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Archive | November, 2012

Barn behind Harvard tavern goes up in flames

Firefighters fought a barn fire behind Harvard Tavern Friday morning. Post photo by J. Reed.

The steel barn behind the Harvard Tavern, 12607 Harvard Avenue, in Oakfield Township, was reduced to a heap of rubble Friday morning, after a fire broke out between 10:30 and 11:45 a.m.

According to Oakfield Fire Chief Don Riker, a construction crew was demolishing the north end of the building with a set of torches when the insulation caught on fire. “It was windy and the wind just fanned the flames, causing it to spread,” explained Riker.

There were no injuries.

Oakfield Fire Department, Courtland Fire Department, and Spencer Fire Department all responded to the fire.

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Santa Claus is coming to town

You better watch out, you better not cry, you better not pout I’m telling you why—Santa Claus is comin’ to town!

You won’t want to miss the annual “Mingle with Kris Kringle” event this Saturday, December 1, in downtown Cedar Springs. The event, hosted by the Cedar Springs Area Chamber of Commerce, kicks off at 10 a.m. with sales up and down Main Street. And, if you’d like to shop kid-free, parents can drop off their kids, ages 6 and up, (for a fee) at Alpha Omega Coffee and Games between the hours of 2 and 6 p.m., where they will be entertained with reading, writing and drawing activities by author Amanda Litz and illustrator Christy Beckwith. Cost is $5 per hour per child and $2 per hour for additional children.

The rest of the festivities will start at 5 p.m. at the corner of Main and Ash Streets. There will be a live nativity scene by Calvary Assembly of God, Santa will arrive about 5:15, and the tree lighting will take place at 5:45. The Cedar View Choir will also be Christmas caroling during the festivities. Santa’s tent will be set up on the southwest corner of Ash and Main, where he will hear boys and girls’ requests, and the tree on the northwest corner. Hot chocolate, cookies and candy canes will be provided. Bring the whole family out for a fun, old-fashioned, town Christmas celebration! See ad on page 7 for more info.

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Mora qualifies for national championship race

Cedar Springs High School senior Connor Mora is taking his stellar cross country year all the way to the Foot Locker National Finals in San Diego.

Cedar Springs cross country runner Connor Mora finished eighth in Foot Locker’s Midwest regionals last Saturday. Photo courtesy of Foot Locker.

Mora finished eighth in the boys division at the Foot Locker Cross Country Championship (FLCCC) Midwest Regionals last Saturday, November 24, in Kenosha, Wisconsin, with a time of 15:09 in the 5K run. The winner was Jake Leingang of Bismarck, North Dakota, with a personal best time of 14:56.

The top 10 boys and the top 10 girls in Saturday’s Midwest race qualified to compete against runners from the Northeast, South, and West Regional meets in the Foot Locker Cross Country Championships National Finals, on Saturday, Dec. 8 at Morley Field, Balboa Park in San Diego, Calif.

Mora earned the distinction this year of being the 2012 MHSAA regional champion, Division 2 state champion, and he was named Mr. Cross Country for 2012. He’s been named all-state four times in his cross country career.

This past spring he also ran track, and was both the 2012 regional champ and 2012 Division 2 state champ in the 1600 and 800.

His personal best in cross country was a time of 14:54 at the Benzie Central regional meet.

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Community shows support at blood drive

When Cedar Springs area residents showed up to give blood at the #13 Honorary Blood Drive Saturday, it meant more than just a simple donation; the family and friends of 16-year-old Sean Thompson were paying it forward.

Donor Rebecca Klompstra with Sean Thompson at the #13 Honorary Blood Drive. Photo courtesy of Michigan Blood.

Sean, whose number on the football team is 13, was involved in a tragic accident on August 23, with friends Wyatt Phillips, 16, and Johnny Klaasen, also 16. Phillips died at the scene, and Thompson lost a lot of blood. He needed multiple transfusions, and people stepped up to donate. His family decided to host the blood drive as a way to say thank you.

According to Meredith Gremel, of Michigan Blood, 34 people attempted to donate. “We collected 21 units. Due to space, another 14 were not able to donate at the blood bus but we invited them to our Michigan Blood facility on Fuller to donate this week or whenever it is convenient and we will include them in the results from the #13 drive,” she said.

Sean’s mother, Tami Elliston, is grateful to friends, family, and the community for their support.

Thompson has been undergoing rehabilitation at Mary Free Bed and was due to return to school this week.

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Four injured in rollover accident

A mom and three Cedar Springs High School students were injured in a rollover accident in Ionia County Sunday.

According to the Michigan State Police, Karin McCarthy, 56, of Courtland Township, was traveling westbound on I-96 near Clintonia Rd about 4:19 p.m. Sunday, November 25, when the vehicle she was driving drifted off the roadway and struck a sign. Police said the vehicle then struck the cable guard, which caused it to roll multiple times. Two of the passengers were ejected.

The driver was flown to Sparrow Hospital in Lansing, with critical injuries. Passenger Kaleb Robinson, 16, was also airlifted with critical injuries. Molly McCarthy, 17, and her brother, Nick, 15, were transported to Sparrow by ambulance for treatment.

One of the passengers told police that the vehicle started to drift toward the cable barrier and that he yelled at the driver, but she was unable to get it back on the road. At press time, police had not yet determined why she drifted off the road.

Troopers were assisted by Portland Fire, Rescue and Ambulance, Portland Police, Aero Med, and Life Net.

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Hometown Hero

Pvt. Joshua Michael Gates, 25, of Rockford, graduated from USMC Boot Camp at Marine Corp Recruit Depot San Diego, on October 19, 2012.

Pvt. Gates successfully completed 13 weeks of intensive basic training at MCRD San Diego, with Alpha Co, Platoon 1006. While in basic training, Pvt. Gates earned expert rifleman.

He is a 2005 graduate of Cedar Springs High School, and the son of Mike and Denise Gates of Rockford and Randy and Dawn Dunneback of Grand Rapids.

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Post to collect toys for needy

Would you like to do something special for families in need this Christmas? You can partner with us to provide toys for needy children in Kent County. The Post is participating in the Toys for Tots program again this holiday season, as a drop off site for toys.

Toys for Tots is a volunteer organization whose goal is to collect new, unwrapped toys for kids 0-16, and distribute them to children who would not otherwise receive a gift during the holiday season. Toys for teens are always needed.

The program runs now through the first two weeks of December. Just bring a new, unwrapped toy to our office at 36 E. Maple Street in Cedar Springs, Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. If you can’t make that time, call us to make other arrangements.

Together we can make this Christmas special for many children!

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Write a letter to Santa

Sydney Sherd, 6, of Sand Lake, was the first person to mail their letter to Santa in our special North Pole drop box this year. Sydney, who attends Cedar Trails, was so excited to find out that she was the first one! Every year dozens of kids use our special box for express delivery to the North Pole, and we make sure Santa reads each and every one! So, if you’d like to send a letter to Santa, and maybe get it printed in the newspaper, just drop off your letter in the bright red box labeled “Santa Mail” outside our office at 36 E. Maple Street, or mail your letter to: Letters to Santa, c/o the Cedar Springs Post, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319.

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Michigan Chillers author to visit

Johnathan Rand, author of the tremendously popular Michigan Chillers, American Chillers and Freddy Fernortner series of children’s books, will be doing a book signing at Bay Leaf Used Books, in Sand Lake, on Saturday, December 8, from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.  Fans can bring their own book for Mr. Rand to sign or purchase a copy at the store.

Rand’s Chiller series has a massive fan base across the country, but he is especially popular in his home state of Michigan. Rand is on tour to promote the importance of reading for kids, who find titles like Gruesome Ghouls of Grand Rapids and Mackinaw City Mummies hard to resist.

“Teachers love Johnathan Rand as well,” said Gabe Konrad, of Bay Leaf Used Books. “He’s ended up on several reading lists because he’s a writer that appeals to both boys and girls; a little scary, a little adventuresome, and all fun.”

Rand’s Michigan Chillers and American Chillers series are targeted at third to fifth graders, while Freddy Fernortner: Fearless First Grader is popular with first to third graders. For more information on Johnathan Rand, please visit http://americanchillers.com/.

Bay Leaf Used Books is located at 49 E Lake in downtown Sand Lake, one block west of Northland Drive. They can be reached at (616) 636-8500. You can also visit them online at www.bayleafbooks.com.



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Man charged with indecent exposure

Cory Crawford

A 21-year-old Howard City man has been arrested in connection with two indecent exposure incidents in June and July.

The first incident was reported June 12 north of Amble, and the second incident was reported Tuesday, July 31, about 7:45 a.m., at the corner of Lake Montcalm Road and Maple Hill. The man reportedly exposed himself to the victim, then fled the scene at a high rate of speed, driving a white car westbound on Lake Montcalm.

According to Howard City Police Chief Steve DeWitt, the suspect was identified and charged with the help of local businesses and an in depth investigation.

Corey Alan Crawford, 21, is charged with indecent exposure and obscene conduct, both misdemeanors. He is scheduled for pre-trial Dec. 4 in 64B District Court in Stanton.

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Be on alert for mail theft

During the Christmas season, people are more likely to send or receive gifts of cash or smaller items in their mailbox. Cedar Springs Police Chief Roger Parent would like to remind residents to remove mail as soon as possible from their mailbox to avoid mail theft, and to use the United States Post Office to send out mail, especially cards with gifts of money.

Parent said that they recently found mail at one of the local parks that looked as if someone had gone through it and disposed of what they didn’t want. Police returned the rest of the mail to the owner.

The United States Post Office offers these tips to protect your mail:

Use the letter slots at your post office to mail letters, or give them to a letter carrier.

Pick up your mail promptly after delivery. Don’t leave it in your mailbox overnight.

Don’t send cash in the mail.

Ask your bank for secure checks that can’t be altered.

Tell your post office when you’ll be out of town, so they can hold your mail until you return.

Report all mail theft to a Postal Inspector. 
Call 877-876-2455.

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Body found in barn fire identified

The skeletal remains of a person found in the debris after a barn fire in Sheridan on has been identified.

The Sheridan Fire Department was called to a barn fire at 2:34 a.m. on October 15, on M-66 near Sessions Road, in Bushnell Township. At around 7 a.m. that morning, fireman discovered the remains. The Montcalm County Sheriff’s Detectives investigated and suspected that the remains were those of a local homeless man who had a history of staying in vacant buildings in the area. He had been seen in the vicinity just a few hours before the fire, and a family member had lived in the residence next to the barn several years ago.

DNA results confirmed that the body was that of the homeless man, Sidney Joseph Perry, 30. The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

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