Detroit— The 16th annual Shiver on the River on Belle Isle brought together Metro Detroiters and several organizations working throughout the region to promote the island jewel as well as other aspects of Detroit.
“We’re putting out the word, giving people information and letting them know who they can call to report pollution,” said Ahmina Maxey, community outreach coordinator for Zero Waste Detroit, which was promoting recycling and better air quality.
She says the group wants to encourage the city to offer curbside recycling.
“With the city leadership making all of these changes with waste contracts and doing all this privatization, now is the time to make these changes.”
Also doing outreach at Shiver on the River, presented by presented by Friends of the Detroit River, was the Detroit Horse Company, which is currently based out of Goodrich, but hopes to one day reopen the stables on Belle Isle and offer riding to inner city children.
“It’s a very cost prohibitive, very race prohibitive thing and we want to break that down,” said Samantha Moody, co-owner of the company.
Last May, the group was able to bring horses to the island for the Renaissance Equestrian Society’s trail ride event, and Moody said the response was tremendous.
“There were lines of people who wanted to see the horses,” she said. “Kids were shaking they were so excited.”
Also available were walk-throughs of the Belle Isle Aquarium, which recently acquired and was displaying electric eels, and the Coast Guard Station, where rescue demonstrations were being held for the public. There was also musical performances, a magic show and caricature artists.
Valerie Searles, from West Bloomfield, brought her family, including her young granddaughter, down to Belle Isle in the hopes of getting them interested in new things.
“I’m a teacher and I think children should be exposed to science and get out and see everything they can,” said Searles, who had a 1 hour, 45-minute ride to the city through the snowstorm Saturday. “I want them to learn everything they can about the river.”