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Meijer generates nearly $6 Million for Midwest food pantries in 2014

Meijer generates nearly $6 Million for Midwest food pantries in 2014

----NEWS RELEASE---

The Meijer Simply Give program – held three times a year – generated nearly $6 million in 2014 for food pantries throughout the Midwest, bringing the program’s overall donation total to nearly $14 million since it began in November 2008.

The retailer’s most recent campaign, which ended in January, was the most successful holiday campaign in the program’s history, resulting in a total of more than $1.8 million for hungry families.

My Town: Third annual Write Michigan Contest winners announced

My Town: Third annual Write Michigan Contest winners announced
--------NEWS RELEASE-------Kent District Library, Schuler Books & Music and Herrick District Library announce the winners of the third annual Write Michigan Short Story Contest. More than 700 writers from across the state entered the contest: 215 adults, 426 teens and 104 in the youth category.

“We’ve had another successful year,” said KDL Assistant Director Michelle Boisvenue-Fox. “We are always excited to see and read so much great talent in Michigan. We are supported by 155 volunteer reviewers—librarians, booksellers and Friends of the Library—with over half of them returning from last year’s contest. Many people find this a fun way to support aspiring writers.”

My Town: In Library Derby, Every Horse Wins

My Town: In Library Derby, Every Horse Wins
-----NEWS RELEASE----KENT COUNTY, Mich. –Kent District Library is kicking off its second annual Genre Derby, an online crowdfunding effort aimed at reducing wait times for print and digital books by growing the library system’s collection of its most popular items. And every horse in this race wins; all money collected for a specific genre will be spent on materials in that genre only.

My Town: Mail-in cancer tests, produce programs get state funding

My Town: Mail-in cancer tests, produce programs get state funding

LANSING, Mich. – Making fruits and vegetables more readily available, cancer screenings by mail, health coaches and exercise programs are just several of the local initiatives getting funding from the Michigan Department of Community Health.

The MDCH recently announced 44 projects are getting approximately $1.34 million, including a dozen projects in West Michigan.  The grants include:

My Town: What should the Whitecaps wear? You decide!

My Town: What should the Whitecaps wear?  You decide!
COMSTOCK PARK, Mich.— The West Michigan Whitecaps are turning over all decision-making to their fans as part of Social Media Night on Thursday, June 4.

Baseball fans are invited to design a uniform for the team, as well as pick out the game giveaway, ballpark music and post game band via social media.  

My Town: What 2015 will hold for West Michigan's economy

My Town: What 2015 will hold for West Michigan's economy

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.--- Consumers in West Michigan are more optimistic about what 2015 will bring.

In fact, consumers in this market are the most optimistic in the region, according to a new study released by Huntington Bank.  The financial firm found local residents say they are much more likely to buy a new vehicle this year; 17 percent said they plan to purchase a new car, compared to just four percent in 2014.

Home improvement stores may also be busy; 47-percent of West Michiganders surveyed for the Huntington Bank Midwest Economic Index said they were planning some home renovations for 2015, compared to 32 percent in 2014.

More green for eating greens: Eat local movement gets federal boost

More green for eating greens: Eat local movement gets federal boost

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—The eat local movement is getting a federal boost.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently awarded Local First a two-year $94,000 grant for Community Supported Agriculture.  Local First is teaming up with West Michigan Growers Group and Michigan State University Extension to provide resources for farmers to grow their CSA programs. With CSAs, community members purchase a share of a local farm, which then divides its harvest among investors.  The CSA form of farming provides stability for farmers and allows investors to enjoy seasonable, locally grown produce. The program provides the health, relational and economic benefits that come with eating local.