Event has ‘best music lineup ever’ Started in 1996, Celtic Festival in downtown Rockford continues to draw thousands, and this year—with what organizer Chris Murphy calls ‘the best music lineup ever’—is sure to be a crowd pleaser. On Saturday, August 8, Celtic festivities run from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. It is the only free Celtic festival in the state and last year drew an estimated 5,000 to 10,000 visitors to downtown Rockford. There will be 20 acts, either music or dance, on two stages in the 12-hour festival. Enjoy food, Celtic-related item vendors and live action by knights and assorted characters provided by the Society of Creative Anachronism (SCA). Typically the SCA members move through the crowd in dress costume, as knights, fairies, and other interesting personas. This year Murphy said a kilt maker will likely be on hand and in past years there have been displays of wool spinning, metal work and other skills of bygone eras. The staple beer tent will offer Budweiser and Guinness. Murphy is tickled to have the band The Kreellers playing during the event. The world-class band just completed music for Fuji batteries. Another top entertainment is the band The Waxies, which just won the Celtic Battle of the Bands. The Grand Rapids District Pipe Band will return for two shows.
Articles by Squire News
by MITCH HARVATIN The Kent County Sheriff’s Department (KCSD), Rockford Police/Ambulance, Cannon Township Fire Department and Greater Grand Rapids Safe Kids along with Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital participated in the Free Child ID program held at Rockford Christian School, 6060 Belding Rd., on Thursday, July 30, sponsored by the Rockford Masonic Lodge #246. One hundred twenty children received a free dental impression and a CD containing a photo, video, sound-bite and digital fingerprints. Deputy Mandy Trevino from the Kent County Police Department said, “If something ever would have happened to the child, all that parent would have to do is give the officer that disc and we’d be able to download it right into our vehicles and get that information out.” “It makes me feel safer,” said Sherry Morrison, whose son and niece attended the event. Joseph Morrison, 11, thought that the teeth impression bite didn’t taste good. Other activities were included for that day, including children who got their heads sized for bike helmets. Those whose helmets didn’t fit received a new helmet courtesy of the Kent County Sheriff’s Department. After fingerprints were scanned and teeth impressions made, the kids could go visit the police officers on their horses, boats, quad runners and the Mobile Crisis Command Unit that is owned by the KCSD, but used by other counties as well. “Just so the community knows what tools we have,” said Trevino. According to the Klaas Kids Foundation website, “85 percent to 90 percent of the 876,213 persons reported missing to America’s law enforcement agencies in 2000 were juveniles [persons under 18 years of age].”
BridgeWay Community Church is sponsoring a totally free car wash on Saturday, August 15, in the D&W parking lot at Ten Mile Road in Rockford from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. “Everyone is welcome to join us for our free car wash. This is just our way of giving back to the community for all the blessings we receive,” commented Pastor Ron Aulbach. For further information, contact the church at (616) 874-7115.
Angela Dykes lost seven weeks of memory when she was involved in a head-on crash on M-57 near Ramsdell Road on January 22, 2008. She remembers to be thankful for her life, however, and those who came to her aid that day. On Monday, August 3, Dykes took the time to thank paramedics from Rockford Ambulance for the role they played in her survival. Dykes brought a bag of Lifesavers candies for her saviors and gave them “the rest of the story” while trying to answer some questions of her own. “Was I wearing clothes?” she asked. Of her wardrobe, only her red winter jacket and a pink boot seem to be missing. Dykes was on her way back from teaching at Spring Arbor University when a driver in the opposite direction decided to “peek” around the car he was following to see if he could pass. Instead, the SUV struck Dykes’ Volkswagen Passat head on. Among the injuries Dykes suffered were 35 broken bones. She spent the next four weeks in Butterworth Hospital’s Intensive Care Unit, another five weeks in the Continuing Care Center, and was on her back in recovery from January to July 2008. Formerly a runner, Dykes is now an inch shorter in one leg and will soon have her right ankle fused. “I’m not going to stop having fun. I don’t classify myself as disabled. I classify myself as ‘alternately abled.’” The paramedics said they were happy to have her feedback, and hear she survived. “I remember saying to Jeff, ‘There is no way she is alive in there’,” said Jamie Balcom, a paramedic with Rockford Ambulance. Rockford Ambulance was assisted in the crash by Courtland Township Fire Department. Aeromed was called but unable to respond due to weather conditions. “People don’t choose to come in for whatever reason and say thank-you. I’m here to say, ‘You did a good job’,” Dykes said.
Wilkinson graduates from basic training Air Force Airman Trevor T. Wilkinson recently graduated from basic military training at Lackland Air Force Base, San Antonio, Texas. The airman completed an intensive, eight-week program that included training in military discipline and studies, Air Force core values, physical fitness, and basic warfare principles and skills. Airmen who complete basic training earn four credits toward an associate in applied science degree through the Community College of the Air Force. Wilkinson earned distinction as an honor graduate. He is the son of Francine Grysen of Wyoming, Mich., and Timothy Wilkinson of Rockford. The airman is a 2004 graduate of Grand Haven High School.