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Archive | December, 2012

Toastmasters to hold open house

North Kent Toastmasters invites residents to its open house on Tuesday, January 8, at Prudential Preferred Realtors, 502 Northland Drive, Rockford, at 7 p.m., to meet members and hear special guest speaker, Dr. Fred L. Johnson III, Associate Professor of History at Hope College in Holland, Michigan, talk about the importance of communication skills for today’s professional.

Dr. Johnson is an award-winning speaker in the Toastmasters organization. In 2007, 2008 and 2010 he advanced to the semifinal rounds of the World Series of Public Speaking competition. In 2008 and 2010, Dr. Johnson ran for US House of Representatives as the Democratic nominee for Michigan’s 2nd Congressional District.

“North Kent Toastmasters provides a supportive and positive environment where members have the opportunity to develop their communication and leadership skills,” says Casey Kornoelje, Club President for North Kent Toastmasters.

After hearing from Dr. Fred Johnson, members and guests will enjoy a regular Toastmasters meeting that will include prepared speeches, Table Topics™ (impromptu speeches) and evaluations.

Club member Mike Kieliszewski, who has served in various club positions, will be the Table Topics master. “Table Topics are one of my favorite parts of the meeting,” says Kieliszewski. “This is where guests and members are randomly selected to speak for one to two minutes. It helps you think and speak clearly on your feet.”

For January 2013 only, North Kent Toastmasters meets the second and fourth Tuesday at 7 p.m. at Prudential Preferred Realtors, next to Our Lady of Consolation Catholic Church in Rockford. Beginning in February 2013 and for the remaining year the meetings will be the first and third Tuesday at 7 p.m. For more information about this event and the club, please visit www.nkctm.org.

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Christmas Coloring Contest Winners

Age Group 3-4 Years:

Brooklyn Noffke of Pierson age 4

Brooklyn Noffke of Pierson age 4

Age Group: 5-7 Years

Kyle Root of Cedar Springs age 7

Kyle Root of Cedar Springs age 7

Age Group: 8-10 Years


Prizes will be ready for pick up on Monday December 24th at our office located at 36 E. Maple St. in Cedar Springs. The POST will be open from 10am-2pm on Monday, December 24 and closed on Tuesday, December 25.

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Prevent holiday decoration fires and injuries

Safety tips:

Trees and Decorations

Buying live trees? Check for freshness. A fresh tree is green, its needles are hard to pull from branches, and its needles do not break when bent between your fingers. The bottom of a fresh tree is sticky with resin, and when tapped on the ground, the tree should not lose many needles.

Setting up a tree at home? Place it away from heat sources, such as fireplaces, vents, and radiators. Because heated rooms dry out live trees rapidly, be sure to monitor water levels daily, and keep the tree stand filled with water. Place the tree out of the way of foot traffic, and do not block doorways with the tree.

Buying an artificial tree? Look for the label: “Fire Resistant.” Although this label does not mean that the tree will not catch fire, it does indicate that the tree is more resistant to catching fire.

Decorating a tree in homes with small children? Take special care to avoid sharp, weighted, or breakable decorations. Keep trimmings with small removable parts out of the reach of children, who could swallow or inhale small pieces. Avoid trimmings that resemble candy or food that may tempt a child to eat them.


Keep burning candles within sight. Extinguish all candles before you go to bed, leave the room, or leave the house.

Keep candles on a stable, heat-resistant surface where kids and pets cannot reach them or knock them over. Lighted candles should be placed away from items that can catch fire, such as trees, other evergreens, decorations, curtains and furniture.


Use only lights that have been tested for safety by a nationally recognized testing laboratory, such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL). Lights for both indoor and outdoor usage must meet strict requirements that testing laboratories are able to verify. On decorative lights available in stores, UL’s red holographic label signifies that the product meets safety requirements for indoor and outdoor usage. UL’s green holographic label, signifies that the product meets requirements for only indoor usage.

Check each set of lights, new or old, for broken or cracked sockets, frayed or bare wires, or loose connections. Throw out damaged sets and do not use electric lights on a metallic tree.

Check each extension cord to make sure it is rated for the intended use and is in good condition. Do not use cords with cuts or signs of fraying.

Check outdoor lights for labels showing that the lights have been certified for outdoor use, and only plug them into a ground-fault circuit interrupter (GFCI)-protected receptacle or a portable GFCI.


Use care with “fire salts,” which produce colored flames when thrown onto wood fires. Fire salts contain heavy metals that can cause intense gastrointestinal irritation and vomiting, if swallowed. Keep them away from children.

Do not burn wrapping papers in the fireplace. A flash fire may result because wrappings can ignite suddenly and burn intensely.

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Tour of Lights

N-TouroflightsSandLakeThere’s nothing like the warm glow of Christmas lights this time of year to give you a good dose of Christmas cheer! Below is just a sampling of the many beautiful displays in our area. Pack up the kids, go for a ride, and enjoy the decorations your friends and neighbors have put up this year. We’re sure you’ll find a few other treasures along the way! Others to see:

427 Northland Drive, near the corner of South Street and Northland. See the 90-foot evergreen Christmas tree at the Reep family home.

65 E. Muskegon, corner of First and Muskegon Streets. The home of Larry and Audrey Young is a classic home decorated with style.

Downtown Cedar Springs is aglow with lights, as is the Christmas tree at the corner of Main and Ash.

345 Tall Grass Drive in the Prairie Run subdivision just off Pine Street. Pretty angels and many lights! There are many other homes in Prairie Run with beautiful lights as well.

Fieldstone Meadow subdivision, just east off 18 Mile at the curve NE of town, has many beautifully decorated homes.

6810 17 Mile Road, near Stout. The home of Don and Pat Reed.

A barn on Myers Lake Road near 15 Mile is sure to make you smile!

3570 Fernfield Drive, inside the Cedarfield Manufactured Home Community.

The corner of Beech and Maple Streets in Sand Lake—two homes right on the corner light up the whole town! The kids will love it.


Thanks to those of you who called or sent in your info!


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Letters to Santa

-HOL-Santa-letterDear Santa,

My name is Ayden Isaacson and I am 7 month old, So this is my first Christmas. I would really like a kids quad, any learning toys, and new Sippy Cups with handles. Thank you Santa.




Dear Santa,

I would like a dog, and cat blanket, I want a dog, cat and zebra stuffed animal, some make-up and a real flower that that I can water and take care of.

Some nail polish in all different colors, and a puppy on a kitty chain

that’s my size, and a picture of you, a stuffed animal pluto. A zebra and dog and cat zo-zo pet. A heart bed for my Kitty tiger and a square bed for my dog little-bit

Emily McCauley



Dear Santa,

My name is Eligah I want a spiderman helment, x-box 360, car track and a flying airplane with a controller, new blanket and teddybear . thank you

Eligah Malone


Dear Santa

Lorax movie princess

and the Pauper

and I want a castle with a flag on top

with princess with it.

 Love Taylor

Age 6


To Santa form Madison McCauley age 7

a big big big card board box

a princess house-big with a princess

a bed

a zebra and cheata dress mix

a lapdorad

a rianbow wand

mack up


a cat dress-fore tigger

a new mermade

a rain bow dress for me

a bow with the pont at the top

a camrah

a littedoll

a strebar short cack doll

a roodoff the red nose raindeer

a dollhouse

a cathouse

a dog house

a ninga soute

flowers that never die

300 christmas cards

a mouse fore tigger-and string

a necklish

dog treats

26 dream lights


a kun fow pandd dall

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Youth wrestlers earn medals

The 2012-2013 youth wrestling season has officially begun with the kick-off tournament held at Manton High School on December 6, 2012. Coach Gonzales and the crew started the year off with a bang. Cedar Springs Youth Wrestling sent seven wrestlers to compete, and all returned with medals. Pistachio Gonzales, Trevor Marsman, Aiden Bouwens, Logan Hull, Gage Gardner, and George Gonzales Jr., all brought home first-place medals. First year wrestler Craig Lee Jr. brought home a third-place medal.

-S-Wrestling-youthBrothers Jordan and Ryan Ringler traveled to Battle Creek that same day to wrestle the Border War Christmas Duals with Team Michigan. Although the team did not place this year, Jordan went 4-2 and Ryan went 6-0. Landon Demorest, Ryan Ringler, Jordan Ringler, and George Gonzales Jr. all made the Team Michigan National Wrestling team again for the 2012-13 wrestling season.

If your child may be interested in joining one of the best wrestling clubs in the state of Michigan there is still time! Cedar Springs will continue sign-ups at the High School wrestling room during regular practice hours, Tuesday and Thursday evenings from 6:00PM-8:00 p.m.  You can get additional information from their web site at cedarspringsyouthwrestling.com or contact Coach George Gonzales Sr. at 616-454-8283.

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Join the annual Christmas bird count

_N-BirdfeedingDo you love watching the birds? Join the 113th Annual Christmas Bird Count with the Grand Rapids Audubon Club, Saturday, December 29 at 7:30 a.m. at the Wittenbach/Wege Center at 11715 Vergennes, Lowell, Michigan.

The Christmas Bird Count entices families, students, birders and scientists, armed with binoculars, bird guides and checklists to leave the comfort of a warm house during the holiday season to venture out in search of birds. Yes, birds! This annual mission has been conducted for over 100 years by dedicated people with the desire to both make a difference and to experience the beauty of nature. Audubon and other organizations use data collected in this longest-running wildlife census to assess the health of bird populations and to help guide conservation action. You can get involved!

Local bird enthusiasts will depart from the Wittenbach/Wege Center at 8:00 a.m. returning around noon for a brown bag lunch. Participants can leave after lunch or continue the census. At 5:00 p.m., section findings will be tallied back at the Wittenbach/Wege Center.

Since the Christmas Bird Count began over a century ago, it has relied on the dedication and commitment of volunteer citizen scientists. In other words, it all starts with you! For more information, please call either Tom Leggett at (616) 249-3382 or e-mail: tomleggett@hotmail.com or Ranger Steve (Mueller) at (616) 696-1753 or e-mail: odybrook@chartermi.net.


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Changes to trail signage system

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is reminding snowmobilers of changes to the snowmobile trail signage system on state trails, including the addition of five new sign types and the elimination of 10 sign types used in past years.

The changes were implemented based on recommendations submitted by a DNR citizens’ advisory workgroup, comprised of motorized trail users, trail maintenance organizations, members of the DNR’s Snowmobile Advisory Workgroup and the Michigan Snowmobile Association. Technical support for the workgroup was provided by recreation and law enforcement staff from the DNR and the U.S. Forest Service.

“The changes to the motorized trail signage program are the result of a collaborative process with stakeholder groups and should be a real improvement for trail users,” said Ron Olson, chief of the DNR’s Parks and Recreation Division. “The sign reductions will result in less clutter along the trails and provide for more consistency statewide.”

The workgroup’s recommended changes are designed to improve safety on Michigan’s 6,400 miles of designated snowmobile trails and provide consistent guidance to the 68 nonprofit organizations that partner with the DNR to maintain the trail system.

“Several of the other snowmobile states, and Ontario, have reduced their trail signs and have seen a reduction in accidents. Our objective is to provide a safe, family-oriented trail system for snowmobiling in Michigan,” said Bill Manson, executive director of the Michigan Snowmobile Association.

The following signs have been eliminated and will be removed from state snowmobile trails: Bridge Ahead, Chevron, Deer Crossing, Drift Area, Narrow Bridge, Narrow Trail, Trail Crossing, Truck Traffic, Two Way Trail, Winding Trail.

New signs added to state snowmobile trails in 2012 include:

*Combination Horizontal Alignment/Intersection (left and right). Bright yellow signs with directional arrows give notice of changes in horizontal trail alignment of less than 90 degrees where an intersection occurs within or immediately adjacent to a turn.

*Private Drives Ahead. Warn trail users where driveways cross a snowmobile trail.

*One-Direction Large Arrow (left and right). Large yellow, reflective signs (10 x 12 inches) with a black arrow and border give notice of changes in horizontal trail alignment of 90 degrees or more

*Next (number of) Miles. A supplemental sign that may be used below “Private Drives Ahead” sign to indicate how long the stretch of private drives runs.

*Trail Closed to Wheeled Motor Vehicles Ahead. Used on state or federal land prior to the point where a designated state snowmobile trail enters private property where the use of wheeled motorized vehicles is prohibited.

The DNR will continue to mark 90-degree turns with “sharp turn” warning signs supplemented with a new directional arrow.

For illustrations of the signs that will be used to mark Michigan’s snowmobile trails and more information about snowmobiling in Michigan, including trail maps with downloadable GPS coordinates, visit www.michigan.gov/snowmobiling.

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Hospital manager receives state appointment

-BUS-Bainbridge-apptGov. Rick Snyder announced the appointment of Jeremy Bainbridge, a Hospital Manager for Spectrum Health United and Kelsey Hospitals, to the Michigan Board of Respiratory Care.

The 11-member board assists the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs in overseeing the licensure requirements and standards for Michigan’s respiratory therapists.

“Jeremy brings diverse experiences to this board and I am thankful for his willingness to serve the Great Lakes State in this role,” said Snyder.

Bainbridge is manager of cardiopulmonary services at Spectrum Health, where he has worked since 2004. Previously, he held the positions of clinical specialist, adult lead therapist, comprehensive respiratory therapist and respiratory care assistant. Bainbridge holds associate degrees in liberal arts and respiratory care from Northwestern Michigan College and Muskegon Community College, respectively, and a bachelor’s degree in general studies from Western Michigan University. He will represent respiratory therapists and replaces Randall Kehr.

“Jeremy has long been an advocate for patients in our community and statewide through ongoing advocacy efforts locally and in Lansing,” said Brian Brasser, Chief Nursing and Operating Officer, Spectrum Health Kelsey Hospital, Chief Nursing Officer, Spectrum Health United Hospital. “His leadership will no doubt be well-served on this committee.”

Helene Wiltse of Freeland was also appointed and will represent the general public and replaces Ilene Hartman-Abramson.

Appointees will serve four-year terms that commence Jan. 1, 2013 and expire Dec. 31, 2016. Their appointments are subject to the advice and consent of the Senate.

To read Governor Snyder’s press release regarding this appointment, please visit http://michigan.gov/snyder.

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Geek Worx opens for business

Pictured is Cedar Springs Area Chamber President Shawn Kiphart (left) and Scott Thomas (right).

Pictured is Cedar Springs Area Chamber President Shawn Kiphart (left) and Scott Thomas (right).

Congratulations to Scott Thomas, new owner of Geek Worx, on their ribbon cutting November 20 at 71 N. Main in Cedar Springs. Scott formerly worked for @Home Computers, and has now started his own business in that same location. Geek Worx specializes in computer sales/service, website design and hosting, and in-home set up and help. Stop in today or give them a call at 696-7000.

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