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We know skin. A D S PAC E Plastic Surgery Associates is conveniently located in the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel, so visit us and treat yourself to these great skin care services during your stay. We offer the latest innovations in anti-aging treatments for your skin.

Call to schedule an appointment today!

BOTOX® and Fillers Laser Skin Renewal Microdermabrasion MicroPeel® Vi Peel™ Laser Hair Removal Treatment of Spider Veins Skin Care Products TRUE Mineral Makeup

plastic surgery associates W. David Moore, MD • Douglas L. Vander Woude, MD • John D. Renucci, MD • Marguerite E. Aitken, MD • David R. Alfonso, MD • Pamela R. Jendritz, RN


located i n t h e a m way g r a n d p l a z a h o t e l 616 451 4500

800 419 470 2


WOMEN’S APPAREL & SHOES Leigh’s Talbots Naturalizer by Zombo MEN’S APPAREL & SHOES Fitzgerald’s Jos. A. Bank

Breton at Burton

BOOKS HOME & GIFTS Pooh’s Corner Carol Roeda Studio Naked Plates

RESTAURANTS & FOOD Hungry Howie’s Pizza Great Lakes Shipping Co. Omelette Shoppe D&W Fresh Market




SERVICES Audio Video Interiors Group, LLC Breton Designer Wigs Breton Rainbow Cleaners Breton Village Shoe Repair Fifth Third Bank Smeelink Optical Miss Saigon Nail Salon and Spa Breton Village Travel General Nutrition Center Rite Aid Drugs Chow Hound

30th Anniversary Year

SINCE 1980

FROM BEACH, TO BOARDROOM, TO BLACK TIE. Men who pursue life shop here! 1872 Breton Rd., Grand Rapids, MI 49506 I Breton Village I 616.957.2220 I



6 7 4 0



9 4 2

9 8 8 6

Very Cherre tart cherry juices are made using the finest Michigan Montmorency tart cherries. They are all-natural, preservative-free, and contain no added sugar. Our juices are crafted in small batches and utilize a proprietary glass bottle to ensure freshness and help retain the product’s natural health benefits. Very Cherre premium tart cherry juices are antioxidant-rich and contain naturally-occurring melatonin.

Available at: Plaza Essentials Gift Shop (Amway Grand Plaza) | Cornucopia (Amway Grand Plaza) | JW Marketplace (JW Marriott) To find a retailer near you, visit us at































/ 616 608 6465 / R E P U B L I C G R A N D R A P I DS.COM VA L E T PA R K I N G / O U T D O O R S E AT I N G




58 36 24




44 We Are Smitten

Fashionably On Time

52 Show Biz

20 A Legacy of Science and

64 Big-Time

Innovation in West Michigan 24

ArtPrize 2.0


Open Opportunities


30 Deliciousness 34 Cutting the Cord 36


Giving Michigan a Voice

58 36 Hours in Grand Rapids

40 Land of Riches 42

Guest Editorial

70 Savor: A Guide to Hotel Dining

Timeless Fun

80 Calendar of Events 88 SOLACE Scene

VO LU M E 4 N U M B E R 1 MADE IN WEST MICHIGAN An Amway Hotel Corporation Publication Editorial Director Dottie Rhodes Creative Director Gwen O’Brien Editor Kristin Tennant Design Plenty Creative

A M WAY H OT E L C O R P O R AT I O N Corporate Director of Marketing Chad LeRoux Marketing Programs Manager Ryan Slusarzyk

O N T H E C OV E R Photography David Ellison 10%


Cert no. SW-COC-003618

SOLACE ™ magazine is published two times per year by Plenty Creative on behalf of Amway Hotel Corporation. No portion of this magazine may be reproduced in whole or in part without the expressed written consent of both Plenty Creative and the Amway Hotel Corporation. For advertising information, please call 616.776.6980 or visit us online at Follow us on Facebook at and Twitter too at @solacemag.

let’s go.


Explore. Shop. Dine. Enjoy. With so much to do and see in downtown Grand Rapids, going out means having fun. From cultural attractions to fabulous shopping just outside your door to the rich and inviting nightlife, one thing is certain. When you’re here, boredom is not in the picture. If you are a guest of a downtown hotel, be sure to visit the concierge and ask for a copy of the downtown directory and map. Otherwise keep up to date with all downtown happenings at

follow us!


S P R I N G & S U M M E R 2 01 0



DEAR GUEST, SOLACE magazine is one of my favorite ways to welcome guests to Grand Rapids, because it will help make your stay in our city fun and interesting, in addition to comfortable. As president of Amway Hotel Corporation— the operator of the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel, the JW Marriott Grand Rapids and the Downtown Courtyard by Marriott—my goal reaches beyond providing our comfortable beds, soft pillows, and friendly service. My hope is that by the time you leave West Michigan, you’ll have a much clearer picture of the people and places that characterize our region. This issue of SOLACE, in particular, highlights many of the surprising, delicious, thoughtprovoking, and inspiring things that are rooted and created in Michigan. Some of those things are actual products that are locally designed and manufactured. From awardwinning children’s gifts (p. 42) to unique bags, comfortable shoes and groundbreaking chairs (p. 49), these products enrich our economy as well as our lives. There are also many Michiganmade products you should be sure to taste while you’re here, and perhaps take some home with you, too. Just make sure you don’t read about Palazzolo Gelato (p. 30) or Hudsonville ice cream (p. 47) on an empty stomach—you might be tempted to skip right to dessert. Some of the other wonderful things made in Michigan are ideas and innovations rather than products. Whether they’re a part of the fashion world (p. 18), the art world (p. 24), theater (p. 52), or technology (p. 34), the creations of Michigan are impacting a variety of fields.


Of course, Michigan people are behind all of the wonderful products, experiences, and ideas. Tim Allen uses his rich voice talent to promote the state he loves (p. 36). A young pitcher, now a Detroit Tiger prospect, builds his career with the West Michigan Whitecaps (p. 64). We offer you a closer look at them all. I truly hope you enjoy your stay with us. If you have a bit of leisure time while you’re here, be sure to check out our local theater companies (p. 56) and our restaurant guide (p. 70). For more ideas about what to do during your visit, we also share a personal take on how you might want to spend 36 hours in the area (p. 58). Wherever your adventures take you, please use SOLACE as a guide to your time here, and be sure to take it home with you to enjoy long after your visit.

Joseph Tomaselli Amway Hotel Corporation President and Chief Executive Officer

LocaL FLavor just around the corner.

SpeCial online pRomotion Receive $10 off your order of $20 or more. Enter “Solace 1� in the discount code. Offer good through 2010.

Get the full coffee experience. visit either of our two locations and receive a complimentary gift of our Kent club coffee sample Pack and cherry Berry Nut mix. Just bring in your hotel key card. Retail StoRe

227 Winter Avenue NW 616 459 6257

RiveRfRont Cafe

Located along the Grand River in the Plaza Towers 235 Fulton NW 616 459 9320 One hour of free parking is available in the adjacent lot




Photography by Yolanda Gonzalez

CONNECTING THE DOTS Reaching out to cultivate individuals, businesses, and the region.

There is currently a lot of passion and energy surrounding entrepreneurship and innovation in West Michigan. It’s an exciting place to be. As Director of Entrepreneurial Development at Lakeshore Advantage, I’m right in the middle of all that energy. I have always been inspired by new ideas and attracted to challenge, risk, and change, but when I first moved here from New York in 1990, my life was very different. My husband and I came here in the middle of a snowy winter, with a very sick child, and no friends, family, or support system. I wanted to go home. Then one day I finally woke up and realized that I could not wait around for people and opportunities to come to me. I needed to reach out and make things happen. Now Michigan has been my home for 20 years. In addition to my work at Lakeshore Advantage, I also act as Program Director for Momentum. Momentum is a great example of all the energy and passion in our region. What started out as a program to help launch new tech companies has become a movement of companies, nonprofit organizations, educational institutions, and individuals all with a shared vision—to retain West Michigan’s great talent, drive innovation, and help cultivate our region’s technology sector.

My role in all of this—at both Lakeshore and Momentum—is to connect entrepreneurs to the West Michigan resources that will help them launch a successful business, whether they need training, mentorship, networking opportunities, office space, or access to capital. It is exciting to be part of a team that casts a vision and connects all of the dots necessary to make that vision a reality.

Amanda Chocko is Director of Entrepreneurial Development at Lakeshore Advantage, a resource for economic development services to help launch, expand or relocate businesses to the Holland, Zeeland and Saugatuck area. She is also Program Director for Momentum, a new kind of venture firm that focuses on keeping creative capital in Michigan. Find out more about Amanda’s work at Lakeshore Advantage online at and Momentum at SOLACE

S P R I N G & S U M M E R 2 01 0


Get the most out of nature and get the best out of life

Agriculture Research Farm Lakeview, California

Trout Lake Farm Trout Lake, Washington

NUTRILITEÂŽ is the only global vitamin and mineral brand to grow, harvest, and process plants on their own certified organic farms. Using sustainable, organic farming methods, Nutrilite replenishes the soil, giving nutrients back to the earth to ensure that the resulting plants used to make dietary supplements that bear the NUTRILITE name take full advantage of everything nature has to offer.

Fazenda Nutriorganica Ubajara, Brazil

Rancho El Petacal Jalisco, Mexico

Plants are processed within hours of harvest and shipped promptly, so that NUTRILITE vitamins, minerals, and dietary supplements contain the most vibrant, beneficial natural plant compounds, providing antioxidant protection and immune support to help you be your energetic best. To order, contact your Amway Global Independent Business Owner, visit, or call 800-253-6500.

Š2010 All rights reserved. Printed in the USA. 37453ENB

home at l ast

gooch design studio Residential ∙ Commercial ∙ Hospitality For more, visit us at



FASHIONABLY ON TIME From a debut at Fashion Week to a new book detailing his design process, Daniel Vosovic has plenty to say. By Karin Lannon Photography by David Ellison

Daniel Vosovic Follow on twitter @dvosovicstudio. Fashion Inside Out available downtown at Schuler Books & Music 40 Fountain Street NW Downtown Grand Rapids A short walk from your hotel. 20

Daniel Vosovic has been a busy boy. Since SOLACE last spoke with the Lowell, Michigan, native in 2008, this young designer—who won the All-Star Project Runway competition in 2009—has published his first book, Fashion Inside Out, traveled the country on a six-week book tour, and prepared for his latest coup, the premiere of his first collection in the 2010 New York Fashion Week. Published in fall 2008, Vosovic’s lavishly designed, velvet-covered book offers an insider’s take on the entire design process. His personal tips on fashion sketching, buying fabric, draping, creating patterns, and styling are interspersed with chatty and insightful interviews with fashion giants such as Todd Oldham, Diane von Furstenberg, and Project Runway’s Tim Gunn. Vosovic’s own designs appear in the book, too, showing the progression from inspiration to sketch to finished design. One of the featured designs is a chartreuse and metallic party dress designed for his best friend, fellow Michigan native Anna Scott.

The young designer’s career took another big step forward this past February, when he introduced his first official collection during New York’s Fashion Week. Described as “definitely very much in” by Mark Holgate at Vogue, the new “Chiseled” collection features marbled prints, earth-tone hues, and soft silk and jersey fabrics. According to Vosovic, “In my ultimate goal of always giving you something fresh and exciting to wear, you will find my intention of dressing the sexy, confident, urban, edgy woman that has consistently inspired me, a prevalent one in each and every design I create.” Another notable event of Fashion Week was Vosovic’s decision to cast only Asian models for his collection—a move that had people commenting and tweeting about the lack of diversity usually seen in runway shows. What’s next for this up-and-coming designer? Whatever it is, he won’t be resting on his coattails. As Vosovic says in the introduction of his book, “As for whether I’ll ever run out of things to say, I can answer that with a definite ‘no’!”

Childhood favorites Barbie® and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups® are all grown up as the inspiration for this ring by Kendall College of Art and Design Metals/Jewelry major Jessica Steenwyk. The delicate, intricate form balances the feminine with the sometimes masculine, aggressive process of jewlery making. For more information on this or any of Kendall’s art and design programs, please call 1 800 676.2787 or visit


LEGACY By Karin Lannon

A LEGACY OF SCIENCE AND INNOVATION IN WEST MICHIGAN From nutrition and skin care to environmentally-friendly household products, Amway has always stayed ahead of the curve.

What do North America’s first multivitamin tablet and one of the world’s top five largestselling prestige brands of facial skin care products and color cosmetics have in common? They both hail from Amway, the corporate giant headquartered in a mile-long complex just east of Grand Rapids in Ada, Michigan. Once known primarily for its biodegradable multi-purpose cleaner L.O.C.™ (Liquid Organic Cleaning Concentrate), Amway has always been a leader in research and development. When L.O.C.™ was developed, the company was ahead of the curve in terms of environmentally-friendly products. It has since gone on to achieve many other firsts: its Nutrilite™ brand is the only global vitamin and mineral brand to grow, harvest, and process plants on certified organic farms; its eSpring Water Purifier is the first in-home water purifier combining UV light with a carbon block filter; and Amway currently holds over 800 patents. Today, science and innovation are still at the heart of the organization. Amway employs over 500 dedicated scientists and technicians, and has 65 R&D labs, including one lab in California and another in Shanghai. “It’s kind of a best kept secret,” says Catherine Ehrenberger, Vice President of Research & Development. “Most people have no idea about the extent of Amway’s scientific community. Amway has always had a serious commitment to science, and it always will.”


According to Ehrenberger, two of the company’s current focal points for innovation are nutrition and beauty products. Amway’s Nutrilite is the world's leading brand of vitamins, minerals and dietary supplements, based on sales of global vitamin and dietary supplement brands in a survey conducted by Euromonitor International. “We’ve been looking at traditional Chinese medicine solutions to see if we can validate those materials and incorporate them into our nutritional products,” Ehrenberger says. “We’re also looking at different delivery systems for the future. Most people don’t like to take a pill, but if we deliver a product they can mix with a drink, it’ll be easier for them to comply with the steps they need for optimal health.” Research for the Artistry brand has focused on reducing the effects of aging through a scientific study of what causes skin to age and how to counteract those mechanisms.

One by One Campaign for Children. Thanks to their generous donations in the community, the founding families’ names can also be seen on many buildings throughout Grand Rapids, from the entertainment venues and hospitals to a convention center and research institute. Right now, there’s even a special exhibit on Amway at the Grand Rapids Public Museum, where you can see some of the company’s innovations, try an interactive nutritional life-age calculator, and learn more about the founders and Amway’s impact on the city. The corporate headquarters in Ada also hosts a Welcome Center, where you can learn more about Amway history, products, and people.

Amway: 50 Years of Helping People Live Better Lives

“Last year we launched a product called Crème LX that makes skin act 15 years younger,” Ehrenberger says. “The launch was extremely successful.”

Grand Rapids Public Museum 272 Pearl Street NW A short walk from your hotel. Welcome Center

Amway’s story isn’t just about products, though. Since 1959 Amway and its distributors and employees have given $371 million dollars to a host of causes worldwide including the

Amway Corporate Headquarters 7575 East Fulton Ada, Michigan About a 20-minute drive from your hotel.

HEADQUARTERS ada, michigan


FLAGSHIP BRANDS NUTRILITE™ nutrition and wellness products, ARTISTRY™ skin care and cosmetics, and LEGACY OF CLEAN™ home care

GLOBAL REACH 80+ countries and territories



2009 ANNUAL SALES $8.4 billion


S P R I N G & S U M M E R 2 01 0


Come Explore the Grand Rapids Public Museum -

Just Across the River! • Amway - 50 Years of Helping People Live Better Lives Interactive exhibit is free with general admission: • Be an R&D scientist at the Innovation Station • Reveal your “true life age” in the Nutrilite lab • Hear inspiring words of wisdom from company founders • 3 floors of fascinating exhibits including a 76-foot whale skeleton and Egyptian mummies. • Catch a show in the Planetarium and ride the Carousel! General Admission: $8 Adults, $7 Seniors, $3 Ages 3-17 and College Students with ID, Members and Kids under 3 free.

272 PEARL STREET NW • GRAND RAPIDS, MI 49504 • 616.456-3977 •

LeArn from

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By Kristin Tennant Illustration by Jessica Mayes, Plenty Creative Photo courtesy of Grand Rapids Art Museum

ARTPRIZE 2.0 The art competition with the world’s largest prize builds on its successes.

If you ask Rick DeVos how the first-ever ArtPrize event went last year, his response is sure to be unequivocal. “It totally exceeded our expectations, in every possible way,” DeVos says of the Grand Rapids-based open art competition he conceived of and organizes. The competition’s radically open platform, along with the $250,000 top prize, drew over 1,200 artists and plenty of buzz in 2009. Any artist, whether successful or just getting started, has the chance to show work at ArtPrize, and any visitor can vote to help determine who wins the prize. The work is shown in venues across Grand Rapids—most of them have no direct connection to the art world. As DeVos looks ahead to ArtPrize 2010, scheduled for September 22–October 10, his main goal is to avoid tinkering too much. “Lately I’ve been thinking about ArtPrize as a garden,” DeVos says. “We had a great season

last year, so I don’t want to mess with the variables too much. You’re dealing with a complex, dense ecosystem, so you have to be careful if you’re going to start changing things, like the amount of water or type of fertilizer.” The ArtPrize team is making some changes, though, mostly in an effort to become better facilitators in this artist- and audience-driven event. That facilitating process began shortly after ArtPrize 2009 ended, when DeVos and his team organized town hall-type meetings to gather feedback from participating venues and artists. As ArtPrize organizers processed and discussed the feedback, they decided to make some improvements to the registration and artistvenue matching process. Another theme also emerged: the importance of acknowledging and working within some of the tensions inherent in the event, like the tension between predictability and surprise. More predictability, particularly when it comes to ArtPrize venue locations, would make it easier for viewers to

see more art, but the event might then lose an element of surprise—the treasure-hunt feel that comes from exploring the city to discover art. The compromise DeVos and his team decided on is the introduction of Exhibition Centers— large spaces with lots of art entries in various parts of the city. Once the Exhibition Centers are established, they will become cores for other, smaller venues to cluster around. “We want to make sure we offer more points of entry for people to see art—that’s the added predictability part,” DeVos says. “But I think there will always be a sense of mystery around this event, too. Each year, ArtPrize will have its own character, depending on who shows up. We don’t control that, the artists and participating venues do. I think in the second year, people will push the artistic limits even more, and will create art that makes the most of the city.” After such a banner year in 2009—1,262 artists showed work in 159 venues that was viewed by 37,264 registered voters—it’s natural to wonder how big ArtPrize can get. “The number of venues and artists will govern how big this can get,” DeVos says. “It all depends on how much the city embraces it.”

If you can’t be in town during ArtPrize 2010 (September 22 through October 10), you can read about it on the ArtPrize website (, Twitter @artprize). The work that took last year’s top prize, shown at left, a painting called Open Water, no. 24 by Ran Ortner, is on display at the Grand Rapids Art Museum, a 3-minute walk from the hotel, through the summer. 26

GOODNESS! At Trillium Haven Farm, food travels from earth to mouth in a matter of moments. SOLACE

S P R I N G & S U M M E R 2 01 0





OPEN OPPORTUNITIES Local residents use social media to speak up and promote change. Story by Tamaryn Tobian Illustration by Sally England, Plenty Creative

There’s a new community forum giving Grand Rapids residents a voice: Residents are organically speaking up on Twitter, with both love for their city and ideas for improving the metropolis they call home. After returning home from a trip to Chicago with his wife, author-illustrator Ryan Hipp, 34, was inspired to ask this question on Twitter: “What does Grand Rapids need?” It spread through the city like the news of chocolate cake in an office building. “I’ve lived here my whole life, and I was genuinely interested in what people think Grand Rapids is missing,” explains Hipp. “I thought we’d benefit from more specialty stores like the ones in Chicago.” So the morning of December 30, he posted the question from his personal Twitter account. Hipp wasn’t expecting the query to go viral, but thanks to its hashtag, #GRneeds, it did. “I expected a few of my friends would respond. I didn’t expect them to retweet to all their followers and keep the conversation going,” expresses Hipp, whose Twitter account is @racewinner. On Twitter, a hash, or the number sign, is used to tag tweets. Typically, it’s a way to connect people who are doing the same thing at the same time, like watching a political speech or sporting event. Sometimes hashtags are just funny, like #omgidothistoo and #awkward.

Within a very short time, there were hundreds of tweets tagged #GRneeds. “Some of it was selfish stuff, but overall the comments were positive,” Hipp says. Everything from suggestions about train and air travel to ways to improve the Fulton Street Farmers’ Market were tweeted; the most-often #GRneeds tweet was for a Trader Joe’s grocery store. “For the most part, the conversation was diverse and welcoming,” says Tommy Allen, a friend of Hipp and active Twitter user, who contributed to the conversation. “It was also interesting to watch the tone of the conversation flip back-and-forth in a way that can only happen with a communication tool like Twitter,” Hipp points out. “It started out #GRneeds, then someone flipped it to a somewhat sarcastic version with #GRwants, only to have it flip back to the positive #GRhas.” Of course, the next question being asked is this: Will anything positive come from all of this Twitter-based brainstorming? “These things often take time before you see results,” says Hipp, “but I think it’s gotten people excited. And the conversation is still being retweeted in different formats. You hope that all your dreams for your city come true, socially, developmentally, and economically. Maybe it was the right time to get the ball rolling.”

Curious about what people think Grand Rapids needs—and what they’re happy it has? Here’s a sampling. You can also go to and type #GRneeds or #GRhas into the search engine.

#GRneeds Great shopping downtown for clothing, groceries, etc … to create a new market to live and play downtown. Lower priced commercial rent in Eastown so that small companies can stay in business. Taco trucks, street musicians, downtown, year-round farmers' market. More low-cost direct flights to NYC and West Coast cities. This 2-stop layover travel has got to go! A commuter rail from the Lakeshore area Holland/ Muskegon for work and going to the beach.

#GRhas Some of the most passionate, community-driven people I've ever met. Michigan's oldest opera company and only professional ballet company. Most generous community with some of the best foundations in the country. But we have 2 roll up sleeves, 2 make it happen. Only a half hour drive to the Greatest Lake. Gerald Ford Presidential Museum. Detroit, Chicago don't. GR gets exhibits that only come to federal museums. Nice.


S P R I N G & S U M M E R 2 01 0


Van Andel Institute proudly announces the

Grand Opening of Phase II

Van Andel Institute employees pose in front of the 240,000 square foot expansion in the heart of Grand Rapids’ Medical Mile

Committed to

improving the health and enhancing the lives of current and future generations through disease research and science education.

Learn more at

Big, Fast, Lean, and Green Less Ink. Less Energy. Less Waste. More Sustainable.

Printers print. We all know that. Printers also consume and discard. At Custom Printers, our Heidelberg XL 105 allows us to print more while using less energy, reducing consumables and generating less recyclable waste. The newest, fastest, most efficient and eco-friendly press in West Michigan. World-class manufacturing. Spot on results.

2801 Oak Industrial Drive NE • Grand Rapids, MI 49505 • • 616-454-9224


S P R I N G & S U M M E R 2 01 0





DELICIOUSNESS It’s easy to fall in love with this custom-crafted, “flavor-full” treat.

Story by Karen DeVries Photography by Mitch Ranger

Look for Palazzolo's gelato at these downtown restaurants...

Vanilla Butterscotch Twirl. Cappuccino Dark Chocolate Swirl. Fresh Red Raspberry, or Sun-dried Cranberry. Cheddar Cheese with Maple Pie Crust Bits? Absolutely, if you ask Pete Palazzolo. He’s created these and more than 600 other flavors of gelato and sorbetto—including 19 varieties of vanilla alone—and is always ready to customcraft another in his West Michigan plant.

San Chez, a Tapas Bistro 38 Fulton Street West A short walk from your hotel. Tre Cugini 122 Monroe Center Street NW A short walk from your hotel.

...Or take some back to your room. Martha's Vineyard 200 Union Avenue NE A 5-minute drive from your hotel. Forest Hills Foods

Gelato is simply the Italian word for ice cream. But it’s not the same as what you’d get in the frozen foods aisle of a large American grocery store. It’s denser, with less air churned into it, and uses cream with a lower butterfat content. Palazzolo’s gelato stands out because he uses real dairy products, not powdered bases, plus all-natural flavorings and mix-ins. He’s even added a bakery to his Fennville facilities for making the cookies that are mixed into some flavors. It costs more to make his product that way, but that hasn’t stopped customers from falling in love. Palazzolo estimates he ships about 15 tons of gelato and sorbetto each week, supplying restaurants, coffee shops, and specialty grocers from Seattle to Key West.

Palazzolo thinks his passion for food is hereditary. His grandfather owned a restaurant in Detroit; in the 1980s, his mother opened Palazzolo’s Italian Specialties in Saugatuck, a small resort town on the shores of Lake Michigan. That’s where Palazzolo, at the time still in high school, started experimenting with gelato. He thinks people are willing to pay $5 a pint in part because of the rise of the Food Network over the last decade. “America’s started to be more culinary,” he says. “I believe the fastestgrowing area of the marketplace is the home gourmet.” Making Oprah Winfrey’s “O” list of favorites in the summer of 2004 certainly didn’t hurt sales, either. Palazzolo’s gelato is served at several downtown Grand Rapids restaurants, including San Chez, Tre Cugini, and Bistro Bella Vita. It’s also sold by the pint at area D&W groceries, Forest Hills Foods, and Martha’s Vineyard, a fine wine store in the Heritage Hill neighborhood. “I can’t pick a favorite,” Palazollo admits, “but right now I could go for some mascarpone caramel pistachio.”

4668 Cascade Road SE A 10-minute drive from your hotel. D&W Fresh Market

Special thanks to Kathy Price, Makeup; and Livvy Zimmerman, Stella & Dot, for jewelry. 2181 Wealthy Street SE An 11-minute drive from your hotel. SOLACE

S P R I N G & S U M M E R 2 01 0


Committed to Michigan. Committed to you. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan has a unique social mission aimed at making quality health care accessible to all Michigan residents. By accepting everyone for coverage, and working with providers and hospitals to improve the quality of health services, we’re able to provide insurance to the people who need it most. Our mission allows us to focus our efforts on giving back to the state we call home by improving the health of Michigan families through supporting: • More than 40 free clinics across the state that offer low- or no-cost health or dental care to more than 90,000 uninsured Michigan residents. • Michigan’s MIChild program to help more than 30,000 children in Michigan receive medical and dental care. Our unique mission defines who we are and where we place our priorities. It’s been that way for over 70 years.

To learn more about our social mission, visit

VISIT MICHIGAN’S oNly preSIdeNTIAl MuSeuM GERALD R. FORD PRESIDENTIAL MUSEUM Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum 303 Pearl Street NW Grand Rapids, Michigan 49504 616.254.0400


Support for exhibits and events provided by the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation


S P R I N G & S U M M E R 2 01 0




CUTTING THE CORD: A WIRELESS ENVIRONMENT A new technology sets the stage for leaving your chargers behind. Story by Karin Lannon Illustration by Chuck Anderson

Imagine leaving on a trip with a laptop, phone, iPod, Kindle, and camera—and being able to leave all the charging cords behind. That’s the vision of Grand Rapids-based Fulton Innovation LLC, inventors of the new eCoupled™ technology. Combining ultra wideband with wireless technology, eCoupled creates a devicecharging platform that can be invisibly placed on (or even built into) a surface.

Learn more about eCoupled™ technology at

“Instead of charging each device with a dedicated cord that plugs into a wall unit, we offer a way to break that connection,” explains Scott Mollema, group leader of FI’s Advanced Technology Group. “You can simply place your device on the surface and let it charge wirelessly.”

Fulton Innovation 7575 Fulton Street East Ada, Michigan 616.787.5564


Mollema says the new technology offers the same charge rates and times as corded systems, and it can be scaled to different power needs, too. Possible applications range from phones and MP3s to laptops, power tools, and even kitchen countertop appliances.

Where can you expect to find this new system? Eventually, it may be everywhere, including hotel rooms, cars, offices, and homes. While adaptive systems are already available to make the system work with existing technology, FI is teaming with Dell, Motorola, Texas Instruments, Bosch, Herman Miller, and others, to build it into their devices. Like Wi-Fi™ or Bluetooth®, equipped devices and environments will be marked with a logo (QI). As more devices adapt the technology, Mollema expects industries like hotels to make it a standard part of their guest experience. However, he adds, “It’s not just about your hotel room or your home. Our goal is to develop a full ecosystem that allows you to carry your devices to different environments and charge them anywhere. We want eCoupled technology to be as ubiquitous and convenient as Wi-Fi.”

On the road having fun? Bet could still use a power hug. feeling low?...youget a hug. wireless charging pad & case

Charge up without plugging in with the...

Coming soon for the BlackBerry® Bold ™ and Tour™ The Trademarks BlackBerry, Tour and Bold are owned by Research In Motion Limited and is registered in the United States and may be pending or registered in other countries. Case-mate is not endorsed, sponsored, affiliated with or otherwise authorized by Research In Motion Limited.

Discover one of West Michigan’s gems, tucked away amid woods, meadows, and ponds just 15 minutes from downtown Grand Rapids. This friendly public course has earned 4.5 stars from Golf Digest, hosted 7 NCAA Golf National Championships, and been rated among the 10 friendliest courses for women. Call or e-mail today to reserve your tee time, ask about our top-notch club rentals, and find out what’s on today’s menu. See you on the green.

616 331 1000

Golf Digest’s Places to Play Four and one-half star rating


S P R I N G & S U M M E R 2 01 0





GIVING MICHIGAN A VOICE How Tim Allen’s voice became synonymous with Michigan’s wonders. Authenticity. That’s what many people are in search of when they plan a Michigan vacation. Authenticity is apparently what they hear in Tim Allen’s voice, too, when he promotes the state in the Pure Michigan ad campaign. Tim Allen is certainly a well-known voice talent, thanks to his work in such movies as Toy Story, but George Zimmermann, director of Travel Michigan, says the power of Allen’s narration goes beyond talent. “Tim has had so many personal experiences in Michigan, and so many memories,” Zimmermann says. “He’s been to these places we’re featuring in the ads, and his love for the state really comes through in his voice. There’s an authenticity in his delivery that just can’t be made up.” Allen, who moved to Michigan when he was 11, still has a house in the state. In an interview for the July 9, 2009, issue of AdAge, Allen talks about his personal bond with Michigan, and why he was excited to be the voice of Pure Michigan. By Kristin Tennant Paintings by Michael Schaeffer Photo by David Ellison

To find out more about Tim Allen, visit his website at See the Pure Michigan campaign on Michigan's Official Travel and Tourism site,

“I’m a big car freak and was a big Michigan booster when I was a kid,” Allen says. “I came from Colorado, which is a nice state, but then we moved here, and there were cars and lakes and it was just really an exciting place to be and it never really got any recognition.” Zimmermann says Allen’s apparent enthusiasm and the strong emotional appeal of the Pure Michigan campaign sets it apart from any other state tourism campaigns. Without Allen’s involvement, Zimmermann says he doubts the campaign would have received the attention and accolades it has. Last summer, Forbes named Pure Michigan one of the All-time 10 Best Tourism Promotion Campaigns Worldwide.

“Tim Allen was really key to all of this success, but the best part of it is that he has said the voice work he’s done for the Pure Michigan campaign is the work he’s most proud of in his whole career,” Zimmermann says, referencing the AdAge interview. There’s no doubt that people love the campaign and Allen’s involvement. Zimmermann says his office “immediately was barraged by consumer emails” after the campaign launched, and shortly after creating a Facebook fan page for Pure Michigan, it had over 30,000 fans. But there’s another positive outcome that’s particularly important in any state, but particularly in a state so hard-hit by the recession: It’s called a return on investment. According to a recent study conducted by Longwoods International, a research firm specializing in tourism advertising return on investment, the first Pure Michigan campaign (which ran in the spring and summer of 2009) motivated 680,000 new trips to the state from outside of the Great Lakes region. Those visitors spent $250 million at Michigan businesses last summer. “The e-mail responses and awards are great, but the numbers really tell the story,” Zimmermann says. “People from outside the region are discovering Michigan, and we have enormous potential to grow in the area of tourism. “Then there’s the state pride element that wasn’t really a planned result of the campaign, but it’s really there,” Zimmermann says. “You can’t really put a dollar amount on state pride, but it’s important right now to change the way people perceive the state. This campaign, thanks to Tim and his own state pride, does that.”


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Visit the Vasaio Spa at the JW Marriott. And, new this summer, indulge at the Vasaio Spa and Salon inside the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel.

Spa Services massage


Swedish Aromatherapy Prenatal Sport/Deep Tissue Reflexology Back-Neck-Shoulders Massage for Two Hot Stone Therapy

Pumpkin Enzyme Customized Diamond Peel Facial

body treatments Herbal Body Wrap Chocolate Silk Mud Wrap Seaweed/Ginger Body Wrap Grapefruit Body Polish

Artisan Nails Executive Pedicure Executive Manicure Mani-Pedi Express

Salon Services

at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel

Featuring Keune Hair cosmetics Women’s Cut/Style Men’s Cut/Style Color Highlights Color & Highlights Texturizing Wave Formal UpStyle Thermal Straightener

Full and in-room suite spa services are available at the JW Marriott Grand Rapids. Guests can book on-line at or 616.242.1475 ext.1475.

Full service spa and salon coming Summer 2010. For more information about our in-room suite spa services please call 616.776.6498.

Exceptional Shopping, Exceptional Dining andGifting Entertainment!

With the holiday shopping season just around the corner, there’s no time like now to get started on finding that perfect gift for those you love. Woodland Mall has all you compliment everyone on your list. Shop overneed 100tostores:

Apple The Children’s Place Bath & Body Works Williams-Sonoma Claire’s Swarovski Papyrus Creek Coldwater Bachrach Brookstone J. Crew Barnes & Noble

Also, visit to From a please full meal a quick bite: for details Woodland Mall’s upcoming American Girl Onregarding The Border Show Event. It’s one event you won’t want RedFashion Robin Restaurant to miss! Bar Louie Olga’s Kitchen Cafés in the Woods Food Court

Relax at the movies: Celebration! Cinema... offering the best value movies across 14 screens



Shop 100 stores including Macy’s, JCPenney, Sears and The Cafés in the Woods Food Court. Monday-Saturday toBeltline, 9pm, Sunday NoonShop to 6pm 28th Street and 10am the East West of I-96. 120 stores including The Cafés in the Woods Food Court 28th Street and the East Beltline, West of I-96 and Macy’s, JCPenney, and Sears. Hours: Monday-Saturday 10am to 9pm, Sunday 11am to 6pm 616-949-0012 • Fan us on Facebook at

A Pennsylvania Real Estate Investment Trust Property



LAND OF RICHES An exhibit in the old museum building reexamines the way Michigan—and museums—used to be. Story by Kristin Tennant Photography by Mitch Ranger

Museums are often time capsules, offering glimpses into particular past moments and places. But the old Grand Rapids Public Museum building is more like a time capsule within a time capsule—a glimpse not only at how life used to be, but also at how museums used to be. The old museum building, at 54 Jefferson Avenue SW, was built in 1940 with WPA funds under Roosevelt’s New Deal. It’s been used as a museum storage facility since 1994, when the new Grand Rapids Public Museum (Van Andel Museum Center) opened (272 Pearl Street NW, downtown). This spring, however, the pubic is being treated to a glimpse inside the old public museum building. The impetus for opening the doors is an art exhibit by local college students and their professors. Group projects will incorporate museum specimens, artifacts, interactive displays, and dioramas, and will bring the “old” Museum building to life in unexpected, experimental ways. Paul Amenta, a Grand Valley State University alumnus and adjunct professor at Kendall College of Art and Design, served as curator and project director. Collaborative groups of students and faculty from seven local colleges and art institutions unveiled their site-specific art installation on April 16. The exhibition, Michigan—Land of

Riches: Re-examining the Old Grand Rapids Public Museum, continued through May 15. More than 200 artists participated, working in various disciplines from ceramics and painting, to photography, graphic design, and film and video. “We’ve been looking for ways to innovate as a museum, and to engage the community,” says Marilyn Merdzinski, the Public Museum’s director of Collections and Preservation. “We also wanted to make better use of this space we have, and provide access to more of the artifacts in storage. Our museum has always incorporated multiple sites and many different experiences—they all complement the programs and offerings at our wonderful main site.” Merdzinski says the museum typically exhibits only about 10 percent of its collection at any given time. The museum has recently posted its entire collection record online (, in an effort to share the riches with the public; opening the doors for the student art exhibit extends those efforts another step. “This project is putting a spotlight on what we have in our collection—the great riches that are in storage so much of the time,” Merdzinski says. “It’s also such a good way to be relevant to a new generation.”

Michigan—Land of Riches Opening Reception Friday, April 16 Exhibition on display April 16 through May 15, 2010 54 Jefferson Avenue SE A 5-minute walk from your hotel. 42


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TIMELESS FUN Some children’s things appeal to grownups, and others, just to kids. But the ones that really stand out find their way into the hearts of both— and some of the best are made here in Michigan. Story by Karin Lannon



Destined to become dog-eared favorites, the picture books published by Sleeping Bear Press in Chelsea, Michigan, are known for their beautiful illustrations and unique blend of fun and learning.

An unexpected surge in the demand for warm bloomers catapulted the Red Flannel Factory into business over 80 years ago. Following a New York news writer’s complaint that, “Here we are in the midst of an old-fashioned winter and there are no red flannels in the USA to go with it.” The Cedar Springs Clipper printed an editorial claiming that flannels were indeed available in Cedar Springs, Michigan. Once the Associated Press picked up the story, red flannels became the new rage, and Cedar Springs soon had a factory full of seamstresses stitching to keep up with the nationwide demand.

Photography by David Ellison

The first title, The Legend of Sleeping Bear (now the Official Children’s Book of Michigan), was an instant hit when it was published in 1998. It was followed by other Michigan-themed books, such as M is for Mitten and The Legend of Leelanau. Publisher Heather Hughes explains, “Michigan has such a rich culture, history, and natural beauty. So many people have wonderful Michigan memories, and our stories really capture that.” Before long, Sleeping Bear Press began expanding its regional focus to the other 49 states. Today, it has more than six series, including the state alphabets, Tales of Young Americans, and Tales of the World, in print. Kids of all ages are drawn to the illustrations, and even adults love to read the books aloud. “We put a lot of time and care into design and choosing the right artists,” Hughes says. Sleeping Bear Press books have earned dozens of awards and accolades, and they continue to find their way into the homes and hands of even the youngest readers. The Legend of Sleeping Bear

By 1995, the factory decided to button-up its long-john business, but a group of 17 area businesswomen banded together to keep them in production. In 2007, one of those long-term seamstresses, Pam Mauric, purchased the company, bringing the famous Red Flannel Factory back to life. Today, the factory sells red flannels to customers in all but six U.S. states as well as Australia, Afghanistan, and Spain. The product line encompasses everything from clothing to long underwear for people of all sizes—and even dogs. Asked why parents love her products, Mauric (who was wearing red flannels as we spoke) says, “When their kids are wearing Red Flannels, they know they’re warm and covered—and besides, they look cute.”

Sleeping Bear Press

Available at Red Flannel Factory


Available at Schuler Books & Music

9256 Ten Mile Road

40 Fountain Street NW

Rockford, Michigan

Downtown Grand Rapids

UNCLE GOOSE ALPHABET BLOCKS Heirloom-quality Uncle Goose alphabet blocks have been stacking (and tumbling) and spelling their way into homes since 1983. Produced in Grand Rapids, Michigan, by Lindenwood, Inc., these blocks are made entirely with sustainable Michigan-grown basswood, environmentally friendly processes, and nontoxic inks. Owner Pete Bultman says, “There’s a clear difference between the blocks we make and what’s made in Asia. We double-test everything for safety and have product testing on top of that, and our concept and design quality far exceed Asian-made blocks.”

products in a world where most toys arrive as fully formed thoughts. While kids can get tired of toys with flashing lights and moving parts, they will continue to bring out blocks year after year because they can be whatever, whenever they want.” Lindenwood Available at Uncle Goose Blocks Hop Scotch Children’s Store 963 Cherry St SE

Gorgeously rendered with classic, colorful style, the blocks are available in English, foreign, and Braille alphabets, along with other specialty designs. The brand’s recognition continues building, too, earning prestigious awards such as Parent’s Choice, Dr. Toy’s “100 Best Toys,” and Oppenheim Toy Portfolio. Bultman says, “Blocks are probably the most fantastic thing you can give to a kid. They are highly imagination-driven

LOG SOFT SCULPTURE sally england design SOLACE

S P R I N G & S U M M E R 2 01 0 45

smitten we are

Products made in the Mitten state reach far beyond the automobile.

Story by Kristin Tennant Photography by David Ellison Styled by Jan Bridgeman Makeup by Kathy Price 46

There’s no doubt, Michigan is known for and proud of its automobile-making heritage. But sometimes those sleek, shiny driving machines have a way of overshadowing the other wonderful products that are conceived of and created in our state. After all, our manufacturing and design talents are multifaceted, beaming brightness into many corners of life. TEAMWORK BAGS For Nick Stockton, embracing a strong sense of place is a big part of what it means to be both an artist and a businessman. “I think realizing who you are involves knowing where you’re from, and how that sense of place impacts you,” says Stockton, who grew up in southwestern Michigan. Sailboats were one of the things Stockton saw a lot of when he was growing up near Lake Michigan. He also knew people who sailed, so when he decided to try making himself a bag, it was no surprise that he thought to make it from the colorful, durable fabric of a discarded sail.

First he made a bag for himself. Then Stockton and his artistic partner, Nick Stygstra, both Kendall College design graduates, made a dozen bags to sell at an art festival in Chicago. A new product was born.

“I love making something that connects to sailing, something Michigan is known for,” Stockton says. “Michigan is also known for recycling and sustainability, and for making things. A lot of our interests and values at Teamwork are rooted in Michigan.”

Teamwork bags are designed by the two Nicks, and manufactured less than a mile from their design studio. Hundreds of different sails, each with it's unique color, design, weight, and age, have been utilized by the company. Each sail is cut by hand to incorporate design elements of the sails into the design of the bags.


Smitten with the Mitten Tee

Teamwork E-SCOW Bag Teamwork Design Commute Bike Shop 120 S. Division Avenue Suite 125, Downtown A short walk from your hotel.

Stormy Kromer Hat Bill & Paul’s Sporthaus 1200 East Paris Avenue SE, Grand Rapids A 9-minute drive from your hotel. SOLACE

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KOEZE’S CREAM-NUT PEANUT BUTTER Since 1925, the Koeze Company has been making peanut butter the same way: on traditional equipment out of just Virginia peanuts and salt. The CreamNut brand is a consistent winner of taste awards. Founded in 1910, the Koeze Company is still in West Michigan and still in the family.

Koeze's Forest Hills Foods 4668 Cascade Road, Grand Rapids


A 10-minute drive from your hotel.

New York might be the city that traditionally introduces the newest fashions, but in 1958, the cutting edge in footwear was being created about 10 miles northeast of Grand Rapids in Rockford. That was the year Hush Puppies created what’s considered the world’s first casual shoe, paving the way for the many relaxed styles that have since followed. According to Hush Puppies’ marketing specialist Tracy Fahselt, there were two motivating factors behind the original classic Hush Puppies: new materials and new attitudes. “The culture was ready for something new in shoes— something that would match the sensibilities of people at that time,” Fahselt says. “People were all about freedom, comfort, and doing your own thing. They didn’t want their dad’s shoes.” The innovative use of materials is what gave Hush Puppies its signature look and famous comfort. Soft suede was used in combination with a new crepe sole. The result was a lightweight, breathable, shock-absorbent shoe. Fifty years later, Hush Puppies continues to define what it means to be modern and casual. Hush Puppies footwear is now sold in over 140 countries, and Fahselt says the brand continues to attract young customers, even with its most classic styles. In fact, a new retro-inspired line will be rolled out this fall. “People seem to be going back to more familiar, comfortable things that have heritage and authenticity,” she says. “That’s what we’re all about.”

Hush Puppies Track ‘N Trail 3163 28th Street SE, Grand Rapids A 15-minute drive from your hotel. 48

HUDSONVILLE ICE CREAM Bruce Kratt believes that when a product is made in Michigan, it matters. When it’s been made in Michigan for many decades, it matters even more. It was 1926 when Hudsonville Creamery began making ice cream in West Michigan. Kratt, the director of sales and marketing for the company, is glad Hudsonville Ice Cream decided to stay put in Michigan, while other major ice cream companies left the state. “We like to promote buying locally, but does being local really matter? Absolutely,” Kratt says. “All of our dairy farmers are within 20 miles of our facility, so the milk and cream arrive extremely fresh. Also, we have a great base of employees. The same guy has been mixing

our ice cream for over 40 years. These things directly affect the quality of our product.”

Hudsonville Ice Cream

To demonstrate their love for their state, Hudsonville Ice Cream has come out with a Michigan-inspired line that includes Kratt’s two favorite ice cream flavors: Sleeping Bear Dunes Bear Hug and Grand Traverse Bay Cherry Fudge. All of the ingredients that can be procured in Michigan include cherries, blueberries, and apples. Some of the flavors even follow the local harvesting calendar for some of Michigan’s most famous crops. Look for Blueberry Cobbler through the end of summer, and then Country Apple Pie in the fall.

D & W Fresh Market

2181 Wealthy Street SE, Gaslight Village A 12-minute drive from your hotel.

“People love the local aspect of our business,” Kratt says. “Once they taste it, we’ve got them.”


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FAYGO POP Faygo soda was founded in Detroit in 1907, as Feigenson Brothers Bottling Works. The original flavors were fruit punch, strawberry, and grape. In 1921, the Feigenson brothers changed the brand name to Faygo, because it fit on their bottles. In the 1960s, the name of the original “strawberry soda� was officially changed to Red Pop. Today, Faygo makes more than 50 flavors.

Faygo Pop D & W Fresh Market 2181 Wealthy Street SE, Gaslight Village A 12-minute drive from your hotel.


AERON CHAIR BY HERMAN MILLER When the Aeron chair was first created, 15 years ago, Herman Miller was already known throughout the world for creating comfortable seating. The world was changing, though. In offices, computers were fundamentally changing how people worked; in manufacturing settings, innovations and new materials were impacting what could be made—and how. “With the Aeron, Herman Miller asked one of our greatest designers, Bill Stumpf, to do what we always ask designers to do,” says Jack Schreur, Vice President, North American Seating. “We asked him to tell us things we didn’t know—to look around corners into the future, and to design something that would change the game.”

The Aeron fits right into the tradition of everything Herman Miller has always been about, Schreur says, from the iconic design and award-winning comfort to its “green” use of materials. And Herman Miller fits right into the tradition of what Michigan has always been about, too. “You can’t imagine Herman Miller coming from anywhere but Michigan,” he says. “The state’s values have been in the DNA of the company from the beginning, when D.J. DuPree started it. Michigan people are skilled and hardworking. They want to go to work and create something meaningful, of value. In the end, it’s that attitude and the state’s industrial know-how that allows us to push the boundaries of design.”

After countless hours observing how people work, sit and interact, Stumpf, who passed away in 2006, envisioned a new kind of chair created out of completely new materials. The result was the Aeron—a revolutionary work chair without cushions or padding. When the Aeron first came out, it received decidedly mixed reviews, Schreur says. Before long, however, it had taken the office furniture world by storm. It is now a part of the Museum of Modern Art's permanent collection.

Herman Miller WorkSquared 4633 Patterson Avenue SE 16-minute drive from your hotel.


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Exotic Teas • Cookie Jars • Big Green Egg® Grills • Aged Cheeses • Fresh Bagels • Pottery • Jerky • Mugs Just 15 Minutes North. Ask your Concierge for Info.

• Cast Iron Cookware • Tea Pots

Outdoor Cooking Classes

on ati e! c o id eL On rldw


Visit Herman’s Boy. A Distinctive Destination in Rockford. Step back in time and explore a 100-year-old farmstead. Roasting specialty coffees and blending exotic teas since 1901, everything is made fresh daily, from hand-dipped chocolates and Mackinac-style fudge to bagels, smoked meats and jerky. Shop an eclectic selection of cookware, spices and unique gifts. Relax. Enjoy.

Herman’s Boy 220 Northland Drive • Rockford

(616) 866-2900

w w w . H e r m a n s B o y. c o m

Coffee Roastery • Bakery • Deli • Confectionery • Smokehouse • Kitchen Gadgets • Grilling Supplies

Making Fitness Fun!

For the past five years, MVP Sports Clubs has been West Michigan’s health and fitness leader and a favorite destination for active families. With a full slate of programs, a wide array of activities, state-ofthe-art equipment and a friendly and knowledgeable staff, it’s easy to see why people keep coming. Won’t you join us?

Get Fit. Have Fun. Fitness | Personal Training | Group Exercise | Aquatics | Basketball | Tennis | Kid’s Stuff | Sports Performance


Four West Michigan Locations!

BMW - Traction Control - Race ABS Speed Shifter - 193HP

S 1000 RR - Pre-Sale Only*

BMW Motorcycles of Grand Rapids 5995 S. Division Grand Rapids, Mi. 49548

616-530-6900 Base MSRP for the S 1000 RR as well as for options such as Race ABS, DTC (Dynamic Traction Control) and Gear Shift Assist is not yet determined. Pre-sell customers Actual price will be determined by dealer. Š2009 BMW Motorrad USA, a division of BMW of North America, LLC. The BMW name and logo are registered trademarks. Always ride safely and wear proper protective gear.


From funny to thought-provoking, large-in-scale to intimate, local theater offers audiences a little bit of everything.

Scott Mellema as Willy Wonka Willy Wonka 54

Story by Karen DeVries Photography by Mitch Ranger

Don’t worry too much, Chicago. Grand Rapids probably won’t ever have as many theaters as you. But don’t get too comfortable, either: The quality, variety, and innovation of our stage productions can easily stack up against yours. Want to see something thought-provoking? We’ve got just the thing. Feel like a Broadway show? No problem. How about improv comedy? Yep, we’ve got that, too. Grand Rapids even has theaters and acting companies devoted solely to Jewish themes, Christian messages, classic theater productions, and (ahem) burlesque shows. “There’s always been an artistic imperative in Grand Rapids,” says Josh Fremer, cofounder of Dog Story Theater, “so there’s always been a thriving theater community.” One of the city’s first organized theater groups, the Civic Players, began in 1926 and eventually evolved into The Grand Rapids Civic Theatre; now it is the fourth-largest community theater in the country. The Civic puts on six main-stage shows and two children’s productions each year, and every role—from actors to ushers, sound technicians to stage crew—is filled by one of hundreds of volunteers. While the Civic’s family-friendly shows are familiar to Broadway aficionados—the theater recently wrapped on Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and is staging Doubt in June­—marketing director Jennifer Prater says, “We don’t want to be a Broadway extension for professionals. We want to reflect the talent of the community.” The Civic cultivates that local talent on site, in its School of Theatre Arts, with 1,800 students in dance, acting, voice, and technical classes.

Those wanting to see Broadway shows on a grander scale can see touring productions at the 2,404-seat DeVos Performance Hall, also downtown. For 22 years, Broadway Grand Rapids has brought about five shows a year to town, though they hire from the local stagehand union and employ Grand Rapids Symphony musicians to play in the pit orchestra.

KEEPING IT SMALL AND PERSONAL Off-Broadway plays have a stage in town, too. Actors’ Theater was founded 30 years ago by Fred Sebulske, then the mentoring professor of Grand Rapids Community College’s fledgling theater program. The theater’s niche has always been that it’s a place “to talk about anything and everything,” outgoing managing director Kyle Dutkiewicz says. To encourage playwrights to tackle tough issues, Actors’ Theatre annually sponsors a “Living on the Edge” juried writing contest. The five winning 10-minute plays—based on this year’s theme, Making Art / Making Money— will be presented in June at the Spectrum Theater. But aspiring writers and performers needn’t win a competition to get on stage in Grand Rapids. Two years ago, actors Josh Fremer and Jay Harnish started Dog Story Theater to offer a small, flexible “black box” space for anyone willing to rent it. It’s scaled for audiences of fewer than 100 people. “You can literally pull up a chair” to watch what’s happening, Fremer says.

four feet away from you. It’s a really intense experience. We also had the Grand Rapids Dance Project throw together a show with 12 women with incredibly tight choreography. That sort of thing four feet away from you is mind-blowing. It’s like you’re surrounded by movement.” River City Improv goes one step further, inviting the audience to help shape the show as it unfolds. Their twice-monthly shows (once a month in summer) incorporate audience suggestions into sketch comedy that includes uniquely Grand Rapids references and often comments on current events. “We try to keep it clean and clever and witty,” cofounder Rick Treur says of the fast-moving humor.

LOCAL LOVE That kind of local emphasis is just one of the reasons to patronize live theater, Dog Story’s Fremer believes. “If you’re the sort of person that goes out and sees movies or buys a lot of CDs, I would encourage you to look at your broader scope of options. What theaters offer is really, really unique,” Fremer says. “You can’t get it at a movie theater or on the Internet. It’s personal. There are a lot of experiences you can really only have that way. “With local theater, you just get more interesting things—it isn’t filtered through the mainstream.”

“The intimacy is a very different experience from other theaters,” he says. “A performing poet did a one-man show telling anecdotes about his life—very personal stuff—and he’s


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Lisa Catrett as Peter Pan Peter Pan

Tom Bush as Pharaoh Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat SOLACE

S P R I N G & S U M M E R 2 01 0


CATCH A SHOW To find out what’s playing now, just call the theaters or visit their websites for details.

Actors’ Theatre

Heritage Theatre Group 616.234.3946 Shows at Spectrum Theatre, 160 Fountain NE, about seven blocks from your hotel. Drawer Boy by Michael Healy runs May 13, 14, and 15, and May 20, 21, and 22.

616.451.2600 Shows in July and August at Spectrum Theatre, 160 Fountain Street NE, about seven blocks from your hotel. This year’s productions are Inherit the Wind, Stephen Vincent Benét’s Stories of America, and Shakespeare’s Two Gentlemen of Verona.

Broadway Grand Rapids 616.235.6285 DeVos Performance Hall box office is at 303 Monroe NW, about one block from your hotel. 2010–2011 season offerings include Rodgers and Hammerstein’s South Pacific, Legally Blonde The Musical, In The Heights, Grease, and Shrek The Musical.

Circle Theatre 616.456.6656 1607 Robinson Road SE, about 3 miles from your hotel. Cabaret Performance Series on selected Monday nights May through September. Summer productions include Steel Magnolias, Alice in Wonderland, Annie, Funny Money, and Little Shop of Horrors.

Dog Story Theater 1115 Taylor NW, about a mile from your hotel. Comedy Mondays each week from 8 to 11 p.m.

Grand Rapids Civic Theatre 616.222.6650 30 Division Avenue North, about four blocks from your hotel. Doubt runs June 4 through 13. Summer Repertory performances include children’s comedies The BFG and The Pirates of Penzance Jr. in August.

Jewish Theatre Grand Rapids 616.234.3595 Shows at Spectrum Theatre, 160 Fountain Street NE, about seven blocks from your hotel. Hello Muddah, Hello Fadduh runs June 17, 19, 20, 24, 26, and 27.

Master Arts Theatre 616.455.1001 75 77th Street SW, about 11 miles from your hotel. Master Arts is “an independent, nonprofit, community theater guided by a Christian worldview.”

River City Improv 616.752.8570 Summer shows at Calvin College’s Gezon Auditorium, 3201 Burton St. SE, about 5 miles from your hotel. June 12, July 17, and August 21 at 7:33 p.m. Regular season begins in the fall at the Ladies’ Literary Club, 61 Sheldon SE, less than a mile from your hotel.

Wealthy Theatre 616.459.4788 x130 1130 Wealthy SE, about 2 miles from your hotel. Offers a variety of live shows, including poetry slams.

Special thanks to the Grand Rapids Civic Theatre, including Marketing Director Jennifer Prater; Lighting Designers Keith Oberfeld and Mark Neumann of KBO Group; Executive and Artistic Director, Bruce Tinker; Property Designer, Diane Lacopelli; and Production Coordinator, Barb Parsaca.



S P R I N G & S U M M E R 2 01 0


Smooch Beauty Boutique

Schuler Books & Music

Rachael Ruiz, Co-host of eightWest, at Smooch Beauty Boutique


Cocktails at Leo's


By Rachael Ruiz Photography by Terry Johnston



When visiting a new city, many people would gladly trade in their guidebook and maps for a personal tour guide. Here, we offer you something in between—a seasoned Grand Rapids resident sharing her favorite leisure activities in and around town. After all, what better way to spend 36 hours in Grand Rapids than to follow the suggestions of someone who spends 365 days a year here? Rachael Ruiz, who was born and raised in West Michigan, now lives right downtown Grand Rapids with her husband and child. She co-hosts eightWest, a daily entertainment and lifestyle TV show on WOOD TV.

5 p.m.

7:30 p.m.



I’ve always had an affection for Thursday. It holds all the promise of the weekend, without any of the high expectations. Warm up the evening with drinks at jdek, at the JW Marriott. Kick back next to the hotel’s fresh herb and vegetable garden, overlooking the quiet calm of the city’s most prized natural resource, the Grand River. I’ve searched near and far, and jdek boasts some of the most artful martinis I’ve had. Pico de Mango or Almond Joy ($10) anyone?

William Shakespeare penned the words, “All the world is a stage… .” But of all the stages I’ve seen, few compare to the fabulous Meijer Majestic Theatre. A massive renovation in 2006 restored the building into a showpiece of a bygone era: hand-painted fixtures, rich velvet, and seemingly thousands of white lights. It’s also the home of The Grand Rapids Civic Theatre company, one of the oldest and largest theater groups in the country. Grab a seat, sit back, and enjoy a stage production in a setting that would make even Shakespeare proud.

jdek JW Marriott Grand Rapids

6 p.m.

235 Louis Campau NW


Patio at the JW Marriott Rockwell’s and Republic 45 Division Avenue S A short walk from your hotel. Meijer Majestic Theatre Grand Rapids Civic Theatre 30 Division Avenue N A short walk from your hotel. La Dolce Vita The Chop House of Grand Rapids 190 Monroe Avenue NW

I love that Grand Rapids is a town of reinvention. Consider Rockwell’s and Republic, on the city’s famed Division Avenue—a building weary and long forgotten until 30-something brothers Dave and Paul Reinert took it over. Rockwell’s and Republic is where the city’s creative types, professionals, and everyday folks go to eat and be merry. If you’re craving comfort, you’ll love Rockwell’s macaroni and cheese, heaped with white cheddar and gouda. Sushi aficionados will delight in Republic’s vast selection. Enjoy your meal amidst brick walls and towering ceilings, or soak in the sun and urban views on one of the outdoor patios.

10 p.m. SWEETLY CLOSE OUT THE NIGHT AT LA DOLCE VITA Who doesn’t crave the sweet life? I do. And when the clock dances toward a new day, my desire for something sugary to suck down, sip, or savor is the strongest. La Dolce Vita could very well be the city’s most delectable secret, a dessert and cigar lounge housed in the lower level of The Chop House. Enjoy a premium port, scotch, or glass of wine. Drench your taste buds in the rich crème brûlée. Relax on one of the plush couches inside the lounge’s cellar setting. Across the street from Amway Grand Plaza.

For more ideas of places to go and things to do, visit


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Jersey Junction in Gaslight Village

Menu at Republic

FRIDAY San Chez Café 38 Fulton Street West

8 a.m.

12:15 p.m.



I admit, I’ve never been the breakfast type. It’s a meal I never miss, but seldom get excited about. But then I discovered San Chez Café. One visit and its Moroccan inspired menu will leave you wanting for all things Mediterranean. Perhaps it’s the Fair Trade Sumatra press pot coffee, which is so good it prompted me to buy my own coffee press. Or it could very well be San Chez Café’s breakfast wrap, simultaneously warming and cooling the tongue with its spicy bean mixture and harissa sour cream. There’s also plenty of temptation in the Caramel Banana Pecan Pancake Skillet. Another bonus—not on the menu—is the free wireless Internet.

You don’t have to be a beer lover to enjoy HopCat, but if you are? BIG bonus. This downtown eatery specializes in Michigan brews, but also offers options from all over the globe. But don’t forget to eat! My husband swears by the Bar Zee Burger, with its spicy punch of jalapeños, but the reason I eat at HopCat nearly every week is the crack fries. (Luckily, the only thing criminal about them is you won’t find anything nearly as delicious outside of Grand Rapids.) Don’t overlook the wonderful paintings by artist Derrick Hollowell, covering the restaurant’s brick walls. And if the weather permits, I recommend dining outdoors, on the side patio.

11 a.m.

1:30 p.m.



It’s the perfect time to take a break—with me! Turn your television to eightWest on NBC affiliate WOOD, and you’ll see me in action. From 11 to noon, eightWest is your all-access pass to everything West Michigan. Sit back and enjoy as my co-host Terri DeBoer and I discuss all the hottest events and topics in the area.

Head to East Grand Rapids, the home of our nation’s 38th president, Gerald R. Ford, for some of the best shopping in the area. Its downtown area is known as Gaslight Village, for the old-fashioned lamp posts that still line the streets. Check out Smooch Beauty Boutique for Bliss beauty products, NARS Cosmetics, and Bond No. 9 fragrance. Channel your inner fashionista at Hot Mama Clothing Store—it specializes in the latest trends for ladies with a maternity bump, and those without. Next, head to Mary Ann’s Chocolates. This isn’t just a chocolate mecca, it’s a great place to buy candy and gifts.

An 8-minute walk from your hotel. eightWest NBC WOOD TV Weekdays at 11 a.m. HopCat 25 Ionia Avenue SW A short walk from your hotel. Gaslight Village About 15 minutes from your hotel. • Smooch Beauty Boutique 2213 Wealthy Street • Hot Mama 2249 Wealthy Street SE • Maryann’s Chocolates 2226 Wealthy Street SE • Jersey Junction 652 Croswell Avenue SE

For more ideas of places to go and things to do, visit


SATURDAY 3:30 p.m.

6 p.m.

9 a.m.




Leo Beil is the heart and soul of Leo’s Restaurant. On most nights, you’ll see the suspender-clad owner bustling around inside this popular seafood eatery. The Horseradish Crusted Whitefish with Remoulade is simply to die for. The Crab Cakes? Delicious. The atmosphere is upscale but not stuffy. It’s no wonder Leo’s is consistently voted Best Seafood Restaurant in Grand Rapids or Restaurant of the Year. The dining room is lovely, but I almost always eat in the bar for its laid-back vibe.

After a late night, simple is best—especially when simple includes caffeine. Start your day with coffee and pastry at Cornucopia at the Amway Grand Plaza.

Mix with the locals, both young and old, at Jersey Junction Ice Cream Parlor. As the name promises, it’s a depot of all things sweet. From ice cream to chocolate covered cheesecake. Don’t miss the autographed Polar Express train, donated by children’s author and illustrator Chris VanAllsburg (who also wrote Jumanji). It’s Chris’ mom who started the Jersey Junction dynasty decades ago. The popular joint has since changed hands, and in addition to ice cream features malts, shakes, and candy in oldfashioned canisters.

7:30 p.m. Leo's 60 Ottawa Avenue NW

130 Fulton Street West A 5-minute walk from your hotel. The B.O.B. 20 Monroe Ave NW

FIND A FESTIVAL TO STROLL THROUGH From Festival of the Arts to the Hispanic Festival, there are free festivals taking place nearly every weekend somewhere in Grand Rapids. Find one and enjoy some people watching and local flavors.


A 5-minute walk from your hotel. Van Andel Arena

10 a.m.

From Elton John to Carrie Underwood, this is where the world’s megawatt stars come to sing and shake their stuff. The Van Andel Arena currently ranks among the top three venues of its size in the country. And you won’t just see magnificent concerts at the Van Andel, you can catch family shows like the Griffins, the city’s celebrated AHL hockey team. Walk right up to the box office to get a ticket.

BROWSE A LOCAL FAVORITE, SCHULER BOOKS & MUSIC Independent bookstores do thrive—Schuler Books & Music is proof. One of its locations is tucked inside a renovated building in the heart of downtown. Be sure to check out the section showcasing Michigan history/travel.

A short walk from your hotel. Cornucopia Deli

11 p.m.

12:30 p.m.



Situated on the top floor of The B.O.B. (The Big Old Building), Eve is probably the city’s most posh nightclub. You’ll no doubt make a grand entrance as you cross the club’s impressive glowing glass catwalk. Eve is sleek and sensual. The club doesn’t open until 11 p.m., so dress to impress, and be sure to bring your game.

This one hits home. I am half Mexican, so I appreciate Mexican food done right. Cinco de Mayo is relatively new on the scene, but quickly gaining a loyal following. Start your meal with a tasty Ultimate Margarita, and an endless supply of warm chips and fresh salsa. Cinco de Mayo features many unique “especialidades,” but I’m a devoted fan of the chicken fajitas. Muy delicioso! The brightly painted furniture and super fast wait staff also make for a great experience.

Inside the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel Downtown Festivals A short walk from your hotel. Schuler Books & Music 40 Fountain Street NW Downtown Grand Rapids A short walk from your hotel. Little Mexico Restaurant 401 Stocking Avenue NW A 5-minute drive from your hotel. SOLACE

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This hip and friendly fine art gallery exhibits the area’s most extensive collection of art, while their award-winning urban craft boutique is a shopper’s paradise of gifts and uncommon accessories for your home and office.

15- t i m e w i n n e r

“Best Art Gallery” voted in On-the-Town

Located downtown on the river at 820 Monroe NW

M, W, Th 9-5:30


Tu, F 9-7

Sa 10-4


The talented professionals and expert craftsmen of Pioneer Construction translate the West Michigan values of quality and integrity to the built environment, within our community and across the country.


Construction Solutions Delivered Full Service General Contractor, Construction Manager and Design-Builder

With a pitch that rings true, this local guy just might make it to the top.

Story by Dave LeMieux Photography by Mitch Ranger



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Detroit Tiger prospect Mark Sorensen may have been born in Chicago, but the 24-year-old’s pitching career was made in Michigan. ”I’ve been really lucky,“ Sorensen says. ”I grew up outside Detroit. I attended Michigan State, which is just an hour away, and was drafted by my hometown team and was sent to their minor league team in Grand Rapids, which is just two hours away.“ ”I’ve been the local guy all the way throughout. I can’t imagine what it would have been like otherwise.“ Sorensen’s roots in both Michigan and baseball run deep. His dad, Larry Sorensen, grew up in Detroit and played baseball for the University of Michigan before going on to an 11-season career in the major leagues. ”I was born in Chicago when my dad was playing for the Cubs,“ Sorensen said. 68

After retiring from baseball, Sorensen’s father teamed with Frank Beckman to broadcast Tigers’ games from 1995 to 1998. Sure, having a former All-Star for a father ”opened some doors,” Sorensen admits. But not as many as you’d think. Professional baseball is a tough way to make a living—especially for pitchers. Those who don’t deliver don’t last long. Sorensen, though, just might have what it takes. Jon Matlack, the Tigers’ minor league pitching coordinator, describes Sorensen this way: ”He’s a very solid individual as a person, and he’s growing steadily as a pitcher. I think he has the ability to read batters fairly well, and he’s willing to throw the ball in the strike zone so he’s working ahead of hitters.“ West Michigan Whitecaps pitching coach Mark Johnson, who himself made a Major League appearance with Detroit in 2000, has a pretty good idea what lies ahead for Sorensen.

”It’s going to be a challenge at every level, but Mark could pitch all the way to the major leagues if he progresses the way he did last season,“ Johnson says. ”His strength is his recognition of hitters’ swings. He doesn’t have a ’plus‘ pitch—one that’s above the major league average—but he knows what his pitches can do and he can make them do different things.“ Only time will tell if Sorensen will go on to a 10-year-long Major League career like former Whitecaps Brandon Inge, Robert Fick, and Francisco Cordero, but he took a big step in that direction in 2009. In 14 games with the local team, Sorensen posted an 8–2 record and 2.44 ERA. By midsummer last year, the Tiger brass were impressed enough by Sorensen to move him on up the professional ladder to the high Class A Flying Tigers in Lakeland, Florida.

BACKYARD BALL The young right-hander’s love for baseball took root at an early age. ”As early as you can imagine. I’ve always been around the game and loved it. I probably had a baseball in my crib,“ Sorensen jokes. Despite his big league pedigree, Sorensen got his start in the game just like the dozen or so other kids in his suburban Detroit neighborhood—playing whiffleball and pickle in the backyard. Besides regular trips to Tiger Stadium with his dad, baseball was just one more sport for Sorensen and his friends to play on the local sandlots. Although they did share the occasional game of catch in the backyard, his father mostly stayed in the background when it came to sports. ”He was more hands off. We’d work in the backyard, but he was never really my coach. He supported and encouraged me and let me do my own thing.“ Sorensen’s first taste of organized baseball— Little League—did not go as smoothly as he hoped. ”Little League was kind of an up and down time,“ he says. ”I understood the game a little more, but it was also a period when everyone else was bigger and faster. I wasn’t even close to being the best player on the team. It was good to experience a little bit of failure.“ It was at Northville High where Sorensen eventually began to emerge as a top, three-sport athlete. As a senior in high school, Sorensen’s teammates named him captain of both the football and basketball teams, and he was voted Northville’s athlete of the year in 2004.

By his second season with the Spartans, Sorensen had become one of the team’s workhorses, pitching 61 1/3 innings (fourth most on the team), and finishing with a 3–4 record and 27 strikeouts. When the time came, major league teams showed an interest in Sorensen, despite a shoulder injury and surgery his junior year. He figured he had a good chance of being drafted, but that didn‘t make the wait any easier. Sorensen sat with his college roommates and girlfriend through round after round of the June 2008 amateur entry draft, watching as the Tigers picked player after player, including close to a half-dozen other right-handed pitchers. ”It was definitely nerve-wracking,“ Sorensen says. Finally, during the 32nd round, the Tigers made Sorensen the 973rd player chosen in the draft. Within days, Sorensen was headed for Oneonta, N.Y., and the bottom rung on the Tigers’ minorleague ladder. The life-change was immediate and dramatic.

Sorensen knows he has a tough road ahead of him. All along the way he’ll be battling guys rated way ahead of him by the baseball gurus. But for him, it’s not that different than it was back in Little League in Northville, where he wasn’t the biggest or the strongest. That experience taught Sorensen an important lesson early—one that Coach Johnson saw in action last summer. ”He became his own teacher out there on the mound, and made his own adjustments,“ Johnson says. ”He pays attention to hitters’ strengths and works to use his strengths against them.“ Sorensen’s fastball might not blow past hitters and his curve doesn’t leave them lunging at air, but he’s more than ready to prove himself. ”There are a lot of guys fighting for jobs,“ he says, as he was preparing to leave for Tiger camp in Florida. ”Best case, I go down there and have a great spring and I’ll be in the starting rotation at AA Erie. Fighting for a job is hard, but once the season starts, it’s all just about winning games.“

”In college, I was playing three games a week and going to class. I had a life outside baseball. In pro ball you play every day, and it‘s a job,“ Sorensen says. ”The key was proving I could be competitive with that lifestyle.“ Sorensen pitched 59 innings that first summer of pro ball in New York. His 3–3 record with Oneonta helped move him up to the Whitecaps last season. ”I couldn't have asked for anything more,“ Sorensen says. ”The Whitecaps are first class all the way.“ Come see Mark and other future Tigers in action.

CLIMBING THE LADDER Upon finishing his high school baseball career with a sparkling 9–1 record and 1.20 ERA, Sorensen had attracted more than a little notice from colleges around the state and the country. He was recruited by all the Mid-American Conference Schools in Michigan, and also visited Northwestern University and Harvard, but Michigan State was the best fit.

There’s a big-league buzz around the team, he explains. ”With the crowds you get there, 6,000 to 10,000 a game, and the way they treat you in the clubhouse, it‘s really pro ball at its best.“

Get the schedule of games at Fifth Third Ballpark 4500 West River Drive Comstock Park, Michigan

But Sorensen only had a few months to enjoy it before being moved up to the Lakeland, Florida, team, thanks to what was arguably the best season of his career so far—striking out 52 batters in 92 innings.

A 10-minute drive from your hotel.


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Small classes. Big thinkers. Raise your hand if you prefer personal attention. At Grand Valley, we keep class sizes small to provide students with individual instruction from the highly qualified faculty who teach all of our classes. It’s just one of the reasons U.S. News & World Report has named us one of the “Best in the Midwest” three years in a row. | (616) 331-8900 | (800) 748-0246


BASEBALL Great Deals Playing All Summer Long! MIDWEST LEAGUE KEY

EASTERN DIVISION BG - Bowling Green Hot Rods (Rays) DAY - Dayton Dragons (Reds) FW - Fort Wayne TinCaps (Padres) GL - Great Lakes Loons (Dodgers) LAN - Lansing Lugnuts (Blue Jays) LC - Lake County Captains (Indians) SB - South Bend Silver Hawks (D’Backs) WESTERN DIVISION BEL - Beloit Snappers (Twins) BUR - Burlington Bees (Royals) CLI - Clinton LumberKings (Mariners) CR - Cedar Rapids Kernels (Angels) KC - Kane County Cougars (A’s) PE - Peoria Chiefs (Cubs) QC - Quad Cities River Bandits (Cardinals) WIS - Wisconsin Timber Rattlers (Brewers)

Farm Bureau Insurance Fireworks


Sprint Breast Cancer Awareness Day

Game broadcast: 107.3 WBBL FM or • 1340 WJRW AM

The Whitecaps are the only Minor League Baseball team in West Michigan. Visit the concierge for special hotel guest ticket rates. Just five miles north of downtown Grand Rapids. Single A Affiliate of the Detroit Tigers


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SAVOR guide to hotel dining


Looking for the perfect way to jump start your morning? Or maybe a light lunch so you can enjoy a decadent dinner? Whatever you fancy, we have just the place for you. Don't forget a nightcap!

SIX.ONE.SIX Located in the JW Marriott Grand Rapids Those looking for highly inspired cuisine in a stylish, cosmopolitan setting, look no further than With its unique combination of globally influenced tastes to regional favorites fashioned from local produce, offers a feast for the senses without even having to leave the area code. Free validated parking is available. 616.242.1500

CYGNUS 27 Located in the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel Sitting atop the Amway Grand Plaza, Cygnus 27 indulges all your senses with trendsetting decor and globally influenced entrées that have earned widespread acclaim. Cygnus 27 is proud to have earned a AAA Four-Diamond restaurant designation. Don’t forget—your concierge is one of your best resources when it comes to local dining. Ask for suggestions, gather more information, and then make a reservation, all through one helpful person. Complimentary valet parking is available. 616.774.2000 x6525


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THE 1913 ROOM Located in the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel As the first and only AAA Five-Diamond restaurant in the entire state of Michigan, The 1913 Room is heralded as one of the Midwest’s best dining destinations. Reservations are recommended. Complimentary valet parking is available. 616.774.2000 x6569

THE GRILL AT 1913 Located in the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel Few steakhouses in Grand Rapids compare to The Grill at 1913. In addition to the choice selection of savory cuts, the grill’s famous daily luncheon buffet features a variety of tantalizing dishes, from soups to seafood. Complimentary valet parking is available. 616.774.2000 x6569

BENTHAM’S Located in the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel Overlooking the Grand River, Bentham’s is one of the city’s best-known family restaurants. Its relaxed atmosphere makes it the perfect place for gourmet breakfasts, business casual lunches, family dining, or a late evening bite. 616.774.2000 x6533

GP SPORTS Located in the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel Designed with the discerning sports fan in mind, GP Sports allows guests to stay current with 40 televisions and three large screens. Gourmet-inspired dishes such as oven-fired pizzas and Black Angus burgers help define the restaurant’s unpretentious personality. 616.774.2000 x6528

BLUE PLATE Located in the Downtown Courtyard by Marriott, Plaza Towers Serving American cuisine, Blue Plate restaurant features all your favorite comfort foods. It’s a great spot for quick bites, specialty drinks, or delicious custom-made pizzas. 616.242.3400



LUMBER BARON BAR Located in the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel A historic gentlemen’s bar, the Lumber Baron Bar is smoke-free and offers an impressive selection of premium drinks and tantalizing appetizers. 616.774.2000 x6522

MIXOLOGY Located in the JW Marriott Grand Rapids Those desiring a nightcap can retreat to JW’s destination lounge, Mixology, located on the main level. With its twosided fireplace and compelling views of the Grand River, Mixology serves everything from classic cocktails made with fresh juice to custom menu choices prepared in 5, 10, 15, or 20 minutes. Free validated parking is available. 616.242.1500

CORNUCOPIA DELI Located in the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel For bites on-the-go that don’t sacrifice flavor, Cornucopia’s international deli-style setting boasts fresh pastries, gourmet pizzas, deli sandwiches, desserts, and Julius Meinl coffee. 616.774.2000 x6527

GARDEN COURT LOUNGE Located in the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel Designed for quick drinks with colleagues or friends, the Garden Court lounge is a casual, tranquil setting complete with a garden pond. 616.774.2000 x6524

STARBUCKS COFFEE® Located in the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel and JW Marriott Grand Rapids Downtown is lucky enough to have two! Savor a large selection of specialty coffee drinks, teas, sandwiches, and more. 616.774.2000 x6565 616.242.1500


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e t h n i c D i n i n g A wA r D o f e x c e L L e n c e 2 0 0 7 , 2 0 0 8 A n D 2 0 0 9    - Grand Rapids Magazine Dining Awards

Authentic Northern Italian Cuisine in the heart of the city!

Lunch Mon – Fri 11:30 – 4:00 p.m. Dinner Mon – Thur 4:00 – 10:00 p.m. Fri 4:00 – 11:00 p.m. Sat 5:00 – 11:00 p.m.

122 Monroe Center Street, NW | Grand Rapids, MI 49503 P 616-235-9339 | F 616-235-9449 |


616.776.6495 HourS Monday through thursday 11:30 AM until 11 PM (Kitchen open until 10 PM) Friday & Saturday 11:30 AM until midnight (Kitchen open until 11 PM) Sunday Closed. For special event hours, call 616.776.6495 for more information. Happy Hour Monday through Friday 3 PM until 6 PM

FOLLOW YOUR TASTEBUDS Create Your own Pizza Our own Zesty Pizza Sauce & Herbed Four-Cheese Blend Your choice of two toppings (each additional topping $0.75) 7" Personal Pizza $7.95 12" Pizza $11.95 Pepperoni

Artichoke Hearts

Red Onions


Italian Sausage


Green Peppers




Banana Peppers

Smoked Gouda

Ground Beef

Kalamata Olives

Roasted Red Peppers



Green Olives





SPeCiaLtY PizzaS 7" Personal Pizza $8.95 12" Pizza $13.95 Meat Lovers Italian Sausage, Pepperoni, Ham, Bacon, topped with our Herbed Four-Cheese Blend

Spinach & artichoke Garlic Butter Crust, Artichoke Hearts, Fresh Spinach, Feta, Mozzarella, with Pizza Sauce

GP Veggie Garlic Butter Crust, Roasted Red Peppers, Mushrooms, Onions, Tomatoes, Spinach, Feta, Mozzarella, with Pizza Sauce

Supreme Italian Sausage, Pepperoni, Green Pepper, Red Onion, topped with our Herbed Four-Cheese Blend

taco Seasoned Beef, Taco Sauce, Cheddar Cheese, topped with Lettuce, Tomato & Green Onion

BBQ Chicken Chicken Breast, BBQ Sauce, Mozzarella, Smoked Gouda & Red Onion

Hawaiian 7" Personal Pizza $8.50 12" Pizza $12.95 Ham, Pineapple, Red Onion, topped with our Herbed Four-Cheese Blend

616.776.6495 L O c AT ED in T hE A m WAY g R A n D p L A z A h O T EL A m WAYg R A n D.c O m FAcEB O O k .c O m / g p Sp O RT S



EVENTS local happenings

Imagine That! Tracy Van Duinen, ArtPrize 2009 Image courtesy of Downtown Alliance 82

All work and no play is never what the doctor orders—especially with so many fabulous things to do in the region. Make time to schedule in some fun.


Through May 9 Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park American artist Michele Oka Doner is widely celebrated for her sculpture, installations, and public art projects, and is similarly acclaimed for her prints, jewelry, and functional objects. Among the most versatile artists working today, the inspiration she draws from nature is the defining factor and unifying force across her repertoire in both formal and spiritual terms. This exhibition, Oka Doner’s largest to date, examines the breadth of her endeavors from recent figurative projects in bronze and on paper to iconic functional objects in bronze and silver. For more information, call 616.957.1580 or visit


Through May 28 Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts Margarida Correia’s photo series, Saudade, evokes different levels of time and forms of representation in photography, and the relationship between a person and a parent as embodied in objects. Each piece is represented by the portrait in the present of the subject wearing the object, a reproduction of the old photograph of the original owner using the same object, and a still life of the object. For more information, call 616.454.7000 or visit


Through July 31 Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts This juried group exhibition marks the last show in the Monroe Gallery before we move to our new facility. The collection of work considers emotional or physical displacement in a broader spatial, social, economic, or political context. For more information, call 616.454.7000 or visit


June 11 Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts As UICA's new building approaches, we will open our final three exhibitions at our 41 Sheldon facility. The final exhibitions will showcase innovative installations by Rebecca Murtaugh, Bryan Leister, and Justin Webb. Meet the artists, explore their work and enjoy amazing food with a cash bar. Free admission. For more information, call 616.454.7000 or visit


September 22–October 10 Downtown Grand Rapids A radically open art competition, giving away the world's largest art prize. This international art contest is decided solely on a public vote. For more information, visit


Through January 2, 2011 Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park has assembled one of the world’s foremost collections of Modern and Contemporary sculpture. In honor of the Meijer legacy and in celebration of the namesake institution’s 15th anniversary, contemporary sculptors represented in the permanent collection will be displaying new work in this unique gallery exhibition. From Louise Bourgeois and Deborah Butterfield, to Mark di Suvero and Antony Gormley, to Claes Oldenburg and Tom Otterness, many artists have developed a special affinity for Meijer Gardens and the Meijers themselves. This exhibition examines the present endeavors of iconic masters from across the contemporary scene and commemorates the breadth and depth of the permanent collection developed with the support of Fred and Lena Meijer. For more information, call 616.957.1580 or visit


Friday Nights GRAM Every Friday night, the Grand Rapids Art Museum presents an evening filled with entertaining and informative programs. Enjoy a cash bar, dinner and appetizer options, Museum Store specials, and gallery viewing all evening long. Live music plays in the Museum Lobby while lectures, demonstrations, performances, and gallery talks enhance the experience and understanding of the permanent collection and changing exhibitions. For more information, call 616.831.1000 or visit


Through February 2011 GRAM Including over forty photographs from the Museum Collection, this exhibition will explore the historical scope and artistic range of photography by master photographers such as Ansel Adams, Edward Steichen, Walker Evans, Yousef Karsh, and Gordon Parks. Documentary photographs, landscapes, cityscapes, portraiture, and social commentary are genres represented. For more information, call 616.831.1000 or visit


May 21–August 15 GRAM This exhibit examines the work of forty-three American painters drawn to Holland during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. These artists established colonies in six communities in the Netherlands: Dordrecht, Egmond, Katwijk, Laren, Rijsoord, and Volendam. With the exception of Dordrecht, all were small, pre-industrial villages. For more information, call 616.831.1000 or visit


Through August 6 Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts Nicola Vruwink’s installation involves organic forms constructed from crocheted cassette tape. Informed by foliage, forms cascade from walls and ceilings, emerging from the floor redolent of overgrown vegetation. Soundtrack audio mixed and layered from the tape accompany the visual. Referencing the wastefulness of our consumer culture as we consistently rush to outdo ourselves technologically, failing to consider the repercussions of our actions, the installation confronts the viewer in an overwhelming environment and invokes both wonderment and contemplation. For more information, call 616.454.7000 or visit


April 30–September 30 Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park The work of renowned artist Dale Chihuly will be the subject of a large-scale outdoor exhibition at Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park. Monumental glass sculptures will be sited in 15 locations as diverse as the English Perennial Garden, Woodland Shade Garden, Children’s Garden, and Sculpture Park, as well as several wetland areas and the great lawn fronting the landmark Tropical Conservatory. Chihuly designed the exhibition specifically to respond to the horticultural focus and natural conditions of each of the respective sites. For more information, call 616.957.1580 or visit

Chihuly: A New Eden


June 4–August 22 GRAM A unique collaboration will celebrate the joint centennials of Ox-Bow school of art and artists’ residency, affiliated with the Art Institute of Chicago, and the Grand Rapids Art Museum. Over thirty artists from Ox-Bow’s history will be featured at the Art Museum in a special exhibition. For more information, call 616.831.1000 or visit

For more events and information, visit


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Gerald R. Ford Museum

Theater and Performing Arts



Through June 13 Gerald R. Ford Museum World War II was the most devastating conflict in history with much of Europe and Asia left in ruins at war’s end. Yet, there was no peace. The superpowers of the United States and Soviet Union and their ideologies of democracy versus tyranny competed for prominence on the world stage in a cold war. For over 40 years these nuclear superpowers maintained a standoff and avoided a hot war that could have potentially destroyed the planet. For more information, call 616.254.0374 or visit


July 2–September 5 Gerald R. Ford Museum Journey back to a time of one room school houses, large public schools, and private tutors. See these future presidents as young sports stars, choir members, and musicians. Watch them mature into serious college and military academy students. Together these experiences demonstrate the variety of educational and extracurricular experiences that trained and influenced our nation’s future leaders. ”School House to White House“ includes more than 150 items from the holdings of the Presidential Libraries. There are large photomurals of class photos and graduations, videos showing several presidents as children, and filmed presidential reflections on their school house years. For more information, call 616.254.0374 or visit

April 30, May 1 DeVos Performance Hall Storms rage on an island off the coast of Charleston as the pure-hearted Porgy fights to save his love from the clutches of a drug-dealing pimp. Gershwin’s poignant, jazz infused opera will capture your heart and leave you humming, “Summertime.” For more information, call 616.451.2741 or visit


May 6–8, 12–16, 19–22 Aquinas College Performing Arts Center Circle Theatre presents RENT, Jonathan Larson’s Pulitzerprize winning Broadway musical based loosely on Puccini’s opera La Bohème. It follows a year in the lives of seven friends living the disappearing Bohemian lifestyle in New York’s East Village. AIDS and both its physical and emotional complications pervade the lives of Roger, Mimi, Tom, and Angel; Maureen deals with her chronic infidelity through performance art; her partner, Joanne, wonders if their relationship is worth the trouble; Benjamin has sold out his Bohemian ideals in exchange for a hefty income and is on the outs with his former friends; and Mark, an aspiring filmmaker, feels like an outsider to life in general, and is always behind the camera recording the events but never playing a part. For more information, call 616.632.1980 or visit


May 21–23 DeVos Performance Hall Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, the award-winning smash hit Broadway musical, is coming to Grand Rapids. Disney’s Beauty and the Beast features the animated film’s Academy Award®-winning score with music by Alan Menken and lyrics by the late Howard Ashman, with additional songs with music by Alan Menken and lyrics by Tim Rice. For more information, call 616.742.6500 or visit


June 3–5, 9–13, 16–19 Aquinas College Performing Arts Center Circle Theatre presents Steel Magnolias. The action is set in Truvy’s beauty salon in Chinquapin, Louisiana, where all the ladies who are “anybody” go to have their hair done. The sudden realization of their mortality affects the others, but also draws on the underlying strength—and love—which gives the play, and its characters, the special quality to make them truly touching, funny, and marvelously amiable company in good times and bad. For more information, call 616.632.1980 or visit


June 4–3 Grand Rapids Civic Theatre Set at a Catholic school in 1964, DOUBT centers on a nun who confronts a priest after suspecting him of abusing a student. He denies the charges. Much of the play’s quick-fire dialogue tackles themes of religion, morality, and authority. For more information, call 616.222.6650 or visit


July 8–10, 14–18, 21–24 Aquinas College Performing Arts Center Leapin‘ Lizards! Join Circle Theatre as the popular comicstrip heroine takes center stage in one of the world’s best-loved musicals. ”Annie“ is a spunky Depression-era orphan determined to find her parents, who abandoned her years ago on the doorstep of a New York City Orphanage run by the cruel, embittered Miss Hannigan. In adventure after fun-filled adventure, Annie foils Miss Hannigan’s evil machinations, befriends President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and finds a new family and home in billionaire Oliver Warbucks, his personal secretary Grace Farrell, and a lovable mutt named Sandy. For more information, call 616.632.1980 or visit


September 2–4, 8–12, 15–18 Aquinas College Performing Arts Center Circle Theatre presents one of the longest-running Off-Broadway shows of all time. This affectionate spoof of 1950s sci-fi movies has become a household name, thanks to a highly successful film version and a score by the songwriting team of Howard Ashman and Alan Menken. Charming, tuneful, and hilarious, with tongue firmly planted in cheek, Little Shop Of Horrors never fails to entertain. A small cast, band, and unit set make the other aspects of production a snap. For more information, call 616.632.1980 or visit


September 7–12 Aquinas College Performing Arts Center “Simply wonderful! Beguiling theatrical magic!” hails the New York Post for Rodgers and Hammerstein’s South Pacific. A stunning reinvention produced by Lincoln Center Theater, South Pacific swept the 2008 Tony Awards, winning seven honors including Best Musical Revival and Best Director for Bartlett Sher. The breathtaking new production features a cast of 34 and a full orchestra of 26 members—the largest orchestra of any touring Broadway production. For more information, call 616.235.6285 or visit

Porgy & Bess


For more events and information, visit



Opened in 2004, we’ve been a part of the community that’s just blocks from downtown. We’re also the first established pizzeria in the historic Heritage Hill district. By using local ingredients and local butchers, we’ve created a fresh product that makes a difference you can see, taste and smell. It’s no wonder readers of On the Town Magazine awarded us with the Silver Townie for best pizza 3 years in a row. We welcome the opportunity to serve you. Order now to enjoy any one of our traditional, stuffed or specialty pizzas. Dine in, or take out and delivery orders conveniently online at:

GRAND RAPIDS PIZZA & DELIVERY 340 State Street (616)742-GRPD (4773)









Open M-Th 11am-11pm, Friday 11am-12:30am, Saturday 4pm-12:30am, Sunday 4pm-11pm • Late Night Delivery Thursday, Friday and Saturday until 2:30 a.m.


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Fifth-Third Riverbank Run Image courtesy of Downtown Alliance


May 7 DeVos Performance Hall Three-hundred musicians take the stage to perform this monumental choral work. You’ll hear the operatic Verdi you know and love: vigorous rhythms and sweeping melodies. Contrasts throughout create the most dramatic musical setting of the Roman Catholic funeral Mass. For more information, call 616.454.9451 or visit


May 14 DeVos Performance Hall The “Big Easy” comes to Grand Rapids with this tribute to the great trumpeter and the American jazz tradition. Experience the best of Louis Armstrong including songs like “Sweet Georgia Brown,” “Honeysuckle Rose,” and “Ain't Misbehavin.” For more information, call 616.454.9451 or visit


June 1–Sept 1 Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park Eclectic selections of world-renowned musicians headline the annual Summer Concert Series at the Meijer Gardens Amphitheater. The intimate 1,750-seat lawn setting is a great place for a picnic and enjoying music under the stars. In addition to the Summer Concert Series, visitors can hear a series of West Michigan’s finest performers during the Tuesday Evening Music Club. For more information call 616.957.1580 or visit


July 8, 9, 15, 16, 22, 23, 29, 30 Cannonsburg Ski Area 2010 D & W Fresh Market Picnic Pops kicks off with Classical Fireworks, featuring more fireworks than ever on July 8 and 9. Put on your dancing shoes for the eclectic swing and rockabilly of Big Bad Voodoo Daddy July 15 and 16. Motown’s Greatest Hits: Hear hits from artists like Smokey Robinson, The Temptations, Marvin Gaye, and the Four Tops, enhanced by a full orchestra on July 22 and 23. On July 29 and 30, original members of the Broadway sensation Beatlemania will be performing more than 20 Beatles tunes, exactly as they were written in: “A Tribute to The Beatles.” Ticket packages on sale now. For more information, call 616.454.9451 or visit


October 8–10 DeVos Performance Hall Groove to the music of the ‘60s and ‘70s with this vocal quintet’s completely original take on pop. Their infectious energy, showmanship, and musical harmony, mixed with hits like “Here Comes the Sun,” “Rock the Boat,” and “Under the Boardwalk” create an unforgettable experience. For more information, call 616.454.9451 or visit


April 11–August 31 Fifth Third Ballpark The West Michigan Whitecaps are a professional minor league baseball team. A member of the 14-team Midwest League and Class A affiliate of the Detroit Tigers, the Whitecaps play 70 home games each season. “Home” is Fifth Third Ballpark, a privately owned stadium built in conjunction with the Whitecaps’ arrival in 1994, located in Comstock Park. For more information, call 616.784.4131 or visit


May 8 Downtown Grand Rapids The Fifth Third River Bank Run will celebrate 33 years of racing excellence on May 8, 2010, with more than 18,000 participants. Featuring the largest 25K road race in the country, 10K, 5K Run, 5K Walk, Junior events, and team competition, the annual event is sponsored by Fifth Third Bank. For more information, call 616.771.1590 or visit

For more events and information, visit


Picture this… A Total Transportation Solution.

• Corporate Service • Sedan & SUV • Limousine & Coach • Airport Service


For a total solution to your ground and air transportation needs, contact WhiteKnight Limousine and EquityAir. Quality transportation services since 1990. Visit us on the web for more information: or

• Fractional Ownership • Air Charter Service • Prepaid Flight Cards • Aircraft Management


We’ll Help You Get It Together For Your Next Get-Together. At Enterprise, we will provide you or your group with personalized, award-winning customer service, great rates, a wide variety of vehicles.

For group or corporate pricing, please call 517 346-8914. Reference account # 20N4286.

©2009 Enterprise Rent-A-Car Company. A00849 09/09 MM


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Fulton Street Farmers' Market Image courtesy of Terry Johnston

Cultural Events RUNWAY ON MONROE

June 10–13 Saugatuck Head to Saugatuck for the Annual Waterfront Film Festival. The festival kicks off with a street party and free outdoor film, followed by three days packed with screenings, evening galas, post-screening parties, seminars, and Q&A sessions with directors and film guests. For more information, call 269.857.8351 or visit


June 12 Bistro Bella Vita Local food, wine, beer, and live music are the stars of this party celebrating all the West Michigan economy has to offer. With more than 10,000 attendees last year, this is one party you won’t want to miss. For more information, call 616.222.4600 or visit

Now through Christmas Every Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday the Fulton Street Farmers’ Market offers locally grown fruits and vegetables, plants, and homemade arts and crafts. Reap the benefits and pleasures of local fresh-picked fruits and vegetables, as well as handmade items! Farmers’ markets provide a unique opportunity for urban dwellers to connect with food producers and are great places to meet friends. For more information, call 616.454.4118 or visit


May 2–9 Holland, Michigan Tulip Time Festival—named Readers Digest’s “Best Small Town Festival”—visitors from all over the world come to see millions of tulips planted in parks, gardens, and lanes throughout the Holland, Michigan, community. Join us this year for our 80th Anniversary, celebrating Dutch culture, tulips, parades, street scrubbing, carnival, Dutch Dancers, Dutch Marktplaats, concerts, theater shows, arts and crafts fair, fireworks, kids events, trolley tours, and so much more! For more information, call 1.800.822.2770 or visit


July 4 East Grand Rapids The 4th of July is an annual celebration in East Grand Rapids as well as an all-day community affair! The day begins with a parade of various school and community organizations showing their community pride. Immediately following the parade, the fun begins at John Collins Park on Reeds Lake. Concessions will be available along with multiple attractions for kids of all ages. The afternoon in the park is highlighted by a water ski show on Reeds Lake leading into a near-twilight musical performance by the American Federation Band. At dusk, a fantastic fireworks display over the water completes the holiday! For more information, visit


May 14 St. Cecilia Music Center Second Annual Wine Tasting with Silent and Live Auctions. Featuring fine wines from around the world provided by Martha’s Vineyard. Accompanied by hearty hors d’oeuvres from Martha’s Catering and the Nantucket Baking Company. The silent and live auctions, include opportunities for great entertainment, dining, relaxing, pampering, and much more. All proceeds benefit St. Cecilia Music Center. For more information, call 616.459.2224 or visit

July 30–August 8 Downtown Grand Haven The Coast Guard Festival is a unique, premier 10-day national military festival, whose purpose is to honor the men and women of the U.S. Coast Guard. During the ten days of the festival, there are opportunities for all to attend and participate. From parades, waterfront entertainment, and fireworks, to the National Memorial Service, Street Dance and Kids’ Day, the festival allows for reflection, celebration, and solidifying the historical relationship between the Coast Guard and Grand Haven. For more information, visit







June through September South Division Avenue Enjoy shopping the wide array of handmade gifts and artwork made by local artisans, while strolling the sidewalks of the diverse artist community located on South Division Avenue in downtown Grand Rapids. Live music, demonstrations, and additional shopping at local galleries and businesses add to the attraction of this unique and family-friendly community event. For more information, call 616.855.0435 or visit

Avenue for the Arts Market Image courtesy of Terry Johnston


Now through May 15 Runway on Monroe mixes the excitement of “Project Runway” with the talents of the Grand Rapids design community. The contest will launch the careers of 20 aspiring fashion designers. Starts February 25 and concludes with a large, public fashion show at Rosa Parks Circle on May 15, 2010. In early April, a panel of expert judges selects the top 20 designers, and public vote will choose the top 5, who will be announced during the May 15 event. For more information, visit

June 4–6 Downtown Grand Rapids 2010 marks the 41st Festival of the Arts, making it one of the longest-running festivals in the state. Always held the first full weekend in June in downtown Grand Rapids, Festival of the Arts is a community celebration featuring arts, entertainment, food, and fun activities for the entire family. All performances, exhibits, and activities are free, thanks to generous donations by local organizations, companies, and individuals. For more information, call 616.459.1300 or visit

September 10–12 Calder Plaza The largest Hispanic Festival in West Michigan, Hispanics have filled the Calder Plaza every September with music, dance, food, and fun! For more information, call 616.304.2759 or visit


September 17–October Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park This annual celebration of autumn at Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park highlights thousands of flowering chrysanthemums in both interior and exterior venues. ColorFall tours of the gardens, trees, and sculpture collection are a visual delight. Harvest at Michigan’s Farm Garden includes heirloom vegetables, herbs, maize, gourds, and giant pumpkins. For more information, call 616.957.1580 or visit

For more events and information, visit

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The 2010 RX - Reinventing The


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Vehicle That Invented It All



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     2550 28th Street SE - Grand Rapids (616) 949-1010  1-800-551-5398 Sales Hours: M, W 9-8 Tu, Th, F 9-6  Sat 9-4



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Blandford Nature Center 1715 Hillburn Avenue NW A 10-minute drive from your hotel.


Photography by Yolanda Gonzalez

Grand rapids’ 2009 restaurant of the Year

“Leo’s ambience and atmosphere are great for business and a date – and everything in between.” Grand Rapids Magazine 2009 Dining Awards

At Leo’s, we promise an unforgettable experience, from appetizer to dessert, and every delicious bite in-between. “Best Seafood Restaurant” Grand Rapids Magazine 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 “Readers Poll”

“Best Business Lunch” The Grand Rapids Press 2008 “Tops in Grand Rapids Awards”

“Restaurant of the Year” Grand Rapids Magazine 2006, 2007 & 2009 “Dining Awards”

60 Ottawa NW | Downtown Grand Rapids | 616.454.6700 Lunch Monday–Friday 11:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Dinner Monday–Thursday 4:30–10:00 p.m. Friday & Saturday 4:30–11:00 p.m. Closed Sunday

Gift certificates are available online at

Join us for happy hour from 4-6 pm Monday–Friday and enjoy $2 draught beers and $5 martinis.


MORE THAN AN ADDRESS. 38-GR.COM 1.877.558.3838


SOLACE Spring & Summer 2010  

Made in West Michigan

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