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About Par75

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  • Birthday 05/10/75

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    Virginia Beach, VA
  1. People talking about Grand Rapids

    fwiw, Dan Bylsma has two brothers who still live and work in the area: Jon is a litigation attorney and partner at Varnum, and Greg is CFO at Herman Miller
  2. People talking about Grand Rapids

    Another article, this one from the Wall Street Journal, which actually does mention the Griffins a few times:
  3. People talking about Grand Rapids

    The UP Community may not put much stock in these rankings and you're not wrong in saying the methodology is sometimes suspect, but that doesn't mean Joe Public disregards them. Regardless of how the lists are compiled, it is certainly better to make the ones that are considered good/positive and it's best to remain off the rankings that are bad/negative.
  4. 2010 First and Second rounds are being held here: HP Pavilion (18,500 capacity) San Jose, California Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena (12,210) Spokane, Washington Dunkin Donuts Center (12,500) Providence, Rhode Island New Orleans Arena (17,000) New Orleans, Louisiana
  5. The early regional games (first 2 rounds) are held in mid-size basketball arenas, not 20k+ arenas and they're never held in football arenas (the domed stadiums - Ford Field, Lucas Oil Field, etc - come into play starting with the Sweet 16, then Elite 8, Final Four, then the Championship game). The Palace would be considered a large venue for an early regional game. The Sprint Center in Kansas City where one of the regionals was held this past year is 18,000 capacity. Yes, larger than Van Andel but consider that Dayton has also hosted regional games and the capacity there is 13,000. The NCAA is looking for smaller and medium sized arenas for these games because they often do not sell out, especially in large markets that are capable of hosting later round games. The smaller arena here would be an almost guaranteed sellout for all games, something the NCAA would look highly upon. The biggest issue isn't the size of Van Andel but the lack of hotel rooms within walking distance of the arena.
  6. This would no doubt bring a lot of national exposure to the area for at least for one weekend. The Michigan-Clemson regional in Kansas City a few weeks ago earned a 6.1 rating. That was for TV. Millions more tuned into the regional games online which are available on-demand for free. In addition to having several big-time college teams in town, you also have a large number of fans plus a pretty large national media presence.
  7. People talking about Grand Rapids

    Our "Local First" campaign got a mention in a Business Week article about buying locally.
  8. The Watering Hole

    Looks like a fantastic week to hit the beach, huh? Windchills are expected to be -20 to -30 on Tuesday morning. Brrr
  9. The Watering Hole

    Yes, I am. I think combined, my wife and I now only spend 10 minutes browsing the paper each evening. I may actually read only 2-3 articles in their entirety. The rest of it, I just skim. The majority of it seems to be wire reports or day(s)-old opinion pieces from the NY Times, Washington Post, or Wall St. Journal. It's old news by the time it appears in the Press. IMO, the paper version of the Press is no longer worth the money, especially when it's available online (I prefer to read a hard copy versus web version, but only if I spend a fair amount of time actually reading the articles).
  10. More Sculptures downtown

    Mark-Paul Gosselaar isn't from Grand Rapids, but his wife is and I believe she is a FHC graduate. Neither is worthy of a sculpture regardless of where they're from.
  11. Grand Rapids Airport (GRR) News and Developments

    Two one-way car rentals might be cheaper than parking for a week in Detroit.
  12. Grand Rapids Airport (GRR) News and Developments

    Took a round trip Air Canada flight from GRR to the Maritimes area of Canada this week. As expected, the BEH aircraft being used is very tiny (18-seater). On the way to Toronto on Wednesday, 8 of the 18 seats were filled. On return flight this morning, only 5 were on the plane (not including pilots). The flight attendant is the co-pilot and he/she only makes an appearance at the start of the flight and at the end. Because the plane is so small, I was expecting a much bumpier ride. Overall not a bad experience and considering my other options included 2 or more connections, the Air Canada flight with only 1 connection was perfect. (I did notice a few Steelcase people on the flight to Toronto. With a production facility in Ontario, having direct service to Toronto is probably nice for them)
  13. Grand Rapids Airport (GRR) News and Developments

    Since Allegiant will only fly to two Florida cities from GRR, they're hardly going to be a threat to NWA or any other legacy carrier in our market. Maybe NWA will try to compete on fares for flights going to/from Orlando and Tampa, but that's it. Allegiant certainly isn't going to impact the cost of flights from GRR to New York, Boston, Washington, LA, etc.
  14. Grand Rapids Airport (GRR) News and Developments

    Have you driven by the parking lots surrounding the airport recently? Those flat lots are huge and consistently 75% - 90% full. Add to that the much needed expansion of a rental car area (to also be housed in this new garage) and I think you'll be surprised that this garage is probably needed. Sure there is some leakage to other area airports (budget travelers who have extra time), but I think it's safe to say that "most" fliers in the area still use GRR. I think you're seriously underestimating how many business travelers we have in Grand Rapids / West Michigan who usually won't take the time to drive to one of the other area airports. For them (me included) it's more about convenience than cost.
  15. People talking about Grand Rapids

    It sounds like this decision will be announced on Friday in Dayton, unfortunately not in Grand Rapids this weekend. Doing this in Ohio makes as much sense as doing it here since both states have a high number of electoral votes and both have polls showing these states are still a toss-up. (Obama up slightly in Mich, McCain up slightly in Ohio)