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Kent County Youth Fair 

Participants in the Little Britches Rodeo at the Kent County Youth Fair must be 18 and under.

Participants in the Little Britches Rodeo at the Kent County Youth Fair must be 18 and under.

August 10-15

The first ever Kent County Youth 4H Fair was held in Lowell, Michigan, in 1935. It was a two-day fair that replaced the West Michigan Fair, five years after it had shut down. And now, 80 years later, the Kent County Youth Fair is still going strong—and it has a lot more than just live and still exhibits.

Each year, the Kent County Youth Fair provides an exciting opportunity to over 1000 exhibitors and more than 40,000 patrons. This year’s fair takes place August 10-15.

Racing pigs are back at the Kent County Youth Fair this year.

Racing pigs are back at the Kent County Youth Fair this year.

Besides the exhibits, there is a carnival, daily themes, free entertainment, and special attractions such as the Little Britches Rodeo, racing pigs, tractor games, pulls, children’s barnyard, dodgeball, princess tea, goat milking contest, clown judging, bingo and much more to see and do. Check out the full schedule here.

Admission is free, daily parking passes are $6, or $18 for the week. Parking fees are the fair’s main source of revenue, since they don’t charge a gate fee.

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The Post travels to Utah

Tom and Char Dubridge of Sand Lake travelled to many parts of Colorado and Utah earlier this month. This picture was taken at Glen Canyon, Lake Powell, Utah.

Tom and Char Dubridge of Sand Lake travelled to many parts of Colorado and Utah earlier this month. This picture was taken at Glen Canyon, Lake Powell, Utah.

Tom and Char Dubridge of Sand Lake travelled to many parts of Colorado and Utah earlier this month. This picture was taken at Glen Canyon, Lake Powell, Utah. They also visited their daughter, Sherri Innis, in Vail, Colorado, and relatives in Grand Junction Colorado, and a brother in Ticaboo, Utah.

Thanks, Tom and Char, for taking us with you!

Are you going on vacation? Take the Post with you and snap some photos. Then send them to us with some info to news@cedarspringspost.com or mail them to Post travels, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319. We will be looking for yours!

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Summer reading carnival next week

 

Last year’s summer reading carnival was loads of fun! Get ready for this year’s celebration in the park next Wednesday, August 5, from 2-5 p.m.

Last year’s summer reading carnival was loads of fun! Get ready for this year’s celebration in the park next Wednesday, August 5, from 2-5 p.m.

Wednesday, August 5, 2-5 p.m., Morley Park

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Last week’s summer reading program with Master Arts Street Theatre was just one of many fun programs that have been part of the Cedar Springs Public Library’s offerings this summer.

It’s been a great summer of reading and special programs at the Cedar Springs Library, but there is still a grand celebration to attend and prizes to be given away!

The Cedar Springs Public Library’s Summer Reading Program is heading into its Grand Finale Reading Celebration Park Party on Wednesday, August 5 from 2-5 p.m., at Morley Park. Beyond the normal fun offerings the Library provides, such as music by Deb Eadie; the Double “K” Petting Barn and Animal Junction 4H Club; popcorn by Independent Bank; a game by Metron of Cedar Springs; a waterslide and four games by Diana Merritt; Ice Cream by Country Fresh; free tours of the Museum; and the hose down by the CS Fire Department, there are two new events!

The Solon Wesleyan Church recently built a brand new Obstacle Course, complete with a climbing wall. Word has it that it takes 1-½ hours just to set it up!  Youth of all ages will enjoy this event.

We are also very excited about the free expo that the Kent County Sheriff’s Department is hosting in the parking lot area on the east side of the Cedar Springs Museum! They will have on hand their Mounted Police (yes, horses), an armored car (you can’t believe how thick and heavy that vehicle is), a Police Robot (wow!), as well as a variety of equipment they use everyday to keep Cedar Springs safe. The Sheriff’s Department will also be giving away two bicycles and two helmets to two lucky winners that day.

The Library will be giving away around 50 other prizes at the Park, everything from a wagon, karaoke machine, manicure, oil change, Legos, to a Kindle Fire, two bikes and a refurbished Xbox 360. You can imagine that Summer Readers have been pouring it on this summer, banking their chances to win the prize of their dreams.  This year every coupon was marked by readers with the number of the prize they wanted to win.  Reading is up. Excitement is way up.

Come to Morley Park next Wednesday, August 5 and share in a great time! A huge thank you to our local heroes who give so much every year to make this the Library’s premier program of the year! A special Hero Banner will appear in next week’s Post. You know who you are and so does your community!

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Chamber to giveaway two kids bikes

boys bike

boys bike

girls bike

girls bike

Shop in Cedar Springs at five different businesses and get in the drawing to win a kids bike! The Cedar Springs Area Chamber of Commerce is giving away two bikes—a boy’s and a girl’s—at its Movie in the Park next Friday, August 7, at 8 p.m. in Morley Park. They will be showing ET.

All you have to do to be entered in the drawing is to turn in five receipts from five different Cedar Springs area businesses to receive one entry. Enter as many times as you wish, but no more than five receipts from the same business can be entered over all. Entries may be dropped at Curves/Jenny Craig, Perry’s Place for Teas LLC, or Cedar Chest.

Bikes are on display at Choice One and Independent Bank.

For more information, email president@coc.org or call (855) 627-2262.

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Hawks drop close game to Vipers

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By Shae Brophy

Saturday evening, the West Michigan Hawks hosted the #7 ranked Michigan Vipers. In what was a very close game, the Hawks were unable to finish their attempt at a comeback, and fell short by a final score of 20-13.

Things did not go according to plan for the Hawks as the game began. The Vipers were able to score three touchdowns in the first quarter, and take a 20-0 lead going in to the second quarter. From that point on, the Hawks defense took over, and the offense did the same.

Hawks wide receiver Dontae Ensley scored two touchdowns in the second quarter, giving the Hawks some much needed momentum going into the halftime break, with the score being 20-13. The Hawks defense came out firing in the third quarter, as well. Cornerback Omar Haynes had an interception, and the defense forced two turnovers on fourth down in the third quarter, giving the Hawks offense a chance to get back on track. After a couple of attempts from the Vipers side of the field, the Hawks were unable to find the end zone.

In the fourth quarter, with the score still 20-13 and four minutes remaining on the clock, the Hawks were given their biggest chance to get back in the game. Cornerback Joel Paasch intercepted the ball at the Hawks’ goal line, and returned it all the way back to the Vipers’ 40. The Hawks proceeded to get into the red zone, but with 1:06 left on the clock, a Vipers interception put the game away.

“The Vipers started out firing on all cylinders. They jumped out to a 14-0 lead really early but it didn’t bother us like it has in past games. We made them play our game from that point on, and we started to wear them down,” said Ensley. “After we made the score 20-13, we had all the hope in the world that we could shock not just the Vipers, but the entire league. It was a very hard fought game, but we came up just short in the end.”

Added head coach David Lange, “I thought we started the game a little flat footed, but we were able to pick it up. We played a heck of a game for the last three quarters, and our guys put it all on the line, it just didn’t work out for us in the end. The guys on our team have really come together more than ever the last couple of weeks, and it is really showing by how we are playing. This week, we play for home field advantage in the post-season. That is where our minds will be for the entire week.”

For details on the Hawks game this weekend in Detroit against the Motor City Jaguars, be sure to follow the West Michigan Hawks on Facebook!

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Human Health and Insect Surveys

 

OUT-Nature-niche-Swamp-milkweed-monarchSome people might wonder why the Monarch butterfly is currently proposed for Federal Endangered Species status. Monarch numbers have declined significantly during this new millennium and there are several contributing factors. One concern is the use of genetically modified organisms (GMO). GMO crops have been genetically altered to be herbicide resistant so more chemicals can be used on crops, allowing higher yield to support our growing human population.

It is difficult for farmers to purchase seeds that are not genetically modified. The increased use of chemicals in farm fields has eliminated many of the milkweeds that Monarch butterflies require to successfully migrate from Mexico to Michigan.

Lincoln Brower conducted studies in the 1960’s to gain understanding about how Monarchs acquire chemicals from milkweeds that protect them from bird predators. Milkweeds developed chemical protections through natural selection that protected them from most insects trying to feed on them. Most insects cannot feed on milkweeds because of the plant’s poisons. Monarchs, milkweeds bugs, milkweed longhorned beetles and some others have developed the ability to feed on the plant and have developed ways to isolate the poisons without being killed.

Brower fed Monarchs to blue jays and the birds became ill, vomited, and had an irregular heartbeat. The birds learned to not eat Monarchs or other orange insects.

Later other scientists studied cardiac glucocides ingested by monarch’s from the milkweeds to learn how they affect the heart. It was discovered that if a person has an irregular heartbeat, the chemical could be used to help correct the heartbeat. After learning its medical value, the chemical has been manufactured in the laboratory and used to save human lives.

If monarchs were allowed to become extinct before the study, we might never have made the life saving discovery. Many, if not most, medicines first come from studying plants, fungi, and other organisms to understand their role in nature niches. Scientists do not just throw chemicals together and test them to see how they might be useful. They look to the natural world.

Butterfly and other insect surveys conducted by citizen scientists aid in monitoring the abundance and distribution of insects. Similar surveys for birds, mammals, and plants help us understand trends for various species populations. Most species have not been studied for their value to humans. The value of many has been lost to extinction and will never reveal their life saving secrets. What if the chemical in milkweeds and Monarchs was lost before the life saving use was discovered?

The recent local butterfly survey conducted by citizens like you has value for fun and learning about local nature niche relationships. It also is important in tracking population changes. The information can be used to preserve species that save human lives. Some people require a known human use before they are willing to support saving a species from extinction. It is impossible to know the value of each species. It is estimated that between five and fifteen million species live on Earth and possibly 30 million. We have named about 1.5 million so far and, for most of those, we know little about their value for us.

Insects that live in your yard might be human life saving organisms provided we do not eliminate them with pesticide and herbicide use. You have life saving control that is important for future generations. If we eliminate species, their value disappears with them. Encourage people to live in harmony with nature rather than trying to dominate it.

Natural history questions or topic suggestions can be directed to Ranger Steve (Mueller) at odybrook@chartermi.net, or mail Ody Brook Nature Sanctuary, 13010 Northland Dr, Cedar Springs, MI 49319. 616-696-1753.

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Tips for growing a water-conservative garden

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(BPT) – Families can decorate their homes with colorful flowers and bring healthy, home-grown foods to the table with gardens. Gardening, however, can use quite a bit of water, and in states struck by drought it’s important to conserve as much water as possible.

If you’re living in an area of the country under drought advisement, you can still have a garden this year if you carefully plan what you plant, how you plant it, and how you give it the water it needs. Here are some water-conservation tips for growing a garden and using the least amount of water possible:

* Choose plants that thrive in drier conditions. Vegetables like corn, spinach, mustard greens and some beans are drought-tolerant, and desert rose and snake plant are beautiful landscaping plants that need less water.

* Water only where it’s needed so it doesn’t go to waste. When you use a lawn sprinkler to water your garden, much of the spray misses your flowers and vegetables and ends up on the grass, the sidewalk or the neighbor’s yard. Make certain the water gets to the roots of your plants via a drip-irrigation system like Raindrip. Raindrip irrigation uses 70 percent less water than underground sprinklers and frees the user from constantly hauling around hoses because the system stays in your garden all summer long.

The Raindrip kit, found at raindrip.com/drip-kits automates the entire process, saving you time and water. Just turn the kit on – without needing to get out the hose – and if you really want to conserve water, set the timer to let the water run for a specific amount of time each day. On rainy days, simply set the timer ahead to the next day so water is not wasted.

* Water at night or in the early morning when the sun is least likely to evaporate the moisture. This allows as much of the water to penetrate to your plant’s roots instead of evaporating.

* Build beds that encourage soil to stay damp as long as possible. Some ways to do this include digging the bed deeper to help loosen the soil prior to planting. This gives roots the chance to go reach deeper and gain access to where water might be more available. Also, once planted, cover the bed with a good layer of mulch or compost. This will help keep the soil good and moist.

* Raise vegetable crops during the rainy season. Many areas of the country have a cooler rainy season. Peas, leafy greens, radishes and other vegetables with short growing seasons are great for planting early in the spring and sometimes again late in the fall. Because temperatures are cooler and the early and late seasons tend to produce more rainfall, you can grow vegetables using less water.

Drought affects all areas of the country during different years, so even if you aren’t living in a drought situation now, you could experience one next year or several years down the road. It’s important to know what steps you can take to be more water conservative when it comes to your garden. Apply these tips to your vegetables and flowers this year to see how successful you can be at reducing the amount of water needed to grow your plants.

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Domestic call ends in arrest

Police cruisers blocked the entrance to Sarah Street during a domestic call on Wednesday, July 22. Post photo by J. Reed.

Police cruisers blocked the entrance to Sarah Street during a domestic call on Wednesday, July 22. Post photo by J. Reed.

A Cedar Springs man was taken into custody by police just after midnight July 23, after a four-hour long operation in Cedar Springs Mobile Estates.

The event started when a woman called 911 and reported that her boyfriend had beaten her up, and locked her out of the house, while holding their one year old in one hand, and a rifle in the other. She also reported that he said that if anyone came to the house, he would kill everyone inside.

The Kent County Sheriff Department responded to the scene, shortly before 8 p.m., July 22, and blocked off the intersections leading to 348 Sarah. The Michigan State Police Canine Unit was also on scene.

They wanted to talk to the man, and make sure the baby was safe.

The KCSD set up a perimeter, and repeatedly told the man through a megaphone to exit the home, but they got no response. The woman said he did not have a phone, so they tried to put a phone through the window, but still got no response. They sent in a robot, and saw him lying in bed, just before midnight. They then decided to go to the door of the residence, and the man surrendered peacefully. The baby was not harmed.

Several neighbors in the park were surprised by what had happened, and said the man was a good guy. One neighbor said they called him the snake man, because he walks around with a snake around his neck.

At press time, the man’s name had not been officially released. He is expected to face a domestic violence charge.

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Post celebrates 27 years

By Judy Reed, editor

POST-frontview-edited

The Cedar Springs Post is celebrating 27 years of being your hometown newspaper.

 

Any town’s history is only as good as its local newspaper.

Did you ever wonder how we know so much about our town’s history? It isn’t by word of mouth (though stories have been handed down); it isn’t taught in school; and it’s not from old movies or magazines. There are a variety of ways we know about the early days of Cedar Springs, or can piece it together. But the biggest resource we have for information is the early newspapers of this town. Our town fathers had the foresight to hold on to each issue, dating from 1867 to the 1970s and they are now on microfilm at the Cedar Springs Historical Museum.

The Cedar Springs Story, a history of our town written in the 1970s by Donna DeJonge and Sue Harrison, used those newspaper clippings as major source material (along with interviews, census data, plat maps, and much more) to give us a treasure trove of information. But the Cedar Springs Clipper shut down in the 1970s, leaving a hole that needed to be filled.

The Cedar Springs Post has filled that hole since 1988. Our newspapers are kept on file at the museum now. We print 5,000 copies each week for readers, and keep a few extra copies for ourselves. We have them bound into books each year, at The Post’s expense. One copy for us, and one for the museum. This year an anonymous donor stepped up to help with that expense. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!

The books are a record of what happened in our town, in the greater northern Kent County and western Montcalm County, each year. It’s our history—history that some day, another generation will research.

Life at The Post is different than it used to be. Gone is the hey day of having an editor, reporter, several stringers, photographers, a bustling sales staff, multiple designers, office manager and publisher. We have had to do what newspapers and businesses across the country have done—cut expenses. And that usually means cutting personnel. Our only revenue to support what we do is by local businesses advertising, or readers paying for things like announcements and classified ads. The problem is that just like everyone else, businesses are looking for ways to cut expenses. And too often, the newspaper advertising is the first to go. Businesses will often ask why they need to advertise in the local paper if people already know they are here? Or if they can do it free on Craigslist? Or Facebook?

There are many reasons. But the most important reason is this: it will help keep our town’s history alive for another generation.

We thank the local businesses who continue to support us, even in tough economic times.

Our readers have an equally important part in keeping the newspaper going. Keep sending us your stories and photos. This paper is about you—it’s your story we are chronicling. But the other important piece is for readers to shop at their local businesses. Let them know you read The Post, and that you saw their ad.

On July 28, it will be 27 years that we have served you. Twenty-seven years of writing your stories. We hope to be doing it for many more!

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Fire destroys family home

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This home caught fire Saturday morning. Photo from woodtv.com

 

Lightning struck an Oakfield Township home Saturday morning, July 18, sparking a blaze that destroyed the home.

The fire occurred shortly before 12 p.m. on Crawford Lake Trail, in the area of Wabasis and 15 Mile.

The homeowners, Craig and Lori Reppert were not there at the time, but reportedly received a call from a neighbor letting them know. A kitten died in the fire.

The family is currently staying in a hotel. A Gofundme page has been set up for them. If you’d like to help, you can visit it at: http://www.gofundme.com/reppertvanderslik.

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