4/19/23: Drive-thru pot in Portage

Wednesday, April 19, 2023

High 46°/Low 31° Cloudy

Portage is considering whether to allow marijuana dispensaries to provide drive-thru service. Also: County officials will ask voters for a tax to help veterans. And Galesburg-Augusta schools are considering banning a book from its libraries.

NowKalamazoo badge

City considers drive-thru pot shops in Portage

Portage leaders are considering allowing drive-thru windows at marijuana dispensaries in the city. Last night, the city council approved the first reading of a ordinance to allow drive-thru marijuana shops as long as they adhere to other city zoning rules. The issue follows a state pandemic order allowing curbside and drive-thru service that was never rescinded. A city ordinance banning the practice was never changed either.

But not everyone is on board with the change. Council members Terry Urban and Lisa Brayton said they don’t understand the need for marijuana drive-thrus. Jevin Weyenberg is a manager at Lake Effect (which is a sponsor of NowKalamazoo). He said there are good reasons for such services. “A lot of people using that drive-thru are either some sort of mobily-handicapped or even have mental health issues. There’s a lot of anxiety and things like that from going into places that could be busy,” he said. The council agreed to weigh the issue at its May 6 meeting.

County to ask for tax to fund veterans services

Kalamazoo County commissioners last night unanimously agreed to ask voters to approve a tax to support veterans services. The tax would be for a tenth of a mil and would provide funds for indigent veterans throughout the county. The question will go before voters in November.

Michael Fry, the chair of the county’s veterans affairs committee, said his department is almost out of funds this year. “This additional revenue will help us to ensure that our [Veterans Service Organization] is properly staffed and does not have to suspend benefits and services in the future,” he said. The tax would cost a homeowner $10 per year for a house with a taxable value of $100,000.

More News You Need To Know

School district considering banning book

Galesburg-Augusta Community Schools is weighing whether or not to remove a book from its high school library following complaints from members of the community. The book in question is “Gender Queer: A Memoir” by Maia Kobabe. Last month, a librarian at the district said the book had been effectively removed from the shelves after a complaint. Superintendent Wendy Maynard-Somers said administrators had simply checked out the book in order to review it.

“Gender Queer” became the most banned book in the U.S. during the last school year. It is a graphic novel, and some people object to its depictions of sex acts. LGBTQ+ advocates say it’s an important book for young people who may be questioning their own gender orientation. The district’s board of education heard from supporters and detractors during a meeting Monday night. A committee set up to review the book said it will offer a recommendation in May over whether the school should keep the book or not. [WMUK]

Things To Do In Kalamazoo

Brought to you by

Doja logo

Southwest Michigan Manufacturers Consortium 2023 Kick-off – Southwest Michigan First
7:30AM 4/19

“Fierce Poise: Helen Frankenthaler and 1950s New York” by Alexander Nemerov – Kalamazoo Institute of Arts
2:00PM 4/19

Tough Topics: The Absence of Money Talk in Our Youth – Kalamazoo Public Library, Central
4:00PM 4/19

Board Game Night – Main Street Pub, West Main
6:00PM 4/19

BRAVO! Competition 2023 Recital – Fontana
7:00PM 4/19

Out of Favor Boys – O’Duffy’s Pub
7:00PM 4/19

Karaoke – Shakespeare’s Pub
8:30PM 4/19

Wednesday Comedy Night – Final Gravity Brewing Co.
8:30PM 4/19

Donuts & The Law – Legal Aid of Western Michigan
9:00AM 4/20

Kai Harris Michigan Notable Book Author Visit – Comstock Township Library
10:00AM 4/20

KSO Musical Storybooks: Ferdinand – Kalamazoo Public Library, Oshtemo
10:30AM 4/20

KSO Musical Storybooks: Ferdinand – Kalamazoo Public Library, Oshtemo
11:30AM 4/20

Item Swap – WMU Office for Sustainability
12:00PM 4/20

Pinball at the Zoo – Kalamazoo County Expo Center
2pm 4/20, 1pm 4/21, 9am 4/22

Just Write Poetry Workshop – Kalamazoo Public Library, Eastwood
4:00PM 4/20

After5: Networking and Social Event – Buy Local Greater Kalamazoo
5:00PM 4/20

High Hopes Beer Release Party – Final Gravity Brewing Co.
5:00PM 4/20

KalaSalon – Community, Culture & Cannabis: More Diversity, Less Stigma – Dabney & Co.
5:30PM 4/20

Kazoo 48 Hour Film Fest Screening – Kalamazoo Institute of Arts
6:30PM 4/20

Adult African Diasporic Dance – Rootead
6:30PM 4/20

Live Music with Neil Jansen – Green Door Distilling Co.
6:30PM 4/20

Storyteller Katsura Sunshine – K College, Dalton Theatre
7:00PM 4/20

The Kettle Belles – O’Duffy’s Pub
7:00PM 4/20

The History of the Portage Pfizer Site and The Upjohn Company – Portage District Library
7:00PM 4/20

Chicken & Biscuits – Farmers Alley Theatre
7:30pm 4/20-22, 4/27-29, 5/4-6; 2pm 4/23, 4/30, 5/7

YMCA of Greater Kalamazoo 2023 Annual Community Breakfast – Radisson Plaza Hotel at Kalamazoo Center
7:00AM 4/21

Earth Day Clean-Up – 41st District Service Office
9:30AM 4/21

KazooPex Stamp & Cover Show – Kalamazoo County Expo Center
10am 4/21-22

Hip Hop with Speak It Forward – Kalamazoo Public Library, Alma Powell
3:30PM 4/21

5:01 Ditch Friday – JungleBird
5:00PM 4/21

Board Game Night – this is a bookstore | Bookbug
5:00PM 4/21

Music with Steve Kamerling – Brick + Brine
6:00PM 4/21

Barrelhouse – The Distant Whistle Brewhouse
6:00PM 4/21

Joe Gatto Night of Comedy – Miller Auditorium
7:00PM 4/21

V. V. Lightbody, Saxsquatch & Bridge Band, Jessi Phillips – Rugger’s Up and Under
7:00PM 4/21

Old Man Trainwreck – Papa Pete’s
7:00PM 4/21

See more upcoming events here.

Suggest something to do: [email protected]

Thank you to the community institutions that support our work:

Dear reader,

If you find value in this newsletter, please consider contributing. NowKalamazoo is independent and locally owned. Your donation goes to the costs of paying professional, local journalists.

Thank you,
Ben Lando
Founder and Publisher of NowKalamazoo


Support NowKalamazoo for free: Forward this email to others who value community news coverage.

Newsletter Signup

Sign up to get our daily news and events roundup in your email every weekday morning.