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Ugly sweaters, big business

Banking upon ugliness has become a gold mine for Mark and Fred Hajjar, Commerce Township brothers who started the website uglychristmassweater.com two years ago selling garish Christmas sweaters. Recently the Hajjars have received national buzz. On Black Friday, Kelly Ripa and Michael Strahan wore matching, gosh-awful holiday pullovers from uglychristmassweater.com on their morning show. Kristin Bell and Dax Shepard will be featured wearing gaudy sweaters from the Hajjar’s collection in a Samsung holiday commercial. The site features dozens of ugly sweaters, ranging in price from $40-$65, including funny ones that riff on classic holiday movies like “Home Alone,” sweaters that light up, and sweaters that spin Hanukkah and Christmas into one for those who celebrate both.

Christmas, hardcore style

Our imagination went into overdrive when we opened the invitation to Dec. 13’s “Hardcore Holiday Event,” featuring Les Gold and family at American Jewelry and Loan on Greenfield in Detroit, from the truTV hit show, “Hardcore Pawn.” The party is for a good cause, featuring super deals on jewelry and electronics, with proceeds supporting Detroit Dog Rescue, Habitat for Humanity, and The Heat And Warmth Fund (THAW). Their film crew will be on site filming all the action, so shoppers may be included in an upcoming episode. There will be tours of the warehouse and personalized photos with the Golds, as well as experts on hand to pay cash for unwanted gold and silver.

Speaking of the Golds, the trendy new eatery Gold Cash Gold in Corktown is in what used to be Sam’s Loans, owned by Sam Rubin, a longtime Detroit pawnbroker. Rubin was the grandfather of Les Gold, who obviously is carrying on the family business. Many a Detroit musician bought their first instrument from Les’ father, Lou Gold.

Remembering Dick Wagner, and the kids

A cross-section of Michigan-bred acts will come together at the Fillmore on Jan. 10 for the Dick Wagner “Remember the Child” Memorial Concert to honor singer/guitarist/songwriter Dick Wagner, late of The Frost, as well as Alice Cooper’s band. The event will also raise money for the Children’s Miracle Network and Beaumont Children’s Hospital in Royal Oak. On the bill: Mark Farner,Marshall Crenshaw, Scott Morgan, Brad Whitford (of Aerosmith), Pat Lewis, Drew Abbott, DavidWinans, Danny Seraphine (of Chicago) Johnny Bee Badanjak, Ray Goodman, Derek St. Holmes from Ted Nugent’s band and an all-female band, The Accidentals from Traverse City.

Wagner, who co-wrote “Welcome to My Nightmare” and other hits with Cooper, died in July, at age 71. At the Fillmore, each act will perform several of his compositions, and Farner will also sing “Closer to Home,” “Because it’s relevant to Dick passing,” Wagner’s manager, Susan Michelson, said. Whitford has invited his Aerosmith bandmates to come, so prepare for surprises. Tickets are $30, available at Ticketmaster. VIP tickets are $100, call (888) 456-7900.

swhitall@detroitnews.com

chuckbennett@hotmail.com

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