Jane Simons says people reading stories from Southwest Michigan’s Second Wave On the Ground series in Battle Creek and Kalamazoo will find some commonalities between the two cities. Those include people wanting to make positive change in their communities. But Simons, who is Project Editor for On the Ground Battle Creek says Battle Creek and Kalamazoo are different, and the stories show those characteristics.
On the Ground Battle Creek Engagement Editor Jeff Cotton says Battle Creek is still struggling with its identity right now. He says the stories in the On the Ground series may help with that effort. He says they are finding the people and getting them to share energy with the city.
Simons and Cotton joined WMUK’s Gordon Evans to discuss On the Ground Battle Creek. Similar to Southwest Michigan’s Second Wave On the Ground Kalamazoo, the project is focusing on different neighborhoods. In Battle Creek, it started in Washington Heights and then moved to Urbandale. Cotton himself is featured in a story about efforts to help at-risk youth.
Other stories introduce the people behind Ignite BC, which is trying to provide networking opportunities for people who want to get involved in the community and make change. There is also the story of Jeremy Andrews, the Chief Excitement Officer at Sprout. He wanted to give a different type of gift to his groomsmen before his wedding. He gave them axes, and held an ax throwing party. It’s now grown into a business venture.