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The “Say nice things about Detroit” movement was the brainchild of native Detroit resident, Emily Gail. Gail owned and operated a small camera and gift shop in Detroit in the early 1970s. While on vacation with her husband in Florida, they met numerous people from Detroit who told them “how great it was to be out of Detroit.” For the remainder of their vacation, they hired a plane to tow a banner reading, “Hi, Detroiters. Enjoy Florida. Say Nice Things About Detroit. Emily.” That event garnered media attention and led to the slogan being used widely in Detroit.
Rubin, Neal. "'Say nice things' about Emily Gail's trademark." The Detroit News, 18 July 2018, www.detroitnews.com/story/news/local/detroit-city/2018/07/17/emily-gail….