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Archive | Hometown Holidays

Santa and tree lighting draws crowd

The tree lighting in downtown Cedar Springs is an annual event. Post photo by J. Reed.

What do hundreds of cookies, candy canes and cups of hot chocolate all have in common? All were served at last weekend’s Mingle with Kris Kringle event and all consumed by festive attendees—right down to the last crumb.

“The event turned out really well,” noted Shawn Kiphart, president of the Cedar Springs Area Chamber of Commerce. “We estimate we had 600 to 700 people, which was double what we anticipated.”

The event, hosted by the Cedar Springs Area Chamber of Commerce in collaboration with the Community Action Network, started early in the day with sales at shops up and down Main Street, and culminated late in the day with the arrival of Santa and the lighting of the community Christmas tree, at the corner of Ash and Main Streets.

Also appearing at the event was a live nativity scene from Calvary Assembly of God, and the Cedar View Elementary Choir. Mayor Bob Truesdale emceed the event. “I’d like to thank him for doing that,” said Kiphart. “He did a great job.”

A tent was set up this year for Santa, and it was a big hit. “The line was long but it moved pretty quickly,” noted Kiphart.

He said he can already think of some improvements for next year, such as providing a stage and a speaker system for the choir, and bringing in Santa earlier in the day and having him stay for an extended period. “That would give more people the chance to see him,” explained Kiphart.

He said that comments from attendees have been positive. “Many people said it was really nice to see everyone out and about. Everyone seemed to have a great time.”


Posted in Featured, Hometown Holidays, News, SeasonalComments (1)

Letters to Santa

It’s that time of year again, when kids can’t wait to mail their letters to Santa! To help parents out, the Cedar Springs Post has set up a special North Pole drop box. Every year dozens of kids use our special box for express delivery to the North Pole, and we make sure Santa reads each and every one! So, if you’d like to send a letter to Santa, and maybe get it printed in the newspaper, just drop off your letter in the bright red box labeled “Santa Mail” outside our office at 36 E. Maple Street, or mail your letter to: Letters to Santa, c/o the Cedar Springs Post, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319.


Dear Santa,
I have been a good girl this year. How is the reindeer?
I want a baby alive, fever, walking baby alive, a kitchen, clothes, strawberry shortcake doll, easy bake oven, art supplies, easel, stroller for my babies.

Harley Parcher
Age 4

Santa is coming to town
Make your list… check it twice!
Monster Jam PS3
Big Monster Truck
J-D tractor
J-D doc
J-D Plow
Sweat Pants

Hunter Rish age 9

Santa is coming to town
Make your list… check it twice!
Ice Age 4 PS3
Ice Age movie
Big Monster Truck
J-D tractor
J-D baler
J-D wagon
Ice age Toys
Rudolph Guys

Justin Rish age 7

Santa is coming to town
Make your list… check it twice!
PS3 Game
Big Monster Truck
J-D tractor
J-D chopper
J-D wagon
Sports Bag

Blake Rish age 5

Dear SAntA,
I hAve been a good
I wAnt A grown up cAmeRA
I wAnt A LAp top AnD eAsy bAKe oven AnD some movies High School Musical 1-2-3 Skrek 3, And jewelry box And stuffed Animal DoRA and gAmes.
Aubrey Parcher
7 yrs.

Dear Santa,
My name is Emme, I am 4 years old and I have been pretty good.
I would like a D.S. and a couple of games.
That is all I can think of for now.
Please make sure you feed the riendeer so they can make it to my house.

Dear Santa,
I know you keep a great big list of who is naughty and who is nice. I’m on the nice list because I’ve been really good this year. My room is really clean, and I almost always made my bed. I tried to do all my chores, and I did my homework before I played, watched TV or went on the computer.
Please come to my house on Christmas Eve and bring me:

wish list

1. 3DS X1 Blue

2. a fan

3. games

4. Snowbord

5. lava lamp

6. i Pod

7. 3Axle Semi

8. Statue of Santa

You and all the elves are the best. Thanks for making all the kids around the world so happy at Christmas.
Brice Skelonc

Dear Santa,
My name is Jaleak
and I am 6 years old. All
I want for Christmas is some monster trucks, lego set, 5 Angery birds, 3 bey blades, a PSP, teek deck bike, a mimi DS for Christmas
Love, Jaleak Lee
age 6

Dear Santa,
My name is Nakarrion
I have been a very good boy this year. I would love some monster trucks, a video game, legos, and help for my family to have a happy Christmas.
Thank you
See you soon
Nakarrion Lee
Age 4

Dear Santa
i dont want alot maybe a mp3 player or a phone but i want you to deliver a message to my dad you see he died feb,7,11 and i want he to know i know it’s not his falt he left oh and i want you to help my mom get better her back hurt’s alot and the doctors cant help it but that is all i want for Christmas

Love Joann Hale
age 13

Dear. Santa I would
like a crossbow or a conpond bow. I would like a I Phone
5. also a I Pode tutch.
Thats all I
want thiss
Love Daniel Jr. (Menefee)

Dear Santa,
I want a trampaline
anD a Dirt Bike
anD a remote control car anD a grown up sister!
Love Schorian (Menefee)

Dear Santa I want a new
phone. I pod. Password

Dear Santa,
I have been a good boy.
I want a R/C Car and nerf gun with bulletts. I want A PS3 game and pellet gun and a football and basketball.

Joseph Parcher III
Age 8


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Christmas Coloring Contest

Hey kids,

This Gingerbread house needs some color! Will you help? Please color with crayons, markers or colored pencils. There will be 1 winner from three age groups: 3-4 years; 5-7 years; and 8-10 years.

Winners will be announced in the December 20th issue of The Cedar Springs Post. So hurry, all Gingerbread Houses have to be at The Post by Monday, December 17, 2012 by 5:00 p.m.



1. Only one entry per child.

2. Only one winner per family.

3. We are not responsible for lost mail.

4. All entries must be at our office by December 17 by 5pm.

5. Use only crayons, markers or colored pencils.


Please deliver entries to: 36 E. Maple St., Cedar Springs


Or mail to: Christmas Coloring Contest

P.O. Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319



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Holiday Happenings


Bah Humbug! Scrooge’s Christmas Carol

Nov. 30-Dec. 3: Kick off your holiday season this year by attending the Cedar Springs Theatre Association’s production of “Bah Humbug! Scrooge’s Christmas Carol.” Come enjoy this lighthearted and enchanting performance. Wonderful family fun and entertainment, guaranteed to have you tapping your toes and putting you into the holiday spirit. Performances will be at 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 29-Dec. 1 and 3 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 2 at the Kent Theatre, which is located in downtown Cedar Springs. Tickets will be $8 for adults and $5 for children 12 and under and are available at the Cedar Springs Public Library, Alpha Omega Coffee and Games shop, located on Main Street Cedar Springs, or by calling 616-696-SHOW.

Mingle with Kris Kringle and downtown tree lighting

Dec. 1: Noon to 8 p.m. Come celebrate the kick off to the Christmas season with the lighting of the tree at the corner of Main Street and Ash. Sales begin at noon at all participating Cedar Springs businesses, and the tree lighting event starts at 5:00 p.m. with a live nativity scene. Shortly after 5, Santa will be coming to town, escorted by the Cedar Springs Fire Department. The Cedar Springs Elementary School Choir will be performing. Bring the whole family out for a fun, old-fashioned, town Christmas celebration.

Christmas fundraising concert for the Kent

Dec. 8: Kin of Hope Natural Health and Perry’s Place llc for herbs, teas, and more…will be hosting a Christmas Concert at the Kent Theatre at 4 p.m. All the proceeds from the concert will be going to the Kent Theatre for their Digital Projector Fund. There will also be a bake sale that day, with gluten free and dairy free products available. Admission is $3, or $10 per family (parents and their children $17 and under).

Make a gingerbread house

Dec. 8: Calling all Kids to decorate a Gingerbread House at the Cedar Springs Public Library. Sign up for one of three sessions: 10-11am, 11:15-12:15pm or 12:30-1:30pm. All ages welcome, preschoolers must have parent present. Stop by the library to register or call 616-696-1910.


Hometown Christmas

Nov. 30: Take in the sights and sounds of Christmas with a hometown parade, followed by Santa lighting the official Greenville Christmas tree and more special treats. Events start with a Santa block party from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. Get photos with Santa, arts and crafts, hot cocoa, cookies and more. The tree lighting ceremony is at 5:15 p.m. with live music, crowd caroling, and holiday merriment. The parade follows at 6 p.m., and then kids can visit with Santa at the Flat River Museum immediately following the parade until 8 p.m. Montcalm Community College’s “Messiah” will be at 7 p.m. at the Greenville Performing Arts Center.

Santa Super Sunday

Dec. 2: 1 p.m. at Montcalm Community College. Free.

Tree of Lights Celebration

Dec. 2: Tree of Lights Celebration. 6 p.m. at Spectrum Health United Hospital.

Grand Rapids Symphony Holiday Pops

Dec. 12: 7:30 p.m. at Greenville High School.

Pictures with Santa

Dec. 15: 12-1 p.m. at the Greenville Area Community Center.

Holiday flea market

Dec. 15: at the Greenville Area Community Center.


Christmas Bazaar and luncheon

Dec. 1: The annual Christmas Bazaar and luncheon will be at Heritage UMC, on the corner of Federal and Kendaville Rds, 2 miles south of Howard City, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Artisan craft show, homemade soup and pie luncheon, candy and baked goods, and white elephant gifts.

Christmas Tour of Homes

Dec. 1: Take a Christmas tour of homes in Howard City from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m., followed by a reception with door prize giveaways at the Timothy C. Hauenstein Library from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. Advance tickets are $10 and are $12 the day of the event. They may be purchased at the library or at Kindel and Company.


Cookie Walk

Dec. 1: St. Peter’s Lutheran Ladies Guild Cookie Walk, from 9 a.m. until cookies are gone. St. Peter’s is at 310 E. Division Street, NE.

Santa Parade

Dec. 1: Rockford residents welcome the jolly man in the red suit to downtown Rockford, at 11 a.m., during the annual Santa Claus Parade! Santa arrives in style in a horse-drawn carriage during the parade, and follows his arrival with a visit to the Rotary Pavilion after the parade. In the pavilion, Santa visits with all the good little girls and boys, from noon to 2 p.m., and hears their wish list. Children’s activities occur in the Pavilion to make the wait a little less intense.

Holiday Carriage rides

Dec. 6, 7, 13, 14: The Rockford Chamber of Commerce sponsors horse-drawn carriage rides each year in Squire Street Square so that visitors to Rockford may enjoy the sights and sounds of the beautifully decorated streets of the downtown area. Visitors are able to ride through the tree-lined streets free of charge. It is a beautiful way to recapture the feelings of Christmases past and make memories with your loved ones.

Rockford Community Holiday Concert

Dec. 9: Enjoy the sounds of the season as the Rockford Community Band, Choir and Orchestra present their annual holiday community concert from 3 to 4:30 p.m. at Rockford High School’s Fine Arts Auditorium. Special guests include the Rockford Community Children’s Choir. Admission is free.

Santa at the pavilion with live reindeer

Dec. 12: Children will love to come visit Santa, sit on his lap and give him their wish list AND meet Santa’s LIVE reindeer at the Rockford Rotary Pavilion, 25 Squire Street, from 6-8 p.m. Free hot chocolate and cookies are also provided.


Adopt a family

In the spirit of giving, donated items for needy families may be dropped off at the Sand Lake/Nelson Township library, 88 8th Street, during open hours December 1-15. Donate a new toy, clothing item or food for area families in need this Christmas. For more info, call the library at 1-877-243-2466.

Christmas with Santa

Dec. 8: Santa will be at the Sand Lake/Nelson Township Library from 10 a.m. to Noon a.m. on Saturday, December 8. Visit with Santa and enjoy crafts and treats. Gifts aplenty for the first 200 children! Prize drawings will be held. For all ages.


Old-fashioned Christmas events

Dec. 1: Shop Sparta Event Downtown! Free Trolley Rides, visit & take photos with Santa, try Roasted Chestnuts, & shop through your favorite local merchants in Sparta!

Supper with Santa 

Dec. 4: 6-8 pm at Civic Center, 75 N. Union. $1.00 per person for hot dogs, popcorn, photos with Santa, craft, decorate cookies & more!

Pet night with Santa 

Dec. 13: 6-8 pm in Santa House. Bring your furry friends to visit with Santa! Photo with $3.00 donation or pet food or blanket donation to go to the Humane Society.

Santa in Santa house

Dec. 15 and 20: Santa will be in the Santa house (94 N. Union) on Saturday Dec. 15 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., and on Thursday, December 20, from 6-8 p.m. Bring your own camera.

Horse drawn trolley rides

Dec. 24: Horse drawn trolley rides through Harper Drive. 6-9 p.m. Loading area and treats hosted at Sparta Fire Department.


The reindeer are coming

November 29: Traveling all the way from the North Pole (via Rooftop Landing Reindeer Farms), live reindeer will be visiting the Spencer Township Library, 14960 Meddler, Gowen, from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Dress warmly, and don’t forget the camera! For all ages.

Gingerbread Lane

December 6: Stroll down Gingerbread Lane at the Spencer Township Library and enjoy tasty gingerbread stories from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Each child will make a simple gingerbread house. Pre-registration is required and participant spots are limited. For all ages. Arts and crafts.

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Celebrate the holiday season with charitable giving

(BPT) – The holiday season is about more than picking the fullest tree, listening to nostalgic carols and planning the perfect family photo. Between addressing holiday cards and toasting the New Year, it’s a great time to incorporate charitable giving into your traditions. No matter your time constraints, there are many ways for you to spread goodness, in addition to good cheer, this holiday season.

* Lend a hand: Many organizations are in need of helping hands. Transport disabled or needy patients to their medical appointments or religious services, deliver meals to homebound seniors or visit a children’s hospital or rehabilitation center. Make a difference in your own neighborhood by raking leaves, shoveling snow or hanging holiday lights for an elderly neighbor. Picking up trash at a local park or painting over graffiti is always appreciated by city services.

* Volunteer your services: Food banks tend to have the highest usage during winter months. Get involved collecting food donations, spend time stocking shelves at a local food pantry or work directly with families in need via a holiday sponsorship program. Do you play a musical instrument? Are you good at fundraising, office organization, public speaking, party planning or writing newsletters? Offer your specific talent to an organization that could utilize it.

* Purchase gifts that give back: Many companies offer charitable incentives with a special purchase. For example, Hickory Farms, well-known for its delicious gift baskets, will donate $5 to Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign with the purchase of every Party Planner gift box sold during the holiday season.

* Support the military: If you have a family member or friend serving in the military away from home this season, Hickory Farms offers free shipping on certain gifts for military personnel delivering to APO/FPO addresses. Consider the Home for the Holidays gift box which includes a wonderful combination of beef and turkey summer sausages, creamy cheeses, flavorful mustards and crackers. It will bring a taste of home and a warm smile to the face of your loved one. Visit hickoryfarms.com or the company’s kiosks and storefronts nationwide.

* Make a monetary donation: The end of the year/holiday season is also a good time to make monetary donations to your favorite nonprofit organizations. Any donations made prior to the last day of the year can also be counted as deductions for 2012 taxes. Many organizations rely on this holiday season to raise much-needed funds to be used throughout the year. If money is tight but you’d still like to contribute, subscribe to a payroll deduction service for 2013 to donate little by little throughout the year. Check with your workplace to see if it will match charitable contributions, because many do.

Combine good will and good cheer to make this a season to remember. Establish a meaningful connection with a charity or organization and turn your seasonal good deeds into year-round endeavors.

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A tasty twist on turkey leftovers

(Family Features) When you’re planning your big turkey dinner, the one thing you want to be sure to do is get a turkey big enough for some delicious leftovers. While turkey sandwiches are good, there’s a lot more you can do with this tasty bird.

Breakfast or Brunch — Wake the family up to a hearty breakfast casserole that’s a creamy blend of turkey, sour cream, cream of chicken soup, cheese and hash browns. It has a crunchy topping with a surprise ingredient; and you can finish it off with a dollop of fresh and flavorful Wholly Guacamole. Make it ahead of time so all you have to do is pop it into the oven in the morning.

Lunch — Enjoy lunch on the lighter side with a turkey salad sandwich. Instead of mayo, this dish gets flavor and 20 nutrients from the avocado in Wholly Guacamole. For extra zip, go with the spicy variety.

Dinner — For another make-ahead meal, try a zesty turkey and corn enchilada casserole. This dish is easy to put together, and you may have all the ingredients in your pantry already. A cornbread base, your favorite enchilada sauce, turkey, cheese, and a generous serving of your favorite guac all add up to a new family favorite.

Get more leftover ideas with a twist at www.eatwholly.com.

Turkey Potato Cheesy Breakfast Casserole

Serves: 8

2 cups cubed turkey

1 cup low-fat sour cream

1 10-ounce can cream of chicken soup

1/4 cup milk

1 cup shredded cheddar cheese, divided

1 bag (30 ounces) frozen hash brown potatoes, thawed

1/2 onion, diced

1/2 cup corn flake cereal

1 cup Wholly Guacamole

In mixing bowl, combine turkey, sour cream, soup, milk, 1/2 cup cheese, hash browns and onion.

Spread in bottom of 2 quart dish (greased).

Bake, uncovered, at 350°F for 1 hour.

Add additional 1/2 cup of cheese and corn flake cereal, and bake another 5 to 10 minutes until bubbly and slightly browned.

Let cool for 10 minutes and serve with a dollop of Wholly Guacamole.


Guacamole Turkey Salad

Serves: 6

2 tablespoons canola oil

1/2 teaspoon salt, divided

1 cup of turkey, diced

1/4 teaspoon black pepper

3/4 teaspoon cumin, ground

1 lime zested

2 limes, juiced, divided

1/4 teaspoon sugar

1/4 teaspoon Mexican chili powder

1/4 cup red bell pepper, diced

1/4 cup yellow bell pepper,   diced

1/4 cup red onion, diced

2 tablespoons cilantro, rough chop

1 cup Wholly Guacamole dip


Mix oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt, black pepper, cumin, sugar, chili powder, lime zest and juice of 1 1/2 limes.

Add to turkey and allow to marinate for at least 20 minutes — do not exceed 30 minutes.

Mix in bell peppers, onion, cilantro, dip, turkey, the rest of the lime juice and remaining salt.

Serve in a pita, on a whole wheat bun, as a lettuce wrap, or with crackers.


Turkey and Corn Enchilada Casserole

Serves: 6

First Layer

1 15-ounce can corn, drained

1 15-ounce can creamed corn

8 ounces sour cream (non-  fat)

1/2 cup ricotta (low-fat)

1 8 1/2-ounce package corn bread mix

Second Layer

1 cup turkey, shredded

1 cup shredded cheese

1 cup enchilada sauce, divided

Wholly Guacamole dip, for garnish

Mix together all first layer ingredients in a casserole dish.

Bake at 350°F for 30 minutes or until firm.

Take out of oven, poke fork holes all around it.

Pour 1/2 cup red enchilada sauce over corn bread.

Top with turkey and cheese.

Put back in oven until cheese melts.

Top with remaining enchilada sauce, guacamole dip; serve.



Quick Turkey Tidbits

Need some more inspiration for turkey leftovers? Try one of these easy snack ideas:


Turkey nachos — Shredded turkey, peppers, onions, black olives and cheese on lime-flavored nacho chips. Top with chunky guac, salsa or sour cream.


Turkey bites — Top your favorite crackers with a little turkey and a slice of pepper Jack cheese. Microwave until the cheese starts to melt. Add a dollop of salsa or guac.


Mini mexi-pizzas — Split an English muffin, and spread a little salsa on each half. Top with turkey and shredded cheese. Broil until cheese is bubbly. Top with a dollop of sour cream or guac.

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