Tuesday, 01 August 2017 13:39

Best of the West 2017 winners: People & Services

Written by  Josh Veal
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Services & People is our most eclectic category by far, ranging from Barbershop to Comedian to Personal Trainer. So let’s take a look at some of these people.

Christian Roberts of Allegro Coaching (which placed second for Fitness Club/Gym) took first place for Personal Trainer, thanks to 18 years of experience working with dancers, MMA fighters and everyone in-between. 

Meanwhile, in what could be considered the opposite of a personal trainer, the Bartender category experienced a shakeup. Dan Dixon of Founders leapfrogged into first place, while Brian Denboer of Harmony climbed from last year’s third place to this year’s second. 

The Comedians retained two of last year’s Top 3 but newcomer Kaira Williams moved into third place. Williams is one half of Inaccurate & Innappropriate (Megan Elaine is the other), a comedy duo that puts together a weekly web series “discussing life’s absurdities while getting most of the facts completely wrong.” The two have begun performing together in live shows as well, so keep an eye out.

Speaking of watching things (this is a bad segue), check out that TV News Personality category. All three winners come from WOODTV8, which is likely the most watched news station in Grand Rapids. But I don’t actually know, so let’s move on. 

Kaite Lyn “KL” Christoffersen of both Cheeky Strut and Siren & Proper retained her devoted fan following as winner of Hair Stylist, but she also moved into third for Instagram Account, @mermiconhair. This isn’t too surprising given her 91,000-plus followers, which is six times as many as the other two winners’ (EatGR and GR Guide) combined. Last spring, long before we even held Best of the West, we featured Christoffersen in our first-ever Style Issue for just being an all-around boss.

We might as well talk about the other hair stylists too, since 265 people were nominated, which is 100 more than last year. Kathy Kang at Capelli Salon took second place, which makes the only win this year for the Eastown salon. Meanwhile, JR Kotrc-Eufora of Belladonna Salon & Spa on 28th Street took third.

As for the services (Car Wash, Catering, etc.), well, I’m not enough of a jack-of-all-trades to impart sage wisdom there, but let’s just say the results speak for themselves.


The Winners:

Auto Repair
1. Westside Garage, 856 7th St. NW, Grand Rapids
2. Community Automotive Repair
3. Veenstra’s Garage
Bank/Credit Union
1. Lake Michigan Credit Union, lmcu.org
2. Macatawa Bank
3. Adventure Credit Union, Chemical Bank
Barber Shop
1. Jude’s Barbershop, Multiple locations, judesbarbershop.com
2. Foremost Barbershop
3. Zach’s Barbershop
Bicycle Shop
1. Freewheeler Bike Shop, 915 Leonard St. NW, Grand Rapids
2. Spoke Folks
3. Grand Rapids Bicycle Company
Car Wash/Detailing
1. Southland Auto Wash (Now Mister Car Wash), mistercarwash.com
2. Waterworks Car Wash
3. Breton Auto Wash
1. Martha’s Catering, 1122 Michigan St. NE, Grand Rapids
2. Kangaroo Kitchen
3. Gilmore Catering
Fitness Club/Gym
1. MVP, 4035 Burton St. SE, Grand Rapids
2. Allegro Coaching
3. Flirt Fitness
1. Dan Dixon — Founders Brewing Co., 235 Grandville Ave. SW, Grand Rapids
2. Brian Denboer — Harmony Brewing (Eastown)
3. Adam Rodriguez — Long Road Distillers
1. Jenna Arcidiacono — Amore, 5080 Alpine Ave. NW, Comstock Park
2. Ryan Bolhuis — Rockford Brewing Company
3. Chris Weimer — Brewery Vivant
1. Stu McCallister, stumccallister.com
2. Nolan Graff
3. Kaira Williams
Hair Stylist
1. Kaite Lyn “KL” Christoffersen — Cheeky Strut, cheekystrut.com/kaite-lyn
2. Kathy Kang — Capelli Salon
3. JR — Belladonna Salon
Instagram Account
2. GR Guide
3. Mermicornhair
Radio Personality
1. Free Beer and Hot Wings, freebeerandhotwings.com
2. Eric Zane
3. Connie and Curtis
TV News Personality
1. Rachael Ruiz — WOODTV8, woodtv.com
2. Casey Jones — WOODTV8
3. Bill Steffen — WOODTV8 
1. Urban Massage, 951 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids 
2. Design One
3. Chasing Vanity
Nail Salon
1. Chasing Vanity, 150 Wealthy St. SE, Grand Rapids
2. Posh Nail Studio
3. Da Vi Nail Salon
1. Grand Rapids Ophthalmology, seeitclear.com
2. Rx Optical
3. HyperOptik
Personal Trainer
1. Christian Roberts
2. Kendra Bylsma, Lance Huber
3. Heidi Dykstra, Lexie Rydleski
1. Cheeky Strut, 216 Grandville Ave. SW, Grand Rapids
2. Brindle & Blonde 
3. Chasing Vanity
1. Mos Eisleys, 71 S. Division Ave., Grand Rapids
2. Honest to Goodness
3. Love Tattoo
Honorable Mention: Sovereign Arms
Vet/Animal Clinic
1. Eastown Veterinary Clinic, 1350 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids
2. Cascade Hospital for Animals
3. Family Friends Veterinary Hospital
Yoga Studio
1. Funky Buddha Yoga Hothouse, 1331 Lake Dr. SE, Grand Rapids
2. AM Yoga
3. PeaceLab Yoga
Honorable Mention: Twisted Hot Yoga


Staff Picks:

HAIR STYLIST: Ann Van Weaver, Brindle & Blonde

How can you forget the 2016 March Style issue cover girl? Van Weaver is a genius stylist and it’s true what they say — you can judge a stylist by their own hair. Whether she’s kinky curly blonde or some magical color of pink or green that exists in another unicorn realm, she always has me watching. I could look at her before-and-after wavy bob-cut photos all day. But Brindle & Blonde won second for Best Hair Salon, so I suppose that’s partially her doing, right? 600 Monroe Ave. NW, Grand Rapids —by Missy Black


SALON: Bombshell Blow Dry Bar and Full Service Salon

I stumbled upon the salon’s Instagram account and I’ve been amazed by all the smiling people. From friendly and helpful staff to customers that look like they won a million dollars or got their best cut or color ever (which is the same feeling), the salon is a surefire happy spot. Besides the Balayage, you can stop in for services for nails, tanning, bridal beauty, makeup and lashes, as well as the latest in quality hair products and trendy accessories. 2975 W. Shore Dr., Holland —by Missy Black


SALON: The Parlour Grand Rapids

There are countless reasons to love the Parlour. This blow dry bar/salon combo is in central downtown (inside CityFlatsHotel), making it the prime location to get your hair done before going out on the town. Stop in to freshen up your manicure or spend your day here sipping wine or beer and snacking on food from the restaurant next door. The Parlour is always running specials and giveaways, and their prices are some of the best in Grand Rapids. For a stellar men’s cut, visit Amanda. For stunning highlights, balayage or a sharp new ’do, check out Carley or Hannah. Visit Instagram for visual proof of all this salon has to offer. 77 Monroe Center St. NW, Grand Rapids —by Kelly Brown



Walk into CrossFit 616 and you’ll be greeted with numerous hellos (and possibly, a lick on the nose from the box dog, Tink). Spend a day at CrossFit 616 and you’ll instantly be hooked. Coaches Brian, Cori and Tom are invested in not only the health and well-being of their clients, but their lives as well. When you join CrossFit 616 you’re not just joining a gym, you’re joining a family. So, if you want to get ripped, gain better endurance, lose a few pounds — whatever your goals are, this place is there to support you every step of the way. 2430 Turner Ave. NW, Grand Rapids —by Kelly Brown


INSTAGRAM ACCOUNT: Diane Teall Evans (@ditea)

Not many Instagram accounts will make you laugh out loud, but Diane Teall Evans will, and she’ll make you healthy while she does it. Her main account focuses on nutrition (delicious healthy recipes, and tips and tricks to live a better life!), while her Instagram stories focus on daily life. Stories include a tutorial for a “caca bun,” her pug Doug and rants about healthy fats. Her account will keep you motivated to lead a healthy life, while making your stomach hurt from laughing. —by Kelly Brown


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