5.01.2013

MUHAMMAD ALI VISITS ANN ARBOR , FALL 1985


Muhammad Ali and Faz Husain (1952 - 2006)

Tonight we have a guest story from our Ann Arbor pal John Carver who was the owner of Second Chance .  SC was the big 3 story rock venue in Ann Arbor where we all used to see the best in music. I never knew that Muhammad Ali appeared at the club after it had been remodeled into the Nectarine Ballroom.


Faz Husain was a very close friend of mine until his sudden passing a few years back.  Faz was the first person I ever met whose passion was having his picture taken with celebrities, sports stars, presidents and politicians of all sorts. Faz truly did meet just about everyone... but his biggest hero of all. was his dear friend, 3 Time Heavy Weight Champion of the World Muhammad Ali. John tells us a bit of cool history on meeting Ali and Faz...

Ali Husain, Faz's son now runs the family business (with his mom Nikki) HELLO FAZ PIZZA and maintains a facebook page where you can see most of the photos of his dad....

Back in the fall of 1985  I was surprised to read that the "GREATEST" was coming to Ypsilanti, Michigan to help fellow Muslim, and colorful character, Faz Hussain raise money for his Mayoral campaign. Ali in Ypsi, pretty amazing! I called my main man promoter Les Harvey to hear what he thought. 


We came up with a plan offering Faz $1,000 for his campaign if he brought Ali to the Nectarine Ballroom. Les said no problem and away he went to Ypsi....it was about 1PM. Slim and none were my thoughts. I headed home to greet my future wife Patricia who was driving in from Florida.

Patricia showed up around 6PM. 10 minutes later the phone rang...it was Les. He reported that Ali was at the club. Holy shit, Les pulled it off! We made tracks for the Nectarine. There he was bigger than life  surrounded by his cronies. Introductions were made then off to the Whiffle Tree for dinner.



Muhammad Ali and Faz Husain (1952 - 2006)

With Patricia on one side and me on the other Ali cracked jokes all through our lobsters. Desserts finished, the champ wanted to party. Nectarine, here we come! On the ride over Ali said he'd like to keep things low key. I knew he didn't mean it.


Upon arriving I made my way to the light booth and a microphone to announce the greatest champion of all time was in the building. Ali strode to the middle of the dance floor and held court.

Two sororities were having a party in the balcony and those girls made Ali's night! After having a fun time bantering with the crowd Ali adjourned to a rear area. Almost everyone in the Nectarine lined up to meet him. Ali called it a night at about 2:30AM. With a broad smile he left the building.  Faz was smiling too. JC


READ MORE ON RK

**NEW DOCUMENTARY** THE TRIALS OF MUHAMMAD ALI

 ANN ARBOR NIGHT CLUB SECOND CHANCE

FAZ HUSAIN: MOURNERS FLOCK TO FUNERAL FOR MY FRIEND

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