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Month: October 2017

Charlotte Soup funds two community projects

CanDo! has existed in Charlotte for close to two decades, and still, community members are sometimes unsure of what Charlotte Area Networking for Development and Opportunity is all about. On Wednesday, Oct. 25, CanDo!’s newest event, Charlotte Soup, showed exactly what the organization has always been — an instigator of ideas. Charlotte Soup’s premise was simple — bring community members together to generate ideas for new community projects; have the participants vote on their favorites; and provide funding for the top two ideas. The simple premise created several memorable moments, exactly what current CanDo! Chair Bill Barnes was hoping...

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9-1-1 surcharge on the Nov. ballot: What readers should know

On the November ballot for Eaton County residents will be the proposal for a surcharge of up to $1.75 a month on all phone lines or devices capable of calling 9-1-1 in Eaton County. The purpose of the surcharge is to cover the cost of new radio systems for all emergency responders. Presentations about the ballot item were given to at least two city councils in Eaton County Monday, Oct. 23. Eaton County’s Central Dispatch director, Michael Armitage, gave a presentation before the Charlotte City Council, and deputy director, Lara O’Brien, presented to the Eaton Rapids City Council. The emergency radio system used for all of Eaton County’s emergency responders is well out of date. The system is more than 40 years old and has a number of weaknesses that are hampering responders’ ability to perform their jobs effectively. Radios connected to the system are known to lose reception in a variety of buildings, there are recurring problems with frequency overlap and interference between Eaton and Ingham Counties and even Chicago, and it is far easier for citizens to tap into the radio frequencies of emergency responders. According to O’Brien, replacement parts for the current system will no longer be in production after 2018. The list of issues with the decades old system goes on. Counties across the state have been moving to updated, digital radio systems that almost...

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Kimmer family enters new era of Halloween fun in Charlotte

For the first time in nearly 30 years, the house on the corner of Lovett and Pleasant streets in Charlotte will not serve as the community’s main Halloween attraction. Dan and Julie Kimmer, who have created elaborate Halloween displays at 333 E. Lovett Street since 1987 have moved, taking their treasure-trove of ghouls and goblins with them. But don’t fret Charlotte. The Kimmer’s have teamed with Courthouse Square Association (where Julie serves as director of the Courthouse Square Museum) to provide a new and exciting Halloween attraction. Courthouse Square Museum will be transformed into a Haunted House Friday, Oct....

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Olivet Bands receive top ratings and placements in competitions

Saturday, Oct. 7 was a chaotic, wet, and triumphant day for the Olivet High School marching band. According to band director Dave Funk, the roughly 100-student band weathered (no pun intended) storms, a bus breaking down, and no warm up before the Vicksburg Invitational. The band arrived, performed, left, and then unloaded their equipment in the rain. Challenges aside, the band was outstanding. The Olivet marching band scored a 90, won every caption of the competition, and took first place in their class C division. What’s more is this year was the band’s first time attending the Vicksburg Invitational. Like a battle hardened troop the band arrived to the festival, kicked butt, and left. (Mic drop) “The kids did a great job, and I was proud of how they handled the adversity of the day,” said Funk. He was humbly impressed with his students. They acted and performed professionally through all of the day’s obstacles, and he believes they’re as ready as they can be for their next and final competition of the season. Saturday, Oct. 21 the Olivet marching band is participating in a marching festival at East Kentwood High School. Olivet has attended the East Kentwood festival for several years, and every couple of years they step up their game. According to Funk, Olivet is one of the only bands of their size in the Class A...

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Place making meeting sparks Eaton Rapids’ creativity

Monday, Oct. 16 members of the Eaton Rapids Arts Council, city employees, local business owners, and Eaton Rapids creatives gathered in the city council chambers at City Hall to participate in a presentation from the Greater Lansing Arts Council. “Creating Place” was an opportunity to learn about how the Greater Lansing Arts Council rejuvenated Old Town Lansing, what they’re still doing to bring artistic life to the Lansing area, and how Eaton Rapids can breathe life into the community through art. About 20 people from Eaton Rapids listened to the presentation from the Arts Council of Greater Lansing and...

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