Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Pepsi Dance Trax 1989 "Rhythm Nation"

Here is a new straight from VHS clip of the Grand Rapids show "Pepsi Dance Trax."  This one comes from 1989 and features a whole Club Eastbrook full of teens in their best 80s fashion dancing to Janet Jackson.
Also, local radio personality Michelle McKormick, who I believe is still on the air and.... another guy. Maybe someone can help me out with who he is?  Anyway, enjoy!

Tuesday, March 7, 2017


Okay, so this is not very "G.R." but I would say it IS pretty retro!
I thought it might be fun to share, in lieu of other content, my latest model-building project, "Ecto-77!"
Some readers probably may know my real-life car, a 1977 Pinto wagon....

Recently, I came across an original 1970's era Pinto wagon model kit.  Of course people were telling me I should do it up to look just like mine and I almost did, BUT I had also been wanting for a while to put together the Ghostbusters Ecto-1 kit. The two collided in my brain and I thought it would be fun to try and combine the two. A Ghostbusters Pinto seems pretty hilarious to me and something I've never seen tried before.  So, tinkering in my spare time from Sept. 2016 to March 2017, here is the final result-- Ecto-77!
Hope some enjoy it.

Also here ^ is a quick video showing the LED flashing lights.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Film of Grand Rapids 1946

Here is a pretty amazing film of random scenes around Grand Rapids from 1946!

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Flying Bridge Art temporarily visible!

The Flying Bridge Fish Market has been closed since October 2016.  I just noticed as I was driving past today that there is now some work to the building going on.  The Western section that was formerly a camera repair shop has had the siding removed and the old wooden siding beneath has some cool hand-painted artwork!  Flying Bridge must have once occupied the whole building.
Some pretty cool artwork there. 

Whatever became to artist "Dave Dunnit" ??  From what I could find out, Dave Marfia was a local artist, used to have a shop near that same corner in the 80s. Was known for doing art on vehicles, motorcycles, shirts or apparently anything you wanted painting on.  Nowadays lives in Sparta and apparently still working.

Also, I actually never knew Flying Bridge was an actual nautical term.  I thought it had to do with possibly some local folklore surrounding the Leonard Street bridge, since this place is right on the Eastern end of it. 

"A flying bridge is an open area on top of a surface ship which provides unobstructed views of the fore, aft, and the sides of a vessel, and which serves as an operating station for the ship's officers, such as the captain or officer of the watch." (The More You Know!!)

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Sears Woodland

Hi and welcome back to the "Stuff Closing In Grand Rapids Blog" !  Today's item, Sears in Woodland Mall.

Right after last month's closing of the last two area Kmart stores, word was going around January 4th that Sears is closing too. This one has been an anchor at Woodland Mall since it's opening in 1968. It occupies 313,000 square feet, making it one of the largest department stores in the state! 

I can't say I went there very often. I bought my air compressor there that I used to paint my 70s van.  And I once went there to buy a turtleneck for a costume I was making. Because I thought rightfully that Sears was a place where I could still possibly find a turtleneck.

Amazingly, that Sears still had the little key shack out in the parking lot.  Still operating!  What poor employee got to work their shift out in the key shack?  Who got keys made at a Sears key shack?  How would anyone know about it?

Anyway, goodbye Sears. Sorry the Internet ruined everything!

Thursday, December 22, 2016

Public Access Santa Call-In 2006

This may not be to everyone's liking but for the holiday time I thought I'd post this clip from a "Santa Call-In" show I produced with the local public access station, GRTV 10 years ago.

I think it's probably the most fun if I present it with no background info and let you guys just enjoy it for what it is....

Merrrrrry Christmas!

Monday, December 12, 2016

Goodbye Kmart!

 It's become a real pattern here that when I post a new update, it's about another cool, old thing going away.  2016 was quite a year, huh?  Things I can think of off the top of my head that closed this year- Flying Bridge Fish Market, Great Lakes Shipping Company, Konkle's Bar, DJ's Lounge, Elliot's News Stand is about to go.... And now Kmart!

I've posted before of my love for Kmart. Trips to that store were a big deal in my childhood.
In my mind's eye, it will always look like this....

And not this.....

Byron Center Kmart on it's last day, December 11th 2016

Also, this time of year will always make me think of this.....

As of December 11th, Grand Rapids Kmart on Plainfield- the last remaining piece of North Kent Mall- is closed. Same with Byron Center Kmart on 68th St.

Byron Center Kmart opened October 3rd, 1994 and the Plainfield location opened February 23rd 1978.  The longest running Kmart in Grand Rapids, 38 years of business!

There are still locations open in Muskegon and Hastings, if you feel like a nostalgia road trip! Not like it would really be the same, but sometimes if I find myself in one of these stores I like to daydream about them good ol' childhood days.