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NFL player helps Van Andel Institute fight cancer July 17-18

NFL player helps Van Andel Institute fight cancer July 17-18

Work out alongside NFL player Jared Veldheer as part of the Van Andel Institute’s Barre Fight Against Cancer.

The two-day workout begins at 6:30 p.m. July 17 at Powerstrength Training Systems, located at 1680 4 Mile Rd. NE  and ends at Pure Barre, located at 2107 E. Beltine Ave. NE.  For $20, participants  get NFL training with Veldheer  and a  Pure Barre class, as well as a Purple Community t-shirt.  Proceeds will go towards cancer research at VAI.

Space is limited.  To reserve a spot, visit https://community.vai.org/veldheerbarre.

Libraries offer free passes to state parks

Libraries offer free passes to state parks
 

Now’s your chance to enjoy the “MI Big Green Gym” by picking up free state park passes at your local library.

The Michigan Recreation and Parks Association is teaming up with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan to offer free passes, allowing visitors to experience free recreation  programs many of the parks offer.

Double Up Food Bucks program begins again July 1

Double Up Food Bucks program begins again July 1

A program aimed at helping low income families eat healthier is back for another season.

Double Up Food Bucks runs July 1 through October 31, 2013.  Participating markets will match the amount spent by shoppers using a SNAP Bridge Card.  The maximum match is $20 per day, and shoppers do not need to use their Double Up Food Bucks the same day they get them.

In West Michigan, participating farm markets include:

  • Ada Farmers’ Market (7239 Thornapple Dr.)
  • Byron Farmers’ Market* (84th & Byron Center, Byron Center)
  • Downtown Market Grand Rapids (435 Ionia St. SW)
  • Fulton Street Farmers’ Market* (1147 East Fulton St.)
  • Greenville Farmer’s Market (1325 W. Washington, Veteran’s Park)
  • Healthy Street Farmers’ Market (431 Cass Ave. SE, Grand Rapids)
  • Holland Farmers’ Market (150 W.

'Gran Fondo' in West Michigan Saturday, June 29

'Gran Fondo' in West Michigan Saturday, June 29

There will be some “Gran Fondo” in West Michigan this Saturday, June 29.

Roughly 1,500 cyclists have registered to ride in the inaugural Gran Fondo, which will benefit skin cancer research by the Michigan State University College of Human Medicine. Participants are coming from Canada and 15 states, including Oregon.

 Riders will choose between three courses spanning 12 miles, 40 miles and 80 miles. The 80-mile route takes cyclists through the Grand River Valley, which cuts through My Town Grand Rapids Central, My Town Walker, My Town Grandville and My Town Coopersville.  They’ll turn around near Lake Michigan at North Ottawa Beach.

Children invited to ride with Griff as part of inaugural criterium June 28

Children invited to ride with Griff as part of inaugural criterium June 28

ZEELAND, Mich.—Families are invited to watch Zeeland’s first twilight Criterium Friday, June 28th.

A critierium is a bike race on a short, closed-circuit course where riders complete multuple laps.  Participants will race for a specific length of time then complete a specific number of laps. 

The race course for the “2BContinued Zeeland Criterium” is a one mile loop through historic downtown.  The award ceremony will take place at the southeast corner of Main and Church streets immediately following each race.

Zeeland’s inaugural twilight crit begins at 6 p.m., when kids can ride for free with Griff from the Grand Rapids Griffins.  Helmets are required.  Each child will receive a ribbon.

Professional cyclists can register for the crit up to 30 minutes before the race. Registration is $55 for the first race and $40 for a second race.

Company building new health care center joins safety partnership

Company building new health care center joins safety partnership

A West Michigan construction company is teaming up with the state to ensure the health and safety of construction workers building a new health care center in My Town Ada/Cascade.

The Spectrum Health Beltline Integrated Care Center is being built at the corner of East Beltline Avenue and Three Mile Road.  The $48 million project is expected to be complete in the spring of 2014.  Approximately 200 Spectrum Health employees from seven office locations will move into the new 120,000 square foot facility.  The office consolidation includes:

  • 4829 East Beltline
  • 3264 North Evergreen
  • 3322 Beltline Court
  • 2855 Michigan Street NE
  • 1179 East Paris Avenue
  • 3271 Clear Vista Court
  • 5378 Plainfield Avenue

Elzinga & Volkers Construction Professionals plan to sign a new partnership with the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Adminsitration (MIOSHA) Thursday, June 27.

Grand Rapids among top ten cities for happy marriages

Grand Rapids among top ten cities for happy marriages

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.— If you’re hoping for a happy marriage, move to Grand Rapids.

The city is among the top 10 cities for a happy marriage, based on Sharecare’s RealAge Test.  The rankings are based on a survey of 250,000 people.

Dr. Keith Roach, the co-creator of RealAge Test says healthy, happy and fulfilling unions hold anti-aging benefits for men (4.2 years) and women (2.5 years) and lower the risk of heart disease, cancer and even car accidents. Based on the survey, happy marriages are most likely to be found in:

  • #1. Cincinnati, OH
  • #2. Salt Lake City, UT
  • #3. Greenville, SC
  • #4. Milwaukee, WI
  • #5. Boston, MA
  • #6. Pittsburgh, PA
  • #7. Charlotte, NC
  • #8. Knoxville, TN
  • #9. Indianapolis, IN
  • #10: Grand Rapids, MI