It's hard to believe that it has been exactly one year since I sat down to write my first Mining Journal column as the Executive Director for the Greater Ishpeming-Negaunee Area Chamber of Commerce. It's not hard to believe that I am still just as excited about all the things going on in our towns and with our businesses.
Speaking of businesses: It seems as though new life has been breathed into many buildings this June. We want to congratulate and give a "West-End Welcome" to the businesses that recently held ribbon cuttings: Great Lakes Recovery Center for both their Tobin Administrative Building and Woodland Adolescent Residential Building, the new YMCA West-End Facility located in the old Range Bank, the Negaunee Historical Society celebrated their new porch, Native Nails in downtown Ishpeming is now accepting clients, and we are happy to see Jackson's Pit is up and running in downtown Negaunee before Pioneer Days.
And now on to Pioneer Days and the 4th of July recap- did you come out and join us? If you didn't then you were certainly part of the minority.
Another parade season has gone by and I'm amazed at the number of people lining the streets of Ishpeming and Negaunee. The softball fields have been packed with players and visitors alike for the annual alumni tournaments (great job, WHS Class of 1997), and many classes have coordinated their reunions around the same time. Ishpeming's Festival of Treasures and Negaunee's Pioneer Days Flea Market pulled people in to see the great downtown shops.
And, not to forget, the community picnics, bouncy houses, and fireworks (July 3-Michigamme), fireworks (July 4-Ishpeming) and fireworks (July 12-Negaunee).
Hotels, restaurants and shops are finding their summer boom and we are ecstatic.
As we proceed to the end of July, we want to remind you of the annual Hilltop RV 'Round the Fire Business After Hours (July 23), and St. Rocco's Italian Festival, Red Earth Classic, and Swim Teal Lake for Diabetes (all on July 26).
Not to mention, we are in the final push for the Northern Lights Rave Run (Aug. 23)- if you haven't registered yet be sure to do so before Aug. 1 to guarantee your shirt.
The evening of fun will kick off at 6 p.m. with the Rave Run Festival. There will be plenty to keep you busy until the race, including Frisbee golf for a chance to win glow swag, a "Glow Yourself" booth, Chip-In to Win to double your money, and CONQUER the Mud Plunge Quarter Pipe for a chance to win a tablet- you didn't think we'd let that obstacle go to waste, did you?
The Kid's 1K starts at 8 p.m. and there will still be plenty of color, 5K kicks off at 9. Come and see the Al Quaal Recreation Area like you've never seen it before.
We welcome to our membership Great Lakes Recovery, Red Rocks Lanes Banquet & Catering Center and the Upper Peninsula Animal Welfare Shelter.
As always, I'll leave you with the reminder that you can stay up to date by liking the Chamber on facebook or visiting our website www.gincc.org.
You can also email firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to be added to our email list and search your mobile app store for GINCC Directory and download the free app featuring all of our great businesses.
Editor's note: Kori Tossava is director of the Greater Ishpeming-Negaunee Area Chamber of Commerce