October 22 2009

News Bits — October 22, 2009

October 22, 2009 // 0 Comments

Veterans, active duty military honored with free food On Veterans Day, November 11, all of the nearly 2,000 Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill & Bar restaurants will honor U.S. veterans and active duty military with a free meal. All guests with proof of current or former U.S. military service will enjoy a free entrée from a selection of six signature favorites. This special offer will be available lunchtime through the dinner hours for dine-in guests at all Applebee’s restaurants, nationwide. For complete details, visit www.applebees.com/vetsday.

Hard work, persistence paying off for RHS marching band

October 22, 2009 // 0 Comments

The Rockford High School marching band once again showed its prowess with top score of the day at Belding High School’s invitational on Saturday, Oct. 10. Rockford was among 11 high school bands participating in the Michigan Competing Band Association (MCBA) event. The band finished the performance with 73.3 points overall. The next highest score was Durand High School in flight four with 68.9. Rockford band director Brian Phillips is happy with Saturday’s performance, but he also notes that competitions are about more than simply striving for a high number. “I was very pleased, visually, with the band’s performance Saturday night,” said Phillips. “It was one of Rockford’s strongest visual productions ever. To be honest, I was a little disappointed musically. We are a young band, and we have some work to do in the area of toughening up the kids, especially in adverse weather conditions. I am extremely proud of what they did accomplish. I think the part of which I am most proud is the kids’ attitudes on the night. They know we did well, but they also know we left a lot on the field, and it hurt our overall performance—and they wish we could have a do-over.” Schools are ranked by MCBA in one of four flights according to enrollment size the previous spring. Rockford was the only school Saturday participating in flight one, and is currently ranked fourth in the state out of nine schools that have posted scores thus far this season. In order to qualify for state finals at Ford Field on Nov. 7, bands must compete in at least two MCBA sanctioned contests and place among the 10 highest scoring bands in its flight. Rockford has made the state finals every year since joining the association. The Rockford band’s two remaining competitions are both MCBA sanctioned events, at Allegan High School Oct. 24 and at Reeths-Puffer Oct. 31. “We have awesome kids. They will learn from this and continue to grow into an amazing band. I’m looking forward to our next shot,” said Phillips. Band members are working hard on fundraisers to help subsidize expenses such as band camp, uniforms, and more, so please be on the lookout for students selling door-to-door in your neighborhood. For more […]

Rockford Christian School art students inspired by ArtPrize

October 22, 2009 // 0 Comments

In September, Rockford Christian School (RCS) junior high students spent an entire day visiting various ArtPrize exhibits along with over 1,500 other Grand Rapids area students. The RCS teens had the opportunity to converse with several artists and learn about their motivation and creations. One artist in particular, Jason Hackenwerth, really inspired the teens. RCS art teacher, Kelly Tuit, said, “Jason really engaged with the kids.” Hackenwerth’s art exhibit was a 10-foot balloon creature, which demonstrated to the teenagers that art isn’t just about oil paintings or sculptures. The students were also invited to talk to another artist, Rob Jackson, whose exhibit was a 50-foot homage to the end of the recession, titled “Wall and Main.” “The kids learned that art is about the experience,” said Tuit. According to Tuit, the field trip changed many of the teens’ perception of art. After the insightful field trip, the students returned to school and were given some guidelines for the RCS ArtProject competition. They were told their art had to either reflect the student or had to convey some kind of current social issue. The other guidelines were the inclusion of a “venue” which for the purpose of the competition was a shoebox, and providing an artist’s “work statement” which summarizes the art’s intent. “The students really enjoyed discussing whether an artist should be true to their self or create something that resonates with popular opinion,” said Tuit. After the guidelines were conveyed, the seventh- and eighth-grade students began enthusiastically working on their projects. “What the students have created so far is truly amazing and creative”, said Tuit. Countless colorful in-progress masterpieces line the art room’s walls and storage spaces. Some of the ArtProject contenders are intricately constructed using various materials while others convey a powerful message about current events. It’s evident that many students were inspired by what they saw during their field trip to the Grand Rapids ArtPrize. The RCS student body is voting on the anonymous RCS ArtProjects in mid-October and various prizes will be awarded to the artists with the most votes. The biggest winners, of course, are the junior high students at RCS. Their minds have been stretched as they contemplated their various masterpieces and how they will impact the world around […]

Sparta student selected as part of NASCAR marketing team

October 22, 2009 // 0 Comments

by ANA OLVERA  The National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing Inc. (NASCAR) is pleased to announce that one of five Central Michigan University (CMU) students selected to participate in NASCAR Kinetics: Marketing in Motion is Austin J. Suttner from Sparta. NASCAR Kinetics, launched January 2009, provides hands-on learning experience and allows these students to gain real world marketing experience while being immersed in the sport of NASCAR. The participating schools were selected on their marketing programs and students’ eagerness to gain real world practice and knowledge. Each week the CMU team will respond to a case study provided to them by NASCAR, allowing students to use techniques and lessons taught to them in the classroom. Placing students in the shoes of professional marketers, public relations practitioners and business professionals, NASCAR Kinetics assignments are based upon everyday challenges facing NASCAR and its sponsors. “These case studies will challenge us to come up with ways to attract new fans to NASCAR, usually the younger fan, 8 to 24 years old,” Suttner said, “It’s a good experience for problem-solving in a real world job setting. We are forced to think outside of the box and come up with answers on our time and quickly.” The team will also plan and execute a NASCAR Day panel discussion. Among the panel participants will be NASCAR professionals in marketing, human resources, diversity and series operations. CMU students, faculty and employees are encouraged to support their team by attending the panel discussion, which, along with case study performance, will determine the winning NASCAR Kinetics school. The winning school will receive the grand prize, an all-expense-paid trip to South Beach, Miami, during Ford Championship Weekend. Suttner hopes to “meet some drivers” if their team wins. “My favorite all-time driver was Ricky Rudd, but… now I would have to say Carl Edwards,” said Suttner. In order to participate, students had to fill out a program application and were interviewed via phone. They were selected based on their application and interview performance, as well as their on-campus involvement, cumulative grade-point average and desire to join the NASCAR Kinetics team. Suttner heard about the program in a presentation in one of his classes. “I have been a NASCAR fan ever since I was a little […]

United Bank begins annual Dress the Dolls

October 22, 2009 // 0 Comments

Girls will be thrilled to find a beautiful doll on Christmas Day, thanks to the efforts of the community and United Bank. Dolls are now available to the public, or businesses who are invited to take a doll home and dress it, as elaborately or simply as desired. The best-dressed dolls will be chosen for recognition before being delivered to the North Kent Service Center for distribution to struggling families. For several years the bank has brought this popular program to Rockford and in past years dolls have come complete with a pony and cowgirl outfit, dressed in Rockford athletic theme, with a sleigh and in a theme representing area businesses. After being dressed and returned to the bank, the dolls will remain on display at the bank before going to the center and becoming some child’s favorite Christmas gift. For more information, visit United Bank or call (616) 863-6081.

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