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Sunday, November 29, 2015

Giving Back Christmas December 12th

Christmas means a lot to people.  It's a time of family, friends and community.  To some it's an extravagant affair...to others, it's a time of gratuity and simple pleasures. We can't forget the other celebrations of Hanukkah, Kwanzaa and for some...Festivus.  However you celebrate, the importance is the same.  Giving a little of yourself for others.  It's a simple task and the amazing results of acts of kindness show the world who we would ideally be.

This year, there is a first time event called Giving Back Christmas happening at the VFW Hall on Apple Avenue December 12th from 4p-8p.  It's being organized by Andrea Rosema and her group of volunteers.  The idea is simple.

There will be chances for kids to make cards for veterans and first responders, there will be arts and crafts stations, story time, decorating bags for Kids Food Basket of Muskegon, cookie decorating, cake walks, reindeer games, elves workshops, gift wrapping stations, selfie booth and more.  Best part of it, it's all free.
Friends Making a Difference

I had a chance to visit Andrea today and learn a little more about the event and what inspired her to organize this event which she hopes, becomes an annual event and something families look forward to every year.  Have a look at the video below to learn more from Andrea!

This is something that Positively Muskegon is ALL ABOUT.  To see friends, neighbors and community members coming together to set a good example for kids, taking care of those in need and putting yet another signature event on the map right here in Muskegon!  Our sincere thanks to Andrea for taking charge and showing everyone the true meaning of Christmas!  Here's a list of the goings on!!

If you'd like to follow Giving Back Christmas on Facebook, please click on their logo below and hit like on their page!  You can contact Andrea through there if you'd like to participate or donate something to help the cause!

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Friday, November 27, 2015

Hot Rod Harley Helps Some Have a Great Thanksgiving

All to often, we hear about local business and the "bottom line" as a measurement to their success.  Well, in as much as profits drive business, so do people and in a world filled with news about things like violence, anger, hate and fear dominate the news...knowing that a local company wen the extra mile to support their community....well, that's what this blog is all about.

Photo Courtesy Facebook/ Kyle Heller

I keep a pretty keen eye on things going on here in town, but this one slipped past me.  Maybe it was the intent of Hot Rod Harley-Davidson to just fly under the radar with their donation of 108 turkey dinners to the Rescue Mission on November 25th, and that's ok.  Charity in my mind isn't done for glory or notoriety, it's done because it's the right thing to do.  As you can see from the photos, Hot Rod brought the shop truck filled right up to make sure no one went hungry this Thanksgiving.

Photo Courtesy Facebook/Kyle Heller

Kindness seems to be abundant this time of year, and the hop remains that the holiday spirit continues all through the coming year.  Our thanks to Hot Rod H-D for their kind act for so many.

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Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Beach Youth Football - National Tournament Bound

The sun was going down quickly and the darkness of November 25th in Michigan took over.  There was to be a practice for the Beach Stampede but the gate was locked and everyone who had the keys was on their way out of town for a long Thanksgiving weekend.  Did that stop the Stampede?  Not for a second.  Up over the fence, under the rail or taking the "long way" to get to the practice field they came in force to squeeze in one more practice before the holiday.  Even the coach, just a couple minutes late as he was trying to wrap things up at work.  But it was happening!

If you have not seen, the Beach Stampede of the Beach Youth Football league, it's time you did. They are on their way to Dallas Texas at the end of December to represent our town for a national title for youth football.  They have been absolutely unbelievable in tournaments in Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, Ann Arbor....you name it...they went and conquered!  Beach scored 222 points in the tournaments and only allowed 21 points!  That's a good old fashion lake shore football drubbin!

The coach did finally make it and took a few minutes while the team completed warm up's to tell me a little more about the team, his time coaching them and the amazing journey to get to the road to Dallas.  Meet Coach Gary Brink.

If you'd like to help the team, you can stop into Whitlow's on Airline Road and make a donation or you could join them at a fundraiser there on December 19th.  They'll be having a special pasta dinner with music, raffles and more.  A great place to stop anytime, but if it can help these kids live out the dream of a national tournament...where we need to be on December 19th!  If you can't make it, you can click on the photo below to visit their Go Fund Me Campaign and make a donation!

Good Luck Stampede!  

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The Night Before Thanksgiving

The night before Thanksgiving, let's take a quick second and take a very good look at what we have!

We have a great community made up of people who care, want to make a difference and look out for one another.  We have miles of beautiful shore for our use and the use of those who come to visit.  We have sports, we have entertainment, we have beer tents and bowling alleys!  We have our fair share of things to work on but we also have the tools to do it.

What we have the most of......is the future.  It's been a growing experience over the last few years but the momentum is real.  The changes coming will be many and we'll become the best city on the shore!

Courtesy Mlive

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!  Positively Muskegon is proud to be here to tell the story and represent the side of Muskegon that some elect to ignore.  May your blessing be many and your heart filled with joy!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Family Promise of the Lakeshore - Keeping Families Together If Homeless

I was in Meijer over the weekend and bumped in to Marian McDermed in the check out lane.  Marian is the Executive Director of Family Promise of Muskegon and I immediately invited myself over to see her and have her tell the story of the work she does to keep families together.

Homelessness happens, and sadly sometimes in the process families get separated because different missions don't allow men in them, or vice versa.  People need a place to stay and shelter is provided, but at the expense of breaking up a family.  Kids end up in foster care or in CPS, men and women are taken apart and valuable time is lost where people can learn and grow....together.  With the Family Promise mission, it's a little different.

Family Promise of the Lakeshore serves all families, traditional and non traditional.  They offer education programs in parenting, money management, nutrition, civic engagement and tenancy.   They have the connections to find medical care, counseling services, housing referrals and more.

Supplies like diapers and personal care items are always needed

In my visit with Marian, I was able to see first hand the hope provided.  I met a couple young families who are currently staying with them and for as humble as the surroundings they had....people were warm, dry, fed and most of all.....they were together.  They have private rooms, they have the tools needed to learn and they are getting an honest hand in becoming a sustainable family that has their feet planted and a direction to go in.

Family Promise is 100% community funded.  There is no state or federal money coming in.  Donations and churches keep the operating budget funded along with the grace of our community.  Have a listen to my chat with Marian.

Great work is being done in Muskegon to keep families together and give them the tools needed to become who they want to be.....a happy family able to face the challenges of life with the needed skills set and most of all... each other.  If you'd like to know more, clock on the photo below of the kids who have been served by Family Promise of the Lakeshore.  You can even make a donation via PayPal if you'd like!

Some of the kids served by Family Promise of the Lakeshore

If you'd like to follow Family Promise of the Lakeshore on Facebook, please click on their logo below to find their page.

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Saturday, November 21, 2015

NAPA Thanks Customers With Thanksgiving Dinner - For Two!!

A while back, Scott and Tracy Cox who own and operate Muskegon Automotive Supply, NAPA on Laketon, called and asked if OMG! could maybe offer a hand with their social media and knowing them like I do....I jumped at the chance!

Scott and Tracy run the family business that was established in Muskegon in 1934 and has served the community with NAPA Know How and to be honest, integrity and customer service beyond all imagination and there is one thing for sure..,,they have earned the business they run.  I have even heard stories of Scott getting up in the middle of the night to make sure that some guy repairing vehicles on 3rd shift got the parts he needed.  You probably won't hear a story like that from Scott, it's his humble approach to make sure his customers are taken care of.  It's just good business to him.  They have also always tried to find a way to give back.

This year, they decided that in November they would provide Thanksgiving dinner and a NAPA gift card to a customer and if that wasn't enough, the also included a matching prize for the customers friend of choice so they could have Thanksgiving taken care of too.

Jaret Allen was selected form all the entries all month and came in this morning to claim the prize.  He's busy out helping a friend  get some work done covering boats and getting them winterized because "he needed a hand and he'd help me if I needed it".

Positively Muskegon - think about the title.  It's friends and neighbors helping each other.  It's a business grateful for their customers.  It's a simple way to show the rest of the world that the truly good things that happen in Muskegon, happen because of people like Jaret and places like Muskegon Automotive Supply.   We're proud to help tell the story!

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Wednesday, November 18, 2015

12th Annual Holidays in Lakeside Coming December 5th!!

The Lakeside District in Muskegon is easily one of the best little neighborhoods an all of West Michigan and a great place for artisan shops, great entertainment and a place or two to wet your whistle or grab a something great to eat!

December 5th The Lakeside District is inviting everyone down to be a part of the festivities, get a little holiday cheer going and shop for unique and fun gifts.  Looking for something hand made?  The have it!  Maybe something dedicated to Muskegon?  Yup!  Items you can order and ship?  They have them.  Santa will be visiting The  Harbor Cinema and they will be presenting a free showing of "Frozen" for the kids!  There will be raffles, a bake sale, sleigh rides, specials and more!

Louise Hopson is the owner of the Art Cats Gallery in Lakeside and invited me down to talk a little about the shopping district, life in Lakeside and how the business in the area work together to promote their neighborhood and Muskegon in general.  It was a fun visit and I found out that Louise is a potter, which absolutely fascinates me.  I think there might be a return visit so I can watch her work.

Take a look at our chat about Lakeside and set aside a little time soon to visit the neighborhood.  December 5th would be a great day to do it and a great way to share a little cheer among friends and neighbors.

Take a minute to follow the links to know more about what's going on in Lakeside!

Click here for the Lakeside Shop Unique, Shop Local Facebook page

To visit the Art Cats Gallery page click here!

And the Art Cats Facebook page!!

The Lakeside District Facebook page can be found here -

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Wasserman's Flowers Wins 2 Major Awards

Having a business in Muskegon that has survived since 1880 is reason enough to celebrate, but if you are a customer of Wasserman's Flowers and Gifts in Lakeside you know that longevity is only part of the key for their success.

Wasserman's was recently awarded the Celebrated Service Award from Celebration Cinema and a day or two later, the Muskegon Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce named their floral shop one of Muskegon's Agents of Change for 2015 from their commitment to making sure they stay ahead of the curve and making their store more of a destination that a flower shop.

This past summer, they brought in food, entertainment, community and fun as they celebrated the remodel of the store and it doesn't look like they are letting up on innovation and truly amazing customer service on every level!
Courtesy Facebook

I was able to grab Troy Wasserman for a couple of minutes and find out what he attributes the generations of success to, highlight a few of the recent fun things they have done and what the future holds.  Take a second to hear from Troy in the video below!

Congratulations to Troy and Angie Wasserman on their success and know that they won't stop bringing innovative gifts, experiences and the best floral service to Muskegon.  Sincere congratulations are in order, and we're proud to help share their story!!  Click below to visit their website!!

Photo Courtesy Facebook
Courtesy Facebook

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Old Newsies and Goodfellows Take to the Streets December 5th

Muskegon has a long standing tradition to be proud of... The Old Newsies and Goodfellows of Muskegon County have been working for years to make sure that if there is a child in need of a good Christmas, they are taken care of with no strings attached and they are taken care of by a grateful community who roll up their sleeves and get to work to make it happen.  Their motto is simple "Let No Child Be Forgotten"

December 5th marks the day whey your friends, neighbors and members of the community band together to take to the streets to sell a one time edition of the Muskegon Chronicle to raise the needed funds to provide the toys, clothing, personal care items and maybe even a little something sweet for the stocking of kids who would otherwise go without.

Debbie Mogdis took over the role of Director of The Old Newsies and Goodfellows in 1999 and has taken the organization from providing for 2000 kids or so to 4000+ kids who need to know the community won't let them down.  I had a chance to stop and talk to Debbie at her work place, the law offices of Shon Cook to find out a little more about her role, and how YOU can get involved!

It's a project I am very proud to have a small role in, and if you are thinking that spending a day making sure you do your part for the kids of Muskegon County is a good idea.....click on the link below to get in touch with Debbie and join The Old Newsies and Goodfellows for a day you'll never forget!

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Monday, November 16, 2015

That Familiar Sound You Hear - The Salvation Army Kettle Campaign

The ringing of the bells during the holiday season is a time honored tradition and there isn't a much more recognizable sound of the ringing bell to let you know that Christmas is near and the Salvation Army could use a little help, even if it's just the spare change in your pocket!

I had a chance to visit the Salvation Army of Muskegon today to find out a little more about the work they do, how your donation helps and what the immediate needs the face are.  It's a never ending mission for the Salvation Army to keep people fed, housed and warm.  You see the kettles during the holidays, but the need is year round.

This year the official Muskegon "kick off" will be at the LC Walker Arena with the Muskegon Lumberjacks game on November 21st.  You may see or hear a bell ringing before the big event, but if you'd like to know more about the Salvation Army and their work or maybe how you can become involved in ringing a bell, stop by and see them at the game!  They will tell you what you can do, or if you need....how you can benefit from the work of The Salvation Army.

Captain Dan Sawka and Robin Henshaw of the Muskegon Salvation Army gave me a few minutes today to talk about the big kick off, the kettle campaign and the work they do right here in Muskegon to take care of those in need.  Check out the video for the details!

If you'd like to know more or visit the Salvation Army of Muskegon's website please click on their logo below and be a part of their great work.  You'll even find a "donate now" button if you'd like to do your part and avoid the hustle and bustle of the shopping season!

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Sunday, November 15, 2015

Muskegon Lumberjacks Thank Vets, Active and Reserve Personnel Nov 20th

Late last week, the Muskegon Lumberjacks announced that the community, especially the business partners of the Muskegon Lumberjacks wanted to recognize our Veterans, Active Duty and Reserve members of the US Armed Forces.

2000 tickets have been purchased by a grateful community to provide a night out for our distinguished community members who are and were willing to make the ultimate sacrifice for all of us.

If you are in the groups mentioned, getting tickets is simple.  Click on the Lumberjacks logo below and it will take you to the email of Chris Benedict.  He will assist you in getting the tickets and we'll look forward to a great night at the LC Walker Arena November 20th!

A great community gathering to show thanks and appreciation to those who serve!

Saturday, November 14, 2015

The Muskegon Winter Sports Complex - Getting Ready for the Season

The Muskegon Winter Sports Complex is in the process of getting ready for a great season of fun for the whole family AND offers more ways to stay active in the winter than you might think.

Home to one of few luge tracks in the United States and the most accessible luge track to the public, the Muskegon Winter Sports Complex is not only a great place for family fun, but...it's also a training ground for the U.S. Luge team and in a short time, we could very well have two more Olympians from Muskegon heading to the Winter Olympics!

We had a chance to sit down and talk to Jim Rudicil about the preparation, the new features and some of the great events to come over the long cold winter!  Click on the video for the details!!

A season pass for the entire family is only $100 bucks!  What an investment to your family, this amazing complex and the community!  Use the link below to go right to the Winter Sports Complex website to get the passes, see the schedule and be a part of the ever evolving, ever growing Muskegon Winter Sports Complex!!  That's Positively Muskegon!

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Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Veterans Day 2015 - In Muskegon

It's a day that is held in reverence across the country.  The young men and women who have signed up to serve this country over the years, willing to make the ultimate sacrifice to defend the freedom and the people of the United States and it's allies.  It's a commitment beyond measure and a willingness to be part of the greater good.

Was it the Revolution?  Could it have been the Civil War?  Was it WWI or WWII?  Korea?  Vietnam?  The Middle East? Afghanistan?  Could it have been peace time when our Veterans served?  No matter the situation and no matter the circumstance, Muskegon is a very special place when it comes to honoring our Veterans.

Photo Courtesy Mlive
A daily drive down the causeway takes you past the names of those who served.  It's better to stop and walk the Veterans Memorial Park but if you're going by, stop and think of the names being remembered there.

On the other side of town, Final Approach remembers those who served with a stunning display of a Huey helicopter coming in for a landing.  Offering safety, respite and quite possibly a final ride home.

On the water, we have the USS Silversides and the LST 393.  One was the third most lethal submarine in WWII and the other landed on the beach at Normandy making 30 round trips to begin to liberate Europe from the clutches of evil.

Muskegon is rich with many things.  People, history and honor and we are very fortunate to be able to house such treasures.  All of which are maintained by people who dedicate their life to volunteering their time to make sure the memories, the stories and honor of those who have served, those who continue to serve and those who hear the call to serve in the future.

Hold your head high Veterans.  We are grateful, we are humbled and we honor you!  

A tour of the LST

The Silversides

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Holidays in the City Happening November 28th

Muskegon is growing by leaps and bounds!  The energy here is amazing, the people who make things happen have a new resolve and together, we'll be celebrating the Holidays in the City with a mix of retail, restaurants and entertainment but more so....we'll be finding ways to celebrate them together!

I stopped down to the Muskegon Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce today to catch up with Ellen Berrends who is the interim director of Downtown Muskegon Now to find out what this years Holidays in the City entails.  Where to shop, what kind of special events are happening and how people can get involved!

Take a look at the interview and get the details on the shopping....the events and the community gathering to light the Christmas Tree in Hackley Park.  You'll even get a chance to meet the one and only Santa Clause!

Holidays in the City is an outstanding way to shop local, support your friends and neighbors and be a part of the great things going on in Muskegon.  Please....get out and enjoy the occasion and all it offers.  Some exciting things coming too if you listened to the interview!!  Stay tuned to Positively Muskegon for more details!!

To visit the Holidays in the City face Book Page click on the logo below!

 Holidays In The City

To learn more about Downtown Muskegon Now, click on their logo below!

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Monday, November 9, 2015

Warren Miller - "Chasing Shadows" at the Frauenthal November 28th

It's an annual tradition.  The latest in the long line of films from Warren Miller will be playing at the Frauenthal Center for Performing Arts November 28th.

Since 1950 Warren Miller has been making spectacular films in every corner of the world that people can ski or snowboard in.  This year the release of "Chasing Shadows" marks the 66th film to his credit!  There will be plenty of giveaways as always and to see the film in the spectacular Frauenthal....an experience all it's own!

Here's a little sneak preview of this years film!  See ya there!

You can get tickets in advance by clicking on the logo below or stopping by the Frauenthal Box Office!!  

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