Toy graveyard 

Abandoned Shelter of the Week

The City of Detroit has 959 Burlingame marked for demolition, but neighbors of the property might regret the disappearance of such a well-loved spot. It has apparently become a very handy place for dumping used toys. Who knows how the phenomenon began? What might have once been an innocent piece of backyard litter has evolved into a huge tangle of discarded kiddie paraphernalia. Among the not-so-well-loved objects identified by ASS (that’s Abandoned Structure Squad to you): two Big Wheels, a plastic kitchenette set, a pink dollhouse and an upside-down rocking horse. The house itself is a white two-story home built in 1916 that has been cutely decorated with bright blue accents. The city lists the Youth and Adult Prayer Center as owner, but neighbor George Reese says the property has been vacant for at least 13 years. How the toys found their resting place might be a mystery, but a seemingly fresh dirty diaper placed atop the front porch leads ASS to wonder whether the perp is not too far off.

Editor’s note: If you know of an abandoned home you would like to see featured in this spot, send a photo and pertinent information to News Hits, c/o Metro Times, 733 St. Antoine, Detroit, MI 48226 (or e-mail

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