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Bethany baking giant cinnamon roll

(WZZM) - Bethany Christian Services is going big for kids. The agency is raising money by trying to bake the world's biggest cinnamon roll.

Friday morning bakers are going to work creating a 400 pound, six foot cinnamon roll. The baking will take place at Russ' Commissary in Holland. Second Floor Bakery is actually doing the baking. The owner got involved in the project because she is a foster mother herself.

Elzinga and Volker construction company is involved by building special equipment to make the world record attempt. The company made a special pan to hold the dough, a giant proof oven where the dough can rise, and altered the racks on Russ' oven to accomodate the one large cinnamon roll.

The event is a fundraiser for Bethany Children's Services Holland office and the post-adoption services program. Post adoption services can include support groups, counselling, and much more.

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Tulips cooperating this year with Holland festival

HOLLAND, Mich. (WZZM) -- Holland's biggest festival of the year is just days away and this year the flowers are cooperating. Organizers and tulip farmers say the tulips are right on schedule for the festival, unlike last year when many bloomed early.

After last year's warm weather, humorous T-shirts were created that read 'Stemfest.' However, this year tulip farmers are pushing for a new slogan.

"We actually have 'bud fest' going on," says Jim Veldheer, president of Veldheer Tulip Gardens. "The selection is the best it's ever been."

The explosion of tulip colors comes just as the Tulip Time festival is set to begin.

"That's the most beautiful thing I've ever seen, I've never seen anything like it," says one lady pointing to a garden of tulips.

Veldheer credits the cold and wet weather.

"While you and I were shivering and people were complaining about the cold, the tulip was going 'yes this is what I want!'" says Veldheer.

Tulip Time gets extra security after Boston attacks

HOLLAND, Mich. (WZZM) -- Holland's Tulip Time Festival will have additional security because of the attacks at the Boston Marathon.

Holland Police say there will be more security personnel at the event as well as officers from other agencies. Authorities will be closely monitoring unattended items during the parades, fireworks show, and other large gatherings.

This year, police are also limiting the items people can leave overnight when they reserve a spot along the parade route.

"We're not going to allow anyone to leave any containers or any bags, it'll basically be lawn chairs and blankets the night prior, if they want to reserve their spot along the parade route," says Captain Jack Dykstra with the Holland Police Department.

It's [almost] Tulip Time! Send us your photos!

It's [almost] Tulip Time!  Send us your photos!

Holland, Mich.-- Tulip Time begins Saturday, but we want to see your photos now!

Please email them to Christa at cgraban@wzzm.gannett.com and we'll add them to our photo gallery for all to see.

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Hope College staff members to be honored for impact on students

HOLLAND, Mich.-- Long-time staff members Tom Renner and Maura Reynolds have been named recipients of Hope College’s 14th annual Vanderbush-Weller Awards for strong, positive impact on students.

The award recognizes and supports the efforts of Hope faculty and staff who make extraordinary contributions to the lives of students. Renner, who is associate vice president for public and community relations, and Reynolds, who is director of advising and associate professor of Latin, will be honored during a luncheon on Thursday, May 2.

“There is no doubt that Maura and Tom are two people who have shaped students and influenced Hope College in profound ways,” said Dr. Richard Frost, vice president and dean of students at Hope, whose office coordinates the award, which is presented based on nominations from the campus community. “Their spirit and competence is exceptional, but their heart is what makes them special.”

How police handle a missing persons case

HOLLAND, Mich. (WZZM) -- With so many people interested in the Jessica Heeringa investigation, WZZM 13 is taking a look at how detectives investigate a missing person's case.

Holland Police recently looked for Emelene Vandyke for weeks before learning she was safe in New Mexico. WZZM 13 spoke to police about the steps they took following her disappearance.

The Holland Police Department gets missing person reports and tips year round. "Most of them turn out to be something simple," says Captain Robert Buursma.

Investigators believed a simple answer would find Emelene Vandyke but as weeks passed without finding her, the case captured national attention.

"With possible sightings and a variety of locations," says Captain Buursma. "We dedicated more resources to it, turns out she was one of those-- as we all know now-- she was one of those that chose to leave."

Cloudy, cold April impacts local greenhouses

HOLLAND, Mich. (WZZM) -- April showers aren't bringing may flowers as quickly as they should this year. Some local greenhouses say a streak of cloudy and cold days has flowers growing slower and it's putting a damper on business so far this season.

The flower stems at JW Greenhouses are grasping for any sunlight they can get.

"The elongated stems would be a direct result of lack of sunshine," says Joel Miedema, owner of JW Greenhouses. They reach for light and the light is not there so they keep stretching."

Some stems are shorter than others, which JW Greenhouses says is not the appearance most customers want. Workers have been cutting back the flowers stems to allow them to regrow the same length.

"We've cut a lot of our baskets, probably thousands of baskets," says Miedema. "It sets this basket back probably a week to ten days, but it's worth the effort because of the end product."