There’s a lot going on around here. Here’s our attempt to catch you up on local food and shopping opportunities, City meetings, upcoming City Council elections, The Graduate Hotel project, and more.
Lots of local restaurants are open again for in-person dining. Call ahead to get details, and remember that if you want to do take-out, try to call directly rather than using a third-party service that will take away most or all of the profit from the restaurant.
City staff have added many places to sit and eat outside downtown, and restaurants all over town have been finding creative ways to manage reduced capacities. Check out our Spend Locally series for lots of ideas about where to eat, shop, or get take-out!
St. Patrick’s Day is Wednesday and the City has set up special rules to try to discourage disease-spreading crowding. Learn the rules here.
A special public-input meeting is coming up at the Study Committee on an Independent Police Oversight Commission. That will be taking place on Monday, March 29. We’ll be bringing more reporting on that, but if you’re interested in participating in one of the meeting’s break-out groups, mark your calendar for a 6 p.m. start. Read more here.
Next week, City meetings are in full swing:
- On Monday, among other topics, the Commission on the Environment will talk about a survey on drop-off recycling and organics.
- On Tuesday, City Council will tackle the use of HUD Community Development Block Grant money and engaging Artspace, a nationwide nonprofit that develops live-work space for artists.
- Also on Tuesday, the Downtown Management Board will continue its work on promoting economic health of businesses in the downtown.
- On Wednesday, the Parks & Rec Advisory Committee will cover a number of items including a proposal for how much to charge for use of various Parks & Rec facilities and programs. ELi recently reported on the money struggles faced by Parks & Rec due to the pandemic shut-downs.
- Also on Wednesday, the Library Board of Trustees will meet and discuss, among other topics, reopening and the Safe Child Policy. As ELi has reported, the Library is back open, but with irregular hours. (We’re working on a separate story about that, in response to a reader’s questions.)
- Two Downtown Development Authority (DDA) committees meet on Thursday: Executive and Finance plus Project and Infrastructure. Those agendas are not yet up.
- Also on Thursday, the Arts Commission will meet with the Director of the Broad Art Museum, talk about a special civil rights recognition, and work on the cultural arts grants.
Before all that, on Sunday, the pandemic-special Underground Market returns from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. A reader asked us which vendors will be there, and so we asked the City staff.
Here’s who you can expect: Agape Organic Farm, El Burrito Mexicano, Hickory Knoll Farms Creamery, Jenny’s Sweets & Treats, Udderly Magic/Kim’s Country Kitchen, Lou and Harry’s, One Mean Team, Rivertree Coffee Company, The Cheese People of Grand Rapids, and the Pasta Shop.
But wait, there’s more: The Pasta Shop, Twisted Craft Cocktails, Two Stix 5 Stones, MI Great Lakes Fish Company, Sweet Potato Delights, Dirty Paw Mixed Media, Grand Traverse Sauce Company, Grand Traverse Pie Company, Kathy Bozyk Crafts, Heritage Forge and Farm, Dusty Rose Designs, Dancy’s Fancy Butter, and finally, MenuBubble, a local company featured in a story this week by ELi’s Sarah Spohn.
City Council elections will take place on November 2, 2021. Three seats are up – those of Aaron Stephens, Dana Watson, and Ron Bacon. Stephens has said he is not running again, and Watson and Bacon have not announced whether they will run. Whoever does run must specify if they’re running for a full-term seat expiring in 2025, or running for the partial-term seat expiring in 2023. The deadline for filing to run is July 20, 2021. Read more here.
What’s getting built at the corner of Burcham Drive and Grove Street? A sorority house. Read more here.
The Graduate Hotel is nearing completion, and one reader wrote to us to ask if the construction company can’t keep the pedestrian walkway along Grand River Ave. clear of trash. We conveyed the concern to the folks at Rockford Construction who quickly responded with action and a promise to do better.
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