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Tag Archive | "Cedar Springs High School"

Host families needed for teens


Host families are needed for two different teens. Both arealready in the area, but need to nd a family. One attendsCedar Springs High School, and one attends Creative Tech- nologies Academy.

A host family is needed for a 17-year-old girl from Cen- tral Asia for the rest of the current school year. She is in the US on a full scholarship from FLEX. She has her own spending money and insurance. She loves shopping, and other things teens love to do. A loving family is needed to provide a bed, 3 meals a day and the desire to includeher in the life of their family. Need to nd a family in theCedar Springs School district. She currently attends Ce- dar Springs High School and would like to stay there. Forquestions, please contact ASSE Representative El Ristau616.272.9473.

A host family is also needed for Binh, a senior boy from Viet Nam who attends Creative Technologies Academy. He has excellent English skills, outstanding academics, and is extremely polite. This is his second year in the UnitedStates. He spent last year in Georgia and the rst thing youwill notice is his southern charm. He enjoys playing sports, hanging out with friends, watching American movies, and playing sports. Host families provide the student with room and board as well as some transportation and guidance. Students come with their own spending money and insur-ance. For more info on Binh contact the ECEP of ce at616-951-7010 or email ecep@ecepnet.org.

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Veteran retires from Air National Guard


 

SMSgt Shirley Mitchell (Bratcher)

By Judy Reed

When Senior Master Sergeant (SMSgt) Shirley Mitchell (Bratcher) thought about what she wanted to do after graduating from high school, she said she wanted to drive a semi truck like her father, and be a police officer, and be in the military. But how would she ever do all that? 

SMSgt Shirley Mitchell (Bratcher) and her brother, TSgt Brian Sherman, at the Air National Guard Base in Battle Creek.

“It turns out, I did all three in my first job joining the military. I joined Security Forces and became a security policeman and learned to drive a big truck in a convoy. That’s all three into one!” said Shirley.

Shirley graduated from Cedar Springs High School in 1983, and worked for eight years until she enlisted in the Michigan Air National Guard in Battle Creek, Michigan, in 1991. She said members of her family inspired her to join—namely, her dad, who enlisted from 1960-1964, and her uncle, who served 32 years in the U.S. Air Force. When she was young, her family went to visit him and other family in Delaware. “He took me to an Air Show at Dover AFB,” she recalled. “It happened to be the Navy Blue Angels performing at that show. I was inspired by the air show and just the mere fact of being on a huge base. I just knew then I wanted to be a part of Air Force. It just felt right for me.”

 Her initial enlistment was a part time job in the Michigan Guard. Her first assignment was a Security Specialist in the 110 Security Forces Squadron. She became active guard reservist in April 1994 and was on an active duty assignment at Battle Creek. That remained her base throughout her 26-year career. 

“It’s a unique position to obtain one at an Air National Guard Base,” explained Shirley. “There are only so many per state and you have to compete (interview) for the position (job) you want. They are active duty positions that mean you serve both the state and federal government. With this type of position, you are able to complete 20 satisfactory years of service and earn the same benefits as other active duty personnel who serve the federal government only.”

The squadrons and positions she served in while stationed at Battle Creek are in the 110 Security Forces Squadron, as a Security Specialist; the 110 Fighter Wing as a Financial Comptroller and Superintendent; the 110 Medical Group as a Public Health Specialist; and 217 Operations Group as the Health Services Specialist Superintendent in the Air Components Operations Group, a Special Security Officer (SSO) in the 217 Air Intelligence Squadron, and then a Security Specialist/Anti -Terrorism Officer in the Air Components Operations Group.  At retirement, her final duty position was in the 110 Security Forces Squadron as a Security Specialist. 

While Shirley was never deployed to the desert, she did travel around the world and to other states. “I wanted to go [to the desert] but was fulltime and too valuable back at home station to be gone,” she explained. “At least, that’s what they told me.” She did get to go on temporary duty to places such as Germany; South Korea; Alaska; Hawaii; and many other continental United State states. “I joined the Air Force to travel, and I sure did!”

Shirley received several medals, ribbons and awards over the years, including the Meritorius Service Medal; Air Force Commendation medal; Air Force Achievement medal; Air Force Outstanding Unit Award with Valor; National Defense Service medal; Global War on Terrorism Medal; Small Arms Expert Marksmanship Ribbon, and more.

Shirley said that the most important thing she learned while serving is that your attitude dictates everything. “It’s what you make of it. Meaning, if you dislike something or disliked being in the service, change your attitude and find the positive aspect so that you do like it. When I enlisted, I said, well, this could be the best six years of my life, or the worst. I would not know either unless I enlisted! Turns out, I loved being in the military (Air National Guard) and it was the best thing I ever did. Sure, there were some stressful times, but overall, it was the greatest thing I ever did. No regrets at all. I kept re-enlisting as I did spend 26 years and 5 months total time in service. I made many new lifetime friends and we will forever be bonded.” 

The Post asked Shirley if she had noticed any difference over time in the way women are treated in the military. “Yes, women are now allowed in some combat type positions and more robust traditional type male roles. The roles are changing right now and women are proving themselves that they can participate in a particular career field just like the men. Due to heightened awareness and mandatory trainings, women are now more than ever (and men too) encouraged to report sexual harassment or assaults. Reports are taken seriously and investigations are conducted. When I came in, women were not reporting issues as a fear of retribution. It has come a long way and getting much better to not fear this. Men will always support and assist women in some ways (let’s say with heavy lifting) as it is a team environment,” she explained.   

Shirley also had a few tips for other women (or even men) who might want to join. “If you are considering the military, think about what you may hope gain and leave with. As in, if you would like technological knowledge and plan to use it after you get out or while still serving (as a traditional guardsmen in the Air National Guard) in the civilian work force, join the Air National Guard or regular active duty Air Force. The Air National Guard is the Air Force, and most are part time members (one weekend a month traditionally).

“There are so many great opportunities and job skills that you can obtain in the Air National Guard and apply them on the outside. There are free college benefits and so many more offerings. Not to mention a lot of new friends and travel opportunities.”

While serving, Shirley earned four different Air Force Associate Degrees, and is now working on a Bachelor’s degree in Security Management with a concentration in Government Security. She plans to pursue a job with the Department of Defense as a Security Specialist.

Shirley may have retired from military service, but there is still another member of her family serving to carry on the legacy. Her brother, Technical Sergeant (TSgt) Brian Sherman is serving at the Battle Creek Air National Guard Base at the 110 Civil Engineering Squadron as a Firefighter. He currently has 13 years in service. He is a 2000 graduate of Cedar Springs High School.

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CINDY GEORGE


On November 1, 2018, there was great sadness and anguish on earth, while in heaven there was a joyous homecoming as Cindy George was greeted by family and friends as she received her angel wings and entered into her eternal glory at the foot stool of her heavenly Father. For those of us left behind, there is great sadness as we say farewell to our friend and sister, but we are conforted in the knowledge that she suffers no more and has been warmly received in heaven. Cindy was born on January 31, 1957 to Eugene (Red) and June George in Bedford, Indiana. She was born with flaming red hair, just like her Daddy whom she never knew as he passed away shortly after her 1st birthday. Cindy graduated from Cedar Springs High School where she was a star basketball player. She attended Grand Rapids Community College and Western Michigan University where she continued to exhibit her basketball prowess. Cindy had a lifelong love of softball as well, have played on the Metro Merchants softball team and was an avid golfer. In 2017, Cindy retired from the State of Michigan after a career spanning over 30 years with the Department of Corrections and Family Services. Her long-anticipated retirement plans were upended when she was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Cindy was a fighter and fought the good fight to the very end. Cindy was a blessing to all of us fortunate enough to call her our friend. She displayed rare courage and grace in her fight against her insidious disease and as a champion for LBGT rights. She defended those least able to defend themselves and was a special blessing to her niece with special needs, Alyssa Knapp. Cindy is sadly missed by her siblings, Mark (Robin) Lester, Pam (Doug) Middleton, Joe (Maria) Lester, Ruth (Jeff) Scott, and Kathryn (Chuck) Gladen; stepfather, Ron Baron; plus many nieces and nephews. She leaves behind special friends, Lorie Norden, Connie Berles, Dorothe Rhodes, Norma Colborn, Sally Grayvold, Lucretia Gomez, and all her friends at Reconciliation Metropolitan Community Church. Cindy will be sorely missed by her best buddy, Toby, her Boston Terrier. She was preceded in death by her mother and father, June Baron and Eugene George; stepfather Jack Lester, and special niece Autumn Neyome. There will be a memorial for Cindy on Sunday, November 11th at 2 p.m at Mount Olive Lutheran Church, 3950 Leonard St., Walker, MI. In lieu of flowers the family asks that you consider donating to the following charities in Cindy’s memory: Pancreatic Cancer Network at 1500 Rosecrans Ave., Ste. 200, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266 or online at www.pancan.org; 5P-Society at P.O. Box 268, Lakewood, CA 90714 or online at www.fivepminus.org; Reconciliation Metropolitan Community Church, P.O. Box 68852, Grand Rapids, MI 49516.

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Colen Clem Cole


EPSON scanner image

Colen Clem Cole age 73 of Cedar Springs, died Tuesday, October 30, 2018 after a long illness with Dementia/Alzheimers disease. Colen was born April 14, 1945 in Greenville, MI the son of Clem and Rose (Nelson) Cole. He graduated from Cedar Springs High School in 1963 and married his high school sweetheart on August 20, 1965. Together they shared 53 years of marriage. He served proudly in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War Era from 1966-68. He enjoyed the outdoors sporting life: hunting, fishing, boating, snowmobiling and riding his quad around his farm with his dog, Little Joe. He loved best being in the big woods and observing nature. Colen owned and operated United Riggers and Erectors Company, Inc., a construction company in Grand Rapids since 1974. Surviving are his wife, Nancy (Tisdel) Cole; son, Calvin (Carolynn) Cole; granddaughters, Laurynn and Allison; sisters, Marion (Richard) Morris, Marieta (William) Peterson; nephews, Dirk, Bill, Brent; niece, Tresa. He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers-in-law, Victor Tisdel and Leon Dennis. Visitation will be held Saturday from 11:00 am until time of service at 12:00 pm at the Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs. Pastor Chuck Smith officiating. Interment with military honors will take place at East Nelson Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to East Nelson United Methodist Church.

Arrangements by Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs

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Marching band ends season


The Cedar Springs High School marching band performed at the West Shore Invitational, in their second and final MCBA competition of the season on October 27 at Rockford High School. They placed 6th with a score of 84.275. This marks an end to the band’s marching season. They did not qualify for state competition.

A community performance that was scheduled for Thursday evening has been canceled. 

A pep band will travel to the football playoff game in Mount Pleasant on Friday.

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We are the champions


Pictured is the Varsity football team after their Ok White conference win.

Boys cross country are number one in the OK White conference.

Two Cedar Springs athletic teams made history last week when they captured their first ever OK White conference championships. Both the Varsity football and boys cross country teams have won championships in the past, but this is the first in the OK White, which they’ve been a member of since 2016. Way to go! For more details, see stories here.

COMMUNITY TAILGATE: The football team will host Gaylord this Friday, October 26, in a pre-district game at 7 p.m. Everyone is invited to a community tailgate in the Cedar Springs High School parking lot from 4 p.m. until game time. Lots of fun planned: music/DJ, balloon artist, contests, lawn games, cheap hot dogs (50 cents or $1 with chips) and free waters. Or bring your own food and snacks! Cheerleaders and band will be there as well. Be sure to wear all black—it’s a black out game!

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CSHS Class of 71 Reunion


Front row (L to R): Rose Grimes-Powell, Vicki Hays-Haynes, Michele Sandro, Mary Rossett-Steffes-Schmidt, Nancy Clark-Noreen, Teri Zielinski-Marin (1970 Red Flannel Queen), Teresa Middleton-Pountney. Second row: Mike Lewis, Bill Fisher, Kim Hough, Lyle Streeter, Kris Reyburn (front), Mark Lester (back), Marjo Frandsen-Christensen, Jan Hamilton-Chase, Sue Waite-Wolfe, and Sharon Gunneson-Magoon. Those not present for the photo but joining in later include Steve Fisk, Marshall Morris, Harvey White, and Shirley Miller-Tompkins.

The Cedar Springs Class of 1971 gathered in honor of their 47th year since graduation and titled it their “Medicare Coming Out” celebration. The graduates met at the Cedar Springs Community Library on Saturday, October 13 from 5 to 9 PM where they enjoyed a delicious buffet and fellowship. 

Librarian Donna Clark was on hand to give a personal tour of the library along with some library history. Donna is also a sister-in-law to class member Kim Hough. Donna inspired the group to purchase a brick in tribute to the Class 1971 with classmate Kris Reyburn offering to fund it.  

Cedar Springs High School graduate and City Councilor Rose Powell provided an update on the Community Building Development Team, City Happenings, and the Veteran’s Tribute, which she is chairing in partnership with the American Legion. 

Mark Lester, graduate and published author, challenged classmates to write a brief life story. To date, only one classmate, Bugle Editor Tom Noreen, has completed this challenge but promises for more stories by the next reunion were made. 

A moment of remembrance was held for the 27 classmates who have passed on since graduation. Letters and photos from classmates not able to attend were shared along a display of high school and past reunion photos. 

A classmate directory was provided so all can stay in touch with each other. Paula Newland-Brink has established and provides updates through a Class of 71 Facebook page. 

Out of the class of 124 graduates, 21 were present at either the library or at the Cedar Springs Brewing Co. following the library gathering. 

The Class of 71 will continue to meet every other year as they have done for the past several years. Steve Fisk will be having a “reunion planning meeting” sometime in 2019. Then, in 2021 they will have the honor of joining the 50+ Year Graduates who gather each summer in CSHS cafeteria.

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New royalty reigns


Court members Harlow Hovarter (L) and Alyssa Washington (R) with Red Flannel Queen Zoe Castor (Center). Photo by Megan Rosenberger.

According to Zoe’s dad, Dave Castor, her Aunt Anna made this Red Flannel Queen costume when she was not quite 2. “Her mom Terrie and I never guessed that she would be Queen,” he said. Courtesy photo.

The 74th annual Red Flannel Queen’s Scholarship Pageant took place this past Saturday, September 29, at Cedar Springs High School, where seven young ladies competed to be the next Red Flannel Queen. 

Judges for the evening chose Zoe Castor, daughter of David and Terrie Castor as the 2018 Red Flannel Queen, and her two court members are Harlow Hovarter, daughter of Will Hovarter and Raelene Davis, and Alyssa Washington, daughter of Steve and Joy Washington. Castor was also voted as Miss Congeniality by the other contestants.

The circus-themed event was started with an exciting opening number that included flips, light up hula hoops, ribbons, and confetti, which was thrown by the “ringmaster” for the evening, the returning Master of Ceremonies, David Stuart Jr., a teacher at Cedar Springs High School. Assisting him for the evening was the 2008 Red Flannel Queen Breeann Ovokaitys Gibson. 

From L to R: Larissa Fettig, Harlow Hovarter, Paige Pierson, Zoe Castor, MC David Stuart Jr, Kalli Green, Alyssa Washington, and Rileigh Warner. Photo by Megan Rosenberger.

The seven talented contestants competed in a one-on-one interview with the judges before the pageant, and onstage they answered a question about the Red Flannel Festival in a business outfit of their choice as well as having a spontaneous conversation with the MC while wearing a lovely evening dress. Another highlight of the evening was when hostess Breeann Ovokaitys Gibson interviewed the 2018 Grand Marshals, Bob and Betty Truesdale. 

“I am so happy with how this year’s pageant went,” remarked Pageant Director Kaleigh Goehler. “Every year we have a great group of contestants participate in the pageant but the seven young ladies this year were an exceptional group! They worked hard and had fun doing it. More than ever I am so thankful I’m not a judge because choosing three of these seven was no easy task. I am so excited for our new Queen and Court. They are going to have a phenomenal year! The parents of all of our contestants should be very proud.” 

Queen Zoe Castor with her mom and dad, Dave and Terrie Castor. Courtesy photo.

Next year will mark the 75th Queen’s pageant and will be held on Saturday, September 21, 2018. 

If you have not yet donated to the Queen scholarship fund, there is still time. 

The Scholarship Committee’s goal is to raise $5,000 for the Queen, and $2,500 for each of the two court members. If you would like to contribute, you can donate online through Paypal at redflannelfestival.org, or you can send a check or money order to Red Flannel Queen Scholarship Fund, PO box 43, Cedar Springs, MI 49319. Every contribution helps! Donations of $100 or more earns the donor two free passes to the Red Flannel Queen pageant. Donations are accepted through June 30, 2019 for the 2018 Queen and court. All contributions are tax deductible.

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SHYANNA DAWN BOWLIN


Shyanna “Zaedyn” Dawn Bowlin passed away unexpectedly on Monday, September 10, 2018. She was born on March 31, 1997 in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and graduated from Cedar Springs High School in 2015. Shyanna loved singing and photography. She also enjoyed wood burning, hunting, nature camping and being outdoors. Shyanna is survived by her mom and dad, Crystal and John Deason-Johnson; her father, Aaron Bowlin; her siblings, Breonna Deason-Johnson, Eve Deason-Johnson, Mercedez Deason-Johnson, and Trevor Winn; her grandparents, Sherri and Mark Sias, Diane Johnson, Shelia Bowlin and Fred Smith; her great-grandma, Sharon Cramer and her great-grandma, Rita Bowlin. She is also survived by her aunts and uncles, Linda Gritzmaker, Donny and Amiee Smith, Jay Cramer, Alisha and Steve Brooks, Jimmy and Tabetha Johnson, Tony and Brandy Johnson, Shante Deason-Johnson, Chrissy Franscico, Brie Willmer; her great aunts and uncles, Terry and Kitty Cramer, Tom and Dee Cramer, and Lee and Darlene Frost; and her extended family, Amanda and Nate Winn, Dawn Smith, Amanda Watkins, Chris Gritzmaker, Nick Dean, and Miah Rodwell; her cousin Samantha Cramer and many more cousins. Shyanna was preceded in death by her great-grandpa Keith Cramer 2014; her great-grandpa Bill Bowlin 2018; and her grandpa Bruce Johnson 2018. A memorial service will take place at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, September 22, 2018 at The Springs Church, 135 N Grant St NE, Cedar Springs, MI 49319. Pastor Dallas Burgeson will be officiating. A potluck luncheon will follow the memorial service at church.

Arrangements by Pederson Funeral Home, Rockford

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Step back in time: 79th Red Flannel Festival


It’s Red Flannel time again, and the festival board is gearing up to celebrate their 79th event on the last weekend in September and first weekend in October with some new fun events to accompany the Red Flannel traditions. 

This year the theme is “Step back in time” and the board opened up the logo and design to the art students at Cedar Springs High School. The board had over 150 entries. With help from the CSHS art teacher, they chose Haley VanHouton’s design.

“Step back in Time 79 came to life when we discovered several past festival pins and some merchandise,” explained Red Flannel Board member LoraLee Nauta. “What a great way to show how far the RFF and Cedar Springs Community has come with the changes of times and styles.”  

They felt that VanHouton’s design captured that feeling. “Congratulations, Haley, you have done a great job representing the RFF & Cedar Springs, keeping up with the spirit and pride,” said Nauta.

Back by proper demand will be the Lumberjack Show, the Lumberjack Dinner at Cedar Springs High School on the night of the Queen Scholarship pageant, Bed Races, New Kids Zone, Food Trucks and more. Watch for brochures with a list of events, times & locations, as well as a schedule in the Post in two weeks.

The new “Kids Zone” will be on Sept. 29, 11:00 am -4:00 pm at the Grand Lodge.  There will be a donut decorating contest, several games, and prizes. “We don’t want to tell you everything and ruin all the surprises!” said Nauta.

Also new this year is Board President Nancy Deyman, who took over the reins after former President Randy VanDuyn resigned in the spring.

Another new feature is the The Red Flannel office, which underwent a remodel and received an updated look this year.

Stop in for a visit and check out their new stuff. All merchandise is available for purchase. The new office hours are: Sept 4-22: Tues, Thurs, Fri. & Sat   11:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m, and  Wed 3:00 pm-6:30 pm. Sept 23-Oct 5: Monday – Saturday 11:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. except Wednesday 2-6 p.m. Oct 6th – Festival day  opens at 9:00 a.m. – until 5:00 p.m. They are  also available by appointment.

“Nancy Deyman (President) and the entire Red Flannel Board would like to thank all volunteers, City council, and Sheriff dept. for helping us make this fun filled event happen. It takes a community to make this happen. So a big thank you to Cedar Springs,” they said.

Watch next week’s Post for updates on what events are happening over Red Flannel Days!

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