Grapevine: Writer Roxane Gay comes to Ann Arbor

Melody Baetens
The Detroit News

Novelist Roxane Gay comes to Ann Arbor

New York Times best-selling author Roxane Gay will read from and sign copies of her new book, “Hunger,” on June 16 at Hill Auditorium. An associate professor of English at Purdue University, Gay’s 2014 essay collection, “Bad Feminist,” was called “a manual on how to be human” by Time magazine. She also is the author of Marvel Comics’ “World of Wakanda.” Gay has Michigan ties: she attended Michigan Technological University in the Upper Peninsula and uses the campus as a setting in her most recent book “Difficult Women,” a collection of short stories. Tickets to her Hill Auditorium appearance, $30, are on sale now at or by calling (734) 763-8587.

Ann Wilson, Isley Brothers to headline River Days

Classic rock icon Ann Wilson of Heart will headline the first night of the 11th annual GM River Days Festival, kicking off summer on the city’s riverfront June 23-25. The Isley Brothers featuring Ron Isley and R&B and soul singer Freddie Jackson headline on June 24, and Grammy Award-winning R&B group 112 and R&B singer Joe are the big names on June 25. Organizers announced Wednesday that a 30-foot-high slide at William G. Milliken State Park is new this year, along with a special treat for bikers. Bike Night on June 23, welcomes motorcycle riders to park for free on Atwater between St. Antoine and Rivard starting at 6 p.m. Bikers and passengers will get free admission to see Wilson if arriving by motorcycle.

Other attractions are the 300-foot MetroPCS Zip Line, an air show staged by the Tuskegee Airmen National Historical Museum, kids activities and food from local restaurants. On the river look for jet ski stunts, Diamond Jack River Tours, United States Coast Guard Auxiliary demonstrations and activities with the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. The GM River Days Festival stretches from Milliken State Park and Harbor to the Detroit/Wayne County Port Authority Terminal and Dock on the Detroit riverfront downtown. Hours are 11 a.m.-10 p.m. June 23-25 and admission is $3 before 3 p.m., $5 after. Admission is free before 5 p.m. on June 23. Visit for information.

Midwest Media Expo is canceled

This weekend’s Midwest Media Expo scheduled at the Edward Village Dearborn Hotel and Convention Center has been canceled. “At this time, we are making arrangements to assist those displaced by this turn of events and those affected should expect we will be sending off notifications immediately to go over available alternatives,” said event chairperson Morgan Kollin in an emailed statement. “We will be making further statements as we are able to discuss things, but know that we are working with good people to help us in this dark hour. Thank you very much for your understanding.”

Compiled by Melody Baetens

Thursday’s birthdays

Ace Frehley, 66

Sheena Easton, 58

Patrick Stump , 33