Nov-Dec 2019 Grosse Pointe Magazine

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We are now preparing the 2020 Insider's Guide 
to the Pointes and Harper Woods with the Grosse Pointe Chamber Member Directory. Call 313.640.8955 or email to be included in this annual, informative, coffee table-quality publication delivered to every home and business throughout the year!


Sitting in my corner office overlooking the Kercheval-Notre Dame intersection, I can already anticipate the day-after-Thanksgiving Grosse Pointe Santa Claus Parade. It is one of our favorite days of the year. Our upstairs office is usually full of visitors and employees’ and families’ children. Be sure to stop in for a visit and some hot chocolate and cookies!

Traditionally, I march in America’s Thanksgiving Parade with the Old Newsboys Goodfellows. The following day, I ride in the Grosse Pointe Santa Claus Parade. And then on Monday, I march in the Goodfellows’ Sales Day Parade downtown, followed by selling Goodfellows newspapers. I encourage you to buy a paper from the Goodfellows, whose motto is “No Kiddie Without a Christmas.”

Then, of course we have Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and, for Seinfeld fans, Festivus. 

Before I sign off with my usual admonition to shop locally, I have some housekeeping work to do. In last issue’s Paparazzi listing, “OT in the D” benefiting Detroit Dog Rescue, we misnamed the “host” of the event, Oliver Thomas, who is being held by Bob Lambert.

In another bit of business, I am sad to announce our resident chef, Ethan Steiner, has written his last column for Pointe Magazine. He began writing for us in September 2013 when he was a sous chef at the Grosse  Pointe Hunt Club, where we were members. Since then his culinary career has taken off. Today, Ethan is executive chef at Umbrella’s 1296 in the heart of downtown Sarasota, Fla.. Follow him on twitter@Chef_Ethan. So long, friend, and happy cooking!

We wish you and yours a happy, safe and healthy holiday season. As always, be sure to patronize our many loyal advertisers and businesses without whom Pointe Magazine — and the Grosse Pointe News — would not be possible. Be sure to tell them we sent you!

— John

... and good writers

November is National Novel Writing Month. As a seven-time participant in the NaNoWriMo challenge to write 50,000 words in one month, my mind has been on all things writing.

It’s one of the reasons I was excited to chat with Grosse Pointe Woods writer and publisher Elizabeth Ann Atkins. She’s penned several novels and memoirs, totaling over 30. Her story is one of salvation through the written word, a resource I fear is underutilized today. 

We spoke on many topics, one of them being the tragedy of leaving this world with your story inside of you. She said, “I strongly believe everyone should write down their stories ... It is your legacy.” Read more about her inspiring life and writing on page 48.

After speaking with Atkins, my inspiration for NaNoWriMo again soared at Grosse Pointe Public Library’s Authors to the Pointe on Oct. 19. At The War Memorial luncheon, authors Stephen Mack Jones and Min Jin Lee shared their heartfelt, and often heartbreaking, writing journeys. I was not alone in wiping away tears as the room rose in a standing ovation.

Lee credited librarians in Queens, New York with her entire career. 

“They helped an immigrant child read, write, speak ... Without their kindness, I could not be here.” Her novel Pachinko is one of my all time favorites.

Jones recounted a story about his father taking him to the library on his 6th birthday, marching him to the front desk and ordering him to request a library card for himself. His father passed several years ago.

“You want to make an old man cry?” Jones said. “Think about standing in the same library your father dragged you to on your sixth birthday, holding a book you’ve written, and hearing your father’s voice say, ‘well it’s about time.’”

That brings me back to National Novel Writing Month. Grosse Pointe Public Library will be hosting several NaNoWriMo write-ins throughout November. Visit for locations, dates and times. If you’re curious about the challenge or interested in coffee and the camaraderie of furious typing, I’ll see you there!
— Lauren


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If you or your family or friends live in Grosse Pointe and have not received a copy of the magazine at home, contact us! If they are out of the Pointes, they can subscribe for just $20 a year. Again, please give us a call or shoot us an email!

Publishers John and Terry Minnis of Grosse Pointe Woods look forward to discussing our exciting magazine and business venture with you! Call us at (313) 640-8955 or send email to!