[NAIAS 2008] On A Clear Day…

Renaissance Center (Image property of OhGizmo!)
By Andrew Liszewski

Even though it’s the dead of winter, the weather in Detroit is surprisingly nice. But having grown up around the Detroit area, I have to admit flying in to attend a trade show here is a weird experience. For me trade shows happen in far off places, like Vegas, LA or even Amsterdam. But being here in a press capacity is an odd mix of work and home.

Anyways, enough of my 2am ‘tired out of my mind’ rambling. The show floor doesn’t actually open to the press until Sunday, so for now you’ll have to settle with random photos I took while walking to the convention hall to pick up my credentials.

Cobo Hall (Image property of OhGizmo!)

Here’s a shot of the front entrance to Cobo Hall where the show has been held for as long as I can remember. While I was there getting my credentials, I had a quick peek at the show floor and like with most trade shows I’ve attended, the majority of the booths on the floor were still under construction. I tried to grab a shot or two, but the looming security guard they had posted at the door certainly did his job. In other words I chickened out.

Joe Louis Memorial (Image property of OhGizmo!)

Between GM HQ and Cobo Hall there’s a large monument to boxer Joe Louis, aka ‘The Brown Bomber.’ Believe it or not when I was younger my dad had me thoroughly convinced it was an exact scale replica of his arm. That’s right, I had one of those dads. I couldn’t understand how a man so big could have been beaten in the ring (imagine the size of Max Schmeling) but who was I to doubt my father?

Stargate? (Image property of OhGizmo!)

Not many people know this, but before the automobile, Detroit actually had a thriving stargate industry. This one looks like it hasn’t been opened in quite a few years though.

Old Mariners' Church (Image property of OhGizmo!)

Have you ever heard that Gordon Lightfoot song The Wreck Of The Edmund Fitzgerald? Near the end of the song you’ll hear the following lyrics: In a musty old hall in Detroit they prayed. In the Maritime Sailors’ Cathedral. The church bell chimed, ’til it rang 29 times. For each man on the Edmund Fitzgerald. Well this is that musty old hall, also known as the Old Mariner’s Church. (In the background you can see part of GM HQ.)

Old Mariners' Church Sign (Image property of OhGizmo!)

Fascinating stuff. And hopefully in the coming days I’ll actually have some cool automotive and technology news to write about as well.