Ilitch Company Uptown Entertainment to Operate Fresh New Food, Catering and Retail Concepts at Detroit Science Center

New services and amenities including a new retail store and food service area will create a more exciting and fun experience for visitors, corporate clients and private parties

Architectural firm nationally recognized for design prowess partners with local artist to deliver a unique and exciting atmosphere to enhance experience for visitors, corporate clients and private parties

Oct 21, 2010, 12:46 ET from Uptown Entertainment

DETROIT, Oct. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Uptown Entertainment, owned by Detroit entrepreneurs Michael and Marian Ilitch, recently signed an agreement with the Detroit Science Center to bring new amenities and services to the facility, including fresh concepts for a retail store and food, beverage and event management services.  Uptown Entertainment also becomes the exclusive caterer for all events at the Detroit Science Center as part of the deal.

"This is a great opportunity to support one of the cultural gems in our city," said Christopher Ilitch, president & CEO of Ilitch Holdings Inc.  "We have a passion for Detroit and recognize that the cultural fabric of our community is critical to the quality of life here.  We are looking forward to enhancing what is already a wonderful, enriching establishment in the heart of Detroit."

"We are really excited to partner with the Detroit Science Center to enhance this important cultural treasure and make it an ideal destination for everything from field trips to corporate events and private parties," said Barb Zanetti, senior director of Uptown Entertainment, which includes the Palladium 12 and Birmingham 8 theatres as well as operation of the Ren Cen 4 theatres.  "The Science Center serves a range of customers including families, school groups, day-care centers, youth groups, companies and even private parties and small weddings.  This renovation makes the Science Center even more suitable for a wider range of events, especially corporate and social functions, business meetings and other high-profile events."

"The Detroit Science Center is all about innovation and our partnership with Uptown Entertainment is as well," added Kevin Prihod, president and CEO of the Detroit Science Center.  "The planning and design phase has been really exciting and we can't wait for customers to see the new products and amenities that will be part of this renovation."

According to Zanetti, Uptown is currently working on the design for the new food service area and retail store.  JGA, a locally based design group that is responsible for national icons such as the Hershey's retail stores, the Audi store on Park Avenue in New York and numerous other well-known retail store designs around the nation, is leading the project that will incorporate three-dimensional storefronts, cobblestone walkways, and park-like components including benches and greenery.

"This new concept will activate the lobby and guest experience with a colorful and easy-to-shop space.  Industrially inspired fixtures and unique graphics will identify departments.  Stretched fabric clouds lend a sense of warmth and energy to the space, juxtaposed against the angled glass perimeter and art installation entry element of reclaimed and repurposed locally manufactured materials, creating a memorable experience for the young and young-at-heart," said Ken Nisch, chairman of JGA.

In addition to a new design, an exceptional food and beverage menu will be available.  Customers will be able to enjoy everything from Little Caesars Pizza® and Crazy Bread® to fresh salads, deli sandwiches, hot dogs, hamburgers and Mexican fare.  Customized menus will be available for everything from casual bookings and elegant high-profile events.

Catering will be serviced by a state-of-the-art kitchen under the direction of Chef Ian Forrest to ensure a high-quality, distinctive menu specifically tailored to each event.

Zanetti noted that the new retail store concept will have much broader product offerings including Detroit-themed items, Detroit sports teams items and technology items.  The store also will continue to sell science and exhibit-related items.

Hazel Park-based artist Richard Gage has been tapped to help design unique elements of the store using recycled materials.  Gage has a history of successfully integrating sustainable elements into the design of facilities, making functional areas much more appealing to the eye in the process.  Using sustainable material in the store also is responsible and adds another opportunity to educate people about conservation and green responsibility.

"We think customers will be delighted with what we have in store," Zanetti added.  "We are really focused on customer satisfaction and delivering a memorable experience for anyone who visits – adults and children alike."

More details about all the new offerings that are part of the renovation, including a new range of packages for groups, are available now.  To book an event at the new Detroit Science Center, call Denise Wilson, director of visitor services for the Science Center at (313) 577-8400, ext. 423, and for event catering needs contact Nancy Devoe, director of operations for Uptown Entertainment at (248) 723-6228 or

A grand opening celebration is being planned for early 2011.

About Uptown Entertainment

Michael and Marian Ilitch own Uptown Entertainment which includes the Palladium 12 and Birmingham 8 movie theatres.  Uptown also manages operations at the Ren Cen 4 theatres.  Other Ilitch companies in the food, sports and entertainment industries include: Little Caesars Pizza, the Detroit Red Wings, Olympia Entertainment, Olympia Development, Little Caesars Pizza Kit Fundraising Program, Blue Line Foodservice Distribution, Champion Foods, and Uptown Entertainment.  In addition, Michael Ilitch owns the Detroit Tigers, and Marian Ilitch owns MotorCity Casino Hotel.  For more information about Uptown Entertainment, visit

SOURCE Uptown Entertainment