We are pleased to announce our Annual “Fore” the Kids Golf Outing fundraiser with all proceeds going to help kids in our community. Living in poverty and crisis, too many of our kids today are at risk of becoming disconnected, lost, and forgotten…United In Christ Ministries (UICM) is a Christian-based, nonprofit organization serving kids and their families in the Black Hills neighborhood & surrounding communities of Grand Rapids, Michigan. With hearts on fire for the Lord, WE ARE all about Connecting Kids with Christ, our Community, and Local Churches!!! Through our core programs, community outreach events, and mentoring relationships, we encourage, inspire, and help our kids to form strong values, make good choices, develop life skills, and discover God’s purpose for their lives. By providing consistent and loving support, UICM is empowering young people to find FAITH and HOPE, while changing our community with LOVE…One kid at a time!!!
September 30, 2016 (Friday)
10:00 a.m. Shotgun Start with registration & warm-up (Driving Range & Practice Green) beginning at 9:00 a.m.
Conveniently located minutes from downtown Grand Rapids, The Mines Golf Course houses 18 holes of rolling bluegrass fairways and undulating bent grass greens. The golf course is built approximately 150 feet above gypsum mines that were utilized as early as the 1860’s and throughout the 1900’s. Various features of the mines and the mining process were used in the construction of the course. The water used to irrigate the course is pumped directly from the mines. The course offers playability from four sets of tees, making your round truly exceptional.
$95 per player and includes green fees, cart, range balls, and barbecue lunch.
The Mines Golf respectfully asks that collared shirts and soft spikes be worn. No denim please.
It is with a heavy—but HOPEFUL—heart that I announce that Allen Pontarelli will be stepping away from United in Christ Ministries (UICM) at the end of this month to pursue his calling as the Pastor of his own Church. Allen has been with our Ministry since we started our journey over twelve years ago. As our Executive Director, Allen has been a champion for so many kids and families in the Black Hills neighborhood. With unwavering faith and absolute resolve, Allen’s direction of our programs and development of our community relationships has helped us to achieve a longevity and success that few could have anticipated.
Over the years, UICM has experienced transformational growth. We have moved from small gatherings in people’s living rooms and Church basements to larger assemblies in the Black Hills Community Center. We have consistently innovated our core programs (God’s Club, Kids Zone, Pathfinders, and The Motion Initiative (TMI)) while improving our mentoring relationships to impact even more kids. We have increased partnerships with area churches, businesses, families, and individuals to help strengthen, support, and serve more and more families in our neighborhood. We have shared in a great many triumphs, achievements, and laughs, while overcoming a number of tragedies, struggles, and tears. In these current and often cynical times, I cannot emphasize enough just how challenging it can be for an Executive Director to develop and lead an inner-city ministry that is both relevant and impactful. But with absolute confidence, I can tell you that there were few things Allen was not able to accomplish. Against impossible odds and with limited resources, Allen utilized every asset and gift that God gave him to be the best Executive Director that he could be. I could spend pages telling you of the countless good Allen has done for our Ministry and this community. Sadly, most of his greatest accomplishments went unacknowledged. That’s the way he wanted it though— ALL done with very little fanfare and very little attention drawn to himself. Allen would be the first to tell you it was never about that. It was always about glorifying God by being the best person he could be and serving sacrificially for the benefit of others. With that spirit of humility, perseverance, and dedication Allen made our team better. He made our Ministry better. He made our community better. He made me better.
To me, Allen’s greatest leadership quality is his ability to see the best in ALL people regardless of their circumstances. It is this unbiased and unconditional love for people that has taught me a great deal about myself and the type of servant leader I wish to be. Thank you, my Brother, for challenging me to be better, for teaching me so much, for being a good friend, and for “fighting the good fight, for finishing the race, and for keeping the faith.”
I know these few remaining days have not been easy for Allen. Twelve years is a long time. I commend my Brother for having the courage to leave the comfort of the Ministry to embrace his calling as a Pastor. Guided by his faith and grounded in the loving support of his wife and two children, Allen now embarks on a new journey…A journey that I am confident will allow him to continue to faithfully serve and impact our community for the better. I delight in the knowledge that Allen’s numerous talents and gifts will morph into a whole new world of possibilities and opportunities…Possibilities and opportunities that will guide and encourage so many others to grow in their relationship with the Lord.
So, how do you adequately recognize someone for twelve years of humble service to something greater than oneself? The truth is you don’t. HOWEVER, as a day of reflection and community celebration, I am asking YOU to join us at 6:00 p.m. on August 31st for our last Wednesday Night Summer Dinner up at Hillcrest Community Church (850 Norwich Avenue, S.W.) to recognize everything Allen has meant to us and to our Ministry. Please join us to thank our Brother and to ask for God’s Blessing and Grace over his new path. And—in his last official act as Executive Director—witness Allen officially “pass the torch” to his new successor and Brother in Christ, Troy Williams.
UICM is a very special Ministry, made so by the kindness, generosity, and service of so many. I am so honored to serve as its Board President. We are truly thankful for the many blessings & accomplishments of our past and we look forward to new beginnings.
Thank YOU & God Bless,
Brad Spooner Board President, United In Christ Ministries (UICM)
Our kids know all too well that a longboard Summer beats a long, bored Summer any day…We are again blessed to partner with our friends at The ARC Project for Surf Camp 2016—a two-day, “unsalted” adventure at Holland State Park filled with water safety skills, coastal environment appreciation, surfing, beach games, delicious lunch, and a powerful message about hope & God’s overwhelming love.
The ARC Project is a nonprofit organization dedicated to share the love of Christ, instill hope, strengthen faith, and encourage life to its fullest by bringing people with various cultural and socioeconomic backgrounds together through the gift of surfing. The ARC Project aims to bring hope and joy to the communities it serves by:
SURF: providing surf camps to underserved youth
SAVE: teaching water safety education
BUILD: opportunities to build relationships and bridge community gaps
To learn more about our friends at The ARC Project and the wonderful work they do, please visit their website at www.arcsurf.org
Have NO FEAR, the Grand Rapids Dirt Dawgs are Coming Here…
We are so pleased and grateful to announce that our friends with the Grand Rapids Dirt Dawgs will be coming to the Black Hills neighborhood on Tuesday (August 16th) to provide our kids with a “Skillz & Drillz” Bicycle Safety & Obstacle Course Training. Complete with music, food, and a whole lot of fun, this event will begin at 6:00 p.m. in the GRCC M-Tec Parking Lot (622 Godfrey Avenue, S.W.). Please remember to bring your signed permission slips/waivers with you and get ready to experience a truly PAW-some event!!!
The Grand Rapids Dirt Dawgs is a mountain bike organization focused on inspiring kids to have adventures outdoors. Their focus is building self-esteem, teaching the importance of living an active and healthy lifestyle, and teaching trail stewardship. The number one goal of the Grand Rapids Dirt Dawgs is to HAVE FUN while riding bikes!!!
To learn more about our friends and the work they do, please visit their website at www.grdirtdawgs.com
Our Annual “FORE” the Kids Golf Outing…
Before you put those clubs away for the season, gather a group of friends and “swing” into action to help support UICM and a “hole” lot of kids definitely worth playing “FORE.” The event is scheduled for September 30th (Friday) at The Mines Golf Course…More Information to follow!!!
EVENT DETAILS Join us for the first annual Run for the Hills 5k Walk/Run/Bike event within the Black Hills and Roosevelt Park neighborhoods. This family oriented event will take place on August 27, 2016 (Saturday) at 9:00 A.M. from the Oxford Trails and curves back around to Roberto Clemente Park. At the final destination you’ll join in our post-race party, which features prizes, music, refreshments, and a raffle.
All proceeds from the race will help support community programming efforts aimed at changing lives by increasing physical activity for people of all generations, cultures, and socioeconomic backgrounds.
(Oxford Trails)- 800 Godfrey Avenue, S.W. Grand Rapids, MI 49503
$20 per person if registered by August 22, 2016 (Monday)
$25 per person if registered on the day of race
FREE for kids 12 and under
For more information, please contact Eugene Sueing by phone (616) 855-9651 or by E-Mail email@example.com. You may also contact Belisa Melton by phone at (616) 855-9692 or by E-Mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How do I register for the 5k in advance? The only way to register online is through Eventbrite; however, you can also register in person at the Roosevelt Park Neighborhood Association office or United In Christ Ministries (UICM):
Roosevelt Park Neighborhood Association Address: 1260 Grandville Avenue, S.W. Grand Rapids, MI 49503 Phone: (616) 243-2489
United In Christ Ministries (UICM)
Address: 1035 Godfrey Avenue, S.W. Grand Rapids, MI 49503
Phone: (616) 855-8851
Do I need to register my child? Children 12 & under are free to participate in the race, but must me accompanied by a registered parent or guardian. Please note that non-registered children will not receive a race shirt, official racing bib, or a finishing time. If you’d like your child to have the full participant experience, please register them.
Can I walk/run with a dog or stroller? Dogs on leashes and jogging strollers are permitted; HOWEVER, we ask that you please be courteous and line up behind the more competitive runners at the starting line. Also, please respect our neighbors by cleaning up after your pets on the race course.
What about wheelchair participants? Persons with disabilities are more than welcome to participate in our Run for the Hills 5k.
What is Run for the Hills inclement weather policy? In the event of thunder, lightening and/or torrential downpour on race morning, the start time will be postponed until 10:15 A.M. in hopes that the weather improves. If inclement weather persists and prevents organizers from putting on a safe race, the event will be cancelled. Due to upfront expenses, permitting , and other arrangements, no rain-checks or refunds will be issued in the event of cancellation. Thank you for your understanding.
How can I sign up to volunteer? If you are interested in volunteering for the event, please sign up here. Alternatively, you may contact contact Eugene Sueing by phone (616) 855-9651 or by E-Mail email@example.com. You may also contact Belisa Melton by phone at (616) 855-9692 or by E-Mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Who is sponsoring the Run for the Hills 5k?
We have some great local sponsors that have partnered up with us to bring about a successful event. It is with great appreciation that we thank: the YMCA of Greater Grand Rapids, Habitat for Humanity of Grand Rapids, the Roosevelt Park Neighborhood Association, the Kent County Health Department- REACH, United in Christ Ministries (UICM), the Black Hills Neighborhood Association, Mercy Health, and many more!!!