April update by Betty

April – 2018

April Fool – that’s what Nature pulls on us by giving us a few warm days – melting a lot of snow – and even bringing out some of the birds that have been hiding (I don’t know where) and there’s action around the feeders.  And then – we wake up to a cold morning with snow on the ground.  You would think that after living up here since the ‘70’s  I would learn NOT to believe it when we get those one or two warm days.  But – I just keep hoping.   I know it will happen – I haven’t missed spring in 92 years!

Just how hard a winter it was is proved by the fact that GPA and Grayling lost over half the banners that were on the poles on the business loop.  We couldn’t even find most of them.  Those winds must have taken them far, far from home.  We are already talking with our supplier and hope to have them back up as soon as we can. 

Another loss that GPA suffered is the loss of about 10+ of the Snowmen that brighten up our sidewalks during the winter.  When we took them down we found that they were missing.  At this time they are still missing, but we are working on it and hope to solve the problem.

April is a busy month.  A group of us went to the Artisan Gallery on the 11th to hear Jake Allan  – our resident celebrity – on guitar.  The place was packed and it appeared that everyone enjoyed the evening.  We had planned to attend the Marathon Dinner on Friday, but unfortunately it was cancelled.

On April 18th it’s the Chamber Business Expo and GPA will be there.  You’ll have a chance to pick a copy of our CD – with Patriotic songs.   

Friday – April 26th is PICTIONARY!!!  At the Eagles.   It’s a fun night. Lots of laughs and good food provided by the Eagles.  I’ve given up my place on the team this year, but I wouldn’t miss the evening.  We always have a great time.  No tickets are sold in advance for Pictionary – just come in the door.  Our Charity this year is River House Shelter so a gift of food or supplies is your ticket to having a fun time.

We’re working hard to make this years Fashion Show on May 18th the best ever.  Tickets are $25 – its at the same place – Kirtland Community College.  We have lots of Vendors and also our Silent Auction.  We have some old artists plus some new ones that will tempt you.  There will be time  to spend perusing these wonderful offerings both before the show and during the lunch break.

Our Shop Grayling First cards are a little later than usual this year – but even better.  They’ll be ready June 1st and still the same $25.  They will be available at the Chamber of Commerce, Tip n’ The Mitten, the Hallmark Store – and any GPA member. We’ve got it figured that if you really use it – its worth over $1,000 in discounts!!!  You’ll see some new places this year that you will be happy about. 

Alice Snyder and Lynn White are already working hard getting new vendors for the GPA Fall Arts and Crafts Show.  As usual this will be the same weekend as the fall festival – October 5, 2019 – so mark your calendars now.

It won’t be long before talk of flowers takes up a big part of the conversation at GPA meetings.  The Committee is already meeting and will be deciding what and where the flowers will be put.  First the pots have to go out and for that we need the City – BUT – for all of this we need the weather to cooperate and so far – we’re not quite sure when the time will be right.

There is a lot of wonderful news about downtown Grayling.  The Duck Pond condominiums are almost finished and ready for sale.  Soon they will be  ready for the shrubs and sidewalks that will be a finishing touch. 

And – we have a new Superintendent of Schools.  GPA welcomes Justin Gluesing to our community.  If we’re lucky we can get him to come and speak to GPA about his thoughts regarding Grayling Community Schools.  We’re already very proud of our educational system and we want him to know that and to know that we are here to help where we can.

Plus – a new event out at Hanson Hills.  I’m sure we’ll be hearing more about what that entails  – plus the renovation of the ski lodge.  All our winter sports enthusiasts will be happy when the word gets out. And of course those that use our trails in the spring, summer and fall.  We have a reputation as having  some of the best maintained trails in Michigan.

And – I couldn’t finish up my article without mentioning that we are losing one of our finest County employees at the end of April.  It will be Joe Wakeley’s Retirement Day.  I’m a little prejudiced because I worked for him at the county for 17 years and think he deserves all the accolades he will receive.  I wish him good health and good times.  Time to enjoy his life, his family and especially his beautiful granddaughter!

That’s all for now.  Hope I didn’t forget anything important.  If I did – I’ll get it next time!