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Ally Carew, 12, and Devin Toman, right, 13, work on making cards for a child at Helen Devos Children’s Hospital during a service learning class at Belding Middle School on Tuesday afternoon. — Daily News/Emilee Nielsen

Belding Middle School adds newspaper writing, service learning classes

Belding Middle School students have been given the chance to try out some different classes this academic year.

In an effort to expose students to a variety of options, some new classes have been added to the curriculum. Two of these classes are newspaper writing and service learning, which are both taught by Jennifer Dispirito.

More than 400 people attended the “Grandma, Grandpa & Me” breakfast event that focused on promoting literacy with Ellis Elementary School students on Wednesday morning.  — Daily News/Emilee Nielsen

Ellis Elementary invites grandparents for breakfast and literacy (PHOTOS)

More than 400 grandparents went back to school on Wednesday morning. Ellis Elementary School hosted grandparents of students from pre-school through second grade to have breakfast and encourage the bond between grandparents and their grandchildren. During that breakfast, book prizes were handed out to students and adults with stickers on their placemats.

Attendees of Sunday’s “At the Foot of the Crosses” event at Easton United Methodist Church in Easton Township stand with their hands over their hearts during the singing of the National Anthem.  — Daily News/Cory Smith

Event honors veterans, emergency responders and victims of 9/11

On the 15-year anniversary of the tragic terrorist attacks of 9/11, a gathering at the Easton United Methodist Church produced more than 100 people who stood in solidarity Sunday to remember those who lost their lives. The event, dubbed “At the Foot of the Crosses,” showcased touching tributes, which were combined with a variety of musical performances for the audience to enjoy.

Belding Area Schools Superintendent Brent Noskey split attendees into smaller groups along with board members to have a discussion about the pros and cons of finding a new mascot, staying with the status quo or bringing back the Redskin mascot. — Daily News/Emilee Nielsen

Belding mascot discussion underway

Despite the uproarious response from some members of the community regarding the Belding Area Schools mascot, only 30 people attended a special work session to discuss how to move forward. Wednesday evening’s meeting, which was supposed to center around an educational presentation by Interim Public Relations Director for the Saginaw Chippewa Indian Tribe, Erik Rodriguez, is the first in what could be a series of meetings that will aim to resolve the mascot issue once and for all.

Spectators watch as the Labor Day Parade in Belding makes its way down Bridge Street Monday morning. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Parade wraps up Belding’s Labor Day weekend celebration (PHOTOS)

Dan Hyde, a Gowen resident, has been coming to the Belding Labor Day Celebration for the past 65 years. He has even gotten the chance to march in the Labor Day Parade as a trumpet player in the Greenville High School band, though he admits that was more than a few years ago. Now 75 years old, Dan watched Monday morning’s parade with his wife, Julie, and other members of the family that represented five generations, beginning with Julie’s father, Julie, their children and their families.

State Honor Guard members and veterans Gary Hoisington, left, and Thomas Gleason, wait for the unveiling of the new Vietnam War Memorial Friday evening in Belding. — Daily News/Cory Smith

POW monument dedication kicks off Labor Day weekend (PHOTOS)

More than a dozen veterans from various branches of military service could be seen milling around and pointing to various spots etched into a granite map of Vietnam Friday evening in Belding.

Jon Bergen opened the Belding Chiropractic Center at 215 E. State St. earlier this year. He renovated the entire building almost entirely by himself. — Daily News/Meghan Koglin

BUSINESS BEAT: ‘Perfect timing’ for Belding chiropractor

Dr. Jon Bergen opened Belding Chiropractic Center in April. The office is at 215 E. State Street, formerly Dr. Charles Barker’s office. To get the building ready, Bergen painted and carpeted the building and built a room out of an open space.

Belding Police Chief Dale Nelson demonstrates dropping off prescription and over-the-counter pills at a drop box at the Belding Police Department. — Daily News/Emilee Nielsen

Ionia County doing its part to deter prescription drug abuse

In an effort to stop the cycle of use and abuse of prescription opioids, Ionia County installed prescription drug drop boxes. The boxes are located at the Belding Police Department, the Ionia Sheriff’s Department and at the Portland Police Department.

Miss Belding and her court will reign over the city’s Labor Day festivities this upcoming weekend. Pictured are, front row from left, Kiddie King Bentley Parker, Miss Belding Lauren Thompson and Kiddie Queen Tinley Brown; back row from left, Young Miss First Runner Up Ava Baltruczak, Young Miss Madison Baltruczak, Junior Miss First Runner-Up Jacqueline Quintino, Junior Miss Ana Hintz; Miss Belding First Runner-up and Miss Congeniality Krista Hull, Junior/Young Miss Congeniality Katelyn Walch and Young Miss Court member Jacklyn McCarty. — Daily News/Lori Hansen

Thompson teen is crowned Miss Belding, again

Lauren Thompson is about to start her senior year at Belding High School, where she is active in band and Leadership Council.

She has also started a successful new hobby: Collecting crowns.

The Friends of the Fred Meijer River Valley Rail-Trail work to maintain 38 miles of the trail that cuts through various West Michigan communities with the hope that they will one day be able to improve and connect all segments of the trail. — Daily News/Emilee Nielsen

Trails group working to designate walkable communities

Creating a network of walkable and rideable trails that connects communities is an important goal for the Friends of the Fred Meijer River Valley Rail-Trails. Accomplishing that goal is a journey that’s been six years in the making and continues to this day.

According to Robert Brown Jr., chairman for the Friends, designating walkable communities is just one more piece of obtaining funding for the network of trails that run through Greenville, Belding, Lowell, Saranac and Ionia.