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Howard City to interview manager finalists

 

Former CS Mayor Charlie Watson a finalist

N-HowardCityBy Judy Reed

N-HowardCity-logoThe Village of Howard City has selected four finalists to be interviewed for the job as Village Manager. Their current Manager, Randy Heckman, has been doing double duty as Village President and Village Manager. He recently notified the Village he was resigning as Manager and a search got underway.

One of the four finalists is familiar to residents in Cedar Springs. Charlie Watson, who served on the Cedar Springs City Council for eight years, including some of that time as Mayor, will be one of those interviewed.

Interviews will take place on Monday, March 27, and Monday April 3, in the Village of Howard City Council Room, 125 E Shaw St, Howard City.

The schedule for March 27 will be Wally Delamater at 7 p.m.; Charles Watson at 7:30 p.m.; and Thomas Raymond at 8:00 p.m. On April 3, Michael Falcon will interview at 6 p.m.

Wally Delameter grew up and worked most of his life in Montcalm County. He is currently the Village Manager in Suttons Bay, and has worked for them since 2008. He has also served as their Zoning Administrator and DDA Director. Prior to that, he worked from 1994-2008 for the Village of Lakeview as Village Manager, Zoning administrator, DPW Director, and in other areas.

Charles Watson was a full time aircraft rescue firefighter at the Kent County Airport from 1994-2015, when he retired. He also served on the Cedar Springs Fire Department, was a reserve police officer in Cedar Springs, worked for the CS DPW, and worked as an ambulance attendant. Watson served on the Cedar Springs City Council for eight years, both as Mayor and Mayor Pro Tem. He most recently got his Bachelor’s Degree in Public and Non-Profit Administration, with a Business Minor from Grand Valley State University. He interned at Spring Lake Township, the City of Ferrysburg, and the Village of Spring Lake.

Thomas Raymond was Manager for the Village of Lexington, Michigan, from March 2013 to March 2015, and Supervisor in Cottrellville Township, Michigan, from 2007 to 2012. He served as Chairman of the St. Clair County Chapter of Township Supervisors from 2010-2012, and as a City Commissioner from 1994-1998 in Marine City, Michigan. He received certification as a public manager through Saginaw University.

Michael Falcon received his Master of Public Administration degree in 2004 from Northern Michigan University. He has worked at Northern Michigan University since January 1999, in various areas of Continuing Education, including Workforce Development. Prior to that he was a security specialist and law enforcement officer in the U.S. Air Force.

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Fire Department purchases life-saving equipment

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Cedar Springs Firefighters show off their new LUCAS automatic chest compression device. Courtesy photo.

By Judy Reed

People living in Cedar Springs who suffer sudden cardiac arrest now have a better chance of survival, thanks to new equipment recently purchased by the Cedar Springs Fire Department.

The CS Fire Department held a spaghetti dinner fundraiser on March 8 to raise money for the LUCAS automatic chest compression device, which would help them give CPR to heart attack victims. The device was $15,000.

“This piece of equipment is costly but well worth the price,” noted Fire Chief Marty Fraser.

March 8 was the Wednesday evening that high winds blew through the area, and many areas were without power. That translated to people going out to dinner, including the fundraising spaghetti dinner at Big Boy.

“We had a large crowd and through the generosity of everyone, raised a sizable amount of money,” said Fraser. “We also had several anonymous donors contribute to our cause.”

The Fire Department made enough to purchase the equipment, and they put it into service on Tuesday evening, March 21. “I and the staff at the Fire Department are very grateful to the community and the surrounding areas for their generosity in making this a very successful project,” remarked Fraser.

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Groups donate to Library

The Cedar Springs Historical Society donated 40 chairs like the blue one in this photo to the Cedar Springs Library. From left to right is Fred Gunnell, CS Historical Society; Amy Hall, CS Library Board; Jerry Hall, Mayor, CS City Council; Sharon Jett (in front of Jerry), CS Historical Society; Tanya Eldred, CS Historical Society; Donna Clark, CS Library Director; Dan Clark, Cedar Springs City Council. Post photo by J. Reed.

The Cedar Springs Historical Society donated 40 chairs like the blue one in this photo to the Cedar Springs Library. From left to right is Fred Gunnell, CS Historical Society; Amy Hall, CS Library Board; Jerry Hall, Mayor, CS City Council; Sharon Jett (in front of Jerry), CS Historical Society; Tanya Eldred, CS Historical Society; Donna Clark, CS Library Director; Dan Clark, Cedar Springs City Council. Post photo by J. Reed.

The Cedar Springs Rotary Club donated $8,000 to the CS Library for their children’s area. Pictured from left to right is Jerry Hall, Mayor, CS City Council; Amy Hall, CS Library Board; Donna Clark, CS Library Director; Julie Wheeler, Rotary; and Linda Stout, Rotary.

The Cedar Springs Rotary Club donated $8,000 to the CS Library for their children’s area. Pictured from left to right is Jerry Hall, Mayor, CS City Council; Amy Hall, CS Library Board; Donna Clark, CS Library Director; Julie Wheeler, Rotary; and Linda Stout, Rotary.

The Cedar Springs Public Library is nearing completion, and two local community organizations recently stepped and made donations toward the cause.

On Wednesday, March 15, the Cedar Springs Historical Society donated 40 chairs for use at the new library. The chairs were originally donated to the CS Museum several years ago by Steelcase, and valued at $100 each at the time. Now that the Museum has several pews from East Nelson UM church, they don’t have the need for the chairs. “Our whole board was so happy to be able to share them with another group right here in our community,” said Sharon Jett, Director.

The Cedar Springs Rotary also made a donation to the Library at its meeting on Wednesday, March 15.

“Cedar Springs Rotary is happy to help the new Cedar Springs Public Library with the children’s area via this $8000 donation,” they said in the announcement on their Facebook page.

Watch for more information in the Post as the Library gears up for opening in May!

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Boy Scouts collect food for pantry

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Boy Scout Troop 222 recently collected hundreds of items for the United Methodist Food pantry. They collected both food donations and money, and Troop leader John Kerr bought more food items with the money they were given.

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Community supports En Gedi fundraiser

Pastor Craig Owens and some of the En Gedi youth at their fundraiser last weekend. Courtesy photo.

Pastor Craig Owens and some of the En Gedi youth at their fundraiser last weekend. Courtesy photo.

The Cedar Springs High School cafeteria was bubbling with excitement last Friday when approximately 175 attendees gathered for the one and only En Gedi annual fundraiser event. En Gedi is a Christ-centered Cedar Springs non-profit organization focused on keeping kids in our community safe, encouraged, and mentored. A free afterschool youth center is provided for students in grades 6-8th grades, along with special events throughout the year for high school students and community members.

This year’s event brought in proceeds totaling $20,995.50, with those funds being matched by CS Manufacturing and equaling almost $42,000. “Once again the business owners and community members have been extremely supportive of En Gedi. This event continues to be a humbling experience due to the outpouring of support,” explained John Huffman, En Gedi Board Trustee and Event Chairman.

The evening began with 12 tables lined with a wide variety of items ranging from college sports tickets, home furnishings, outdoor and hunting equipment, games, tools, collectable dolls, athletic training items, subscriptions, and many more items attendees could bid for through a silent auction.

The En Gedi 8th Grade Student Leaders gave testimonials on why they appreciate the after-school youth center. While the program is free to all students, the estimated cost is $150 per student per year. The center serves an average of 75 students per day and approximately 130 different students per school year.

The last segment of the event included a live auction with opportunities to Sponsor-a-Student and then bid on the larger items, which included a speed bike, kayak, leather recliner, Tiger tickets, guided pheasant hunt, and more.

En Gedi is dependent upon donations to achieve the organization’s mission of “building up families in our community.” In addition to Huffman’s leadership on this year’s event, he was assisted by Kevin Pike, Jodi Coxon, Liz Pigorsh, Chris Mabie, as well as all the En Gedi board members.

A Free Family Day at the Belmont YMCA is currently scheduled for Friday, April 28, an early release day for Cedar Springs Public Schools. Please check out the En Gedi Facebook page or contact Pastor Craig for more details and to register. All families in the area are welcome.

Pastor Craig Owens serves as the Youth Center Director, assisted by Pastor Josh Schram and Tabi Carter, along with volunteer adult and high school honor society students.

“Part of our goal at the youth center is to introduce various hobbies, life skills, and special interests to our young people. If community members would like to get involved, please contact me at Craig@CSCalvary.org,” said Pastor Owens.

Huffman added, “The entire En Gedi Team would like to thank everyone who has and continues to support this local mission within our community. Your commitment to the youth of our community is greatly appreciated. Mark your calendars now for next year’s event in mid-March!”

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Leave wildlife in the wild

 

Do not take baby animals from the wild this spring

A white-tailed deer fawn waits for its mother to return.

A white-tailed deer fawn waits for its mother to return.

Spring is here, bringing warmer temperatures and the next generation of wildlife. The Michigan Department of Natural Resources reminds those who are outside, enjoying the experience of seeing wildlife raise its young, to view animals from a distance so they are not disturbed.

It’s important to remember that many species of wildlife hide their young for safety and that these babies are not abandoned. They simply have been hidden by their mother until she returns for them.

“Please resist the urge to help seemingly abandoned baby animals,” said Hannah Schauer, wildlife communications coordinator for the DNR. “Many baby animals will die if removed from their natural environment, and some have diseases or parasites that can be passed on to humans or pets.”

Schauer added that some animals that have been picked up by people and do survive may become habituated and may be unable to revert back to life in the wild.

“Habituated animals pose additional problems as they mature and develop adult animal behavior,” Schauer said. “For example, habituated deer, especially bucks, can become aggressive as they get older and reach breeding age.”

White-tailed deer fawns are one of the animals most commonly picked up by well-intentioned citizens.

Schauer explained that it is not uncommon for deer to leave their fawns unattended for up to eight hours at a time. This behavior minimizes the scent of the mother left around the fawn and allows the fawn to go undetected by nearby predators. While fawns may seem abandoned, they rarely are. All wild white-tailed deer begin life this way. The best chance for their survival is to leave them in the wild. If you find a fawn alone, do not touch it, as this might leave your scent and could attract predators. Give it plenty of space and quickly leave the area. The mother deer will return for her fawns when she feels it is safe; she may not return if people or dogs are present.

Only licensed wildlife rehabilitators may possess abandoned or injured wildlife. Unless you are licensed, it is illegal to possess a live wild animal, including deer, in Michigan.

The only time a baby animal may be removed from the wild is when you know the parent is dead or the animal is injured. Please remember, a licensed rehabilitator must be contacted before removing an animal from the wild. Licensed wildlife rehabilitators must adhere to the laws and have gone through training on proper handling of injured or abandoned wild animals. Licensed rehabilitators will work to return the animal to the wild where it will have the best chance for survival.

A list of licensed rehabilitators can be found by visiting mi.gov/wildlife or by calling a local DNR office.

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WMP West Regionals results

WMP state qualifiers. Photo by B. Chong.

WMP state qualifiers. Photo by B. Chong.

By Barbra Chong

West Michigan Pursuit traveled to Caledonia for the 2016-2017 Regionals. Twenty-one individuals entered the tournament and 17 placed in the top four, which qualifies them to compete at the State tournament in two weeks at the Lansing Center.

Finishing in fourth place was 90 lb Logan Bennett, 11/12 age group.

In third place was 52 lb Kaleb Pautke, 7/8 age group.

Finishing in second place was 67 lb Chayson Eberspeaker, 7/8 age group; 122 lb David Erxleben, High School division; 75 lb Blake Peasley, 9/10 age group; 61 lb Selina Stalker, 4/6 age group; and 55 lb Kellen Weckesser, 7/8 age group.

Regional Champions are 61 lb Quinten Cassiday, 7/8 age group; 70 lb Carter Castillo, 11/12 age group; 63 lb Luke Egan, 9/10 age group; 58 lb Drew Moro, 7/8 age group; 67 lb Tyler Parmeter, 7/8 age group; 155 lb Lucus Pienton, High School division; 138 lb Ahmad Starr, High School division; 59 lb Josh Vasquez, 9/10 age group; 46 lb Blake Werkema, 4/6 age group and 158 lb Maston Wood, 11/12 age group.

“My first year running WMP, I had seven individuals qualify with three Regional Champions. Five years later, I have 17 individuals qualifying with 10 Regional Championship titles. These kids and their parents continue to impress me with their neverending support and dedication. The combined efforts are what makes this program a success,” said Head Coach Dave Andrus.

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The Waif coming to the Kent Theatre

Pictured left to right: Kyria Elise and Char Ambrose in The Waif, the story of little orphan Annie.

Pictured left to right: Kyria Elise and Char Ambrose in The Waif, the story of little orphan Annie.

Actors Arte Ensemble of West Michigan will present “The Waif,” (the little orphan Annie story) at the Kent Theatre on Friday, March 31, and Saturday, April 1.

For the lovers of Annie, The Waif is a fun filled comedy/drama set in the 1920’s New York City, with orphans, villains, and adventure for the whole family.

Performances will be Friday, March 31, at 8 p.m., and Saturday, April 1, at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m. Tickets can be purchased at the door. Adults are $10; students $5; and seniors $8.

The Kent Theatre is located at 8 N Main St., in Cedar Springs.

For more information call (616) 874-5264.

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Benefit to help family of third grader with cancer

Beach third grader Emma Orr with her mom, Michelle Crawford, stepdad Zak Fisk, and brother Tyler, 11. Courtesy photo.

Beach third grader Emma Orr with her mom, Michelle Crawford, stepdad Zak Fisk, and brother Tyler, 11. Courtesy photo.

Emma sleeping soundly. Courtesy photo.

Emma sleeping soundly. Courtesy photo.

March 24, 6-8 p.m. at Beach Elementary

By Judy Reed

In September 2015, Emma Orr was a beautiful, happy girl who loved sparkles, and loved being outdoors playing with her kittens and running hot wheels and monster trucks through the dirt. By the end of the month, the sweet second-grader at Beach Elementary was fighting for her life.

Emma lives here in Cedar Springs with her mom and stepdad, Michelle Crawford and Zak Fisk, and brother, Tyler, 11. Michelle related how she first knew something was wrong with Emma.

“Emma woke me up with a serious bloody nose, and as the days followed, she became very pale with high fevers and she all but quit eating. Emma was admitted to Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital September 24, 2015 and a series of tests were taken including an MRI, bone marrow and blood tests. On September 25, 2015, Emma was diagnosed with stage 4 high risk Neuroblastoma. The cancer was found in her shoulders, spine, left leg, pelvic bones, in her liver and around her liver.”

Emma Orr has relapsed with Neuroblastoma in her brain and spine. Courtesy photo.

Emma Orr has relapsed with Neuroblastoma in her brain and spine. Courtesy photo.

Michelle couldn’t believe what she heard. “I was an emotional roller coaster running off of 2-3 hours of sleep. I was in denial at first because Emma was always a healthy child,” she explained.

According to cancer.gov, Neuroblastoma is a disease in which malignant (cancer) cells form in neuroblasts (immature nerve tissue) in the adrenal gland, neck, chest, or spinal cord. In stage 4, it has spread to distant lymph nodes or other parts of the body, and may be hard to cure.

Emma started on treatment immediately. According to Michelle, Emma completed 8 rounds of chemotherapy, a stem cell transplant, four cycles of antibody therapy and 12 rounds of radiation. Her treatments started September 2015 and went until August 2016. On June 10, 2016, she went into remission.

It lasted six months.

On December 12, 2016, Emma, now in third grade, relapsed with Neuroblastoma in her brain and spine. There were four tumors with the main tumor wrapped around blood vessels. Emma was given a 0 percent chance of survival.

“Emma did 17 rounds of radiation in hopes to shrink the tumors and expand her life a little longer,” explained Michelle. She said that radiation did shrink some of the tumors, however it has caused the main tumor to start bleeding. Emma’s survival chance went up slightly to 5 percent, but the bleeding will only increase as time goes on.

The Post asked Michelle how much Emma knows about this, and how is she taking it?

“Emma realizes her chance to survive is small and she understands the bleeding will continue to get worse until the unthinkable happens.”

The family is making the most of and treasuring their time together with Emma. “Emma has dropped out of school to spend more time with family as time is ticking away,” said Michelle. “It’s been a very emotional experience for all family members involved and we are all just trying to enjoy having Emma with us as long as possible.”

Recently, they attended Disney World together and made many happy memories, through a trip made possible by the Make-A-Wish foundation. “She loved every moment of it. Emma got to meet almost every princess possible and she loved the roller coasters!”

Emma’s mom said that insurance has covered about 90 percent of Emma’s medical treatments and some of the prescriptions. But they still need some financial support. There is a gofundme page set up at http://tinyurl.com/emmaorr for those who wish to donate.

Also, the Beach Elementary PTO is holding a special 25-cent sale fundraiser for Emma on Friday evening, March 24, from 6-8 p.m. Come join in a fun night of shopping to help raise money for Emma and her family. Booths will be set up with local direct sales consultants. Two raffle prizes will be available from each booth, each valued at a minimum of $25. Purchase 25-cent raffle tickets throughout the event and drop your tickets into the cup next to the raffle prize you wish to win. To make it even better, for every $10 spent at the booths, you will earn Golden Tickets. Golden Tickets get placed into a separate raffle drawing. One lucky winner will be announced at the end of the event. That lucky winner will receive a raffle prize valued at a minimum of $25 from each of the booths present. There will also be a custom Fight for Emma “No one fights alone” bracelet at the Plunder Design booth. Be sure to check that out.

To follow Emma’s fight, you can follow the Fight for Emma facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/groups/732117343587400/.

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Odyssey of the mind teams head to state finals

Odyssey of the Mind Team 1.

Odyssey of the Mind Team 1.

Three Odyssey of the Mind teams from Cedar View Elementary will be heading to the state finals this weekend after placing at regionals in February.

The three teams traveled to Greenville on February 25 to compete at Regionals and finished with one first place and two second places, which allowed them to move on to State Finals.

The first team that took first place at Regionals did Problem 2 Odd-a-Bot: Coryn Wiles, Ember Briggs, Brielle Sarniak, Walker Glyshaw, Nathanael Slager, Devin Jobson, and Silas Cartwright, all in 5th grade.

Odyssey of the Mind Team 2.

Odyssey of the Mind Team 2.

The second team which took second place at Regionals did Problem 3 It’s Time, OMER: Dominic Vanderhyde and Michael Stevens, 4th grade; and Emily Stevens, Kendall Fisk, Alana Wiles, Jeremiah Slager, Logan Redes, 3rd grade.

The third team took second at Regional as well and did Problem 1 Catch Us If You Can: Kyla Robinson, Derek Bordeaux, Kaden Kirkwood, Riley Robb: all in 5th grade; and Gavin Kirkwood in 4th grade.

State Finals will be held on March 18 at Thornapple Kellogg High School. By visiting the miodyssey.com website fans can see when they are performing that day.

Odyssey of the Mind Team 3.

Odyssey of the Mind Team 3.

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