Playa Bowls opens in East Lansing

The long line leading outside of the new Playa Bowl on Grand River shows that East Lansing is preparing for summer vacation with a smoothie and an acai bowl.  The Playa Bowls franchise opened its newest location in East Lansing on June 18. Its grand opening for the new attraction on Grand River was a huge success, with large groups of students and East Lansing locals lining the sidewalks in hopes to cool down from the heat with their favorite blends of fruit and juices. 

Playa Bowls employee Brooke Soper said it has been staying busy since opening day. “We usually get quite a bit of people, I’d say between noon and 2 is probably our busiest time but it’s a pretty constant flow,” said Soper. Playa Bowl started as a small business in Belmar, New Jersey, but now has over 140 stores that have opened in the past seven years.

Art in the Park returns to Canton

PLYMOUTH-CANTON, Mich.– The annual Art in The Park festival downtown in the Plymouth-Canton district was held this weekend on July 9. This event brings local artists, friends and family together every summer to enjoy art pieces, crafts, music and food. Artists from all over set up booths to share their talent with everyone in the Plymouth-Canton community. 

Rhonda Manning, the owner of Blossom and Gauge, a jewelry business from North Carolina, said she is a big fan of Art in The Park and has been coming to share her craft for years. 

“Everyone is so sweet and nice… it leaves a warm spot in my heart,” said Manning. Lindsay Hill, a saleswoman for True Honey Teas, said her and her colleagues come from Virginia every year to set up their booth and share their product. 

“This is actually one of our best shows of the year, we’re from Virginia, we heard about this show from another friend and it’s one of our best shows we do all year so it’s worth the trip,” Hill said. “We have been here three years.”

Karen Kennedy, who set up her booth at the festival, is an artist who specializes in “painting, penmanship, colors and drawing.” She said art is her whole life and she is happy to share it with people around her, 

“I’ve done this for 24 years at shows…it was never about money,” said Kennedy 

Art in The Park takes place every summer in the downtown Plymouth-Canton area.

Turn Up Dance mixes workout moves

Canton, Mich.– Tanci Maree held her first dance fitness class at LifeTime Fitness on July 5 after a long recovery from an injury. Over 3o people showed up to join her class and see her teach after multiple months of being out, some participants even shouted that they took a “long drive” to participate.  Maree created Turn Up Dance Fitness and designed this new dance class that involves a mixture of workout moves similar to Zumba along with modern hip-hop dance moves to make working out fun for everybody. However, this was more than just a workout session to Maree. 

“I was a college basketball player and without that I didn’t really know who I was anymore, like I graduated and was like this is adult life, who am I supposed to be? I remember stepping into a dance fitness class and just feeling like my soul lit up again and it helped me reconnect with myself and who I wanted to be,” said Maree.

Peanut Barrel changes ownership

In a Facebook post June 25, the Peanut Barrel of East Lansing announced that after 42 years of business the owner Joe Bell is retiring. The Peanut Barrel first opened in 1973 as Jacks or Better and was owned by a couple from Oregon, Carol and Gordon Smith. One year later, the name was changed to the Peanut Barrel. The restaurant was sold to Jennifer and Joe Bell in 1980. It has been a favorite to many in East Lansing ever since. 

On the Facebook announcement, over 40 locals expressed their gratitude to the business and its owners.