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My Town: Raspberry farm hosts first gleaning for families in need July 31

My Town: Raspberry farm hosts first gleaning for families in need July 31

COMSTOCK PARK, Mich.—An army of volunteers will be out in the fields of Krupp Farms Thursday, July 31, gathering fresh food for families in need.

The trip to the Comstock Park farm is the first gleaning for Feeding America West Michigan this season.  The nonprofit organization is told there is an abundance of raspberries ripe for the picking. 

The pantry produce picking will take place from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. at Krupp Farms, located at 8025 Krupp Ave. NE. Volunteers of all ages are welcome.  At least 45 people are needed.  To register, visit the event page here.

My Town: Consumers Energy Foundation awards nearly $39K to nonprofits

My Town: Consumers Energy Foundation awards nearly $39K to nonprofits

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—Dozens of nonprofit organizations that are close to the hearts of Consumers Energy employees are getting a financial boost.

The Consumers Energy Foundation recently awarded 78 grants worth $38,350 to organizations in Michigan where Consumers employees and retirees volunteer.  Last year, nonprofits in the state received more than $8 million from Consumers Energy and its employees, retirees, foundation and parent company, CMS Energy.  

The 2014 second quarter grant recipients include:

Allegan County

  • $450 to Fennville Public Schools Youth Baseball (Loren Barnes)
  • $550 to Fennville Public Schools Youth Football (Loren Barnes)

Ionia County

  • $550 to Portland Public Schools Wrestling Club (Chad Miller)

Kalamazoo County

My Town: Board to address ballpark water upgrade proposal following fire

My Town: Board to address ballpark water upgrade proposal following fire

PLAINFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich.— A plan to improve the water system at the recently burned Fifth Third Ballpark will go before the Plainfield Township Board next week.

In January, fire crews spent precious time pulling hoses 500 feet from the nearest fire hydrants to the fire at Fifth Third Ballpark.  The fire destroyed the first base concourse, including some suites.  As part of the rebuild, contractors added a modern sprinkler system and six hydrants inside the ballpark stairwells. 

Upgrades also include adding at least three more fire hydrants outside the ballpark. All of the hydrants will be fed by a 36-inch water main running beneath White Pine Trail.  The looped system would provide better water pressure because it is coming from two points, rather than one.

OPINION: Michigan, Our Great State

OPINION: Michigan, Our Great State

Michigan, our great state. Whether we realize it or not, we really do have a great state.

Granted, we had an unusual winter this past year but then again, have you ever seen the grass and trees so green before? Even people returning from Florida this year have commented about everything being so green!

Despite all of the good things, I still hear people complain about it either being too cool, too cloudy, too hot, etc. To those people I say, maybe it’s time for you to move to a perfect climate, wherever that may be.

I love Michigan and all it has to offer. We have the Great Lakes, a treasure on their own. I used to have an older friend, Bill Hickey, who had apple orchards.

He told me, “You will never, ever find an apple as snappy when you bite into it as a Michigan apple in the fall, because of the Great Lakes.” 

My Town: Date set for Art Van Sports Complex grand opening

My Town: Date set for Art Van Sports Complex grand opening

PLAINFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich.—  A $7.8 million project nearly two years in the making will open to the public next week.

The grand opening for the Art Van Sports Complex is scheduled for Aug. 1.  The 60-acre complex is located at 3300 10 Mile Road in Plainfield Township.  Crews broke ground on the project in October of 2012; so far they’ve finished the first phase of work, which included eight diamonds for baseball and softball and a Miracle Field for players with disabilities.  Four additional fields are planned for phase two of construction.

The President of the West Michigan Sports Commission expects the facility to create an economic impact of more than $10 million during its first five years of operation. The Art Van Complex manager says ball diamonds are already booked for tournaments during 23 of the 27 weekends on the 2015 schedule.

Burglars lock up after stealing cigarettes


PLAINFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WZZM) -- Investigators ask anyone with information about a burglary early Wednesday morning to give them a call.

Around 12:39am, two or three suspects stole several cartons of menthol cigarettes from the Admiral Tobacco at 3676 Plainfield Ave. NE.

In entering the business, they activated the back door alarm, according to the alarm company.

By the time the business owner arrived, the suspects -- and the stolen merchandise -- were gone. The burglars even took the time to lock the door as they left.

The Kent County Sheriff's Department wants anyone who may have observed or heard anything in the area to call investigators at 616-632-6100.


My Town: Heart of West Michigan United Way awards $3.3 million in community grants

My Town: Heart of West Michigan United Way awards $3.3 million in community grants

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—More than three dozen organizations and agencies helping people get back on their feet are getting millions of dollars in support.

The Heart of West Michigan United Way awarded $3.3 million in grants to 39 agencies that reach out to the community-from offering home-delivered meals to senior to after school care.

 “We value our partnership and believe a community that takes care of its friends and neighbors is a good place to live. By investing in the basic needs of the community, we are working together to help the people that are the most in need,” says Maureen Noe, president and CEO of Heart of West Michigan United Way.  “If people have their basic needs met, such as food, shelter and a safe home situation, they are able to focus on the future and take the next steps to improving their lives. “

This year’s grant recipients are: