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My Town: Hundreds expected to walk for arthritis cure

My Town: Hundreds expected to walk for arthritis cure

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—More than 450 people are expected to fill John Ball Park Zoo Saturday, but not because of the animals.

They’re signed up to take part in the 2014 Grand Rapids Walk to Cure Arthritis.

The event, benefiting the Arthritis Foundation, is a non-competitive event aimed at raising awareness and money to help Michiganders who have arthritis.  This year’s honoree is 3-year-old Mackenzie Proefrock of Norton Shores.  She is among the more than 300,000 children nationwide diagnosed with juvenile arthritis.

Participants in this year’s walk will enjoy refreshments, music, massages and other family-friendly activities.  Those who donate $25 or more will be given admission to the zoo.

WZZM 13’s Jennifer Pascua will emcee this year’s event, which begins at 10 a.m.

My Town: Tech Center students earn $66,000 in scholarships at state competition

My Town: Tech Center students earn $66,000 in scholarships at state competition

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GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (MUSKEGON Intermediate School District)-- Auto Collision/Refinishing and Catering & Culinary Management students from the Muskegon Area Career Tech Center (MACTC) tested their skills against their peers at the 2014 SkillsUSA State Leadership and Skills Conference April 11–13, 2014 at the Amway Grand Plaza Hotel in Grand Rapids. Winners from both classes earned over $66,000 in scholarships and prizes.

My Town: Interview dates set for MAISD superintendent finalists

My Town: Interview dates set for MAISD superintendent finalists

MUSKEGON COUNTY, Mich. (MAISD)---  The Muskegon Area Intermediate School District is moving fast to find its next superintendent.

The MAISD Board of Education has scheduled first-round interviews for applicants on April 17 and April 21.  After whittling down the pool of candidates, they'll interview the finalists a second time on May 12 and May 14.

The MAISD posted the superintendent job online on March 7, officially beginning their search for Superintendent Dave Sipka's replacement.  Sipka is retiring June 30.

The MAISD is an educational services center located in Muskegon County on the shores of Lake Michigan, 30 miles west of Grand Rapids. The district provides leadership, programs, and services to 11 local public school districts and four public school academies serving nearly 29,000 students.  

My Town: Former Ponzi scheme victim appointed to MAISD post

My Town: Former Ponzi scheme victim appointed to MAISD post

MUSKEGON COUNTY, Mich.--  A new person is in charge of finances at the Muskegon Area Intermediate School District.

On Monday, March 17, the MAISD Board of Education appointed Michael Schluentz to the position of Associate Superintendent for Administrative  Services.  Schluentz currently serves as the executive director of management services for Fruitport Community Schools.  He has more than 21 years of experience in school finance at Fruitport, Mona Shores, Saginaw Township and Lake City area schools.

MAISD Superintendent Dave Sipka says Schluentz’s experience, paired with his unfortunate experience as a victim of a Ponzi scheme, makes him valuable.

“When you discover you have been deceived by someone like Dante DeMiro, it causes you to be more cautious and incredibly suspicious. Mike has grown from this tragedy. After working directly with the FBI, he knows better than anyone how to protect financial assets,” adds Sipka.

My Town: Muskegon instructor wins pastry chef of the year

My Town: Muskegon instructor wins pastry chef of the year

MUSKEGON, Mich.--  Baker College of Muskegon is home to the pastry chef of the year in the 2014 Great Lakes Regional Masterpiece Chocolate-Pastry Competition.

This is the second consecutive year Justin Raha has won the honor.  Raha is an instructor at Baker’s Culinary Institute of Michigan.  He’s also the owner and executive pastry chef of Grand Finale Desserts & Pastries in Grand Haven.

All competitors had to create a chocolate display piece, a chocolate anniversary cake and plate presentation and a petite four presentation with eight bonbons, in honor of the event’s 25th anniversary.

My Town: Students shine in auto collision and refinishing contest

My Town: Students shine in auto collision and refinishing contest

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MUSKEGON, Mich. (MAISD)--  Six students from the Auto Collision/Refinishing program at the Muskegon Area Career Tech Center took part in the regional SkillsUSA competition on Thursday, Feb. 27, 2014.

MACTC students finished the day with a clean sweep in both the automotive collision and automotive refinishing categories.

The competition between students from the MACTC and students from the Traverse Bay Area Career Tech Center included seven separate timed events.  Competitors in automotive collision performed tasks in mig welding, metal repair, plastic repair, and estimating. The automotive refinishing competitors were assigned tasks of color blending, masking, panel painting, and estimating.

My Town: MAISD board begins search to replace retiring superintendent

My Town: MAISD board begins search to replace retiring superintendent

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MUSKEGON COUNTY, Mich. (MAISD)---With an online job posting Friday, March 7,  the Muskegon Area Intermediate School District Board of Education officially began their search for a new superintendent.

The posting follows a special board meeting earlier this week with consultant Gary Rider. Rider is Regional President of the Michigan Leadership Institute selected to lead the search effort.

During the meeting, Rider explained the process to be followed and tentative timeline for the search for a replacement for retiring Superintendent Dave Sipka. According to Rider, the board also discussed the importance of feedback from parents, students, staff, and the community. “Our firm will be facilitating focus group meetings with each of these groups to gather data for the Board to consider when developing an ideal candidate profile,” said Rider.