Temperatures are dropping, the snow is falling, and twinkly lights are shining all over our beautiful Northern Michigan town. This can only mean one thing: the holidays have officially arrived! This special season is an opportunity for coming together with friends and family, spreading joy and cheer to those around you, and a chance to ring in the start of a new year. But most especially, the holidays are a perfect time to celebrate the season of giving.

Our local community is full of many deserving people and organizations, both at Christmas and all-year round. Below, we’ve listed just a few of the many charities, non-profits, and families in need that Bayside Docs is proud to support in our community throughout the year. We’re grateful for the work these groups are doing to make our home a happier, healthier, and safer place to live:

Teen Girl with red and white gift season of giving

Traverse City Salvation Army: In addition to an annual monetary donation, Bayside Docs has been participating in the Teen Angel Program for the past 3 years. Each year, we adopt 3 local teens to make sure that they are able to experience the magic of the holiday season, and relieve stress from struggling families. Prior to our support of the Teen Angel program, we participated in the Adopt A Family program for over 15 years.

The Father Fred Foundation: Since 1989, The Father Fred Foundation has been providing food, clothing, household goods, and financial assistance to those with less within our five-county community, and we are proud to support them each year with a monetary contribution. We also understand how difficult health care can be when a family or individual is struggling to make ends meet. To alleviate this burden, we provide free office visit vouchers to the Foundation, to be shared with those who need it.

Cowell Family Cancer Center: This year, a portion of the funds from all flu shots given by Bayside Docs was donated to the Center, to support their mission of providing comfort, convenience, and high-quality cancer care for patients throughout northern Michigan. If you haven’t gotten your flu shot yet this year, it’s not too late! No appointments are needed, and you can protect yourself against the flu while helping those in the devastating fight against cancer.Old Town Playhouse Sponsors during season of giving

Old Town Playhouse: Bayside Docs is thrilled to have been a season sponsor of the OTP for over ten years. This volunteer-driven organization provides much-needed entertainment and educational opportunities in the theatrical arts for all ages in our community. When you stop by our office, you may recognize Receptionist Meg both as a frequent OTP volunteer in set design & costumes, and a talented actress on the stage!

Blonde boy lacing up skisInternational Student Exchange Programs: It’s important for our students to be healthy before they compete in any sports program, and sports physicals are the best way to identify and address any health concerns that might interfere with safe participation in a given sport. That’s why we offer opportunities for free sports physicals for participants in local international student exchange programs. We want to be sure that these students and their host families are able to easily evaluate their health status before enrolling them in any activities.

In addition to the deserving organizations listed above, we also provide annual monetary donations to the Grand Traverse Sheriff Department, in support of their Drug Safety handbook and participation in programs such as National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day; Grand Traverse Metro Fire Department; Easling Pool; and various school sports programs throughout Traverse City, including baseball, football, hockey, tennis, and figure skating.

This Christmas, we encourage you to join us in celebrating the season of giving. Look for ways that you can give back to your community, by offering time, money, or spreading holiday cheer to those around you. We are proud to be part of Northern Michigan, and happy to serve Traverse City and the surrounding communities. We hope you have a wonderful and safe 2019 holiday season!Season of Giving snowman with red shovel

While taking care of others this winter, be sure to take care of yourself as well. Use safe seasonal practices, such as washing your hands regularly, watching out for icy patches in driveways and sidewalks, and wearing appropriate out-door gear to protect against cold temperatures. If you need fast and reliable care to get you back on your feet, stop by the Bayside Docs Urgent Care office today to visit with one of our experienced healthcare professionals.