Chateau Chantal adds dragon to staff | Chateau Chantal Photo
Chateau Chantal adds dragon to staff | Chateau Chantal Photo
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Here’s a roundup of recent news and photos around the Old Mission Peninsula…

Old Mission Tavern Update. They are opening back up for the summer season soon, but are looking for staff and hiring for the following positions:

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  • Hosting: $15 hourly plus tips
  • Wait staff: $10 hourly plus tips
  • Line Chef/Line Cook: $20-25 hourly
  • Dishwasher: $15 hourly and up

Call (231) 223-7280 or visit their website here. The family-owned Tavern has been around for 43 years. Here’s a picture of my mom, Mary Johnson (right) and lifelong friend Reva Greilick at the Tavern in 2015.

OMP News - Reva Greilick and Mary Johnson at the Old Mission Tavern | Jane Boursaw Photo
Reva Greilick and Mary Johnson at the Old Mission Tavern | Jane Boursaw Photo

Seven Hills Update: The team that’s building the new Seven Hills development now has Facebook and Instagram accounts. They also have a website — which still needs to be built at this writing — but follow along at those accounts for updates.

On their Instagram account, they’ve included links to Old Mission Distilling, Mission Proper and Tinker Studio (the art studio that’s been there a while, now located in the back). The Mission Proper account reads: “cafe + mercantile, proper goods for casual folk, coffee • tea • eats • shop • gather.”

The address is 13795 Seven Hills Road – or for people who’ve been around forever, where Arnold White’s place used to be located. I’ve included a photo below of what the site looks like today.

Also, at their April 11 meeting (7 p.m. at the Township Hall), the Township Board will hold a public hearing for an amendment to the developer’s special use permit. They are looking to expand the capacity of the whiskey and coffee bar from 32 to 70. This would include outdoor seating and the use of outdoor spaces for gathering, games and other activities. Outdoor uses may also include amplified sound.

View the application and more details in the meeting packet here.

Seven Hills Development on the Old Mission Peninsula, April 2023 | Jane Boursaw Photo
Seven Hills Development on the Old Mission Peninsula, April 2023 | Jane Boursaw Photo

Update on Conor Rigan. We’ve been following along with Conor Rigan, Patrick and Sarah Rigan’s little boy who is undergoing treatment for a brain tumor at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. Patrick and Sarah are part of the family who owns Rigan Estate Vineyards on the Old Mission Peninsula.

On April 3, Sarah posted that they had an appointment to begin the third cycle of his clinical trial, but things didn’t go as planned. After his blood draw, the doctor came in, and they knew it wasn’t good news.

“All of his blood work looked great except for one test, alkaline phosphatase,” writes Sarah. “This is an enzyme that may be an indicator of bone disorders or liver problems. Likely neither are true for Conor. Elevations in this enzyme are also common in children going through growth spurts. It is also a very rare side effect of the Indoximod drug Conor is taking (not yet seen in any patients thus far).

“While it does not appear to cause any side effects or be particularly harmful to Conor, his numbers were so high that they went well out of the threshold for this trial. When you sign up for a clinical trial, there are many rules, regulations and specifications. They have to follow them closely in order to collect consistent data. This is understandable, but it doesn’t make it any easier to hear that he is not currently eligible to receive this much needed drug. So we left the hospital empty handed. Even Conor was sad that he didn’t get a new refill of his ‘booster pills.'”

Keep this family in your prayers as they wait for those enzyme levels to come down so he can continue this important treatment. Read Sarah’s Caring Bridge journal here.

GTACS Robotics Team Needs Our Help. Last year, I posted about my sister-in-law, Carol Johnson (my brother Ward’s wife), and her robotics team and how they were raising funds to compete at the World Championship in Dallas, Texas. They are headed to Worlds once again this year and need our help! How you can help:

  • Donate directly through the Grand Traverse Area Catholic Schools (GTACS) website here (donations are tax-deductible).
  • Buy a coffee at Biggby. The GTACS’ and Benzie robotics teams are doing a joint fundraiser in partnership with Biggby Coffee in Traverse City. Download the coupon here and show it at any of the four Biggby locations in Traverse City, and they will donate $1 for each purchase. The coupon expires April 30, and you must purchase a full-sized beverage.
  • Be a corporate sponsor. Download the form here.

The Biggby locations are 1535 S. Division; 748 Munson Ave., Suite 3; 1100 W. South Airport Road; and 4041 U.S. Highway 31 South. Check out the team below…

GTACS Robotics Team 2023 | Carol Johnson Photo
GTACS Robotics Team 2023 | Carol Johnson Photo

OMP winery adds dragon staff. Chateau Chantal posted on April 1 that they’ve added a new staff member to the team. “We’re excited to announce that we’ve taken the next step in our sustainability journey by bringing in a dragon to help limit the starling population in our vineyards!” they wrote on their Facebook page.

“The dragon, named Shimmer, is a non-venomous species that is native to the region. She is gentle and loves to chase off starlings, which are a major pest in our vineyards. We’re confident that Shimmer will be a valuable addition to our team and will help us to produce even more delicious wines in the years to come!”

I can’t wait to meet her, Chantal crew! Maybe she will be friends with the two whales spotted in Old Mission Harbor – also on APRIL 1ST.

Chateau Chantal adds dragon to staff | Chateau Chantal Photo
Chateau Chantal adds dragon to staff | Chateau Chantal Photo

Bardon’s is open. I repeat, Bardon’s Wonder Freeze is open! This is not a drill! We all know what that means. We made it through another winter. And for me, this winter seemed exceptionally long. Photographic evidence when I drove by the other day…

Bardon's Traverse City | Jane Boursaw Photo
Bardon’s Traverse City | Jane Boursaw Photo

Also Read…

A NOTE FROM JANE: I started Old Mission Gazette in 2015 because I felt a calling to provide the Old Mission Peninsula community with local news. After decades of writing for newspapers and magazines like the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, Family Circle and Ladies' Home Journal, I really just wanted to write about my own community where I grew up on a cherry farm and raised my own family. So I started my own newspaper.

Because Old Mission Gazette is a "Reader Supported Newspaper" -- meaning it exists because of your financial support -- I hope you'll consider tossing a few bucks our way if I mention your event, your business, your organization or your news item, or if you simply love reading about what's happening on the OMP. In a time when local news is becoming a thing of the past, supporting an independent community newspaper is more important now than ever.

To keep the Gazette going, click here to make a donation. Thank you so much for your support. -jb

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