Saturday, August 31, 2013

Labor Day 2013

On Labor Day, we observe the achievements made by the American workers over the years.  The first National Labor Day celebration occurred in 1894.  Prior to that beginning with New York, there were 30 States that had been celebrating the holiday with parades, picnics, etc. for several decades. 

The holiday was instituted by President Grover Cleveland, many feel as an alternative to International Workers Day, observed by many countries on May1, and associated with Communist, Syndicalist and Anarchist movements. 
The Michigan labor force made great strides since those days, so much so that by the 70s automobile and tire manufactures were lured away with economic incentives offered by other States.  This scenario repeated itself as manufacturers began to open plants in foreign countries leaving many Americans out of work.
Labor movements may have seen its best in the past, but the American work force is coming back, primarily because it is recognized for producing a higher quality product.
A sincere thank you to the American worker and Happy Labor Day!
Ii Alpine Township and the Ridge, a special tribute to our many agricultural workers who work so hard along side our farmers and who make it possible for us to have  food on our tables. 



Friday, August 30, 2013

Shop Local Alpine Township

Why not drop by one of our many Farmers Markets this weekend?  You may want to call ahead and make sure they are open but most farmers markets are open for business.  A list of farm markets is in the column to your right.  There is a variety of fresh  apples available  and  peach and blueberries season is here.  These photos were taken today at "Under the Pines", 6103 Alpine Ave. Comstock Park.


Thursday, August 29, 2013

Family Activities Scheduled for Next Weekend

Labor Day Weekend and then back to school!  Fortunately that is not the end of family fun.  The following weekend September 7-8 has plenty of family activities including the following in Alpine Township:
Saturday and Sunday September 7 - 8 2013 Alpine Festival - Sponsored by Holy Trinity Parish, Lots of fun for the adults in Saturday Night, for the Family on Sunday, at School Grounds. 
Saturday September 7, 2013 - Third Annual Alpine Firefighters Fallen Heroes Car Show.   Show off your vehicle or come look at antique cars and trucks, including old fire trucks.  The Wolverine Sky Hawks Model Airplane Association  will perform using the south soccer field as their air strip. The area where the cars will be located has been deemed a no fly zone Come out and support this local organization while you are attending our show. 1850 Alpine Church Road.
Sunday September 8, 2013. The Kent District Library will host a Fiesta at the Alpine Township Sports Complex at 1850 Alpine Church Road.  Everyone is welcome from 2:00 P.M - 4:00 P.M.  Come enjoy the fun or watch one of a number of kids and adults soccer games played on Sundays. 


Vietnam Memorial Moving Wall on display in Sparta.

It was an impressive beginnning for local residents honoring the 58,286 victims of the Vietnam War whose names are inscribed on the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington D.C.
Westgate Bowl on Alpine Ave, was the staging point for a procession of over 300 motor bikes that escorted the Vietnam Memorial Moving Wall to it's temporary destination, Balyeat Field in Sparta.  The wall is 252.4 feet -- just over half the size of the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington, D.C. and was transported along Alpine Ave. escorted by other veterans and supporters on all types of motorbikes.
An opening ceremony is scheduled in Sparta at 6:30 P.M. Thursday. 
An honor guard will march to the wall at Balyeat Field. The wall will be open for display 24 hours a day through September 2.


Sunday, August 25, 2013

Michigan Apples Are Back

A great crop of apples is good news for Alpine Township's economy and the farmers on the Ridge.   Heeren Brothers anticipates their new $23 million packing and distribution center at 1055 7 Mile Rd. to be operational this season. Alpine Township  last week approved a $1.7 million Tax Abatement for  Jack Brown Produce packing and distribution center at 8035 Fruitridge Ave.
Don't forget to visit one of the many farmers markets listed on the right hand column of this blog for the best of fresh and locally grown produce.

Following is from an article by By Susan M. Selasky  Detroit Free Press Food Writer:

Michigan apples are back — and in a big way.
This year’s harvest could be one of the largest Michigan has ever seen, the Michigan Apple Committee said Friday after the U.S. Apple Association released its estimate for Michigan’s 2013 apple crop. The 30-million-bushel projection was welcome news after last year’s wacky spring weather devastated 90% of the overall apple crop, which yielded just 2.7 million bushels. The state averages about 20 million bushels a year, the committee said.
“Our growers, packers and shippers are already moving Michigan apples into the marketplace and are thrilled with the estimates for this year’s crop,” said Diane Smith, executive director of the Michigan Apple Committee, who was in attendance at the US Apple announcement in Chicago. “There’s a lot of buzz around the estimate here in Chicago and in our state.”
The Apple Committee said a crop like this year’s could pump as much as $900 million into the state’s economy, and industry experts say perfect weather conditions are to thank.
“We are already picking several summer apple varieties, including the Lodi, Jersey Mac and Paula Reds,” said Bob Tritten, district fruit educator for the Michigan State University Extension. “The McIntosh apples are getting close.”

Complete story at

Heeren Brothers Facility, looking northeast


Saturday, August 24, 2013

Bow Tie hosts 14th annual Fund Raiser for Multiple Sclerosis.

Over the past 14 years the Bow Tie Tavern,  and members of the Road Weasels Motorcycle  Club,  staff, family, friends, have raised over $114,000 benefiting the Multiple Sclerosis Society by  sponsoring an annual  Poker Run.  The event attracts bikers from all over West Michigan.   Breakfast was provided for all the participants at the point of Departure , with a BBQ Dinner and refreshments waiting for them upon their return to the Bow Tie.
Dawn Preston
It all began with the friendship between Kim Erickson and Dawn Preston. They knew each other for a long time before Dawn was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. In the United States, about 10,000 to 15,000 people are diagnosed with this chronic disease of the central nervous system (CNS), which is made up of the brain, spinal cord, and optic nerve. This motivated Kim Erickson and other friends to organize a fundraiser.
The Bow Tie Tavern is located on the corner of Old Alpine Ave and 10 Miler Road and  has been a part of Alpine Township for about three fourth of a century. It was established in 1929 and before it was called the Bow Tie Tavern, it was known under several other names, including the Blue Tavern
Mary Steinbrecher (front center) Cathy DuCharme (front left) Kim Erickson, (front right) with many of the other organizers of the event.

Some of the earlier arrivals

Friday, August 23, 2013

Donut Peaches

Until recently many of us had never heard of Donut Peaches. Somebody brought some into the office today and they are a white flesh  delicacy. 
Known as donut peaches, they are also often called saturn peaches because of their flat shape..  Other known names are paraguayo peach, pan tao peach, saucer peach, belly-up peach, UFO peach or hat peach.  They came here from China in 1989 but they have not been known for growing on the ridge.
According to Mother Earth Most peaches found in the United States have yellow flesh, but many white-flesh peaches are starting to show up in our grocery stores, too. William Woys Weaver, a Mother Earth News contributing editor and author of 100 Vegetables and Where They Came From, thinks  'Saturn' peaches are among the very best of the white-flesh varieties. Saturn' peaches have an unusually flat shape, and are named for their resemblance to the rings of Saturn. They're also called 'Donut' or Doughnut' peaches. In fact, many supermarkets package the flat peaches in long boxes like those used for doughnuts, and market them as a good-for-you snack food.

 Donut peaches are excellent not only for  for snacking but also for grilling.

These donut peaches don't grow on the tree already cored.


Sunday, August 18, 2013

Fricano's Hosts Car Show in Support of Children's Assessment Center

Today, supporters of the Children's Assessment Center are sponsoring a Car Show at a familiar place for such events, Fricano's Pizza, 5808 Alpine Ave here in Comstock Park.  Fricano's is well known for it's Tuesday evenings car shows but today's show is specifically in financial support and awareness of counseling services for kids who may have been sexually abused.  It is estimated that child abuse in one form or another victimized over 6,000 kids in Kent County alone. Most incidents go unreported and the Children's Center assesses about 1,000 kids a year.  Abuse can lead to deep scars, especially if the victim does not receive counseling near the time the abuse took place.    For more information, contact the Children's Assessment Center 616-336-5160.
Fricano's Pizza, recognized state wide for it's fine pizza, is celebrating it's 10th year at the Alpine Ave. location.


Saturday, August 17, 2013

Resident Appreciation Day at York Creek

Land Co. and York Creek Apartments once again held their Resident Appreciation Day under sunny skies and beautiful weather.  Each year this event attracts more visitors and vendors.  There were free hot dogs, pop, frozen yogurt, lemonade, more food, games, drawings, mascots, give-a-ways, live broadcasting, free school supplies, public safety information, and much more.

Location of the Event
Some of York Creek's friendly staff

More friendly York Creek Management staff


Inviting everyone back to school with drawings for back packs and school supplies
Fazoli's Big Tomato,

"They loved me so much last year that I am back, balloons and all"

If there is a community event or need,  Culver's is there.

Hot FM 105.3 was broadcasting live

Crash captured a lot of attention

Property Manager Hope with son Jensen

Not just any Hot Dog

There were lots of fun activities for the children

Please don't EVER again tell me the remote can't walk away.