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Tag Archive | "En-Gedi youth center"

Hometown Happenings


Hometown Happenings articles are a community service for non-profit agencies only. Due to popular demand for placement in this section, we can no longer run all articles. Deadline for articles is Monday at 5 p.m. This is not guaranteed space. Articles will run as space allows. Guaranteed placement is $10, certain restrictions may apply. You now can email your Hometown Happenings to happenings@cedarspringspost.com please include name and phone number for any questions we may have.

Craft & Vendor Show at Hillcrest Community Church

Apr. 29:  On Saturday, April 29 the Hillcrest Community Church (5994 18 Mile Rd.) will be hosting the Spring Craft & Vendor Show from 9 am – 2 pm. It is an opportunity to experience a time when you can set aside the fast paced world and slow down, enjoy some coffee or tea, browse the craft tables, enjoy a relaxing lunch and visit with friends. Mother’s Day is coming soon and this is a great opportunity to shop for mom. We will have flowers, hanging baskets and ferns too. #17

Huge Adoption Fundraiser

Apr. 29: Rockford Reformed Church is hosting a HUGE Adoption Fundraiser Garage Sale for a local family in the Church Gym (4890 Eleven Mile Rd.) on Saturday, April 29th from 9 am to 2 pm. There will be a $5 bag sale beginning at 1 pm. Please join us for a great sale to support a great cause – tons of kids items, clothes, home décor, quality large furniture items and much more! #17p

Payton Christian in Cedar Springs

Apr. 30, May 1: Payton, an 18 year old actress/model/non-profit director/speaker, will share her testimony on Sunday, April 30 at North Kent Community Church, 1480 Indian Lakes Rd. NE, Sparta, MI 49345 at the 10 am service. At 5:30 pm Payton will speak to the youth at the community wide screening of “I’m Not Ashamed.” Monday, May 1 at 2:45 pm, Payton will speak to En Gedi Youth Center at Red Hawk School, 204 E. Muskegon St. Cedar Springs. For more information contact Pastor Craig Carter, Senior Pastor of North Kent Community Church, 616-550-6398. #17

Dinner at the Legion

May 1: American Legion, 80 S. Main St. Cedar Springs, is hosting a Baked Chicken dinner on Monday,  May 1, from 5 – 7 pm. Included will be baked chicken, mashed potatoes, stuffing, veggies, salad, roll, drink and dessert. The cost is $9 for adults, children (15 and younger) $4.00. Come and enjoy home cooking. Take out is available. 616-696-9160.  #17p

God’s Kitchen in Cedar Springs

May 2,9,16,23,30: Join us for dinner every Tuesday. God’s Kitchen – Cedar Springs welcomes families from Northern Kent County and the surrounding area to a Tuesday Evening Meal. No charge – no registration required!  Served from 5:30 – 6:30 pm at the St. John Paul II Parish, 3110 – 17 Mile Rd., Cedar Springs. For more information, call the Church office at 616-696-3904. #17

Parent and Child Yoga @ KDL

May 4: Amber Kilpatrick – founder of Mindful Vinyasa School of Yoga & creator of The Mindful Classrooms Project – will be hosting a special Parent & Child Yoga session, perfect for young children. Come learn about yoga and try a few poses. A story is included! The library has a limited number of yoga mats. First come, first served. Please bring your own if possible and join us! Thursday, May 4, 6:30 pm,  at the Spencer Township KDL Branch, 14960 Meddler Ave., Gowen. #17

Carnival Bingo

May 6: Come join the fund and help the North Kent Senior Citizens Association raise money to help pay for their furnace. We will have a baked good sale going on and chances to win gift baskets as well. So come check out the Senior Center, 44 N. Park, Cedar Springs, and have a great time playing bingo! Only 25 cents for 3 bingo cards per game to play. #17,18p

3rd Annual Kentucky Derby Party

May 6: Watch the Kentucky Derby, listen to music by Gordon Thayer Band, enjoy a Mint Julep, food, raffle, and silent auction. Pick your favorite horse. Saturday, May 6th from 4 to 12 midnight at Sparta Moose Lodge, 11510 North Division, Sparta. Benefit to support 2nd Chance School a school for troubled teens of any race, color, and national or ethnic origin. Questions? Call 616-293-2150. #17,18p

Discover Small Museums

May 6,7: “Spring Into the Past” and discover the small museums of the Tri-River Historical Museum Network, including Cedar Springs Museum, Rockford Area Museum, Oakfield (Twp) Museum and Plainfield Township’s Hyser Rivers Museum in Belmont. These and 25 other member museums from Hastings to Edmore, Plainfield to Sunfield will be open from 11 am to 5 pm for your convenience. Pick up one at any member museum. Ask about the new Tri-River Quilt Trail too. #17

Pierson School Reunion

May 13: The Pierson School Reunion will be held on Saturday, May 13th from 9 am to 12 noon at Pierson Bible Church, 101 Grand St., Pierson. Contact Dick Pierce or Francine Sherman, 616-550-4547. #17

Christian Women’s Retreat

May 13: The Carousel of Life – Strategies for Navigating Today’s World. Speaker – Leslie Anne Wood, Transforming Faith Ministries. Do you feel like you’re on a carousel? Life is spinning round and round and first you’re up and then you’re down. The music plays louder and louder. Let me off! But we can’t get off; we must learn how to ride the colored horses of life. We can do this with faith and perseverance and God’s help. Saturday, May 13, 8:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. at Settlement Lutheran Church (1031 S. Johnson Rd., Gowen). Cost is $5 and includes registration, wake up coffee, snacks, and a light, healthy lunch. Register by Sunday, May 7 by calling Linda Hansen at 616-984-5557 or mailing her at 13680 Sprague St., Gowen 49326, or by emailing linda13680@sbcglobal.net. #17


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Actress in Columbine film to speak at local church


 

Payton Christian, an actress, model and speaker, will speak at North Kent Community Church on Sunday, April 30, and be on hand to speak to youth that evening at a community-wide showing of “I’m not ashamed,” a film telling the story of Rachel Scott, the first victim in the Columbine shooting in 1999. Courtesy photo.

Payton Christian, an actress, model and speaker, will speak at North Kent Community Church on Sunday, April 30, and be on hand to speak to youth that evening at a community-wide showing of “I’m not ashamed,” a film telling the story of Rachel Scott, the first victim in the Columbine shooting in 1999. Courtesy photo.

By Judy Reed

The shooting at Columbine High School in Colorado in 1999 was a tragic event that people will not forget. And the stories that came out of it—like the shooting of Rachel Joy Scott—the first victim, are a reminder of the courage of many of the students.

“I am not ashamed,” a movie that tells her story and is based on Scott’s diaries, came out last fall. It will have a special showing next weekend, April 30, at North Kent Community Church, 1480 Indian Lakes Rd NE, at 5:30 p.m. Payton Christian, an actress who plays a Columbine student in the movie, will be on hand to give her own testimony during the 10 a.m. service April 30, and will speak to youth at the community-wide screening at 5:30 p.m.. She will also speak to youth at the En Gedi Youth Center on Monday, May 1, at 2:45 p.m. at Red Hawk Elementary.

Payton is an 18-year-old actress and model who lives in Erin, Tennessee. Her faith and family are both important to her. She lives on a 200-acre farm called Christian Farm, with her mom, dad, and grandmother. She was homeschooled from about second grade on, because of an auto-immune deficiency. “I would be sick all of the time, catch colds and flu really easy,” she explained. So her mom decided to keep her home and homeschool her. It’s gotten better as she’s gotten older, but it’s still with her. “It’s just something I have, it doesn’t stop me,” she said.

When she was 11, she was watching New York fashion week, and told her mom she’d like to do that. So they looked at agencies, and chose a Christian-based agency. “They told me I was a little short for modeling but they could put me in a movie here and there,” she explained with a chuckle.

Her first movie was “Rumors of War,” when she was almost 12. “It’s an intense, faith-based film about the end of days,” she explained. “Not for kids under 13.”

Payton has done a variety of movies—both secular and Christian, but said her heart is with faith-based movies. “I love God and love doing films about Him and his word, and how he’s worked through people’s lives,” she said.

The Post asked Payton how she became involved with “I’m not ashamed.”

“I had seen some talk about it, and I helped with some of the casting. My agency was doing the casting and I was there that day, and I listened and watched as the actors read for their parts. I later talked to my manager about it, and said ‘If there is anything I can do to be a part of it, I want to do it.’ So I was there from day one to the last day,” she recalled.

She said they were all happy with the response to the film. “So many people showed up at the premier, and huge groups came to see it,” she said.

Payton Christian loving on a parrot, on the farm she lives on with her parents and grandmother in Kentucky.

Payton Christian loving on a parrot, on the farm she lives on with her parents and grandmother in Kentucky.

When Payton is not acting, modeling, or speaking, she likes to spend time reading—“I have 500 books in my room,” she confessed. She also spends time with the animals on their farm. The farm is home to an array of animals, including regular farm animals as well as camels, zebras, and birds. But one of her favorite things is working with the rescue horses they take in. “I feed and help them put on weight and just love on them. I have a real passion for that. It’s a humongous this for me,” she explained.

Payton’s big heart is not just for animals. She is also involved in a foundation called “To write love on her arms,” a depression awareness and suicide prevention cause. And she also just started a new foundation called Bibles in Battle, a foundation to provide bibles to every soldier fighting overseas. She said she would have a donation box set up when she comes to speak in case people want to donate to that cause.

Payton said that she feels faith should be important to everyone. “People are worried about everything. But whenever we leave this earth, those things we worked so hard to get won’t be important. God doesn’t care how much money we make, where we live, what we drive. He cares that we love him and follow his word. He should be our number one priority.”

When she talks to the youth in Cedar Springs, she will try to impress on them that no one is ever perfect. “Don’t try to make yourself perfect. To God you are already perfect from day one—he loves you the way you are. It doesn’t matter what group you are in; you don’t need to prove yourself. You have God and that’s enough,” she said.

What does Payton see in her future? “My goal is mostly to do what my heart tells me—what God wants me to do—to spread his message and do as much good as I possibly can,” she said.

Payton has never been to Michigan, and is looking forward to it. “I’m overly excited that I get to be here and talk to everyone,” she remarked. “And I’m looking forward to seeing the sights!”

For more information on the showing contact Pastor Craig Carter at 616-550-6398 or craigcarter8282@gmail.com.

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Clarification


 

Last week we ran article reporting that former Survivor contestant Michael Skupin had been arraigned on multiple felony charges, including possession of child pornography and racketeering. We also noted that the Michigan native had been here in Cedar Springs five years ago to give an inspirational presentation to youth and their parents at the En Gedi Youth Center. We included a photo showing him at En Gedi.

We referenced that appearance in the story because many would remember it, and used that photo because it was the one we had. Skupin is the contestant on Survivor that fell in the fire and burned his hands so badly that skin was peeling off. He said that doctors told him that the way his hands healed was a miracle. He attributed it to God.

The En Gedi board wants the public to know that no children were alone with Skupin at any time during  his presentation, and that they have had no contact with him since his appearance here five years ago. En Gedi was one of many Christ-centered organizations that Skupin spoke to.

In no way did the Post mean to infer that there was any kind of connection between Skupin and En Gedi beyond that appearance.

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Former Survivor contestant arraigned on felony charges


Michael Skupin is shown here with En Gedi after his talk five years ago.

Michael Skupin is shown here with En Gedi after his talk five years ago.

Michael Skupin charged with possession of child pornography, racketeering

Five years ago this week, former Survivor contestant Michael Skupin was a guest speaker at Cedar Springs’ En Gedi Youth Center, where he shared his inspirational story with 120 kids and parents. Many remember him as the man who passed out and fell into the fire on live TV and was medivaced by helicopter to a hospital in Australia.

Earlier this week, Skupin was arraigned on a dozen felony charges. Michigan State Attorney General Schuette charged Skupin, 54, of Oakland County, with six counts of possession of Child Sexually Abusive Materials (a four-year felony), five counts of Larceny by Conversion (a five-year felony), and one count of Racketeering-Conducting a Criminal Enterprise (a 20-year felony) for his role in allegedly running and promoting a Ponzi scheme.

Not only did this man rob people of their hard earned savings with his financial scams but he victimized innocent children every time he looked at a piece of child pornography,” said Schuette. “This man seems to have no concept or caring for right and wrong and will be prosecuted under the full extent of the law for these horrific crimes.”

An investigation began into Skupin after victims from his alleged Ponzi scheme contacted a local news reporter. It is alleged that Michael Skupin recruited investors and friends to take part in his “gifting scheme” called Pay It Forward. Victims allegedly made $10,000 cash investments in the scheme. Their money would then cycle through a chart in which participants were eventually paid out of other new investors’ money. The scheme was discovered when eventually there were no new investors signing and most people in the scheme lost all of their money.

Skupin’s laptop was searched in conjunction with the Ponzi scheme investigation. During the search, investigators discovered images of underage children in sexual situations. The images are alleged to belong to Skupin.

Skupin was arraigned Friday, February 5, 2016 in 52-2 District Court in Clarkston before Magistrate Daniel Schuman. Bond was set at $350,000. If bond is met, Skupin must wear a GPS tether, cannot have any unsupervised visits with children or leave the state. Skupin will next appear in court for a pre-exam conference on Friday, February 19, 2016 at 9 a.m.

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En Gedi auction a big success


Guests browse auction items at the En Gedi silent auction.

Guests browse auction items at the En Gedi silent auction.

Cedar Springs High School hosted the one and only fundraiser of the year for En Gedi youth center Friday, March 21, and people in the community responded both with their presence and with their pocketbooks.

Approximately 150 people attended this year’s big event, which included a silent auction with over 145 items, and 10 bigger items were in the live auction. A money machine and dice game allowed the guests to have some fun. The excitement continued while enjoying the delicious appetizers.

According to Sue Wolfe, the goal for the auction was to make $12,500, to maximize the matching gift from CS Manufacturing. They surpassed that goal by $5,000. Kevin Pike, Co-Chair of the event, reported earnings of $17,794 from the auction, ticket sales, and raffles, plus the $12,500 match from C S Manufacturing, which brought them to $30,294.00 earned for En Gedi in one night.

Guests enjoyed an array of delicious appetizers.

Guests enjoyed an array of delicious appetizers.

“The En Gedi Team is grateful to our community who graciously donated the items and then to our attendees who generously gave,” said Pike. “We know they saw it as more than as a donation for an item, but as a lasting investment in our people’s lives.”

Wolfe was excited to see they exceeded their goal. “Our annual budget is $28,000 so this will allow us to expand on our high school programs and special events,” she explained.

 

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On tap this weekend


You don’t want to miss these events coming up Friday and Saturday!

On Friday, May 13, at 7 p.m., En-Gedi youth center, meaning a Place to Be Refreshed, will host its first ever “Come Be Refreshed – Special Event” in the Cedar Springs High School. This is a free community event with a dessert buffet/cook-off providing sweet treat samples for guests to enjoy. Area catering and restaurant owners will be vying for guest’s votes in hopes of being named the “2011 En-Gedi Best Dessert Cup Winner.” A silent auction will be held for items such as two tickets to a Taylor Swift Concert, one ton of wood pellets, guided turkey hunt, two desktop computer, monitor, and software, Amish quilts, two bikes, a leather relaxation recliner, one-night stay at the W. W. Lodge, MSU autographed basketball, and many more great items. The evening will conclude in the auditorium with some exceptional music from local musicians as well as hearing from some students and Pastor Holloway. Proceeds go to support the youth center. Visit the En-Gedi website to learn more and/or make a donation (Pay Pal) www.En-GediYouthCenter.com.
On Saturday, May 14, come celebrate the grand reopening of the Howard Christensen Nature Center, 16190 Red Pine Drive, from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The Birds-eye Treasure Hunt has been canceled, but residents are still welcome to come out and explore the nature trails and enjoy the cozy atmosphere of the Red Pine Interpretive Center, where lunch will be available for $5. The Howard Christensen Nature Center occupies 135 acres owned by the Kent Intermediate School District and is located west of Cedar Springs in the middle of the Rogue River State Game Area. To make a donation, or to get more information, call (616) 675-3158.

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