Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving - A Presidential Proclamation

The Elected officials and staff of Alpine Township Michigan wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving. Our office will be closed Thursday - Sunday.


One of our Nation's oldest and most cherished traditions Thanksgiving Day brings us closer to our loved ones and invites us to reflect on the blessings that enrich our lives. The observance recalls the celebration of an autumn harvest centuries ago, when the Wampanoag tribe joined the Pilgrims at Plymouth Colony to share in the fruits of a bountiful season. The feast honored the Wampanoag for generously extending their knowledge of local game and agriculture to the Pilgrims, and today we renew our gratitude to all American Indians and Alaska Natives. We take this time to remember the ways that the First Americans have enriched our Nation's heritage, from their generosity centuries ago to the everyday contributions they make to all facets of American life. As we come together with friends, family, and neighbors to celebrate, let us set aside our daily concerns and give thanks for the providence bestowed upon us.

Though our traditions have evolved, the spirit of grace and humility at the heart of Thanksgiving has persisted through every chapter of our story. When President George Washington proclaimed our country's first Thanksgiving, he praised a generous and knowing God for shepherding our young Republic through its uncertain beginnings. Decades later, President Abraham Lincoln looked to the divine to protect those who had known the worst of civil war, and to restore the Nation "to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquility, and union."

In times of adversity and times of plenty, we have lifted our hearts by giving humble thanks for the blessings we have received and for those who bring meaning to our lives. Today, let us offer gratitude to our men and women in uniform for their many sacrifices, and keep in our thoughts the families who save an empty seat at the table for a loved one stationed in harm's way. And as members of our American family make do with less, let us rededicate ourselves to our friends and fellow citizens in need of a helping hand.

As we gather in our communities and in our homes, around the table or near the hearth, we give thanks to each other and to God for the many kindnesses and comforts that grace our lives. Let us pause to recount the simple gifts that sustain us, and resolve to pay them forward in the year to come.

NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and the laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim Thursday, November 24, 2011, as a National Day of Thanksgiving. I encourage the people of the United States to come together – whether in our homes, places of worship, community centers, or any place of fellowship for friends and neighbors – to give thanks for all we have received in the past year, to express appreciation to those whose lives enrich our own, and to share our bounty with others.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this sixteenth day of November, in the year of our Lord two thousand eleven, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-sixth.


Welcome JO-ANN Fabrics and Crafts

Not in time for the 2011 Christmas season but Alpine Township is proud to be the home of a new JO-ANN Fabrics and Craft store. Scheduled to open February 3, 2012, the store will be located at 3495 Alpine Ave. The building is at a prime location and will be shared with the Salvation Army's Thrift Store. A sign in front of the store indicates that JO-ANN Fabrics and Crafts is currently hiring.

The management of JO-ANN Fabrics and Crafts is very excited to bring more creativity and more jobs to Alpine Township . The company is looking to hire 40 +/- people and is hosting a job fair at the JO-ANN Fabric and Craft Store 2163, 3665 28TH ST SE. GRAND RAPIDS, MI. 49512 on 12/13-12/14 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

To find out information about a career with the company. click here.

To find out more about available positions at the new store, please click here.

Added 12/12/2011

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Adventures Along the Pacific Crest Trail

Nancy and Tim Van Nest
Guest speaker at today's Alpine Township Historical Commission's monthly meeting was Tim Van Nest, a Kent City resident who, with his wife Nancy, shared anecdotes and photos of their  2,600 mile hike along the Pacific Crest Trail from Mexico to Canada, across California, Oregon and Washington.  An audience of over 50 people watched and listened attentively as Tim and Nancy shared their adventures.

Tim Van Nest

A very attentive audience filled the room to capacity

Saturday, November 19, 2011

3rd Annual Holiday Tree Silent Auction & Spaghetti Dinner

The Comstock Park Educational Foundation held its 3rd Annual Holiday Tree Silent Auction and Spaghetti Dinner Saturday night.  The spaghetti was great and the desert fantastic (from Amore). Participants had the opportunity to bid on over thirty trees.  The award for most best liked tree went to York Creek Apartments, which also one an award for best first year entry.  The tree decorated by the staff of Alpine Township was named most traditional tree, and received the highest bid ($200).  Music was provided by students.  Students also provided some of the art on display.
A few of the 31 trees

"Candyland Christmas" York Creek Apartments

"A Taste of Alpine" Alpine Township Staff

Superintendent and Head Chef Ethan Ebenstein and son Trevor

Some of the youthful student art on display a la Georges Rouault

A Van Gogh?

P.S.  Congratulations to the Comstock Park, West Catholic, Kenowa and Sparta football teams for a fantastic season!

Santa Arrives by Reindeer at Fruitbasket Flowerland

If there was any place in the Towship today that hinted the Christmas season is near, it would have been at Fruitbasket Flowerland where Santa was spotted, reindeer and all. Kids enjoyed not only meeting Santa and a few of the reindeer but were able to make their own reindeer food that they can can scatter over their lawn Christmas eve to attract the reindeer to their home.  Some took the opportunity to decorate Christmas cards.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Cookie and Candy Sale - Zion LutheranChurch

582 Lamoreaux DR. NW Comstock Park, Mi 49321
Choose From:
Cut Out Sugar Cookies, Peanut Butter Blossoms
Fudge, Peanut Brittle, No Bake Cookies
Gingerbread Men, Date Pinwheels, Church Windows,
Puppy Chow, Magic CookieBars
for pre-order, please  call Sandi Ayon 784-5832
or e-mail by December 2, 2011
All preorders are available for pick up by 9 am the day of sale

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Armed Robbery Awareness Workshop

Alpine Township hosted an Armed Robbery Awareness workshop Tuesday evening that was attended by 25 owners, managers and employees of businesses located on or near Alpine Ave.  The meeting was conducted by Alex Arends who is a former president of the Crime Prevention Association of Michigan, and continues to maintain his membership in the International Society of Crime Prevention Practitioners, and Sgt. David Kok, who heads the Kent County Sheriff's Community Services Department.  The emphasis was on employee and customer safety and attendees also received tips on how to make their establishment less attractive to robbers, as well as conduct during and after a robbery. 

There has been an recent increase in the number of armed robberies that occurred along Alpine Ave.  It is believed, however, that all of them have been solved and suspects arrested with the help of information provided by alert victims and citizens.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

A Taste of Alpine Township

The Comstock Park School Foundation will be holding a Spaghetti Dinner fund raiser on Saturday, November 19, 2011 from 6:00 P.M. until 8:00 P.M. at the Comstock Park High School.  Cost will be $6.00 per adult, $3.00 for children 5yrs – 12 yrs, and free for children 5 yrs and under. 

Menu consists of Spaghetti, featuring Janine Fidler’s Famous Sauce, Salad, Breadsticks, Dessert and Beverage thanks to generous donations by Vitale’s and Olive Garden. Music and art displays will be provided by students from Kdg. – 12th Grade. There will be a silent auction for over 30 trees with various themes being donated by area businesses and organizations.  The time of the auction is from 6:00 P.M - 7:30 P.M.  The staff of Alpine Township is donating a tree with the theme of "A Taste Of Alpine Township"  The tree displays several homegrown products including apples, and it includes coupons and gift cards for over a dozen Alpine Township restaurants.  The value of the tree with the products and gift cards/certificates is estimated at about $250 and the staff of Alpine Township is excited that it can help raise funds for the School Foundation. The Mission of the Comstock Park School foundation is to generate and distribute financial and other resources to and for the Comstock Park School District, for enrichment programs and other projects aimed at enhancing the quality of education and educational opportunities throughout the district.

Staff of Alpine Township decorated and "stuffed"this tree thanks to the generous contributions by Alpine Township restaurants

Friday, November 11, 2011

Comstock Park Rotary Club Eyes New International Project

884 million people in the world do not have access to safe water. This is roughly one in eight of the world’s population. (WHO-UNICEF)
1.8 million children die every year as a result of diseases caused by unclean water and poor sanitation. This amounts to around 5000 deaths a day. (UNDP)
• The simple act of washing hands with soap and clean water can reduce diarrheal diseases by over 40%. (UNICEF)
• Providing water and hygiene education reduces the number of deaths caused by diarrhoeal diseases by an average of 65%. (WHO)
• Water-related disease is the second biggest killer of children worldwide, after acute respiratory infections like tuberculosis. (UNDP)
• The weight of water that women in Africa and Asia carry on their heads is commonly 40 pounds, the same as the average airport luggage allowance. (UNDP)
• Water and sanitation infrastructure helps people take the first essential step out of the cycle of poverty and disease

Todd VandenToorn
Just a few of these facts alone were enough to have the Comstock Park Rotary Club explore partnering with Living Water in order to provide water and sanitation skills to a poverty stricken community elsewhere in the world.  Club member Todd VandenToorn explained how Living Water International, addresses this most basic of needs by helping deprived communities acquire safe, clean water. Their goal is to substantially ease the global water crisis while addressing root causes such as injustice, oppression, and abject poverty. As this happens, communities and worldviews are transformed—both among those in desperate physical need, and among those who have been blessed with much.  The Rotary club is looking at raising enough funds to drill a new well, provide enough man power to help drill it, and provide training for sanitary skills. 

Members listened attentively

District Governor candidate Jim White from Lowell presented past President Sharon Steffens with several citations

Jim White also dropped off gift packages of salad dressing. Litehouse Foods is donating $40,000 of salad dressing product with 100% of the proceeds from the sale of product being used to implement Hydraid BioSand Water Filters in Honduras, Ghana and the Dominican Republic. This is is support of Rotary District 6290’s Thirsting to Serve project, and is its leading promotion and distribution initiative.

State of the Kent County Michigan Road Commission

John Rice
Alpine Township Trustees were well represented Thursday evening at the annual meeting sponsored each year by the Kent County Road Commission.  Managing Director John Rice gave a good update on Kent County roads, and some of the changes that were made in equipment, material usage and personnel in order to maintain high quality roads despite decreasing revenues and escalating costs.  John Rice also discussed highlights and the pros and cons of Governor Snyder's plans on improving infrastructure and changes in funding.
Senator Mark Jansen and KCRC's Wayne Harrell
Also addressing the guests from township and county government were State Senator Mark Jansen and State Representatives Dave Agema and Pete McGregor.
Alpine Township Clerk Jean Wahlfield and Trustee Bill Schweitzer
Alpine Township Trustee Ted Wallace with Treasurer Jim Townsend
Alpine Township Trustee Jim May with Courtland Township Supervisor Chuck Porter

Kent County Commissioner Gary Rolls with Wayman Britt, Kent County Assistant Administrator, and State Representative Dave Agema

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Veterans Day 2011


Today, our Nation comes together to honor our veterans and commemorate the legacy of profound service and sacrifice they have upheld in pursuit of a more perfect Union. Through their steadfast defense of America’s ideals, our service members have ensured our country still stands strong, our founding principles still shine, and nations around the world know the blessings of freedom. As we offer our sincere appreciation and respect to our veterans, to their families, to those who are still in harm’s way, and to those we have laid to rest, let us rededicate ourselves to serving them as well as they have served the United States of America.Our men and women in uniform are bearers of a proud military tradition that has been dutifully passed forward—from generation to generation—for more than two centuries. In times of war and peace alike, our veterans have served with courage and distinction in the face of tremendous adversity, demonstrating an unfaltering commitment to America and our people. Many have made the ultimate sacrifice to preserve the country they loved. The selflessness of our service members is unmatched, and they remind us that there are few things more fundamentally American than doing our utmost to make a difference in the lives of others.
Just as our veterans stood watch on freedom’s frontier, so have they safeguarded the pros­perity of our Nation in our neighborhoods, our businesses, and our homes. As teachers and engineers, doctors and parents, these patriots have made contributions to civilian life that serve as a testament to their dedication to the welfare of our country. We owe them a debt of honor, and it is our moral obligation to ensure they receive our support for as long as they live as proud veterans of the United States Armed Forces. This year, as our troops in Iraq complete their mission, we will honor them and all who serve by working tirelessly to give them the care, the benefits, and the opportunities they have earned.

Thank you for your service!
On Veterans Day, we pay tribute to our veterans, to the fallen, and to their families. To honor their contributions to our Nation, let us strive with renewed determination to keep the promises we have made to all who have answered our country’s call. As we fulfill our obligations to them, we keep faith with the patriots who have risked their lives to preserve our Union, and with the ideals of service and sacrifice upon which our Republic was founded.
With respect for and in recognition of the contributions our service members have made to the cause of peace and freedom around the world, the Congress has provided (5 U.S.C. 6103(a)) that November 11 of each year shall be set aside as a legal public holiday to honor our Nation’s veterans.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BARACK OBAMA, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim November 11, 2011, as Veterans Day. I encourage all Americans to recognize the valor and sacrifice of our veterans through appropriate public ceremonies and private prayers. I call upon Federal, State, and local officials to display the flag of the United States and to participate in patriotic activities in their communities. I call on all Americans, including civic and fraternal organizations, places of worship, schools, and communities to support this day with commemorative expressions and programs.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this third day of November, in the year of our Lord two thousand eleven, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-sixth.

This is the third year that Applebee's is offering  a free meal as a show of gratitude and respect to all military veterans.  Click for more information.

Thank you for your service!

Thank you for your service!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Autumn Days

About 30 boys, girls and adults took advantage of the "Hunters Safety Classes" being offered by the Kent County Sheriff's Department three nights this week to prepare for opening day of deer season on Tuesday, November 15th.  The classes were conducted at the Alpine Township Offices at 5255 Alpine Ave NW.

Fricano's Pizza restaurant located at 5808 Alpine Ave., NW in Comstock Park is truly decorated for the harvest and Thanksgiving season. And of course their pizza was rated best in Pure Michigan this year.  Harvest Nights began the first Thursday in October, with Live Bluegrass every Thursday. "If you like the autumn beauty and bluegrass music Fricano's Pizza on Alpine Avenue is the place to be"  says Doug Fricano on its facebook page,