Grassroots effort to save beloved Detroit jazz bar Bert's Marketplace

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The Eastern Market staple Bert's is headed to auction.

An Eastern Market tradition remains open despite money troubles as Bert's Marketplace is soldiering on, as fans rally for the jazz hotspot.

For the record, owner Bert Dearing says no one's going to force him out

"The building itself, I have no plans of going anywhere," he said. "My granddaughter when she turns 25, this becomes her place." 

Bert says he was duped by the landlord trying to auction off his Eastern Market place-maze of jazz, cocktails, soul food and culture.

He says the building is rightfully his. All the same there is a Save Bert's page on Facebook and

And now a grassroots effort on social media and in real life.

That's where Sarah Johnson comes in.

Sarah says Bert's simply has to be saved. She is leading an effort to collect donations toward paying Bert's debts Saturday at Eastern Market.

She's going to walking with friends at Eastern Market - the goal: $700,000.

"We're going to actually ask people for donations," she said. "We're going to walk around Eastern Market and ask the same people that come here and patronize to help."

As this plays out, possibly in court, Bert's remains open. Salitha's kitchen humming along with ribs and chicken and mac 'n cheese and greens.

FOX 2: "What makes this place so special?"

"Me," quipped Salitha. "Everything I put into it."

There is even Save Bert's merchandise and signs hanging everywhere to preserve a Detroit institution.

"I'm going to fight to the end," Bert said.

Go to the Save Bert's GoFundMe BY CLICKING HERE.

Go to the Save Bert's Facebook page BY CLICKING HERE.