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Community Assistance Specialist Ryan Kilpatrick with the Michigan Economic Development Corp. asks a question of business owners in downtown Greenville during a Monday meeting at Springrove Variety. — Daily News/Brad Klosner

Greenville business owners meet to discuss grant opportunities

If there is one thing that can draw a horde of business people together, after hours, on a Monday, it is the prospect of free money. Or at least mostly free.

A hot air balloon lights up for a crowd of onlookers at last year’s Danish Festival in Greenville. — File photo

Balloon Rally is a high-rising Danish event

The Danish Festival will feature large shapes lofting through the air, roaring and spitting fire, as their bulbous shadows darken the ground below. None will be able to shield their eyes from the airborne splendor.

Greenville Public Schools Board of Education Secretary Ronald Billmeier, left, and Treasurer James Anderson, discuss the purchase of 10 propane-fueled buses for the district during a special board meeting Monday evening. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Greenville schools to buy 10 propane buses

When the upcoming school year begins for students at Greenville Public Schools, several of those who are transported by bus may notice something different. During a special Board of Education meeting Monday evening, board members voted 5-1, with Treasurer James Anderson opposed and Trustee John Raven absent, to approve the purchase of 10 propane-fueled buses for the district’s fleet of 29 buses.

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3 downtown Greenville businesses closing shop

The business front is about to get sparse in downtown Greenville. Three businesses are currently liquidating stock and preparing to close shop. In the very near future, Springrove Variety, The Cottage Porch Gift Shoppe and Anne’s Pet Shoppe will all close their doors for the final time.

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JUST IN: Driver, passengers receive non-life-threatening and minor injuries in car-motorcycle crash

A car-motorcycle crash that occurred this morning near the intersection of M-66 and Fenwick Road resulted in minor injuries for passengers involved.

A view from the auctioneer booth during the Montcalm County 4-H Market Animal Livestock Auction on Thursday. — Daily News/Brad Klosner

4-H’ers show off their efforts at livestock auction

Three little pigs went to the market, but none of them actually came home … they were auctioned off at the Montcalm County 4-H Market Animal Livestock Auction. People flocked to the fairgrounds Thursday evening to place their bids on homegrown Montcalm County livestock during the auction. The 4-H’ers showing animals at the auction represented clubs from across the county.

A look behind the scenes at the Greenville Ecumenical Food Kitchen. — Daily News/Brad Klosner

Greenville Ecumenical Food Kitchen marks decade

When it comes to filling people’s bellies, the Greenville Ecumenical Food Kitchen is an equal opportunity food mission. “There are no requirements to get a meal here,” Director Jan Drake said. “Everyone is welcome. Just come in for a free meal.”

This was the first year for the goat cart demonstration at the Montcalm County 4-H Fair. In the past, no one had signed up for the category. — Daily News/Mike Taylor

And the award for best dressed goat goes to …

Young 4-H’ers had a chance to show off their months of hard work during Tuesday afternoon’s goat events at the Montcalm County 4-H Fair. Dozens of “Clover Buds,” as well as several older 4-H’ers lined up with their hoofed ruminants to be judged on looks, workability and grooming, as well as — in the case of the younger kids — their costumes.

The 4-H Poultry, Waterfowl, Wildfowl, Pigeon and Eggs show participants checked out their stand-in chicken on Monday. — Daily News/Brad Klosner

Fake chickens, real storms at Montcalm County 4-H Fair

As the menacing black storm clouds crept into Montcalm County on Monday afternoon, everyone begin to feel a touch of anxiety. However, the children at the 4-H Poultry, Waterfowl, Wildfowl, Pigeon and Eggs show were anything but chicken. At least not totally.

Miss Michigan KT Maviglia presents Emily Smith of Greenville with the Pam Eldred Community Service award, a $2,000 prize at the Miss Michigan Scholarship Pageant on Saturday at the Frauenthal Center for the Performing Arts in Muskegon. — Daily News/Lori Hansen

Greenville woman first runner-up at last weekend’s Miss Michigan pageant

“It all started with the Miss Danish Festival Pageant!” Two local women, Lauren Walsh as Miss Danish Festival and Emily Smith, Miss Danish Festival 2013 and reigning Miss Pride of the Peninsulas, were among 34 contestants seeking the crown Saturday at the Miss Michigan Scholarship Pageant at the Frauenthal Center of Performing Arts in Muskegon.