I can talk about HHH and what we do until I'm blue in the face, but there's really nothing like hearing from our guests themselves. All our houses have books where guests can leave a note about their stay, which are not only a joy for us to read but are also very helpful for subsequent guests. Knowing someone has gone through a similar medical experience is of great comfort. We also get thank you cards, texts...all kinds of affirming words to know that HHH is an essential service in our community. Find more great guest testimonies on our Facebook page! facebook.com/hunterhospitalityhouse
This guest came to us from Ohio!
Because HHH was founded in memory of our premature baby, Hunter, young parents are very special guests to us!
Such a sweet post script!
I didn't just love this text sent to my husband from a guest because she said I was beautiful...but it didn't hurt! ;)
Some people just really deserve to lay around on a hammock. Dennis and Debbie Pluff won this wonderful prize in our Hope Blooms from Home fundraiser, and it couldn’t have happened to two better people--especially when you consider that Dennis is lucky to be alive.
Debbie and her son, Scott, stayed at Hunter Hospitality House while Dennis was in the hospital after spending 17 hours on Lake Huron in 2019. Read more about that incredible story here:
Enjoy that hammock, Dennis and Debbie! You deserve to rest!
And thank you for supporting HHH through Hope Blooms from Home!
The new Hunter Hospitality Family House is open ahead of schedule, and ready to provide free hospital lodging for parents with children.
The Family House is a part of the Hunter Hospitality House non-profit organization, founded in 2011. Co-Founders Jeff and Tracy Willard established the charity in memory of their infant son, Hunter, who passed away at 16 days of age in 1991. The charity provides free lodging for patients and loved ones needing to stay near a hospital in Port Huron.
Hunter Hospitality House has two bed and breakfast style homes next to each hospital in Port Huron. The new Family House is a single unit home designed to give parents with children a much more private refuge. Guests will find a fully stocked kitchen and laundry room; sleeping accommodations for up to 6 people, plus a crib; and complimentary hygiene products.
“We couldn’t have opened the Family House without the community’s generosity,” said Tracy Willard. “A lot of companies donated time and services. They believe in our mission, and we’re so grateful for their help with this expansion.”
Representatives from the companies who donated time and services for renovating the Hunter Hospitality Family House gathered for a photo at the home early in June. They included Superior Heating and Cooling, Blue Water Door, Huron Inspections/Mold Removal, Watson Brothers Plumbing, Ron Lowe Construction, Home Depot, Shane Hernandez, LiUNA! Local 1075, Rock-N-Wood, Stephenson Electric, Zimmer Roofing, Independent Flooring, Kimball Appliance, Golden Choice, and Donna’s Storage.
A ribbon cutting for Hunter Hospitality Family will be held later this year, on December 7, which is the organization's 10th anniversary and what would have been Hunter’s 30th birthday. For more information about Hunter Hospitality House, and for volunteering and donation inquiries, please call 810-824-3679 or visit hunterhospitalityhouse.com.
Springtime is amazing for Hunter Hospitality House, and summer’s wonderful, too—all because of the gardens and well-kept lawns.
Who Does All of That Work?!
A quick list of volunteers who regularly help with off the top of my head would include names like Jean, Matt, Dominic, Hannah, Adam, Scott, Lynn, Steve, Paul, Rick and Rebecca. It would also include groups like St. Mary’s Youth Group, Eastern Michigan Thumb Association and Blue Water Choices.
Truth is, there are many, many more. We’re blessed to have many people reach out to us and ask how they can help make our Hunter Hospitality Houses beautiful.
What Exactly Are Volunteers Doing Outside?
Just like your house, our places need planting, weeding, trimming, mowing, edging, watering and mulching. Our volunteers’ contributions of time, talent and supplies mean HHH doesn’t have to pay companies to do the work. That allows us to use donor funds right where they’re needed—providing free lodging and abundant amenities.
Three locations--beautiful homes. Three yards. Numerous garden areas. It’s a lot of ground to cover. Takes a village!
So, when does this magic take place? Well, that’s the cool thing about outdoor volunteering. You do what you want when you want to. Seriously.
If you’re interested in starting, adding to, or just maintaining a garden, let us know. We’ll meet with you for a few minutes at your convenience, showing you the yard of whichever location, you’d like. Just give us a call at 810-824-3679 and leave a message. After your first meeting with us, you’re free to work whenever it’s best for you.
Guests often tell us that they feel more peaceful and calmer about their circumstances after they’ve sat outside, enjoying an HHH garden. And there’s science behind that.
According to an article on mentalfloss.com called 11 Scientific Reasons Why Being in Nature is Relaxing, “A study by the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health found that a natural environment allowed people to leave the stressors of their everyday lives behind and instead focus their minds on something more pure. By centering your mind, you can relax your body.”
*Note I have not verified the existence of that study…seems right to me, though! 😊
Ditch the Perfectionism
Are the yards and gardens perfect at the Hunter Hospitality Houses? Not always.
For example, we choose not to use donor dollars in watering the grass frequently, so it gets kind of yellow in the heat of the summer.
Sometimes the weeds get a bit out of control, too. But just about the time we start worrying about them, another volunteer seems to call and ask to help.
I’m Reading Your Mind
You’ve made it this far into my blog about our amazing green thumb volunteers, and you’re starting to think you’d like to join the team, too. Maybe.
But I think I know what you’re thinking. What’s in it for me?
Check out that full article I referenced above. There are numerous benefits to your health and body to working outside. https://www.mentalfloss.com/article/60632/11-scientific-reasons-why-being-nature-relaxing
Not to mention the mental benefits of volunteering, which are also well documented. You’ll basically be a superhero…healthy, happy, and worthy of big-time bragging rights.
We’re looking forward to hearing from you!
A huge thank you goes out to all of the volunteers who helped with fall clean up and house renovations! We sincerely appreciate the hard work our community pours into the homes and yards, making it possible for us to always provide medical lodging and amenities for FREE at Hunter Hospitality House!
In a year dominated by catastrophes and controversies, it’s nice to share some good news.
Hunter Hospitality House, Inc., a local organization providing free lodging and amenities in two locations near both hospitals in Port Huron, is growing. We’ve acquired a ranch style home next door to their Lake Huron Medical Center location, at 1015 Vanderburgh Place, to be called Hunter Hospitality Family House.
“We’ve long talked about wanting to help those who need to stay near the hospital, and also have children,” explained Tracy Willard, the Executive Director of Hunter Hospitality House. “Our other homes, with their bed and breakfast style accommodations, are ideal for adults. However, this house will be perfect for a family to stay in, alone, assuring they will have the freedom to relax and attend to their children in a private setting.”
Although the house is conveniently across from Lake Huron Medical Center, HHH can also provide guests with the transportation they may need to McLaren Port Huron.
“There’s a lot of work to be done inside and outside of the Family House before we can open,” Willard said. “We’ll need the help of roofing, flooring, construction, and landscape professionals, for sure. It is our hope that many people will reach out to us and donate their time and talent. We’ve had so many wonderful volunteers through the years. It’s been beautiful how our community has embraced our mission since we opened that first house in 2011, and the second in 2013.”
Hunter Hospitality House, Inc. was formed in 2011 in memory of Hunter Eldon Willard, the late son of founders Jeff and Tracy Willard. Our mission is to provide a complimentary home away from home, steps away from the hospital, for those in need of restoration while either comforting a loved one or receiving treatment themselves.
HHH’s goal is to open the new location on December 7 of 2021, which will be the organization’s 10th anniversary. “That gives us over a year to work on the renovations, involving a lot of volunteers in a safe manner with COVID-19 precautions,” said Willard. That day would also have been their son Hunter’s 30th birthday.
If you would like to contribute your time, talent or treasure for Hunter Hospitality Family House, or the organization itself, visit our website at hunterhospitalityhouse.com, email them at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call them at 810-824-3679.
Hunter Hospitality House has acquired a third house. It's located next to one of our current houses, across from Lake Huron Medical Center. This home at 1015 Vanderburgh Place will become the first Hunter Hospitality Family House, which will allow a single family including children to stay close to a loved one requiring medical treatment at no cost to them. Our goal is to open in late 2021.
See Times Herald Article HERE
Considering a stay at Hunter Hospitality House in Port Huron during a family medical crisis? Read on to see how they’re keeping people safe during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Normally providing bed-and-breakfast style lodging with numerous guests, HHH has temporarily transitioned into a rental home model. Only one family resides in the houses at a time, eliminating any concern of shared spaces or social distancing. During their stay, staff and volunteers have minimal to no interaction with the guests on site. Between guests, volunteers are cleaning and sanitizing to the highest CDC requirements while wearing gloves and masks.
Social distancing has been extended to the registration process, too. Guests are emailed a link to fill in a Google Form, which normally would have been done in person with the manager. “It was quick and easy, and I did it from the comfort of my own home, at my convenience,” said a guest who recently completed the process in advance of her stay.
Guests are asked to check their temperature and complete a pre-screening health assessment in advance of their stay, and every day throughout. If a volunteer or staff member has to be onsite, masks are available and required. Sanitizing stations are at each entryway.
As always, Hunter Hospitality House is filled with an abundance of amenities, and all guests stay for free. “Despite these new protocols, we are still offering what we’ve always provided: rest for the weary and heavy hearted,” said Tracy Willard, Executive Director of HHH. Adults with a hospitalized loved one, treatment of their own, or an early morning surgery are welcome to stay at HHH.
To make a reservation or ask questions, call the HHH Manager, Jeff Willard, at 810-990-9956. More information is available at their website, hunterhospitalityhouse.com.
Five tables of 8 are currently available for Hope Blooms 2020, to be held on August 26. Be sure to let us know ASAP if you'd like to attend, before those seats are gone!
While everyone's home under the pandemic quarantine, we've had some extra time to check out our own website and realized how dreadfully out of date I've kept this news tab. No time like the present to fix that!
So what's new at HHH? For starters, we're temporarily closed. When visiting restrictions at the hospitals have been lifted and the local health department advises that we're safe to reopen, our two locations will happily accept guests with hospitalized loved ones or treatment of their own. While the homes are closed, we've been doing some cleaning and painting, too.
Also because of the Coronavirus, our annual fundraiser, Hope Blooms, has been rescheduled for August 29. Previously purchased tickets are good for this date, and more tickets are available at our "Hope Blooms" tab here on the website.
While we realize most of our supporters will not be in a financial position to support HHH through donations at this time, we are still going forward with our Endowment Fund Awareness Raffle. Only 300 tickets at $100 each are available, and five incredible prizes will be awarded on August 31.
The community's health and well being are in my prayers daily. I can't wait to get back to meeting new guests and providing free medical lodging near both hospitals in Port Huron.