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Community Foundation celebrates generosity

The Community Foundation of Oceana County has announced a successful giving season in Oceana County. “Every day in December felt like Christmas Day,” said Tammy Carey, Executive Director of the Community Foundation for Oceana County. Donations exceeded the goal of matching the $25,000 challenge grant to Oceana CAN! that was pledged by Kresge Foundation. The goal of Oceana CAN! is to prepare all students to be college and career ready – to have the mindset and resources to pursue and complete further education after high school. There was also an anonymous donor’s promise to match contributions to the Foundation’s Community Investment Fund up to $25,000 was also exceeded. Finally, 16 of the 19 Oceana nonprofits in 2016 who applied for the community wishlist were fulfilled by individuals and organizations this year. “This is more than triple the number of wishes that were met in 2015,” said Carey.  

Girl located with Father, accessory still at large

 

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Last night, Hailey Hunter- Rose Fargo was not returned to her foster parents after an unsupervised visit with her biological father.  At 10:45 this morning, A Hilsdale Trooper and Deputy responded to a lead on missing Hailey.  She was located with her father, Mark Alan Saporita-Fargo in Hillsdale County. Hailey is currently on her way to the hospital for a standard check up.  Mark Alan Saporita was scheduled for a jury trial today regarding an unrelated criminal sexual conduct charge from an incident in 2014. Jeffrey Alan Miller is believed to have consipred with Saporita-Fargo in his daughter's abduction, by allowing Saporita-Fargo to use Miller's Black Ford Taurus.

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Jeffrey Alan Miller

Mark Alan Saporita- Fargo is currently in custody on charges of Conspiracy to commit Unlawful Imprisonment, a felony will a maximum sentence of 15 years. Jeffrey Alan Miller is still outstanding. The Mason County Sheriff has a warrant for his arrest. Anyone with information is asked to call the Mason/Oceana County Dispatch at (231)869-5858.

Girl abducted by father

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Hailey Hunter Rose Fargo was not returned to her foster parents last night after visitation with her biological father, Mark Alan Saporita. Hailey is ‘37 inches tall and 32lbs and was last seen wearing White, red and silver bow on the side of her head, Minnie Mouse shirt with black ruffles on the bottom, black pants and Elsa Frozen shoes. Saporita-Fargo is currently out on bond for a CSC charge and is scheduled for a jury trial today. Saporita-Fargo is a white male, 6’01”, weighs 200 pounds. Anyone with information is asked to call 911 or the Mason/Oceana County Dispatch at (231)869-5858.

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Council discusses removing James Street section from City Street System

The Ludington City Council will be meeting tonight. Items on the agenda include a review of a portion of James Street between Ludington Avenue and Court Street. This portion of James is no longer accessible to vehicular traffic. The city council will discuss decertifying and declassifying this portion of James from the City of Ludington Local Street System. The meeting will conclude with a resignation and appointment to the board of review.

Local historian presents community connection to drinks

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“I will not allow a liquor saloon to live in the village that bears my name.” declared James Ludington in his original plan.  Last night, local historian James Jensen presented “The History of Ludington and Mason County in 6 Glasses” entertaining the audience by connecting our local community to the various drinks and the impacts thereof. Attendees were provided history of stimulants, including coffee, tea and soda and intoxicants, which included beer, wine and liquor. Although James Ludington did not intend to have alcohol in his village, saloons were common, and Mr. Jensen guided the audience on a visual pub crawl from the 1890’s, with some locations still serving as bars today. Mr. Jensen said,“The hardest thing to research is the saloons, because they didn’t advertise, there was no records kept of where they were. A lot people didn’t even want talk about saloons, so finding the locations and when they were in existence was one of the more challenging things that I did.”

 

The impact of the temperance movement was felt in Mason county, as Mr. Jensen described the various ways the community responded, including becoming a dry county and throwing a “Ludington Whiskey Party” by throwing unwanted whiskey in the lake.

During the presentation, Mr Jensen encouraged questions and comments from the audience, citing their participation as “A way for him to learn,” MOM News asked him what he meant by that, “I love history. My family goes back to 1850 in this community and every time I give one of these presentations, someone says something that adds to my knowledge and I use it in my presentation.”

 

There will be two more speakers in this series provided by The Sable Point Lighthouse Keepers Association and Mason County Historical Society. Todd Reed will provide a Multimedia presentation on Lighthouses of the Great Lakes on February 16th. The series will conclude on March 16th with Steve and Grace Truman, authors of Sands and Storms, presenting on local shipwrecks and the Coast Guard Station.

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