Archive for February, 2013

Dearborn Resident Buys Former Cheli’s Chili Bar

Thursday, February 21st, 2013

The building that once housed Cheli’s Chili Bar in Dearborn has a new owner.

Najib Rizk, a Dearborn resident who owns the nearby Le Cigar cocktail and cigar bar on Michigan Avenue, tells that a deal was inked on Wednesday.

Cheli’s officially closed its doors Wednesday night, hosting a “closing party” for all of its regulars and friends.

Rizk says he plans to reopen the building as a restaurant and bar under a new name, promising to bring something special to Dearbornites.

“I am investing in Dearborn because I love this city,” Rizk says. “My plan is to make that corner of downtown west Dearborn a destination for Dearborn and metro Detroit.”

We wish him the best.


Deal Near to Sell Cheli’s Chili Bar in Dearborn

Tuesday, February 19th, 2013
A deal is near to sell Cheli’s Chili Bar in Dearborn. The restaurant is owned by former Detroit Red Wings defenseman Chris Chelios.

A deal is near to sell Cheli’s Chili Bar in Dearborn. The restaurant is owned by former Detroit Red Wings defenseman Chris Chelios.

Cheli’s Chili Bar in Dearborn, owned by former Detroit Red Wings defenseman Chris Chelios, is expected to be sold as early as this week, according to people familiar with the restaurant.

If the sale goes through, the restaurant/bar would close and reopen under a new name and theme. Cheli’s employees are being told their last day of work could be as soon as Wednesday, Feb. 20.

The sale of Cheli’s is not unexpected. Chris Chelios has been trying to sell the location since retiring from the Detroit Red Wings. It is not clear what Chelios will do with his Detroit restaurant, located across from Comerica Park, home of the Detroit Tigers.

Cheli’s Chili Bar was once one of the more popular places in Dearborn but over the years it has become just another bar in Dearborn.

If the building sale does go through, we are hopeful the restaurant will be renovated and reopened with something that will spark more interest in downtown west Dearborn.


Cass Ambassadors at Dearborn First United Methodist Church

Tuesday, February 19th, 2013

The Cass Ambassadors, a unique vocal group composed of formerly homeless men, will be the featured performers at an event aimed to help immigrants make a new life in their new home.

The group will share its Old Gospel and Motown favorites as part of a celebration dinner hosted by Justice For Our Neighbors of Southeastern Michigan, the national charitable organization which provides free, high-quality legal immigration services, education and advocacy to those in need.

The concert and strolling dinner, catered by Fuego Mexican Grill of Dearborn, will take place March 2 at Dearborn First United Methodist Church, 22124 Garrison. The dinner begins at 6 p.m., followed by the concert at 7:30 p.m.

The event celebrates the group’s third year in operation. Rev. Paul Perez, regional coordinator of JFON-SEMI explains, “Immigration has shot to the top of the national agenda in the past month. It has been at the top of our agenda for three years. As an organization on the frontline we pause to celebrate our success and to look forward to the hope of immigration reform.”

In recognition of advocacy efforts on behalf of immigrants statewide, Steve Tobocman, director of Global Detroit, a regional economic revitalization strategy for the Detroit area focused on immigration and global connections, will be in attendance to accept the Just Neighbor Advocacy Award.

The group employs a full-time immigration attorney who serves clients by appointment at three volunteer-led monthly immigration clinics located in Dearborn, Pontiac and Ypsilanti. In the last three years, it has served more than 300 clients from nearly 70 different countries. For more information on the group and its operations, or to make an appointment, go to

The Cass Ambassador choir was organized 10 years ago at the urging of Rev. Faith Fowler, executive director of Cass Community Social Services. Says Fowler, “The men volunteer their time and talent. More than that, they offer their stories of struggle, hardship, addiction, institutionalization, etc. and those that depict recovery, community, and mentoring. They serve as ambassadors for the church, Cass Community Social Services and for Christ.”

The event is open to the public. Tickets for the dinner and concert are $30 per person, $5 per child 12 and under, and can be reserved by calling Perez at 1-734-422-0149, or email: Admission to the concert only is $10 per person, children 12 and under free. Admission paid at the door.

Discount Grocer ValuLand Opens Sunday in Dearborn

Saturday, February 16th, 2013

The grand opening for Valu Land, a new discount grocery store in Dearborn, is this Sunday.

Valu Land is Spartan Store Inc.’s version of Aldi, a discount grocery store with no brand name products. Valu Land is also designed to compete with Save-A-Lot and even dollar stores. Many of the products lining the shelves of Valu Land will be the grocer’s own Spartan brand or the discounted brand Valu Time.

The new store is scheduled to open at 8 a.m. Sunday.

While some in Dearborn have expressed disappointment about this new discount grocer coming to this location, Spartan Stores does deserve credit for sprucing up the building it is moving into and improving the general look of that area.

Some Dearborn city leaders were hoping for an Aldi to move into the former Michael’s location rather than Valu Land, which says a lot about how low the business bar has been set by some in City Hall.

Neither store is desirable but it does provide a glimpse into the minds of some city executives who are willing to accept average or below instead of trying to attract more aspirational businesses such as a Trader Joe’s or a Whole Foods Market.


Boy Scout Troop 1111 Holding Annual Pancake Supper Fundraiser 5-7 p.m.

Monday, February 4th, 2013

Boy Scout Troop 1111 is holding its annual Pancake Supper on Friday, February 8 from 5:00 p.m.-7:30 p.m. at Cherry Hill United Presbyterian Church (Cherry Hill and Telegraph) in Dearborn.

This is Troop 1111’s main fundraising event. It supports troop activities throughout the year. Tickets are available at the door, $6 for adults, $4 for children and seniors.

This year’s fundraiser has a dual purpose. One of our scouts, Eagle Scout Karl Meffert, is ill and currently in the University of Michigan Hospital. Troop 1111 will be donating some of its supper proceeds to help Karl.

Please support Troop 1111 and their fellow scout Karl.