The year was 1999. I was seven years old. Despite my young age, my mom was still dropping me off for work, dressed to the nines in my suitcoat. I pulled paper records each time a customer called. Took the trash out. It’d be a few years until they let me answer the phones, let alone sell a policy. I didn’t trip and fall into insurance. While I didn’t always know my end game within the insurance world, I always knew risk management and business was the place for me.
Insurance professionals truly believe we work in an outstanding industry, with incredible opportunities and the ability to form meaningful relationships. We just need to yell our story. Louder. There are so many opportunities in the insurance industry right here in the Capital Region. I’d feel I was robbing tomorrow’s leaders if I didn’t at least make young adults aware of why insurance, specifically in Lansing, is a great career.
Insurance is unique in that it truly gives motivated professionals the opportunity to touch almost every aspect of the business world. The industry has given me so much and I can only hope that today’s young professionals truly understand the possibilities. They’re endless.
Rathbun Insurance was generous to select Lansing 5:01 as the next recipient of their Quotes for a Cause initiative. For the month of MAY, their agency will be donating $5 per new business quote to Lansing 5:01, regardless of whether or not the policy is actually purchased!
As a musician, sometimes people are surprised when I say I live in Mid-Michigan. They assume there isn’t a vibrant music scene or ask if I wish I lived in Chicago or New York so I could catch the best new performers who are making waves in classical and jazz music.
This always makes me smile, because the thing is, I often DO catch the best new performers at concerts—at the MSU College of Music.
I admit that I’m totally biased because—spoiler alert—I work there! But even though I interact daily with the incredibly talented students and faculty at the college, I’m still amazed that that my colleagues and I are able to bring the best artists from around the nation and the globe to East Lansing on a regular basis. We believe that hosting performances and residencies by some of the world’s leading musicians is important, not just for our students, but for the entire community.
And, unlike Chicago or New York, ticket prices won’t break my budget, and my commute to the concert venue is approximately 10 minutes (which is great, because I loathe sitting in traffic).
I’m especially excited about a group coming this week to MSU, yMusic. They are a phenomenal group of six musicians from New York City that blends the pop and classical worlds. Their high profile collaborators include some of the most creative indie and pop artists today, including Ben Folds, Paul Simon, Bon Iver, Chris Thile and Son Lux. yMusic is also known for working with singer-songwriters (they played with John Legend at the Grammys in 2017), and they’ll be in East Lansing on Friday, April 6 at 8 PM at Fairchild Theater.
To me, yMusic’s visit to East Lansing says so much about the community we live in, the intellectual and artistic curiosity of audiences, and the fact that the music scene here feels alive and vibrant. This is definitely a new music group worth checking out.
If you’ve never ventured onto campus for a performance at Fairchild Theater where yMusic will perform, you owe it to yourself to take in a show there soon.. It’s small but comfortable, big theater acoustics in an intimate setting. Plus, there’s plenty of free parking across from the theater and restaurants within walking distance on Grand River. As a bonus, a pregame or post-game performance trip to the MSU Dairy store is just a few blocks away.
And if you come to the concert, please say hi! One reason I #loveLansing is that so many people I meet have a meaningful connection to the arts, whether as a performer, cheerleader, or educator. Events and venues like yMusic and Fairchild Theatre are two great places to make even more of those connections.
Williamston is a wonderful destination in the greater Lansing area, just about 14 miles east of Lansing. One of the aspects that makes Williamston so special is the Williamston Theatre. The theatre is currently in its 12th season, and this season, we are producing three world premieres, which is a new record for us. I am lucky enough to appear in two of them.
DOUBLEWIDE is a National New Play Network Rolling World premiere and has had just three other productions across the country this year. It is a wonderful story about a typical American family trying to achieve the elusive American dream in the 21st century. That runs from March 22 through April 22. It’s received great feedback already.
OUT OF ORBIT will be running from May 17 through June 17 and tells the story of a NASA Mars scientist who is trying to balance life on Mars with life as a single mom with a teenager here on Earth. It’s a lovely mother-daughter story.
Here at the theatre, we like to tell stories of people who we know…people who are our neighbors…people who you will recognize when you come see a show here. This aesthetic has led not only to local and national awards, but also to growing audience numbers. Over 11,000 people attend shows at our theatre throughout the year, and in response, the downtown Williamston area has developed into a foodie haven.
There are four wonderful restaurants within walking distance of the theatre, and one of Michigan’s most promising young breweries, Old Nation Brewery, is within a very short drive. Williamston is becoming a destination location for dining and entertainment. It’s also an incredibly quaint town, with easy parking, and lovely walks in McCormick Park right on the Red Cedar River. Williamston is a hidden gem, one worth taking the time to discover.
As a native to Los Angeles, California, I never dreamed of moving to another state. The food, entertainment, and sunshine were enough to make me feel like California would be my home forever. I loved California and the life I built for myself while there, but I’m glad I moved. The decision to move away from what I believed to be paradise was made during a five minute phone call with my then fiancé.
We were both seniors in college and the question of what we’re doing with our lives was a constant point of discussion. Because of the difference in our expected graduation dates and the fact that I had no clue what I wanted to do career-wise, we decided to plan our next steps based on wherever my husband was accepted for law school. He applied to various law programs throughout the country, including some great programs in California.
Right before my husband graduated college, he started getting acceptance notices from different programs for which he had applied. One of those notices came from Michigan State University College of Law. They invited him to fly out, visit the campus and meet with current students. When he came back home, he immediately called me and talked about his experience. I knew from the sound of his voice that he enjoyed his trip and started imagining himself there. Once he informed me about the attractive scholarship they offered him, I started imagining him there too.
As he continued talking, I looked up the school and noticed they had an amazing Linguistics program should I decide to continue my education and pursue my latent dreams of being a professor. Call it fate or divine providence, but in some crazy way, we managed to convince ourselves to move from everything we know to the unknown in a five minute conversation. We had no family, friends, or connections whatsoever in Michigan, and we had no idea what we were getting ourselves into.
Fast forward two years later and we’re still here. My husband is expected to graduate from law school this December, and while I decided being a professor wasn’t the career choice for me, I managed to cultivate an amazing career that has given me opportunities and experiences I never dreamed were possible. The transition wasn’t easy, but I’m glad we stuck it through. Being in Lansing has afforded us opportunities that would have never been possible in California. One of those opportunities in particular is the fact that my husband and I were able to purchase a home. The cost of living in Lansing made something that is not a possibility in California a reality.
My husband and I have fallen in love with the community and spirit here. Looking back, we probably should have taken more than five minutes before committing to a major life change like moving across the country; however, I don’t regret for a second the decision we made because it changed the trajectory of our lives. Lansing changed my life and I am forever grateful.
I like food. A lot. But I don’t know how to cook, so I rely heavily on living in a community with access to a variety of restaurants in order to keep myself adequately fed. Luckily for me, Metro Lansing has plenty of delicious options. From Middle Eastern to Cuban and Italian to Thai, Lansing boasts ethnic cuisine from around the globe. From breakfast through dessert, I’m set.
So naturally, I am really looking forward to an upcoming event called Forks & Corks. The Promotions Committee of Downtown Lansing Inc. is producing this event for food lovers and wine lovers alike. The upscale evening will take place in the suite level of Cooley Law School Stadium on March 27. Each suite will feature a dish from one of Lansing’s top dining spots paired with a fine wine. Guests will get to sample from several of the region’s best restaurants without leaving the stadium.
This is the second year of the event, and although last year was a blast, this year is going to be even better. Lexus of Lansing is the new presenting sponsor of Forks & Corks, and they’re bringing a few surprises with them. They’re rolling out the red carpet (literally), so get ready to experience the ballpark in a whole new way.
You’ll see me at Forks & Corks on March 27 sampling dishes and planning which restaurants to visit in the following weeks. Last year I learned a lot about wine pairing – I had never put much thought into how to pair food with wine before, but each wine complimented the dish so perfectly.
You can find additional information about the event, including a list of participating restaurants and a link to purchase tickets, at forksandcorkslansing.org.
Hello, fellow students!
Sadie, here. I’m a junior at Michigan State University studying arts & humanities and social work and, if you’re like me, you feel as though you cannot wait another second for spring break to arrive. January felt like it lasted a million years and February doesn’t seem like it wants to pick up the pace at all either.
Even though spring break won’t be the life-saver and restorer back to full health and energy like we hope, it still does mean a full week of not thinking about homework, exams, or essays – all of which I am completely down for.
I know what you’re probably thinking you’ll do over spring break if you’re not one of the “cool” kids taking a trip to Panama City beach – binge watch your favorite show on Netflix, take a couple of naps, and eat a few too many pizza rolls. That sounds like a great time, but we have a full week we’re talking about here, people!
So, you’re in luck! The greater Lansing area has lots of activities going on throughout spring break and I promise they’ll be just as fun as that warm, sunny trip you wish you were taking. There’s everything from a nice workout of snowshoeing or belly dancing, to relaxing with some wine or painting to the soothing sound of Bob Ross’s voice, and even a visit to the farmer’s market for a unique grocery shopping trip.
I found the following list of events here, in case you’re interested in taking a further look at what’s going on!
Enjoy your #SB2k18 and #LoveLansing while you’re at it. I know I will!
Meridian Township Farmers' Market
Date: March 3, 2018
Location: Meridian Mall, 1982 W Grand River Ave, Okemos
Time: 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM
American Fifth Bob Ross Night
Date: March 8, 2018
Location: American Fifth Spirits, 112 N. Larch St., Lansing
Time: 7:00 PM
Fenner Nature Center’s Winter Snowshoe Hike
Date: March 9, 2018
Location: Fenner Nature Center, 2020 E. Mt. Hope Ave., Lansing
Time: 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Price: $8; Members $3
Belly Dance at the Brewery
Date: March 10, 2018
Location: Lansing Brewing Company, 518 E. Shiawassee St., Lansing
Time: 12:00 PM to 2:00 PM
UrbanBeat Event Center’s Wine Night
Date: March 11, 2018
Time: 2:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Location: Urban Beat, 1213 Turner St, Lansing
Let's be real. We're probably not going to travel far for fun after enduring this snow storm. So let's talk about the best neighborhood bars in Lansing!
Westside Neighborhood - bordered by MLK, Oakland, Clare, and Olds Ave.
Harry's Place - This bar started in 1921 and used to be a favorite of workers at the Fisher Body Plant. Now they describe it as everyone's bar with a very friendly atmosphere. Their menu has plenty of downhome American food, a Friday fish fry, as well as Greek favorites, an homage to their Greek beginnings.
Eastside - bordered by S. Pennsylvania, 4-96, 1-27, and Saginaw
The Green Door - This spacious bar with a dance floor describes itself as a blues bar, but the genres of music vary every day of the week. DJ trivia followed by live djs are on Tuesdays, blues is on Wednesdays, karaoke is on Thursdays, and Fridays and Saturdays can feature anywhere from a classic rock band to a current pop band. Their menu is short, but they do pizza and burgers very well.
The Waterfront Bar and Grill - Located inside the City Market, it is just a short walk from Marketplace, Riverfront Apartments, and The Outfield. This bar has the most neighborhood feel among the downtown bars. Many of the regulars sitting up at the bar know nearly everyone there and if they don't know you, they'll likely strike up a conversation. Patrons young and old often sing along together to the juke box. Brand new dart boards with lighted rings are lined up on one wall in their own area. Their menu features excellent pizza and Gump's bbq. Wash it all down with a $2 All Day IPA or Fat Tire can.
Old Town and Groesbeck
Zoobies - Zoobies appeals to both beer aficionados with an artfully chosen rotating beer list, but also the craft cocktail lover with their very own craft cocktail menu. It is rumored that they have some of the best Moscow mules in Lansing, too. They share a food menu with The Cosmos Pizza, consisting of creative gourmet pizzas and irresistible appetizers like duck fat fries, goat cheese bruschetta, and stuffed corn fritters. They also offer several unique salads with optional protein. Park at The Cosmos - it is just easier that way.
Tecumseh River - Northwest Lansing by the airport
Airport Tavern - The Airport Tavern is a longstanding bar and restaurant on Grand River. It is a simple and cozy place that serves both lunch and dinner. They are known for their affordable steaks and prime rib, which are arguably the best in Lansing.
Forest View Neighborhood - bordered by Jolly, Aurelius, Collins, and Mt Hope Rds
Leo's Lodge - Like all Leo's around town, this bar and restaurant has a cozy up north feel with knotty pine and taxidermy everywhere. Leo's Lodge has the game on TV and a menu with your favorite American fare - along with Mexican offerings. Customer favorites include the turkey reuben, steak fajita salad, the pizza (on special on Sundays), and the cheese bread.
Colonial Village - bordered by W. Mt. Hope Ave, W. Holmes Rd, Pleasant Grove Rd, and MLK
and Baker neighborhood
LeRoy's - This bar is dark and cozy in the front, but the back bar features a bright atrium-like look. (In the summer, patrons really enjoy "The Back Yard", a large covered deck added in 2006.) Burgers are Leroy's specialty - there are 13 on the menu! The menu is rounded out with fried chicken, shrimp, and fish, as well as traditional sandwiches, sides, and appetizers at really affordable prices.
REO Town, Moore's Park, Quentin Park, and Old Everett
REO Town Pub - The ReoTown Pub is one of those classic, old long, narrow neighborhood bars. Here you will find rotating craft beers, but no food, unless it is Wednesday, when they have their popular steak night. One of the best parts of ReoTown Pub besides the people is the free jukebox!
Westgate Tavern - The Westgate's pizza may be the best kept secret in town (it is very cheesy!). Patrons also love the burgers, including the juicy-Lucy style. They'll always have the game on and they host a lively karaoke on Saturday nights.
Reno's West - Reno's West (or any of the Reno's, really) is one of the largest bars in town. The front/east area has more of a family restaurant feel, with arcade games. A small bar area separates it from a large enclosed area featuring a very large wraparound bar with a solid row of flat screens above showing a variety of sporting events. This area has a lot of windows and light due to the overhead doors that open up in the summer. You may be able to catch a live band starting at 7 pm on Friday and Saturday nights. Reno's offers a wide selection of flavored vodkas (the drinks are doubles) and craft beers. The food menu has your typical American fare, with their pizza really taking the spotlight. Try the potato or bbq chicken!
Coach's - Cozy but spacious, stop in to play pool or catch a live band or dj on the weekends. The pizza here is so good, those in the neighborhood often order it for take out. In the summer months, you can join a volleyball league and play on the beautiful court bordered by their nice wooden patio and a line of mature, plush trees.
Friday, February 2nd, 8 pm - 12 am
Lansing Brewing Company, 518 E. Shiawassee St., Lansing
Come out to Lansing's finest brewery for great food, drinks, and your favorite jams from Avon Bomb!
Michelle Held w/Debbie Walton
Friday, February 2nd, 7:30 pm
MI Blue Owl Coffee, 1149 S. Washington Ave., Lansing
Please join us for an evening of original music in this cozy, warm atmosphere. Debbie Walton will kick things off at 7:30pm and Michelle Held will play a couple of sets from 8 :00pm- 9:30pm. No cover.
Indigenous, an Illustration by Nevin Speerbrecker
Friday, February 2nd, 5 pm - 7 pm
Arts Council of Greater Lansing, 1208 Turner St., Lansing
Join us for an opening reception for Nevin Speerbrecker as we present his exhibition, "Indigenous, an Illustration," featuring illustrations of peoples from many different tribes as well as wildlife depictions from North America and around the world. Come meet Nevin and talk to him about his work. Light refreshments will be served.
Featured Artist Friday: Tim Drier
Friday, February 2nd, 7 pm - 10 pm
American Fifth Spirits Tasting Room, 112 N. Larch St., Lansing
A new monthly event where the artistic process unfolds before you! Our featured artist will make a creation while you watch and enjoy your spirits. Purchase a raffle ticket, or many, for a chance to win the piece created during the evening.
All proceeds go to the artist.
Tim is a versatile artist and accomplished with oils, color pencil, pastels and markers. He creates wildlife portraits, caricatures and transportation themed works.
Brent Lowry and The Drifters
Saturday, February 3rd, 8 pm - 11:30 pm
Tequila Cowboy Lansing, 5660 W. Saginaw Hwy, Lansing
Hear Brent Lowry and the Drifters live in concert!
"Brent Lowry & the Drifters have been making the most of 2017 and will top off the list of highlights when the Northwest Ohio band opens for Toby Keith at the Bash on the Bay Country Music Festival on August 31. The band released their second EP, The Drifter, in May and opened for Jerrod Niemann at Tequila Cowboy in Michigan later that month. They followed that show up with another, opening for Rodney Atkins at the Hamler Country Fest. Over the past few years Brent Lowry & the Drifters have also opened for David Allan Coe, Craig Campbell, Brothers Osborne, Paramlee, Josh Thompson and many others. The band traveled to Nashville in late May and early June to record tracks at Skaggs Place Studio for their next EP and also performed at Tequila Cowboy and Crazytown on Broadway during CMA Fest in Music City."
Doors open at 4 p.m. and tickets are free.
As I Walk Through the Valley
Saturday, February 3rd, 7 pm - 9 pm
The Robin Theatre, 1105 S. Washington Ave, Lansing
Charlie Vela & Ronnie Garza/United States/2017/81 min
Director in Attendance
As I Walk Through The Valley documents 40 years of musical history and Mexican-American culture. It is the first comprehensive look at rock music in the Rio Grande Valley. The film is an oral history of the popular music of The Valley told by the musicians, promoters, producers, and scenesters who lived it. The Rio Grande Valley has been called a flashpoint for the creation of Mexican-American Culture in the United States. Roughly 230 miles south of San Antonio, the river delta known as The Valley is a network of cities and roads that sits at the southernmost border between the United States and Mexico. Combining over 100 hours of interviews as well as never-before-seen archival footage and photographs, this documentary tracks the musical evolution of a region that has forged its own unique identity between two countries.
Young Pioneer, Valley Girl, Lilac Lungs, and James Gardin
Saturday, February 3rd, 7 pm - 12 am
The Loft, 414 E. Michigan Ave, Lansing
16+ // $10 in advance, $12 DOS // 7pm Doors
Tickets available at www.theloftlansing.com or get them fee free at the The Loft box office.
Complete Show information at https://www.theloftlansing.com/event/1595756-young-pioneer-lansing/
Bowl for Babies
Sunday, February 4th, 2 pm
City Limits, 2120 E. Saginaw, East Lansing
We need bowling teams! This Sunday, February 4th, from 2pm-4pm. Make it a pre-game Superbowl activity. Pizza and prizes. If you can't make it, please consider raising money for the event by having your friends/family pledge or sponsor one of our residents.
Hannah's House in Lansing is a non-profit, Christian home for homeless pregnant women (18+). As a maternity shelter we are long-term and provide a program for the women who reside here. They are given free room and board, as well as all personal items for baby and mother--free of charge!
Super Super Sunday
Sunday, February 4th, 11 am - 11:59 pm
Spare Time Entertainment Center, 3101 E. Grand River Ave, Lansing
$9.99 per person
- 1 Hour of Bowling with Shoes (Must be completed by 4 PM)
- 5 Attractions
- $5 Game Card
The 5:01 is looking for guest bloggers to share their experiences on the benefits of living, working and playing in the greater Lansing area.