Introducing On the Ground Ypsi

It's time to share your story, Ypsi.


For the next five months Concentrate will be conducting an embedded reporting program called "On the Ground" in Ypsi. Our parent company, Issue Media Group, has conducted On the Ground projects in 15 different communities nationwide since 2013. On the Ground programs aim to tell the stories of the people, projects, and innovations that are creating "what’s next" for communities. The intent is to create additional "solutions-oriented" media coverage, community engagement, and ultimately understanding of the community, resulting in awareness and investments that can contribute to the community's vitality and prosperity.


On the Ground programs have taken place in Memphis, Tampa, Grand Rapids, Dearborn, Cincinnati, and Detroit. For a very recent local example of the program, check out On the Ground Pontiac.


In doing this work, it's important to us to have a visible, tangible presence in the community. For the duration of On the Ground Ypsi, Concentrate staff will be working out of a cozy office at the recently opened Landline Creative Labs in downtown Ypsi.


We'll also have a dedicated journalist, On the Ground Ypsi project manager Brianna Kelly, attending community meetings and events, writing the bulk of our On the Ground content, and pounding the pavement to tell the many Ypsi stories that often go overlooked.


Brianna is a multimedia journalist from the Minneapolis area by way of Chicago. She's been living in Ypsi since the beginning of the year and will continue to do so as the embedded reporter for On the Ground Ypsi. She has worked for The Associated Press and has freelanced for The Detroit News and Crain's Detroit Business.


During this program, it's also important to us to keep in touch with Ypsi community members about the stories that are on their minds. To that purpose, we'll be conducting weekly Community Newsrooms starting August 2 at the Ypsilanti District Library's downtown location. These weekly forums are an opportunity for all Ypsi residents to chat with us about what's going on in their neighborhoods.


On the Ground Ypsi would not be possible without the support of our community partners: the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, the Washtenaw County Parks and Recreation Commission, Washtenaw County Administration, Eastern Michigan University, WEMU, Washtenaw County Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Ypsilanti Downtown Development Authority, Depot Town Merchants, the Ann Arbor/Ypsilanti Regional Chamber, the city of Ypsilanti, and the Downtown Association of Ypsilanti.


On the Ground Ypsi coverage starts next week. We couldn't be more excited about this opportunity to dig deeper into telling Ypsi's story.

Patrick Dunn is the managing editor of Concentrate and an Ann Arbor-based freelance writer for numerous publications. Follow him on Twitter @patrickdunnhere.

Depot Town photo by Doug Coombe. Office photo by Patrick Dunn.

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