Music lovers. Meet here. Music lovers now have a place to gather to enjoy free concerts in the park thanks to the vision of Taylor Idema, a 2019 Mt. Pleasant High School graduate. The Island Park Arts Pavilion project, in the works for four years, is the end result of Idema’s Girl Scout Gold Award Project. The Gold Award is the highest honor a Girl Scout can earn. In 2016 Idema pitched the arts pavilion idea at the United Way’s Pitch-Er event and won first place honors along with the $5,000 seed money to launch her project.
For the past few years Idema has been working with Chris Bundy, Mt. Pleasant Parks and Public Spaces Director to make her vision a reality. More than $200,000 was raised through grants from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources and the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe 2% Distribution, and generous donations from the Morey Foundation, W.E. Martin Fund of the Mt. Pleasant Area Community Foundation, Isabella Bank, Rotary Club of Mt. Pleasant, Isabella Community Credit Union, Doug and Melissa LaBelle Family Foundation, Mercantile Bank of Michigan, City of Mt. Pleasant Parks Partnership Fund, United Way of Gratiot & Isabella Counties, Mt. Pleasant Jaycees, Mt. Pleasant Agency, Inc. – Central Insurance.
Idema shared, “Mt. Pleasant is an active community with many talented citizens interested in not only attending fine arts events, but performing in them as well. The Island Park Arts Pavilion provides a venue for local citizens of all ages to perform, and enjoy a myriad of events close to home.” Idema continued, “Potential pavilion events include; concerts, theater and dance performances, art exhibits, ceremonies, public speeches, holiday celebrations, auctions, reunions, weddings and more.”
The public is invited to celebrate the opening of the Island Parks Arts Pavilion on Monday, August 5, 2019. This free event will begin at 6 p.m. with a short program and ribbon cutting ceremony. At 6:30 p.m. Jim McKeith, a one-man acoustic rock band, sponsored by the Mt. Pleasant Area Convention and Visitors Bureau, will perform. At 7:15 p.m. the Central Michigan Area Concert Band will take to the stage to perform a full concert. Food will also be available for purchase from the Cruisin’ Chef Food Truck.
For information on how to reserve the Island Park Arts Pavilion contact the Mt. Pleasant Parks & Recreation Office at (989) 779-5331.