Things are getting interesting on the 2300 block of East Michigan Avenue. On the south side of the street, tucked between Lansing Art Glass and the urgent care clinic, two new businesses are blooming in the summer heat.
The Sunrise Market (2312 E. Michigan Ave.) is a brand-new, 2,600-square-foot facility catering to an international audience. Owners Ali Ali and Mohamed Abdi have been slowly building their inventory since their soft opening last month, and this week the store should be packed: bulk food bins filled with rare spices, racks stocked with imported rice, tea and canned goods, and — the pièce de résistance — a full-service butcher shop, serving up fresh cuts of lamb, beef, chicken and goat.
“There are other stores in the area carrying international items, but none of them are this big or this nice,” Abdi said. “Our goal is to have as many hard-to-find international items as possible, but still carry the kind of stuff you can find at Quality Dairy, like chips and pop.”
By the end of summer, Abdi says the market will have even more refrigerators for specialty juices and sodas, as well as a rich selection of bulk candy.
Next door, at 2316 E. Michigan Ave., Rubie’s Paradise Salon is settling into its new home. Owner Beth Sanford more than doubled the size of her beauty shop from its former 400-square-foot location on the same block as Emil’s Italian Restaurant to its current 900-square-foot spread. The avant-garde color scheme and punk-rock décor makes for an eye-popping visit, whether you’re getting your hair dyed the newest shade of electric pink or you’re just flipping through a magazine while waiting on a friend.
“This is more than just a salon — it’s a destination,” Sanford said. “We’re going to be featuring local artists in rotating shows, there will be lots of locally made swag for sale, and I hope to have a yoga studio and massage room set up soon. This is such a cool space.”
Most important, Sanford says the new space has allowed her to add another work station to her lineup, and she’s hiring pronto. Swing by for more info.
That’s my bag, baby
Two weeks ago, The Purse Rack made the big move from Grand Ledge to 5025 West Saginaw Highway in Lansing, right next to Turkeyman. Owner Ken Kareckas said he and his wife, Lana, decided to transplant the 8-month-old handbag store/consignment shop to soak up a little bit of that higher-volume Lansing traffic.
“It’s a much better location for us, and I think it’s a good fit for the area, too,” Kareckas said. “There’s really no place else like us.”
The Purse Rack specializes in new and gently used purses and accessories, and Kareckas says there will be a grand opening coming soon. “Like” them on Facebook to find out when that will happen.
Finally, my friend Kolmarge Harris, who retired as a professional boxer/mixed-martial artist last week, recently set up his new nonprofit, the Lansing Spartan Youth Organization, inside the Capitol City Boxing and MMA (2120 S. Cedar St. in Lansing). Harris is running a series of youth fitness camps this summer.
“The two goals I had in mind when I started this were to keep kids off the street and to fight childhood obesity,” he said. “There’s a lot of talk right now about the bullying problem and the obesity epidemic. I’m actively doing something to turn those things around and create something positive for the community.”
For more information, call (517) 894-8429.