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West Michigan Armed Forces Thanksgiving Luncheon to Pay Tribute to United Sates Military Members

Students from across West Michigan are joining area business leaders to celebrate local members of the Armed Forces – past, present and future – during the 2nd Annual West Michigan Armed Forces Thanksgiving Appreciation Luncheon at the JW Marriott in Downtown Grand Rapids on Friday, May 5th. Military members will be in attendance for this event aimed at strengthening awareness and dialogue on the contributions our military personnel have made and continue to make on behalf of their families, their friends and their country.

Oldest Toastmasters Club in Michigan Still Talk of the Town on its 70th Birthday

Oldest Toastmasters Club in Michigan Still Talk of the Town on its 70th Birthday

Often listed among the top 10 fears people have, public speaking is a skill that can help anyone regardless of their age or background. Whether it’s at school, work or among friends and family, the ability to speak in front of an audience – even if it’s an audience of one – can be the key to future success. Thus, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the oldest Toastmasters International organization in Michigan – located here in Grand Rapids – continues to thrive as it celebrates its 70th birthday.

Toastmasters International is a world leader in communication and leadership development. With more than 345,000 members around the world, Toastmasters empowers individuals to become more effective communicators and leaders by providing a safe, supportive and structured setting for its members to acquire and practice meaningful communications and leadership skills on a regular basis to promote and enhance career and personal growth.

New Invasive Species found in Reeds & Fisk Lake

New Invasive Species found in Reeds & Fisk Lake

European Frog-bit, was discovered in the channel between Fisk & Reed’s Lake during a routine study by PLM, the Cities water treatment & management group. It appears as a water lily with a single white flower emerging from the middle.

This plant species is native to Europe, parts of Asia & Africa and grows rapidly. It crowds out & prevents sunlight from reaching plants with its fast-growing thick mats. In the fall season, oxygen decreases from the water when large colonies of plants die & decompose, in turn affecting fish and aquatic life.

City Manager, Brian Donovan says the European frog-bit was located early and the DNR is creating a plan to treat the invasive species.

Reminder to the community: Do not dispose of aquarium or water garden vegetation into lakes, ponds or streams. They may not be native to the area, causing issues.

Free Fishing Weekend Coming Up

Free Fishing Weekend Coming Up

For the Valentine’s weekend, it’s a free fishing weekend for residents and out of state visitors.

All fishing license fees are waived for two days in Michigan, February 13 & 14 from 6:00am – 10:00pm. This allows fishing enthusiasts to enjoy the chance to catch all types of fish on both inland and Great Lakes’ waters during their respective open season. Just remember that all regulations still apply.

Call: (517)284-5839 or email walters@michigan.gov for more information. Visit www.michigan.gov for details.

Water main break causes sinkhole, school bus accident

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WZZM) -- Part of a school bus fell into a sinkhole Wednesday morning in Grand Rapids.

Police tell WZZM 13 a water main break caused the road to collapse around 7 a.m. near E. Fulton & Lakeside Dr. SE.

Only three kids were on the Kent ISD bus at the time of the accident. No one was hurt.

Lakeside will remain closed while crews repair the road.

EGR honors officers and store worker for rescue

EAST GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WZZM) -- A group of police officers and a store worker are being honored for their efforts to save a man's life.

The incident happened in August, when a customer at Grand Rapids Bicycle Company collapsed. Officer Jon Karnes was the first person to get to the scene. He and store employee Joseph Vanessendels gave the man CPR, and shocked him with a portable defibrillator.

Other officers soon arrived to help, and managed to restart the heart and breathing of the victim. The victim who suffered a heart attack, Tim Zych, was on hand Monday night when the officers and store employee were honored for their efforts.

EGR helps grieving kids through football game fundraiser

EAST GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WZZM) -- Friday nights in fall mean football to many around West Michigan, but a group of students is using that excitement to help grieving children and teenagers.

East Grand Rapids hosted the community-wide Hearts of Gold fundraiser during its home game against Forest Hills Central Friday night.

The event raised more than $65,000 to supports Ele's Place, a healing center for grieving children, teenagers, and their families.

School leaders say the event is more than one night.

"As an individual, you are bigger than yourself, and if you can do something solid for your community, it is something we want to teach our young people to do," said Director of Athletics Tim Johnston. "Athletics is an opportunity to do that."

One of the highlights of Friday night's event: a performance by the University of Indiana's marching band at halftime.