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The Phantom of the Opera at Dog Story Theater


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WZZM) -- If you love "The Phantom of the Opera," you have a chance to see it in a whole new light.

The University Wits will perform at Dog Story Theater this weekend.

The University Wits is a collective of theatrical designers, directors and talented performers. Their upcoming production, "The Phantom of the Opera" is an adapted play by Kyle Walker.

"I have loved the story of "The Phantom of the Opera" since I was very little and have watched all of the stage and film versions I could possibly find," said writer/director Kyle Walker. "But they all stray pretty far from the original novel by Gaston Leroux. I wanted to make a version that is based and inspired heavily upon the novel, the story lends itself very naturally to a stage adaptation."

Grand Rapids employees send 1,200 water cases to Flint


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WZZM) -- Last week, employees at the Grand Rapids Employees Independent Union had an idea on how they could help Flint -- they asked their community for water.  

Organizers collected water from the community and with a final total of about 1200 cases and some 300 jugs, volunteers loaded a donated semi.  

The water was delivered to Food Bank of Eastern Michigan, with the water handed over to distribution points across the city.  

The 1,200 cases of water will help about 600 families for two weeks.  

Muskegon man sentenced in 'extreme' child porn case


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. -- A Muskegon man will spend the next 20 years in prison for spreading child pornography via the Internet.

Adam James Fitzpatrick, 26, will have 10 years of supervision following release. He must also register as a sex offender at that time.

The sentence was handed down Thursday in U.S. District Court in Grand Rapids. Judge Paul Maloney said this is the worst child pornography case he has ever seen.

Fitzpatrick’s computer was seized Aug. 5, 2015, when the FBI executed a search warrant following a joint investigation by the Michigan State Police and the FBI. Examiners discovered thousands of images and video, including hardcore, graphic material of prepubescent children — including infants and toddlers — being raped and tortured, U.S. Attorney Patrick Miles Jr. said.

Hutchinson opens first innovation center in Grand Rapids


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WZZM) -- Global automotive and aerospace manufacturer, Hutchinson opened its first North American Innovation Center in Grand Rapids Wednesday.

  The 13,000 square foot facility will be dedicated to research and development for automotive noise reduction systems. 
The center is complete with robotics, interactive displays and a showroom of airplane and automotive interiors.

"The City of Grand Rapids is very proud to have a longtime business such as Hutchinson invest in our City, particularly in the manufacturing and technology sectors," said Mayor Rosalynn Bliss. 

The center it located at 460 Fuller Avenue in Grand Rapids. 

Hutchinson executives chose Grand Rapids because the City is close to major automotive clients and vendors.
  The only other center that Hutchinson operates is in Paris.


Onward to Meijer Gardens, another free outing last Saturday

Onward to Meijer Gardens, another free outing last Saturday

Going on line and doing a little research will help you find something to do during the cold winter months of Michigan and Grand Rapids MI seems to have an abundance of interesting things to do. This is a follow-up to our coffee visit on Saturday, January 16th.

OK, so now Pat & I had our coffee and checked out the Grand Rapids Coffee Roasters, so it was on to Fredrick Meijer Gardens for the Orchid Show, something else that was free on Saturday, January 16 & 17.

Lots and lots of beautiful Orchids and so many different kinds. There were many people out there, just like us, curious to see these beautiful flowers. I’m sure many of them were people who had their plants displayed. How proud they must be.

Grand Rapids Coffee Roasters, "The Saturday Experience"

Grand Rapids Coffee Roasters, "The Saturday Experience"

In spite of the cold wintry weather this past weekend, my friend, Pat and I had quite the excursion. One nice thing about Grand Rapids, MI. You can always find something to do and it doesn’t have to cost an arm & a leg.

It all started out with a visit to “The Saturday Experience” at the Grand Rapids Coffee Roasters in Grand Rapids, MI. This wholesale coffee bean business is located in an old factory on Hall St. SW, just beyond Godfrey St., around the back of the building. We entered at the only door we saw that was on the second floor and proceeded to walk up steps to the 5th floor, where we found a room filled with eclectic furnishings, lots to look at, amazing teas and delicious coffee. There is also a freight elevator but I think it was out of order that day.

Lightfast coffee shop opens in Grand Rapids


GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WZZM) -- A new coffee shop in Grand Rapids is celebrating its first day in business.

Lightfast Coffee Bar + Art Collective served its first customers Monday. In addition to serving coffee, the shop hosts work from a different local artist each month. There'll be an opening party for each new show.

Lightfast is on Fulton near Diamond. Its open Monday through Saturday, 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.