How to Make a Walking Stick

Walking SticksMaster Woodworker, Stan Cordts will be leading two demonstrations on Saturday at 4:30 and 5:15 on the topic, How to Make a Walking Stick in the Thornapple Township Parking Lot.

Stan’s love for woodworking started when he was a kid helping his grandpa. He was a German Mennonite who owned a large farm in Kansas and also built homes in that area. So Stan believes it’s in his blood. After graduating high school, he attended carpenter trade school and received his Journeyman status in 1982.

Stan was a Contractor/Builder in the Middleville/Wayland area building homes and custom-built cabinets, entertainment centers, and fireplace mantels. He retired 3 years ago due to health reasons. He now needs to use a cane, so he started making his own from wood he found on his property and locally.

Stan makes wood walking sticks and canes that are unique and bring him satisfaction because the materials are usually from his back yard. He has found cedar and sassafras. He has also purchased some diamond willow, which comes from Alaska because it’s very unusual. Stan’s favorite walking staff is a piece of sassafras that has insect cankers all up and down it so it looks really weird. He carved an eagle head on the top of it and always get comments on it when he takes it out.

CanesStan has some of his products in The Nature’s Walk craft shop on Chief Noonday Road, just west of the Marathon gas station at Briggs Road.

Sometimes when Stan is out and about, people see a cane he has and he ends up making one for them.

Stan is a member of the Michigan Woodcarvers Association and has taught different classes throughout the years.

He really enjoys making things with wood. He has also made some furniture pieces throughout the years. Additionally, Stan has carved quite a few realistic animal pieces. His carving of a bison even won at the State Fair in Detroit. Stan says that he is not able to carve quite like he used to, but he really enjoys making canes and walking sticks. “It’s great to see other people who use and enjoy the canes I’ve made for them.”


Bison (State Fair Winner)


(Click to enlarge)

Nature Trail Walk Down the Riverwalk

Paul Henry TrailThe Nature Trail Walk down the Riverwalk will be a time of discovering the special and unique plants, birds, geology,  animals and other natural features that appear, in season, to trail walkers. Your guide for the Trail Walk will be nature enthusiast, Cal Lamoreaux.

Cal is outdoorsman at heart and interested in all aspects of nature.  He learned how to identify poison ivy at age 4.  Cal is a member of Michigan, Kalamazoo, Grand Rapids, and National Audubon societies; a member of the Michigan Botanical Club, and one of the founders of the Thornapple Trail Association. Additionally, Cal is the founder of the Michigan Paddling Council a member of the North Country Trail Association, and the American Volkssport Association.  Cal is also a retired high school teacher, engineer, marine mechanic, and “starving artist”.  As a hobby, Cal likes to place and find geocaches. There are 1,050 geocaches around Middleville.

The Paul Henry-Thornapple Trail has been called the most beautiful railtrail in Michigan since much of it follows and offers many views of the Thornapple River. It is the product of years of efforts by many people. Work continues to connect Grand Rapids with Hastings, Vermontville, and Eaton Rapids, a distance of over 40 miles, and to link this Trail with other trails in West Michigan.

If you would like to download a checklist of plants and animals you might see during your nature walk, you can do so here.

Cowboy Songs & Gospel Roundup

Hosea playing guitarHosea Humphrey has been playing guitar since he was 15 years old.  Little did he know the adventures that music would take him on throughout his life!

While Hosea is very humble about his long and accomplished musical career, some of the highlights are worth mentioning for listeners to fully appreciate their listening experience.

Hosea is local to the Middleville/Hastings area, so many of you may have seen him perform at the Allegan County Fair or at local churches throughout the years.  He performed at the Gull Lake Bible Conference for a month in 1993 while Dr. David Jeremiah was there and was a regular for about 10 years at the Arby’s in Hastings when they consistently had live music to dine by.  Over the years, he became good friends with Ray Overholt, with whom he traveled and performed.  In 1999, Hosea was given the honor of being inducted into the Michigan Country Music Hall of Fame.

Gospel Song Roundup 60th AnniversaryPerhaps what Hosea is known best for, however, is his radio show, “Gospel Song Roundup” which has been running consistently for 61 years now on WBCH out of Hastings, Michigan.  He has also been on radio stations in Iowa, Pennsylvania, and Florida.

You can still listen to Hosea singing and playing his guitar on WBCH (AM 1220) on Sunday mornings and find him at the Big Rock Barn in Martin, Michigan on the first Sunday of each month at 6:00 pm during the open mic jam session.

Fox 17 Coverage: Celebrate Middleville Heritage Days August 16-18

Middleville Heritage Days promises to bring traditions of the past and exciting promises of the future together in one weekend.

This year’s event promises to be the most event-packed Heritage Days ever with ongoing demonstrations and activities of interest to Midvillians and others in three days of celebrating the best of small-town living and remembering the village’s past.

Friday features are a Classic Car Cruise-in, music by the “Whatabouts Band” and The Jungle Book at the “Pajamas in the Park” movie.

Saturday has non-stop activities and a dozen demonstrations in several locations in the village repeated during the day so there’s no need to miss a show.

See how to make a perfect pie crust, a stained glass window or make balloon animals, create a quilt, make perfect pizza dough and much more.  Some teach a talent, others are just for fun, like the ventriloquist who will put on two shows.

There will also be the Heritage Days 5k/10k trail run and Youth Fun Run.

Then on Sunday morning, enjoy an old-fashioned church service and (bring your own) picnic.