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Members of the Carson City-Crystal Area Schools Board of Education discuss Monday the potential of implementing a balanced calendar at the school district. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Carson City-Crystal school board discusses possible balanced calendar

In an effort to keep summer tourism flowing in Michigan, former Gov. John Engler took a stand 17 years ago when he signed a law extending Labor Day weekend into a four-day school holiday. Seven years later, former Gov. Jennifer Granholm followed suit and signed legislation aimed to help the tourism industry by requiring schools to begin the school year after Labor Day.

Surrounded by friends and family, Mark Crawfis, at center, shares a laugh as he is recognized as the 2016 Carson City Area Citizen of the Year at the 23rd annual Carson City Area Community Recognition Night on Wednesday. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Mark Crawfis honored as Carson City Citizen of the Year

Mark Crawfis is not a man who expects or demands applause. Yet when he took the stage Wednesday evening, there wasn’t a person in the audience who wasn’t standing and paying their respects.

Crystal Township Clerk Bob Naumann, right, explains his thoughts on a contract with the Road Commission of Montcalm County as Supervisor Chris Johnston listens. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Crystal Township approves brine contract with Road Commission

Residents in the Crystal area will again be receiving road treatments throughout the upcoming year on behalf of the Road Commission for Montcalm County. Members of the Crystal Township Board voted 4-1 Wednesday evening, with Clerk Bob Naumann opposed, to approve a contract with the road commission for the application of brine on township roads.

Members of the Carson City-Crystal High School Marching Band rehearse music Wednesday that they will soon be playing at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla. — Daily News/Cory Smith

CC-Crystal band heads to Florida following successful music season

For one week, the Carson City-Crystal Marching Eagles are migrating south. On Sunday, members of the high school band will travel to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Fla., a trip that Band Director Chad Parmenter sees as a benefit to a dedicated group of students.

From left, Carson City Elementary School third grade student council members Rylie Weber, 8, Peyton Bewalt, 8, Klouse Andrews, 10, Liam Jensen, 8, Savannah Sabela, 9, and Padi Watson, 8, pose with fellow third grade student Mason Burns, 9, who has Duchenne muscular dystrophy. The students are helping to raise enough money to purchase a service dog for Burns. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Carson City students raising funds to purchase service dog for classmate

From the moment Mason Burns opens his eyes in the morning, the struggle to get out of bed begins. It’s a problem many of his third grade peers can share — wishing for another 10 minutes or hoping for a snow day — anything for a little extra time to spend in bed.

Robert Nieman of Crystal performs a “belly flop” dive into the icy waters of Crystal Lake during the 7th annual Crystal Lake Winter Festival Polar Dip event Saturday. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Crystal Lake festivalgoers embrace ‘coldest weekend of year’ (PHOTOS)

The coldest weekend of the year reserved itself a seat at the seventh annual Crystal Lake Winter Festival on Saturday, but Michigan’s winter was more than welcome to the table. Festivalgoers didn’t seem to mind the single digit temperatures that encompassed a day filled with ice skating, polar dipping, chili eating and much more.

Frozen flowers hang on the fence around the Crystal Lake Polar Dip site, where Lee Avery died in an ORV accident Saturday night during the Crystal Lake Winter Festival. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

‘A community guy’: Crystal in mourning after winter festival tragedy

The Crystal Lake Winter Festival was an annual highlight for Lee Avery. The Crystal businessman helped organize car shows and enthusiastically served homemade chili to cold festivalgoers over the years, as well as those who braved the Polar Dip in the icy water of Crystal Lake.

Zaybben Bowen, 9, of Crystal, right, pulls his friend, Harrison Prebble, 9, of Ionia, on a sled as the winds howl and create a fog of snow at the 2015 Crystal Lake Winter Festival. — File photo

Winter’s wrath won’t stop Crystal Lake Winter Festival

Whether the lake remains frozen or melts to its liquid state, this year’s Crystal Lake Winter Festival will go on as scheduled. Event organizers are ready for the 7th annual event in downtown Crystal on Saturday, with plenty of events planned for visitors of all ages to enjoy.

Crystal Township Treasurer Ted Padgett, left, Supervisor Chris Johnston, center, and Clerk Bob Naumann listen to residents interested in the amount of usage the Crystal Community Center has been getting in recent months. — Daily News/Mike Taylor

Crystal residents query community center usage

Township residents are curious as to just how much use the Crystal Community Center is getting these days, as well as how much revenue it’s bringing in. Understandable, considering the township board has previously discussed the possibility of a bond to help pay for improvements and repairs there. That bond issue could appear on the ballot as soon as August.

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Ice fishers urged to use caution on lakes amid fluctuating temps

Just call Bill Hacker the ice man. The owner of Wet Willy’s Bait & Tackle in Crystal has been fielding numerous phone calls from customers wondering if the ice on local lakes is thick enough for ice fishing.