September 15 2011

Friday Night Lights Experience

September 15, 2011 // 0 Comments

Week 3: Union Red Hawks versus East Grand Rapids Pioneers For the last two weeks, FNLE has covered games that included the Rockford Rams. Well this week we left the comfort of the OK Red and headed to Memorial Field to watch the East Grand Rapids (EGR) Pioneers host the Union Red Hawks. Even though this was a non-conference game and one with not much history, our expectations were high as we headed to the home of the five-time Division III state champions. We arrived at Memorial Field an hour prior to kickoff and were able to park right next to the stadium. This took us by surprise—how were we able to park so close to the stadium this close to kickoff? Normally parking in the street is not the most ideal situation for people. However, looking around at the beautiful houses that surround the stadium, we felt pretty secure in our parking selection. While chatting with the Pioneer fans, we learned that, with the exception of two small school lots, the only available parking for games is street parking. Heading in to the game, we anticipated a lot of pre-game energy—maybe some face painting, signs to fire up the team, at the very least cheerleaders getting the fans ready to push their team toward a sixth consecutive state championship. Instead, we were greeted with, well, nothing. Memorial Stadium is beautiful! It sits across the street from Reeds Lake, which can be seen from the home side bleachers. The stadium seats approximately 5,000 people and 30 minutes prior to kickoff there were still a plenty of seats available, which only further proved that this was not a rivalry game by any stretch of the imagination. The field sports the artificial multi-toned turf that we have grown accustomed to seeing at the “Ted.” Unlike the “Ted,” there is only one scoreboard with no play clocks to be found. The field is recessed—surrounded by brick and a two-level press box, giving the stadium a collegiate feel. As we walked around the stadium to build up our appetites, we ventured inside a small enclosed shed that acted as a bookstore, selling all kinds of EGR gear—great idea for fundraising! The main concession stand is near the primary entrance […]

CROP walk fights hunger

September 15, 2011 // 0 Comments

Sunday, October 2, at 2 p.m. is the date and time for the Belmont/Comstock Park Communities Responding to Overcome Povery (CROP) Hunger Walk. Registration starts at 1:30 p.m. at the Wolverine World Wide YMCA, 6555 Jupiter Ave. NE, Belmont. Donations collected help the Loaves & Fishes food pantry at the Church of the Holy Spirit on Post Drive and Mobile Food Pantry at St. Stephen’s Church, plus national and international relief agencies such as Church World Service and Catholic Relief Services. People can walk 3.2 miles (5k) on the scenic Fred Meijer White Pine Trail. Contact Carol Dunn, team leader for Assumption of Our Blessed Virgin Mary Catholic Church, Belmont, at (616) 863-6899, or Pat O’Neill, team leader for St. Stephen’s Lutheran Church Pines, at (616) 866-5131 to learn about Belmont’s walk or to get a walker’s donation form. You can sign up online or make a donation at Please join in and walk for a good cause. On Facebook, search “Belmont/Comstock Park MI CROP Hunger Walk.”

Animals star at second Pet Festival

September 15, 2011 // 0 Comments

Food, activities, giveaways, free microchipping  by BETH ALTENA Even stuffed animals receive star treatment at a festival that celebrates the importance of animal companions in our lives. Plainfield Pet Hospital, 4609 Plainfield Avenue, invites animal lovers of all ages to visit their second Pet Festival 2011, Saturday, Sept. 17 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. “There will be booths, giveaways, spin to win, free microchipping and a food tent,” said Kathy Olsen, technician and office manager for the veterinary clinic. Also on tap for the day’s event will be greyhounds from Allies for Greyhounds; pets from Mackenzie’s Animal Sanctuary; K-9 Good Citizen training, which certifies dogs to be therapeutic visitors to nursing homes, hospitals and other care facilities; a booth where kids can have their stuffed animals “examined” by a veterinarian; food activities and other activities to celebrate companion animals. Last year Plainfield Pet Hospital, which has been open more than 25 years, held the first pet festival, which was a big success. Olsen said the hospital, which offers regular veterinarian services in addition to emergency care, has been around so long it replaced a chicken coop when it was first built. She said the animal medical field is an interesting career because every day is different. Olsen has been in the industry for over 20 years herself and has been at the Plainfield Pet Hospital the last seven years. Olsen said the main focus of the business is regular care for cats and dogs, but they have also had a variety of companion animals in, such as rabbits, for spaying and neutering. “We performed surgery on a chicken once,” Olsen noted. She added turtles, and iguanas as among the family pets brought in. “I learned how to draw blood from an iguana,” she stated. “You flip them over on their backs to do it.” Among displays for people to view at the festival are X-rays showing some of the objects animals have eaten and had to have removed. One precocious bull mastiff had repeat surgeries to remove items from its stomach, and in one go had removed two blue hospital towels, a rock, a bottle cap and a glove. They have treated fishhooks in noses, cats with string inside, hockey tape and more. The […]


September 15, 2011 // 0 Comments

FOR SALE Percussion and bell kit for school band, $150. Call (616) 866-4186. ______________________ AUTOS FOR SALE ’95 Nissan Altima—great student car, 145k miles, A/C, power locks/windows, cruise, airbags, moon. Some rust. $1,500. E-mail: ______________________ FREE Utility building—9′ x 12′ in good condition with garage door. You have to dismantle and haul it. (616) 874-6505. ______________________ FOR RENT Cedar Springs—3-bedroom, 2-bath mobile home. Private land. Secluded. Central air, 12′ x 12′ shed, 1-stall garage. $650 per month plus utilities. (616) 754-9468. ______________________ SERVICES Do you want a sparkling clean home weekly, every other week, or just a one-time cleaning? Give me a call! I can also help with gardening. References available. Call (616) 433-8124. ______________________ PETS AND SUPPLIES The Rockford Squire’s “Free” and “Lost & Found” classified ads are free of charge. Call (616) 866-4465 by noon on Monday to place your ad in next Thursday’s issue.  

Sierra Miller wins gold at USCA Nationals event

September 15, 2011 // 0 Comments

by STEPHANIE MILLIS Sierra Miller won the gold medal in the kayak event at the United States Canoe Association (USCA) Nationals, held in Newaygo on August 9. Fifteen-year-old Sierra lost her leg in a lawn mower accident at seven years old. Initially, doctors told Sierra’s parents that even though her leg would be amputated below the knee, she wouldn’t be able to bend her knee. Doctors also said Sierra should expect many surgeries into her adult years. Sierra’s parents had to make a fast decision about their daughter’s amputation. They decided to have the surgeon perform a through-the-knee procedure, which would allow Sierra to bend her knee. The procedure eliminated the need for many of the surgeries down the road. “As her parents, it was an easy decision,” said Shannon Miller, Sierra’s mother. “This option would allow her to run, play and be a normal seven-year-old.” After the initial surgery, Sierra’s amputation became infected. She underwent surgery a second time to remove a portion of her leg above the knee. The surgery still allows Sierra to bend her knee. Sierra is also a patient at Mary Free Bed Orthotics & Prosthetics in Grand Rapids, where she was fitted for her prosthetic leg. Sierra is like any other teenager. She’s enthusiastic and excited to participate in sporting events. A sophomore at Lakeview High School. Sierra is a member of the junior varsity cheerleading squad. In middle school, she participated in wrestling and volleyball. Sierra is the youngest in a family of eight. Being part of military family—where mom, dad and two brothers serve in some branch of the military—Sierra, too, has grown up wanting to serve her country. When she was 13, Sierra wrote a letter to Dave Camp, congressman from Midland, Mich., pleading her case. She told the congressman that it wasn’t fair that she would never be able to serve in the military because she is an amputee. Sierra doesn’t let her amputation slow her down. She has her sights set on participating in the kayak event at the 2016 Paralympics. “I’m not going to give up,” Sierra says. “I will always keep trying.”

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