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Archive | June, 2018

Lifewalk celebrates 25 years

New this year was the baby & me Lifecrawl at Lifewalk. Courtesy photo.

Over 80 walkers participated in the two-mile walk through downtown Cedar Springs.
Courtesy photo.

Alpha Family Center held its 25th annual fundraising event, Lifewalk, on Saturday June 16. 

“It was a great day to celebrate life,” said Executive Director Teresa Hathaway. “This year’s theme was ‘Celebrating 25 years for Life!’ which relays the message we have been faithful in serving individuals and families with the issue of life,” she explained. 

The day began at 7:30 a.m. with their first LifeRide, a cycling event. They had 5 participants travel the White Pine Trail on either 10, 20, 30 or 40 miles ride, and had 9 runners taking part in Alpha’s 5K LifeRun. 

LifeWalk began with a welcome, instructions about the walk, and an opening prayer. They had 81 walkers follow behind the LifeWalk banner for the 2-mile walk down through the heart of Cedar Springs, stopping at key points to pray for community leaders, churches, schools and Alpha Family Center. 

“This year the walk once again included a prayer stop at Metron Senior Citizen Center to help emphasize life is precious at all stages,” said Hathaway.  

The walkers returned to the park to either participant in or watch our first Baby & Me LifeCrawl. This was a fun event for parents and infants. They had 4 teams join in the fun. This year a box lunch and cake was provided to those in attendance. There was also face painting and a clown for the children, and a Kid’s FunRun.

One difference in LifeWalk this year was that they had an online option available for those raising funds to use with their social media accounts. “We raised over $20,000!” remarked Hathaway. “LifeWalk covers a large portion of Alpha’s operating expenses as we assist over 100 families per year, and give away over 8,000 baby and maternity items per year.”  

Alpha also offers free pregnancy self-testing, parenting classes, support for abuse, miscarriage, post-abortion and sexual integrity classes. New this summer Alpha is partnering with Positive Options Mobile Medical Center in providing free ultrasounds to clients.

Hathaway presented the awards for top walkers. Lifewalk ended with a closing prayer and the sky filled with colorful balloons that were released in memory of the over 56,000,000 babies that have been aborted since abortion became legal in 1973.  

Alpha wishes to offer a special “Thank you” to the local communities for their ongoing support of Alpha throughout the years. See ad on page 5.

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Presenter collects E-coli data from Rogue River 

 

Molly Rippke, Aquatic Biologist Specialist, DEQ, testing for E.coli in the Rogue River, at 12 Mile Road. Photo courtesy of Gretchen Zuiderveen, Rogue River Watershed Partners.

This summer, Molly Rippke, on behalf of the DEQ, is determining what the E-coli levels are in the Rogue River.

The Rogue River Watershed Partners sponsored one of their “Tuesday Talks” at the Cedar Spring Brewery this year on March 27. Rippke, an Aquatic Biologist Specialist with the Department of Environmental Quality, gave a memorable talk and power point presentation about E.coli. She focused on answering these four questions:  What is E-coli? How does it get into rivers? Why should we care? What can we do about it? 

Once a week, for five consecutive weeks, Molly Rippke, with the help of an intern, is testing the Rogue at the same seven locations, starting at 22 Mile Road and ending at Twelve Mile Road. They deliver the samples collected at each site to a laboratory in Lansing that same day. In addition, the team measures the dissolved oxygen content at these sites, a measure of special interest to those who fish the Rogue.

The DEQ does similar monitoring on the rivers in Michigan as a matter of routine every five years but this is the first time E.coli has been measured on this scale in the Rogue River.  Testing is done in order to evaluate whether the bacterial level in the river is safe for partial or full-body contact. Because human health is the priority, the DEQ  responds to reports from the public that question the safely of a river’s E-coli levels, regardless of the five year schedule.

 E.coli (short for Escherichia coli) comes from the feces of warm-blooded animals, and is a common problem in rivers. E-coli enters rivers through pasture runoff, illicit sanitary connections, failing septic systems, urban run-off, and manure land-applications in agricultural areas. 

If you’d like to learn more about E-coli, go to this website:  www.mi.gov/waterquality.gov, and click on surface waters.

The testing phase is not finished yet, so the results are not available.

However, the RRWP plans to post the resulting data when it become available, at their website: rogueriverwp.org. 

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No Emergency Managers for first time in 18 Years

 

Highland Park School District released from receivership

Michigan state treasurer Nick Khouri announced this week that no Michigan municipality or school district is under state financial oversight through an emergency manager for the first time in nearly 18 years.

The state treasurer’s announcement comes after releasing Highland Park School District from receivership under the Local Financial Stability and Choice Act. Since 2000, there has been an emergency manager providing financial oversight somewhere in Michigan.

“Today’s achievement is really about the hard work our communities have accomplished to become financially sound,” Khouri said. “I commend the efforts of our local units to identify problems and bring together the resources needed to help problem-solve challenging financial conditions. Our state as a whole prospers when communities practice good financial policy.”

Highland Park School District’s locally elected school board will oversee the contract for Highland Park Public School Academy and the cooperative agreement with the Detroit Public Schools Community District for the continuing education of students. The board will also manage the repayment of long-term debt obligations.

The Highland Park School District currently has a plan in place to address its general fund deficit, with revenue from property taxes imposed on non-homestead property dedicated to outstanding debt. An approved two-year budget is also being implemented.

In August 2011, the Michigan Department of Education conducted a preliminary review of the Highland Park School District to determine whether probable financial stress existed. Based upon that review, the State Superintendent of Public Instruction concluded and reported to the governor that probable financial stress existed and recommended the appointment of a Financial Review Team.

Later that year, the governor appointed a Financial Review Team, which concluded a financial emergency existed within Highland Park School District and there was no satisfactory plan to resolve that emergency. An emergency manager was appointed in January 2012.

In July 2012, the emergency manager established Highland Park Public School Academy to provide educational services to district students while the school district paid off long-term debt obligations.

Since 2015, the public school academy has been educating students from Pre-K to eighth grades and a cooperative agreement with the Detroit Public Schools Community District has been providing educational services to students from ninth to 12th grades.

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Operation Dry Water emphasizes boating safety leading into holiday

Michigan DNR conservation officers again are participating in the national Operation Dry Water campaign, aimed at reducing the number of people boating under the influence of alcohol and drugs, keeping the water safe for everyone.

As the July 4th holiday nears, DNR conservation officers will focus on keeping boaters safe through heightened awareness and enforcement of “boating under the influence” laws.

It’s part of the Operation Dry Water campaign, June 29-July 1, in coordination with the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators, the U.S. Coast Guard and other partners. The annual campaign starts before the holiday weekend, when more boaters take to the water and alcohol use increases.


Boating safety takes center stage during Operation Dry Water June 29-July 1, 2018, when Michigan DNR conservation officers focus on keeping boaters safe through heightened awareness and enforcement of “boating under the influence” laws.

“The best way to safely enjoy a day on the water is to avoid alcohol,” said Lt. Tom Wanless, Michigan’s boating law administrator. “Using alcohol impairs reaction time, balance and judgment. Please don’t put yourself and others at risk. Be smart and stay sober when boating.”

In Michigan, a person operating a motorboat while under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance, or having a blood alcohol content of .08 grams or more, can be charged with a misdemeanor punishable by fines up to $500, community service and up to 93 days in jail. It also can result in loss of boating privileges for at least one year.

If a person is killed or injured due to a driver operating a boat while under the influence, the driver could be charged with a felony, punishable by fines up to $10,000 and up to 15 years in prison.

Boaters can do their part by:

Boating sober. Alcohol use is the leading contributing factor in recreational boater deaths. The effects of alcohol and certain medications are increased on the water due to added stress factors such as the sun, heat, wind, wave motion and engine noise.

Wearing life jackets. Nearly 85 percent of drowning victims in the U.S. were not wearing life jackets.

Taking boating safety courses. The DNR recommends a safety course for anyone who plans to use a boat or personal watercraft. Convenient, affordable classes are offered at locations throughout the state and online.

Learn more about boating regulations, safety and where to find marinas at michigan.gov/boating. For more on Operation Dry Water, contact Lt. Pete Wright, 906-228-6561.

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Parasites and parasitoids

Ranger Steve’s Nature Niche

By Ranger Steve Mueller

 

We are familiar with parasites like mosquitoes that suck blood essential for egg development. Females are parasitic and males are not. Males seek nectar and so do females for general energy requirements. The female needs blood proteins for egg development. After sucking blood, she takes a few days to digest blood protein that serves egg yolk development. 

If a female survives the effort of sucking blood, she might lay 100 to 200 eggs on water surfaces after she has processed blood proteins to adequately nourished eggs. Only two of her eggs survive to reproduce if the mosquito population remains stable from one generation to the next. That is the norm. Some species lay eggs in unique ways to meet specialized nature niche adaptations. Population abundance has seasonal peaks.

Most mosquito parasitism occurs at dawn and dusk. We avoid harassment by selecting outdoor activity times and locations. Instead of using yard pesticides, we mechanically manage vegetation. Near the house we mow a 20-foot wide area that is avoided by most mosquitoes. Beyond the mowed area is a lush display of maiden pink and Cat’s-ear flowers (see photo) that please our eyes in June and house insect predators that help control parasites and parasitoids. Learning to live with nature has rewards. Sterilizing the yards diminishes the wonders of life that enrich our lives. It prevents bird habitation and beneficial insect predators important to landscape ecology.

Parasites do not normally kill their host. Mosquitoes carry parasites like the malaria amoeba that kills a half million people annually. There is a middle ground between the impacts of parasites and parasitoids. Most things exist on a gradation. To be most effective a parasite captures needed substances from a host without killing it.

Parasitoids kill their host. If parasitoids were completely effective, the host species would become extinct. Host species have structural and behavioral adaptations that help them complete their life cycle and reproduce. Parasitoids are more effective at controlling pests than predators and they are more susceptible to pesticides.

The adaptations of a parasitoid are for an adult to find a suitable host and lay eggs on or in the animal. Sphinx moths and large silk moths are sought by tiny specialized Braconid and Ichneumonid wasps. They sting the caterpillar to lay eggs. Tachinid flies lay eggs on the caterpillar. When hatched, larvae burrow in. 

The host larva often jerks and waves its body to prevent parasitoid egg laying. Some caterpillars like the Federally Endangered Karner Blue Butterfly are ant tended. The butterfly secretes honey dew, a sugar solution, that ants eat. Ants protect the caterpillars from both parasites and parasitoids. Perhaps you have had ants jump off plants and bite you if you got too close to a caterpillar they protect. The Edwards Hairstreak butterflies are ant protected. Ants herd the caterpillars from oak leaves where they feed at night to the ground in the morning and back to leaves at dusk. Ant behavior is similar to farmers herding cows to and from barns. 

Once the parasitoid larvae of wasps or flies hatch from the egg, they feed on the least essential body tissues like caterpillar fat. The caterpillar goes about daily feeding to meet its energy needs for pupal development to transform to an adult. As it nears the pupal forming stage, it often has inadequate stored nutrition to complete pupal formation. Finally, vital organs are consumed by the parasitoid. Parasitoid and parasite activity exist in other organism groups. The few examples presented are simply representative to introduce their roles. 

When you explore wild areas of your yard or neighborhood, you might find a shriveled desiccated caterpillar skin or one with obvious white pupae on the surface of a living individual. It is common for 100 or more parasitoids to emerge from the caterpillar’s body. If the parasitoid killed the caterpillar quickly, it would not survive to adulthood and its own species would parish. 

Ask plant nurseries to sell native plant genotypes, buy cultivars minimally, and use minimal pesticides to enjoy life’s abundance. Such practices will maintain Earth’s biodiversity and enhance your life’s enjoyment.

Natural history questions or topic suggestions can be directed to Ranger Steve (Mueller) at odybrook@chartermi.net – Ody Brook Nature Sanctuary, 13010 Northland Dr. Cedar Springs, MI 49319 or call 616-696-1753.

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Grand Rapids welcomes Bill Gaither & Gaither Vocal Band

On Friday, July 20, 2018, at the DeVos Performance Hall in Grand Rapids, multi-Grammy Award-winner Bill Gaither will host a spectacular evening of music, laughter and encouragement featuring the talent of the prestigious Gaither Vocal Band.

The Gaither Vocal Band will share timeless gospel classics, as well as refreshing, inspiring new favorites embraced by audiences of all ages and backgrounds. Few events have the ability unite individuals from all walks of life the way Gaither concerts do. 

“The longer I live, the more I learn to appreciate the here and now—this moment—this place in life—this group of people with whom I am privileged to collaborate,” said Gaither Vocal Band founder and bass singer, Bill Gaither. 

This past fall, the Gaither Vocal Band celebrated the release of their brand new recording, We Have This Moment, produced by famed country and gospel music performer and studio musician Gordon Mote. The recording is a musical snapshot of a special season for this lauded quintet, featuring Gaither, Wes Hampton, Adam Crabb, Todd Suttles and Reggie Smith, the newest addition to the iconic group.

Year after year, Bill Gaither has brought the Homecoming Tour into cities worldwide, performing to packed houses with collective attendance figures exceeding a million people and being ranked among the top concerts for tickets sold worldwide in any music genre during the past two decades.  Each concert showcases gospel music’s finest talent and draws new listeners with every city. Joining The Gaither Vocal Band for this special evening will be talented female vocalist, Charlotte Ritchie and powerful male vocalist Gene McDonald, as well as guitarist and comedian, Kevin Williams.

Gaither continues to be delighted by audiences’ response to the concerts, now more than 40 years after he quit his day job as a teacher: “I’ve always said it all starts with a great song, and we are fortunate that each concert includes great songs that have stood the test of time. With all the musical choices that are available now, there is still a special place for the joy and optimism that reside in Gospel music. Good news never gets old.”

Named ASCAP’s Songwriters of the Century, Bill and Gloria Gaither have written more than 700 popular gospel songs throughout their multi-decade career, including favorite standards “He Touched Me,” Because He Lives,” and “There’s Just Something About That Name.” Since 1992, when Gaither began recording the celebrated Homecoming series of DVDs and CDs, most every volume has gone gold or platinum with sales totaling approximately 100 million volumes. The programs appear regularly on television networks around the world.

This evening with the Gaither Vocal Band at the DeVos Performance Hall in Grand Rapids, MI, on Friday, July 20, will celebrate timeless themes of faith, unity and eternal hope through a variety of music the whole family will enjoy. The concert will begin at 7:00pm. Complete information, including ticket pricing, is available by calling 616-742-6500 or visiting www.gaither.com or www.premierproductions.com. To charge tickets by phone call 1-800-745-3000. Tickets are available online at  www.premierproductions.com and www.Ticketmaster.com. Tickets are also available at the DeVos Place Box Office. For group ticket information call 616-742-6600. 

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Painting donated to local church

By Ariadne Winquist/Schuldt

Roger Norton, husband of the late local artist Pat Norton, has donated a meaningful painting from Pat’s collection to the Cedar Springs United Methodist Church.

The painting depicts a small church on Neebish Island that they attended.

Roger met Pat Cook, one of 12 children raised in a lighthouse on Neebish Island, in Sault Ste Marie, while he was attending college at Northern Michigan. Neebish Island is located on the St. Mary’s River.

Roger brought Pat back to Cedar Springs, where she graduated from high school, and they were married. They had three children, and they all attend CSUMC.

To help with finances, Pat became a renowned beautician in the area, who enjoyed painting on the side. Painting got into her blood, and when Roger got a teaching job in the Sault, they moved from Cedar Springs back to her home area, where she painted full time. She was an acclaimed artist, known for her lighthouses and ships. However, she also became known in many other areas, such as flowers and portraits.

On top of teaching, Roger also had a part time job just framing her work. Pat also held classes in her studio in the Sault and Wisconsin. Her paintings have been juried award winners all over the United States.

Pat often painted a mood or a feeling of a freighter rather than the exact detail and developed a technique unique to her best work.

She was a great teacher, and died in 2001 at the age of 70. 

Roger’s parents, Harold and Florence, were Cedar Springs natives and had two children, Roger and Alice. Alice Norton Powell Anderson is also a well-known artist in the area.

Pat’s work will be dedicated on Sunday, July 1, at the CSUMC and will also be on display at the Cedar Springs Public Library in the near future.

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Simple Operation

 

A man was seen fleeing down the hall of the hospital just before his operation. “What’s the matter?” asked an orderly.

The man stopped to catch his breath. “I heard the nurse say, ‘It’s a very simple operation, don’t worry, I’m sure it will be all right.’”

The orderly smiled. “She was just trying to comfort you. What’s so frightening about that?”

The man’s eyes grew wide as he shook his head no. “Oh, she wasn’t talking to me. She was talking to the doctor!”

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Hometown Happenings

Hometown Happenings articles are a community service for non-profit agencies only. Due to popular demand for placement in this section, we can no longer run all articles. Deadline for articles is Monday at 5 p.m. This is not guaranteed space. Articles will run as space allows. Guaranteed placement is $10, certain restrictions may apply. You now can email your Hometown Happenings to happenings@cedarspringspost.com please include name and phone number for any questions we may have.


KDL Red, White & Blue Book Sale

June 30, July 2, 3: The Nelson Township/Sand Lake KDL Branch is hosting a book sale on Saturday, June 30 from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, Monday, July 2, from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm and Tuesday, July 3, from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. Great deals on books, magazines, movies, music and more. Located in the Library program room. Sponsored by the Friends of the Library. Volunteers needed – call Ann at 616-636-5174. #25,26p

Free Kidsight Vision Screening

July 2: The Sand Lake Lions Club in cooperation with the Kent District Library will be offering a free vision screening on July 2nd (Kiddie Day of Sand Lake’s July 4th Celebration) at the Nelson Township/Sand Lake KDL Branch from 10 am to 2 pm. This is a free service offered through the District 11E1 Lions. It is offered to everyone from 18 months up, but the main focus is preschool and young aged children. The only requirement is that the child must be accompanied by an adult who must sign consent forms etc. There is NO charge, but donations are appreciated. See details in our Health Section on page 10. #26

TOPS weight loss support group

July 3: 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 weigh loss goals! Weigh-ins 8:15-9am, meeting starts at 9:15am.  Call Martha at 696-1039 for more information. #26

God’s Kitchen in Cedar Springs

July 3,10,17,24,31: Join us for dinner every Tuesday. God’s Kitchen – Cedar Springs welcomes families from Northern Kent County and the surrounding area to a Tuesday Evening Meal. No charge – no registration required!  Served from 5:30 – 6:30 pm at the St. John Paul II Parish, 3110 – 17 Mile Rd., Cedar Springs. For more information, call the Church office at 616-696-3904. #26

Rogue River Watershed Meeting

July 11: The Rogue River Watershed Partners invites all interested citizens, who live in and care about, the Rogue River Watershed, to attend our monthly board meetings. The next meeting will be on July 11, starting at 9:30 a.m., at Cannon Township Hall, 6878 Belding Road, Rockford, 49341. For more information, go to our website: Rogueriverwp.org or our Facebook page at Rogue River Watershed Partners. #26

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Honor roll

Creative Technologies Academy

 2nd Semester Honor roll 2017-2018

CTA Middle School

Grade Student Name GPA

06 Atwood, Shadrach 3.1 

06 Besmer, Trinity 3.7 

06 Brandt, James 3.0 

06 Brinley, Nadelynn 4.0 

06 Christie, Gabrielle 3.9 

06 Creveling, Jaxson 3.4 

06 Dillon, Jacob 4.0 

06 Fulkerson, Jack 3.6 

06 Harvey, Tylor 3.0 

06 Hoops, Thomas 4.0 

06 Jaggers, Jacob 3.5 

06 Montambo, Saige 3.8 

06 Piskun, Danielle 3.3 

06 Rowland, Gunnar 3.0 

06 Rypma, Ryan 3.4 

06 Schreiber, Jayda 3.7 

06 Sullivan, Mason 3.8 

06 VanHarten, Analiese 3.9 

06 Vogler, Morgan 3.2 

06 Warner, Conner 3.3 

06 Willis, Kirsten 3.1

06 Winters, Kaden 4.0

07 Beiter, Landon 4.0

07 Bishop, Avery 3.1 

07 Covell, Remington 4.0 

07 Davenport, Haydn 4.0 

07 Engle, Faith 3.5 

07 Fessenden, Joshua 3.5 

07 Grdjan, Anna 4.0 

07 Greenfield, Dylan 3.1 

07 Hanes, Joel 3.6 

07 Harvey, Laila 3.8 

07 Jibson, Brenna 4.0 

07 Rainwater, Michael 3.0 

07 Slock, Ethan 4.0 

07 Slock, Kaden 4.0 

07 Tompkins, Parker 3.5 

07 VanderZyl, Gerald 3.1 

07 Walker, Malikia 3.6 

07 Winn, Emily 3.2

07 Winters, Landon 3.5

08 August, Elizabeth 4.0

08 Benson, Jesse 3.1 

08 Besmer, Evan 4.0 

08 Brown, Jordan 3.5 

08 Fisk, Alison 4.0 

08 Fisk, Austin 4.0 

08 Fisk, Nathaniel 3.3 

08 Fleet, Raven 3.1 

08 Huizing, Eric 3.0 

08 Knowlton, Elizabeth 4.0 

08 Kober, Nathan 3.3 

08 Marek, Sawyer 4.0 

08 McSorley, Kendallyn 3.4 

08 Shelagowski, Alyssa 4.0 

08 Spielmaker, Drake 3.0 

08 Stevens, Zachary 3.6 

08 Thebo, Michael 3.3 

08 Watson, Ethan 3.0 

08 Winters, Ivan 4.0 

08 Wortz, Molly 4.0

CTA HIgh School

09 Buchanan, Anthony 3.5

09 Hoogerhyde, Grayce 3.7

09 Hutchins, Nathan 3.4

09 Marek, Jeff 3.1

09 McSorley, Carson 3.6

09 Sidlauskas, Willow 3.6

09 Tompkins, Ruby 3.1

09 Wierda, Tori 3.2

10 Bucholtz, Kaela 3.7

10 Fahling, Gabriela 3.7

10 Hirsch, Travis 3.7

10 Hofstra, Hannah 3.8

10 Shelagowski, Ashley 4.0

10 Watson, Faith 3.6

10 Wright, Aaron 3.4

11 August, Danielle 3.9

11 Calkins, Brianne 3.6

11 Davison, Matthew 4.1

11 Dillon, Joshua 3.3

11 Dotson, Arianna 3.0

11 Evink, Jillian 4.0

11 Hawley, Hailey 3.5

11 Jahns, Elizabeth 3.9

11 Lovett, Nathan 3.1

11 Winters, Logan 4.0

11 Wortz, Charles 3.1

12 Armstrong, Dawson 3.5

12 Aspinall, Cortney 3.9

12 Gibbs, Hannah 3.5 

12 Hofstra, James 3.5

12 Howard, Austin 3.9

12 Imhoff, Elise 4.0

12 Miner, Leslie 3.5

12 Nguyen, Dat 3.6

12 Nguyen, Khanh 4.1

12 Ryder, Jamie 3.9

12 Sidlauskas, Violet 3.6

12 Thebo, Tayler 3.7

12 Watson, Autumn 3.8

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