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Local non-profit looks to improve area


N-CBDT-Cedar-Springs-Community-Building-Project-Logo-web

By Judy Reed

 

There are a lot of plans in the works for the corner of Main and Maple Streets and the Community Building Development Team (CBDT) hopes to be a big part of it.

In addition to the new Cedar Springs Library, on the northwest corner, and the brewery on the southwest corner, the CBDT hopes to build an ampitheatre on the city’s property (the old foundry property) to the west of where the library will be. The team was at the Cedar Springs City Council meeting last Thursday, October 9, to pitch the project.

“The Community Building Development Team is a group of people who want to make the community better,” explained CBDT trustee Tom Holloway, and Pastor at Solon Center Wesleyan Church. “We believe this fits with the prior library board’s plans in 2007 of having both a library and ampitheatre.”

Holloway asked the City Council to let the group build the ampitheatre—and they would do it for free. “All we ask is for the city to maintain it,” he said, “and pay the utilities.”

He explained that they hope to develop the whole area—on both the east and west side of the trail. They are currently buying the Johnson lumberyard property to that end. Besides the ampitheatre, they are working towards helping to restore wetlands, and install walking bridges, to give kids a place to fish. On the lumberyard property, they hope to build a community center and recreation center. Other plans include a boardwalk along Cedar Creek, rain gardens, skate park, spash pad and playground equipment, campground, and fish hatchery.

They have already been working on rain gardens along Cedar Creek with Trout Unlimited, and other groups, and recently voted to take advantage of a matching 3 to 1 grant opportunity. They voted unanimously to pledge  $20,000 towards Trout Unlimited’s Department of Environmental Quality 319 Grant Proposal, which will restore and enhance wetlands in downtown Cedar Springs and elsewhere in the Rogue River watershed, if funded. The project will look to develop future conservation projects in the Rogue River watershed, including other wetland restoration projects, buffer strip plantings, and other efforts directed at improving the health of the Rogue. According to the CBDT, the grant could be worth $300,000 to $400,000 to the community.

The group’s mission is to retain the small-town character of Cedar Springs, incorporate natural features, link neighborhoods and people, enhance characteristics that already define our community, and make it easy for families, youth, senior citizens, organizations, and all community members to gather, celebrate and serve each other.

With that in mind, they’ve adopted a railroad theme for their group, since two railroads ran through the community in its early days. They have chosen an old photo for their logo. In it you can see Lute Fullington’s carriage. His livery service transported people from the trains to hotels, businesses, and homes in our area.

The Cedar Springs City Council heard the CBDT’s presentation, but no agreement has yet been made on whether they will allow the ampitheatre to be built there. Holloway said that after the library is built, they would try to match it in design.

Members of the CBDT are Kurt Mabie, President; Tom Mabie, Vice President; Betty Truesdale, Treasurer; Carolee Cole, Secretary; and Sue Wolfe, Dale Larson, Sally Howland, Nick Andres and Tom Holloway, trustees.

The public is invited to attend their meetings the third Tuesday of each month at 6 p.m. at the Amish Furniture Store, 141 S. Main Street, Cedar Springs.

 

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Nelson Township Library millage request


The November 4, 2014 General Election ballot for Nelson Township voters will include a request for the Nelson Township Library operating millage to be restored to the original .5 mills which was approved in 1987.  Since 1987, the effect of the Headlee Amendment has reduced the levy to .3940 mills.  The November ballot request is asking for an additional .1068 mills to bring the levy back to the original ½ mill.

Since the construction of the new library in 2007, operating expenses have continued to rise and millage receipts have diminished.  The 2014-15 budget for the library was set at $51,400.00. Expenses for the building include utilities, insurance, custodial services, grounds maintenance and miscellaneous items.

The reduced millage of 0.3940 mills generates $46,600.00 annually. Approval of the requested additional 0.1068 mills will add $12,718.00 to the dedicated library operating funds. At present, the shortage comes out of the township general fund. If passed, property owners will pay 11 cents per thousand dollars of taxable value or $11 on a home with a taxable value of $100,000.

In August, Kent County voters approved a millage request by the Kent District Library. This money provides librarians, programs, books and magazines in both print and audio, music, videos, programs, computers and internet access, plus more. The townships in turn must provide a facility for the library to operate in and like KDL, our funds have remained flat while our costs have increased.

Please vote YES on November 4.

Dorothy Bishop, Nelson Township

Post Scripts Notice: The Cedar Springs Post welcomes letters of up to 350 words. The subject should be relevant to local readers, and the editor reserves the right to reject letters or edit for clarity, length, good taste, accuracy, and liability concerns. All submissions MUST be accompanied by full name, mailing address and daytime phone number. We use this information to verify the letter’s authenticity. We do not print anonymous letters, or acknowledge letters we do not use. Email to news@cedarspringspost.com, or send to PostScripts, Cedar Springs Post, PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319.

 

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Summer reading kicks off at library


Cindy Karafa, from Double K Farms, talks to the children about the animals.

Cindy Karafa, from Double K Farms, talks to the children about the animals.

Hundreds of people signed up for the summer reading program Monday.

Hundreds of people signed up for the summer reading program Monday.

It was a great day Monday, June 9, for the Cedar Springs Library’s Summer Reading Kick-off party! According to Library Director Donna Clark, over 500 people came to sign up, celebrate and participate in festivities, which included the Double K Petting Zoo, Kelly’s free ice cream, and the Friends of the Library Book Sale.

“People were pouring in from all over Cedar Springs,” remarked Clark. “564 have signed up for the Summer Reading Program so far and 372 of those registered on Opening Day!”

Local merchants, service organizations, school students and local families support the Library’s summer reading outreach. “Prizes, publicity, performers, crafts and supplies have been secured for what is to be the very best summer ever,” noted Clark. “Programs are for all ages, babies to adults. Family programs will be held at the Cedar Springs Middle School on Wednesdays at 2 p.m.”

If you didn’t get signed up yet, you can still sign up all month. The more you read, the more chances you get to win prizes to be given out at the

The Cedar Springs Fire Department made a guest appearance at the summer reading kick off party Monday.

The Cedar Springs Fire Department made a guest appearance at the summer reading kick off party Monday.

Reading Celebration Carnival, Wednesday, July 30, at Morley Park from 2-4 p.m.

Wednesday is the big day for family programs. Preschool story times are set for 11:15 at the library on the lawn, so bring a beach towel! The family programs are at the lovely Cedar Springs Middle School from 2-3pm. Two special programs with pizza are planned for the following groups: 4-6th graders, 7-12th graders and adults. Check the library’s new website at cedarspringslibrary.org to view all programs online.

“A special thanks to all of the staff and volunteers who made this event run smoothly!” said Clark. “We are blessed by a generous community.”

 

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Quilt raffle at Sand Lake/Nelson Library


ENT-Quilt-at-Sand-Lake-Library-webFive dedicated community volunteers put their heads, needles, and thread together for over 40 hours to make a beautiful quilt for the Sand Lake/Nelson Township Library to use as a fundraiser.

The quilt was pieced together by Sharon Hula, Sharon Jones, Lois Williams and Janet Boezwinkle. Long arm quilting was done by Quilting by Carol of Rockford Michigan. This quilt demonstrates the passion these volunteers have for the library and its services.

“We hope that the community likes it as much as we do,” says Glenda Middleton, Library Branch Manager. “These women decided to offer it to the library as a way to raise money for the many services and operations we offer. The colors are so vibrant and cheerful that I imagine many people will love it.”

The quilt is a perfect-sized couch quilt at 68 x 110 inches. It is extra long and great for a nap or comfortable enough for two to stay warm and read a good book (from your library). The value of the quilt is $285.00.

Tickets are available for a suggested donation of $1 each or 6 for $5 at the library, 88 Eighth Street, Sand Lake. The drawing will be held December 21st at 3 p.m. at the library. Need not be present to win.

For more information, contact the KDL Sand Lake/Nelson Library at (616) 784-2007 or visit www.kdl.org.

 

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Community’s generosity highlighted on local TV station


Fox 17 Meteorologist Kevin Craig does the weather from Cedar Springs.

Fox 17 Meteorologist Kevin Craig does the weather from Cedar Springs.

By Judy Reed

 

Cedar Springs got some positive publicity this week from a Grand Rapids area television station.

Fox 17 meteorologist Kevin Craig did a story on Cedar Springs Tuesday evening for the channel’s West Michigan Stories segment. He did the interviews about a month ago, and then did live teasers from The Kent Theatre Tuesday evening. He started out by doing the weather outside of the Kent, and then talked to people inside before each segment.

Kevin Craig interviews both Rose Powell (right wearing granny cap) and her mother-in-law Alice Powell (left wearing top hat) about their Red flannel wear.

Kevin Craig interviews both Rose Powell (right wearing granny cap) and her mother-in-law Alice Powell (left wearing top hat) about their Red flannel wear.

Craig called Cedar Springs “the epitome of giving” for the way the residents pulled together to raise $50,000 towards the new library this year, as well as funding the $60,000 for the digital projector at the Kent Theatre. He also talked about the donations that were raised for Veterans Park. Librarian Donna Clark talked about the library in the segment, and both Len Allington and Jack Clark were interviewed about the Theatre.

The Red Flannel Festival Queen and Court and Cindy Patin were interviewed for a segment on the Festival.

Kevin Craig at the Kent Theatre ticket booth.

Kevin Craig at the Kent Theatre ticket booth.

A few dozen people showed up despite the snow to be a part of the festivities. The Kent handed out free popcorn, and the Red Flannel Festival gave away t-shirts and buttons.

You can find the stories online at Fox 17’s website at www.fox17online.com.

 

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Students do more than read at library


 

Sand Lake students work on library landscape. Post photo by J. Reed.

Fourth and fifth grade students in Sand Lake Elementary’s Green Club have taken on a monumental task—maintaining and improving the prairie and rain garden at the Nelson Township/Sand Lake Library.

According to teacher Melanie Gould, the students decided they wanted to take on the project, and went before both the Sand Lake Village Council and Nelson Township Board with their proposal. And it worked.

Now, instead of just being mowed, it will be returned to a more natural state.

Gould said that students have been learning about the prairie and rain garden in the best possible way: outside and hands on!

“It’s such a great thing,” said teacher Melanie Gould. “Kids that might not shine in the classroom can shine out here,” she said.

The students have been learning about the native plants in the garden that soak up and purify pollutants, and about the animals that depend on the specialized ecosystems. With the help of master naturalist Laurie Grant, the students are researching the importance of native wildflower gardens, creating a field guide blog, and working to maintain and build upon the gardens in place.

The students and community volunteers are creating a walkway through the garden and will be putting up a kiosk to inform visitors about the plants and animals that can be seen in the garden. Student volunteers of all ages will help maintain the garden all summer long.

For more information on the Sand Lake Elementary Green Club and their mission, contact Melanie Gould or Michele VanderVelde at 616-636-5669.

 

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Can we ever come together?


Greetings,

Cedar Springs City Hall, Fellow Merchants, Concerned Citizens:

 

Can we ever come together? Does anyone really care?

As we understand it a very generous person put up $50k of matching funds for a new future library.

We at the Amish Furniture and Gifts Warehouse, wanted to have some little part in seeing this come to fruition.

So, we spent $640.00 for ads in the local papers, giving 15% of all furniture sales for one week to this effort.

Results – none!

A planning representative that the City uses, from Royal Oak, said NO to our signage promoting this cause.

And really when you think about it, why should he care? His children and grandchildren probably have a nice new library in their city.

So, we are sorry, Donna Clark, for not giving the $640.00 to the library fund.

The $100.00 token [I donated] doesn’t quite cut it, so who knows, maybe the planning firm that takes those green backs out of Cedar Springs every year will kick in!

Then, maybe someday Cedar Springs will once again become a nice place to live, work, and play.

 

Sincerely, 

Amish Bob (Truesdale), Cedar Springs

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Library building fund hits $30,000


The Cedar Springs Public Library has now hit $30,000 in its efforts towards earning a $50,000 matching grant.

“I really think we can do it,” said Library Director Donna Clark, referring to the other $20,000 needed.

The Library building fund committee has been hard at work with businesses and community partners since last fall on setting up fundraisers to meet the goal. One such fundraiser that occurred last week was the all-you-can-eat taco bar at Big Boy’s. According to the committee, donations and ticket sales at the event topped $1,300 for the Library (including $40 in t-shirt sales).

“Our thanks to everyone who came to support our library and to the many volunteers, management and the restaurant staff who gave their time and energy to the cause,” said Fundraising co-chairs Vicky Babcock and Alicia Imhoff. Author David Stricklen came to sign his books despite having knee surgery mere hours before the event. You can check out his website at www.blackwaterpond.com.

For a complete listing of upcoming library events and to donate via paypal, visit cedarsprings.llcoop.org.

 

 

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Combined fundraisers net over $1,000 for Library


From the Library Matching Fundraising committee

 

If you had nothing to do last week, you weren’t paying attention! April 9-14 was a busy week for library fundraising, bringing in over $1,000 for the library building fund.

There was bingo at American Legion #287 Glen Hill Post with Jim See, where the Legion donated the entire receipts allowable by law to the Public Library Building Fund. For fitness buffs, Kate Rehmus did 90 minutes of Zumba on Saturday with receipts going to the Library. Shopping your game? The Amish Warehouse donated 15 percent of all furniture sales and 5 percent of gift sales to the Library.

If you missed this (and many did), don’t despair—there’s more fun ahead.  The library will have a table at Community Night, April 19 (today) from 6-8 p.m., featuring a bake sale and other items. Big Boy’s All You Can Eat Taco Bar is scheduled for April 26, 5-8 p.m. Tickets are available at Big Boy and your public library. We have kick-boxing in the works, Zumba, Karaoke, Book Sales and so much more.  On-going fundraisers include Take-Two Game Shop ($1 donated for every $20 spent) Alpha Omega Coffee’s Pound of Ground, license plates and frames available at the library and City Hall and quality T-shirts for $5, also at the library. Each dollar donated brings us that much closer to our goal of a bigger library.

It is wonderful to see this community rallying around the library as it has. By investing in our Public Library, we are investing in the future. Many businesses and individuals have made the commitment to partner with us in attaining this goal. Our major concern with fundraisers has been getting the word out to the public. The Post has been a major player in public awareness. Thanks to them and to each of you for making the new library a very real possibility. Keep watching the Post for new fundraisers and updates!

For a complete listing of upcoming library events and to donate via Paypal, visit cedarsprings.llcoop.org/

 

 

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Library fundraising events


Proceeds from several upcoming events will go toward the Cedar Springs Public Library’s building fund matching grant challenge.

April 9-15: Bob and Betty Truesdale, of the Amish Furniture and Gifts Warehouse, will donate 15 percent of furniture sales and 5 percent of gift purchases made from April 9 to 15, to the Cedar Springs Library Building Fund. The person who spends the most will receive a trip for two to Sarah’s Amish Dining Room for an amazing all you can eat fish fry on April 20. (See advertisement on page 18.)

April 12: Bingo at the American Legion in Cedar Springs on April 12 at 5 p.m. Proceeds to benefit the Cedar Springs Library Building Fund.

April 14: 90 Minutes of Zumba with Kate Rehmus, Saturday, April 14 at 9:30 a.m. at the Cedar Springs Middle School. $10 class fee will benefit the Cedar Springs Library Building Fund.

 

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