On my most recent book tour, I spread out my readings so I would have a little extra time in each city to talk with social justice organizations, visit friends, and have some general fun. At each stop, I asked the locals I met, “If you moved away from [insert city name here], and you were back for only one day, what would you do?”
In Detroit, the answer was pretty unanimous: Belle Isle.
Belle Isle is a nearly-1,000 acre park in the middle of the Detroit River. The park was designed by Frederick Law Olmstead, who was also responsible for Central Park in NYC. While Belle Isle Park is more than 100 acres larger, its annual budget is a mere $2.8 million — compared to Central Parks $43 million — for all physical upkeep and programs. Unfortunately this means that many of its wonderful resources are unavailable most of the week, or have closed for good: the aquarium, the zoo, the casino.
Following are some pictures of Belle Isle, and other things I like about Detroit.
More things (not on Belle Isle) I Like About Detroit: