Oh, West Michigan. You’re so conservative and proper.
Except the times when you’re not, which are becoming more and more frequent. West Michigan cities like Holland and Grand Haven may seem conservative on the outside, but they’ve got their vices. In May 2013, Pornhub took data from a Gallup poll on most religious cities and found out which places visited their site the most. Out of a list of 12, Holland and Grand Haven took the No. 8 spot with 9.2 Pornhub views per capita.
“This type of entertainment has been around for centuries,” said Michele Blair, manager of Lady Godiva’s Showgirls, Studs and Erica’s Erotic Accessories. “There is a need and a call for it.”
Now that these places have been outed, we’re hoping they might start to let their freak flags fly. We can only hope.
“It’s got a little ways to go, but it’s still better than it’s been in the past,” Blair said of West Michigan.
She added that when it comes to indulging in your strip club vice, Lady Godiva’s and Studs — both in Grand Rapids — are a little more conservative-friendly than others, and those with reservations should give the nightclubs a try.
“I think [more conservative people] would approve,” Blair said of Lady Godiva’s. “Our girls are in bikinis. This would more suit them.”
While Grand Haven and Holland sit and watch porn, Grand Rapids boasts its Beer City USA title with great pride. Even our mayor gets in on the action. Instead of keeping his imbibing private, Mayor George Heartwell is frequently seen with a beer in hand, making for great photo ops. When it comes to alcohol, Holland has also lightened up on this vice in a big way. In 2008, voters overturned a ban on Sunday beer and wine sales. New Holland Brewing Company was instrumental in getting the law overturned by campaigning and educating people about the ban, which prevented customers from enjoying their brews on Sundays.
“Our company campaign now is stop and taste. Enjoy the moment and what you have in front of you,” said New Holland Brewing’s distiller, Brad Kamphuid, on indulging in certain vices such as alcohol and food.
And we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention Decriminalize GR, which went into effect on May 1, 2013. The law states that those caught smoking marijuana or those with less than two and a half ounces would get a ticketed citation instead of criminally charged. Could our next step be following Washington and Colorado’s footsteps and legalizing marijuana? It certainly wouldn’t hurt our economy. Colorado made $2 million in marijuana taxes in January alone and The Huffington Post is projecting Washington to bring in an estimated $190 million through marijuana sales over the next four years.
But no matter how hard we try to hide and bury our vices, they will always work their way to the surface some way or another. Go ahead and indulge, West Michigan.
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