What Dads Really Want for Father’s Day

We asked metro Detroit dads what they want on their big day

The task of getting the perfect gift is unique to each father ­— it can either be very manageable or extremely difficult. This year, we tried to make the process a little easier.

Hour Detroit asked local dads what they truly wanted this Father’s Day, which falls on June 17. Check out their responses below, plus some gift ideas for your own dad, inspired by their feedback.

Tony Selvaggio, Royal Oak
Co-founder and owner of Western Market

“Father’s Day for me is not about stuff; I’ve got plenty of stuff. Having four grown children with their partners and one grandson, it becomes increasing difficult to gather all in one place for a sustained period of time. My ‘want’ for Father’s Day is a commitment from everyone to gather together — preferably outside, say at a park with our bikes, kettle grill, and music — to enjoy being together as a family and enjoy the outdoors and activities. However, they always will find something cool to ‘give’ me for Father’s Day.”

For dads like Selvaggio, who enjoy outdoor activities, opt for a bike tour from Wheelhouse Detroit around places such as Belle Isle Park and Corktown. $25+.

Julian Bond, Detroit
Social media manager for Little Caesars

“As a father of a pair of 2-year-old twin boys, what I really want for Father’s Day is ringside seats for the next WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment) live event here in Detroit! I’ve been a lifetime huge pro-wrestling fan since I was a little kid, but never have had the chance to be front and center to catch the crazy action in person! While my kids are a wee bit too little at the moment to bring along, I would love to attend, take tons of great photos and videos, and then share the memories from this experience as they get older to have a mini “back- in- my-day” story to tell, and hopefully put a nice smile on their faces.”

For dads like Bond, who want to see the big show, the next World Wrestling Entertainment event comes to Grand Rapids on Monday, June 18. Tickets are still available. $20+.

Scott Rutterbush, Detroit
Owner of Dine and Drink Detroit

“As I’ve gotten older, gifts have faded into the background of importance, and I have really enjoyed capturing moments and experiences with my kids. Going out to eat, visiting a museum, a park with [the] kids — creating memories that last has really become the ultimate Father’s Day gift for me.”

For dads like Rutterbush, who want to capture life’s special moments, consider an instant camera, such as the Instax Camera. $100+.  

Stanford Blanck, Franklin
Owner of Wallside Windows (A company started by his father)

“For Father’s Day, what I really want is to spend quality time with my kids and my new granddaughter this summer. I have a daughter, son-in-law, and granddaughter in Denver, another daughter in New York, and a son who lives here in Detroit and works with me at our family business, Wallside Windows. He doesn’t get to the factory as early as me, but I do get to see him every day as we take our 74-year-old business into its third generation. The whole family will be together for my son’s wedding in August. There are no better gifts than moments like that with my family.”

For dads like Blanck, who want to spend quality time with their family, consider a vacation rental from Cottages at Bay Harbor. Contact for rates. 

John Hopper, Dearborn
Owner of Hopper Construction and Greater Detroit Painting Co.

“I don’t want any material gifts. For Father’s Day, I just want [my children] to be happy and to spend time with me. I want them to see life as having no limitations. I have no aspirations of them following in my footsteps, going to college, getting married, having children, or doing anything I have done. I want them to dream big and live life bigger than anything they can possibly dream. I want them to live life on their terms. If that can happen, I’ve done my job. That’s my gift.”

For dads like Hopper, who want to watch their children grow, consider a professionally-printed photobook from Woodward Camera. $30+. 

Justin Near, Bloomfield Hills
President of Near Perfect Media

“I’m big into sports cars and racing of all kinds, and regularly participate in track days during [the] season. My kids (2 years old and 4 four years old) are growing into enthusiasts as well, so I’d love to get a day on one of my favorite tracks, and have the kids and my wife with me in paddock and go out for a few parade laps with each kid.”

For car-enthusiast dads like Near, splurge on professional driving classes at the 87-acre M1 Concourse, located in Pontiac. $100+.