Kingsford city manager speaks at Golden K Club meeting
By JOAN JOUPPI
For The Daily News
KINGSFORD — Monday morning provided a “golden” opportunity for Alyce Derwinski to pull the bench up to the piano and get those “black and whites” warmed up and ready for Jim Verrette to start the group singing. With the adroitness of a professional, Verrette was able to get the Golden Kers singing the “oldies,” sending vibrations throughout the fellowship hall at the First Presbyterian Church in Kingsford.
Mary Jane Nelson, as chairwoman for July, kept the momentum to begin the business meeting.
Diane Aune was the lucky 50-50 winner. Happy Anniversary wishes to Bill and Ellen Roberts, July 23; and Vance and Dorleen Uhazie, July 25. Guests welcomed were Tony Edlebeck, Kingsford city manager; Bob Bowman and daughter, Linda; Gene Henry, a gentleman new to the area who resides near Pembine, Wis.; and Ron Jouppi’s sister, Vivian. Vivian at age 92 filled an item that has been on her bucket list for some time — she had her nephew stop at the Mystery Spot in lower Michigan and rode a zip line. She earned a T-shirt for being the oldest person to ride that line. No matter the age, life is still full of surprises and fun. Her nephew has since retreated to his home in California, which may be a good thing when Vivian’s children see the pictures on Facebook.
As Mary Jane donned her program chairwoman hat, she introduced Edlebeck as guest speaker.
Edlebeck brought the group up to date on the current activities in the city of Kingsford and the Dickinson County area.
The Dickinson Area Economic Development Alliance reorganized in 2017 as a partnership of business, industry, local units of government and the private sector. A partnership agreement also was formed with Lake Superior Community Partnership in Marquette. This collaboration provides economic development services to both areas efficiently and effectively, under the direction of Lois Ellis.
Working with a board comprised of 17 people representing various business in this area, they established their goals and strategic categories to address. Two major concerns to date: First, attracting people to fill the expanding job market that is being created locally, with a future projection of 650 to 700 people needed; second, single-family, duplexes and multi-family housing.
Current projects include: Residential developments, Evergreen Heights Inc., Zawada Lumber and Supply, Birchwood Mall, Brownfield Redevelopment Grant, Lodal Inc. properties and 51st State Brewing Company, a new bar and grill on Breen Avenue. Park projects include: Soccer field, currently used by Iron Mountain and Kingsford youth; Lodal Park, soccer, baseball, softball, tennis and basketball improvements; Triangle Park, Iron Mountain, Rotary-funded new playground area and equipment. Eagle Scouts Projects include Jeff Janowski, Kimberly Avenue Arboretum; Mike Anderson, refuse can decorative enclosures; Jack Mitchell, picnic shelter at Lodal Park; and Justin Lanthier, replacement of damaged grills and improving playground areas at Menominee River Park. These are just a few of the things that are changing the local area. Many other projects are planned with hopes for grants to help with the costs.
Working with grant monies and millages, other projects aimed at better serving the community will address streets and alleys, stormwater management and wastewater, water system, digital parcel mapping, public safety and public works equipment.
Things are happening with a combined effort of city management programs working with area businesses, local governments and the public.
Assisted with grants and millages, the area is like the flower in your garden. It starts with an seed and with help from elements around the flower grows, buds and then blooms. Full blooms thrill the gardener and so it is — watching, participating and enjoying the growth of this area as it begins to reach its full potential, enriching all who reside here.
The Golden K will meet Monday with guest speaker Karen Klenke. Everyone is invited Monday morning to join the group to sing and/or learn what Klenke has to share.
The Golden Throats will sing Wednesday at Victorian Pines on the Northside of Iron Mountain.