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My Town Coopersville: Students win national award to change the world

My Town Coopersville: Students win national award to change the world

COOPERSVILLE, Mich.— A group of Lamont Christian School students are being honored for their lunchroom invention.

Team Recycling Quads is a finalist in this year’s Siemens “We Can Change the World Challenge.”  The middle school students redesigned Lunchables trays in the shape of a plastic bottle so that it could be easily recycled for money.

The team was among three in Michigan selected by a panel of judges comprised of environmental, science and educational leaders.  Each member of the team receives a certificate and green prize pack.  The school also gets a congratulatory banner to display.

“Now, more than ever, environmental issues are at the forefront of our national discussion.  These students bring fresh perspectives with new and exciting solutions that affect change,” said David Etzwiler, CEO of the Siemens Foundation. “The Siemens Foundation and Siemens’ 53,000 employees are inspired by the innovation of these students.”

My Town: Rock & roll nutrition show tours West Michigan

My Town: Rock & roll nutrition show tours West Michigan

HOLLAND, Mich.—A rock and roll nutrition show has arrived in West Michigan.

“Jump with Jill” kicked off a series of performances at five area schools Monday, with a live show at Thomas Jefferson School in Holland.  It’s one of five schools that won a statewide contest, thanks to the generosity of Michigan’s dairy farmers and milk processors and the United Dairy Industry of Michigan as part of their Fuel Up to Play 60 program. 

“Dairy is one of easiest and richest ways that kids can get the calcium they need for strong bones,” says Amy Viselli with the United Dairy Industry of Michigan. “Jump with Jill has serious fun with a serious message. They even dress up a milk jug as a rapper named Calcium.”

My Town Coopersville: Bunny Train makes its first run April 5

My Town Coopersville: Bunny Train makes its first run April 5

COOPERSVILLE, Mich.—The Coopersville & Marne Railway’s Bunny Train is back on the tracks.

The holiday tradition runs Saturdays and Sundays,  April 5-18.  This is the 10th anniversary of the Bunny Train, which takes visitors and the Easter Bunny through the springtime countryside of Coopersville and Marne, aboard a vintage train car built in the early 1900s.  Riders will be entertained by the Easter Bunny’s musical performance with BooBoo the Lamb and Quack the Duck.  The cast of characters also plans to pull playful jokes on passengers and pose for photos.  Each child will also receive a special gift from the Easter Bunny.

Admission is $14.50 for adults/seniors, $13.50 for children ages 2-12, and free for children ages two and under.  For more information, visit www.MiTrain.net or call (616) 997-7000.  

My Town: Sams Joint restaurants closing; memorabilia auctions planned

My Town: Sams Joint restaurants closing; memorabilia auctions planned

COOPERSVILLE, Mich.—The owner of Sams Joint restaurant is closing his remaining restaurants.

Sam Bravata plans to auction off all of the vintage and collectable items that decorate the four restaurants online, beginning Tuesday, March 25.  The first auction on Orbitbid.com will feature more than 600 items from the Sam’s Joint in Coopersville.  Subsequent online auctions will include memorabilia from the Middleville, Plainwell and Norton Shores restaurants.

Bravata opened the first of his nine Sam’s Joint restaurants in Caledonia in 1977.  The collectibles he used to decorate each restaurant came from all around the state of Michigan.

My Town Coopersville: Summertime farmers market saved

My Town Coopersville: Summertime farmers market saved

COOPERSVILLE, Mich.—The Coopersville Farm Museum is saving a summertime tradition.

On Jan. 14, the Downtown Development Authority voted to skip organizing the farmers market this year.  The DDA said it didn’t get enough response when it moved the weekly event  to the Veteran's Park area. 

Around the time of the vote, the DDA also approached the Coopersville Farm Museum to see if it would like to take on the farmers market.  Within the last month, the Farm Museum decided to move forward with organizing the market.

Kate Landon with the Coopersville Farm Museum says the farmers market will be every Wednesday, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., starting May 7 and running through October.  Landon says the Farm Museum will also hold a farmers market on the last Saturday of each month.  The event will take place in the Farm Museum’s parking lot, at 375 Main Street.

My Town: American Red Cross continues history of helping

My Town: American Red Cross continues history of helping

For 133 years, the American Red Cross has taken the lead in organizing an army of volunteers to help communities devastated by disasters.

Without volunteers, the organization wouldn’t function.  That includes the more than 3.5 million people who volunteered to give blood last year, providing  a life-saving resource for patients in about 3,000 U.S. hospitals and transfusion centers. 

 “While the world changes around us, our mission never does,” said Todd Kulman, communications program manager for the American Red Cross Great Lakes Blood Services Region. “We’re all about helping others during times of great need – and we can do that because of the generosity of countless volunteers and donors—including people who roll up their sleeve and give blood.”

If you’d like to join the efforts, the following blood drivers are scheduled:

My Town: St. Mary’s Church parishioners pledge $1.87M for new education center

My Town: St. Mary’s Church parishioners pledge $1.87M for new education center

SPRING LAKE, Mich.―During a special “Announcement Weekend” mass held recently at St. Mary’s Church in Spring Lake, Fr. Dan DePew made public for the first time the news that St. Mary’s church parishioners pledged $1,876,280 over the past month toward construction of a new St. Mary’s Catholic Education Center.

The proposed Center is expected to be built at 421 East Exchange Street in Spring Lake within the next three to four years. Plans call for it to replace the existing St. Mary’s School, which is currently located at the site. The 15,000 square foot school was built in 1954 and has been deemed to be beyond its life expectancy. It currently serves 212 students from 1,250 families who live in Coopersville, Ferrysburg, Grand Haven, Fruitport and Spring Lake. The nearby St. Mary’s Church, which sits adjacent to the school, houses a preschool and after-school extension program, as well as faith formation and Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults programs.