date(s): 4/19/13 – 4/21/13

At:  Fox Theatre

Peter Pan is a unique, family friendly attraction of spectacle and fantasy.  The thrill of flying, timeless magical moments and a captivating hook will mesmerize your and old alike.  The legend you thought you knew is now the adventure.


Carrying over from 2012…

UMMA Exhibition:  African Art and the Shape of Time – Ann Arbor

Date(s):  8/18/12 – 2/3/13

At:  University of Michigan – Museum of Art

African Art and the Shape of Time explores how African art gives material form to diverse concepts of temporality, history and memory.  African art is often interpreted in Western analytical frameworks as expressions of timeless myths.


Visions of Our 44th President – Exhibit – Detroit

Date(s):  9/20/12 – 8/4/13

At:  Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History

Visions of Our 44th President, a groundbreaking, collective art exhibit, was created to honor and celebrate the significance of the first African American President of the United States, Barack Obama.  For information call (313) 494-5800


A Very Present Force: Celebrating a Century of the Detroit Branch NAACP – Detroit

Date(s):  11/1/12 – 3/3/13

At:  Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History

Since its formation in 1912 – only three years after the founding of the national association – the Detroit Branch NAACP has been on the frontline of civil rights activism and advocacy, both locally and throughout the nation.


Lego® Architecture: Towering Ambition – Dearborn

Date(s):  11/3/12 – 2/24/13

At:  The Henry Ford

Childhood’s favorite bricks re-create some of the world’s most famous and fanciful buildings.  With a hands-on LEGO® Play Pit.  For more information call (313) 982-6001


Source:  Michigan Events – Special Event Calendar/Pure Michigan

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More than a sign of hope…a sense of purpose!

Garlic April 2012

The picture you see above is called Allium Sativa or more commonly called Garlic.  It was planted by last year’s group of “Nolan’s Fierce Gardeners.”  Last year the kids were fascinated by the notion that something they planted then was not going to die over the winter and actually grow big and strong come spring.  Well, lo and behold the magic of Mother Nature.  You plant a seed (in this case a few bulbs) and due to the wondrous force that nature is, it grows into a living and productive plant that will make a minor, yet, significant contribution to our food chain.  There’s a “life” lesson even in that for our young wards. 

As an adult with a pretty diverse palate it’s easy for me to understand the importance of the many types of plants (fruit and vegetables) that contribute to the food chain.  Our young gardeners are starting to show a little more understanding and appreciation too…about the food and themselves.  It’s really cool when you see on the faces or in the eyes their fascination of garlic’s evolutionary process from planting a bulb to eating a bulb.  And there’s that feeling of pride from knowing that they have taken a collective and individual step forward, by ensuring that there will be something for them or for others to come back to in the spring of 2012. 

I believe that they had an unspoken but unified sense of purpose when planting the garlic bulbs, even the ones that knew they weren’t coming back.  They expected what they started to carry on…go forward…to endure!  And for anybody that came to the garden looking for just a sign of hope, the bet is they walked away with a sense of purpose too!

Looking for a way to help or support the inspired students of Nolan’s Fierce Gardeners, contact:

Additionally, we are having a garden kick-off on Saturday, May 12th.  It starts at 10:00a.m. and it stops when everything is done.  It’s at Nolan Elementary-Middle School.  The address is 1150 Lantz.  For you googlers it is in the 48203 zip code.  Look below to see the information on the flyer.


BE Culturally Exposed 

Invites you to the 2012 Garden Kick-Off

Of the Nolan Community School Garden


May 12, 2012 10:00 AM – Until

Building Raised Beds , Planting, Garden Bed  Clean-up

Food & Beverages Provided

Please bring your gloves & plenty of energy!!!!!!

Call me with any questions at 313-804-6776. Bonnie Odom-Brown-, Garden Coordinator



This project is a partnership with



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The Greening of Detroit – Garden Resource Program Events

It is not too late to join The Greening of Detroit’s Garden Resource Collaborative.  Here’s a short list of some of their upcoming events:

  • Thursday, April 12th, 5:00 – 7:00PM or Saturday, April 14th, 1:00 – 3:00PM  Pick up COOL WEATHER TRANSPLANTS at Earthworks Urban Farm, 1264 Meldrum.
  • Thursday, May 17th, 5:00 – 7:00PM or Saturday, May 19th, 1:00 – 3:00PM  Pick up your HOT WEATHER TRANSPLANTS at Earthworks Urban Farm, 1264 Meldrum.

Please contact The Greening of Detroit/Garden Resource Program Collaborative for more information at (313) 285-2300 or visit their website at

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