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My Town: Final rounds of Little League State Tournament unfold in Grand Rapids

My Town: Final rounds of Little League State Tournament unfold in Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.--- Just one West Michigan team remains in the running for the Little League State Tournament  title.

The Western team based out of the Walker/Standale area carries a 5-2 record into Tuesday night’s semi-final game against South Portage.  The game will begin at 7:30 p.m. at the Southern Little League’s East Field, located at 2525 Kalamazoo Ave. SE in Grand Rapids.

The 9/10 year old division of the Little League State Tournament began Friday, July 25 with 16 teams.  Detroit Red Wings’ Luke Glendening, who is a former Southern Little League player, helped kick off the competition.

All games and parking are free to the public. Concessions will be open during all games. For updated scores and information, visit www.southernll.blogspot.com and click on 9/10 Tournament.

Caught Being Safe program launches statewide

Michigan State Police, local law enforcement and Michigan’s Field Neurosciences Institute have teamed up with McDonald’s of Michigan to once again launch “Caught Being Safe,” a statewide bicycle/scooter helmet safety program. Kids wearing helmets and “caught being safe” by participating law enforcement officials will treated to a free ice cream cone or Apple Dippers at McDonald’s. 

According to the Field Neurosciences Institute (of Michigan): “Caught Being Safe! has shown a significant increase in both helmet utilization and public awareness regarding the critical importance of wearing a bicycle helmet. This program has impacted not only children but adults as well.” 

My Town: Army of volunteers create new play space for children

My Town: Army of volunteers create new play space for children

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—Hundreds of Grand Rapids children have a new place to play, thanks to an army of volunteers.

On June 13, more than 300 people from Amway,  Ellington Academy of Arts & Technology and KaBoom! pitched in to build a new playground at in front of the school, located at 600 Burton Street SE.  The volunteers spent several hours transforming children’s designs into a place to play. 

Dr. Marvin L. Sapp and other community leaders will celebrate the playground’s grand opening Tuesday, June 17 at 5 p.m., before officially welcoming children to play at the new site, which is the 16th of its kind built by Amway and KaBOOM.  

My Town: Fish for free June 7 and 8

My Town: Fish for free June 7 and 8

MUSKEGON, Mich.— Grab a rod and head out onto the big lake this weekend for Michigan’s Free Fishing Weekend.

On June 7 and 8, the state will be waiving fishing license fees.  Free Fishing Weekend applies to residents and out-of-state visitors on inland and Great Lakes waters for all species of fish.  All fishing regulations still apply.

According to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, our state offers some of the finest freshwater fishing in the world, with more than 3,000 miles of Great Lakes shoreline, more than 11,000 inland lakes and tens of thousands of miles of rivers and streams. To find inland lakes in your area, click here.

My Town: Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo among worst cities for mosquitoes

My Town: Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo among worst cities for mosquitoes

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—If  you’re among the many Americans planning to celebrate Memorial Day weekend outside, don’t forget the bug spray.

The Grand Rapids-Kalamazoo-Battle Creek area is among the top 20 cities for mosquito problems.  That’s according to Orkin.  The pest control company based its rankings on the number of treatments it performed last year. Grand Rapids-Kalamazoo-Battle Creek ranked 13th on the list.  Atlanta took the top spot, followed by Chicago, Washington D.C. and Detroit.  

The rankings are as follows:

1: Atlanta

2: Chicago

3. Washington, D.C.

4. Detroit

5. Raleigh-Durham

6. Boston

7. Houston

8. Nashville

9. Charlotte

10. Dallas-Fort Worth

11. Richmond-Petersburg

12. Miami-Fort Lauderdale

13. Grand Rapids-Kalamazoo-Battle Creek

My Town: Hunger Walk organizers expect to reach their goal

My Town: Hunger Walk organizers expect to reach their goal

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.— Organizers of this year’s Hunger Walk say they’re on track to reach their $120,000 goal.

More than 750 walkers and 100 volunteers took part in walk at Park Church last Sunday.  This was the 37th year for the stroller-friendly event.

Organizers expect to be tallying up donations from the event over the next few weeks.  The proceeds will go to Access of West Michigan, which is focused on eliminating hunger and reducing the impact of poverty in Kent County.

My Town: The Hashtag Battle over the 2014 Jump Jam

My Town: The Hashtag Battle over the 2014 Jump Jam

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—  What started as a hashtag battle about the 2014 Jump Jam has turned into a friendly wager between Grand Rapids Public Schools’ superintendent and Spectrum Health’s senior vice president.

GRPS posted the hashtag battle between Theresa Weatherall Neal and Steve Heacock to YouTube last Friday.  In the video, Weatherall Neal challenges Heacock to a friendly bet on two of the Jump Jam teams, with the loser buying lunch from either the hospital or school cafeteria.  Mayor George Heartwell makes a surprise appearance at the end of the video.