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Grandparents Day Events Celebrate Special Family Bonds

Increasing numbers of grandparents are raising grandchildren, due to such factors as parents' job losses and the opioid epidemic. (Pixabay)
Increasing numbers of grandparents are raising grandchildren, due to such factors as parents' job losses and the opioid epidemic. (Pixabay)
September 6, 2018

LANSING, Mich. – As the matriarchs and patriarchs, grandparents have always played important roles in their families, and this weekend Michiganders can spend special time celebrating those contributions.

AARP Michigan is hosting free Grandparents Day events in Detroit, Jackson and Lansing on Sunday.

Associate State Director of Communications Mark Hornbeck explains grandparents deserve a special honor, as many are becoming a much bigger part of grandchildren’s' lives than they were in the past.

"A variety of factors out there are requiring that grandparents get more involved,” he states. “They're taking on a family role that they didn't expect to have to take on. Some do it gladly, some probably reluctantly."

An estimated 2.7 million grandparents in the U.S. are raising grandchildren, in part because of parents' job losses or financial instability, as well as the opioid epidemic.

Hornbeck says Sunday's events are a way to honor the bond between grandparents and grandchildren.

Lansing's event will be held at the Don Johnson Fieldhouse, where Hornbeck says more than 35 organizations are planning activities for the entire family.

"Dance instruction and dance performance, balloon-animal making, street magic, tennis instruction, chalk art, learning about animals, old-fashioned games, martial arts classes, bounce houses, a carnival, photo booth and more," he states.

Similar activities are taking place at the Detroit celebration at the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. And the Jackson Symphony Orchestra is hosting a musical afternoon, featuring a quartet performance and instruction on creating homemade musical instruments.

Information on all three events is online at aarp.org/mi.

Mary Kuhlman, Public News Service - MI