Tuesday, April 30, 2013
Multi-Day Windjammers Offer One-of-a-Kind Sailing Experiences Aboard Traverse City’s Tall Ship Manitou
Since 1987, the Traverse Tall Ship Company has been offering sailing adventures on the freshwater Grand Traverse Bay – and beyond, into Northern Lake Michigan.
As one of the largest sailing ships on the Great Lakes, the Manitou is a replica of an 1800s “coasting” cargo schooner. A traditional two-masted, gaff rigged, topsail schooner, Manitou measures 114 feet in length with more than 3000 square feet of sail.
Each September, the Manitou offers its popular windjammer excursions. These multi-day outings give passengers a one-of-a-kind experience to head out into the open waters and enjoy a relaxing, stress-free get-away, while visiting quaint coastal villages and soaking up the panoramic views of the northern Michigan shoreline.
The 2013 sailing schedule includes the following sailing trips: 4-Day Astronomy Cruise (Sept. 13-16 $685pp), 4-Day Wine Tasting Cruise (Sept. 20-23 $685pp) 4-Day Fall Color Cruise (Sept. 27-30 | $635pp). Accommodations are provided in 12 double-bunk cabins, and fare includes lodging, all meals and sailing activities.
Throughout the summer months, three two-hour day sails are offered each day – at Noon, 3pm (Moomers Ice Cream Sail) and Evening (6:30pm). Speciality cruises include Microbrew Tastings on Sunday evenings featuring Short’s Brewing Company, Entertainment Cruises with “Song of the Lakes” on Wednesday evenings, and the Wine Tasting Cruises featuring Leelanau Cellars (Tuesday evenings) and Left Foot Charley (Thursday evenings) both including specially-catered Mediterranean cuisine from Silver Swan Homemade foods. In addition, passengers have the option of experiencing an adventuress overnight aboard ship followed by full breakfast as part of the “Floating Bed & Breakfast.”
With a 59 passenger sailing capacity (24 overnight capacity), there is plenty of space for sitting and moving around the decks while under sail. While aboard the Manitou, passengers are free to leave the sailing to the experienced crew or lend a hand and learn the arts of the sailor. An excursion aboard the Manitou allows you to remove yourself from the trappings of modern life: no TV, phone (cell phones are discouraged), internet, email and definitely no itinerary.
In addition to public day sails and multi-day windjammer cruises, the schooner Manitou works with Inland Seas Education Association, providing hands-on environmental education to school kids from throughout the region and state. The Manitou is also available for private charters, making it ideal for corporate outings, wedding parties and family reunions.
Traverse Tall Ship Company is located at 13258 S.W. Bay Shore Drive (M22) in Traverse City and shares a dock with the fleet from the Maritime Heritage Alliance, creating a unique nautical experience for the area.
To make reservations for any of the 2013 Manitou sailing adventures, call toll free 800-678-0383 or order tickets online. Gift certificates are also available. For additional information about the Manitou, including its corporate charters, log on to www.TallShipSailing.com.
The Grand Opening Celebration of the all-new Model A Ford Museum—the world’s largest public museum dedicated to the Model A—will take place Saturday, May 18, 2013 in Hickory Corners, MI.
Fashioned after a 1928 Ford dealership, the new museum is located in southwest Michigan on the campus of the renowned Gilmore Car Museum – America’s Signature Collection.
“The Model A is a car that all can relate to,” explains Michael Spezia, executive director of the Gilmore Car Museum.
“It was an affordable and very popular automobile that has been owned and enjoyed by millions of people,” Spezia continued. “We are proud and honored to welcome the Model A Ford Museum to our historic campus.”
Nearly 5 million Model A Fords were manufactured between 1928 - 1931 and marked the second commercial triumph for Henry Ford after the Model T. In fact, during that time period more people owned a vehicle produced by that Ford Motor Company than any other maker worldwide.
In late 1927 when Henry Ford announced the first all-new Ford in two decades would soon be available, he was greeted with such tremendous public enthusiasm that 400,000 Model A Fords sold “sight unseen” before the car was even unveiled.
“The legendary Model A Ford has become an icon of Americana,” says Stan Johnson, president of the Model A Ford Foundation, Inc. (MAFFI). “And the museum will preserve the car and the era.”
Johnson states representatives from Ford Motor Company, including Corporate Historian Robert Kreipke, will take part in the Grand Opening ceremonies. They’ll be joined by representatives of various national and regional Model A Ford clubs, as well as hundreds of Model A Fords from around the country at the event.
The Model A Ford Foundation, Inc. (MAFFI) was able to raise over $1 million dollars for the building project and completed the 12,000 sq. ft. museum in just under a year.
Among the nearly 30 vehicles, cut-away engines and various memorabilia in the new museum, exhibit highlights include:
* Thomas Edison’s Model A. This was the very first Model A Ford completed, was driven off the assembly line by Henry Ford on October 21, 1927 and presented to inventor Thomas Edison. Here it will be exhibited for the first time in decades to the general public. In 1943, Edison’s widow donated the car to the Henry Ford Museum, which has graciously loaned it to the Model A Ford Museum.
* A rare 1930 Model A school bus. This vehicle originally served the El Monte, California school district. It was rescued and restored by a Model A club in Placerville, CA and shipped to the museum in time for its opening.
* Authentic and unusual Model A Trucks. From an original United State Postal delivery truck to a unique dual powered-axle truck that was used in building the Hoover Dam and a tow truck that could be ordered with stylish sides and chrome side rails.
* Original 1920s and 30s clothing. These period garments range from styles worn by school children, housewives, and workers, to a prized wedding dress.
* Complete parts and service department. More like a time capsule, this display sports many brand new parts remaining in their original packaging or unopened crates from 80 years ago. The gas pumps located in front of the dealership still boasts only 18.5 cents a gallon!
“The Model A is a consistent favorite among car collectors and is also one of the most recognized autos of all time,” states Jay Follis of the Gilmore Car Museum. “For many it represents the antique car hobby itself.”
The new Model A Museum Grand Opening will take place Saturday, May 18, 2013 from 9am – 6pm, at the Gilmore Car Museum in Hickory Corners, MI.
A ribbon cutting ceremony takes place at 11am, with special guests and keynote speakers. Visitors can also enjoy historic lectures, presentations and tours and live music throughout the day.
This special event is open to the public with admission to the Gilmore Car Museum and campus only $5 each—less than half normal price. Those arriving in a Model A Ford will be given special parking near the Model A Museum and free admission to the entire Gilmore Car Museum campus. To learn more about the Model A Ford Foundation, Inc. and its new museum please visit www.MAFFI.org.
The Gilmore Car Museum - America’s Signature Collection is situated on a 90-acre historic campus near Kalamazoo, MI, midway between Detroit and Chicago. For more information, please visit www.GilmoreCarMuseum.org or call (269) 671-5089.
Friday, April 26, 2013
In recognition of the growing trend of craft beer consumption by women, Saugatuck Brewing Company is hosting an afternoon “Celebration of Women and Craft Beer” on Sunday, May 5 from 2-5pm in its Singapore Room. The event is free and open to the public.
Annette May – the first female Certified Cicerone in the United States and beer manager at Merchant’s Fine Wine in Dearborn will share the story of her life journey, the Cicerone program, trends in the industry and will also offer a session on beer styles, with samples.
A Cicerone is a term used to classify a guide who is well versed in the styles, history, flavors and complexities of the craft beer world – with various levels offered (Certified Cicerone, Master Cicerone) and is comparable to a sommelier in the wine industry.
Amy Sherman – chef and host of “The Great American Brew Trail” – which premiered in 2012 on WOTV4 in West Michigan – will host a beer and cheese pairing around 3:15pm. Some 40 guests will have the opportunity to participate in this experience (a minimal fee will be charged).
Other featured guests include:
• Liz “ET” Crowe – Owner of Wolverine State Brewing Company and award-winning romance novelist.
• Laura Houser – Brewer at Founders Brewing Company in Grand Rapids, Beer City USA.
• Kati Spayde – Certified Cicerone, award-winning homebrewer and blogger/staffer at Siciliano’s Market in Grand Rapids.
• Dianna Stampfler – President of Promote Michigan and publicist for the Michigan Brewers Guild.
In addition to the featured guests, displays will focus on classic beer styles – including history and tastings; discussions on pairing beer with food; information on cooking with “beergredients”; discussions about career opportunities in the craft beer industry; information on becoming a Certified Cicerone; tips on how to survive a craft beer festival; insight into Michigan: The Great Beer State, beer tourism, ties to Michigan agriculture and more.
A drawing will also be held at the end of the day, for a variety of Michigan beer related items – including two (2) tickets to the popular Summer Beer Festival coming up in July in Ypsilanti.
A highlight of the day will be the all-event brewing by Laura Houser of Founders and Jenny Vonins of Saugatuck Brewing of a celebration brew with sales of bottled proceeds donated to Sylvia’s Place, Allegan. Also, commemorative women’s shirts will be available with proceeds to benefit Sylvia’s Place.
According to an article that appeared in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel in late March, beer has passed wine as the beverage of choice for women ages 18 to 34. Julia Herz, craft beer program director for the Brewers Association trade group, said women in their 20s and 30s are in "the sweet spot" for craft beer consumption. They're the same quality-minded people who are buying artisanal cheeses and fair-trade coffees and who don't mind waiting for a bartender to shake a craft cocktail.
Saugatuck Brewing Co. is a microbrewery with a traditional family style pub and upscale banquet room, “The Singapore Room” featuring hand crafted beer, wine, food, and service. Fifteen unique beer styles, all brewed in house, plus wine and hard cider are served daily in the Pub. “SBC” also distributes eleven styles in 6 and 4-packs, plus kegs throughout Michigan and metro Chicago. The brewery also features the only active brew-on-premise facility in Michigan, utilizing five copper kettles and an array of natural ingredients and recipes, for the public to become “Brewmaster for a Day.”
Saugatuck Brewing Company
2948 Blue Star Hwy. – Douglas, MI 49406
Thursday, April 11, 2013
The Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds of Michigan (ARVC Michigan) has hired Scott Everett – Director of Legislative Affairs for the Lansing-based Fraser Consulting, a subsidiary of Fraser Trebilcock Davis & Dunlap PC – one of the state’s longest-established law firms, to serve as its legislative liaison in Lansing.
“ARVC Michigan recognized the need to have the private campground industry represented in Lansing by a full time consultant,” says ARVC Michigan vice president Dave Cordray. “Scott Everett is the perfect fit. His achievements representing the State’s paddlesport industry is a natural complement to ARVC Michigan's membership in the outdoor hospitality industry.”
Since 1883, Fraser Trebilcock has been providing pre-eminent legal and legislative services in more than 70 areas, including businesses, governmental entities and associations. As Michigan's only member of the “State Capital Group,” Fraser Trebilcock is global network of 145 law firms located in capital cities providing legal and legislative services.
Before joining Fraser Consulting in 2012, Everett was the President of Earthscape Resource Management. He also served six years as the Midwest Director of American Farmland Trust, and more than a decade at Michigan Farm Bureau in a variety of capacities including as Legislative Counsel charged with Natural Resources and Education policies.
As a legislative consultant, Everett specializes in land-based businesses and is focused on issues such as personal property tax exemptions, Grand Marais breakwall, non-motorized watercraft inspections, wetlands, small harbors, private land forestry issues, hunting ranches and more.
Everett is currently the Treasurer of Alaiedon Township, Ingham County and resides in Mason with his wife and daughter.
ARVC Michigan represents nearly 160 member campgrounds with more than 25,000 sites available throughout the state. These private campgrounds are promoted in an annual Michigan Campground Directory, available at various locations statewide, including all Welcome Centers. ARVC Michigan’s mission is to lead in the development of the RV Parks and Campground industry through education, communication and representation. ARVC Michigan is a member of the National Association of RV Parks and Campgrounds. (www.gocampingamerica.com).
Monday, April 8, 2013
With a nod to the arrival of spring and the region’s Dutch culture, Harmony Brewing Company proudly announces the release of its latest brew. Grote Pier Double IPA boasts literally double the ingredients of Harmony’s normal IPA, including a massive amount of hops like Northern Brewer and Chinook. Made with a huge grain bill, including rye to add spiciness and complexity, this one of the biggest beers in Harmony’s portfolio with a 9.5% ABV.
The beer is aptly named after the legendary 1400s Frisian (Dutch) warrior, Grote Pier – whose life is shrouded mostly in legend, focused around his enormous size and strength. An historical figure in the genre of Braveheart, Grote Pier became a freedom fighter of legendary standing after his wife and kinfolk were killed and his property was pillaged, plundered, burned and destroyed. His historical status – whether seen as a villain or a hero – has endured over the centuries and embodies a reputation of brute force.
“I loved the idea of naming our biggest, hoppiest beer after this gigantic guy,” says co-owner and brewer Jackson Van Dyke. “We thought that it would be great to have a whole celebration surrounding this beer, while highlighting some unique facets of Dutch culture.”
Dutch Days are scheduled at Harmony, April 25-28, featuring Dutch treats, food and cocktails made with the Dutch Gin, Genever, as well as plenty of Grote Pier.
Harmony Brewing Company opened in 2012 in Grand Rapids’ Eastown neighborhood. Harmony is owned by siblings Heather Van Dyke-Titus, Barry Van Dyke and Jackson Van Dyke (Barry and Jackson are co-brewers). Harmony offers rustic wood fired pizzas, salads, house made soups and some snacks (with an expanded menu coming soon) and was named among the “Top Five West Michigan Brewpub Menus” by Revue magazine.
HARMONY BREWING COMPANY
1551 Lake Drive, Grand Rapids
LIKE Harmony Brewing on Facebook
Reality Models & Talent Agency, a full-service agency catering to models and actors in West Michigan, has joined forces with Lawrence Productions, Inc., a video and audio production company, at their new facility in Kalamazoo.
Kristi Fitts, Founder and Director of Reality Models & Talent, reports the alliance was initiated to help maximize future business potential for both enterprises.
Established in 2006, Reality Models & Talent specializes in print, runway, promotional, voice-over and on-camera talent. Although based in Southwest Michigan, the agency’s market includes Detroit, Chicago, Indiana and Ohio.
Both companies will be located in offices at 6146 West Main Street, Suite A, in Kalamazoo, where Lawrence Productions currently resides following its recent move from Grand Rapids.
The Reality agency’s clients include: Gerber, Kellogg’s, Kroger, Pfizer, Walmart, Kimberly-Clark and many others. They have also cast acting talent for such locally-produced motion pictures as Cherry, I Wish and A Chance of Rain.
Reality Models & Talent will be conducting open calls for new models and actors in coming weeks.
For more information, please contact Kristi Fitts at: 269-547-8525 or email Kristi at: Realitymodels@sbcglobal.net
Grand Traverse Distillery has been recognized as one of the 2013 “Michgian 50 Companies to Watch,” – an awards program sponsored by the Edward Lowe Foundation and presented by Michigan Celebrates Small Business. Awards will be presented on May 2 in Lansing.
Companies making it to the “Michigan 50 Companies to Watch” list are a remarkable group of second-stage companies. Defined as having 6 to 99 full-time-equivalent employees and generating $750,000 to $50 million in annual revenue or working capital from investors or grants, these companies form the backbone of Michigan’s economy.
Representing all regions of the state and a diverse range of industries, companies like Grand Traverse Distillery are known for their exceptional entrepreneurial leadership, creation of innovation or use of innovation in creative ways, and their sustainable competitive advantage.
Winners were selected by michigan-based judges from the banking, economic development, entrepreneurship development, industrial and venture capital communities.
“We’re pleased to be chosen as one of the 50 companies to watch in Michigan,” says Owner/Distiller Kent Rabish. “Distilling world-class vodka, whiskey and gin products – using grains grown in Michigan – is our mission. I’m glad to see the work recognized and customers supporting locally-produced spirits.”
Hand-crafted in small batches, GTD products include True North Vodka, Chocolate Vodka, Cherry Vodka and Wheat Vodka; Ole George 100% Straight Rye Whiskey, Bourbon, a 2nd Straight Rye Whiskey, and a 100% Corn Whiskey; Double Barreled Ole George Whiskey, Cherry Whiskey, and a soon-to-be-released gin.
GTD currently operates four tasting rooms in Michigan – including two in Traverse City (the original location on Industrial Circle and in The Village at Grand Traverse Commons), River Place Shops in downtown Frankenmuth, and in Leland on the Leelanau Peninsula, not far from historic Fishtown. A new tasting room is schedule to open during the summer of 2013 in Novi.
Spirits can also be found in over 900 retail outlets and 400 restaurants/bars in Michigan and is distributed in Michigan by Great Lakes Wine & Spirits.
Last week, GTD’s Ole George Rye Whiskey was awarded “Best of Category – Gold Medal” in the Aged Rye Whiskey category at the American Distilling Institute (ADI) 7th Annual Judging of Artisan American Spirits. Other recognitions for GTD’s brands include multiple “Gold Medal” honors in the International Review of Spirits (2007 and 2009) and a “Gold Medal” in the San Francisco World Spirits Competition (2008). In the 2009 and 2010, Wine Enthusiast Magazine selected True North Vodka as one of the six best vodkas in the world.
For more information about Grand Traverse Distiller, log onto www.grandtraversedistillery.com or find them on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Grand-Traverse-Distillery/208013680224
Michigan 50 Companies to Watch is presented by Michigan Celebrates Small Business. Founding underwriters are the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, PNC Bank, Michigan Certified Development Corporation, Accident Fund Insurance Company of America and Dynamic Edge. Contributing underwriters are DTE Energy Foundation, Comcast Business class, Michigan Credit Union League & Affiliates, Rehmann, Varnum Attorneys at Law, Consumers Energy, Comcast Spotlight and AARP. Information about next year’s Michgian 50 Companies to Watch program can be found at www.Michigan.CompaneisToWatch.org. For more information about Michigan Celebrates Small Business, visit www.MichiganCelebrates.biz.
Wednesday, April 3, 2013
It’s been a exciting week for Detroit-based Valentine Distilling Co., with the announcement of results of the American Distilling Institute (ADI) 7th Annual Judging of Artisan American Spirits and the Beverage Testing Institute (BTI) International Review of Spirits Competition – the largest and most prestigious annual spirits competition in the United States.
Liberator Gin not only won “Best of Category – Gold Medal” for the Contemporary Rectified Gin at the ADI competition, but also received the prestigious “Best of Class” award. A total of 66 American gins were entered and judged by a panel of four judges, in a blind tasting based on nose, palate, finish and balance. Best of categories were awarded to the medal-worthy spirits that scored numerically better than other spirits in the same category.
At the BTI competition, Liberator Gin was awarded a Gold Medal (90 point rating). According to the organization’s website, Tastings.com, this product is: “Clear. Attractive aromas of peppery cinnamon, honey cardamom pastry, dried citrus, and candied juniper with a silky, dry-yet-fruity medium-to-full body and a zesty melange of citrus, herbal roots, anise, pink peppercorn, cinnamon bark, and chalk notes on the long finish. A well balanced and spice forward gin for all applications.”
“Our goal from the beginning, has been to bring manufacturing back not only to this country, but to Detroit,” says Rifino Valentine, master-distiller and owner of Valentine Distilling Co., in Ferndale. “We’ve always set our sights on crafting spirits that compete on the international level. To win these competitions, topping some of the biggest and best companies in the world, is not only personally satisfying, but also serves the economic purpose of bringing manufacturing back. Our philosophy has always been ‘don’t drink Valentine spirits just because they are local – drink them because they are better.’”
Ten of the world’s finest botanicals were hand-selected to craft this American-made spirit (42% ABV), the latest release in Valentine Distilling’s award-winning portfolio.
“In limited batches, we delicately impart the flavors through our award-winning process,” Rifino says. “The bold flavors are macerated for several days before alembic distillation, while the delicate profiles are infused using a specially designed botanical vessel designed especially for Valentine Distilling Co. by Christian Carl Stills of Germany.”
The result is a well-balanced, multi-layered flavor – beginning with soft juniper, carried through with cardamom and coriander, and finishing with a light cinnamon flavor.
Liberator Gin is named in honor of the B-24 Liberator Bomber. Early in World War II, Ford Motor Company built the Willow Run plant near Detroit to produce the B-24 Liberator – cementing Detroit’s nickname as the “arsenal of democracy.” Carefully hand-crafted, this delightfully-unique gin salutes Rosie the Riveter and all the American workers who helped secure victory.
First introduced to the marketplace in March 2009, award-winning triple-grain Valentine Vodka was Detroit’s first micro-distilled spirit since Prohibition. In 2012, Valentine released the delicate and fragrant White Blossom – infused with the flowers of Elderflower. Soon after its release, White Blossom won a Gold Medal – rated Exceptional – receiving a 92 point rating from the BTI.
Last year, the original Valentine Vodka was recognized by Anthony Dias Blue, editor-in-chief of The Tasting Panel magazine as one of the top vodkas in the world with a 94-point ranking – placing higher than noted international brands like Belvedere, Ketel One, Grey Goose and Absolut. It was awarded a Gold Medal at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition in 2012. In 2011, it received a Double Gold Medal in the “Best Domestic Vodka” category by TheFiftyBest.com. The BTI also awarded Valentine Vodka with a Gold Medal “Exceptional” in both 2010 and 2011.
Valentine Distilling Co., products can now be found in more than 2000 outlets throughout Michigan, Illinois and Tennessee.
VALENTINE DISTILLING CO.
161 Vester Street – Ferndale, Michigan
West Michigan’s award-winning Reserve Wine & Food introduced weekday lunch service, beginning April 1. Lunch hours are 11:30am-4:00pm, Monday through Friday – with Happy Hour beverage and charcuterie offerings from 4-6pm and dinner service beginning at 5pm. Saturday hours remain 4pm-Midnight; the restaurant is closed on Sunday.
Executive Chef Mathew Green is pleased to present a new fresh menu which includes a selection of sandwiches, lunch plates, soups, salads, sides and snacks including a fried perch sandwich, lamb Reuben, French omelet, oxtail tart and chicken Keiser salad with Great Lakes salt-cured smelt dressing. Dinner menu favorites – like pierogis, pork fat fries, heirloom lettuce salad and potato soup – are also available. The lunch menu will change regularly, reflecting the seasonal offerings from the woods, waters and farms of West Michigan and beyond.
“People have been asking us for years to open for lunch so we are very excited to make those people happy,” says Chef Green. “We took our time developing the menu and translating what we do at dinner into a lunch menu. It's a great showcase for our housemade charcuterie, we are featuring our own bacon, sausage, mortadella, ham, and corned lamb brisket. We are having a lot of fun with the menu and I think that is evident in the dining room.”
In 2012, Grand Rapids Magazine recognized Reserve for the “Best Restaurant Wine List” and “Best New American Restaurant” in its annual reader’s poll. In 2011, the restaurant was named a winner of OpenTable’s Diner’s Choice Awards for Top Wine Lists in the United States – one of only two restaurants in Michigan to make the list.
Located in the heart of downtown Grand Rapids at 201 Monroe Avenue NW, Reserve Wine & Food offers a world-class menu fully embracing the West Michigan farm-to-table philosophy in an elegant yet casual fine dining setting.
Monday, April 1, 2013
Saugatuck Brewing Company is proud to announce they have collaborated with growers Michigan Malts and Empire Hop Farm in producing their summer seasonal release, “Michigan Wheat Ale.” Launching April 1st, the approved “Pure Michigan” style will contain 100% Michigan grown wheat, barley and hops. Michigan Wheat Ale will be a limited release, available on tap and in bottles (in the SBC Variety 12-pack) throughout Michigan and greater Chicago. A very limited quantity of 6-packs will be available for sale at the brewery only.
SBC will host a launch party, open to the public on Friday, April 5th from 5-7 PM. Representatives of both Michigan Malts and Empire Hops Farm will be on hand to help celebrate the occasion. Michigan Wheat Ale will be on tap for and also available in 6-packs for the event.
Saugatuck Brewing Company is a microbrewery with a family friendly pub/restaurant, complete with outdoor seating and an upscale banquet room (“The Singapore Room”). Fifteen unique beer styles, all brewed in house, plus wine and hard cider are served daily in the Pub. “SBC” also distributes ten styles in 6 and 4-packs, plus kegs throughout Michigan and metro Chicago. The brewery features one of the only active brew-on-premise facilities in Michigan, utilizing five copper kettles and an array of natural ingredients and recipes, for the public to become “Brewmaster for a Day.”
Saugatuck Brewing Company
2948 Blue Star Hwy.
Douglas, MI 49406