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What’s “bugging” you in our streams?

 

N-Stream-insect-monitoring-volunteersIn many cases we think bugs are a nuisance, but bugs in a stream can be very useful.  Stream insects are a good measure of water quality.  Unlike fish, stream insects cannot move around much so they are less able to escape the effects of sediment and other pollutants that diminish water quality. Stream insects can also be easily identified.

Trout Unlimited National and Michigan Trout Unlimited will be holding a Stream Insect Monitoring Event on Saturday, October 1, 2016 from 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. at the Rockford Community Cabin – 220 North Monroe Street in Rockford. Volunteers will be assigned to a monitoring group with a team leader. Each group will collect and identify insects from different stream sites in the Rogue River watershed. You don’t need any experience with stream insects to participate and all ages are welcome.

What will you need?  Please RSVP to Jamie Vaughan at jvaughan@tu.org or 312-391-4760 if you would like to attend.  Lunch will be provided for all volunteers.  Please bring waders if you have them and dress for the weather conditions. Children under 16 years old need to be accompanied by an adult.

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It’s time for football!

This was the scene last fall after the Cedar Springs Red Hawks beat Northview and were champions for the second year in a row in the OK Bronze. They kick off their season tonight (Thursday, August 25) at Zeeland West. Photo by K. Alvesteffer and Rob Lalone.

This was the scene last fall after the Cedar Springs Red Hawks beat Northview and were champions for the second year in a row in the OK Bronze. They kick off their season tonight (Thursday, August 25) at Zeeland West. Photo by K. Alvesteffer and Rob Lalone.

Thursday, August 25, marks the first game of the 2016 season for the Cedar Springs Red Hawks, and you don’t want to miss it! They face off against the Division 4 state champs, Zeeland West, at Zeeland at 4 p.m. It’s the Grand Rapids Press game of the week.

Last year the Red Hawks clinched a share of the OK Bronze Championship, and shared it with Forest Hills Eastern. It was the second year in a row they were champions, as well as made it into the playoffs.

This year, the OK Bronze was dissolved, and the teams moved to other conferences. The Red Hawks are now in the OK White, where they will face teams such as Greenville, Northview, Forest Hills Northern (all from OK Bronze), Forest Hills Central, Lowell, and Grand Rapids Christian. Next week they play long time rival Sparta, at Sparta.

Come on out and cheer on your Cedar Springs Red Hawks!

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Sand Lake Bank robbery suspect arrested after crashing car

A bank robbery occured at the Sand Lake branch of Independent Bank on Thursday, August 18. Post photo by L. Allen.

A bank robbery occured at the Sand Lake branch of Independent Bank on Thursday, August 18. Post photo by L. Allen.

Bank robbery suspect, Edward Lucas

Bank robbery suspect, Edward Lucas

A bank robbery suspect was pulled from a burning vehicle last week Thursday by Kent County Sheriff Deputies after he crashed his car and the engine compartment burst into flames.

According to the Kent County Sheriff Department, a white male entered the Sand Lake branch of Independent Bank at 5 S. 3rd Street, about 4:06 p.m., Thursday, August 18. He passed the teller a note demanding money, and the teller placed an undisclosed amount of money in an envelope. As he exited the bank with the money, the silent alarm was activated, and 911 was called. He was last seen driving southbound on Northland Drive.

A detailed description of the suspect and his vehicle were given to dispatchers. His description was relayed to all police units in the northern part of Kent County as well as to Montcalm County dispatch.

Twenty minutes later, a vehicle that matched the description of the suspect’s vehicle was spotted on 17 Mile Road in Cedar Springs.  The deputy was able to see the driver, who also matched the description that had been broadcasted. The vehicle then ramped onto southbound US-131 as the deputy followed. Once a second deputy caught up to the first, they made a traffic stop, but the suspect then sped away, continuing south on US-131. Police said the vehicle reached speeds between 80- 90 mph before slowing down and exiting on Post Dr. The suspect vehicle turned onto Post Drive heading toward Belmont.

A very short time later the suspect’s vehicle appeared to cross into oncoming traffic, side swiping a Jeep Liberty before hitting a second vehicle head on. The suspect’s vehicle then left the roadway and rolled two or three times before coming to a rest.

As Deputies approached the suspect’s vehicle, the engine compartment burst into flames. Deputies were able to pull the suspect from the vehicle and use an extinguisher to extinguish the fire.

A Michigan State Police Sergeant who saw the crash, said that it looked like the suspect appeared to deliberately stray across the centerline to crash into the other vehicle.

Two individuals from the vehicle that was hit head on were treated at the scene and released. One person from the Jeep Liberty was transported to the hospital with minor injuries. The suspect was transported with much more severe injuries to Butterworth Hospital, where it was determined that he broke his leg, injured his neck, and suffered a severe contusion to his chest.

The local FBI office will be handling the actual robbery and the Kent County Sheriff Department will be handling the pursuit. Also assisting on scene was the Michigan State Police and Plainfield Township Fire and Rescue.

According to paperwork filed in Federal Court this week, the suspect is Edward Ray Lucas, 49, who also was convicted of bank robbery in 1999 in Michigan.

The Sand Lake Police Department posted the following thanks on their Facebook page: “The Sand Lake Police Department and the entire community would like to give a huge shout out to the Kent County Sheriff’s Department for their quick response and apprehension of a possible bank robber that occurred at the Independent Bank in the village of Sand Lake. God Bless each and every one of you.”

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Bicyclist dies of crash injuries

David Draugalis

David Draugalis

 

A Walker man who was struck by a vehicle while bicycling on the White Pine Trail has died of his injuries.

According to Sgt. Corey Luce, of the Kent County Sheriff Department, David Draugalis, 49, of Walker, was bicycling southbound on the White Pine Trail about 7 p.m., on Tuesday, August 9, when he was hit by a westbound pickup truck while crossing 16 Mile Road.

A witness bicycling behind him reported that Draugalis did not stop at the stop sign before proceeding into the intersection.

Another witness, who was traveling behind the pick up truck, verified that the driver of the pickup, Jesse Foster, 36, of Cedar Springs was not speeding.

Draugalis was sent to Spectrum Butterworth Hospital with what appeared at the time to be non-life-threatening injuries. However, some internal injuries were discovered at the hospital. MLive.com reported that he suffered from a ruptured aorta, collapsed lung, broken pelvis, broken arm, and road rash.

Draugalis died of his injuries on Sunday, August 21, 12 days after the crash. He was married just a few weeks ago to his wife, Nita.

Sgt. Luce said that the case is still under investigation.

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The Post travels to Colombia

N-Post-travels-Colombia-McFarland

The Post traveled with Harold McFarland, of Cedar Springs, on a business trip to Colombia July 31 to August 6. While there, Harold visited the cities of Barranquilla and Medellin. The picture with The Post was taken in Medellin.

Thank you, Harold, 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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Library awards backpacks to readers

Rabeka Reeves was one of four readers that won backpacks for reading during August.

Rabeka Reeves was one of four readers that won backpacks for reading during August.

After the great summer reading outreach, the Cedar Springs Library gave students an opportunity  to read for a chance to win one of four backpacks filled with school supplies.

They had 21 students read. They turned in 104 tickets, each representing 2.5 hours of reading or 260 hours. The students who won are:  Rabeka Reeves, Benson Vides, Siena Vides and Ashleigh Tanis.

 

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Six tornadoes hit West Michigan 

Tornado damage at Burton and Burlingame SW, Wyoming. Photo credit Lacey Wakefield.

Tornado damage at Burton and Burlingame SW, Wyoming. Photo credit Lacey Wakefield.

The National Weather Service confirmed that six tornadoes occurred in West Michigan on Saturday afternoon, August 20, including two in the Grand Rapids metro area.

Damaging straight-line wind gusts have also been noted near the tornado paths.

Sirens went off here in Cedar Springs, and while we had some intense rain, we didn’t suffer the effects of the tornado. According to the National Weather Service, the following areas in West Michigan experienced tornadoes:

EF-1 tornado damage was found between Bangor and Grand Junction, ending in far southern Allegan County.

An EF-1 tornado touched down just southwest of Bangor Michigan on Saturday, August 20th about 1:13 p.m. and tracked northeast through town. The entire city lost power as well as hundreds of trees. Multiple structures in Bangor were damaged as well. Roof damage was noted on Main Street. New Beginning Ministries and the Bangor Police Department sustained damage. The tornado then tracked further northeast, causing significant damage at True Blue Farms along County Road 215 and the Columbia Township Hall in Grand Junction. The tornado tracked into extreme southern Allegan County before lifting about 2.5 miles northeast of Grand Junction on 103rd Ave west of 52nd Street about 1:31 p.m.

A tornado (EF-1) southeast of Fennville, to east of Hamilton, in Allegan County.

Tornado damage in Bangor. Photo credit South Haven Emergency Services.

Tornado damage in Bangor. Photo credit South Haven Emergency Services.

After the first tornado of the day (EF-1) tracked from Bangor to north of Grand Junction, the second tornado of the day began 6 miles southeast of Fennville about 1:42 p.m. and tracked to 4 miles northeast of Hamilton and was rated EF-1. It ended about 2:10 p.m.

A tornado (EF-1) south of Jamestown in far northern Allegan County and Southeastern Ottawa County.

The day’s third tornado, also rated EF-1, began 2 miles northwest of Burnips in extreme north-central Allegan County about 2:18 p.m. and tracked to 2 miles southeast of Jamestown in extreme southeast Ottawa County. It ended at 2:26 p.m.

EF-0 tornado damage was found in Grandville and Wyoming. EF-0 to EF-1 wind damage was also found south and east of this tornado across parts of Byron Township, Wyoming, Grand Rapids, and East Grand Rapids.

An EF-0 tornado touched down near 44th Street and Ivanrest Ave SW in Grandville Michigan on Saturday August 20th about 2:34 p.m. and continued on the ground along a varying path through Grandville and Wyoming before lifting near the intersection of Nagel Avenue SW and Chicago Drive SW about 2:44 p.m. Though the tornado remained west of US-131, it did zigzag across a number of major roads/intersections in the Grand Rapids metro area including Ivanrest Avenue SW just north of Rivertown Parkway; the intersection of Byron Center Ave SW and 36th Street; 28th Street SW near Sharon Avenue SW; Porter Street SW near Boulevard Drive SW; and Burlingame Avenue SW just north of Burton Street SW. Along the path, hundreds of trees were damaged or knocked over resulting in tens of thousands of power outages. Many homes and a number of vehicles were damaged from fallen trees. A couple notable locations the tornado moved through include the Wyoming Middle School football field where a set of football field goal posts were bent by soccer goals, and Battjes Park and Prairie Park where a number of trees were damaged or uprooted.

In addition to an EF-0 tornado that moved through portions of Grandville and Wyoming on August 20th, National Weather Service damage surveys identified areas of straight line wind damage in Kent County from August 20th storms.

Estimated winds of around 100mph, were equivalent to EF-1 wind damage. A small area of wind damage caused by estimated 100 mph winds was found near M6 between Ivanrest Ave SW and Kenowa Avenue SW. South of M6, Ironwood Golf Course saw the worst of the damage losing a significant number of large trees. North of M6, just west of Wilson Ave SW along 64th Street, a number of very large trees were uprooted causing significant damage to one home.

Estimated winds of 65 to 75 mph equivalent to EF-0 wind damage were  also seen. A long stretch of straight line wind damage occurred from just northeast of the intersection of M6 and Wilson Avenue SW through East Grand Rapids. Notable locations that were impacted by straight line winds include Maple Hill Golf Course and Pinery Park. This damage was mainly to trees with a few fallen trees resulting in damage to homes.

Northeast Grand Rapids EF-0 Tornado. 

A brief tornado touched down in Kent County about 2:50 p.m. near Perkins Avenue NE between Leonard Street NE and Knapp Street NE. Tree damage and some property damage from fallen trees occurred as the result of this brief tornado, which lifted about 2:52 p.m.

A tornado (EF-1) between Orleans and Fenwick in Ionia and Montcalm Counties.

Tornado damage began just east of the small town of Orleans about 3:10 p.m. and moved northeast where it crossed M-44, bringing several large trees down, one of which fell on a house. The tornado then crossed West Long Lake Road where the concrete block wall of a garage was blown out and the wind peeled shingles off the roof of a house. A path of tree damage about a hundred yards wide continued to the northeast and narrowed as it crossed the Montcalm County line. The last damage noted was a few downed trees on East Boyer Road about 3.5 miles southeast of Sheridan. It lifted about 3:25 p.m.

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CBDT receives donation for veteran’s memorial clock tower

Dan Brown, left, presents CBDT president Kurt Mabie with a check to go towards a Veteran’s Memorial Clock Tower. Courtesy photo.

Dan Brown, left, presents CBDT president Kurt Mabie with a check to go towards a Veteran’s Memorial Clock Tower. Courtesy photo.

Dan Brown, co-organizer of the Annual Fallen Heroes Golf Outing, presented a check to the Community Building Development Team (CBDT) at their August Team Meeting, to go toward the Veteran’s Memorial Clock Tower to be built at the corner of Main and W. Maple Street.

The golf outing is held each year to raise funds to maintain Veteran’s Memorial Park, which runs east of Main on Oak Street. The $1,576 check presented to the CBDT represented half of the net profits earned from the 2016 Fallen Heroes golf event, which includes team entries, hole sponsorships, and donations.

Brown’s relatives Alisha and Stevie Brown also assist with this fundraiser event.

Brown has plans to expand the park along the north side of Cedar Creek and possibly on the west side of Main St.

Kurt Mabie, president of the CBDT, gratefully accepted the donation with a statement securing these donated funds to be earmarked for the Veteran’s Memorial Clock Tower. Brown, Rose Powell, and Pat Ensley, all CBDT members, are currently organizing a community group and working with the local American Legion to erect a bell tower. This tribute will be provided to honor our community’s veterans as part of the “Heart of Cedar Springs” on the south corner of the library lot. A guest speaker is scheduled to explain one possible Memorial Tower design at the September 20 CBDT meeting being held at Hilltop School at 6 p.m. All are invited to attend these informative meetings and get involved with any of several committees or activities.

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Man arrested in hit and run

Benjamin A. Vander Ploeg

Benjamin A. Vander Ploeg

A Grand Rapids man is being held on $200,000 bond in the Kent County Jail after he struck a bicyclist then left the scene in Cannon Township.

According to the Kent County Sheriff Department, the crash occurred on Wednesday, August 17, at 8:19 p.m. on Cannonsburg Road, east of Chauncey Avenue. Witnesses at the scene reported that a 66-year-old bicyclist, traveling westbound on the shoulder, had been struck from behind by a westbound white passenger car, who then left the scene.

The victim, Charles Lewis Driggers, 66, was transported by Aeromed to Spectrum Butterworth Hospital in critical condition.

Investigators with the Kent County Sheriff’s Office located and seized the vehicle involved in the crash, and charged Benjamin A. Vander Ploeg, of Grand Rapids, with driving while license suspended causing serious injury, and failing to stop at a serious injury accident in relation to this incident.

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Owner of Mexican restaurant chains sentenced to prison 

 

A Hudsonville man that owns 90 Mexican restaurants across five states, including 24 in Michigan, will spend the next year in federal prison for tax evasion.

Marco Cuellar, 37, was sentenced in U.S. District Court this week to serve 12 months in prison for filing false tax returns, U.S. Attorney Patrick A. Miles, Jr. announced Tuesday.

Before his sentencing, Cuellar was also required to pay approximately $370,000.00 in restitution to the Internal Revenue Service in back taxes and penalties.

According to his plea-agreement with the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Cuellar filed false tax returns for 2008 through 2012 with the Internal Revenue Service. During those years, Cuellar skimmed cash from his restaurants located in Michigan and then failed to report that income in his tax returns for those years; as a result, Cuellar avoided paying taxes on $607,914.00 of unreported income.

“Successful business owners have the same legal duty to pay their taxes as any other taxpayer, and any business owner who uses his or her business to cheat the tax-paying public has to understand that he or she runs the real risk of winding up as a defendant in Federal court,” stated U.S. Attorney Miles. “Mr. Cuellar ran that risk, and now he’s on his way to prison.”

“Cheating on your taxes is the same as stealing,” said Special Agent in Charge, Manny Muriel, of IRS Criminal Investigation. “Individuals who corruptly violate the law to further their business interests and intentionally evade paying their fair share of taxes undermine public confidence in our tax system and unfairly disadvantage businesses that follow the rules. As Marco Cuellar has discovered, operating outside the law and failing to pay taxes has severe consequences.”

As a citizen of Mexico who is present in the United States as a lawful permanent resident, Cuellar also faces removal proceedings back to Mexico once he is released from the Bureau of Prisons.

Cuellar owned/co-owned over 90 restaurants in MI, MS, IL, OH and LA. There were 24 in MI incorporated as “S” corporations under names: “La Pinata, Inc.” (one location); “El Burrito Loco, Inc.” (five locations); “Loz Aztecas, Inc.” (three locations); “Cinco de Mayo, Inc.” (two locations); “El Ranchero, Inc.” (one location); “El Rancho, Inc.” (four locations); “Los Cabos, Inc.” (one location); “San Marcos, Inc.” (three locations); “La Herradura, Inc.” (two locations); “Loco Burrito, Inc.” (one location); and “Don Luis, Inc.” (one location).

Restaurant locations included Kalamazoo, Grand Rapids, Big Rapids, Battle Creek, Mt. Pleasant, Allendale, Rockford, Petoskey, Ludington, Holland, Gaylord, Novi, Grand Haven, and Traverse City.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Hagen W. Frank, and was investigated by Special Agents of the IRS Criminal Investigation Division and Homeland Security Investigations, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

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