Outside shot of Common Grace Coffee Company in Dearborn, Mich. Photo credit: Erin Hannum.

Neighborhood Spotlight: Dearborn

Today, you often hear “comeback” stories about Detroit, but there is another city that is equally deserving of that moniker. Bordering the Motor City, Dearborn also has a rich history rooted in the automotive industry. Also like Detroit, Dearborn is a city that is culturally diverse and that diversity extends to its businesses and attractions. Next time you have a day free of obligations, consider spending it in Dearborn to see what the city has to offer.

9:00 AM – Wake up with Common Grace Coffee Company


Common Grace Coffee mug. Photo credit: Erin Hannum.

As a newcomer to the city of Dearborn, Common Grace Coffee Company had to prove its worth to the community. Now, with its first year of business in the books, Common Grace has become a local favorite shop for great coffee, tea and more.

11:00 AM – Honor the greats at the Automotive Hall of Fame

The Automotive Hall of Fame honors the great history of the automotive industry, including its engineers, salespeople and more. Find out where the automobile came from, who you have to thank for interstate highways and much more. It’s open Friday-Sunday from October through April and Wednesday-Sunday from May through September.

1:00 PM – Grab a burger for lunch at Miller’s Bar

Miller’s Bar is a no frills, no fuss burger bar that specializes in the hamburger (with cheese “if you want it”), or as it likes to call it, “The Ground Round.” Get it with pickles and onions if you like and your choice of onion rings or fries on the side. Keep in mind that it’s cash-only at Miller’s and they work on the “honor system.” After you’re done eating, head up to the bar, just tell them what you had and they’ll ring you up.

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3:00 PM – Discover Dearborn’s rich history at the Dearborn Historical Museum

McFadden Ross House and Gardner House during snow

A snow-covered McFadden Ross House and Gardner House. Photo courtesy of Mason Christensen.

Did you know the city of Dearborn as we know it today wasn’t formed until January 1, 1929? The year prior, voters in Dearborn, Fordson and part of Dearborn Township voted to combine the three communities into one. That’s just the beginning of Dearborn’s rich history, more of which you can learn about at the Dearborn Historical Museum, located in Dearborn’s oldest building; the same building that housed the Detroit Arsenal Commandant’s Quarters from 1833-1876.

5:00 PM – Enjoy authentic Yemeni cuisine at Mocha Bistro

With a name that borrows from the town of Mocha in Yemen, Mocha Bistro combines American and Yemeni cuisine to create dishes that you’d be hard-pressed to find in most other American cities. Dishes like the Mocha Steak Roll (sliced steak, grilled onion, green pepper, Swiss and American cheese) and sweets like the Mocha Treat (mango smoothie topped with cake, pineapple, apple, banana, strawberry, raisin, a chocolate waffle stick and pure honey) will have you coming back to try just about everything on the menu.

7:00 PM – Wind down with a pint at Dearborn Brewing


Flight of beer. Photo courtesy of Dearborn Brewing.

After a long day of history lessons and delicious food, why not take a load off? Dearborn Brewing is a microbrewery with eight beers on tap that are always rotating. Check out their website to see what’s on tap and what’s on the horizon. You won’t find a food menu here, but this brewery is “carry-out friendly,” so feel free to bring in your favorite food from another restaurant. Some restaurants will even deliver right to your table!

Of course, this isn’t EVERYTHING Dearborn has to offer, but it should offer you a good taste. Keep coming back to check out more cafes, attractions, restaurants, bars and more.

UPDATE [10:14 a.m.]: An earlier version said that modern Dearborn was formed in 1928. That date refers to when the vote happened. The result of the vote went into effect Jan. 1, 1929. The article has been updated to reflect this.

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