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Tag Archive | "Lois Allen"

Happy birthday, Cedar Springs Post


By Post editor, Judy Reed

What were you doing, in July, 29 years ago, when the Cedar Springs Post was born? Some of the headlines for July 1988 included:

  • USSR launches Phobos II for Martian orbit
  • Sting performs first rainforest concert
  • Florence Joyner runs 100m in 10.49 seconds for world record
  • 4 billion tv viewers watch Nelson Mandela’s 70th birthday tribute
  • Michael Dukakis selected as Democratic presidential candidate
  • Pedro Delgado wins Tour de France
  • Gorbachev pushes plan to elect president and parliament in March
  • Cedar board sets millage election to recover earlier budget cuts

Many people that have grown up here (at least those under 30) don’t remember what it was like not to have their own hometown newspaper. The previous newspaper, The Cedar Springs Clipper, served the area well for over 100 years. Once it closed, the area relied on out-of-town newspapers for several years to publish only bits and pieces of Cedar Springs news, much like area newspapers do today. Then on July 28, 1988, Roger and Alice Allen, founders of the Rockford Squire, rented out an office from Sipple TV, on 36 E. Maple Street in Cedar Springs, and started the great little newspaper you still have today—The Cedar Springs Post.

Roger’s daughter, Lois, took over operation of the paper, with her mother Alice, in 1989, and she’s still holding the paper to a strong standard today. The introductory issue of the Post pledged that “the community will once again receive the concentrated attention of its own local newspaper. The newspaper will be dedicated entirely to Cedar Springs and to the Cedar Springs area, and should prove to be the stimulus that the district needs to reach its highest potential.” Those are lofty words, but a promise that we still strive to fulfill today. We try to deliver the news you can use each week. In addition to the regular “hard” news such as accidents and fires, where else will you find what size catfish Johnny caught, who won the spelling bee, what the women’s club did last week, and who was arrested for drunken driving? Nowhere! Because the other papers don’t care but we do. This newspaper is about you and for you. And it will continue to be as long as we’re here.

Many people don’t realize that we wouldn’t know much about the history of our area if weren’t for the local newspapers. The Clipper told us about the early days of our town and the surrounding townships. And we can find most issues on microfiche at the Cedar Springs Historical Museum. That’s 100 years of history! The Post carries on that heritage by having a year’s worth of Post newspapers bound in a book each year. We then give that book to the Museum so that future generations can look back on the history we are living today.

Our readers tell us they love the paper. We continue to print 5,000 copies each week with the bulk delivered to newsstands and businesses, and they are gone within days. We wish we were able to cover even more of your local news and print more copies; but as advertising evolves, our revenues have declined, and so has our budget and our staff. The paper is free to our readers, but printing the paper is not free. We have overhead such as payroll, taxes, equipment, and supplies, along with the cost of just getting the paper printed. The Post is supported 100 percent by local businesses advertising on our pages. We sincerely appreciate those businesses that choose to advertise with us because they know that the newspaper and the information it supplies is important to this community.

Besides our printed paper, you can also visit our website at www.cedarspringspost.com to read some of our news stories, or you can download our e-edition from our website, which is an exact replica of our printed paper, as a pdf. You can also like our facebook page for breaking news and/or updates.

Thank you for letting us into your home each week, and we look forward to our 30th year of serving you.

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Winter is here!


n-winter-photo-shaun-cook-downtown-cs-after-storm

n-winter-photo-lois-allenWe had our first big winter snowstorm last weekend, bringing 8-10 inches of snow across parts of Michigan, including here in Kent County. Kids were rejoicing Monday morning, when many schools were canceled, including here in Cedar Springs. Reader Shaun Cook sent us this nice photo of downtown Main Street, taken after road crews had plowed Main Street late Sunday night. Thanks, Shaun!

Publisher Lois Allen took this photo of her bird feeder, showing just how much snow had fallen at her home in Nelson Township.

More snow is on the way. If you’d like to send us photos of winter weather, or kids having fun in the snow, send them to news@cedarspringspost.com.

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What a difference a week makes


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Post photo L. Allen.

Post photo L. Allen.

Photo by Mary Lou Fuller

Photo by Mary Lou Fuller

Signs of Spring

By Judy Reed

A week ago last Tuesday, we were hit with the second snowstorm in a week and kids all across Kent County had last Tuesday and Wednesday of school. By the weekend, however, it started warming up, and as of this past Tuesday, all of the snow was gone. Mary Lou Fuller, of Solon Township, sent us two photos showing the difference. “I thought this was quite a contrast in photos,” she said.

She took the photo of the cardinal sitting on snow-covered branches on Tuesday, March 1. The second photo, of a blooming crocus, she took on March 8. What a difference!

Our publisher, Lois Allen, spotted a robin in a local business parking lot and snapped this photo. So she gets kudos for the first robin sighting photo of the season! We know that some robins winter here, probably from further north, so it’s hard to know if it’s one that’s come back, but we choose to be optimistic and believe spring is right around the corner!

What signs of spring are you seeing? Send them our way. Email your photos and some info to news@cedarspringspost.com. Put “signs of spring” in your subject line. We will print them as space allows.

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The Post travels to…the hospital


N-Post-travels-to-the-hospital-Lois

As many of you know, Post publisher Lois Allen was in a car accident earlier this month. She spent several days at Butterworth Hospital, in Grand Rapids, and was a good sport to pose for this photo with a Post! Lois is home now, but still on the mend. Thanks to everyone for your cards and well wishes! We hope to have her back with us soon. If you’d like to send her a card, you may send it to her here at The Post. Our address is PO Box 370, Cedar Springs, MI 49319.

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Post publisher injured in accident


Damage to Allen's black Chrysler Sebring convertible can be seen here

Damage to Allen’s black Chrysler Sebring convertible can be seen here

By Judy Reed

Lois Allen, owner and publisher of The Cedar Springs Post, was injured and hospitalized for several days following a two-vehicle crash last weekend in Nelson Township.

According to the Kent County Sheriff Department, the accident occurred about 7 p.m., on Saturday, April 6. Deputy Chad Tucker, the officer at the scene, said that Allen was southbound on Shaner Avenue, in her black Chrysler Sebring convertible, when she failed to stop at the stop sign at 17 Mile. She then collided with a westbound 2004 silver Saturn Ion.

Allen was transported to Butterworth hospital by Rockford Ambulance, where she was diagnosed with several broken ribs, a broken collarbone, and a cracked verterbrate in her neck.

Sara Butler was the driver of this Saturn Ion.

Sara Butler was the driver of this Saturn Ion.

According to Lt. Marc Burns, the driver of the Saturn was Sara Butler, 34, of Grand Rapids. She was also transported to the hospital, with non-life-threatening injuries.

Allen’s small dog was also in the vehicle, but escaped without injury.

Assisting at the scene was the Cedar Springs Fire Department and Rockford Ambulance.

The Post would like to thank everyone at the scene for their help.

Lois hopes to be back up and around soon!

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First Turtle-selfie


turtle-selfie

This photo, taken by publisher Lois Allen, is the very first known turtle-selfie taken by a person. This turtle was spotted crossing the road on Ritchie Avenue in Nelson Township just last week. It probably didn’t need any help, but Allen wanted to get the “scoop” on everyone else. Unfortunately, she does not have a “smart phone” and cannot work her phone/camera… so she improvised by using a regular camera!

Join our Turtle Rescue Club! Send your turtle rescue photos to news@cedarspringspost.com with your name and address, and info of when and where you rescued a turtle. Turtle Rescue Club members will receive a certificate and keychain.

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Spring takes area by storm


 

The Cedar Springs Post took a direct hit when winds blown in by a fierce spring-turned-winter storm ripped through our area last Saturday.

Owner and Publisher Lois Allen received several calls at her home about it. “The Post is under attack!” said one caller. And indeed, the Post was in the path of destruction as the high winds lifted the roof of Len Allington’s brick building on the corner of Main and Maple Streets and sent it airborne across the alley between the buildings. It landed on top of the Post, wrapped around a utility pole and entangled in electrical wires.

Consumer’s Energy cut the wires on Sunday and left the scene, leaving three businesses and several apartments without power until Tuesday afternoon.

“The more you depend on technology, the more helpless you become when it fails,” said Allen. “You can quote me on that.”

What many people thought was a tornado turned out to be straight line winds. The first storm rolled into our area at about 4:30 p.m. and was followed by several others throughout the night.  The National Weather Service said damage across West Michigan was consistent with winds gusting 75 to 85 mph, and lasted 3-5 minutes. The winds were equivalent to an EF-0 tornado on the Enhanced Fujita Scale.

The winds blew in, and hail rained down, damaging cars, mobile homes, and other outside objects. The size ranged from a dime to a quarter. Some mobile homes were pelted with hundreds of holes. It covered the ground to a depth that looked like snow.

Trees were ripped out of the ground or broken all across the area—Sand Lake, Cedar Springs, Sparta, Kent City, and surrounding townships. The wind even blew the roof off of the gymnasium at Kent City.

In the aftermath of the storm, rivers and creeks were swollen and many areas are still under a flood watch.

Thanks to the many readers who sent us your storm photos!

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Police seek water tower vandals


N-water-tower

By Judy Reed

 

A white water tower. A bucket of paint. An abandoned ladder. The cover of darkness. And someone who loves The Post. It was the perfect storm for a hit and run graffiti event in Cedar Springs last night.

Police are looking this morning for the person(s) who painted the logo of The Cedar Springs Post newspaper on the city’s water tower on Pine Street.

“I didn’t hear a thing,” said one neighbor. “I saw a forklift there yesterday evening, but thought they were just going to do some maintenance.”

People gawked as they drove by, causing a couple of minor traffic crashes. That’s when police discovered the vandalism.

“It’s actually pretty good,” said one officer. “I’ve never seen graffiti that looked so professional. I think we are looking for an expert.”

The graffiti also gave the city council an idea. “I think we should rent out the tower once a month to any interested business that wants to put their logo on it,” said one councilor. “It might help offset some of our budget problems.”

The councilor didn’t specify how much they might charge, but said it would be in the $2,499 range. “And they would have to paint it themselves, or we wouldn’t make any money,” he noted.

The Post editor caught up with Post publisher Lois Allen at a local hardware store, while she was trying to return some paint. “It just isn’t the right red,” she said, wiping her hand on a paint smock she was wearing. But she thought it was great that someone painted the Post logo on the water tower.  “I hope they don’t get caught,” she added.

If you have any info on who might have painted the water tower, please 616-APRIL-FOOLS.

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Want to win a newspaper?


POST-Building-Front-winterN-Post-raffleThe owner of The Cedar Springs Post, Lois Allen, has been publishing the “small town” newspaper with stories and information relevant to families in the northern Kent County area for over twenty years.

Starting publication in the late 1980s, Allen is hoping to get a well-deserved rest from the newspaper business. “I could use a vacation,” said Allen. “I haven’t had one in 25 years.”

She continued, “I set out to create the best local newspaper I could, and I think I’ve done that. The Post is great. I think it’s the perfect reflection of the community spirit here and I’m proud to be a part of it,” said Allen.

But now after decades of working to keep the struggling newspaper going, she is considering her options. “I’ve tried to get in contact with Warren Buffett to see if he’s interested in adding to his collection,” Allen explained. “I’d like to retire with about a million or so, but his people told me not to call back.” With no millionaires knocking down the door, Allen has even considered possibly closing The Post. She continued, “But then I thought, why not raffle it?”

According to Allen, the holder of the winning raffle ticket would “win” the newspaper. “Just think. You’d have your very own newspaper! You could put yourself on the front page every week. Or you could oust your neighbor for letting their dog crap in your yard. Think of the power you would hold!”

“You could say, ‘Stop the presses!’ every single day!” said Allen.

Readers or non-readers of The Post are eligible to enter and get their once in a lifetime chance at winning a real newspaper. And, as Allen says, there aren’t that many left. “They’re practically a collector’s item for the rich and famous.”

For just $10 a ticket, anyone can have a good shot at being a big shot in a small town. You could call Donald Trump and offer to “Do lunch.” And, unlike the lottery, the odds are very good at winning. Almost as good as hitting a pothole on your way to work.

Although the newspaper would be “free” to the winner, keeping it would not. According to Allen, the new publisher would be responsible for the operating funds needed to keep the weekly paper going once they took possession. She explained, “You’ll need money for stuff like, you know, rent, payroll, postage, printing five thousand copies weekly, the insurance, utilities, internet, office equipment, computer hardware and software, and stuff like that.”

“You might want to start with some serious operating cash,” she explained. “Or you can save a ton of money if you just do everything yourself.”

For a chance to enjoy ownership of a real newspaper and live the dream, that never, ever ends, look in The Post, April 1st issue for special details on, “I want to win a newspaper!”

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Year in Review: Gone but not forgotten


Roger Allen

Roger Allen

Many of us lost loved ones in 2013. However, there was one death that touched us all at the Post. It was the death of Roger Allen—the founder of the Post and father of our current publisher, Lois Allen.

Roger Allen, of Rockford, Michigan, and formerly of Cedar Springs, died Saturday, January 5 after a long battle with heart disease. He was 84.

He was well known in both communities as publisher of the Rockford Squire newspaper and founder of The Cedar Springs Post. He wrote a weekly column for both papers, and many people appreciated Roger’s wit and humor. It was one of the most popular pages in the newspaper. If his column didn’t run for some reason, people called and wanted to know where it was.

He bought the Squire when it was the Rockford Weekly Register and in bankruptcy in the early 1980s. He felt that it was important that the town’s oldest business and only newspaper stay in publication.

He bought the Squire while living in Cedar Springs, and his neighbors complained and told him they wanted a newspaper in Cedar Springs, too. (The Clipper was no longer printing.) So he founded the Cedar Springs Post in 1988 and turned over the reins to his wife, Alice, and daughter, Lois. His daughter Beth runs the Squire.

Roger wrote his weekly columns without fail for over 30 years. When he traveled, he called the column Roger on the Road, and when he was in town he called the column Main Street. His column always featured jokes, anecdotes and his own wry commentary on world events. After a heart surgery several years ago, he was no longer able to travel. He bought property in Rockford, built a house and lived out his last days there.

 

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