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News That Affects You Archives for 2021-03

Spectrum Health Announces New Visitor Restrictions

As a result of significantly increasing numbers of patients admitted with COVID-19 and the increase in community positivity rate, Spectrum Health is revising its visitor policies to reduce the number of people in its Grand Rapids and regional hospitals and outpatient care sites.

Effective Wednesday, March 31, adult patients are allowed one adult family member or guest per patient. This must be the same person for the patient’s entire hospital stay. The following exceptions will apply:


Labor and delivery obstetrics patients are allowed two adult visitors. These must be the same two people for the patient’s entire hospital stay.

Patients with COVID-19 are not allowed in-person visitors, however the care team will work with patients and families to coordinate virtual visits.

Emergency department patients are limited to one adult guest per patient.

Adult radiology and laboratory patients at the hospital or outpatient care sites are not
allowed guests except for those patients here for an obstetric ultrasound or those who
need assistance with activities of daily living or have cognitive impairments. These
individuals will be allowed one adult guest.

Adult patients at Spectrum Health physician offices and surgery centers are allowed one
adult family member or guest for surgical sedated procedures, but no visitors unless the
patient needs physical or cognitive support. Patients may contact office staff for
extenuating circumstances.

Pediatric patients under the age of 21 are allowed two adult family members (parent or
guardian or their designee only) per patient stay.


For pediatric outpatient services, physician offices and surgery, pediatric patients are
allowed one family member or guests per patient visit.


Pediatric radiology patients are allowed one adult family member per patient.


Pediatric hematology and oncology clinic and infusion center patients are allowed one
adult family member per patient.


The new restrictions apply to the following Spectrum Health hospitals and nearby physician
offices and ambulatory care sites:
Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital
Spectrum Health Blodgett Hospital
Spectrum Health Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital
Spectrum Health Fred and Lena Meijer Heart Center
Spectrum Health Lemmen-Holton Cancer Pavilion

Spectrum Health Big Rapids Hospital
Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial
Spectrum Health Kelsey Hospital
Spectrum Health Pennock
Spectrum Health Reed City Hospital
Spectrum Health United Hospital
Spectrum Health Zeeland Community Hospital
Spectrum Health Ludington Hospital

In addition, in order to prevent the spread of coronavirus, all visitors will be screened and are required to wear a mask that covers their mouth and nose to enter the hospitals and outpatient facilities. Spectrum Health dining rooms continue to be closed to visitors. Hospital food service will be available in the cafeteria through to-go orders. 

Suspects steal vehicles back to back nights in Green Twp.


The Mecosta County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a Stolen Auto complaint in Green Twp in the 22000 Block of 205th Avenue. 


A resident woke up Tuesday morning 3/23/21 to find his 2008 Chevrolet HHR stolen which was later recovered in Newaygo County. 


The complainant woke up Wednesday morning 3/24/21 to find his 2010 Red Ford F450 Superduty pickup stolen. 


The owner left the keys in the HHR and unknowingly left the keys in the pickup.


If anyone has information on the back to back vehicle thefts, or have seen the Ford Pickup, they are asked to contact the Mecosta County Sheriff’s Office.


Mecosta Co. Sheriff's Office and Big Rapids DPS team up for Youth Academy

The Mecosta County Sheriff’s Office and the Big Rapids Police Department announce a new program for youth this summer.


The Mecosta County Youth Academy is a one week program open to boys and girls, ages 12-14 from July 19-23.


During the academy, 15 students will be introduced to the roles and responsibilities of first responders in the area. Topics will include Teamwork, Leadership, Physical Fitness, Defensive Tactics and Firearms safety.


Students will learn from instructors from the Mecosta County Sheriff’s Office, the Big Rapids Police Department, the Michigan State Police, Ferris State University Department of Public Safety, and the Big Rapids City Fire Department.


Space is limited is limited so act fast.

DHD#10: All eligible priority groups can NOW schedule online ; 16+ starting Monday

District Health Department #10 (DHD#10) announces that all currently eligible priority groups can now schedule directly online to receive your first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at Those currently eligible include adults 50+, healthcare workers, frontline essential workers, and caregivers of individuals with special needs. You can schedule online even if you are currently on a waiting list. If you do not have access to a computer, call 888-217-3904 during regular business hours for scheduling assistance. 


Starting Monday, March 22, anyone age 16 and older will also be eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine from DHD#10; however, you must be 18 or older to schedule yourself online. You do not have to have a medical condition to be eligible. Individuals aged 16 and 17 must be scheduled by a parent or legal guardian and can only receive the Pfizer vaccine. If you are a parent or legal guardian of a 16- or 17-year-old and you want them to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, please enter their information on the 16-17 waitlist at beginning Monday. One of our schedulers will contact you directly to schedule. Please do not schedule 16- or 17-year-olds online. 


“Vaccine supply is improving so we decided to open up the eligibility to anyone 16 and over starting Monday”, stated Kevin Hughes, Health Officer for DHD#10. “We will add clinic dates each week, so if there are no dates available when you go to schedule online, keep checking back for more dates to open up and try and schedule again.”  


DHD#10 reminds everyone to please keep your appointment with us once you are scheduled because a vaccine is reserved specifically for you. If you cancel because you were able to get one somewhere else sooner, that causes issues with vaccine clinics. Also, when you schedule with DHD#10, your second dose is automatically reserved and you will be scheduled for it at your first dose appointment. 


For questions, email us at For more COVID-19 vaccine information, visit us at To stay informed, sign up for our Public Health Alert at  


4 juveniles caught breaking in and damaging Barryton businesses

Four Juveniles were apprehended after a break-in at the Professional Dental Associates Office on Northern Avenue in Barryton. 


According to Detective Casey Nemeth of the Mecosta Co. Sheriff's Office the suspects broke in through a window and took small amount of petty cash and some dental supplies. 


Additional investigation led to identifying the four local juvenile suspects ages 8, 12, 12, and 14.  


All admitted to involvement in the incident and admitted to taking dental supplies and petty cash. The dental supplies were recovered in the suspects possession.


Deputies also responded to two separate locations near the Breaking and Entering where two of the juveniles had spray painted graffiti on a garage and the Frontier Building.


The report will be sent to the prosecutor for review for all four juveniles in probate court.

Sears teen injured in rollover crash in Mecosta Co.

A 17-year old Sears man is recovering following a rollover accident in Mecosta County Thursday.


It happened near the intersection of Arthur Rd/45th Ave in Sheridan Twp.


Deputies say the driver, a 17-year old man from Sears failed to negotiate a curve and overturned.


The driver was ejected from the vehicle and was transported to Spectrum Health Big Rapids Hospital for non-life threatening injuries.


Speed was a factor in the accident.


Possible tax deadline extension on the horizon?

People who still have to file their taxes will have extra time.


A U.S. House Committee says the traditional April 15th filing deadline will be pushed to May 17th.


Those involved with the decision say the extension will allow Americans some needed flexibility as they continue to navigate the coronavirus pandemic.


The extension also gives the IRS time to issue guidance on recent changes to tax law under the American Rescue Plan, which is the latest stimulus package.

Ferris State University President David L. Eisler announces June 2022 retirement date

Ferris State University President David L. Eisler announced today he will retire as the University’s 18th president in June 2022, capping a 47-year career in higher education. He began his presidency at Ferris in 2003 and after the university’s founder, Woodbridge N. Ferris, is its longest serving president.


Under his leadership, Ferris has witnessed unparalleled growth and advancement over the last 18 years. Student retention and graduation rates have sharply increased, the latter by 65%. Fifteen major building projects totaling $400 million were begun during this period, including the former Federal Building in Grand Rapids, the Michigan College of Optometry building, the University Center, the newest residence hall on campus, North Hall, and most recently the Center for Virtual Learning. During this time, the university’s presence has dramatically increased across Michigan, providing access to a Ferris education through partnerships with 22 community colleges across the state.


To further support students and the university, Eisler has led increased philanthropic efforts, with The Ferris Foundation’s endowment growing from $18 million to $100 million. The university is in the final stages of its first-ever $115 million comprehensive campaign. In 2019 he and his wife, Patsy, established the Norris and Irene Johnson Scholarship Endowment to assist former foster care youth pursuing a bachelor’s degree at the university.


Eisler is an active community and educational leader, serving currently as chair for the Midwestern Higher Education Compact and on the boards of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities, the Grand Rapids Symphony, the Michigan Association of State Universities (MASU), Michigan Campus Compact (MCC), the Michigan Nonprofit Association (MNA), Michigan Works! West Central, Talent 2025 and the Michigan United Way. He has also served as board chair for MASU, the MNA and the university’s two sports conferences, the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) and the Western Collegiate Hockey Association (WCHA).


In 2013 Eisler was the inaugural recipient of Grand Rapids Business Journal’s Newsmaker of the Year and in 2014 Ferris State University was the first university to receive the Uncommon Greatness Award from the Grand Rapids Chamber of Commerce. He is also a member of the University of Michigan School of Music, Theatre and Dance Hall of Fame.


Amna P. Seibold, chair of the university’s Board of Trustees, said the university is a stronger, greater institution today because of Eisler’s hard work and dedication to Ferris. 


“President Eisler’s remarkable tenure has encapsulated many successes and challenges for higher education, and his vision and commitment to Ferris State University have been unwavering,” said Seibold. “My fellow board members and the university community appreciate his strong leadership and advocacy for higher education, and will join me in offering Dr. Eisler our deepest gratitude for his service to Ferris.”


In making the announcement to the university community, Eisler shared his appreciation of the opportunity to serve as president.


“Working at Ferris State University is a privilege, and it has been my honor to serve as president. This is a great university, with a unique and special mission, one that truly changes lives,” said Eisler. “When I speak with our alumni I often hear the phrase, ‘if it weren’t for Ferris...’ My experience at Ferris has been so much more than I could have ever imagined. While I may be retiring, I will always be a Bulldog.”


Seibold said a search for the university’s 19th president would begin in the coming months.

Mecosta man arrested after trying to run from police


A Mecosta man was arrested after trying to flee from police during a traffic stop.


It happened on 11 Mile Road near 90th Ave in Morton Township. 


The driver, 42-year old Kelley Green was out on bond on earlier charges, attempted to Flee and Elude the deputies. 


After finally stopping he was placed under arrest for three outstanding Contempt of Court Warrants, A Felony Warrant for Possession of Meth, and flee and elude. Green was also Issued tickets for no license, no insurance, no plate and open intoxicants in a motor vehicle.


His bond was set at $50,000.

Rockford woman rear ends semi tractor; alcohol suspected

Police believe alcohol played a role in a one car accident where the female driver rear ended a semi tractor trailer in Mecosta County Thursday evening. 


Deputies say it happened just after 6:30pm on US-131 near mile marker 125. 


An Investigation found that a 50-year old Rockford woman had rear ended a semi tractor trailer, traveled off road and then overturned.  


The Rockford woman was taken to Spectrum Health Big Rapids for non life threatening injuries.  


Alcohol is believed to be a factor in the crash.

UPDATE: Father charged in connection to explosion of homemade device at Newaygo High School

A man is facing charges following the explosion of a homemade device inside Newaygo High School.


33-year old David Robert Daniel Saylor was arraigned Tuesday on counts of manufacturing or possession of molotov cocktail and contributing to the delinquency of a minor. The charges include heightened penalties because Saylor is being charged as a habitual offender.


Investigators say Saylor is the father of the student who caused Monday's explosion at Newaygo High School.


Michigan State Police say a 16-year-old student brought the device to school, then accidentally set it off inside a classroom injuring himself and four other students and a teacher.


Troopers continued to sweep a home outside Newaygo on Tuesday after more explosive devices were found inside.

Newaygo High School Student accidently detonates homemade explosive in classroom

Police say a teenager brought a homemade explosive device to a western Michigan high school and accidentally detonated it in class.


He and five other people were injured, including a teacher at Newaygo High School.


The Newaygo superintendent says the 16-year-old showed a "serious lack of judgment."


Peg Mathis says the student wasn't trying to hurt others.


The high school was evacuated and students were sent home because of odor and smoke.


The student with the device had "moderate to severe injuries" while four more students and the teacher had minor injuries.

131-Music Fest slated for June 19th

A new live music venue is coming to the Reed City area and it's first concert is slated for June 19th.


Area resident Jason Hardy is organizing the 131 Music Fest set for mid June and says this event will showcase some great musical talent the state of Michigan has to offer.


“There are a lot of great local bands out there and I wanted to give them a place to play so they can show off their talents.”


On June 19th, starting at 3pm, five bands will play throughout the day, including Damned by Dawn; Whiskey Bound; Rock n' Roll Ave.; We, The Infamous; and Jack Pine Savage.


During the event, attendees will be able to watch music performances from two stages, and will have the chance to shop 30 local business and food vendors as well.


If the event is successful, Hardy says he wants to have another concert in September and is also looking to have a blues or Christian festival down the road.


For more event details or to learn how to purchase tickets , visit the event's Facebook page @131MusicFest.

Health Department urges residents to beware of vaccine scammers

The District Health Department #10 (DHD#10) is reporting two different COVID vaccine scams occurring in Mecosta County.


One involved someone going door to door posing as the health department and the other involved someone attempting to sell vaccines to others.


The first occurrence involved two individuals who reported that someone pretending to be from the health department came to their door offering to give them a $30 gift card if they would allow that person to vaccinate them. One of the individuals contacted the police and filed a report. 


In the other occurrence, an individual notified DHD#10 that someone tried to sell him a Johnson & Johnson vaccine and stated the person had a cooler full of the vaccine. It is unknown if the vaccines were real or where the person obtained them.


DHD#10 urges everyone to be very vigilant and suspicious of anyone offering to give or sell them vaccines. The COVID-19 vaccine can only be administered by a vaccine-certified health department, doctor’s office, federally qualified health center, pharmacy, or hospital system. The only time DHD#10 would visit someone in their home to provide a vaccine would be for those that are homebound. In that situation, DHD#10 would call them first and schedule a date and time for that to occur. 

Seasonal weight restrictions on Mecosta Co. roads begin Friday

The Mecosta County Road Commission is implenting its Seasonal Weight Restrictions on county roads effective Friday, March 5th. 


If you have any questions, call Road Commission Superintendent Manager Tim Nestle at 231-796-2611. 

DHD#10 to hold COVID-19 vaccine clinic for 65 and older Friday

Some residents 65 and older can register to receive their first vaccine shots on Friday.


It’s for District Health Department #10 which covers 10-counties including Wexford, Crawford, Kalkaska, Lake, Manistee, Mason, Mecosta, Missaukee, Newaygo, and Oceana. Anyone who signs up for an appointment will be receiving the first of two doses on Friday.


You must be 65 or older and must register online.


The health department says seniors without access to the internet should ask for help from family, friends, and neighbors to schedule an appointment.


Those eligible can go to and read the instructions and information carefully before scheduling. If there are no times available when you select the date, then the clinic is full.


For questions, residents can email


To stay informed, residents can also sign up for public health alerts at

Traffic-related deaths in Michigan increase in 2020

There were fewer drivers and crashes on Michigan roads last year, but more traffic-related deaths. .


State Police say relaxed enforcement by local police departments could be responsible for the increase along with pandemic frustration among drivers.


Deaths on Michigan roads were up 7 percent in 2020 despite 18 percent fewer drivers.


Police say seatbelt use was also down while spinout crashes were up, which led to more people being ejected.


Drug and alcohol use could also be factors.

Ferris State Professor fired for profane tweets

A science professor at Ferris State University has been fired after using racist, antiSemitic and homophobic slurs months ago on Twitter.


Reports say Thomas Brennan, who claimed sinister forces were targeting him and breaking into his home, made the announcement on Twitter Saturday.


Ferris State later confirmed his dismissal but declined to comment further.


The university's student run newspaper first reported about the tweets in November. Brennan was put on administrative leave at the time.


He expressed remorse for the tweets and said they were a consequence of self-destructive behavior.


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Local High School Schedule & Scores

CSAA Baseball

SATURDAY 4/13/24

White Cloud 9 @ Holton 5

White Cloud 0 @ Merrill 13 (6inn)

Clare 16 @ Chip Hills 7 (4inn)

Greenville 9 @ Chip Hills 9 (8inn)

Kent City 1 @ Whitehall 16 (4inn)

Fremont 3 @ Kent City 0


MONDAY 4/15/24

Shepherd 3 @ Big Rapids 9

Shepherd 12 @ Big Rapids 0 (5inn)

Newaygo 0 @ C Montcalm 1

Newaygo 0 @ C Montcalm 2


TUESDAY 4/16/24

Chip Hills 7 @ Tri County 3

Chip Hills 3 @ Tri County 2 (5inn)

Lakeview 2 @ Morley Stanwood 8

Lakeview 5 @ Morley Stanwood 11

Kent City 5 @ Newaygo 10

Kent City 4 @ Newaygo 11

Grant 1 @ Reed City 2

Grant 7 @ Reed City 5

C Montcalm 13 @ White Cloud 2

C Montcalm 2 @ White Cloud 6


THURSDAY 4/18/24

Shelby @ Kent City

Hesperia @ Lakeview


FRIDAY 4/19/24

White Cloud @ Big Rapids

Tri County @ C Montcalm

Newaygo @ Grant

Morley Stanwood @ Kent City

Reed City @ Chip Hills



CSAA Softball

SATURDAY 4/13/24

Grant 0 @ Ravenna 15 (3inn)

Tri County 0 @ Ravenna 10 (CH Forfeit)

Chip Hills 0 @ Clare 16

Chip Hills 0 @ Vestaburg 12

MONDAY 4/15/24

Shepherd 2 @ Big Rapids 12 (5inn)

Shepherd 9 @ Big Rapids 6 (8inn)

Newaygo 15 @ C Montcalm 11

Newaygo 1 @ C Montcalm 14 (5inn)

Lakeview 1 @ Vestaburg 16 (4inn)

Lakeivew 4 @ Vestaburg 10 (8inn)

TUESDAY 4/16/24

Chip Hills @ Tri County

Lakeview @ Morley Stanwood

Kent City 1 @ Newaygo 4

Kent City 0 @ Newaygo 11 (5inn)

Grant 1 @ Reed City 5

Grant 1 @ Reed City 16 (3inn)

C Montcalm @ White Cloud

THURSDAY 4/18/24

Greenville @ C Montcalm

Sparta @ Kent City

Hesperia @ Lakeview

FRIDAY 4/19/24

White Cloud @ Big Rapids

Tri County @ C Montcalm

Newaygo @ Grant

Morley Stanwood @ Kent City

Reed City @ Chip Hills

SATURDAY 4/20/24

Lakeview @Beaverton Tournament

Big Rapids @ TC West

CSAA Baseball Standings

1) Big Rapids: 2-0 | +31 -6 (+25)

2) Morley Stanwood: 2-1 | +24 -17 (+7)

3) Chippewa Hills: 2-1 | +22 -14 (+8)

4) Reed City: 2-1 | +17 -11 (+6)

5) Newaygo: 3-3 | +30 -24 (+6)

6) Central Montcalm: 3-3 | +22 -21 (+1)

7) Kent City: 2-2 | +32 -37 (-5)

8) Grant: 2-2 | +18 -12 (+6)

9) White Cloud: 1-1 | +8 -15 (-7)

10) Tri County: 0-3 | +11 -41 (-30)

11) Lakeview: 0-4 | +23 -41 (-18)

This Week's Poll

What place will the Tigers finish in the AL Central?