New eyecare office treats patients like family

September 3, 2015 // 0 Comments

After having practiced in the eyecare industry in Rockford for ten years, Mandy Russell said she knew she wanted to raise her daughter here. “The opportunities are endless, the school system is exceptional and the community is very welcoming.” She has opened her own eye care practice at 6290 Jupiter Avenue, Suite A this August with certified optician Brittany Meinke. She describes Brittany as a person who specializes in exceptional customer service. “She helps patients in frame and lens selection, making sure they have the best fitting frame and lens for their lifestyle,” Mandy said. “Brittany has the ability to find a frame compatible with your face shape and complexion. She is patient, kind and is always looking for the options that will work well for our patience.” Signature Eyecare is an office that is inviting, cozy and ensures the comfort of the patient. Mandy said she loves meeting new people and getting to know their families. “I find patients truly unique and all have different needs.” “We always strive to give our patients personal attention,” she stated. “We focus on prevenative care and want our patients to have healthy eyes throughout their livetime.” Mandy said she took time with experts in the frame and lens industry to ensure Signature Eyecare is offering the highest quality products. “We have advanced technology and a frame line that can hold a 45 pound weight.” There is even a display in the office to demonstrate this. “On the medical side, we have digital retinal imaging equipment that photographs the back of a patients eye,” she said. Patients at Signature Eyecare all receive a total eye health examination for all ages. The exam screens for premature cataracts and glaucoma and diabetes, among other conditions. “Brittany helps the patient select quality hand-crafted eyewear for their needs and lifestyle.” There will be a grand opening of the business with a ribbon cutting and ceremony on September 12, 2015 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. “No two patients are the same and we know that,” said Mandy. “Everyone has different needs and concerns and at Signature Eyecare we address all of those needs and concerns. Our practice provides an inviting cozy atmosphere and the service is personalized and fun.” Signature Eyecare can […]

“Food Art”— local food for local people

October 4, 2012 // 0 Comments

by CLIFF AND NANCY HILL Is there anyone in the greater Rockford area who hasn’t taken a cooking class hosted by Chef Robin Toldo? If not, all is not lost for soon you will be able to have all your cooking queries answered face to face by the charming and delightful Chef Robin in her soon-to-be opened boutique food pantry – Food Art. Last Wednesday evening, Chef Robin hosted an invitation only soft opening of her Belmont storefront located at 1259 Post Drive, right next door to Flo’s Italian Ristorante. It was standing room only all evening as Chef Robin’s many friends and adoring fans sampled the local, West Michigan sourced foodstuffs she plans to offer. Perhaps Chef Robin is better known for her 100% fresh, all natural ingredient, hummalicious hummus which she produces and distributes locally to many fine food marts such as Forest Hills Foods, Kingma’s, and the upscale Plum Markets of Ann Arbor and Bloomfield Hills. Others know Chef Robin from weekly appearances as a regular vendor at the Saturday morning Rockford Farm Market where she, more often than not, sells out of hummus. It was at Rockford Farm Market that the “seeds” for her Food Art store were planted. This was America’s Favorite Farmers Market after all, and Robin was surrounded by purveyors of quality West Michigan produced foodstuffs such as, Great Harvest Bread, Maisy’s Pie and Cookies, and Local Epicurian organic herb infused hand-crafted noodles, to name a few of many. Chef Robin thought, “Why not make all this great food available locally year-round?” Seeking a space for a larger hummus production kitchen of her own, she decided to also include a retail storefront and make this dream a reality. In a Grand Opening scheduled for Thursday, October 11, Chef Robin plans to also offer Veggie Bites – all natural pickle chips, Daily de-lish Organic Oat Granola, Amos and Maude’s seasoning mixes, Grassfields organic cheeses, Englesma’s Apple Barn cider, and the Dancing Goat Creamery’s goat cheeses – fresh chevre, traditional Greek feta, soft-ripened cow’s milk cheese. This is but a partial list. There you have it! Food Art – local food for local people.

Exchange veteran is named area representative of the year

June 9, 2011 // 0 Comments

Rebecca (Becky) Delacher of Belmont was chosen as recipient of the national Area Representative of the Year Award by International Student Exchange (ISE) at a conference in Buenos Aires, Argentina. ISE is a respected and established nonprofit organization that places hundreds of foreign students in American high schools each year. “Becky is just so dedicated, so passionate about her job,” said Mary Miller, ISE’s regional manager. “I’ve been with this company since 1992 and only once or twice has a Michigan representative been chosen for this honor.” Becky is a regional advisor and area representative for ISE and has been involved with student exchange for 10 years while placing at Rockford High School as well as other schools in the metropolitan area. In selecting the recipient of this award, ISE looks for a representative who has excelled in supporting the exchange students, the schools they attend, and the host families. “For the area representative, the exchange experience is much more than just finding a host family for the student,” said Miller. “Becky is dedicated to making sure that everyone involved in the student’s placement has a rewarding and memorable experience.” Over the past years, Becky has placed more than 150 students from many countries around the world with families in the greater Grand Rapids area. “It is a real honor that not just the schools and students she works with know how deserving she is, but also the New York office recognizes the quality of work she does,” added Miller. ISE sponsors a cultural exchange based program, during which hundreds of foreign students are introduced to America every year. Host families open their homes to foreign students, sharing traditions, learning new customs, and introducing the student to our community and country. The students become part of the family, and usually keep in touch after they return home. Most families find that hosting is a wonderful experience. Those interested in information about hosting a foreign exchange student should contact Miller at (800) 378-9395 in Grand Rapids.  

Board, MDOT harassment investigations find nothing

September 23, 2010 // 0 Comments

‘It is difficult to validate their accusations’ —Supervisor Meek Two different investigations of claims of threats and harassment are concluded in Plainfield Township. An MDOT investigation regarding the Kent County Road Commission’s (KCRC) actions in securing agreements to grade Belmont Road property frontage found there were no threats to residents in order to receive permission for grading. An extensive investigation initiated and paid for by Supervisor George Meek and trustees Charles Weldon and Vic Matthews—threatened with recall—also found no basis for the claims of threats made by residents. A small group of verbal and accusing residents have been condemning the board members, as well as the KCRC staff, of disregarding the will of voters, breaking the law, and complaining of threats to health and home. Several of those claiming wrongdoing by KCRC and the board refused to talk to Gene Debbaudt, a former FBI investigator who was hired to look into the accusations. “While we respect their right not to talk to our investigators, without the information they claim to possess, it is difficult to validate their accusations,” said Supervisor George Meek following the board’s Monday, September 20 meeting. “We are satisfied that the issue of threats and intimidation has been meticulously and extensively investigated, not only by Mr. Debbaudt and his associates, but also by MDOT. We now consider this matter closed,” said Meek.

Belmont dentist straightens teeth in only six months

May 28, 2009 // 0 Comments

If you have spaces between your teeth or your teeth are crowded together, you don’t have to wear braces for two years or cut your teeth as you do with bonding, veneers or crowns. Now you can have a great smile in only six months. Dr. John P. Klooster is a dentist in Belmont who has taken advanced training in orthodontics to provide short-term braces. Using this exciting new orthodontic technique, he can help many patients who otherwise would go through their life embarrassed of their smile. Dr. Klooster says, “The six-month braces technique works great and people are really excited about having the smile they always wanted in only six months. Many patients are so happy that they actually cry when we take off their braces and show them their new smile.” Since many people are self-conscious about wearing braces, Dr. Klooster has incorporated composite tooth-colored brackets. The braces blend into the teeth and greatly decrease their visibility. Generally, all treatment is completed in seven to ten short appointments. Also, the six-month braces technique is surprisingly comfortable since it uses lower forces than traditional braces. Dr. Klooster says, “People usually think that we just ‘tighten’ the braces to aggressively move teeth more quickly, but those high forces would actually slow down tooth movement. The six-month braces technique is a low-force technique that gently and safely moves the teeth to the desired position.” In addition to being faster than traditional braces, the six-month braces technique is also less expensive. Other advantages to using this technique include having your teeth look more natural than with bonding, veneers or crowns, and healthier gums, since straight teeth are easier to clean than crooked teeth. “One of the nicest benefits of the six-month braces technique is the improved self-esteem and self-confidence the patient has with straight teeth and a beautiful smile,” says Dr. Klooster. “They look great and they feel much better about themselves.”  To complete their look, patients who start the six-month technique by August 1, 2009, will be offered complimentary teeth-whitening to brighten their new smile. For more information on this new technique, call Belmont Dentistry at (616) 284-3200 or visit

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