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Building bonds between Dads and kids

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

(Family Features)

For many adults, the times spent with their fathers are among their most treasured memories. However, today as many as one in three children in America live in a home where a biological father is not present.

The reasons for paternal absence can vary. For example, fathers may stay distant from a child out of fear of being inadequate or failing the child. Despite difficult circumstances, in many cases there are solutions that allow fathers to maintain an important presence in their children’s lives.

The following are many of the common reasons for fathers’ absences along with guidance on how to help resolve the situation, provided by Dr. Janet Taylor, an author and community psychiatrist.

Guilt

Many fathers have guilt for not having the financial means to buy things for their kids. Fathers need to understand their children love them because they are their father and not because of the “things” they give them.

“A father’s time and involvement in a child’s life is a true gift,” Dr. Taylor says. “Give the gift of your time and it will mean the world to them.”

Family Conflict

Disputes among family members may also keep a father away. When conflicts arise with a mother, grandparents or other family members, a child should know he or she is not the problem, Dr. Taylor cautions.

Doubts about paternity can be an especially trying source of family conflict. A paternity test can help eliminate this uncertainty. To help address paternity questions, Identigene offers an affordable DNA paternity test kit that is sold in drug stores and supercenters and is 100 percent accurate.

Dr. Taylor advocates for fathers to make an effort to spend time with their children in the midst of conflict, even if circumstances dictate that time together is in a group setting rather than one-on-one.

Failed Personal Connections 

Another reason a father might stay away is the result of a lack of a father figure in his own life. Dr. Taylor calls parenting the ultimate “on the job training.” She recommends working to make a connection to break the cycle from repeating in the next generation.

Fathers Have Value

“Fathers also need to recognize their value in their kids’ lives,” Dr. Taylor says. A recent survey sponsored by Identigene found that most Americans who are looking to address a paternity issue understand there are many benefits of having a biological father in a child’s life, including providing the child with a sense of family and self (73%), enhancing the child’s self-esteem (70%) and offering the child with a masculine parental figure (69%). According to Fatherhood.org, children who do not have a father figure in their life are more likely to endure financial hardship, use drugs, quit school or engage in criminal behavior.

“This data serves as a testament that a father’s active participation does make a difference,” Dr. Taylor says. “Hopefully it encourages those fathers who have not had a role in their child’s life to develop a bond that can truly re-shape a young person’s entire childhood.”

For more information, visit www.DNAtesting.com.

 

 

 

 

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Help Dad perfect his grill skills this season

FATH-Perfect-grill-skills(StatePoint) The seasoned griller commands an arsenal of experience and recipes, all having been painstakingly passed through the generations and perfected over time and temperature. The origin of these tasty traditions usually can be found in family, and the one often deserving the credit is dear old Dad.

Southern grilling guru Fred Thompson, author of the new book “Williams-Sonoma Grill Master” a collection of back-to-basics tips and recipes, recalls the influence of his father as early as nine years old. “Every Saturday night my father grilled rib-eye steaks. I wanted to keep up with daddy so I hung out at the grill,” he says. “I was fascinated with what my father could do.”

This Father’s Day and BBQ season, try honoring the Old Man with delicious tradition.  So light that fire!

Take a page out of Thompson’s book and learn the secrets to grilling the perfect steak:

• Buy good meat: Grass-fed and grass-finished beef tastes better and has a bolder flavor that holds up particularly well against the lick of the grill’s flames.

• Simple seasoning: Sprinkle steak liberally on both sides with salt and pepper when you take it out of the refrigerator. Brush steaks on both sides with a little olive oil (not extra virgin). This facilitates the heat transfer, so you can get an evenly browned crust and a delicious steak house flavor.

• Timing is important: There’s nothing worse than a rubbery, tasteless overcooked steak. Professionals use touch to gauge doneness, and so can you. Touch your index finger to your cheek. When the meat feels this way, the steak is rare. Touch the tip of your nose. That firmness equates to medium. Your forehead is well done. “But please don’t go there,” says Thompson.

• Let it rest: If you cut into a piece of beef as soon as it comes off the grill, you will lose precious juices. Give the proteins in the steak the opportunity to unwind a little bit from the heat they have just experienced. Let most steaks rest at least five to 10 minutes to give the juices time to redistribute evenly throughout the meat.

• Goes great with: Skip the steak sauce. A pat of plain or compound butter is the perfect finish.

Even experienced grillers need new tips, tools and tricks to perfect their steaks, ribs and dry rub techniques. Consider gifting dad a successful grilling season with “Grill Master.” Grill tips, BBQ recipes and information about the book can be found at www.WeldonOwen.com.

“There’s a mystique that happens with smoke and flame that you just can’t get any way else, and it’s pretty simple to create,” says Thompson.

 

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Easter Coloring Contest Winners

Age Group: 3-4 yrs

 

Morgan Sanders age 3 of Cedar Springs

Morgan Sanders
age 3 of Cedar Springs

 

Age Group: 5-7 yrs

Hannah Rae Dempsey age 6 of Cedar Springs

Hannah Rae Dempsey
age 6 of Cedar Springs

 

Age Group: 8-10 yrs

Ryan Hebert age 9 of Cedar Springs

Ryan Hebert
age 9 of Cedar Springs

 

Winners may pick up their prize Easter Baskets at The POST, 36 E. Maple St., Cedar Springs 10 am to 5pm Mon.-Fri. Or call The POST at 616-696-3655 to make pick up arrangements.

 

 

 

 

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Winning treats to please kids and adults this Easter

EAS-Winning-Easter-treats-1-webFamily Features

 

When you think of Easter goodies there’s a good chance the flavorful jelly bean comes to mind – a big hit with kids young and old. But, because flavor preferences change with age, it stands to reason that not all Easter gifts are created equal.

So, how do you navigate the taste bud temperament of loved ones so everyone will receive special Easter treats they love? With more than 100 flavors of jelly beans under their belts, Jelly Belly Candy Company has an idea of what types of flavors will be more popular with both kids and grownups.

“When we talked to kids, we learned that the more complex or exotic the flavor, the less likely they were to enjoy it,” said Lisa Brasher, executive vice chairman and a fifth generation candy maker for company.

As a renowned candy expert and author of “Candy: The Sweet History,” Beth Kimmerle added, “Classic flavors like apples and berries are typically the most popular with the younger crowd. Adults crave the more adventurous flavors.”

Understanding age and preferences

Flavor innovation keeps a company like Jelly Belly on its toes. As people age, their taste buds mature and become more open to those complex flavor profiles children shy away from. The coconut flavor is a great example of this.

“Although our panel of kids gave coconut low scores, when you look at adults who purchase our jelly beans, it’s is a very popular one,” explained Brasher.

EAS-Winning-Easter-treats-2-webFlavors for everyone

By taking the feedback from children of all ages into consideration, the jelly bean company assembled its youthful Kids Mix, a collection of 20 flavors kids love. The mix makes it easier for anyone to pick winning flavors like cotton candy, berry blue and watermelon for Easter treats. More adult-friendly flavors like licorice, cinnamon and buttered popcorn are purposefully absent from the mix.

According to Brasher, there was one surprise among the company’s findings, “We were shocked when caramel corn didn’t crack the top twenty flavors with the kids,” she said.

One sweet agreement

Despite their palate differences, kids and adults can agree on one thing—very cherry is their top pick. It’s the most popular Jelly Belly bean flavor in America, placing among the top two since its debut almost 40 years ago. For a brief period, it was upset by buttered popcorn and fell to the number two position, but it’s been consistently the winning flavor since.

“I don’t see that changing any time soon,” said Brasher.

Treat tips

When it comes to giving the best Easter treats, keep these tips in mind:

For the little ones: Give them what they want. Stick to tried and true fruity flavors and other kid-friendly tastes like cotton candy and toasted marshmallow.

For the grownups: Go with complex flavors and new flavor experiences, such as the unique offerings of chili mango, draft beer and cappuccino.

Save and celebrate: Be sure to hold onto your favorite jelly bean flavors to enjoy on National Jelly Bean Day. This year, it’s just two days after Easter on April 22nd.

Use these gift tips and you’ll see many smiles on Easter morning. For other flavorful ideas, visit www.jellybelly.com.

 

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Easter services 2014

 

God wants a relationship with you. Take time to worship at one of the following churches during Holy Week next week and let God prepare your heart to celebrate the joy of Easter!

 

Community Good Friday Service

April 18: You are invited to join together in worship with the churches of Cedar Springs for our community Good Friday service at 7 p.m. on Friday, April 18, at The Springs Church, 135 N. Grant Street, Cedar Springs. Childcare will be provided. This program is being sponsored by the Cedar Springs Ministerial Association.

 

Resurrection Celebration

Cedar Springs High School – 204 E. Muskegon, Cedar Springs

April 19: Would you like a new way to celebrate Easter this year? Or, are you wondering how Easter is even relevant to life today? Either way, you won’t want to miss Resurrection Celebration, coming to Cedar Springs High School on Saturday, April 19 at 2 and 7 p.m. This community production is a musical drama highlighting the birth, life, death and struggles of Jesus Christ. Bring your friends and family to see this exciting event. Admission is free, but tickets are encouraged. Pick up tickets at The Springs Church from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Thursday; and at The Cedar Springs Post, Cedar Springs Public Library, Main Street Restaurant, Alpha Omega Coffee and Games, and Perry’s Place, all in downtown Cedar Springs.

 

Blessed John Paul II Catholic Parish

3110 17 Mile Road, Cedar Springs

April 17: Holy Thursday. Lamb dinner and potluck starting at 5:30, Mass of the Lord’s Supper at 7:00 PM

April 18: Good Friday. 12:00 PM The Celebration of the Lord’s Passion, individual Confession at 1:30 PM

April 19: Holy Saturday: Easter Vigil Mass at 8:00 PM

April 20: Easter Sunday: 10:00 Am Mass and 5:00 PM Mass

 

Mary Queen of Apostles Catholic Parish

1 W. Maple Street, Sand Lake

April 18: Good Friday: 8:00 AM Morning Prayer, 6:30 PM Stations of the Cross

April 20: Easter Sunday: 8:00 AM Mass, 9:30 AM Mass

 

Calvary Assembly of God

810 17 Mile Road (1.5 miles west of Algoma Avenue)

April 20: Easter morning service at 10:30am

Get all the details at http://cscalvary.org

 

Solon Center Wesleyan Church

15671 Algoma Ave.., Cedar Springs  (just N. of 19 Mile Rd.)

April 19: Saturday Easter Eggstravaganza, 1 – 2:30 p.m.

April 20: Easter morning worship services at 9:30 & 11:15 a.m.

 

Holy Spirit Episcopal Church

1200 Post Dr. NE, Belmont (corner of Post and Pine Island drives)

April 13:  Palm Sunday, 10 a.m.

April 17:  Maundy Thursday, 7 p.m.

April 18:  Good Friday, 7 p.m.

April 19:  Easter Saturday, 7 p.m.

April 20:  Easter Sunday breakfast at 8:30 a.m, followed by worship service at 10 am.

 

First Baptist Church

233 S. Main St., Cedar Springs

April 18: Good Friday Service at 6:30 PM

April 20: Sonrise Service at 8:30 AM

April 20: Easter Family Breakfast at 9:30 AM

April 20: Easter Worship at 10:45 AM, NO PM Service

 

Resurrection Lutheran Church

616-636-5502

180 Northland Dr. Sand Lake, MI. (just north of Sand Lake)

April 13: Palm Sunday Worship, 9:30 a.m. (with egg hunt to follow)

April 18: Good Friday Service, 7:30 p.m.

April 20: Easter Breakfast, 8:15 a.m.

April 20: Easter Worship Service 9:30 a.m.

 

East Nelson United Methodist Church

9024 18 Mile Rd. NE, Cedar Springs

April 20: Easter Morning Worship at 9:30 a.m. with brunch following

 

Grace Evangelical Free Church

4714 13 Mile Rd., Rockford • www.gracerockford.com

April 19: Family Easter Carnival 10:30-12:00.  Easter egg hunt will start right at 10:30 with indoor carnival games to follow.

April 20: Sunrise Service – 8:30, Morning Worship – 10:45

 

Courtland-Oakfield United Methodist Church

10295 Myers Lake Ave., Rockford (just north of 12 Mile)

April 17: Maundy Thursday 9:30 a.m., breakfast and communion

April 19: Saturday Easter Eggstravaganza egg hunt and more 12 noon to 1:30 p.m.

April 20: Easter morning worship at 10 a.m., breakfast 8:30-9:30 a.m.

 

The Springs

135 N. Grant St, Cedar Springs

April 20: Easter Worship Celebration 9:45 & 11:15 a.m.

This Easter, when the eggs are found and the baskets are unwrapped, will you feel satisfied or still searching? Join us at The Springs Church for a celebration full of joy and meaning, not empty ritual. Your whole family will enjoy the great music, fun for the kids, and a message that will bring direction and encouragement to your faith journey. Come find what’s missing in your Easter! We’ll be looking for you. For more information visit our website www.thespringschurch.info or call 616.696.2970. We hope to see you at The Springs this Easter!

 

Rockford Springs Community Church

5815 Fourteen Mile Road, Rockford

April 17: Maundy Thursday service 7:00 p.m.

April 20: Easter morning worship at 9:30 a.m.

 

North Kent Community Church

1480 Indian Lakes Rd. NE, Sparta

April 20: Easter Morning Worship at 10 a.m.

 

Cedar Springs United Methodist Church

140 S. Main St. in downtown Cedar Springs

Make plans to worship during holy week:

April 13: Palm Sunday Worship at 9:00 a.m. & 11:30 a.m.

April 17: Holy Thursday Worship with Holy Communion at 7:00 p.m.

April 18: Good Friday Prayer stations in the sanctuary until 10:00 p.m.

April 20: Easter Sunday 7:30 a.m. Sunrise service on front lawn, 8:00-8:45 a.m. Breakfast in Fellowship Hall (free-will offering), 9:00 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. Worship service, 10:15 a.m. Christian Education for all ages

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Fun Easter activities for kids

N-Easter-egg-hunt-promo

The Cedar Springs Post will not be holding an Easter Egg hunt this year, but watch for the community Easter egg hunt to be back next year, possibly with a new host. For this year, you can find plenty of Easter fun at the hunts below!

 

Easter bunny at the library

April 11: The Easter Bunny will stop by the Cedar Springs Public Library on Friday, April 11 from noon to 1 p.m. He will bring along some small bunnies and lambs from Double K Farms for children to pet. Come and enjoy stories and a craft, too.

 

Easter egg hunt at nature center

April 12:  The Howard Christensen Nature Center is having its 3rd annual Easter egg hunt on Saturday, April 12, from 10 a.m. to noon, rain, shine or snow. Hunts starts promptly at 10 a.m. for ages 3 and under; 10:45 a.m. for ages 4 to 7; and 11:30 a.m. for ages 8 to 11. Bring a basket, or they will have extras. They will have over 1,500 eggs this year, prizes, and lots of candy! Golden and silver eggs are special. Meet at the Interpretive Center, event takes place in their prairie area just north of the Interpretive Center, beyond the parking lot. Visit www.lilysfrogpad.com for more details.

 

Easter bunny at Sand Lake

April 12: The Easter Bunny will visit the Sand Lake VFW on Saturday, April 12, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Stop by and say hello!

 

Easter egg hunt at Resurrection Lutheran

April 13: On your mark get set go! Resurrection Lutheran Church, 180 Northland Drive, Sand Lake, will hold their Easter egg hunt on April 13 immediately following 9:30 a.m. service. Games and crafts, too. This event is open to the public and we welcome seekers of all ages. Please come join us. We love meeting new friends and please feel free to invite others!

 

Easter egg hunt at Courtland-Oakfield UMC

April 19: Courtland-Oakfield United Methodist Church will hold an Easter Eggstravaganza egg hunt and more from noon to 1:30 p.m., on Saturday, April 19. They are located 10295 Myers Lake Avenue, Rockford, between 12 and 13 Mile.

 

Family Easter carnival and egg hunt at Grace Evangelical

April 19: Grace Evangelical Free Church, 4714 13 Mile Road, Rockford, will hold a Family Easter Carnival on Saturday, April 19, from 10:30 a.m. to noon. Easter egg hunt will start right at 10:30 a.m., with indoor carnival games to follow.

 

Easter egg-stravaganza at Solon Center Wesleyan

April 19: An Easter egg-stravaganza, a celebration for children, will be held on Saturday, April 19, from 1 to 2:30 p.m., at Solon Center Wesleyan Church, 15671 Algoma Avenue, just north of 19 Mile. All children 10 years old and under are invited to attend. There will be games, candy, prizes, a special Easter presentation, and two bikes will be given away as grand prizes. For more info call the church at 696-3229 or go to scwchurch.org.

 

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Real bunnies and chicks grow into rabbits and chickens

Think twice about giving them to children for Easter

Dyeing Easter Eggs or going on Easter Egg Hunts are a part of the holiday tradition for many families. But there is another tradition that families should consider long and hard before making a commitment: buying live bunnies and chicks.

The Kent County Health Department recommends giving children toy stuffed animals instead. Adults should consider the longevity, as well as health and safety issues, of giving bunnies or chicks to children for Easter.

Rabbits can live seven to ten years, while chickens can live into their teens. “The Kent County Animal Shelter received nearly a hundred unwanted rabbits and chickens last year,” according to Adam London, Health Officer for the Kent County Health Department. “Pet rabbits have specific health needs, special diets, and must live indoors. While they can be very social with the right care and supervision, they don’t like to be held or cuddled.” Releasing a house-raised rabbit into the wild leaves the animal vulnerable to predators.

Raising chicks and other poultry has become popular, but it has also led to an increase in Salmonella outbreaks in humans. Salmonella is common in baby poultry and spreads from contact with the birds or their environments. Birds with Salmonella may appear healthy, but in humans, the bacteria can cause diarrhea, stomach cramping, fever, and dehydration. Illness can last for up to a week and can be serious in young children, older adults, or those with weakened immune systems.

Children under the age of five should have adult supervision when handling chicks or chickens. “Be sure to wash your hands and your child’s hands thoroughly after handling chicks or chickens,” London says. “Don’t let children snuggle or kiss chicks. And never allow chicks or chickens into bathrooms, kitchens, or areas where food is prepared, stored, or eaten.”

Visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information:

http://www.cdc.gov/media/dpk/2013/dpk-live-poultry-salmonella.html.

If giving or receiving plants for the holiday, make sure they stay out of the reach of any pets. Some items, such as lilies and daisies, can be toxic to pets. For a complete list, check out: www.aspca.org/Pet-care/poison-control/Plants.

 

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We have a winner!

VAL-BestLipsComing in first was #13-Kissy aka Amanda McGovern, of Sand Lake, with 171 votes. She won a dinner for two at Big Boy ($30 value); a free movie for two at the Kent Theatre with two medium combos; $50 worth of makeup from the Haircraft Company; and a month of free classes for two at Moxie’s Fitness and Health.

Coming in second was #1-Succulent aka Trisha Dart, of the City of Cedar Springs with 168 votes. She won a lotion and tanning package from Awesome Tan, a shampoo and cut from B&B Beauty Salon, and free class from Moxie Fitness and Health.

Coming in third was #10-Pouty aka Micki Martin, of Sand Lake, with 112 votes. She won a $25 gift certificate from Geekworx, a chair massage from Kin of Hope, tea from Perry’s Place, and a free class from Moxie Fitness and Health.

A big thank you to all who participated—those who sent in their lips, those who voted, and all of the businesses that donated prizes! We couldn’t have done it without you!

Winners may pick up their prizes at The POST, 36 E. Maple St., Cedar Springs on Valentines Day, Friday, February 14 between 10am-5pm. Please call 616-696-3655 if you need to make special arrangements for pick up.

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Bite-Sized Valentine’s Day treats get to the heart of the holiday

VAL-Recipe

(Family Features) Nothing says “I love you” on Valentine’s Day more than heart-shaped, homemade treats. This year, try individual treats to make each gift recipient feel extra special. You’ll love the fact that they are simple to create.

“Though small in size, mini-treats deliver a big message to all of the Valentines on your list,” said Nancy Siler, vice president of consumer affairs at Wilton. “Decorating these treats is quick and easy thanks to Candy Melts Candy – a pantry staple for any decorating project.”

With a little help from Wilton you can bake to your heart’s desire this Valentine’s Day.

We Heart Valentine’s Day – Hearts are by far the top shape of the season. From giant heart-shaped cookie pans to cookie cutters to Heart Pop pans, Wilton has a variety of bakeware options.

A Sweet Heart for Your Sweetheart – Create mini cakes, brownies or cookies with the Bite Sized Heart Dessert Shell pan. Once cooled, drizzle with red, pink and white colored Candy Melts candy for the perfect personalized heart-shaped treat.

Homemade Box of Chocolates – Make your own candies using shaped Candy Molds. Choose between hearts, lips, flowers and more. Fill the mold with the Candy Melts candy, color and flavor of your choice, and watch as you melt the hearts of your Valentines.

Give a Little Love – Valentine’s Day is a top gift-giving holiday. Give your made-from-the-heart homemade treats the gourmet treatment with festive packaging like heart-shaped boxes, colorful gift bags and brightly colored baking cups.

For more Valentine’s Day recipes, baking tips and gift inspiration, visit www.wilton.com.

 

Chocolate Heart Petit Fours

Makes about 40 mini cakes

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 cup cocoa powder

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter, softened

2/3 cup firmly-packed brown sugar

1 egg

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla

extract

2/3 cup buttermilk

1/2 cup peanut butter,

chocolate fudge ice cream topping or cherry pie filling

2 containers (14 ounces each) Choco- late or Vanilla Icing Glaze (optional)

Jumbo hearts sprinkles (optional)

 

Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare 24 cavity bite-sized heart dessert shell pan with Cake Release pan coating.

In large bowl, combine flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

In large bowl, beat butter and sugar with electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla extract; beat until well combined. Alternately add flour mixture and buttermilk in three additions, beating until just combined. Spoon one tablespoon batter into each pan cavity.

Bake 9-11 minutes or until tops of cakes spring back when touched. Cool in pan 10 minutes. Cool completely on cooling grid.

To decorate, place cakes on cooling grid with cookie pan below. Pipe 1/2 teaspoon peanut butter, chocolate fudge or cherry pie filling into shell; fill only to top of cavity. If desired, warm glaze according to package instructions; carefully pour over shell and tap pan to smooth. If desired, add jumbo hearts sprinkles.

 

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It’s time to VOTE for the Best Lips in Cedar Springs!

2013 Best Lips winner, Leah Almy

2013 Best Lips winner, Leah Almy

The 21st annual “Best Lips” Contest

 

Who has the most luscious lips in CedarSprings?

 

YOU be the judge – Vote below for your favorite lips!

 

The entries are in! Now, it’s your turn to be the Judge! Vote for your favorite below. The entries have been numbered and nicknamed so every entry has a fair chance to win – this is no popularity contest! Voting starts at 5pm on Thursday, February 6. You can vote once per day. Contest closes Tuesday, February 11, at 5pm. The person with the most votes at that time will be the grand prize winner. Prizes will also be awarded to 2nd and 3rd place winners. 

Prizes: A FREE Class from Moxie Fitness, FREE Shampoo & Cut from B&B Beauty Salon, Lotion & Tanning Pkg. from Awesome Tan, $25 Gift Certificate from Geek Worx, FREE cup of Tea from Perry’s Place llc, 15 Minute Chair Massage from Kin of Hope, $50 of makeup from Hair Craft Company, $30 Gift Certificate to Big Boy Restaurant (Cedar Springs location), 2 movie tickets and 2 medium combos from The Kent Theatre, and more!

Due to a discrepancy in the time of the closing of the polls, the winner of the Best Lips contest will be announced in Thursday’s paper. 

 

Posted in Arts & Entertainment, News, Valentine's DayComments (30)