Columnist Stirs Up More Bay City-Madonna Debate

Andrew Dodson's article is "Causing a (Comments) Commotion."

Bay City Times reporter Andrew Dodson suggests in his piece on Thursday that the cycle of someone asking, rhetorically, why the community of Bay City, Mich., hates Madonna runs like clockwork about once every two years.

In response to Alina Simone’s gargantuan March 1 item, a 5,000-word-plus opus for website lithub.com, Dodson revisits the roots of the controversy. Madonna, who was born in Bay City and would later spend summers there, grew up primarily in Detroit.

Readers in the comments are generally done with Madonna. But Bay City mayor Kathleen Newsham tells Dodson she is open to some sort of belated, official recognition for the superstar:

It’s a little personal for Newsham. She lived two blocks down the street from Madonna’s grandma Elsie Mae Fortin, who died in March 2011.

“She was such a gracious gal,” said Newsham, who previously served as mayor from 1997-2003. “Even when I was campaigning, she would ask me to come to in, have a cup of coffee and chat for a little bit. She was such a humble lady that you never would have known from the way she acted that she had such a famous granddaughter.”

Newsham said it’s time for Bay City to highlight its Madonna connection, but she’s not interested in getting the ball rolling. “I have too many things on my plate right now, but if there’s a group out there who wants to do this, I would do what I can to help out,” she said.

Sounds like a great opportunity for someone to finally step into the Bay City void. Madonna fan clubs … go!