Metro Retro 

22 years ago in Metro Times: Mel Small's headline reads "The Roar of the Hot Dogs, the Smell of the Crowd," as he ponders why it is that a hot dog tastes so much better at Tiger Stadium. "It is a uniquely sublime experience — the warm summer sun, the community of fans, those magical days when one can almost catch a glimpse of Horton or Kaline patrolling that lush, incredibly green field. On such days, even the London Chop House's finest piece of beef is no match for a Ball Park Frank." Speaking of baseball history, last week we lost broadcasting legend Ernie Harwell. For legions of fans, Harwell will always be the voice of the Tigers, as much a part of the experience as soaking in some sun, eating a hot dog and pulling for Detroit's finest on a summer day. Rest in peace, Ernie. What was happening: King Sunny Adé at the Michigan Theater, the Meat Puppets at the Nectarine Ballroom, Depeche Mode at Pine Knob, and the Giant prepared for a bout with Hacksaw Jim Dugan at the Pontiac Silverdome.

15 years ago in Metro Times: Jack Lessenberry closes his column touching on two major Michigan-related stories, "We live in a state, where it is perfectly legal for the strutting woodlot fascists of the Michigan Militia to buy lethal weapons, but a minister can't legally get a soft landing. Well, if that's normal, count me among the weird, count me for choice, count me on the side of this quietly brilliant, anarchistic little man," Lessenberry says, referring of course to Dr. Jack Kevorkian. This month, HBO's You Don't Know Jack, which was filmed in Royal Oak, airs multiple times a week with none other than Al Pacino playing the good (or not so good) doctor, while MT's Lessenberry is played by James Urbaniak. What was happening: Second City Detroit debuts its latest show, "Ito Phone Home," with a playbill featuring the O.J. Simpson judge riding his bike over the moon. Also, the three-day Greektown Art Fair showcased more than 150 local artists.

6 years ago in Metro Times: Curt Guyette brings the ASS back! The Abandoned Structure Squad, that is. Under the aegis of that coy moniker, Guyette and a team of other MT reporters returned after a two-year break with a recap of previously covered abandoned structures across Detroit. In the course of the 48-building project, 22 buildings were demolished and eight were renovated. Unfortunately, another 18 were still standing, sometimes in worse condition than when the project began. "A Dumpster doesn't normally evoke a feeling of hope. But when one sits beside an abandoned Detroit home, it's a good sign." For the following weeks, ASS would return to the News Hits section, focusing on Detroit structures in peril. What was happening: Dick Dale at the Magic Bag, Umphrey's McGee at St. Andrew's Hall and the Cardigans at the Magic Stick.

Special thanks to editorial intern Pietro Truba for his assistance compiling this column.

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