United way of south central michigan. 8,312,445 invested or managed through our legacy united ways, impacting lives in key areas of need.

Mary Gajda

Mary Gajda is the managing editor for 517 Magazine and has an extensive background in radio and television. She enjoys creative writing, photography and spending time with family — and she will never say no to an evening of karaoke.

Articles by Mary Gajda


Days of Giveaways is back for 3rd annual Holiday Gifting

The Day after Thanksgiving is when holiday gift buying steps into high gear. No matter what or how you celebrate; giving always makes you feel great. And as …

Annual MSUFCU Student Art Exhibit Returns after One-Year Hiatus

After 13 years, the annual MSUFCU Student Art Exhibit took a year off to evaluate the event in the ongoing pandemic. Now that the world is at its new state o…

Indoor Painting Techniques and Tips

I’ve been around the block with a paintbrush … at least twice. While I wouldn’t say I have chromophobia, I do have a deep aversion to color within my home…

Suppliers, Hire Diversity Summit Comes to Lansing

The first annual Mid-Michigan Suppliers and Hire Diversity Summit makes its debut at the Lansing Center from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Nov. 15. The event brings oppo…

Tri-County Public Transit Agencies Launch Partnership to Enhance Regional Mobility

Three public transit agencies have unveiled an unprecedented effort to enhance regional mobility across the Mid-Michigan region. The Capital Area Transportat…

Make Your Home Porch Perfect

Ask many a Michigander, and they’ll tell you fall is their favorite season. While the official first day of fall isn’t until Sept. 22, we’ll start to see …

A Q&A with Justine Bell of Cedar River Insurance

You’ve been publicly lauded for being so incredibly helpful to people with insurance questions whether they are or are not your client. It seems your goal is…

An Indelible Imprint

Wells leaves legacy of insight and understanding on lives at East Lansing High School Andrew Wells’ answer started off strong before he realized the full …

Dancing’s Lifelong Lessons

A Q&A with Children’s Ballet Theatre Board Chair Sue Powers Can you give a brief overview of Children’s Ballet Theatre and describe its mission? Ch…

Summertime Social Comes to Downtown Lansing

Get Social with Lansing Social Districts this summer. Grab your friends, neighbors or a co-worker, then pick-up a social district drink to join us within L…

Being Fair and Balanced in an Influencer World

On the Record with television journalist Ann Emmerich Emmy Award-winning WILX TV-10 evening anchor Ann Emmerich has been in broadcast journalism since her…

How to Hold a Successful Garage Sale

A garage sale is a great way to purge old items and make cash to pay off bills, buy replacement pieces or even take a vacation. Doing it right will make the …

Zesty Radish and Chive Sandwich

Radishes are fresh, crisp and peppery tasting. Not everyone loves them; but if you do, here’s a treat you’ll want to try. Ingredients: 3 radishes, th…

Why Coffee Table Books are a Thing

Coffee table books have long been considered as decorative. They grace your tabletop with beautiful photos. They are nice to have guests leaf through as conv…

On the Record with Aaron Tobias of Century Construction

Aaron Tobias is passionate about the work he’s put into the community for 15 years with Century Construction of Lansing. As a general contractor, the busines…

Hall of Famer Smoltz Makes a Stop in Support of Autism

Lansing Native and Baseball Hall of Famer John Smoltz has been making headlines again for putting his name behind the Strikeout Baseball Stadium coming to Fe…

Baked Goods by Dominic Reaches Another Milestone

Last July, 517 Magazine shared the story of Baked Goods by Dominic. Dominic Blatnik started his business baking products under the Michigan Cottage Food L…

On the Record with Jim Owens, Financial Adviser for Lansing Community College

As the saying goes, “You don’t know what you don’t know.” When it comes to paying for college, the facts can be a game-changer, and that’s why it’s important…

Starting from the Bottom can Provide Motivation

Having a business is a dream for countless people. Many new business owners have gone all-in, spending every last dime to open their doors. But is starting y…