Category Archives: Community News

High school students help prepare community gardens for Earth Day


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27 ways to immerse in Muskegon’s largest photography exhibit ever

The Muskegon Museum of Art will open its largest and most significant exhibit to date on Thursday, May 11.

Edward S. Curtis: The North American Indian” is a showcase of a collection of work comprised by Curtis over a 30-year period that documented the history of 80 Native American tribes. In total, the collection includes participation from 10,000 Native Americans, 20 leather-bound books, over 40,000 photographs, 10,000 audio recordings and a feature film.

The grand opening event will include an outdoor blessing ceremony at 5:30 p.m. on May 11 led by Larry Romanelli, tribal ogema of the Little River Band of Ottawa Indiana.

The event from 5:30-8 p.m. at the MMA, 296 W. Webster Ave., is free and open to the public. Refreshments and a cash bar will be available.


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Law enforcement agencies, Baker College to help students explore criminal justice careers April 28

There’s still time to register for statewide Baker College Policing Day;
300 high school students expected

Muskegon, Mich. – High school students interested in careers in law enforcement/criminal justice can still register for the statewide Baker College Policing Day, Friday, April 28, 2017, 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., at Baker College’s Owosso campus. The registration deadline is Wednesday, April 26.

“Baker College Policing Day offers the opportunity for high school students to explore diverse careers in law enforcement, meet representatives from policing agencies, and learn about the desired training and education that will set them on the path to success,” said Mark Heaton, Baker College system assistant director of admissions and Policing Day coordinator.

At the event, there will be presentations by representatives from approximately 15 city, county, state and federal law enforcement agencies (listed below this news release). Many are police chiefs and sheriffs. Baker College criminal justice students will also present a crime scene demonstration.

There is no charge to attend, but registration is required because space is limited and lunch will be provided. More than 200 students have registered; capacity is 300. (Schools represented are listed below this news release.)

Baker College offers bachelor’s and associate degrees in criminal justice. One associate degree includes completion of a law enforcement training academy program.

The Owosso campus was selected for this event because its central location is convenient for students across the state.

To register by Wednesday, April 26, and for more information, contact Julie Ramirez at 989.729.3350 or Baker College’s Owosso campus is located at 1309 S. M-52, Owosso, MI 48867.

The largest private college in Michigan, Baker College is a not-for-profit higher education institution accredited by the Higher Learning Commission. Founded in 1911, Baker College grants doctoral, master’s, bachelor’s and associate degrees, as well as certificates in diverse academic fields including applied technology, business, education, engineering, health science, information technology and social science. Baker College has on-ground campuses throughout Michigan and offers online programs that can be completed 100 percent online without ever visiting a campus. In 2016, the Online Learning Consortium recognized Baker College Online with the OLC Quality Scorecard Exemplary Endorsement, the highest ranking for online higher education programs. For information, visit or follow Baker College on Twitter, @bakercollege, or on Facebook,

Inaugural Port City Criterium Slated for May 13 in Downtown Muskegon

(Muskegon, MI) – Muskegon will host Michigan’s newest criterium bicycle race. The .8 mile, closed-circuit course is starting and finishing on Western Avenue in the heart of downtown. The races are shorter than traditional road races. A CRIT offers higher-than-average speeds and much more intensity, making it a fan favorite to watch. The counter-clockwise course has a short kicker and fast finishing stretch. Races are timed for 30, 45 or 60 minutes depending on the category. Registration is now open with cash prizes and medals being offered for many categories and experience levels. There is a limit of 100 riders in most races/categories. USA Cycling rules apply and any unlicensed riders can purchase a one-day Category 5 license to compete.

Categories include: • Junior Men & Women • Women (Cat. 3,4,5) • Men (Cat. 4,5)

• Masters 40+/50+ (Cat. 1-4) • Kids Races • Master 30+ (Cat. 1-4)

• Women (Cat. 1,2,3) • Men (Cat. 3,4) • Pro (Cat. 1,2,3)

Whether an experienced competitor or new to racing, the course provides the best of both worlds. Downtown businesses are partnering to create an exciting atmosphere for both spectators and competitors. Viewers will be able to walk along the boundaries of the race track as the cyclists race by on the course. An After Party is planned for those over 21, featuring pizza from Top Shelf and award-winning craft beer from Pigeon Hill Brewing.

Registration/Pricing: • Kids Races – Free • Women (Cat. 3,4,5) – $25 • Men (Cat. 4,5) – $25
• All other categories – $35 • Second Race – $15 • $10 late fee day of registration

Location: Muskegon Convention & Visitors Bureau 610 W. Western Avenue Muskegon, MI 49440

Start Times Range: • 10:00 am – 3:30 pm

For more information or volunteer details, visit Major sponsors include Staples, Core Realty Partners, Nichols, Andrie Inc., Arconic, Lorin Industries, Tyler Sales, ProMed, Mart Dock, Pigeon Hill Brewing, and Rock-n-Road Cycle.

Muskegon Area Teens to embark on trip to Africa

” Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s famous speech, The Birth of a New Nation was inspired after King visited Ghana, I wouldn’t be surprised if these students traveling to Africa return too with ideas to help change their communities.”
-Paul Allen Billings

Muskegon, MI April 17, 2017:
Six (6) Muskegon area high school students will embark on a life -changing journey to Africa. Five Honor Roll Students from Muskegon Heights Academy and one Student from Orchard View High School will depart Thursday for Ghana West Africa. The all-expense paid excursion sponsored by 103.7 the Beat FM, the West Michigan Community Help Network, and donations from people both in and outside of the community will include tours of the Abeadze Kyeakor Village, and the Slave Castles.
Paul Allen Billings of 103.7 says it’s been at the top of his bucket list to see to it that students from the area would get a chance to accompany him to West Africa, a trip he’s now made several times saying, ” Dr. Martin Luther King Jr’s famous speech, The Birth of a New Nation was inspired after King visited Ghana and I wouldn’t be surprised if these students traveling to Africa return too with ideas to help change their communities.”
According to Billings, the only thing the students were asked to contribute towards the trip is the promise to utilize what they’ve learned upon their return to help make Muskegon a better place.
Perhaps travel cannot prevent bigotry, but by demonstrating that all peoples cry, laugh, eat, worry, and die, it can introduce the idea that if we try and understand each other, we may even become friends.” – Maya Angelou

Media Advisory Baker College, area ICT companies welcome 60 eighth graders for first West Michigan Girls in ICT Day April 27

WHAT:          The first International Girls in Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Day in West Michigan is designed to encourage girls to pursue careers in ICT fields. It is hosted by Baker College’s Muskegon campus and sponsored by area businesses so it is free for attendees.

The event includes speaker presentations and several hands-on projects. The speakers will join the girls in groups to assemble, program and wirelessly control GoPiGo robotic minicars.

Other projects include tearing apart a PC and putting it back together, and making a network cable.

WHO:             – Sixty eighth-grade girls from the seven Muskegon County schools identified below. (Originally open to 40 girls, registration was expanded to 60 girls due to demand and generosity of sponsors.)

– Event speakers will be women who have excelled in ICT careers and a Baker College student earning a bachelor’s degree in information technology and security.

– Sponsors are Baker College, cPanel Inc., Arconic and ADAC Automotive.

WHEN:          Thursday, April 27, 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. Lunch will be provided.

WHERE:        Baker College’s Muskegon campus, 1903 Marquette Ave.

WHY:             Women are greatly underrepresented in ICT fields, and, according to the U.S. Department of Labor, ICT employment is projected to grow faster than the average for all occupations through 2024.

Mark Verhoeven, coordinator of the West Michigan Girls in ICT Day and IT program director at Baker College of Muskegon, said, “We are entering the era of the Internet of Things (IoT) where our world is increasingly connected to the Internet – from toasters to automobiles. This change is changing career opportunities, too. Those prepared with a minimum of a bachelor’s degree will be in the best position to take advantage of these rewarding new ICT careers with good pay. And, employers want a workforce that includes females.”

Baker College’s Muskegon campus offers two bachelor’s degrees in information technology and security and in computer science, and an associate degree in information technology with specialties in Cisco and Microsoft.


For more information, contact Jan Jenkins, 517.898.2858

Edward S. Curtis: The North American Indian Opening Ceremony & Reception

April 13, 2017, Muskegon, Michigan – The Muskegon Museum of Art will open Edward S. Curtis: The North American Indian, an exhibition of national significance, on Thursday, May 11 with a Native American Blessing Ceremony at 5:30 pm, followed by an opening reception. The event is free and open to the public.

Larry Romanelli, Tribal Ogema, Little River Band of Ottawa Indians, will lead the traditional Native American Blessing Ceremony outdoors at the back entrance of the Muskegon Museum of Art. After the ceremony, trained MMA docents will be on hand throughout the exhibition galleries and refreshments and cash bar will be available at the reception.

Edward S. Curtis: The North American Indian explores the depth, breadth, and lasting cultural legacy of Edward Curtis’s monumental work. The exhibition, both survey and critique, tells the story of one of the most prominent photographers of his time who sacrificed everything for his work on The North American Indian, only to die in obscurity.

Curtis’s portraits of Native Americans and their landscapes, lifestyles, and rituals have become iconic over the past century, and not without controversy. The entire collection of 723 original photogravures from The North American Indian portfolio, along with all 20 volumes and Native American artifacts, will be on display May 11 through September 10, 2017.

Curtis undertook a 30-year desperate quest to create a historical record of what he believed to be a “vanishing race,” photographing Native Americans and documenting the rich and varied cultures of 117 named tribes, groups, and clans. Most of these tribes still survive today, despite half millennia of ordeals and obstacles.

A series of special programs will accompany the exhibition. Visit for more information or call (231) 720-2571.

Bike to Work changes to Muskegon Area Smart Commute Week

Muskegon, MI (June 12 to 16, 2017)- Muskegon Area Smart Commute Week replaces Bike to Work Week and consists of events promoting cycling, walking, running, taking the bus and carpooling. Free breakfast and loads of perks from local businesses are hosted at various locations around the greater Muskegon Area.
Community members challenge each other to a friendly competition known as the Smart Commute Week Challenge. Register as an individual or create a team and rack up points to qualify for prizes with every smart commute trip you make.

The purpose of this initiative is to encourage the use of healthy alternatives to single rider motorized transportation, decreasing distracted driving, easing traffic congestion, and reducing air pollution in the Muskegon Area. In addition our goal for this event is to rally 500 participants to find alternative transportation for all commuting needs.

June 12 to 16, 2017

All Smart Commute Week participants will register on our Facebook site as an individual or create your own team. Team Captains will log daily activities for smart commuting (any form of alternative transportation earns you points as well as attending the free breakfast) and winning individuals and teams will earn free prizes donated by local event sponsors. In addition, by showing your registration card all participants will be eligible for beverage discounts from selected Muskegon Area merchants. Participants must register online at our Facebook page in order to be eligible for prizes and business discounts.

What: Smart Commute of Muskegon Area

When: June 12-16, 2017

Registration: Participants can register @ Facebook SmartCommuteMuskegonArea@RideOnMuskegon

Visit us our Facebook and Twitter sites for a listing of events and updates.

Facebook: SmartCommuteMuskegonArea@RideOnMuskeon

Twitter: SmartCommute@SmartCommute2

Downtown Whitehall mural to be painted by local students

WHITEHALL, MI – White Lake area middle and high school students will soon create a mural at the Nuveen Center that will represent them and the community.

Artist in residence Gypsy Schindler is leading the students as they plan and create the mural on the back outside wall of the center, 106 E. Colby St. in Whitehall.

“We talked about identity, what it means to be an individual and what it means to be part of a community,” Schindler said. “It’s not going to necessarily be faces, but they’re going to come back with images and materials and ideas. We’ll put them all together. I’m not exactly sure what it will look like, but it will be a representation of them.”


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Taste of Muskegon Receives an Updated Look

Muskegon, MI (April 14, 2017) – Taste of Muskegon has undergone a rebranding to begin its 11th year. Following the most successful festival in its history, the Taste of Muskegon committee decided it was time to modernize their look. Charla Proctor donated a new logo to the group which was the inspiration for their new website. The new logo incorporates food, drinks and music which follows the committee’s goal of making Taste of Muskegon about more than the food but a full “taste” of what Muskegon County has to offer. The website will feature online voting to make participating in selecting the winning plates even easier.
“We try to grow Taste every year and highlight more of the great things that Muskegon has to offer. The new branding is a part of that growth. We are excited to find new ways reach more people,” Ellen Berends, Director of Taste of Muskegon.
Taste of Muskegon, a part of Downtown Muskegon Now, will take place on June 16th and 17th in Hackley Park. It joins Parties in the Park Friday night and will feature the West Michigan Offshore Club Powerboat Street Party as part of Powerboat weekend. Saturday will begin with the United Way’s Ride United event, breakfast with the Shoreline Lions, the Downtown Car Show and the Sweetwater Local Food Market. Awards for Taste of Muskegon’s best plates will take place Saturday afternoon and includes both judge and public votes. To learn more about the restaurants, bands and events at Taste of Muskegon 2017, visit their new website at

Other ways to get involved

Volunteer for the Lakeshore Art Festival

A unique blend of arts, crafts, music, food and fun along the shoreline in historic Downtown Muskegon. More than 300 artists and crafters will be showcased with fine art in the park, crafts, children’s activities and Michigan food market – all wrapped up in a huge downtown street party atmosphere!   Come out and join us on July 7th,  and July 8th, 2017.

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Join Watch Muskegon

Muskegon has more to offer than ever before. Join the conversation, movement and Watch Us Go!

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