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Caught Being Safe program launches statewide

Michigan State Police, local law enforcement and Michigan’s Field Neurosciences Institute have teamed up with McDonald’s of Michigan to once again launch “Caught Being Safe,” a statewide bicycle/scooter helmet safety program. Kids wearing helmets and “caught being safe” by participating law enforcement officials will treated to a free ice cream cone or Apple Dippers at McDonald’s. 

According to the Field Neurosciences Institute (of Michigan): “Caught Being Safe! has shown a significant increase in both helmet utilization and public awareness regarding the critical importance of wearing a bicycle helmet. This program has impacted not only children but adults as well.” 

My Town: Celebrate Independence Day by making a life-saving donation

My Town: Celebrate Independence Day by making a life-saving donation

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—Americans are encouraged to celebrate the upcoming Independence Day by rolling up their sleeves to make a life-saving donation.

Blood and platelet donations from all types of donors are needed, as the American Red Cross deals with a summer shortage.

“Vacations and other summer activities often conflict with donation appointments for regular blood donors, which makes summer a very difficult time to collect blood donations,” said Todd Kulman, communications manager for the Great Lakes Blood Services Region. “Donations decline further near summer holidays like Independence Day. A blood or platelet donation now can help sustain an adequate blood supply this summer.”

 The Red Cross must collect 15,000 blood donations daily to meet the needs of patients across the country.  From June 30, through July 7, all donors will receive a commemorative Red Cross t-shirt, while supplies last.

My Town: Free tickets still available for 'Lets Go to Bat for Kids'

My Town: Free tickets still available for 'Lets Go to Bat for Kids'

COMSTOCK PARK, Mich.—The Media Giants and Catholic Charities West Michigan Padres will battle it out at Fifth Third Ballpark as “Let’s Go to Bat for Kids” returns this Thursday, June 26 with even more family-friendly events.

More than 1,200 people are expected to fill the ballpark for the fundraiser, which supports Catholic Charities West Michigan.  Tickets are free and can be reserved by visiting the organization’s website.  In addition to the softball game between local priests and media personalities, families may take part in a Lego building station, face painting, crafts, a doughnut dunking station and meet Crash of the West Michigan Whitecaps.

My Town GR North: NorthPointe Christian students compete to give away $1,000

My Town GR North: NorthPointe Christian students compete to give away $1,000

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.-- Before wrapping up their school year, NorthPointe Christian School students competed in an unusual contest: Who has the best idea of where to give $1,000?

The exact challenge: create a one-minute video explaining what you would do with $1,000 that would make a difference in impacting the world for Jesus Christ.  The incentive: $1,000 in prize money.

Coined “Heart Prize 2014,” the contest motivated 46 NorthPointe Christian middle and high school students to step up to the challenge.  Students passionately presented local, national and world causes to their fellow student body, inviting the school as a whole to consider needs outside themselves.  Hundreds of views and votes poured in through the contest’s youtube channel, eventually narrowing down the entries to a top six.

One of the top six contestants was Tadesse Yasin.

My Town: Army of volunteers create new play space for children

My Town: Army of volunteers create new play space for children

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—Hundreds of Grand Rapids children have a new place to play, thanks to an army of volunteers.

On June 13, more than 300 people from Amway,  Ellington Academy of Arts & Technology and KaBoom! pitched in to build a new playground at in front of the school, located at 600 Burton Street SE.  The volunteers spent several hours transforming children’s designs into a place to play. 

Dr. Marvin L. Sapp and other community leaders will celebrate the playground’s grand opening Tuesday, June 17 at 5 p.m., before officially welcoming children to play at the new site, which is the 16th of its kind built by Amway and KaBOOM.  

My Town: 13 Food for Families 'food fight' comes to your town!

My Town: 13 Food for Families 'food fight' comes to your town!

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich.—Feeding America West Michigan says approximately $165 billion worth of food never makes it onto the plates of those who need it, taking an alternative trip to the trash instead.

Now is your chance to change that statistic. 

Our 13 Food for Families campaign is underway, pitting the WZZM 13 team against one another in a “food fight”.  From June 9 through June 16, members of the WZZM 13 family will be camping out outside various SpartanNash stores to collect your food donations. The community that donates the most will receive a free ice cream party.

WZZM 13’s Valerie Lego will kick off the food fight Monday, June 9 at the Plumb’s store in Muskegon, located at 1663 W. Sherman. She will be taking your donations live during our news show.

My Town Comstock Park: Donations needed for inner city youth sports programs

My Town Comstock Park: Donations needed for inner city youth sports programs

COMSTOCK PARK, Mich.--  Give your unwanted sports equipment new life by donating it to the Inner City Youth Baseball and Softball programs.

This is the final week for the equipment drive, which ends Friday, June 6.   The program is in need of kid size bats, cleats, catcher’s gear and other baseball or softball equipment. Donations can be dropped off at Fifth Third Ballpark, any Fifth Third Bank, the David D. Hunting YMCA, Spartan Stores YMCA, Wolverine World Wide YMCA, Visser YMCA, Southeast YMCA or Lowell YMCA.

Donors will receive four lawn seat tickets to a 2014 Whitecaps home game, a Wendy’s small combo meal and a YMCA family day pass.