Here’s a roundup of recent news and photos around the Old Mission Peninsula…
Potluck at the Legion. The Old Mission Peninsula Historical Society is holding its annual potluck at the Old Mission Legion Hall in the village of Old Mission (4001 Swaney Road) on Thursday, June 1, 5:30 p.m. You don’t have to be a member to attend, and it’s a great way to learn more about the group. Attendees should bring a dish to pass and a hearty appetite.
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Bayshore Marathon. The Bayshore Marathon is this Saturday, May 27, on Old Mission Peninsula roads. Expect a lot of traffic near the NMC campus starting in the early morning hours that day, along with road closures on the Peninsula. Center Road will be closed from McKinley Road to Island View Road, along with Bluff Road and the entire race course, starting around 6 a.m. Here is this year’s map…
Pyatt Lake News. Have you walked the Pyatt Lake Nature Preserve lately? Now you can access it from Peninsula Drive. The Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy has been making improvements there for several years, including improved trails, boardwalks, and a brand new trailhead off Peninsula Drive.
Located just south of AcenTek Phone Company (14909 Peninsula Drive), the addition was once owned by Peninsula Telephone Company owners Jack and Vi Solomonson, who previously donated an eight-acre parcel with critical wetlands. This addition allows visitors to explore the northern section of the preserve.
Trash at Haserot Beach. A reader emailed this note to me, with the hope that folks will pay more attention about the possible consequences of leaving a half-full bottle of alcohol on the beach:
Perhaps you could publish something about the disturbing sight I found at Haserot Beach on Sunday afternoon. There was a half empty large bottle of whiskey sitting on a bench with no one else at the park. My husband and I were there with our toddler grandchild. I hate to think what could have happened if unsupervised children or teens had found it. I emptied it and threw the bottle in the recycle bin.
Bluff Road Barriers. The Grand Traverse County Road Commission has installed new barriers on the closed portion of Bluff Road. As mentioned previously, this part of the road has been decertified, which allows the Road Commission to create a better throughway for pedestrians, bikers and non-motorized vehicles. At a recent meeting with the Township Board, they said they will continue to seek grant money to fix this portion of the road.
New Firefighters on the OMP. From the Fire Department’s Facebook page: “The Peninsula Township Fire Department is proud to congratulate Laura Martin, Tyler Strouf, Logan Shannaquet and Luke Miller (not picture) for graduating fire school. These members spent the last six months learning how to be firefighters. The department is so proud of their dedication and hard work. Great job.” The new crew is pictured with Fire Chief Fred Gilstorff.
Update on Conor Rigan. We’ve been following the journey of Patrick and Sarah Rigan’s little boy who has been undergoing treatment for a brain tumor. Recently, scans revealed a cancerous mass that had grown exponentially in just a couple of months. Options included a risky surgery at U of M Hospital, a different chemotherapy regimen or hospice care at home. Sarah writes that Patrick has been an absolute warrior in advocating for Conor’s care – researching, calling and emailing to find the best course of action. To that end, they are headed to Boston Children’s Hospital, where Conor will undergo surgery to remove the tumor. Read Sarah’s full report here., and donate to their fundraiser here. Prayers and good thoughts for this family are much appreciated.
Update on Johnny Rokos. Everyone’s favorite bartender at Peninsula Grill continues to progress along, after suffering a stroke earlier this year. There’s a Facebook page here where you’re welcome to send good wishes and read updates. His daughter, Jennifer, posted this week that he’s continuing to progress with therapy. “He can shuffle himself around in his wheelchair, but unfortunately, keeps trying to get up and walk,” she writes. “We will have a lot of falls until his leg strength is back.”
She adds, “Although we are progressing along with motor skills, etc., the speech and understanding are a little slower to progress. But there is still a lot of healing the brain needs to do.” He also recently celebrated a birthday – 73, I believe. His old pal Tim would have been 71 this year, and I know Johnny was a couple years older. Help support Johnny’s health journey here.
Tulips on Center Road. Did you catch the tulips near Old Mission Tavern this year? I drove by yesterday, and they’re starting to wane, but they sure were magnificent. Many thanks to Bern and Cheryl Kroupa for bringing these beauties to the Old Mission Peninsula each year.
Quilters at St. Joe’s. There’s a quilting group at St. Joseph Catholic Church, and I just happened to be there one day when they were quilting. So, of course, I took a picture! From the St. Joe’s website, the group’s mission is “to promote an interest in and appreciation of the art of quilt making, sharing of quilting information and education, and charitable works with and for members of the community at large.” More info here.
Are Your Kids at Old Mission Peninsula School? It’s not too late to enroll your kids at OMPS for the 2023/24 school year. And this year, they’re introducing Junior Kindergarten. They still have a few remaining seats left in grades K through 5. Click over to the school website for more info.
GTACS Robotics Team Update. As mentioned here, the robotics teams at Grand Traverse Area Catholic Schools – including some students from the OMP – went to the World Competition in Dallas, Texas. Team leader Carol Johnson said the teams did amazing. The details…
- 560A Robo Saints: Kole Baker, Patrick Belden, and Joey Dunphey in Opportunity Division; ranked 27th place out of 77 teams with average points of 194.38.
- 560B Quadrinity: Joey and Jesse Smith, Ethan Strait and Gavin McClellen in the Math Divison; ranked 67th out of 78 teams with average points of 147.12. This team also received a Judges Award and came home with a trophy.
- 560D Faith Builders: Gavin Tue and Lillian Gibson in Technology Division; ranked 70th out of 78 teams with average points of 133.38.
Old Mission Women’s Club Grant Recipients. Each year, the Old Mission Women’s Club awards monetary grants to charitable groups chosen by the membership. This year, the grant recipients were Child & Family Services, The Laundry Project, Addiction Treatment Services and the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). Here’s a photo of the recipients, with OMWC Appropriations Chair Lisa Trombley and OMWC President Nancy Davy…
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 the Gazette is mainly reader-supported, I hope you'll consider tossing a few bucks my 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. Check out the donation page here. Thank you so much for your support. -jb