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Outdoor Recreation

Visiting Blandford Nature Center

  • by Kiran Patel photo by Alina Albin for Experience GR.
  • GR text Must
  • 3 min story

On a recent Saturday morning, my family of four embarked on an adventure to Blandford Nature Center…

Ben Darcie

Ben Darcie is a 10-year beer writer, 8-year member of the Michigan Beer Industry & a 15-year homebrewer. Living in Grand Rapids, Michigan, he spends most of his time promoting and connecting the public to Grand Rapids Breweries, Cideries, and Distilleries.

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Ashley Wierenga

Ashley is a local marketing consultant and lifestyle blogger. When she isn't writing, you can find her spending time with her husband and sweet pup, snapping photos, cheering on her favorite sports teams, jamming to Hamilton, and soaking up everything this beautiful city has to offer. Connect with her on Instagram: @ashleywierenga

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Rick Jensen

Rick Jensen is a Grand Rapids native who has enjoyed growing up in the region and watching the city grow and evolve.  He currently works in healthcare communications and has also spent time working in higher education and arts and culture.  He and his partner Eric live in the Midtown neighborhood with their two cats and enjoy the downtown city scene including all things food, drinks, and arts and culture.  He is a regular contributor to Spectrum Health's Health Beat.

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Kirsetin Morello

Kirsetin Morello is a writer, author, and blogger who’s called Grand Rapids home for 20+ years. She writes for a variety of websites, companies, and magazines, including Parents and West Michigan Woman. When she’s not writing, she and her husband love to explore everything West Michigan has to offer. Kirsetin is enthusiastic about spending time with her kids, yoga, coaching basketball, weight training, craft beer, going to the beach, and travel. You can find her online at KirsetinMorello.com.

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Matthew Makowski

Matthew Makowski is a professional storyteller, positivity promoter, and local tourist who loves sharing the awesomeness of Grand Rapids for Experience Grand Rapids. Away from his work, Matthew enjoys burying his nose in a good comic book, cosplaying for charity as Captain America with The League of Enchantment, and exploring West Michigan with his wife, son, and far-out corgi, The Dude.

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Nadira Kharmai

Nadira Kharmai loves to explore the outdoors and check out new restaurants with her wife. On the weekends, you can find her hiking the trails with her dog Ozzi, visiting the beach, enjoying an Instagram-worthy brunch, or cruising country roads on her motorcycle (when it’s not snowing!). Keep up with her on Instagram: @nadirakharmai

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Brian Craig

Brian Craig recently moved to Michigan with his wife and three kids. He photographs and writes stories about parenting, food, history’s oddities, and happenings around Grand Rapids. A former teacher, Brian also tutors students with dyslexia, for the non-profit SLD Read.

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Amy Busse

Amy is a married mother of two fantastic girls who doesn’t understand why everyone doesn’t live on Michigan’s West Coast. With so many great things to do in the area, she will begrudgingly admit what her friends have known for years – it is hard getting her to leave. However, she will invite you to visit anytime to explore the great outdoors, festivals, fun fitness activities, and of course the breweries.

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Gun Lake Casino

photo by Corey Klien Photography for Gun Lake Casino