by BOB SIEGEL Principal, Valley View Elementary Being a Michigan State University (MSU) alumni and HUGE fan of the Spartans, when I first heard the phrase, “GO GREEN!” I instinctively shouted out loud, “GO WHITE!” (Green and White are MSU’s school colors—in case you missed the NCAA basketball tournament.) This past fall, Valley View Elementary School, along with other schools in Rockford, focused on educating our students about the importance of protecting our environment on our “one and only” planet Earth! At Valley View, teachers Nancy Berg (fourth grade) and Brad Davison (fifth grade) invited fourth- and fifth-graders to be leaders of this effort by joining our school’s newly created “Green Team”—a hands-on experience at helping safeguard Mother Earth. What started out as a simple group of students looking to engage in fun activities under Nancy and Brad’s leadership, became a group very serious about their efforts and highly organized. The experience culminated in the reception of the “Green Award,” given by the Kent County Intermediate School District. Valley View’s upper-elementary students truly embraced the concepts of conservation and recycling to the point where they gave up recesses to organize their tasks. A “tree-hugger” I am not, but one can no longer overlook the need to be conscious of the environment around us! As a leader of future leaders, it’s incumbent upon us as educators—and parents—to teach our children the importance of considering how and what we USE, from material goods to electronic devices. If there’s one thing that I’ve learned as a parent and educator, it’s that whatever we place a high priority and focus on is what our children will grow up to place importance on when they are adults. The way that I view this topic is analogous to how we should treat our bodies. We get ONE shot at taking care of our earthly “temples,” as the Greeks used to say. If we mistreat our human bodies by eating poorly, failing to exercise, and abuse chemicals, the result will probably not be a long and prosperous life. Unfortunately, once our body begins to malfunction, we do NOT get to trade it in for a new one! The same goes for “Mother Earth!” I’m not sure we’ll ever truly know the extent […]
Jason Baniukaitis and Mackenzie Osbeck, both of Rockford, have each been named recipients of a Faculty Scholarship to Grand Valley State University (GVSU). Baniukaitis is the son of Mary and Ed Baniukaitis. Osbeck is the son of Tim and Jill Osbeck. To be considered for a Faculty Scholarship, the recipient must have a 3.6 high school grade-point average (GPA), a minimum ACT score of 29, and attend a scholarship competition. The award is renewable for three consecutive additional years with a minimum GPA of 3.5 or better. Kyle Trimble of Rockford has been named a recipient of a Presidential Scholarship to GVSU. He is the son of Jeff and Julie Trimble. To be considered for a Presidential Scholarship, the recipient must have a 3.8 high school GPA, a minimum ACT score of 32, and attend a scholarship competition. This award is also renewable for three consecutive additional years with a minimum GPA of 3.5 or better. All three students are recent Rockford High School graduates.
Whaley-Ingraham In the fine company of close friends and endeared family, Wendy Whaley, a 2007 graduate of Forest Hills Eastern, and Will Ingraham, a 2005 graduate of Rockford, shall commit their lives together before Almighty God in marriage. The couple will be married on August 8, 2009, and will reside in Grand Rapids. Terry and Ellen Whaley of Ada and beloved sister Stephanie will accompany the beautiful bride to the altar. Brian and RuthAnn Ingraham of Rockford, with beloved sister Lyza, will be proud to witness this sacred union. Will is a geek in the I.T. department at Amway International, and Wendy is pursuing a creative career in photography from Grand Rapids Community College. Psalm 150!
Meeting set August 6 for more information by MITCH HARVATIN Cannon Township officials decided Monday night that they want to hear more about the proposal of putting two non-motorized sidewalks/trails starting at Myers Lake toward Cannon Farms and along M-44 near Bostwick Lake. Both projects would feature poles (railings) and hydrants. The contractor would also design the trail so it doesn’t draw puddles when it rains for a long period of time. The Myers Lake proposal is estimated to cost $12,100. The Bostwick Lake project is estimated to cost around $22,100. Township Clerk Bonnie Blackledge is for the project, but Township Trustee Steve Grimm said, “It’s a lot of money for a straight sidewalk.” Township Supervisor Peter MacGregor stepped in and said that the construction workers “will have to move a green box and a telephone pole.” Blackledge will hold an informational meeting for anyone who would like more information about these two projects on August 6 at 5:30 p.m. at the Cannon Township offices, 6878 Belding Road. The engineer of the project will also attend the meeting.
Local playwright Scott Phillips has written his first musical, “Paris on the Brain,” and it will debut at the Kent Theatre in Cedar Springs this summer. In this musical comedy, Paul is surprised by the reappearance of the woman he loved but left in Paris several months before. The exotic Meena arrives, expecting to marry, and Paul enlists his quarrelsome sisters to help explain the abrupt nuptials to their conservative parents. This engaging musical ranges from hilarious to poignant as three generations adapt to growth and change within the family. Based on a true family story, Phillips wrote the musical with his sister, Jill Phillips, who composed the words and music. A former professional musician, Jill proposed the musical after witnessing the enthusiastic reception given Scott’s first two plays, “Fish and Visitors” and “None Would Be Old.” The audience will delight in this collaboration and empathize with the problems of the family that proudly sings “We put the fun in dysfunctional!” Performances will be August 7, 8, 14 and 15 at 7:30 p.m., and August 16 at 3:00 p.m. at the historic Kent Theatre, 8 N. Main Street, Cedar Springs.