The Grand Rapids strike back! This is how to show ’em they’re wrong

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Grand Rapids is getting all kinds of crazy attention for its response to being included on the Top 10 “Dying Cities in America” list that appeared in Newsweek in January. (BTW – Grand Rapids at No. 10 wasn’t the only Michigan city to make the list. Flint came in at No. 9 and Detroit at No. 7.)

Rather than write letters to the Newsweek editors, Grand Rapids, under the leadership of community activist Rob Bliss, put together a wondrous LipDub to the live version of Don McLean’s “American Pie.” Read a short piece about the preparation for the filming here.

The result is an amazing effort that required first a grand vision and then the coordination of an entire city to produce. It’s a fun, fun video. If you’ve not seen it, take 10 minutes to watch the amazing production.

This piece from raises an interesting question, though, about the mixing and matching of stories appearing in the media. Though the Dying Cities list appeared in Newsweek, the publication disavows any responsibility for it, saying that another group,, put it together.

In a modern-day mash-up of editorial and advertising, made possible through technology and the ever-corporatization of media sources, it’s hard to sometimes know who produced what. Read the story on It’s interesting.

In the meantime, enjoy the video. It has me smiling at the amazing and ever-expanding possibilities for creative efforts fueled by technology and imagination.

Perhaps this will inspire an equally amazing and creative endeavor a lot closer to home!


About Maria Stuart 211 Articles
Journalist Maria Stuart lives in Howell. She worked at The Livingston County Press/Livingston County Daily Press & Argus as a reporter, editor and managing editor from 1990-2009. She is often spotted holding court at Uptown Coffeehouse. You can check out her website by clicking here.