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A pile of trash sits in next to a recycling bin in the parking lot of Leppink’s Food Center in Howard City on Friday, even though the Montcalm County recycling site has signage specifically stating “No Trash.” The recycling site will be permanently closed down by Dec. 23 due to repeated issues of trash abuse, as well as funding problems for the county. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Howard City recycling site to close; county’s recycling future uncertain

Two of Montcalm County’s seven recycling sites will have closed by year’s end, and the future remains uncertain for the remaining five locations.

The Montcalm County Board of Commissioners unanimously voted Nov. 7 to eliminate Howard City’s recycling site due to an increase in county recycling costs.

Tri County High School Marching Band walks through the main tunnel at Ford Field prior to performing. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Tri County Marching Band competes at Finals for 1st time (PHOTOS)

Standing together in the giant confines of Ford Field, performing for the final time after a long and enduring season, members of the Tri County Marching Band took one last collective breath. There would be no do-over, no second chance, as for the first time in school history, the band was performing at the Michigan Competing Band Association (MCBA) State Finals.

Former Michigan State University basketball player Anthony Ianni, pictured in back center, met with Tri County High School’s peer to peer group Tuesday before leading an inspirational assembly before the high school student body. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Former MSU basketball player inspires Tri County students

Anthony Ianni stands 6 foot, 9 inches tall in his size 18 shoes.

He says the challenges and obstacles he faced in life were even taller than him, “and I’m pretty sure they wore bigger shoes.”

A former gas station located at 15350 W. Howard City-Edmore Road (M-46) sits on two long neglected acres in Winfield Township, better known as Amble. The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality is currently working to fix contamination from leaks out of underground tanks at the property. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Michigan DEQ cleans up former Amble gas station contamination

The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality is working to fix contamination from leaking storage tanks underground at a former gas station.

The property at 15350 W. Howard City-Edmore Road (M-46) sits on two long neglected acres in Winfield Township, better known as Amble.

Work on Howard City’s Shaw Street began after Labor Day and will continue through early November. The project will then go on hold until April, when it will be completed. Businesses on Shaw Street remain open to customers. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Shaw Street project on schedule in Howard City

Other than a few literal bumps in the road, a construction project in Howard City is going smoothly and ahead of schedule.

CL Trucking & Excavating of Ionia began working on Shaw Street just after Labor Day. The project extends from the village’s traffic light at Federal Road (old 131) west on Shaw to the village limits, which are located just short of the U.S. 131 expressway north and south ramps.

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Howard City school receives 82 backpacks from AT&T Pioneers

Kindergarten students through second-graders at MacNaughton Elementary School now have access to 82 new backpacks full of school supplies, thanks to a donation from AT&T Pioneers. The backpacks — in colors of pink, black, light blue and dark blue — were distributed to the Howard City school on Monday morning. Each backpack contains an assortment of notebooks, colored pencils, crayons, glue sticks, scissors and a pencil box.

Harvest Festival Queen Bridgette Pollaski, at right in red, First Runner-Up Hope Gommesen, in blue, Second Runner-up Keshia Aho-Minnema, in teal, and Princess Lauren Senn, in purple, wave during the Harvest Festival parade. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Harvest Festival welcomes autumn to Howard City (PHOTOS)

Candy, a marching band, a queen and her court, a fire truck carrying cheerleaders … the Harvest Festival parade had it all. The 14th annual festival kicked off Saturday morning with car, motorcycle and tractor shows, the second annual Tri County High School Harvest Festival Cheer 5K and a volleyball tournament. Rain came and went in the morning, making way for a sunny day of fun.

Leppink’s Food Centers operates five Leppink’s stores, 11 Save-a-Lot stores and a Do It Best Hardware store throughout West Michigan. The organization is being awarded the 2016 Outstanding Retailer by the Michigan Grocers Association on Sunday during the fall conference on Sunday. Pictured is the Leppink’s Food Center Howard City location. — Daily News/Emilee Nielsen

Leppink’s recognized as Michigan Grocer’s outstanding retailer

Over the course of 88 years, the Leppink family has built a company with five Leppink’s Food Centers, 11 Save-a-Lot stores and a Do It Best Hardware store. This year, Leppink’s Food Centers has been recognized by the Michigan Grocer’s Association as 2016’s Outstanding Retailer.

Al and Judy Parker have been named grand marshals of the 14th annual Harvest Festival. They will preside over the grand parade at 1 p.m. Saturday in Howard City. — Courtesy photo

Parkers named grand marshals of Howard City Harvest Festival

Al and Judy Parker will preside over the 14th annual Howard City Harvest Festival on Saturday. They will ride in the grand parade at 1 p.m. and judge the scarecrow making contest in Ensley Park at 4:15 p.m.

Sam Johnson of Lakeview, at left, congratulates Michigan Department of Health & Human Services Director Nick Lyon at the grand opening of My Town Services of Montcalm County in Howard City on Monday. Johnson is excited to start his new cleaning job at the business at 208 Edgerton St. in downtown Howard City, which will offer a variety of health, senior citizen, veteran and employment services. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

My Town in Howard City offers variety of health and human services

Montcalm County residents have access to a variety of health and human services in Stanton, but for those who live on the outskirts of the county, the county seat isn’t always the most accessible location.

As of Monday, those who live in the Panhandle (the northwest section of Montcalm County) will be able to enjoy many health and human services in downtown Howard City.