Saturday, February 26, 2011

Say Goodbye

Sending off superstars Amalie Nash, Stefanie Murray and David Jesse in style at Conor O'Neils Irish Pub on Main Street in downtown Ann Arbor Friday night. The highlight of the night was Geoff Larcom's roast of Amalie and Stefanie. Watch it here.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Snow My God

City Administrator Roger Fraser acknowledged the city's shortcomings as he briefed the Ann Arbor City Council Tuesday night on the city's latest snow removal efforts. "We were not anticipating the event that we got," Fraser said of the winter storm that started Sunday and left more than 9 inches of snow on area roadways by Monday. Lack of an accurate forecast is part of the reason why the city wasn't fully prepared, Fraser said. He also acknowledged the city purposefully has avoided investing in more heavy duty plow equipment that could help the city respond more quickly to such a severe weather event. "They would allow faster progress on our majors if we had access to vehicles like that, but we don't. And we think it's an appropriate budgetary strategy to not gear up for this rather untypical event," Fraser said. Another 4 to 6 inches of snow is forecasted to hit the area by Friday. Read the story here.

Monday, February 21, 2011

The Art Of Cannabis

These are hydroponic and soil-grown strains of Kali Mist, Pure Power Plant, and L.A. Confidential marijuana. PPP is an extremely strong sativa developed in the late 1990s by crossbreeding South African and Dutch strains. Kali Mist, developed in the early 1990s, is considered one of the top sativa strains around. L.A. Confidential captures the genetics of O.G. Kush, which first became popular in the Los Angeles market in the 1990s and was made famous as rappers like Snoop Dogg and Cypress Hill namechecked it in their songs. It's said to be a great medical strain for pain relief, insomnia, appetite stimulation, and general anxiety.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

The Constant Gardner

Tony Keene, owner of the Hydro Med medical marijuana co-op on South Industrial Highway in Ann Arbor, tends to his hydroponically grown crops on Saturday afternoon. Keene is asking a judge to force the Ann Arbor City Council to clearly define the terms "cultivation facility" and "dispensary" before proceeding with a new medical marijuana licensing ordinance. Keene, a California native, grows several different strains of marijuana, including L.A. Woman, L.A. Confidential, Vanilla Kush, and Himalayan Gold. He remains hopeful his business will take off. He has big plans for a multifaceted operation that is part indoor farm, part research facility, and part chromatography lab — with quality-control testing for THC and cannabinoids. His hope is to offer "certified pot." "I'm just not interested in selling pot — I'm interested in seeing this become a legitimate business," he said. "We're talking pharmaceutical development, pharmaceutical research. There's a huge, legitimate industry to be built out of this. And the dispensary model, it's turned into a group of people who want to have Amsterdam here. I'm sorry, this is the Midwest." Read the story here.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Go Figure

The upstairs area of the Ann Arbor Art Center currently features an exhibit by figurative sculptors Chris Untalan and Mark Chatterly, who suggest the human form and face in radically different ways. In the foreground below is a piece by Untalan, who takes pride in representing the figure in its natural form. In the background, at left, is a piece by Chatterley, whose work is described as ritualistic figures made of high-fired stoneware and volcanic glaze. Both artists will have their work on display through March 27. Lectures by the artists and a hands-on workshop presented by the Art Center will be held in conjunction with the exhibition on March 5.

Scenes From Artini 2011

Four hundred merry revelers took to the streets of downtown Ann Arbor Friday night for Artini 2011, the annual martini crawl held to benefit the Ann Arbor Art Center. Eight bars participated in this year's event, including Alley Bar, Bab's Underground, Black Pearl, Cafe Felix, Cafe Habana, Melange, Jolly Pumpkin and Vinology. Hands down, the best martini of them all was at Alley Bar. The two that made my Fail List were Black Pearl (it was loaded with milk, chocolate and marshmallow) and Vinology (it had bits of chorizo in it).

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Free Camel Rides

Pretty Bird, Pretty Bird


The first of these two photos was taken just moments before the girl pictured turned around and yelled to her parents, "Hey, he just took a sip of my Coke!" Yes, the animal snuck a sip while she wasn't looking. Absolutely classic.

Little Miss Silver Spurs

A friend of mine was assigned to shoot the 2011 Miss Silver Spurs and Little Miss Silver Spurs pageant held Monday night in conjunction with the Osceola County Fair. I tagged along and came away with a few shots of my own.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Going The Extra Mile

Not all photographers would get into a pen with a feisty bull (one that likes to swing its horns around) just to make a picture of a petting zoo for a local weekly newspaper. But my friend Octavian is not your average photographer. He spent some time Monday night alongside this African Watusi, waiting for the perfect moment when a bright-eyed kid would come up with a handful of feed for our furry friend. According to the folks at Eudora Farms, the Watusi are a breed of cattle that originated in Uganda and trace back more than 7,000 years. They are said to be the largest horned cattle in the world, with horns reaching up to 8 feet in length.

Osceola County Fair

Carnival rides, stunt dogs, and bull riding. What more does a kid need?