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Ferris Joins in Celebration of Cherries at Annual Festival

BIG RAPIDS − Ferris is heading back to Traverse City for the National Cherry Festival, held July 5 through 12 this year. Ferris students, staff and the cheer team will be walking, cheering and rousing the crowds during the parade on July 12 starting at 11:15 a.m.

This year brings an all-new presentation from Ferris. Diverging from last year’s blimp, Ferris’ plans include two students walking with a Ferris banner, the beloved bulldog dancing around and giving high fives, the cheer team bringing spunk and pep to spectators, and wrapping a car to idle down the parade’s path.

“This is a new kind of publicity for Ferris,” said Sue Starkey, assistant director of Marketing and Communications at Ferris, adding that she personally “wants to invite Ferris students and alumni to come cheer us on.

“Because Ferris offers extended learning classes in Traverse City, our involvement in the parade is a novel recruitment tool aimed at both adult-learners and traditional college students” she said.

The statewide availability of Ferris programs, including a location in Traverse City at Northwestern Michigan College, provides a variety of settings for busy individuals seeking to advance their education. This includes evening and weekend classroom instruction, interactive television, a combination of classroom and online delivery as well as strictly online instruction. Available programs range from professional development certificates, to associate, bachelor’s and master’s degrees.

The National Cherry Festival in Traverse City is held to celebrate cherries, which grow in abundance due to the advantages of its moderate climate, and to promote tourism and community involvement. The Festival includes a variety of activities for kids and adults of all ages. Along with a parade, activities include free events for kids such as an arts and crafts fair, cherry pie eating, fireworks and turtle races. Adults can join in on the festivities as well with wine tasting, a car and truck show, musical performances, air shows and golf.