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Archive | November, 2017

Santa Claus is coming to town

Santa Claus hugs two excited children at the 2016 Mingle with Kris Kringle. Photo courtesy CS Area Chamber of Commerce Facebook page.

Are you ready to have yourself a merry Christmas Cedar Springs-style? Come on out and experience a day of goodwill and cheer on Saturday, December 2, when the Cedar Springs Area Chamber of Commerce presents “Come Mingle with Kris Kringle.”

The day will run from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., with various fun, family-friendly, events. The starts at 9 a.m. with families able to make and take Christmas ornaments for our downtown tree or decorate a mug at the Cedar Springs Library from 9-noon. You can also enjoy a story time with Mrs. Claus from 2-3 p.m. at Perry’s Place llc for herbs, teas, and more. There will also be a meet and greet with Cedar Springs cheerleaders, a petting zoo, and carolers from Red Hawk Elementary, all before the mini-parade that brings Santa to the corner of Main and Ash Street at about 4:30-4:45.

Following the parade will be a live nativity scene and mingling with Kris Kringle at the American Legion Hall.

Bring the whole family out on Saturday, December 2, for a fun, community Christmas celebration! See the Chamber advertisement on page 9 of this week’s e-edition and our list of Holiday Happenings in the surrounding areas for complete details on times and locations.

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Letters to Santa Claus

Hey kids, it’s time to write a letter to Santa! Photo courtesy of S. Read.

It’s that time of year again, when kids can’t wait to mail their letters to Santa! To help parents out, the Cedar Springs Post will have a special North Pole drop box. 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. It’s a fun memory for you and your child and a great photo opportunity! Or, mail your letter to: Letters to Santa, c/o the Cedar Springs Post, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319. If you do take a photo of your child mailing a letter, you can post it to our facebook page or email it to news@cedarspringspost.com.

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Christmas lights are back in town

Downtown Cedar Springs is looking more festive and cheery than it has looked in the past decade, thanks to a partnership between the Cedar Springs Area Chamber of Commerce, the Downtown Development Authority, and the City of Cedar Springs.

According to Perry Hopkins, who is chairman of the DDA, president of the Chamber, and sits on the City Council, it’s been at least 10 years since the trees lining Main Street were decorated with lights. “They haven’t had them since I opened my business here,” remarked Hopkins, who owns Perry’s Place llc for teas and more. 

Hopkins said that both old and new businesses were asking, “Why don’t you bring back the small-town Christmas charm this town used to have?” 

Hopkins explained that Mayor Gerald Hall offered to string the lights and hook up the needed accessories if the Chamber could get sponsors to raise the money, and several businesses chipped in to make it possible. The City Council then voted to pay for the electricity.

The Cedar Springs DPW plugged the lights in on Monday and they now come on at dark with the street lights. 

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Cost of energy to cook Thanksgiving meal

 

Are you cooking Thanksgiving dinner at your house this year? Consumers Energy says that the cost of the energy it takes to cook a traditional Thanksgiving feast is less than $2. That value includes the energy—either natural gas or electricity—for roasting the stuffed 18-pound turkey at the center of the table and for simmering or baking enough side dishes and dessert to serve 12 hungry guests.

Customers can increase their energy value even more by using a roasting bag to cut in half the time it takes to cook a turkey, combining several dishes when baking, and keeping the oven door closed. Other tips to trim holiday energy costs are at www.ConsumersEnergy.com/myhome.

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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 especially needed.

“This is our 8th year of collecting toys for children who might not otherwise get one,” said Post editor Judy Reed. “We are humbled and grateful at the community’s response to helping others in need, and hope everyone will consider giving to this program, which helps less fortunate children have a merrier Christmas.”

The program runs now through December 18. Just bring a new, unwrapped toy to our office at 36 E. Maple Street in Cedar Springs, Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Fridays 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. If you can’t make that time, call us to make other arrangements.

Both Independent Bank, 4115 17 Mile Rd, and Wireless Zone, 4021 17 Mile Rd, are also collecting Toys for Tots. You can drop off toys at their locations as well. Visit https://grand-rapids-mi.toysfortots.org/local-coordinator-sites/lco-sites/donate-toys.aspx to find a drop off location near you.

Together we can make this Christmas special for many children!

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Highest Thanksgiving gas prices since 2014 to hit motorists 

 

GasBuddy data shows national average gas price poised to see largest pre-Thanksgiving rise in a decade as travel increases over the holiday 

Gas prices in Cedar Springs were between $2.30 and $2.33 on Tuesday at press time. Photo by S. Reed.

GasBuddy, the only smartphone app connecting 70 million drivers with their perfect pit stop, projects that Thanksgiving will see the highest average gas prices since 2014 as the country prepares for the busiest traveling weekend of the year. Yet the average gas price in four of five U.S. states is lower than a week ago, coming as the number of Americans driving is expected to surge by 20 percent over last Thanksgiving according to GasBuddy’s Annual Holiday Travel Survey. 

GasBuddy projects the national average gas price this Thanksgiving will be $2.53 per gallon, the priciest Thanksgiving in three years (2014: $2.79), though not as high as the peak on Thanksgiving in 2012 ($3.44). Additionally, average gas prices have risen 9 cents in the last month, the largest pre-Thanksgiving Day increase since 2007, when average prices rose 26 cents in the 30 days leading up to the holiday. 

“This year has been unique at the pumps. Gas prices spent much of the time in the weeks approaching Thanksgiving by rising when typically, they would be on a sizeable downward trend,” said Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy. “On average Americans are paying nearly 40 cents a gallon more than last year, which means collectively we’re spending $800 million more on fuel over the Thanksgiving travel period. Drivers should pay close attention to prices to avoid overpaying.” 

According to GasBuddy’s Annual Holiday Travel Survey, despite higher gas prices, travelers are driving longer distances. 2017 is expected to see a 4 percent increase in travelers driving for 10 or more hours over Thanksgiving compared to 2016. 

GasBuddy offers several tips to motorists on the road this holiday season: 

• Watch Out for State Lines. Because of differing state taxes, in some extreme cases, drivers can spend an extra $25 when refueling the tank if on the wrong side of the line according to a review GasBuddy study. 

• Avoid Gas Stations Near the Highway. Gas station on a long stretch of highway will usually be pricey. If possible, plan ahead or drive a little farther toward the nearest town to find a cheaper station. 

• Pay with GasBuddy. A free new payments service that offers 15 cents off per gallon on the first fill-up and 5 cents off per gallon on every fill-up after at over 100,000 stations nationwide. 

GasBuddy is the leading source for the most accurate, real-time fuel prices at more than 140,000 gas stations in the U.S., Canada and Australia.

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Help prevent auto theft during the holiday shopping season

 

As the holiday shopping season begins, the Michigan Automobile Theft Prevention Authority (ATPA) is reminding the public to be aware of their surroundings and where purchases are stored in parked vehicles. 

Thieves often target shopping center parking lots looking for vehicles with bags and packages left in plain view. Follow these tips to help lessen the chance of becoming a victim: 

  • Park in a well-lit area 
  • Place shopping bags in the trunk 
  • Use storage compartments that keep valuables out of sight 
  • Don’t leave your vehicle running unattended 
  • Watch for suspicious activity or for anyone who may be following you 
  • Close windows when your vehicle is parked 
  • Install a car alarm or panic alarm on your vehicle 

Over the last 10 years, the ATPA has assisted in the reduction of motor vehicle thefts in Michigan by 56 percent. The ATPA awards grants to law enforcement agencies, prosecutors’ offices, and non-profit organizations for the investigation, apprehension, prosecution, and prevention of motor vehicle thefts. During the 2016 grant year, ATPA grant-funded motor vehicle theft teams made 1,819 arrests and recovered vehicles and parts worth approximately $37 million. 

For more information about the ATPA, visit www.michigan.gov/atpa.

 

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More than 300 children in foster care need adoptive homes 

Bruce is among the Michigan children who are available for adoption.

Mariah is among the Michigan children who are available for adoption.

Mariah, 15, is from Wayne County and enjoys playing cards and crocheting purses. 

Bruce, 13, is from Kent County and likes koala bears and french fries. He says he wishes for “family safety, for lots of love, and for the world to be a better place.” 

Bruce and Mariah are among the approximately 330 children in Michigan’s foster care system looking for loving adoptive homes. 

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services is sharing their stories during November, which has been proclaimed Adoption Month in Michigan by Gov. Rick Snyder. Nov. 21 is Adoption Day in Michigan. 

Anyone interested in adopting from foster care can contact the Michigan Adoption Resource Exchange at 800-589-6273 or see biographies and photos of children available for adoption, including Bruce and Mariah, at www.mare.org

MDHHS, in partnership with adoption agencies and the courts, works to find and create forever families through adoption. In fiscal year 2017, more than 1,900 children were adopted from the Michigan foster care system. 

“All children should have permanent homes to call their own,” said MDHHS Director Nick Lyon. “We appreciate the love and stability provided by our adoptive families and hope that more Michiganders will open their hearts to adoption.” 

People can adopt whether they’re single or married. They don’t have to be wealthy or own their own home, but must have adequate financial resources to provide for a family. 

Children in the foster care system become eligible for adoption following termination of parental rights due to abuse or neglect. There are about 13,000 children in the foster care system, but the goal for most of these children is reunification with their families. 

New families are becoming “official” at Adoption Day ceremonies around the state this month, including Nov. 21 at the Michigan Supreme Court Hall of Justice in Lansing. 

Details can be found on the Michigan Adoption Resource Exchange Adoption Day 

webpage, along with profiles of outstanding adoptive families and wishes being granted to the families this month. 

For more information about adoption in Michigan, visit www.michigan.gov/adoption

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God’s got this

Pastor Kristi J. Rhodes

Hillcrest Community Church

5994 18 Mile Rd. Cedar Springs, MI 49319

 

Maybe you’ve noticed the tremendous increase of struggles in the lives of people you love. Maybe you’ve seen more and more people struggling with destructive addictions and hurts, habits and hang-ups both from the recent and distant past. Maybe it’s even YOU that have been battling demons with increasing difficulty.

It is easy to believe that there is no way out and that no one really even cares. But I am here today to speak truth to you. Truth is, “If God could close the mouth of lions for Daniel, part the Red Seas for Moses, make the sun stand still for Joshua, open the prison for Peter, put a baby in the arms of Sarah, and raise Lazarus from the dead, then He can certainly take care of you! Nothing you are facing today is too hard for Him to handle!” (Anonymous writer)

Truth is:  Nothing is impossible with God but apart from him, we can do nothing. Our hope is in him. Get connected and stay in close relationship with Jesus. Satan and his dark forces have been around much longer than we have. We are no match for him alone, but with God, we can do all things.  

Jesus is the only one who has gone toe to toe with Satan and defeated him. In Christ, believers have been given authority over the dark forces, which is something Satan wants to keep you from learning. If you don’t know you have authority over Satan and his demons, he will continue to defeat you anytime he wants. Colossians 2:15 reminds us that Jesus defeated and disarmed all the powers and authorities that oppose God and His people. At the very Name of Jesus, the demons tremble! Believers should never have to fear their spiritual enemy.

The church has done a poor job of intentionally teaching believers about their authority over the work of the enemy in their lives. Paul taught about this most aggressively in the book of Ephesians. I have heard it said that when seeking spiritual power, look to “G-E-Power-Company.” G=Galatians, E=Ephesians, P=Philippians, and C=Colossians. These are 4 books (right in a row), which are located in the New Testament of the Bible. God wants people to be delivered from the power of Satan and his forces.

We serve a God who is mightier than the struggles we inherit, and bigger than the battles we face. God is full of the desire to forgive, love, and heal the brokenness that rises up between us and Him. God is present in the places where our fears live.  Jonah 2:2 reminds us that “in my distress I called to the LORD, and he answered me.  From the depths of the grave I called for help, and you listened to my cry.” And Hebrews 7:25 (NIV) says, “therefore, He (Jesus) is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.”  

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C. LEONA HOSKINS SJOGREN

C. Leona Hoskins Sjogren of Rockford, Michigan (formerly of Cedar Springs), age 94, passed away on Saturday, November 18, 2017. She was born to Lawrence and Lucy (Low) Loveless on February 6, 1923, in Dolph, Michigan. Her family moved to the Rockford area where she grew up on a farm on 12 Mile Rd. In 1941 she graduated from Rockford High School and while in high school she was a drummer in the drum and bugle corps. for the Merritt Lamb Post # 102 American Legion. When she was 11 her mother led her to the Lord and she accepted Christ as her Savior. Leona is survived by her loving sons Tom Hoskins, Mark (Joy) Hoskins, and Dan (Laureen) Hoskins; the Sjogren family; 13 grandchildren, 27 great-grandchildren, and 3 great-great-grandchildren. She was preceded in death by her first husband Henry Hoskins in 1993; second husband Norman Sjogren in 2008, sister Mildred Crisman, and daughter in law Judy Hoskins. A funeral service for Leona was celebrated at 11:00 a.m. on Wednesday, November 22, 2017 at Algoma Baptist Church, 10515 Grange Ave NE, Rockford, MI 49341. Pastor Dave Fernlund and Pastor Ken Harger officiated. Those wishing to offer expressions of sympathy are encouraged to make a memorial contribution to Algoma Baptist Church or Hospice of Michigan, 989 Spaulding Ave SE, Ada, MI 49301.

Arrangements by Pederson Funeral Home, Rockford

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