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Archive | November, 2018

Flo’s Wood Fired pizzeria

Dan Uccello (left) and Davide Uccello (right) of Flo’s Wood Fired Pizzeria.
Photo courtesy of Perry Hopkins.

If you’d like to taste an authentic Sicilian wood fired pizza, you need to check out Flo’s Wood Fired Pizzeria at 4425 14 Mile Rd (formerly the site of the Crazy Horse Saloon). The restaurant, which opened in September, held a ribbon cutting on Monday, November 12.  

This is a brand new location and concept for Dan and Davide Uccello, who own several restaurants in northern Kent and Montcalm County. “This will be the first wood fired pizzeria in our restaurant group,” they told the Post earlier this year.

The pizzeria offers authentic wood fired pizzas, traditional appetizers, salads, and flat bread sandwiches. They provide an open kitchen concept so you can see the staff make your food, and for those who would like a glass of wine with their pizza, St. Julian’s Winery has a tasting room right next door.

The Post asked how business has been so far, and how it’s working out having St. Julian’s right next door. “Business has been great so far,” said Dan Uccello. “We are executing our projections, and we believe that once the highway opens back up our lunches will thrive just like our dinners do. Having the winery next to us has been extremely helpful in many ways. We enjoy having them as our neighbors and partners in this venture!”

Hours are Sunday–Thursday 11 a.m.-10 p.m. and Friday-Saturday 11 a.m.–11 p.m. To see the menu or to order online, visit https://floswoodfired.com/.

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Red Hawks finally fall, to the Big Reds 34-18

By Judy Reed

The Cedar Springs Red Hawks ended their season on an ice covered field at Grand Haven High School last Friday, November 9, when they lost to the undefeated Muskegon Big Reds in the regional championship by a score of 34-18. But what a season it was!

The team went 10-2, which is their best record since 2000, when they went 11-2 and made it to the semifinals. They lost their first game this season to a tough Saginaw Swan Valley 12-21, and then went on to win 10 straight, including two playoff games. They won their first ever OK White Conference championship (6-0) and went on to become District Champs, defeating a previously undefeated Mount Pleasant for the title. They only allowed 95 points during the regular season, and 55 during the post season, with the Muskegon game making up the bulk of that. 

Kapolka explained why his team had such a great season and what he will remember about it. “We were successful because our team was unselfish, and played hard for each other. This group enjoyed being around each other and loved playing football. They never had a bad day on the practice field or weight room, and it was an honor for me to coach this group,” he said.

Muskegon scored first in Friday’s game with 8:44 on the clock in the first quarter on a 4-yard run by Cameron Martinez, and Carlos Hernandez-sias kicked the extra point. Cedar Springs then scored with 4:54 left in the first, on a 5-yard run by QB Kolby Swank. The extra point run was no good. Cedar Springs then kicked off to Muskegon, and the ball was run all the way back by Myles Walton to the Cedar Springs end zone for a touchdown. The first quarter ended with a score of Cedar Springs 6, Muskegon 13.

The Red Hawks then scored again in the second when Ethan West ran left 20 yards for the touchdown. Swank’s pass to West for the extra points was no good. Muskegon did not score in the second, so it ended with a score of Muskegon 13, Cedar Springs 12.

Muskegon scored twice in the third on runs by Cameron Martinez—a 32-yard run and a 75-yard run. Extra points were good, and the score at the end of 3 was Muskegon 28, Cedar Springs 12.

Both teams scored again in the fourth quarter. The Big Reds scored on a two-yard touchdown by Martinez, and the extra point was no good. The Red Hawks scored with 3:20 left, when Sage Serbenta ran the ball in two yards for the touchdown. Swank’s pass to Ryan Ringler was no good. The final score was Muskegon 34, Cedar Springs 18.

“I thought our kids played tough Friday night,” said Coach Gus Kapolka. “We made a few too many mistakes, and against a team like Muskegon it makes it difficult to win. It was a disappointing end to our season, but I’m proud of how our kids handled themselves against a tough opponent. I thought they represented Cedar Springs well, and our community should be proud of the job they did.”

Leading rushers for Cedar Springs were Serbenta with 94 yards; West with 81; Ringler with 31; Lucas Pienton with 24; and Swank with 14. The team rushed for 244 yards.

For Muskegon, Martinez was the leading rusher with 232 yards. The team total was 321.

Leading in tackles for Cedar Springs was Ethan West, with 11; Xavier Anderson with 9; Ryan Ringler with 8; Seth Almas with 6; Landon Totten with 5; Ben Shaw and Sage Serbenta with 4; Lucas Pienton, Gage Gardner and Zack Schmid with 3 each; and Brayden Marvel, Bryant Maley and Tyler Salinas all had one.

Ali’vonta Wallace led the Big Reds in tackles with 12.

When the Red Hawks come back next season, they will be missing some of the familiar names from this season. What does Kapolka see in the team’s future? 

“We lose an amazing group of seniors who have raised the bar of expectations in our program” he remarked. “Their impact on our program will be felt for a very long time. With that being said, we will return approximately 5 starters on both sides of the ball, including our leading scorer and rusher from this year’s team, Sage Serbenta. In addition, our JV’s finished 8-1 and the freshmen were 6-3, so the future is bright for our program.”

Congratulations to the Red Hawks on a great season! 

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City Council Clips

This map shows the 55 acres for the proposed business park at the south end of West Street.

By Judy Reed

City passes resolution to bond for business park improvements

The Cedar Springs City Council passed a resolution last Thursday, November 8, showing their intent to go out for bonds to make improvements to 55-acres of city property at the south end of West Street to develop a business park. 

The bonds would cover the cost of water and sewer extension to the park, as well as the extension of West Street. The cost of the bonds and the improvements is expected to be about $685,000.

Womack said there is no intention to raise property tax rates for the bonds for the business park. “The intent is to take out the bond to complete the project and then repay the bond as financed by the sale of the land to businesses and/or any property taxes generated from those businesses,” he said. 

The location where the Wolverine Skyhawks fly would be part of this development. “They are aware of this proposed development but we will allow them to continue to use the property as long as possible,” said Womack.

For specifics on the business park improvements, see the legal announcement on page 14.

City opts out of allowing retailers to sell cannabis 

The City of Cedar Springs passed an ordinance at their City Council meeting last Thursday, November 8, that opted the city out of allowing commercial marijuana facilities until the state issues their regulations and guidelines. City Manager Mike Womack read a statement at the meeting to clarify why they did it, and noted that once the state comes back with regulations, they can reconsider it. He said that this is largely an issue of zoning and wanting to know what the State intends to do before they figure out how the City can follow the State regulations and also be able to enforce their own zoning regulations. Here is his statement:

“At this time, the City Council is discussing banning commercial marijuana facilities in the City until the State of Michigan issues their regulations regarding the permitting and operation of commercial marijuana sales. Currently, the City has no information from the State regarding how the State permitting process will work or what the State level regulations will be. It is expected that the State of Michigan may not have any regulations or permits allowing commercial marijuana sales in place until December 2019. There is a possibility that no marijuana licenses will be issued for commercial sales anywhere in the State of Michigan until 2020.

Once the State has announced their regulations and permitting process, the City Council plans to review those regulations and consider permitting commercial marijuana operations in the City at that time. At the present time, city staff does not feel that the State of Michigan has issued sufficient information to enable the City to write our own laws that would both follow State law and also preserve our own zoning regulations. Since proposal 1 is an opt-out proposal and not an opt-in proposal, City staff felt it best to recommend opting-out of permitting commercial marijuana facilities until such time as City staff could better inform the City Council about the regulations and systems the State government will be enacting.  Once this information is provided by the State, City staff can then propose a comprehensive, efficient and legally sound commercial marijuana sales ordinance for the Council to consider.

Finally, it is important to note that this proposed local ordinance is only to prohibit commercial sales and that all other rights granted under proposal 1 remain intact in the City. It is not the wish nor desire of the City Council or any member of the City government to in any way impugn or challenge any of these other rights.”

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Cedar Springs student wins national award

Pictured L to R: American Legion Unit #287 Education Chairman Mary Anne Yuncker, David Vernon, Jasmine Fankhauser, Rachel Vernon, and Deborah Chambers, 2017-2018 Unit President. Not pictured is Unit Poppy Chairman last year LoraLee Nauta.

Congratulations to Jasmine Fankhauser for winning a National award for the best poppy poster in the Poppy Poster contest sponsored by the American Legion Auxiliary. Ms. Vickie Burke was the art teacher who encouraged her class to enter the contest. Jasmine followed the guidelines and won at the local, district and state levels before winning the National award. 

Her poster was featured at the American Legion Auxiliary National Convention in Minneapolis, Minn. in August. She was presented her certificates and a $50.00 prize for her outstanding talent at a ceremony on November 8. “We hope to have even more entries next year,” said Mary Anne Yunker, Education Chairman for American Legion Unit #287.

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Activities keep the FFA Busy

By Chloe Boomgaard 

The Cedar Springs FFA chapter has had a very busy start to a new year with many events happening. Now that the school year is in full swing so are many of FFA events. 

The FFA kicked off October with our second grade harvest day on the 16th. The FFA had 26 members help lead 10 different classes of students through a FFA designed corn maze and many members brought different livestock animals to give the kids a small barnyard with cows, pigs, chickens, goats, sheep, and a draft horse. Each child got the opportunity to ride on a wagon pulled by one of the two tractors with high school drivers Dylan McConnon and Garret Migoski. These wagons brought the students to the middle school where the students were split into smaller groups with one high school student leader. After the students completed the corn maze, they were able to interact with the animals and get an apple, a drink of milk, and a coloring book made by FFA members. The second grade students, their teachers, and parent helpers had a great time exploring the corn maze and animals.

 On October 24th through the 26th a group of FFA members took a trip to Indianapolis for the 91st national Convention and Expo. Those members included Chloe Boomgaard, Dylan McConnon, Autumn Adkison, Gideon McConnon, Carly Dunham, Garret Migoski, Olivia Martinek, Trevor Marsman, Emily Brown, Zack Cardinal, and a great group of chaperones including Amy Marsman, Marcie Boomgaard, Bill Brandt and Mr. Reyburn. The National FFA Convention is an event where FFA members and advisors from all over the country attend sessions, competitions, an expo, workshops, and many other activities. The National Convention drew over 62,000 members from across the nation. The attendees also had the opportunity to see the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Bass pro shop, a Garth Brooks concert, The World’s Toughest Rodeo, and the chance to see the National FFA Officers. National Convention is always an awesome learning opportunity, and an exciting event to be a part of. One of the highlights was the election of Michigan member Adrian Schunk elected to National FFA Eastern Region Vice President. On Saturday, President Trump addressed the convention, but the Cedar group had to return home as several members were scheduled to work Saturday.

After students returned from National convention, the PALS program kick off took place on November first. PALS is a branch of the FFA where high school students mentor 2nd graders. Members are very eager to get the program rolling. Members of this program include: Chloe Boomgaard (chairperson), Morgan Singleton, Ricky Wood, Aubriana Smith-Russell,and Ryan Matteson Jr. These students are very excited to begin changing the lives of a few students in the elementary schools. Along with PALS beginning, the students in Mr. Reyburn’s Agriculture and Natural resources classes and Animal Science class had the opportunity to have a class period run by two of the Michigan State Officers, Secretary Raegan Gembarski and Region I State Vice President Abigail Puskala. The Officer Team would like to give a big thank you to the State Officers for taking time to come to our high school to meet with our members.   

The FFA is beginning to plan many other activities including the Big Buck Contest with Gideon McConnon chairing the contest.  All of the rules and regulations are up on the Cedar Springs FFA official Facebook page, and a Christmas party with Emily Brown planning the activities for the party. Keep a look out for more updates to come. 



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For the first time in 17 years, the Cedar Springs Red Hawks Varsity Football team brought home the District championship title after defeating the Mount Pleasant Oilers 44-14 in Mount Pleasant last Friday, November 2. The Red Hawks are the Division 3, District 1 champions, and will take on the Muskegon Big Reds this Friday, November 9 at Grand Haven High School, in a bid to become regional champions. For more info on last Friday’s game click here.

The last time Cedar Springs faced Muskegon was in 2014, when the two teams played for the district championship, and Muskegon won 27-14.

The only other time Cedar Springs won a district title was in 2000. That team also won the regional title, and went to play in the semi-final game, where they lost to Coopersville. 

Be sure to come out and cheer on the Red Hawks Friday night, November 9, at Grand Haven High School. Kickoff is at 7 p.m. You can buy tickets ahead of time at the Cedar Springs High School athletic office on Thursday and Friday until 3 p.m.

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Veteran retires from Air National Guard


SMSgt Shirley Mitchell (Bratcher)

By Judy Reed

When Senior Master Sergeant (SMSgt) Shirley Mitchell (Bratcher) thought about what she wanted to do after graduating from high school, she said she wanted to drive a semi truck like her father, and be a police officer, and be in the military. But how would she ever do all that? 

SMSgt Shirley Mitchell (Bratcher) and her brother, TSgt Brian Sherman, at the Air National Guard Base in Battle Creek.

“It turns out, I did all three in my first job joining the military. I joined Security Forces and became a security policeman and learned to drive a big truck in a convoy. That’s all three into one!” said Shirley.

Shirley graduated from Cedar Springs High School in 1983, and worked for eight years until she enlisted in the Michigan Air National Guard in Battle Creek, Michigan, in 1991. She said members of her family inspired her to join—namely, her dad, who enlisted from 1960-1964, and her uncle, who served 32 years in the U.S. Air Force. When she was young, her family went to visit him and other family in Delaware. “He took me to an Air Show at Dover AFB,” she recalled. “It happened to be the Navy Blue Angels performing at that show. I was inspired by the air show and just the mere fact of being on a huge base. I just knew then I wanted to be a part of Air Force. It just felt right for me.”

 Her initial enlistment was a part time job in the Michigan Guard. Her first assignment was a Security Specialist in the 110 Security Forces Squadron. She became active guard reservist in April 1994 and was on an active duty assignment at Battle Creek. That remained her base throughout her 26-year career. 

“It’s a unique position to obtain one at an Air National Guard Base,” explained Shirley. “There are only so many per state and you have to compete (interview) for the position (job) you want. They are active duty positions that mean you serve both the state and federal government. With this type of position, you are able to complete 20 satisfactory years of service and earn the same benefits as other active duty personnel who serve the federal government only.”

The squadrons and positions she served in while stationed at Battle Creek are in the 110 Security Forces Squadron, as a Security Specialist; the 110 Fighter Wing as a Financial Comptroller and Superintendent; the 110 Medical Group as a Public Health Specialist; and 217 Operations Group as the Health Services Specialist Superintendent in the Air Components Operations Group, a Special Security Officer (SSO) in the 217 Air Intelligence Squadron, and then a Security Specialist/Anti -Terrorism Officer in the Air Components Operations Group.  At retirement, her final duty position was in the 110 Security Forces Squadron as a Security Specialist. 

While Shirley was never deployed to the desert, she did travel around the world and to other states. “I wanted to go [to the desert] but was fulltime and too valuable back at home station to be gone,” she explained. “At least, that’s what they told me.” She did get to go on temporary duty to places such as Germany; South Korea; Alaska; Hawaii; and many other continental United State states. “I joined the Air Force to travel, and I sure did!”

Shirley received several medals, ribbons and awards over the years, including the Meritorius Service Medal; Air Force Commendation medal; Air Force Achievement medal; Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with Valor; National Defense Service medal; Global War on Terrorism Medal; Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon, and more.

Shirley said that the most important thing she learned while serving is that your attitude dictates everything. “It’s what you make of it. Meaning, if you dislike something or disliked being in the service, change your attitude and find the positive aspect so that you do like it. When I enlisted, I said, well, this could be the best six years of my life, or the worst. I would not know either unless I enlisted! Turns out, I loved being in the military (Air National Guard) and it was the best thing I ever did. Sure, there were some stressful times, but overall, it was the greatest thing I ever did. No regrets at all. I kept re-enlisting as I did spend 26 years and 5 months total time in service. I made many new lifetime friends and we will forever be bonded.” 

The Post asked Shirley if she had noticed any difference over time in the way women are treated in the military. “Yes, women are now allowed in some combat type positions and more robust traditional type male roles. The roles are changing right now and women are proving themselves that they can participate in a particular career field just like the men. Due to heightened awareness and mandatory trainings, women are now more than ever (and men too) encouraged to report sexual harassment or assaults. Reports are taken seriously and investigations are conducted. When I came in, women were not reporting issues as a fear of retribution. It has come a long way and getting much better to not fear this. Men will always support and assist women in some ways (let’s say with heavy lifting) as it is a team environment,” she explained.   

Shirley also had a few tips for other women (or even men) who might want to join. “If you are considering the military, think about what you may hope gain and leave with. As in, if you would like technological knowledge and plan to use it after you get out or while still serving (as a traditional guardsmen in the Air National Guard) in the civilian work force, join the Air National Guard or regular active duty Air Force. The Air National Guard is the Air Force, and most are part time members (one weekend a month traditionally).

“There are so many great opportunities and job skills that you can obtain in the Air National Guard and apply them on the outside. There are free college benefits and so many more offerings. Not to mention a lot of new friends and travel opportunities.”

While serving, Shirley earned four different Air Force Associate Degrees, and is now working on a Bachelor’s degree in Security Management with a concentration in Government Security. She plans to pursue a job with the Department of Defense as a Security Specialist.

Shirley may have retired from military service, but there is still another member of her family serving to carry on the legacy. Her brother, Technical Sergeant (TSgt) Brian Sherman is serving at the Battle Creek Air National Guard Base at the 110 Civil Engineering Squadron as a Firefighter. He currently has 13 years in service. He is a 2000 graduate of Cedar Springs High School.

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City Council to vote on cannabis sales in City

The Cedar Springs City Council held a special meeting last week to discuss and hear the first reading on an ordinance that would opt the City out of allowing commercial or non-profit businesses to sell cannabis in the City if the statewide proposal to legalize it passed. Since it did pass, the second reading will occur tonight, November 8, at their regular meeting at 7 p.m., and the Council will have the opportunity to vote on it in their consent agenda.

“The City is worried about the potential for the City to be inundated with marihuana businesses before the State can issue regulations,” City Manager Mike Womack told the Post last week. “I think most cities are going to take a wait and see attitude due to how much time the State took in implementing the medical dispensary rules. I should emphasize that this ordinance is not necessarily indicative of the City or City Council’s long term intent on whether marihuana facilities will be permitted in the City or not.” 

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Local election results

By Judy Reed

Cedar Springs and Sand Lake will both have new members on the boards, and the results of Cedar Springs Board of Education write-in votes are still unknown.

In the Cedar Springs City Council race, the two seats went to newcomer Renee Race with 558, and incumbent Pam Conley with 545. Shandell Napieralski had 304, and there were 18 write in votes. Voter turnout was 47.1%.

For the Cedar Springs Board of Education, there were four seats open, with three candidates running unopposed for three of the seats, and a two-year partial term with only write-ins running. The three unopposed candidates were Mistie Bowser (5,190 votes); Jeff Rivard (4,850 votes), and Tracie Slager (4,455 votes). Since only write-ins were running for the two-year partial term, we haven’t received those results yet. The Board of Canvassers at Kent County was due to start validating ballots at 1 p.m. Wednesday, but it could be another week before we have those results.

In Sand Lake, there were three positions open for trustee. Marcia Helton was on the ballot, and received 152 votes. There were also two others running running as write-ins, but only 37 votes were received for write-ins, so it is unknown yet who received those votes.

In the race for the 28th District Michigan senate seat, incumbent Peter MacGregor (R) won with 58.39 percent of the vote. Craig Beach (D) received 39.02 percent; and Nathan Hewer (L) received 2.6 percent.

In the race for 73rd District representative, Lynn Afendoulis (R) won with 60.11 percent of the vote, and Bill Saxton (D) received 39.89 percent.

In the race for 74th District representative, Mark Huizenga (R) won with 60.40 percent, and Meagan Carr (D) received 39.51 percent.

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CSHS and H Productions proudly present Radium Girls

Maddi Huntoon, Omani Morales, and Hannah Vinton work tirelessly in the studio of the United States Radium Corporation.

This weekend only!

Cast of Radium Girls

The Radium Girls is a phenomenal drama that depicts the mistakes of the past. Picture this: the Roaring 20’s, the stock market is booming, people are dancing and enjoying themselves; however, along with the booming economy, World War I is looming over their heads. The women sit at their bench, painting watch faces for the military men, with radium paint. Their brushes going from the glowing paint, to the dials, and to their lips. The mistakes of large businessmen, the poisoning of young girls, and the daily struggle of life in the 1920’s are seen through the performance. 

The students here have been working persistently, trying to make this performance absolutely perfect. They’re traveling back in time, presenting to you all what happened during the war, what life was like at that time, and how they dealt with their problems. Of course, all parts of our history cater mistakes. And the Roaring 20’s, as wonderful as it was, holds its own misfortunes. The students show you all a darker part in our history. But what’s a show without its audience? Come support the cast, and take a step back into the past.

Shows are Thursday night (11/8) at 7:00 p.m., Saturday (11/10) at 1:00 and 7:00 p.m. There is NO Friday night show due to the football playoffs, so they added a Saturday matinee. Please support this group as they have sacrificed so much during the last 2 months. Tickets are only $7.00 and can be purchased at the door or online through the link on www.hprodcshs.com.

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