Hazel Park Holiday Inn

February 28, 2010

Looks like it's going to be torn down anytime now to make room for a(nother) CVS drugstore.

Steve worked here from 1981 till 1985 and has many memories, from my dad getting me the job there, to meeting many different famous people, to moving into the computer industry shortly after leaving.

(updated 2/28/10)

Some of my favorite memories include:

- dad getting me the job there

- dad working the midnight shift there as a security guard

- dad's 40th birthday party (April 1981)

- Matt Switanowski

- serving dinner to Ozzy Osbourne

- meeting Aldo Nova

- meeting Adam Ant

- meeting Mickey Gilley

- meeting Ricky Nelson (and the beautiful blonde in the room with him)

- partying in the parking lot

- smoking cigarettes along the service drive outside the back door

- meeting Edgar Winter

- Piper's Restaurant

- the record album sales event

- buying fool's gold at one of the shows

- working with Matt Switanowski, Lois Womack, Kim Wiggins, Sherri Daigneault, Simone, Mark Detheridge, Shirley Paquette, Charlie Wagner, Joy, Gerri (died of a heart attack in the kitchen), Marie Snow, Tom, Tammy, Dennis Pratt. Pam (cute young blonde). also Pam's brother and mom (her mom was Matt Switanowski's girlfriend), Jeannie Snow

- Fresh prime rib, sirloin and NY strip steaks, lobster

- Matt Switanowski's famous (limp) pizza made with bread dough

- getting arrested in Hazel Park for drag racing, then being immediately released when mentioning I worked at the Holiday Inn

- free steaks and prime rib

- brakes going out on the Plymouth Scamp

- Plymouth Arrow getting hit in the parking lot

- running the entire place on 3 people on Sunday nights. Lois Womack behind the front desk, Kim Wiggins as hostess and waitress, myself as cook, dishwasher, bartender, room service, porter, etc.....

- calling Barry Weber to tell him Ozzy Osbourne was there, and him showing up 20 minutes later with a carload of people. They stalked Ozzy and waited for him and Sharon to show up at the Renaissance Center later that evening (hey Barry, I never did get any of those pics from you !!)

- calling my sister Sue to tell her Adam Ant was there. She showed up with a few friends and stalked Adam and the band at the old Abbey theatre at 14 Mile & I-75. The band tried to go incognito, but Sue and her friends were not about to let that happen !

- Aldo Nova telling me he needed some cold milk and a slice of warm cherry pie "for a sick rock and roll singer who needed it before heading out to his show that evening"

- to the only person who ever wanted his "exact change" after I delivered a room service order, only to discover later there was a SECOND $10 bill stuck to the back of the one they gave me :)

- finding out years later that Matt Switanowski was cooking the books, got stripped of his cash and retirement, and kicked out the door

- Shirley Paquette chain smoking while cooking. I'm sure there were many dinners that went out with extra ashes on them !

- Charlie Wagner living next door to Shirley in Hazel Park. We all thought they were getting together outside of work (though they would never admit it!)

- going to work with a good Jack Daniels buzz one day that I put on before work at the Rainbow Inn. Matt Switanowski then proceeded to give me the rest of the night off work

- being up on the roof waving at people during the Hazel Park Memorial Day parade

- delivering room service breakfast to Ricky Nelson in his room. A beautiful blonde answered the door and had me put the breakfast on the bed. She woke him to sign the check. I had to make MANY copies of that check for the women I worked with !

- driving around Hazel Park for hours before work

- leaving work one night to horns honking all over town. The Tigers had just won the 1984 World Series !

- Hazel Park officer Foley who always hung out in the restaurant

- finding marijuana near the dance floor after a Michigan State Police party

- starting smoking cigarettes because everyone else at work did it, and we used to get garbage bags full of Barclay's cigarettes to give away as promotions

- getting free leftover cases of Stroh's beer after the Detroit River boat races

- getting lifted horizontally over the head of Pam's brother Ed after telling him "I'll make your mother some food after I finish my cigarette". His mother was General Manager Matt Switanowski's girlfriend. Never did that again !

- "Pronto" breakfasts (scrambled eggs with ham)

- working as breakfast cook about 2 times. I didn't know the difference between "over easy" and "over hard" with eggs. I cooked them all the same, and had no complaints.

- Matt Switanowski's flaming hot chili. Him and I were the only people that would eat it !

- Cooking fresh lobster with Matt Switanowski

- freshly steamed crab legs

- taking pride in everything I did !

- setting up and tearing down banquets

- memories with other friends Lisa Durantini, Tony Brazeel

- hanging out with Joanne, an older woman (relative to me at the time)

- Cindy Dooge, Sales/Marketing person with the office next to the front desk

- Tim and his brother Dave who worked there. Tim was 6 foot 5 and weighed 120 !