December 15 2011

Nine years of Dress the Dolls has provided countless smiles

December 15, 2011 // 0 Comments

Top ten include repeat winners  by BETH ALTENA The CARSTAR doll was one of this year’s public-voted Top Ten Dolls in the United Bank Dress the Dolls event, but owner Dan Williams said he wasn’t the talent that dressed the winning doll. “It is really pretty neat. The daughter of one of our employees did it,” he said of the American Girl-style doll that won honors. This year, CARSTAR of Rockford donated dressing for four of the 100 dolls that eventually end up in the home of children whose families are struggling this year. It is the ninth year for the popular event, where United Bank purchases 100 undressed dolls and allows friends, customers and local businesses to take home the dolls, dress them up and return them for donation to a family being helped by North Kent Community Services (NKCS). “It is so fun to see what people come up with,” said United Bank of Rockford Director Nancy Martin. Martin said the entire staff of her branch office is involved throughout the campaign, from untying the many, many twist ties that hold the boxed dolls in prior to distribution, to watching the dressed dolls return. During a voting period by the public the dolls fill the bank—along with their accessories. “Sometimes they come with matching outfits the girls can wear,” said Sandy Waite, director of NKCS. She pointed out a doll included a necklace for her girl, which matched the attire of that doll. Another doll had purse for herself, and one for a child. This year’s winning doll is a repeat top choice, created by Linda Huff, who received a huge prize package for her efforts. Waite said need for all kinds of donations, from toys to non-perishable food to clothing to cash is at an all time high—a figure that seems to be a moving target as the economy continues to challenge Michigan families. In the week before the traditional Christmas celebration, 800 families with 2,000 children will seek aid from the Center, receiving a Christmas dinner of either a turkey or chicken, depending on family size, as well as fixings, socks, hats, mittens, scarves, and a choice from Toys for Tots donations. The Dress the Doll toy is a special treat […]

MSP canines receive GPS collars

December 15, 2011 // 0 Comments

All 29 Michigan State Police (MSP) canines now have Global Positioning System (GPS) collars to help with the search and retrieval of not only the canines themselves if they are lost, but also the potential tracking of an injured canine handler. “In November last year, the department lost its first canine during a search,” said Sgt. David Yount, commander of the MSP Canine Unit. “If we are in this situation again, the GPS collars will provide an efficient way to track and retrieve a missing canine.” The GPS units, which cost approximately $5,000 to outfit the entire Canine Unit, were purchased with donated funds. MSP canine teams are stationed statewide to provide assistance with tracking criminal suspects, locating lost or missing persons, conducting building searches, and locating stolen property or articles discarded by criminal suspects. Additionally, each dog is trained in a second area of expertise, either explosives detection, narcotics detection, cadaver detection, or accelerants detection.

Old-fashioned barber retires after lifetime of cutting hair

December 15, 2011 // 0 Comments

Rockford resident Glenn Kuiper has been a barber for 56 years and will be retiring on December 30, 2011. He will be turning 81 in February and has finally decided to take it a bit easier. “My dad and mom have put five children through Christian Education on his barber wages, often receiving only six or seven dollars per haircut. I can’t imagine how many heads of hair he has cut,” said daughter Beth Ferguson. “He has been the sole barber at his Wyoming shop for many years.” “All of us kids are very proud of our dad and the longevity of his career,” added Ferguson. “He is counting down the days until he is done as he does not like the morning commute from Rockford to Wyoming. We will be helping him celebrate his retirement by giving him an open house for his current customers, family and close friends on his last day at the Barber Shop as well as having a family dinner at a local restaurant in Rockford.” Ferguson said her father has worked very hard for the past 56 years and has passed on a wonderful work ethic to all five of his children.

New focus on West Michigan in Hospice of Michigan changes

December 15, 2011 // 0 Comments

Hospice of Michigan (HOM) is returning to its roots in Grand Rapids with leadership changes designed to better respond to West Michigan needs and to expand awareness of the organization’s end-of-life services. The statewide group will shift greater authority in the West Michigan region to the Ada-based regional headquarters and to the new post of executive director, to be held by Marcie M. Hillary of Grand Rapids. The office will operate under the new title of Hospice of Michigan/West Michigan. Hillary, who presently serves as vice president of community relations for HOM, will provide executive leadership for the West Michigan program which already oversees care for nearly 200 adult and pediatric patients daily in the region and is a partner with other health-care providers in the region, including with Michigan State University’s College of Human Medicine in development of a new physician fellowship in end of life care. As West Michigan executive director, she will have increased flexibility and authority to engage with other regional leaders, with donors and with hospitals and other patient-care organizations. “Our board members and community leaders in West Michigan felt strongly that we wanted to intensify our efforts to build awareness of Hospice of Michigan services to everyone in this growing part of the state,” said John Maurer, M.D., chair of the HOM Board of Trustees. “This isn’t about the care we provide. We’ve been leading the way for more than 30 years in that area. It’s about getting our message out, having greater locally based decision-making and about thinking more strategically with others in the West Michigan healthcare field about managing end-of-life issues.” “Marcie has been part of our team for 14 years,” said Maurer, “and she understands intimately how we can make end-of-life more comfortable, more peaceful and less stressful for patients and their families.” HOM, serving 54 counties in Lower Michigan, grew out of the former Hospice of Greater Grand Rapids, which was founded in 1981 and is the original hospice in West Michigan. In 1994, HOM was born from the merger of the Grand Rapids agency with other community based programs throughout the Lower Peninsula. It is the second oldest hospice in the United States, the largest in Michigan and maintains a nonprofit, open-access policy of […]

WWW opens first Sebago flagship store in London

December 15, 2011 // 0 Comments

Wolverine Worldwide (WWW) recently announced the opening of a very special retail location for its Sebago brand, a flagship location on the celebrated Regent Street in London. This particular Sebago store is the brand’s 44th store to open, as the brand already has a wide variety of retail location spanning the globe in locations such as Paris, Oslo and the Philippines. This is the first Sebago flagship store opened by the parent company, Wolverine Worldwide. The flagship Regent Street location opened this November to an enthusiastic consumer response. Sebago has been a well-known premium footwear brand in Europe for years and the opening of this flagship store with one of Europe’s most prestigious retail addresses cements the brand’s status as a must-have brand in the mind and hearts of consumers. Of course, the recent buzz around the brand after Kate Middleton has been spotted several times in her Sebago shoes has certainly helped elevate the profile of Sebago around the globe as well. The store itself is located at 78 Regent Street in London and boasts more than 1,600 square feet of retail space encompassing two spacious floors. The inspiration for the design of the store draws upon Sebago’s New England heritage accented with nautical influences. There is an exceptionally impressive, true-to-life and yacht-inspired staircase that connects the floors. The staircase has brass accents, inset portholes and wall-to-wall wraparound graphics that inspire and place the customers’ state of mind firmly on the New England coast. The Sebago flagship store is providing customers with the ultimate Sebago heritage experience in a personal fashion lead by the first-hand craftsmanship and premium quality of the Sebago footwear and apparel items. The Regent Street location offers the widest range of Sebago product in the United Kingdom and also features some very unique product collaborations including the brand’s Artisan and Filson collections.

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