Bob Renwick, and Gary Wilfong Sr. started the basketball program 25 years ago with AYBT and then partnered with the Meijer State Games of Michigan. After over two decades of building the program, the pair retired, leaving big footsteps for whoever came next.
In West Michigan, you can find a lot of things but field hockey teams are few and far between. In fact, there are only two schools that have field hockey teams on the west side of the state. One of those schools is East Grand Rapids High School, where you will find the Meijer State Games Field Hockey Tournament director Ingrid Fournier. As a current player herself, Fournier uses her passion for field hockey and athletic skills to coach players at East Grand Rapids High School.
Since there are only two schools that offer field hockey on the west side of the state, the life of a field hockey athlete in Midwest Michigan requires a lot of traveling to the east side of Michigan where the majority of games and tournaments are currently held. This is something Fournier hopes to change.
Fournier uses the hashtag #Growthegame and she means it. Fournier says she wants to see field hockey grow on Michigan’s west side and her coaching is one way she is spreading the word about Field Hockey. Fournier also founded and plays with the group the "The Old Folks Field Hockey Club". The club is focused on gaining more athletes and helping the club’s players regularly participate in field hockey.
The club started this past year with 9-13 adults playing indoors whenever they have the chance. The club members range form alumna of EGR to parents of current players who just wanted to try out the sport. Fournier remembers everyone aching for days but knowing playing field hockey was worth it.
For anyone considering trying field hockey, Fournier says do it! The sport requires hand eye coordination, similar to other sports, which can make field hockey easier to pick up. Even if you haven't been athletically involved before, field hockey is still worth looking into for fun or competition.
As a first-year tournament director, Fournier jumped at the opportunity to organize the Field Hockey tournament with the Meijer State Games of Michigan. Fournier's love for her sport pushes her to spread the word about field hockey and keep being fully involved.
The West Michigan Field Hockey Facebook page offers announcements, events, and other posts for those interested in or already playing field hockey. Make sure to also check out the Meijer State Games of Michigan field hockey event happening June 23rd at East Grand Rapids High School from 2:00pm-7:00pm.
As kids we have dreamlike career aspirations - old west cowboys or world saving superheroes. We might not have grown up to fill those positions, but there is one job many kids to be that we can all pursue even in our adult years. Ninjas. Yes, there are people that train to be ninjas that compete in Michigan, across the country, and around the globe, and yes, you can be one of them.
Madhokar wanted to form a cricket club for West Michigan cricket enthusiasts to put on tournaments and showcase local talent. That idea is how the West Michigan Cricket Club was founded. In 2016, Madhokar and his business partners created the West Michigan Cricket Club with intentions to grow the sport. The main goal of the club was to grow the popularity of cricket and bring players together. There are currently 25 players in the club, but the club is always open to more athletes.
Not everybody can win first place, but everybody can learn from a loss. Athletes encounter losses all the time on their way to being take-home-the-title winners. The way an athlete handles and uses their loses greatly impacts future outcomes. Here’s why.
By Olivia Menchaca
The Meijer State Games knows how important every member of team is when it comes to creating a successful event for thousands of athletes and spectators. Lake Michigan Credit Union is not only a sponsor but a member of this team. Every year, LMCU employees volunteer for the Meijer State Games.
The 2018 Summer Meijer State Games will be the third year LMCU volunteers have come out to help. From checking in athletes to guiding visitors, LMCU volunteers are in all parts of the Meijer Games main weekend.
"Being able to reassure people. give them information about what they need...something about being that friendly face that helps make the connection," says Mary Beth Braun, a LMCU volunteer. Mary Beth first started volunteering with the Meijer State Games last summer during the State Games of America.
For the State Games of America, the opening ceremony was at Van Andel arena. Mary Beth remembers watching the athletes as a volunteer.
"[The athletes] see this huge arena. Then their eyes would light up like 'wow, I'm a part of this'". This experience as a volunteer and others during her time at the State Games are what is bringing Mary Beth back to volunteer a second year.
"I would recommend volunteering," Mary Beth says, "I think to some degree, it's important that we celebrate what we love about our city and this area. Its really fun to get to know some other people and make the experience as positive as it could be."
Every year when the Meijer State Games begin there is a sort of excitement that everyone feels. The athletes love to compete their talent, spectators love to watch their favorite sports, and volunteers love to see everything play out just right.
If you want to be apart of the volunteer experience, you can sign up here. This year, the Meijer State Games main event weekend will be June 22-24. Opening Ceremony will be held at East Kentwood High School on June 22.
Grand Rapids, Mich., June 6, 2018 – Priority Health has been named as the presenting sponsor of the West Michigan Corporate Challenge. The West Michigan Corporate Challenge presented by Priority Health will take place September 5-8, 2018 at various venues throughout the greater Grand Rapids area. Endorsed by the Michigan Fitness Foundation, the West Michigan Corporate Challenge brings together West Michigan businesses to get active through friendly competition.
Justin Caine is a para athlete with an inspiring story and advice for competing, training, and doing your best.
Photographer Diane Durand gives a quick look into her experience as a volunteer photographer for the Meijer State Games of Michigan. Learn more about the Marks Photo and Video sponsored photo contest, becoming a volunteer photographer and what to expect.
FootGolf is making its debut at the Meijer State Games this summer. Learn more about what FootGolf is and why you should consider coming out to play.
Grand Rapids, Mich., May 23, 2018 – The 2018 Meijer State Games of Michigan − Summer Games will offer 39 sports at 49 different venues with an estimated 8,000+ athletes. The Meijer State Games of Michigan continues to add events to the lineup, which allows people of all age, gender and ability to compete. There are 30 days left until the Opening Ceremony (June 22) scheduled to take place on the main weekend of June 22-24.