News Top Story

A panoramic view shows a hefty amount of remodeling work occurring at the former Driftway Bar and Restaurant in Belding as it transforms into the new Horse’s Mouth Tavern. — Daily News/Cory Smith

New bar to bring Michigan craft beer atmosphere to Belding (GALLERY)

The clang of a hammer falling hard to a nail, the screech of a table saw quickly splitting through a piece of wood — that’s the sound of the orchestra of construction taking place at an old but familiar location in this community. Since the summer of 2012, the Driftway Bar and Restaurant has sat empty, eventually foreclosed on and left as a shadow of its former lively self.

A man allegedly robbed the Burger King near Belding, located at 9463 Belding Road just outside of the city limits, at gunpoint Wednesday afternoon before successfully fleeing on foot with an undisclosed amount of cash. — Daily News/Cory Smith

UPDATE: Belding Burger King armed robbery suspect caught

A man allegedly robbed the Burger King near Belding at gunpoint Wednesday afternoon before successfully fleeing on foot with an undisclosed amount of cash.

The incident took place during lunch hour around 12:20 p.m., according to Ionia County Sheriff’s Sgt. William Hoskins.

Daily News/Cory Smith

Sixth grade students in Belding Middle School teacher Jennifer DiSpirito’s classroom listen attentively to a presentation on unhealthy relationships from Relief After Violent Encounter’s Domestic Assault Response Advocacy Coordinator Amanda Peterson on Thursday. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Expert helps Belding middle schoolers learn to identify unhealthy relationships

As children enter adolescence and jump headfirst into the ever-changing world of relationships, there’s no questioning that the distinction between right and wrong grows more important.

Petersen Youtube cover

VIDEO: Soldier surprises daughter with homecoming in kindergarten classroom

Five-year-old Gabby Petersen knew she was getting a present Friday, but as to what could be hidden beneath wrapping paper was a mystery.

Rob Butler, left, and Mike Versluis, sprinkler fitters with Fire Pros of Grand Rapids, work to repair broken pipes that burst due to freezing temperatures in the Covered Village Mall in Belding Monday. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Frozen pipe bursting causes stir at Belding mall

The former Rayborn hardware store has been empty for several years, but even vacant buildings can cause unexpected problems for nearby business owners. That was the case around 9 a.m. Monday when a frozen pipe burst, triggering an alarm that required the attention of the Belding Fire Department.

The Wesco gas station in Belding, located at 105 W. State St., will undergo several months of construction this spring in which the store building will be demolished and rebuilt with a newer facility, along with new gas pumps and expanded parking. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Belding Wesco rebuild project OK’d

With a unanimous vote by council members at Tuesday evening’s City Council meeting, the Belding Wesco gas station, located at 105 W. State St., will soon be remodeled on a larger parcel with a new store, additional parking and more service pumps.

Members of Belding City Council, from left, Dennis Cooper, Mike Scheid, Jerry Lallo, Mayor Ron Gunderson, City Manager Meg Mullednore, and Mayor Pro Tem Tom Jones, discuss the Zoning Board of Appeals during the Dec. 16 council meeting. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Belding City Council schedules work session to discuss Zoning Board of Appeals candidates

A city board that was absorbed by the Belding City Council seven months ago appears to be on the path of reinstatement after members of the council voted to schedule a work session. At the Dec. 16 council meeting, council members voted 4-1, with Councilman Dennis Cooper opposed, to schedule a session for Jan. 6, when the council will discuss how to properly evaluate candidates for the Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA).

Members and supports of the Belding Education Association stand together in applause Monday to show support for a “fair contract” between the school district and union members. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Belding Board of Education cites budget restraints in lack of raises

Contract disputes are never fun … especially when they drag out. After nearly six months of negotiations, a contract between Belding Area Schools and the Belding Education Association (BEA) remains stagnant after two failed tentative agreements.

Belding Police Chief Dale Nelson, right, speaks with officer Shannon Hummel Monday afternoon outside of the Belding Police Department. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Belding a ‘most improved crime rate’ town

Patterns in crime can change tremendously over time, and for residents of this community, change has apparently been good. A report released by Safe Choice Security, an alarm and security system company with locations throughout the country, recently named Belding as one of the top 25 Michigan cities with the most improved crime rates.

loc 1119 cs Belding city council-2

Belding residents, city council reflect on message of positivity

The newest member of Belding City Council was officially sworn into office Tuesday evening, and he wasted little time, immediately going to work on city business. Dennis Cooper took his seat for the first time beside his four fellow council members after successfully defeating Joe Feuertstein in a recall election on Nov. 4.