I can hardly bear to turn on the morning news shows anymore. The reports are always horrifying – shootings, stabbings, politicians fighting. I feel so lucky to have a job that allows me to see the good things that are happening right here in Greater Flint. As a writer for My City Magazine, I have the opportunity to meet so many wonderful people and the honor of sharing their stories with our readers.
This month alone, my assignments took me from one end of Genesee County to the other. I sampled some really good food at Brick Street of Grand Blanc. And, I spent an interesting afternoon at Crossroads Village and Huckleberry Railroad interviewing the new manager, Denise Bowles. As I sat in the shade watching our photographer take some photos by the Genesee Belle Dock, I felt a cool breeze from Mott Lake, and thought to myself that it was the most perfect spot to be on a hot, summer day. Volunteer master gardeners have planted beautiful flowers all over the village. One worker at Huckleberry Railroad has been volunteering his time there for 40 years. A gentleman was sitting on the porch in the Village in a rocking chair, strumming a banjo. With all of the people walking around in costumes and all of the old Village shops, it truly felt like I had taken a step back in time.
For this issue, I also had the privilege of interviewing Bobby Crim, founder of the HealthPlus Crim Festival of Races. I can’t wait to see him on Crim Day, running with his hero, Howard Myers, on what Bobby says is “his favorite race, on his favorite day at his favorite place.” I also enjoyed visiting five beautiful wineries in the area and speaking with the owners who all have such passion for their craft. Seven Lakes Vineyard is a hidden gem with its beautiful fields of grapes.
It’s always a pleasure to meet so many selfless people who do good things for others. I interviewed Raul Garcia, who was chosen the 2016 Michigan Big Brother of the Year. Raul has a lifetime of public service having served in the Army, as a Flint firefighter and a civil servant for the City of Flint. The values that had been instilled in him he has passed on to Santino Guerra, who is heading to UM-Flint and has a bright future. I also interviewed Mott Community College President, Dr. Beverly Walker-Griffea, whose passion for education and her students was very inspiring to me.
These are just a few examples of the people I had the pleasure of writing about for this issue. Every month is different, and I am constantly impressed by the many people who are so caring and giving – and the great things that are happening here. As Bobby Crim said to me, “The citizens of the city of Flint are tough, resilient and caring people who don’t give up. I see a city that is bouncing back.” And, I couldn’t agree more. I can’t wait to see who I will meet next month. And you know what? I think I’ll skip turning on the TV in the morning.