Grande Ballroom History Tour and Excursion Charter 10-7-16


Tickets on Sale Now !

Join the Friends of the Grande and author-historian-musician-preservationist Leo Early for a tour of historically significant Grande sites. Friday October 7 the tour will start at our rallying point, the Lincoln Park Historical Museum where plenty of municipal parking will be available. The museum will be open two hours prior to our 3:30 P.M. boarding call so that attendees may check in and view the marvelous exhibits featuring the MC5 and famed artist Gary Grimshaw.
At 4 P.M. sharp our tour begins by “bombing the hood”, cruising through the neighborhoods the MC5 called home. A handful of haunts, homes and schools will be acknowledged from the comfort of our 40 passenger air-conditioned Blue Lakes charter bus. The next leg of the three hour excursion will take us up Fort Street in the direction of Dearborn, hometown of Henry Ford and Grande Ballroom impresario Russ Gibb.
This segment of our adventure will roll us past a handful of locations significant to Uncle Russ’ life and career. Departing Dearborn our charter will transport us up Livernois, “The Avenue of Fashion” to the University District. There we will take note of buildings significant to the 60’s music scene and to students of the University of Detroit. Next we will head south to Grand River and Beverly for our stop curbside at the Grande Ballroom, 50 years on from the rock n’ roll re-opening weekend! Light refreshments will be provided with plenty of opportunity for photos and conversation. Please note that the interior of the building is not safely accessible and off-limits to the general public. We will NOT be entering the building. Once we’ve had an opportunity to pay our homage, we will depart the Grande at approximately 6:30 PM for our return trip to Lincoln Park. An afterglow location will be announced at the conclusion of the tour offering food and cocktails at attendees’ expense.


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Friends of the Grande T-shirts



A  5.3 ounce “Ultra Cotton” T-shirt emblazoned with the Friends of The Grande logo. This is the original logo and color palette as created by FOG charter member and legendary Grande artist Gary Grimshaw in 2005 . The lettering has been inset in a color correct oval that makes it really “pop” on a dark background.

Friends of the Grande T-Shirt

fog_blkThe current series of this shirt is a men’s cut and is available in black only. It is a high quality multi-color ink on cotton print.

Shipping to the lower 48 is included. Allow 2-3 weeks for processing.

Please use the comment form on this page if you have any special requests or problems ordering.

Proceeds will cover fulfillment, underwrite our web hosting, photo licensing for the book and benefit the Estate of Gary Grimshaw.


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Gary Grimshaw Exhibit – Detroit Historical Museum 10-30-14

Thursday October 30th the Detroit Historical Museum will launch a magnificent year long exhibit of Gary Grimshaw’s work.   10668944_869688049707880_6728739579358873800_oI will be present representing the Friends of the Grande and talking about my Grande book to be released in 2015.  F.O.G T-shirts Event posters will be available for sale.  Get there early as it will be packed !

Friends of the Grande Shirt (Grimshaw)

Friends of the Grande Shirt (Grimshaw)


Leo Early


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Grande Photo and Film Tour – 2008

Grande Photo and Film Tour

With permission from the CHMB Church, FOG members coordinated a photo tour of the Grande in the month of October 2008. Since our last inspection in April 2008,  zero positive effort has been expended on the building. The weather continues to take a devastating toll on the structure and scrappers and souvenir hunters continue to walk off with parts of the building. I still hold hope that the Church will sign off on the Historic Nomination regardless of their future plans.

Joining our group for this trip were filmmaker Tony D’Annunzio whose film on the Grande “Louder than Love” is fast coming together and New Yorker Rhona Bitner a photographer who is undertaking an ambitious project of photographing iconic stages from all across America. We also were privileged to have with us the legendary rock photographer Tom Weschler. Tom brought his original vintage Nikon that he used to take his classic photos of Cream and the Who from his special vantage point on the dance floor of the Grande. This trio’s interest in documenting the building only serves to further underscore its significance.

Tom, Rhona and Tony (Photo courtesy Tom W.)


Tom Gaff, Leo and Tony (Photo courtesy Tom W.)
Tom G., Tom W. and Leo (Photo courtesy Tony D’annunzio).

(Originally posted November 2008)

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Grande Site recovery !!!

elevations.jpg Wow!   Our site is back online after several weeks of concerted effort to recover the hacked content. We are still working to revise and tune the site with some really cool new stuff. Please stay tuned as we announce some great new projects coming this fall. Cheers, Leo Early Webmaster

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FOG T-shirts! I have worked with Laura Grimshaw and family to arrive at an appropriate version of Gary Grimshaw’s original FOG Letterhead logo for use on apparel. It now appears as our new Facebook group header and shirts can be ordered here.  Dependent upon interest, other shirt types may be forthcoming. – Leo Early

Fog T-shirts at the Grande Store

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“A Night of Grande Love” March 22

“A Night of Grande Love” at NEW YORK NEW YORK INSIDE THE PREMIERE CENTER ON 23 MILE IN CHESTERFIELD. Hosted By 94.7 WCSX, Doug Podell & John Sinclair! Showing Tony D’Annunzio’s award winning film “Louder Then Love – The Grande Ballroom Story” and Live performances by Gary Quackenbush from SRC , Scott Morgan from The Rationals, and Dick Wagner and Friends from The Frost…all to Benefit Gary Grimshaw Family and Wife Laura Grimshaw…legendary artist for The Grande Ballroom Posters. The Family has insurmountable bills to pay so the Detroit & Michigan Rock community is stepping up to help. There will also be a Rock Auction of classic memorabilia some from Gary’s Personal collection. Many special guests and friends are expected to be there and play. Tickets can be purchased the night of Event. Movie and concert $15.00 Concert from 7 to end of night $10.00

  • 5:00 Announcements, introduction – Doug Podell
  • 5:30 to 7:00 Movie showing “Louder than Love”.
  • 8 to 8:30 SRC Band
  • 9 to 9:30 Scott Morgan
  • 10 to 11:00 Dick Wagner

In between bands Doug Podell will be doing short raffles, prize give a ways) etc.

House/Doors at 4:30 Donation of $15 for Movie and Concert or $10 for just concert.


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Dick Wagner to record new live CD June 28

Grande guitar legend Dick Wagner will be recording live at Callahan’s Music Hall Auburn Hills, Michigan June 28.



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John Sinclair at U of M Dearborn April 4.

Th original Grande Counter-Culture Svengali, John Sinclair is appearing at UM-Dearborn’s College of Arts, Sciences, and Letters (CASL) is sponsoring “Kick Out the Jams” on Thursday April 4.



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Site Update 2-1-2013

We’ve begun adding “stub pages” that will act as Home pages for each act that we document as having appeared at the Grande. There are literally hundreds of acts, some famous, some less so.
Using our search function you will be able to find any act and comment on them, thus contributing to the experience of our site.

Here are a some of the first to be published:

Stay tuned.


Leo Early




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