Sled Race - Top of HillWhile this post is a few days early, it’s so quiet in our halls as everyone prepares for the holidays we can’t help but reflect on the past year. Thinking of how we kicked off the year we should of known we were bound for greatness. If you’re not aware of what we’re speaking of, we’ll spell it out for you. Winterfest Spirit Award. That’s right, cardboard sled races 2013, we dominated in spirit. When all else fails you might as well have a good time, and that’s exactly what we did. From there we continued with our Love, Wine chowhound& Chocolate event debuting in the event’s first year back since our renovations. The event was a success and that luck would carry over to our Glowing for Grand Haven Silent Auction in July and Lovestruck Boutique Wedding expo in November. Not to mention our smaller events like our annual Fourth of July Lawn Party and Coast Guard Backyard BBQ, both free to the public to atted, with our great lawn the perfect spot to watch fireworks from! Not to mention our participation in the Coast Guard Parade and Jingle Bell Parade with our mini great sign making its last round this year.

This spring we started a new program called Random Acts of Green and while the name implies being eco-friendly (which we’re all for), we were really just doing Random Acts of Kindness and included our signature Holiday Inn green in every way possible. Through our kind giving we met the Muskegon Humane Society and formed a new partnership that would soon lead into an extended partnership with the Grand Haven Chow Hound in an effort to raise money for the shelter and provide our four legged guests with the luxuries of home.

photoWhile our community outreach hit a new high, we never forgot about our loyal staff…especially when the torrential down pour hit, flooding the Grand River, and many yards. When water flooded the basements and crawl spaces of some staff members homes, our management staff helped clean up the mess and repair their homes. When it comes to cleaning nobody knows the business more than our Executive Housekeeper who hit her 40th year of employment with us this year! The celebration hit her as a surprise with special t-shirts made, cupcakes galore and a toast to the next 40! It’s employees like her that make this place run like a uswell-oiled machine, and since our renovations are now complete (including our outdoor pool, which we’re sure our summer guests are grateful for), our property received the renovation award!

While the property looks nice, the staff also took some steps to increase the knowledge of the area as two employees took off on a lighthouse tour along the Lake Michigan Shoreline. The traveling duo hit thirty lighthouses in five days with the trip creating a great opportunity for networking and a foundation of relationships that have now provided a true understanding of the Pure Michigan experience. The trip is a two part series with the second half taking place in the spring of 2014.

With all that said, we bid farewell to 2013. The memories reflected upon only touch the tip of the iceberg, as we have 365 days of events, weddings, check-ins, and overall sharing memories…and for that we thank you. Looking towards 2014 we couldn’t be more happy for Winterfest to hit, and the trip to start all over again, and better yet sharing it with you!