Joanne Holden, 84

Joanne Holden, 84, of Three Rivers, died April 17, 2012. She was known to many as the lady who operated the Long Lake Food and Book Shop from 1968 until her retirement in 2011. Born in Michigan City, Ind., on Oct. 26, 1927, to Ruth and Kenneth Holden, she grew up in Harbert, Mich., on the shore of Lake Michigan. She attended the Three Oaks schools, Michigan City High School and graduated from the University of Colorado. After working as a youth organizer for the American Friends Service Committee, she did graduate studies in psychology and religion at the University of Chicago. The work of Helen Luke of the Apple Farm Community attracted her to this area.

Joanne was a uniquely charming and independent person who turned the Long Lake Food and Book Shop into a special experience for all who lived in Fabius Township, all who visited the lakes, or any who were just lucky enough to chance by one day. One sign in the store read,

“Yes, we have a little bit of everything! You We may not be able to find it, but it’s here!

The Management”

She wrote poetry, loved the woods and animals (her dogs especially helped her mind the store), and became a connoisseur of beers from around the world. She stocked the store with the things she loved (music, books, beer) and the things her customers wanted (Baltic Bakery Bread, penny candy for the kids).

A memorial service celebrating all things Joanne to which all are welcome will be held on June 30 with details to be announced at a later date. In the spirit of Joanne’s generosity to a multitude of charitable causes, donations in her memory may be made to the charity of your choice or to any of the following: Animal Rescue Fund, P.O. Box 593, Centreville, MI 49032; Southwest Michigan Land Conservancy for the Dutch Settlement Road Spirit Springs Sanctuary, 6851 S. Sprinkle Road, Portage, MI 49002; Three Rivers Home Care and Hospice, 222 S. Main St., Three Rivers, MI 49093; Fabius-Park Townships Fire and Rescue, 15149 Broadway, Three Rivers, MI 49093. Online condolences may be left at in care of her arrangements.

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