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While the snow slide remains “up in the air,” the festival will again present an outstanding line-up of winter themed programming, including the opportunity to ice skate for free at the Campus Martius Park skating rink . (Photo by HB Meeks/Tell Us Detroit)


Motown Winter Blast organizers announce dates and new initiatives and sponsors

New presenting sponsor, search for festival’s new “look,” and status of many favorite programming attractions unveiled; snow slide return uncertain

DETROIT – December 20, 2011 – The warmth of family fun and winter joy will be back in Detroit when the Motown Winter Blast returns to Campus Martius Park for the eighth consecutive year, from Friday, February 10 – Sunday, February 12. The Ambassador Bridge will join festivities in 2012 as presenting sponsor of Detroit’s perennial outdoor event.

“We are proud to be this year’s presenting sponsor of the Motown Winter Blast,” said Nora Moroun of the Ambassador Bridge, “Year after year the festival has solidified its position as the highlight of Detroit’s winter calendar. As a company and employer in Detroit we continue to support Detroit. We are looking forward to being a part of this event once again.”

“The show is on and the event will continue at a high level, even in light of tough economic times,” said Jonathan Witz, event producer. “There are a number of exceptional corporate citizens who help make this festival a continued success. We are thrilled to have the Ambassador Bridge return, this time as the presenting sponsor. We also would like to thank our sponsors that have increased their involvement this year, including Quicken Loans, Greektown Casino, Charter One Bank and Marketing Associates. Their continued dedication to the festival and to the City is crucial to the success of Winter Blast.”

While outstanding sponsorship support and planned revenue from festival activities have officials confident of covering the $365,000 Winter Blast budget, another $40,000 would need to be raised to bring back the signature snow slide, which returned to the festival in 2011 after being absent for a few years.

This year’s event will bring a new creative twist. For the first time since the festival’s inception, metro Detroiters have the opportunity to design the official 2012 Motown Winter Blast logo. Hosted by Marketing Associates, the Motown Winter Blast Logo Design Contest is intended to tap the community’s creative pool of talent that this area is known for, and provide a new look and feel for the festival.

“Marketing Associates is proud to support the 2012 Motown Winter Blast and engage our community in a hip, cool and artful way,” said Jerry Curtis, Creative Director at Marketing Associates. “As a company based in Detroit, we know firsthand there’s plenty to be entertained and inspired by in the city and adjacent neighborhoods. We’re surrounded by a truly rich, diverse, dynamic and vibrant creative scene, and have long been committed to playing an active role in the community and inspiring others to do so.”

A committee of Marketing Associates designers, along with the Motown Winter Blast committee, will determine the winning logo. The winning designer of the Logo Design Contest will receive a grand prize, which includes an iPad 2, a gift certificate for the purchase of art supplies, and a VIP Motown Winter Blast package featuring a weekend stay at The Westin Book Cadillac, dinner at Hard Rock Café, and other items for a total value of $1,500. The winner and the logo will be revealed at a press conference in mid to late January 2012.

To be considered for selection, all artwork must be created in a vector format using Adobe Illustrator or similar program. Anyone 18 years and older may participate. Contestants should mail logos in as a basic 300 dpi jpg format to by January 16.

Also to be announced in January are details regarding “Reading is a Blast,” a new festival event program made possible by a General Motors Foundation grant. “Reading is a Blast” will not only make reading a featured event on the Winter Blast family stage, but also will feature a children’s book collection drive to complement existing festival charity initiatives.

"Motown Winter Blast really highlights what's great about Detroit," said George W. Jackson, Jr., president and CEO of Detroit Economic Growth Corporation. "We have an all-weather outlook that embraces every season of the year. Winter Blast is good for businesses that benefit from ‘feet on the street,’ but it's also an important event for companies that want to attract talent to a vibrant, urban working environment. It shows there's never a bad time to come downtown to live, work or play."

While the snow slide remains “up in the air,” the festival will again present an outstanding line-up of winter themed programming, including the opportunity to ice skate for free at the Campus Martius Park skating rink courtesy of Charter One Bank. Winter Blast is the only time each year where metro Detroiters can skate at no charge in the fabulous and fun skating rink.

Other returning favorites include the Greektown Casino Ice Garden and the all-new Quicken Loans Taste of Detroit featuring restaurants from across metro Detroit and top bands also from across the Motor City. The stage will be one of three planned entertainment stages at the festival that may feature more than 50 bands, with the schedule also being announced in January. Skating exhibitions, marshmallow roasting, carnival rides and four heated Comfort Zones round out the confirmed line-up of activities with hope of adding more fun elements over the next few weeks.

For the third consecutive year, Motown Winter Blast will partner with Matrix Human Services and the Grosse Pointe Rotary in support of “Breaking the ICE on the cycle of Poverty” program. Volunteers from each organization will help collect nonperishable food items and children’s books at the festival gates as part of a special Motown Winter Blast “admission fee.” All donated items will be used to support a major service project that will fight hunger and promote literacy in metro Detroit.

“Partnering with Motown Winter Blast has helped us to make significant inroads into our campaigns to fight poverty and hunger in southeast Michigan,” said Marcella Wilson, Ph.D., president and CEO of Matrix Human Services. “Last year, more than 150,000 lbs. of goods and an additional $13,000 were donated by the generous guests of the festival. These donations were used to support our Crossroads of Michigan and Kids Against Hunger programs and helped us to make a difference in the lives of those with the greatest need.”

The return of Winter Blast is made possible with the generous support of many corporate citizens, including The Ambassador Bridge Company, Michigan Lottery, Detroit Downtown Development Association, General Motors Foundation, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, US Bank, Greektown Casino, Wayne County, Quicken Loans, Charter One Bank, Ilitch Holdings, Health Plan of Michigan, Marketing Associates, Detroit Receiving Hospital, GalaxE.Solutions, MetroPCS, Brown Forman, Great Lakes Beverage, Pepsi, and more.

Winter Blast is Detroit’s celebration of winter experiences, dining, music and family fun to be held in downtown Detroit’s Campus Martius from, Friday, February 10 - Sunday, February 12. The three-day festival will be open from (11 a.m. – 11 p.m. on Friday, 11 a.m. – 11 p.m. on Saturday and 11 a.m. – 9 p.m. on Sunday). Originally created as the backdrop for Super Bowl XL, the festival attracted more than 75,000 people last year. For additional public information, visit or call (313) 963-8418.



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