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A tail of another color

 

Ron Parker sent us this photo of an unusual looking squirrel.

Ron Parker sent us this photo of an unusual looking squirrel.

Last summer the Post printed several photos sent in my readers that showed black squirrels with a white tail, or white markings on their tails. Recently, we received this photo from Ron Parker, of Courtland Township, that showed this black squirrel, with a reddish-brown tail.

“We get about one squirrel each year that visits our bird feeders, and today was the day,” said Ron. “Most of the time they are not note worthy but, in this case, I thought I should share this picture with you. If I didn’t know any better, I might suggest that this black squirrel’s momma had some explaining to do to her mate when this guy was born. Since we seldom see squirrels in our yard, I feel blessed to have seen such an unusually colored squirrel, and hope to see him or her again.”

When we ran the story last year about the black squirrels with a white tail, Ranger Steve Mueller explained that they were genetic mutations. But, like the deer with the white face, we still like to see unusual animals!

Thanks, Ron, for sending us your photo!

Send your

 to the Post. Send by email to news@cedarspringspost.com, or by mail to PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319.

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Man honored for saving boy’s life

Tpr Tim Cruttenden (Lakeview Post – Investigating Officer), Mr. Drew Trudell (employee of Mr. Hansen’s) Mr. Kenneth Hansen, Mr. Brian Hansen (employee of Mr. Hansen and brother to Kenneth)  and F/Lt Kevin Sweeney (Lakeview Post Commander).

Tpr Tim Cruttenden (Lakeview Post – Investigating Officer), Mr. Drew Trudell (employee of Mr. Hansen’s) Mr. Kenneth Hansen, Mr. Brian Hansen (employee of Mr. Hansen and brother to Kenneth) and F/Lt Kevin Sweeney (Lakeview Post Commander).

On June 3, 2015, the Michigan State Police (MSP) recognized Mr. Kenneth Hansen, of Crystal, with a Distinguished Citizen award for his heroic actions in saving the life of a child during a dog attack.

On May 4, 2015, while working at a construction site in Seville Township, about 5:10 p.m., Mr. Hansen and his work crew heard the screams of a child at a nearby residence.

The child, an 8-year-old boy, went over to visit his step-grandmother. He was familiar with the dogs there, four rottweilers, which were in a fenced in back yard of the residence. As the child walked into the back yard, one dog began barking at him. Another dog knocked the child down and the four dogs attacked him.

It was then that Hansen heard the screams, and saw the four dogs attacking the boy. He jumped over the fence and carried the child to safety inside the house, even with the dogs continuing to bite at the child. The boy suffered 22 bite wounds, and was treated at Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital and released that evening.

“There is no doubt in my mind that the actions of Mr. Hansen saved the life of this child,” stated F/Lt Kevin Sweeney, commander of the Michigan State Police Lakeview Post. “Mr. Hansen knowingly, and without hesitation, put himself in harm’s way to save the life of another.”

The recognition was given to him in front of his work crew, at a job site in Oakfield Township.

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Student charged in bomb threats

 

A 16-year-old from the Belmont area is being charged with making a bomb threat against Rockford High School.

According to the Kent County Sheriff Department, Rockford Public Schools and several employees have been the target of harassing and threatening telephone calls since October 2014.

A joint investigation with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Kent County Sheriff Department, and Rockford Department of Public Safety, identified the local student as one of several people involved.

On June 17, 2015, the evidence involving the student was reviewed by the Kent County

Prosecutor’s Office, resulting in the 16-year-old male being charged with False Report or Threat of Terrorism (a 20 year felony). The Kent County Sheriff Department said they would be requesting restitution in this investigation.

There are additional suspects that are from outside of Michigan or in another country. They are not releasing details on any of the other suspects at this time due to the ongoing investigation.

The Sheriff Department said that law enforcement and the Rockford Public Schools worked closely to ensure the students were safe at all times. “We want to thank the parents, students, staff, and community for their patience and support during this very time-consuming and meticulous investigation,” said Detective William Marks.

Anyone with additional information is asked to call the Kent County Sheriff Department at 616-632-6357 or Silent Observer at 616-774-2345.

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Solon seeks public input on proposed park plan

 

Solon Township will conduct a public input session for the Township’s 5-year Parks and Recreation Plan on Tuesday, June 30, at 6:30 p.m. at the Solon Township Hall.

The purpose of this meeting is to gather input from the township residents concerning current and future opportunities for parks, recreation, and trails in the community. The comments and ideas received from this meeting will be used to develop the 2015 Parks and Recreation Plan Update.

Watch for information on future sessions on the Solon Township website and facebook page.

The final public presentation of the Solon Township Parks Master Plan will be held on Wednesday, July 1 at 11:00 am at the Solon Township Hall. This presentation will be attended by the Township Board and is open to the public for viewing and comment.

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Sheriff announces new Chief Deputy

Kevin Kelley was promoted to Chief Deputy

Kevin Kelley was promoted to Chief Deputy

Sheriff Lawrence Stelma announced that Kevin Kelley was promoted to Chief Deputy effective Monday, June 8, 2015.

He replaces Michelle LaJoye-Young, who was recently promoted to Undersheriff, after Jon Hess retired.

Kelley began his career at the Sheriff Department on June 5, 1989 as a County Patrol Officer. He was promoted to Sergeant on the Road on January 13, 2003, and promoted to Road Patrol Lieutenant on February 19, 2007. On January 3, 2011, he was promoted to Captain assigned to the Road Patrol and, in August 2012, he was put in charge of the Detective Bureau, Road Patrol, and Vice Unit.

Kelley graduated from Grand Rapids Central High School. He obtained his Associates in Arts from Grand Rapids Community College and attended Grand Valley State University. Kevin graduated from Northwestern University School of Police Staff and Command in November 2012.

“Please join us in congratulating Kevin on his promotion to Chief Deputy,” said Sheriff Stelma.

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Renaissance Faire a hit

N-Ren-Faire1-King-and-Queen-Chamber-photo

You may have thought you were in a time warp if you ventured out to Morley Park last weekend, or happened to get ice cream at KC Kones and Coneys last Saturday and saw people dressed like they were from medieval times. That’s because the Cedar Springs Area Chamber of Commerce hosted its second annual Renaissance Faire last weekend, and over 300 people attended the event.

“We have many people who said they can’t wait for next year’s faire,” said Chamber President Perry Hopkins. “Some of the people that travel the Renaissance circuit said it was very impressive for a second year faire.”

He said that the cast loved being part of the Ice Cream with Queen Victoria at KC Kones and Coneys.

Hopkins estimated they had approximately 175 people wandering around the park on Friday, and they counted 35 people who stayed to watch the Disney animated movie Robin Hood.

Post photo by J. Reed

Post photo by J. Reed

N-Ren-Faire3-Chamber-photo“Saturday, with the weather being better than the other two days, we had at one time about 325 people in the park,” said Hopkins. “Some people came back all three days of the event. With people coming and going and no admission it is hard to get a total number of attendees, so we can only go with how many were there when we did a head count.” About 15-20 vendors and entertainers took advantage of the opportunity to camp in the park.

The Cedar Springs Area Chamber of Commerce and Cedar Springs Renaissance Faire Committee are grateful to all who volunteered their time and contributions to make it an awesome event.

Post photo by J. Reed

Post photo by J. Reed

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Brewing Company buys Liquor Hut building

Post photo by J. Reed

Post photo by J. Reed

By Judy Reed

The Cedar Springs Brewing Company is taking shape at the southwest corner of Main and Maple Streets, and they now also own the building next door, formerly the home of Liquor Hut.

According to David Ringler, construction is on schedule—the structural masonry is complete and the steel framing is in place this week. “It’s been fun over the past couple of weeks to watch all the activity,” he said. “We should be seeing the walls and complete enclosure shortly and the flooring is scheduled for early July, followed by the start of equipment installation.”

Ringler said their brewhouse is custom designed and currently in fabrication locally in Belding, by Digital Fabrication, in partnership with Psycho Brew. “This is their first large system, but we wanted to work locally if possible, rather than commissioning a system from elsewhere,” he explained.

The company closed on the deal to purchase the neighboring building at 81 N. Main a few weeks ago. Ringler said they had offered to buy the building from Walker Liqours six months ago, but could not come to an agreement. About six weeks ago, those discussions started again.

Walker Liquors maintained their retail package liquor license, but the store is permanently closed. “They are still in the process of removing some of their equipment this week and we will begin further clean up of the building in the coming weeks,” said Ringler. “We don’t have any firm plans in place for the building, as our priority is getting the brewery and restaurant open, but we are seeking a retail tenant for the front space that will complement our project.”

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Local principal to umpire College World Series

Michael Duffy has been umpiring for college baseball since 1985.

Michael Duffy has been umpiring for college baseball since 1985.

Michael Duffy

Michael Duffy

 

By Judy Reed

This last week has been a dream come true for Cedar Trails principal Michael Duffy. After a 30-year love affair with umpiring college baseball games, he is finally officiating at the College World Series, in Omaha, Nebraska, which began last Saturday, June 13.

Duffy, who umpires for the Big Ten, Mid-American, and Big East Conferences, began umpiring college baseball in 1985, for smaller colleges. But his roots go much deeper. He played Little League as a boy, and then began to umpire Little League games when he was a high school baseball player. After graduation, he umpired high school games.

In 1985, he was approached by Terry Bocian, Athletic Director at Aquinas. “I knew Terry, and he said he needed an ump for just one game,” explained Duffy. But he was hooked. “It became a love affair,” he said.

Duffy at first umpired for smaller colleges, like Aquinas and Grand Rapids Community College. He’s been doing the Big 10 since 1995. “My mentor, Bruce Doane Jr., took me under his wing, showed me the ropes, then said you are ready to go out on your own,” he recalled.

What does Duffy like about umpiring? “I’ve always been a sports enthusiast. At first, I needed to make some money, but I loved being around sports and the competition. After awhile, I realized that ‘Hey, I’m pretty good at this.’ Then other people started to notice my skill level. It’s really just a thrill to be a part of it,” he said.

This year, Duffy umpired 42 Division 1 baseball games, which take place on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. The Post asked Duffy how that worked with his job as principal at Cedar Trails Elementary. “The school has been really good about it. Cedar Springs allowed me to restructure my contract so that I work less days,” he explained.

Duffy has been working hard to get to the College World Series. Over the years he has worked several NCAA Division I Regional Tournaments and one NCAA Division I Super Regional Tournament. He has also worked NCAA Division II, III, and JUCO Regional Tournaments. He has also umpired three baseball high school State Championships. With all that on his resume, there was still one thing they wanted him to do to reach the College World Series: take off a few pounds. Duffy did that, and this year, he finally got the call.

While Duffy didn’t have his schedule when we talked last week, he said that people could recognize him by the number he will be wearing—22. He got to choose his number, and it was a heartfelt decision. “My favorite number is 12. I wore it in school as a quarterback, and in baseball. But I decided the number to choose was #22—to honor the person who has sacrificed the most—my wife, Deb. That was her number in school, when she played softball,” he explained. “So with thankful thoughts, I chose 22.”

Duffy will be in Omaha through June 25. The series started on Saturday, June 13.

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Man dies, three injured in ATV accident

 

Jesse Turner

Jesse Turner

A Tyrone Township man died last weekend, after his ATV collided with a car.

According to the Kent County Sheriff Department, the crash occurred about 11:08 p.m., Saturday, June 13, at Red Pine Dr and 20 Mile Rd, in Tyrone Township. Deputy Thomas reported that Jesse Turner, 28, of Tyrone Township, was traveling westbound on 20 Mile Road, on his Polaris RZRXP900, when he failed to stop for the stop sign, and collided with a GMC Jimmy, traveling southbound on Red Pine Drive.

The driver of the Jimmy, John Chapen, 42, of Grandville, was transported to Spectrum Butterworth by Life EMS, with a fractured pelvis. Passenger Sierra Chapen, 16, of Grandville, was transported to Spectrum Butterworth by Life EMS, with neck pain. The other passenger, Stacey Wolbert, 40, also of Grandville, suffered injuries to her abdomen, right knee, and lower back, and was also transported to Spectrum Butterworth by Life EMS.

The driver of the ATV was transported to Spectrum Butterworth, by Rockford Ambulance, but later died, as a result of his injuries. Police believe alcohol may have been a factor in the accident.

Kent City Fire and Rescue assisted at the scene.

The crash is still under investigation.

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The Post travels to Washington

N-Post-travels-honor-flight-Allington

On June 2, George Allington and 60 other veterans and their helpers flew to Washington D.C. on an honor flight to visit all the monuments, such as WWII, Vietnam, Unknown soldier, etc. While there, they watched the changing of the guard. George was amazed with Arlington Cemetery, which is the final resting place for over 400,000 active duty service members, veterans, and their families. It covers 624 acres.

George traveled with his daughter, Mary Coonen.

Thanks, George and Mary, 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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