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Tag Archive | "Tom Mabie"

Hard work brings beauty to library grounds


by Donna Clark and Sue Wolfe

The asphalt being poured on the walking trail at the Library.

Volunteers continue to work hard to complete the projects around the library and surrounding park areas, which includes the flowers around the stainless steel structure and the native grasses in the rain garden on the south. Naturalists Tom Mabie and Perry Hopkins took oversight of these two projects, gathering most of the native grasses and plants from the area around Cedar Creek, and then babying them to be sure they survived.

From the first days of May to the Grand Opening of the new Library, many good folks from the Community Building Development Team (CBDT) and beyond came together to put in the shrubs, trees, stones and lawn around the Library. An underground watering system on timers has been key in aiding in the growth and stability of the healthy plants and lawn. The system was provided by Dan McIntyre and his company, Splash, and then installed at no extra cost to the Library. Several free visits have been made as adjustments or replacements to sprinklers have been needed.

City Councilor Dan Clark has put in a lot of hours tending to the library grounds.

Councilman Dan Clark has spent many evenings and weekends around the Library and walking path in the surrounding park areas off Main and Pine Streets, hand-mowing the lawn,  edging, checking on the sprinklers, making sure the timers are set right, and cleaning around the new asphalt and placing sod to prevent any washouts. Clark is doing the finishing touches that take a lot of time but really pull things together for a neat and crisp appearance. Also spending many hours toward cleaning up the grounds, trimming bushes, and sweeping sidewalks has been donated by Andy Dipiazza.  The public grounds are really beautiful!

Along the new path you can now see the (36) 10”x8” brass plates inset into the retaining wall blocks. Thanks to Don Snow and his team at CS Tool Engineering, Inc., the plates and engraving are finished, and at no cost to the Library. Thanks to Dale Larson, owner of Northwest Kent Mechanical and his team, 36 plates were installed with great care and precision on September 27 and 28. 

An example of one of the many bricks available to purchase.

The 129 bricks that have sold this past year have arrived and will be installed very soon. With the help of our new DPW Director, David Ducat and his team, and any other volunteers needed, the plan is to install them at the entrance of the new Library. According to Duane McIntyre, foreman of the project, we have 410 places for bricks, depending on the sizes purchased. The sizes offered are the 4×8 for $50 or the 8×8 for $100. On the 4×8 there can be 3 lines of 21 characters, including spaces between words and for the 8×8, 6 lines. These will make wonderful holiday presents! In fact a long-time community person with lots of family and grandchildren recently said she was going to purchase 21 bricks for her family Christmas presents.  

Mayor Gerry Hall and Councilman Perry Hopkins have been assembling the 10 benches purchased through the CBDT. The nameplates will again be engraved under the direction of Don Snow. Memorial and honorary brass plates will be installed on these benches, also. McIntyre and Hopkins will oversee the installing of the benches on various cement slabs around the library and surrounding park area. 

You perhaps noticed the four six foot benches around the clock tower and the sidewalk at the east side of the Library, ready for Red Flannel visitors.  They were in constant use and a very attractive and useful addition to our festivities!

Director Donna Clark was on hand at the library on Red Flannel Day offering tours and information about the vision our community has embraced called, the “Heart of Cedar Springs.” The entire property, going even beyond the edge of Cedar Creek and the White Pine Trail, will be a park-like area, developed and supported through a base constituency of over 100 volunteers and donors, the Community Building Development Team.  

The next project is building an amphitheater along where the White Pine Trail and Cedar Creek meet west of the park property.  A new fundraising campaign has begun. The City of Cedar Springs and the CBDT will work together on submitting an application for a Economic Development Grant for a $50,000 match within the next few weeks. Watch for details soon on how you can get involved. 

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Community cleans up on Earth Day

 Community members helped clean up around the Heart of Cedar Springs and other roadsides within the city limits on Earth Day last Saturday. Photo by Kathy Ensley.

Community members helped clean up around the Heart of Cedar Springs and other roadsides within the city limits on Earth Day last Saturday. Photo by Kathy Ensley.

In honor of National Earth Day on Saturday, April 22, the City of Cedar Springs and the Community Building Development Team (CBDT) volunteers took to cleaning up the newly acquired city property running north along Cedar Creek and intersecting with the White Pine and North Country Trails, just west of Main Street in downtown Cedar Springs. Approximately 28 community members came together to cut down brush and dead trees, haul away the lumber, clean out creek waters, and pick up debris in the area.

Earth Day cleanup. Photo by Perry Hopkins.

Earth Day cleanup. Photo by Perry Hopkins.

Perry Hopkins, City Councilor and CBDT Board Member, along with Tom Mabie, CBDT member, and other community members were careful to protect and keep flowers, bushes, plants, and trees that are environmentally important to maintaining proper creek temperatures for the trout, as well as providing an enjoyable year-round variety of natural blooming and therapeutic vegetation. The Hopkins and Mabie duo are teaming up with the Cedar Springs Garden Club and Trout Unlimited in creating natural rain gardens and learning stations along the creek beds. Other city councilors participating in the Earth Day cleanup included Rose Powell and Gerry Hall.

John Ensley, CBDT, organized the Earth Day cleanup and has secured the donated marble stone from Doreen and Dan Welch, Welch Tile and Stone, which will be eventually installed along the walking path.

Community members helped clean up on Earth Day. Photo by Kathy Ensley.

Community members helped clean up on Earth Day. Photo by Kathy Ensley.

“The goal is to open up the new downtown park areas known as the Heart of Cedar Springs. We got a lot accomplished today thanks to the many dedicated volunteers. We still have some work ahead of us but it’s coming along nicely,” explained Ensley.

Julie Wheeler, CBDT Board Member, organized various other community organizations who also began their Cedar Springs Earth Day cleanup along the primary roadsides within the city limits and other sections of the White Pine Trail as part of the Earth Day efforts.  The groups have until May 1 to complete their section of the roads.

“This is another example of folks coming together for our community. We had volunteers out there on a sunny Saturday willing to do some hard physical labor,“ shared Kurt Mabie, CBDT President. “We hope to continue the cleanup this summer along with constructing a new amphitheatre, walking path, and veteran’s memorial by fall as needed funds become available.”

Garett Tunison, Ground Control Aerial LLC, did a second drone fly-over to show the area progress since his first video done prior to the construction of the library. The video will be added to the CBDT website.

The CBDT meets on the third Tuesday of each month at 6 p.m. in their new regular meeting location of the Community Library gathering room. All are invited. More information is available on the website of CSCommunityCenter.org, the Facebook page of Cedar Springs Community Building Development Team or by calling Sue Wolfe at 696-2246.

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Tom Mabie recognized by CBDT for community service


Tom and Claudia Mabie (seated) with other members of the Community Building Development Team. Tom was honored at this month’s meeting for his vision and support of the CBDT.

Life-long resident and community supporter Tom Mabie was recently thanked for his service on the Community Building Development Team (CBDT) as well as his efforts toward the library. Tom and his wife Claudia Mabie have supported numerous organizations in our community for many years.

Tom served as the Vice President and as one of the founding board of directors for the CBDT. He has been instrumental in establishing the vision and direction of the board. His eternal optimism and “let’s make it happen” attitude have inspired and motivated many in constructing the new library and other public facility enhancements for the Cedar Springs community.

Mabie’s passion for reading and learning began as a young child when his mother, Estella Mabie, would consistently read to him from a variety of genres and authors including Edgar Allen Poe. Mabie’s love for reading still continues when he is not tending to his organic garden, writing poetry, or exploring new places with his wife or family.

In 2003, the Mabies met with Librarian Donna Clark to discuss the need for a larger library to better serve the community. While various options were discussed, real progress seemed out of reach. Then, on December 1, 2006 they donated $300,000 toward the construction of a new library in an effort to kick start enthusiasm for the project. Since then, they have tirelessly continued to give of their time, wisdom, and resources to help make a new library a reality for our community.

In December 2013, Tom was instrumental in creating the Community Building Development Team. This group of over 60 community and business volunteers met with the various governmental and community organizations to determine if a library should continue to be a primary focus. The City of Cedar Spring’s Master and Recreation Plans were reviewed which included a long list of possibilities to include an amphitheatre, boardwalk along the creek, community building, and recreation center.

“Tom is often described as a visionary with a unique gift to see the possibilities,” shared Kurt Mabie, CBDT President and nephew to Tom. “He has always held strong to his belief that dreams do come true.”

In December 2016, Tom will complete his term as a CBDT Board Member and Vice President. He is ready to pass the torch to someone else. He and Claudia believe the mission to create the “Heart of Cedar Springs” will continue. They will always support and encourage but Mabie will no longer serve on the board.

The CBDT recognized Tom at the November CBDTeam Meeting and presented him with a Certificate of Appreciation that reads, “This certificate is awarded in recognition of your contributions to our community and the CBDT. You have generously given of your time, talents, and resources for the enhancement and enrichment of the Cedar Springs Area. You have led by example and we are grateful for your leadership!”

Following the presentation Kurt Mabie added, “We all want to thank Tom and Claudia. You are a very important reason this is library is coming to fruition as well as a tentative site plan for the “Heart of Cedar Springs. You never allowed us to give up!”

The CBDT is accepting letters of interest from anyone wishing to serve on the board. The term begins in January 2017 with board meetings held on the second Tuesday of each month at 7:30 a.m. and team meetings held on the third Tuesday of each month at 6 p.m. Letters can be submitted to Carolee Cole, CBDT Secretary, at CaroleeCole@gmail.com no later than December 20.

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