Governor Rick Snyder is a fan of Reading Rocks in Rockford, a Rockford Rotary festival, which just completed its second year. He sent an award of recognition for the reading festival, applauding the effort to promote literacy and the fun of reading in a day-long event with authors, celebrity readers, mascots, games, prizes, acting and more. Pictured is organizer and Rockford Rotary President Sue Bodenner with State Representative Peter MacGregor and Kent District Library’s new director Lance Wener.
The Rockford Fire Department helped make the last few days of the Rockford Public Schools Summer Kids Rock program full of fun as they brought two fire trucks to the Parkside Elementary School playground and sprayed water into the air for the kids to play in. According to organizer and teacher Steve Brown, it was the highlight in a week of fun activities to celebrate the end of the summer camp. “Every year the fire department does this for us at no charge,” Brown said. He noted the department brings two trucks in case an emergency requiring the attention of the fire department should occur. Fire Chief Mike Reus said the department is always happy to accommodate the request. The camp is attended by about 200 students from kindergarten through sixth grade. In addition to playing in the spray from the fire truck, the children enjoyed a day of track and field events, a scavenger hunt through downtown Rockford, and an ice cream social. Brown said the program is offered by Rockford Public Schools Childcare Services each summer. He came up with the name Summer Kids Rock because it sounded more fun than Summer Care. Brown said Chief Reus also offered to bring a truck in for a cooling spray if next summer has extremely hot days such as this summer did.
Shoppers are invited to experience a unique fashion event new to Rockford this year. Fashions Night Out is an unprecedented global initiative created in 2009 to celebrate fashion, promote consumer confidence and put the fun back in shopping. This year, Rockford is on board along with Grand Rapids, and businesses globally, including the United States, Canada, Mexico, Portugal, Spain, South Korea, Russia, Taiwan, Turkey and the United Kingdom. Fifty locations in Grand Rapids and nine in Rockford will open their doors with a festive, party-like atmosphere on Thursday, September 8 from 6 to 11 p.m. Not just anyone can participate in the event. Shops and restaurants are required to submit an application and be approved to participate. Retailers are rated on the quality of experience they will offer to shoppers on this special, once-a-year event. In Grand Rapids the Fashions Night Out was initiated by A.K. Rikks, a clothing boutique on 28th Street. This year A.K. Rikks owner contacted Erika of Paper Doll to invite Rockford to join in the celebration. Earlier this year an email went out to Rockford retailers explaining the process and the event. There was a great response from Rockford shops and many were very excited to get on board. Don’t miss the first time opportunity to see Rockford roll out the red carpet for shoppers for this exciting first time celebration of Fashions Night Out.
Rockford will again be the site of a movie brought to you by Joel Reisig, who last year filmed “Win by Fall” in Rockford. The film is currently in preproduction for and will be a PG-rated Christmas movie titled “A Dog For Christmas.” The intended shoot dates in January and February will take place in Rockford and Grand Rapids. Reisig is excited to bring some notable talent to his second filming in Rockford. The movie will star Sherman Hemsley of “The Jeffersons,” Richard Karn of “Home Improvement,” and Dustin Diamond of “Saved By The Bell.” Also starring will be West Michigan native Sophie Bolen, the 11-year-old star of last year’s movie “The Christmas Bunny.” The movie is described as a hilarious family comedy about life during the holidays. David and Janet Feldman make the classical mistake of inviting all of their relatives into their home for the holiday season. Anything that can go wrong does, especially when Santa Claus (Grandpa) decides to go against their wishes and buy their daughter an untrained dog for Christmas! Reisig is a Hope College graduate. He recently completed a 1910 period piece on Belgium immigrants in America, shot partially in Allegan, Mich. You can view the trailer of “Win by Fall” on You Tube where you can see Rockford City Manager Michael Young in his role in the film as a wrestling referee, which he actually does in real life in his spare time. Bruce Snider of Rockford will co-produce. Reisig also teaches a two-day seminar on the film business called “Be Your Own Hollywood.” More information can be found at www.BeYourOwnHollywood.com. The film will be distributed by All Channel Films, which has been in business since 1987. They intend to bring the film to one of the following networks: Showtime, Starz, Hallmark, or ABC Family. Reisig is currently seeking product placement. Product placement in film is an excellent way to get your brand seen in a positive light.