This & That: Baseball (at last), Upcoming Road Work, Trucked In Eats, Outdoor Tunes, & Brewery Donuts?
By Ken DeLaat
Baseball is like church. Many attend, few understand.”-Leo Durocher
Baseball began Thursday night with a game cut short by a blowout of rain and a blowout of a different kind on display in the nightcap ,but tonight the season begins in earnest as the Tigers take the field.
And this looks to be a fascinating season.
I know, I know, purists are alarmed as they always are (I am certain there were those who felt introducing the use of gloves ruined the game) but in a year where everything has been tipped on its side, a 60 game run for the title with expanded rosters,16 playoff teams, fanless stadiums, games limited to geographic rivals, and a funky new rule that has teams starting with a runner on second base in extra inning games is just the kind of season that pairs well with 2020.
There’s bound to be the kind of drama that doesn’t always hold up over a 162 game 6 month season. It’s 60 games. Wild things could happen, marginally talented teams could get hot and surprise their rivals with a sprint to the playoffs, maybe somebody slaps out a .400 average for the season or a pitcher runs the table with a 12-0 mark. Asterisks galore will thrive in the record books when it comes to this season,but so what? For some of us it certainly beats no baseball at all and this will be a year filled with anecdotal treasures.
Our Tigers are rated 29th among the 30 teams in terms of their chances for success this season. The only team in their rearview mirror is the Orioles. No one is giving the Bengals the least bit of a chance to do much better than last season (when they were dreadful) and the sizable budding talent they have stockpiled in recent years to restore the roar will not open the season on the roster.
But right now the possibilities are endless right? They could jump out and win a few games and maybe call up some of the young arms if there’s half a season to go and it looks like a close race.
Maybe Cabrera roars back with a monster season, Boyd becomes an ace, a couple of relievers find their niche, newcomers Cron and Schoop put some pop in the lineup….
And a whole lot of other things go right.
A whole lot.
But hey, they’re 0-0 right now.
Check back in around the 20-25 game mark.
Couple of road things:
If you’re traveling south and headed for the Alpine area be aware there is likely to be a pause in your progress.
DOT says there will be intermittent lane closures for crack sealing from now until the end of August. N3 staff were snared in one of these ‘intermittents’ this past week and counted over 50 vehicles passing by while waiting with others to access the single lane that lay ahead. Some of the less patient among us did some rapid and at times creative turnarounds but those of us who stayed the course soon got on our way.
There’s another lane closure slated for M-37 this coming week just past the White as you’re getting ready to enter White Cloud.It is scheduled to start on Monday
They didn’t specify what was to be done but it didn’t seem suspicious.
Here’s a link for state road closures.
If you haven’t been a part of the food truck scene at the Smuggler’s Cove site this Saturday marks the triumphant return of LumberJills (philly cheesesteak to die for) and another Sunday stopover for the popular Silver Star Cafe (get the burritos). Sunday also brings in Ice Box Ice Cream to cool things down on what looks to be a sweltering day.
The Braunschweiger Blues Band brought a little normalcy back to the community delivering on the first concert of the season at Veterans Park in Fremont. We at N3 World Headquarters were being detained out of town and so missed it, a regrettable miss because B3 never disappoints when it comes to putting on an entertaining show.
However, this return to outdoor music (not counting the occasional personal kazoo concert by the fire, generally a short set due to popular demand) will hopefully continue and we understand the schedule for next Thursday has another favored sound among the local citizenry with Backwoods Express taking the stage.
Got Donuts? Newaygo Brewing Co does. Saturday from 10am-12noon you can get their fresh made beauties and coffee to go.
Because no downtown should be without donuts.
“New mysteries. New day. Fresh doughnuts.”-David Lynch
The Public Library
By Jackilyn Roseberry, Library Director
When I tell people I work at the library, I generally get one of two responses, “I love the library! I/we go there all the time!” Or the infamous, “Wow, I haven’t been to the library in years!” If you fall into the latter category, you may be wondering if libraries are still important to have in your community in the era of Google and Amazon.
We are happy to tell you yes, libraries are not only still vital but also loved and valued.
The Fremont Area District Library had 62,585 visitors in 2019 and 22,068 computer sessions. We checked-out 90,295 physical items and 13,336 digital items. We hosted 168 programs with 3,454 attendees.
That’s great for Fremont, but how are all public libraries doing in the technology age? The honest response is that libraries are thriving. According to the most recent Annual Institute of Museum and Library Services Report, libraries are visited 1.3 billion times a year which is 10 times more than MLB, NFL, NBA, Hockey, and NASCAR combined.
Libraries provide a safe place for the public. You are never expected to spend any money when you come in – you are welcome to just sit down and read the paper or maybe a magazine while you relax and enjoy the air conditioning in the summer or the heat in the winter.
For those of you thinking you are not interested in the resources/services/materials mentioned, you might be wondering why the public library should be important to you. One reason is that close proximity to a public library increases the value of your home. According to a study conducted in Pennsylvania published in 2010, libraries are responsible for $698 million in home values in Philadelphia alone.
People often take for granted having access to a public library, but there are 55 townships and parts of townships in Michigan that are not so fortunate. Those citizens may visit the closest library to their location only to find that they need to purchase a library card (the cost varies greatly by library but can often be more than $100/year). These “non-resident” cards usually only grant you partial access to the library’s resources.
The mission of the Fremont Area District Library is, “To provide resources and technology that inspire lifelong learning, challenge the imagination, and foster enjoyment.” We strive to not only preserve and maintain our services and materials but also to expand and grow them to meet the diverse and changing needs of our patrons now and in the future.
If you haven’t been to the library in a while, you’ll notice a lot of new things and services you didn’t know about before. So what are you waiting for? Come on over – we can’t wait to see you at the library.
Book Review: The Tenant
Book Review: The Tenant
By Alexis Mercer
Summer reading can go one of two ways: light and carefree or deep and intense. With longer days comes more hours to indulge in a book of one’s choosing. I have the tendency to read three or four light and carefree books and then dive into a deep and intense novel that requires concentration before heading back to light and carefree.
The most recent choice was The Tenant by Katrine Engberg. In her debut novel, Engberg tells a tale of murder and the detectives who investigate the crimes. A young woman is found brutally murdered in the downstairs apartment of a building with a unique carving on her face. The owner of the building, the victim’s roommate, a mutual acquaintance and another tenant all get pulled into the investigation and terrifying continuation as the search for the killer goes on.
In an interesting difference with other murder mysteries I have read lately, this is a Swedish author. The names, locations and references are all unfamiliar to me, but in an intriguing way that doesn’t require much concentration to allow the story to progress.
While this wasn’t the most titillating thriller I have ever read, it certainly held my interest and fit the bill for a light (mind you not light in topic, but in an easy way) read. Despite its being translated into English, the language flows well, adding to the intrigue.
The Tenant fit the bill for the last of the lighter reads before finding a deep, intense novel to settle into. A perfect summer read, this mystery won’t disappoint.
Tee ‘Em Up
68th Golf-O-Ree Coming to Village Green Golf Course
WHITE CLOUD, MI - White Cloud Rotary will hold its 68th Golf-0-Ree at Village Green on Friday, July 31. It will be a 2-person scramble which includes 18 holes, cart, snacks and a delicious lunch.
The event will feature a range of activities before, during and after golfing from a raffle and giveaway prizes, including mulligans, and contests at every hole; including closest to the pin, and longest drive for men and women.
The scramble begins with a shotgun start at 9:00 a.m., with sign-in beginning at 8:00 a.m. The golfer registration fee is $60 and includes a cart, 18-holes, snacks, hot dogs, pop and water, delicious lunch and giveaways.
The White Cloud Rotary Club Golf-O-Ree is one of the longest running golf events in the State of Michigan. The proceeds from the event support the Club’s good works, including; a student scholarship fund, life leadership youth training, stewardship of White Cloud Rotary Park, and other community projects. To register, interested golfers can call Holly Moon at 231-250-0369 or sign-up with any White Cloud Rotary member.
White Cloud Rotary is a volunteer organization, encouraging the model of ‘Service Above Self’ and the advancement of high ethical standards, goodwill and civic responsibility. Our club’s emphasis is the betterment of opportunities for our youth and strengthening our community. The club meets every Wednesday, starting at 11:45 a.m. at White Cloud/Rotary Park (temporarily because of Covid-19) in White Cloud.
Please call Nancy Harper 231.689.6631 of White Cloud Community Library, if you have questions.
At the Library
By Jackilyn Roseberry, Library Director
Everyone knows that the library has books, but what else is available at the Fremont Area District Library? Here are just a few that might interest you:
DVDs. The library carries TV series, new releases, children’s movies, documentaries, workout videos, classic favorites, and more! All available for you to check out and take home. If we do not have what you are looking for we can (usually) get it for you from another library within a few days.
Computers. Our computers are used daily by those who need to check email, browse Facebook, apply for jobs, file for unemployment, file their taxes, type up a resume, or maybe just play games. Did you know that you do not need a library card to use our computers? Although, if you need to print something or make copies there are small fees for those services.
Magazines/Newspapers. There is no need to purchase your own personal subscription to your favorite periodical, just come on in and read ours while relaxing in a cozy chair by the fireplace.
Large Print. We have an expansive collection of large print materials for those who need, or just prefer, larger text.
Audiobooks. We have books on CD as well as “Playaways” which are small MP3 players on which you can listen to an entire book – just plug in your own earphones!
e-Materials. We have ebooks, emagazines, and eaudiobooks available on two different digital platforms. Check our website or call us to find out more.
Amazing People. Library staff members are ready to help you with anything we can. We answer reference questions, recommend books, assist with computers, and more every day. Our staff members are friendly and helpful.
Programs. The library offers a variety of programs for all ages and interests. At this time almost all of our programs are virtual but we look forward to offering in person programs again soon. Some of those programs include storytimes for children, crafts for teens and adults, computer classes, author talks, book clubs, magic shows, and more!
Would you like to know what else you might find here? Normally the library has toys and games for you to enjoy (although most of these are put away while we are in Stage 2 of our reopening plan). We have access to Ancestry.com for patrons who login on our computers. We have free WiFi available to everyone 24/7. The list seems never ending so come on in to find something I haven’t mentioned!
We can’t wait to see you at the Library!
P.S. Did I mention we have air conditioning?
How Was Your 4th?
2020 (the year, not the hindsight) reached the halfway point last week as we edged into the second half with understandable caution given what has been tossed our way thus far this go around the sun.
As we mentioned in a previous article the annual transcontinental birthday bash took on a different flavor with fewer community-wide celebrations taking place, particularly those that involved the phenomena of fireworks.
But in true Bipeninsular fashion, folks reacted with some serious celebrating despite the dearth of displays at the usual community venues.
We had heard fireworks were selling big and judging from the view gleaned at the shore of N3 World Headquarters on Saturday night the boost in sales wasn’t going to be about hoarding like the run on toilet paper earlier this year.
No, these purchases were meant to be consumed as if an approaching expiration date loomed on their packages.These were meant to go out with a thunderous showing of luminescence
And from our observation point, a glorious showing it was.
Under a large yellow moon the denizens of Hess Lake poured out a cavalcade of pyrotechnics to be proud of. It was lengthy, luminous and captivating.
And for a while one could put the trials and tribulations of this challenging half year on hold and embrace the celebratory spirit our country's birthday deserves.
The 4th, Fireworks, Food Trucks, Farmer’s Market, A Slice of the Dragon and Heat
By Ken DeLaat
It’s a strange year to be sure.
The parade and doings at Croton are always a good time but not this weekend.
The Hesperia Fun Fest bit the dust earlier this spring as well.
Nearly all festivals have been cancelled and that means their fireworks displays will be equally absent.
But we’re bipeninsular peeps who are resilient, particularly when it comes to having a good time and celebrating a big day.
After all it isn't often one gets a chance to celebrate a 244th birthday.
Man, two hundred and forty four.
I remember when it turned 200. Everything was about the bicentennial, and Lil and I, in our third year of marriage, lived up in Manistee. It was our pre-children era when life was a tad looser than it would become once our family began to grow beyond the two of us.There were a lot of parties if I recall. Beach parties, park parties, house and yard parties, pool parties and it lasted for days because the 4th was on a Sunday so serious celebrators of America’s birthday started in earnest about Wednesday and carried on through the following Tuesday it seemed.
And there were fireworks. Lots and lots of fireworks.
There have always been fireworks.
The first year we were wed we sat down in a softball field near where we lived in Ada as an impressive set of ‘works’ went off above us.
The dozens of mid summer holidays spent at a family cottage on Crystal Lake never disappointed when it came to a colorful showing of pyro-patriotism
In our Grand Rapids years we hit the dazzling downtown displays while sitting on the 6th Street bridge.
The past two decades plus we’ve lived on a lake so fireworks are sort of a part of summer.
And well into fall most years.
Something about proximity to water ignites amateur pyrotechnicians and while generally limited to some bottle rockets and loud bangers most of the summer, the 4th brings forth some impressive collections that complement rather than compete from the various locations. It’s generally a stunning show of firepower.
And of course there is the iconic Ring of Fire.
The flares have been purchased as N3 World Headquarters does its part to give old Hess that slice of magic once again this year.
I’m certain there will still be some large gatherings and by dark those gatherings will likely include some boomers, bangers and explosions of light.
But it’s still a little strange this year.
Here’s hoping birthday 245 arrives with far fewer ‘surprises’ pandemically speaking.
And Speaking of Hess Lake…
If you haven’t taken advantage of the steady stream of food trucks that have made cameo appearances at the site of Smugglers Cove, there will be portable eatatoriums pulling in all weekend.
And it’s an appealing schedule with Sweet Rack’s & Smoking Butts (try the loaded Mac & Cheese) on Thursday while Friday and Saturday Silver Star Cafe will be dealing out some upstanding eats and their Colonel Peltier Sub is on my personal radar. Ohana Ice will cool things off with their shaved ice treats both days as well and Ice Box Ice Cream dishing up some faves.
On Sunday local epicureans Rita and Reuben a.k.a Two Hot Tamales arrive with their celebrated Mexican menu and Ice Box will return for a third day
It looks to be a good weekend.
And hot.The weather folks usually don’t get this amped up unless it’s in anticipation of an impending snow storm, but they are visibly excited while calling for an extended scorcher. This predicted stretch steaminess will give those who like to lament about meteorological matters ample fodder to do so.
And of course we will get to hear the predictable refrain “It’s not the heat, you know, it’s the humidity.”
As if somehow that’s supposed to make any difference whatsoever.
And listen folks, go to the Friday Farmer’s Market at Brooks Park in downtown Newaygo (2-6pm). It has been revitalized with a number of vendors plying their wares and if we want to keep the vendors happy we need to support them and thus allow the market to continue to thrive. At N3WH we’ve purchased pork, procured produce, bought from bakeries, secured some sassy soap and acquired a barn quilt thus far and hey, it’s barely July.
And there are food trucks on hand for a quick bite or a cold drink or you can wander up the road where Newaygo Brewing Co. is serving up their bodacious brews with some alluring alley seating.
The Dragon is open!
About 6 miles of the proposed 47 mile trail around Hardy Pond has been made available for bikers and hikers itching to put the new trail through its paces. Check out the story at https://www.nearnorthnow.com/news/igniting-the-dragon
And again it looks to be a hot one so stay cool, be kind to one another and revel, bipeninsularians, revel.
After all, it’s a birthday party.
"The air - moist, sultry, secretive, and far from fresh - felt as if it were being exhaled into one's face. Sometimes it even sounded like heavy breathing.”-Tom Robbins, Jitterbug Perfume
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