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Mary Free Bed dishes up new dining services for patients

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – There’s a lot cooking at 235 Wealthy Street these days. With the launch of its in-house food and dining service, Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital patients are enjoying a new menu of nourishing meals tailored to their specific needs.

Patients who need rehabilitation sometimes require a long hospital stay, and nutrition is a vital component of recovery. The Mary Free Bed Kitchen & Cafe features a wealth of healthy offerings that also keep taste buds entertained.

Todd Veenstra, ChefThe culinary team is led by executive chef Todd Veenstra, whose love of cooking was instilled by his mother when he was young. A graduate of Grand Rapids Community College’s Culinary School, Veenstra has nearly 30 years of experience as a chef.

“I’m excited to be working in the rehabilitation setting, using food and nutrition to aid in recovery,”

Veenstra said. “My style is ‘less is more,’ using quality ingredients to make healthy and enjoyable meals.”

Mary Free Bed is partnering with Unidine, a food and dining management services organization that operates in over 400 facilities across the nation. The Kitchen & Cafe focuses on fresh-from-scratch cooking, a commitment to seasonal ingredients and exceptional customer service.

The 4,300-square-foot facility is part of Mary Free Bed’s 20,000-square-foot building expansion project that started in December 2019. Later this spring, the Kitchen & Cafe will open to staff and visitors for indoor and outdoor dining, as well as grab-and-go meals.

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