News Top Story

Junior Searles walked the bass line while Jerry Waldorf picks his guitar during the Christmas in July Jamboree at Charlie’s Wag-N-Train Opry on Friday. At top left, Marie Wagner took her turn on the mic during the Christmas in July Jamboree at Charlie’s Wag-N-Train Opry on Friday. — Daily News/Brad Klosner

Charlie’s Wag-N-Train Opry hosts Christmas in July Jamboree

Boots were thumping, hands were clapping and barn walls were shaking over the weekend in Sheridan. Anyone looking for a good, old fashioned jamboree would not have been disappointed on Friday. Charlie’s Wag-N-Train Opry hosted its Christmas in July Jamboree at its secluded pine woods location in backwoods Sheridan.

Commissioners in Stanton recently decided to have the Department of Public Works take on the responsibility of sidewalk repair and maintenance citywide. City Manager Jake Eckholm said he expects it will take about two years to get all the sidewalks up to code. — Daily News/Mike Taylor

City Commission takes on repairing and maintaining Stanton’s sidewalks

City residents fond of traveling on foot are soon going to have things a little easier, thanks to a recent decision on the part of the Stanton City Commission. According to Stanton City Manager Jake Eckholm, commissioners decided last week to take on the responsibility of repairing and maintaining the city’s sidewalks. The topic had come up at previous commission meetings and had been discussed by concerned citizens as well as commissioners.

Judge Charles Simon, center, poses with recently-sworn in children’s advocates Tuesday at the Montcalm County Court Complex; from left, Jeffrey Bennett, Ronald Massanari, Rhonda Massanari, Simons, Brigitte Aggas and Michael Kattreh. — Daily News/Mike Taylor

Volunteer Court Appointed Special Advocates help courts with at-risk kids

By the time the courts become involved in a domestic situation, things are complicated. Wives, husbands, sons, daughters … all can be victims. But too often, those most hurt are those least able to speak for themselves: The children.

Scott Koenigsknecht has been Montcalm Area Intermediate School District’s superintendent since 2007. His last day with the MAISD is today. He was hired as superintendent for Ingham Intermediate School District. — Daily News/Ryan Schlehuber

Dr. K reflects on his time with MAISD

As he readies for a new challenge, Scott Koenigsknecht is reflecting on his past eight years with the Montcalm Area Intermediate School District (MAISD) during his last week on the job. When he arrived in 2007, “Dr. K,” as he’s known, brought the knowledge and experience of a teacher, a principal and a high school superintendent. The advancement of his career to the head of MAISD was the pinnacle of his career at that point.

Kai Loni Redner, 26, at left, and Rebecca Rowe, 23, both of Lakeview, proudly display their marriage license in front of the Montcalm County Administrative Building (old courthouse) in Stanton on Friday. — Daily News/Elisabeth Waldon

Lakeview women first same-sex couple to marry in Montcalm County

Like many Americans, the two women learned the news from a Facebook post. Kai Loni Redner, 26, and Rebecca Rowe, 23, both of Lakeview, were helping a family member move Friday morning when they heard about the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision that same-sex couples have the right to marry anywhere in the United States.

The students of the Ombudsman class of 2015 were officially graduates following their commencement on Wednesday night. — Daily News/Brad Klosner

Ombudsman Alternative Education celebrates commencement

For many, it was a long hard road, full of twists and turns, with an uncertain ending. But make it to the end they did. As of Wednesday night, eight students from the Ombudsman Alternative Education program can officially call themselves graduates.

Michael Williams of Sidney is the new undersheriff of Montcalm County. He has worked for the Montcalm County Sheriff’s Office since 1996, first a road patrol deputy, then as a canine handler and most recently as a sergeant. — Courtesy photo

Canine handler Michael Williams named new Montcalm County undersheriff

Montcalm County’s star canine handler is taking on a new challenge as second-in-command at the Sheriff’s Office. Michael Williams was recently promoted to undersheriff in the wake of the most recent undersheriff’s retirement. He will earn an annual salary of $65,000, which was approved by the Montcalm County Board of Commissioners in March.

Central Montcalm High School Principal Marty James shook hands with every graduating senior as they made their way across the stage to receive diplomas Sunday afternoon. — Daily News/Mike Taylor

Central Montcalm High School class of 2015 celebrates graduation

One-hundred-sixteen Central Montcalm High School graduates took their first steps into adulthood Sunday afternoon during the school’s graduation ceremony. Clad in Central Montcalm green and white, the graduates made their way across the podium to receive their diplomas following some sage words of advice from school administrators, as well as the class of 2015 valedictorian, Jesse Kuczynski, and salutatorian, Santiago Alvarado.

Central Montcalm High School Valedictorian Jesse Kuczynski’s years of hard work on academics will pay off this fall in the form of several scholarships to Eastern Michigan University. — Daily News/Mike Taylor

Years of hard work pay off for Central Montcalm valedictorian

Hard work. That’s what it takes to graduate high school with an overall grade point average of 3.99. It helps to be born with some serious smarts, but in the final reel, the hard work is what it’s really all about. Just ask graduating Central Montcalm senior and class valedictorian Jesse Kuczynski. He’s been working hard his entire academic career, as the results clearly indicate.

Montcalm Community College Trustee Mike Williams, right discusses the issue of raising tuition at the college during Tuesday evening’s board meeting as Secretary Carol Deuling-Ravell listens. — Daily News/Cory Smith

MCC increases tuition 4%

In keeping with statewide averages, tuition at Montcalm Community College (MCC) will be rising once again. Members of the MCC Board of Trustees voted 7-0 Tuesday evening to increase tuition for the 2015-2016 school year.