Over the last year or so, Ricarlo Williams - Winston has kind of become part of the family here at the Muskegon Channel!  He was our very first comic guest on Muskegon Tonight Live, he helped arrange countless big name comedians to make an appearance with us while he was with the Back Alley Comedy Club in Sherman Lanes and he's also become a great friend and trusted partner.  Ricarlo is a very hard working and dedicated comic, husband, dad and event organizer and not so long ago, he decided it was time to up his game and venture out on his own to start his own career as not only a touring comedian, but a promoter for other comics and promoter of shows, large and small, to help bring a little more laughter to his hometown of Muskegon! mike geeter fg comedyClick Here to Follow Fresh Ghost Comedy on Facebook

The new venture is called Fresh Ghost Comedy.  You'll find the shows popping up at different venues in town.  Right now there are scheduled shows at Racquet's and our main spot for Muskegon Tonight Live at Smash Wine Bar and Bistro!  Fresh Ghost Comedy can also handle bookings for private functions like parties, fundraisers and more.  Ricarlo is plugged in really well in the Midwest region and can help find just the right comic for the kind of show you'd like to have!  He's also working to give young comics a shot to get started in what's considered one of the hardest disciplines of entertainment....stand up.  Smaller shows give that guy looking for a few minutes of stage time a chance to get up there and get going, and building a growing future talent is essential in any endeavor. 

Ricarlo and I sat down for a few at Smash Wine Bar and Bistro, and talked a little about the upstart of the business and his future plans to not only infuse some entertainment around town but to make his mark for himself a little and the other comics.  Take a listen! 

 

 

 

 

Boom! Love it!  We started all of what we do with a free blog website and a GoPro camera!  Ricarlo is light years ahead of us and poised to bring a lot of great entertainemnt to Muskegon and a lot of opportunity to venues, comics and fans!  It's been a great working realtionship with Ricarlo and The Back Alley and to add more laughter to the world...a noble endeavor on all accounts!   Stay tuned, the weather is cooling off and comedy season is upon us!  We'll tell you where to get the guffaw's, belly laughs and snickers right here on the Muskegon Channel!

fresh ghost comedy

With the thought of full disclosure...Andy O'Riley is the Mayor Pro Tem of Roosevelt Park and this article is appearing out of nothing but pride in community and a sincere wish for you to come and join us for an awesome day with a little something for everyone in the family at the annual day to celebrate in Roosevelt Park, which is Saturday September 7th 2019!!  Now that we have the disclaimers out of the way, let's get down to the fun!  roosevelt park logoThe City of Roosevelt Park Online

Hey, for years in the Muskegon area Roosevelt Park Day was THE event!  Over time though, as things do a fresh approach was needed and while the party on Broadway was great, it had dwindled a little and the time had come to shake things up a little so, to utilize the assets that Roosevelt Park has the most of was the idea that came up and so set in motion a move to the center of the city at the expansive park at the Community Center where the park itself could be surrounded by food trucks with every kind of fare to please any palate.  We could also add in some extra free fun for kids with the grassy areas dedicated to kids games and inflatables from Kangaroo Palace.  Crafters and vendors all have plenty of space by the tennis courts do display and sell their incredible hand crafted items.  We can put up a stage, rope off an area for some ice cold beverages and while we're at it, let's call Lewis' Farms and see if they'll bring down the Candy Cannon and blast that off at the Del Mar Playfield at 3:30.  It all seemed to come together nicely.

Of course, it all kicks off with a Pancake Breakfast hosted by the Trinity Lutheran Church with proceeds going to benefit the Muskegon Rescue Mission.  Fill your family up for only $4 for those 13 and over and $3 for kids 6-12, kids under 5 eat free!  The breakfast will be held at the Roosevelt Park Community Center.  The parade gets underway at 10 lead by Grand Marhsall, Eagle Scout Jason Fitzpatrick.  It's free for entries if you have a business or organization that would like to join, but you do need to complete an application that can be found by CLICKING HERE.  Once the parade is complete, the morning set up will be done and you are invited to come get a taste of the trucks!  Delightful temptations of savory fare, sweets, deserts and more.  Sights, sounds and smells will abound and the music gets rolling with the Mona Shores Fiddlers, followed by Country Current a little later in the day, and the evening rounds out with everyone's favorite local party band Yard Sale Underwear!

The BIG moment for the kids happened last year for the first time though.  Scott Lewis of Lewis Farms came down for a visit and brought along the Candy Cannon!  Every Saturday and Sunday the Candy Cannon goes off at Lewis Farms, however, 3:30p is the time to be at the Del Mar Playfield as 80 pounds of candy goes boom and then rains down on the kids!  It's quite a sight to behold!

Andy O, Roosevelt Park City Manager Jared Olsen and City Clerk Ann Wisnewski gathered up to talk all about the fun and what's to come.  Take a listen. 

 

Consider yourself invited!  Roosevelt Park considers itself a "Proud Community" and it's our chance to throw out the welcome mat with great entertainment for all ages, delicious offerings of all kinds of food, great music, great community togetherness and with Mother Natures blessings...some perfect weather for such an occasion!  It's going to be a full day of fun September 7th!  We'll see you at Roosevelt Park Day!

It was a great night of talk and fun as we took Muskegon Tonight Live to the northern tier of Muskegon County to enjoy the surroundings and awesome food and drink at Pub One Eleven!  It's an amazing spot and a sincere focal point in Whithall where so many amazing things come out of.  Not only amazing things like burgers, wraps and other tempting food specials, but programs that impact the community....an idea hub to make things better as a community and a place where friends meet to share special occasions or just swap lies for a while over a couple of cold ones.  

Parties in the Park!  Our weekly Summer gathering spot wraps up the 35th season of fun this coming Friday August 23rd.  It's been an awesome season once again of making the best use of our centrally located urban paradise.  Pretty much, every week, all Summer long the beer flows, the chat ensues, music is played, friends are caught up with and we all kind of exhale after a long week of making Muskegon happen.  But like just about anything in Muskegon, we've found a way to add purpose to the party and give back through a good time and make a difference for some of our area organizations who do for others. PITP logo Color Horizontal 300x149 leadVisit Parties in the Park Online

Yes, every week at Party in the Park, a different non profit is selected to help run the show and reap the rewards of the gathering.  The non profit pitches in with the set up, serving and clean up while the board of directors for Party in the Park takes care of things like sponsorship's, booking the bands, renting the port-a-johns etc.  It's a pairing that ends up making a difference for a lot of very worthy causes over the Summer, and a great way to give back.

As we approach the finale, they have really gone all out on the big finish.  This Friday, Parties in the Park is welcoming a national name!  Laith Al-Saadi was a finalist on NBC's "The Voice" and has numourous tour credits to his name.  Big names too loke Bob Seger, BB King and more.  He's bringing a brand of Blues/Rock that Muskegon will absolutely LOVE and sticking with Parties in the Park tradition...won't cost you a penny to get in an see the show!

I met up with Tracie Kuhn who's a member of that committee who helps pull it all together.  Take a listen to our chat about this staple of life in Muskegon as it gets set to sail into the sunset with a bang this season!

 

 

 

 

A good time for all!  We in Muskegon have to figure out innovative ways to make things happen.  What better way than to utilize our centerpiece every week, all Summer to gather as a community and enjoy the company?  As one season closes, another is planned for and the 2020 season of Parties in the Park should be bigger, and better than ever thanks to the dedicated committee and amazing groups that come together to remind us all, that we really are one big giant neighborhood here in Muskegon.  If you'd like a sampling of Laith's music, please follow the link under his picture to visit his website

 

laith

It was a picture perfect day for a boat race on the beautiful banks of Bear Lake in North Muskegon.  August 10th saw the Cardboard Boat Regatta brought to you by J. Nedeau Realtor.  We were contacted months ago about the idea of being part of a build your own boat event as part of the North Muskegon Family Funfest.  We jumped at the chance because who doesn't love a tired and true event where a little innovation and some willingness to sink or swim can prove to be a pretty good time! north mkgCity of North Muskegon Online

It started off with a boat show at the beverage tent!  Competitors lined their boats up for the Peoples Choice Awards.  Not all of the boats were present, but a nice showing none the less while Yard Sale Underwear rocked the crowd.  Some boats had yet to even be built....so....that's another story.  Teams arrived, rules were set and we took a few minutes to meet up with the competitors, talk a little strategy and smack and then get ready meet up on the beautiful shores of Bear Lake.

We've put it all together in a little video that you'll have some fun watching.  Take a look at the Cardboard Boat Regatta sponsored by J. Nedeau Realtor at the North Muskegon Family Funfest.

 

 

 

 

The City of North Muskegon is filled with friendly and awesome people who really know how to put on a great time.  Events from the Art Fair, to the Taste of North Muskegon...the Foam Pit looked like a great time...the Beverage Tent the massive parade and more...the North Muskegon Family Fun Fest is a staple of our area when it comes to Summer fun.  Our thanks to the teams, the spectators, J. Nedeau Realtor and everyone involved in the fun!  We hope you enjoyed the recap of the Cardboard Boat Regatta!

nedeau realtor

Summer is still in full swing. Even with schools starting early there is still so much for you to pack in before that first day back. Thursday August 8th North Muskegon will be kicking off there Northside Family Fun Fest with a Parade starting at 7:30pm. The parade will begin at Fleming St. head down Ruddiman dr. and end on Charles St. You will not want to miss this one because there will be over 100 entries.
 
Make sure not to make plans for Friday night on August 9th because you are not going to want to miss all of the yummy food that the Taste of Northside will have to offer. Not to mention there will be a beer tent, Live music (Yard Sale Underwear), pony rides, a car display and so much more.
 
The fun continues Saturday August 10th with the art fair in Walker Park from 9am-4pm. Along with the Art Fair, Walker Park with also be holding the kid’s expo, candy scramble and a Frozen Yogurt Eating Contest that is being sponsored by Yodels Frozen Yogurt. The festivities continue through the day with so many more fun activities for the whole family to enjoy including the nightcap with the fireworks at dusk over Bear Lake Beach.
 
 
For a full List of the events, activities and times throughout the whole Northside Family Fun Fest you can visit the links below.
 
north mkg
 
 
n mkg kick off lead

It was an awesome night in Downtown Muskegon!  The Frauenthal Center seemed to be the focal point with the US Coast Guard Band playing a huge and patriotic concert upstairs and Muskegon Tonight Live happening in the lower level of the building at the delicious and intimate setting of the Smash Wine Bar and Bistro!

Sure the July episode happened on the 1st of August, but July is a very busy month in Muskegon...so to have an extra week to exhale with all the July events going on didn't seem to matter to anyone. 

We talked about the Muskegon County Veterans millage that's up for renewal with Michael Baauw.  How they manage to provide more services to our veterans with less money than bigger counties and how the amount of the millage has not gone up in 25 years.  We also had some fun talking about the Burning Foot Beer Festival coming up at Pere Marquette in August, Allen Serio is the event director and came by with some free tickets and the North Muskegon Family Fun Fest is coming up quick!  North Muskegon City Clerk Lee Ann Clausen come on to talk about the events and fun for everyone!

Here's the show in it's entirety if you missed it!  We had a great crowd and a great time!

 

 

It was all done in an hour! (We're known to run over a little) We can't thank our guests enough and Smash is an awesome setting for such a great show!  We are however thinking that we might shake it up a little...stay tuned for some details on that...in the meantime...if you'd like to know more about what's going on with any of our guests, click on the links below and find their websites!  

veterans affairs logo

 

burning foot

 

 

 

 

north mkg

 

I point out in this interview of White Lake area musician Tommy Foster that when I first met him when he was a teen, the first thought that came into my mind was that he would have a unique life path ahead of him.Not only has he confirmed this by his choice of career, but also when we met for the interview. He suggested sitting in the “seat” of a huge tree.  (I had thought we would sit in the gazebo by White Lake.) Neither of us could make the climb, so we ended up standing in front of the massive trunk.  No one else so far has suggested we climb into a tree for an interview!
 
I was truly honored to interview Tommy.  He is one of our area’s treasures, a homegrown musician, beloved by his hometown folks and well beyond.  He is known for being part of Foster and Popps, the Foster Kids, and being a solo performer for over a quarter of a century. He currently plays with the FAN Club, whose original members include: Tommy, Justin Avdek, and Scott Nesbit (FAN --from their last names).  Additional members are  Ezekiel Kinney, Eric Engblade, Rich King, John King, Mike Lynch, Mark Lavengood, Drew Howard, Chas Millican, Everett Domeier, and Jeffrey Niemeier. He is also a former member of the Echoes of Pink Floyd production.
 
Tommy says one influence has been his mother, Virginia Foster, who played the violin.  He’s painfully honest when he relays how he was flunking out of college and a guidance counselor helped him to determine his interests. The results indicated he should be a mortician or musician.  True . . .   He took music theory, found it held his interest, and the rest is history.
 
Tommy sings and plays many instruments, including acoustic and electric guitar, lap steel guitar, and he dabbles in pedal steel guitar, piano, mandolin, and bass guitar. He has been influenced by country music, blues, folk, bluegrass, R & B, rock, jazz, classical, and even heavy metal.
 
Life as a full-time musician isn’t easy.  It involves lots of time on the road. One week, Tommy might be in Chelsea, a few days later, back here in Whitehall, for a concert at the Montague bandshell like he was last week.  A lot of perseverance.
His advice to aspiring musicians is likewise, to persevere.  Keep the music going, and work at whatever job you have to as you build a musical career.
 
 
You can find Tommy Foster or the FAN Club on Facebook - Click on image below.  As I always tell folks, if you have not heard Tommy Foster yet for some strange reason, you should -- right away!  
 
 

 

The Summer Concerts at McGraft Park has been a Muskegon tradition for over 50 years. Today, the free family friendly concerts are still going strong at the beautiful McGraft Park Band shell.

On of our staff member has recently rescued several vintage super 8 reels of Muskegon Heights Football motion picture. We've decided to digitize one of them and share with everyone on MuskegonChannel. This particular reel is titled Muskegon Heights dated 11-7-1981 on the cover.

  Muskegon Tonight Live! June- A monthly local talk show convering a variarity of local interest - was held on 6/27/19 Downtown Muskegon at Smash! Winebar & Bistro in front of live audience.

 

It was a great night at Smash Wine Bar and Bistro May 30th.  Sold out crowd yet again and we welcomed some awesome guests in for the 5th edition of Muskegon Tonight Live!  Susan Shaw from WOOD TV 8 was up first and talked about her 25 years at WOOD TV plus the early years of her TV career.  Muskegon's Citizen of The Year Paul Billings came in next to talk about his extensive work with the Muskegon Heights Community and particulary young people there.  Pete and Walt Gawkowski along with Keith Williams came in to talk Muskegon Clippers Baseball and we wrapped up with the music of Chad Flores.  

We'll be back at Smash on June 27th with another show and more fun!  Stany by for the ticket release and guest list coming soon!  Thanks for coming out and if you missed the show, click on the video above and enjoy when you can.  

It's a huge event and it's a great source of family fun minus the beer tents and everything else that seems to be part of a "festival" anymore.  Nothing against a good beer tent, but to know that a town festival can be pulled off without one and that some of the good "old fashioned" fun things are still available to all, well, that's makes ya feel warm and fuzzy all over and to see a festival like that in a community like Fruitport..makes perfect sense for the beginning of Summer.  It's a huge undertaking for the Fruitport Lions Club and a source for them to help fund all the great work they do.

Fruitport, to me is were "Muskegon" begins.  In a lot of ways, it reminds me of my hometown of Sparta.  Trojans, or Spartans, our schools share the same mascot and colors.  Both communities share industry, agriculture and maintain the "small town" feel and since Mrs. O is a teacher at Fruitport High School, I get to see a lot of the people and families..and yes...I always feel right at home in Fruitport.  There are good people who take great pride in their home and they are a great link between all the major city's of the area.  Not to mention, they have Pomona Park which is becoming a site used more and more for incredible events like Dancing into the Sunset on Thursday nights and has been the home of the midway for Old Fashioned Days for years! fruitport lionsClick Here for the Full Schedule of Events at Old Fashioned Days in Fruitport

Everything for this years Old Fashioned Days gets underway May 22nd.  You'll find the midway and a list of events daily that will keep anyone entertained, well fed and coming back for more!  It's a 150th celebration in Fruitport too this year so the expanded festival time and events will be keeping everyone busy.  Of course, the save a few bucks on the midway, you can get a wristband in advance at the following locations.  Buy in advance and get your ride wristband for only $20!  Locations are,

Buyers Guide, 1781 5th st (at Laketon), Muskegon, MI Kangaroo Palace, 3524 Green St., Norton Shores Lakeshore Federal CU, 2182 Lakeshore Dr., Muskegon Mr. Quick: All locations Pin Crest Lanes, 6571 Airline Rd., Fruitport 49415 Prenger's Jewelry, 2264 Apple Ave., Muskegon 49442 Spring Lake Orchard Market Community Shores Bank, 5797 Harvey St Community Shores Bank, 1120 S Beacon - G H Community Shores Bank, 1030 Norton - N S Village Pharmacy 10 S 3rd Fruitport, 49415 Waypoint Dock & Spirits, 187 S 3rd Ave Fruitport Whitlow's Forerunner 4610 Airline Rd Fruitport Ye Old Tavern 24 South 3rd Ave (Park St), Fruitport.  

Heidi Tice is the Village of Fruitport Supervisor and we sat down to talk about the fun to come and the events you don't want to miss. Take a listen!

 

Fun! The old fashioned way!  Don't miss the celebration in Fruitport and be a part of a great annual community event.  Fruitport is truly a treasure in our area, and growing....quickly!  We are all living in a fast forward time in and around these parts...so, grab yourself a sno cone, maybe an elephant ear and a corn dog and do things the Old Fashioned way for a while in Fruitport!  For a completel list of events or the run sign up, click on the photo below.

old fashionClick here to see the full schedule and any updated information at Fruitport Lions Website

Let me start off by saying, this was one of the most fun interviews I have done in a while, and it could have easily gotten out of hand...quick as we sat down to reminisce about the photography gallery that's going to be on display beginning May 23rd at the Muskegon Museum of Art.  Tough as it might have been, the artist and myself managed to keep it together....for the most part and talk about the display and the work that went in to the gallery...30 years in the making.  Let's rewind to begin.

Way back when, I was just a lad getting started in radio.  There was the internship where I got my start, then the next step was to be hired on as a "board op".  The board op had to stick around the radio station and run the music, commercials and everything else when the actual air personality went out to broadcast live somewhere.  It was the second step to being "on the air" and it was a chance to get used to the mechanics before you drove yourself into the wall actually talking on the radio for the first time.  Which I did....and how.  Amazing the humiliation you'll put yourself though for $6 bucks an hour if you want something bad enough.  Anyway, Paul Jendrasiak was also a board op and if memory serves me right, he did some air work too back when.  Part time, weekend stuff and it was always good to work with Paul. lights camera leadLights Camera Rock and Roll Opening Event on Facebook

Paul on the other hand was a lot more eclectic in his focus when it came to all things media and music.  Ya, we were both a couple of "mullets" (his was WAY better than mine) but we loved the heavy and hard stuff and while I was out mingling with fans and bands, Paul was writing about them for the Music Review and gathering up photo passes to really capture some amazing moments from behind the lens.  Paul's photography and journalistic approach led him to a world of surreal experiences, much like I had, but just from a different angle and the amount of shared experiences we had over the years....the amazing events, the incredible people...it's truly the stuff dreams are made of.  Paul did have one distinct advantage though.

Paul's memories are all preserved.  Photos...1000's of them, the best of which will be on display beginning may 23rd at the Muskegon Museum of Art.  It's a comprehensive gallery covering the three decades Paul has been on stage, or side stage with the biggest names in the business.  Moments just before a lot of bands really hit the big time, or some moments of when established icons came to West Michigan for a visit.  

Paul and I sat down for a chat in front of Metallica front man James Hetfield, a photo Paul took at the LC Walker Arena on November 1st 1991.  Paul was behind the camera, and I was in the center of the stage in the "Snake Pit" for the show that barely left the LC Walker Arena standing.  Take a listen.

 

His memories are in print...mine...all in my head.  I think in the long term, I had to give the win to Paul for his amazing work and his terrific approach to an industry we both grew up loving...and both found ways to dig in deeper than most anyone could.  It's been a great 30 years of friendship...and even the few minutes of getting together brought back so many memories.  Please join Paul for his gallery opening and photo discussion on May 23rd.  I will see you there to hear Paul's side of the story.  For more about the Muskegon Museum of Art, click on their logo below.

art museum 2

It first got underway in 1972.  Motorcycle riders from all over Michigan converge on the small town of Baldwin and head to the airport grounds for their annual blessing on their bikes to keep them safe during the riding season.  It's a fun pastime for some, a lifestyle for others but there is a risk factor to the ride so what can any good luck or blessing hurt if offered to a rider, right? bb37Follow Camp 37 on Facebook

Flash forward to 2019 and the Blessing of the Bikes draws thousands and thousands and yes....thousands more bikers from all over the Midwest.  Every race color creed, ever club, gang and loner all coming together for some fellowship, to see what everyone else is riding and of course to welcome in the riding season.  The Blessing now brings vendors, bands, food trucks, camp sites and more.  Baldwin doubles or triples in size for the weekend and a good time is had by all.

Of course, bikers are known to be incredibly giving and amazingly charitable, so..it's only a matter of time until someone has the idea to put on an event really raise some money for important things.  In the case of Camp 37, it started 10 years ago and now, has grown to a two day party and camping opportunity that will be hard to beat anywhere.  The best part of Camp 37....the funds go to help benefit Veterans.

The funds raised go to the Ruby Creek Disabled Veterans Hunt Club which gives our veterans a chance to break free of what might hold them back and get them out in the woods to enjoy some R&R and the excitement of a hunt.  Camp 37 is a completely volunteer run organization and the passion put in by those who make the event happen is a way of saying thank you to those who were willing to make the ultimate sacrifice. 

I caught up with Marcella Henry and Shannon Mullaney at Hot Rod Harley to learn a little more about the event.  The camping is sold out, but there are plenty of day passes to be hand for a great time.  Take a listen! 

 

If you're heading up, ride safe.  If you're heading up and looking for a party with a little purpose behind it, make it a visit to Camp 37 and help them give a Vet or two a great experience and a thank you for what they did for all of us.  Below, you'll find the complete schedule of events and if you click on it, you'll be able to visit the Camp 37 website!  Ride safe this season, and if you don't ride....look twice and safe a life!!

37 events

  Mona Shores Middle School Band held their 2019 Spring Concert featuring their 6th, 7th, and 8th grade bands at the high school auditorium, with special guest featuring the High School Jazz Band. Each grade performed three songs to a full auditorium with standing audience all the way at the back on both levels, the High School Jazz Band gave a strong finish with the theme from Peter Gunn by Henry Mancini. We have condensed the performance into a 7 minute video featuring one song for each grade / band, enjoy.

 

 

Index

0:00 6th Grade
1:28 7th Grade
3:30 8th Grade
5:21 HS Jazz band

 

What a night at Smash Wine Bar and Bistro!  It was the 4th installment of Muskegon Tonight Live on a very busy Thursday night in Downtown Muskegon.  We had a full house enjoying the great food, sampling the fine wines and other tasty beverages and as the cameras rolled, we had some pretty awesome guests drop by as well.

Our very own "Reporter Emeritus" Lauren Stanton came by to talk about life post retirement from WZZM 13 in Grand Rapids and how she and her husband John are building and growing their Retro Boat Rental business in Saugatuck and a few other locations this Summer.  Up next, the Muskegon County Central Dispatch Director Shawn Grabinski brought Sheriff Michael Poulin and Muskegon Heights Fire Chief Christopher Dean over to discuss the urgent need for a hand from all of Muskegon County to replace our antiquated 9-11 system with the vote coming up May 7th.  Up next, we shift gears a little and talk about Dancing into the Sunset in Pomona Park in Fruitport, then we talk to our show announcer Luke Lewis for a few minutes and we finish up the show with singer song writer Bri Baron and some of her soulful and amazingly good songs.

Lot's to talk about and lot's to follow up on!!  If any of the guests tonight sparked your interest, by all means, click on the images below to head over to their pages and learn more about what they are up to!

Our next show will be May 30th!  Guests include Susan Shaw from WOOD TV, Pete Gawkowski of the Muskegon Clippers Baseball Team and Country Music Artist Chad Flores!!  Keep your eye open for the free tickets coming soon!

retro boat rentalsRetro Boat Rentals in Saugatuck

 

911911 Central Dispatch

 

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