MiReason Blog

/MiReason Blog
MiReason Blog 2018-02-09T15:06:29+00:00

#MiReason Blog

Read more about things we love to do and places we like to visit in West Michigan. Our blog posts are written from first hand experiences of real things you can do when you live here.

If you’re currently in West Michigan loving life and would like to write a guest blog post, contact Rachel Bartels at bartelsr@hellowestmichigan.com.

Dancing Away Stress at Tuesday Night Swing

The first time I found myself at Tuesday Swing Dancing in Rosa Parks Circle was during the afterglow at West Michigan Intern Connect, a networking requirement of my summer internship; and the first experience hooked me. It was certainly nerve wracking to stand at the edge of Rosa Parks Circle, in the middle of downtown, surrounded by people, many of whom I work with, but it only took a mere thirty seconds before being invited to dance, with no worries about my lack of experience from my partner.   Meet Ben: my first, and very patient, swing dancing partner. He showed me the basic four steps to get me started, which were deceivingly simple. As soon as I was comfortable with that, the real fun began. My coworkers watched from the sidelines as I attempted to mimic Ben and the other dancers around me. Several times, Ben turned me or had me all twisted up [...]

By | September 25th, 2017|Categories: Blog, Blog Posts|Tags: , , , , |

My New Breakfast Spot

Wolfgang’s. For many Grand Rapidians, a necessary pilgrimage. Among students, the restaurant enjoys mythical status as the place you can get a $4 early bird special, that is, if you can peel yourself out of bed in time. It’s common for little herds of Calvin students make the pilgrimage together, emerging from dormitories into the crisp Michigan mornings shuffling to their cars. There will be coffee soon enough and a plate of scrambled eggs with hash browns, or pancakes, or... A friend and I walked through the door. It’d been a while. As I found myself enveloped in warm light and wrapped up in the scent of hot chocolate, coffee, and pancakes, I knew we’d made the right choice. We sat down on the tall chairs at the bar and stared through the window into the kitchen, at the cooks [...]

By | September 18th, 2017|Categories: Blog, Blog Posts|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

At the Blueberry Patch

Next to California, West Michigan boasts the second most diverse agricultural output of any place in the U.S. We get to enjoy the corn and pumpkins, soybeans, apples, and, most important to this blogger, blueberries. Late July is the season to pick, and with a girlfriend who’d never gotten the chance and a free Saturday afternoon to spend together, we set off into the countryside. The blueberry patch has always held a prized place in my memory.  My grandmother would take us cousins out and show us how to cup our hands beneath a cluster and work only the ripe ones off with our thumbs. I remembered the way a really big one would look, like a prize goose or a miniature doughnut, hanging just out of reach. It’d always fascinated me how you could leave marks, simply by pressing [...]

By | August 3rd, 2017|Categories: Blog Posts|

Big Sky or Big Lake?

Like so many others in this day of Google maps, I have a mountain fascination. I envision taking my travel guitar, large hat, and vintage suitcase to a log cabin for a getaway with my friends. I want to snap a picture of high-altitude scene and find that perfect filter on Instagram. Maybe do some yodeling. I want to escape what sometimes seems to be oh-so-normal, impossibly Midwestern existence. And this was my chance. We landed in Salt Lake City, got a breath of the dry desert air and started driving. We traveled through the Tetons, craggy, grey, snow-covered, rising over 10,000 feet in elevation, stretching up high above the timberline. We passed through prairies, huge, treeless and dry, smelling like sagebrush, under the biggest, most cloudless sky. We stuck our bare feet in rivers descending from snowmelt, cold, clear, with [...]

By | July 20th, 2017|Categories: Blog Posts|

Philanthropic Fashion

I recently volunteered for the April 21st event, Runway On The Rapids, benefiting the Multiple Sclerosis Program at Mercy Health St. Mary's. It featured a high-trend fashion show, elegantly executed at the JW Marriott in downtown Grand Rapids. The event was sponsored by many local companies, including Meijer, ADAC Automotive, and JW Marriott. There were over 80 men and women volunteers walking the runway to the sold-out crowd of over 550 people. In addition to local boutiques like Denym and Lee & Birch, this year’s show featured Siss Viss, a designer from Memphis, TN who creates clothing by using the inner tubes from bicycles. She is a two time winner of Memphis Fashion week, and came to West Michigan to close out the show with her stunning designs. The event creator, Kim VanOeffelen, was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis 6 years [...]

By | May 1st, 2017|Categories: Blog Posts|

Rowing Into Summer

On April 8th, I had the privilege of representing Hello West Michigan and the region to over 500 collegiate athletes at the GVSU Lubbers Cup Regatta. When I started my internship, I didn’t know what a regatta was, but I quickly discovered the sport of rowing, and was fascinated by the speedy boats, called “racing shells” by the aficionados, cruising up and down Spring Lake. The Lubbers Cup dates back to 1997 and Hello West Michigan has partnered with the Grand Haven Spring Lake Ferrysburg Chamber of Commerce for the last 5 years to host a table at the event. With so many students from top tier universities, it is a target environment for us to talk about the region, its opportunities with soon-to-be grads. The athletes represented various schools around the Midwest, including Grand Valley State, Illinois, Drake, Purdue, [...]

By | April 17th, 2017|Categories: Blog Posts|