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Motorcycle benefit ride honors officer killed on the road

Motorcycle benefit ride honors officer killed on the road

EAST GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—Motorcyclists are invited to honor one of their own while helping U.S. service members Saturday, July 27.

Mike Winchester was a five-year veteran of the East Grand Rapids Department of Public Safety. He died on August 8, 2007 when his motorcycle collided with a semi after rounding a curve on Alden Nash near 36th Street in Lowell Township.

In keeping with Winchester’s legacy of helping others, the Grand Rapids Warthogs Motorcycle Club is holding the Mike Winchester Memorial Ride Saturday.  The ride and dinner is $25 per person or $40 per couple.  Dinner only is $10 per person.   The proceeds will go to Hope for the Warriors, which is a non-profit organization supporting services members and families affected by injuries or death in the line of duty.

West Michigan Archery Center closer to construction

West Michigan Archery Center closer to construction

ALGOMA TOWNSHIP, Mich.—Algoma Township officials are reviewing bids from companies interested in building the West Michigan Archery Center.

The new facility will be part of a larger sports complex on 10 Mile Rd in Rockford.  The proposed 9,700 square foot archery center will feature an indoor range and a 90 meter national tournament range, as well as 3-D courses for all ages.  The deadline for construction bids was July 22.

The non-profit West Michigan Archery Center was established in June 2011, as more youth archery programs began popping up, and interest in the sport grew. The Easton Foundation was so impressed with the WMAC’s program and proposed facility, it donated $250,000 towards the project.  From there, state grants and local donations followed.

Rockford Varsity Football at Ford Field

Rockford Varsity Football at Ford Field

Rockford developer agrees to deal saving district $100,000

Rockford developer agrees to deal saving district $100,000

A Rockford based developer has struck a deal with Caledonia Community Schools (CCS), saving the district nearly $100,000.

After building the Ralph E. Meyers Football Stadium, CCS found out it would need more land next to the new venue for service and access to the stadium.  The land was part of a foreclosed property Sable Homes recently purchased.  After a series of negotiations, Sable Homes agreed to grant a permanent easement for the district, eliminating the need to purchase the land, worth an estimated $100,000.

“We are thankful for the agreement that Sable Homes and John Bitely offered to Caledonia Community Schools,” said Randy Rodriguez, superintendent of CCS.

Volunteers needed for Rockford Area Kids Triathlon July 13

ROCKFORD, Mich.—Volunteers are still needed to help pull of this year’s Rockford Area Kids Triathlon.

Volunteers are needed for all aspects of the event, including registration, traffic control and runner safety.

The Triathlon will take place Saturday, July 13 at Rockford High School, from 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. Proceeds from the race will go to Rockford Explorer and D.A.R.E. programs.  For event information or to sign up to help, click here.

Cyclists raise more than $3,000 for Freedom In Motion

Cyclists raise more than $3,000 for Freedom In Motion

Four West Michigan cyclists are back home after traveling more than 270 miles to ensure others have bicycles.

On June 20, Derek Rust and Ben Hyink of Grand Haven and Todd Stelma and Doug Crysler of Rockford rode  from Rockford to Mackinac City to raise funds and awareness of the non-profit organization, Freedom In Motion.  Freedom In Motion volunteers take in donated bicycles, repairing them and redistributing them to those in need.

During their more than 15 hour journey, the four cyclists maxed out a $1,500 donor match, thanks to last minute donations.  Rust says calls are still coming in from potential volunteers, donors and clients.

For more information about Freedom In Motion, click here.

Cyclists begin 250 mile trek to bring bicycles to those in need

Cyclists begin 250 mile trek to bring bicycles to those in need

The weather is cooperating for four West Michigan cyclists riding 250 miles to ensure all children have bicycles.

Derek Rust and Ben Hyink of Grand Haven and Todd Stelma and Doug Crysler of Rockford began their three-day ride June 20. The journey to Mackinaw City is meant to raise funds and awareness of the non-profit organization, Freedom in Motion. Freedom In Motion volunteers take in donated bicycles, repairing them and redistributing them to those in need.

"Some don’t realize that bikes are more than toys for people who can’t afford the expense of a vehicle" Stelma said.

 Rust adds, "We’ve seen real people with real needs. The bikes we give out make sustainable reliable transportation possible for those who need to get to work, the store or a job interview".

Rust says a donor has agreed to match pledges and donations dollar for dollar, up to $1,500.