E.Slider

Vestaburg High School senior Phillip Day poses in front of the entrance to Vestaburg High School. Day is cognitively impaired, but after a long journey he will be earning his high school diploma this coming Sunday. — Daily News/Kyle Wilson

Assisting sports teams gave Vestaburg senior sense of belonging

At just 5 pounds, 7 ounces, Phillip Day may have entered the world as a tiny baby boy, but the Vestaburg senior’s personality is anything but. Diagnosed at a very young age as cognitively impaired, Day struggled through many aspects of his childhood. Everyday activities that seemed routine to other kids were sometimes a challenge for him.

loc 0417 ew Edmore park 1

Edmore Village Council declines to remove unsafe playground equipment

The majority of the Edmore Village Council is refusing to remove unsafe playground equipment from the Glenn D. Curtis Memorial Park, despite pleas and warnings from the village manager. Village Manager Neil Rankin recently surveyed the park at 307 E. Forrest St. and found several playground items to be dangerous. At Monday’s village council meeting, he presented the council with photographs and a detailed report of the unsafe conditions.

Leader Dog for the Blind representative Tammy Bartz explains to the Vestaburg Lions Club how the Rochester program works. Bartz spoke Monday evening at the club’s regular meeting. — Mike Taylor/Daily News

Some leader dogs begin their training in prisons

A good dog can change a life. A great dog can change the lives of many. The business of the Leader Dogs for the Blind program is to create good dogs and place them where they will do the most good.

loc 0315 cs Seiter Center special ed-3

Montcalm County school officials hope time is right for special ed millage

Twenty-six years.
That’s how much time has gone by since Montcalm County voters last approved an increase in special education funding. In the meantime, Montcalm Area Intermediate School District (MAISD) officials have made more than $2.5 million in cuts to special education services and reduced their workforce by 22 percent. Programs not required by law have been consolidated or eliminated, including the shutdown of Harold O. Steele Alternative High School in Fenwick in 2006.

At Monday’s Legislative Update meeting at Montcalm Community College, Rep. Rick Outman, R-Six Lakes, discusses a package of bills with a focus on making it easier for state prison parolees to return to the workforce. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Outman discusses ‘parolee hiring’ bills

Finding a job as an unemployed citizen can be stressful, difficult and unpleasant. Finding a job as a convicted felon can be nearly impossible.

loc 0117 ew Phenix Bar

Brotherly partnership takes over The Phenix in Edmore

Two brothers have been looking to get into the restaurant business for several years. Jason Wieber, 34, and Justin Wieber, 29, finally found their calling in a century-old bar and restaurant in northeast Montcalm County. The Wiebers are in the process of purchasing The Phenix at 413 E. Main St. in Edmore from Travis Jensen.

loc 1231 cw indian head fire 3

2 dogs die in house fire near Six Lakes

A single-story home on Indianhead Lake near Six Lakes was gutted by a Monday morning fire. Belvidere Township Fire Chief Rick Rockafellow said the home, located at 4585 Pawnee Trail, was a complete loss after flames ripped through the inside.

loc 1129 cs Vestaburg house fire-4

Vestaburg residence a ‘total loss’ after fire destroys home

A home in downtown Vestaburg was destroyed by fire Wednesday morning after the homeowner discovered smoke while preparing Thanksgiving dinner.

Drew Corder of Cedar Lake assembles a forklift at A&O Forklift plant in Edmore. The company is expected to produce about 180 forklifts this year. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Edmore’s A&O Forklift flourishing in Hitachi Magnetic’s former home

Bumblebees and forklifts may not seem like an obvious partnership, but they’re proving to be a hot combo for an Edmore business. Brian Kulling, who grew up near Detroit and now lives in Alma, earned his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from Kettering University in Flint. He was looking for business opportunities and while he was working for a sheet metal provider to A&O Forklift, he heard the owner of A&O was looking to sell.

Loafers Glory employee Megan Moore of Remus takes a lunch order from Pam Petno of Syracuse, Ind., left, Becky Fox of Syracuse, Ind., center, and LouAnn Williams of Cedar Lake. The three women were enjoying a last lunch at Loafers Glory along with Carl Petno of Syracuse, Ind., before the Blanchard business closes for good. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Beloved Blanchard business Loafers Glory closing after 27 years

Alan and JoAnne Camp were traveling through the mountains of North Carolina when they came across an antiquated settlement, barely still in existence. The settlement was called Loafers Glory, the name reportedly coined by the women of the community who took a rather dim view of the men’s habit of lollygagging on the porch of the community store, rather than working.