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Valerie is available for daytime and evening programs

An award-winning author, member of the Women Divers Hall of Fame and dynamic presenter, Valerie van Heest shares the fascinating stories of Great Lakes shipwrecks and her expeditions to discover and document them. With a passion for all things creative, Valerie offers a wide variety of programs designed for adults and children alike that enlighten, inspire and offer a “deeper” look at Michigan’s rich maritime heritage. Adventure and intrigue fill each program and provide a tantalizing peak back in time and beneath Lake Michigan as she brings these stories alive with fascinating historic photographs, spectacular underwater images and intriguing commentary. Valerie live-narrates her multi-media shipwreck programs and presentations and offers a book signing afterward.

Email Valerie to schedule a program: shipwrecked@chartermi.net
She is listed on the Michigan Humanities Touring Directory, which provides partial grants for apperances


Includes images for use in promoting these programs


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"We just loved your talk! It was interesting, inspirational and important. You have preparation, professionalism, presence and  passion!  I learned a lot and really enjoyed the evening."     - Cynthia Doucet, audience member

"Bar none, your program was the best we have ever hosted. We intend to have you back again soon."       
- Jenny Thompson,  Evanston History Center

“My 14 year old son and I attended your presentation Wednesday on Belle Isle. Words cannot express how much I learned, felt and was inspired by the excellent research, dialogue, prints, pictures and total package you delivered that night about the Lady Elgin. One could really embrace the emotion, significance and mayhem that ensued on that dark and stormy night along the western shoreline of Lake Michigan. Your speech was FLAWLESS!!” - Janice Cook, Attendee

Few in our state truly understand the significance of lake travel in the settlement of our Great Lakes region. Fewer still can appreciate what it was like in those times with schooners, steamers, and all of the thousands of vessels that navigated here from Europe or from port to port around the freshwater seas. What a wonderful program, thank you so much for all you have offered to us. You are truly gifted and a very dynamic person. - John Gray, Attendee



 March 3 Heritage Christian School
 March 5 White Lake Library
 March 9  Sparta Senior Center
 March 10 Radio Interview- The Pledge
 March 11 Grand Rapids Church
 March 21 Evening Beneath the Inland Seas
 March 24 Forest Hills Senior Center
 March 26 Marcellus Township Library
 March 31 Kalamazoo Public Library
 April 7 Hackly Public Library
 April 20 Quiet Birdmen
 April 28 SERA
 April 28 North Muskegon Library
 May 27 Pentwater Historical Society
 June 25 Berrien Springs Historical Society
 July 14 Leland Public Library
 September TBD Winnetka, Illinois
 October 12 Baroda Church
 November 3 Hackley Public Library
 November 10 Charlevoix Public Library


 Feb 15-17 Our World Underwter
 Feb. 18 Walker Memorial Library
 Feb. 22 Sea Horses Show
 Feb. 27 Loutit Library
 March 6 Rockford Historical Society
 March 13 Lowel Township Library
 March 16 Map Society of Wisconsin 
 March 15 Ghost Ships
 March 18 Walker Memorial Library
 March 20 Aquinas College
 March 22 Evening Beneath the Inland Seas
 April 8 Walker Memorial Library
 April 22 Hackley Library
 April 29 Walker Memorial Library
 May 7 Georgetwn Township Library
 July 17 Morton Township Library
 May 8 Michigan Maritime Museum
 May 1 Baldwin Christina Reformed Church
 May 3 Michigan Maritime Museum
 May 9 Waukazoo Elementary
 May 13 Lowell Library-Flat River Historical Society
 May 15 Saugatuck Center for the Arts
 May 20 Cummings Elementary School
 May 22 Dexter Library
 June 7 Sable Point Lightkeepers Assoc.
 July 17 Morton Towship Library
 August 8 Rosecommon Library
 Sept. 8 Calvary Church
 Sept. 9 Clarkston Library
 Sept. 13 Oceana County Public Libraries
 Sept. 16 North Berrien Historical Society


 February 15 Our World Underwater, Rosemont, IL
 February 27  Norton Shores Library
 March 2 Ford Seahorses, Ann Arbor, MI
 March 5 Lansing Dansville Library
 March 7 Rockford Museum
 Marc 11 West Bloomfield Library
 March 15 Ghost Ship Festival, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
 March 18 Sand Lake Historical Society, Sand Lake, Michigan
 April 20 MSRA Evening Beneath the Inland Seas, Holland, MI
 April 27 Lansing Library Holt
 May 1 Teamsters Retirees, Wyoming, MI
 May 1 Spring Lake Library
 June 12 Radio Program: The Big Show
 June 15 WWMT Morning news
 June 19 Radio Program
 June 25 Lansing Library Leslie
 June 25 Lansing Library Okemos
 June 18 Take 5 Channel 13
 July 18 Adrian Public Library
 July 24 Hope College Sumemr Science Camp
 August 20 Vicksburg Historical Society
 August 28 Pentwater Historical Society
 September 4 Paw Paw Library
 September 11 Kalamzoo Puublic Library
 September 17 Beacon Hills
 September 18 Trinity Luthern Church
 September 20 Kalamzoo Kelog Life Long Learning Center
 September 24 SERA Grand Rapids
 October 6 Glenview Library, Illinois
 October 10 Pentwater Service Club
 October 15 Manistee Library
 October 19 Shipwrecks & Technology Muskegon
 November 4 Calvary Seniors Grand Rapids
 November  20 North Muskegon Library
 November 26 Fifth Reformed Church Grand Rapids


 January 5 Beacon Hill--Grand Rapids, MI
 January 10 Heritage Christian School-- Hudsonville, MI
 February 9 Brenton Woods--Grand Rapids
 February 12 Michigan Maritime Museum--South Haven, MI
 February 16 Dorr Township Library--Dorr, MI
 February 24 Freedom Village--Holland, MI
 February 25 Ford Seahorses--Detroit, MI
 February 26 Michigan Maritime Museum--South Haven, MI
 March 1  Calvin College--Grand Rapids, MI
 March 8 Georgetown Library--Jenison, MI
 March 10 Kentwood, Library, Grand Rapids, MI
 March 13 Parchment Library
 March 23 Petosky Noontime Program
 April 4 Beacon Hills, Grand Rapids, MI
 April 10 Clare Library--Clare, MI
 April 11 Orian Lake Library--Orian Lake, MI
 April 12 North Berrien Historical Society, Coloma, MI
 April 13 St. John's Cathedral--Milwaukee, WI
 April 14 Ghost Ships Festival--Milwaukee, WI
 April 15 Wilmette Historical Society--Wilmette, IL
 April 21 Evening Beneath the Inland Seas--Holland, MI
 April 24 Rochester Hills Library--Rochester Hills, MI
 May 15 Lowell Historical Society--Lowell, MI
 May 21 Spring Lake Library--Spring Lake Michigan
 June 7 Simpson United Methodist Church
 June 14 Bangor Historical Society--Bangor, MI
 June 20 Aquinas College--Grand Rapids, MI
 June 27 Aquinas College--Grand Rapids, MI
 June 27 West Minister Church--Grand Rapids, MI
 July 12 Holland Rotary--Holland, MI
 September 10 Calvary Church--Grand Rapids, MI
 October 20 Shipwrecks and Technology-- Muskegon, MI
 October 23 Hackley Public Library--Muskegon, MI
 November 6 Charlevoix Public Library--Charlevoix, MI
 November 6 Charlevioix Elementray School--Charlevoix, MI
 Novemebr 10 Grand Rapids Public Museum
 December 6 Paw Paw Library
 December 18 Grand Rapids Public Museum School Program


 January 7 Heritage Christian School--Hudsonville, MI
 February 8 Tri Cities Museum--Grand  Haven, MI
 February 12 The Wexford Center--Cadilac, MI
 February 17 Brighton Library--Brighton, MI
 February 19 Our World Underwater--Rosemont, IL
 February 23 Flat River Historical Society--Greenville, MI
 March 3 Loutit Library--Grand Haven, MI
 March 5 Ford Seahorses--Ann Arbr, MI
 March 17 Calvin College Life Long Learning--Grand Rapids, MI
 March 26 Ghost Ship Festival--Miwaukee, WI
 March 29 Hackley Library--Muskegon, MI
 April 2 Scuba Fest--Welland, Canada
 April 14 Cummings Elementary--Grand Rapids, MI
 April 16 Knickerbacher Theater--Holland, MI
 April 19 Spring lake Library
 April 20 Pine Ridge Elementary
 May 7 Kenosha Museum--Kenosha, WI
 May 16 White Lake School--White Lake, MI
 May 21 Lakeshore Museum Center--Muskegon, MI
 May 24 Martin Luther King Elementary
 June 1 Stevensville, Library--Stevensville, MI
 June 9 Daughters of the American Revolution--Holland, MI
 June 28 Private Program--Benton Harbor, MI
 July 5 Sheboygan Arts Center--Sheboygan, WI
 July 7 Berrien County Historical Society
 July 19 Women's City Club--Grand Rapids, MI
 August 18 Cook Valley Estates--Grand Rapids, MI
 August 18 Porter Hills--Grand Rapids, MI
 Sept. 2 Covenent Village--Grand Rapids, MI
 Sept 8 Life Long Learning Harper College--Arlington Heights, IL
 Sept. 19 Grand Forum--Grand Rapids
 Sept. 20 Northview Seniors--Grand Rapids
 Sept. 20 Huron Manor--Grand Rapids
 October 5 Teamsters Retiree Assoc.--Grand Rapids
 October 10 Women's Club--Grand Haven, MI
 October 15 Herick District Library--Holland, MI
 October 25 Charlevoix Library--Charlevoix, MI
 October 25 Charlevoix Elementary School--Charlevoix, MI
 Novemeber 3 Ionia Community Library--Ionia, MI
 November 7 Holland Book Club--Holland, MI
 November 10 Spring Lake Library--Spring Lake, MI
 November 22 Forect Hills Senior--Forest Hills, MI


January 8 Heritage Christian School--Grandville, MI
January 10 Cummings Elementary--Grandville, MI
January 16 Holland Literary Club--Holland, MI
January 23 Hope College Book Signing--Holland, MI
February 10 Woodside Elementary--Holland, MI
February 16 Womens Literary Club--Holland, MI-
February 20       Our World Underwater--Chicago, IL
February 27       Great Lakes Shipwreck Film Festival--Ann Arbor, MI
March 6        Ghostships Festival--Milwaukee, WI
March 13         Herrick District Library--Holland, MI
March 20       ScubaFest--Columbus, OH
March 22 Robinson Church--Holland, MI
March 24 Oakcrest Senior Center--Holland, MI
March 31 Celebration of Reading-Grand Rapids Library--Grand Rapids
April 13 Oakcrest Senior Center--Jenison, MI
April 16 Pine Ridge Elementary--Ada, MI
April 24      Mysteries and Histories--Holland, MI
May 5 Kalamazoo Public Library--Kalamazo, MI
May 13 Saugatuck Center for the Arts--Saugatuck, MI
June 16       The Heritage Museum--St. Joseph, MI
July 12      Berrien County Historical Society--Berrien Springs, MI
July 14 Three Rivers Public Library--Three Rivers, MI
July 21 Springlake Ladies Club--Spring Lake, MI
July 27 St. Joseph Public Library--St. Joseph, MI
August 14 Legends of Diving--Bowling Green, OH
August 17 Mecosta Library--Mecosta, MI
September 8 Discovery World--Milwaukee, WI
September 9 Evanston Historical Society--Evanston, IL
September 16 Ransom Library--Plainwell, MI
September 19 Winnetka Historical Society--Winnetka, IL
Septmeber 23 Grand Traverse Lighthouse Society--Northport, MI
September 24 St. Joseph Yacht Club--St. Joseph, MI
September 28 Coldwater District Library--Coldwater, MI
October 5 Hudsonville Library--Hudsonville, MI
October 12 Calvary Church--Holland, MI
October 19 Berrien County Historical Society--Berrien SPrings, MI
November 1 Mt. Pleasant Library--Mt. Pleasant, MI
November 6 Dossin Museum--Detroit, MI
November 9 Radisson Hotel--Grand Rapids, MI
November 10 Dossin Museum--Detroit, MI
December 3 Coast Guard Auxillary--Holland, MI

Jan. 13           Hackley Library—Muskegon, MI
Jan. 18           Michigan Maritime Museum—South Haven, MI
Jan. 22           Cummings Elementary—Grandville, MI
Jan. 27          Olive Township Historical Society—Olive Township, MI
Jan. 30         Woodside Elementary—Holland, MI
Feb. 12           Grand Rapids Power and Sail Squadron—Grand Rapids, MI
Feb. 14           Womens Fellowship—Holland, MI
Feb. 19            Freedom Village—Holland, MI
Feb. 21            Our World Underwater—Chicago, IL
Feb. 18          Ford Seahorses—Detroit, MI
Mar. 12          Tri-Cities Museum—Grand Haven, MI
Mar. 17           Haslett Library—Haslett, MI
Mar. 18            Leslie Library—Leslie, MI
Mar. 21          Scuba Fest—Dayton, OH
Mar. 24           Mason Library—Mason, MI
Feb. 26           Spring Lake Schools—Spring Lake, MI
Mar. 25            Webberville Library—Webberville, MI
Apr. 25            Evening Beneath the Inland Seas- Holland, MI
May 15            Holland Professional Club—Holland, MI
Jun. 02            Pine Ridge Elementary—Grand Rapids, MI
Jun. 11            Bangor Historical Society - Bangor, MI
July 06             Childrens Shipwreck Exploration—South Haven, MI
July 21              North Berrien Historical Museum—Coloma, MI
Aug. 06           Berrien County Historical Association—Berrien Springs, MI
Aug. 08           Red Barn Playhouse—Saugatuck, MI
Sep. 09            Boy Scouts of America—Holland, MI
Sep. 15            Lowell Area Historical Society—Lowell, MI
Sep. 25            Elder Hostel—Kalamazoo Community College, Hastings, MI
Oct. 01            Tri-Cities Historical Society—Grand Haven, MI
Oct. 02            Historical Society of Michigan—Grand Haven, MI
Oct. 09            Hope College Science Banquet—Holland, MI
Oct. 17            Grand Rapids Public Library—Grand Rapids, MI
Nov. 07            Gales of November Keynote Speaker—Duluth, MN
Nov. 10            Ionia Library—Ionia, MI
Nov. 10           Zeeland Literary Club—Zeeland, MI
Nov. 16            Schoolcraft Library—Schoolcraft, MI
Nov. 21              Shipwrecks and Scuba—Huron, MI


Jan. 15  Tri--Cities Museum—Grand Haven, MI 
Jan. 16 Rockford Public Schools—Rockford, MI
Jan. 21  Retired Pilots Group—Grand Rapids, MI
Feb. 02  Sloan Museum/Book Signing—Flint, MI
Feb. 07 Waukazoo Elementary School—Rockford, MI
Feb. 16  Our World Underwater/Book Signing—Chicago, IL
Feb. 19  Flat River Historical Society—Greenville, MI
Feb. 23  Great Lakes Shipwreck Preservation Society—Moundsview, MN
Mar. 01 Herrick District Library—Holland, MI
Mar. 06  Lakeshore Elementary School—Holland, MI
Mar. 06 Georgetown Township Library—Jennison, MI
Mar. 08  Ghost Ships Festival—Milwaukee, WI
Mar. 12  Cummings Elementary School—Grand Rapids, MI
Mar. 18 Lakewood Elementary School—Holland, MI
Mar. 20  The Heritage Museum—St. Joseph, MI
Mar. 25  Sheldon Woods Elementary School—Holland, MI
Mar. 27 Walker Library—North Muskegon, MI
Mar. 29  The Grand Rapids Museum/Book signing—Grand Rapids, MI
Apr. 05  Shipwrecks 2008—Welland, Ontario Canada
Apr. 10  LaGrave CRC—Grand Rapids, MI
Apr. 17  Tri--Cities Museum/ Book Signing—Grand Haven, MI
Apr. 19 Ford Seahorses/Book Signing—Detroit, MI
Apr. 23  Muskegon Historical Society—Muskegon, MI
Apr. 24 Walker Memorial Library—Muskegon, MI
May 03 Mysteries and Histories—Holland, MI
Jun. 12  Banger Historical Society—Banger, MI
Jul. 23 Genesee District Library—Flint, MI
July 02 Hope College Summer Science Camp—Holland, MI
Aug. 06  The Heritage Museum—St. Joseph, MI
Aug. 26  Pentwater Library—Pentwater, MI
Sep. 05  Assoc. for Great Lakes Maritime Heritage Annual Meeting
Sep. 09  Aurelious Library—Mason, MI
Sep. 13  Georgetown Township Library—Jenison, MI
Sep. 18  Saugatuck Center for the Arts—Saugatuck, MI
Sep. 21  Flight 2501 Memorial Program— Saugatuck, MI
Sep. 23  Bretton Village Seniors—Grand Rapids, MI
Sep. 24  Holland Women's Club—Holland, MI
Oct. 01  Muskegon Power Squadron—Muskegon, MI
Oct. 02  Rockford Area Historical Society—Rockford, MI
Oct. 17 Moby's Dive Shop—Grand Rapids, MI
Oct. 23  Lakewood School West Ottawa—Holland, MI
Oct. 28  Fifth Reformed Church Senior Group—Grand Rapids, MI
Nov. 08  Herrick District Library—Holland, MI
Nov. 10  Spring Lake Library—Spring Lake, MI
Nov. 11  Heritage Christian School—Grandville, MI
Nov. 14  Waukazoo School West Ottawa—Holland, MI
Nov. 21  Sheldon Woods School, West Ottawa Holland, MI
Nov. 25  The Joint Archives of Holland—Holland, MI
Dec. 03  North Holland School West Ottawa—Holland, MI
Dec. 05  Zeeland Historical Society—Zeeland, MI


Feb. 10              Our World Underwater-- Chicago, IL
Feb. 13              Lowell Public Library -- Lowell, MI
Mar 24               Ghost Ships Festival-- Milwaukee, WI
Mar 31               Shipwrecks 2007-- Ontario, Canada
April 10             Patmos Library-- Jamestown, MI
April 19             Georgetown Township Library-- Jenison, MI
April 24             Berrien County Historical Society-- Benton Harbor, MI
May 5                 Mysteries and Histories Beneath the Inland Seas-- Holland, MI
May 16              Trinity Luthern Church 7th Grade class-- St. Joseph, MI
May 17             Loutit Library-- Grand Haven, MI
May 26               SS CITY OF MILWAUKEE Museum Ship-- Manistee, MI
June 6                White Lake Library-- Whitehall, MI
June 21              Hope College -- Summer Camp-- Holland, MI
June 27              Hope College -- Summer Camp-- Holland, MI
June 9                Waterfront Film Festival-- Saugatuck, MI
July 10              Forest Hills Senior Center-- Forest Hills, MI
July 17               Zeeland Rotary-- Zeeland, MI
Aug 18               Michigan Maritime Museum-- South Haven, MI
Aug 19               Michigan Maritime Museum-- South Haven, MI
Aug 30              Grand Rapids Kiwanis-- Grand Rapids, MI
Sept. 6               Walker Library-- North Muskegon, MI
Sept. 9               Mackinac City, MI   (In partnership with William Lafferty PhD)
Sept 12               Caledonia Library (Kent) Caledonia, MI
Sept 20              Knights of the Round Table-- Grand Rapids, MI
Oct. 2                 Alto Library-- Kent County
Oct 4                 Michigan Maritime Museum-- South Haven, MI
Oct. 9                Grandville Library-- Kent County
Oct. 30               Spencer Library-- Kent County
Oct. 17               Rockford Public Schools-- Rockford, MI
Nov. 5               Crousse Memorial Library-- Kent County
Nov 6                 Hackley Library-- Muskegon, MI
Dec 19               West Michigan local Government Managers Assoc.-- Grand Rapids, MI


Nov 14             Otsego Library-- Otsego, MI
Nov. 9                 Spring Lake Library-- Spring Lake, MI
Nov. 4               Shipwrecks & Scuba -- Sandusky, Ohio
Oct. 18               Fort Miami Heritage Society-- Benton Harbor, MI
Oct. 12               Ford Museum-- Grand Rapids, MI
Aug. 24              Hope College -- MSRA Announcement Presentation-- Holland, MI
Aug. 18              Press Conference -- Shipwreck Discovery Announcement-- Holland, MI
Aug. 16             Pentwater Historical Society-- Pentwater, MI
Jun. 10              Waterfront Film Festival-- Saugatuck, MI
May 6               Mysteries & Histories -- Evening Beneath the Inland Seas -- Holland, MI 
April 27            Freedom Village-- Holland, MI
Mar. 25              Beneath The Seas-- Secaucus, NJ
Feb. 25               Our World Underwater-- Chicago, IL
Feb.                     Forest Hills Senior Center-- Forest Hills, MI