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Month: April 2018

Charlotte unveils new community brand

The billboards unveiled on State Street Tuesday, April 24 are just the first step for Charlotte’s new community brand. Developed over the course of the past two years through a collaborative effort between CanDo! and CharlotteRising — with input from a number of other community leaders and organizations — the brand was designed by Redhead Design Studio of Lansing to be utilized in promoting all facets of the Charlotte community. “It’s really an exciting moment in the history of Charlotte,” said Dillon Rush, executive director of CharlotteRising, during the Tuesday unveiling. “We may not recognize it right now, but...

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School District makes case for recreation coordinator position

For the past year, a group of concerned community members has been meeting to devise a plan to address what they felt were shortcomings in recreation programs offered to Charlotte youth and its effect on athletics at the high school level. Monday, April 23, members of the Charlotte Athletic Advisory Group, including representatives from Charlotte Public Schools, stated their case to Charlotte City Council for the reestablishment of a partnership between Charlotte Public Schools and the City of Charlotte. “We were frustrated and felt we could do better,” said Jim Cicorelli, one of the community members that helped establish the Charlotte Athletic Advisory Group. “We felt we had a vision for what could work and be a success for our community, and primarily success for our kids. In my opinion there is nothing more important in our community than our kids.” The plan, which has support from the CPS Board of Education, is to establish a recreation coordinator position within the school district. This position would be charged with: Creating a website to house all youth recreation opportunities within the district; expanding and enhancing current recreational programming in the district; creating new programs of interest for local youth; building continuity within local programs allowing for better coordination with varsity-level coaches; and streamlining communications, sign ups, dates and events, among others. The district reached out to the City of Charlotte...

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Spinsanity Flow Down to expose greater-Charlotte to ‘flow arts’

Watch Natalie VanHaitsma perform with a hoop in her hand and you can see the pure joy on her face. Since becoming a “flow artist” in 2016, she has found the freedom of her movement and the synchronization of the hoop to be a meditating experience. She started slowly, she said, hoop dancing in the safety of her own home. She quickly found, however, that she had a knack for controlling the hoop and putting together elaborate choreography. “Once I started, I couldn’t stop,” she said. “I learned several tricks and transitions from YouTube and in only three months,...

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Potterville City Council in dispute over paying city bills

At the Thursday, April 19 Potterville City Council meeting, an unusual occurrence took place, one that Mayor Katherine Schmidt said is a first for the City of Potterville. The city council voted to not pay the city’s bills. According to council members Schmidt and Bussard, among the list of unpaid bills was the liability insurance, energy bill, employee health insurance, and others. The paying of bills came to a vote due to what councilmen Duston Twichell and Bruce Kring, and councilwomen Jennifer Lenneman and Rebeckajo Lewis identified as untimely presentation of bills reports. The reports were presented via email to the council the Wednesday before the Thursday meeting, much to the dismay of the aforementioned council members. “Since the first of the year we have in open meetings directed the manager to get packets to us in a more timely manner,” said councilman Twichell. “Getting the packet the day before is unacceptable.” “I didn’t think I could approve them in good faith,” said councilwoman Lenneman. Mayor Schmidt denied the allegations that bills reports were consistently presented late to council. According to Schmidt, the April 19 council meeting was the first time City Manager Wanda Darrow presented the reports only one day in advance to the monthly council meeting. The last few months the reports were presented consistently by the Tuesday before the meeting. Mayor Schmidt also factored in that...

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City of Eaton Rapids hires new Quality of Life Director

After Troy Stowell, the former quality of life director for the City of Eaton Rapids, departed to become the Parks and Recreation director for Eaton County, Eaton Rapids City Council and city manager got right to searching for a new quality of life director. Stowell left big shoes to fill as he looked after not only Eaton Rapids parks, but also fulfilled several other tasks. Monday, April 30, Lindsey Zeller will start her new job as Eaton Rapids quality of life director. Zeller has spent the last few years in Eaton Rapids. She has two sons, ages 9 and 6, who have attended Eaton Rapids Schools. Zeller worked at Eaton Rapids Schools where she met her husband, Jason Zeller, who is the principal of Lockwood Elementary. As she’s lived, worked, and integrated into Eaton Rapids, Zeller has found a special appreciation for the Island City. “I love the small town feel. It has a lot of unique qualities to it,” said Zeller. “There’s something here for every member of the community.” Zeller came across the job opening at the city and knew she had to apply. She will soon complete her degree from Central Michigan University, which is in community development with an administration focus. The quality of life director job was right up her alley, and what better place to use her new skill set than in her...

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