Local

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.

Patrick O’Connell

Citizen cooperation, K9 key in catching Burger King robbery suspect

Patrick Michael O’Connell, 26, of Belding was arraigned Thursday for allegedly robbing the Burger King near Belding. With the help of citizen tips, the Ionia County Sheriff’s Office located a 28-year-old Ionia woman who had reportedly driven the car the suspect had used to flee the scene after allegedly robbing the restaurant Wednesday afternoon.

Belding Planning Commission Chairman Gary Knowlton answers questions regarding the Zoning Board of Appeals during Tuesday’s Belding City Council meeting.  — Daily News/Cory Smith

Belding OKs zoning candidate questions

This community’s Zoning Board of Appeals (ZBA) is one step closer to retuning to a board led by a citizen effort instead of the city council. In a 3-2 vote at Tuesday’s Belding City Council meeting, council members approved a prepared list of questions for each candidate of the ZBA to answer before the council makes a decision to appoint members to the board at the Feb. 3 council meeting.

Patrick O'Connell

Citizen cooperation, K9 key in apprehending BK robbery suspect

Patrick Michael O’Connell, 26, of Belding was arraigned Thursday for allegedly robbing the Burger King near Belding. With the help of citizen tips, the Ionia County Sheriff’s Office located a 28-year-old Ionia woman who had reportedly driven the car the suspect had fled the scene in after allegedly robbing the restaurant Wednesday afternoon.

loc 0121 cs Mullendore terminated-3

Belding City Council votes 3-2 to fire city manager ‘effective immediately’

After a tense debate, the Belding City Council voted 3-2 to fire their city manager Tuesday night.

Meg Mullendore, who was hired in March 2013, was not present at the city council meeting. She was at home recovering from a recent surgery.

Supporters and members of the Belding Education Association teachers union stand in attendance at Monday evening’s school board meeting as they asked for the second consecutive meeting that the school board and union reach a fair contract. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Belding Area Schools teacher contract negotiations stagnant

As another month has come and gone, contract negotiations between the Belding school district and its teachers’ union continue to remain at a standstill.

It’s been nearly seven months since the previous contract between the Belding Area Schools district and Belding Education Association (BEA) union expired on June 30, 2014, and the frustration that has grown in that time was evident again Monday evening’s school board meeting.

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.

Meg Mullendore

JUST IN: Belding City Council votes 3-2 to fire manager

In a 3-2 vote by members of the Belding City Council tonight, City Manager Meg Mullendore has been terminated from her job, effective immediately.

Councilman Dennis Cooper motioned for Mullendore’s dismissal during the council comment portion of tonight’s Belding City Council meeting.

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.