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Archive for April, 2011

Spring has finally arrived in southeastern Michigan.  Trees and flowers are blooming, grass is turning green and growing.

I was struck by the beauty of these blooming hyacinths in my yard and wanted to share them.  I have this ambitious idea that I will post photos of things blooming here in town, but I know that I will more likely than not find myself busy with other projects in the coming weeks.

For now, enjoy these flowers.  If you see hyacinths in bloom, make sure to smell them (while they are here.)

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If you’ve been downtown in the last few weeks, you’ve noticed that the intersection of Penniman and Main Street is under construction.  Getting around downtown is more difficult given that Main Street is closed between Ann Arbor Trail and Fralick.

The Downtown Development Authority’s official information packet indicates the expected completion date for the project is May 4, 2011.

Here are some photos from the DDA’s Facebook page.

PHOTOS COURTESY OF DOWNTOWN DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY

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As just about everyone in town knows, much of Scream 4, which opens this Friday, was shot right here in Plymouth.   I’ve seen several trailers that show a few recognizable places around town.  Here’s an older trailer.  See if you can spot Plymouth landmarks.

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The Coffee Beanery, Sheldon and Ann Arbor Road, Plymouth

There is no shortage of coffee vendors in Plymouth.  Between the City and the Township, there are two Starbucks, at least two independent coffee houses, a few chains that sell lots of coffee as a sideline (e.g. Panera), and another franchise coffee store.  Of course, every gas station and restaurant sells coffee.  You can get it anywhere.

If I’m going to spend money on coffee, I look for three things, not always in this order:

  1. Convenience — Is the place close to home or work?  Can I get my coffee and get out of there quickly when I’m in a hurry?
  2. Coffee quality — Does the coffee taste good?  How is the variety?  If it’s not better than the lousy Maxwell House we have at the office, there’s no point in paying $2 for a cup.
  3. Service — Are the people cool?  I don’t need to be best buddies with the barista, but I’d like to think I’m a people person and when I have the time, I like to talk to the people with whom I am interacting.

Atmosphere is not a big thing for me these days.  I don’t tend to hang out much at coffee shops, so I don’t care whether or not there’s jazz wafting through the background or cool people sitting around reading heady books.   I’m certainly not against that (almost stereotypical) coffee shop atmosphere, I just don’t seek it out most of the time.

Given what I like and don’t about coffee vendors, The Coffee Beanery in Plymouth Township is one of my favorite places to get coffee in town.   It’s close to where I work; I can walk there in about 90 seconds.  That’s probably not true for most people, but getting in and out of there while you’re out and about town is just as easy if you’re driving.  The Beanery is the store closest to Ann Arbor Road, on the northwest corner of the Sheldon/AA Road intersection.  Pull in the lot, park, get your coffee, go!  Easy!

The coffee’s pretty dang good, too.  Full disclosure: I’m not a big fan of Starbucks.  That said, I feel like I can objectively the Beanery’s house blend, Beanery Blend, beats Starbucks’ house blend hands down.  Their coffees are flavorful but less acidic than some of Starbucks’ stuff I’ve had.  And you certainly won’t get better coffee or desserts at the gas station!

Each day, you’ll have three blends to choose from, typically.  For me, that’s plenty of variety.  I’ve sorted settled in with my favorites, so I don’t worry too much about choices.

Lastly, the service is great.  Everyone that works there that I’ve dealt with is genuinely warm, friendly and know how to treat customers.  The owners, the Changs, are great people and I really enjoy getting to know them.

Don’t forget the Coffee Beanery if you’re looking for a good coffee shop to hang out in or run in and grab a nice brew.  I think it works both as a sit down place — they have wi-fi *thumbs up* — and a grab-and-go place.

 

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