Monthly e-Newsletter | April 2018 Edition
Dear Fellow Walker Residents:
The City's Annual Easter Egg hunt was held this year on March 24, a sunny but blustery Saturday morning. The crowds were larger than usual this year at the Walker Ice and Fitness Center. I love this event, it brings our residents together. I enjoyed speaking with so many participants both young and old. The egg hunt is an annual tradition that notes the beginning of Spring. A big thank you to those who volunteered, for staff who organized the event and for our local organizations who assisted with sponsorships.
I hope that you have a wonderful and safe spring. Enjoy the flowers and spend some time getting to know your neighbors.
Mark E. Huizenga
Mayor

Save the Date! The 2018 Walker Memorial Day Parade is Monday, May 28!
A ll Veterans, bands, floats, companies and organizations are invited to participate in the annual Walker Memorial Day parade, you may register online at www.walkericeandfitness.com or forms available at Walker Ice & Fitness.

Must register by May 7. No fee for entry for Walker based or non-profit organizations. Any business based outside of Walker and all political entrants (unless they are an incumbent representing walker) will be charged $100. Contact the Recreation Department for further information by calling (616) 735-6286.
NEW Left Turn Arrow
The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) has approved the installation of a left turn arrow for eastbound Lake Michigan Drive at Kinney Avenue. It will take some time to get the design and funding in place but we are excited that this enhancement will be coming our way in the coming year. We have fielded dozens of requests for this signal so it should be well received. Thanks for your patience!
Income Tax Department: Do you need help?
Do you need help?
Walker Income Tax returns for calendar year 2017 and first quarter estimated payments for 2018
are due April 30, 2018. Forms are available on our website at: http://www.walker.city/income_tax_forms.php#
The most common questions are answered on our website at:
We will be happy to prepare your Walker return at the counter free of charge. 
Call (616) 791-6880 for an appointment. Appointments are available from 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 7:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. on Fridays. We are unable to schedule appointments on the due date of the return which is April 30, 2018.
Attachments
Please make sure that your W-2 forms showing Walker withholding are attached to your returns. Many returns are missing the W-2 forms this year. Missing W-2 forms will delay the processing of your refund.
Clerk's Office: Updates
April Passport Hours and Special
For the month of April, first time applicants can get a FREE passport picture when applying at the City of Walker. Simply show or mention the below coupon. All other fees still apply.

We also are offering limited after-hours passport hours by appointment ONLY this month.

  • Monday April 9 - 4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.
  • Wednesday, April 11 - 4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.
  • Saturday, April 21 - 9:00 a.m.-11:00 a.m.
  • Monday, April 23 - 4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.

Please call (616) 791-6865 to schedule an appointment. You can visit our website below for more information on our regular passport hours and what items are needed to apply for or renew a passport.
Fire Department: Rules for Open Burning with Permit
In accordance with the Code of Ordinances for the City of Walker, Chapter 34 (Environment), Section 34-55

(Open Burning), listed below are the rules and regulations for the City’s Open Burning Policy:

Residential burning is allowed twice a year. The burning season begins on April 15th through May 15th and October 15th through November 15th. Burning permits are free and can be obtained at the main reception area at Walker City Hall or on line at www.walker.city . You will be required to show your valid Michigan driver’s license when applying for your burning permit. If you do obtain a permit, the following rules will apply:
  • You may only burn on Mondays, Wednesdays and Saturdays during the burning season..
  • The burning of leaves and grass clippings is prohibited.
  • You are only allowed to burn small twigs.
  • ABSOLUTELY NO COMMERCIAL BURNING (Contractors, businesses, clearing land, etc.)
  • Burning of garbage, rubbish or any other solid waste is also prohibited.
  • Open burning shall be supervised and kept under control by an adult who shall be present at the site of the fire at all times and until the fire is completely extinguished without smoldering.
  • Fire extinguishing equipment must be readily available at the site of the fire. A supply of water must be available in the immediate vicinity of the fire.
  • Open burning is not permitted within 50 feet of any building or overhead wires.
  • Open burning is not permitted in any public street.
  • Open burning is not permitted in ditches or drainage courses other than the burning of natural vegetation growing therein (with permission from the Fire Dept.)
  • No burning in trash barrels or other containers.
  • Burning is not allowed until sunrise and must be extinguished by sunset.
  • Materials to be burned must be dry and readily combustible. The fire must be small and no black smoke is permitted.
  • Burning is not allowed when the wind is over 20 mph.
  • You must renew your burning permit every spring.

Lastly, if the Fire Department is called to your address because of a complaint from smoke or odor from your fire, and if our responding fire officer determines that your burning is causing a health hazard or nuisance to your neighbors, you will be asked to extinguish your fire. 
Walker Police Department: Department News
Winter seems to be hanging on, but warmer Spring weather is just around the corner. With that warmer weather, more people will be out and about. This is a great time for us to remind citizens to not keep anything of value inside their vehicles while unattended. Leaving items in your vehicle can be enticing to a passerby, so keep items hidden if they must remain in your vehicle. Another good reminder is to always remember to lock your doors and windows to avoid theft. This time of year, is typically when we see an increase in larcenies, many time because people are leaving car/home windows open, garages unlocked, and yard equipment outside. Don’t become a victim!
March was reading month, and our Community Resource Officer was busy making the rounds at area schools, reading to students. Our department enjoyed several opportunities to connect with citizens, at the Walker Easter Egg Hunt, Altitudes Trampoline Park opening weekend, The 3 Mile Project, and other area community events. Our first ever Coffee with a Cop was successful, so look for more of these events in the future. Our next event will likely try to accommodate the Standale area.
You likely heard in the news about the threat that was emailed to West Michigan Academy of Environmental Sciences. If you have students there, you should be very pleased with how the staff at the school handled this incident. Once the threat was received, the school immediately went into a full lockdown and contacted our department. Every officer that was on duty, from the Chief down, responded to the school. Once a safety perimeter was established, our department assisted the school with an emergency dismissal of students. It was a bit time consuming, but it was the safest and most efficient way to get students back to their parents.  Quick work by our Detective’s Bureau lead to the identification of the suspect in just a few hours. The juvenile suspect was arrested later that evening and is currently in the Kent County Juvenile Detention Facility. 
  April is Distracted Driving Awareness Month. Please talk to your children about the dangers of texting and driving. All this month, if you follow our department on Facebook, we will be sharing various statistics and facts about the dangers of texting and driving. If you would like a Distracted Driving Myth vs. Reality index card to start the conversation with your children, stop by the department and ask for one from our Community Resource Office. Our CRO also has informational materials relating to scams and identity theft, online safety, safe bicycling, and child safety seat installation tips.
                                        
Events at the KDL Walker Branch
KDL Caffeinated: Rowster Coffee Roasting Facility Tour
Thursday, April 12 6:30 pm – 8:00 pm

Join us at the Rowster Coffee Roasting Facility ( 100 Stevens St SW, Grand Rapids ) for an exclusive tour and learn how they make such wonderful coffee. Witness the process from seed to cup, observe coffee beans roasting and enjoy some delicious coffee.
KDL Caffeinated: Ferris Coffee & Nut Tour
Wednesday, May 2. 6:30 pm – 7:45 pm

Pre-registration is required. Join us at  Ferris Coffee & Nut  for an exclusive back-stage pass to see how they make such tasty coffee. Observe coffee beans roasting and enjoy some delicious samples.  In accordance with Ferris policy, please do not wear watches or jewelry (except rings without stones) or open-toed shoes. Hairnets and beard nets will be provided required.  Ferris Coffee & Nut, 227 Winter Ave NW, Grand Rapids. Call us at 616-784-2007 to register
          
Special Events at the Walker Branch
The Victorian Lady
6:30 pm to 7:30pm
Thursday, May 3

See first hand, what it took to dress and live as a Victorian woman. Local historical interpreter Wendy Batchelder presents an interactive 90 minute program that offers a fascinating peek at the daily routine of a Victorian Lady. Suitable for anyone who is interested in fashion and history!
Ready to Read Michigan: I got Rhythm
10:30am to 11:30am
Friday, May 11

Get ready to groove with Ready to Read Michigan's 2018 pick,  I Got the Rhythm  by Connie Schofield-Morrison! Featuring musical and rhythmic stories, activities and crafts.

Regular Events at the Walker Branch
Toddler Time
9:45 am to 10:15 am & 10:45 am to 11:15 am
Monday, April 9
Monday, April 16
Monday, April 23
Monday, April 30

Nurture your toddler's love of books through music, movement and stories while helping to develop their language, motor and social skills.

Family Storytime
Mondays 6:30 pm to 7:00 pm
Thursdays 10:30 am to 11:30 am
Monday, April 9
Thursday, April 12
Monday, April 16
Thursday, April 19
Monday, April 23
Thursday, April 26
Monday, April 30
Thursday, May 3

Read and sing together. Enjoy stories, music, movement and rhymes that develop early literacy skills and encourage everyone in the family to share their love of reading.
Adult Book Discussion:
Tuesday, April 10
10:00 am to 11:00 am
Join us for an informal and lively discussion of The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton.

Tuesday, May 8
10:00 am to 11:00 am
Join us for an informal and lively discussion of The Boys in the Boat : Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics by Daniel
Babytime
9:30 am to 10:15 am
Thursday, April 12
Thursday, April 19
Thursday, April 26
Thursday, May 3

Delight and stimulate your baby with songs, a story and playtime. Get to know other families and help your baby develop listening and language skills.
Rhyme Time Music and Movement
10:30 am to 11:30 am
Friday, April 13
Friday, April 20
Friday, April 27
Friday, May 4

Move and groove together with action rhymes, songs, games and hands-on musical activities that will help children develop motor, listening and literacy skills.
Sensory Playtime
10:00am to 11:00am
Monday, May 7
Thursday, May 10
Monday, May 14
Thursday, May 17
Drop in and explore a variety of sensory activities that will stimulate your child’s mind. Sensory play, art experiences and gross motor activities will be provided.


Head on over to the KDL Walker Branch to help us choose our featured movie for the Movie in the Park on August 23.

Join us on August 23 for Walker Family Fun Night and Movie in the Park. This FREE family event starts at 6pm with the movie beginning at dusk. More details to come!
Walker Ice & Fitness Center: 20 Years Strong at WIFC
Save the Date!
20 Years Strong – Mark your calendars for our Summer Celebration!! We are celebrating our 20 th Anniversary in the Walker Community on Wednesday, July 11, 2018 from 5-7pm with free open skating and games for the kids. Watch for more details to come on our Facebook page!!

Student Memberships
Student Summer Special – In Celebration of our 20 years, we are offering 20% off Student Gym Memberships. Just $79 for 3 months! Starts May 1, 2018 – August 31, 2018.

Groupon
Check out our Groupon for Group Fitness Classes. 10 Classes for $35 or 5 Classes for just $19. Get yours today!
7-Day Free Trial
Come Try our facility for 7-days for FREE!! Anyone over the age of 18, with a valid MI Driver’s License and a first-time visitor to our gym are eligible. Come in today!

Silver & Fit and Silver Sneakers
Did you know that if you a member of the Silver & Fit or the Silver Sneakers Programs that Walker Ice & Fitness Center Only receives payment for your attendance/membership when you check in at the gym. Make sure to attend regularly!

Walker Ice & Fitness Room Rentals
Looking for a room to host a graduation party, baby/bridal, shower or family reunion? We have a room to rent for up to 100 people. Room rentals start at just $20/hr. Contact Mary Kay Sherman at (616) 735-6286 or mksherman@walkericeandfitness.com for more information and room availability.
Weight Loss Challenge
Cindy had this to say about her journey…

Losing weight is made possible by saying NO to yourself more than you say yes.

I started keeping a daily tally of how many times I had to say "no" each day to food temptations. Jotting down a tally each time made me much more aware of how many temptations were coming at me each day; realizing that helped me to expect them and be better prepared to say no without it being that big of a deal.

I started coming to Walker Fitness in 2011 during a stressful period caring for my elderly and ill mom. It was my "me time." Since then I've become part of a little community of friends. We share our lives during workouts, many of us are Facebook friends, and we sometimes see each other outside of the gym. I wonder how many calories I've burned over the last 7 years...and how much heavier I'd be had I not prioritized the time for regular exercise.

And Jared…

I started eating healthier and consuming less calories per day, while still getting the nutrition I needed. I started doing a little bit more cardio and working out my larger muscle groups more often to burn off more calories/fat. And, of course, cut back on the beer consumption!
City of Walker Annual Easter Egg Hunt
Thank you to everyone who came out to this year’s Easter Egg Hunt on March 24! Check out more pictures on our facebook page. We love our Walker Community!!

We are still accepting donations for the Hand to Hand organization who provide lunches for area children in need on the weekends. Drop off box is in the lobby!
Learn to Skate / Learn to Play Session
The next Learn to Skate/Learn to Play Session 5 takes place May 30 to July 18, Wednesdays at 6pm. Please go to www.walkericeandfitness.com for the brochure and more information about our skating programs.
Hawk Hockey Fall Try-outs
HAWK Hockey Fall Tryouts begins the week of May 7. Please register and check out the times at www.hawkhockey.net or contact Hockey Director Mike Fountain at 616-735-6286.
Walker Parks and Recreation: Adult Softball
Adult Coed, Men’s and Women’s Softball registrations ended April 7 so if you didn’t register your team, contact the Recreation Department at 616.735.6286 to see if there is spots available! Everyone always has a great time!!!
Updating Existing Playground: Please Excuse our Mess
We are very excited that construction of the playground at Community Park started April 8. It is scheduled to be completed by the beginning of June (weather permitting). We can’t wait to see the end result- we know the community will enjoy the new equipment that will be added! In the meantime, please excuse our mess while we work hard to get this project completed.






Walker Chamber of Commerce Upcoming Events
Quarterly Meetings are held at:
Walker City Hall
4243 Remembrance Rd.
Walker, MI 49534
Held Quarterly the second Tuesday of the month

Tuesday, May 8, 2018
Noon ­- 1:30 p.m.
Protecting Your Business, with the Walker Police Dept
If your business would like to host an Walker After Work Event, please let us know!


Watch WalkerChamber.Eventbrite.com
for updates.