The Michigan Daily - Monday, April 9, 2001.- 7A
rite of spring
Continued from Page 1A
were far in the minority," she said.
-DPS arrested 22 people for marijuana possession, issued
three tickets for sales and solicitation, and had one incident of
alcohol possession in the Diag, Brown said.
"Of these 26 people, none of them were University students
and only five were Ann Arbor residents," she said. "That tal-
lies up to arresting'150 people in three years - only one per-
son was a University student."
Two people who were found in possession of marijuana
were also arrested for resisting and obstructing police officers.
During the rally, a 17-year-old Brighton man and 24-year-old
Frankfort man fought with an officer as she attempted to
,arrest them for possession of marijuana.
"The officer and her partner went into the crowd after they
had observed possession of marijuana, and then when trying
to move the 17-year-old, he became combative and so did the
year-old," Brown said.
Sinclair, the keynote speaker, spoke about the history of the
fine system for being caught in possession of marijuana, but
' the majority of his speech focused on his belief that it is a First
Amendment right to smoke marijuana.
"It's wonderful to be out here in the open air exercising our
First Amendment rights as Americans and also our rights
mder the Declaration of Independence to pursue life. liberty
and the pursuit of happiness," he said.
Keith Strout, a marijuana reformer and the founder and
<'tional director of the National organization for the Reform
'Marijuana Laws, stressed that [lash Bash is about more
"This is really about a personal freedom and with (the sig-
Mntures), we are going to restore a personal freedom to the
.taens of millions of otherwise law abiding smokers of marijua-
" a in this country" Strout said.
LSA sophomore Erika Wilson said she was attending her
-second Hash Bash.
"I just came to see what was going on. The music is pretty
good. Last year I was here for the rally and I think there was a
better turnout," Wilson said. "I think it is just people getting
* ether for a common cause. I personally don't think mar-
ana should be legalized but I support people gathering here
to fight for a cause.
Continued from Page A
"The question is, what kind of business can
make it when rents get up in the mid-S30s (per
square foot per year)? It's going to change the
character of the neighborhood," he said.
Harshe estimated monthly rent for a 1,200
square-foot business on State Street is about
The shift in ownership of State Street buildings
has been a major factor in changing the composi-
tion of the street, as rent hikes have put increas-
ing pressure on businesses' profit margins.
"Twenty or 50 years ago, you had a lot of small
retail in addition to large department stores, and
families owned the buildings," says Karl Pohrt,
president of the State Street Area Association
and owner of Shaman Drum Bookstore. "Over
the years, they sold the buildings to investment
groups who don't live here. That's extremely dan-
gerous for the vitality of a downtown."
Business owners have universally lamented the
level of rent in the State Street area.
"In my opinion, the rents are overly inflated
down here," said James Decker of Decker Drugs,
whose business is in the enviable position of
holding a long-term lease. A number of stores
whose leases have come up for renewal in recent
years - Caribou Coffee and Hallmark Crown
House of Gifts among them - have been forced
to shut Gown.
One of the pronounced effects of rising rents
has been the increased presence of chain stores
on State Street. Larger stores, taking advantage
of economies of scale and stronger financial
backing, have been more suited to survive rent
"They make more money per square foot,"
said Harshe. "They can afford higher rents."
With the entrance of chain stores, the business
make-up of State Street has also become increas-
ingly homogenous. The topic has become a con-
cern to many State Street business owners who
depend on foot traffic to drive demand.
"We need a better mix of stores down here,"
said Steve & Barry's manager Dan Switzer. "We
have enough coffee places and Michigan stores
like this one. If you have a better mix and more
restaurants, you're going to attract more people
to the downtown area and they're going to spend
more time down here."
Although soaring rents have put pressure on
State Street business owners and forced a number
of stores to shut down, the competitive market is
not without underlying wisdom. The pressure has
forced businesses that have not delivered consis-
tent value to State Street patrons to make room
for businesses who do, and the heavy competi-
tion has kept business owners in close touch with
In addition, for downtown stores to compete
with the low rents of remotely located businesses,
the stores have had an incentive to fill new cus-
tomer niches: The Michigan Theater offers inde-
pendent films other theaters do not, and Urban
Outfitters fills a clothing niche absent at Briar-
In the coming months, change will accelerate
in the State Street neighborhood. The Downtown
Development Authority recently approved an 18-
month, S5 million "State Street Area Streetscape
Revitalization Project." The project, which will
affect State, William, Washington, Maynard,
Thompson and Liberty streets, will include new
lighting, widened streets, new trees, and the con-
version of some one-way streets to two-way traf-
Adding to the downtown renovation, a number
of new apartment buildings are being planned in
the area. .
In addition to the upcoming conversion of the
former Maynard Street McDonald's building to a
mu lti-story and commercial apartment building,
a recent proposal has been put forward to con-
struct an eight-story apartment building in place
of the vacated Olga's Kitchen at the coiner of
State and Washington streets.
Althouigh the changes promise to expand the
retail presence of the State Street area and stabi-
lize the business environment, many of the small,
traditional stores of Ann Arbor will be missed.
For every new Bruegger's to arrive downtown,
there is a Drake's that will have to be closed.
"It was a great landmark," Pohrt said, recalling
his own memories of the campus sandwich shop.
"I once went in there and had a cup of tea with
the poet Gary Snyder - a friend of (Jack) Ker-
ouac's - and Snyder suggested it be put on the
national registry of landmarks" Pohrt said. "We
didn't do it, and I'm really sorry."
Continued from Page 1A
"Tonight I will march through the
streets to let evil know that I am not
afraid," said Cathy Antkow iak-:
Howard, who has counseled sexual'
assault victims since 1987, after being
assaulted several times herself.
Arntkowiak-Howard, a social worker
for 31 years, told the story of how she
came back from feeling like nothing to
living a fulfilled life.
"Today I do not focus on being a
survivor but on thriving. I have learned
to turn shame into compassion, fear
into knowledge, vulnerability into
strength," Howard said.
"The key to thriving is our refusal to
relinquish our spirits to those who
raped and abused us. We will take
back the night, we will take back our
lives," she said.
Sheila Nelson, a Public Health and
Social Work graduate student, said an
"epidemic of sexualized violence"
incited her to become an organizer for
Take Back the Night.
"There is no one in the world who
should have to face that. I am here to
honor every survivor, she said.
Denise Diggs-Taylor, the event's
keynote speaker and education
director at the School of Social
Work, discussed reaching out to
oppressed and battered minority
groups. She said biases need to be
dealt with in order to help those
groups that aren't getting the care
"You need to take time to learn
about other minority groups. All you
need to do is take that first step and
you can do that on the march tonight,"
In addition to speakers, the-band
Absolving Ease and singer Jennjfcr
Erb performed at the rally. -
RC junior Akosua MirekLIJp d
singer for Absolving Ease, aiipI
consider myself an activist and I
was honored to have the chance ,to
hopefully touch someone wth mny
Take Back the Night is sponsofed
by the Ann Arbor Coalition Against
Rape and University Women Against
Rape and is held for anyone who has
experienced domestic or sexual vio-
lence or for anyone who wanted to add
their voice to the fight against domes-
tic and sexualized violence.
"The people and local government
of Ann Arbor really support this
event,' said Ann Arbor Mayor John
II ieftje, who attended the rally.
"It is important to educate people
and to empower women who are coin-
ing that are survivors. That is why I
came out," said Amy Hansen, P first-
time participant who will be eiteriig
the School of Social Work in tIjfll
and who is a volunteer for the 'xual
Assault Prevention and Awayeings
Continued from Page 1A
of winter and spring temperatures.
"It's typical of April in Michigan."
Students who have lived in
Michigan for most of their lives
agree that the up and down weather
"It's part of the Michigan character,"
The average high temperatare in
Ann Arbor during April is 58 degrees:
the record, from 1899, is 88 de'grees.
The average low temperaturei< 37
degrees, with a record low of 6nly
seven degrees in 1982.
Students shouldn't expect any sta-
bility from Mother Nature for the-next
Kahlbaumi said the average fnst dy
of 80-degree weather in Ann A rb'ris
the michigan daily
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