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Morning Buzz: June 4

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Morning Buzz June 4
Posted at 10:50 AM, Jun 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-06-04 10:50:31-04

1. Pack those bags! Starting today, Allegiant Airlines is adding another new nonstop flight out of Grand Rapids.

It will begin a new route to Portland International Airport in Oregon from Gerald R. Ford International Airport. To celebrate, the company is offering one-way fares as low as $86.

Portland offers a variety of outdoor activities, including hiking and mountain climbing at Mount Hood or visiting one of six national parks.

The new nonstop route will operate twice weekly.

2. Big news for laid-off workers trying to fix their unemployment claims, local offices are expected to open back up soon.

The interim director told lawmakers the goal is to reopen the offices by mid-July if not sooner.

They've been closed for 15 months due to the pandemic. There have been extensively on issues that claimants are having who've said if they could just talk to someone in person, they'd be able to fix their claim in five minutes instead of waiting months.

It's unclear if it will be a walk-in system like before or if people will have to make an appointment.

3. Asparagus is coming out on top as one of America's favorite veggies. Thanks to a strong Michigan harvest, Meijer says asparagus is topping the grocery list of many of its shoppers.

Meijer expects to sell more than two million pounds of locally-grown vegetables this summer. Asparagus is known for being beneficial to digestive and cardiovascular health, the nutrient-rich vegetable is best when eaten fresh.

Meijer works with more than 200 local growers across the Midwest to shorten the time and distance from the fields to the checkout lane.

4. The Grand Haven Area Community Foundation gave out some books to Northwest Ottawa Elementary students earlier this week.

The giveaway was all part of the ongoing celebration of their 50th anniversary. The free books were given to Grand Haven Area Second Graders courtesy of the foundation's Shape Corp Fund.

Foundation representatives say they were promoting their Community Book Read, an event coming later this summer where everyone is invited to a virtual read-along of "Have You Filled A Bucket Today?" a children's book about gaining personal happiness by showing kindness towards others.

5. As the heat kicks up next week, Grand Rapids city pools and splash pads are opening on June 11 next Friday.

The city has three public pools, and 14 splash pads which will open every day this summer, weather depending.

Admission to city pools can range from $1-$5 depending on your age, and if you're a grand rapids resident. There are also season passes and punch cards available, but the splash pads are free to use.

There are a few public health guidelines in place at city pools, including reduced capacity, enhanced cleaning, cashless payment options, and face coverings which will only be required for non-vaccinated visitors while they're using the locker rooms inside.

The city also is also hiring seasonal staff. Check out all available positions on the city's website.