09-14-2017 Watervliet Police Chief wants safer, secure parks;  seeks locked gates for Hays and Flahe

WATERVLIET CLASS OF 1937… Pictured on the left is Floyd Weber, on the right is William Furlan. The Watervliet High School Class of 1937 celebrated its 80th class reunion recently, with two of the three living members from the class present. The other surviving classmate lives in Midland, Michigan and was unable to make the trip to Watervliet. This reunion took place simultaneously with the Watervliet 40 Year Club meeting, on Saturday, August 19, 2017. The men did not meet one another until high school, during their fresh-man year. When William Furlan and Floyd Weber graduated from Watervliet High School in 1937, little did they know they would still be sharing memories over 80 years later. Both men played football for Water-vliet, and were present at the 100 year game between Watervliet and Coloma, on August 28, 2009. Floyd is 97, and will be 98 in March. Born in Bainbridge Township, on the farm, Floyd grew up without electricity until 1935. He served in the United States Army from 1942-1945, and is a veteran of World War ll. Floyd and his wife were married over 68 years, until her passing in 2010. He retired from Whirlpool. Floyd has been blind since 1991, when his blood pressure dropped during his third open heart surgery. His days are now spent riding his exercise bike, and listening to the radio. William is 98, and will be 99 in Octo-ber. He was born in Chicago, and the family moved to Hartford when he was about eight years old. However, William did not begin his schooling at Watervliet until his freshman year. He served in the United States Army from 1942-1946, and is a veteran of World War ll. William and his wife were married over 62 years, until her passing in 2006. He retired from Auto Specialties. Since William no longer drives, he watches “the world go by” and enjoys taking walks around his neighborhood. (TCR photo by Greg Krell)


Watervliet Police Chief wants safer, secure parks;  seeks locked gates for Hays and Flaherty Parks, resident suggests Sterner Park for a dog run

By Annette Christie

Watervliet Police Chief Timothy Sutherland told the City Commission at their Tuesday, September 12 meeting that they have spent a lot of money and effort to make their parks nice and he would like to help them stay that way.  Sutherland would like to put up gates at Hays Park and Flaherty Park in an effort to prevent vehicles in the parks after hours and to hopefully cut down on theft and vandalism.

Sutherland said his department has made three arrests in two weeks at Hays Park. Last year picnic tables and a grill were stolen from the park.  With posted hours and gates to keep vehicle traffic out overnight, Sutherland thinks that the conditions of the parks will remain as they should.

Recommended parks hours are from 7:00 a.m. to 10:00 p.m. and the police department will man the gates along with the Public Works Department.  “I don’t want to keep people from using the parks, I just want to preserve them,” Sutherland said.

Melanie Marvin said that the materials for the gates should be between $1,500 and $2,000 and that Sam Williams in the Public Works Department can build them.

Commissioner Larry Hehl said he thought it was a good idea. “From the investment, we are protecting our investments,” Hehl said.  In the most recent years, the city has put in a basketball court, made major improvements to the skate park, put in a kayak/canoe launch in the river, added a 9-hole disc golf course, and helped maintain the ball fields.  Recently a group of volunteers went in and cleaned out what is referred to as the “bear cave” at Hays Park.

The City Commission unanimously approved the recommendation of the Police Chief to set park open hours from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. and to lock two gates at Hays Park and one gate at Flaherty Park.

In other business, the City Commission set trick-or-treating hours in the City limits on Tuesday, October 31 from 5:00 – 7:30 p.m. The downtown business trick-or-treating has yet to be set.  Clerk Dena Yow said usually they plan that around when the schools do their Halloween parties.   The city’s fall pick-up details, while not available yet, will be made available on the city’s website (www.watervliet.org) and in future issues of the Tri-City Record.  Marvin said they will most likely be one day a week for several weeks for one part of the city and another day of the week for several weeks for the other part of the city.

Also, a resident asked for the city to establish a dog park and recommended that Sterner Park on Mill Creek off of Red Arrow Hwy. be used for that.  The city does have an ordinance that states that a dog must be kept on a leash that is not longer than 72 inches when it is not on its property. The resident was asking for space for dogs to run.

Watervliet Recreation Council officer selection meeting this weekend

The Watervliet Recreation Council official officer selection meeting for the 2018 baseball/ softball season will be held on Sunday, September 17 at 6 p.m. This meeting will take place at VFW Post 6803, 8777 Red Arrow Highway in Watervliet. Anyone interested in joining and/or becoming an officer please attend!

Coloma City Commission observes a moment of silence

By Christina Gelder

Commissioner Marsha Hammond led the Coloma City Commission in a moment of silence to begin their Monday, September 11 meeting. In remembrance of lives lost on September 11 in 2001.

Tree in front of Edgewater

The tree in front of Edgewater Bank has become a safety hazard as its roots are pushing up the sidewalk and causing it to be uneven. The Department of Public Works has used spray paint to make the cracks more visible and worked to level things. Commissioner Hammond says they are looking for suggestions on what to do, it is a nice tree and they hate to cut it down. Since the trees were originally a DDA project she asked that the mayor ask them what they would like to see happen. Commissioner Julia Smith suggested that going forward trees be replaced with flowering pears.

Cemetery thefts continue

There was another report of theft in the Coloma Cemetery. Coloma Township Police Chief Jason Roe said that even though they it is happening they still appreciate reports. This is not a problem unique to the Coloma community and they are actively trying to stop it.

Speak Up: Skills of Self-Advocacy free workshop

 Disability Network Southwest Michigan is hosting a free workshop which will teach the skills of self-advocacy for people with disabilities. The workshop is titled “Speak Up: Skills of Self-Advocacy” and will be held on Wednesday, September 20, 2017, 1:00 – 3:30 p.m. at Disability Network’s office located at 2900 Lakeview Avenue in St. Joseph.

Through fun and interactive activities participants will learn what advocacy is, how to make an advocacy action plan, and some background on disability rights and disability history.

To register, contact Terezie at harazinovat@dnswm.org or (269) 982-7761. For more details visit the Events calendar on Disability Network’s website at www.dnswm.org.

This is a fragrance-free environment. Please do not wear perfume, cologne or other scented products to these events.

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