1. In the midst of trying times, what is the state of Grand Rapids? Grand Rapids Mayor, Rosalynn Bliss, is scheduled to deliver her address today.
The mayor will give the speech virtually from the Listening Room at Studio Park starting at noon.
The address will be live-streamed on the city's Facebook and YouTube pages.
In last year's speech, Bliss addressed homelessness, recruiting and retaining businesses, tackling lead poisoning, and more. This time around, COVID-19 will likely be a major focus.
2. Muskegon Community College is celebrating Black History Month.
They're hosting a series of virtual discussions every day next week, all of them are free to attend.
The series kicks off next Monday with a prerecorded, half-hour panel discussion focused on racial healing, featuring Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson, other politicians, clergy members, and community leaders.
There are also Zoom presentations throughout the week, highlighting topics like politics, religion, poetry, and black entrepreneurship in West Michigan.
Find a link to all these events on the college's website.
3. Four Winds Casinos is now offering online gaming and sports betting. They're the first operator in West Michigan to get approval from the state's gaming control board.
The Four Winds online platform went live on Monday. The casinos are owned by the Pokagon Band of Potawatomi Indians. They run three casinos in West Michigan, and another in Indiana.
Four Winds is the 11th operator to have both online casinos and sports betting in Michigan.
4. It may be another chilly day, but Bell's Brewery wants you to think warm thoughts. Now out their Flamingo Fruit Flight.
It's described as being brewed with passionfruit and lime zest which gives the beer "a tart blend of tropical, citrus flavors and aromas."
It's available in 12-ounce bottles or on draught in different locations around West Michigan. It's the first of five beers to be released this year under the "Flamingo Fruit Flight" series.
5. Happy Fat Tuesday! One of the places that really put on quite a show is New Orleans, but Mardi Gras won't have quite the fanfare this year.
The Big Easy is going easy on parades, parties, and pageantry that typically comes with Fat Tuesday, but that doesn't mean you can't still celebrate.
Don some beads and bake some traditional King Cake, or pick up your favorite Paczki.