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Tag Archive | "Cedar Springs High School"

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 “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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Hometown Hero


U.S. Air Force Airman Joseph P. Sherman

U.S. Air Force Airman Joseph P. Sherman graduated from basic military training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, San Antonio, Texas.

The airman completed an intensive, eight-week program that included training in military discipline and studies, Air Force core values, physical fitness, and basic warfare principles and skills.

Airmen who complete basic training also earn four credits toward an associate in applied science degree through the Community College of the Air Force.

Sherman is the son of Robert and Lisetta Sherman of Cedar Springs, Mich. He is also the brother of Ashley Sherman.

Sherman is a 2015 graduate of Cedar Springs High School, Cedar Springs, Mich.

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The Post travels to Fiji

Samantha and Emilee Pastoor, of Courtland Township, recently took the Post with them on a trip to the Fiji Islands. Samantha gave the trip to Emilee as a graduation present, after she graduated recently with highest honors from Cedar Springs High School. While in Fiji, the girls spent 12 days on two different islands. They went snorkeling, scuba diving, hiking, and even skydiving. 

That sounds like a great trip! Thanks so much 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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Public invited to attend meeting on Cedar Springs Drain


Meeting on June 21, at 7 p.m. at Cedar Springs High School

By Judy Reed

The Kent County Drain Commissioner recently sent out a notice about a meeting determining the future of the Cedar Springs County Drain, which will affect quite a few residents on the east side of Cedar Springs, and a few on the west side as well.

The Board of Determination will meet at 7 p.m. on June 21, at Cedar Springs High School to decide whether a petition to clean out, relocate, widen, deepen, straighten, tile, extend or relocate along a highway is necessary to the public health. It will affect both the City of Cedar Springs and some of Nelson Township.

The Cedar Springs County Drain is an open and enclosed storm system that collects the storm water runoff from properties and road within the drainage district. (See map above.)

According to Kent County Drain Commissioner Ken Yonker, due to recent permit requests, it was discovered that the Cedar Springs Drain runs under several existing buildings. Those properties cannot be further developed due to the County’s easement on the drain area. For instance, there is a restaurant that wants to buy the Gun Tavern and expand it, but cannot due to the drain running underneath. It also runs underneath the city property at the corner of Elm and Second Street, next to the old library, where the new fire station is to be built.

“The drain was installed years ago, before motorized vehicles,” explained Yonkers. “They didn’t think of that. It worked great back then. The Gun Tavern was able to store their beer down there to keep it cold. But now we have roads that go over those drains.”

He noted that there are other reasons it’s not a good idea to have drains run under buildings. “If a gas tank ruptures, it would spill into the same catch basins that collect the storm water. The drain is flat; it doesn’t move, and gas fumes would build up. They would move upward until they exploded.” 

It also puts development at a stand still. “In the city you have land that now can’t be developed because it’s sitting over the drain. It’s a bad scenario. It needs to be developed for the growth of Cedar Springs,” he said.

They don’t yet have a definite plan to on what they would do, or where it would be moved if the board decided it was needed. But one thing is sure: both the city and the people in the drainage district will pay a portion of the cost. “I know it’s not an easy thing for Cedar Springs because it’s not a lot of people for the cost,” said Yonkers. He added that it would be a bonded cost and they would put it out as far as possible to keep the cost as low as possible for residents.

City Manager Mike Womack said that they have been given an estimate for their share. “The City government has already been informed that the government will likely be seeing a minimum of $25,000 per year share of the overall cost for 15 years and we have already started to budget for it. Homes and businesses in the district will also see a 15 year special assessment and that amount will be based upon the size and perviousness of their property. Since the final drain costs are not known it is impossible to predict with any reasonable accuracy what that dollar amount will be at this time.”

Yonkers told the Post that if the Board votes to go ahead with the project, work would likely not start until late 2019 or early 2020.

For more information, attend the meeting on June 21 or contact the Drain Commissioner at (616) 632-7910, or email drinfo@kentcountymi.gov.


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Cedar Springs Women’s Club selects scholarship recipient

Erika Larsen

By Sue Harrison

Each year the Cedar Springs Women’s Club presents a $1,000 scholarship to a female of any age who resides in the Cedar Springs School District and is planning to attend a college or skill training program. This year’s recipient is Erika Larsen, a Cedar Springs High School senior who was a member of the National Honor Society, played soccer, and volunteered in a local food pantry. 

Erika has over 150 hours of volunteer work, has tutored students, has aided students in the En Gedi program after school, and has traveled to Costa Rica and Mexico to volunteer in orphanages and serve food to poverty-stricken children. 

Erika graduated with honors and is planning to attend Western Michigan University in the Biomedical field and study auto-immune diseases and immunology.  She will be the Women’s Club representative in the Red Flannel Parade in October.

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Raiders add Dallas Mora to Cross Country Team

Dallas Mora (L), a 2018 graduate of Cedar Springs High School, is pictured here with Matt Silicia, head coach of the GRCC Cross Country team. Courtesy photo.

The GRCC Men’s Cross Country team made a run into the post season and placed 24th overall as a team at the NJCAA Division I National Championship this past fall. As a team, the Raiders finished as one of the top MCCAA schools represented, just behind Macomb and Lansing at the National Championship.

The Raiders add Dallas Mora from Cedar Springs High School to the roster for 2018-19. Mora lettered in Cross Country, as well as Track & Field for the Red Hawks.

Mora was recognized for many team and individual awards during his senior season. He helped his team take home trophies from the Spartan Invitational, the Red Hawk Invitational, and the Kent/Ottawa County Championship, as well as a second place finish at the Carson City Invitational. Additionally, the Cedar Springs Men’s Cross Country team finished 10th overall at the State Championship.

Mora was named All-Conference, as well as second team All-Area during his senior season. He finished out his season with a time of 16:31, placing 43rd at the State Championship meet, while earning his best time and highest placing in three years of racing.

With Mora’s best times coming in during the end of his high school career, the Raiders are excited to have him join the team and help continue their success!

Reprinted with permission from Grand Rapids Community College.

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Two Cedar Springs area students receive Congressional Medal of Merit 

Two CS area students receive Congressional Medal of Merit 

Autumn Watson, of Creative Technologies Academy, received the Congressional Medal of Merit on Saturday, May 5, from Rep. Justin Amash. Courtesy photo.

Jacob Ryan Outwin, of Cedar Springs High School, received the Congressional Medal of Merit on Saturday, May 5, from Rep. Justin Amash. Courtesy photo.

Rep. Justin Amash (R-Mich.) recognized the 2018 service academy appointees and student Congressional Medal of Merit recipients from Michigan’s Third District at the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum on Saturday, May 5. 

Applicants to the service academies require a nomination from an authorized nominating source, which includes members of Congress. To assist with the nominating process, Amash assembled a committee of military and civic leaders who reviewed applications, interviewed potential nominees, and made recommendations. 

In addition to the seven service academy appointees recognized, Amash honored 34 students with the Congressional Medal of Merit. Among them was Jacob Ryan Outwin, of Cedar Springs High School, and Autumn Watson, of Creative Technologies Academy.

The Congressional Medal of Merit recognizes high school seniors who have demonstrated exemplary citizenship and academic excellence. Recipients were nominated by their principals or guidance counselors. 

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Willard B. “Will” Rowland age 69 of Grand Rapids, formerly of Cedar Springs passed away Thursday, March 8, 2018 at Harbor Hospice Poppen Residence in Muskegon. He was born in Grand Rapids on February 16, 1949 to Jack and Dorothy (Tompsett) Rowland. He attended Cedar Springs High School (Class of ’67), Ferris State College and Central Michigan University. Will worked in the automotive parts business and later for 12 years at a pharmaceutical company. He was a member of Teamsters Local 406. He is survived by a sister, Kathleen (Brian) Botbyl; brother, Jack (Ellen Bourke) Rowland and several nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents; brothers, Steven and Duane; sister-in-law, Mary Jean and special friend, Lee Van Stee. The family will meet with friends Saturday, April 21 from 1-3 p.m. at the Bliss Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs. A graveside service will be held at 3 p.m. at Elmwood Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to Spectrum Health Foundation, Pulmonary Excellence Fund in memo line or online at https://give.spectrumhealth.org/donation. 

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

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