Creative and Fun Recipes for a Picnic

Picnics are a fun way to enjoy a meal in the summertime! If you are looking for unique picnic ideas for a boat trip, for kids, for a date night, etc., then check out the list of articles below! 60 Kid-Friendly Picnic Food Ideas: https://www.tasteofhome.com/collection/kid-friendly-picnic-food-ideas/ This link includes many different, easy and healthy recipes to switch things up for a picnic! There are vegan and vegetarian options, and some sweet options as well. This link is kid-friendly, so it includes many recipes kids would enjoy! Romantic Picnic Ideas For Two: https://zestfulkitchen.com/romantic-picnic-ideas-for-two/?r_done=1 This article includes several romantic food ideas that are extr

Zoos to Visit in Grand Rapids

Are you looking to see some wildlife this summer? Here are two zoos in Grand Rapids to visit this summer that take extra precautions due to COVID-19. First, we have the John Ball Zoo, located on Fulton St. in Grand Rapids. The John Ball zoo has nine exhibits, some of which are only opened seasonally. In the aquarium, you can see things like octopus and sharks. Between the African, North American, and South American exhibits you'll see animals like Chimpanzees, lions, wolfs, flamingos, brown bears, and more. The tickets vary depending on the seasons at the John Ball Zoo, and they also have wheelchair and stroller rentals. Due to COVID-19, they are offering timed tickets at a limited guest cap

Dog-Friendly Restaurants in Grand Rapids

Looking for a place to take your pup on this warm summer day? Grand Rapids has tons of dog-friendly restaurants for you to enjoy with your furry friends. Especially for when you feel bad about leaving them home on beautiful sunny days. Well, now you don’t have to, check out some of the best places to bring them along for a bite to eat below. That Early Bird Offering a wide variety of healthy menu options including vegetarian, gluten-free, and vegan items. Bring your pup and sit at one of their outdoor tables. Elk Brewing Bring your dog to the outdoor patio and enjoy a specialty brew. ​Lantern Coffee Bar and Lounge This calm atmosphere is great to bring your pup for a cup of joe and a pastry.

Jason Ridge Condominiums - Walker

This beautiful new development is in Walker on Jason Ridge Lane SW off of Sunset Hills Ave SW. The location is only an eight-minute drive from downtown Grand Rapids, close to Millennium and Harmon Park, and is in proximity to amenities like grocery stores and restaurants. The lot offers seven stand-alone units and six duplex units. They have two floorplan options for both the independent units and the duplex units. The square footage in the stand-alone units ranges from 1,474 sq. Ft. to 1,673 sq. Ft. and the duplex units range from 1,358 sq. Ft. to 1,557 sq. Ft. Some features you can find throughout the development include nine-foot basement walls, ranch-style condos, a walkout or daylight b

Summer Bucket List Goals (while remaining safe and social distancing)

This summer has been so much different than previous summers. COVID-19 has changed the way people live life, and has changed the normal summer routine. Concerts, festivals, car shows, weddings, and other events with big crowds have been cancelled in order to ensure safety. While many fun summer events have been cancelled, that doesn’t mean we can't have a great summer. Here is a new and improved summer bucket list with the consideration of social distancing and safety. Camping Going to the beach Trying new summer inspired recipes Grilling out Watching the sunset on the beach Watching the sunrise on the beach Kayaking/Canoeing Backyard games for kids – sort of like a field day. You could incl

Sustainable Products for Your Home!

There are plenty of small changes we can make to better the planet we live on, despite how challenging it may be to find them. Luckily, brands have recently been focused on becoming sustainable and eco friendly. The trouble with the growth we have seen in ‘green’ products, is deciding if the labels are accurate or just a marketing ploy. Below, we have compiled a list of eco friendly and sustainable home products that can be incorporated into your everyday life to live a happier and healthier lifestyle. Mrs. Meyers Clean Day: A company based in household cleaning supplies such as laundry detergent, dish soap, multi surface cleaner, etc. Not only do their products smell amazing, they are deriv

Celebrate National Hot Fudge Sundae Day!

Why not have an excuse to eat more ice cream this summer? July 25th is National Hot Fudge Sundae Day! Celebrate by stopping by one of these 7 local favorite Grand Rapids gems. Some are even offering delivery options so check out their webpage. Or better yet, make your own sundae creation in the comfort of your own home. Just don’t forget the cherry to top it off! #1 Pinkies Ice Cream and Desserts Located on Wealthy Street in SE Grand Rapids, Pinkies has a ton to choose from. They offer over 30 flavors of ice cream with an assortment of specialty sundaes! Also, keep an eye out for their famous food truck around the city. #2 Frosty Boy of Grand Rapids Located on Plainfield Ave in NE Grand Rapi

Take Advantage of the Summer Weather to Improve Physical and Mental Health

Summer time doesn’t always seem to last too long in Michigan. So, now is the best time make it a goal for yourself to take advantage of the summer weather and long summer days! Work-Days Start a weekday by taking advantage of the summer day right away. If it is a work day for you, wake up early enough so you are able to have at least an hour of "you-time". Here is a good routine to follow in order to seize every opportunity to make your summer day worthwhile. First, it is an accomplishment to wake up an hour earlier than normal! So, pat yourself on the back for that, you are already on to a good start. Then, make some time for exercise. It is important to be active for 30 minutes a day, and

Studio Park Events - Downtown GR

Studio Park has been putting together activities that allow people to get out and enjoy the fresh air while maintaining social distance! You can grab a meal at Studio Park, see a live show, or watch a movie! Here are some events going on at Studio Park: Sunset Cinema happens every Wednesday, it started on July 22nd and continues through August 12th! You can watch movies like Baby Driver, Knives Out, Parasite, and La La Land at the Piazza within Studio Park. Tickets are twenty dollars per four-person picnic square. The lawn opens at 6 pm. The movie starts at 8 pm and ends around 10 pm. You can bring a small cooler of snacks, but all beverages must be bought on-site, they have full bar service

Happy National Hotdog Day!

National Hot Dog Day has arrived! When we think of summer, we often think of grilling or hanging at the beach. Why not do both and celebrate this favorite summertime staple. Hit the beach and don’t forget some of these delicious toppings you can add to spice up your hotdog. Classic & Fun Toppings: Pickle Spears Sliced Tomatoes Sweet Pickle Relish Onions Jalapeños Bacon Chili Mac n Cheese Chives Don’t want to cook? Find the best hotdogs in GR below. Yesterdog Crazy Charlies Mad Dogz Sloppy Joe’s Snack Shack Grand Coney Diner Another Option: Go Vegan! Some of the best vegan hotdogs can be found here

Beach Packing List

Summertime means beach time! Beach days are a lot of fun, but are also long! Here is your perfect packing list for the beach so you are prepared for a long day in the sun and water! Sunscreen Beach chairs Umbrella Beach toys Towels Snacks: fruit, pretzels, veggies, chip, small salad Water Speaker (for music) Sunglasses Phone Headphones (if you would prefer to listen to music individually) Book Newspaper A large sheet to lounge on Summer beach days are the best, so make it an even better time by being prepared!

5 Ways to Beat Summer Heat

As the end of July is approaching, the Summer days are getting warmer. Although, getting fresh air outside is important, so is staying cool and hydrated. Here are a few suggestions to beat the heat this Summer! Drink Lots and Lots of Water On average, we need about 3 liters of water a day. It helps to get an insulated bottle to refill throughout the day. Stainless steel bottles keep water nice and cool while even in the hot sun! Eat Cool Foods Some Favorites: Fruits like berries and watermelon Homemade popsicles Smoothies Engage in Water Activities Hit the beach or even purchase a mini pool to fill up with the hose in the backyard. This can be not only fun for you but the kids too! Exercise

Mason Jar Crafts for Summer

Mason Jars can be used for many different reasons, but the most fun way to use them is for crafts! Summer Activity Jar for Kids: Decorate your mason jar how you like, whether that is with paint, colored paper, stickers, etc. Then label it: Activity Jar. Cut up a piece of paper into many small rectangles, then write a different summer activity on each one. Reach in and pick one, then enjoy your activity! Mason Jar Candle: Decorate first! Paint, twine, gems, seashells, etc. Fill the mason jar with fish rocks, marbles, or something similar to these! Add a small candle to place in the center of the mason jar, slightly nestled Light your candle and enjoy! Birthday Party Utensil Holder: Decorate t

Michigan COVID-19 Update

Governor Gretchen Whitmer just released a new executive order related to the coronavirus. This executive order requires businesses to deny entry and service to customers who refuse to wear a face mask. It also states face masks need to be worn in indoor spaces and crowded outdoor spaces. There are exceptions to this order, children under five do not need to wear a mask, those who for medical reasons cannot wear a mask, and those eating and drinking while seated at a restaurant. Violating this order may result in a misdemeanor and a five-hundred-dollar fine. Gov. Whitmer issued this executive order after there was an increase in the number of cases per day in Michigan. Governor Whitmer hopes

7 Garden Veggies to Plant in July

Before the first hard frost hits in the Fall, get your garden going this Summer. Grow some of your favorite vegetables right in your backyard and put together a delicious garden salad! Doing so may even save you a few bucks on the grocery bill. What can you plant? Summer squash Squash boosts bone strength, your metabolism and is packed with vitamins! Tips: Plant 3-6 feet apart 1 inch deep into soil. Check daily for insects as they are susceptible for diseases. Harvest your squash 45-60 days after planting. Carrots Carrots help digestion, skin and eye health! Tips: Spread seeds apart and rake soil over top of them. This veggie grows best with light contact to soil. Keep well watered/moist. Ha

Condos of Hidden Ridge - Grandville

Hidden Ridge development is a mix of single-family homes and condos! It got its name Hidden Ridge for being along 64th St. and its border being surrounded by trees. You are surrounded by nature and close to amenities and M-6. There are two condo floor plans that range from 1,437 sq. ft. to 1,513 sq. ft. and come in two floorplans the Alexander and the Cranebrook. The Alexander floor plan is a ranch style condo that has the option of a two or three stall garage, which changes the square footage. The Alexander 1,437 sq. ft. floor plan has one bedroom, two baths. The floorplan allows for flex rooms, which could be converted to another bedroom, an open floorplan between the kitchen, dining room,

National Ice Cream Day

Ice cream is an American favorite, so that is why we should take full advantage of national ice cream day coming up on Sunday, July 19! There are many delicious ice cream shops around the Grand Rapids area. Jersey Junction: Jersey Junction is located in East Grand Rapids, within Gaslight Village. This old fashioned ice cream shop was established in October of 1963. Give this place a try for some exceptional ice cream, and for a piece of Grand Rapids history. Love’s Ice Cream Love’s ice cream is located in The Downtown Market. This ice cream shop is unique for the vegan and grass-fed dairy options that are all homemade. If you’re looking for an ice cream option that utilizes local ingredients

5 Mojito Recipes for National Mojito Day

Today, July 11th, mark's National Mojito Day! Celebrate during these hot Summer days and mix up a mojito recipe everyone can enjoy. While there are plenty of recipes, here you can find 5 of our favorites that are easy to make and oh so refreshing! The Traditional What you'll need: 3-4 mint leaves, ¾ oz of lime juice, ½ oz of simple syrup, 2 oz White Rum, Club Soda, lime wedge, stem of mint leaves How-to: Add White Rum, lime juice, simple syrup, mint and ice in a shaker. Muddle together. Strain over glass onto fresh ice. Add club soda to taste. Garnish with lime wedge and mint stem. *(Makes 1 serving) Blueberry Mojito What you’ll need: A handful of fresh or thawed blueberries, 1 ounce of lime

DIY Summer Snack Ideas

Summer is a great time of the year to enjoy the outdoors with family and friends. If you gather a group of people together during a warm summer day and would like to provide a couple of the best and creative summer snacks, here are some ideas: DIY Popsicle: https://www.jessicagavin.com/make-your-own-homemade-fruit-popsicles/ An article from Jessica Gavin (Culinary Scientist) titled, “Make Your Own Homemade Fruit Popsicle”, gives instructions on how to easily make a healthy and delicious fruit popsicle! First, grab your favorite fruit you would like to use for the popsicle. Pureed fruits are a good option for this as well. Then, make sure you have a gadget to mold the popsicle. Jessica Gavin

DIY - Kids Summer Games

Looking for fun ways for your kids to enjoy the summer days without getting too hot in the sun? Here are three DIY water games that will keep your kids refreshed and entertained on a hot summer day! First, we have the water balloon pinata! All you will need is water balloons, string, and a stick! The kids will take turns trying to break the water balloons that will release the refreshing water! Check out the water balloon pinata here: water-balloon-pinata Next, we have the Fill the Bucket with Water Race! All you need is two buckets and a sponge per team. Each player will fill one bucket with water, and the other will be empty. Then, you go to the full bucket, soak up as much water as you ca

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