Recent Posts

Downtown Kalamazoo cafe hires ex-offenders

A new coffee shop and cafe in downtown Kalamazoo is almost completely staffed by ex-offenders as part of a culinary arts program at Kalamazoo Probation Enhancement Program. The Walnut & Park Cafe officially opened last week. The shop serves coffees ground by the Water Street Coffee Roaster along with homemade baked goods, breakfast and lunch dishes. Program graduates earn certifications …

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Road commission names projects

Two roads and four bridges will receive attention this summer, as the St. Joseph County Road Commission has announced its 2017 road and bridge projects. Road commission manager Chris Minger said the work will take place on Nottawa Road in Mendon and Nottawa townships, and White School Road in Sturgis Township. The Nottawa Road work will feature a crush-and-shape process …

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Colon hires first village manager

Municipal officials made history last week when they hired Colon’s first village manager. Michael “Mitch” Mitchell was offered the full-time position during the village council’s regularly scheduled meeting Tuesday. A Niles native, Mitchell has government experience in five Michigan communities and most recently worked as a real estate agent in Hillsdale County. The 47-year-old Mitchell started work Wednesday, a hit-the-ground-running …

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COA considers senior center options

St. Joseph County Commission On Aging Director Tim Stoll has been instructed to determine the feasibility and potential cost of a new senior center built on county-owned property in Fabius Township. The proposed facility would replace the Three Rivers senior center, which is housed in the south half of the Three Rivers Public Library building. County commissioners discussed the issue …

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County unemployment up from year ago

January’s unemployment rate in St. Joseph County was eight-tenths of a percent greater than the same month one year earlier. The monthly labor-market analysis by the Michigan Department of Technology, Management and Budget showed the county’s 4.3 percent January unemployment rate marked an increase from December’s 3.5 percent. Still, St. Joseph County remained below the state unemployment average, which was …

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K-Wings split weekend match-up with Indy

The luck of the Irish was not with the Kalamazoo Wings (33-27-1-3) on Friday night as they lost to the visiting Indy Fuel by a 6-5 margin, but a little magic must have traveled with them to Indy the next night as they defeated the Fuel 5-1. The two teams gave the standing room only crowd of 5,363 at Wings …

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County could receive river property

St. Joseph County could be in line to secure a wooded parcel with river access in Fabius Township. Parks and recreation director Jaymes MacDonald told commissioners during their executive committee meeting Wednesday that a 60-acre property was willed to three siblings. The so-called Kettles parcel is on the east side of U.S. 131, just south of Gleason Road. It abuts …

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Man died after being hit by train

A Niles man died this week after he was struck by the engine of a freight train in Cass County’s Pokagon Township. Sheriff Richard Behnke said the incident occurred around 1:30 p.m. Wednesday at the rail crossing a half mile south of Pokagon Highway. Investigators said a Norfolk Southern train traveling north came across a subject on the tracks who …

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Grant writer agreements up for approval

Two government entities in St. Joseph County have agreed to extend their participation for services with the county’s grant writer. Park Township and the village of Centreville have indicated their interest in continuing to pay $3,714 each annually for the services and expertise of James Hissong. County administrator Pat Yoder said the contracts with both parties are up for renewal …

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Commission meetings remain at 6 pm

The start of county commission meetings from 5 p.m. to 6 p.m. has not resulted in greater attendance. Commissioners during their executive committee meeting Wednesday were provided attendance details by board chairman Allen Balog. The commission for years had met at 5 p.m. the first and third Tuesdays of the month. With three new members joining the five-person board at …

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