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Three-county campaign to Take the Stairs kicks off September 3

Three-county campaign to Take the Stairs kicks off September 3

Organizations in Kent, Ottawa and Muskegon counties are teaming up this week to encourage people to take the stairs.

Take the Stairs Week runs September 3 through September 6.  The three-day campaign is meant to encourage people to become more physically active while saving energy.  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, graphic designs promoting healthy behavior have been shown to motivate stair users; that’s why Kendall College of Art and Design at Ferris State University created images for this campaign.  Free color signs are available at the Heart of West Michigan United Way for businesses and organizations with escalators or elevators.

Participating agencies include:

The American Institute of Architects, Grand Rapids Chapte

Pete plants picture perfect pumpkin patch

Pete plants picture perfect pumpkin patch

ROCKFORD, Mich.-- Pete Kruer, the owner of Rockford's Ace Hardware, is not one to rest on his laurels.

After a recently successful foray into all things grilling and smoking, including professional outdoor cooking classes, Kruer is at it once again, tweaking his business model.

In a partnership with Randy VanderWerp, owner of Rockford Floor Covering, Kruer has planted the one acre immediately adjacent to the south side of his Northland Avenue hardware store with pumpkins. VanderWerp owns the property and Kruer is share-cropping the fertile parcel of land. Together they will share the spoils and/or reap the profits.

Kent County accepting household hazardous waste

Kent County accepting household hazardous waste

Kent County will be accepting household hazardous waste from residents Saturday, August 24.

Residents with proper ID can drop off items from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. at 1500 Scribner Ave. NW. The county will also accept drop-off items at the following times and locations:

  • September 7: 5068 Breton Rd. SE, Kentwood
  • September 21: 2350 Ivanrest SW, Grandville
  • October 12: 2908 Ten Mile Rd. in Rockford
  • October 26: 1500 Scribner Ave. NW, Grand Rapids

Chemicals including weed killers, bug sprays, antifreeze, gasoline, oil-based paint, wood preservatives, paint thinner, pool chemicals, deck cleaners, fluorescent light bulbs, mercury thermometers and thermostats will all be accepted.  Latex paint, medical waste, prescription drugs, ammunition and fireworks are prohibited.

Grand Valley Metro Council to award grants to six community projects

Grand Valley Metro Council to award grants to six community projects

The Grand Valley Metro Council will award $668,000 in grant funding to six community projects.

On Tuesday, a GVMC committee narrowed down the pool from 85 projects to seven.  A day later, a study group met with the committee to whittle the finalists down to six.

The grant money will be divvyed up between Cannon Township, Jamestown Township, Rockford, Wyoming, Grand Rapids and the Kent County Parks Department.   All of the projects are non-motorized, meaning they will not involve road improvements or construction. GVMC plans to release further details of the projects at a later date.

Free waste drop-off in Cannon Township

Free waste drop-off in Cannon Township

CANNON TOWNSHIP, Mich.—Residents looking to clean out their homes will get some help from the Township this fall.

On Monday, August 25, the township board is expected to approve a community cleanup effort for September 19-21.   On those days, residents can drop off waste at the township center for free.

Items can be dropped off between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. September 19 and 20, and 8 a.m. to noon September 21.  Proof of residency is required.

The township will not accept household hazardous wastes listed on the Kent County website.  Additionally, tires must be cut up and propane/fuel tanks must be cut in half or cleaned out.  Whole tires, mattresses and box springs will cost $10 to drop off.

Star-gazers invited to Perseid meteor shower party August 10

Star-gazers invited to Perseid meteor shower party August 10

ROCKFORD, Mich.—Saul Lake Bog Preserve will be filled with star-gazers Saturday, August 10, intent on catching the annual Perseid meteor shower.

The “Star Party” is being coordinated by the Land Conservancy of West Michigan, Boy Scout Troop 228 and the Grand Rapids Amateur Astronomical Association (GRAAA). The family-friendly event begins at 8 p.m.

Several members of the GRAAA will be providing telescopes for the public to get a closer look at the Perseid meteor shower, which is considered one of the best meteor showers of the year.   Viewers could potentially see more than 50 meteors per hour at the celestial show’s peak.

Boy Scout members also plan to lead night hikes through the preserve during the Star Party. Guests can also relax around a campfire.

Registration for the Star Party is required.   To sign up, click here or call 616-451-9476.

Kent County accepting household hazardous waste

Kent County accepting household hazardous waste

Kent County will be accepting household hazardous waste from residents Saturday, August 10. 

Residents with proper ID can drop off items from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. at 2908 Ten Mile Rd. in Rockford. The county will also accept drop-off items at the following times and locations:

  • August 24: 1500 Scribner Ave. NW, Grand Rapids
  • September 7: 5068 Breton Rd. SE, Kentwood
  • September 21: 2350 Ivanrest SW, Grandville
  • October 12: 2908 Ten Mile Rd. in Rockford
  • October 26: 1500 Scribner Ave. NW, Grand Rapids

Chemicals including weed killers, bug sprays, antifreeze, gasoline, oil-based paint, wood preservatives, paint thinner, pool chemicals, deck cleaners, fluorescent light bulbs, mercury thermometers and thermostats will all be accepted.  Latex paint, medical waste, prescription drugs, ammunition and fireworks are prohibited.