July 12 2012

Mustard Seed Ministries pays kindness forward

July 12, 2012 // 0 Comments

Making a difference with kindness In the early morning hours of May 19, numerous volunteers gathered at 241 Park St. in Sparta. Their mission was to make a family’s needs become a reality by installing a new roof on their home. Phil and Carol McVickers were in dire need of a new roof on their home for at least 10 years, but could not afford one due to Phil losing his job at the local school district and not being able to find steady work for the last few years. Carol works three jobs just so they can keep their heads barely above water while trying to stay up on the bills as much as possible. A brown tarp had covered part of the roof for the last three years just to keep rain and snow from coming into the attic area. The volunteers were led by a nonprofit organization from Rockford known as Mustard Seed Ministries. President Troy Winters was contacted by an anonymous individual who had asked if Winters could put something together to help the McVickers with a new roof. The individual was not only led by the Lord to contact Mustard Seed about a new roof for the home, but was also gave $1,000 toward the materials for the project. Mustard Seed is usually approached by homeowners who need work on their homes, such as wheelchair ramps, roof repairs and many other repairs. “This was one of those unique situations you don’t come upon too often,” said Winters. “The majority of the people we help are low income and just don’t have the funds to put toward the remodeling of their home.” The initial estimate came in around $1,300 and the project was in need of another $300 to make this successful. Thanks to the generosity of the Sparta Lions Club, the project was going to happen. Many businesses and individuals stepped up to the plate by donating things like food from Family Fair, beverages from McDonald’s, lumber from Standard Lumber and a dumpster from Venman’s Landscaping. A portable restroom was even donated by Plummers Disposal. Dave Vander Kodde, a licensed contractor, was on hand to oversee the project to make sure everything went smoothly without issues. Dr. Chris Hawkins, a […]

Ignoring barricades a damaging decision

July 12, 2012 // 0 Comments

by CLIFF AND NANCY HILL Scofflaws removing barricades from either end of a roadway known as Rum Creek Crossings could expose themselves and others, along with their vehicles, to a world of hurt. Rum Creek Crossings, entered off Courtland Dr. NE, gains access to the rear of the MVP Sports Club business complex. However, the street/driveway is not a City of Rockford street but rather a roadway surface wholly owned by Hillview Townhouses (operated under the auspices of Hope Network). Last week a large sinkhole appeared in the center of the road’s surface. Upon close inspection, it appears the sinkhole runs diagonally underneath the asphalt surface from shoulder to shoulder for a distance of approximately 25 feet. At the time, barricades were placed at both ends of the street to block through traffic. Additionally, an orange traffic cone was placed in the sinkhole and was highlighted by yellow warning tape straddling the dangerous area. Apparently some people have a better idea. Repeatedly they have been removing the barricades and cutting the tape to exit or gain access to the business complex. This is foolish and dangerous business as the complex has a divided 2-way main entrance off of 10 Mile Road. Those that remove the barricades could find their vehicle the one that finally breaks through the remaining road surface resulting in possible vehicle damage and physical injury. Worse yet, they expose other innocent and unknowing motor vehicle operators and their passengers to the same fate. Repairs have been scheduled. In the meantime honor the barricades, they have been placed there for the protection of all.


July 12, 2012 // 0 Comments

SCHOOL BEAT A Foundation for Motivation by ADAM BURKHOLDER Assistant Principal Rockford High School Motivating students, increasing self-esteem, and assisting in the building of a foundation for successful individuals are endeavors, or achievements, I take pride in as a professional and as a parent. Striving to always be better, I am continuously looking for ways to improve who I am and what I am doing for students and my children alike. My constant pursuit led me to a book I’ve completed for the second time. The book is titled “Mindset,” and the main idea presented is to acknowledge the effort your students and children put into something rather than stating how good, how smart, how talented they may be. Author Carol Dweck has devoted her career to the psychology behind the success of individuals. Focusing on how an individual can grow what they are naturally good at is at the forefront of her research. Her ideas challenged me to look at how I receive feedback/constructive criticism, how I give it, and how I can further benefit from feedback and results in general. Dweck provides examples to the reader of different individuals who have characterized both forms of mindset. John McEnroe is a prime example of someone who embodies the fixed mindset. When things were going well on the court, he and his talents were responsible for his success, but when he was losing it was his opponent’s fault, the referee’s fault, the weather conditions, the fans, or his trainer. The bottom line is that it was never his fault that he wasn’t succeeding. On the other end of the spectrum is Jackie Joyner Kersee. She is one of the most celebrated Olympic athletes in having earned a total of six Olympic medals in three different events, three of which were gold, one silver, and two bronze. Of these accomplishments, personally she is most proud of her bronze medal earned at the age 34 while competing in the long jump competition. More work went into earning that bronze medal than any of those she had previously won. This exemplifies the growth mindset. A brief overview of the book “Mindset” can be found at mindsetonline.com and a portion of it has been provided below: “In a fixed […]

Huge trees taken down on Main, Elizabeth streets

July 12, 2012 // 0 Comments

Original plantings were to keep roads in place by BETH ALTENA  The face of Rockford changed somewhat as two old trees were removed at the corner of East Main and Elizabeth streets Monday, July 9. The pair of maples, as big as 60 to 70 feet high, were suffering from some dead wood, and according to Melissa Imhoff of Imhoff Tree Service, the homeowners were concerned because in storms and high winds branches were falling from the elderly pair. She also noted that dead wood was visible in a split in one of the two trees. “Parts of the trees are healthy, but as a whole tree, they were not healthy trees,” said Imhoff. The company spent the entire day chipping branches, cutting limbs and removing in their entirety the two trees, and Imhoff said their service includes complete removal of the trees and the tree debris, including grinding the stump. She said a job such as this one costs about $2,000. Imhoff said she wasn’t sure how old the trees were, but many of the large ancient maples that line the streets of Rockford date back to the 1850s when Rockford was still known as Laphamville. According to the late Homer Burch’s definitive book on the town’s history, “From Sawmill to City,” the long years passing, by 1855 Laphamville was rapidly expanding eastward from Smith Lapham’s 40 acres on the Rogue River. “New homes and buildings were being built haphazardly wherever convenient, with little thought to future growth as a village,” wrote Burch. He went on to describe the efforts of surveyor and engineer William Thorton as he drew up the very first ever map of the Village of Laphamville. He laid out and named all the streets of the new village from Main Street to Courtland, south to Division (Ten Mile). “Then, through his efforts, many of the new streets were lined with shade trees set out in orderly rows outside the sidewalk lines. Most of those trees were soft maples, but they also included some hard maples, poplars and elms.” The purpose of the tree planting was to ensure the streets stayed where Thorton had drawn them, rather than to deviate in other directions. Hopefully both East Main Street and Elizabeth Street […]

Rockford Fourth of July hotter than a firecracker

July 12, 2012 // 0 Comments

by CLIFF AND NANCY HILL Rockford did not escape the successive days of record-breaking heat that engulfed two-thirds of the nation last week. Unless you were beachside, the stifling heat put a damper on out-of-door 4th of July activities especially backyard cookout gatherings. Air conditioning was certainly the order of the day. Locally, venues such as Rockford’s North Star Cinemas were extremely busy all day long with many people changing their holiday plans as they sought to escape a heat wave flirting with 100 degrees. Venturing barefoot out on our concrete front porch at 3 p.m. that afternoon, brought us an abrupt and painful explanation of the term “hot foot”. It also brought to mind the old expression, “It’s hot enough to fry an egg on the sidewalk.” You guessed it; this was an experiment we always wanted to try. So we got out a small frying pan, sprayed it with a little olive oil, and set it on our concrete porch in full sunlight. Wanting to verify the surface temperature of the concrete, we placed an extremely accurate digital thermometer on the porch’s surface adjacent to the frying pan. The thermometer quickly rose past the current 98 degree outside air temperature to an astounding 133 degrees on the concrete’s surface! We broke an egg into the pan and, although it wasn’t as fast as stovetop, we were soon rewarded with a perfectly cooked sunnyside up egg. Being reporters, we wanted to share the results of this “scientific” test with West Michigan so we contacted our newspartner WZZM TV 13 via an email and a picture. Meteorologist Joe Kopecek of WZZM’s “On Target Weather Team” quickly replied, “Thanks for the pic, I’ll work it into the weather segment during the 11:00 p.m. newscast.” And so he did – did you see it? Proof positive is in the accompanying photo. By the way, Cliff ate the egg on top of an ice cold 4th of July salad of Farm Market mixed greens.

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