Arrowhead Pavilion dedicated during Wyandotte’s annual tree lighting

Photo by Sue Suchyta Officials prepare to cut the ceremonial ribbon Nov. 17 during the dedication of the Henry Ford Wyandotte Hospital Arrowhead Pavilion at Wyandotte City Hall, 3200 Biddle.

Photo by Sue Suchyta
Officials prepare to cut the ceremonial ribbon Nov. 17 during the dedication of the Henry Ford Wyandotte Hospital Arrowhead Pavilion at Wyandotte City Hall, 3200 Biddle.

 

Wyandotte Aglow

By SUE SUCHYTA
Sunday Times Newspapers

WYANDOTTE – The city dedicated its new Henry Ford Wyandotte Hospital Arrowhead Pavilion Nov. 17 during its annual tree lighting ceremony, setting the city aglow with festive lights in the new gathering space.

City Councilman Robert A. DeSana said at the dedication that the pavilion will provide many years of enjoyment for residents and visitors.

Photo by Sue Suchyta Children prepare to flip the switch Nov. 17 during Wyandotte's annual tree lighting ceremony.

Photo by Sue Suchyta
Children prepare to flip the switch Nov. 17 during Wyandotte’s annual tree lighting ceremony.

The pavilion, a place-making project at the corner of Sycamore and Biddle, was championed by the Downtown Development Authority. The space, which will host public gatherings and serve as a pocket park, was constructed through the Michigan Economic Development Corporation and Michigan State Housing Development Authority “Public Spaces, Community Places” Program.

The design improves the site’s walkability with added sidewalks, as well as additional seating, public art, signage and lighting.

The plan initially called for MEDC and MSHDA to provide $50,000 in matching funds, with the DDA generating the remaining money.

Wayne County Commissioner Joseph Palamara (15th District) said DDA Director Joe Gruber contacted him a year ago asking for some parks millage money for the Arrowhead Pavilion.

“I didn’t know if that was going to be possible because Wayne County had just contributed to a bathroom renovation at Bishop Park,” Palamara said. “But Joe didn’t take ‘no’ for an answer, and he called me a month later and played to my Catholic guilt and said, ‘Well, we are close, but I don’t think we can get there unless Wayne County Parks Millage can get us across the finish line.’  Well, we are here today at the finish line.”

Palamara thanked Mayor Joseph Peterson, the City Council, and the taxpayers who supported the County Parks Millage, which he said enabled Wayne County to contribute $10,000 of taxpayer money to complete the Arrowhead Pavilion.

Henry Ford Wyandotte Hospital was the largest contributor, Palamara said, crediting Henry Ford Wyandotte Hospital President and CEO Denise Brooks-Williams.

Brooks-Williams said the hospital has been in the community for more than 90 years, which she said made it very proud to be a lead sponsor and to be included in the name of the Arrowhead Pavilion.

“We are looking forward to many opportunities to be out here to celebrate with you,” Brooks-Williams said. “I want to thank Joe for his vision, for not taking ‘no’ for an answer, even though almost immediately when he asked me, I said ‘yes.’”

Gruber said the DDA and the city Beautification Commission were integral in driving the process. He also thanked Tony Pizzo and Kaylyn Crane of the Pizzo Development Co. and Dino Mazola of D’Anna and Associates, the architects and builders.

He also recognized Special Events Coordinator Heather Thiede for her work for the city.

“This project’s vision was to work with the community and through the community with the resources that we have to make a project like this happen,” Gruber said. “We look forward to many years of enjoyment in this public space, something that is available for everybody.”

(Sue Suchyta can be reached at sue.suchyta@yahoo.com.)