By SUE SUCHYTA
Sunday Times Newspapers
ALLEN PARK – Threatening thunderstorms moved up the time line, but Bob Seger Boulevard was enthusiastically dedicated the afternoon of Oct. 19 by the singer’s fans and Big Jim O’Brien of WCSX-FM 94.7.
The Detroit classic rock station, which hosts “Big Jim’s House” morning show, has tried to dedicate a street to Seger for some time.
Melvindale, Lincoln Park and Ann Arbor all claim Seger as a former resident, and the station thought it might have an opportunity to dedicate a street at Ann Arbor Pioneer High School, but the deal fell through.
City Administrator Mark Kibby said Seger performed at Allen Park’s ice arena early in his career, in 1972, and he saw the street naming as a positive promotion for the city, which has dealt with negative news in recent years.
Kibby said the new section of road, Bob Seger Boulevard, runs from Southfield Road to Philomene Boulevard, east of the new City Hall, between Shish Palace and the new Culver’s location. He said the section of road will not have an impact on the addresses of any buildings.
Mayor William Matakas said he was proud to be unveiling Bob Seger Boulevard.
“It will be the first new street in the city in 40 years or so,” Matakas said. “Enjoy the music, and enjoy Bob Seger Boulevard.”
O’Brien thanked Kibby for initiating the Seger street naming.
“We want to say ‘thank you’ from WCSX and all the listeners and everybody here,” O’Brien said. “Bob Seger over so many years has meant so much to the Motor City, and you guys made it possible.”
Kibby thanked O’Brien and the WCSX staff for making the event possible, and praised the Department of Public Works for the event setup.
O’Brien said Seger heard about the street naming, and is excited by it.
“Bob’s the kind of guy that thinks it is an honor, but the Civic Fund thing here, that they do here in Allen Park, ‘Shop with a Cop’ and some of the programs that they do, Bob and everyone there are going to donate $3,000 to them, it’s their way, on your behalf,” O’Brien said. “That’s what it is all about.”
A raffle for a pair of tickets to Bob Seger’s upcoming Toledo concert, donated by the singer, also was held during the event.
“You are the best listeners in the Motor City,” O’Brien said. “This is going to be fun. Bob Seger – it’s about time.”
(Sue Suchyta can be reached at [email protected].)