News & Updates from muscle crew

St. Anthony’s Receives Another Step-Up

St. Anthony’s Receives Another Step-Up

The Detroit Muscle Crew II project was finished — all 18 glass block windows and two side doors at the Cathedral of St. Anthony had been replaced — thanks to a $5,000 donation from A Hole in the Roof Foundation.

But in the eyes of Mike Stephanoff, finished didn’t necessarily mean completed.

The DMCII volunteer and owner of One-Step Home Solutions, learned after the project that the front doors to the church desperately needed to be replaced. They were rotting, unsightly — and 115 years old.

So he contacted Bishop Karl Rodig and Jim Penrod, who directs St. Anthony’s food and clothing pantry, and delivered three simple but golden words: “I’ll help you.”

Foundation funds depleted, Stephanoff developed his own fundraising plan and began spreading the story about a small church on Sheridan Street in Detroit that does big work, assisting thousands of residents each year.

In just under two months, Stephanoff had raised a total $9,609 in donations. And on Sept. 29 the possible happened: four new front doors to the church were installed. Thanks to Stephanoff’s generous heart, he and his crew once again donated their time and services to St. Anthony for free.

How’d he do it?

“Well, I started contacting customers and one thing led to another,” he said. “Through their kindness, and the kindness of my friends, we were able to get it done.”

Jim Penrod said: “Mike and his crew are amazing, and they do such excellent work.”

Stephanoff isn’t new to volunteering. As a younger man, he frequently donated his time to others in need when he served in the Navy.

“When I answered the call to Mitch Albom’s article (last spring) to join the Muscle Crew, well, it just feels good,” he said.

Electrician Lends a Hand At Detroit Water Ice

Electrician Lends a Hand At Detroit Water Ice

DETROIT — Doug Watson isn’t a carpenter by trade—he’s a longtime electrician at The Conti Corporation—but he raised his hand anyway when he heard that S.A.Y. Detroit needed some work done at its Detroit Water Ice Factory in downtown Detroit.

The request: Install a third row of trim designed to hold a slew of celebrity photographs at the frozen dessert store at Campus Martius, where all profits benefit Detroit’s neediest citizens under Mitch Albom’s S.A.Y. Detroit umbrella of charities.

“I’ve been in the business long enough that I know how to do a lot of different things,” Watson said. “I’m glad that you contacted me, but I’m especially glad that it worked out well.”

The project, which was completed last week, was Watson’s first since joining the Detroit Muscle Crew II last spring after Albom formed the all-volunteer team of skilled tradespeople to help with S.A.Y. Detroit’s physical projects and endeavors. (You can sign up to become a member here.)

Watson said that he had so much fun, and that Albom was so grateful, that he decided to donate the materials for the project himself, a value of $143.

“It was great teamwork all the way around,” Watson said. “Bedrock (which provides the DWIF space for the store) even sent a guy over to help me, because it was a two-person job.”

DMC Update #5 from St. Anthony’s: Completed Thanks to One-Step Home Solutions

DMC Update #5 from St. Anthony’s: Completed Thanks to One-Step Home Solutions

There’s above and beyond, and then there’s WAY above and beyond.

That sums up the dedication and commitment of Detroit Muscle Crew II members Mike Stephanoff and Ron LaBarge of One-Step Home Solutions.

We are happy to report that our first major project of the DMCII is completed at the Cathedral of St. Anthony (5247 Sheridan Street, Detroit) largely because Mike and Ron continued to step up to the plate and make sure that the food and clothing pantry, and the entrances to the 100-plus year-old church, received the necessary improvements they sorely needed.

The final phase of the project consisted of installing two new steel entry doors; the first phase (completed a few weeks ago) included the installation of 18 new glass block windows. You can read our previous posts to learn more about the contributions of Mike, Ron and other DMCII team members on that part of the project.

“We accomplished an awful lot thanks to you guys,” Jim Penrod, St. Anthony’s clothing and food director, said Monday. “When we started our second project (the new doors) and no one stepped up to the plate, they handled everything. It looks great. It really looks good. You don’t know what a help you’ve been to us.”

Mike, who served as the manager of the St. Anthony improvements from beginning to end, logged a total of 60 volunteer hours on the projects over the course of the past few months; Ron totaled 54. Materials were purchased via funds that Bishop Karl Rodig’s church received from the Hole in the Roof Foundation via Mitch Albom’s S.A.Y. Detroit 2016 Radiothon. The church’s food and clothing pantry assists thousands of residents each year.

“I think they’re a wonderful group of people, and you also realize the battle they’re engaged in,” Mike said. “That building requires so much tender loving care and maintenance; I’m glad I was able to help them.”

Muscle Crew Spruces Up S.A.Y. Play Grounds

Muscle Crew Spruces Up S.A.Y. Play Grounds

A big S.A.Y. Detroit shout-out to Matt Mosher, one of our original Detroit Muscle Crew (Haiti) members, who sent out his team from Mosher & Associates Landscape Services to do some much-needed landscaping work at our S.A.Y. Play Center at Lipke Park today. Thank you, Matt, for donating your company’s time and services to help our non-profit center before summer session begins for the kids on July 10.

Pop-up DWIF Up & Running Thanks to DMCII

Pop-up DWIF Up & Running Thanks to DMCII

Bloomfield Hills — If you happen to stop by the Detroit Water Ice Factory’s new pop-up location this summer at the Franklin Cider Mill, you’ll see the handy work of your Detroit Muscle Crew II.

All you have to do is take a look around.

The scoop: A team of DMCII members came together shortly before Memorial Day and put up the large tent on the parking lot at the cider mill. It wasn’t as easy as it looks. There was some craftsmanship going on to make the whole thing come together, with volunteers Jack Galopin and a few member members of Scott Albaugh’s masonry team, combined with a huge assist from Richard Krus of Midas Shelby Township.

The pop-up location at the cider mill, which is closed for the summer, will be open through the third week of August.

The DWIF, founded by author and columnist Mitch Albom, opened in downtown Detroit in August 2015. All profits support Albom’s S.A.Y. Detroit charity, which helps Detroiters in need. The cider mill’s picturesque scenery makes it the perfect spot for a pop-up, so come visit us this summer!

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