Friday the 14th, here we are. Those of you who are superstitious, congrats on just missing an unlucky day.

ğŸŒž Today's weather: Sun, sun, sun! Chance of showers and thunderstorms after 2pm. High of 81.

Today's newsletter is 901 words — a 3.5-minute read. Edited by Delano Massey and Emma Hurt, and copy edited by Cindy Orosco-Wright.

1 big thing: Downtown hotel boom

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Downtown is riding a wave of new and renovated hotel developments — yet tourism officials still see room for growth.

The big picture: A five-star hotel planned at Hudson's Detroit, a new luxury convention hotel at Huntington Place and the hotel expansion at the historic David Whitney Building are helping drive the momentum.

Yes, but: The city needs another 4,000 to 5,000 hotel rooms to consistently attract major conventions and events, Visit Detroit spokesperson Chris Moyer tells Axios.

  • "We're at a critical inflection point for hotel development," Moyer says. "The interest is only increasing."

By the numbers: Downtown has 5,313 hotel rooms as of April — a 25% increase since the end of 2019, according to the Downtown Detroit Partnership.

  • The downtown hotel occupancy rate was 54% in April, up from 48% in April 2023 and 15% in April 2020.

State of play: The hotel boom is part of downtown's larger revival following the city's 2013 bankruptcy.

Zoom in: The Courtyard Detroit Downtown just finished extensive upgrades at the 260-room hotel across the street from the Renaissance Center. Dan Gilbert's Bedrock owns the hotel and it's operated by Marriott International.

  • The new-look Courtyard has a refreshed lobby, modernized amenities throughout, a robust fitness center with locker rooms and enhanced rooftop views.

What's next: Construction continues at Midtown's 154-room AC Hotel, which will incorporate the historic Bonstelle Theatre, per the Free Press. It could open by the end of the year.

  • Michigan Central Station is also pursuing a hospitality program.

The bottom line: A prime opportunity for more hotels is simmering, especially on the heels of the NFL Draft and Michigan Central's grand reopening.

  • "Now you're seeing a market in Detroit that is starting to kind of hit its stride, it's starting to fill in," says David Di Rita, principal at the Roxbury Group, developer of the David Whitney and the AC Hotel.
  • "We're really in a place where by [Visit Detroit's] measure, we need more hotel rooms to attract the bigger and bigger events."

Read more

2. Can (or should) we eat fish flies?

A fish fly says hi during a recent walk on Belle Isle with Phoebe. Photo: Annalise Frank/Axios Detroit

🪲 Annalise here, wondering why we don't talk about eating fish flies.

Hear me out. The other week, surrounded by swarms of these insects on the east side, I thought back to reports I read this spring about how to cook and eat cicadas.

  • Trillions of cicadas were emerging across 16 states, bringing a natural opportunity to consider insect consumption.

The intrigue: As I walked past buildings covered in fish flies, watched my dog snap them out of the air and covered my mouth (at times) so I wouldn't accidentally inhale any, I wondered why I was hearing this about cicadas, but never about our own seasonal swarms.

Catch up quick: Fish fly season, around June, is a messy time for water-adjacent communities. But experts consider it a positive, because fish flies' presence shows a healthy ecosystem, the Free Press reports.

I consulted Wade Syers, an MSU Extension food safety specialist who has written about insect consumption:

Cicadas are a particular target for these conversations because they're a "fun spectacle," they're quite large for insects, they have a "nutty flavor" and are not harmful, Syers told Axios in an email.

  • Syers says he doesn't hear about people wanting to eat fish flies, likely in part because most of their lives are spent underwater.
  • But "people eat many different kinds of insects all over the world, and I do not know of any reason that under the right conditions, fish flies could not be eaten," he says.

Yes, but: Syers doesn't recommend foraging for insects due to potential chemical and illness hazards.

Share with a particularly adventurous eater

3. The Grapevine: You heard it here

Illustration: Lindsey Bailey/Axios

💨 Michigan has surpassed California as the top cannabis market in the U.S. by sales volume. (Free Press)

💰 State lawmakers have spent $1 billion in corporate incentives and pledged hundreds of millions more for electric-vehicle and battery projects that so far have created about 200 jobs, a Bridge Michigan analysis found.

⛲ Detroit's Dodge Fountain in Hart Plaza is running again after a $6.7 million renovation. (Detroit News)

4. Food sign ordinance a long time coming

An example of what the food safety placards would look like. Screenshot: Courtesy of the city of Detroit

City Council approved member Scott Benson's "Dining with Confidence" ordinance this week that requires restaurants to post food safety compliance signs.

The big picture: Benson's proposal, in the works for six years, was revamped several times. Two barriers to its passage were the pandemic and major opposition from some restaurant businesses over how it may hurt bottom lines.

How it works: The latest version of the ordinance requires restaurants to put up a green sign if they're in compliance. The only way to get a sign with negative connotations — red — is if the restaurant is shut down for violations.

The intrigue: After the ordinance was approved unanimously, a couple of council members fist-bumped and clapped for Benson.

Read the full story

5. Flint golfer shines

Willie Mack III, a Flint native, plays his shot from the 13th tee during the first round of the 124th U.S. Open at Pinehurst Resort. Photo: Andrew Redington/Getty

Flint native Willie Mack III went from sleeping in his car to living out his dream at the U.S. Open in North Carolina this week, his first major tournament.

The intrigue: After launching his pro career in 2011, Mack, 35, says he's hoping for a special week.

What they're saying: "Just being able to show everybody that you can come from not the best places in the world and still succeed truly means a lot to me," Mack told reporters this week, per the Detroit News.

The latest: Mack shot +1 in the Open's first round yesterday, tying him for 34th place. (That's really good.)

Our picks:

🍕 Joe is ordering Pie Sci on a weekly basis.

🧑‍🍳 Annalise is getting stoked for the new season of "The Bear." Though she's pretty sure nothing could top the Copenhagen ("Honeydew") or "Forks" episodes.

🙌🏽 Sam is ready for the weekend.