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Archive | November, 2010

Hometown Hero

American heroesCpl. Korey Kelley (front and center) is serving in Afghanistan with his fellow marines in the Blue Knights division. They are the aviation specialists on the osprey.
Korey is a 2007 graduate of Cedar Springs High School.
Korey’s parents, Bob and Joyce Kelley, and brother, Kyle, are very proud of him and ask for your prayers for his safe return. Thanks to all that had a hand in raising Korey—family, teachers, coaches and friends. And please give praise to our Lord and Savior for all that are serving.

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Police seek copper wire thieves


38 yr old Franklin Roy Miller Lansing MI.


27 yr old Lance Jason Trecek Grand Rapids MI. Trecek is Currently on Parole out of the Grand Rapids Office.


23 yr old Thomas Anthony Schafer Muskegon MI.

The Kent County Sheriff’s Office is asking for your assistance in locating three criminals, all of whom have valid Felony warrants for Maintaining a Criminal Enterprise.
The three men have been traveling throughout West Michigan and Ohio and have stolen over $10,000.00 of copper wire, copper tubing, and power tools from at least three known Menards locations.
One of the suspects approaches the cashier with several items that have been loaded onto a cart. Often, large items capable of blocking the cashiers view such as a piece of drywall or privacy fencing.  While the cashier is distracted one of the other suspects walks past the cashier with a cart full of copper wire, copper tubing, and power tools.
Wanted are 38-year-old Franklin Roy Miller of Lansing, MI; 27-year-old Lance Jason Trecek of Grand Rapids; and 23-year-old Thomas Anthony Schafer of Muskegon.
Anyone that could help Investigator’s locate these criminals is asked to call the Kent County Sheriff’s Office at 632-6100 or Silent Observer at 774-2345.

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Solon to build new township hall

Solon Township HallIf everything goes smoothly, Solon Township will have a new township hall by this time next year.
The Solon Township Board recently approved preliminary plans for the construction of a 6,000-square-foot building, which will include new offices and a 2000-square-foot community room. The plans were developed by a committee of township residents.
“People really want a community room,” explained Solon Township Clerk John Rideout. The community room will be available for family gatherings and receptions.
Rideout said the building would be built just north of the old horse barn on Algoma, near Wiersma. Solon bought the 19 acres, at 15185 Algoma Avenue, 1-1/2 years ago after it came on the market as a tax foreclosure.
floor planThey estimate the new building will cost about $750,000. Rideout said the cost would be covered by funds in the township building fund, cash reserves and about $200,000 would be financed through an installment agreement. They said this would not result in any additional tax burden for the residents.
Rideout said that originally they thought they might be able to convert the old pole barn into either offices or a new fire department, but a site engineer found that it would be cost prohibitive to make it usable for those purposes. It will eventually be torn down. Last spring/summer they ran a farmer’s market/flea market out of the building, but aren’t yet sure if they will do it again this year.
Construction is expected to start in spring 2011 and be completed in the fall.
Future plans for the parcel have not yet been developed, but some of the ideas include construction of a new fire barn when funds become available, and for the back half to be used for recreational purposes, including baseball and soccer fields, and a walking trail.
Once the new township hall is built, the old one will be strictly used for firehouse purposes. The upstairs will be converted into offices for the fire chief and staff.
As far as voting precincts, precinct 1 will stay in the current offices, and precinct 2, now located in the Solon Center Wesleyan Church, will move into the new township hall.
Rideout said that they accepted an offer on the house next to the hall at the corner of Algoma and 19 Mile, and still have the parcel on White Creek, near Tractor Supply, up for sale. That parcel was originally purchased for a second fire station, before the 425 agreement with Cedar Springs went through. Cedar Springs Fire department now serves that area.

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Staging area almost complete

staging areaThe long-awaited staging area for the White Pine Trail off of W. Maple and Second Streets in Cedar Springs is almost complete.
The parking area and sidewalk leading to the trail was completed last week. A gazebo will be built yet this fall as an Eagle Scout project and dedicated in honor of Clara Gust. The bathrooms are slated to be installed sometime next spring. The city plans to put them out for bid over the winter.
A dedication for the gazebo will be held when it’s complete, and a ribbon cutting for the entire staging area will be held next spring or summer after the bathrooms are complete.

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City Council members sworn in

Sworn In ceremonyThe Cedar Springs City Council held its annual reorganization meeting last Thursday, November 11. Incumbent Ken Benham (R) and newcomer Neil Gomez (L) were both sworn in following their October election.
The council voted to reappoint Charlie Watson as mayor, and Christine Fahl as mayor pro-tem for another year.

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“Dress the dolls” a tradition for all ages

girls with dolls

Girls from Greenville Michigan Homeschoolers delighted in dressing dolls for charity in a service project to benefit families from North Kent Community Services.

By Sarah Read

Area residents young and old are helping to dress dolls for charity once again this season for United Bank of Michigan’s Dress the Dolls Program for North Kent Community Services (formerly the North Kent Service Center). This year, a group of homeschool students from Greenville Michigan Inclusive Connection for Home Learners contributed to the event, dressing 10 of approximately 100 dolls bought by the bank and picked up by volunteers to dress and return for children in need.

Each year the dressed dolls, many accompanied by elaborate sets and accessories, are on display at the bank for several weeks, allowing community members to vote on the best-dressed doll. Last year’s winner was Christine Green, who dressed a doll as an eloquent Christmas Ice Skater.

dollsFor the families of Greenville Homeschoolers, the goal is not to get the most votes, but to teach the valuable lesson of charity as the kids either picked out or helped create the clothes themselves and dressed them for other children in greater need. “It seems like each year the holiday season becomes more and more ‘me’ focused,” shared homeschool mom, Stephanie Herzog. “We saw this as an opportunity to remind our kids that this time of year is about something bigger and better than just what they might get under the Christmas tree.”

Dolls will be on display at United Bank of Michigan on 10 Mile Road and Northland Drive in Rockford until December 3. They will be dropped off at North Kent Community Services on December 4 where they will be distributed to families in need through the center’s annual Christmas gift baskets.

“What we have found about this program over the years is that it really pulls the community together,” shared Rockford branch manager, Nancy Martin. “There are great back stories from the people who dress the dolls year by year and the biggest benefit is we get to bring smiles to one hundred children on Christmas day.”

For more information, contact United Bank at 616-863-6081.

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Alice in Wonderland brings in record crowds

Alice and Chessy

Jenna Johnson (Alice) and Steve Reed (Cheshire Cat).

If there was ever any doubt that Cedar Springs High School has talent in the dramatic arts, those doubts were erased after three superb stage performances of Alice in Wonderland last weekend. And record crowds came out to see it.
“We experienced some of the biggest crowds ever at CSHS,” said drama teacher Justin Harnden, who produced and directed the play. “Over 1,350 people came and saw the show, and that doesn’t include the 500 students and staff from Beach Elementary that saw the show on Friday morning.”
The show had standout performances from many of the cast members, many of them first time actors. “The cast did a great job with the show,” remarked Harnden. “They took on their roles with a great intensity and really displayed their character for all to see. They were in character all the time. From before the show to after curtain call every student put their all into it.”
A total of 70 students worked on the show.
The show starred seniors Jenna Johnson as Alice, and Steven Reed as the Cheshire Cat. Johnson had us believing she really was an 8-year-old girl in Wonderland trying to get home for her birthday party, and Reed nailed his role as the “now you see him now you don’t” ever grinning “watch cat.” The two worked great together, and you could feel the emotional intensity in the air when they said their final goodbye.

March Hare and Alice

Tyler Felty (March Hare) and Jenna Johnson (Alice).

Seniors Nick Day and Tyler Felty were perfectly cast as the two mad friends the Mad Hatter and March Hare. The tea party scene was a joy to watch and full of surprises—including the Hatter walking on the table and the Hare rolling across it.
Senior Justin Balczak was a big hit as Humpty Dumpty, as was senior Miles Johnson as the cook. Senior Joe Brunett and junior Cole Maike grabbed the audience with the antics of Tweedle dum and Tweedle dee, and seniors Emily Marckini and Kodi Baker were great as the Mock Turtle and the Gryphon. Baker’s movements and facial expressions were spot on. Senior Amber Mogg made it easy to hate the Queen of hearts, senior Brittany Bellamy was superior as the moral telling duchess, and senior Jared Kelley was funny as the frog. Junior Tinsley Nulph was great as the energetic and ever loyal White Rabbit, sophomore Steven Kern did a great job as the omniscient caterpillar, and Paul Flores was also good as the King of Hearts, while everyone was scared of Nathan Eades, the executioner. There were many other characters in the play that brought laughs and fun, including the flowers, the Queen’s ladies, and the King’s soldiers. Everyone involved gave stellar performances.
“The students had a great time with the show and that really shone through on stage,” said Harnden.
The show was not as serious or the plot as straight-forward as some of the shows Harnden has produced, but he is very proud of it, nonetheless.
“The show was definitely a different experience to direct, but when it all was over I was, and am, extremely proud of everything that we have done,” noted Harnden. “There is no doubt in my mind that we were able to entertain a great number of people during our 3 performance nights. “

Cast of Alice in Wonderland

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Turkeys needed

North Kent Community Services is looking to serve 2,000 families this holiday season. They are in need of turkeys, roasting chickens, mashed potatoes, gravy and dressing. Their distribution for Thanksgiving is November 22, and Christmas is December 12-16.
They are also always in need of canned fruit and health care products (hair soap, body wash, toothpaste, toothbrushes, etc.).
If anyone in the community would like to donate, hours are Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. They are located at 10075 Northland Drive NE, Rockford, just north of 12 Mile Road.
For more info, call (616) 866-3478.

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Free Thanksgiving dinner

Two Cedar Springs businesses have teamed up to offer a free Thanksgiving dinner to both senior citizens and anyone in need.
Cedar Pub and Sue’s Kountry Kitchen will be holding the dinner at Sue’s, at the corner of First and Cherry Streets, from 1-5 p.m. Thanksgiving Day.  “No one will be turned away,” said Rand Ruwersma, owner of Cedar Pub.
Rand said they’ve currently got about $300 to spend toward the event. They raised money for it through the game at Cedar Pub where they throw money on the ceiling, as well as a pig roast they held. Anyone who would like to donate or volunteer to help at the event should call Rand or Cindy at 696-9824.

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Halfway Restaurant to serve free Thanksgiving dinner

The Halfway Restaurant is happy to let the community know they are hosting their second annual free Thanksgiving dinner of Thanksgiving Day from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.  They will be serving a full course traditional dinner, including all favorites: turkey, stuffing, mashed potoatoes and gravy, sweet potatoes, corn, dinner, rolls, beverage and pumpkin pie for dessert. Owners Melissa Brower and Michelle Worden’s motto is: “Whether your cupboards are bare, the kids are away, or you just don’t have the energy to cook, the community is welcome to come and enjoy a Thanksgiving feast.”

They would like to make it clear to the public that even though donations will be received, they don’t want their dinner guests to feel any obligation to donate. Although they will be collecting donations throughout the entire holiday season, all proceeds will be given to local food pantries. Melissa and Michelle have owned and operated the Halfway Restaurant for 14 years and this is their personal way of reaching out and thanking the community at large. The restaurant is located at 10792 14 Mile Road (between Wabasis and Lappley avenues), Rockford. The phone number is (616) 754-9084.

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