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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.

A center lane will be added to Shaw Street in Howard City to accommodate the ever-increasing amount of vehicles waiting to turn into business driveways, such as Leppink's Food Center. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Howard City readies for $1 million Shaw Street project

Businesses on this village’s busiest stretch will remain open throughout a $1 million road project set to begin after Labor Day and be completed by next Memorial Day. The Howard City Village Council in July approved a $1,036,389 bid from CL Trucking & Excavating of Ionia to work on Shaw Street 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.

The Howard City Department of Public Works is comprised of, from left, Shane Smith, Director Mike VanWagner, Joe Krogman, Bill Cornelisse and Joe Cornelisse. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

‘Hostile workplace’: Howard City DPW employees and village officials clash

The Howard City Village Council voted Monday to cut by half the amount of personal/sick hours for village employees, saving $3,400. The move came after a recommendation from the village’s employee committee to change the employee manual to reduce personal/sick hours and to not pay DPW employees for being on call. The committee is comprised of Village Manager-President Randy Heckman and council members Cheryl Smith and Janice Williams.

Visitors at the Timothy C. Hauenstein Reynolds Township Library search for books, use computers and internet, and take time to read at Monday in Howard City. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Hauenstein donates $50,000 to help Reynolds Township Library pay off loan

Timothy Hauenstein was driving home with three friends after a fun day of skiing in January 1981. Timothy, 19, was a 1979 graduate of Tri County High School and was attending Central Michigan University with plans to study oceanography.

Howard City Village President-Manager Randy Heckman reviews a blueprint of the village’s two ballfields while standing near the pitcher’s mound on field 1. The Howard City Village Council recently voted to invest $35,000 in improvements to the ballfields. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Howard City to make ballfields, trail upgrades (PHOTOS)

Plans are underway for upgrades to two ballfields and a local trail in Howard City. The Howard City Village Council on Monday approved spending $35,000 to redo two baseball fields. The council also learned the late Warren White had donated a piece of property to the village, which Village Manager Randy Heckman hopes to develop into more parking spaces, plus a pavilion.

Members of the Edmore Village Council, from left, Eddie Adams, Bonnie Davis, Jamie Ballard, Village Clerk Tracy Fockler, Village Manager James Lower, President Karl Kluwe, Treasurer Elaine Leak, Phill Kohn, Karen Deja and Bonnie Ashbaugh, discuss the hiring of a new village manager during Monday evening’s council meeting. — Daily News/Cory Smith

Edmore brings back Rankin as village manager

After an unexpected exit from the community nearly two years ago, a familiar face is expected to return to the position of Edmore village manager. The Edmore Village Council voted unanimously Monday evening to hire Neil Rankin, 39, as village manager following the resignation of James Lower, whose last day is March 28 as he campaigns for a seat in the Michigan House of Representatives.

A sewer project that broke ground at Pierson Township’s Little Whitefish Lake in 1997 remains a funding concern today because of the special assessment sewer fund being depleted years ahead of schedule. — File photo

Little Whitefish Lake sewer fund issue still unresolved

An expensive and complicated special assessment situation continues to hang like an unpleasant fog over Little Whitefish Lake.
Lake Association President Matt Matlosz alerted Montcalm County officials to the sewer fund discrepancy in April 2015. There hasn’t been a public meeting to address the issue since county and lake association officials met in June 2015.


JUST IN: Sheriff’s Office seeking assistance identifying Howard City burglars

The Montcalm County Sheriff’s Office is asking for assistance in identifying two individuals who broke into and robbed a Howard City business.