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FALL 2011

l l a r o fun f

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Three Hundred Miles

A model illustration of gratitude and love for a daughter

Stroke of Luck Maurine Mitchell speaks out

PLUS: SJHS Fall Highlights, all of your favorite columnists, and a trip to the Grand Tetons with Lisa Soros!

See local. Do local. Be local.

www.stjohnslocale.com


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LOCALEMAGAZINE FALL 2011

iGrok. A few years ago, at the top of the housing bubble, my husband and I decided to build a house. It was one of the most exciting things we

company. His attention to the detail mesmerizes. In one of the top 20 Jobs quotes perusing the internet, I found this:

have done together. And unlike some couples I am told, Brian and I had an amazing experience designing, choosing and watching it all come to life. We both feel good design is important in any surroundings. Like most folks, at the end of the day,

“Design is a funny word. Some people think design means how it looks. But of course, if you dig deeper, it’s really how it works. To design something really well, you have to get it. You have

we want to walk in, feel relaxed, comfortable and warm. The truth is, as any designer might attest, it’s the visual that really makes it work. Interestingly enough, even when the house is a total mess, family, friends and colleagues don’t seem to mind -

to really grok what it’s all about.”

in fact - they sometimes linger. Now this can be good or bad, depending on how much wine is available. But all in all, we like to attribute this to good design. Sometimes they comment on art, paint or surroundings. And if the comment is

design of no good business. Good design is imperative to success. I want a viewer to linger in the message - feel compelled to stay, or ask more questions. I want them to love the product and service. Good design will set any business apart

I’d like to believe I grok. Some may disagree. But without good design, it’s empty, cold and forgettable. A business without good design is a

favorable, my husband is quick to usher guests to the paintings he tends to give away from his private stash kept in the basement. We hope people genuinely feel welcome and relaxed when they are here. That was our

and stay memorable in the face of competitors. This magazine was started with the idea that if it was of good design on all levels - people would embrace it, and that would make it successful. And what do you know? It worked. Here we are.

goal. We want them to love it as much as we do. This makes us happy. And after 7 years, we still love it, strive to perfect it and work to keep it memorable and pleasing for guests. The recent passing of Steve Jobs hit home for me.

Taking chances. Growing. Believing. I encourage you to think about what good design can do for your business. How can Locale help you achieve good design? Can we help you love it? Perfect it? Keep it pleasing to your

I have followed Jobs for a time, watching and trying to emulate his style and finesse as he navigated his way over the years. Apple has become the iconic symbol of great design and what it can do for a person, business and

clientele? As you peruse this fall issue, we hope you enjoy how it looks, but more importantly, how it works. All the best!

In this issue: 6 Three Hundred Miles

14 ONCE ON THIS ISLAND

18 Black Bear, Black Bear!

Mary Kay George

SJHS debuts its Fall

bikes in honor of her daughter.

Musical - get the info here!

Lisa Soros takes us on a trip to the Grand Tetons of Wyoming.

4

24 Stroke of Luck Maurine Mitchell gets up close and personal in Washington about stroke and it’s unlikely victims.


COVERSHOT The Jobs Fan Laurie Oakwood-Bishop Advertising Manager Robert “Bing” Crosby Marketing Manager Cammi Robinson Graphic Artist Megan Priess Office Assistant Christina Hammond Photography Jim Oakwood Lisa Soros

Contributors: Brian Bishop Ron Huard Maurine Mitchell Mike Meuhlenbeck Lisa Soros Monica Stump-Thayer

Published by Locale Media Company Fall 2011 Photography by Jim Oakwood Getting ready for the BIG GAME - with Myles Jones

Our advertisers make this publication possible. We graciously thank them for their continued support. We know our dedicated readers love Locale. Please tell our advertisers you saw their ad in Locale Magazine so we may continue to bring you the best, beautiful and heart warming stories of our favorite hometown.

St. Johns Locale Magazine is published by Locale Media Company, LLC © 2009. All rights reserved. Reproduction, whole or in part, is strictly prohibited without the written consent of the publisher. Contact our office at 517.614.4189 or email us at stjohnslocale@gmail.com.

5


LOCALEMAGAZINE FALL 2011

TOGETHER- The Goerge family is pictured during the fall of 2010, one of the last group photos before Emily’s death. From left, Trent, Alex, Mary Kay, Brian and Emily, along with family pet, Sid.

Three Hundred Miles Emily K. Goerge was born March 28, 1998. In June1999 she was diagnosed with a form of optic nerve glioma, causing total blindness in her right eye and very limited vision in her left eye.  Despite years of struggles tempered by hope, prayer, compassionate professional attention and loving care, Emily conveyed a cheerful spirit.  Her expression of love for everyone and everything became an inspiration to all.  But the disease was not to be denied.  Emily died May, 2, 2011.

6


Fowler Mom Celebrates Memory of Daughter with 300 Mile Bike Ride Imagine, enlisting for a 3-day, 300 mile bicycle ride without the previous experience of much more than a few turns around the confines of the village of Fowler.  Up until she began a limited period of training in preparation for a trip with about 850 other bikers to raise funds for the Make a Wish Foundation, that was virtually the extent of her pedaling time.  But, at the end of 300 miles, there was a profound sensation of satisfaction for the “greatest athletic accomplishment I’ve ever experienced.”   That comment was her summation of the journey along with the gratification of having given in return for the grant of Emily’s wish for a trip to Disney World in Orlando, following her physician’s suggestion.   The ride, under the sponsorship of Make a Wish Foundation is officially identified as ‘WAM’, an acronym for ‘Wish A Mile’ and is held each year.  The 2011 run was the 24th year and significant plans are already underway for the 25th anniversary.   Encouragement to join the ride came from the creation of a “Team Emily,” spearheaded by Mary Kay’s niece, Alisha Jandernoa, who had ridden “WAM” in 2010.  She recruited another of Mary Kay’s nieces, Amanda Jandernoa and friends Maria Pohl and Danielle Pline.  The team was in formation.   “I had considered riding a couple of times before,” Mary Kay explained, “but the formation of the team and the support of family convinced me.”  Before signing the dotted line, she talked with friend Tonya Platte about going along and without hesitancy she agreed.  So there were six ladies signed on to take a 300 mile bicycle ride and only one had long distance experience!  Not to worry!  End of the story will show that all made every mile and each completed the commitment to “Team Emily.”   Emily had enjoyed a wonderful time at Disney World under the auspices of Make a Wish Foundation.  “‘Em’ “‘Em’ had such an amazing time and was thrilled with the preparations, the travel and the excitement of visiting the Disney attraction.”  In addition, Mary Kay and husband Brian resolved that whatever the cost of the Disney visit, Make a Wish Foundation would be repaid.  Participation in the bicycle ride would assist in achieving that purpose.  purpose. Team Emily enhanced that potential.  

Training was another thing, though.  After setting foot to the pedal in June, shortly after Emily’s funeral, Mary Kay learned through the “WAM” website that a suggested training schedule began in March.  “I should have begun then!” she commented, realizing that her time was going to be no where near most of the other riders.   Her training rides averaged around 20 miles per jaunt, however as the days for the real thing drew near, she and her niece, Amanda and friend Tonya, did an eighty-miler from Fowler to Lowell and return.  “I was task driven,” she said, “I only knew I must get on that bike!”   The Make a Wish ride, which ran from Traverse City to Chelsea, began Friday July 28, ended Sunday July 31 and presented an image of Michigan from the seat of a bicycle that is smoothed over and leveled off while in the comfort of an auto.  “That first day was really hilly.  I don’t believe we went more than two miles between hills.  It was truly challenging!”  While there were hills the final days of the ride, none were as persistent as those between Traverse City and Big Rapids.  The later provided the first over nighter, wrapping up a total of 98 miles.   The second day – from Big Rapids to DeWitt - was spent in the heart of mid-Michigan, offering less challenging hills.  Also, for Mary Kay and associates, it presented a chance greeting by a group of supporters who were aware of a rest stop located at the intersection of Wright and Price roads.  A brief  period of “high fives,” segmented resumes of the

If therapy could be measured in miles and appreciation by effort, Mary Kay Goerge would be the essence of an endeavor to heal and a model illustration of gratitude. 

7


LOCALEMAGAZINE FALL 2011

tour so far, then it was off to DeWitt High School for the night.  A 114 mile day. As with the previous two days, Sunday dawned with warm and humid temperatures that increased throughout the ride.  However, temperature was forgotten two miles outside Chelsea when all riders observed a â&#x20AC;&#x153;Silent Mile.â&#x20AC;?  â&#x20AC;&#x153;This period was overwhelming,â&#x20AC;? stated Mary Kay.  â&#x20AC;&#x153;The intent of the â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Silent Mileâ&#x20AC;? is to memorialize all of the former â&#x20AC;&#x153;Wishâ&#x20AC;? children who are no longer with us, but in particular those who died during the past twelve months.  There was total silence for those two miles,â&#x20AC;? she said.  â&#x20AC;&#x153;I did not hear a word spoken.  Very impressive.â&#x20AC;? But the memorial period was replaced by a euphoric arrival at the fair grounds in Chelsea where a wall of people on either side of the route greeted and cheered the riders at the end.  To say that the welcome - along with the completion of the trip - was not emotional would be the understatement of the event.  â&#x20AC;&#x153;It is difficult to express the excitement felt upon entering that channel of people, knowing the ride has been accomplished and appreciating the overwhelming reception,â&#x20AC;? Mary Kay said.  â&#x20AC;&#x153;It certainly encourages thoughts of riding again!â&#x20AC;?

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Along with the sense of accomplishment, there was even greater satisfaction in knowing that the commitment of â&#x20AC;&#x153;Team Emily brought about over $7,000.00 in cash and pledges.  â&#x20AC;&#x153;We believe the average wish is granted at an expense to the Foundation of approximately $5,000.00.   I believe we have paid our wish back and paid forward toward another childâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s wish through funding and donations over the years.â&#x20AC;? A fitting tribute to Emilyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s memory that will be shared in spirit and support for many other children whose fate in life merit a grant from Make a Wish Foundation. Mary Kay and Brian reside in Fowler and are the parents of two sons, Alex, 18 and Trent, 16.  Dad and the boys leant much support to Mom as she trained and they met her along the way on the run from Traverse City to Chelsea.  All agree, the venture was but a first.

               

 



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Submitted by Ron Huard


TEAM EMILY- Completing a third of the distance between Traverse City and Chelsea, ‘Team Emily’ celebrated the memory of Emily Goerge by huddling together.  From left, Maria Pohl, Danielle Pline, Amanda Jandernoa, Alisha Jandernoa, Mary Kay Goerge and Tonya Platte.

Since 1980, the Make-A-Wish Foundation® has enriched the lives of children with lifethreatening medical conditions through its wish-granting work. The Foundation's mission reflects the life-changing impact that a Make-A-Wish® experience has on children, families, referral sources, donors, sponsors and entire communities. A network of nearly 25,000 volunteers enable the Make-A-

As the Foundation continues to mature, its mission will remain steadfast. Wish children of the past, present and future will have an opportunity to share the power of a wish®.

Wish Foundation to serve children with life-threatening medical conditions. Volunteers serve as wish granters, fundraisers, special events assistants and in numerous other capacities.

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9


LOCALEMAGAZINE FALL 2011

Oakview Elementary: Day in the Life News, updates & happenings from Lisa Soros. Thanks to deep budget cuts by the state, the St. Johns school district was staring at

students would sit in groups at long tables.

some pretty painful decisions. One of the

She put up shelves. Created little â&#x20AC;&#x153;quietâ&#x20AC;?

many sacrifices was the displacement (to

areas for students to retreat to. Threw a

Eureka Elementary School) of our beloved

splash of color on one wall. And buckled

Eryn Copland, fifth grade teacher and

down and readied herself for battle.

teaching partner to Amy Jo Worrall. I have loved working with Eryn. She made me laugh every day. Her passion for teaching, her completely sincere and

We did lose a handful of students who moved or left voluntarily. And picked up a couple in return. Our final count? 38. Just days into the start of the school year,

unabashed love for her job and students, is

there was a bubble of good news. Based on

admirable. Oakview has not been the same

the consistently high numbers at all of the

without her laughter lining the halls and her

schools, the school board approved the

silly, happy face.

hiring of a part-time teacher, Mr. John

And what was left in the wake of the cuts was unthinkable: 40 students in one class. 40 FIFTH grade students. Ms. Worrall began working on a solution weeks before school started. She had all of

For more info about Oakview South Elementary as well as photos, check out Facebook!

10

the desks in her classroom removed. The

Ferden, who would be at Oakview in the mornings. Happily, our fifth grade class is now 19 students per room in the morning. John & Amy Jo will split teaching duties and our fifth


graders will have the quiet, space, and attention they need. Afternoons are broken up with lunch, specials and recess, and there will still be an aid in the afternoons who will work one on one with students in literacy. We thank all of our parents for their patience, understanding, and willingness to stick with us. We especially thank the St. Johns School Board and our Superintendent, Dr.

Get the

UNIQUE perspective from Lisa Soros online with LOCALE. www.stjohnslocale.com

Ken Ladouceur, for putting our children first and creating a solution that benefits everyone. And we welcome our new fifth grade teacher, Mr. John Ferden, to our family at Oakview!

NEW SEASON    

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Take Out - Newer Menu!

Look for us @ Local Joes & Facebook!

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Open Sundays 12 - 8p

Photos by jim Oakwood - See more at www.stjohnslocale.com!

SJHS 2011 FALL HIGHLIGHTS

LOCALEMAGAZINE FALL 2011


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13


LOCALEMAGAZINE FALL 2011

SJHS THEATER PRESENTS

ONCE ON THIS ISLAND St Johns High School Theatre Department will present Once On This Island, a musical with an island setting. With elements reminiscent of both â&#x20AC;&#x153;Romeo and Julietâ&#x20AC;? as well as the fairytale of "The Little Mermaid", the show tells the story of Ti Moune, a peasant girl who rescues and falls in love with a wealthy boy from the other side of her island. The fantastical gods who rule the island guide Ti Moune on a quest to test the strength of her love against the powerful forces of prejudice, hatred and death. Both staff and students from the St Johns High School Orchestra and band will perform the musical accompaniment in this almost non-stop song and dance performance.

On Stage November 11, 12 & 13

MEET THE CAST: Momma Eurlie- Megan English Ton Ton Julian- Joe Dersham Ti Moune- Meg Dedyne Erzulie- Alyssa Wettlaufer Asaka- Mallory Cormier Ague- Jared Gregory Papa Ge- Remy Patterson Daniel- Erickson Hufnagel Andrea- Gabie Shileika Armond- Gage Denney Gatekeeper- Eli Joy Little Ti Moune- Dani Flynn Ensemble: FrenchRichelle Korienik, Camille LaBar, Katie Miller, Bailey Rebh, Morgan Terlecki-Tait, Hannah VanValkenberg, Mitchell Gazda, Alec Rogers, Luke Smith PeasantsHolly Flynn, Audrey Lockwood, Whitney Pung, Meredith Robbins, Tess Rowland, Annie Thelen

Tickets $8 reserved seats Tickets on sale 10/31

24

Photo provided by Kim Patterson


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LOCALEMAGAZINE FALL 2011

WORDFIND AUTUMN FEAST MEAL CANDIED YAMS FRIENDS PARADE CELEBRATION GATHERING PILGRIMS CORNUCOPIA HARVEST PUMPKIN PIE CRANBERRY SUACE HOLIDAY STUFFING FAMILY MAYFLOWER TURKEY

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Fill in the blank squares so that each row, each column and each 3-by-3 block contain all of the digits 1 thru 9. If you use logic you can solve the puzzle without guesswork. Need a little help? The hints page shows a logical order to solve the puzzle. Use it to identify the next square you should solve. Or use the answers page if you really get stuck.

17


LOCALEMAGAZINE FALL 2011

Article & photos submitted by Lisa Soros See more of Lisaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s photos at stjohnslocale.com

18


Black Bear, Black Bear, What Do You See? A trip to the Grand Tetons of Wyoming beckons black bears. It’s another ridiculously beautiful day in Grand Teton

now my daughter has realized that I am not coming to her

National Park, Wyoming. We’ve rolled into a parking lot at

rescue, shrugged, and begun taking pictures herself. My

the Lupine Meadows trailhead, which is packed to the

son continued to stand transfixed. After a few moments, I

rafters with folks eager and curious to hike several miles

realized with a jolt that my camera is still set for full sun and

amidst blood-thirsty mosquitoes waiting to suck the life out

I am in the woods and oh my gosh, these pictures are so

of them. (And let’s be clear on one thing: Michigan

not going to turn out…..so I quickly adjust my aperture and

mosquitoes having nothing on these Wyoming monsters.)

shutter speed….but of course by now our bear has

We head forth on a well-marked (paved for Pete’s sake!)

completely lost interest (and presumably his appetite) and

trail, my daughter skipping along ahead, my son

wandered off into the forest.

meandering behind me, most likely dreaming of his X-Box and counting the hours until it’s time to head home and back to civilization. I am questioning the wisdom of a long hike the day after a spur of the moment decision to make the 7.5 trek down Rendezvous Peak (alone, in bear country no less), rather than enjoy the comfort of the airconditioned tram.

Naturally none of my pictures are suitable, in my mind anyway, for print. They’re either too dark, too bright, too boring (What? Did I want the bear to rear up and roar at my children?), too something. They’re not framed right. There are shadows on the bear’s face. Too many

As though dropped into the scene by an over-eager

shots of its butt as it’s

editor obsessed with Photoshop….a black bear appeared

walking away.

on our trail. My daughter squealed. I quickly muttered to her to be quiet, to stay calm, and not to move. She whimpered back, “I don’t like this. I want to go home!” Behind me my son blurted, “Man, I LOVE this place!” Meanwhile, I am wondering how awful it would be if I tried to take some pictures. (Never mind the recent grizzly attacks in Yellowstone or the trails closed at Willow Flats just a few miles away due to grizzly sightings. We weren’t in Yellowstone. This wasn’t a grizzly.) I thought to myself, really? What kind of mother is thinking about taking pictures of a bear that is just feet from her daughter? Apparently, this kind of mother because I quietly brought my Nikon D80 to my eye and started snapping away. By

I guess we will have to go back next year and try again. - Lisa Soros is a premier guest writer and contributor to Locale. Look for more from Lisa in upcoming issues!

19


LOCALEMAGAZINE FALL 2011

Honors, Guard Change Highlight Kiwanis Annual Meeting

The St. Johns Kiwanis Club has been recognized for its active membership and numerous contributions to the community and those acknowledgements were justified recently when the group opened a new year by announcing special honors and naming incoming officers. The annual meeting, which not only installs leaders for the club, but also pays tribute to outstanding Kiwanians and persons who have contributed to the well being of the general community. This year’s honors included Denise Uribe, named as Kiwanian of the Year, and Patsy Coffman selected as Lay Person of the Year. Both were recognized during the club’s annual assembly Sunday Sept.25 at Clinton Commons. Ms Coffman received the special Human and Spiritual Values award as lay person of the year following a nomination by the Rev. Lori Sykes, pastor of First United Methodist Church of St. Johns. In her nomination, Rev. Sykes credited Ms Coffman as being “dedicated to living out her faith in ways that bless and serve her church, community and world. Patsy’s life is a virtual fountain of joy and thanksgiving, and her motivation in pouring herself out for others is simple: she loves because God first loved her.” Rev. Sykes pointed out numerous other personal qualities and contributions to her church and community that warranted special acknowledgement in keeping with the spirit of those attendant to being named Kiwanis lay person of the year. The yearly award is named in memory of Terry Cornwell, Kiwanian and high school counselor, whose life represented the

20


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essence of spiritual living, but was taken by diabetes at an early age. Meanwhile, another significant honor was bestowed on Denise Uribe as immediate past president.  This traditional tribute emphasizes the importance of leadership and the effect that an influential person has on the direction and purpose of an organized group.  Ms Uribe received her award from club secretary Marianne Harris.

and one community at a time. Our members develop youth as leaders, build playgrounds and raise funds for pediatric research. We help shelter the homeless, feed the hungry, mentor the disadvantaged and care for the sick. Working together, members achieve what one person cannot accomplish alone. And along the way, club members share friendship and laughter.

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Kiwanis is a global organization of volunteers dedicated to changing the world one child

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In other business, officers and directors for the upcoming Kiwanis year were installed.  Leading the club are Marcia Peterson, president; Greg Teichman, president elect, Denise Uribe, past president; Laurie Bishop, secretary and Jim Gunther, treasurer .  Board members include Tony Hufnagel, Mike Zigler, Theresa Fedewa Wells, Nan Simons, Rhoda Hacker and Sue Lounds.

BUILD IT YOUR WAY

BURGERS

  

           Big Boy is a registered trademark of Big Boy Restaurants International, LLC Š 2011 Big Boy Restaurants International, LLC

21


LOCALEMAGAZINE FALL 2011

Mint tasting contest mint-tastic! Brian Bishop is Locale’s premier “Foodie”

grandmother’s had done years ago. The scents

and was asked to serve as a judge for the Mint

of elephant ears, caramel corn, barbeque, and

Cooking contest during this year’s Mint Festival

the petting zoo all hanging in the muggy air of

by Jean Ruestman. His experience was fun,

the local pavilion, people gather to see and

fabulous and MINTY - to say the least!

partake of a dessert prepared by our family, our friends and our neighbors. There is pride,

On a hot August afternoon, air heavy with humidity of a morning cloudburst, people

anticipation, and on my part a bit of drooling in the room. This is local. This is what we do.

gather at the Mint Fest to attend a food preparation contest, much as our

I was asked to take on the difficult job of judging the entries of mint-based desserts. The task was not easy, as there were over a dozen entries, and my fellow jurors and I were seated in front of the room to taste the wares of local cooks. The samples came out in small pieces, and much like my dog Charmin at a family holiday feast I was given little morsels of delight to savor, though my anxiety level was much lower as I didn’t have to beg and I didn’t have to sneak the treat under the table. Wave after wave of mint came upon us, sometimes subtle, sometimes as a burst of flavor, always tasty. At that moment I have to admit that life was good. When the judging was over the crowd of family, friends and neighbors eagerly lined up to sample the entries. The look on my father in law’s face as he bit into a dessert he’d been eyeing since it was placed on the entry table...the congratulations of friends and kin as they pridefully shared a cherished family recipe with others...a community coming together in gentle celebration of local pride and talent...on a hot August day a tradition upheld as our grandparents would recognize and appreciate...this is local. This what we do. And it is good. Mint recipes are available on our website at

stjohnslocale.com!

22


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23


LOCALEMAGAZINE FALL 2011

Stroke of Luck

Maurine Mitchell of St. Johns raises awareness about stroke. It started with a “bruit” (pronounced

Ohio. Neurosurgeons in Cleveland performed a

brooie) -- a loud swishing noise in her ear. Very

risky, life-saving technique that actually allowed

annoying and gradually got louder. Finally a

Maurine to return to Saint Johns within two days

Doppler on both sides of her neck indicated a

for full recuperation at her home.

dissected artery and she was immediately put into the hospital. She did not stroke until three

The doctor entered through her right groin;

days later, while in the hospital. Because she

followed through her arteries to perform a

has always been healthy and active and had

mercy retrieval (actually “corkscrewing” the

low blood pressure, it was hard for physicians to

blood clot, latching on to it and pulling it back through the groin area); then, the doctor had a 2-3 minute window of opportunity to then go back through the artery and place a stent in the dissected carotid artery of her neck. The carotid artery, over time, knitted around the stent and, to this day, remains fully open. This procedure (performed in 2008) is still considered part of a medical study today. Maurine’s dissection and subsequent stroke was not caused by high blood pressure, poor diet or, most common, plaque. It was later determined to be genetic and life-changing for her. Maurine has been diagnosed with FMD, fibro-muscular dysplasia, and will

determine the seriousness of her situation. In June 2008, Ron and Maurine Mitchell had

have restrictions to lifting not more than fifteen pounds, stretching, extensive turning of neck, reaching and similar activities.

just been married six years and relocated back into the Saint Johns area. She was just 50 years old when her right carotid artery in her neck dissected causing a pseudo aneurism that would eventually lead to a blood clot that traveled to her brain. Through a series of events, she was eventually air-lifted from Sparrow Hospital in Lansing to Cleveland Clinic,

24

Maurine went back to work full-time in October, four months following her June stroke, with little permanent affects from her stroke. Stroke awareness, especially for young women, is now on her forefront of interests. Maurine and Ron both feel fortunate to have had the risky, life-saving surgery performed and the ability to advocate for stroke awareness.


Maurine makes a trip to Washington for advocacy. There is hope after stroke. I was fifty (50) years

National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke

young when I had my life-threatening stroke. I want to

(NINDS) briefed us on the cutting-edge research and

give a hopeful face to stroke. Stroke can affect

trials being conducted for stroke research. Dr.

anyone regardless of age, gender or race. Women,

Koroshetz, who was leaving for a conference on stroke

younger women, are often misdiagnosed or symptoms

the very next day to China, reminded us all – in China,

missed.

we would not have the opportunity to go express our views to our leaders, like we do here in America.

The National Stroke Association brought together a group of inspired and committed stroke advocates

Legislative change is needed to provide

(survivors and caregivers) to receive training on

appropriate care to individuals who have survived a

advocacy and to apply that training on Capitol Hill.

stroke. Younger survivors are not being served well with

This group is the first of its kind to connect, organize and

regard to getting their lives back, dealing with

advocate for better stroke

depression and the anxiety of

awareness to improve

having another stroke, while

policies and surround stroke

trying to raise a family and

care. I felt privileged to be

return to work. Survivors need

asked to speak to our

to educate policy decision-

national lawmakers on

makers about the issues and

behalf of stroke survivors in

problems we face to help

our country and to help

remove any and all

educate them on the

roadblocks in order to receive

difficulties stroke survivors

proper care and

and stroke care givers

rehabilitation.

encounter. How wonderful it was to be with these

On Thursday, June 23, our

individuals who, like me,

group made our way to

have endured the trials of

Capitol Hill. Ron and I were

stroke. To be able to speak, as well as, understand the

assigned the offices of Michigan’s United States

unspoken language of stroke survivors and caregivers.

Senators Debbie Stabenow and Carl Levin. In the afternoon, we visited the office of Congressman Mike

“National Stroke Association Lobby Day” was a

Rogers. We shared our story of my stroke, the

great opportunity empowering advocates to share their

challenges we encountered and the hopes that

personal story in a way that can make a big difference

funding would be maintained for the National Institute

for all stroke survivors and their families. Ron (husband

of Health (NIH), which is instrumental in research for

and chief care giver) and I attended a one-day

stroke and neurological diseases.

seminar on June 22, which provided useful tools necessary to meet with leaders on the “Hill” on

How awesome to be able to express our

Thursday, June 23, and effectively discuss issues on the

experience first-hand, to walk into their offices, tell the

congressional agenda and for budget year 2012.

story and request assistance on behalf of all stroke survivors.

During our training on advocacy on Wednesday,

Submitted by Maurine Mitchell

our speaker, Dr. Walter J. Koroshetz, Deputy Director for

25


LOCALEMAGAZINE FALL 2011

We Are Here For You!

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Homegrown Productions encourages the â&#x20AC;&#x153;Buy A Seatâ&#x20AC;? program.

Homegrown Productions brings numerous theater productions to Clinton County.  These productions are put on in the Wilson Center Auditorium which is located at 101 W. Cass Street in downtown St. Johns. Homegrown Productions started officially in 2008 when Beth Webb and Susan DeRosa directed You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown.  This was after a collaboration (along with Jim Gunther) to write and direct "A St. Johns Home Companion" for the St. Johns Sesquicentennial celebration in 2006.  That show provided the seed money to replace the seating and paint the interior of the Auditorium.   The â&#x20AC;&#x153;Buy a Seatâ&#x20AC;? program sponsored by the Wilson Center Auditorium Renovation Committee and a successful grant application provided the balance of the funds to install 212 new, comfortable seats and purchase basic sound equipment.  The Auditorium Committee's goals are to install at least 120 more seats on the main floor of the Auditorium, to install new and enhanced lighting and replace the carpeting.  Some of the stage lights currently in use are more than 50 years old. Eventually, the light control booth will move to the balcony so the person running the lights can actually see what he/she is lighting! The goal for Homegrown Productions is to produce a musical, a play (comedy, drama, or mystery) and a variety show each year.  Homegrown Productions is looking for community members who are interested in all aspects of theater, from building sets to tackling the most challenging dramatic roles on stage.  They are discussing an event to encourage community members to learn more about the plans and join the next production.  In the meantime, anyone interested in getting involved with Homegrown Productions can email Susan at susanderosa@msn.com and Beth at bethwebb@chartermi.net. More information can be found at

www.clintoncountyarts.org 26

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Learn â&#x20AC;&#x153;Beadersâ&#x20AC;? Alert! Classes set at Art Councilâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Gallery.

Deborah Laverty, a beading instructor who has conducted numerous classes in recent years, will return to the Clinton County Arts Council Gallery for two classes scheduled for October 20 and 27.   1 , /1 # . 1 , / 3 0!. According to Ms Laverty, students will be 1, , '! ".!/$ ) %*0(! 2!/ creating striking 1 , +1 . +* rings, fashioned from beads of various shape and color.  The beads will be 1 , size, (1 /+ %*0/, .% #/ "+. # .*%/$ strung on complementing elastic to ensure ease of fit and security while being worn.  +) %*! /1 # . 3 0!. * ) %*0(! 2!/ %* /) (( planned for / 1The !, classes * * are .%*# 0+ +% ( /0two %..%*#consecutive 0+ %//+(2! 0$! /1 # . evenings, !) +2! ".+) 0$! $!200and * 27 ++( 0+ 6:30 to Thursday October from .++) 0!) , !. 01 .! 0$! +1 . +* * (1 9 p.m. with a registration fee of $25 which includes /+ 0+ 0$! ++(! /5.1 , /0%..%*# 1 *0%( +) %*! all supplies.  must at"least 14 years of .!!6 ! ) %401 .!Students +. %*# 0+ )be *1 01 .!./ age and to arrive for class %.! 0% +*/ %*all are * % !encouraged .! ) ".!!6 !. ( ! /+. !0%* by 6 ".!!6to !.allow / "! time +*0 % *!.registration * ((+3 )and %401 .! 0+ p.m. for distribution ".!!6 ! "+. $+1 ./ !"+.! /!.2%*# .*%/$ 3%0$ of supplies. ".!/$ ) %*0/, .%#/   Persons interested in registering may call the Gallery, 989 224-2429 or contact Ms Laverty, 517 775-0168.  The Gallery is located at 215 N. Clinton Ave. in St. Johns.

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1 , / $ ("business $ (" hours at the Gallery are Tuesday Normal 1 , $! Friday, 25 .! 10a ) through to 5:30p and Saturday 10a to ( .#! !## 5+('/ 2p.! The Gallery is closed on Monday. Additional +1 * !/ /1 # . information on, this 0! /, ++* , !, !.) event %*0+%(and other details of +1 * !/or$+ +( 0!County ) %*0 Arts * %!/ + ./!( 5 Gallery Clinton Council operations $+, , be ! secured by calling 989 224-2429. may ( ! 0$! $ (" * $ (" * 0$! $! 25 .! ) %*0+ ) ! %1 ) / 1 !, * +2!. ) ! %1 ) $! 0 .%*# 0$! ) %401 .! &1 /00+ /%) ) !. /0%..%*# + /%+* ((5 * .!) +2! ".+) 0$! $! 0 * ) ! %1 ) ) %4%*# +3(3$%/' 0$! !## 5+('/ 1 *0%(0$!5 (%#$0!* %* +(+. . 1 ((5 0$! /1 # . * 3$%/' 0+ +) %*! !) , !. 0$! .! ) ) %401 .! %*0+ 0$! !##/ * /1 # . 5 #. 1 ((5 %*# /) (( ) +1 *0/ 1 *0%( +1 0 +" 0$! .! ) ) %401 .! $ / !!* ! +1 . %* 0$! .!) %* !. * .!01 .* 0$! !*0%.! ) %401 .! 0+ 0$! / 1 !, * * , ( ! +2!. (+3 $! 0 +*0%*1 ! 0+ ++' /0%..%*# ".!-1 !*0(5 1 *0%( 0$! ) %401 .! 0$% '!*/ /(%#$0(5 * + 0/ 0$! ' +" /, ++* * .! $!/ 0+ !#.!!/ +1 . 0$! ) %401 .! %*0+ +*0 %*!. * ((+3 0+ /%0 0 .++) 0!) , !. 01 .! "+. ) %*1 0!/ 0$! , !, , !.) %*0+%( * /0%. 0+ +) %*! ( ! 0$!

23


LOCALEMAGAZINE FALL 2011

Just a Small Town Girl A continuing series: The Transformation of Monica. I didn’t realize how long it would take me

It’s really hard to explain to people how I

to achieve this goal of mine. I have been

feel about it taking this long to get to goal.

dealing with this weight loss journey since the

They look at me and think you look fine, be

end of February 2009. Most people would’ve

proud of what you’ve done, you can stop

given up by now. Not me! I have a strong

now. I know I look fine. I am proud of what I

drive; an abundance of determination. I’m

have been able to do. Most people have

not complaining by any means! I feel

never done something like this. Usually they

fortunate and blessed that I have been able

need help either with a weight loss group or

to continue fighting the fight. It has taught

money bet with family and/or friends, or with

me that I have strength in myself that I didn’t

medical help. I’m not putting any of those

know I had. It has taught me perseverance

ways of losing weight down. If that is what

and it has shown me how to be more

works for a person to lose weight, then so be

patient. It has changed me not just

it. I just need to be able to say “I did it.” I

physically but also mentally and emotionally.

compare it to completing high school. Why

Don’t get me wrong, I have my good days

would you want to quit school the day of

and bad days just like everyone else but it

graduation? That is how I feel about it. I am

has changed the way I look at things now.

so close to accomplishing what I set out to do. It’s things like this that I live with every day. I never would imagine how bad that I would want this. It seriously fuels my determination. I am pretty sure that the more negativity I experience, the more fired up I get. I know, it’s crazy but it really does that to me. I’ve learned to embrace everything about this journey I am on, even the good, the bad, and the ugly. Yes, there is an ugly side of this. I consider the excess skin my “ugly” issue. Ha! Ha! I will address that in a future article. So, I turned my thoughts on something that I knew I could accomplish right away. I set out to do a long distance race. It was the Mint City 10 mile race. I have been running for over 29 months. I started out using the treadmill and now I’m running totally outside. I hadn’t run in a race for over 26 years. I was scared to death to do it. As embarrassing as this is to put it out here, I would get lost on the Cross Country courses. So needless to

28


say, I worried about this race way more than I needed to. I studied the map till I couldn’t study it any more. I asked my children’s Doctor (who is one of the people in charge of the race) questions about the course. Yes, I may have been a little “over worried” but I wanted to make sure I knew exactly where I was going. I ran the race in 1:35:49.6 seconds. I came in 8th out of 15 women in my age group. I came in 130th overall. Not sure exactly how many people ran it but I’m guessing around 219. I was extremely pleased with what I did. I was able to run the

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pace that I was used to running every day. I ran the whole

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race without walking. Who knew that a former 258 lb. woman

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could run 10 miles? I think that is one of the things that hit me the hardest at the end of the race. When I finished the race and was able to find a nice, quiet little area to lie down that is when it hit me. I was able to lie on the grass with a wet towel covering my face and have a good cry. I cried out of exhaustion, I cried out of the fear leaving my body, I cried for accomplishing that thing I set out to do. Nobody knew what

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was on my mind at the moment, let alone during the race. I had all that time to think about what I have all accomplished. I think that is another reason for the tears. I was just a little overwhelmed, to say the least. I have put a lot of things “out there” by writing these articles. I want to inspire others but hope that I don’t make myself more vulnerable in all this. I want to become a stronger

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person physically, emotionally and mentally and I think I’m

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doing just that, but then I start to wonder…

# Submitted and written by Monica Stump-Thayer

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Follow Monica on her blogspot! http://monica-justasmalltowngirl.blogspot.com/

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Or on stjohnslocale.com

15


LOCALEMAGAZINE FALL 2011

Honoring Military and Families

Sign up for a unique 3 + 1 Golfing Event at The Emerald. A charitable foundation designed to provide secondary educational scholarships

military personnel (free, of course!) to complete a four-person team.  “We are

to children and spouses of military men and

looking forward to November 11,”

women killed or disabled while on active service, will host a unique golf outing Friday

commented Eccleton, “and are pleased the foundation selected the Emerald for this

November 11, 2011 at The Emerald Golf Course.  That the date  happens to be

special event.  It is truly an exceptional way to not only help the foundation but to also

Veteran’s Day will add to the significance of

pay tribute to the military men and women

the event along with assisting The Folds of Honor Foundation to benefit from a

and their families.”  

successful fund raising event.  

score and contest holes, along with lunch

According to Jay Eccleton, director of golf

Aside from golf, there will be prizes for and dinner for everyone participating.  All

course operations for The Emerald, the team assignments themselves is a tribute to all

proceeds of the day will be donated to The Folds of Honor Foundation.

military services.  Each team will be comprised of three players of choice who

 

will be joined by one active or active reserve

sponsorships are available, including event

As with every fund raising outing, sponsors, cart sponsors, range sponsors, lunch and dinner sponsors and hole sponsors.  All sponsorships will receive generous recognition through appropriate signage and special awards.  Sponsorship associations include: Event, 4 available, $1,000.00; Cart, 6 available, $500.00; Range, 2 available, $200.00; Lunch/Dinner, 2 available, $200.00; Hole, 18 available, $100.00.   Persons interested in registering 3-person teams should contact Eccleton at The Emerald, 989 224-6287 or director@emeraldgolfcourse.com.   Future information and details will be announced as preparations for the outing take place.


 

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Fun For All Fall Issue