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Rockford MSU student helps MSU to the final four

Lansing, Mich. (WZZM) - It takes more than a good basketball team and a good coach to be dominate in the NCAA tournament. You need to know your opponents inside and out, and that's where the MSU student managers come in.

Jake Schemmel is one of them.

"I do all my scouting reports here on this computer," explains Schemmel in the back office at the Breslin Center in East Lansing. "Here we got stuff getting ready for Duke." The computer displays lines of information about each Duke player.

Schemmel is part of a team that prepares information about opponents for MSU coaches and players. Information like where Duke players like to shoot from and who likes to do quick passes. Other useful pieces of information include identifying players who like to drive the lane and other aspects of the game.

And it's not just Duke they're preparing for.

Special Olympics state basketball finals Fri. & Sat.

ROCKFORD, Mich. (WZZM) -- Approximately 530 athletes and 170 coaches and chaperons gathered in Rockford Friday for the Special Olympics state basketball finals. The event lasts through Saturday at Rockford High School, Freshman Center, and North Middle School.

Friday's opening ceremony was hosted by WZZM 13's Juliet Dragos, who also serves as board of directors vice chair for Special Olympics Michigan.

WZZM 13 is a media sponsor of the event, and the news team, along with some of our friends from Free Beer and Hot Wings, faced off with elite Special Olympics athletes in a game following the tournament's opening ceremony. The Special Olympics athletes, the KEC Blazers, beat the media team.

Rockford planning commission approves condo development

ROCKFORD, Mich. (WZZM) -- Despite loud opposition, a development is moving forward that will bring major changes to downtown Rockford.

The community shared their concerns with the city planning commission Thursday night. Commissioners still gave the project the go-ahead.

Back in February, the city commission approved the preliminary plan to build the 51-unit Tamarack Run condo development.

Thursday evening, the planning commission also approved the plan, by a five-to-one vote.

City hall was packed, though, with community members strongly opposed to the project. Among their concerns are the environmental impact and increased traffic. The new construction will nearly double the amount of homes in the area near Monroe Street.

My Town: Rockford Brewing Company to release inaugural bottled brew

My Town: Rockford Brewing Company to release inaugural bottled brew

ROCKFORD, Mich.—Rockford Brewing Company is getting ready to roll out its first bottles of brew since opening in December 2012.

The company’s first bottle release will take place 5 p.m. on April 7 at Rockford Brewing Company's Public House, located at 12 E. Bridge Street. Rockford Brewing Company chose its Belgian Multigrain Anniversary Ale for the inaugural distribution. The series of bottled beers, dubbed the Enthusiast Collection, will come in European shaped bottles with a classic label.

Rockford Brewing Company describes its Belgian Multigrain Anniversary Ale as a rich, malty Belgian beer brewed with barley, wheat, rye and oats. Because bottled Anniversary Ale is very limited, patrons may only purchase up to two bottles a day. Rockford Brewing Company only has 100 total bottles from its 2013 batch and 500 bottles from its 2014 batch.

My Town: Kent ISD throws support behind sales tax hike proposal

My Town: Kent ISD throws support behind sales tax hike proposal

KENT COUNTY, Mich.--- The Kent Intermediate School District is throwing its support behind a sales tax hike to fix Michigan’s roads and provide additional funding for schools and local governments.

Thursday, March 19, the Kent ISD Board approved a resolution in support of Proposal 1, which will be on the May 5 ballot.  In the resolution, the Board said Michigan ranks last in the nation in transportation spending per person.  The Board also noted money being siphoned from the School Aid Fund to higher education, since the previous sales tax proposal generating funding for schools did not include colleges and universities.

Woman found safe after being reported missing

ROCKFORD, Mich. (WZZM) -- Investigators say a woman reported missing in the Rockford area has been found.

Antoinette "Toni" Morrison, 59, was reported missing Friday evening after having last been seen in the afternoon East Main near Elizabeth. She has dementia, according to authorities.

Kent County Search and Rescue, the Kent County Sheriff Department, and the Michigan State Police helped the Department of Public Safety look for her.

My Town: Sweet surprise comes to downtown Rockford

My Town: Sweet surprise comes to downtown Rockford

ROCKFORD, Mich.—Visitors to Rockford are in for a sweet surprise.

Sweetland Chocolates & Coffee is moving in.  The company recently posted signs on its new storefront at 9 North Main Street NE.  According to the company’s Facebook page, the new candy and coffee shop will feature a full espresso bar.

Sweetland Chocolates & Coffee is expected to open in June.