This Week on One Detroit:

Republicans, Democrats in tight race to fill Sen. Debbie Stabenow’s seat in 2024 election

The race for Debbie Stabenow’s open Michigan senate seat will be decided this year. Among the Republican candidates for the primary are former Rep. Mike Rogers, former Rep. Peter Meijer, Grosse Pointe Park businessman Sandy Pensler, and former Rep. Justin Amash. 

Former President Trump recently announced his endorsement of Rogers, and polls show Rogers is in a tight race against the Democratic front-runner for the senate seat, U.S. Rep. Elissa Slotkin. The Republican party has not won a Michigan U.S. state senate race since 1994. 

Stabenow was elected to the Ingham County Commission in 1974, at age 24, where she became the first woman to chair the board. That was the first of many ‘first’ woman historic milestones she reached in her career, including being the first woman elected from Michigan to serve in the U.S. Senate. She announced her retirement from the Senate shortly after her last re-election. 

One Detroit contributors Stephen Henderson of “American Black Journal,” Nolan Finley of the Detroit News, and Zoe Clark from Michigan Public weigh in on the race.  

Wayne State University’s AI for Mobility Project seeks to improve Detroit’s public transit system

The Wayne State University School of Computer Science is working on an AI tool that may transform the way Detroiters get around the city.  

In response to a Civic Innovation Challenge Award by the National Science Foundation and Department of Energy, Dr. Dongxiao Zhu, the founding director of Wayne State’s AI research initiative, and his team are developing an AI tool to improve public transit operations and options for Detroiters. The goal of the tool is to create the ability to update bus routes more often to increase the availability and reliability of the overall transit system. 

Among the resources used in developing the tool, the team is using foot traffic data to identify where the highest bus rider needs are within the city, aerial images to map sidewalks so they can be more easily navigated by riders after they exit a bus, and potential user generated data from an app that would be developed as part of the AI prototype.  

The Detroit Department of Transportation has said it’s too early to comment on potential AI tools to enhance mobility in Detroit. One Detroit Producer Will Glover talks with Dr. Zhu, who is also the director of graduate programs in Computer Science master programs in AI, and his team about their AI for Mobility Project. 

‘Breaking the Waves,’ ‘Cunning Little Vixen coming to Detroit Opera to close out 23-24 season

As Detroit Opera closes out its 2023-2024 season, two new productions will be making their Detroit premiere. April brings the emotional “Breaking the Waves, a heart-wrenching opera inspired by the controversial Lars von Trier film. It marks a significant milestone with a female composer, Missy Mazzoli, at the helm. The season will conclude with Leoš Janáček’s “The Cunning Little Vixen,” a family-friendly fable directed by Detroit Opera’s Artistic Director Yuval Sharon. 

Opera is something that people think, ‘I know everything about operas, it’s Puccini, it’s Verdi, it’s et cetera,’” Sharon said. “But there is so much more to explore always with opera.” 

People can also check out the Opera House’s architecture. “We do tours of the building, and it’s really well worth the tour because the building itself is over 100 years old and has gone through so many different lives,” Sharon said. 

One Detroit contributor Sarah Zientarski sat down with Sharon to talk about the Detroit Opera’s two upcoming productions and its place in Detroit’s history.

One Detroit Weekend: March 29, 2024 

Easter Sunday is this weekend and there are some egg-citing events happening around metro Detroit this weekend including an Easter jazz concert at the Fisher Theatre. If you’re looking to ring in the spring season, there’s the Spring into Science event at the Cranbrook Institute of Science and the Spring Eggstravaganza at the Leslie Science & Nature Center in Ann Arbor.  

 Plus, check out the Ann Arbor Film Festival, celebrate March Madness at the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament Midwest Regionals and more. See what else is coming up on “One Detroit Weekend” with Dave Wagner and Cecelia Sharpe of 90.9 WRCJ.

Upcoming Events: 

  • Stagecrafters presents the play “Children of Eden,” about the relationship of parents and children, at The Baldwin Theatre in Royal Oak through April 21. 
  • The Ann Arbor Film Festival returns to the Michigan Theater through March 31 to feature more than 180 films from across 40 different genres and categories.  
  • Broadway in Detroit brings the 8th annual Easter Jazz Spectacular with Incognito and Norman Brown Saturday, March 30 at the Fisher Theatre in Detroit. 
  • The Leslie Science & Nature Center in Ann Arbor hosts its Spring Eggstravaganza Saturday, March 30 including a scavenger egg hunt, crafts and more.  
  • The Cranbrook Institute of Science hosts its Spring into Science event through March 30 where children can get hands-on learning about animals, habitats and nature. 
  • Wayne State University’s Hilberry Theater presents a production of “Chicken & Biscuits” through March 30.  
  • Bluey’s Big Play, the Emmy Award-winning Disney animated preschool series, returns to the Fox Theatre in Detroit through Saturday, March 30. 
  • The NCAA March Madness Men’s Basketball Tournament games, hosted by The University of Detroit Mercy and Oakland University, will take place at Little Caesars Arena March 29 and 31. 

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