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News That Affects You Archives for 2023-03

Barryton driver overturns vehicle after sliding on patch of ice

A 37-year old Barryton woman is recovering after being involved in an car accident Wednesday. 

 

The Mecosta County Sheriff's Office says  the woman was traveling eastbound on 20 Mile Rd  near 65th Ave in Chippewa Twp when she came across a small strip of ice on the road.

 

The driver loss control of the vehicle and the vehicle overturned in the ditch.

 

She received non-life threatening injuries and was transported to Corewell Hospital in Big Rapids.

Panel discussion on Gotion project moved to virtual meeting

An informational panel meeting regarding the Gotion Inc project that was scheduled for April 5th at Ferris State's Williams Auditorium will now be virtual due to possible groups coming to disrupt the event.

 

In an email to Big Rapids Daily News, Green Township Supervisor Jim Chapman says a link to the virtual meeting will be posted on the townships website.

 

In addition, Chapman says a link to a document with all the questions that have been submitted will be posted as well. If you have a question about the Gotion project, you have until Monday, April 3rd to submit your question on the township's website HERE. 

 

The meeting on April 5th at 6:30pm will feature representatives from a variety of fields; Roads, Fire/HazMat, Energy, Waste Water, along with representatives from Gotion Inc., Ferris State University, and The Right Place economic non-profit organization will be on hand to answer residents questions.

 

Narcan approved for over the counter sales by FDA

A major tool in the war against the current opioid crisis has been approved for sale over-the-counter.

 

Officials with the Food and Drug Administration approved the sale of Narcan without a prescription, which makes it the first opioid treatment drug that will be sold over the counter.

 

The use of Narcan can reverse the overdoses of several drugs, including fentanyl, oxycodone and heroin.

 

According to the FDA, the use of those drugs exploded exponentially during the COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, more than 100,000 deaths in America per year have been linked to the opioid crisis.

Big Rapids High School Softball standout commits to Ferris State

First-year Ferris State University head softball coach Jake Schumann has landed one of West Michigan's top prep talents as local product Rylie Haist of Big Rapids High School has inked with the Bulldogs.

A multi-sport standout, Haist has been a two-time Michigan High School Softball Coaches Association All-State pitcher for the Cardinals, leading Big Rapids to the regional finals a year ago. She's also been a two-time Central State Activities Association (CSAA) First Team All-Conference standout.

"Rylie is a pitcher and corner that will bring an enormous amount of work ethic and competitiveness to our program," Schumann said. "Having worked in her high school for the last year and a half, I have seen it first hand.

"Rylie will find a way to be on the field, whether in the circle or at a corner infield position as she is that type of player," he added. "We are extremely excited to call Rylie a Bulldog."

Haist has twice been chosen as the Big Rapids Pioneer All-Area Softball Player of the Year and is a two-time Pioneer All-Area Dream Team honoree on the diamond. Additionally, she has been tabbed as a 2023 Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) State Farm Scholar-Athlete Semifinalist along with a 2023 Heisman School Award winner.

During her prep career, Haist has registered multiple school records in both softball and basketball while also becoming a five-time MHSAA softball record holder. She was the 2023 Big Rapids High School Student Body Mayor and a 2023 DAR Good Citizen Award recipient along with being her school's homecoming queen.

On the basketball floor, Haist earned 2022 Associated Press and Detroit News All-State recognition and was a four-time CSAA First Team All-Conference selection. She served three-straight years as her team captain and garnered Pioneer All-Area Dream Team honors the last three years along with being chosen as the 2022 Pioneer All-Area Basketball Player of the Year. Haist was also a two-time Basketball Coaches Association of Michigan Individual Academic All- State recipient while playing under her mother in Coach Jessica Haist.

Outside of athletics, Haist has been active in numerous organizations such as the student council, athletic leadership team, climate crew and the key club. She's also a National Honor Society member and holds a a perfect 4.0 grade point average, ranking number one in her class. Haist has also competed in both travel softball along with AAU basketball.

The daughter of Tim and Jessica Haist, Rylie has three younger brothers, Cole, Drew and Ty. She will join the Bulldogs as a freshman in the fall of 2023.

Ferris State University's PGA Golf Management Player Development Director Mark Wilson earns prestigious Bill Strausbaugh Award

Mark Wilson’s mentorship in developing future golf professionals through Ferris State University’s PGA Golf Management program, the first of its kind sanctioned and accredited by the PGA, has earned him significant acclaim.
 

At the 2023 Michigan PGA Spring Meeting at Eagle Eye Golf Course in East Lansing, Wilson received the Bill Strausbaugh Award, presented to a PGA professional whose day-to-day work distinguishes them through the mentorship of fellow PGA professionals to improve their employment status through community service. Established in 1979, the award honors Strausbaugh, a Middle Atlantic PGA Master Professional who died in 1999.
 

A PGA Master Professional and 2007 Michigan Golf Hall of Fame inductee, Wilson is the Player Development Director in the PGA Golf Management program, established in 1975. Wilson previously received the PGA of America Horton Smith Award, in 2008, in recognition of his contributions to the PGA Education Program nationally.
 

“Being recognized by my fellow professionals for mentoring and making a difference in their careers is tremendously gratifying,” Wilson said. “I hope to be able to offer this assistance for many years to come.”
 

In 2008, Wilson was chosen for the Grand Rapids (Michigan) Sports Hall of Fame, and in 2011, he became one of the 12 original inductees in the Michigan PGA Hall of Fame.
 

Before becoming the Player Development Director of Ferris’ PGA Golf Management program, Wilson spent 31 years as the Head Golf Professional at Watermark Country Club in Grand Rapids. He remains actively involved in PGA Education and Rules of Golf Activities. Wilson has served as a Rules Official at 30 PGA Championships, 22 Masters Tournaments, seven British Opens, seven U.S. Opens and 11 Ryder Cup Matches. Additionally, Wilson served as the chair of the PGA Rules Committee from 2005 to 2010. During that period, Wilson was rules chair for six PGA Championships and was the chief referee at the 2008 and 2016 Ryder Cup Matches.
 

Wilson brought his professional experience to leadership roles in Ferris’ PGA Golf Management program in 2013 and served as the program’s interim director from 2020 through the end of 2022. At Ferris, Wilson has classroom responsibilities and delivers PGA Golf Management-specific content covering golf facility management, teaching and coaching in three levels of PGA education. During the fall semester, Wilson teaches a class in private club management for Ferris’ Hospitality Program.
 

Wilson is also an advisor to the PGAGM Student Association, which conducts tournaments and educational activities for PGA Golf Management students and engages in community service.

Bobby Fleischman, Ferris' provost and vice president for Academic Affairs, said this award is also a point of pride for the PGA Golf Management program, in the Ferris College of Business.
 

“Mark winning the Bill Strausbaugh Award speaks highly of him, his reputation in golf in the state of Michigan and beyond, and the impact he is having on our program, our students, our alumni and many others,” Fleischman said. “Mark truly works daily to train and mentor current and future professionals. Professionals like Mark are critical to the work done in our PGA Golf Management program. We’re pleased that Ferris State University is not alone in recognizing his ongoing contributions.”
 

Ferris’ PGA Golf Management program, with 2,000-plus alums nationwide, is the original in the country and one of only 18 nationally. PGA Golf Management students have a 100 percent job placement rate as head golf professionals, directors of golf, general managers and golf instructors. In addition, program students benefit from Ferris’ Katke Golf Course and the new Ken Janke Sr. Golf and Learning Center, with over 10,000 square feet of top-notch technology, including six Trackman simulators for year-round golf learning.
 

Several Ferris alums received recognition at the 2023 Michigan PGA Spring Meeting. Alumnus Doug Bell, class of 1989, received the Golf Professional of the Year; Scott Wilson, class of 1997, received the Teacher and Coach of the Year Award; Ian Ziska, class of 2001, received the Patriot Award; Stefan Niezgoda, class of 2006, was presented the Merchandiser of the Year-Resort Award; and Raquel Bryant, class of 2009, received the Youth Player Development Award.

Michigan State Police warning residents of a second phone scam in as many weeks

There's a scam alert issued by Michigan State Police.

 

Officials say a man with a heavy accent is calling people and claiming he's from the department's Lansing post. They say the calls are a scam and the man is attempting to gather personal information or money.

 

The department says no law enforcement agency would ever ask for money over the phone to satisfy fines or clear an outstanding warrant.

 

Officials say if you receive a call from the man, you should hang up.


 

Could cursive writing be coming back to Michigan public schools?

In Lansing, a house bill would instruct the department of education to bring back something that hasn't been taught in the state in over a decade.

 

The bill would urge the department to develop lessons on cursive handwriting and make that curriculum available to public schools. The bill does not mandate the department to create a cursive plan but it would be "strongly encouraged" to do so.

 

If the department chooses to bring back cursive curriculum it would have to make the lessons available to schools by the start of the 2024-25 school year.

Mecosta County Sheriff's Office Weekend Blotter: 3/24-3/26

3/24

At 2:10pm, deputies made a traffic stop on 16 mi//157th, in Colfax TWP. The stop resulted in the arrest of the female driver.  The driver was arrested on a warrant.

 

Calls for service 10

Car/deer accidents 1

 

3/25

Calls for service 12

Traffic accidents 7

Car/deer accidents 1

 

3/26

Calls for service 12

Ferris State President issues statement regarding Gotion project rumors

On the heels of an informational panel meeting on April 5th at the David L. Eisler Center regarding advanced battery components manufacturer Gotion Inc potentially coming to the area, rumors have been spreading locally. 

 

One rumor of note is that between '200-500 Chinese nationals are coming to Big Rapids and to be housed on the campus of Ferris State University'. 

 

Ferris State University President Dr. Bill Pink heard these rumors and issued a video statement on Ferris' YouTube page on Thursday. 

 

In the video, Pink says he  was recently made aware of certain things that have been said about Ferris State University and these things are at best rumors and at worst just falsehoods.  

 

"I heard a falsehood just last evening that had to do with our university housing and planning to house, I believe it was said "300 Chinese nationals who will be working for this company." Pink said in the video. "First of all, one of the best things about hearing things is to find out if you're hearing it first, second, third, fourth or fifth hand. Let me give it to you first hand, because these kinds of things are not approved without me being the one saying 'yes'.  As president of this university, I can tell you that no one from Gotion Inc has had a conversation with me about asking Ferris State University to house anyone on this campus. I've had no meetings. That's your first hand account." Pink said in the video statement. 

 

The panel meeting on April 5th at 6:30pm will feature representatives from a variety of fields including, roads, fire/hazmat,energy, waste, water and representatives from Gotion Inc., Ferris State University and the Right Place economic non-profit organization. 

 

 

Safe gun storage bill passes in Michigan House

The Michigan House of Representatives passing legislation last night that would implement safe storage requirements for firearms in order to prevent youth from accessing a firearm.

 

The bill passing in the Democratic-led House by a 61-to-47 margin -- with five Republicans voting in favor of the bill.

 

The firearms, under the law, would need to be unloaded and locked with a trigger-locking mechanism or stored within a locked storage container.

 

If a minor obtains the firearm and the individual didn't comply with the safe storage law, the gun owner could face a misdemeanor charge of up to 93 days in fail or a $500- dollar fine.

Catfishing mom in Isabella County pleads guilty

The mid Michigan mom accused of faking her identity online or catfishing her own daughter, pleaded guilty to two charges in a plea deal.

 

Kendra Licari had harassed her own daughter and her daughter's boyfriend with hundreds of harassing text messages for more than a year. Her daughter attends the Beal City Public Schools.

 

Police say Licari would hide her identity and location with fake IP addresses and tried to make it seem like another student was sending the messages.

 

In the plea deal, three charges were dropped. Licari faces up to five years in prison.

Reed City Police Blotter: 3/13-3/19

Monday…3/13
Officers were dispatched to a residence after a 911 call was placed about a family member being aggressive. After arrival, situation was de-escalated, and everything was fine.


Tuesday …3/14
School Liaison Officer confiscated a vape pen from a High School student and issued a citation. Charges have been requested on a second student for providing the vape device to a minor.


School Liaison Officer assisted in transporting a juvenile for a mental health evaluation.


An Officer served an abatement notice regarding trash stored in violation of city ordinance.


An Officer responded to a car vs. semi crash. There were no injuries and only minor damage to the vehicles.


Wednesday …3/15
School Liaison Officer was dispatched to assist with a special needs juvenile that was being assaultive
toward staff members.


An officer transported a man to the RCH for a mental evaluation after calling into the police department and showing signs of instability.


An officer was dispatched to a house for a wellbeing check, from where dispatched received an unusual phone call. The woman was transported to the RCH for a mental health evaluation.


An officer was dispatched to a home regarding unlawful entry of an intoxicated man who was known to the homeowner. Charges have been requested in the matter.


Thursday …3/16
An officer took a report for a minor accident in a parking lot. No injuries reported.
A report was taken on a 2-car private property accident. There were no injuries and only minor damage.


Officers took a report of threats and harassment by a coworker of the complainant. The matter is under investigation.


Officers transported an individual to an out-of-town mental health facility for inpatient treatment.
The liaison officer issued a citation to a juvenile in possession of a vape device. This was the second offense.


Friday …3/17
An officer assisted Big Rapids PD in serving a court subpoena on a local resident.

 

Officers took a report of slashed tires. The investigation revealed it to be an angry ex-boyfriend. The matter has been forwarded to the prosecutor for charges.


Officers took a report of a 2-car private property accident. There were no injuries and only minor damage.


An Officer was dispatched to a call regarding an internet scam. The individual was led to believe he was online dating. The woman asked for money to come and see him and was told he did not have the money. She then advised she was coming to see him but called and stated she had been kidnapped and he needed to pay the ransom. Investigation revealed the woman not to exist and none of the information given to the man to be true.


Saturday …3/18
An Officer conducted a traffic stop of a car that was dragging something and causing sparks on the road. After investigation the plate was found to be expired. A citation was issued.


An Officer was dispatched to an establishment in town where an individual was intoxicated and had been inside causing a disturbance. The 28-year-old woman was arrested for violating her probation by drinking alcohol.


Sunday …3/19
An Officer assisted OCSD with an arrest of an individual after being pulled over while driving intoxicated.


An Officer noticed trash left out by the road. After investigating, turns out the family moved out and left the trash behind. Contact with landlord/owner to be completed.

Michigan State Police warn of statewide 'spoofing' scam

State Troopers don't want you to get ripped off.

 

Be on the lookout for a call from the Michigan State Police informing you of an investigation.

 

The con-artists will say if you want to stay out of jail, you'll need to send them money. The trick is that the phone number looks like it's coming from an official source. However, the scammer is actually 'spoofing.'

 

Lt. Derrick Carroll with the State Police says they we will never ask for money over the phone or to be sent in the form of gift cards or through a third-party money transfer service including.

 

If you get this call, hang up and notify your local Michigan State Police post.

5-year old child struck by vehicle in Aetna Township

A 5-year old child is in critical but stable condition after being struck by a vehicle in Aetna Township, Tuesday.

 

The Mecosta County Sheriff's Office said a vehicle driven by a 70-year old Morley man was traveling on 180th Ave South of Washington Rd when the child had been on the side of the roadway and when the vehicle approached the child ran into the road and was struck. 

 

The child was taken to Devos Children's Hospital in Grand Rapids for injuries sustained at the scene.

 

As of 9:30pm last night, the child was listed in critical but stable condiditon.  

BR Commissioners provided update on Roben Hood Runway extension

The Big Rapids City Commission was provided an update on the runway extension at Roben Hood Airport. 


The extension would be from a 4,300 foot runway to a 5,000 foot runway. 


Airport Manager Steve Schroeder told the commission its been a process but he's hoping to get a to a resolution sooner than later. 


"I was hoping to come before you with really good news from the FAA and that everything is a green light however I haven't gotten that call but I think that will come at any day now." Schroeder said.  


Schroeder told the commission there were a few hiccups but everything is up to date on the process. 


"We did a justification study back in October, we then had to make some revisions and then resubmitted in November and the FAA then justified the $1.8 million dollar earmark." 

"We were still $1.2 million dollars short, so we went back to the drawing board and got an excellent letter of support from Ferris State University President Dr. Bill Pink's Office explaining the benefits this extension would provide to them from academics to athletics and alumni coming in. " Schroeder said. 


He said the letter was sent to the FAA on March 16th and he heard from MDOT on Monday, so they are now just waiting on the FAA to make its decision in regards to the rest of the funding. 


Schroeder added they have a short timeline when it comes to its environmental assessment which takes 12 months to complete. He also said he hopes to get contracts to commissioners for construction within the next couple of meetings so they can start in 2024. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Two children die in Wexford County vehicle/ buggy crash

Two children have died in an Amish buggy accident.

 

It happened Monday morning in Cedar Creek Township, north of Cadillac. A horse drawn buggy crossed traffic and was hit by a vehicle.

 

An 11-year-old girl and 7-year-old boy were ejected from the buggy and died on the scene.

 

Deputies say a 9-year-old was airlifted to Devos Childrens Hospital in Grand Rapids. They were listed as having serious injuries.

 

The Wexford County Sheriff's Office notes the driver and passengers were not hurt, and speed is not believed to be a factor.

Big Rapids City Commissioners to discuss airport runway extension and review city charter

The Big Rapids City Commission meets tonight at City Hall to discuss issues and approve resolutions.

 

During study session, Commissioners will get an update from Roben Hood Airport Manager Steve Schroeder on the runway expansion and where it currently stands. They will also discuss the the city's charter and possible changes to it.

 

In general business, commissioners will discuss and act on resolutions including approving grant application submissions for Swede Hill Skate Park and accepting the Drinking Water Asset Management (DWAM) Grant Application. Commissioners will also act on a resolution adopting the City of Big Rapids Economic Development Strategy.

 

The meeting begins at 6:30pm.

 

To see other items on the agenda scroll down: 

AGENDA FOR REGULAR MEETING OF THE CITY COMMISSION

1. CALL TO ORDER.
2. ROLL CALL.
3. PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE.
4. APPROVAL OF THE AGENDA
5. APPROVAL OF MINUTES.
Act on the minutes of regular meeting of March 6, 2023.
6. SPECIAL ORDERS OF THE DAY
7. STUDY SESSION.
a. Charter Revision
– Tamyra K. Gillis, City Clerk
b. Runway Extension Update - Steve Schroeder, Airport Manager
8. PUBLIC COMMENT NOT RELATED TO ITEMS ON THE AGENDA.
9. PUBLIC HEARINGS
– None
10. GENERAL BUSINESS. (Regarding public comment, anyone may speak on an item of
general business. Please rise and wait to be recognized.)
a. Grants
i. Resolution Authorizing Submission of a Michigan Department of Natural
Resources (DNR) Recreation Passport Grant Application for the Swede Hill
Skatepark Project.
ii Resolution Accepting the Drinking Water Asset Management (DWAM) Grant
Application.
b. Resolution Awarding Bid for 2023 Construction Season Maintenance Materials and
Equipment.
c. Resolution Adopting the City of Big Rapids Economic Development Strategy.

d. Resolution Approving a Third Amendment to Site Lease for Verizon.
e. Resolution on Mayoral Appointments to Boards and Commissions.

*** f. Ordinance Amending Section 50.14 in Title X Chapter 50 of the Big Rapids City

Code of Ordinances – Polycarts.

11. UNSCHEDULED BUSINESS – (Commission Concerns/Reports)
12. WORK SESSION – Ethics Policy – Commissioner Jennifer Cochran
13. ADJOURNMENT.


***Agenda items requiring a 4/5 Vote.

Mecosta County Sheriff's Office Blotter: 3/17-3/20

3/17

 

At 1:34pm, deputies made a traffic stop on Northland/Jefferson in Aetna TWP.  The stop resulted in female driver being arrested for Operating While Intoxicated.  She was lodged at the Mecosta County Jail.

 

Calls for service 12

 

3/18

At 11:30pm, deputies made a traffic stop on Maple/Warren in Big Rapids Twp. The stop resulted in a male driver being arrested for Operating While Intoxicated.   

 

Traffic accidents 4

Calls for service 14

 

3/19

No reported incidents

 

3/20

At 12:51pm, deputies responded to a domestic at a residence in Morton TWP.   Male subject was arrested after assaulting someone in the residence and making threats to shoot people in the residence.  He was lodged at the Mecosta County Jail.

 

Calls for service 22

Traffic accidents 2

Car/deer accidents 1

Ferris State celebrates opening of new athletics complex

 Ferris State University officially celebrated the grand opening of the Center for Athletics Performance and Bulldog Arena with a special ceremony held in conjunction with Bulldog Volleyball's alumni game on Sunday (March 19) at the Ewigleben Sports Complex.

 

A project intended to fortify Ferris' student-athletes and advance its programs into the future, the Center for Athletics Performance was officially approved in February of 2021 as part of a $15.3 million upgrade to the Bulldogs' Athletic Facilities. The upgrades now offer championship-caliber training and conditioning facilities to the nearly 400 Bulldog student-athletes and 17 varsity programs.

 

Sunday's events included guest speakers such as FSU President Dr. Bill Pink, Athletics Director Steve Brockelbank, Bulldog Football alum and donor Luke Piepkow along with FSU Volleyball head coach Tia Brandel-Wilhelm, head strength and conditioning coach Andrew Thiede and volleyball student-athlete Syann Fairfield.

 

Following the speakers, a special ribbon cutting ceremony took place outside the entrance to Bulldog Arena and FSU student-athletes led tours thru the new facility and upgrades in addition to photo opportunities followed by the alumni volleyball match and reception.

 

The opening of the Center for Athletics Performance and Bulldog Area was part of a multi-phase renovation and construction project which included not only a new and expanded strength and conditioning space, but also a new multipurpose arena and competition space for the volleyball program and practice area for other sports, additional and renovated locker room facilities along with team meeting spaces. Further, the project features a new connector and entrance to athletic facilities and renovations to offices and the sports medicine area.

 

Along with the Center for Athletics Performance, the new and renovated locker room facilities along with the sports medicine area were opened during preseason camp in August. The addition of office space overlooking the CAP was completed soon after with the construction of the new Bulldog Arena and team meeting spaces finished late this past fall.

 

Granger Construction oversaw the subcontracting firms, who took up approximately 7,200 square feet of renovation work and the development of nearly 16,000 square feet of new construction to create the Center for Athletics Performance. This work included the new home for the volleyball program, Bulldog Arena, in addition to a new entry and connector space.

 

The Center for Athletics Performance provides student-athletes with increased space for strength and conditioning, cardio work, training and nutrition.

 

The Ewigleben Sports Complex was originally constructed in 1974 with the former volleyball arena, which was transformed into the new Center for Athletics Performance, added on in 1982. Ferris State built Jim Wink Arena off the existing structure in 1999 and renovations to the ice arena were last made in 2007. The new Bulldog Arena addition will sit to the east side of the main concourse near both the existing Ewigleben Ice Arena and Wink Arena.

UPDATE: Police in Mecosta County identified woman suspected in incident

UPDATE: Police have identified the woman in question, they thank the public for their help. 

_______________________________

 

The Mecosta County Sheriff's Office is asking for help to identify a woman, who's accused of being involved in an incident in Green Township.

 

The alleged incident happened Saturday night. If you know who this person is, contact Sgt. Darcy Mann at 231-592-0150. 

 

 

Deputies in Osceola Co. investigating Pine River bus crash

The Osceola County Sheriff's Office is investigating why a school bus with Pine River students crashed Thursday morning in Burdell Twp.

 

It happened on on 18 Mile Road and 185th Avenue.

 

Sheriff deputies say the Pine River School Administration was notified immediately and activated their response plan.

 

At the scene, students reported no injuries initially and were transported to Pine River High School.

Once at the high school, Osceola County EMS began evaluating students that were complaining of injuries or sickness from the crash.

 

This incident is still under investigation by the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office.

Evart Public Schools put on lockdown Thursday due to threat

It was a scary time for parents and students at Evart High School Thursday as the school district went into lockdown due to a threat at the high school.

 

Evart High School Principal Jessica Kolenda said in a press release, the district went into lockdown because of a threat of a weapon. In her statement, Kolenda said after being notified of the threat, law enforcement was called. Officers were then able to track the student's movements using security cameras and conduct systematic searches of the building to ensure that the building was safe.

 

Kolenda then thanked everyone who assisted with the investigation and went on to say in her statement that EPS take these threats very seriously and wants to assure everyone that their first priority in an emergency situation is to ensure that the students are safe and secure end quote.

 

To read the statement by EHS Principal Kolenda scroll down: 

 

Ferris State Football National Championship Parade This Saturday In Big Rapids

Ferris State University, in conjunction with the city of Big Rapids and the Downtown Business Association, will hold a special "National Championship Parade & Celebration" honoring the Bulldogs' 2022 NCAA Division II Football National Championship team this Saturday, March 18, in downtown Big Rapids.

 

All Bulldog fans, supporters and community members are invited to come out and celebrate FSU's second consecutive NCAA Division II National Championship with the Bulldog team and university community.

 

The parade will begin in downtown Big Rapids on Michigan Avenue at 12 p.m. (ET) and run from the South to North, starting at the Big Rapids Public Library and ending near city hall. Members of FSU's national championship team will be featured in the parade along with other FSU student-athletes and teams, local fire and police vehicles, the FSU dance team, cheer team and more.

 

Near the end of the parade route, a special recognition and proclamation ceremony will take place in front of Horizon Bank in downtown Big Rapids featuring special speakers such as Big Rapids Mayor Fred Guenther, FSU President Dr. Bill Pink, Athletic Director Steve Brockelbank, head coach Tony Annese and others.

 

The festivities will continue following the parade until 2 p.m. (ET) and the general public will have an opportunity to greet the national championship team, get autographs, take photos with the national championship trophy and more in the lot near city hall on North Michigan Avenue. The downtown area from Maple Street to Pine Street will be blocked off until the event concludes and local business restaurants and establishments are expected to be open for dining and retail shopping.

 

All FSU students and campus faculty and staff along with the general public, community members and supporters are invited to attend the parade and celebration to help honor the Bulldogs' back-to-back NCAA Division II National Championship team and staff.

 

The Bulldogs capped off a second-straight national championship with a decisive 41-14 win over the Colorado School of Mines on Dec. 17 in McKinney, Texas, finishing the year with a 14-1 overall record.

Reed City Police Blotter: 3/6-3/11

Monday…3/6
The liaison officer gave citations to 3 High School students for vaping on school grounds.


Tuesday …3/7
An Officer observed snow plowed in a manner that blocked the sidewalk in two different locations. Notice to remove the snow were given to both locations.


Wednesday …3/8
An Officer was dispatched to a residence, where a domestic assault had happened the previous night. The caller had found a pistol. After investigation, the pistol is found to be unregistered and charges have been requested on the owner.


Thursday …3/9
The School Liaison Officer was dispatched to assist with a student that was acting disorderly during one of the morning pickups stops. The student attempted to assault the driver and another passenger and damaged the vehicle and another vehicle. The situation was deescalated. Since the juvenile violated probation, he was transported to a detention facility.


The school liaison officer issued a citation to a teen for being in possession of marijuana. Since it was also a violation of probation, her probation officer was notified.


Officers arrested a 44yr old male for absconding from parole and for having an outstanding warrant for failing to appear in court on a traffic violation.


An Officer took a complaint in reference to a possible inoperable vehicle in violation of city ordinance.


Friday …3/10
An Officer took a complaint in reference to a possible inoperable vehicle in violation of city ordinance.


An Officer took a complaint in reference to a possible inoperable vehicle in violation of city ordinance. An abatement notice was served.


An Officer took a report from an individual reporting that some of his property was missing from his vehicle after being towed. The item was located and returned to the owner.


An Officer was dispatched with CPS to a residence regarding a domestic dispute between mother and son. Charges have been requested on both.


An Officer responded to a call about a male hanging out at an apartment complex. The individual had nowhere to go. The responding officer contacted the individual and after investigation, the officer took him to a safe place to spend the night.

 

An Officer responded to the Reed City Hospital out of an abundance of caution since an assault victim from another county was being treated and the suspect had not been located. Once the victim was transferred out to another medical facility the officer cleared without incident.


Saturday …3/11
Officers served a trespass notice on a male following a prior disturbance at an apartment complex. He was advised if found on the property he could be arrested for trespassing.

The Making of a State Champion

For the first time since 1991, a Reed City Coyote outlasted the state’s best on the wrestling mat.


By the virtue of a 5-3 sudden victory in overtime, senior Bryson Hughes defeated Constantine’s Troy
Demas to claim the Division 3 State Championship in the 190-pound weight class.


“(It feels) pretty good,” Hughes said. “It’s a lot and at first, I didn’t know how to handle it.”


Hughes finished his season with a 50-2 record, improving on his fourth place finish a year ago. What
many might not know is Hughes wrestled in the 2022 state meet with an injured shoulder from football.


Following last year’s exit from the bracket, Hughes made a bold claim to his coach that created an
incredible story concluding his career: “We were walking out of Ford Field and he had his arm around me,” Head coach Roger Steig said. “He said ‘Coach, I’ll be back next year with a healthy shoulder and we’ll win this thing.’ It couldn’t have turned out any better.”


When I asked the 2023 State Champion Bryson Hughes about the time he knew he could become a state champion, he mentioned qualifying for states in 2021 as a sophomore and how that gave him the confidence to reach the state’s top mark in 2023.


Hughes finishes his career as a Coyote with 158 wins, which ranks seventh all time in school history.
Along with two state finalist finishes, he also earned three CSAA conference championships and all-
conference honors four times.


While the awards will certainly be remembered, Coach Steig said he’ll remember Bryson by his
coachability.


“I think that is what made him elite,” Steig said. “He’s not only a very gifted athlete, but he’s extremely
coachable. A good example of this was before the championship match. Back at the hotel, we studied film on the guy he’d wrestle at finals and I gave him a game plan. It was going to change his style and
technique of wrestling at the highest level for a state championship. He was willing to do that and he
couldn't have done any better.”


As an inspiration to many, Hughes’ advice to those that want to reach his accomplishment: Always work.


“It’s gonna be hard. It’s gonna be tough. Never stop working, because one day you will succeed.”


While Hughes’ wrestling career has come to an end, the talented athlete will look forward to his next
chapter after signing with Olivet College to play football; but from now on, he’ll always be remembered as a Reed City Coyote State Champion Wrestler.

MDOT: Signal installation begins next week; road work starts May 8th in Big Rapids

 

Michigan Department of Transportation officials say road crews will begin phase one work next week on a signal installation on State Street at Gilbert Road. 

 

It starts Monday, March 20th at 8am and runs through April 7th. 

 

Phase two, officials say will resurface 5.75 miles of US-131 Business Route and M-20 in the city of Big Rapids which begins May 8th.

 

This $4.3 million project includes concrete joint repairs, concrete curb and gutter, sidewalks, and the installation of a new traffic signal at State Street and Gilbert Road.

 

The project is scheduled to be complete by July. 

 

 

Stanwood woman struck by vehicle at Coppertop store Tuesday

A 74-year old Stanwood woman is recovering after being hit by a vehicle in the parking lot of the Coppertop store.

 

Mecosta County deputies say the 74-year old woman was walking back to her vehicle in the parking lot when a 59-year old Morley man pulled into the lot making a U-Turn around the gas pumps and didn't see the Stanwood woman, striking her with his vehicle. 

 

She was taken to Corewell Health BR for Non-life threatening injuries. 

Local manufacturer to expand and hire more employees

A local manufacturer is looking to expand and hire more people. 


Last week, the Big Rapids City Commission granted a tax abatement for Big Rapids Products properties located at 525, 535 and 625 North DeKrafft Ave over the span of 12 years.  


According to Aaron Thompson, Vice President of Sales at BR Products, the tax abatement will allow for the $3-million dollar expansion to build a new facility for warehousing, packing and inspection. 


We are looking to expand the DeKrafft Avenue facility to bring more business to Big Rapids.” Thompson said. 


The expansion will also add 60 more new hires to the current 300 employees who already work at Big Rapids Products locally.  


Big Rapids Products is a vital partner of this community and is very much needed and wanted in our industrial park.” Big Rapids City Manager Mark Gifford told the commission.  


Mecosta County Community Development Director Kelly Wawsczyk added to what Gifford told the commission saying BR Products is a great business for the area.


 “They have gone above and beyond to create a culture that really shows their investment in their employees, between the full benefits package, to an on-site facility to take care of medical needs, cornhole they can play during lunch and a great café that provides fresh made food and a place they can decompress and take a break. When it comes to talent, they don’t struggle with that because they provide such a great culture.” Wawsczyk said. “So filling those new additional positions won’t be an issue.” 

Lake County Shooting suspect arrested by police in the Muskegon area

A suspect involved in a Lake County shooting has been arrested following a police chase. 

 

The Lake County Sheriff's Office says 40-year old Alton James Corbin was taken into custody today after a vehicle pursuit, driving a stolen vehicle, in the Muskegon area.

 

Corbin is accused of shooting a 33-year old man at a home in Webber Township Friday night. 

 

When deputies arrived at the scene, they found the victim on the ground with a gunshot wound to the stomach. He was taken to the hospital for treatment. 

 

 

Police in Montcalm County looking for 'Hit and Run' suspect

Police in Montcalm County are on the lookout for a suspect and a SUV they say was involved in a hit and run crash involving a pedestrian walking on the shoulder of the road last week.

 

It happened March 7th, on Hillman Road north of Stanton Road in Douglass Township. Deputies say a 66-year-old man from Stanton was walking southbound on Hillman Road, when he was struck by a southbound vehicle. They say the southbound vehicle crossed the center line and continued onto the shoulder where the man was walking. 

 

The man was taken to Corewell Health United Hospital in Greenville for treatment for his injuries.

 


The suspect vehicle has been described as a sport utility vehicle, believed to be a Chevrolet/General Motors product, missing its driver’s side mirror.  Anyone with information is urged to contact the Montcalm County Sheriff’s Office.

Police pull 15-year old from underneath ORV in Fork Township

A 15-year old girl from Walker was taken to the hospital after being pinned underneath an ORV in Mecosta County Saturday.

 

It happened in Fork Township, deputies say thats where someone was driving a Polaris side-by-side on 18 Mile Road near 60th Avenue. It rolled over, trapping a 15-year-old girl underneath.

 

A deputy, and with help from the driver, were able to lift the ORV and pull her from it.

 

The victim was taken to Helen DeVos Children's Hospital with non-life threatening injuries, and officials say the driver and other passenger was left uninjured.

 

Sheriff Brian Miller warns to always wear a helmet, eye protection and other safety equipment when operating ORV's or other recreational vehicles.

 

He also says that parents should make children take ORV, snowmobile and other boater safety courses before they drive them.

 

Hospice of Michigan seeking volunteers in Big Rapids

By mid-February, most people have abandoned their New Years resolutions, but Hospice of Michigan believes it’s not too late to start something new in 2023. For those looking for opportunities to get more involved in their community, the not-for-profit is seeking compassionate volunteers to help patients and families dealing with life-limiting illnesses throughout Big Rapids and surrounding communities.

 

The not-for-profit has a specific need for area residents who can make a real difference in the lives of others by providing the following services:

 

  • Caregiver relief volunteers to allow a caregiver to get away for a few hours and recharge.
  • Companionship volunteers, who visit patients living at home or in a facility setting to offer comfort and company.
  • Veteran volunteers, who visit patients who are fellow veterans.

 

“Hospice volunteers provide so much more than a social visit – they offer companionship, conversation and comfort during one of life’s most vulnerable times,” said Megan Cadle, volunteer program manager at Hospice of Michigan. “If you’re considering getting involved in your community, I urge you to consider becoming a volunteer with Hospice of Michigan. You never know the impact you can have on someone’s life.”

 

All volunteers are required to complete orientation, background checks and fingerprinting prior to volunteering. Volunteers must also be age 18 or older and have received the COVID-19 vaccine. For those who have experienced a recent loss, Hospice of Michigan requires a waiting period of one year before becoming a hospice volunteer to allow for the processing of grief.

 

Hospice of Michigan volunteers are vital in helping to deliver exceptional, compassionate support to patients and families according to its mission of caring for patients wherever they call home, right in the same community in which its volunteers live.

 

Those interested in volunteering can contact Megan Cadle at 616-356-5233 or mcadle@hom.org to apply to become a volunteer. To learn more about Hospice of Michigan and apply to become a volunteer, visit hom.org/get-involved.

Ferris State recognized for its online graduate nursing program

Nursingprocess.org, a guide for healthcare students and working nursing professionals, included Ferris State University’s Master of Science in Nursing degree among the 25 best programs in the nation at 21st.

 

Ferris’ bridge program for registered nurses has concentrations in Nursing Education, Nursing Administration and Nursing Informatics, according to MSN program coordinator Stephanie Gustman, an associate professor in the School of Nursing. She said the online curriculum is accessible anytime to accommodate and inform nurses in the field.

 

“We know these students are adults with jobs and busy lives,” Gustman said. “We strive to be supportive and accommodating in all regards, so they can accomplish their goals while serving in the profession.”

 

Nursingprocess.org cites Ferris’ success in providing a return on investment for MSN Nursing students. Ninety percent advance to a leadership position in the nursing field within six months of graduation. Gustman said Ferris’ Nursing faculty take coursework through a continuous improvement and review process.

 

“We incorporate information on current healthcare issues as they relate to best outcomes in practice, along with topics related to global health trends as part of our learning,” Gustman said. “Obviously, considerations related to COVID-19 have been a primary focus during these last few years.”

 

Ferris’ College of Health Professions has entered other initiatives recently to help address workforce demands and nursing shortages. The university signed an affiliation agreement with MedStar, an Illinois-based nonprofit focused on assisting international nursing students to enhance their credentials and receive training to support healthcare workforce development. Also, a third cohort has been added to the university’s five-semester prelicensure Nursing program, so 96 students are accepted annually.

Drug investigation leads to two arrests at Aetna Township home

The Mecosta County Sheriff's Office says two people were arrested following a drug investigation. 

 

After receiving multiple tips on from the community regarding the suspects being involved in the selling of methamphetamine, deputies conducted an operation where a purchase of methamphetamine was made an Aetna Township residence.

 

A search warrant was executed on the residence where deputies had to make a forcible entry due to the suspects not cooperating. An initial sweep of the residence revealed the female suspect, identified as Wendy Sue Williams and her 14-year-old son.

 

Wendy Williams was taken into custody and the juvenile was led from the residence to be turned over to family members. The second suspect, Christopher Williams, was later located by deputies hiding in a closet. He was taken into custody after a short struggle where force was used to effect the arrest including the use of a taser.


Both suspects were transported to the Mecosta County Jail and lodged on multiple charges stemming from the distribution of methamphetamine as well as resisting / obstructing officers. They were arraigned in the 77th District Court on their charges.


Christopher Lee Williams, was formally charged with: Violation of Controlled Substance Act - Methamphetamine – Deliver, Violation of a Controlled Substance Act - Crystal Meth, Deliver, Violation of Controlled Substance Act - Methamphetamine – Possess, and Obstructing Police - Resisting Officer. His bond was set at $150,000.00 Cash/Surety.


Wendy Sue Williams, was formally charged with: Violation of Controlled Substance Act - Methamphetamine – Deliver, Violation of Controlled Substance Act - Methamphetamine – Possess, and Obstructing Police - Resisting Officer. Her bond was set at $10,000.00 - 10% Bond.

State House Rep. Tom Kunse to read at local elementary schools next week

State Rep. Tom Kunse, of Clare, announced he will be reading to students in second through fourth grade classrooms this March, coinciding with March is Reading Month.

 

Rep. Kunse will be reading to classes at the following times and locations:

 

Monday, March 13:

Clare Elementary School; 9 – 11 a.m.

Mecosta Elementary School; 1 – 2 p.m.

Osceola County Emergency Services develop 'Security Levels Plan' for residents

 

Osceola County Emergency Services have established the following Security Levels for all Osceola County schools, businesses, and communities.

Emergency officials say this common framework allows response agencies, businesses, schools, and the community be on the 'same page' and greatly speed up initial response actions, notification messages, and communications.  

 

OCES is asking residents to help in their ongoing safety efforts by knowing these levels and integrating them into your home and business emergency plans.

 

The levels are as follows: 

 

LOCKED – EVERYONE INSIDE / EXTERIOR DOORS LOCKED

Used when there is an outside threat requiring basic security measures– consists of locking external doors and suspending outside activities.  Site is ‘on watch’ but may conduct business within the building.  Outside-No! / Hallways-OK / Rooms-OK

SECURE – EVERYONE SECURED IN INTERIOR ROOMS

Used during outside and/or inside threats requiring significant security measures – consists of locking external doors and limiting activities to inside locked areas.  Site conducts all activities within secured areas and is in a heightened state of readiness. Outside-No! / Hallways-No! / Rooms-OK

 

LOCKDOWN – RUN, HIDE, FIGHT!

Used for active threats requiring maximum protection & response – all doors locked, rooms barricaded and staff ready to run hide fight.  All activity is focused on response to the incident and will involve public safety response.  Outside-No! / Hallways-No! / Locks, Lights, Out of Sight!

 

For further information or to request our 'Site Safety Toolkit', please contact Osceola County Emergency Management - osceolaemd@gmail.com or your local law enforcement agency.

Police in Osceola County arrest three people following chase in LeRoy Twp.

The Osceola County Sheriff's Office says a traffic stop turned into a short pursuit and multiple arrests.

 

On Saturday morning, deputies attempted a traffic stop of a vehicle near Mackinaw Trail and 13 Mile Road in LeRoy Township for an equipment violation. The driver fled the scene and pulled into a home near 14 Mile Road and 220th Avenue. The suspect ran into the house and refused to come out.

 

Deputies identified the driver as a 33-year-old woman with several warrants out for her arrest, including a felony warrant for possession of narcotics. The residents of the home, a 67-year-old woman and her 42-year-old son, refused to cooperate. Deputies said the 42-year-old, later identified as the boyfriend of the 33-year-old driver, made threats to assault law enforcement at the scene.

 

Police then obtained a search warrant, entered the home and located the 33-year old suspect hidden under a bed sheet in the 67-year-old woman's bedroom.

 

She faces charges of  possession of methamphetamine, two counts carrying a concealed dangerous weapon, three counts of resisting and obstructing a police officer, and one count of fleeing and eluding a police officer. 

 

The prosecutor's office issued additional warrants for the 67 year-old woman and her 42-year-old son for harboring a fugitive. All three were lodged in the Osceola County Jail, awaiting arraignment.

Freedom Fest to take place July 3rd and 4th in Big Rapids

The Mecosta County Area Chamber of Commerce is excited to announce the Big Rapids Freedom Fest that will kick off with food trucks and fireworks at dusk on July 3rd at the Mecosta County Fairgrounds, and commence with a parade and family activities along Michigan Avenue on the morning of July 4th.


Fun for the whole family is planned to include patriotic costume contests, military demonstrations, and an opportunity for children to decorate their bicycle or scooter and travel along with the parade. All of the Big Rapids Fireworks and Freedom Fest updates as well as vendor, performer, parade, and volunteer applications can be found on the Mecosta County Area Chamber of Commerce Facebook, Instagram, and LinkedIn pages, or by contacting director@mecostacounty.com.


For many years, the Big Rapids Jaycees have coordinated the annual Big Rapids Independence Day
activities. During the pandemic, the local Jaycees have joined as members of the Mecosta County Area Chamber, encouraging growth and enhancing connections with newer community and business leaders.

 

We are excited to carry on their tradition thanks to generous sponsorships from the city of Big Rapids, Ferris State University, and support from community groups including the Lions Club, Rotary Club, Elks, Eagles, American Legion and Am Vets, local military personnel, Green Township, Mecosta County Fair Board, Isabella Bank, and Band of Locals.

Emergency crews conduct ice rescues in Mecosta and Montcalm Counties

Two ice fishermen were rescued after falling through the ice in west Michigan in separate incidents on Sunday afternoon.

 

A 50-year-old man and a six-year-old were reportedly out on the ice on Townline Lake in Montcalm County when the man fell in. The man was in the water for about an hour before rescuers could get him out.

 

A little later, a 43-year-old Stanwood man fell through the ice in Latimer Park in Morley, south of Big Rapids. Rescue crews from the Morley Fire Department went out 100 feet on thin ice to reach him and pull him out of the water.

Ferris State University is excited to play a role in the campaign to promote careers in surging electric vehicle and mobility sector

Ferris State University is among the higher education community members and other major employers prepared to invest in and promote Michigan’s fast-growing electric vehicle and mobility sector.

 

Additionally, Ferris stands with peer higher education institutions and partners sharing in a combined $2.35 million in strategic investments as set forth by the Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s Talent Action Team, which officially announced these efforts during a press conference on the morning of Wednesday, March 1, in Lansing. The state of Michigan has noted that these investments include a budget for The Michigander EV Scholars program and an increase in its capacity to train students to meet EV/mobility occupational needs. Other plans call for a talent development focus that could be attractive for the semiconductor industry.

 

The Ferris Board of Trustees, at its Friday, Feb. 17 meeting, accepted the university’s approved funding portion amounting to $659,504 for the fiscal year 2023 and up to an estimated $3,297,520 through FY27.

 

Ferris President Bill Pink could not be more excited about this development for Michigan and for Ferris to play a significant role in the necessary student education and training.

 

“We appreciate the affirming EV grant funding from the MEDC to our university,” Pink said. “Ferris State University is known for providing relevant and prepared graduates for multiple industries throughout our state. This grant will help solidify us as a preferred education, training and applied research partner for EV battery manufacturers.”
 

In addition to Ferris, investment peers include Macomb Community College, Schoolcraft College and The Michigander EV Scholars University of Michigan, Michigan State University and Michigan Tech University.

 

The EV grant will support a new Ferris Center for Applied Battery Production and Testing partnering with key Michigan battery manufacturers, inform the development of new EV certificate programs, and build West Michigan’s reputation for battery knowledge via applied research and industry partnerships. Further, it will help corporate training programs to upskill employees, help Ferris engage K-12 programs to increase the visibility of EV careers via visits to school campuses and increase K-12 student interest and ability in EV-relevant skills via Ferris-hosted events.

 

The grant also allows hiring a grant director to meet milestones for grant initiatives, including quarterly reporting to MEDC and maintaining relationships to ensure industry alignment with grant initiatives.

 

Provost Bobby Fleischman is excited about this grant’s possibilities on the academic front as Ferris looks forward to serving communities across Michigan and beyond.

 

“As an applied research institution, this grant provides us with an unprecedented opportunity to have engaged work between our faculty and students in a cutting-edge, innovative way,” Fleischman said.

 

In its March 1 release, the MEDC noted that the EV and mobility campaign is one phase of an overall $34 million talent attraction and retention strategy the MEDC is introducing in 2023. The goal is to assist challenged in-state businesses seeking to fill key in-demand and high-growth jobs. In addition, the efforts point toward growing the workforce population over the long run. Kicking off the campaign focuses on in-state retention and recruitment while targeting key out-of-state markets before transitioning to a national campaign begins. 

 

The $34 million is from the $115.6 million allocated to the MEDC in a bipartisan vote last year by the Michigan Legislature to attract business, revitalize communities, and to champion entrepreneurship programs.

 

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has tasked the MEDC Talent Action Team to spear the one-year pilot program that features a public-private partnership to recruit EV and mobility talent in 2023 with 15 major Michigan employers and higher education partners. The partners include Ferris, the University of Michigan, Michigan State University, Macomb Community College, Schoolcraft College and Michigan Works! agencies across Michigan.

 

“For generations, Michiganders have stepped up to get the job done by embodying the kind of grit, determination and work ethic needed to keep the world moving forward. As we work to make an electrified future a reality, it’s no surprise that once again, Michigan is being recognized as a leader in shepherding this new evolution,” Lt. Gov. Garlin Gilchrist II said. “We’re ready to build on our proud legacy and automotive heritage here in Michigan to usher in a greener, more sustainable and electrified future in 2023 and beyond. The Michigander EV Scholars program and our historic talent attraction campaign will help get us there and ensure our state continues to keep our foot on the accelerator driving the future of mobility and electrification.”
 

Information on Michigan’s transportation mobility and electrification global leadership is available at www.michiganbusiness.org/mobility/.

Stop sticks used in high speed chase that went in Osceola County

The Osceola County Sheriff's Office says police had to use stop sticks in order to apprehend a suspect during a multi county chase on US-131 Thursday morning. 

 

Meceola Central dispatch advised police the vehicle involved in the pursuit was a white Dodge Ram that had been stolen out of Kalamazoo. Meceola Central dispatch further advised the vehicle was driving on three rims and one tire.

 

Deputies closed the exit and entry ramps to US-10 while Reed City Police prepared to deploy stop sticks. Stop sticks were deployed successfully and the driver lost control of the vehicle and drove into the ditch.

 

The suspect was taken into custody and lodged at the Osceola County Jail for flee and elude, possess stolen vehicle, resisting arrest × 3, driving on a suspended license, and several unrelated warrants.

 

Charges are pending arraignment.

 

Getting to know new Big Rapids HS Baseball Coach JT Scarpelli

A new era in Big Rapids High School Baseball has begun as JT Scarpelli was recently named the new head coach of the Cardinals. 


He takes over for Jake Schumann, who resigned in the Fall to take a position with the Ferris State University women's softball program, and Sam Doherty who headed the program since 2015.


Scarpelli a 2007 alum of BRHS, played college baseball at Kellogg Community College (07-09) where he was team captain and lead his team to a 2009 NJCAA World Series appearance. The next season he transferred to Hillsdale College (09-11) where he was named team captain as well. At BRHS, Scarpelli was as assistant under former HC Sam Daugherty from 2015-2021. In 2022, he led the JV Cardinals baseball team to a 26-4 season. 


Scarpelli will take what he's learned as an assistant the last six years and one season as JV head coach and use that knowledge for his vision of cardinals baseball. 


"The biggest thing I learned is culture building. What kind of dugout will breed success on the field? How can I motivate kids to play their best each and every day for an entire season? I learned a lot from the previous Head Coach Sam Daugherty, someone I've known since I was a little kid, specifically how to approach building a program versus just winning games in the moment. Sam always had a great vision for the future of Big Rapids Baseball and I intend to build on that vision." Scarpelli said. 


As an alum, Scarpelli says its an honor to represent BRHS and the community.


"It means the world to me! This is my town and my school. I graduated from Big Rapids High School, I work in BR, my wife works in BR. I see it as a great honor to represent my school in the greatest sport in the history of the world." He said. 


Scarpelli is excited to get started and work with team, he says parents and players can expect to have a competitive team this year but also a team that has fun.


"I try to keep things loose but competitive. It's a game and I want players to have fun, but it's also a very competitive level so they need to be focused and in it. I'm also big on communication and accountability. I will always emphasize open communication between players and coaches. I want them to know where they stand, what they can improve, how they can help the team, etc. For accountability I keep it simple. If you make a mistake, own it, grow from it, and don't do it again." Scarpelli said. 

 

 

 

 

 

   

 

 

 

 

Big Rapids set to receive over $881,000 from Marijuana sales tax

Hundreds of Michigan cities, townships and counties will be getting money as a result marijuana sales taxes.

 

The City of Big Rapids is set to receive $881,301.00 from marijuana sales tax reimbursement from the 2022 fiscal year.

 

Mecosta County will also receive a match payment of $881,301.00 as well.

 

In 2021, Big Rapids and Mecosta County received $677,441.

 

The Cannabis Regulatory Agency says the communities each will receive over $51,000 for every licensed marijuana business within its jurisdiction. Last year, Big Rapids had 17 dispensaries, in 2021 they had 12.

 

Other local area's set to receive money include Montcalm County who will receive $311,041, Isabella County will receive $259,206, both Newaygo and Lake Counties will receive $155,524 each and Osceola County will receive $51,841.

 

The school aid and state transportation funds will also receive $69-million dollars from the tax payments. 

DTE Energy implements 'Time of Day Rate Plan' for customers

DTE customers will be charged differently starting this month.

 

The company is switching to a time of day rate plan -- where customers will pay more for electricity during peak-hours of the day. Those hours are 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. on weekdays.

 

DTE says you can keep your bill lower by doing laundry or running your air conditioner in off-peak hours. The time of year will also impact your bill with a higher rate in June through September.

 

This comes after nearly 700,000 DTE customers lost power from ice-storm complications. Many were out of power for several days.

Local veterans groups raising money for one of their own

Local veterans groups are banding together to help one of their own following an accident at home.

 

Rudy Grahek, a Korean War veteran and professional clown performing under the name “Dynamite the Clown”, has put many smiles on the faces of kids and parents in Big Rapids and around Michigan for over 60 years has been in rehabilitation facility after hip surgery following a fall at his home.

 

The local veterans groups have started a GoFundMe for Rudy to help with his post rehab.

 

According to Mark Brejcha, Commander of American Legion Post 98, along with AMVETS Post 1941, Big Rapids, and the Michigan Warrior Clowns, are wanting to purchase a pristine used ADA-approved aluminum service ramp with rails that fit the dimensions of his walkway and entrance to his home when he returns in April.

 

"Dynamite gave us the gift of himself for over 60 years. We wish to return the favor with our time, talent, and treasures," Mark Brejcha, fundraising organizer.

 

He says their plan is to loan it to him for as long as he needs it, then continue to use it again and again for future veterans in the local area.

 

You can click HERE TO DONATE.

Polar Plunge in Big Rapids raises over $21,000 for local Special Olympics athletes

Local Special Olympians are benefiting from a recent fundraiser over the weekend in Downtown Big Rapids.

 

Pat Rosales, Director of Area 5 Special Olympics says the Polar Plunge event on Saturday raised over $21,000, which is $1,000 over their goal.

 

This year, nearly 100 participants got to jump into a mobile pool trailer called “The Plungster”.

 

The money raised on Saturday will go to local Special Olympic athletes for equipment and events held throughout the year.

State Senate approves tax cut plan; discussing gun control laws

State Senators have finalized a tax cutting plan and sent it to the Governor's office.

 

The Lowering MI Costs Plan phases out the retirement tax over four years and increases the Earned Income Tax Credit that will affect more than 700-thousand Michigan workers.

 

Also yesterday the Senate approved a new $1.3 billion dollars spending bill that allocates more than $600-million dollars to prepare land in Marshall for the new Ford battery plant.

 

Meanwhile, a package of gun safety laws will be discussed during a State House committee hearing this afternoon.

 

The legislation would require background checks for all firearms sold in Michigan, require guns be stored in gun safes or with trigger locks and establish a red-flag provision to allow police to ask a court to temporarily take away weapons from individuals deemed a threat to themselves and others.

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Weather

Local High School Schedule & Scores

CSAA Baseball

FRIDAY 4/5/24

Gm1: Cadillac 2 @ Big Rapids 6

Gm2: Cadillac 1 @ Big Rapids 16 (3inn)

Gm1: Reed City 4 @ Kingsley 11

 

SATURDAY 4/6/24

Gm1: M.C. Central 4 @ Reed City 5 (6inn)

Gm2: M.C. Central 8 @ Reed City 12 (6inn)

Gm1: Greenville 9 @ C Mont 0 (9inn)

Gm2: Greenville 2 @ C Mont 12 (6inn)

 

MONDAY 4/8/24

Gm1: Grant 0 @ Cedar Springs 10 (5inn)

 

TUESDAY 4/9/24

Gm1: Big Rapids 19 @ Tri County (6inn)

Gm2: Big Rapids 12 @ Tri County 1 (2inn/susp.)

Gm1: Grant 1 @ Morley Stanwood 4

Gm2: Grant 9 @ Morley Stanwood 1

Gm1: Chip Hills 5 @ Newaygo 3

Gm2: Chip Hills 4 @ Newaygo 9 (6inn)

Gm1: C Mont 3 @ Reed City 10

Gm2: C Mont 1 @ Reed City 3 (2inn/susp.)

******************************************

CSAA Softball

FRIDAY 4/5/24

Gm1: Cadillac 1 @ Big Rapids 11

Gm2: Cadillac 1 @ Big Rapids 16

Reed City 2 @ Kingsley 10 (6inn)

 

SATURDAY 4/6/24

M.C. Central @ Reed City - 1:00pm & 3:00pm

 

TUESDAY 4/9/24

Big Rapids @ Tri County

Kent City @ Lakeview

Grant @ Lakeview

Chip Hills @ Newaygo

Gm1: C Mont @ Reed City 7

Gm2: C Mont 8 @ Reed City 10

This Week's Poll

What place will the Tigers finish in the AL Central?