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My Town: Two communities join Great American Meatout Day

My Town: Two communities join Great American Meatout Day

KALAMAZOO, Mich.—The City of Kalamazoo will recognize the Great American Meatout Day this Thursday, March 20.

Mayor Bobby Hopewell recently signed a proclamation encouraging community members to skip the meat and opt for meals filled with vegetables, fresh fruits and whole grains. His proclamation discusses the health, environmental and animal welfare benefits.

This is the 30th year for the Meatout campaign, organized by the national nonprofit Farm Animal Rights Movement.  FARM says the lives of 8,000 can be spared if 30,000 people commit to going meatless for one full day.

Holland’s Thai Palace Restaurant also plans to show its support for the event with a vegan “feed-in” Thursday.  The restaurant plans to serve up free samples of vegan food to patrons. Thai Palace is located at 977 Butternut Drive.

Trailer spills cows onto highway

Trailer spills cows onto highway

PORTAGE, Mich.--   Portage Public Safety officers are investigating how two cows fell out of a cattle trailer and onto the highway.

Officers were called to southbound U.S. 131 north of W. Centre Avenue around 11:22 a.m. Tuesday.  A passerby told dispatchers a cattle trailer had opened and dropped two cows onto the highway.

One of the cows was injured and had to be euthanized at the scene.  The other cow was loaded back onto the trailer without incident.  Crews with the Michigan Department of Transportation removed the dead cow from the scene.

Come Kayak down the River

Come Kayak down the River

Kayak the Kalamazoo River with DeGraaf Nature Center in Holland, MI on Saturday, September 28th, from 10:30am – 3:30pm.

This three hour paddle begins within the Allegan State Game Area and ends at New Richmond, a beautiful 9-mile stretch of water on the Kalamazoo River with lots of wildlife sightings. This is a great time to see and hear migrating songbirds too.

The nature center will provide transportation from DeGraaf for kayaks, life jackets, paddles and guide. You provide the energy, snacks, waterproof lunch, (no coolers please), hats, sunscreen & insect repellant.

Fees for this trip are $25 but only $20 if you are a Friend of DeGraaf.  If you have your own boat, transfer fee is $15. Please call 616-355-1057 to register.

DeGraaf is located at 600 Graafschap Rd. in Holland, Mi. Website: www.degraaf.org

Former strip club site now a safe haven for butterflies

Former strip club site now a safe haven for butterflies

KALAMAZOO, Mich.--  The former site of a strip club is now home to a butterfly sanctuary.

On August 9, Kalamazoo Area Wild Ones teamed up with Monarch Watch and Downtown Tomorrow, Inc. to transform a 500 square foot space located at 1311 Portage St. into a feeding ground for butterflies. The plants donated by all three organizations are all Michigan native.  Dave Wendling, president of Kalamazoo Area Wild Ones says the lone tree on the lot is a Bur Oak, a species which once covered Kalamazoo’s landscape before settlers moved in.

The new sanctuary, called "The Edison Neighborhood Monarch Haven,"  is meant to support Monarch butterflies which are in severe decline, as well as make the space more appealing to potential buyers. The site will be registered as a Monarch waystation, providing milkweeds, nectar and shelter for migrating butterflies.

Animals take over final Parkapalooza Park Party August 8

Animals take over final Parkapalooza Park Party August 8

EAST GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—The final Parkapalooza Park Party is guaranteed to be wild.

Join the staff of East Grand Rapids Library at John Collins Park for the “Animal Extravaganza”, featuring wildlife from the John Ball Zoo, the Kalamazoo Nature Center and the Critter Barn of Zeeland.  Children of all ages are also invited to take part in crafts during this free event.

 The Animal Extravaganza runs from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Thursday, August 8.  John Collins Park is located at 650 Lakeside Dr. SE. 

Local businesses offering freebies for moms this Mother's Day

Local businesses offering freebies for moms this Mother's Day

West Michigan businesses are honoring moms this Mother’s Day by offering freebies.

In Grand Rapids, moms can get in free to the Grand Rapids Children Museum on Sunday, May 12.  Admission is also free for moms who visit the Binder Park Zoo in Battle Creek with children or grandchildren in tow.

When it comes to food, Hooters has moms covered Sunday, offering free entrees (up to $10)  for mothers who bring a kid along and buy any drink.  Hooters has 10 locations in Michigan, including a restaurant in Portage.

And don’t forget dessert!  TCBY is offering a free six ounce ‘Fro-Yo’ to mother’s this Mother’s Day weekend.  Muskegon has a TCBY stand at the K-Mart Shopping Center on Henry Street.