Published: Tuesday, June 28, 2011, 11:00 AM


Brian VanOchten | The Grand Rapids Press


GRAND RAPIDS -- The West Michigan Sports Commission proved it could get the Meijer State Games of Michigan -- its signature event designed to increase direct spending among visitors to the area -- up and running despite limited staff, resources and funding for the inaugural Olympic-style festival last year.


It proved it could build upon that solid foundation this past weekend.


Steve Kaminski | The Grand Rapids Press


Imagine Mike Guswiler’s surprise the day he got a text message at work, and staring back at him was a photograph of a rat.


“I wrote something like, ‘Guess what we got?’” said Julie Guswiler, his wife of 18 years. “He said, ‘I don’t know, but I think that is a rat I see in the picture.’ He told me I wasn’t allowed to stay home with the kids anymore.”


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Published: Saturday, June 04, 2011, 7:00 AM

By Steve Ungrey | The Grand Rapids Press


Dave Emeott would like nothing better than to see one more strong performance out of his East Kentwood boys track team this weekend.


The defending Division 1 state champions have worked overtime the past two weeks and the thrill of a third consecutive championship is something Emeott wants to experience.

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GRAND RAPIDS - Mayor George Heartwell blended right in with eight rowers as they hauled a 54-foot row boat on their shoulders to the dock near the Grand Rapids Boathouse, 291 North Park Street NW, on Friday morning.


The rowers gently placed the 250-pound, eight-person shell into the Grand River and jumped into the sliding seats before strapping their feet into the built-in shoes in the boat. The ninth person on the boat, the leading coxswain, sits facing the rowers in the very front of the shell, giving directions through a microphone.



More than 1,200 athletes will travel to West Michigan in April 2012 after Grand Rapids won the bid to host the MACRA (Mid-American Collegiate Rowing Association) Championship Regatta.


The regatta, which was last hosted on the Grand River in Riverside Park in 2007, has grown in size and popularity in recent years and local rowing officials are ecstatic to be bringing it back in 2012.


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