News Briefs 6-14

Stellar Award Winner Vickie Winans returns to the Capitol City

At 6:00 p.m., Sunday, August 12, 2007, Stellar Award Winner Vickie Winans returns to the Capitol City to celebrate DLG’s Gospel Productions 5th Annual Gospel Dinner Cruise and Concert on the Michigan Princess Riverboat, Grand River Park, 2971 West Main Street, Lansing, Michigan.    

As you cruise the Grand River with Michigan’s Princess of Gospel, Ms. Vickie Winans aboard the Michigan Princess Riverboat, boarding at Grand River Park, 2971 W. Main Street, Lansing, Michigan, you will enjoy fine dining served with a full course meal along with other scheduled gospel performances from LaNette Hester, Vera Riley, Steve McCoy, Princess Morgan, and Unspoken Praise.

Ticket prices: $50 per person; or group rate $40 per person with a group of 10 or more. Call 517. 819.7125 or 517.505.2619 for more information. 

Visit Ms. Vickie Winans’ Official Website at

RED HACKER Basketball Tournament

It’s back for the first time in almost a decade.  The nationally acclaimed RED HACKER will be in Lansing on Saturday August 11th, hosted by the Bread House Youth Ministry.  The tournament will feature 3-on-3, 4-on-4 and 5-on-5, half-court and full-court competition.  There will also be a dunking contest, which is sure to be a crowd pleaser.  Details, Registration and Pricing are available online at or call 1-800-YOU-Dunk.  Register today as team entries are limited and filling fast!  For Vendor information, please call the Bread house church offices at (517) 485-4209.  This is sure to be an event you don’t want to miss; will your team be the last one standing?

Celebrate Women’s Equality Day

    On Sunday, August 26, 2007, Michigan women from across the state will come together to celebrate Women’s Equality Day at the Michigan Women’s Historical Center & Hall of Fame, 213 West Main St., Lansing, MI, from 2-4pm.
In 1971, The United States Congress designated August 26 of each year as Women’s Equality Day.  The date was selected to commemorate the 1920 passage of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution, granting women the right to vote. The observance of Women’s Equality Day also calls attention to women’s continuing efforts toward full equality.
Guest speakers include: Diane Madsen, the Grand Rapids mother who helped create Communities for Equity to end discrimination for Michigan high school female athletes; Pan Godchaux, advocate for providing women with the tools to run a campaign and serve in public office “Run Girl Run”; Lansing’s own historian Elizabeth “Liz” Homer speaking on Title IX. .  Attendees will be provided by Michigan ERAmerica board member, Laura Callow, with a brief written history of the ERA, and the status of the current plan to have the ERA ratified.
Cost $20 ($10 tax deductible). Food and drinks provided.  Rain or Shine, join others under the tent to enjoy the festivities. For register, email or call 517-351-8335.

 The need for adoptive families is greater than ever.  Adoption Associates, Inc. a statewide nonprofit agency, is hosting a free domestic infant and international (China, Russia, Guatemala, Ethiopia, Nepal, and Kazakhstan) adoption information meeting. It will be held on August 7, 2007 at  Adoption Associates, Inc., 800 Thomas L. Parkway, STE 1, Lansing, MI  at 7pm-9pm.   Call (517) 327-1388  for more information and to RSVP

Southside Community Showcase Set

Free Community Southside Community Showcase will be held on Saturday, August 25 from 12-6 p.m. at Benjamin Davis Park, which is located at Pleasant Grove Rd. between Jolly and Miller, in South Lansing.  The South Lansing Community Development Association proudly invites the community to be a part of their  free 5th annual community festival from .  This popular event features merchants and exhibitors “showcasing” businesses, nonprofits, community groups, faith organizations, service clubs, and government agencies located in or serving the south side. (12-4 p.m.)
Families will love the wide variety of youth activities including the ever-popular Impression 5 “Slime Factory,” JD Byrider’s “Paint-a-Car,” Woldumar Nature Center’s “Skins and Skulls,” Reach Studio Art Center’s “Clay-Making,” First Tee “Putting Green,” and more. (12-6 p.m.)
There will be a food court  with sample treats prepared by local restaurants and caterers (Marco’s Pizza, BBQ, and more).  Then relax and enjoy liver performances by the Habibi Dancers (belly dancing), On the Rocks (funky ska/reggae), the Ronnie Ford Experience (R&B, Rock/Funk), Powerlight Band (70s& 80s), and others. (12-6 p.m.)

CATA Named #1 Transit System in North America

LANSING, MI -The Capital Area Transportation Authority (CATA) has been named the best transit system of its size in North America by the American Public Transportation Association (APTA).

“This is the highest honor in our industry,” said Sandy Draggoo, CATA’s CEO/Executive Director. “We couldn’t be more excited or proud!”   Draggoo also won the prestigious General Manager of the Year award from APTA in 2003.

CATA was ranked #1 in the competitive 4-30 million passenger trips category.  This category includes 106 transit systems.  APTA gives out the Outstanding Transportation System Achievement Award annually to honor transit systems demonstrating exceptional efficiency and effectiveness. Transit systems are judged on services and programs, safety, operations, customer service, financial management, attendance and employee costs, advancement of minorities and women, marketing, policy and administration, and community relations.
"CATA is at the leading edge of transit systems here in Michigan, and across
the nation, with its environmental initiative, innovative partnerships, and responsive service," said Governor Jennifer M. Granholm.  "CATA is an integral part of the capital area and this award is a great honor for CATA and the entire community.”

The award will be presented to CATA at the APTA Annual Meeting in Charlotte, North Carolina on October 9, 2007. This conference brings together more than 2,000 transit industry professionals from across the world.  CATA was also voted #1 in 1991.  No other Michigan transit system can claim multiple wins as ‘America’s Best’.
“This award belongs to the dedicated CATA employees who do their work so well,” said CATA Board President Patricia Munshaw. “It also belongs to those who use our services and to the citizens in our service area.  It recognizes their support through their loyal patronage as customers, as well as their financial support through local funding. Their investment maintains a comprehensive service system; deserving of this recognition.”

Draggoo surprised employees with the APTA award announcement at a special employee celebration this morning (July 19) at the CATA administrative facility in south Lansing. “Our employees work hard to provide high quality transportation,” said Draggoo.  “This award recognizes their hard work, dedication, and most of all, commitment to our customers.”

“This is kind of like winning the Emmy.  It’s the best of the best,” APTA President William W. Millar said in a videotaped message to Draggoo and CATA’s 300 employees during the celebration. “You won for many reasons, including your outstanding safety record at CATA, your incredible ridership growth and your record of service to your customers.”

APTA is a nonprofit international association of 1,500 member organizations, including bus, rapid transit and commuter rail systems.  APTA members serve more than 90 percent of people who use public transportation in the United States and Canada.

CATA was the also the first public transit system in Michigan to add full size hybrid buses to its fleet this past year.  CATA’s 2006 ridership broke its all-time record – – exceeding 10 million rides in 2006.

Source: Press releases