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History uncovered: Renovations take downtown business back in time

History uncovered: Renovations take downtown business back in time

SPARTA, Mich.—The owners of a downtown business are discovering some historic treasures as renovations take their building back in time.

Before it was Dollar N’ More, the building at 112 E. Division St. was the Johnson-Smith Department Store. According to Downtown Development Authority Director Elizabeth Morse, a fire on March 19, 1941 destroyed the store and all of its contents. Four months later, the building’s owner told the Sentinel-Leader she would rebuild the facility as a tribute to her late husband, August Johnson. 

Owen-Ames-Kimball Co.

Credit unions join cash mob to support local business

Credit unions join cash mob to support local business

Three West Michigan credit unions will take part in a statewide cash mob Tuesday, treating local business employees to lunch.

Community West Credit Union based in Wyoming, Rogue River Community Credit Union based in Sparta and My Personal Credit Union based in Wyoming are all taking part in the event, which is part of the CU Lunch Local program.

“Michigan credit unions are first and foremost rooted in their communities, and CU Lunch Local is a way for us to demonstrate that,” said Michigan Credit Union League & Affiliates CEO David Adams. “Our credit unions support small businesses in so many ways, including business lending that is helping to create jobs and help move the state’s economy forward. CU Lunch Local is an opportunity to show everyone just how big the credit union commitment to small business really is.”

Sparta puts Ambulance Barn up for sale

Sparta puts Ambulance Barn up for sale

SPARTA, Mich.—Sparta’s old Ambulance Barn is back on the market.

Village Manager Martin Super says the Village added the property to real estate listings last week.   The facility, located at  E. Gardner and Washington streets, is no longer used to house ambulances, but serves as a storage facility for community event supplies.

Super says the building could be better used by a company; he says the space is ideal for businesses like a car detail shop or a heating and cooling service.

Super says the Village will build a new facility near the Department of Public Works garage at 276 West Division, which will be large enough to house trailers for Sparta Town & Country Days.  Work on the new facility will likely begin in spring.

Kent County accepting household hazardous waste

Kent County accepting household hazardous waste

Kent County will be accepting household hazardous waste from residents Saturday, October 12.

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 on October 26 at 1500 Scribner Ave. NW in 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.

For more information, visit the Household Hazardous Waste Program website or call (616) 336-2570.

Allendale tops Sparta, 38-7

ALLENDALE (WZZM) -- The Allendale Falcons are back in the playoffs following a 38-7 win over Sparta.

The Haiden Majewski to Nate Couturier combination led the way again for the Falcons, who are now 4-1 in the O-K Blue.

Sparta falls to 5-2 overall.

Michigan Works! looks for hard workers to honor

Michigan Works! looks for hard workers to honor

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—Michigan Works! is looking for employees in Kent and Allegan counties who go above and beyond to make customers happy.

This is the sixth year the agency has honored important yet sometimes undervalued workers during the Essential Service Awards. 

“While all employees contribute to the growth of our community and the efficiency of their organization, we tend to recognize those in leadership or highly visible positions,” says Dave Smith, chair of the Michigan Works! Kent & Allegan Counties Workforce Development Board.  “We often overlook the significant contributions that a virtually invisible workforce – the support workers within the various sectors – makes to our community by passionately performing less visible tasks.  The Essential Service Awards recognize exceptional individuals performing these necessary and essential jobs.” 

Sparta begins leaf pick-up October 14

Sparta begins leaf pick-up October 14

SPARTA, Mich.—It’s fall, which means leaves are littering the yards in Sparta.

The village will begin wide leaf pick-up for fall Monday, October 14.  Residents are asked to rake their leaves into piles between the curb and sidewalk area or near the street.   Leaves should not be raked into the streets, where they can clog storm drains.  Leaves contaminated by pet waste or trash will not be picked up.

Leaf pick-up service runs through the end of November.