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Archive | June, 2012

Year of Numbers for Alpha Family Center

Last Saturday, June 16, was a great day to celebrate Alpha Family Center’s 20th year in Cedar Springs, with Lifewalk—the annual fundraising event. Not only was it their 15th annual Lifewalk, but it was also Alpha’s 5th year as the Alpha Family Center, which they’ve been known as since becoming independent of the Alpha Women’s Center of Grand Rapids.

Post photo by Judy Reed

Walkers registered at Morley Park in Cedar Springs Saturday morning. Everyone who walked received a “Baby I’m on Board” T-shirt that relays the message that the wearer is supporting life. Pastor Craig Owens, along with a local praise team, began the event with worship music, a hearty welcome, instructions about the walk, and an opening prayer. A crowd of over 150 walkers followed behind the Lifewalk banner for the 1.5 mile walk down through the heart of Cedar Springs, stopping at key points to pray for our community leaders, churches, Alpha, and schools. The walkers returned to the park for a time of refreshment, door prizes, and a report that included the total amount raised this year, which was nearly $12,000!

Alpha helps over 125 families per month, and gives away 18,000 baby and maternity items per year.  They also offer free pregnancy self-testing, parenting classes and support for abuse, miscarriage, post-abortion and sexual integrity classes.

Tara Triezenberg shared her touching story of her own teen pregnancy, and how she chose life for her baby. Tara shared how she was being encouraged to abort her baby by classmates and school counselors. “She made a brave decision and chose adoption to a stable, loving family who is now raising her eleven-year-old son,” explained Executive Director Lorrie Shelton. “Today Tara is not only a graduate of high school, but also of college and is an elementary teacher in Grand Rapids. She and her husband Mike have a beautiful 3-year-old little girl, Grace, and her little sister, Faith, is due in September. Tara is a true testament of the good influence Alpha Family Center has on our community.”

Pastor David Vander Meer shared about the importance of supporting Alpha Family Center and the service they provide to help others. His closing prayer was for protection of unborn babies. Colorful balloons filled the sky in memory of the 52,000 babies that Shelton said have been aborted since abortion became legal in 1973.

If you would like to donate to Alpha Family Center, you can donate through their website: www.alphafamilycentercs.org, send a check to their address:  P.O. Box 450, Cedar Springs or by stop by the Center at: 6 N. First St, Cedar Springs.  For more info call 616-696-2616.

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Out of the attic

100 years ago

Gordon Reyburn dropped off a couple of photos of his family’s farm, as it appeared 100 years ago.

John J. Reyburn, Gordon’s grandfather, moved with his parents, from New York to Algoma Township, when he was 7 years old (about 1870). He married Adelia Ann Miller on August 10, 1886, and they lived many years on the Reyburn family homestead, at 1869 Indian Lakes Rd, between Algoma and Pennington. Adelia died in 1927, and the farm was sold to another family in 1935. John died in 1947, in Grand Rapids, and was buried in Myers Cemetery in Sparta.

The barn in the photo shows about 75 people helping with construction in 1912. (Notice the name and year on the barn.)

The second photo features the family and the newly constructed barn. Back row (L to R): Clay, Vernon, Leo, Noel. Center (L to R): Adelia (Mother), Shelby, John (Father), Harlow, Ottie. Front row (L to R): Boyd, Glowen, and Clifford.

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City Council clips

Mayor tells city’s side of story

The City Council chamber was packed with spectators at the regular Cedar Springs City Council meeting last week Thursday, many of them there to speak on behalf of the Red Flannel Festival. Post photo by Judy Reed

Cedar Springs Mayor Charlie Watson read a letter at last Thursday’s City Council meeting, saying it was time for the silence to be lifted and for the city to defend itself against false accusations and half truths regarding negotiations with the Red Flannel Festival. (click here to read letter) He offered three solutions to the problem: that the city and RF board agree to the last proposal sent by the city; that the city stop using the RF logos and create their own; or they put it on the ballot and let the voters (who have to pick up the bill) decide.

The City’s proposal to the Festival stated that the city would cease use of all logos except the Red Flannel Town USA and round Red Flannel Town, Cedar Springs, Michigan logos, and that they would use them for identification purposes only. They would agree not to use them for commercial purposes without payment to the Festival. And if the city did profit from the sale of any items bearing the RFF trademark, they would waive city-incurred expenses associated with the Festival in that particular year.

What do you think? Are any of these solutions feasible?

DPW Director resigns

Roger Belknap, DPW Director for the City of Cedar Springs, is resigning as of June 30. Cedar Springs City Manager Christine Burns said he resigned for personal reasons. He’s been a phenomenal DPW Director,” said Burns. “He’s been a great addition to the team and I’m going to miss him.”

Mayor Charlie Watson echoed a similar sentiment. “He’s done a wonderful job, and I hate to see him go.”

Belknap offered to come back on a contracted basis as needed to help with projects until a new director is found. The city is having a going away party for him on June 26. He was hired about a year and a half ago.

Red Flannel Festival

The Cedar Springs City Council approved a motion to waive parade fees for the children’s parade and grand parade, and the application (excluding the beer tent) for holding special events that impair the use of streets and public ways. A special meeting will be held on Friday, June 29 at noon to approve an amendment allowing temporary or seasonal uses in any district on issuance of a permit. The RF beer tent, which is being planned for the American Legion parking lot this year, would fall under this ordinance amendment. The Festival’s lawyer has also sent the city some revisions they would like made in the ordinance before it is adopted.

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Solon Fire Chief resigns post

By Judy Reed

Solon Township Fire Chief Joyce VanderMey, the first woman fire chief in Kent County, gave her resignation to the Solon Township board last Tuesday evening, June 12. It will be effective November 13.

“She offered to stay on as interim if we hadn’t found someone by then,” said Supervisor Bob Ellick.
VanderMey was appointed as Fire Chief in May 2007.

According to Ellick, VanderMey resigned for personal reasons. “She’s been a great fire chief,” remarked Ellick. “She’s served the township well. I wish her the best in her ventures.”

Ellick said they are actively looking for a new chief to supervise their 20-plus firefighters and medical personnel.

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Woman electrocuted by homemade cord

A Courtland Township woman was fatally electrocuted while working in her yard earlier this week.

On Tuesday morning, June 19, the Kent County Sheriff Department was called to the scene at 7636 Hessler Drive NE, in Courtland Township, about 6:14 a.m., on a female down in her yard.

According to police, the victim, Stephanie Trudeau, 41, was working on her landscape in the late to early morning hours between June 18 and 19. She reportedly was using a homemade electrical cord with a bulb on the end. She was carrying the cord, light and a wire piece of steel on a steep slope in her yard, and the yard was extremely wet from both the hose and rain from earlier in the morning.

Deputy Michael Tanis reported that with the wet ground, no shoes, bad wire light and steel, they connected and she was knocked to the ground and electrocuted.

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Snow White

Reviewed by Tom Noreen

Once upon a time is how all good fairy tales begin and the Cedar Springs Community Players’ current musical production of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is no exception. Director Terri Riggle has captured the energy and creative spirit of 31 young thespians and channeled it into a delightful evening of entertainment.

The two alternating casts bring to life Tim Kelly’s adaptation of the Brothers’ Grimm timeless story that we all know so well. Like Andrew Lloyd Weber, lyricist Bill Francoeur uses a variety of musical styles ranging from the dwarfs’ country and western Howdy Doo to the blues duet, I’ve Got This Apple, sung by Snow White and her crone nemesis. Kellie Hoerner’s creative set design adds an additional dimension to the production as do the wonderful costumes.

The show runs through this weekend with performances on June 21-23 at 7:30 p.m. at the Kent Theatre. Tickets are available at the Cedar Spring Library or by calling 696-0527. Tickets are $10 in advance, $12 at the door, and $6 for youth under 17.

Watching kids perform is always a joy. They bring a spirit to the stage that is unmatched. Do not miss this great opportunity, come out and support one of Cedar Springs’ unique attributes—live theater.

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Concert in the park tonight

June 21 at Morley Park

The music is back for another summer in Morley Park. The 2012 Cedar Springs Area Parks and Recreation Department is putting together another round of bands on the 3rd Thursday of June, July and August. The concerts begin on Thursday, June 21, at 7 p.m., with the group “Decades.” In the event of inclement weather, the concert will be held at the Cedar Springs Middle School, on the corner of 16 Mile and Northland Drive.

The event is free to the public and will include a free raffle of door prizes during the bands intermission.  The door prizes are donated by local businesses. In addition to the entertainment and door prizes for the evening, there will be snacks available for purchase as well as t-shirts.
This is the sixth year that the Cedar Springs Area Parks and Recreation department has sponsored concerts in the park. The events began in 2006 with one concert and grew in 2007 to three concerts. The Cedar Springs businesses work with the department to offer these events at no charge to the community.

“These concerts are a highlight of the summer for many area residents and we are thrilled to be a part of bringing the community together for these evenings,” said Parks and Rec Director Amanda Gerhardt. “We have seen growth over the years and are hoping for that trend to continue. It is such a joy to see residents interacting and enjoying the events. It is truly special and we are grateful we have been able to continue these, especially free of cost to the community. The hard economic times make it difficult for some families to do activities, so we are thrilled to provide them this opportunity to have some fun.”

Additional concerts will be held on July 19 and August 16, in Morley Park.

Some of the other events the Cedar Springs Area Parks and Recreation department are sponsoring this summer girls basketball camp with Coach Scott Taylor the week of August 6, and volleyball camps in July for grades 3-12. We are also putting together a bus trip to Amish Acres for Thursday, August 2. This trip will include admission into the 50th annual craft fair, lunch Amish style and a musical theater production. There will be information on these events and more online at www.csaparksandrec.com.

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hometown happenings

Fall 2012 Soccer Registration

June 18,22,26: American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO) Final registration opportunities for the Fall 2012 season: Mon. 6/18 from 7-8:30 pm at Boomer Park, 13440 Ritchie Ave., south of 17 Mile Rd.; Thurs., 6/20 and Tues., 6/26 from 6-8 pm at the Cedar Springs Family Fare on 17 Mile near the US 131 expressway. Complete the Pre-Registration Application online and use the registration Express Lane when you arrive – see details on our website: www.ayso902.org The registration fee is $55 per child for the fall season. Save $15 if you register for both fall and spring seasons now. Families registering 3 or more players will receive an additional discount of $5 per player, per season. Players must be at least 4 years old by 9/4/12. First time players must show a Birth Certificate for age verification. Get registered NOW for the Fall/Springs 2012-13 Season! #24,25p


Coral Days Festival

June 23: Come join the fun! Coral Days Festival on Sat. June 23. Start your day with a free Pancake Breakfast at Cowden Lake Bible Academy, the Parade at 11 am, enjoy a Chicken Barbecue Dinner by Maple Valley Firemen, see the Bucket Brigade at 2 pm, the Soapbox Derby at 3 pm and the Gordon Russ Magic Show at 4 pm. A Time Capsule will be opened at 5 pm. Hear great music by “Stolen Horses” from 7 to 9 pm and finish your day with the Light Parade at dusk.  #23-25p


Senior Lunch at Pine Grove Community Church

June 27: It’s High Noon the 27th of June. Summer’s already playing its hot tune. Senior Café is a real cool place; come on down, there’s plenty of space. Those aged 60 and those aged a tad more; we’re serving our first picnic to entice you to come thru our door. So tuck your napkin in even wear a bib cause our Sloppy Joes are mighty big. On the northeast corner of M-82 and Beech is where you’ll find our gig. #25


Blithe Spirit Auditions

June 28,29: Noel Coward’s, Blithe Spirit will be performed August 16, 17, and 18 by the Cedar Springs Community Players. Auditions for this hilarious comedy will be Thursday, June 28 and Friday, June 29 from 6:30 to 8:30 at the Cedar Springs United Methodist Church located on the corner of Church and Main in Cedar Springs. There are roles for 5 adult females and 2 adult males. For more information go to www.cscommunityplayers.org or call 616-696-5186.  #24,25p


North Kent Toastmasters Club – Where Leaders Are Made

July 3 & 17: Toastmaster members enhance valuable leadership and speaking skills through practice and encouragement. Members progress through the manual at their own pace. Guests always welcome. The meeting is at 7 pm, at Prudential Preferred Realtors, 502 Northland Dr. NE, north of Our Lady of Consolation Catholic Church & 11 Mile Rd., Rockford. For directions call Sue 616-866-3509 or club website www.nkctm.org.  #25

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“We’re proud of our underwear”

The sunshine of summer, what’s not to like? ’Tis the season to wear skimpy clothes and develop our glowing tans.
I’ll tell you what’s not to like: skin cancer. It’s a nasty side effect of that summer sun.
Last week I had skin cancer and this week I don’t. However, getting from having it into not having it is a cutting experience.
The dermatology clinic that did the surgery is topnotch. The doctor and support staff made it as pleasant as possible. But if you can avoid getting skin cancer, you’ll be glad, because you won’t have to get holes cut in your face. (And, take my word, the numbing anesthetic will wear off and you will hurt.)
Old saying: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Sun block, the broad-spectrum kind, is a must. And you should use a lot of it and re-apply often, because sweat and swimming wash it right off. Brimmed hats and long sleeves might not sound summery but they’re a lot better than a goofy-looking bandage after getting your skin cancer removed.

After she woke up, a woman told her husband, “I just dreamed that you gave me a pearl necklace for our anniversary. What do you think it means?”
“You’ll know tonight,” he said.
That evening the man came home with a small package and handed it to his wife. Delighted, she opened it to find a book entitled, “The Meaning of Dreams.”

Also funny
When the new patient was settled comfortably on the couch, the psychiatrist began his therapy session.
“I’m not aware of your problem,” said the doctor, “so perhaps you should start at the very beginning.”
“Of course,” replied the patient. “In the beginning, I created the Heavens and the Earth…”

Not so funny
Sorry I don’t have more jokes this week. My face hurts, and I’m going to bed.

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Let’s call it a wash

To the Editor,
I’m just wondering…. Why doesn’t the City of Cedar Springs and the Red Flannel Festival just call it “a wash”?  The Festival should contribute to the City by allowing the use of the Red Flannel logo because the City is promoting the Festival. The City should contribute to the Festival by providing the services of the Department of Public works and the Police Department because the Festival is promoting the City.

Instead, both are contributing to the legal system, which, financially, may or may not be comparable to the amount of money in contention.

In the words of Rodney King, “Can’t we all… just…get along?”

Dorothy Bishop
Former Chair of the Red Flannel Festival      

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