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Friends and family of Devon Morrison gathered Wednesday afternoon at Demorest Field in Belding for a dedication ceremony to remember the 10-year-old boy who accidentally drowned in the Flat River on Sept. 14, 2013. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Belding boy remembered one year later with memorial stone dedication

Nearly a year to the day that Shawna Smith learned her young son Devon Morrison had accidentally drowned in the Flat River, she took a moment to write him one last heartfelt message. As freshly poured concrete steadily began to harden, solidifying a new memorial for Devon at Demorest Field in Belding, Smith used a finger to carefully etch the three words she would recite to him today if she had the chance.

Eleven vacant “Build-A-Home” lots owned by Belding Area Schools have been reduced in price in order to entice potential buyers to purchase the properties. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Belding Area Schools drops price of 11 former Build-A-Home properties

Several property lots owned by Belding Area Schools have remained vacant for years. School board members are hoping a drop in price will encourage buyers to step forward and snatch up the properties.

The new Miss Belding Allison Harrison is crowned by Miss Belding 2013 Sarah Thompson following Saturday evening’s scholarship pageant. — Daily News/Lori Hansen

Allison Harrison crowned 2014 Miss Belding

“Don’t Rain on My Parade” was the song Allison Harrison chose to sing for her talent phase of the Miss Belding Scholarship competition. That may be her motto for the year now that she has been chosen as Miss Belding 2014 and will reign over not only the Labor Day festivities but also will represent her hometown at various parades and community events this next year.

Belding Superintendent Sara Shriver, left, and Belding Area Schools Board of Education President Tom Humphreys, discuss Shriver's positive annual evaluation with board members Monday evening. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Belding school board approves superintendent evaluation, contract

Sara Shriver was elated nearly two years ago when she was selected as the superintendent of Belding Area Schools, and it appears members of the district school board continue to share in that sentiment.

Vietnam veteran Denny Craycraft unveils his vision for a large Vietnam War memorial Tuesday evening at the Belding City Council meeting. At top right, the center of a monument honoring all Michigan Vietnam veterans who died in the Vietnam war would be a possible engraving of the “Three Servicemen Statue” that stands in Washington D.C. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Belding Vietnam War memorial ‘unlike anything you’ve ever seen’

Denny Craycraft can still hear the mortar blasts, the rapid fire of gunshots, and the screams of his fellow soldiers — all the horrors of war that encompassed him on a daily basis while fighting in Vietnam nearly half a century ago.

From left, Belding City Council members Joe Feuerstein, Mike Scheid, Jerry Lallo, Mayor Ron Gunderson, City Manager Meg Mullendore and Mayor Pro Tem Tom Jones discuss the possibility of consolidating city inspection services Tuesday evening at the Pere Marquette Depot in Belding. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Belding council tables decision to consolidate inspection services

Belding Council members have long been asking to consolidate the city’s inspection services, and after Tuesday evening’s city council meeting, they’ll be waiting a little longer.

The Belrockton served as one of the three voting precincts in Belding for Tuesday’s primary election. — Daily News/Kyle Wilson

Ionia County defeats millage that would have put $18.6 million toward roads

The roads in Ionia County are among the worst in the state. On Tuesday, residents voted by a narrow margin — just 56 votes — to let the matter lie for now.

The gymnasium at Threshold Academy in Orleans Township is full of items from throughout the school that are available for purchase via auction today.  — Daily News/Cory Smith

Auction to empty remaining contents of Threshold Academy

The halls of Threshold Academy will once again be filled today, but not for the original purpose of educating young students. Rather, visitors will be attending an auction with the option to purchase the last remaining items contained within the school from classroom to classroom.

Belding Superintendent Sara Shriver, left, discusses with Board Vice President Timothy Flynn during Monday evening's Belding School Board meeting at the Belding Administration Building. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Board compensation reinstated for Belding School Board members

For the first time since 2011, members of the Belding Area Schools Board of Education will be compensated for their services for the upcoming school year.

The span over the Flat River on Main Street in Belding is now closed to traffic as construction crews work to replace the bridge, cutting off one of the main hubs of traffic into downtown Belding. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Downtown Belding businesses struggling during road construction

As local business owner Bonita Steele stares out her storefront window of the Belding Mini Market through a vacant parking lot, she only observes more of the same. Located directly across her business on W. Main Street is Millie’s Family Restaurant, which also stands still without a single customer inside.