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Volunteers needed to help when Moving Wall Memorial arrives

Volunteers needed to help when Moving Wall Memorial arrives

SPARTA, Mich.—The City of Sparta is looking for volunteers to help when the Moving Wall Memorial arrives later this month.

The wall is expected to roll into town on August 29.  It will be on display through Labor Day weekend on Balyeat Field.  The memorial is a half-size replica of the wall in Washington D.C. that lists the names of Vietnam veterans who sacrificed for our country.

If you’d like to volunteer to help, click here.

Funding deadline nears for communities impacted by flooding

Funding deadline nears for communities impacted by flooding

Communities impacted by the floods in April have less than a week to file their request for federal disaster money. 

In June, President Obama declared a major disaster in 16 Michigan counties, including Allegan, Ionia, Kent, Ottawa and Muskegon and Newaygo. The Small Business Association also issued a disaster declaration this summer.  Both declarations freed up federal assistance for homeowners, local governments and certain non-profits who were forced to clean up.  Homeowners and businesses had until Monday, August 12 to apply for assistance; city officials have until August 17.

The flooding caused $10 million in damage in Kent County alone.  Federal funding would help pay for debris removal and repairs to public property, roads and bridges.

Kent County accepting household hazardous waste

Kent County accepting household hazardous waste

Kent County will be accepting household hazardous waste from residents Saturday, August 10. 

Residents with proper ID can drop off items from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. at 2908 Ten Mile Rd. in Rockford. The county will also accept drop-off items at the following times and locations:

  • August 24: 1500 Scribner Ave. NW, Grand Rapids
  • September 7: 5068 Breton Rd. SE, Kentwood
  • September 21: 2350 Ivanrest SW, Grandville
  • October 12: 2908 Ten Mile Rd. in Rockford
  • October 26: 1500 Scribner Ave. NW, Grand Rapids

Chemicals including weed killers, bug sprays, antifreeze, gasoline, oil-based paint, wood preservatives, paint thinner, pool chemicals, deck cleaners, fluorescent light bulbs, mercury thermometers and thermostats will all be accepted.  Latex paint, medical waste, prescription drugs, ammunition and fireworks are prohibited.

Sparta Library offers free site to Geneology

Sparta Library offers free site to Geneology

The Sparta Carnegie Township Library has temporarily installed the “NewsBank” genealogy program on the library’s computers for residents to use through Monday, August 12th, free of charge.

If demand for the program is great enough, the library will consider installing the program on a full time basis, to allow residents to look up family history at no charge instead of going to subscription sites and pay a fee. The cost of the annual license is $1500.00 but would make it available to people on a full time basis.

Four Irish Bands to perform at Sparta's Celtic Festival

Four Irish Bands to perform at Sparta's Celtic Festival

On Saturday, August 10th, Sparta will sponsor the fourth annual Celtic Festival from 10am until 10pm, rain or shine. This is the only free Celtic Festival in Michigan, to quote the co-chair person, Kris Murphy. There will be two stages for the bands in Rogers Park and other locations in the area.

There will be bagpipers along with a beer tent, vendors and other activities. Some of the bands participating will be The Waxies, named to be the best Irish band in Michigan, Paddy’s Cure, Peat in the Creel and the Billies. Dancers and local fiddlers will entertain also.

West Michigan’s own Lee Mulder will kick off the festival bringing her solo act to the Rogers Park Main Stage located at 120 N. State St.

Strike a pose at new studio in downtown Sparta

Strike a pose at new studio in downtown Sparta

SPARTA, Mich.— A new business in Sparta is inviting everyone to come in and strike a pose.

On Wednesday, August 7, members of the Sparta Chamber of Commerce helped cut the ribbon to Soaring Kite Yoga (SKY), located at 147 E. Division. The new studio features foot-friendly bamboo flooring and walls covered in element-inspired murals created by David Marfia.

SKY's yoga instructor, who has taught internationally, offers one-hour sessions on Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.  For more information, visit SKY’s website here.

Sparta prepares for a Celtic invasion August 10

Sparta prepares for a Celtic invasion August 10

SPARTA, Mich.—The banners are up in downtown, and now the community awaits a Celtic invasion.

Celts will take over Rogers Park this weekend as the Sparta Celtic Festival returns August 10.  This year’s event will feature performances by the Shannon Irish Dance Academy, kilt and clan contests, as well as art vendors, bag pipers and food and craft brews.

The 4th Annual Sparta Celtic Festival will run from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.