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Register now to kayak the Kalamazoo June 22

Register now to kayak the Kalamazoo June 22

HOLLAND, Mich.--Register soon for this three hour paddle event, which starts in the Allegan State Game Area and ends at New Richmond.

This adventure takes place on Saturday, June 22 from 10:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at DeGraaf Nature Center,  located at 600 Graafschap Road in Holland. The nine-mile stretch will likely include lots of wildlife sightings, from birds like the Belted Kingfisher, the Common Yellowthroat  and the Bald Eagles to other creatures.

The Nature Center will provide a kayak, paddle, life jacket  and transportation. Guests should bring sunscreen, hat, snacks, bottles of water and a lunch packed in a waterproof container.

Go Green Youth Challenge: How to get fresh trees in your community

Go Green Youth Challenge:  How to get fresh trees in your community

Applications are being accepted for the Go Green Youth Challenge tree planting grants.

Children from pre-kindergarten through 12th grade are invited to participate.  Participants are challenged to collect change individually, with their class or with a club each spring.  The change will go toward community tree plantings by the Michigan Arbor Day Alliance, as well as program outreach efforts.  The team that raises the most for the Go Green Youth Challenge will be awarded with a tree planning in their community.  They also get an invitation to the state Arbor Day celebration in April at Potter Park Zoo in Lansing.

Local governments, public educational institutions, public libraries, non-profit organizations, non-profit organizations, neighborhood associations, churches and tribal governments can also apply for a Go Green youth Challenge tree planting grant by visiting this websit

Guided Kayak trips offered

Guided Kayak trips offered

Have you ever been kayaking? If not, here is an opportunity to take a lesson and enjoy the great outdoors.

Ottawa County Parks and Recreation Department invites paddlers of all skill levels to join naturalists from the department on the Pigeon River. Even though they started on May 8th, the 3.5 mile guided tour is still on the schedule for May 18th, 21st and June 4th.  The trip begins at 12:30pm and takes about 4 hours with each trip a basic kayaking lesson, and kayak, paddle and life jacket are all included for $35.00. Anyone having their own kayak can join in for a fee of $15.00.

Registration is required by calling 616-786-4847. All trips begin at Hemlock Crossing at 8115 West Olive Rd in West Olive and ends at Sheldon Landing.

It's [almost] Tulip Time! Send us your photos!

It's [almost] Tulip Time!  Send us your photos!

Holland, Mich.-- Tulip Time begins Saturday, but we want to see your photos now!

Please email them to Christa at cgraban@wzzm.gannett.com and we'll add them to our photo gallery for all to see.

Wading in a Frog Pond

Wading in a Frog Pond

DeGraaf Nature Center in Holland invites the community to Register to take part in this free Wading experience on Saturday, April 27 at 8pm. For persons age 6 years & older accompanied by an adult.

Participants will meander on the grounds searching for signs of spring. This is the perfect opportunity to discover native toads & frogs, along with salamanders, emerging from their forest homes slipping down to the ponds to locate their mates & lay their eggs.  Be prepared to dress for the search, bring a flashlight & wear wading boots. The critters found will be placed in observation tanks for identification, then released.

Meet at the Nature Center & form a car caravan, traveling south 5 miles to Far View Nature Park.

Register by Calling: (616)355-1057 or go on-line to www.degraaf.org for more events details.

Free program helps home and business owners deal with mercury

(ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY COMPANY)– The Environmental Quality Company is proud to partner with The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Mercury Collection Project.

This is an on-going effort to collect and properly recycle mercury.  Small and large business operations have traditionally been overlooked during mercury collection events.  The project’s objective is to address this issue and promote a long-term solution for easily collecting and recycling of mercury.  The program is free to anyone located in Michigan – residents included. 

The program is easy.

Outdoor Discovery Center hopes for good weather for Marsh burn

Outdoor Discovery Center hopes for good weather for Marsh burn

Holland, Michigan - Plans to conduct a prescribed burn at the Macatawa Marsh this month have been put off because of recent rainy weather.

Earlier this month, the Outdoor Discovery Center Macatawa Greenway announced the next phase of habitat improvements in the Macatawa Marsh included the burn which would get rid of invasive grass species.

An Ann Arbor company has been contracted to do the work. The same company has conducted prescribed burns throughout Michigan including burns for the Michigan DNR, Zeeland Public Schools and more.

The fire would combat non-native species including Phragmites, Purple Loosestrife and Reed Canary grass, all of which has a growing season that begins earlier than the native species of plants in the marsh.