WGVU Top Story
Whitecaps focus on wowing fans at concession stands
February 12, 2013 | WGVU
“What is that, deep fried risotto here and that’s a Pig swims to Cuba sandwich which is a mixture of looks like some ham, pickles, some mustard. It looks delicious, though.
The West Michigan Whitecaps, Mickey Graham is my maitre d’. At Wyoming’s Gordon Food Service headquarters, clients are rolling out new food items that could potentially end up on the minor league ballpark’s menu like the Drunken Weiner.
“We’ve got a quarter pound hotdog, we beer batter it, deep fry it, put it in a nice big bun, liquidy cheese and a couple strips of bacon,” as described by Brent Smith who works with Grand Rapids-based Supreme Great Lakes.
“Whitecaps do things different than any other minor league baseball in the country,” explained Kevin Vander Meer with Michaels and Associates, a Grand Rapids food broker.
I asked if there’s a little competition here?
“It is a competition every year. Who’s going to come up with what and the wildest and craziest thing we’re going to see this year? We developed the Fifth Third Burger with them a few years back and it’s still a very popular item”
Vander Meer rattles of a few of his new creations.
“Well, we’ve got a giant eight once meatball here that is a precooked meatball. It’s that wow factor. It’s a baseball sized meatball. We have an Italian sausage wrapped in bacon that we’ve sautéed on a flat top grill. Deep fried avocados. When we were out east we went to a restaurant and they were doing deep fried avocado and we were like, what a unique item.”
Lew Chamberlin is Managing Partner and Chief Executive Officer for West Michigan Whitecaps Baseball. He calls this experience food entrepreneurism. The organization will give anything a try.
I ask him if there’s a point made or if there’s any pressure to have something on the menu that becomes nationally acclaimed?
“You know, that sort of happened, that was just sort of a side benefit of the whole Fifth Third Burger creation and I don’t think we’re necessarily looking for national exposure. It’s great when you get it”
Brett Bakita is sports radio program director at WBBL.
He’s doing some taste testing.
“Any type of that stuff that gives you notoriety is a big deal. That’s why you see even in what we cover in sports radio stories that pop up about such-and-such got married at a game or whatever. Everyone’s looking for that angle from the social media aspect which is so powerful with YouTube and everything. So, for them they caught fame. It was a nice moment that they had with the Fifth Third Burger and now you always try to recreate that if you can.”
With six vendors serving up nearly 100 new items there’s a good chance something will amaze the masses and mass media.
Western Michigan approves 3-year faculty contract
KALAMAZOO, Mich October 1, 2014 | WGVU The Western Michigan University board of trustees has approved a new contract with the school's faculty union.
Founders Brewing plans $35 million expansion
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. October 1, 2014 | WGVU Founders Brewing Co. is planning a $35 million project to double the size of its Grand Rapids facility.
Muskegon County, Detroit, get lead abatement aid
MUSKEGON, Mich. October 1, 2014 | AP The federal government has awarded $4.74 million to Muskegon County and Detroit authorities to protect children from lead poisoning at home.
Michigan has 25 confirmed cases of severe virus
LANSING, Mich. October 1, 2014 | AP Federal health officials have confirmed 25 cases of a severe respiratory illness in Michigan, including a young child that developed lower extremity paralysis.
Chrysler's US sales jump 19 percent in September
DETROIT October 1, 2014 | AP Chrysler Group says its U.S. sales rose 19 percent in September thanks to strong demand for the new Jeep Cherokee SUV and the Ram pickup.
Consumers Energy builds new 24-mile pipeline
COLDWATER, Mich. October 1, 2014 | AP Consumers Energy has built a 24-mile natural gas pipeline in southwestern Michigan that's part of a $120 million project.
Lawyer says singer Anita Baker owes him money
Detroit MI September 30, 2014 | WGVU A lawyer who represented Anita Baker against allegations she failed to pay for work done on her Detroit-area home is suing the singer, saying she owes him money.
Name released of woman, 72, found slain in river
Polkton Township, MI September 30, 2014 | WGVU Authorities have released the name of a 72-year-old woman whose body was found in the Grand River in western Michigan after she was beaten to death.
State offers $20 permits for cutting fuel wood
Lansing MI September 30, 2014 | WGVU The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is offering permits for cutting wood in state forests to use as fuel this winter.
$2.3 million aims to help public housing residents
Lansing MI September 30, 2014 | WGVU More than $2.3 million will help public housing residents and others across Michigan connect with local services to improve their education and employment.
Kellogg introduces Battle Creek economic project
Battle Creek MI September 30, 2014 | WGVU Cereal maker Kellogg and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation plan to work with Battle Creek residents to address economic issues in the city.
U.S. Department of Education partnering with WMU to improve graduation rate
KALAMAZOO, Mich. September 30, 2014 | WGVU Western Michigan University is receiving more than $3 million from the federal government aimed at improving low-income student graduation rates.
State changes to tax-funded development expected
September 30, 2014 | WGVU Efforts to reform tax capture districts continue at the state level.
West Michigan boy, 15, struck and killed by car
HOLLAND TOWNSHIP, Mich. September 30, 2014 | AP A 15-year-old western Michigan boy has been struck and killed by a car.
Snyder defends record, says he made tough calls
KALAMAZOO, Mich. September 30, 2014 | AP Gov. Rick Snyder has defended his record in a town hall event with voters, saying he made "tough decisions" to put Michigan on a positive path forward.
Multiple-murder convict gets 30-50 years in escape
IONIA, Mich. September 30, 2014 | AP A man serving life for his role in four murders has been sentenced to 30 to 50 years for escaping from a Michigan prison and kidnapping a woman during his attempted getaway.
State lawmakers debate bill aimed at reducing homelessness
September 30, 2014 | MPRN It looks like a bipartisan bill meant to reduce homelessness in Michigan has stalled. As Jake Neher reports, the governor’s Mental Health and Wellness Commission called for the legislation.
Judge won't stop Detroit water shutoffs
Detroit MI September 29, 2014 | WGVU A judge overseeing Detroit's bankruptcy won't stop the city from shutting off water if people can't pay their bill.
Port Huron center construction hits halfway mark
Port Huron September 29, 2014 | WGVU Construction is about halfway complete on a $5.5 million welcome center for people entering the U.S. at Port Huron.
Detroit crews start laying light rail track
Detroit MI September 29, 2014 | WGVU Crews have started laying the track for Detroit's long-awaited commuter light rail project.
West Africans in Detroit rally over Ebola outbreak
Detroit MI September 29, 2014 | WGVU Detroit's West African communities are rallying to raise money and awareness to help families suffering from the Ebola virus overseas, as well as those in Michigan feeling the effects of the crisis.
AAA Michigan: Gas prices rise 4 cents in week
Dearborn MI September 29, 2014 | WGVU AAA Michigan says gasoline prices in the state have risen about 4 cents in the last week.
Grand Rapids forum tackles local, state issues
September 29, 2014 | WGVU Business and policy leaders talk West Michigan’s future at a two-day event.
Music and art featured at Grand Haven festival
September 29, 2014 | WGVU Art Prize is not the only creative showcase in town.
WMPF: Correct framework key to addressing poverty
September 29, 2014 | WGVU Social misunderstandings of poverty may cause additional harm when it comes to education and employment.
Snyder hosting 1st of town hall campaign events
KALAMAZOO, Mich. September 29, 2014 | AP Gov. Rick Snyder is kicking off a series of town hall-style events with voters as he campaigns for re-election.
Michigan pit bull owners protest at ArtPrize entry
GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. September 29, 2014 | AP Pit bull owners are protesting an entry in the Grand Rapids ArtPrize contest that memorializes dog attack victims because they say it unfairly blames the dog breeds.
Man, 83, charged in wreck that killed his wife
WRIGHT TOWNSHIP, Mich. September 29, 2014 | AP An 83-year-old man has been charged in a wrong-way crash that killed his wife and another woman on Interstate 96 in western Michigan.
Snyder: US, not Canada, should pay for customs plaza
September 29, 2014 | MPRN Governor Rick Snyder is expressing frustration that the US government still hasn’t ponied up the money to pay for a new customs plaza to go along with the new international bridge in Detroit.
We have more from Rick Pluta.
Company working to Mow Down Hunger in Detroit area
Detroit MI September 26, 2014 | WGVU An outdoor power equipment company is continuing to Mow Down Hunger in the Detroit area.
Muskegon college opens health science center
Muskegon MI September 26, 2014 | WGVU A Muskegon college has opened an $8 million health science center to train health care providers in a simulated operating room and radiology suite.
Detroit's elected officials regain control of city
Detroit MI September 26, 2014 | WGVU The day-to-day operations of Detroit's city government are back in the hands of its elected mayor and City Council.
Girl, 10, with leukemia to be celebrity for a day
September 26, 2014 | WGVU A 10-year-old Detroit-area girl with leukemia is about to become a celebrity for a day.
Grant aimed at improving health in Grand Rapids
Grand Rapids MI September 26, 2014 | WGVU A health department that serves the Grand Rapids area will receive more than $2 million over three years to reduce chronic disease and promote healthier lifestyles.
Holland looks to link new residents to community
September 26, 2014 | WGVU City of Holland officials want to be better neighbors to new families.
Man convicted in fatal shooting at Kalamazoo bar
Kalamazoo, MI September 26, 2014 | AP A 24-year-old man faces sentencing next month after being convicted of second-degree murder in a shooting death at a Kalamazoo sports bar.
Ex-state Sen. Jaye gets plea deal in Macomb County
September 26, 2014 | AP A former state senator has taken a plea deal for a disorderly conduct charge in Macomb County.
Land transfer deal for new border bridge approved
DETROIT September 26, 2014 | AP The state has approved Detroit's transfer of 301 city-owned properties to a Michigan land bank authority in exchange for $1.4 million from the Canadian government as part of plans for an international commuter bridge.
Christie praises Snyder's handling of Detroit
DETROIT September 26, 2014 | AP New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is praising how Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has addressed bankrupt Detroit, crediting him for being realistic with residents.
State board completes Detroit EM wrapup
September 26, 2014 | MPRN A loan board has approved some of the final steps that make up the state’s role in Detroit’s bankruptcy.
We have more from Rick Pluta.
Transportation Secretary Foxx to speak in Detroit
Detroit MI September 25, 2014 | WGVU Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx is scheduled to discuss race and inequality with students in Detroit and also make a funding announcement for the city's public transportation system.
Conyers to receive first Jazz Advocate Award
Detroit MI September 25, 2014 | WGVU Longtime Michigan Congressman John Conyers is being honored for his advocacy of jazz.
Groundbreaking set for new Detroit hockey arena
Detroit MI September 25, 2014 | WGVU Officials are expected to hold a groundbreaking for a new 18,000-seat hockey arena and 45-block entertainment complex in Detroit.
Grand Rapids ArtPrize competition bans artist
Grand Rapids MI September 25, 2014 | WGVU The annual ArtPrize international art contest in Grand Rapids has permanently banned a stunt artist who it says has broken public safety rules in past years.
Emaciated falcon rescued from Grand Rapids bridge
Grand Rapids MI September 25, 2014 | WGVU A young and emaciated peregrine falcon has been rescued from Blue Bridge in downtown Grand Rapids and is being taken to a wildlife rehabilitation center.
FDA reclassifies popular pain killer Vicodin
Grand Rapids MI September 25, 2014 | WGVU There’s a big change coming in the way a popular pain killer is prescribed
Kent County grant to bolster public health programs
September 25, 2014 | WGVU A $2.18 million grant received by the Kent County Heath Department benefits several Grand Rapids neighborhoods.
Baker College of Muskegon expands life science programs with new Health Science Center
September 25, 2014 | WGVU Muskegon’s Baker College is showing off its new Health Science Center. Campus president Lee Coggin tells WGVU the school is positioned to meet the demand for graduating life sciences specialists.
Snyder won’t comment on Aramark ‘murder for hire’ accusations during investigation
September 25, 2014 | MPRN Gov. Rick Snyder is staying silent on the latest scandal related to the state’s prison food service contract. That’s while the matter is under investigation.