The summer of 2020 is not what everyone had pictured. Everyone assumed that COVID-19 would have been done and over with. Stores, restaurants, bars and parks have been closed or operating under restrictions for months. But all this should not stop anyone, because in the town of Big Rapids there is so much more to do.
Ferris senior biology major Stacey Jacobs says that Big Rapids is packed full fun and exciting things to do during the summer. To her, this summer felt extended because school had switched to online classes and not having to go to campus everyday meant she could have more time to focus on fun.
“I love being out outside and walking around downtown,” Jacobs said. “We have a beautiful downtown. My favorite store has to be The Yellow Window.”
Jacobs’ favorite place that she would go to every Tuesday and Friday was the Farmer’s Market, which is located outside of the Family Dollar and Salvation Army. The Farmer’s market is open from 12 p.m. until 5 p.m. on Tuesday and on Friday 8 p.m. until 2 p.m. Jacobs’ also enjoys going to Kilawin’s at this time, getting some ice cream then walking across the street to Pocket Park to listen to live music that locals play.
Being active and going out around town doing things is fun but sometimes it is nice to also just be lazy.
Ferris junior business administration major Skyler Stolk has spent more than one summer in Big Rapids. Stolk works as a shift leader at Planet Fitness in Big Rapids. When COVID-19 hit, all gyms were forced to close down and he had more down time then he had had in summers past.
“Over the summer, I’ve spent most of my time tubing and fishing on the Muskegon River,” Stolk said. “Since my work got shut down due to COVID, I’ve been keeping myself busy spending time tubing the river with friends.”
Stolk was the winner of the UREC fishing tournament that was held over the summer. He won it with a 16-inch bass. He spent the entire day trying to catch it. Stolk believes fishing is a great pass time for anyone trying to find a way to get away from people. One of his main fishing spots is around Hemlock Park, one of the most popular parks in the Big Rapids area.
Everyone has been doing their part in the fight against COVID-19. Ferris sophomore plastics and polymer engineering major Keegan Wetter was lucky enough to get an internship in Reed City for a company doing just that.
“I worked for the Reed City Group producing products in the fight against COVID-19,” Wetter said. “I worked third shift during the night and slept more days, but I still had time to hang out with my fraternity brothers.”
Wetter said that he is happy he got an internship close to Big Rapids because it allowed him to strengthen his bond with his fraternity brothers. Wetter is a member of Lambda Chi Alpha. He plans to try and stay as many summers in Big Rapids because of the memories you can make when you don’t have to worry about school.
Even with COVID-19 wreaking havoc across our nation, there is still a multitude of fun things to do around Big Rapids. You never have to look far to find entertainment that can fill your day with joy.