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Author: Adam Droscha

Nashville Pride mural unveiled at ribbon cutting ceremony

Jack and Judy, owners of the Country Kettle Café, have changed things around near their locally favored restaurant. The building next door was torn down, a small walk way was made for easier access to customers with wheelchairs, and recently a new art project was unveiled. The Nashville pride mural, made by Maple Valley High School students in Jessica Droscha’s art classes, is the recent talk of the town after a ribbon cutting ceremony on Monday, June 12. In the nearly 90 degree weather, between the Country Kettle and the new, brightly painted mural spelling out Nashville, parents, teachers,...

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Michigan Dairy Tech, a local business working nationwide

Michigan Dairy Tech is a dairy cow technology company in Olivet. The company originated as Kyle O’Brien’s first computer/I.T. business and blossomed into a farm technology company that services dairy farms all over the country. With ever changing technology comes technological advances many areas, including agriculture. O’Brien sensed a growing need for I.T. services in the world of agriculture, and quickly discovered the wide world of dairy needs. O’Brien, owner and founder of Michigan Dairy Tech, never intended to work with dairy farms, cows, or their technology. He was an I.T. guy. He knew his future was in computers, but the dairy side of things sort fell into his lap over the last 20 years. Gradually he started hearing more about the needs of dairy farmers, and started moving his specialty to working with those farms. “I just started hearing stuff. I.T. people are like that,” said O’Brien. Likewise, O’Brien didn’t grow up around dairy cows, or any kind of farm. The world of dairy was brand new to him, but his I.T. brain power kicked in and he started learning the ins and outs of modern dairy tech. There are neck monitors to detect when a cow is in heat and how much the cow is chewing, udder monitors that can test the cow’s milk as it’s being milked, robotic arms that can automatically spray disinfectant on a...

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Country Mill owners file lawsuit against City of East Lansing

On May 31 Steve and Bridget Tennes held a press conference at the State Capitol to announce their filing of a lawsuit against the City of East Lansing. The lawsuit comes after a change in application policy for vendors to the East Lansing Farmers Market. The new application reportedly bars vendors who have openly discriminatory policies. In the Tenneses’ case, the application bars the Country Mill from participating in the farmers market based on their wedding venue policy at the orchard, which reserves wedding ceremonies only for heterosexual couples. To Steve and Bridget this is a direct move against their constitutional rights of freedom of religion. For the last seven years the Country Mill has participated in the East Lansing Farmers Market, and was welcomed back each year as a favored vendor. The city praised the Country Mill for its excellent service, organic produce, and fresh made desserts. According to Steve, the praise stopped immediately after the Tenneses made a Facebook post explaining why they would be no longer be opening the orchard for weddings. Following the August post Steve started receiving push back from the city about the Country Mill’s participation in the East Lansing Farmers Market. According to Steve they were discouraged from returning based on their religious policy and practice in their business. When in December the Tenneses announced the orchard would continue hosting weddings, between...

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Eaton Rapids Library hosts public hearing for potential facilities renovation

Tuesday, May 30 Eaton Rapids residents were welcomed to attend a public hearing at the Eaton Rapids Library regarding upcoming renovations to the library. ERPL has been receiving donations for a remodel for some time, and recently library director, Anna Curtis, selected an architect for the project. With these strides forward, the next step was to provide an informational meeting for the public, and to hear what residents would like to see in their local library. Architect Daniel E. Whisler, who has worked on a number of specialized and award winning libraries, provided the 13 attendees to the hearing information on what ERPL is lacking, ways to improve the space, and components that have benefitted other libraries. Included in the information were statistics of comparison between ERPL and other libraries of similar sizes in Michigan. These statistics, according to Anna, indicate that ERPL is “sorely lacking in a number of areas.” The information from Whisler affirmed many of Curtis’ concerns. In her two years as library director she’s done what she can to update the library’s services and programs, but still recognized significant holes in its offerings. Like many librarians and library directors, Curtis sees the library as a community information center, not just a place to store books. Visitors shouldn’t just come to the library for a book about cooking; they should be able to learn how to...

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Exciting changes coming to Eaton Pub and Grille in Charlotte

Eaton Pub and Grille is used to regular change. Especially with the house made beer list from Charlotte Brewing Co., owner Terry Davis tries to incorporate variety and circulation. This variety has given mug club members and many other customers regular treats to look forward to. But now Davis is running out of room. Because of the variety he and head brewer, Jason Orbeck, have provided Eaton Pub and Grille now enjoys six or seven staple beers, as opposed to their original four. With the demand for more staple beers Eaton Pub and Grille is looking to expand. “Beer garden” is the term Davis used frequently to describe the hopeful expansion of Eaton Pub. What he generally meant is a patio, likely with an outdoor tap, where customers can sit, dine, and socialize over their Charlotte Brewing Co. favorites. Currently Davis is looking to expand into buildings neighboring the north side of the pub. He is discussing renovation possibilities with friend and business neighbor Mark Hughes, owner of Jerry’s Barbershop. The expansion would also include more brewing equipment so Charlotte Brewing Co. can keep more regular beer on tap, and so head brewer Orbeck can continue creating creative new tastes. Davis and Orbeck have created a regular rotation of seasonal beers that customers look forward to, like their bourbon barrel beers released in April, Snow Storm Winter Lager released...

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