Michigan Works! West Central invites job seekers to Hiring Party
NEWAYGO – There’s something about food that always seems to bring people together.
In an effort to connect job seekers with employers looking to hire, Michigan Works! West Central is hoping a free lunch will attract community members looking for work to one of its upcoming Hiring Parties.
The team at Michigan Works! West Central has held Hiring Parties this summer at its Baldwin, Big Rapids and Reed City service centers, and is organizing its next one on Aug. 1, at its Newaygo office. These large-scale job fairs are set up like block-party-style events, where attendees can stop at each booth to grab a portion of their meal, as well as talk to employers about open positions they have available.
“We feel these Hiring Parties are a great way to bring job seekers and employers together in a more relaxed, casual setting, all while sharing a meal together,” said Michigan Works! West Central Executive Director Shelly Keene. “We will be providing hot dogs, and participating employers are encouraged to provide side dishes, snacks, drinks, etc. We also have invited area service organizations to talk to attendees about any support services they have that may benefit them.”
Michigan Works! West Central will be hosting its next Hiring Party from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Monday, Aug. 1, at its Newaygo service center, located at 9075 S. Mason Drive. Additional events are being scheduled in August at the organization’s Ludington and Shelby offices. So far, 15 employers and service organizations are expected to participate in next week’s event. Employers still are being added as the event gets closer.
According to the Michigan Bureau of Labor Market Information and Strategic Initiatives, Michigan’s unemployment rate in May 2022, was 4.3 percent (the most recent data available), which is slightly higher than the national average at 3.6 percent. Unemployment was 4.4 percent in Newaygo County during the same period.
“COVID-19 case numbers continue to hold steady and unemployment rates are at pre-pandemic levels,” Keene said. “However, there still are employers across all industry sectors struggling to hire. We encourage all those looking for work or to advance their career to come to our Hiring Parties to help bridge the hiring gap. Our staff also will be available to help assess job seekers’ individual circumstances to potentially enroll them in programs and services we offer that may be able to help them advance their career.”
For more information about Michigan Works! West Central’s programs and services, visit MWWC.org, and follow them on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and Twitter. Be sure to check the organization’s social media profiles for the most up-to-date list of employers participating in the upcoming Hiring Parties.
Fremont Area Community Foundation recently held its annual meeting where members elected three new trustees. New board officers were also elected.
Todd DeKryger, Ken DeLaat, and Julie Tatko were each elected by the members to join the Community Foundation board. Members of the Community Foundation are chosen by virtue of their leadership positions in the community, and their primary responsibility is to meet annually to elect trustees.
DeKryger is the regional manager for sustainable agricultural development at Nestlé Nutrition North America. He holds undergraduate and graduate degrees from Michigan State University, including a PhD in resource development.
“I’m excited for this opportunity to serve the community,” said DeKryger of joining the board. “I’ve always been impressed with the Community Foundation and what it has been able to support. I look forward to serving.”
DeLaat is a freelance writer and creator of Near North Now. He has also spent his career working in mental health in various capacities and leadership positions.
“I worked in nonprofit organizations for most of my life,” said DeLaat. “Coming from the nonprofit sector, I always admired the work of the Community Foundation. It’s a real honor to be asked to serve. I hope I can be part of the solutions for issues we face in our community.”
Tatko has a background in community health. She is currently president and CEO of Baldwin Family Health Care, which has facilities in White Cloud and Grant.
“I’m looking forward to seeing how we can look at healthcare as part of the Community Foundation’s poverty to prosperity work,” said Tatko. “I am excited to get to know other people and sectors here. I love the area and appreciate how people here work together to improve the community.”
The new trustees were elected to fill vacancies, including those left as Joseph Roberson and Carolyn Hummel retired from the board. Roberson was first elected in 2012 and most recently served as chair of the board. Hummel was elected in 2013. She was formerly chair of the Community Foundation’s Education Committee and continues to serve on the committee.
Following the members meeting, the Board of Trustees met and elected officers. Dr. Lori Tubbergen Clark was elected chair of the board, with Lola Harmon-Ramsey named vice chair and Mikhail Salacina named secretary. Bill Alsover will remain as treasurer and Dr. Susan Wente will serve as trustee-at-large.
A month or so after Hess Lake Board President Rich Bosowski passed away in a tragic boating accident last summer Jerry Swendrowski and John Van Dam talked about how they and other lake residents needed some sense of closure after losing their long-time neighbor and friend so suddenly.
“I think it was John who came up with the idea for a stone like the one that sits by the boat launch now,” said Swendrowski.
“In September I went to the Hess Lake Improvement Association meeting and presented the idea to the membership there that night. It was met with open arms.
‘Of course when you volunteer for something it tends to fall your way,” he added with a smile.
From there he set out to make the arrangements for the tribute stone and on Saturday July 23rd the stone was unveiled in front of 60+ folks who came to the dedication ceremony.
At the event Jerry Swendrowski spoke of his long time neighbor highlighting the word ‘Give’ as he referenced his late friend’s propensity to lend a hand whenever and wherever it was needed.
Jerry then gave way to Rich’s wife Betty Bosowski who, along with her niece Jamie Holbrook, unveiled the stone for all to see. Afterwards the many who attended milled about having the conversations lake people have and enjoying the refreshments donated by the Hess Lake Party Store courtesy of store owner and lake resident Raeann Husky.
We asked Jerry how the funding for the tribute was secured.
“Eight generous people,” he stated.”8 people who all said, ’Of course we will donate. Rich was my friend.’ One person said ‘Rich wasn’t just my friend, he was my best friend.’”
The stone rests at the foot of the Hess Lake sign on the corner of 88th and Redwood Dr.
Free service at ROD office protects your property
Newaygo County Register of Deeds Stu Sanders would like to remind property owners in Newaygo County of the free property fraud alert service offered by the Register’s Office. Since our first press release 2 months ago we have had a tremendous response of residents signing up for this service. As property fraud and real estate cybercrimes have become more prevalent, it is important to provide all the safeguards that we can, and we are excited to do so. Signing up for this service will keep property owners informed of any recordings that come through our office.
To sign up for this free service use the following steps:
Again, I would like to encourage all property owners to become a part of this free service to help safeguard a person’s home and property.
Saturday ceremony to begin at 11am
Just over a year ago the Hess Lake improvement Association lost their President Rich Bosowski. Well known among the lake’s year-round and weekend residents he had long been involved in the organization and also chaired the Hess Lake Board for the county.
“Rich’s dedication and efforts to better Hess Lake will always be remembered,” said Association board member Mary Spicer.
As a tribute to his years of service to the Hess Lake community, local residents came together to have a memorial created. A stone bearing his name now graces the area near the Hess Lake boat launch.
On Saturday July 23rd there will be an official unveiling held at the boat launch beginning at 11am.
All are welcome to attend.
Below is a link to a letter we received following the untimely death of Mr. Bosowski
Michigan PFAS Action Response Team Community Meeting Announcement
District Health Department #10 (DHD#10) is reminding residents of Newaygo and Oceana County of the Michigan PFAS Action Response Team’s (MPART) upcoming community meeting to discuss their investigation of PFAS contamination in private drinking water wells at the “Eagle Ottawa Newaygo Farms PFAS Investigation Site.”
MPART representatives from the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) along DHD#10 will host an in-person public meeting on Tuesday, July 19, 2022 from 4:30 – 6:30 pm at Walkerville Wesleyan Church. There is also an opportunity to watch the meeting via Facebook Live: https://fb.me/e/1zw1Cp9W3.
Walkerville Wesleyan Church
144 176th Ave.
Walkerville, MI 49459
An open house and time for community members to ask questions will be held from 4:30-5:30pm, followed by the PFAS presentation from 5:30-6:30pm. For questions about the Eagle Ottawa Newaygo Farms investigation, contact Aaron Assmann, EGLE, at AssmannA@michigan.gov, or call him at 616-430-5275.
County Collection program sends nearly 2500 for recycling
In cooperation with Newaygo County Board of Public Works, Newaygo County Drain Commissioner and Newaygo County Road Commission , Saturday June 18th resulted in a very successful tire collection day.
Newaygo County Commissioner Chuck Trapp headed up the small group of volunteers. A limit of ten tires, not on rims and no tubes allowed was the policy per person that was set. Approximately 2,469 tires were collected. Tires collected came from all of the townships throughout the county with the exception of Barton, Grant and Troy Townships. Their residents did not use the one day tire collection service. Denver Township brought in the most tires at 371. Home Township the least amount of 10. The tires have been loaded into enclosed trailers and were shipped to Environmental Rubber Recycling, downstate all per required permits.
Currently there are no more scheduled tire collections for Newaygo County in 2022.
At the start of the regular meeting of the Newaygo County Board of Commissioners, Phil Deur was appointed to serve as District #1 Commissioner filling the seat left vacant by the recent death of Commissioner Burt Cooper. Deur previously represented District#1 before leaving office at the end of his term in 2018. He will also chair the Public Safety Committee. County Clerk Jason VanderStelt administered the oath of office and Commissioner Deur took his seat on the board for the remainder of the meeting.
During commissioner comments Deur expressed his condolences to the Cooper family and recalled having encouraged Mr. Cooper to consider running as he was leaving office in 2018.
Two candidates are currently seeking the Republican nomination for District #1, Paul Mellema and Amber Wakefield.
In other business, the board interviewed Michelle Petz, nominee for the Mental Health Board, heard a presentation from West Michigan Adult & Teen Challenge of Muskegon regarding their substance abuse services, and gave the go ahead for a grant submission to the Ice Mountain Fund at the Fremont Area Community Foundation. If awarded the grant will be used to assist in the completion of the Michigan Dragon, the 47 mile non motorized trail that will encircle Hardy Pond.
Panel discusses local issues, efforts.
On Tuesday, July 12th, a community forum was held at the Board of Commissioners meeting room in White Cloud. Representatives from a multitude of agencies took their turns at the podium in hopes of increasing awareness of the magnitude of the drug problem in Newaygo County while also presenting information on the efficacy of harm reduction programs such as the Red Project initiative in White Cloud.
Robert Sheehan Executive Director of the Community Mental Health Association of Michigan moderated the event.
Dr. Jennifer Morse of the District #10 Health Department and Dr. Josh Vander Lugt, an emergency room physician at Spectrum Gerber spoke to the need for such harm reduction programs to help prevent the spread of disease among not just people who use drugs but their families and the community.
“Every school has a drug issue,” stated NCRESA Superintendent Blake Prewitt who provided some insight from his years as an administrator but also from his days as a counselor in the schools as well as with substance users. “One-third of our students live in a home where addiction is a problem.”
Law Enforcement also weighed in as Newaygo County Undersheriff Chad Palmiter described the challenges faced with the burgeoning increase in methamphetamine use in the county while speaking to the number of jail residents who require detoxification after going through withdrawals after being lodged. He also talked of the frequency of officers using Narcan, a medicine used to treat opiate overdoses that literally saves lives.
Palmiter expressed his compassion for those suffering from addiction and emphasized that the officers that serve the county share that feeling.
“No one with this uniform has the attitude of ‘just let them die’. These may be people we arrest and lodge in our facility but they are still human beings with families and loved ones.”
“Half of our Protective Services cases are due to addiction.”
He also sounded a cautionary note after hearing about a bad batch of Meth being discovered in Muskegon the past week.
“If it’s in Muskegon it will be here this weekend and someone here will die this weekend.”
Brian Vaderzalm from the Department of Health & Human Services gave info on the challenges of working with families hit by addiction and listed some resources where help can be found.
Then came a pair of presenters who shared their personal stories. Jessi Lucas tentatively approached the front of the gathering and introducing herself as a person in recovery from addiction she delivered a heartfelt testimonial to harm reduction.
“What an addict needs is knowing someone cares. That’s what harm reduction is. It means while it seems no one else cares about you, they do.”
She was met with a resounding round of applause.
Ms. Lucas was followed by Donna Mazurek who founded the group Paige’s Promise after losing her daughter to an overdose of fentanyl laced heroin.
She reiterated the need for harm reduction programs to help keep the addict alive until they are ready to seek help, all the while holding a collection of photos of her daughter, lost too soon to addiction.
She also received applause from the group.
Following the presentations the panel members took questions from the audience that had been delivered in writing during the program and presenters were available afterwards to respond to audience members individually.
“It was amazing to see this community come together and care so much about people with addiction,” said Newaygo County Mental Health Executive Director Carol Mills who organized the event in response to concern from some members of the community about the Red Project. “We learned from those on the front line helping people overcome addiction and helping families through crisis. There are incredible providers in this county who care a great deal for those who suffer from various forms of addiction.
“We look forward to working with the providers to develop treatments that meet the needs of this community and work together to reduce addictions in Newaygo County.”
"The opioid crisis forum was right on point, demonstrating the collaborative and science-driven nature of Newaygo county's work on this front,” observed moderator Robett Sheehan. ”The forum allowed those in attendance to get a sense of the cross-organization vision of the community's leaders in the use of best practices - in prevention, treatment, and harm reduction - to combat this crisis. While, as is always the case when addressing complex health and law enforcement issues, on-going community dialogue and adjustments will be a part of this effort, this forum provided all in attendance with the science and data behind the Newaygo county efforts."
Carol Mills added, “Thank you to the members of the community who came out to listen and learn, and talk about ways to solve the addiction crisis in our community. Newaygo County is an amazing place to live and work. This forum showed how much this community cares about others.”
More lane closures coming next week
As drivers navigate the work being done between White Cloud and Newaygo another M-37 project is set to begin on a section of road south of Grant.
From our friends at MDOT:
Daily (7 a.m. to 7 p.m.) lane closures for culvert replacement are scheduled for this Monday through next Friday on M-37 between 136th Street and Moore Road.
The work is weather dependent.
If you travel between White Cloud and Newaygo you might want to give yourself a bit more time beginning Monday.
From our friends at MDOT:
Newaygo to White Cloud.
Monday through Thursday lane closures between 6 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. are scheduled for this Monday through July 28 on M-37 from Evergreen Drive (Old M-37) in Newaygo to the White River bridge in White Cloud.
The work is weather dependent.
When it comes to keeping the citizenry safe our friends at the Newaygo County Sheriff’s Office are on it. From the numbers recently released from the past month they had a rather busy June logging 1480 Road Patrol calls, or an average of just under 50 per day.
42 calls involved domestic situations, never a good thing for anyone involved. Once violence enters a relationship it tends to stick around. Sometimes counseling helps, sometimes not but without some outside assistance (i.e. the aforementioned counseling) these situations tend to be rife with recidivism.
There were 54 collisions between vehicles and deer or about 2 a day. If you have done any amount of driving lately this one poses no surprises.
It seems as if the coyotes and crows are on strike or something given the amount of scavenger venison along some roadways.
Oh and there were 16 disputes between neighbors. Really? While we’ve all had our share of difficult neighbors it’s disappointing to hear of a spat escalating into the need for law enforcement.
And the men and women who handle these calls weren't the only county badge wearers to have a busy month.
It seems 190 individuals required a bit more extensive intervention and were lodged in the jail facility by the Corrections staff who are tasked with dealing with a wide variety of ‘guests’.
Here are the stats for the month courtesy of the NCSO.
“Oh mirror in the sky, what is love?
Can the child in my heart rise above?
Can I sail through the changing ocean tides?
Can I handle the seasons of my life?”
-Stevie Nicks, Landslide
Man, you just have to admire people who take the most personal of thoughts and toss them out for the world to see. Ms. Nicks asks the questions so many of us ponder in one manner or the other. What am I doing here and what’s going to happen going forward?
And what, pray tell, is love?
Nothing seems quite so elusive as finding a definition for love, much less being able to put into words why we love someone.
Maybe it doesn’t need to be defined. Maybe love just is. When we enter into a love relationship we rarely ease our way in. We use the phrase ‘fall in love’ because that’s what we do. We fall. We go into a free fall with no way of knowing where we might land.
At the recent Poetry Slam competition Ms. Taylor Pasch won with her offering entitled simply, ‘Love’. Her last line tells it all.
“Real love will come when it is least expected.”
Few expect it and it can come at the most inconvenient of times.
But when it does?
Here are the couples who have recently made their way to the County Clerk’s office and signed on to enter into the awesome adventure known as marriage.
Amanda Hunter, Standale & Phillip Afton, Bailey
Naomi Thompson, White Cloud & Gabriel Becker, White Cloud
Matthew Meeuwenberg, Grant & LeeShay Henderson, Grant
Tony Funkey, Fremont & Norma Gates-Tanis, Fremont
Brent Wilks, Fremont & Melissa Jewett, Fremont
Jon Haywood, Grant & Vickie Boylan, Grant
Kaylee Morehouse, Fremont & Payton Hotz-Hild, Fremont
Crystal Calkins, Fremont & Jason Slovin, Lansing
Adam Drouillard, White Cloud & Tabbithia Rich, Newaygo
Over 185 parcels of surplus state-managed land available via online auctions in August, September
Lake frontage, river frontage or vacant forested acreage surrounded by privately owned land – these types of parcels are available in the next round of surplus public land auctions, running Aug. 2 through Sept. 9, from the Michigan Department of Natural Resources.
The department is busy preparing 188 such properties for sale in August and early September. Land is available throughout the Lower and Upper peninsulas. Fifteen online auctions will be offered, featuring vacant land in the following counties on these dates:
You can pre-register and get more information about the online auction schedule at Tax-Sale.info. If you would like to bid on a property, you must register before the property’s auction date. Absentee bids can be made up to 30 days before the auction.
The “interactive” bidding portion of an auction will open at 10 a.m. on that auction date. At that time, you can see current high bids for each property. You can continue to place bids on a property until 7 p.m. when bidding closes and the winning bid is determined.
Visit Michigan.gov/LandForSale for information including minimum bid, acreage and location information on the available properties, as well as maps and more. Interested bidders also are encouraged to review the DNR Land Sales: Terms and Conditions.
Sale property details
Properties for sale range in size from under an acre to 160 acres. Many of the surplus properties highlighted in the auction are in Chippewa, Dickinson, Grand Traverse, Luce, Marquette and Saint Clair counties.
There are around 50 properties 40 acres or larger available, mostly throughout the Upper Peninsula and northern Lower Peninsula. Notable waterfront properties include:
Separate from the online auctions, the DNR is offering additional properties (listed for sale at their former minimum bid prices) that were not sold in previous auctions. These properties are available for immediate purchase only via the BuyNow list.
Auction proceeds help provide future outdoor recreation opportunities in keeping with the DNR’s mission to conserve, protect and manage the state’s natural and cultural resources for the use and enjoyment of current and future generations.
Auctions and state land review
Most of the properties included in the auction were designated as surplus during the DNR’s state land review. The review aims to examine isolated state-managed parcels 200 acres or smaller with a substantial private-public boundary. The review process is conducted on a county-by-county basis throughout the entire state. Public feedback can be made for a particular group of counties before the DNR director makes a final decision on a parcel. To learn more about the state land review and strategies used to administer public lands, visit Michigan.gov/PublicLands.
For more information about the sale of surplus state-managed public land, contact Michael Michalek, resource specialist in the DNR's Real Estate Section, at 517-331-8387.
Michigan State University’s campus was bustling with youth from all over Michigan including area 4-H youth, Evan Christoffersen, Fawn Muraske, Gracie Muraske, and Hope Parshall as part of 4-H Exploration Days held June 22 – 24. The annual event is Michigan State University’s largest pre-college program, attended by youth and adult chaperones from across Michigan. The theme was Explore your Spark!
Youth selected from nearly 200 hands-on sessions and fieldtrips in content areas such as animal and veterinary science, business and entrepreneurship, careers, environmental education, food and nutrition, fitness, international language and culture, money management, performing and visual arts, and science, engineering, and technology for this 3-day event.
Keynote speaker, and inspiring author, poet, podcaster, Tanner Olson opened the event with his message about kindness, trust, words, and courage through telling personal stories and sharing poetry. His stories have challenged tens of thousands of kids across the nation to build a better world.
When not in sessions, participants had the opportunity to visit the MSU Breslin Center, Abrams Planetarium, National Superconducting Cyclotron Laboratory, Eli & Edythe Broad Art Museum, 4-H Children’s Gardens, MSU Animal Teaching and Research Centers, and a variety of campus museums to name a few.
4-H Exploration Days is made possible through a grant from the Gerber Foundation and support from Newaygo 4-H Council. For more information about the Newaygo County 4-H program contact Laurie Platte Breza, 4-H program coordinator, at email@example.com or by calling 231-928-1056.