RAM artifact #3

December 8, 2011 // 0 Comments

Native American pottery bowl This Native American pottery bowl was donated to the Rockford Histoical Museum on April 5, 2000 by Simon Francis, a spiritual leader of the Grand Rapids Band. The clay pot is believed to be 2000 years old, possibly from the area of Indiana. Items were traded near and far, even thousands of years ago.

Dad marks 10th anniversary of son’s death, former RHS student Ezra Hogg

December 8, 2011 // 0 Comments

Over 10 years ago on September 11, 2001 almost everyone can recall where they were and what they were doing when they heard the news of the terrorist attack on America. On December 10, 2001, John Hogg remembers where he was at and what he was doing when he was informed that his son, Ezra Hogg, was killed during a traffic accident on his way to school that day. The tragic events of 9/11 changed America forever; the death of John’s son changed his life forever. Ezra was 17 years old when he died. He was senior in high school, a member of the National Honor Society, an Eagle Scout, lifeguard, and played hockey and rugby. He died five days before John’s birthday, 11 days before Ezra’s 18th birthday, and 15 days before Christmas. John was emotionally, physically and spiritually devastated. “The outpouring of support from family and friends was critical during those first few weeks after he died,” stated John. Later, two scholarships were established in Ezra’s memory, and a staff cabin at Gerber Scout camp in Michigan where Ezra worked during the summer was named in his memory. A group called Compassionate Friends, which helps parents who have lost a child, also provided much needed emotional support. Despite all the initial support, as time passed John continued to struggle with his son’s death. As the months passed, John read in the Bible that when men had powerful life-changing experiences, it was usually on top of a mountain or in the wilderness. Moses on Mount Sinai, Elijah on Mount Carmel, Jesus spent 40 days in the wilderness, Peter, John and Andrew on the Mount of Transfiguration‑all had life-changing experiences. John decided he was going to the mountains and wilderness to find healing. He set a goal to summit the highest point in all 50 states in memory of his son. This year marks the 10th anniversary of Ezra’s death. John has successfully reached the highest point of 48 states in the last 10 years. From the very beginning it has been a spiritual journey to come to terms with the grief of losing his son. The first state’s high point John achieved was Michigan. It is here he learned a valuable lesson about how […]

Crickets Crop Shop opens to serve scrapbookers

December 8, 2011 // 0 Comments

Several members of the Belding Area Chamber of Commerce along with Chamber staff member Jody Paulsen recently participated in a ribbon-cutting ceremony at a new business venture in Grattan. Crickets Crop Shop opened in June to serve scrapbook enthusiasts. When asked about how she decided to open the store, owner Dianna Force commented, “I was at a scrapbooking retreat with some friends last winter and we were discussing the availability of scrapbook supplies in our area. Both of the scrapbook stores in Greenville had closed, so if we needed anything we had to drive to Grand Rapids. Someone jokingly said to me, ‘You should open a scrapbook store, you have plenty of room.’ Thus the idea for Crickets Crop Shop was born.” Force is excited to see increased patronage recently, as she explained, “Our grand opening was held the end of June. Business has been slow, but is starting to pick up since the kids have gone back to school. The store carries a good variety of cardstock, paper, adhesives, embellishments, sew easy supplies, inks, stickers, ribbon, cutting tools and much more! New items are arriving all of the time, and we also have a couple of tables set up for cropping right in the store.” The store is located at 11768 Old Belding Road NE in Grattan, just across from the general store. Store hours are Monday, Tuesday and Thursday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Wednesdays from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., Fridays from 5 to 9 p.m., and Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Cash and checks are welcome, with plans to accept credit and debit cards in the near future. For additional information about Crickets Crop Shop, please contact Force at (616) 826-1872 or Belding Area Chamber of Commerce Vice President Mike Verdun at (616) 794-1300.

In Your Own Backyard – June 11, 2009

June 11, 2009 // 0 Comments

Forest tent caterpillar outbreak heavy this year Michigan is experiencing a heavy outbreak of forest tent caterpillars (FTC) this year, particularly in areas around Gaylord, Cadillac, Traverse City and Petoskey in the northern Lower Peninsula, according to the Department of Natural Resources, (DNR). Widespread outbreaks of FTC occur at intervals of 10 to 15 years. These outbreaks last for two to five years, with most running their course in two to three years.  FTC epidemics commonly begin over large areas simultaneously.  This is caused by favorable weather conditions preceding an outbreak.  Population buildups often follow periods of unusually warm, dry springs. Fortunately, FTC outbreaks eventually subside as caterpillars succumb to parasites and other insect natural enemies. Defoliation begins in early May in the northern Lower Peninsula and late May in the Upper Peninsula.  Defoliation can be dramatic and becomes noticeable by early to mid-June.  However, cool weather slows development and feeding, extending the duration of outbreaks. “Defoliation from FTC normally does little damage to the tree,” said Roger Mech, forest health specialist with the DNR. “FTC infestation will reduce the vigor of the tree, but the tree usually recovers within a few years, after FTC infestation dies down.” Mech noted that most trees will develop a second set of smaller leaves around mid-summer, after the initial loss of leaves from FTC. He added that trees rarely die from FTC infestation alone. Native flies play an important role in natural control of FTC, but fly populations tend to increase as a result, and can create another nuisance for the public. The DNR can provide technical advice to landowners and landowner groups experiencing FTC infestation. Landowners interested in technical advice should contact their nearest DNR office. Aerial applications of pesticides may help reduce caterpillar nuisance during an FTC outbreak.  Applications must be made at the appropriate time and by licensed experienced applicators.  Once caterpillars are full grown and defoliation is nearly complete, pesticides are not effective.  The DNR can help homeowners determine whether aerial spraying will be effective. When spraying is warranted, the DNR recommends the use of a biological insecticide called Bacillus thuringiensis (also known as Bt). The DNR recommends the use of Bt because of its environmental safety.  Bt is a naturally occurring bacterium that […]

Secrets of a Sunken Cannon Revisited

April 15, 2009 // 0 Comments

by RICH GELDHOF The older we get the more powerful our minds become and when we don’t use what the brain has stored we “lose it.” Our short-term memory capacity is normally from five-nine number digits.  This explains why phone numbers and checking accounts are kept to seven numbers and a social security number doesn’t exceed nine numbers, because we have great difficulty remembering them the older we get, like a driver’s license of 12 numbers. Bob found that when you reach 55 you don’t always remember what you’ve heard correctly. That’s why it’s so important to write things down and store hard copy.     Can you remember your credit cards 16 numbers in proper sequence?  Probably not, but we are walking computers of information and our living brain is more active when sleeping than watching mindless video games and TV.  We awaken fresh as daisies, that’s some of us, not all of us. Like computers we must discard the trash and junk, but retain important information. When children come home from school we’ve all heard them say,  just as you said when your parents asked you, “how was school today or did you learn something new?”  The answer was, “fine, I hate school or I’ll be glad when I’m done with high school.” Chances are you’ve heard and felt the grumbling and experienced the frightening years as a wild teenager, who viewed teachers as dispensing mindless dribble. If you dismiss them without finding out what interesting thing they taught in class each day you’ve helped de-program their thinking ability. It takes the first 18 years or more to increase the knowledge and memory retention.  Teenagers can’t swallow wisdom pills at age 16 and can’t tell parents they are smarter. They should have committed three new things (adults six) each day to memory. In doing this you are sharpening their minds and teaching them the art of storing memory by concentration.  Teachers are challenging them to see, think and retain useful information. Teachers use their skill to energize and program their minds for the future. Mindless video games for hours after school de-programs them and renders anything they might have learned as useless fodder.  Learning will help prepare them for success. Dowsers need to […]

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