TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — Michigan officials have selected 14 community and state parks, trails and sports facilities to share $5.4 million in federal grants.
The state Department of Natural Resources said the money will come from the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund, which is supported by revenues from gas and oil development from the Gulf of Mexico.Continue reading
Michigan communities are in for outdoor improvements with 32 recreation and forestry projects approved for over $2 million in state funding.
This week, the Department of Natural Resources approved $1.9 million in funding for recreation projects and about $99,000 for urban forestry improvements. The DNR also recommended $5.4 million in Land and Water Conservation Fund grants to support park projects across the state; those funds are awaiting federal approval.
“During this time, having a fun, safe place to enjoy the outdoors is more important than ever, and these grants make projects to achieve that possible,” said Christie Bayus, Recreation Passport grant program manager.
The state’s 10-year-old Recreation Passport grant program is providing $1,926,000 for 18 projects, including a trailhead development in Marquette County, a recreation center renovation in Oakland County and park improvements in Crawford County.
The grants are funded through purchases of Recreation Passports, which are required for entry into Michigan’s 103 state parks, 140 state forest campgrounds, hundreds of miles of state trails, historic sites, hundreds of boating access sites and other outdoor spaces. About $1 from every passport goes to the grant program.
Counties where recreation grant funding has been approved include Alcona, Alpena, Barry, Chippewa, Clare, Crawford, Genesee, Isabella, Lapeer, Manistee, Marquette, Monroe, Montmorency, Oakland, Ogemaw, Osceola and Shiawassee.
Find the full list of projects here.
Communities across Michigan will have funding to get greener after this week’s approval of $98,690 in forestry grants. The DNR’s Urban and Community Forestry Program collaborated with the USDA Forest Service to fund the projects, which include tree planting and maintenance, planning for public spaces and educational programs.
This program helps Michigan increase the number of healthy trees where people live and work, which translates to cleaner air and water, cooler cities, erosion control and even reduced stress levels, according to the DNR.
Communities will use grant awards to inventory urban forests, plant trees, improve public awareness of threats such as invasive species and provide professional education opportunities. Local municipalities match the grants dollar-for-dollar.
Forestry grants were approved in Grand Traverse, Ingham, Kalamazoo, Kent, Livingston, Macomb, Marquette, Monroe, Oakland, Ottawa, Washtenaw and Wayne counties.
Find the full list of projects here.
This week, the DNR also recommended 14 projects to receive a share of $5,441,600 in federal funding.
The Land and Water Conservation Fund grants would support improvements to trails, sports facilities, and state and local parks across Michigan to bring “real-world health and social benefits to residents and visitors,” said Dan Lord, DNR grants manager.
If approved by the National Park Service, the funding would support campground developments, park renovations and improvements, accessible playground development, accessibility improvements and more.
“The Land and Water Conservation Fund is pivotal in supporting projects that improve the quality of outdoor recreation for communities across Michigan,” Lord said.
Projects recommended for funding are in Bay, Berrien, Eaton, Houghton, Ingham, Macomb, Oakland, Oceana, Van Buren, Washtenaw and Wayne counties.
Find the full list of recommended projects here.
The fund is supported by revenues from federal
From House Beautiful
As the holidays approach, so does the debate of whether or not inflatable decorations deserve a spot on your lawn. Are they tacky? Festive and fun? Well, if you’re team giant lawn inflatable, we’ve found the best centerpiece to display in your yard this holiday season: this enormous National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation inflatable that projects scenes from the classic movie.
Available for purchase at Home Depot, the lawn inflatable stands at eight feet tall. It’s shaped like a snow globe, which is fitting for winter. The top of the globe features a sign with the title of the movie surrounded by illustrations of Christmas lights, and the base reads, “Nuts about Christmas” with images of two squirrels on either side of the word “Christmas.”
The best part? The globe is blank so you can project scenes of the movie onto it. The inflatable comes with a LightShow projector that plays five Christmas Vacation scenes and four exciting transitions with instrumental music. You also have the option to customize the order of the scenes. Plus, you can play them on a continuous loop or show a single scene. Even better, the inflatable has external ports so you can play the entire Christmas Vacation movie and the rest of your favorite holiday movies.
Can’t get enough of Christmas Vacation? Sam’s Club is offering a virtual shopping experience that lets you explore the the iconic Griswold family home during Christmas and shop items in and around it.
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Henrico-based KM Hotels has opened two new hotels in the Richmond region in recent months.
The company opened up the Residence Inn by Marriott on Glenside Drive just north of West Broad Street in Henrico County last month.
That hotel site, which is in front of the Hampton Inn & Suites that KM Hotels also owns, had been the home of the Skilligalee seafood restaurant, which closed in 2013.
The 119-room, four-story hotel was supposed to open earlier this year, but the coronavirus pandemic delayed the opening.
KM Hotels also opened a five-story Tru by Hilton hotel in Ashland. The 91-room hotel is at the northwest quadrant of state Route 54 and Interstate 95.
It also opened a Tru hotel in Radford.
Both Tru hotels also were slated to open earlier this year, but got delayed.
KM Hotels is proceeding with other projects in the Richmond region, but those developments have been delayed because of the pandemic, said Mayur Patel, the president and chief operating officer of KM Hotels.
“They have been prolonged and are still going through the development approval process,” Patel said.
One project calls for a nine-story hotel along the Kanawha Canal in downtown Richmond for an AC Hotel by Marriott.