New rider David Ludeke hits the trails on his mountain bike at Luton Park in Rockford.

Mountain biking sees popularity climb during pandemic

MOUNTAIN BIKING: West Michigan mountain biking groups are seeing interest from new riders skyrocket, leading to shortages of bikes. More trails have opened as well. We talk to a new Rockford Rider, the coach of the West Michigan Coyotes youth biking team in Grand Rapids and the Ada-based West Michigan Mountain Biking Alliance, an Ada- said By Lindsay McCoy. FOR KUDINGTON, MANISTEE, HOLLAND, OCEANA, GRAND RAPIDS BUSINESS, GREENVILLE AND ALL POINTS.

Scrap Sparty stands at the entrance of the MSU Surplus Store & Recycling Center.

Michigan State is taking steps to make sporting events more sustainable

It’s one of the most common chants from fans at Michigan State University sporting events: Go green.

But Michigan State University may be behind in the race to make its athletics department environmentally sustainable. Big Ten rivals Ohio State University and University of Michigan have established zero waste plans for their large sporting events and tailgates — diverting 90% of waste from landfills by recycling, repurposing and composting — while the Spartans lack an athletics-wide sustainability action plan.

David Ludeke ride his mountain bike on a trail at Luton Park in Rockford.

Mountain biking sees popularity increase during pandemic

David Ludeke and his wife had bought a Peloton early in the pandemic as a way to stay active. After almost a year of riding the stationary bike, this spring he decided it was time to take his spinning out of the house.

“I figured I’d take the skills from the bike to nowhere, and go outside and get on a mountain bike,” said Ludeke, who is from Rockford, Michigan. “I ran into the issue of there’s no bikes anywhere. I even dabbled with the idea of getting a mountain bike last year but bikes were super backordered then as well.”

Demand for bikes has skyrocketed. Nationwide sales of mountain bikes were up more than 150% in April 2020 compared to that time in 2019, according to market research company NDP Group. Bike shops in West Michigan are experiencing that same influx, leaving customers facing higher prices and long wait times to get a new bike.

COVID-19 Death Rates by Race and Ethnicity in the United States.

Tribe avoids COVID-19 losses hitting some Native American communities

TRIBES & COVID: COVID-19 is killing one in every 390 Native Americans, the highest mortality rate among U.S. minority groups, but tribal leaders say Southwest Michigan’s Nottawaseppi Huron Band of the Potawatomi so far has avoided problems at that large a scale.We interview the CEO, health and human services director and an elder of the tribe based at the Pine Creek Indian Reservation in Fultoin.By Lindsay McCoy. FOR STURGIS, THREE RIVERS, HOLLAND, BAY MILLS AND ALL POINTS.