Just a few years ago, Montcalm County Animal Control was under fire from everyone from animal rights activists to run-of-the-mill pet owners. Management was slipshod, conditions and cleanliness were abysmal and euthanasia practices were archaic and — according to many — inhumane. The shelter actually had a contract with an individual who re-sold former pets and strays alike to animal testing facilities. What a difference three years can make.
Five fire departments worked together for several hours Thursday evening in attempt to save a large two-story home, but the challenges of extinguishing the fire proved to be too great in the end.
State Rep. Rick Outman and House Energy and Technology Committee Chair Aric Nesbitt recently spent a day in the 70th House District, touring energy and Internet provider workplaces to better understand the needs of residents in the communities. Outman, R-Six Lakes, who serves on the Energy and Technology Committee, said he was happy that Nesbitt, R-Lawton, spent a day meeting with local job creators to find out how state government can better serve Montcalm and Gratiot counties.
When Larry Beard was a child he was told countless tales by his grandfather, a train engineer in Ohio, of the workings of the railroad industry in the late 19th century. Today, Beard shares those the stories and knowledge he obtained long ago from his grandfather with the young children who attend the annual Heritage Festival on the campus of Montcalm Community College.
It was a night of misplaced tiaras and a misprinted program, yet it was a perfect night for Riann Rohn, as she was crowned the 2013 Miss Sheridan Springfest queen. Organizers originally planned a 6 p.m. pageant, yet when the schedule came out in print, it stated a 7 p.m. start. Combined with the tiaras somehow lost en route to the event, organizers made a last-minute decision to postpone the start to 7:20 p.m., giving time for a quick run to Mount Pleasant for replacement crowns.
A house that is home to five Montcalm Township residents is still standing today thanks to fortunate timing and a closed door that prevented a bedroom fire from spreading.
The issue of possible pay raises for some village employees was an unexpected entry under the “new business” portion of Sheridan’s village council meeting Tuesday evening. Although some employees received 2 percent raises earlier this year, Councilman Pete Gehoski contends those raises — when considered in tandem with increased insurance premiums — actually constituted a pay cut. Gehoski said he has contacted several other area municipalities and all of them pay their Department of Public Works employees significantly higher wages than does the village of Sheridan.
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.
With freezing temperatures and a light snow falling from the sky Tuesday evening, there was little indication that spring is on the horizon in Montcalm County. But for those who stepped into the Montcalm Area Career Center (MACC) in Sidney for the fifth annual All Things Green event, plants, gardens and landscaping products were found in abundance as more than 20 vendors gathered to promote local agriculture.
An electrical fire that is believed to have begun in the bedroom of a woman’s home was successfully extinguished Thursday before the fire could spread throughout the rest of the residence.