Detroit's options for distinctive venues continue to grow.

The Detroit Institute of Music (DIME) opened September 2014 in the former Bamlet Building on Griswold. The 1896 structure, abandoned since the 1980s, was bought and rehabbed by Dan Gilbert’s Bedrock Real Estate Services.

“We moved in and revamped the entire thing, head to toe,” says Brittany Morris, the institute’s team administrator. “It’s definitely a more modern space now, but we tried to keep some of the historic elements.”

DIME is an accredited music institute, opened by Brits Kevin Nixon and Sarah Clayman. The institute also offers short courses, certificate programs and summer camps for kids, all focused on modern music.

Its spaces are available for rent, and already have hosted album release parties, musical gigs, private birthday parties, a graduation party and a wedding rehearsal dinner.

DIME’s main rental space, the Underground, is located in the basement and is fully decked out for musical events, from the ticket booth window at the entrance to the top-notch sound system and acoustics.

“There can be a rock band playing on stage, but you can still have conversations at the bar,” Morris says. The Underground can host 300 guests standing and 150 seated. In addition to the bar, it includes a DJ booth, two dressing rooms, coat check and catering staging area.

The first-floor Acoustic Space is also available. The open floor plan includes large windows overlooking downtown. The Acoustic Space offers a full sound stage, sound system and acoustic paneling. It can accommodate about 150 guests standing or 75 seated, and has two conference rooms and a lounge area with couches and other seating. Décor includes vintage tables found in partnership with facility-design firm dPop!

Finally, the LPW Room, which holds 50, is well suited for networking events and meetings. 

Rent it:

 > The Underground: $300/hour
 > Acoustic Space: $200/hour
 > LPW Room: $100/hour

 > Two on-site staff members available to help
 > Use of the space, musical equipment and sound system 
 > Use of 10 half-moon tables Use of available table and chairs in the Acoustic Space

Security is available for $25 per hour per guard (one guard can cover 100 people) Event insurance is required; cost is $100-150 per day
 > Parking is available, both in a valet garage across the street and a surface lot. Average prices range from $5-10.
 > Renters may use the caterer of their choice.

MACVB Annual Educational Conference finally reaches the shores of Mackinac Island.

As I rode in the carriage from the Shepler’s Ferry terminal to the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island, my mind wandered to a scene from “Monty Python and the Holy Grail.” In said scene, King Arthur and his sidekick, Patsy, approach a castle while galloping and banging coconuts together. After a few moments passed and my mind wandered back to the tree-lined streets of the island, I realized it was the clippety-clop of the draft horses pulling our carriage that brought on my thoughts of Python.


First came COVID. Then came the tornado.

The northern Michigan community of Gaylord was just starting to rebound from the pandemic with its groups and events business as a new season was getting underway when a rare EF3 tornado with estimated wind speeds between 136 and 165 miles per hour struck May 20.

Two people were killed and at least 44 were injured, according to official reports at the time. West Michigan meteorologist Bill Steffen said it was the strongest tornado to strike in the U.S. that month. 


A conference or convention venue might be described by meeting planners as offering ease and convenience for multiple reasons. It may be because its address is easily accessible from numerous compass points. Or perhaps it’s the destination—with a variety of opportunities for activities and entertainment close-by. And of course, it could be that the venue itself offers a peaceful, easy setting with all the comforts you could want. 

Well, at Treetops Resort, it’s all of the above.