"A Source of Inspiration"
Gerber Memorial to host cancer survivors’ brunch at Tamarac on Sept. 16
Fremont– Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial will host a cancer survivors’ brunch on Saturday, Sept. 16, at Tamarac from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. Attendees to the event will enjoy a delicious, specially prepared nutritious brunch, presentations, stories of survival and an interactive, fun-filled cooking demonstration.
“Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial’s annual brunch is one small way we can celebrate and honor our friends and neighbors who have faced this disease with courage,” said Darcy Tussing, director of oncology. “The people we serve are a source of inspiration to us every day as they fight back against cancer. They show us what hope, healing and resolve mean, and we look forward to celebrating them.”
The 10th annual survivors’ brunch is held in partnership with the American Cancer Society. Among the highlights are presentations by Dianne Taylor-Chandler about how female cancer patients are coping through fly-fishing; Tussing, who will provide an overview of Gerber Memorial’s cancer services; Alice McKenna, who will talk about the emotional and psychological dimension of facing the disease; and others.
Cancer survivors will share their stories, and registered dietitian Jennifer Osantowski will lead an interactive cooking demonstration with the audience.
The event is free and open to the public, and anyone wishing to attend is advised to respond to Katie Mata at 616.551.4061 or by email at Katie.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial will be hosting a program presented by the Alzheimer’s Association. The topic of the program will be “Conversations About Dementia”. It will help families learn how to talk about some challenging and often uncomfortable topics around Alzheimer’s and Dementia. How to decide with family members things such as when the loved one with memory loss should stop driving; making plans for financial and legal decisions; and thinking about future care needs.
The program will be on Wednesday, September 6 from 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. It will be held at Tamarac, 1401 West Main Street, Fremont. The program is free and open to the public. Registration is recommended but walk-ins are welcome. For more information call: Sally Wagoner, RN, 231.924.7589.
Food Fight For Life
Blood drive shatters expectations, brings new donors to Tamarac
Fremont – Some of the biggest names in the food industry came together and challenged their employees and the community to step up and donate blood.
Summer is a time of low blood donations and high need, said Amy Rotter, Community Relations Coordinator at Michigan Blood. That’s why Michigan Blood teamed up with Tamarac to host a “Food Fight for Life” blood drive on Friday, August 4. General managers from the local Burger King, McDonald’s, Arby’s and Taco Bell were challenged to recruit the most blood donors and the store with the most successful donations would be crowned the 2017 Food Fight for Life winner.
Tina Wilburn, general manager at McDonald’s in Fremont, recruited 12 members of her staff to donate blood.
“I thinks it’s important for us to give and what better way than to help save a life of someone in our community,” Wilburn said.
Michigan Blood had expected 15 donors – an average number – to show up.
Instead, more than 34 people registered, and 13 of those were first-time donors. Each donation can save up to three lives, so more than 80 Michigan lives could potentially be saved as a result of the generous donations made during the “Food Fight for Life” event.
"Until it affects you, you really don't realize the importance, but there are so many people out there, cancer victims, accident victims, burn victims who do need help," said Faye Fisher, event specialist at Tamarac who coordinated the blood drive. "It's a good feeling to know that you take less than an hour of your time and you are actually saving up to three lives. There is always someone in need."
The next blood drive is Friday September 8, 2017 from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial. For more information or to schedule an appointment, visithttps://donate.miblood.org/donor/schedules/drive_schedule/95127
Grant V-Ball Squad Gives Back
In an effort to embrace this year's team motto, GIVE, Grant Varsity Volleyball players traded practice time for time of service. The girls volunteered their time handing out food to those in need. The entire team pitched in to help unload and distribute food from the Feeding America truck at Mamrelund Lutheran Church on August 21. It was all hands on deck and the girls brought their positive energy and willingness to serve as they pitched in to help those in need.
Picnic In The Cloud
Police Department holds community gathering
By Julie Burgess
Photos by TK Photography
You could almost feel the ground rumble from the buzz about the Community & Kid’s Picnic held August 15th, 2017. Children and parents, community citizens, and service personnel from around the area all made their way to the City of White Cloud Rotary Park with great anticipation. The word about White Cloud Police Chief, Dan Evans working on putting together an event, to show appreciation for the Community & Kid’s spread fast. With over 450 people in attendance, over $1,000 in prizes, 30 sponsors, and lots of activities the real winners of the event were truly the community and kids.
For two months Chief Evans worked with volunteers to plan activities and ensure the event would be free for all who attended by recruiting local businesses and organizations to help sponsor the picnic.
Stepping up to the plate to be a part of the community fun were Police Officers, Deputies, K-9 handlers, Firefighters, ERT (swat) Team members, other public safety personnel. Their vehicles and equipment were on hand allowing the community to get an up close glimpse while doing a little meet and greet time with the personnel who help keep our community safe.
Free food, giveaways, and games were on the docket for the day with and activities including Rock painting hosted by Rockin Newaygo County #rockinNC, face painting, water balloon competition, the National Wildlife Turkey Federation BB gun shoot, corn hole competition, music and much more.
The prizes were amazing! Upon arriving to the event, you would check into the prize tent to get a popcorn bucket with some goodies while they lasted, and your door prize tickets. Winners of activities and games also received tickets to get a variety of items. Door prizes including gift cards and certificates to local businesses along with many family fun items that were announced at the end of the event by Chief Evans, with his wife and daughter helping to pick tickets and hand out the prizes.
The best prize of all was to the entire community as we got to stand together, celebrating each other as we shared in the happiness of the children collecting their winnings, making fun jokes at each other, telling stories of times to catch up on, and just having another great day to live in White Cloud.
Sponsorships (in no particular order) of games, activities, and prizes included: AMG (Bentek); Life Care Dental; Hits the Spot Restaurant; Houseman’s Foods; Parts Plus; Independent Bank; Square One Guru Professional Services; Accurate Screen; Animal Wellness Center of White Cloud; Mike Saum State Farm Insurance; Rotary Club of White Cloud; White Cloud Physical Therapy & Rehabilitation; Walmart (Fremont); Newaygo County Sheriff's Office; Crandall Funeral Home; Wild Turkey Federation; Northern Towing; Freedom Chevrolet; Newaygo Fire Department; Sally’s Restaurant; Wesco (White Cloud); TK Photography; Subway (White Cloud); White Cloud Fire Department; RockinNC; Newaygo County Emergency Services; Newaygo County Central Dispatch; Rudert’s Insurance Company; Maike's Pizzeria; Quilt Something New.
Keep On Rockin
Rockin Newaygo County event at Sandy Beach County Park
Sandy Beach County Park is hosting a rock painting day on Saturday, Aug. 26, from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at the park pavilion. The event is free and sponsored by Rockin NC (Newaygo County), Newaygo County Parks & Recreation, and Newaygo County Welcome Center.
“We had so much fun at the July event at White Cloud County Park we decided to do another one at Sandy Beach County Park,” said Parks Director Nicholas B. Smith. Typically visitors to the park must purchase a $6 day pass but for the Rockin Newaygo County event if visitors say they are for the rock painting, the fee will be waived. It will be at the pavilion on the south end of the park and utilize the boat ramp parking area.
Rockin NC is a grass roots effort started by Kimberly Howland who saw a similar effort in Florida.
“You paint rocks and hide them. When you find one, you post a photo on the Rockin NC website on Facebook and then can keep it or rehide it. If you keep it, it is encouraged that you hide a different one so there are always plenty to find,” Howland said.
To re-hide a rock make sure it is outside, visible and not hidden under something and must be in a place that is easy to get to, safe and not where it could be considered a nuisance. Don’t hide it in the grass that has to be mowed.
Howland said that many families might find it difficult to buy paint and brushes and still want to participate. Several rock painting events have been popping up.
“The Facebook page is up to 4,000 participants and families are getting out in the parks and on the trails and it doesn’t cost anything to look for rocks,” Howland said.
For more information, contact Newaygo County Parks at 231-689-7340 or on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/NCParks/
The Second City, Chicago’s legendary sketch and improv comedy theater, brings "The Cure for The Common Comedy" on Saturday, September 9 to the Dogwood Center Main Stage at 7:30 p.m.
Edgy, thought-provoking and always spectacularly funny, The Second City is celebrating nearly six decades of producing cutting-edge satirical revues and launching the careers of generation after generation of comedy’s best and brightest. See the stars of tomorrow performing all-new material to help you laugh your way into the fall season!
The Second City is known for producing the premiere comic talent in the industry. From Mike Myers to Steve Carell, Stephen Colbert to Tina Fey – The Second City imprint is felt across every entertainment medium.
This performance may be inappropriate for younger audience members. You must be 17 years or older, or accompanied by a parent or legal guardian to attend this event.
Tickets are $20.00 and are available through the Dogwood Center Box Office, NCCA-Artsplace in downtown Fremont, or on-line at www.dogwoodcenter.com. For information, phone 231.924.8885. The Dogwood Center is located one mile east of downtown Fremont.
Running Through A Rainbow
2nd Annual My School Color Run September 17th
Newaygo Middle School will host the 2nd annual, community wide My School Color Run on Sunday September 17th at 2:00pm to raise money for the Emma L. Graham Scholarship Fund.
We heard about the inaugural race held last year mostly from folks who had entered and were vowing to be a part of it again this year primarily due to the elevated fun element involved in participation.
Being unfamiliar with color runs and, truth be told, nearly anything to do with running we decided to get a little info on the event so we managed to catch up with a very busy Gena Dietz one of the race organizers and pose a couple of questions
N3- How did this get started?
Gena D.-“I began hosting events to raise money for the Emma L. Graham Scholarship Fund about five years ago. Our first event had six runners, and it has grown to over 200 last year.
N3- Tell us more about the scholarship.
Gena D.-This event and scholarship are very important to me because Emma Graham was a special part of my life. She was a Newaygo student who was diagnosed with a terminal brain tumor her freshman year of high school. She underwent surgeries, treatment, and fought very hard, but, sadly, she lost her battle shortly after she turned 17.
Emma happened to be one of my 8th grade students, but she was so much more than that. I always say she was like my little sister. She was intelligent, funny, spunky, athletic, and outgoing. She played football and sang in the church choir. She loved the outdoors and spending time with her family. Her parents, Jon and Sherry Graham, started the scholarship fund to help one graduating senior each year with their expenses.
N3- What happens at a My School Color Run event and how do I sign up?
Gena D.-This event is fun for everyone since it is not competitive. Participants can walk, run, jog, hop, or skip along the 5k course that starts at Newaygo Middle School and loops towards Newaygo High School. The participants will go through four color stations where they will be sprayed with different colors (it is basically colored water). At the end, once everyone has crossed the finish line, we will open and throw our color packets or the final celebration. We will also have a variety of events happening before the 5k starts, like yoga, plyoga, yard games, and music. Afterwards, there will be a photobooth where the colorful participants can get their picture taken for a small cost!
People who register before September 1st will receive a t-shirt, race bib, and color packet. We will accept registrations all the way up until the start of the event, but we cannot promise a t-shirt after the 1st. All of the money we raise will go directly to the Emma L. Graham Scholarship Fund!
WHAT: My School Color Run for Newaygo Middle School
WHEN: 09/17/17 at 2:00pm (Registration begins at 1:00)
WHERE: Newaygo Middle School 850 E. 76th St.
CONTACT: Gena Dietz – 231-652-1646 or email@example.com
Above and Beyond
From left, Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial Chief Nursing Officer Meleah Mariani; Deb Sprague, Spectrum Health improvement specialist, Patient and Family Advocacy Councils; Barb Geno, recipient of the Spectrum Health ACE award in the volunteer category; and Sharon Boczkaja, Gerber Memorial’s senior patient experience specialist.
Longtime Gerber Memorial volunteer, patient advocate honored with Spectrum Health ACE Award
Fremont – Barb Geno, a White Cloud resident who was one of the founding members of Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial’s board advocating for patients, has been recognized with the Spectrum Health system’s ACE Award. Honored in the Volunteer Category of the Achieving Continuous Excellence, or ACE, Award, Geno was cited for going “above and beyond the call of duty, has a strong commitment to Spectrum Health and whose ‘volunteer story’ is an inspiration to many.”
“Volunteering at Gerber Memorial is such a pleasure, just a joy to do,” Geno said after receiving her award on June 14 at Gerber Memorial. “I always say that I get back so much more from volunteering at Gerber Memorial than I give. What’s important to always remember is that people who come to the hospital are often not in the best place in their lives, they face challenges, and as a volunteer, I hope to do as much as I can to make their visit as pleasant as possible under the circumstances.”
Spectrum Health representatives traveled to Fremont to present Geno with the award earlier in the summer.
Gerber Memorial President Randy Stasik said: “Barb Geno has truly been a strong advocate for patients. As a board member, Barb constantly challenges us to put patients first. As a volunteer, she goes above and beyond to create an exceptional patient experience. Gerber Memorial congratulates Barb for her well-deserved recognition.”
Geno herself has a lifelong relationship with Gerber Memorial, having been born there in 1955.
“Gerber Memorial is truly an asset to our community,” she said. “The physicians, nurses, staff and volunteers do so much for the families in our small rural community. For many services, people don’t have to travel outside the community for excellent care that they can get right here. Being a volunteer is one small way I can give back to this hospital and to our community.”
Geno was selected as recipient of the award in the volunteer category based on her commitment to excellence, accountability, compassion, integrity, respect and teamwork. Her nominating petition said Geno “expects excellent services for the residents of the service area” and is the “first one to be a part of the process improvement efforts at Gerber, holding the organization accountable to bring consistent standards to everyone.”
Geno first started volunteering at Gerber Memorial in 2007 with her therapy dog, Maggie. Today, she has four therapy dogs, all Labrador retrievers, who are regular visitors to the hospital.
“Our therapy dogs really connect with patients and provide comfort and stress-relief for so many people,” Geno said. “They really are very special animals. Even though they’re dogs, they have a lot of empathy for patients and it’s so rewarding to see them bring a smile to people’s faces.”
Among her many contributions to the community, Geno is a founding member of the Gerber Memorial Patient and Family Advisory Council formed in June 2011 and served as its chair from 2011 to 2014. Since 2013, Geno has been on the Gerber Memorial’s board of directors. She serves as the representative voice of patients on several hospital initiatives. She is a volunteer for HOPE Animal Assisted Crisis Response and NATIONAL Crisis Response Canines, national crisis response organizations with specially trained handlers and canines trained and tested for crisis response work; for West Michigan Therapy Dogs, serving in multiple roles, including as former president, training instructor and director of programs; and as a member of Pet Partners, an international pet therapy organization that is the leader in the field promoting the social, emotional and physical benefits of the human-animal bond.
In addition to Gerber Memorial, Geno and her therapy dogs also visited Spectrum Health Hospitals Butterworth Hospital, Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, and Rehab-Nursing Centers in Grand Rapids.
Geno’s commitment to patient advocacy arose from her own experiences: In 2000, she was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma stage four and quickly took her healthcare into her own hands, becoming an advocate for herself. To this day, she remains focused on identifying what’s best for patients, and finding ways to put their needs and preferences first.
In Geno’s nomination, Gerber Memorial Chief Nursing Officer Meleah Mariani said: “Barb's work with the pet therapy program is just one example of how she demonstrates her commitment to heal the whole person. Barb and her team of furry friends have a powerful impact to bring life and energy back into someone who is tired, painful and ready to give up. She gives a great deal of time and love to others. We appreciate all she does and are fortunate to have her on our team.”
Geno’s award for volunteer of the year was one of seven categories in the ACE Award. The recognition has been given out for 14 years to physicians, staff and volunteers who demonstrate an ongoing commitment to the values that define Spectrum Health – compassion, excellence, accountability, integrity, respect and teamwork
Gerber Memorial opens walk-in clinic in Fremont, giving patients an added option for healthcare
FREMONT– Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial has a new Convenient Care Walk-in Clinic in Fremont, adding to the walk-in option already available at the Gerber Memorial Convenient Care Walk-In Clinic in Newaygo. Convenient Care is a clinic where people who feel ill or have minor injuries – but don’t require emergency care – can get immediate attention without an appointment.
The newly opened Convenient Care Walk-In Clinic in Fremont is located at 204 West Main Street. The Fremont Walk-In clinic is open Monday-Thursday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Fridays, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
“Convenient Care addresses a critical need for immediate care services in Newaygo County,” said Mary O’Callaghan, DO,Division Chief, Regions, Spectrum Health Medical Group. “We are excited to open a Convenient Care location in Fremont where families can walk in for their health needs without having to wait for an appointment, and we’re pleased to offer this option in Fremont in addition to our Convenient Care location in Newaygo. Our goal is to identify and meet our community’s health needs, and access to medical care is at the top of that list. Convenient Care is one of the main ways we can address convenient access to care for patients in Newaygo County and beyond.”
Convenient Care Walk-In Clinics are designed to assist existing patients, new patients and visitors, regardless of insurance status and primary care provider. The clinic provides follow-up information back to each patient’s primary care physician if there is one, or offers the opportunity to receive primary care services from Spectrum Health if a patient has no primary physician.
The opening of the Fremont clinic marks the sixth Spectrum Health Convenient Care to be implemented, joining locations in Greenville, Ludington, Ionia, Newaygo and Reed City.
The Newaygo Convenient Care clinic is located at 211 West Pine Lake Drive in Newaygo, and is open Monday-Thursday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Fridays, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Dr. O’Callaghan said the Fremont and Newaygo walk-in clinics will improve access in three significant ways:
The Fremont clinic phone number is 231.924.1800. The Newaygo clinic phone number is 231.652.1631.