Image showing what Valeo looks like on the inside

Hometown Highlight: Valeo

With all of the fitness options out there, Valeo strives to be just a little different in their approach. Located in downtown Holland, Valeo has a hip, industrial vibe and the space offers every client an awesome environment on their journey to better health and wellness.

What does “Valeo” mean? “Vuh-lay-oh” is Latin for “Have strength, have power, be effective” and that is exactly what they desire for their members.

In 2006, Jessica Luepke took her Exercise Science degree from Hope College and time spent in corporate wellness and established Valeo in her apartment. The business has grown to what it is today with her passion for functional training and her passion for creating a space for people to feel welcomed and proud of themselves.

Along with her husband Mike, who studies Exercise Science at Purdue, Valeo strives to help people look, move and feel awesome!

As part of their mission, they are dedicated to the joy and success of their members. Their goal is to help their members become healthy, active people by providing a welcoming environment and exceptional results-based fitness activities for all ages and abilities.

Word on the street:

“There is a feeling of my ‘fitness family’ when I walk into Valeo. I love the encouragement, the challenges, the laughs and the conversation. It is a welcoming environment. I need you, my body needs you and my well-being needs you.” – Deb

“I can’t enough positive things about my time at Valeo. The atmosphere of encouragement, positivity and community is unique and I find myself leaving each time strong, happy and proud of the achievements they foster in me. I would recommend Valeo without reservation.” – Ryan

Valeo offers personal workout plans, semi-private training, larger group classes and a nutritional lifestyle program that gets at the root of the habit change. There is something for everyone!

Valeo has been honored with the Official People’s Choice Award in both the “Fitness Center/Gym (2016)” and “Personal Training (2016, 2017)” Categories in the Holland’s Best of the Best Awards.

For more information, check out Valeo’s website.


Images of Waters Edge Fitness

Hometown Highlight: Waters Edge Fitness

You could say that Waters Edge Fitness is nothing like any other gym, fitness facility or studio.

They welcome you with a calm, zen, light filled gathering space and a positive vibe that owner Marissa Evans embodies and exudes when you pass through the front door.

Waters Edge was founded to be a community resource that promotes positivity, growth, and both physical and spiritual wellbeing.

Believing that health and fitness are an integral part of living a happy, productive life, Waters Edge strives to offer the most diverse and accessible schedule of classes in Muskegon. From Yoga and Tai-Chi to Zumba and weight-training, the goal is to provide a fitness (and time) option for anyone looking to move and sweat in an atmosphere that is affirming and encouraging.

“We tried to make this place exactly what we want fitness to be,” said Blake Evans, co-owner of Waters Edge Fitness in Muskegon. Contracts are not required.

“Waters Edge’s intimate classes not only burn calories but also make you part of something bigger; a healthier community,” said one happy client.

“I love the fact that Marissa is dedicated to the community and makes fitness affordable in Muskegon,” said another client. “Marissa has the best energy and I love the variety of classes they offer, such as Barre, which is hard to find.”

Classes and activities are not limited to the 4 walls. The fitness center offers classes in Tai Chi, Yoga on the beach, Zumba at Beechwood Park and kayak fit classes on Muskegon Lake as well.

“We want to offer something for everyone and to give people the opportunity to try new things,” Evans said.

For more information, visit Waters Edge Fitness’ website or check them out on Facebook!

Waters Edge Fitness
Address: 2465 Lakeshore Drive Muskegon, MI 49441
Hours of Operation: Monday-Thursday: 5:30am – 12:00pm (CLOSED 12pm-4pm) 4pm- 8pm; Friday: 5:30am – 12:00 pm (CLOSED 12pm-4pm) 4pm – 5pm; Saturday: 7:00 am- 11:00 am; Sunday: CLOSED

A Night of Pearls Event Brochure

Hometown Highlight: TCM Counseling

TCM Counseling is not unlike so many of the amazing non profit organizations that organically came about when a need arose in the Tri Cities area.

For 40 years, TCM Counseling has been providing accessible and affordable professional therapy services along the lakeshore. TCM’s mission: to offer help and healing for all, by providing accessible and affordable professional counseling services.

“Our unique business model enables us to maximize donations and help everyone who calls or walks through our doors. No one is ever turned away,” said Sarah Lewakowski, executive director.

In 2017, TCM provided over one million dollars of mental health services on a budget of $406,000.TCM is able to turn a $1 donation into $3 worth of counseling. The organization depends on every generous dollar received, with the great majority of that money going directly to client care.

With offices in Grand Haven and Holland, TCM helps with issues affecting adults, children, teens, and families, including but not limited to depression, anxiety, stress, trauma, parenting, marriage counseling, addiction, sexual abuse, conflict, coping, communication, ADD/ADHD and more. Partnering with over 50 therapists, all in professional practice, they will find the best counselor for each individual’s needs.

“To me, my counselor has been an angel in disguise. She has faithfully listened and shared her wealth of knowledge with me. Prior to meeting her, I had thoughts of suicide, as it seemed there was no way out due to a very difficult divorce, complications from a car accident and being told that I would never work again as a nurse. She helped me pick up the pieces of my life and put them back together again, all while showing great compassion and understanding,” said one client of her experience with TCM.

On November 8, “A Night of Pearls Down to Earth Fashion Event” fundraiser will offer a magical evening at Porto Bello Restaurants Grand Ballroom to raise funds for needed counseling, and to support awareness of current mental health issues. All proceeds will go to TCM to support their efforts, including the growing School Outreach Program.

For a fun filled evening with upscale fashion show, music, cash bar silent and live auction, as well as a raffle drawing go to for your tickets or to learn more!

On Wednesdays we wear pink!

“On Wednesdays, We Wear Pink”

Every two minutes, a woman in the United States is diagnosed with breast cancer.

To help combat these staggering numbers, every Wednesday during the month of October, North Ottawa Community Hospital (NOCH) will be offering any woman the opportunity to stop by the Breast Evaluation Center to get an annual screening.

Walk-ins are welcome and no appointment or physician referral is needed on Wednesdays from 8 a.m. to noon, making it as easy as possible for women to obtain the screening. All that is required is proof of health insurance.

The American College of Radiology recommends that women receive an annual mammogram starting at age 40 – even if they have no symptoms or family history of breast cancer. Early detection and effective treatment resulted in a 40 percent decline in breast cancer deaths in the U.S. in the last 25 years.

How? Annual mammograms. Mammograms can detect cancer early-when it is most treatable, up to two years before a patient or physician can feel them.

During this effort to expand their services to more women, NOCH employees and volunteers will be wearing pink as a visual reminder for everyone who visits the hospital that mammograms save lives. The Breast Evaluation Center is located on the first floor of NOCH inside the Medical Imaging Department.

The whole program is located at NOCH. All of their experts and technology are in one location.

For more information call 616-847-5430 or visit the NOCH Facebook page.

Images showing Sweet Spot Disc Golf's storefront

Hometown Highlights: Sweet Spot Disc Golf

For the love of the game of disc golf – and a lack of a local shop – Sweet Spot Disc Golf launched their store in Muskegon, Michigan, in 2005.

Today, Dan and Katie Jensen pride themselves in providing a full range of top disc golf brands while sharing their love of the sport with thousands of customers who want the best in their bag.

“We want our customers to become our friends and we really feel in order to do that we have to treat everyone as though they already are our friends when they walk through the door,” they said.

When you stop into Sweet Spot, you will find the best plastic discs and gear for players of any and all skill levels. Whether you’re an OPEN, AM1, 2, or 3, REC or beginner, you will find a range of discs and gear that play to your experience level and budget.

“We want people to experience the love and passion that we have of disc golf, and how awesome it is to get out and be active and get out and play something that is just so fun to do.”

“Great service is huge in the impact of someone’s day, because if someone walks into the shop and they have a great experience here, they are more apt to walk somewhere else and smile and give someone else a big smile, and a great experience throughout the rest of their day.”

Dan’s experience as a Disc Golf Pro Masters Player, along with several state championships, gives him the ability to educate and guide customers when deciding on the perfect supplies to meet their needs.

Offering clinics and lessons, Dan and Katie are dedicated to helping their customers succeed at the game. They love the sport and their customers…and seeing the sport continue to grow as people experience the sweet thrill of the throw.

“It’s just fun to see other people enjoying the game.”

If you are an enthusiast or just curious about trying this sport that allows you to enjoy nature, get a bit of experience and bond with friends, check out Sweet Spot’s website, stop in at 3142 Glade Street in Muskegon or give them a call at 231-903-3259.

Dan and Katie look forward to sharing their knowledge and love of the game with all of you!

Images from 2018 Stand Up for the Cure Event

Hometown Highlights: Stand Up for the Cure Muskegon

Stand Up for the Cure champions the fight to #SaveLives!

Since 2012, Stand Up for the Cure (SUFTC) has been providing free breast cancer screenings while uniting paddlers, fitness enthusiasts, yoga practitioners, medical professionals and the breast cancer community from California to Florida and Michigan to Washington in an effort to save lives.

The mission of SUFTC is to build a compassionate, empathetic, nationwide community to foster a healthy lifestyle while raising money for early breast cancer detection, treatment and education.

Stand Up for the Cure forwards 100 percent of the donations and proceeds from each event to their local affiliate partner of Susan G. Komen. Donated funds are returned to the local community through Komen’s local affiliate in the form of breast health program grants to clinics and other local effective organizations for screening, education, treatment, and psychosocial support programs for uninsured and under-insured women.

The events offer free on-site breast cancer screenings and resources from other healthcare partners. Event participants fundraiser with family, friends and co-workers while our corporate partners support the cause through sponsorship packages and exhibiting opportunities. To date, they have raised over $1 million.

Stand Up for the Cure introduces stand up paddling to participants of all ages and skill levels. The festival style events foster wellness for the body, mind, and soul with activists for the entire family, including paddling lessons, yoga classes, and friendly races. Each event is held at a beautiful paddling venue and includes a catered lunch and hosted happy hour for participants.

This year’s 2018 Muskegon event was held in July and raised over $75,000 to support the underserved in the community. With the support and generosity of Mercy Health, participants were screened for Melanoma and Breast Cancer for free while educating on the importance of annual mammograms.

Mark your calendars for next year’s 5th Annual Stand Up for the Cure Muskegon event, July 13, 2019. If you’re interested in donating, visit their website.

Images from Bodhi Tree Juice Company

Hometown Highlights: The Bodhi Tree Juice Co.

If you are lucky enough to have meandered through one of West Michigan’s Farmers Markets and stumbled upon the Bodhi Tree Juice Co. and stopped for a taste, you know that you have experienced something special.

In the summer of 2016, Renee Randell and her husband John started bringing their own blends of organic vegetables, fruit and herbs to the farmers market so their customers could juice for themselves. By fall of that same year, their customers encouraged them to start making the blends for them, so they rented Kitchen 242, and began experimenting with creating some delicious juice blends. They began selling their products at the Grand Haven Farmers Market, where they developed a loyal following!

Within a year, they expanded from one Farmers Market to five, up the coast of West Michigan from Holland to Muskegon. The demand became so great for their cold pressed juices that they
were running out of space, so they decided to open a shop in Grand Haven. After renovating and adding a large industrial kitchen where they could serve their organic beverages, salads,
and assortment of other healthy products, they opened their doors in May of 2018. Always looking for ways to support other businesses and artisans, the Bodhi Tree Juice Company also carries all kinds of fun fair-trade gifts.

When you stop in the store, you are welcomed with warm smiles and graciously greeted like family. Peak through the window to the kitchen and you will see smiling, happy faces working with love to peel, dice, slice and press the best organic pressed juices in West Michigan. Delicious fresh grab and go salads, energy bites, smoothies and Kombucha are just a few of the tasty treats you can take home.

Bodhi Tree Juice Co. is a company with a conscience as Renee and John live out their passion and purpose to enhance people’s lives by providing these healthy, nutritious opportunities to
thrive. Stop in today to say hi, you will be glad you did!

For more information, visit Bodhi Tree Juice Co.’s website.

Address: 1115 Washington St, Grand Haven, Michigan 49417
Phone Number: 616-414-9434

Summer Hours:
Monday – Friday  7 AM – 7 PM
Saturday 8 AM – 4 PM
Sunday 9 AM – 1 PM