GR Dog Adventures, LLC
Grand Rapids, MI 49506 US
Phone: 616-259-0147 Website: http://www.grdogadventures.com
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Meet the Grand Rapids Dog Adventures Athletes

At GR Dog Adventures, we’re not just dog walkers. We’re distance runners, athletes, outdoor zealots and absolute dog lovers!

Jenny

Jenny

Mountain biker, traveler, crazy, funny lady…yep, that’s Jenny. She’s a die-hard athlete, but wasn’t always that way. She was a total sports failure in high school, only making the golf and track team because nobody got cut. Fast forward to today and Jenny is an accomplished athlete of the toughest kind. She’s a marathoner, triathlete and Ironman finisher…TWICE!!! Recently, she’s gotten into bike polo and has traveled the U.S. and Canada to play. You may even see her “fat-biking” her way between clients in the winter. Why not??

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Her travels have included 29 countries, multiple languages, studying Design in Florence, Italy and triple citizenship…Brazil, USA and Mexico! MOST IMPORTANTLY, she has brought back the secret to Brazilian Cheesy Bread! But what about the crazy, funny lady part, you say? Back home in little ol’ Grand Rapids, you will often see her racing in crazy costumes to get the crowd pumped. Jenny recently broke her jaw during a mountain bike race, but she finished the last 10 miles, not realizing it was broken until 3 days later! You can bet your bottom she won’t wimp out on your pup. 9 years ago Jenny made an online love connection with a little Italian dude, an Italian Greyhound named Pedro. He’s been her sidekick and was the reason she started running. She regularly goes camping and hiking with her dog and can’t imagine a better way to spend her time. 
Danielle

Danielle

Extreme endurance mountain biker extraordinaire, Sour Patch Kids junkie and leader/founder of the GR Dirt Dawgs. Whether in her 100th mile of a grueling 24 hour bike race or coaching a kid’s mountain biking clinic, you will never see Danielle without a smile. Her heart is 100 percent in to anything she does and as a result, you will be inspired…whether you like it or not. Yes, you read correctly, 24 hours of continuous mountain biking…no sleep! She recently placed 4th in the 24 Hour World Championships in Fort William, Scotland and

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she’s the 2011 national champion in the 24 Hour Single Speed division!!! She even has multiple sponsors, including Salsa Cycles. Obviously, Danielle spends a LOT of time on two wheels, but every once in a while, you may be lucky enough to spot her on her own two feet…trail running or hiking with her three rescue dogs. She has a 12 year old Greyhound and two Pit Bull mixes (5 and 3). They’re goofy and fun-loving dogs. Hmmm…sounds like they take after their Mamma?? As every dog-lover knows, you can never get enough “dog”, so Danielle volunteers as a dog walker for the Humane Society of West Michigan. When she’s not on the trails, on a bike or with dogs, Danielle can be found at the Grand Rapids Bicycle Company, Ada location.  She teaches skills clinics, kid’s clinics, a weekly spin class, leads ladies rides and has led the charge on the new GR kid’s mountain bike team- The Dirt Dawgs! Her goal is to get as many women and kids in to biking as possible. Oh yeah, and to WIN the world championships next year!
Elissa

Elissa

Canine cancer researcher, doggie rescue veteran and K-9 portrait extraordinaire, Elissa is no fence-straddler. She has both feet firmly planted in the animal welfare world. She’s been involved in rescue for over a decade, most recently as a foster home for Boston Terriers. As a dog portrait artist, she often uses her paintings as fundraising efforts for dog causes. Elissa was even featured twice in the “Pit Bulls n Pretty Girls” fundraising calendar (proceeds for military families)! Elissa’s nearly 14 years of cancer

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research included researching canine cancers and genetics- traveling the country to meet dogs in all sorts of venues like dog shows, working dog kennels, dog sport competitions, rescue events and fundraising walks. Her family will tell you that she’s been performing “science experiments” since she was very young -ha!. I’m picturing little Elissa in a lab coat, thick goggles and crazy scientist hair. In case you’re not already convinced of Elissa’s responsible, hard-working nature, she actually saved money from her first job to buy a house in Grand Rapids at age 19! Sheesh- who couldn’t do that??;). Elissa was born and raised here in Beer City and is finding it a great place to raise her scraggly terrier “son”, Caper, AKA Lil Clif, Scuba Steve and Mr. Scragglesworth. He’s an energetic dog with a ton of personality…and a beard! He is adept at opening doors and loves hiding snacks in the couch- again, who doesn’t?! Elissa is, and has always been, completely dedicated to giving dogs a great life. Your pup will be well-loved and well-exercised during his sessions with her and I’m pretty sure you’ll feel better knowing Elissa is your dog’s new BFF. Imagine the fun they’ll have!
Mike

Mike

Nurse in the making, MULTI-marathoner, identical twin and all-around great guy, Mike is the human every dog wants in his life. If your dog is fast, or can run for miles, then Mike’s the guy for you! High-energy “working dog” breeds, I’m talking to you! With multiple marathons (4 currently) under his belt, and a 7:10 min/mile pace (on a good day;)), your pup is sure to get an exciting workout! No worries if your pup needs a little extra TLC and a slow-motion adventure, Mike’s still your guy.

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He’s happy to tailor his sessions to the needs of his furry friends. He’s soon to be a nurse and has been working at Hope Network Rehabilitation Services for over two years as a direct care provider for patients with traumatic brain injuries. For the two years previously, he worked with children on the Autism Spectrum. When Mike’s not pouring his heart in to caring for others, he’s most likely enjoying the Michigan surf: swimming, boating, kayaking or the mitten state turf: mountain biking, camping or running. He has an ambitious short-term goal of a sub 3 hour marathon in Boston this year. A little further off, Mike wants to pursue his Master’s Degree in Nursing and explore Africa and Croatia. Lucky for him, dog running is just the stepping stone he needs to reach all his goals;). Your dog will be safe, happy, well-loved and TIRED after his session with Mike. BTW, that pretty gal in the car with Mike is his special lady, Sadie.

Beth

Notre Dame golfer, world traveler and hockey wife and mother, Beth is an incredible person who has accomplished many things with her life and now loves helping her husband and two girls succeed. While at Notre Dame, Beth was busy! She was on the golf and synchronized swim teams, collecting awards left and right, all while earning a degree in Finance and Business Economics! Fast forward to after college, where she went on to sell drugs…seriously…for some dealer named Eli Lilly;).When she wasn’t dealing,

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she was the Director of the Water Show at the Kalamazoo Country Club where she directed a group of more than 80 children in a synchronized swimming show. She coordinated set design, costumes, and music, and choreographed routines for nighttime performances under the stars! Who knows, maybe she can teach your pup a few crowd-pleasers to show off next time he’s at the dog beach. Beth is genuinely humble and it wasn’t easy to drag these details out of her;). Don’t you love people like that?! However, it was easy  to learn about her husband and daughters, who she’s very proud of- rightly so! She’s a hockey wife, who became a hockey mom. She works hard to raise her two girls and a 4 year old dog named Louie;). However, Louis isn’t the only lucky pup to cross paths with Beth. During her time in Chicago, she worked on several Adopt-A-Dog campaigns to help place rescued dogs with loving, long-term homes through the Chicago Wolves Charity. Living in 4 different countries and over 15 cities, Beth, her family and Louie:) have become good at making friends- you’ll see for yourself if you’re lucky enough to get to know her! Of course, you will also see a serious runner-girl who loves her fur-pawtners!
Jill

Jill

Incredible vegan soup maker, roller derby girl and ultra-endurance mountain biker …that’s just the beginning of Jill’s story. She’ll make you laugh and she’ll make your dog tired. What more could you ask for?? Jill loves loves loves racing mountain bikes and fat bikes. This summer, she’ll be travelling to some of the National Ultra Endurance series races and next winter she hopes to be at the the Iditabike (an ultra-endurance fat bike race)!

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Of course, her racing experience doesn’t begin and end with bikes. She used to drive in demolition derbies, where her first derby car, at the ripe old age of 14, was a hot pink Lincoln Town Car with bowling pins bolted to the roof. Vegan soups, fat bikes and hot pink derby cars are pretty fun, for sure, but add to that her skating experience with the Grand Raggidy Roller Girls, with a derby name of The Morton Assault Girl, and Jill makes the cut as one of the coolest ladies in GR. But what about animal experience?? She has PLENTY. She volunteered at a vet clinic in high school, she grew up with a yellow lab named Daisy and she’s a volunteer dog walker for the Humane Society of West Michigan. She adopted her dog, Ninja, when he was 3 years old from the humane society. He’s 11 now, and seems to have led just as exciting a life as Jill. He found $20 on the streets of New York, was dog-napped in Lansing, and he has happily joined her at work at a radio station, a screen-printing shop, a neighborhood market, and now, occasionally, at the bike shop where she works. When Jill isn’t running dogs, you’ll find her coordinating events at the Grand Rapids Bicycle Company. She LOVES it there because she gets to help people find their perfect bike, and fall in love with cycling. She also loves camping, road trips and a raging bonfire…with Ninja at her side, where he belongs.
Eve Wrest, Owner

Eve

Founder

Combining a lifetime love for dogs, the great outdoors, adventure and business, Eve created GR Dog Adventures, the first dog running company in Grand Rapids, Michigan.  She grew up as a competitive ice dancer and ballroom dancer and went on to teach ice dancing at the Detroit Skating Club.  These days she enjoys skiing, running and competing in local events, especially the 5th3rd Riverbank Run 25k. Eve and her husband, Brian, have three dogs, two of which are very senior pups at 15 and 16 years old.

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. They never miss an opportunity to get them out on the trails, although being senior petizens, they can’t cover as much distance these days. Eve credits her pups’ healthy golden years to all the walking, running and hiking they’ve done together over the years. When they’re not exploring new West Michigan territory, Eve and Brian love competing in adventure races together. The Winter Adventure Race at Cannonsburg and their two Tough Mudder finishes made for some interesting date nights, for sure. Eve has seen the results of a very active lifestyle in her own dogs and wants to give other Grand Rapids Area dogs the healthy, happy, adventurous lives they were meant to lead.  Appreciating how busy most dog owners are, she started GR Dog Adventures with the sole purpose of making dogs’ lives better and their owners’ lives easier.
Kent

Kent

Kent belongs to the woods…seriously…he could literally sit in the woods all day long!  He loves solitude and contemplation and expressing his love of nature through writing and art. Currently he’s working toward a master’s degree in Applied Ecopsychology, which is about deepening our understanding of our relationship with the natural world. Eco-Art Therapy is a major part of this method and Kent will soon have this

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certification. He hopes to develop Eco-Therapy services within a new, local non-profit that a friend of his started. Eventually he and his wife would like to live in a small, self-sustaining, intentional living community…preferably in a tiny home. Bottoms up to the tiny home movement! Kent is not all nature and art. In high school, he was a sprinter and basketball player. Now days, you might see him playing a round of golf, if the price is right, or out running…barefoot! Ouch! Don’t try to sell him shoes. It’s a waste of time.  He and your dog will have so much in common;). He’s worked for Hope Network for the past 8 years, working with folks who have sustained a brain injury.  He says that “the job can be challenging, but the lives of the people he serves are incomparably challenging.  If he can help them get through their day a little easier, with a little less stress and a little more laughter, then he’s done his job”. His work, nature and his own dogs have taught him about enjoying the moment. Ultimately, Kent is a kid at heart; and according to his wife, can be a complete goofball, so watch out.

Katie

Pseudo wedding singer, trauma therapist, tri-athlete and weekend adventurer…Katie is an action-packed, surprise filled member of our crazy, fun GRDA family! She is always ready to make you laugh and genuinely loves people as much as she loves her four-legged friends. Katie’s care and compassion towards people extends to her profession, where she’s a trauma-focused therapist, specializing in PTSD in children. She loves getting to be creative and using art and music with the kiddos, and when the weather cooperates,

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she loves taking the sessions outside! She even uses dogs in therapy! Growing up, Katie’s family bred Brittany Spaniels for hunting and family pets. They also bred (her parents still do) canaries, chickens, ducks, geese and her favorite, teddy bear sheep! How cute! Maybe, just maybe, this is where the seed of her compassionate heart was watered:). When Katie’s not working, no doubt you will find her outdoors! Though she’s a lover of sports in general, her greatest love is for biking. Katie and her bike go together like peas and carrots; she got serious about road biking 2 years ago and mountain biking this past summer. She’s been getting in to triathlons and adventure racing and competed in her first Olympic distance tri this past summer. Katie is also a gung-ho weekend adventurer, once hiking the tallest peak in the UK, Ben Nevis, still covered in snow. This year, she wants to improve her orienteering skills, as well as her wilderness survival skills. It’s been a dream of hers to get certified as a Wilderness First Responder…and why the heck not? If your pup gets paired with Katie, he will have one of the coolest cats in GR to explore the great outdoors with…and will never get lost! He may even get serenaded wedding singer style;).

Kaitlyn

 

Nicole

Nicole

 

Joel

 

Brian Wrest

Brian

Founder & Chief Techie

Without Brian, there would be no GR Dog Adventures.  He’s the wizard behind the curtain, performing e-“magic” and making problems disappear with his magic mouse.  His “real” job is as a Senior Digital Specialist for Amway, but that can’t be nearly as fun as running with dogs, can it??  He has three dogs of his own, one of which he named Moguls (after his first love, freestyle skiing).  Life, as Brian knows it, revolves around skiing.  He’s a skier first, everything else second, kind of guy.

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He’s an amazing freestyle skier (moguls) and was an instructor for many years.  Brian also knows his way around a mountain bike and loves to hit the trails whenever possible.  Brian finished his first Riverbank Run 25k race this year, but honestly, he prefers the challenge and thrill of adventure racing, the GR Winter Adventure Race and Tough Mudder being his favorite.  He likes to sprinkle in a couple triathlons each year too…why not?!  He loves the Reeds Lake Triathlon and is a proud finisher of the 2013 Titanium (½ Ironman) race here in his hometown of Rockford!!!

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The pictures are in from the Cannonsburg Deck Paw-ty and Woof Walk (link below)! Thanks to everyone who braved the Heat! I think the doggie pool station was my favorite! Grumpy Pups Pet Photography does a fantastic job ❤❤❤.
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