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Archive | December, 2012

Kindergarteners push library toward goal

By Judy Reed

Even the smallest person can change the course of the future.

Carrie Dault’s kindergarten class showed just how that’s done when they arrived at the Cedar Springs Public Library Wednesday, December 19, with a donation of $92.70 to go toward the $50,000 matching grant for a new library. And they did it in just three weeks.

Carrie Dault’s kindergarten class holding money they couldn’t wait to donate to the Cedar Springs Public Library. Post photo by J. Reed.

Carrie Dault’s kindergarten class holding money they couldn’t wait to donate to the Cedar Springs Public Library. Post photo by J. Reed.

Dault said the kids have been earning money for the project since the beginning of December by doing odd jobs at home. The kids shared with Children’s Librarian Shannon Vanderhyde how they raised the money. Examples included cleaning the house, washing dishes, picking up toys, making dinner, cleaning off the table, and one little boy even said he earned money by cleaning the cat litter.

Another little boy had a special coin he donated—a 50-cent piece.

All the children were proud of being able to help, and each of the children were given two dollars of the money to give to Vanderhyde before they filed out to get back on the bus.

Watch the Post for an update on whether the library reached its goal for the matching grant and what the future holds.

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Shop with a hero

Ten area children ages 19 months to 15 years took part in a unique experience last Saturday. They got to shop with Cedar Springs’ finest—the men in blue from the Cedar Springs Police Department.

-N-Shop-with-a-hero-ZOOM-INEach year Meijer hosts several “Shop with a hero” events where underprivileged children walk the aisles with area firefighters and law enforcement personnel to shop for holiday gifts for themselves and their families.

Cedar Springs Police has taken part in it the last several years, at the Cedar Springs Meijer, and this year, it was Police Chief Roger Parent, Sgt. Ed Good, Officer Chad Potts, Officer Erick Porter, and Officer Jerry Wineland. Each child was given a $100 Meijer gift card and paired with a police officer to do their holiday shopping. They were also treated to a pizza party afterward.

“I think it’s a great thing to do,” remarked Sgt. Good. “We can relate to kids in a positive fashion. We see some happy children—you could really see it in their eyes how happy and excited they were.”

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Giving from the heart

-N-Hair-Donation‘Tis the season for giving, and grandma Cindy Bloehm and granddaughter Alexis Kidder made it a family affair. Cindy and Alexis, age 5, donated eight inches of hair to children with hair loss last month, after getting their hair cut at a local salon. Way to go!

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City Council elects mayor pro-tem, appoints new councilor

The face of the Cedar Springs City Council is quite different now that three new members make up the seven-person board. One of those members, Mark Fankhauser, was appointed Thursday evening to fill the unexpired seat of Neil Gomez.

The city held interviews for the position on Tuesday, December 11. Applying was Sherri Foster, who works for the Kent County Prosecutor’s office and is president of The Pines Homeowners Association; Perry Hopkins, owner of Kin of Hope Natural Health and Perry’s Place LLC for herbs, teas and more; Fankhauser, a firefighter for the City of Grand Rapids who also sits on the GR Firefighter’s Union executive board and the Board of Directors for Rockford Community Credit Union; and Gerald Hall, former City of Cedar Springs DPW Director and a former Cedar Springs Public Schools Board of Education member.

Hall was not able to make the interview day, and several people thought he should still be given the chance to interview at a different time or at least be considered. A motion was made on the issue but it was tied 3-3 so was defeated.

The City Council also chose their Mayor Pro Tem for 2012-2013. Former Mayor Charlie Watson was voted into that position.

 

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Highest average cost for gas ever

Gas had dropped to $2.98 per gallon in Cedar Springs at press time Wednesday. Photo by J. Reed

Gas had dropped to $2.98 per gallon in Cedar Springs at press time Wednesday. Photo by J. Reed

With the U.S. average price of gasoline falling 20 cents per gallon in the past month, it may be easy to overreact. U.S. consumers tell GasBuddy that while it’s good news, it’s not good enough.

“Some reports have been a bit too gleeful but we’re not expecting any dancing in the streets,” says Patrick DeHaan, Senior Petroleum Analyst, GasBuddy.com. “Even with the seasonal price decline, 2012 is going to yield the highest average price ever paid –January through December— at $3.63 per gallon.”

To gauge consumer sentiment GasBuddy asked whether gas prices and related transportation costs are forcing consumers to cut back holiday spending. In recent weeks a survey of respondents nationwide indicated that 43 percent of consumers said gas and transportation costs are forcing them to spend less; 51 percent said those issues are not impacting them and 5 percent were not sure. The survey was based on over 22,000 responses. Additionally, when asked how their Christmas / Hannukah spending compares to previous years, 32 percent of respondents said they are spending less than previous years; 51 percent said they’re spending about the same; 9 percent are spending more and 7 percent said they were not spending at all, based on 17,000 responses.

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Local woman elected president of state auxiliary

Mary Anne Yuncker, of Nelson Township, was elected state president of the Department of Michigan American Legion Auxiliary during their 93rd annual convention June 27-July 1, 2012. She will be president for the 2012-2013 year.

-N-Yunker-electedMary Anne lives on Stout Avenue, with her husband Bill. She is a former teacher and nurse, now retired. Her four children are grown and all live out of state. She loves living in the Cedar Springs area, having retired here in 2004. She is a member of the Women’s Club and is active in her church, The United Methodist Church, singing in the choir and filling in where needed.

She is a member of the Glen Hill American Legion Unit #287, and has been an Auxiliary member for 23 years.

The mission of the Auxiliary is the spirit of service, not self, to support the American Legion and to honor the sacrifice of those who serve, by enhancing the lives of our veterans, military and their families, both at home and abroad. For God and country, the Auxiliary advocates for veterans, educating citizens, mentoring our youth, promoting patriotism, good citizenship, peace and security.

Mary Anne’s theme this year is “the sky’s the limit for our veterans” and her logo is the hot air balloon. As part of the Auxiliary’s goal to soar to new heights in serving our veterans, her special project is the woman veteran. She observes that too many of our veterans facilities do not accommodate the needs of the servicewomen. With over 200,000 returning female veterans, the needs are greater than ever before. Our servicewomen returning from the Middle East are younger and in greater numbers than from any other conflict. “It is my goal to help make VA benefits more easily accessible and more specific for our sisters in service in the State of Michigan this year,” noted Mary Anne.

If you happen to see Mary Anne around town, be sure to stop and ask about the American Legion Auxiliary. She’ll be happy to promote this program, helping our veterans get the respect and benefits they so rightly deserve.

 

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Take time to heal from nation’s trauma

By Mary Anne Meyers

N-Take time to healDETROIT – Families in Michigan and around the nation may be having a tough time getting into the holiday spirit because of the school shooting in Connecticut. Doctors and psychologists say it’s common for children to become anxious after such events, even when they happen far away.

Dr. Denise Dowd, an emergency room physician, says traumas such as this one can affect children for a long time. She says children under seven years old don’t need to be watching the news coverage.

 “Spare them the news, at least. I mean, they know about it, clearly kids know about it. But they don’t need to be watching the TV or the Internet, especially graphic images, photographs, things like that really stick in our minds.”

Dr. Dowd says because many children will hear about the shooting at school, parents should ask open-ended questions about what they know. Give them information, she says, but not more than they need. And she says to let them know that feelings such as sadness and worry are normal, but reassure them that most schools are safe and the adults in their lives are determined to keep them safe.

Dr. Dowd says just hearing about a tragedy far away can bring about severe anxiety in some children. “Kids that are at risk, though, are kids that have already dealt with trauma in their lives, where there’s been a death in the family that’s been very, very hard, but even such things as witnessing a car crash or witnessing somebody hurt.”

She says when she examined studies on teenagers, she realized that getting them to open up can go a long way in preventing such tragedies.
“And the insight that kids have was amazing to me. And the knowledge they have about what’s going on with their peers, who are the kids at risk. They’re the first ones to know that stuff.”

Dr. Dowd stresses that patience is key, especially because children react to trauma in many ways. Some may want to play more. Some close up while others may want to talk. And some may not react until much later, even months from now.

More information is at www.samhsa.gov and at www.childrensmercy.org.

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Post Scripts

Wake up America

It’s 3:00 a.m. the morning after, can’t sleep! Thinking and praying for hurting people in a little town, much like our town, in Connecticut.

Yesterday (December 14, 2012), across our Nation people were weeping in public places, and no doubt asking “Why would a Great Almighty God allow this to happen?” And how would I know? Then my mind turns to millions of babies who never had the fun of even going to kindergarten, and even if they had an opportunity to attend school, the teacher would not be allowed to read God’s Holy Word or pray with them. Why, because we might offend a family who believes in some other god. Our founding father, George Washington, didn’t commit or great Nation to those other so called gods. Our prayer should be “Lord God please don’t let this happen in our little town of Cedar Springs.” Friends, let us not slumber or sleep. Put God first, please take your children to the church of your choice. If you don’t, the next shooter might be already sitting at your dinner table. I’m reasonably certain that the murdered mother, of that son gone insane, could never imagine she was raising a boy so devious.

Wake up America – turn back to God – and He will heal our land.

Bob Truesdale

Cedar Springs

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Roger on Main Street

Roger Allen, father of publisher Lois Allen, is still in St. Mary’s Hospital recovering from two recent heart attacks. Cards and well wishes may be sent to Roger Allen, The Cedar Springs Post, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319 and we will be sure he gets them.

The following column was originally published in December 2011.

roger on main street

Merry Christmas!

How many dozens of people have you heard that from lately?  It comes in handy this time of year when you can’t think of anything else to say.

Robo calls

I get several every day, so I don’t answer until seven rings. And now there’s talk of allowing robo calls to cell phones. I may have to stop answering that one, too. You can get in touch with me by knocking on my front door.

“Completed,” finally

The President has withdrawn our troops from Iraq, although we’ll still be spending money there. Nine years is way too long, especially for an optional war with inadequate planning ahead of time.  And we’re still at war in Afghanistan. And while Pakistan purports to be our ally, we seem to be at war there, too.

I think it’s time to let them settle their own affairs. It’s obvious we can’t do it, and it only makes us poorer. Just think of all the other things we could have bought with that $1trillion+ spent on the Iraq war. Yes, that’s $1,000,000,000,000. Plus.

Cat story

A friend writes:

Last Saturday night we were dressed and ready to go out to a Christmas party. We turned on a nightlight, turned the answering machine on, covered our pet parakeet and put the cat in the backyard.

Because we knew we’d be having a few drinks, we phoned a cab company and requested a taxi. The taxi arrived and we opened the front door to leave the house. As we walked out the door, the cat we had put out in the yard scooted back into the house. We didn’t want the cat shut in the house because she always tries to eat the bird.

My wife went on out to the taxi, while I went back inside to get the cat. The cat ran upstairs, with me in hot pursuit.

Waiting in the cab, my wife didn’t want the driver to know that the house would be empty for the night. So she explained to the taxi driver that I’d be out soon. “He’s just going upstairs to say goodbye to my mother.”

A few minutes later I got into the cab. “Sorry I took so long,” I said as we drove away. “That stupid thing was hiding under the bed. I had to poke her with a coat hanger to get her to come out. She tried to take off, so I grabbed her by the neck. Then I had to wrap her in a blanket to keep her from scratching me. But it worked! I hauled her fat bottom downstairs and threw her out into the back yard! Hope she doesn’t use the vegetable garden for a toilet again.”

The silence in the cab was deafening.

Last words

Years ago, my kids believed in Santa Claus. Now they think I’m Santa Claus.

 

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Hometown Happenings

CORRECTION

 South Ensley United Methodist will NOT have a Christmas eve service as reported in last week’s Post. It should have read:

Dec. 23: South Ensley and Sand Lake United Methodist Churches will hold a joint Sunday evening service at 7 p.m. December 23, at South Ensley called “A light has come!” The Sunday morning message (Dec. 23) will be titled “Jesus’ wish list.” South Ensley is located at 13600 S. Cypress, Sand Lake, and Sand Lake UMC is located at 65 W. Maple Street, Sand Lake.

 

Tri County Eagles’ New Year’s Eve Party

Dec. 31: Come to the Tri County Eagles in Sand Lake for a New Year’s Eve Party! Open to the Public. The evening starts with a prime rib dinner from 4pm-9pm, call 636-8787 to RSVP for $11.75 per person or at the door for $13.00 per person. Vegas Night starts at 6pm – includes Black Jack, Roulette, Texas Holdem, 3 card poker, and a 50/50 raffle. The O’Brother Band will provide live entertainment. There will be champagne & snacks at midnight. License #M79231. #51,52p

 

TOPS weight loss support group

Jan. 8: Start the New Year off right with TOPS. Take off pounds sensibly (TOPS), a non-profit weight loss support group for men and women, meets every Tuesday at the Resurrection Lutheran Church in Sand Lake. Your first visit is free so come check out what TOPS can do to help you reach your weight loss goals! Exercise 8-8:30am (optional), weigh-ins from 8:30am–9am and the meeting starts at 9:15am. In case of inclemeent weather, meetings are cancelled if Tri-County or Cedar Sporings schools are closed. Call Martha at 696-1039 for more information. #51

 

Lions Club Pancake Breakfast

Jan. 19: Starting in January the Lions Club will be hosting their annual Pancake Breakfast on the third Saturday of the month (January-April). You can buy your tickets early from any Lions Club member and get a $1.00 off! Contact Art Probst at 696-9340 or Seth Baker-Donnan at 696-9397 for ticket info. The pancake breakfasts will be held at the Cedar Springs United Methodist Church located on the corner of Main & Church Streets from 7am to 11am. Proceeds to assist sight conservation. #51

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