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Archive | October, 2021

Cedar Springs loses heartbreaker to Catholic Central

By Judy Reed

Red Hawk senior quarterback Aiden Brunin runs with the ball. He had 98 yards rushing against Catholic Central. Photo by Brandon Kramer Photography.

The win (and possible share of the conference title) was within their grasp. It was so close that the Red Hawks and their fans could taste it. With 38 seconds left on the game clock, Ryan Miller scored the touchdown that brought them within one point of the Catholic Central Cougars. Would they get the 2-point conversion to seal the win?

In what was being called a showdown for the title in the OK Gold conference, Cedar Springs hosted Catholic Central at Red Hawk Stadium last Friday, October 15. Both teams were 5-0 in conference. The Cougars have not lost a conference game since 2016, and were state champions in Division 5 in 2020, and in Division 4 in 2019, 2017, and 2016.

But no team since 2018 has scored as many points against Catholic Central as Cedar Springs did Friday night.

“I thought our offensive line played one of the best games I’ve ever witnessed,” said Cedar Springs Coach Gus Kapolka. “They were dominant from beginning to end. Our special teams were solid as well, with a kick return for a TD, and two blocked PAT’s (point after touchdown kicks).”

Red Hawk junior Antwuan Nicholls scored on an 80-yard kick off return against Catholic Central. Photo by Brandon Kramer Photography.

Cedar Springs hit the scoreboard first, when with 6:52 left in the first, Ryan Mitchell ran 10 yards to the left to score. The 2-point conversion was no good.

Catholic Central then scored with 2:40 left in the first, when quarterback John Passinault ran right for a four-yard touchdown. The point after kick by John Meyer was good.

With 2:27 left in the first, Catholic Central then kicked off to Cedar Springs. Antwuan Nicholls got the ball on the Cedar Springs 20-yard line and ran it 80 yards down field to score the next touchdown. Alex Ream’s run for two more points was good.

With 1:23 left in the first, CC scored again, when Passinault threw to Nolan Zeigler for a 14-yard touchdown. The Red Hawks didn’t allow Meyer to attempt the point after kick.

At the end of the first quarter, it was CS 14, CC 15.

Cedar Springs scored twice more in the second quarter, on a 10-yard run by QB Aiden Brunin and a 1-yard run by Alex Ream. Brunin ran in the 2 points after Ream’s TD.

Catholic Central scored again, when Passinault threw to Devin Fridley-bell for a 25-yard touchdown. The Red Hawks blocked Meyers point after kick.

The score at half was CS 28, CC 23.

Catholic Central held the Red Hawks at bay in the third and came back with three touchdowns. Passinault scored on both a one-yard run and a 67-yard run and threw a pass to Fridley-bell for a 7-yard touchdown. They scored 2-point conversions after two of the touchdowns.

Catholic Central runs with the ball. Photo by Brandon Kramer Photography.

After three quarters, it was CS 28, CC 41.

In the fourth quarter, Cedar Springs not only had to play catch up, they had to hold back Catholic Central. Cedar Springs drove down the field and scored on a two-yard run by Brunin with 8:26 left on the clock. Brunin’s pass to Josh Kriekaard for extra points was no good. It was now CS 34, CC 41.

Catholic Central started their next drive on their 20-yard line. They made it to the Cedar Springs 33-yard line, and on 4th down and 3, Passinault tried to run up the middle but was stopped by Antwuan Nicholls for no gain. Cedar Springs took over on their 33-yard line.

Cedar Springs drove down the field and made it the Catholic Central 3-yard line. Ryan Mitchell ran left for the 3-yard touchdown. It was now CS 40, CC 41, with 38 seconds on the clock. Cedar Springs called their third time out. They needed a two-point conversion to win the game, and a possible share of the conference title.

Brunin rolled out with the ball but couldn’t make it in to the endzone.

Cedar Springs kicked off, and tried an onside kick, but it was picked up at the 50 by Catholic Central. They made one play to lose two yards, and the game was over. Final score CS 40, Catholic Central 41.

“I’m proud of the way our guys battled all the way down to the final play on Friday night,” said Kapolka.   “We are obviously disappointed with our effort, but I am pleased with how we competed. The game came down to us making 2-3 critical plays at crucial times, and we just couldn’t make them.”

Cedar Springs racked up 327 yards on the ground. They were led by Aiden Brunin with 98 and 2 TDs, Ryan Mitchell with 72 and 2 TDs, Carter Falan with 57, Antwuan Nicholls with 52, Alex Ream with 39 and one TD, and Kyle Hoort with 9. Nicholls also had an 80-yard TD run on a kickoff return.

The Cedar Springs Red Hawk senior football players made their walk across the football field Friday night. From L to R: Jacob Rocafort (32); Carter Bayink (2); Landon Demorest (31); Jordan Victorson (67); Kyle Hoort (15); Alex Ream (20); Brennen Porter (58); Tate Ringelberg (50); Aiden Brunin (28); Cam Heiss (75); Alex Kramer (51); Logan Johnson (52); Blake Scheer (81). Photo by Brandon Kramer Photography.

Catholic Central had 170 yards rushing between three players: John Passinault had 104, Jack Rellinger had 53, and Ronin Russell Dixon had 13.

Passinault also threw for 256 yards, including three touchdowns.

Cedar Springs is now tied for second place in the OK Gold with South Christian High School. They will battle them this week at East Kentwood High School.

We asked Coach Kapolka what challenges that game will bring to the Red Hawks.

“South Christian will present similar problems to Grand Rapids Catholic Central. They are big and athletic, and they will try to spread us out and throw the ball,” he explained. “We have to fix some things defensively this week to be ready for their dynamic attack.” Make the trip Friday to East Kentwood High School to cheer on your Red Hawks! Game time is 7 p.m.

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Cedar Springs tops Wayland 62-22

OK Gold showdown this Friday

By Judy Reed

Cedar Springs (5-0, 6-1) continues to hold on to a tie for first place in the OK Gold after a 62-22 win over Wayland (0-5, 0-7) last Friday night, Oct. 8, at Red Hawk Stadium.

Cedar Springs is tied for first place with Grand Rapids Catholic Central (5-0, 7-0), and will host them in an OK Gold showdown this Friday. The following week they will take on South Christian (4-1, 5-2), currently in second place in the OK Gold.

“The next two games will determine the outcome of our season,” said Kapolka. “If we win, we will win the OK Gold.  We need to be the best version of us on Friday night.  It will take our individual and collective best game to beat GRCC.”

The Red Hawks offense scored early and often against Wayland, making seven touchdowns and racking up 489 total yards. They averaged 12.2 yards per play.

“We came out ready to play on Friday and executed extremely well in all three phases of the game,” said Coach Gus Kapolka. “We were able to keep our focus during a long weather delay and continued to perform at a high level.”

Cedar Springs scored three times in the first quarter. The first time was with 9:23 on the clock, when Carter Falan ran 15 yards up the middle, and Ryan Mitchell ran in the extra points. They scored again with 6:28 left in the first quarter, when Ryan West ran left for a 12-yard touchdown, and Carter Falan ran in the extra points. Then, with 36 seconds left in the first, Alex Ream ran left for a 12-yard touchdown, and then ran in the extra points as well. 

Wayland scored with 9:04 left in the second quarter, when Ian Thompson ran left for a 30-yard touchdown. The pass for extra points was no good.

Red Hawk Carter Falan scored again with 6:17 left in the second when he ran to the right for an 8-yard touchdown, and then ran in the extra points as well.

Cedar scored next on a block punt. It was Wayland’s next possession, and it was 4th and 14 on Wayland’s 15-yard line. They attempted to punt to Cedar, but it was blocked, and Red Hawk Ryan Mitchell recovered the ball at the Wayland 5-yard line and ran it in the for touchdown. Quarterback Aiden Brunin then passed to Blake Scheer for two extra points.

Cedar Springs scored again with 2:18 left in the second, when Aiden Brunin passed to Ryan West for a 12-yard touchdown. Antwuan Nicholls then ran in the extra points. The score was Cedar Springs 48, Wayland 6, at halftime.

Cedar Springs scored once in the third quarter, on a long 58-yard run up the middle by Carter Bayink. An extra point run was no good.

Wayland got on the board again in the fourth quarter, on a 1-yard touchdown by Dustin Loomans. He then also ran in the extra points.

Cedar Springs had their last score of the night on a long touchdown run by Kevin Vanderhaag. With 8:07 on the clock, it was second down and 10, on the 27-yard line, when Vanderhaag ran left for a 73-yard touchdown. Quarterback Sawyer Smith then passed to Nolan Myers for two more points.

Wayland got in one more score with 1:15 left in the fourth, when Cainon Fenn ran in a one-yard touchdown, and then ran in the extra points as well.

The final score was Cedar Springs 62, Wayland 22.

Kapolka is happy with the way the Red Hawks have improved this season. “We have continued to improve in all three phases and our offensive line has taken their game to the next level,” he said.

Nine players had rushing yardage in the double digits, with six of them having over 50. Carter Falan netted 119. 

Aiden Brunin completed four of seven passes for 50 yards, including one touchdown.

Wayland netted 184 yards on the ground, and 62 yards passing. Dustin Loomans completed four of 6 passes and threw two interceptions. They were recovered by Red Hawks Aiden Brunin and Kyle Hoort.

The Cedar Springs defense had 68 tackles and was led by Alex Ream with 8.

Be sure to come out to Red Hawk Stadium this Friday to cheer on your Red Hawks when they take on unbeaten Grand Rapids Catholic Central. Tickets are $5 at the gate, and game time is 7 p.m.

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Red Hawks compete at Portage Invitational

Cedar Springs junior Molly Bentley. Courtesy photo.

The Girls Cross Country team competed in the Portage Invitational on Saturday, October 9.  This is the biggest meet of the season next to regionals and state finals. Some of the best teams in the state competed there in all divisions. 

The varsity ladies finished 28th out of 35 teams. The team was in the Division 1 section, which is the toughest and most competitive. Larissa McGrath (76th) was the first lady to come in for us.  Annalise Elliot (125th) was second for our team, trying to keep Larissa in her sights to tighten gaps.  Ally Ladd (134th) was third for our team, moving up and having one of her best races of the season.  Izzy VanDusen (203rd)  was our fourth girl in.  Madison Golliver (218th) was our fifth girl to cross the line.  Molly Bentley (226th) finished sixth for our Lady Hawks.  Kaitlynn Brown (229th) finished out our varsity squad for the day.  

In the JV race, we had two ladies competing. Kaisa Maki (156th) ran a pretty strong race trying to beat as many packs of runners as she could.  Emily Hoort (184th) looked very strong as well. 

Coach Melinda Stressman said, “I really thought we ran pretty well.  This is the toughest race they will run all season.  It’s good to get them in the mix to see how we stack up and compete against some teams we will see at regionals and other invites in the season. I’m very proud of these girls. They work hard and lead strong all season long!”

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Birding safely during hunting seasons

Kirtland’s Warbler viewing eco tour, near Grayling. Bird Watching

Tips on how to safely and confidently view birds and other wildlife at or near a hunting area

From Michigan DNR

Michigan’s public lands offer a great chance to see birds and other wildlife while spending quality time in the great outdoors. But maybe you’re concerned it’s not safe to hike or go birding in the woods during hunting season. The good news is hunting is a very safe sport, and, with a little knowledge and preparation, you can confidently enjoy birding during any hunting season.

Here are some tips:

Keep color in mind. The more visible you are, the safer you are. Wear a brightly colored piece of clothing that can be seen from all directions. Avoid wearing colors that blend in with the environment or are the color of game species: green, brown, black or white.

Know which hunting seasons are open. There are open seasons every day of the year in Michigan. Most seasons are busiest on opening day, and many hunters stop going out after the first week. The most popular hunting season in Michigan is firearm deer hunting season, which runs Nov. 15-30 annually. Find more on Michigan’s hunting seasons online at Michigan.gov/Hunting.

Know the lands you use. Hunting is open on any public or private land where permission is granted. Most public lands and private conservation lands have resources online to help you find out when and where hunting is allowed. When in doubt, contact the property owner.

Stick to the trails. Hunters generally will venture well off human-used paths to look for game, so there is less hunting on established trail systems.

Head home before dark. Dawn and dusk are often the best time for hunters to find their quarry. Wildlife viewing during daylight hours means you’ll be seeing fewer hunters.

Michigan’s hunters take seriously the lessons learned in their hunter safety classes and work hard every year to keep themselves, their hunting partners and the people they share the land with safe so all can enjoy Michigan’s outdoors.

Questions? Contact the DNR Wildlife Division at 517-284-9453.

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Home Grown Natural Communities

Ranger Steve Mueller

By Ranger Steve Mueller

The Great Lakes Ecosystem is a broad term that includes 76 component natural communities within the boundaries of Michigan. A brief definition of natural community is an assemblage of plants, animals, and other life that live in similar environmental conditions governed by natural processes rather than human disturbances. 

The “natural” reference separates the communities from those significantly modified by human activity. Our activities alter natural communities in ways that allow us to support our families, but they also can degrade conditions to make it difficult or impossible for many species to survive. We can live and thrive with other species by maintaining healthy yard communities that include life beyond a narrow human focus.

Important species that we rarely notice include insects, fungi, nematodes, and microorganism. They maintain healthy living conditions essential to sustain a human population. Farm soils would not produce without a vast array of organisms that created their fertility. Insect pollinators are essential for many crops.

Many organizations work with a common vision for a sustainable future. The Nature Conservancy, land conservancies, Trout Unlimited, Izaak Walton League, National Wildlife Federation, Xerces Society, Audubon Society, Ducks Unlimited, hunting clubs, and a list that would continue for pages, all help. Most organizations focus on a specialized species group but all work to support natural communities supporting their interests.

To maintain a suitable living environment for people, we have national and state forests, wilderness areas, national, state, and county parks, plus a host of other shared public lands. The amount of private land ownership exceeds publicly owned land acreage. Theodore Roosevelt recognized that forests, wildlife, and watersheds were being damaged and even destroyed by human activities. He established national forests on public lands so they would be managed to maintain healthy human life conditions as a shared public resource. 

His efforts significantly benefited the health, wealth, and social wellbeing of the nation. Many people are working to eliminate publicly owned land and they want it all privately owned. President Trump wanted to sell national parks and other public lands to private owners to maximize profits instead of serving agency stated missions. His vision of privatization failed with Congress. He then opened public lands to increase resource extraction for private profits. My stance is society cannot thrive and succeed without land protected for public needs such as water. Most public lands are already open for resource extraction. Using all land for personal gain is counter to public interest. Some land needs secure nature niches for present and future generations.

Dr. Doug Tallamy has championed a concept of “bringing nature home” with his book of the same title. The book clarifies why it is essential to maintain our private yards with portions reverted to conditions that support native plants, insects, and other life. He points out that sterile manicured lawns greatly exceed land protected by national parks. We can create “private national park” living conditions to maintain essential life. Such action would enhance our own health, still be private land, and maintain the wealth of species on Earth.  

Lawns are life deserts that should be reduced if we hope to provide coming generations with a thriving social, economic, and environmental future. Eliminate any of those three and people along with all life will suffer.

Ody Brook maintains a small lawn free of pesticides and herbicides. The home yard had several mowed acres when purchased. It required excessive fuel, carbon output, and time for mowing. It was open yard to our neighbor’s house hundreds of feet away. I stopped mowing except in the vicinity of the house and trails to make easy walking in the yard. More time was spent enjoying nature. Forty years later, a forest grows between the homes providing visual privacy. Road noise in front of the house to the highway has been reduced by the presence of abundant plant life that supports more species of insects and birds than I can easily identify. 

Maintaining a natural community in your yard will help prevent an impoverished future for coming generations. 

Natural history questions or topic suggestions can be directed to Ranger Steve (Mueller) at odybrook@chartermi.net – Ody Brook Nature Sanctuary, 13010 Northland Dr. Cedar Springs, MI 49319 or call 616-696-1753.

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Three easy ways to deal with fall leaves

From Michigan DNR

Peak fall color is in the Upper Peninsula right now and heading to Lower Michigan—check out our fall color tour to see where to go for the best leaf-peeping opportunities.

Once the color show is over, here are a few ways to deal with the fallen leaves in your own backyard.

Leafthem be

What’s the easiest way to deal with fallen leaves? Just leave them alone—they will benefit wildlife and save you time and energy. If you’re worried about getting the stink eye from neighbors, you can assure them that the leaf layer is a critical part of the ecosystem. Salamanders, chipmunks, wood frogs, box turtles, toads, insects and other wildlife live in the leaf layer of the forest. Many important pollinators like moths and butterflies overwinter in fallen leaves.

If you’d like to move fallen leaves off your lawn, you can rake them into garden beds (free mulch!) where they will insulate perennials and keep soil in place during storms. Alternately, shred them with a lawn mower and let them become natural fertilizer for the yard.

Make garden gold

Another way to take care of fallen leaves is to collect them in a compost bin and let nature do the rest. They’ll break down into rich soil that plants love. If you have the space, you can also rake them directly into a vegetable patch and till them under in the spring.

A guide published by the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy, Home composting: Reap a heap of benefits describes how to build and maintain a compost bin.

Burn responsibly

If you choose to burn leaves, here are some important tips for this disposal method.

Before burning, remember to check for a burn permit to see if conditions are safe for burning, and know your local fire ordinances. 

If you’re in the Upper Peninsula and northern Lower Peninsula, visit Michigan.gov/BurnPermit or call 866-922-BURN to find out whether burning is allowed. People who live in the southern Lower Peninsula can check with local government or fire departments.

“When burning, always have a water source nearby and never leave a fire unattended, even for a moment,” said Paul Rogers, DNR fire prevention specialist. “Debris burning is the No. 1 cause of wildfire in Michigan.”

It’s okay to burn natural materials such as leaves, branches and logs. It’s not legal to burn plastic or other trash.

Questions about burning? Visit Michigan.gov/BurnPermit or contact Paul Rogers at 616-260-8406.

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Men and Ladies of Honor kickoff

Men and Ladies of Honor will be kicking off a new season on Thursday, October 21, at Red Hawk Elementary from 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. for 6th through 8th grade students.  

Men and Ladies of Honor teaches moral excellence and courageous leadership using biblical principles.  Middle School students can take the shuttle bus #7211 from the Middle School to Red Hawk after school on Thursdays. High School students can participate as assistant leaders to the adult leaders.  We will continue to meet every Thursday throughout the school year.  Ladies of Honor will meet in Room 9 and Men of Honor will meet in Room 11.  

Please contact Men & Ladies of Honor Regional Director for Randy Badge for more information at randy.badge55@gmail.com or 616.799.5776. Website: www.honorchangeseverything.com

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Paper Walls

As a young married couple, a husband and a wife lived in a cheap housing complex near the military base where he was working.

Their chief complaint was that the walls were paper-thin and that they had no privacy. This was painfully obvious when one morning the husband was upstairs, and the wife was downstairs on the telephone. She was interrupted by the doorbell and went to greet her neighbor.

“Give this to your husband,” he growled, and thrust a roll of toilet paper into her hands. “He’s been yelling for it for 15 minutes!”

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Hometown Happenings 10-14-21

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 anad phone number for any questions we may have.

theTable Meals at The Springs Church

Oct.14,21,28: Meals are served every Thursday fom 5:30 to 6:30 pm at The Springs Church on the corner of Oak and Grant. All are welcome to theTable to enjoy this free meal that is being shared with us! #tfnb

Community Pumpkin Giveaway

Oct. 16: This year’s Cedar Springs Community Pumpkin Giveaway will be held on Saturday, October 16th at the Heart of Cedar Springs (Maple St. behind the CS Library) from 2 – 6 pm. Costume contest! Games, food, entertainment. This is a FREE event brought to you by City Impact, the CS Chamber of Commerce, and the Green Family and friends. #40,41

Book Sale at Nelson Twp./Sand Lake KDL 

Oct. 21-23: The Nelson Township/Sand Lake Library (88 Eighth St. Sand Lake) will be having a used book sale. October 21 and 22 from 10 am to 6 pm and October 23 from 10 am – 1 pm. Books, CDs, DVDs and more! Donations are appreciated and may be brought to the library. #41,42

Trunk or Treat at East Nelson Church

Oct. 23: Come for Family Fun, Cider, Donuts & Treats! Join East Nelson Church (9024 – 18 Mile Rd. Cedar Springs) for our Annual Trunk or Treat on Saturday, October 23rd from 4 – 6 pm.We ask that one family visit a trunk at a time. As you leave, you will be served cider and donuts. #41,42

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Red Flannel brings back the fun

A sea of red filled the street after the parade. Photo by Suzanne Ader.

By Judy Reed

True to this year’s theme, the Red Flannel Festival brought back the fun to 2021! The last two weekends, and especially Red Flannel Day, October 2, were sun-drenched, fun-filled days where people enjoyed elephant ears, a chicken dinner, carnival rides, crafts, vendors, a lumberjack show, pie eating contest, grand parade, beverage tents, music, and so much more.

“The Red Flannel Festival board felt this year’s event was a huge success,” said Red Flannel Festival President Nancy Deyman. “We were not sure how it would turn out coming out of the pandemic.” 

But people were ready. Thousands flocked to downtown Cedar Springs to enjoy the return of the legendary Red Flannel Festival.

“The Red Flannel Festival would like to thank everyone who attended the festival this year,” said Deyman.  “We hope you all had a wonderful time!”

See gallery below for some of the photos you contributed of this year’s festival.

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