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More sunflowers

AWE-Sunflower-OstromWe received two more sunflower entries this week. One was from Lori Ostrom, of Nelson Township. Grandma Hale and Harlee are standing next to the sunflowers in their garden, with the tallest reaching 11 feet 6 inches.

Marjorie Merritt, of the Village of Sand Lake, also sent us photos of the sunflowers in their garden. She said that this year, she didn’t even plant any sunflowers—they just came up on their own! Her tallest one also reached 11 feet 6 inches.

AWE-Sunflower-MerrittThanks to both Lori and Marjorie for sharing their sunflowers with us!

Do you have the tallest sunflower in the area? Send your photo to news@cedarspringspost.com, with “sunflower” in the subject line. Give us a little bit of info about the sunflower, your name and where you live, and we will print it as space allows.


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Update on vintage photo of yesteryear

By Judy Reed

Last week, we printed an old photo given to us by Lori Ostrom. She said it was on an old postcard that belonged to her great-grandmother Margaret Hale. We guessed it was a celebration of some kind around or before the turn of the century.  It turned out we were right.
We got a call from Sue Harrison, one of the authors of the Cedar Springs Story, and she explained that this photo was taken during a Beucus Hardware Day. Harrison said that while working on the book, Margaret Hale called her and told her she had a photo she might want to use, and it turned out to be the very one her great-granddaughter sent to us.
In fact, the photo is on page 17 of the book, in the section on Early Township Settlement, because it went with a story that Della Wightman, of Nelson Township, was telling about harvesting wheat, and when they got their first grain binder.
According to “The Cedar Springs Story,” by Sue Harrison and Donna DeJonge, it was in 1889 that John Beucus and his brother Tom opened a hardware store at 59 S. Main (at Ash St.) “They opened the store with the purchase of mortgaged stock that could have been packed in a two-horse wagon,” the book said. It went on to describe a fine store there at the corner of Main and Ash in 1900. The brothers carried hardware, cook stoves, and the “celebrated” Crescent bicycles, with sales totaling $25,000 per year.
Della Wightman told how her husband, Glenn, and his dad used to go out into the fields and harvest the grain with a cradle. “Then one time, the Beucus brothers had a big day in town. They brought in two flatcar loads of kitchen cabinets, grain binders, and mowing machines. Then they had a regular ‘Fourth of July’ downtown with parades, picnic dinners, and all kinds of contests,” she said. That perfectly describes what it looks like in the photo.
She also noted that the Beucus brothers sold the whole two carloads of items, with her husband buying a grain binder, kitchen cabinet and a steel range.
Thanks, so much, Sue, for the info!
In later years, the Beucus building was owned by Tom and Sonya Cronkright, and housed Pioneer Pharmacy, and then NAPA and other businesses after it was renovated. The building was at least 119 years old when it burned down in 2009.

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Vintage postcard of yesteryear

By Judy Reed

Lori Ostrom, of Nelson Township, saw one of the old postcards we printed a few weeks ago and sent us a copy of the old postcard her grandpa gave her last summer (printed above).  It appears to be of a village gathering or celebration of some type. The John Beucus Hardware store at 59 Main St. can clearly be seen at the corner of Ash and Main. (This was the NAPA building that burned down March 7, 2009.) The Beucus store opened there about 1900. In the foreground you can see a band, possibly the Cedar Springs Band. There are horses and carts and no cars, so it must be early 1900s. If anyone knows what event this photo shows give us a call at 696-3655 or shoot us an email at news@cedarspringspost.com.

The backside of the postcard had some notations by Mrs. Margaret Hale, Lori Ostrom’s great-grandmother. “She used to be the egg lady of Cedar Springs,” wrote Lori. “I’m wondering if anyone remembers her and could tell me some stories?”

Lori said that Margaret’s son Bob still lives on some of the family’s homestead land on Shaner Avenue, and she does, too. “When Bob built my house a few years ago, we had the fire department come in for training and burn down the old, old homestead and outbuilding, those same outbuildings that housed all the chickens Margaret Hale raised to provide eggs,” she said.

If anyone has info for Lori, send us an email at the one listed above and we’ll get it to her, or give us a call and we’ll get you connected.

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Nine-year-old to walk to stop diabetes

Fundraising garage sale this weekend to benefit walk 


Preston Ostrom

Preston Ostrom

Most nine-year-olds are active and energetic. So earlier this year, when Preston Ostrom, son of Kurt and Abby Ostrom, of Kent City, started drinking a lot of water, and wanting to sleep all the time, his mom started asking him questions about his strange behavior. He just wasn’t himself.

When she checked with the school, the school said he wasn’t participating anymore, wasn’t his normal self, and his face was red most of the time. Then they called and told his mom that Preston fell asleep in class. So Preston’s mom googled his symptoms, and found that he could have diabetes.

She called and made an appointment with the doctor. The doctor thought it was just something viral, but his mom insisted they test for diabetes. After five minutes of being tested, Preston was taken to the emergency room for high blood sugar.

“After 5 months of learning how to manage diabetes, the shots and sugar checks are ok, but learning a new way to eat is a real struggle for me,” said Preston. “But I’ve learned diabetes doesn’t define me. I’m still the same kid and I can be anything I want to be. Maybe even playing football for the U of M!”

According to Preston’s aunt, Lori Ostrom, Preston is walking in the American Diabetes Association’s Step Out Walk to stop diabetes event at Rosa Parks Circle in Grand Rapids on October 5. “It’s his 10th birthday, so it’s extra special to him. We are joining him and trying to raise funds.”

She will be having a fundraising garage sale this weekend, September 13 and 14, at her home at 13383 Shaner Avenue, between 16 and 17 Mile, to help raise $1,000 for the walk. All proceeds from the garage sale will be donated to Preston’s Team for the Step Out event.


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Teen runs half marathon in Kenya

Left to right in the photo is Yani Henriques Raymond, Tanzi Lampert & Melissa McCauley.

Left to right in the photo is Yani Henriques Raymond, Tanzi Lampert & Melissa McCauley.

Earlier this fall, The Post ran a story about Lori Ostrom and her mom, Beverly Hale, making the Red Flannel 5K run/walk a family tradition for better health. Lori’s children are also picking up on the tradition. Her daughter, Melissa McCauley, 18, ran her first half marathon in Nairobi, Kenya, last week.

According to Lori, Melissa had been running while at college in TN and continued to do so when she moved to Kenya for the semester. “She has been training for this event since she arrived in Kenya this past May,” she explained.

Melissa grew up in Cedar Springs, and is currently a Student Missionary teaching at a primary school in Kenya. She will be back in Michigan in May or June 2013 and resume her goal of getting her teaching degree. “Financing has slowed her down, but she continues to work hard towards her goal,” said Lori.

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Mother and daughter make 5K a tradition

By Judy Reed

For Lori Ostrom and her mother, Beverly Hale, the annual Red Flannel 5K walk/run as become a tradition that means something special. It means that Beverly is still here to walk it.

The two began walking in the race 5 years ago. It was then that they got the idea to make it an annual event. “We met a man and his son who told us they had made it a tradition. It didn’t look like the father would be around much longer,” explained Lori. “They were such gentlemen. During the race we would pass each other, and as we neared the finish line, they lingered behind and let us win.”

Since then the women have done it every year. But two years ago this Christmas, they weren’t sure there would ever be another race together. “She almost died of pancreatitis,” Lori said of Beverly, now 65. “We thought she wasn’t going to make it.”

But Beverly fought back. And last year she won in the senior category. “We laugh because we always come in last,” remarked Lorie. “We do what we can, when we can. The idea is just to cross the finish line.”

Beverly has been out walking every day with her husband to prepare for the walk. “She’s been encouraging me,” explained Lorie. “She’s trying to stay healthy.”

Lorie encourages everyone to try it. “Just go do it—even if you think you can’t,” she said.

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MORE sunflowers!

Lori Ostrom, of Cedar Springs, sent us this cute photo of Harlee, 3, and her Nana (Beverly Hale) near some of the giant sunflowers they grew this year. “It was our first year growing them,” said Lori. “We heard they bring in good bugs for the garden.” Nice looking sunflowers, Lori!

If you have a wildflower or wildlife photo you’d like to send us, please email it to news@cedarspringspost.com.

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Celebrating community night

Residents, businesses, school groups, and other non-profits came together last Thursday, at Cedar Springs High School, for the 25th annual Community Night.
“It really was a good event,” said organizer Isabelle Brace, of the Community Action Network (CAN). “Everyone seemed to enjoy themselves, and we had a lot of good comments.”
There were 125 vendors, including the Post, that bought tables to showcase their business or group, or provide a service to residents. There were some free food samples, such as ice cream and cake, and a free sloppy joe dinner.
“It was a nice family evening,” said Lori Ostrom, of Cedar Springs. “We were able to get the information we needed on how our family can volunteer at the Red Cross. We also enjoyed the ice cream and free sloppy joe dinner. Thank you!”
One change in this year’s Community Night was that the ever-popular AeroMed helicopter did not make an appearance. “They said they couldn’t do it this year due to budget cuts,” explained Brace.

Many booths had drawings for a free product. The Post gave away a digital camera with memory card. Congratulations to Cedar Springs High School senior Tyler Felty, who won the camera! You can see some of his photos on page 2 with the drinking and driving story.

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Youth fair hosts Edward and Bella

By Hope Cronkright

N-4H-Fair-goatLike Elvis, Edward and Bella from Twilight now have impersonators. Instead of singing on stage in front of an audience, these impersonators are a girl and her beloved goat from a 4-H fair project.

Kelly McCauley, as Bella, and her Alpine Bore goat, now named Edward, made their debut the beginning of August at the Kent County Youth Fair.

Kelly explained how the idea of “Edward” got started. Kelly needed to think of a costume for her and her goat to wear in the goat costume class. She said, “My aunt is obsessed with Twilight and she told me, ‘you should be a vampire.’” Sporting a tux and a dress complete with the cast, Edward and Bella were easily identified by 4H fairgoers.

Edward and Bella received three awards—1st in Breed and Market, and 3rd in showmanship. Edward was a market goat purchased in a livestock auction by the Cedar Springs Family Fare. The store then donated the goat back after the auction, and Kelly takes care of it at their Green Acres Farm (yes, named after the old TV show) in Cedar Springs.

“We work hard all year for fair,” remarked Kelly. “You learn responsibility [by] taking care of the animals.” Kelly became a 4-H explorer at the young age of five and plans to continue 4-H until the age of 19.

Lori Ostrom, Kelly’s mother said, “It’s fun to see kids enjoy their animal. And learning by doing as a 4-H member puts my kids in a spot where I know where my kids are, they are safe, and staying out of trouble.”

Edward the goat has created such a sensation that he now he has 50 fans on Facebook after only three weeks. One fan wrote, “Robert Pattinson has nothing on you.”

If you’d like to see Edward and Bella, they will be visiting a petting zoo in Sparta on September 26 at the Harvest on the Ridge Festival.

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