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Tri-Cities Kiwanis

Kiwanis has a long history of service in Grand Haven, Spring Lake and Ferrysburg.

The Grand Haven Kiwanis was originally chartered on March 13, 1941; sponsored by the Grand Rapids, Holland and Muskegon clubs. Our first president was Arthur F. Gieseking, and our first secretary was Harvey L. Scholten. The club had 38 charter members, had grown to 69 members by 1955, and peaked at 120 members before declining.

In the beginning, membership in Kiwanis was limited to men only; the wives of 19 members formed their own club called "Kiwani-Queens." They were active until at least 1961. Former Loutit Library Director Char Zoet became the first female member of the Grand Haven Kiwanis Club.

The club first met at Keerfer's Restaurant, located in the first block of Washington Avenue. The restuarant was later torn down and made into a parking lot. Next, the club met at the Methodist Church at the corner of Washington and Fourth, which was torn down to build the post office. In 1961, the club's home was the Church of the Dunes, and in 1995 the club moved to the First Presbyterian Church at Franklin and Fifth.

Click here to download a booklet originally published in February, 1991 to celebrate Grand Haven Kiwanis' 50-year anniversary. This booklet documents the many community service projects carried out by the club in its first 50 years.

Some of those service projects were:

  • Bonds for underprivileged children
  • a hand ball league
  • sponsored Big Brothers in conjunction with Rotary
  • sponsored a Sea Scout Ship
  • community Easter egg hunts
  • March of Dime contributions
  • a mulitude of sponsorships, scholarships, and support for babies, students, teachers, atheletes, enlisted Coast Guard men, migrants, refugees, handicapped, elderly, YMCA, Salvation Army, Boy Scouts, student musicians, and young people looking for work
  • a variety of support and participation in community festivals and events
  • a variety of support for and provisions for community parks and buildings

After more than 60 years of such valuable community service work, the Kiwanis Club of Grand Haven dissolved on January 28, 2003. Read the Tribune article here.

 

     

Nearly two years later in late 2004, the Tri-Cities Kiwanis Club was established under the inspirational leadership of several local citizens. Tri-Cities Kiwanis celebrated its 10th Anniversary at a gala in January 2015, and was recognized at the state level for rapid growth and innovative projects that assist special needs children and young victims of catastrophic diseases.

See the Community Support page and various Event pages for more information about this active club!

Membership is open to any person of good character who wishes to serve the community, participate in Kiwanis service projects and attend regular meetings.

Members pay modest annual dues, which provide for the local, district, and international membership fee. Many corporations pay the dues and luncheon cost for their employees serving our community. See the Membership page for more information.