It's been quite a few years now since an anonymous benefactor or benefactors set up a fund that would allow any Kalamazoo school student to go to college for free.  At the time The Kalamazoo Promise was either the first or second of its kind in the country.

Debate continues as to it's success which, I think we can all agree, is measured first by the improvement in grades and test scores.  Some say it is not as successful as expected as the performance overall through the years did not show a remarkable increase.

The other way success can be measured is how much of a "lure" it has been to business and families relocating to the area.  When first announced I for one thought this would be a huge draw for our community.

Now there's a new promise in Kalamazoo and surrounding areas and this time we hope the draw is successful as it may determine the survival of many restaurants and bars.  And this time it's mostly the adults who will have to step up.

It's called the MI Restaurant Promise and it's basically a growing group of Kalamazoo and other West Michigan establishments that want to assure the public that they are following local, state and CDC guidelines so patrons will feel more comfortable.

As I've expressed in previous articles, my wife and I couldn't wait to got out to eat but realized once we were there that there were some pangs of doubt and uncertainty.  Our experiences so far have been great, we haven't gotten sick and we look forward to our next time out.  And now we know what businesses are going the extra mile to make safety part of their hospitality.

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