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  • Ann Duchene

None Of Us Is As Smart As All Of Us*

It may come as no surprise to you that Grand Ledge is featured as one of Michigan's hidden gems in more than one publication. MLive has a number of articles about things like how Cugino's held a finalist position on Michigan's Best Pizza Tour, and how we are of the best stops in a Grand River Kayaking Expedition. GRKids encourages Michigan parents to get their children over to Fitzgerald Park. Now. And that painting next to the ball field under the bridge? If you click on the link, you'll see it's considered one of the most brilliant graffiti pieces in the state. Those things barely scratch the surface of all we have to offer.

Now before you start feeling cynical, we all know our town is not perfect. Sometimes our kids are truly mean to each other at school. Sometimes you slip and skin your knee on the sidewalk in front of an abandoned house because no one has shoveled there all winter. Sometimes there's an unfair call at your five year old's t-ball game and the guy next to you goes completely nuts. But no place is perfect.

So my questions are: How can we celebrate the good things, and make them even better? And can we improve the less-than-ideal things we do see?

As mentioned in the last post, we have a gap in accommodating people overnight. (And in giving ourselves that well-deserved local respite.) Filling a lodging gap - that's something I can do. I can create beautiful rooms and a pleasant experience for guests.

But there are lots of things I can't do. I can't whip up feather-light croissants, coach a frozen climber up a rock face, or describe to you the best river kayaking route in May vs. September. I can't capture on camera that perfect moment in an outdoor wedding or compose hauntingly lovely music. (Okay, that's putting it mildly. I can't play a syncopated rhythm to save my life.)

The cool thing is, there are people in our town who can do all of those things I just mentioned amazingly well. In putting together this hotel plan, we keep asking ourselves, "What is already available in Grand Ledge and done at an excellent level? How can we help other people experience that?"

Isolated businesses start up all the time and many eventually fold. With that said, every once in a while, a person comes along and figures out how to turn their business into a connecting point. How to be a community hub instead of a stand-alone business entity. (Chuck, the owner of Sun Theater comes to mind.)

This is the kind of place we are intentionally designing Rabbit & Mitten to be. Instead of attempting to reinvent the wheel, we want to partner with other businesses in offering our guests experiences that get them in touch with what's really going on here in Grand Ledge.

It's still a little early to give specifics, but we're planning to offer packages that include spa/wellness weekends, foodie and brewery tours, rock climbing, biking, hiking, antiquing, etc. The Rabbit & Mitten is focused on making memorable getaways happen. And, of course, if nothing sounds so good as getting away from it all and seeing no one, we'll have your back.

If you want to connect with us about your ideas or simply track with our journey, please subscribe to our email list here.

*This isn't my quote. It's from a guy named Ken Blanchard.

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