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Archive | October, 2021

Beautiful fall

By Judy Reed

This time of year is a picturesque reminder of the beauty we experience here in Michigan as leaves and fall foliage turn bright shades of red, yellow, and orange. We asked readers on our Facebook page to post their photos of the changing fall colors, and they did not disappoint! Take a look at all the great photos submitted, both here and on our Facebook page.

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City council gives manager high marks

Cedar Springs City Manager
Mike Womack

The Cedar Springs City Council recently completed their regular performance review of City Manager Mike Womack, and given him high marks for the work he’s accomplished the last two years.

While this review typically occurs once a year, the Council and Manager had agreed to not conduct a review in 2020 due to the pandemic. This 2021 review comes shortly after Womack passed the five-year mark in August as the head of City Hall, starting as City Manager in 2016.

“Mike has been a great asset to this community for the last five years” said Mayor Gerry Hall. “He works well with the Council, Planning Commission and DDA, and he’s always working towards the City’s goals.”  Mayor Hall indicated that the City Manager has been instrumental in the continuous improvement the City has seen over the last five years, specifically citing “roads, sewers, water lines, the new fire station, economic development, new neighborhoods, parks, city staffing, ordinance changes, working with the State, (and) obtaining grants.” 

Mayor Hall also pointed out that “the City Manager’s job can be very complex and difficult sometimes and Mike just finds ways to get all those things done for the City.”  

Councilperson Rose Powell indicated that Mike is very hard-working and dedicated to the City, saying that he is “one of the best” city managers that she has worked with during her 50 years in Cedar Springs.

Councilperson Molly Nixon praised Womack for his honesty and integrity, stating that she trusted the City Manager to always be doing what’s best for Cedar Springs.

Mike Womack became the Cedar Springs City Manager after serving eight years as an attorney in the Metro Detroit area and obtaining his Masters of Public Administration from Central Michigan University.  “I have always felt a strong call to public service,” Womack said. “All through my childhood, schooling and previous work life I was always looking for ways that I can help make things better for more people. Working as City Manager gives me the opportunity to work with the Council and the community to do that every day.”

The Council rated the City Manager’s performance over the last two years highly, earning “outstanding” or “above average” marks in all categories. The Council specifically pointed out that they were pleased with how the City Manager handled COVID19 for City Hall, the building of the new fire station, and his ongoing work with the Planning Commission.  The Council cited the hiring of more City Hall staff, finding a healthy work/life balance and continuing to seek out more professional training opportunities as the areas they felt could use improvement.

Reflecting on his time in the City, Womack said, “Five years ago I promised that I’d keep an open door and that I would do my best to help solve any problems in the community that I could, within the legal and financial constraints of the City Manager’s office. I hope that I have accomplished that and I hope that the City has been improved through my efforts.”

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Woman sentenced in Trooper’s death

Tpr. Caleb Starr
Thomasina Jones

A Utah woman was sentenced this week for the 2020 crash that killed Michigan State Police Trooper Caleb Starr, 33, of the MSP Lakeview Post.

Thomasina Shani Jones, 30, of Montezuma, Utah, crossed the center line and collided with Tpr. Starr’s Patrol vehicle on the evening of July 10, 2020, on Grand River Avenue in Ionia County. The married father of two died three weeks later.

Jones pled guilty in September to second degree Murder; Operating under the influence with a high blood alcohol content causing death; Driving while license suspended causing death; and Operating under the influence 3rd. Tests showed that she had a blood-alcohol level of 0.233 percent—nearly three times the legal limit.

She was sentenced to 27-50 years in prison.

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Residents to vote on school sinking fund millage

The Cedar Springs Public School District is asking voters to vote YES on November 2 extend the 1 mil sinking fund millage—income that has made possible a multitude of district repairs. 

“We are asking voters to extend a millage they are currently paying to provide continued support for the district’s efforts to provide quality facilities for our students and guests,” said Superintendent Scott Smith. “This will not be a new addition to their property taxes. Strong communities build strong schools and strong schools build stronger communities. The two go hand in hand.”

Originally approved in 2012, the sinking fund has been used to help the District maintain its buildings and grounds over the last ten years. Major projects have included Turf Replacement – Red Hawk Stadium; Secure entrances – Cedar Trails, Red Hawk, CSHS; Track Resurfacing – Red Hawk Stadium; New parking lots – CSHS, Cedar Trails, Cedar View; New Gym Floors – Cedar Trails and Cedar View; New Boiler – Cedar View; Repaving of district parking lots and roadways; and LED Lighting retrofit across the district.

District officials want to make sure constituents understand how the upcoming ballot request will be used to make additional improvements on campus.

In Michigan, schools are able to use a Sinking Fund as a millage (tax) levied to support school safety improvements, technology improvements, and the repair and construction of school buildings and facilities. It is a “pay as you go” system that does not require a district to borrow money or pay interest.

The request on the Nov. 2 ballot asks voters to extend the current sinking fund millage of 1 mil for an additional 10 years. If approved, the district has plans to continue to make upgrades to its facilities designed to enhance the experiences for students and visitors to the campus. Key improvements in the areas of health and wellness, technology, and safety include:

● Safety and security upgrades

● Continuing to provide each student with personal technology

● Adding fitness based features to our elementary playgrounds

● Upgrading the tennis courts

● Upgrading the baseball and softball fields

● Adding a campus fitness trail

● Adding pickleball courts

● Replacing the track in Red Hawk Stadium

● Replacing water fountains with water bottle refilling stations

● New technology infrastructure

● Replacing the Agriculture Science storage building

● Updates to district signage

“The renewal of our sinking fund millage is vital to making continued progress on our comprehensive facilities plan,” stated Chief Financial Officer, Chris LaHaie.

The current construction bond approved in 2020 is addressing the district’s critical facility needs. However, that bond does not address long term technology, maintenance and other enhancement projects a renewal of the existing sinking fund will help provide.

“The sinking fund provides us with a savings account to use for necessary facilities repairs, and this renewal would allow us to enhance many s  other important updates that were not included in the 2020 bond,” LaHaie said.

The new sinking fund ballot language also allows for the district to use funds for technology and security, two categories that were not allowable when the sinking fund millage passed in 2012.

This language change causes the ballot to state it is an increase, rather than a renewal, of the existing millage. “Rest assured, it’s still the same 1 mill,” states LaHaie.

If approved, the tax would generate approximately $718,000 annually. Cedar Springs property owners with a home valued at $100,000 now pay less than $9 per month for the sinking fund tax. If the millage fails, the current-sinking fund millage will end this year.

Visit bit.ly/SinkingFundNov2 for more information.

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The Post travels to Mackinac City

Patrick Ensley, Laura Ensley, Peter Ensley and Shannon Maurer traveled to Mackinac City for a color tour earlier this month, and took the Post along. 

I bet the colors were beautiful! Thanks so much for taking us with you!

Are you going on vacation? Be sure to take along a printed edition of the Post and get someone to snap a photo of you or your family with it. Send it to us along with some info about your trip (where you went, who went along, what you saw) and send the photo and info to news@cedarspringspost.com. We will print as space allows. If you forget the Post, please do not photoshop it into the photo. Just take it with you next time!

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Elections to be held in 71 counties Nov. 2

Voters reminded to cast ballots

School districts and communities in 71 counties will hold elections Nov. 2. 

The polls will be open statewide from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Check your registration status at the Michigan Voter Information Center at Michigan.gov/Vote.

The Secretary of State encourages voters who already have a ballot at home to fill it out and sign the back of the envelope. Voters should deliver it to their local clerk’s secure ballot drop box if they have one, or to the clerk’s office if possible, to avoid possible U.S. Postal Service delays.

In-person voting will be available in every jurisdiction for voters who choose to do so.

Voting and returning an absentee ballot

You have until 8 p.m. on Election Day to complete your ballot and return it to the clerk’s office or drop box. Your ballot will not be counted unless your signature is on the outside of the return envelope and matches your signature on file.

If you’re already registered at your current address, you can request an absent voter ballot in person at your clerk’s office anytime up to 4 p.m. on the day prior to the election (Nov. 1).

In-person voting

Beginning 40 days prior to Election Day, voters have the option of voting early using an absentee ballot in their clerk’s office until 4 p.m. on the day before the election.

Polling places will be open in every jurisdiction on Election Day for voters who want to vote in person. Voters are not required to wear a mask while at the polls.

Each polling location will have at least one voting station adapted to allow a person to vote while seated. In addition, all voters, including voters with disabilities, have access to a Voter Assist Terminal in all polling places. The Voter Assist Terminal helps the voter mark a ballot. It will mark the ballot with the voter’s choices but does not tally the votes. Once the ballot is marked, it is counted in exactly the same fashion as all other ballots.

You can register to vote through Election Day

Citizens who are not yet registered to vote but who wish to do so in the Nov. 2 election may do so at the office of their local clerk up until 8 p.m. on Election Day. You can find your clerk’s information at Michigan.gov/Vote.

Proof of residency must be provided if registering within two weeks of an election. Acceptable documents include a driver’s license, state ID card, current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, government check or other government document. Documents must have name and current address. Digital copies are acceptable.

Be democracy’s MVP:

Sign up to be an election worker today!

Election workers are the Most Valuable Players of our democracy, ensuring free and fair elections for all. And our democracy needs election workers more than ever. Serving as an election worker is a paid position, and all election workers are trained on proper protocols to assist clerks and count ballots. 

Interested voters can sign up at Michigan.gov/DemocracyMVP.

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Candidates for City of Cedar Springs

There are two seats available on the Cedar Springs City Council, and three people running: incumbent Lisa Atchison, Ashley Hamel, and Shandell Napieralski. Pick your candidate and vote on November 2.

Lisa Atchison

I am running for city council. I have lived in the Cedar Springs area for 25 years and raised 3 daughters in Cedar Springs. 

I have an Associates Degree in Business Administration. I am a hairstylist at Classic Hair By Lisa (inside Classic Hair Design).

I served on the Planning Commission from 2006 until 2017, when I won a seat on the Cedar Springs City Council, where I have enjoyed serving for the past 4 years. I have also chaired Lake Effect (a concert whose proceeds go to many area charities) for over 5 years. 

I hope to keep growing the Cedar Springs business area especially the downtown. I will find out what businesses the city is looking for, adding these businesses will draw people to our area and help us flourish. New businesses will put money into their facades and beautify the downtown area.

We need to keep our infrastructure strong. The infrastructure is the bones of our city. This can be accomplished with clean water, better roads, sidewalks, and strong city staff. 

All of this cannot be achieved without your support. Please vote and show up for community meetings.

Ashley Hamel

I’m Ashley Hamel. I’m 32 and moved to Cedar Springs in September of 2020. I’m a 911 dispatcher and I’m married with three littles, ages 5, 3, and 1. I am so excited to be running for City Council. Thank you so much for your consideration. 

I am currently serving on the Cedar Springs Planning Commission and have been since December, 2020. 

If elected, I hope to encourage participation in local politics. I want to find ways to help more citizens become involved in decision making and to let their voices be heard. I also hope to make decisions using common sense. I’d love to keep the growth of Cedar Springs going and moving in a positive direction. 

Shandell Napieralski

I am 48 years old, born in Lake Forest, Illinois. Collectively I have lived in Cedar Springs for 13 years, but most currently as a 5-year resident of the City. I graduated from Cedar Springs High School in 1991, then attended Grand Rapids Community College and later Northwood University where I have a bachelor’s degree in Management. I work for Materials Testing Consultants, a civil engineering firm as CMT Field Technician II/ Materials Sampling Technician. I am engaged with a blended family of adult children, one grade schooler, and grandchildren.

I have served two years on the Cedar Springs Planning Commission, two years on the Assessor Board of Review and three years as an election inspector. I previously worked for Cedar Springs as the assistant finance director and assistant city clerk. I am a member of the Cedar Springs Historical Society.

What do you hope to accomplish if you are elected? Infrastructure is my primary focus – roads, sidewalks, and our water/sewer system. Park maintenance and redevelopment as well as community services are also important.

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Candidates for Village of Sand Lake

The Village of Sand Lake has one seat up for grabs due to a recall petition and two people running for the seat. Trustee Rachel Gokey is being recalled due to a petition filed by Jack Christensen, who is now running against her. According to the petition language, he filed it because Gokey did not sign the social media policy passed by the board. She now has to run to hold on to her seat. The partial term will expire in November of 2022.

Rachel Gokey

My name is Rachel Gokey.  I am 40 years old and have lived in the Village of Sand Lake for over 16 years.  I am married to Jeff Gokey with three kids, all of which attend Tri County Schools.  As a GVSU Grad with a bachelor’s Business Administration with emphasis in Management & Marketing, I have a passion for helping businesses run as efficiently as possible while assisting with marketing to reach the furthest guest base.  I am currently running a nonprofit pantry and resource center for Sand Lake and area communities, Tri-Unity, community resources.  We are in the process of finding a new location.  I also do marketing for six local businesses and have recently started a full-time position assisting in day-to-day operations for a small business in Muskegon.

I enjoy helping others, working with the community and getting to know people. I previously served on the following Village of Sand Lake committees:  Buildings & Grounds, Department of Public Works, Public Safety, Human Resources, Streets, Events and Community Promotion. You will find me working closely with the Tri-County Junior Eagles and members of other, local, nonprofit groups. I believe that everyone should be welcomed and invited to participate in our community, not just those that have lived here generation after generation.

If elected I hope to bring additional transparency and accountability to the community. I plan to continue to ask questions, to ask for supporting documents, to continue offering my assistance to local groups and businesses. I have served on the Village Council since September 2018. As a council member I have been locked out of my Village email, excluded from communication, not given proper supporting documents, and even repeatedly denied requests for financial records. It is my duty to ensure accuracy. There needs to be better communication with our residents, more proof behind the words, less believing without seeing supporting documentations. Be careful what words you believe without doing research of your own. Transparency and accountability are necessary! Be cautious of what others state as “Unity,” it can also be seen as “Quorum” and the right to free thinking begins to disappear.  I would love to see our business district grow and develop! Salisbury Park is such an amazing space, it would be amazing to see it host community events more frequently. Be a part of the community, meetings, and events.

I am the best candidate for the current available position. I was previously elected by the Village of Sand Lake residents to serve on the Village Council and hope they wish for me to continue bringing light to issues. I am currently running under a recall re-election. I can honestly say that I have never met the candidate running against me. Yes, he chose to recall me just as I chose to run for my spot. If re-elected I would be finishing out my Trustee term through November 2022. Remember, attend meetings (3rd Monday of the month @7pm, Village Meeting Hall) and go vote to re-elect Rachel Gokey November 2, 2021!

For additional information on this candidate visit:


Jack Christensen

I am 56 years old.  I was born and raised on a farm in South Ionia, the youngest of 5 children. I came to Sand Lake about two years ago. Having lived most of my life in more rural settings, I wasn’t so sure how I would like living “in town,” however, living “in town” has turned out to be a wonderful experience. I have kind and considerate neighbors who are willing to help me when I need it and I’m willing to do the same for them. As a village, we must be willing to take care of each other, because sometimes, each other, is all we have.

In my 22 years at Amway, I have found myself collaborating with all kinds of people across the corporation and across the globe, to solve difficult problems together. There is nothing I have seen in my career that could not be solved, but when working within a group or committee, mutual respect and consideration, must be observed.

If elected, I would work to reestablish a coherent and civil dialogue among council members and the citizens of Sand Lake, so that we might return to the business of serving the residents of our fine village.

Civil dialog, cooperation and unity, seem to be a missing factor in the business of running the village recently. These elements are the cornerstone of any successful endeavor, where multiple parties need to coordinate a response. While civil discourse is essential as well, obstructionism, for the sake of obstruction, is counter-productive and we must not stand for it. 

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Candidates for 28th District Senate seat

By Judy Reed

Last fall, former state senator Peter MacGregor, who was the senator in the 28th district, won the election to become the new Kent County treasurer. That left a vacant state senate seat, and there are four candidates running for this seat. Mark Huizenga (R), and Keith Courtade (D) gave us info last summer during the primary. The other two running—Alex Avery (LIB) and Theodore Gerrard (UST)—did not send us a response to our email inquiry. 

Rep. Mark Huizenga (R), 74th District

I am a life-long resident of Kent County. I grew up on a small farm in Walker where I learned the value of hard work. I attended Calvin University, where I received a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration and then completed a Master’s Degree in Management at Aquinas College. 

I have a strong background in finance and accounting, which has helped me throughout my business career. I am a small business owner, working with hospitals and physician groups. I also am the owner of a software company that helps manage energy, waste, water, and food data for hospitals throughout the US. I currently live in Walker, and I have three grown children: Elaina, Olivia, and Blake. Each of them has chosen service-focused careers, and Blake is currently serving in the US Marine Corps.

I have been involved in local politics in Walker where I served on the Planning Commission. I was elected to the City Commission and I served as Mayor for five years. During my time as mayor, we worked to bring thousands of new jobs to Walker, rebuild roads, and grow our water infrastructure. I was heavily involved in fundraising for the bike tunnel that goes under Lake Michigan Drive in Standale. Some of my most important work in Walker was as the Chair of the Finance Committee. We paid down debt early, accelerated payments on bonded projects, and reduced the city’s long-term liabilities. 

I currently serve as the State Representative for the 74th District. I previously was the chair of the General Government Appropriations Committee and presently chair the Higher Education and Community College Appropriations Committee. I also serve on the Transportation, Department of Health & Human Services, and K-12 appropriations committees. I believe firmly in being responsible with every hard-working taxpayer dollar (state or federal) and I pledge to continue to be fiscally responsible with your money.

As a state representative, I firmly believe in representing the people and have always run on Transparency, Accountability, and Availability – constituents may call me any time at 616-334-4885.  Compared to my opponents, I have hosted “office hours” five times a month throughout the district, including Big Boy in Cedar Springs (excluding during the pandemic shutdown). 

Have you served on other types of committees or boards?

It has been my honor to serve on many community boards including The Salvation Army Advisory Board, Council of State Governments, Midwestern Higher Education Compact Commission, Grandville Walker Community Foundation advisory board, Calvin Christian School Education Foundation board, Health Development International board, and the Asthma Network of West Michigan. 

What do you hope to accomplish if you are elected?

Upon being elected, I will work to ensure that our community has continued access to the American Dream. My conservative principles and faith will guide me in my service as doing so will ensure that our children have access to that dream. Be it producing a balanced state budget, protecting individual liberties, or halting government overreach, I will make government responsible to We the People. I also believe that we must hold our Governor accountable for her actions throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, support our law enforcement, and ensure the integrity of our future elections. 

Election website address for more info: www.votehuizenga.com

Keith Courtade (D)

You can count on me to be a voice for families and individuals, the middle class, the poor and senior citizens—all of the residents—if elected as your state senator. I brought that advocacy to the Kent County Board of Commissioners when I was elected to that service. I maintain a commitment to fiscal responsibility, tax fairness, accountability and open government. Health and safety are important to watch and guard. I will work to maintain and restore the quality of our ground water and hold polluters accountable. I will stand up for free, fair, accessible elections and will absolutely oppose all efforts that interfere with our ability to vote. I will demand open debate on important state issues and oppose any efforts to make  decisions behind closed doors. Elected officials should be held accountable for their decisions. I will treat each and every person with respect and courtesy. I pledge to provide strong, effective leadership that it truthful and fair. I ask for your vote Nov. 2, 2021 and I look forward to serving you once again.

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Cedar Springs beats South Christian for first time ever

Clinch second place in OK Gold

Red Hawk Aiden Brunin scored two touchdowns against the Sailors. Photo by Brandon Kramer Photography.

By Judy Reed

A 20-game rivalry with zero wins. Second place in conference up for grabs. A road trip into enemy territory. The Cedar Springs Red Hawks were still stinging from a one-point loss to Catholic Central the week before that would’ve given them a share of the OK Gold title and they had something to prove.

And prove it they did—with a 38-32 first time ever win over South Christian.

How does the team feel about that?

“We feel great!” remarked Cedar Springs Head Coach Gus Kapolka. “It is exciting to be the first Cedar Springs team to beat South Christian.”

Cedar Springs had played South Christian 20 times and had never won a game against them. Their rivalry started in 1984, when the Tri River Conference was dissolved and Cedar Springs moved into the OK Gold, where they faced South Christian every year, until Cedar Springs moved into the OK Blue in 2003. It was thought the Red Hawks might have a chance to beat the Sailors in 2000—the year Cedar went all the way to the semifinals. But South Christian was Cedar’s fly in the ointment—their only loss that year, apart from the semifinal championship against Coopersville.

Prior to last Friday’s game, the Red Hawks were tied with the Sailors for second place in the OK Gold. They needed this win and were determined to get it.

South Christian hosted Cedar Springs at East Kentwood High School on Friday, October 23. South got on the board first, when Jake DeHaan ran for a 24-yard touchdown with 9:49 on the clock in the first quarter. The extra point kick by Nate Brinks was good.

Cedar Springs then scored with 8:07 on the clock, when on their fourth play of the drive, Ryan Mitchell ran 69 yards for the touchdown. QB Aiden Brunin ran in the extra points.

Junior Antwuan Nicholls slips away with the ball. Photo by Brandon Kramer Photography.

South Christian didn’t get far on their next drive and punted on fourth down to the Cedar Springs 50. Cedar Springs then scored at 6:22 on the clock when Antwuan Nicholls ran 50 yards for the touchdown. Alex Ream’s run in for extra points was good. At the end of the first quarter, it was CS 16, SC 7.

Both team’s scored in the second quarter. The Red Hawks scored with 7:44 left on a one-yard run by Aiden Brunin. He then passed to Carter Falan for two more points.

Then, with 4:13 left in the half, South Christian’s Chandler VanSolkema ran left for a 4-yard touchdown, and the extra point kick by Nate Brinks was good. At the end of the first half, it was CS 24, SC 14.

Both teams scored again in the third. South scored on a field goal by Nate Brinks, with 7:51 on the clock. 

That was followed up by Red Hawk Aiden Brunin taking the ball 7 yards into the endzone for another TD. His pass to Carter Falan for extra points was no good.

South then scored again, this time on a one-yard run by Chandler VanSolkema, and an extra point kick by Nate Brinks. At the end of the third quarter, the score was CS 30, SC 24.

Junior Ryan West runs the ball into the endzone for extra points. Post photo by Brandon Kramer Photography.

The teams each scored again the fourth quarter. Cedar struck first, when with 7:41 left, Alex Ream scored on a three-yard run, and Ryan West then ran in the extra points.

With 2:54 left in the game, Jake DeHaan then passed to Jace DeMann for a 24-yard touchdown. His extra points pass to Ashton Fennema was good. Final score CS 38, SC 32.

What does Kapolka think his team did well? “Our offense was really good, like it has been all year.  Our offensive line really came to play and our backs ran the ball exceptionally hard,” he explained.

What did he think South Christian did well? “Coach Brown had a good gameplan that stressed us out on defense, but we were able to make some adjustments and hold on for a road win,” he said.

Cedar Springs’ Ryan Mitchell was unstoppable against South Christian. Photo by Brandon Kramer Photography.

The team racked up 415 yards on the ground. Leading the way was Ryan Mitchell, with 197 yards and a TD,  Antwuan Nicholls had 115 and a TD, Carter Falan had 51, Alex Ream 28 and 1 TD, and Aiden Brunin 24 with 2 TDs. Brunin completed one pass out of two attempts for another 8 yards.

South Christian had 212 yards rushing, and quarterback Jake DeHaan had 191 of that, with 1 TD. Chandler VanSolkema had 21 and 2 TDs. DeHaan also had 203 yards passing, to six different receivers, and 2 TDs.

Kyle Hoort led in tackles for the Red Hawks, with 9.

Coach Kapolka knows there are a lot of people who help make the team’s success possible. “A special Shout Out to our coaching staff and their wives!” he said. “Our coaches make tremendous sacrifices from their own families to spend time with our players, and they wouldn’t be able to do it without the support of their wives—Emily Frigo, Sarah Dukes, Abby Gigowski, Jen Myers, Amy Martens, Rachel Austin, Kristine Johnson, Stephanie Claypool & Rachel Ash.”

Cedar Springs will host Coopersville in the first game of the playoffs this Friday at Red Hawk Stadium. What kinds of challenges will the Broncos bring? 

“Coopersville is a team that will test us with their offense. They feature some really explosive skill players, and they have a QB that can distribute the ball,” explained Kapolka. “They have some size and athleticism on the defensive side of the ball, so we will need to be at the top of our game in order to score points.”

For those attending the game, the MHSAA is going digital only for tickets. All playoff tickets except for Finals will be sold online only via GoFan at https://gofan.co/ to provide for a cashless and contactless purchasing process.

If the Red Hawks win against the Broncos, they will play the winner of the Lowell vs Muskegon game.

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All Conference football picks

Congratulations to all of the 2021 OK Gold All Conference selections from Cedar Springs!


Blake Scheer

Antwuan Nicholls

Josh Kriekaard

Brennan Porter

Cam Heiss

Aiden Brunin

Alex Ream

Honorable Mention:

Tate Ringleberg

Ryan West

Ryan Mitchell

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Volleyball holds fundraising event

Aaliyah Calkins (#4) jump serves to Shelby at October 20th CommUNITY Against Cancer quad. Photo provided by Amy Outwin.

Red Hawk volleyball achievements soared above win/loss results this week in a phenomenal and invaluable fundraising event for the community. Varsity volleyball went 8-2 this past week, while completing the second round of the OK Gold Tournament on October 19, and competing Saturday, October 23, at the Hesperia Panther Volley Against Violence tournament. However the limelight belonged to the CommUNITY Against Cancer event hosted on October 20, as the predominant and heartfelt victory.

Competition began last week Tuesday, October 19, when the team traveled to Thornapple Kellogg, dropping the match in three sets (22-25;16-25;24-26) while JV and Freshman recorded victories (JV 25-9;25-17; Freshman 25-15;25-14). 

On Wednesday, October 20, the volleyball program hosted Central Montcalm, Greeenville, and Shelby for a rewarding CommUNITY Against Cancer awareness and fundraiser event. 

“We are so thankful for all of the community members who rallied together in such a short time to make the event memorable for our Volleyball program, along with raising money for our wonderful community members; the Saboo family and Justin Harnden,” said head coach Ashley Lowing. The night was much bigger than volleyball. A special thank you to all the businesses and individuals who donated to this cause. We could not have realized our goals, recognized and honored all and raised awareness without all of you.”  

Varsity began the night beating Central Montcalm (25-19;25-10). In the second match the Lady Red Hawks topped rival Greenville 25-22; 26-24. The final game against a tough Shelby team resulted in a 25-20; 25-21 victory.

On Saturday, October 23, Varsity went undefeated in pool play taking victories over Fremont (25-12; 25-23), Frankfort (25-15; 25-20), Chippewa Hills (25-18;25-11), and Montabella (25-16;25-13). The Lady Red Hawks entered as the number one seed in the Purple/Gold Bracket with a solid win over Tri County in the quarterfinals 25-10; 25-13 before falling to Grant in the semi-finals 17-25;17-25 and finishing 3rd in the tournament. 

Senior setter Makenna Outwin and Junior Outside hitter Kennedi Jager were named to the All Tournament team and were stat leaders on the day. Kennedi Jager recorded team leading stats including highest kills at 32, and top three in blocks (5), aces (17), service points (32), digs (15) and serve receptions (26). Setter Makenna Outwin had 71 assists,13 kills,12 aces,35 service points, 11 digs and a block. Alyssa Detweiler had 28 kills 5 digs and a team high 13 blocks. Senior Aaliyah Calkins contributed 15 kills,4 aces, 5 service points,and 20 serve receptions. Libero Brandy Singleton led the defense with 52 serve receptions and 25 digs while also tallying 20 service points, 4 aces and 7 assists. Courtney Page had 10 kills, 2 blocks,7 aces and 22 service points while Aspen Haywood added 7 kills. Junior Setter Madeline Helton recorded 11 assists and 3 service points. Defensive Specialist Josie Kenyon had 8 digs and 16 service receptions and Kaylee Veersma tallied 6 digs and 10 to target serve passes.

 The final round of the OK Gold Tournament against Ottawa Hills was Tuesday, October 26 at Cedar Springs. Varsity travels to the Sparta Invite on Saturday, October 30, with Pool Play starting at 9:00am.

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