TUCKER'S RESTAURANT: GIFT CARD FUNDRAISER

Tucker’s Restaurant opened on September 19, 1946. This Saturday, the iconic eatery reaches its 69th anniversary, but the doors will remain closed as the kitchen was destroyed in a fire in July.

Tucker's Restaurant bustling during weekend brunch in Spring 2015.

Owners Carla and Joe Tucker are hoping to re-open the restaurant within the next few months. Neighbors have come together to assist with manual labor or raise money for reconstruction, including customer Chris Heckman, who created a GoFundMe.com campaign for Tucker's. Within the first 48 hours, over $10,000 in donations poured in from around the community. To date, the campaign has raised almost $15,000 of the $65,000 needed to repair damages and reopen the establishment. So far, the Tuckers have used the funds to hire an architect, contractor, and begin the construction process.




Jean-Fran├žois Flechet, a long-time Tucker's customer and owner of nearby restaurant, Taste of Belgium, helped setup an online store to increase fundraising through the sales of Tucker's gift cards. Flechet thought of it as paying for his next meal in advance, helping the Tuckers' cash flow and speeding up the renovation process. "I bet others would be willing to do the same thing," says Flechet. "You get a few hundred people buy a few meals each; Joe and Carla will have the funds they need to reopen the restaurant." Flechet reached out to Heckman, a designer by trade, who created the artwork for the gift cards. 

Join Carla and Joe Tucker in Washington Park this Saturday, September 19, as they celebrate Tucker's 69th year during City Flea from 10:00am-4:00pm. Gift cards will be available for purchase at $25, $50 and $100.

MOTOWN THE MUSICAL

Mo' money, mo' problems...Motown. The famed lyrics sums up the rise of Detroit's grassroots music scene, retold in Broadway musical form as the story of one man's dream. Founder Berry Gordy's journey in the entertainment business started with a desire to write songs and grew into a recording label as he launched careers of some of most iconic African American performers of the time.
 
Photo by Joan Marcus, courtesy of Broadway in Cincy

Motown The Musical captures every toe-tapping detail of Gordy's rise and inevitable fall as he competes with corporate record labels. The fast-paced timeline progresses with songs from the eras, such as early hits from Smokey Robinson, The Temptations, and Marvin Gaye. We meet the Supremes during their high school days, croon with a young Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder; all who got their start in a Detroit studio known as Hitsville U.S.A.
 
Berry Gordy and Diana Ross
Photo by
Joan Marcus, courtesy of Broadway in Cincy

With success comes trials, as competitors inch in on Gordy's talent, and romantic relationships blossom within his close-knit collaborative.


The Supremes
Photo by
Joan Marcus, courtesy of Broadway in Cincy

As a fan of the Motown sound, the Broadway cast reenactments of musical legends were spot on -- from appearance to rafter-shaking vocal talent. I particularly enjoyed Reed Shannon, a teenager who owned the roles of young talent that Gordy shaped. While rockin' with the Jackson 5 hit "ABC," his song mastery shined during the audition scene where Shannon belted out a heartfelt "old soul" ballad as Michael Jackson.



Jackson 5
Photo by
Joan Marcus, courtesy of Broadway in Cincy


Motown The Musical does a fantastic job of telling the whole story of how Gordy's Motown label pioneered African Americans into the popular music scene. If you're curious on learning about the backstory, a hardcore Motown fan, casual listener, or simply enjoy a musical with a solid story and all-around powerhouse cast -- this show is for you!

Motown The Musical runs through September 20, 2015 at The Aronoff.