NLEA awards Indigenous businesses

BOYNE CITY — The Northern Lakes Economic Alliance’s newly-established Innovation Alliance made awards to seven Indigenous-owned businesses.

Seven business owners met Sept. 8 to pitch their start-up or growth idea for an opportunity to receive funding.

Awardees for the first Innovation Alliance event included Aurora B Lounge, LLC of Indian River, Autumn Eve Creations of Alanson, Creative Graphics by Eva of Harbor Springs, Fade Did of Petoskey, Superior Board Company of Kewadin, Two Women Beading of Petoskey and Watercolor Artist Russ LaLonde of Cheboygan.

Future Innovation Alliance events are planned in several different industries including Value Added Agriculture, Tech, Outdoor Recreation, Manufacturing, Recycle/Upcycle and Research & Development.

Businesses or individuals who live or work in Antrim, Charlevoix and Cheboygan counties are invited to register online at northernlakes.net/innovation-alliance. Those registering will be invited to join the Innovation Alliance program and/or schedule a meeting to discuss their business idea.

More information is available at www.northernlakes.net.

Boyne Highlands debuts new rooms

HARBOR SPRINGS — Boyne Highlands Resort remodeled 87 guest rooms in its Main Lodge. The remodeling is phase two of a four-phase project, according to a release.

The new Main Lodge rooms offer “expanded to more spacious layouts with options ranging from standard king and queen configurations, to deluxe, premium, and suite layouts with sitting areas and sleeper sofas,” according to a release.

Bathrooms feature marble floor and wall tiles. Each room features complimentary Wi-Fi, high-efficiency mini smart refrigerator and a Nespresso machine.

The next phase of the Main Lodge renovation is expected to start in spring 2022, according to the release. More information on the renovation is available at highlandsfuture.com or on Instagram @Boyne.Highlands.

Priority announces Quality Awards

GRAND RAPIDS — Priority Health awarded Quality Awards to 123 physician offices in Michigan for improving patient’s health care outcomes, according to a release.

The Priority Health Quality Awards are for “physicians and physician offices that achieve the highest overall scores in preventive care and chronic disease measures through the Priority Health Primary Care Provider Incentive Program,” according to the release.

The awards, based on performances during 2020, will give more than $39 million to practices in Michigan, including Bayside Family & Sports Medicine, Petoskey; Brookside Family Medicine, Traverse City; Cadillac Family Physicians, PC; Cherry Bend Family Care, Traverse City; Family Practice of Cadillac; Gary S. Ruoff, DO, Traverse City; Grand Traverse Children’s Clinic, PC, Traverse City; Grand Traverse Internists, PC, Traverse City; Kids Creek Children’s Clinic, PC, Traverse City; Lakeshore Family Care, PC, Arcadia; Little Traverse Primary Care, Harbor Springs; Northern Pines Health Center, Inc., Buckley; Partners in Family Practice, Traverse City; Petoskey Family Medicine; Rivertown Medical Clinic, Cheboygan; Thirlby Clinic, Traverse City; Traverse Bay Internal Medicine, PC, Traverse City; and West Front Primary Care, PLLC, Traverse City.

‘Buy MBE Day’ is Sept. 25

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Department of Commerce, Minority Business Development Agency will support minority business enterprises with “Buy MBE Day” on Sept. 25. MBE is short for Minority Business Enterprise.

“Buy MBE Day” is part of National Minority Enterprise Development Week. The event “encourages individuals and purchasing agents within corporations to actively support their local minority-owned business community by shopping and purchasing goods and services from them in person and online,” according to a release.

More information about the event is available at MBDA.gov/BuyMBEDay.

Money management workshops starting

INTERLOCHEN — The Northwest Michigan Community Action Agency’s weekly Fall into Money Management workshops at the Interlochen Public Library begin Oct. 6 and end Nov. 3. Sessions are on Wednesdays from 5:30-7:30 p.m.

Topics include Mastering Money Management (Oct. 6), Improving Credit & Debt Reduction (Oct. 13), Consumer Protection & Fair Housing/Lending (Oct. 20), Banking Basics & Developing a Spending Plan (Oct. 27) and Student Loans & Insurance (Nov. 3).

There will be a prize drawing for those who attend multiple sessions. Sponsored by the Friends of the Interlochen Public Library, register by calling the library at (231) 276-6767 or visiting nmcaa.net/workshops.

MSUFCU holds groundbreaking

EAST LANSING — MSU Federal Credit Union held a groundbreaking ceremony Aug. 18 for its new headquarters. The branch will be located at 3775 Coolidge Road in East Lansing.

The new 9,936-aquare-foot branch will include two island Video Teller Machines, one thru-wall Video Teller Machine and two island ATMs, according to a release. The new branch will replace the one inside the Headquarters Building and will house 12-15 employees.

The anticipated opening is June 2022. For more information, visit msufcu.org.

Buy Nearby Weekend Oct. 1-3

LANSING — The Michigan Retailers Association’s Buy Nearby Weekend is scheduled for Oct. 1-3.

As part of the organization’s year-round effort to promote shopping local, there will be special merchandise and sales.

One shopper will receive a $500 gift card by posting a photo while shopping local with #buynearbymi on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram. Contestants must be at least 18 years old and all posts must be public.

Michiganders spend $23.7 billion at out-of-state retailers, according to a release, citing a 2021 study by Public Sector Consultants.

More information is available at buynearbymi.com and facebook.com/BuyNearbyMI.

MCBC accepting research grant proposals

LANSING — The Michigan Craft Beverage Council is accepting 2022 research grant proposals. There is a maximum grant award of $40,000.

Deadline for proposals is 3 p.m. Oct. 25.

“While any research topic will be accepted, the Council has identified the following funding priorities: climate change impacts affecting Michigan’s craft beverage agricultural supply chain, crop quality analysis; new varieties for hops, fruit, barley, grain, or other agricultural inputs used in craft beverage production; and sustainable wastewater discharge best practices,” the release said.

The proposals will be reviewed in December and decisions on funding are expected in January 2022.

Proposals must be received via email at MDARD-CraftBev@Michigan.gov.

Application and grant guidelines are available at https://tinyurl.com/MCBC2022. More information about the Council is available at michigancraftbeverage.com.

Bank launches ESG page on website

GRAND RAPIDS — Independent Bank launched an Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) page on their website.

Information “on the sustainability and societal impact of the bank” can be found in this section at IndependentBank.com, according to a release.

Established in 1864, Independent Bank has 62 branches in the Lower Peninsula of Michigan and nine loan production offices in Michigan and Ohio.

MET launches new campaign

LANSING — The Michigan Education Trust has a new campaign to help families prepare for their higher education future, according to a release.

The campaign runs in September during College Savings Month.

Administered by the Michigan Department of Treasury, the MET is a prepaid education savings program “that lets users pay today’s prices for future education costs,” according to a release.

There are three types of MET plans: full benefits, limited benefits and the community college plan. Families can purchase one plan or blend the different options.

MET benefits can be used for postsecondary education at universities, colleges and technical schools and include both Michigan and out-of-state public and private institutions. Benefits “may also be transferred to other eligible family members and are refundable if the student does not attend college,” according to a release.

MET is hosting September webinars about the Section 529 savings program. The current enrollment period ends Sept. 30 and reopens in December.

More information about MET is available at SETwithMET.com, by calling 800-MET-4-KID or emailing treasMET@Michigan.gov.

Job scams rose during pandemic

GRAND RAPIDS — A Better Business Bureau study found job scams were on the rise during the pandemic and could continue to increase with the end of federal unemployment benefits, according to a release.

The BBB Serving Western Michigan warns job seekers “to verify employment offers to avoid illegal jobs, identity theft and fake checks,” according to the release.

The 2020 BBB Employment Scams Report found job scams “to be the riskiest of all the scams they tracked in 2018 and 2019” and the problem worsened in 2020, according to a release. The report found people ages 25-34 were the most victimized and the average financial loss was $1,000 per victim.

The complete study is available at https://bbb.org/local/0734/scamstudies/jobscams/jobscamsfullstudy.

Those who believe they are the victim of a jobs scam can report it to the BBB (BBB.org/scamtracker), Federal Trade Commission (eportfraud.ftc.gov or 877-FTC-Help) or the Internet Crime Complaint Center (ic3.gov/complaint).

Priority partners with Virgin Pulse

GRAND RAPIDS — Priority Health has partnered with Virgin Pulse for its member engagement and wellbeing initiative in early 2022, according to a release.

The Virgin Pulse platform “will become the new engine for the Priority Health Wellbeing Hub to create a more personal, engaging experience for all commercial, Individual and Medicare members,” according to a release from Priority Health.

Virgin Pulse focuses on long-term behavior and health changes with a proactive approach, according to the release.

More information on Priority Health is available at www.priorityhealth.com. More information on Virgin Pulse is available at VirginPulse.com.

USDA joins aviation fuels challenge

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently joined the government’s Sustainable Aviation Fuels Grand Challenge.

The goal of the SAF is “to meet 100% of U.S. aviation fuel demand by 2050,” according to a release.

The new initiative was announced during a White House roundtable with Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm and U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg.

The government commitment is to produce 3 billion gallons of SAF per year by 2030 and 35 billion gallons by 2050.

A fact sheet on the Sustainable Aviation Fuels Grand Challenge is available at https://tinyurl.com/WhiteHouseSAF.

SBA makes $5.4M in awards

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Small Business Administration awarded $5.4 million to a total of 92 winners for the Growth Accelerator Fund and Small Business Innovation Research Catalyst competitions.

The lone SBIR Catalyst competition award in Michigan went to BBC Entrepreneurial Training & Consulting LLC in Chelsea. Michigan winners in the GAFC competition were TechTown Detroit and Centrepolis Accelerator at Lawrence Technological University in Southfield.

Award winners come from 48 states, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands and the District of Columbia. Its the first year the SBA held two prize tracks simultaneously, according to the release. The complete list of winners is available at www.sbir.gov/accelerators.

Online career exploration tool gets update

LANSING — Michigan Education and Career Pathfinder, the state’s online career exploration tool, recently received a major update to enhance available data, ensure mobile friendliness and create an overall better user experience. This online resource supports residents in exploring in-demand careers and the degrees or credentials needed to pursue them.

Pathfinder is a free tool that uses current information related to employment and the workforce, as well as data about the relationship between education and training programs. It allows visitors to better match skills to career paths and jobs and can be accessed at Pathfinder.MiTalent.org.

Pathfinder was launched in 2017 to provide residents with Michigan-specific education and occupation information so they can make informed education and career decisions. It also provides a complete training path picture when a career goal is chosen, assisting the user in creating a roadmap for their future.

The latest version of Pathfinder amplifies the overall user experience by incorporating filters when exploring jobs, fields and schools and allowing visitors to choose multiple paths and compare them with each other. Completed paths can be emailed and printed for later viewing.

Great Lakes Potato Chips makes top 10

TRAVERSE CITY — Great Lakes Potato Chips has advanced to the final round of the 2021 “Coolest Thing Made in Michigan” contest, hosted by the Michigan Manufacturers Association.

One of the top 10 vote-getters in the competition’s first round of voting, the Great Lakes Potato Chips are now vying to be the “Coolest Thing Made in Michigan.” This People’s Choice Award is part of MMA’s annual recognition of exceptional products made across the State of Michigan and celebration of the contributions manufacturers make to Michigan’s economy and local communities.

The final round of voting runs through Friday, Sept. 24. Anyone can vote daily for their favorite product at coolestthing.mimfg.org. The winner will be announced live during the 2021 MFG Excellence Awards on Nov. 4 in Lansing.

Great Lakes Potato Chips launched in 2009. The company’s skin-on kettle chips are available at thousands of stores and restaurants in Michigan and in six surrounding states. A new building intended to increase manufacturing capacity is now under construction behind Turtle Creek Stadium, home of the Pit Spitters baseball organization.

Subie Guys, Inc. part of fundraiser

TRAVERSE CITY — Subie Guys, Inc. in Traverse City will join other Independent Auto Repair Shops in the U.S. and participate in the Brakes for Breasts fundraiser during October.

Owned by Nichole Bennecoff, Subie Guys, Inc. is located at 3153 Cass Road. Appointments are required, according to www.subieguys.com.

The event is to raise funds for breast cancer vaccine research.

Participating facilities give away free brake pads as part of the fundraiser. Customers pay for the labor and any other necessary parts to complete the brake job. The participating facilities donate 10% of the cost to Dr. Vincent Tuohy & the Cleveland Clinic Breast Cancer Vaccine Research Fund.

Brakes for Breasts began in 2011 and has donated more than $1.192 million.

Munson earns stroke care awards

TRAVERSE CITY — The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association honored Munson Medical Center with national awards.

Munson was named to the 2021 Get With The Guidelines Stroke Gold Plus Award and the Target Stroke Honor Roll Elite Award.

It is the eighth straight year for the Gold Plus Award, which will be recognized in U.S. News and World Report and at the International Stroke Conference Feb. 9-11, 2022. The recognition for the core and expanded Endovascular Stroke Program team is for meeting “the hospital’s commitment to ensuring stroke patients receive the most appropriate treatment based on nationally recognized research-based guidelines tied to the latest scientific evidence,” according to a release.

The Target Stroke Honor Roll Elite Award “recognizes a 45-minute door-to-treatment time for administering clot-dissolving medication,” according to the release.

More information on Munson Healthcare’s stroke program is available at munsonhealthcare.org/stroke.

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