"Spotlight on Kentwood Michigan" header
April 2021 eNewsletter
Bunches of yellow flowers surrounded by greenery and mulch.
Welcome to the City of Kentwood's monthly eNewsletter. Stay up to date about community news, events and programs happening this month.
Mayor's Message
Mayor Kepley smiling headshot
With the arrival of spring, a season of growth and renewal, take a moment and witness nature’s beautiful ability to rejuvenate and grow after being knocked down by the harshness of winter. Let the fresh start of a new and sunny season help keep us encouraged and lifted as we rise out of difficult times. 
 
Please join me in finding respite in Kentwood’s parks and trails this month. It’s amazing what nature and fresh air can do for one’s mental and physical well-being. If you haven’t yet, I encourage you to visit Covenant Park, Kentwood’s newest and largest property with 109 acres of land.
 
There have been numerous wonderful ideas shared for the future of Covenant Park. To help guide the property’s development and incorporation into the current parks system, two advisory committees will assist the City to create a long-term plan. We look forward to their recommendations to best use the space as a valued recreational destination in our community for generations to come.
 
Mayor Kepley
Spring Leaf and Brush Drop-Off Programs Are Back Through May 29
Road closure barricade used to display arrow traffic-style signs that say "brush" pointing to the right and "Kentwood leaf site" pointing to the left.
Our brush drop-off and leaf drop-off sites reopened Saturday, April 3 at the Kentwood Department of Public Works, 5068 Breton Ave. SE. Hours of operation are noon-8 p.m. Monday through Saturday and noon-6 p.m. Sunday.
 
The services are available to Kentwood residents only now through Saturday, May 29. Proof of residency is required for anyone wishing to drop off items. No contractors are allowed. For questions, visit kentwood.us/BrushLeafDropOff or call the Department of Public Works at 616.554.0817.
Sign up for the Limb Loss Awareness 5K - April 24
Limb Loss Awareness 5K t-shirts folded and in a pile on a table at the 2019 event.
In recognition of Limb Loss and Limb Difference Awareness Month, the City of Kentwood is partnering with Hanger Clinic, a local prosthetic and orthotic patient care provider, to host the third annual Limb Loss Awareness 5K on Saturday, April 24.
 
The all-ages and all-abilities event will take place at Bowen Station Park, 4499 Bowen Blvd. SE. It will continue to raise funds for Kentwood’s adaptive recreation programs, which provide empowering opportunities for people with various disabilities to take part in athletic activities in an adapted way to allow for a safe and fun experience.
 
The route for the clock-timed race will include sections of the East-West and Paul Henry-Thornapple trails and a boardwalk. Participants will see woodlands and wetlands along the route that feature wildlife and budding trees. COVID-19 precautionary measures will be in place, including staggered start times beginning at 10 a.m., required face coverings at packet pickup and physical distancing. Packet pickup and start times will be shared with registrants closer to the event date.
 
Online registration is available at runsignup.com. Registration is $35 through April 23. Race day registration is $40. Participants will receive a T-shirt and goodie bag. For more information, visit kentwood.us/LimbLoss5K.
Division United Virtual Town Hall Meetings - April 22
Click the above image to open a PDF of the flyer.
Join representatives from The Rapid, and the cities of Grand Rapids, Kentwood and Wyoming for an update on the Division United project.

We will be broadcasting on Zoom and The Rapid’s Facebook page to discuss plans for exciting improvements along the Division Avenue corridor.

Two sessions will be offered on Thursday, April 22. The first session will run 11 a.m.-1 p.m. and the second will be from 6-8 p.m. Spanish and Vietnamese translation will be available.

Visit divisonunited.org for all the event details and to learn more about Division United.
Arbor Day Celebration and Tree Seedling Giveaway
Kentwood Arbor Day Celebration graphic featuring an illustration of a tree, Advance Packaging logo, City of Kentwood Seal, and text that says, "April 30 at noon, Veterans Memorial Park"
The City of Kentwood will give away 300 tree seedlings to residents throughout the week leading up to its Arbor Day Celebration on Friday, April 30 that will include a tree planting.
 
Arbor Day is an annual day of observance typically held in the spring to celebrate trees and encourage tree planting. Residents are invited to join Kentwood’s Arbor Day Celebration at Veterans Memorial Park, 355 48th St SE. The event will kick off at noon with an Arbor Day proclamation, followed by a tree planting in the park. Free hot dogs and slushies will be available at the concession stand. Attendees will be reminded to wear face coverings except when eating or drinking and to follow physical distancing guidelines.
 
Leading up to the celebration, residents will have the opportunity to pick up free red maple and white pine tree seedlings at the Kentwood Activities Center, 355 48th St. SE, and at City Hall, 4900 Breton Ave. SE. The seedlings will be available during business hours Tuesday, April 27 through Friday, April 30 or until they are gone. Residents are invited to post a picture of their planted seedling on social media using the hashtag #GreeningKentwood. To learn more, please visit kentwood.us/ArborDay.
Easter Eggsploration - Find Golden Eggs Now Through April 11
Enjoy time outside searching for a dozen golden eggs hidden in East Paris Nature Park and Paris Park now through April 11.

As you find them, take a selfie with each golden egg and share it on social media with #KentwoodEasterEggsploration or email us at erecreation@kentwood.us. We’ll select four winners to receive a prize basket.
A golden egg ornament hanging from a tree branch with a label attached showing it is egg number 1 in the Kentwood Easter Eggsloration activity.
High School Students Invited to Apply for the Kentwood Police Youth Academy
An officer teaches Youth Police Academy participants about traffic stops next to a Kentwood police cruiser that is outside and has its trunk open.
The Kentwood Police Department is inviting high school students to apply for its youth academy, set to take place July 26-29. The free program will provide students with hands-on experience in police training and operations.
 
The academy is open to all graduating seniors and students who will be a sophomore, junior or senior in the 2021-22 school year. It is geared toward young people who are interested in a career in law enforcement and who want to experience what it’s like to be a police officer. Participants do not need to live or attend school in Kentwood.
 
To participate, students must contact Sgt. Tim Wierenga for an initial screening and application at wierengat@kentwood.us or 616.656.6561. Applications are due by May 14 in person at the Police Department or by mail to Sgt. Tim Wierenga at 4742 Walma Ave. SE, Kentwood, MI 49512.
Kentwood Drug Take Back – April 24
Kentwood Police patch featuring text that says, "Serving our community since 1968."
The Kentwood Police Department and the Drug Enforcement Administration are partnering to host another Drug Take-Back Day.

Residents are encouraged to drop off any unwanted or expired pills or patches at the Kentwood Police Department, 4742 Walma Ave. SE, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, April 24. Please note: Liquids, needles and sharp objects are not accepted.
Upcoming Election Reminders from the Clerk’s Office
Several "I voted" stickers spread out on a surface.
An election will be held Tuesday, May 4 for a Kelloggsville Public School District operating millage and a Kentwood Public School District bond proposal. The ballot will include the Kelloggsville millage question for precincts 1, 4 and 5 located at the Kentwood Activities Center, 455 48th St. SE. A Kentwood bond proposal will be on the ballot for precincts 2, 3, 7-15, 17 and 18. A precinct map and list of polling locations can be found at the bottom of our kentwood.us/elections webpage. To find a sample ballot, go to Michigan.gov/Vote.
 
If you’re interested in running for office, packets can be picked up at the City Clerk’s Office. Nominating petitions must be returned by 4 p.m. Tuesday, April 20.
 
Have a question about upcoming elections? The City Clerk’s Office has answers to common election questions here. You also can contact the Clerk’s Office at elections@kentwood.us or 616.698.9610.
Save the Date: Community Clean-Up Day Set For Saturday, May 1
United States and City of Kentwood flags on a flagpole and flying open in the wind.
This year’s annual Community Clean-Up Day is set for Saturday, May 1. Between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m., residents may bring yard waste, trash and general debris for disposal and electronics for recycling at the Kentwood Department of Public Works, 5068 Breton Ave. SE.

Anyone wishing to participate is asked to enter the drive off Breton Avenue, where staff will check for residency and direct traffic flow. For more information, please visit kentwood.us/CommunityCleanUp.
Community Resources Are Here to Help
Social media graphic encouraging people who need help to call 2-1-1 to be connected with resources.
Help is available to pay your rent and energy bills. If you didn’t qualify for assistance before, you may now. Please call 211, text your ZIP code to 898211* or search online to see if you’re eligible and to get connected with resources. Operators offer help in 180+ languages. To explore more resources, please visit kentwood.us/resources.
Expanded COVID-19 Vaccine Eligibility and How to Register
COVID-19 vaccination eligibility has been expanded all residents ages 16 and older. In order to get the vaccine, you must register. To be notified when you are eligible to make an appointment for the vaccine, click on one provider at VaccinateWestMi.com/Register and complete a COVID-19 vaccination registration. If you have already registered with a provider, you will be notified when the vaccine is available. Please do not register multiple times through multiple providers – this will cause duplications in the system and delays in scheduling.
 
To stay up to date on the latest news regarding the COVID-19 vaccine, visit VaccinateWestMI.com or Michigan.gov/COVIDVaccine.
Click the above video to learn how to register on VaccinateWestMI.com.
City of Kentwood Operations
Front entrance of Kentwood City Hall with greenery in the foreground.
City Hall remains open for essential in-person services. Visitors are required to wear a face covering and practice physical distancing. Residents are encouraged to continue to access City services online at kentwood.us or call or email City staff. City bill payments may be made through U.S. mail, electronically using ACH or the drop box or drive-up teller tube located outside City Hall.
 
Most of our public meetings continue to be conducted electronically via Zoom. For information regarding each week’s meetings, including links to meeting agendas, packets and Zoom instructions, visit kentwood.us/meetings.
 
For more information about our operational changes in response to COVID-19, visit kentwood.us/COVID.
Text that reads: "We're hiring!"
Are you interested in joining the City of Kentwood team? All current job listings are posted at kentwood.us/employment.
For more information, please visit our website: www.kentwood.us
4900 Breton Ave. SE Kentwood, MI 49508 | 616.698.9610 | Contact Us

City Hall opens weekdays at 7:30 a.m. and closes Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays at 4:30 p.m.; Tuesdays at 6 p.m.; and Fridays at noon.
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