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Downtown residents invited to share thoughts about future of city

Mix, Mingle and Share Your Voice hopes to prompt residents to meet their neighbors and learn about important issues in the community.
Downtown residents listen at a GR Forward forum held at the Federal Building earlier this year.

Downtown residents listen at a GR Forward forum held at the Federal Building earlier this year. /Courtesy of the City of Grand Rapids Planning Department

Underwriting support from:

Mix, Mingle and Share Your Voice

Wednesday, April 15

5:30-8 p.m.

The B.O.B.'s Eve Lounge

Free appetizers and drink specials

Facebook event page

Mix, Mingle and Share Your Voice, an upcoming event sparked by Downtown Dwellers GR, invites downtown residents to meet their neighbors, share insights on the future of Grand Rapids and learn from city developers about current projects and proposals.

"The purpose is to inform downtown residents of the fact that they have the opportunity to share their thoughts and ideas as to the future of Grand Rapids," says Allen "Dusty" Duistermars, owner of Downtown Dwellers GR, one of the sponsors of the event.

Downtown Dwellers GR is an informal group of residents who live in the core city of Grand Rapids. Members can bring issues or concerns about the city to the group for discussion or action, to improve and sustain the Grand Rapids community as a whole.

The mixer is organized in conjunction with GR Forward, an organization that invites the public to join with Downtown Grand Rapids Inc. and the City of Grand Rapids to make progress towards a holisitic vision for Downtown and the Grand River.

GR Forward will present on future developments in the city, and focus on downtown residents' own neighborhood with their River Corridor Plan, looking at how the Grand River can help shape and better the Grand Rapids area.

The presentation will ask downtown Grand Rapids residents to step forward and share their voice on topics that concern them in the city.

"All the issues that face us today as we grow, those are the ones that GRForward is considering and talking about and trying to get input from those of us who live in the city," Duistermars says.

Mix, Mingle and Share Your Voice will also feature speakers, including City Planner Suzanne Schultz, City Commissioner Ruth Kelly, Mayoral Candidate and City Commissioner Rosalynn Bliss and County Commissioner Jim Talen.

The event also hopes to introduce downtown dwellers to their neighbors, and help them encounter some new voices in the city. To help facilitate this, the first hour of the event is a mixer.

"The main focus is not only the program, but also to mix and mingle with other residents of the downtown area," Duistermars says. "So we're gonna serve some booze and some food, and we're gonna have a good time. We're gonna party!"

The event takes place on Wednesday, April 15 from 5:30-8 p.m at The B.O.B.'s Eve Lounge. The Gilmore Collection will provide complimentary appetizers, and there will be drink specials for the event.

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