Johnny Rokos with Big Mo and Grant Blackmer | Rokos Photo
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Here’s a roundup of news and photos around the Old Mission Peninsula. Got news? Send it to me – email [email protected] or text (231) 590-4715.

Peninsula Market is Hiring. They’re looking for cashiers/stockers, pizza cooks, prep cooks and a little of everything. Short shifts and long shifts are available, with lots of flexibility. High school age and up (cashiers must be at least 18), but also a great option for retirees who just want a few hours in the afternoon or evening.

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Stop by the store (14111 Center Road), fill out a quick application, and line up a time to talk with a manager (you’ll likely be able to do that when you’re there). For more info, call the store, (231) 223-9500. And have you noticed their snazzy new paint this summer?

OMP News - Peninsula Market, Summer 2023
Peninsula Market, Summer 2023

Art Fair Seeking Artists. The “Friends of Peninsula Community Library” Annual Art Sale is coming right up on Saturday, Sept. 23, 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. There are still some spaces available for artists, so if you’re interested, contact Becky Dykstra for more info and an application – [email protected].

Buy a Brick. When the new Peninsula Community Library was built, they included a cool feature where people could buy bricks in memory of loved ones. The bricks were then placed around the Children’s Garden out back. There are only a few times a year (maybe even once a year) when they’re available to buy, so if you’re interested, now is your chance!

Michele Westcott, Bricks Project Chair, says they’re currently ordering bricks for 2023, but the deadline is fast approaching on Wednesday, August 23, at 2 p.m. Orders must be at the library with payment no later than this time. For more info, call the library, (231) 223-7700, or just stop by the library and fill out a form.

Girl with a book overlooks memorial bricks at the Mack and Lorraine Beers Children's Garden at Peninsula Community Library on the Old Mission Peninsula | Jane Boursaw Photo
Girl with a book overlooks memorial bricks at the Mack and Lorraine Beers Children’s Garden at Peninsula Community Library on the Old Mission Peninsula | Jane Boursaw Photo

Giant Moth Spotted. Jeff Kane (who lives with his family on the old Herkner farm on Carpenter Hill – check out their website here) recently spotted this giant moth. He said it’s nearly six inches long (!) and is likely a Carolina Sphinx Moth. What a gorgeous moth – like something out of a Gene Stratton-Porter novel (which, by the way, her historic home in Indiana is on my must-visit list).

Carolina Sphinx Moth spotted on OMP | Jeff Kane Photo
Carolina Sphinx Moth spotted on OMP | Jeff Kane Photo

Kathy Hardy Bench Installed. If you’ve hiked the trail at Old Mission Point Park lately, you may have noticed a new bench honoring Kathy Hardy, my friend who died tragically in a bicycle accident last fall. Last week, a few of us gathered there with her family to see the bench and honor Kathy with a small ceremony.

I miss her dearly, but will be grateful to “spend time with her” on one of the trails she loved so much. If you park at the Murray Road Trailhead, take the left trail through the woods, then take the first right and the bench is down along the ridge about a quarter-mile. Rest in peace, my friend.

Memorial Bench honoring Kathy Hardy installed at Old Mission Point Park | Jane Boursaw Photo
Memorial Bench honoring Kathy Hardy installed at Old Mission Point Park | Jane Boursaw Photo

Updates on Johnny Rokos and Conor Rigan. We’ve been following the journeys of Johnny Rokos (beloved bartender at Peninsula Grill who suffered a stroke earlier in the year) and Conor Rigan (young OMPer with a brain tumor) this year. We have good news on both!

Johnny’s daughter, Jennifer, took him for a ride to Peninsula Grill, where he had a great time chatting with everyone and seeing his cat, Big Mo (now in Ardy’s care). Jennifer said she’ll try to let people know when they’ll be out and about, so people can stop by the Grill and see Roke.

Johnny Rokos with Big Mo and Grant Blackmer | Rokos Photo
Johnny Rokos with Big Mo and Grant Blackmer | Rokos Photo

As for Rigan, his mom, Sarah, reports that his most recent scans were clear with no evidence of disease! “There are no nodules, lesions or anything that suggests his cancer has returned or is currently growing. There are a couple linear spots of enhancement that light up, but [his doctor] was confident it was still post operative surgical scarring/blood product, as they were present during his intraoperative scan back in May during his surgery.” Read the rest of Sarah’s report over at their Caring Bridge page.

Meeting on Charter Townships. The Peninsula Township Board is hosting a special informational meeting on Sept. 7, 7 p.m., at St. Joseph Catholic Church to discuss the idea of the township switching from a “general township” to a “charter township.” Township attorneys from Fahey Schultz Burzych Rhodes will be present to discuss the pros and cons, and all residents are encouraged to attend.

If you can’t make it to the meeting, it will be available for viewing on the Township’s YouTube channel. Click here for info on charter townships from the Michigan Townships Association, and read OMP resident Curt Peterson’s opinion piece on the matter here.

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

Bay View Insurance of Traverse City Michigan

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