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Entrepreneurship : Featured Stories

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G-Sync: Summer's bookend is a Silver Line

Lifestyle Editor Tommy Allen reflects on a couple's comments at the start of summer and finds something beautiful that ends with the launch of a Silver Line. Along the way, he wonders if the word "progressive" has come to mean something new as the city moves forward.


G-Sync: Our big, bold bid to build the future

Last week, in part one of the feature on the Living Building Challenge bid of Matthew and Kristin Fowler, G-Sync reported the goals of the project. This week, Tommy Allen looks at how the West Michigan community is coming together to make it happen.


Part science fair, part county fair, Maker Faire brings the maker movement to Grand Rapids

This summer, the West Michigan maker scene gets a makeover, as Mini Maker Faire comes to town and lets local inventors and innovators get in on a burgeoning national trend. Audria Larsen finds out why the event is a boon for creators and creatives of all ages and occupations.

Matt and Kristin Fowler

G-Sync: Living Building Challenge in Grand Rapids

Goethe's famous quote, "Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it" becomes crystal clear with new meaning when Lifestyle Editor Tommy Allen meets Baxter neighborhood's Matt and Kristin Fowler. This is part one of their incredible journey to build something new in our city.

Ashley Cole in her home office.

New ways of working in West Michigan, part two

For an increasing percentage of the local workforce, going to work no longer means commuting to a corporate office from nine to five. John Rumery takes a look at some non-traditional environments in this two-part series that showcases West Michigan's best co-working spaces as well as some unusual mobile working arrangements.


RapidChat: Kelly LeCoy

For this week’s RapidChat, Molly Crist and Kelly LeCoy, friends and food-entrepreneurs, threw a blanket down in Wilcox Park to chat it up and reflect on Kelly’s experience starting, operating, and recently selling (as of last week) Uptown Kitchen, a shared-use incubator kitchen in Eastown. She’s moving on in life, leaving the keys with a pair of local bagel geniuses, and pursuing the next opportunity. Read on as Kelly talks about her work growing the local food culture, engaging with her beloved business districts, and learning hard lessons.

Detroit Eastern Market's Shinola Clock.

G-Sync: Postcards from Detroit's Edge

Ever wonder what else is happening in Detroit beyond the often-negative headlines? Lifestyle Editor Tommy Allen shares his insights and photos from the latest Rapid Growth #GRR2DET project.


G-Sync: Startup Culture Gets Design Brief(ed)

Design thinking is a critcal but often overlooked piece of any new startup's puzzle -- and it can make or break an idea's evolution. Lifestyle Editor Tommy Allen looks at what the soon-to-debut AIGA of WM's Design Briefs has to offer the entrepreneurs of our region.


RapidChat: Ted Velie

For this week's RapidChat, Molly Crist sits down with Ted Velie, furniture entrepreneur, on location in Austin, Texas. A group of Grand Rapidians (hosted by Dana Friis-Hansen and Mark Holzbach) headed to Austin for an early-June long weekend to form connections between the cities and enjoy the land of food trucks, art, and music. Read on as Ted chats about story-telling, tacos, and the mobile showroom he's driving around the midwest.


For local life science entrepreneur, immigration creates a roadblock

As Michigan struggles to attract and retain talent, immigration policy plays a role in allowing entrepreneurs to live and work in The Mitten. Steven Thomas Kent profiles Dr. Stanley Samuel, who has established a Grand Rapids-based life science startup and worked to develop a new drug administration technology, even as his immigration and visa issues loom in the background.


G-Sync: The Art in Craft

Put down that beer and back away from your vino: a new community spirit is about to take hold in West Michigan. G-Sync's Lifestyle Editor Tommy Allen talks with members of the spirits distillery movement who are brewing up a storm.

Jermale Eddie

#30Days30Dollars Challenge spotlights Black-owned businesses

Business owners behind Grand Rapids' #30Days30Dollars Challenge believe that supporting Black-owned businesses is good policy for the whole city. Halfway through this month's challenge, John Wiegand checks in to see how the initiative is transforming communities -- and how the hashtag is trending.


G-Sync: All Up in the Airbnb

Dear City Hall: With the sun high in the sky this time of the year in West Michigan, we will see many folks place "travel" at the top of the list of things to do. Let's keep our options open. Love, Tommy Allen


Marco's Magic: Riolo Creative Engineering

Artist, entrepreneur, and all-around maker-of-magic, Marco Riolo is making his mark on West Michigan with Riolo Creative Engineering. Audria Larsen finds out what makes this creative tick and why he's decided to call Grand Rapids home.


The State of Design in West Michigan (Part 1)

The first West Michigan Design Week is to begin May 5 and Lifestyle Editor Tommy Allen presents the first of a two-part series that takes a look at a few new creative projects in various stages of their development.
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