May 19 2011


May 19, 2011 // 0 Comments

Independent Bank receives Financial Literacy Award Independent Bank has been recognized for its 2010 financial literacy efforts by the Michigan Bankers Association (MBA) with the 2011 MBA Financial Literacy Award. Independent Bank reached more than 20,000 individuals through its financial literacy efforts. The bank educated students about workforce readiness, entrepreneurship and financial literacy through experiential, hands-on programs. Bank associates also hosted an all-day event for high school seniors covering planning for the future, balancing a checking account, budgeting, borrowing money, protecting yourself from identity theft, and working in the financial industry. “We are very excited to be recognized with this award,” said Brad Kessel, Independent Bank’s president. “We see a need for financial literacy education in the communities we serve and are proactively seeking opportunities to educate people across the state about finances.” Interested groups are encouraged to contact their local Independent Bank office about financial literacy education. A complete list of locations can be found online at  

Summer Reading Club returns to library

May 19, 2011 // 0 Comments

The Kent District Library (KDL) invites the whole family to sign up for the Summer Reading Club and spend some time reading this summer! This year’s Summer Reading Club runs from Monday, June 13 to Saturday, August 6. With new activities for babies and adults, KDL’s Summer Reading Club really does offer something for everyone. There’s Baby Bingo for babies 0-18 months; One World, Many Stories for kids 18 months through fifth grade; You are Here for teens grades 6-12; and Novel Destinations for adults. Meet your reading goals and enter to win great prizes such as gift certificates, a new bicycle, and even a Barnes & Noble Nook Color eReader. Not only is KDL’s Summer Reading Club a great way to have fun this summer, but it’s also an important step in helping to prevent what’s known as summer reading loss. Studies show that “students typically score lower on standardized tests at the end of summer vacation than they do on the same tests at the beginning of summer vacation.” The KDL aims to help prevent summer reading loss by providing programs and activities that encourage learning while children and teens are away from school. By developing these habits now and making learning fun, we hope to help people succeed in school and in life. Sign up for KDL’s Summer Reading Club starting June 13 at any of KDL’s 18 branch locations. The Krause Memorial Library branch is located at 140 E. Bridge St., Rockford. For more information, please call (616) 784-2007 or visit Kent District Library is a millage-supported system encompassing 18 branch libraries in 26 governmental units throughout Kent County. KDL serves 362,312 people in all areas of Kent County except the City of Grand Rapids, Cedar Springs, Sparta, and Solon Township.  


May 19, 2011 // 0 Comments

Friday-Monday, May 20-23 Spectacular Book Sale—Friday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m., and Monday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Plainfield Township Library, 2650 Five Mile Rd., Grand Rapids. Hardcovers only $1, softcovers 50¢, and paperbacks and children’s books only 25¢. Bag-of-books only $2 on Sunday and Monday only. Sunday, May 22 Forest Hills Adult Community Band Spring Concert—2:30 to 3:30 p.m. at Forest Hills Eastern High School Auditorium, 2200 Pettis Ave. NE, Ada. The Knapp Street parking entrance to the school is closest to the auditorium and is handicap accessible. Admission is free. Music is for all ages. For more information, please visit “Fathers vs. Players” Fundraiser Community Picnic—1 p.m. at Cedar Springs High School varsity baseball field, to raise funds for promoting off-season training for the Cedar Springs High School baseball players. Enjoy vendors with games and prizes, a fathers and sons baseball game, and so much more! Monday, May 23 Legacy Homeschool Cooperative Informational Meeting—7 to 9 p.m. at Alpha Omega Coffee, 32 S. Main St., Cedar Springs. Group shall meet in northern Kent County with location to be announced. Weekly classes for ages infant through 12th grade. Parent-taught cooperative with minimal costs. Please RSVP to Tuesday, May 24 Rockford Rotary Club Meetings—7 a.m. at Rockford High School, and 12:10 p.m. at Rockford Community Cabin. For more information, call Mark Bivins at (616) 866-1470. Rockford Garden Club Meeting—7 p.m. at Rockford United Methodist Church, community room, 159 Maple St., free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served. This month’s topic is “Frogs Are Desirable Neighbors,” presented by Ranger Steve. For more information, contact Karen Chickering at (616) 874-0186. Country Music—9:30 to 11:30 a.m. every Tuesday at Rockford Ambulance Community Center, corner of 10 Mile Road and Shaner Avenue in Rockford. Music by the Rogue River Band. Enjoy free coffee, tea and snacks. Thursday, May 26 Rockford Lions Club Meeting—6 p.m. social, 6:30 dinner and 7 p.m. meeting at the Community Cabin, 220 N. Monroe St., Rockford. Meetings held every second and fourth Thursday of each month. Saturday, May 28 Howard City/Tri County High School Annual Alumni Banquet—6 p.m. at Heritage United Methodist Church, 19931 Kendaville Rd., Pierson. Cost is […]


May 19, 2011 // 0 Comments

Eraser by PASTOR RON AULBACH BridgeWay Community Church Imagine for a moment, your child is born and in the delivery room you’re handed a script of their life and an eraser. Doctor says you have five minutes to edit the script of this little life before a day of it is lived out. What would you erase? How would you decide what should be included? You read that your child will have a learning disability, and while reading comes easy for most kids, your daughter will struggle immensely. But in the next paragraph you read that with the help of a caring teacher she makes a breakthrough and overcomes to earn the respect of peers, staff, and a full ride scholarship. Later you read that she gets a great job, only to lose it in an economic downturn, only to find a new job and meet her future spouse. What do you erase? How do you rewrite this story? If you could erase every failure, disappointment and painful experience, would that even be a good thing for your child? Minnesota Twins outfielder Kirby Puckett was a legendary clutch hitter and class act. Kirby was fun to watch and even cheer for when at bat against my beloved Tigers. However, on September 25, 1995, Cleveland’s Dennis Martinez accidentally drilled Kirby in the right eye, causing irreversible damage. It shortened Kirby’s career, forcing him to retire well before his time. Everyone thought Kirby would forever hate Dennis. But Kirby saw it differently and in press conferences, when asked about the circumstances that forced his retirement, Kirby said simply, “Dennis Martinez is my good friend.” Kirby knew that there was no eraser and embraced love, forgiveness and hope. In 2001, despite what analysts would consider average baseball statistics, Kirby was admitted into the Hall of Fame. There’s no eraser. Instead there is an opportunity to live by faith, trusting God completely, in all areas of your life. “‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future,’” Jeremiah 29:11. Let go of the eraser and reach for God and the future he has in store for you.  


May 19, 2011 // 0 Comments

Water, Water (Almost) Everywhere by CRAIG JAMES Can you believe Lake Michigan has nearly three trillion more gallons of water in it than at this time last month? With the wet spring we have had, the lake has risen seven inches since mid April, which translates to 2.73 trillion gallons more water. According to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Lake Michigan is still about two inches below last year at this time and 16 inches below the long-term average for May. Lake Michigan is an amazing 47 inches below the highest level of record set back in 1986, but it is 13 inches higher than the lowest level of record set in 1996. Lakes Erie and Ontario are above average for this time of year. In fact, Lake Ontario is up 18 inches from last year and is now six inches above its long-term average for May. Lake Michigan is expected to come up another three inches by mid June; Lake Superior may rise another four inches, while the eastern lakes should remain nearly unchanged. The total increase of water in the five Great Lakes in the last month is over 11 TRILLION gallons! Farther south, the Corps of Engineers is releasing water through spillways on the Mississippi River to prevent another flood the magnitude of the 1927 flood, which is the worst flood ever recorded for that river. The water is flowing at the rate of 1.5 million cubic feet per second through the river between Arkansas and Mississippi. Last Sunday, May 15, the Grand River in Grand Rapids was flowing at just 7.6 thousand cubic feet per second. An engineer has calculated that at the rate the Mississippi is flowing, the water could completely fill the Superdome in New Orleans in just 50 seconds. Opening the spillway will release enough water to submerge about 3,000 square miles of land under as much as 25 feet of water. This will take the pressure off the downstream levees protecting New Orleans, Baton Rouge and the numerous oil refineries and chemical plants along the lower reaches of the Mississippi. However, it could mean ruin to many of the farmers who grow crops in the flooded area. The government tells us there is little inflation. However, […]

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