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Oldest Toastmasters Club in Michigan Still Talk of the Town on its 70th Birthday

Oldest Toastmasters Club in Michigan Still Talk of the Town on its 70th Birthday

Often listed among the top 10 fears people have, public speaking is a skill that can help anyone regardless of their age or background. Whether it’s at school, work or among friends and family, the ability to speak in front of an audience – even if it’s an audience of one – can be the key to future success. Thus, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the oldest Toastmasters International organization in Michigan – located here in Grand Rapids – continues to thrive as it celebrates its 70th birthday.

Toastmasters International is a world leader in communication and leadership development. With more than 345,000 members around the world, Toastmasters empowers individuals to become more effective communicators and leaders by providing a safe, supportive and structured setting for its members to acquire and practice meaningful communications and leadership skills on a regular basis to promote and enhance career and personal growth.

2015 Firefighter of the Year and 2015 Police Officer of the Year

2015 Firefighter of the Year and 2015 Police Officer of the Year

On February 9, 2016, Firefighter Jim Ruiz, a 29 year veteran of the Department was named the 2015 Firefighter of the Year and K-9 Officer, Joe Slenk, a 14 year veteran of the Department was named 2015 Police Officer of the Year, both announced by Chief Messer. They were nominated by their peers & selected by the Command Staff to receive theses honors.

In 1987, Jim Ruiz started his career as a paid on-call firefighter with the Holland Fire Department. In 1997, he was selected as a full time Firefighter/EMT. His duty now is with the Waverly Road Fire Station, along with continuing to serve as a role model.

He is recognized by his peers for his ethical responsibilities & pride for the Department & the community.

Free Fishing Weekend Coming Up

Free Fishing Weekend Coming Up

For the Valentine’s weekend, it’s a free fishing weekend for residents and out of state visitors.

All fishing license fees are waived for two days in Michigan, February 13 & 14 from 6:00am – 10:00pm. This allows fishing enthusiasts to enjoy the chance to catch all types of fish on both inland and Great Lakes’ waters during their respective open season. Just remember that all regulations still apply.

Call: (517)284-5839 or email walters@michigan.gov for more information. Visit www.michigan.gov for details.

Hope College students threatened with gun


Big Lake Brewing to distribute statewide


HOLLAND, Mich. (WZZM) -- Big Lake Brewing in Holland has signed a deal to distribute its beer statewide.

Our partner the Grand Rapids Business Journal reports the brewery has teamed up with Kalamazoo-based Imperial Beverage.

Initially, Big Lake will send cans and kegs of two of its beers into the state market, the Rye-Coe and the Darkstar.

Right now, the Holland company self-distributes five of its beers in Kent and Ottawa Counties.

Big Lake Brewing opened more than two years ago.


Holland crews respond to broken water main


HOLLAND, Mich. (WZZM) -- Holland's Board of Public Works estimates a broken water main will be fixed, and water service restored, Monday evening.

The BPW told WZZM 13 that around 15 customers were affected by the broken water main on South Shore Drive between Lugers and Goldenrod.

The cold, snowy weather and the low depth of the break have made repairs more time consuming than usual, the BPW said.

A neighbor in the area said the BPW has called affected customers to let them know restoration was expected by about 7 p.m.


1 killed in Holland freeway crash


HOLLAND, Mich. (WZZM) -- A man died in a head-on crash on I-196 in Holland Friday afternoon.

Just before 4:30, Holland Department of Public Safety officers were called to I-196 near milemarker 47.

When they arrived, they found a 2012 Ford Escape with heavy front-end damage in the median and a 1991 Freightliner semi truck in the ditch along the freeway's north side.

Investigators say the man who died, Prashamth Kumar Muchumarri, 41, from Grand Rapids, had been driving the Escape eastbound when his vehicle left the freeway, went into the median, and crossed into the westbound lanes -- hitting the semi head-on. The Escape's driver was ejected and was pronounced dead at the scene. Authorities aren't yet releasing his name, pending family notification.

The semi's driver, a 43-year-old Kalkaska man, was not hurt.