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Morning Buzz: 5 things to know for February 7

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1. Some big news for outdoor enthusiasts, instead of housing development, the Highland’s Golf Club is now turning into a 121-acre nature preserve.

Blandford Nature Center will take over the defunct golf course. The developer who planned to build a new neighborhood on the property is helping to bay the nearly $3 million bill to transform the golf course into a permanent natural habitat.

The center expects to create new trails, start education programs, and build a visitor’s center. The nature center is accepting community input on how to work on the course.

Blandford is holding the grand opening of their visitor’s center on April 22, which is also Earth Day.


2. Etsy is a pretty popular website for people to buy and sell handmade items, and this week the website’s co-founder was in West Michigan to talk to entrepreneurs.

Matthew Stinchcomb stopped by the Lafontsee Galleries. He said, while profits are nice, making a positive social impact and staying rooted in your community as an entrepreneur is really important.

Etsy launched in 2005, and that same year they sold about $200,000 in goods.

Last year, they sold a little less than $3 billion in merchandise.


3. The new Michigan Farm Bureau Mobile Science Lab is up and running, making its way around Kent County.

The lab stopped at Southwood Elementary School in Grand Rapids for its first ever lesson on Monday.

Inside the lab, there’s a classroom that’s ready for students so they can learn about the connections between science and agriculture.

The lab educators are still working to develop the program, but they say their goal is to teach kids about water standards, food safety, DNA extraction, and alternative plastics.

The lab is set to visit eight more schools in the country.


4. Michigan and Michigan State will meet once again on the Hardwood just nine days after the Spartans beat the Wolverines in East Lansing 70 to 62.

Miles Bridges was big in that win for Michigan State while Michigan’s Zak Irvin was held scoreless.

The Wolverines will need more from him tonight because the Spartans have won the last five in the series.


5. Long Road Distillers in Grand Rapids has a new gin made entirely out of local ingredients.

It’s called “Michi-Gin,” and there was a release party at Long Road on Monday.

Long Road says they’ve been working on this gin since they first opened two years ago. In a release, the distillery said they were having a tough time finding a local juniper, which is a key ingredient in gin. Fortunately they finally found abundance on Beaver Island.

“Michi-Gin” is available statewide, at stores, bars, and restaurants.

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