Our network

Anglers group hears about Grand River restoration plans


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WZZM) -- As plans to restore the rapids move forward in Grand Rapids, the change will affect many who use the Grand River. Especially if you fish.

The Grand Rapids chapter of Michigan Steelheaders met Monday evening with representatives from the City Commission and engineers working on the Grand River restoration plan. They were able to share their input about changes they'd like to see for the river, especially ones that could change the way they fish, said chapter president Steve Heintzelman.

"We're more concerned about making sure fish can travel safely up and down the river for reproduction purposes, and fish-catching purposes, and we want to make sure it's safe for boaters."


Local pastors ready to marry same-sex couples


GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) -- Since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Friday that same-sex marriages are legal in all 50 states, city halls and churches have been busy with eager couples.

On Friday we showed you video of couples in Muskegon tying the knot at the courthouse, now, Grand Rapids is following suit.

At the Fountain Street Church Monday afternoon, no couples had tied the knot yet, but there are pastors on standby ready to help facilitate the union.

"As an ordained minister, when I used to sign wedding licenses before in the state of Michigan, I would kind of take this moment as I signed and feel like, oh, this isn't quite right because this isn't something that all couples have access to," said Reverend Elizabeth Barnum. "So I know when I'll be signing certificates from now on, it's going to feel good knowing that marriage is something that all couples have access and a right to."

Protests turn to celebrations at Rosa Parks Circle


GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) -- Celebrations continued through the weekend after the supreme court's decision to allow same-sex marriages nationwide.

At Rosa Parks Circle, people have been protesting marriage equality for months. On Sunday, those protests turned to joy and celebration after the landmark decision.

Grand River Water Festival educates on water quality


GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) --The Grand River Water Festival is back for 2015. The day-long music event features traditional Folk, Country, Bluegrass, Cajun, Blues and World Beat music, all performed by Michigan artists.

The free event kicks off Sunday at Riverside Park in Grand Rapids near boat launch two.

It starts with an opening blessing at 11 a.m. The last band is scheduled to end at 10 p.m.

Speakers will take the stage in between performances to discuss water-quality issues.

For more information, visit the Grand River Water Festival website.


Three canoers capsize over Grand River dam


GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) -- Three canoers capsized while traveling over a dam in the Grand River Sunday afternoon.

The three men were split up in two canoes and were towing a kayak.

Trouble came just north of Fulton St. bridge. All three grabbed their life jackets as they swam to shore. The men escaped with minor injuries.

Grand Rapids police and fire departments responded around 12:30 and say the men did everything right in this emergency situation.

After the three were safely ashore, the fire department helped them retrieve their gear downriver.


Financing secured to preserve Harris building


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WZZM) -- The historic Harris building in downtown Grand Rapids will soon have more available space on its upper floors.

Right now, the building, on S Division near Oakes, houses the Local Epicurean and the art gallery the Renaissance Club.

With help from Develop Michigan, Inc., the Harris building will be preserved and re-purposed.

The building's owner plans to use the remodeled floors as a space for hosting cultural events.


City manager expects 'huge payoff' with return of police academy

City manager expects 'huge payoff' with return of police academy

GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM)—Grand Rapids Police are hoping to inspire a new generation of officers by bringing back their youth police academy.

The police department announced the return of the program in February. The first session begins June 22; the second program starts on July 20. The academies are open to high school sophomores, juniors and seniors in the Kent County area who might be interested in a career in law enforcement.

"Our hope and our belief is some number of years down the line, this is going to have a huge payoff," says City Manager Greg Sundstrom.

For more information, visit the Grand Rapids Police Department's website.