Show might go on

Marie Havenga • Jul 21, 2015 at 1:06 PM

After withdrawing a request to set up the show in Ferrysburg's Coast Guard Park because of strong resistance from a member of that city's council, the show's organizer said he is now eyeing the first and second blocks of Grand Haven's Franklin Avenue as a landing spot.

Brad Boyink, president of the Holiday Road Charities Board, said his group has the support of local business owners and homeowners there. But they still need the blessings of Grand Haven City Council to flip the switch on the 200,000-light show that typically raises more than $30,000 for Special Olympics.

“We have been very busy working in the background and have received verbal support from all council members,” Boyink said of the Franklin location, which would feature lights on nearly a dozen businesses and homes.

Mayor Geri McCaleb said she wouldn't comment on the proposal until City Council had a chance to review the plans. She said it could be discussed as soon as Tuesday's meeting.

“I know (Boyink) has done a lot of work on this,” McCaleb said. “He's asked all the questions and made all the arrangements to get it to the place where council can take a look at it.”

Boyink said he has contacted the Grand Haven Department of Public Safety for review of his plans, which include funneling traffic westbound on Franklin from U.S. 31. Because Franklin is a one-way street heading west, vehicles approaching the light show would be in the right lane and through-traffic could pass in the left lane.

“We're excited because ... it is a perfect traffic flow scenario there,” Boyink said.

Boyink said the owners of nine of the 11 homes and businesses projected to be part of the show are onboard with the plan. He said he still needs to reach the other two, but the show could go on without them.

The show would feature RGB pixel technology capable of 16 million colors, similar to what he ran in his show set up in his Spring Lake Township neighborhood in 2011 and at an indoor show at The Pointes strip mall in Norton Shores last year.

Boyink said the proposed plan includes barriers at Second, Third and Fourth streets so vehicles can't cut into line. A police officer would be stationed at Fifth and Franklin. An officer would also be stationed at Seventh Street for weekend shows, according to Boyink.

To read more of this story, see today’s print or e-edition of the Grand Haven Tribune.


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