Articles by Squire News

About Squire News
The Squire has been Rockford’s free weekly newspaper since 1871. Our loyal readership includes over fifteen thousand homes in the Rockford area, including the affluent Lakes area of Lake Bella Vista, Bostwick Lake and Silver Lake; Belmont, Blythefield, as well as Algoma, Courtland, Cannon and Plainfield Townships. The Squire is distributed through the U.S. Post Office every Thursday. We also deliver to in-town businesses and homes with paper carriers and news stands in our grocery stores and over thirty local shops.

‘Run for the Prize’ to benefit North Kent Service Center

September 10, 2009 // 0 Comments

American record-breaking champion Dathan Ritzenhein isn’t the only person from Rockford who loves to run. The eighth annual Run for the Prize, hosted by Christ Our Savior Lutheran Church, last year raised an amazing $3,500 to donate to the North Kent Service Center. With requests for help at an all-time high at the service center, lacing up and hitting the streets—either running or walking—has never been more important. The annual 5K run is Saturday, September 12, with packet pickup and late registration on Friday, September 11 from 4 to 7 p.m. and Saturday, September 12 at 7 a.m. Pre-register by visiting or The race begins at 8:30 a.m. Pastor Thomas Martin is excited to offer the race as a fundraiser for the service center, which helps so many of our neighbors in need here in our own community. “I know that all of us have been greatly affected by the current economic conditions,” Martin said. “The North Kent Service Center is standing there in the midst of it all, trying to meet the many needs of the families in the area who are struggling.” Martin said many in the community may not realize that the church has been holding this run for seven years. Each year 100 percent of proceeds has gone to the center. Participating in the walk/run or making a donation can make a big difference to a family struggling to pay bills and put food on the table. The event features post-race refreshments and awards for the overall male and female and top two finishers in each age division. A Little Tykes dash takes place for children 6 and under at 9:30 a.m. There is no charge to enter the Tykes race, and every child will receive a ribbon. There is free childcare for infants and toddlers for those who register for the race. The cost for the 5K race is just $25. Christ Our Savior Lutheran Church is located at 4610 Belding Road, just off Wolverine Blvd.

Huntington Bank to sponsor Chamber After Hours event

September 10, 2009 // 0 Comments

The Rockford Chamber of Commerce is proud to announce Huntington Bank will be the sponsor of its September After Hours networking event. The event is a special evening for the movers and shakers of the Rockford-area’s business community and is scheduled for Monday, September 14. Huntington Bank, 6835 Belding Road, will start the two-hour event at 5:30 p.m. Paul Chimienti, general manager of the Rockford branch, and his staff are excited to be hosts of the event and look forward to sharing their place of business for a relaxed evening of networking, food and music. Since 1864, Huntington Bank has remained true to its values of supporting the local communities it serves. It’s about loans and other financial services to help businesses grow and succeed, mortgage loans for families, and banking and investment services to help build secure futures. Huntington Bank has just completed its second year of sponsoring the Rogue River Blues Series, which has been a huge success. The series utilizes the scenic Rogue River and some of the best blues talent in the area to entertain crowds on Tuesdays during the summer months at Garden Club Park. Weezil Malone, who has played at the Huntington Bank Rogue River Blues Series, will be entertaining during the Chamber event. According to Chimienti, the bank looks forward to sponsoring the series again next year. “Huntington is committed to doing their part to help improve the quality of life in our community,” he said. There is no charge to attend Chamber After Hours. However, in order for Huntington Bank and its staff to properly plan for this event, they ask that you RSVP by September 11 at the Chamber office. Please call (616) 866-2000 or e-mail Participants are encouraged to bring business cards and be geared up to meet amazing business leaders. The Chamber and Huntington Bank are looking forward to seeing everyone on Monday, September 14.

Kent County Sheriff deputy sentenced

September 10, 2009 // 0 Comments

by RANDY R. COTTON  A sentencing hearing in the case of People vs. Keith Michael Kazelskis took place Wednesday, September 2 in the 61st District Court in Grand Rapids before Judge George Buth. The defendant, a 36-year-old resident of Cedar Springs and 12-year veteran of the Kent County Sheriff’s Department, was initially charged and arraigned on a larceny of $1,000 or more and less than $20,000 when he stole a Sentry lock box containing a large sum of money and miscellaneous papers from a 71-year-old resident of Solon Township. The former Kent County Sheriff deputy was suspended without pay on July 7, and resigned from his position on July 8. According to Kent County court records, “On June 23, 2009, at approximately 7:30 p.m., Keith Kazelskis went to Dan Elves’ residence in Solon Township to install surveillance cameras in an attempt to identify kids that had been harassing him. Kazelskis arrived and came into the home carrying two grey suitcase-style bags. One of the bags was carried into the porch area.” After having his Miranda rights reread to him during an interview on September 8 Kazelskis admitted that he took the Sentry Box from Dan Elves’ residence on June 23 by placing the box in his grey bag just prior to leaving, According to Detective Lieutenant Charles Dewitt and Detective Ronald Gates, “The tan Sentry lock box partially hidden under some wet clothing was located in the basement in the dryer at the home of Keith Kazelskis.” There was approximately $1,200 in cash in the lock box . The detectives were able to open the lock box that also contained miscellaneous paperwork with the victim’s name on it. During the sentencing hearing, the assistant Kent County prosecutor accepted the plea deal that was negotiated between the parties. The defendant pled guilty to and was ordered to spend 180 days in jail and 60 months probation for the one count of larceny of $1,000 or more and less than $20,000. David Dodge, the Grand Rapids area defense attorney who represented the defendant, argued that there are no objections to the guidelines of the pre-sentencing report. Dodge asked the court to consider the humiliation and loss of grace Kazelskis suffered. The attorney argued that the humiliation Kazelskis […]

Rockford tramples Holt in battle of Rams

September 10, 2009 // 0 Comments

The Rockford Ram defense rose to the occasion and forced Holt to punt after three plays, resulting in negative three yards. The punt went down to the Rockford two-yard line. Joey Johnson ran the ball the first two plays, resulting in three- and one-yard runs. On third down, the Rams turned to Ryan Darby, who picked up six yards and a first down. After a penalty it was first and 15 to go. Johnson ran four yards, then Zach Schmuck hit for seven more. Then Masiewicz hit Wierengo for a first-down pass. The Rams got another false-start penalty, and Neil VanderLaan picked up nine yards before another false-start penalty. Darby picked up a Ram first down the next play. Masiewicz called his own number and ran for three yards. On a pass play, Masiewicz hit Matt Karamol, who dashed to the 12-yard line. Darby finished the last 12 yards on the next play, and Paul Mudgett added the point after. The kickoff from Mudgett was almost out of the end zone, resulting in Holt starting on the 20-yard line. The Rockford Rams forced another Holt punt that only went to the 47-yard line. Johnson ran six yards and then Masiewicz ran to the 15-yard line. The final play of the first quarter saw Schmuck being hit in the back field, netting a seven-yard loss. At the end of 15 minutes of play, the score was Rockford 7, Holt 0. The second quarter got off to a great start with Johnson taking a 15-yard pass from Masiewicz, and a three-yard run for a first down. The Rams were then shut down, and Mudgett came in and hit a 20-yard field goal. The kick off from Mudgett was out of the end zone, resulting in a touchback, and Holt starting on the 20-yard line. Holt seemed to have a shimmer of momentum after a huge pass play on a third down, but fumbled the next play on the 10-yard line. Jason Kester scooped up the fumble and returned to the 28-yard line. Feeling the energy, the Rams’ offense ripped off a big run, but the ball was knocked free and recovered by Holt. The defense did not allow themselves to be brought down, and stood tall, forcing […]

Lady Rams runners start season with win

September 10, 2009 // 0 Comments

The Rockford Rams women’s cross-country team claimed a victory at the Rockford Invitational on Saturday, August 29, by recording the low score of the 10 teams competing in the upperclassman/underclassman team competition. The Rams’ day started with the upperclassman division recording 22 points, second to Grand Ledge at 16 points. Scoring for the Rams in this division were juniors Anna Bos and Catie Rietsema in fourth and fifth place with times of 19:32 and 20:22, and senior Katie Carlson in 13th place with a time of 20:45. Other Ram finishers in this race were juniors Molly Brasure (21:48) and Allison Hazy (22:03). “We could have run a little faster, but overall these were pretty good performances against some tough competition,” stated Coach Watson. This race featured four previous All State runners in the competition. The Ram underclassmen were faced with a six-point deficit in trying to earn the team title, and the racers were up to the challenge. Sophomore Taylor Manett led the way with a lifetime personal record of 19:34 in winning this race. Fellow classmates Jane Hawks and Sawyer Rocheleau finished in third and fifth places with times of 19:43 and 20:50 respectively. Freshmen Jordan Vickery and Colleen Conroy finished the racing for the Rams with times of 21:40 and 22:02 respectively. The underclassmen for the Rams scored a total of nine points for a team total of 31, distancing themselves from Grand Ledge, who finished with a total of 40. “The underclassmen really came through with the performances we needed. Each sophomore ran two to three minutes faster at this race this season than they did last year as freshmen, so that is encouraging that the training they are doing is working,” stated Coach Watson. The day concluded for the Rams with eight of the top 10 spots going to Rockford in the junior varsity race, with senior Megan Knape winning in a time of 21:54. “This was a really good start to the season. Now we just need to keep working hard and improve a little each day, and see how fast we can get between now and the true championship races: conference, regional and state,” said Coach Watson. The Rams’ next competition is Saturday September 12 at the Bath Invitational […]

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