Shannan Kooistra and her husband, Josh, can’t help thinking of their 3-year-old son, Zade, as their “miracle” child. The rambunctious tyke, paralyzed from the hips down as a result of being born with myelomeningocele spina bifida, had undergone eight major surgeries before his second birthday. A shunt embedded in his brain carries excess spinal fluid from his head to his abdomen. And of course, he cannot walk. But these days, thanks to a coordinated effort by several area Lions Clubs, Zade zips around the Kooistra home with an ease he never could manage in a traditional wheelchair.
News Top Story
“Born under a bad sign, I been down since I begin to crawl; if it wasn’t for bad luck, I wouldn’t have no luck at all.” Those words, from the old Albert King tune, “Born Under a Bad Sign,” could preface many stories, but few so aptly as that of Robin Sova. For the past 10 years, the Sheridan woman’s life has been one long series of near misses and catastrophes, most health related, some man made.
High school today is not what it was yesterday. As a public institution of higher learning, with teenagers shuffling from class to class on an hourly basis, the culture and world inside the doors of what many refer to as the “best four years of your life,” is an ever-changing whirlwind of new experiences found each and every day. But that culture, filled with children who are learning to become adults, is not always a favorable one, and students, faculty and administration at high schools throughout Montcalm County are ready to make a change.
It’s Animal Control, not Animal Shelter. Montcalm County Animal Control Director Angela Sova Hollinshead appeared before the county’s Economic Development & Physical Resources Committee on Monday to request permission for the Animal Control building to be painted.
Described as a “foundation stone” to help lead to a new future, the Montcalm County General Plan has moved one step closer to being revised and reimplemented with a goal to provide policy that guides decision making for future land and infrastructure development within Montcalm County. Montcalm County Commissioners voted Monday to approve the distribution of the Montcalm County General Plan in draft format to receive comments on the proposed changes.
The idea of moving forward into the digital age has now officially become a reality for the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners as each member of the board will soon possess a wireless tablet device to use during meetings and on a daily basis. With each commissioner sitting with their 139-page meeting packet before them at the Montcalm County Administration Building Monday afternoon in Stanton, members of the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners voted unanimously to do away with the paper packets and approved the purchase of wireless electronic tablet devices to use in order to replace the paper packets.
The Montcalm Community College (MCC) Board of Trustees took the next step toward ensuring the Early College program will move forward. During the board’s meeting on Monday, trustees approved the Early College consortium agreement, which commits MCC to being a part of the program.
It takes a special kind of crazy to jump into the near-freezing waters Clifford Lake in the middle of February, but over 100 “plungers” were willing to brave the ice depths Saturday to raise money for Special Olympics. Hundreds of spectators lined the ice to watch the plungers — many attired in colorful or whimsical costumes — leap through the hole in the ice.
How many volunteers does it take to serve breakfast on a farm? When you’re planning to feed over 2,000 visitors, it turns out it takes quite a few. It also takes a great deal of advance planning, cooperation and a bit of money. All those factors began to come together Monday evening at the Douglass Township Hall in Entrican, where Michigan State Extension Officer Nancy Thelen presented the first in a series of meetings that will end with this year’s area Breakfast on the Farm event.
Call them crazy or call them dedicated, but the group of “polar plungers” slated to drop through a hole in the ice Feb. 9 at Clifford Lake Inn is doing its part to raise money for a very good cause — Special Olympics Michigan. According to event organizer Jim Dennis, the annual plunge attracts as many as 100-plus plungers and 400 spectators to the small, inland lake each winter. Depending on weather conditions, he’s hoping to see at least that many turn out for this year’s plunge.