Coloma’s Curbside Christmas to boost local business during coronavirus pandemic; Paul Friday awarded

Coloma’s Curbside Christmas to boost local business during coronavirus pandemic

By Joshua Coffin

The Coloma City Commission met for their monthly meeting held as a teleconference in response and caution to the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic on Monday, Dec. 14, 2020. The virtual meeting was led by Mayor Marsha Hammond to discuss an array of Coloma city matters including upcoming holiday festivities.

SANTA VISITS COLOMA TOWNSHIP… While Santa did make a stop to visit with kiddos at Coloma Township Hall this year, the look of the visit was a little different but still contained all the excitement of meeting the jolly ole’ fella. The drive-thru Santa visit had over a 100 vehicles in a procession as the children waited to have a few words with not only Santa but Mrs. Clause as well. Here Santa waves good-bye to one lucky boy or girl. (TCR photo by Annette Christie)

Coloma’s Curbside Christmas this coming Monday

Coloma will be holding their curbside Christmas event downtown Coloma on Monday, Dec 21 from 5 to 7 p.m. The event is set to have local vendors Soulard’s Bakery, Coloma Subway, The Friendly Tavern, Easy Street Inn, and the Loma Theatre. The Grinch and Santa Claus will also be attending and enjoying the festivities alongside all the attendees. The event will not only be a holiday happening for the community, but also encourage activity for local businesses.

Taylor Prestidge of Soulard’s Bakery, who has taken on a large portion of the planning for this event, said, “I know from firsthand experience that restaurants are being hit extra hard… speaking with business owners you could hear tears in their voice when they said they couldn’t believe that we were organizing this.” Coloma’s Curbside Christmas will resemble other curbside concession events seen from other businesses, but on a larger scale.

Cars will line up in front of City Hall on Center Street and will go through town and exit at Soulard’s Bakery by the stoplight downtown. Each car will be given a list with all participating vendors and their deals for the night. The cars will also receive a goody bag including activity sheets for kids and a gift card to a local business. Just as much as the event is planned to be fun, it is also helping the businesses of Coloma during this unprecedented time.

Clerk position filled

The Coloma City Commission was in need of a clerk. Kelly Clements was the only one to show interest in the position. At the Monday meeting Clements was welcomed as Coloma’s new clerk. Designated assessor

According to a state mandate in 2018, Berrien County is now requesting a designated assessor that will oversee everything countywide, requiring cities in the area’s approval. At their meeting, the Coloma Commission approved the agreement, thus allowing the chief executive officer of the City of Coloma to formally sign the agreement with Berrien County. There is no monetary charge for this agreement.

Bill Moser assigned to sewer board

Mayor Marsha Hammond brought up the importance of residents to be involved in local government, specifically public works. Because of this, she contacted Bill Moser to be a part of the Coloma’s sewer board and he agreed. The board fully supported his appointment to the position.

The public works department has had a busy few weeks with four water main breaks and a sewer break. The city had not had a water main break in two years.

Scam season warned by Chief of Police

Police Chief Wes Smigielski discussed that it is now scam season. There have already been numerous reports and cases of these scams to local citizens. Remember: The IRS and FBI will never call your phone, and if you get a phone call from one of those, it is a scam. Do not release your personal information and stay aware of these scams.

Police Report

Chief Smigielski of the Coloma Township Police Department gave the police report for Coloma at the meeting. The city had 52 calls in the month of November. The police department did a raid on a house on Church Street and found a significant amount of methamphetamine, LSD, mushrooms, and guns in the home. Smigielski said that it was one of the larger drug houses in the city and was a very significant bust for the department. The police department has been busy as there have also been five car chases as of Monday.

Smigielski noted that he gets phone calls regarding the use of face masks. He said that he is tired of listening to the complaints and directed those calls to the attorney general. He said there is not much more he can do to fix those situations. As he put it, “I’m not more than happy to make the calls anymore. I’m kind of getting frustrated with it, but it is what it is.”

Smigielski also expressed his excitement and pride for the December 21 Curbside Christmas event the city is putting on.

Fire Board

Mike Mattix had 23 fire calls for the month of November, a notable amount for Coloma. The fire board will be meeting on January 5, 2021 at the Coloma City Fire Department. Roger Jordan said that he would be willing to serve on the fire board and the city commission unanimously supported his appointment.

Paul Friday awarded for service to the fruit industry


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