Any sort of relocation is accompanied by a learning curve. Whether you’re moving across the state or across the world, there are always a few surprises waiting to be discovered when you settle into a new home. For new Detroiters, however, there’s certainly a lot to learn — and we’ve compiled a list of eleven things that most people quickly pick up upon moving to the Motor City.
We’re aware that these uncertain times are limiting many aspects of life as we all practice social and physical distancing. While we’re continuing to feature destinations that make our state wonderful, we don’t expect or encourage you to go check them out immediately. We believe that supporting local attractions is important now more than ever and we hope our articles inspire your future adventures! And on that note, please nominate your favorite local business that could use some love right now:
1. Sports are a way of life.
Detroiters take their sports seriously. When we’re not at Comerica Park watching the Tigers play baseball, we’re checking out a Pistons, Lions, or Red Wings game. Every city has its fair share of hardcore sports fans, but we Detroiters take the obsession to a whole new level. Don’t let it intimidate you — just get ready to do a whole lot of cheering!
2. On that note, the Detroit Lions must be defended no matter what.
You might be sick of hearing this, but the Lions are DEFINITELY going to win the Super Bowl… next year. We know our NFL team isn’t the greatest in the league, but we’ll never stop showing up to support them. No matter how many times they let us down, we’ll continue to be there for our team. And you should too!
3. An octopus is the ultimate good luck charm.
It sounds weird, but just trust us on this one! There’s no better way to guarantee a win for your hockey team than by tossing a dead octopus onto the ice just before the start of a game. If there’s no real octopus available, an inflatable one will typically suffice. Of course, we don’t know if this charm can be applied to non-hockey aspects of life, but it’s worth a try.
4. Detroit-style pizza is the best you’ll ever taste.
There’s just something about that perfectly crispy crust and square shape that adds a delightful taste to every Detroit-style pizza. Sure, we enjoy thin-crust or Chicago-style from time to time, but every true Detroiter knows that our pizza is the best pizza. After a few slices, you’ll be inclined to agree.
5. Detroit has the greatest musical history in the world.
While we have massive respect for the musical histories of Nashville, New Orleans, and plenty of other rhythm powerhouses, there’s just no musical backstory quite like Detroit’s. We’re beyond proud of our Motown roots, and we’ve got the famous artists to prove it. Stevie Wonder? Diana Ross? Among countless others, they both got their start here in the Motor City.
6. Belle Isle is a total dream.
When you need an escape from the craziness of everyday life in the city, there’s no better place to visit than Belle Isle. This island park features everything from an aquarium to a whole slew of grassy areas to relax, picnic, or enjoy sweeping views of the city skyline. It’s the most wonderful getaway you can have without venturing outside the city limits.
7. Some people who say they’re from Detroit aren’t really from Detroit.
Sure, Bloomfield Hills and Ferndale are in Metro Detroit, but that doesn’t make their residents true-blue Detroiters. When you relocate to Detroit, you might be surprised at how many people claim the city as their hometown when they actually live in the suburbs. We’re not hating — just stating a fact!
8. Vernor's belongs in every medicine cabinet.
As soon as you move to Detroit, you’ll realize that you simply must stock up on this beloved ginger ale. It might not make sense to you yet, but just wait until you’ve got a stomachache — one sip of Vernor’s and you’ll be as good as new.
9. International adventures aren't so far away.
See that strip of land across the river? Yep, that’s Canada — and it’s almost close enough to touch! When you relocate to Detroit, you might be surprised at just how close our city is to our Canadian neighbors. It’s relatively easy to make a quick trip across the Ambassador Bridge into Ontario, and you’ll soon start to think of yourself as an honorary Canadian.
10. If you call it anything but "pop," you’ll be scolded.
We’ve said it before and we will definitely say it again: true Detroiters refer to our favorite fizzy beverage as "pop." If you’re from out of town, we’ll give you a couple of chances to mistakenly utter the word "soda." Once your chances are up, though, don’t be surprised when we correct you on your beverage vocabulary!
11. The spirit of the Motor City is alive and well.
Before you move to Detroit, perhaps you’ll hear rumors and stereotypes about our city and its residents. While there are certainly difficulties to be faced in the Motor City, what major metropolis is without its problems? We love Detroit, and we believe fiercely in its potential to rebuild. If you decide to join us here, it won’t be long until you love this city just as much as we do.
Did you relocate to Detroit from a different part of the state, country, or world? What were your first impressions? We’d love to hear your thoughts and memories in the comment section below.