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Author: The County Journal

Team One Chevrolet Grand Parade to draw thousands to downtown Charlotte

If you want a good seat for the Frontier Days Team One Chevrolet Grand Parade on Saturday, Sept. 7, come early. The parade will begin at 10:30 a.m., but many people will reserve their place by setting up chairs and blankets along the parade route hours in advance. The Team One Chevrolet Grand Parade is usually the largest event of the year in Charlotte, drawing thousands of people downtown. This year we are honored to introduce David Howe as our Grand Marshal, and Garrett Blocker as Jr. Grand Marshal. David has been a businessman in Charlotte for more than...

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Eaton Rapids … A well-loved small town

By Deb Malewski Not everyone loves Eaton Rapids, of course. But those who do, really do. There is a certain passion about what this town has to offer, and many appreciate it. They enjoy a sense of security, neighbors helping neighbors and a strong community connectivity. Yes, they know it’s not perfect, there are problems and crime just like everywhere else. But they recognize what it has to offer and appreciate the life in Eaton Rapids. The beauty of the community was important to many. Janell Bush said, “I love the parades and the tree-lined and lighted Main Street at night.”  Tammie Driggs agrees: “When you come into town at night and see the lights on the trees. I think that is beautiful!” The small-town connectivity is what several commented about. Knowing your neighbors.  “Seeing friends and customers around town, taking a minute to say hi, and spending time building friendships,” is important to Jaime Lawson. Laura DeLong explained that the town feels, “more like family. When someone needs help the community steps up to help as a family would.” Jennifer Mills echoes the family connection.   “With technology and Facebook I can put out a shout for help and the community is so receptive and willing to help. That is what you call family. I love our town.” Kerry Colestock commented: “I’ve lived here for 32 years and what I love...

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Bald eagle hit by car while eating

Deb Malewski Contributing Writer It’s hard to imagine that someone would intentionally hit a bald eagle with their car as it stands in the road, eating. Louise at Wildside Rehabilitation and Education believes this is probably what happened to Freedom, an 8-year-old female Bald Eagle. The majestic bird now shivers in its habitat at Wildside; spinal trauma leaving it unable to use its legs or tail, rendering it flightless. She was brought in on Aug. 19 after being found on Canal Road in Eaton Rapids. On Aug. 24, Freedom took her first tentative steps since being hurt. No fractures have...

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Eaton Rapids Post Office mural created by Russian prince

Deb Malewski Contributing Writer If you’ve ever mailed a letter or package in the Eaton Rapids Post Office you’ve probably noticed the large mural above the service counter. It is one of about 1,400 similar murals throughout the country. In this area, there are also post office murals in Grand Ledge, Mason, and East Lansing. Russian/French/American Boris Mestchersky (1889-1957) came to the US in 1937. He painted the oil-on-canvas mural “Industry and Agriculture,” which was installed in the Eaton Rapids post office in 1939.  Mestchersky was believed to be a Russian prince, in addition to being quite a well-respected artist at the time. He relinquished his royal title upon moving to the United States. The mural was commissioned by the Treasury Section of Fine Arts, as was the tradition when a new post office was opened. Although the Works Progress Administration (WPA) funded the construction of post office buildings, most post office artworks were funded through commissions under the Treasury Department’s Section of Painting and Sculpture, and not the WPA. Mestchersky visited Eaton Rapids for about a week to research the industries of the area and to get an impression of the venue in which his mural would hang. He kept the color of the floor tiles in mind when he painted the mural and suggested to the Postmaster that the walls of the lobby should be painted to...

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Girl Scouts end the ‘there’s nothing to do’ problem

Deb Malewski Contributing Writer So often we hear “There’s nothing to do …” from our kids. Some of our young women, though, have found a way to keep busy, to learn, and to have fun. They joined the Girl Scouts. There are eight different troops in Eaton Rapids alone. The Girl Scouts offer a wide variety of activities and experiences to interest girls of all ages. Girls can start out in Daisies (kindergarten and first grade) and advance from Brownies (second and third grades) through Juniors (grades fourth and fifth) to Cadettes (sixth through eighth grades) and then on to Senior Girl Scouts (ninth and 10th grades). In 2011 a new level was added, Ambassadors (11th and 12th grade). The higher a girl goes in Scouting, the more independence she receives in her projects. We recently have seen Rachel Loren, an Eaton Rapids Senior Girl Scout, working on her Gold Award, which is the equivalent to the Eagle Scout Award in Boy Scouts. To achieve this award, the Girl Scout must find a problem and solve it with a sustainable solution. Rachel is working to improve Oak Ridge Park, one of the city’s newest parks. Susan Kinaitis is the area leader for Eaton Rapids and has been a troop leader for about six years. Her passion for the volunteer position is obvious as she talks about Scouting.  “We are there to...

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