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My Town: Head Start for Kent County names new executive director

My Town: Head Start for Kent County names new executive director

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—A new face is taking the helm of the Head Start for Kent County.

The Board of Directors has appointed MaDonna Princer as executive director of the Walker-based organization, which provides resources to low-income families to aid in the well-being and development of children age five and under.

Princer has worked with the Head Start Program EightCAP, Inc. of Greenville for 15 years.  For the last five years, she’s held a senior management position overseeing childhood systems within the areas of early childhood education, child and family outcomes, family engagement and evaluation.

Princer replaces Mary Hockwalt, who is retiring this summer after 13 years of serving as executive director for Head Start for Kent County.

OPINION: What happened to common sense?

OPINION: What happened to common sense?

Most days I get to see a portion of ABC's Good Morning America and most days I end up shaking my head at some of the common sense subjects that are discussed. Believe me, it’s not just on this program, but most talk shows anymore.

Today they were discussing how many calories are in certain healthy foods and how some of the numbers can be surprising; but when I was growing up or our children were growing up, choices like dried fruit versus fresh fruit was not discussed because we only had fresh or home canned fruit, to my knowledge.

My Town Coopersville: Date set for annual Benefit Sale

My Town Coopersville: Date set for annual Benefit Sale

COOPERSVILLE, Mich.-- Coopersville Cares, a local nonprofit organization to help those in need, will be holding its annual Benefit Sale on Friday, Aug. 15 from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday, Aug. 16, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The sale location is Grace Lutheran Church, 300 E. Cleveland.  Both new and used items will be available for purchase, including toys, clothing, furniture and household items.

Thrivent Financial for Lutherans will be matching part of the proceeds.

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.” 

Rhubarb Custard Squares; It's still that time of year

Rhubarb Custard Squares; It's still that time of year

My Grandma use to tell us kids that Rhubarb was like a Spring Tonic after the long winter. For that reason, I probably should have listed this recipe under Health. Anyway, I ran across this recipe recently, made it, and it was a hit. The rhubarb can almost be mistaken for apples when it is baked up.

Try this recipe for a special occasion and see what your family or guests think.

Rhubarb Custard Squares          

2 cups Flour

¼ cup Sugar

1 cup cold Butter

Combine in a bowl and mix until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Press into a greased 9x13 cake pan and bake at 350 for 10 minutes.


2 cups Sugar

7 Tablespoons Flour

1 cup heavy Whipping Cream

3 Eggs, beaten

5 cups cut up Rhubarb

My Town Walker: Trail renamed to honor late parks supporter

My Town Walker: Trail renamed to honor late parks supporter

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

WALKER, Mich. – The Kent County Parks Foundation is pleased to announce that four miles of trails in Millennium Park will forever be recognized as the Sandy Hansen Shoreline Trails.  Part of the Fred Meijer Millennium Trail Network, the Sandy Hansen Shoreline Trails include a one-mile nature trail and three miles of paved, multi-purpose trail. 

Sandy is remembered for her passion for nature and birds, a legacy she nurtured in her three children and eleven grandchildren.  She volunteered for West Michigan Environmental Action Council, was active in the Audubon Society, and was a long-time supporter of the Kent County Parks Foundation.  When she passed away in January, her husband of 49 years, Dick Hansen, along with their children, Rick, Beth, Kristi and the grandchildren, pledged a significant gift in Sandy’s honor to memorialize her love of nature and parks.   

My Town: Lowell teacher donates his shag to charity

My Town: Lowell teacher donates his shag to charity

LOWELL, Mich.—A teacher’s head is a little lighter this summer, after winning a very hairy bet to help others.

As a retired Army officer, Rob Stevens had always kept his hair trim; that’s why his friend Steve Cannady thought he could win an easy bet by challenging Stevens to growing his hair to at least ten inches.  If Stevens could resist the urge to pick up a pair of scissors, Cannady promised to donate $20 an inch to the charity of Stevens’ choice.

Earlier this month, Stevens celebrated his first hair cut since November 2012, during an assembly at Cherry Creek Elementary, where he teaches fifth grade.  The Humane Society of West Michigan was on hand to accept the $200 donation.  The hair will go into a wig for Children With Hair Loss.