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Archive | February, 2013

Goliath of a snowman

-N-Snowman-CouturierDeb Couturier, of Solon Township, sent us this photo of a giant snowman made by her kids, Esther, Isaac, and Samuel Couturier, on Wednesday’s snow day. At 9-feet tall, this snowman is certainly a Goliath! Deb said it was so big, that they used red potatoes for the eyes and buttons down the front, and an orange pepper for the nose. And, it’s looking rather stylish with a flowerpot hat and colorful scarf! Thanks for sharing your snowman with us!

If you have photos of a snowman or snow sculpture you’d like to share with us, please send it to news@cedarspringspost.com with some brief info about the photo and your contact information.

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Cedar Springs man charged with Montcalm break-ins

-N-Breaking-and-entering-Keith-AmesA Cedar Springs man already in the Kent County jail on other charges has been charged with breaking and entering in Montcalm County.

According to Detective Sgt. Thomas Goerge of the Montcalm County Sheriff Department, officers responded to several breaking and entering complaints in Pierson and Reynolds Townships in October. Last Friday, February 22, Keith Allan Ames, 25 of Cedar Springs, was arraigned on one count of breaking and entering, in Montcalm County’s 64B District Court. Bond was set at $15,000.

Goerge said he is suspected in six break-ins, as well as thefts in neighboring counties. He said Ames became a suspect after he was apprehended in Kent County on similar crimes. He is currently in the Kent County Jail on charges of Criminal sexual conduct fourth degree (victim between 13-16) and possession of meth or ecstasy.

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Send us your winter wildlife photos

-N-CardinalThis cardinal has been playing hide and seek in the bushes here at the Post with a group of other birds. His bright red color sure does light up an otherwise bleak wintry day!

We would like to see your bird and other winter wildlife photos. Send them to us at news@cedarspringspost.com with your name and contact info, and some brief info about the photo. We will print them as space allows.

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Button down the hatches!

Pirate theme for 2013 Red Flannel Festival

Are there any Red Flannel Pirates out there? There will be this fall! The Red Flannel Festival Board of Directors has been working diligently to provide fresh new events for the 74th “Button Down the Hatches!” Festival celebration. “We’re turning our famous ‘Sea of Red’ into a Pirate Paradise,” said Brynadette Powell, Festival First Vice President.

“The board has added many events in the last few years and boasts over 4,000 fans on our Facebook page,” said President Michele Tracy-Andres. “This board is extremely dedicated to ensuring the Red Flannel Festival is the biggest and best ever! We’re already working on plans for new events for the 75th Diamond Anniversary Festival in 2014!”

-N-RF-trolley-car

Pirate theme for 2013 Red Flannel Festival

The Festival continues to expand its advertising portfolio with the addition of billboards to advertise this year’s events. Again this year, the Festival has partnered with WLAV, 96.9 FM in Grand Rapids, for radio commercials; and the 730 television commercials will begin on various Charter cable channels in September. The beautiful, 32-page full color “Official Red Flannel Press” will be distributed in August, thanks to Festival Business Patron Sponsors and “Friends of the Festival, a donor program designed exclusively for individuals.

New this year, the Festival will debut the first ever Red Flannel Art Review, with local artists vying for cash prizes in local venues, beginning in late August. The RF Art Review winners will be announced at the new Red Flannel Wine and Microbrew Tasting event on September 14.

Also new this year is an old fashioned trolley that will be used to transport Festival goers to various events and venues on a route. “We’ve had several requests for this over the years. The Festival is thrilled to partner with B&W Charters from Kalamazoo to make this happen,” said Festival 2nd VP Anna Nozkowski.

Also, fans of the Firefighter Parade will be happy to see it return this year on Friday, Oct. 4 at 8:30 p.m. in downtown Cedar Springs! “Of course, the traditional events are still in place,” said Andres. “The Car & Tractor Shows, Museum Open House, Rotary Chicken BBQ, Lion’s Lumberjack Supper, Queen Scholarship Pageant, Bed Races and Grand Parade are wonderful traditions!” For a full schedule of events, or to download event applications, visit www.redflannelfestival.org.

The Festival was granted 501c3 non-profit status and all donations are tax deductible. For more information on how to donate, volunteer or get involved with the Red Flannel Festival, call 616-696-2662 or visit www.redflannelfestival.org.

 

 

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Be a rock star

The “Be a rock star” event was filled with giggles, glitz and glamour last Saturday as girls dressed the part of a rock star and tried their hand at writing and singing songs.  Photos by Shannon Vanderhyde.

The “Be a rock star” event was filled with giggles, glitz and glamour last Saturday as girls dressed the part of a rock star and tried their hand at writing and singing songs.
Photos by Shannon Vanderhyde.

Girls in grades 1 to 5 were rocking and rolling at the Cedar Springs Public Library’s “Be a Rock Star” party, Saturday, February 23, held at The Springs Church.

Sixteen girls and their parents attended the event, where girls got to pretend to be rock stars, from dressing the part, to writing their own songs.

The leader of this sparkly, dazzling crew was none other than the Springs’ own Abby Briggs. Not to be outdone by the girls, Abby was also delightfully decked out in many colors, including the beads and funky-colored hair. Colored hairspray was generously shared.

-N-rock-star3Girl Rock Stars found out that writing song lyrics is very much like writing poetry, which they all tried to do. Lyrics, singing, microphones…each star made her own microphone and joined in a sing-a-long to many song favorites. The party ended on a HIGH note!

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Ranger Steve inducted into GR Camera Club Hall of Fame

Naturalist Steven Joel Mueller, of Cedar Springs (better known to readers as Ranger Steve), was added to the Grand Rapids Camera Club Hall of Fame last Wednesday, February 20.

Ranger Steve joined the Grand Rapids Camera Club (GRCC) in 1979, moved out of state and rejoined in 1986.

-N-Steve-Mueller3-BlackSwallowtailLarvaHe is a butterfly, nature and wilderness photographer, and a consummate naturalist with an endless fascination for the environment. The career of “Ranger Steve” Mueller has crossed over six decades, since his start in the 1960s as a Michigan State Parks Ranger. He has served in the National Park Service as a high school and college biology instructor, and chief naturalist at three different nature centers. Ranger Steve has authored over 100 articles related to nature and interpretation through Michigan Audubon and local newspapers. His photographic work has been published in national publications such as Sierra Magazine, high school text books, and Beautyway Post Cards.

-N-Steve-Mueller1The canyon country of southern Utah is his favorite place, Water Canyon Falls in Bryce Canyon National Park being close to his heart since exchanging wedding vows with wife Karen there in 1977. He has presented a photographic program titled “Wilderness-Unique Treasure,” in an effort to gain wilderness protection for the region, and he discovered a new moth species, “Brilliant Virgin Tiger Moth,” in the same spot 28 years later.

Ranger Steve was recently named Outstanding Senior Interpreter, by the National Association of Interpreters (NAI). He is one of the original members of the Utah Lepidopterists’ Society, and recipient of the William B Stapp Award for environmental education. The NAI awarded Ranger Steve the 2010 Distinguished Interpreter Award, the highest award they bestow.

-N-Steve-Mueller2-QueenButterflyRanger Steve always finds time from his travels, and educating on the environment to share his photo skills with the Grand Rapids Camera Club. He has served two terms as President and until most recently as club Historian/Archivist. He has been a competition judge and served on countless committees. Ranger Steve was the instructor for the “Nature Photography Guided Practice Workshop,” and has conducted field trips looking for butterflies, moths, bugs, and wildflowers in their natural environment. In 2001 he sent a slide presentation of GRCC member works to the Pennant Hills Photographic Club in Sydney, Australia for their exchange of works program. Ranger Steve continues to compete at both GRCC and Southwestern Michigan Council of Camera Clubs (SWMCCC), most often showing his love of nature and of course butterflies.

This month Ranger Steve has been writing our articles for natural birdfeeding month.

 

 

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Teen charged with assault

-N-Assault-Zachary-Otto-GoodinAt 3:30 a.m. Sunday morning, February 24, Cedar Springs Officer Mike Stahl responded to a call of people fighting in the 100 block of E. Cherry Street.

According to Cedar Springs Police Chief Roger Parent, when Officer Stahl arrived he learned that a group of teens were inside a home when they heard a knock at the door. One of the females inside answered the door to find her ex-boyfriend outside with another person. When she told him to leave, she was grabbed and pulled outside.

Others came outside to help her and they were also assaulted by the girl’s ex-boyfriend. Parent said that the suspect used a metal object, commonly known as brass knuckles, causing injuries to three individuals. One of those injured was the adult homeowner, who was awakened and told about the problem outside. A 16-year old female was treated at United Memorial Hospital for a laceration near her left eye.

Officer Stahl located the suspect nearby and he was arrested and lodged in jail. Zachery Otto Goodin. 17, of Morley, will face numerous charges. The Prosecutor’s Office issued two felony assault charges (assault with a dangerous weapon), and two misdemeanor charges—one for domestic assault and one for simple assault based upon the complaint and persons injured.

Goodin was arraigned on Monday, February 25 , in 63rd District Court. Bond was set at $2,000cash/surety. He has bonded out.

 

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Kent County Sheriff Department awards

Sheriff Larry Stelma recently announced 2012 Deputies of the Year and Civilian Employee of the Year.

Eric Hutchinson, Emergency Communications Supervisor I—Dispatch, was selected as 2012 Civilian Employee of the Year; Deputy Wayne Secord was selected as 2012 Deputy of the Year—Corrections; and Detective Justin DeBoode was selected as 2012 Deputy of the Year—Law Enforcement

These three employees were honored at the Kent County Sheriff Department Annual Awards Ceremony on Friday, February 22, 2013.

ERIC HUTCHINSON

-N-Sheriff-Awards-HutchinsonIt is with great pleasure that the Kent County Sheriff Department name Eric Hutchinson as 2012 Civilian Employee of the Year. Eric began his career at the Kent County Sheriff Department on July 19, 1999 as a full time Emergency Communications Operator. On October 25, 2010, Eric was promoted to Emergency Communications Supervisor I.

When dealing with a variety of emergency calls, Eric maintains a level head and calm demeanor and goes the extra mile when assisting the needs of the public. Eric evolved into the dispatcher you want on the other end of your call or radio during any emergency run.

In 2008, Eric was recognized with a Letter of Recognition for his assistance to Consumers Power by installing electronic surveillance devices on their copper wire supply that ultimately lead police to arrest theft suspects. Also in 2008, Eric was recognized with a Letter of Appreciation for his explicit communications during a police pursuit involving multiple agencies. In 2010, he was recognized with a Letter of Recognition for his dispatching expertise during a home invasion resulting in the arrest of the suspects. In 2011, he was awarded a Letter of Recognition for his service on the new 911 phone equipment committee and staff training and a Letter of Recognition for serving on the Dispatch Contract Transition Team. In 2012, he was included in the Unit Citation presented to the Communications Center for their service during the crane collapse incident. Eric has many skills that include an exceptional aptitude for technology that is continuously called upon by many departments.

Since 2010, Eric has been a member of the Motorola Premier One CAD project team. This was a huge undertaking and was monumental in its successful deployment on the December 4, 2012 Go-Live transition. Eric wrote the Request for Bids, coordinated with Purchasing, assisted in selecting a vendor, and ensured compliance. Eric was responsible for the structured wiring design of the new dispatch center; to put this in perspective, there are 7.9 MILES of data cables that run from the new dispatch center to the data-comm room. Eric was also responsible for troubleshooting mobile issues and then applying the software to over 170 police and fire mobiles serviced by the Kent County Sheriff Department’s Communication Center.

DEPUTY WAYNE SECORD

-N-Sheriff-Awards-SecordIt is with great pleasure the Kent County Sheriff Department name Deputy Wayne Secord the 2012 Deputy of the Year—Corrections.

Wayne began his career on April 10, 1995 at the Kent County Sheriff Department as a Corrections Officer. While assigned to the main jail facility, Wayne worked virtually every duty station. His responsibilities included conducting inmate searches, transfers and investigations regarding alleged incidents, admitting visitors, conducting inmate counts, inspecting living quarters, and assisting in the Inmate Services Program.

Whatever the task or the assignment, Wayne will always greet you with a smile on his face. Wayne is an incredibly hard worker and never lets the stress of the job affect his work. He adapts well to whichever work station he is assigned to as if he has been there the whole time. He is professional, has an excellent work ethic, and is dedicated to his job.

Wayne is currently assigned to central control and played an important part of maintaining safety and security during the recent construction of the jail renovation project and the smooth transition to the new jail.

Deputies know they can depend on Wayne and he does a superior job keeping track of cameras and what is happening throughout the over 1200 bed facility.

Deputy Secord’s commitment to doing his very best and going above and beyond makes our facility and community a safer place.

DETECTIVE JUSTIN DEBOODE

-N-Sheriff-Awards-DeBoodeIt is with great pleasure that the Kent County Sheriff Department name Detective Justin DeBoode the 2012 Deputy of the Year—Law Enforcement.

Justin began his career on February 14, 2000 as a County Police Cadet, working part time while attending college full time. From May to July 2000, Justin attended a Grand Valley State University sponsored summer trip to Tubingen, Germany. He graduated from college in Fall 2002 and, on January 13, 2003 was hired as County Patrol Officer, providing services to the residents of Kent County by enforcing laws and traffic regulations, investigating crime, and utilizing crime prevention techniques.

Justin is currently assigned to the Detective Bureau serving on the Major Case Team and Tactical Team. Justin’s attributes demonstrate the model deputy. The professionalism and thoroughness of his work is something to be admired and his personal life is beyond reproach.

Justin has had many successful investigations and convictions in the five years as detective. He has a strong work ethic and personal morals. He is assertive and displayed heroic actions during his career. Justin is known to go above and beyond the call of duty to comfort victims of crime. He is a tremendous asset to those who work with him and gives 100 percent to each case.

Throughout his career, Justin has received five Letters of Recognition and three Letters of Commendation for services characterized by outstanding ability and exemplary performance. In 2007, Justin was awarded a Distinguished Police Service Award for his part during a standoff with a dangerous, armed, murder suspect, where his life, along with his fellow deputies’ lives, were endangered, and they had to use deadly force.

Detective DeBoode’s constant commitment to his profession is overwhelming evidence of his dedication, teamwork philosophy, and enthusiasm for his patrols, investigations, and willingness to help others.

 

DETECTIVE JUSTIN DEBOODE

 

 

 

It is with great pleasure that the Kent County Sheriff Department name Detective Justin DeBoode the 2012 Deputy of the Year—Law Enforcement.

Justin began his career on February 14, 2000 as a County Police Cadet, working part time while attending college full time. From May to July 2000, Justin attended a Grand Valley State University sponsored summer trip to Tubingen, Germany. He graduated from college in Fall 2002 and, on January 13, 2003 was hired as County Patrol Officer, providing services to the residents of Kent County by enforcing laws and traffic regulations, investigating crime, and utilizing crime prevention techniques.

Justin is currently assigned to the Detective Bureau serving on the Major Case Team and Tactical Team. Justin’s attributes demonstrate the model deputy. The professionalism and thoroughness of his work is something to be admired and his personal life is beyond reproach.

Justin has had many successful investigations and convictions in the five years as detective. He has a strong work ethic and personal morals. He is assertive and displayed heroic actions during his career. Justin is known to go above and beyond the call of duty to comfort victims of crime. He is a tremendous asset to those who work with him and gives 100 percent to each case.

Throughout his career, Justin has received five Letters of Recognition and three Letters of Commendation for services characterized by outstanding ability and exemplary performance. In 2007, Justin was awarded a Distinguished Police Service Award for his part during a standoff with a dangerous, armed, murder suspect, where his life, along with his fellow deputies’ lives, were endangered, and they had to use deadly force.

Detective DeBoode’s constant commitment to his profession is overwhelming evidence of his dedication, teamwork philosophy, and enthusiasm for his patrols, investigations, and willingness to help others.

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Hearing and following the call

I often smile at the path my life has taken. Working for a company that did commercial heating and plumbing, I would have laughed out loud had anyone suggested that one day I would be a pastor of two churches. (And so would most people who knew me!) I can assure you that while standing in a sewage pit fixing a pump, the thought of being a preacher was the last thing on my mind. And yet, here I am—proving beyond a doubt that God’s word is true, nothing is impossible with God!

Some people have that “at the bottom of the pit with no hope, when the heavens opened up and a light ray struck me while God spoke” experience. The truth is, though, God usually doesn’t make that kind of appearance. He usually makes himself known through many and constant blessings, and through answers to questions that we may not remember asking him. In short, he reveals himself to us in ways that we, individually, can see and understand. He was with me in many situations that I only realized afterwards.

So how may he call you? It’s hard to say.

It may be that you find the words to say to a friend or family member when they really need it. It may be in a sudden and unexplainable feeling to act on a cause or to help a person in need. It can be in answering a question asked by a child, or by giving a ride to someone you never thought you would.

It’s important that you don’t panic. God calls us all to be ministers but not preachers; and He calls us to be friends, neighbors, mentors, parents and simply someone who is there to help.

Just as important as hearing a call is answering it. God may call anytime and anyplace. And it may be to do something that you never thought you’d do. But He is faithful and He will not call you to do something and just abandon you. He will be at your side from beginning to end.

The amazing thing is that He has chosen to have us serve Him in the simplest ways, and yet so many people find this terribly difficult. How does God want us to serve Him? By serving His people. That’s really it. When you call an older neighbor to check up on them, you’re serving God. Give some extra cans of food to someone who needed it? You served God. Take time to listen to that person on the street that everyone else walks by? Yep, you’re serving God! Not really that painful is it? God calls us to do what we are able to do, only we need to do it for the glory of God not ourselves. And that way we are doing what God calls all of us to do!

Pastor Darryl Miller

Sand Lake UMC

65 W. Maple, Sand Lake

South Ensley UMC

13600 Cypress,

Ensley Township

 

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Richard and Nora Slaight

9-C-SlaightIn loving memory
of our parents,
Richard and Nora Slaight

“Happy is the man who finds a true friend, and far happier is he who finds that true friend in his wife.”  — Franz Schubert

Miss you.
Kathy, Craig, and Brad

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