44 S. State St #1123 in Hart
A Q&A with Michael Jonassen
Date opened: We’ve actually been in practice here since 1928. I joined in 1986.
Staff: One full-time, three part-time
Hours: 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. during the week, 9 a.m. to noon on Saturdays. Closed Thursdays and Sundays.
What they offer: We do comprehensive eye health exams, and we treat diseases of the eye. We provide glasses, contact lenses, safety glasses and sunglasses.
Why did you open this type of business? I worked here when I was in high school. I would do filing and accounting and cleaning. You know, all those things. I just liked the environment. You know, it’s a nice, nice environment to help people with their vision. So I decided to go to optometry school as well.
How did you choose the name for your business? It’s pretty much our service area, the whole county.
Most memorable day at your business? Probably when we reopened after complete remodeling. That was in 1994. We completely gutted the place out. Got everything new — new front, new plumbing, electrical and flooring. We had an open house, that was fun.
What is it like to serve our community in this business capacity? It’s very satisfying to be able to help people in the county with their eyes. I’m from Hart, originally, and it was nice to come back and be able to practice in my hometown.
How has our community responded to your business? They’ve been very accepting of it. We take care of our patients appropriately.
How has becoming a business owner allowed you to be more involved in our community? I’m in the Hart Rotary Club, the Hart Lions Club, and I’m a member of the Silver Lake Chamber of Commerce. So I’m able to be involved in a lot of those groups to help improve our area.
What is your favorite thing about Oceana County? Probably the Lake Michigan beaches. We’re lucky right? We have a beach all the way across the west side of the county.
Future plans? No. Nothing big.
Why is it important to shop small and local? Well, what are the statistics? We know that if you spend locally, how many times does it exchange hands? If you shop out of town, the money is gone. So if you shop local, then that money stays in the community and supports the community.
Final thoughts? I’ve enjoyed practicing here in Hart and serving the community. It’s great.