Charis Kirk and Jackie Zimmerman—two young women with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)—met online after they started chronicling their fight with IBD. They have had 15 surgeries combined and fought through the highs and lows of recovery. Throughout their journeys, the duo supported each other and was inspired to encourage other girls and young women with IBD to be confident and proud, regardless of what's happening with their disease. The Girls With Guts website serves as an online community where women can share their stories about explaining the disease to friends or being pregnant with an ostomy bag, among others.
• For $16, you get two dinner-and-a-show packages for a Wednesday performance (a $32 value). • For $20, you get two dinner-and-a-show packages for a Thursday performance (a $40 value). • For $27, you get two dinner-and-a-show packages for a Friday or Saturday performance (a $54 value).
The talented dancers of the Michigan Classic Ballet Company bring The Nutcracker to life for the 22nd year with their elegant, well-trained limbs and precise artistry. Leaping through expressive choreography, the company transforms Tchaikovsky’s famous score into an enchanting escape into the Land of Snow, the Kingdom of Sweets, and the Municipality of Dentistry. The performers’ finesse and grace captivate eyes, while the sugar-powdered plotline piques imaginations young and old. Four special guest artists from the Grand Rapids Ballet lend their acumen to the classic Christmas tale. Quartets can seek refreshments, exchanging their tickets for coffee, pretzels, cookies, and other snacks that don't require the assistance of the ballet's titular appliance.
Dream Dinners makes meal preparation a breeze with easy-to-follow instructions, precut meats and veggies, and a host of complementary ingredients. The experience is like a cross between a barn raising and a bar crawl, minus the alcohol and hard labor: After choosing from a rotating menu of up to 14 dishes per month, customers schedule a spot at a fun prep session (call at least a week in advance) to assemble meals in-store. Items from the April menu include blackened salmon with pineapple salsa ($15.89 for three servings) and crispy sesame chicken with gingered green beans ($14.04 for three servings). Groupon holders can dazzle dining-room tables with fancy, restaurant-inspired fare or serve up flavor-filled comfort foods such as white-chicken lasagna ($14.04 for three servings) and caliente pork chops with garlic mashed potatoes ($16.42 for three servings).
Fitness Rx's team of instructors deploys to dozens of locations throughout southeastern Michigan to lead a staggering array of fitness classes. Whether they're guiding groups through kickboxing's strikes, yoga poses, or Pilates’ core-strengthening moves, they draw on their diverse backgrounds, years of experience, and enthusiasm. Additionally, trainers meet for one-on-one or semi-private sessions, and supplement workouts with nutrition support to help clients achieve varied goals, from building strength to fitting back inside their high-school-graduation cap.
Helmed by a team of expert bike mechanics, Cycle to Fitness outfits riders with cycling apparel and accessories, and keeps their bikes rolling smoothly. The shop stocks a wide range of biking accessories, including tires and brake pads, as well as complete bikes from Schwinn, GT, and Bianchi.
The gastro alchemists running Bumpers Bar and Grill cleverly mix their massive menu and full bar with live music and a nightclub atmosphere to create unforgettable evenings, even if the specifics are a bit fuzzy. The kitchen turns out a slew of pub-fare staples with Bumpers flair, such as burgers layered alternately with mushrooms and melted swiss ($6.75) or Five Alarm patties topped with pepper jack, jalapeños, hot sauce, and two heat-activated motion detectors ($6.50). Twelve-inch pizzas and calzones ($5.50 each) make an idea meal for sharing or smuggling pepperoni across state lines, respectively, and snackers looking for a light but filling bite can daintily devour mini tacos ($4.25), breaded mushrooms ($4.75), and loaded potato skins ($5.50) with a choice of dressing.