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Archive | August, 2019

Ready for some Red Hawk football?

Last fall the Red Hawks were OK-White Champions

By Judy Reed

Another exciting year of Red Hawk football is about to begin and you won’t want to miss it. It starts tonight, Thursday, August 29, at Red Hawk Stadium, with a rematch against the only team to snatch victory from the Red Hawks during the regular season last year—Saginaw Swan Valley, who was also last year’s opening game.

After the loss to Saginaw Swan Valley (who made it to the District 5 semifinals last fall) the Red Hawks went on to win 10 straight games—including their first ever OK-White Championship and two playoff games. They became District Champs, defeating a previously undefeated Mount Pleasant for the title, and ended the season with a 10-2 record. They only allowed 95 points during the regular season, and 55 during the post season, with their regional finals loss (18-34) to the Muskegon Big Reds making up the bulk of that. 

The Red Hawks will face the same non-conference and conference teams this year: Saginaw Swan Valley, Caledonia, Northview, Greenville, Allendale, Forest Hills Central, Lowell, Ottawa Hills, and Forest Hills Northern. 

Come on out tonight and support your Red Hawks! See spirit themes for all the games on page 8.

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Helpstock 2019 raises donations for outreach centers

By Judy Reed

Helpstock 2019 was held to raise donations for the local outreach centers. Photo by Macie Huntoon.

 

Sometimes our young adults have the best ideas. 

That was the case last weekend, when the event Helpstock 2019 was held in the Heart of Cedar Springs Saturday afternoon and evening. Eight bands performed—seven from Grand Rapids and one from Cedar Springs. People were charged $2 for the event and asked to bring donations for local outreach centers. 

“The event went very well,” said Gabe Park, a senior at Cedar Springs High School this year, who came up with the idea for the event. “All of the sound ran nicely and we were able to raise over $600 and get a bunch of donations for the shelters.”

The outreach centers they were helping included North Kent Connect, Alpha Family Center of Cedar Springs, and Lean on Me Outreach.

Park said he came up with the idea after seeing some local bands play. “I was thinking it would be awesome to give them some recognition and also help people in need at the same time,” he explained. 

Park then got some friends on board to help with the event. “I brought up the idea to my friend, Brenton Evans, who went to Ferris State University at the time and had done things very similar to what I wanted to do with this event. We then got in contact with the person who was recording my band Rendered Worthless‘s full-length album, Steven Schaefer, to be our sound engineer, and who helped us out to have Ferris be a sponsor for the event and loaned us all of the sound equipment we needed for the event. Andy Morris, who also went to Ferris, became our stage manager and helped us set everything up for the day of. Then the day of Helpstock came and everything went super well!”

The event was held in the area between the library and the amphitheater. 

Congratulations to Gabe Park and his friends on pulling off such a special event to help those in need in our community.

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Sand Lake man charged in armed robberies

He was charged with robberies in Pierson and Trufant

Joshua Webster

A Sand Lake man has been charged with the armed robberies of both the Pierson Trading Post in 2018 and the Trufant Party Store earlier this summer.

Troopers from the Michigan State Police Lakeview Post arrested Joshua Webster, 28, on Monday, August 26, after executing a search warrant at his residence in Maple Valley Township. He was arrested on two charges of Armed Robbery and lodged at the Montcalm County Jail.

Troopers began the investigation on April 12, 2018 when a white male entered the Pierson Trading Post on Federal Rd in Pierson and demanded money while armed with a long gun. He fled in a dark colored Chevrolet extend cab pickup truck with an undisclosed amount of money. 

On July 31, 2019, the same suspect allegedly entered the Trufant Party Store with a long gun and demanded money from that clerk. He also fled the scene in a Chevrolet extended cab truck. The vehicle was identified as a 2008 Chevrolet extended cab Silverado LT pickup truck. Police conducted an extensive search and identified the vehicle as Webster’s. When the search warrant was conducted, officers seized the gun and clothing that was used in the Trufant robbery. 

The Central Michigan Enforcement Team assisted with the investigation.

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Help “Me-owt!” Free kittens and cats

Spayed/neutered, micro-chipped and vaccinated

GRAND RAPIDS – Beginning immediately the Kent County Animal Shelter (KCAS) is offering free kittens and cats for adoption. This offer is good until further notice.

The Kent County Animal Shelter is waiving all adoption fees for cats and kittens until further notice. They are all spayed/neutered, micro-chipped, and vaccinated.

KCAS has recently experienced an explosion in the cat and kitten population. Currently there are nearly 120 cats and kittens at the shelter. That number is generally in the forties. This is an unprecedented and urgent situation.

To qualify, potential adopters simply need to come the Kent County Animal Shelter and fill out an adoption form. The form can also be found online at

https://www.accesskent.com/Health/AnimalControl/pdfs/cat_adoption_survey.pdf

All the cats and kittens available for adoption have been spayed or neutered. All have been tested for Feline Leukemia and FIV. They are all up to date on all vaccinations and have been micro-chipped.

“For whatever reason, there are just too many cats in our shelter right now,” says Dr. Kristin Davison DVM, staff veterinarian at KCAS. “These are good loving cats and we want to find them good homes.”

KCAS also currently has many adoptable dogs. While fees are not being waived for dogs at this time, potential adopters may come to KCAS or begin the process by filling out an online dog application form located here

https://www.accesskent.com/Health/AnimalControl/pdfs/dog_adoption_survey.pdf

The Kent County Animal Shelter is located at 740 Fuller N.E. in Grand Rapids. The shelter is open Monday through Thursday 1pm-7pm (adoption cutoff time is 6:30) and Friday from 9am to 5pm (adoptions available until 4pm).

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The Post travels to state of Washington


The Post traveled to Washington state with Laurie Denslow and Johna Alexander to visit daughter Taylor and family Shawna and Bentley Lubbers-Denslow. 

“We took this picture at Pugent Sound on the Fourth of July, where we watched fireworks all around the sound,” said Laurie.

Also pictured is Shauna’s niece, Shannon Thompson, David Mendez, and children Bayleigh and Weston.

“We visited Pike’s Farm Market in Seattle; Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium; Owen’s Beach and 5-Mile Drive—a scenic drive through the forest with views of Narrows Bridge, Pugent Sound, huge trees, and lots of wildlife,” Laurie said.

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Labor Day gas prices lowest in three years


GasBuddy reveals how much “labor” it takes to fill up the tank in each U.S. State

BOSTON (August 27, 2019) – With Labor Day and the close to summer driving season on the horizon, gasoline prices this Labor Day are set to be lower than last year for everyone, but some are still putting in more “labor” to fill their tanks, according to GasBuddy, the smartphone app helping consumers avoid paying full price for fuel. Price wise, for Labor Day, GasBuddy predicts a national average of $2.55 per gallon, down nearly 30 cents from last year and the lowest priced Labor Day since 2016’s $2.20 per gallon average.

The national average gasoline price on Labor Day itself will likely be the third lowest in the last decade, behind 2015 and 2016’s average of $2.42 and $2.20, respectively. Gas prices are likely to face additional headwinds into the autumn as the transition back to cheaper winter gasoline begins in just two weeks while demand for gasoline is also set to begin a seasonal downturn. By Thanksgiving, GasBuddy estimates that as many as 10,000 gas stations, primarily in Oklahoma, Texas, Louisiana, South Carolina, Alabama, Mississippi, Missouri but also a handful in the Great Lakes, will drop under $2 per gallon, barring any improvement in U.S. trade relations with China, a recent major factor in oil prices.

Meanwhile, a new GasBuddy study on how many hours motorists need to work to pay their annual gasoline expenses found that motorists in Nevada had to work nearly 108 hours per year, while those in Montana worked roughly a half-hour less (107.4) and those in Idaho falling into third place (107.1) for hours worked, all well above the U.S. average of 88.9 hours. Meanwhile, motorists in the Northeast region got off easiest, with those in Massachusetts working just 67 hours per year to pay their yearly gasoline bill, followed by Connecticut (70.6 hours) and Maryland (71.7 hours). The difference between the two amounts is nearly an entire workweek every year. The West Coast, Rockies and Southeast all generally required more labor than the Northeast, while the Great Lakes was close to average.

“While it feels nice to have seen gas prices fall so substantially into the last leg of the summer driving season, we wanted to see how motorists in each state may have to work more or less to fill their tanks. This study was an interesting reminder that how much time one spends to pay for gasoline varies drastically and that motorists can lessen the burden by locating low priced stations,” said Patrick DeHaan, head of petroleum analysis at GasBuddy. “Rural communities oftentimes have wages that are lower than urban areas, while also having to commute longer distances with little to no mass transit. The Northeastern U.S. generally has gas prices at or slightly higher than the national average, but commuters have many more options than driving their cars, which are also generally smaller than the vehicles found in rural communities.”

Methodology: the study looked at the latest state-by-state median wage data available from the Department of Labor (May 2018), as well as data from GasBuddy’s payments card to calculate average yearly demand by state, using the average price on record, by state, on August 1, 2019.

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Mobil Station in Algoma Township robbed


Police have one suspect in custody but the other is still at large following an armed robbery at the Mobil Gas Station at 3620 14 Mile Rd near Edgerton on Thursday, August 22 shortly after 1 a.m.

According to the Kent County Sheriff’s Office, employees reported that two suspects entered the store, one of them armed with a handgun, and demanded cash from the register. The suspects took an undetermined amount of cash and cigarettes and then fled in a silver Chevrolet Silverado extended cab pickup truck. The suspects were described as two white males, both approximately 6-feet tall with slender builds. Both suspects were wearing dark jackets and blue jeans and had their faces covered by bandanas. 

Daniel Morris

One suspect was taken into custody on Wednesday, August 28, in the Jackson area after investigators followed up on a lead that eventually directed them to the suspect’s location. Detectives contacted the Michigan State Police who were able to locate the individual and take him into custody. The suspect is identified as Daniel Morris, 35, of Newaygo. Morris has been charged with Armed Robbery by the Kent County Prosecutor’s Office and the second suspect is still outstanding. Anyone with information is asked to contact Silent Observer, safely and anoymously at 616-774-2345.


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City Hall Corner


By Mike Womack, Cedar Springs City Manager

Grrrrr Bark Bark Woof

The City of Cedar Springs has developed a draft plan for a fenced, off-leash dog area in Riggle Park. The plan would use the northeast corner of the park and is currently designed to be about 1/3 of an acre. The dog area could be made larger by removing the half-court basketball area and for additional cost in fencing.  The plan separates the area into two sections, about 25 percent of which would be reserved for smaller, older and gentler dogs, while 75 percent is open to friendly, well-behaved dogs of all sorts.  The area would be outfitted with picnic tables for humans to sit at, objects for dogs to explore, and waste containers for cleanup. Future plans include the installation of a water fountain and the extension of sidewalk from 5th Street and Beech to connect Riggle Park with the White Pine Trail by sidewalk. The cost estimate for the current plan is estimated to be between $8000-$10,000 for the creation of the dog area, less if the fencing was erected by volunteers.

As City staff work to figure out the best way to design and pay for this proposed dog area, we are happy to hear any thoughts, questions or concerns you might have about this proposal. Do you think cheaper and 1/3 of an acre is better or do you think more expensive and 1/2 acre is better? Is Riggle Park a good location for a dog park? Should the park be free to use or should a user fee be required to help pay for maintenance? What features do you think a dog park absolutely needs to be successful? Do you think a dog park is overall a good idea for Cedar Springs? 

Please send your thoughts, questions or concerns to the City Manager at manager@cityofcedarsprings.org

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Efforts to stop robocalls to customers a step in the right direction


LANSING -Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel commended a move by Verizon Wireless to better protect its customers from robocalls. The move comes days after Nessel and 50 other Attorneys General entered into an agreement with 12 major telecom providers to fight illegal robocalls and one day after the same Attorneys General sent a letter to the Federal Communications Commission urging it to encourage telecom providers to implement anti-robocall technologies, including default robocall blocking.

As part of its efforts, Verizon will immediately begin automatic protections for eligible Android device users through its free robocall-blocking software. Customers who use iPhone and Apple devices will be required to download the company’s Call Filter app to enroll for these free protections.

The company reports eligible customers can expect the following protections:

If they receive a call from a number that’s been reported as fraudulent, that call will be blocked by the app and forwarded to voicemail.

If a customer receives a known spam or nuisance call, they will see “Potential Spam” label instead of a name on the incoming call screen. This is essentially a warning of a potentially unwanted call, and they have the option to turn on blocking for these types of calls.

If they receive a call from a known contact, nothing changes. Their contact’s name will appear on the screen, the same as it does today.

“Protecting consumers from robocalls shouldn’t have to be an opt-in benefit, it should be an automatic service,” Nessel said. “Verizon’s swift action is a step in the right direction and I encourage the company to further its commitment by automatically enrolling ALL of its customers in this already-available technology to help further our efforts to end to this public nuisance once and for all.”

Since the beginning of this year, it is estimated that Michiganders have been on the receiving end of more than 900 million robocalls. 

(See https://robocallindex.com/history/states for statistics.)

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First place finish for Cedar Springs boys cross country


Senior Jaydon Moleski finished first for the Red Hawks.

The Cedar Springs boys’ cross country team took to the course at the Long Lake Invite hosted by Kent City on August 20. They proved that they are very much still a powerhouse this year by taking first out of eight teams for the second consecutive year. The team won with a score of 25, making a huge improvement from last year’s score of 48 with five individuals finishing in the top 10.  

Jaydon Moleski took charge during the last 1k of the race finishing 1st for the second year in a row in a time of 17:28. Other teammates rounding out the top 10 of the race and receiving their first medals of the year were Corey Bowers, finishing 2nd at 17:45; Daniel Vermulm, 5th at 18:08; Dilan Sargent, 7th at 18:20; and Austin Mann, 10th at 18:30. Placing next for the Red Hawks were sophomore Carter Moleski, freshman Espen Wood, and sophomore Cayden Steinebach finishing 13th (19:29), 18th (20:12) and 20th (20:20) respectively, displaying the bright future of the program. Also showing their hard work in the off season and on the course for the Red Hawks were Justin Voskuil (26th, 20:39), Caleb Menefee (32nd, 21:11), Gabe Minnich (35th, 21:31), Ben Mallory (57th, 23:15), Connor Skelonc (61st, 23:38), Eli Malon (66th, 24:03), Logan Douglas (83rd, 25:00), and Jonathan Reed (83rd, 26:50). 

Teammates Jaydon Moleski (R) and Corey Bowers (L) who packed a 1 and 2 finish.

The boys are led this year by new coach Justin Jones. Jones is a Cedar Springs and Alma College Alumni and had a successful career running at Cedar Springs and at Alma College where he was a three-year captain. 

“We have a very gifted group,” said Coach Jones. “I think what makes this team particularly special is that we had no one graduate from last year’s squad. It’s a veteran group with budding young talent as well. I’m blessed to be able to lead such a fun and committed group of young men. I can trust them to leave every ounce of themselves on the course on race day. We have a long ways to go if we plan on competing with the biggest and best teams in the state, but this was a strong showing to start to our season,” he added.

The Red Hawks will compete next in their first OK White Conference meet of the year at Lowell High School on September 4. 


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