Wednesday, October 30, 2013


With much consideration, the Birmingham Public Schools Board of Education has revitalized the former Birmingham Conference Center as the Birmingham Education & Administration Center, located at 31301 Evergreen Road in Beverly Hills.  Along with school officials, the Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber held an open house and ribbon cutting ceremony welcoming the school district’s new home.  Superintendent Dr. Daniel A. Nerad of Birmingham Public Schools spoke in honor of the Birmingham Education & Administration Center’s admirable outlook within the community.

Photo Credit: Laurie Tennent
Pictured from Left:
Mark Nikita, commissioner, City of Birmingham; Gordon Rinschler, commissioner, City of Birmingham; Linda Hatfield, Birmingham Bloomfield Credit Union; Dr. Daniel Nerad, superintendent, Birmingham Public Schools; Michael McCready, state representative, Michigan House of Representatives; Steve Scheidt, president, Birmingham Public Schools Board of Education; Lori Soifer, trustee, Birmingham Public Schools Board of Education; Geri Rinschler, vice president, Birmingham Public Schools Board of Education; Michael Fenberg, trustee, Birmingham Public Schools Board of Education; George Dilgard, mayor, City of Birmingham; Joe Bauman, president, Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber; Tim Mercer, council member, Village of Beverly Hills;  Bob Kupfer, Tiffany Florist; Bob Bruner, city manager, City of Birmingham


Danish designer and global success of urban furniture, BoConcept, has now opened in downtown Birmingham at 670 South Old Woodward.  Along with owners Steve and Jane Syzdek, the Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber celebrated the new showroom with a ribbon-cutting and grand opening ceremony.  BoConcept in Birmingham is the thirtieth location worldwide, and now the first of its brand in Michigan.

Photo Credit: Doug Ashley
Pictured from Left: 
John Heiney, executive director, Birmingham Principal Shopping District; Paul Taros, Taros & Associates; Bob Kupfer, Tiffany Florist; Ed Fisher, The Fisher Agency; Gordon Rinschler, commissioner, City of Birmingham; Jane Syzdek, owner, BoConcept; Steve Syzdek, owner, BoConcept; Kelly Lewis, Alpha Lifestyle Center; Linda Hatfield, Birmingham Bloomfield Credit Union; Art Babian, Arthur E. Babian Health Insurance Agency; Carsten Pedersen, president, BoConcept USA; Joe Bauman, president, Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber


Two childhood friends from Warren, John Kelly and Paul Grosz, are now business partners with their opening of The Stand Gastro Bistro, a new gourmet hamburger bar and grill located at 34977 Woodward Avenue. Along with classic American cuisine, The Stand offers vegan and charcuterie menus. To kick off the pair’s great achievement in the art of fine cooking (gastro, as they say), the Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber held a ribbon-cutting ceremony at The Stand’s location in Downtown Birmingham.

Photo Credit: Doug Ashley
Pictured from Left:
Victor Saroki, Victor Saroki & Associates Architects; Ed Fisher, Fisher Agency; Michelle Saroki, Victor Saroki & Associates Architects; Gordon Rinschler, commissioner, City of Birmingham; Rackeline Hoff, commissioner, City of Birmingham; Chris McLogan, Max Broock Realtors; Scott Moore, commissioner, City of Birmingham; Chef Paul Grosz, owner, The Stand Gastro Bistro; Bob Kupfer, Tiffany Florist; John Kelly, owner, The Stand Gastro Bistro; John Heiney, executive director, Birmingham Principal Shopping District; Mark Nikita, commissioner, City of Birmingham; Joe Bauman, president, Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber; Tom McDaniel, commissioner, City of Birmingham

Monday, October 28, 2013

Chamber #RailRally Revs Up The Rail District

The Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber rounded up business leaders to discover the hidden gem of Birmingham’s Rail District in a scavenger-hunt style event, the 2013 #RailRally, on Wednesday, October 23.  Twenty Chamber Member businesses hosted simultaneous open house events for participants to complete challenges and collect prizes.  Participants were also asked to snap photos at each location on a smartphone and share them on social media using the #RailRally on Twitter and Facebook.  A free community event, the #RailRally attracted 80 participants and an even larger audience online.  Birmingham’s Rail District is defined as the area between Maple and Lincoln Roads from Eton Street to the train tracks including the Amtrak train station.  

Registration and team check-in was held at 3 p.m. at Laurie Tennent Studio, where light refreshments were served to gear participants up for the race.  Teams set off at 3:30 p.m. with maps in hand, and participating sponsor businesses hosted ralliers with challenges and special offers.  Upon completion of the #RailRally, hosts and participants alike met at the newly-established Griffin Claw BrewingCo. for appetizers and drinks.  The Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber celebrated a successful #RailRally with prizes, raffles, and an entertaining slideshow of participants’ social media snapshots.

In addition to Laurie Tennent Studio and Griffin Claw Brewing Co., event sponsors also included: Breeze Design Studio, Birmingham Ice Arena, Carnovale Associates, Inc., The Chop Shop, CoachMeFit, Colorworks Studio Inc., Extra Oomph!, Fuzz Athletics, Goldfish Swim School, Jones-Keena & Co., Michigan Mutual, Inc., Nordic Manual PT, Robot Garage, Script Salon, State Farm - Barbara Merten-Dubensky, Tyler Dumas Reyes Specialist in Orthodontics, Restyle Child & Whistle Stop Diner.

Click here to view the #RailRally full story and slideshow on Storify.

Photo taken by and at Tyler Dumas Reyes Specialists in Orthodontics
Pictured from Left: Kevin Outland, Pure Energy Advertising; Steve Gualtieri, Nexus Partners; Ellen Mahoney, Complete Title Services of S.E. Michigan


Go-getters of digital marketing and technology enterprise, Shift Digital employees are excited to grow business at the company’s new Birmingham offices, located at 348 East Maple Rd. To support employees’ high dedication to their work, the new space will give opportunities for both the lives of employees and the business itself to grow together. The Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber joined founder and CEO of Shift Digital, Steve St. Andre, in celebrating the new headquarters’ grand opening with a ribbon-cutting and open house. 

Photo credit: Doug Ashley
Pictured from left front row:
Danielle Workman, Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber, Phil Oriani , VP Marketing, Shift Digital; Ashley Cox, VP Internal Operations, Shift Digital; Steve St. Andre, founder & CEO, Shift Digital, Bob Bruner, city manager, City of Birmingham; Bob Kupfer, Tiffany Florist; Linda Hatfield, Birmingham Bloomfield Credit Union


Spanish professor and businessman Joaquin Frías welcomes Spanish language students of all ages to Studio Español, a new private, corporate and small-group tutoring establishment in Birmingham, located at 988 South Adams, Suite 206. A ribbon-cutting and open house for the new language studio was held by the Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber to celebrate its grand opening with Frías, a Spanish native from Madrid.

Photo credit:  Doug Ashley
Pictured from left:
Bob Kupfer, Tiffany Florist; Christina Oswald, The Community House; Camille Jayne, The Community House; Brett Nicholson, The Community House; Kerstin Gerdes, student, Studio Español; Mark Nikita, commissioner, City of Birmingham;  Joaquin Frías, owner, Studio Español; Kristine Frías, owner, Studio Español; Carol Jackson, Royal Services: Paul Taros, Taros & Associate; Larry Ribits, Birmingham Bloomfield Lifestyle; Danielle Workman, Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber

Monday, October 21, 2013

Join the Rail Rally to discover Birmingham’s ‘other’ shopping destination

Birmingham is known far and wide as an outstanding shopping and dining destination for folks from throughout southeast Michigan and beyond.

The city of Birmingham, largely through the efforts of the downtown Principal Shopping District, does a terrific job of keeping the central business district clean and inviting, and also markets the downtown area as an attractive alternative to the shopping mall scene.

As great as the downtown area is, however, it is not the only game in town when it comes to shopping and service opportunities in the city. Slowly but surely, the city’s “Rail District” is gaining momentum on its own, with a wide variety of entrepreneurial efforts taking place east of Eton Road and south of Maple.
To help highlight the growing business community, the Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber is hosting a “Rail Rally” in the district on Wednesday, Oct. 23. The event kicks off at 3 p.m. with Check-Ins at Laurie Tennent Studios - 929 S. Eton where team passport photos are taken and a trip ticket with all the participating stops is distributed.  Form your own team of up to four or join a team at Check-In.
Teams will then head out to make rally visits, social media check-ins with demos, activities and incentives at Member businesses.  Bring your charged smart phone to capture photos, video & social media check-ins.  Then join us at 5:30 p.m. at GriffinClaw Brewing Company - 575 S. Eton St. to network and socialize.
There will be complimentary appetizers for Rail Rally participants, prizes will be awarded, and pictures and video from the event will be shared.  All are welcome and there is no cost to participate in the RAIL RALLY; simply RSVP at the Chamber Website

Non rally-goers also can join us just for the Business After Hours. Guests can register at, $10 in advance for Chamber Members, $20 day of the event and Nonmembers. For a list of participating businesses visit

Even though summer is officially over, there still is plenty of fun to be had in and around Birmingham. I hope to see you at one of our upcoming events.

Joe Bauman is President of the Birmingham Bloomfield Chamber. He welcomes feedback at