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Posted on Thu, Aug 30, 2012 : 2:08 p.m.

WEMU offering shuttle to Detroit Jazz Festival

By Bob Needham

Want to hit the annual Detroit Jazz Festival this weekend but don't want to deal with driving and parking?

WEMU and Golden Limousine will again this year offer a shuttle service between Ypsilanti and the festival site, in downtown Detroit around Hart Plaza and Campus Martius.

WEMU (89.1-FM), the public-radio station at Eastern Michigan University which plays a lot of jazz, has sponsored the service for the last few years and found it to be a hit. Rising fuel costs have bumped the price to $15 round trip this year. Several departure and arrival times are offered Saturday, Sunday and Monday (Labor Day). (The festival actually begins with a couple performances Friday night.)

“This has been a hugely successful partnership,” said WEMU General Manager Molly Motherwell in a press release. “We get hundreds of riders over the three days. It’s convenient, environmentally responsible, and it makes all the difference for a lot of people who have always wanted to attend the festival but aren’t familiar with driving in Detroit or the parking situation at the festival.

"Increased gas prices made it necessary to raise the price to $15 for the round trip this year but we think it’s still a very good deal, plus there is a discount for advance registration.”

Festival goers can park free at Eastern Michigan University in Green Lot One, off Huron River Drive. Buses leave EMU at 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, leaving Detroit at 4, 7, 9 and 11 p.m.; and leave EMU at 11 a.m and 2 p.m. on Monday, leaving Detroit at 5 and 8 p.m.

Riders who take earlier buses can stay all day or come back on any of the return trips. Dropoffs and pickups in Detroit are at Woodward and Jefferson, in the heart of the festival.

The Detroit Jazz Festival is a major event for jazz lovers and all music fans, with all performances offering free admission. This year's lineup is especially strong, featuring Chick Corea, Wynton Marsalis, Pat Metheny, Marcus Belgrave, Kenny Garrett and more big names, as well as lesser-known and rising acts. The festival website offers a full schedule for download.

Details and registration for the WEMU shuttle are available at or by calling 1-800-300-5151, ext. 1.

Bob Needham is director of entertainment content for Reach him at or 734-623-2541, and follow him on Twitter @bobneedham.


Marie Willnow

Thu, Aug 30, 2012 : 10:16 p.m.

I've used the shuttle two years in a row and it's a great way to get to the Jazz Fest. I can spend more time at the festival and less time looking for a place to park. And I get the added bonus of saving money on gas and parking.


Thu, Aug 30, 2012 : 7:33 p.m.