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Huizenga sees Muskegon Heights schools' tech improvements


MUSKEGON HEIGHTS, Mich. (WZZM) -- Recent technology improvements in the Muskegon Heights Public School Academy System led to a visit from Michigan Congressman Bill Huizenga.

The school system is in his district.

The schools are using four new labs that help students become problem solvers. The labs were bought with grant money from the Michigan Department of Education.

Huizenga and Superintendent Alana Zachery-Ross said they believe technology is becoming more and more crucial as students prepare for careers in the 21st century.

U.S. Coast Guard warns of ice dangers


MUSKEGON, Mich. (WZZM) -- A wintertime sport that's getting a later than usual start is ice fishing.

Just this week, anglers have started going out onto some small lakes in Muskegon County, but there's a warning from the U.S. Coast Guard about the condition of much of the ice on the county's biggest lake.

Muskegon Lake is large, and is usually the last lake in the county to ice over.

"Usually you are fishing in the middle of the lake right now, so it is a late start," said Chad Workman of North Muskegon. He found four inches of sloppy ice at a shallow marina. "The snow blankets the ice, then you get some warm ups and the temperature changes -- you get some slush."

This is Workman's ice report: "A lot of unsafe ice."

Norton Shores couple celebrating 73rd wedding anniversary


NORTON SHORES, Mich. (WZZM) -- This month, a Norton Shores couple will achieve something few couples ever get the chance to experience.

Harold and Theresa Shafer will soon celebrate their 73rd wedding anniversary.

Harold says he first noticed Theresa walking by a cherry orchard near Hart in Oceana County way back in 1942. He asked her three times if he could give her a ride into town; she eventually said yes.

Woman sentenced for role in Muskegon Twp. murder case


MUSKEGON, Mich. (WZZM) -- A Muskegon woman is going to jail for 10 months for her role in a homicide in Muskegon Township last year.

Kerri Sue Crawford was the girlfriend of Trent Humphreys-McPherson, who was found guilty of killing his grandfather during a robbery.

Crawford was charged with lying to police in a violent-crime investigation, and being an accessory to a home invasion after the fact.

Prosecutors say Crawford drove her boyfriend to the Muskegon Township home where the murder and robbery took place but never went inside the home.

As part of Crawford's sentence, she'll also serve a long probation term.


'Disturbance' prompts Reeths-Puffer schools lockdown


MUSKEGON, Mich. (WZZM) -- Several Reeths-Puffer schools were placed on lockdown for a short time Tuesday afternoon.

Superintendent Steve Edwards confirmed the district's elementary, intermediate and high schools were placed on a soft lockdown from about 1:44-1:55 p.m. Tuesday regarding a "disturbance" about a mile southeast from the campus. Police received a call of shots fired in the 1400 block of North Creston Street, said Ken Sanford, the Muskegon Township police chief.

The schools' perimeter was secured -- no one could enter nor leave, Edwards said -- while police conducted their investigation.

Lake-effect snow hits hardest on lakeshore


MUSKEGON, Mich. (WZZM) -- These are the kind of cold temperatures that make you want to stay inside, but for many there's too much work to be done outside.

Fifteen- to 20-mile-per-hour winds over the big lake pushed big waves and made street signs shake.

Downwind in downtown Muskegon, the cold makes shoveling dangerous.

"It is freezing," said Brandan and Jessica Boyd. They skipped the chore Saturday. Both hoped multiple layers of clothing would make the chore bearable, but the work was miserable, they said.

Outdoor work continued down Monroe Street, where Jim Rogers sings to stay warm. He and his crew are building houses. They take on the frigid weather, even when tools sometimes can't handle the cold.

Muskegon events honor Martin Luther King Jr.


MUSKEGON, Mich. (WZZM) -- "Stand up for right" was the central theme for Muskegon's largest MLK Day events.

The community remembered King's dream with the distribution of a food truck to needy families. Then, everyone gathered inside First Congregational Church for a community luncheon.

Participants remembered Dr. King with music and essays from students in the Muskegon Public Schools.

The students wrote about ending violence and bullying. One first-grader shared his dream to one day become President of the United States.