Monroe Street Midway

Roller skating. New murals. Pickup basketball. Food trucks. DJs. Smiling faces…

All in the same spot? That’s right.  

In downtown Detroit? You’ve got it.  

Worth the trip? 100000%. 

That’s the beauty of the Monroe Street Midway– it’s fresh, new and there’s something for everyone to enjoy.  

I had the pleasure of playing a small role in helping to plan this outdoor activation- it took a big team and a lot of passion to develop this immersive experience in such a short time. Do you remember the Monroe Street Drive-In? Classic movies were hosted in the same spot less than two months ago. So much activity happening! 

Back to the Midway- I had the opportunity to experience it first-hand on opening night. As eager as I was to attend after working on the project for the past month and a half, it blew my mind away being there in person! The energy was so real and everyone was smiling ear to ear. People were genuinely excited to be there, and it was so refreshing to experience.    

After walking in and smelling that good barbeque, I went right to renting some roller skates. I quickly noticed we had some of Detroit’s best on the rink but that wasn’t stopping me from getting out there. The skating culture in this city is rich and I was so impressed to see skaters dancing on the rink, gracefully gliding on their feet with such ease. Since I haven’t skated since middle school, watching me was definitely not as charming. But luckily, I had my pro roller hockey partner there to guide me around in between his laps of backwards skating. After an initial little slip on my end, I got the hang of it and am so ready to get back out there. 

Besides the fun on skates, you can’t miss the astonishing artwork all around the Midway. It’s all so colorful, inviting and bold. The cool part about the work is that it’s all done by Detroit-based artists. The even better part is that all of the artists are such authentic and kind-hearted individuals, the type of people you feel drawn to support. It’s been a treat getting to know all of them throughout the process.  

Speaking of cool people at the Midway, Bedrock partnered with RollerCade to operate the roller rink and their team is fantastic. RollerCade is one of the oldest black-owned roller rinks in the country and is a family run, third-generation business. If you’re not familiar with Detroit’s skating history and have a few minutes, I recommend taking a few to research- it’s super interesting to learn about how they’ve kept it alive and booming through all these years. 

If skating isn’t your thing (although I highly recommend at least giving it a try) there are four basketball courts and a multipurpose sports court also on the site, a part of Rocket Mortgage Sports Zone. Try a little pick-up action or even throw it back to an “around the world” or game of lightening for old times’ sake.  

And if still, none of this excites you, who doesn’t love eating and people watching!?  

See you out there! 

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For more details on the Midway and other exciting happenings downtown, please visit DeckedOutDetroit.com 

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