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My Town: Whites Bridge Historical Society granted oversight of bridge area

My Town: Whites Bridge Historical Society granted oversight of bridge area

LOWELL, Mich.—  The Whites Bridge Historical Society is taking on a larger role in the community.

The group, which is leading the effort to rebuild the historic Whites Bridge, was recently granted a land use permit to oversee and maintain the north side canoe/kayak launch area, as well as the bridge abutment, boardwalk and parking areas. 

The Whites Bridge Historical Society is working on securing grant funding and fundraising to build a replica of the bridge, which was destroyed by arson on July 7, 2013.   The project is expected to cost approximately $400,000.

My Town: City lifts boil water advisory for downtown Lowell

My Town: City lifts boil water advisory for downtown Lowell

UPDATE (July 18)-- The city has lifted the boil water advisory.

LOWELL, Mich.--  A boil water advisory is in effect for a portion of downtown Lowell.

The advisory took effect Wednesday morning, as city employees repaired a water main break in the 200 block of East Main Street.  All businesses and apartments on the north side of that block, including the Chamber of Commerce and Englehardt Library, are asked to boil their water before use.

The city will be collecting water samples to determine when water is safe to drink again.    The city anticipates receiving the results with a couple of days.  If the tests come back clear and the boil water advisory is lifted, residents will be notified.  For more information, contact the City of Lowell Water Department at (616) 897-5929 or (616) 813-8603.

My Town: August voters to decide funding for Kent District Library branches

My Town: August voters to decide funding for Kent District Library branches

-------NEWS RELEASE-------

KENT COUNTY, Mich. (Kent District Library)-- On Tuesday, August 5, 2014, Kent District Library residents will vote on a 1.28 mills ballot proposal to provide funding for KDL for 10 years.

The 1.28 millage rate consists of a renewal of the 0.88 mills levy, which has been in place since 2000 and expires at the end of 2014, and an additional 0.4 mills. The Kent District Library property tax millage provides 90% of the funding for services offered at 18 branch locations and online, including all library materials, technology, staff and programs.

My Town: Committee to review judicial candidates for 63rd District Court

My Town: Committee to review judicial candidates for 63rd District Court

ROCKFORD, Mich.—A review committee with the Grand Rapids Bar Association is inviting candidates for the 63rd District Court seat to take part in their review process.

The judicial candidate review committee is already beginning its confidential evaluation process of the candidates.  Six people are on the ballot for the seat, currently held by Judge Steven Servaas.  The 15 member committee expects to wrap up its reviews and issue ratings ahead of the Aug. 5 primary election.

All communications intended for the committee should be mailed to Kimberly Coleman, Executive Director, Grand Rapids Bar Association, 161 Ottawa NW, Suite 203-B, Grand Rapids, MI 49503.

Michigan’s 63rd District represents a large swath of Kent County, including Sparta, Plainfield Township, Alpine Township, Ada, Lowell, Rockford and East Grand Rapids.

Caught Being Safe program launches statewide

Michigan State Police, local law enforcement and Michigan’s Field Neurosciences Institute have teamed up with McDonald’s of Michigan to once again launch “Caught Being Safe,” a statewide bicycle/scooter helmet safety program. Kids wearing helmets and “caught being safe” by participating law enforcement officials will treated to a free ice cream cone or Apple Dippers at McDonald’s. 

According to the Field Neurosciences Institute (of Michigan): “Caught Being Safe! has shown a significant increase in both helmet utilization and public awareness regarding the critical importance of wearing a bicycle helmet. This program has impacted not only children but adults as well.” 

My Town: Lowell unveils Riverwalk stage and showboat master plan

My Town: Lowell unveils Riverwalk stage and showboat master plan

LOWELL, Mich.--  Consultants have presented the final plan and outcome of the City of Lowell Riverwalk stage and showboat master plan that began last October 2013.

Over the last nine months the steering committee met with two groups of stakeholders, held two public forums and used social media and e-blasts to gather information and feedback to complete this project.  The purpose of this project was to develop a master plan and conceptual design for the Lowell Riverwalk area with specific attention to creating a new multi-functional stage structure and identifying the community’s long term vision for the Lowell Showboat. 

On Monday, June 16, Dave Austin of Williams & Works and Pat Cornelisse from Cornelisse Design Associates presented a conceptual design of the Riverwalk area and stage, along with a vision for the Lowell Showboat to the city council. 

My Town: Check out a Book Buddy at your local library

My Town: Check out a Book Buddy at your local library

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. - Firemen, ballerinas, mascots, sports figures, literary characters and more will be at local library branches on June 21 to get kids reading!

Kent District Library, Grand Rapids Public Library and the Heart of West Michigan United Way are joining forces to present Book Buddies, a program that encourages children to check out a “book buddy” and spend ten minutes reading their favorite book together.

The Book Buddies program is designed to help children meet the goal of reading 400 minutes over the summer, the amount of time it is estimated that kids should spend reading to prevent summer slide and maintain the reading gains they made over the school year.

Seven local library branches will present Book Buddies on June 21. The schedule is as follows: