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My Town: Search for Kent ISD's next superintendent down to two

My Town: Search for Kent ISD's next superintendent down to two

KENT COUNTY, Mich.—The search for Kent Intermediate School District’s next superintendent is down to two people.

After the first round of interviews this week, the Kent ISD School board whittled down the pool of four finalists to two- Ron Caniff, superintendent of Grandville Public Schools; and Tom Martin, superintendent of West Ottawa Public Schools.  Superintendents Dr. Curtis Finch of the Mecosta-Osceola ISD and Dr. Sara Magana Shubel of East Grand Rapids Public Schools were not selected for second round interviews.

Caniff and Martin will be interviewed a second time Tuesday, March 31.  The person selected for the job will replace Kevin Konarska, who is retiring on June 30, after nine years of leading Kent ISD.

My Town: 'Battle of the Buildings' underway in West Michigan

My Town: 'Battle of the Buildings' underway in West Michigan

PLAINFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich.— A ‘Battle of the Buildings’ is underway in West Michigan, and the winner gets to keep more of their money.

The U.S. Green Building Council of West Michigan says more than 14 Grand Rapids area businesses have signed up for the competition to reduce energy usage.  Participants include Steelcase and Spectrum Health, JSJ Corporation in Grand Haven; Spectrum Health in Grand Rapids, Steelcase in Kentwood; The Grand Rapids Art Museum; Kent Intermediate School District; Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park; Aquinas College; Western Michigan University in Kalamazoo; the Muskegon County Hall of Justice and Metro Health Hospital in Wyoming.

This is the second year for the Battle of the Buildings.  For more information, including how to sign up your business, visit the campaign website here.

HBA of Greater Grand Rapids announces winner of $10k giveaway for home renovations

HBA of Greater Grand Rapids announces winner of $10k giveaway for home renovations

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.– A homeowner in Eastown is getting $10,000 to renovate her place.

Cami Estep won the giveaway contest by the Home Builders Association of Greater Grand Rapids and Option 1 Credit Union.  The two groups launched the contest in February, during the Grand Rapids Remodeling and New Home Show. 

“Our home is more than 100 years old, so the possibilities for projects are endless,” said Estep. “We were already planning on redoing an upstairs bathroom, but our furnace has been making some interesting noises lately, so we may choose to replace our aging heating and cooling system instead!”

Although she may not know exactly how to invest the money yet, one thing is for certain-- Estep and her family are very grateful for the HBA of Greater Grand Rapids.

Down to four: Where the search for Kent ISD’s next superintendent stands

Down to four: Where the search for Kent ISD’s next superintendent stands

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—Leaders of the Kent Intermediate School District are narrowing their search for the ISD’s next superintendent.

Board members will begin interviewing the four finalists this week.  The candidates include Ron Caniff, superintendent of Grandville Public Schools; Dr. Curtis Finch, superintendent of the Mecosta-Osceola ISD; Tom Martin, superintendent of West Ottawa Public Schools; and Dr. Sara Magana Schubel, superintendent of East Grand Rapids Public Schools.

Finch will be first up for questioning.  His interview will take place at 6 p.m. on Monday.  Shubel and Caniff will be interviewed Wednesday, starting at 6 p.m.; Martin will answer the Board’s questions on Thursday.  The second round of interviews will take place Tuesday, March 31.

My Town: Sneak peek of women's WWII baseball documentary March 17

My Town: Sneak peek of women's WWII baseball documentary March 17

---NEWS RELEASE---

Comstock Park Rotary is hosting the annual Interclub dinner, on Tuesday, March 17, 2015, at the Pepsi Stadium Club at Fifth-Third Ball Park.  The event will feature a sneak preview of a new documentary which tells stories from the all-American girls’ professional baseball team. 

Dr. Jim Smither, Grand Valley State University, Veterans History Project, tells how the league was part of the home front during World War II and how this led to the documentary on baseball. The collaborators participated in two reunions of the whole girls’ professional baseball league and did 48 interviews with former players including the Grand Rapids Chicks. 

This documentary is a collaboration of Professor Jim Smither, GVSU, Professor Frank Boring, GVSU Film & Video program, producer working with the editors, Professor Janet Coryell, Western Michigan University History Dept. who wrote the script, and a student editor.

My Town: Girl Scout cookie munchers will have to wait

My Town: Girl Scout cookie munchers will have to wait

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.— The start of spring usually signals the return of the Girl Scouts’ traditional boxed treats, but cookie connoisseurs will have to wait even longer this year.

The Girls Scouts of Michigan Shore to Shore says local cookie deliveries will be delayed by four weeks.  Little Brownie Bakers, which churns out the treats, blames unexpectedly high demand for cookies.

"[Our forecast] has resulted in a tightness in cookie inventory and an inability to meet cookie orders at the dates originally requested," explains sales director Brenda Smith. "The situation was made worse by winter weather that resulted in a plant shutdown for two days in February and an ingredient delivery delay in late February."

Little Brownie Bakers is working around the clock to fill all orders.  All requested boxes should arrive in West Michigan the week of April 13. 

Grant helping buy flood homes in Plainfield Twp.


PLAINFIELD TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WZZM) -- A $700,000 FEMA grant is going toward buying homes damaged by the April 2013 flooding.

Fifteen Plainfield Twp. properties are eligible for the buyouts. They're all within the Grand River floodplain.

If owners agree to sell, the homes would be purchased at their pre-flood value and then demolished.

The land will be turned into permanent open space maintained by the township.

There are several additional properties planned if owners of the 15 designated properties opt out of selling.