Issue 2


Issue 2 | 10.25.2018 | Holland, MI

Pumpkin art and photo by Michael Tuccini.

Top 5 Things To Do This Week

by Reka Jellema
Oct. 25-Nov. 1, 2018

Trick or Treating
But it’s not Halloween yet, you say. True, but Holland’s downtown puts on a pretty great trick or treating event on Saturday, October 27, even if it is held in the morning! From 10 a.m. to noon, participating retailers host kids in costumes and give out candy — if you say those magic three words. Any child can join in the fun. Scary? Maybe not. But There Will Be Candy!

Halloween at Van Raalte Farm
Looking for an evening out-of-doors to conjure up the spirit of Halloween? We’ve got you covered. On Friday, October 26 from 5-7:30 p.m., celebrate the holiday at Van Raalte Farm, 1076 E. 16th St. where there will be fun activities, treats, and “wild creatures” to be discovered along the wooded trails. Volunteers and staff from DeGraaf Nature Center will be on hand to guide you (but maybe bring a flashlight along with your $2 admission fee) and at the end of the excursion you can sip hot cider, munch on a cookie and get cozy around a crackling bonfire. Park in the 16th Street parking lot and walk up to the check-in station and barns.

Pumpkin Carving
If you can’t find a pumpkin patch to pick out your Great Pumpkin for Halloween, stop by the Holland Farmers Market on Wednesday or Saturday, October 24 or 27, and ponder the pumpkin potential. Pumpkin carving is a fun activity for all ages, and it costs nearly nothing to participate. Don’t forget to pick up votive candles (cheap at the Dollar stores in town) to stick inside your scary masterpiece for ambiance.

Rocky Horror Picture Show
If you need some grown up, campy fun, consider dressing up as your favorite character from “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” playing Friday, October 26 at the Park Theatre, 248 S. River Avenue. “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” is a cult classic movie from 1975 starring Susan Sarandon, Tim Curry, and Meatloaf. Yes, there’s rock and roll music and dancing. Whether it’s your very first time seeing this flick or your 100th, turn off those “Law & Order” reruns and hit the Park. Tickets are $7 presale general admission through Eventbrite or $10 at the door. Doors open at 7:30 and showtime is at 8 p.m.

Halloween Parade for Adults
Holland still has a lot of growing up/catching up to do when it comes to Halloween, so our citizens will be forgiven if they spirit off to the village of Douglas on Saturday, October 27, to participate in or be a spectator at the annual adult Halloween parade. For the creative and competitive, there are costume contests. The Pumpkin King “rises from the ashes” at 10 p.m. to get the parade underway. For more information visit


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Red Cross volunteer Carol Rice on Carolina Beach. Photo by Louise.

Once A Nurse, Always A Nurse: Allegan County Retiree Joins Disaster Relief Efforts

By Kathleen Schenck
Oct. 25, 2018

After 34 years as an ER nurse, Allegan County resident Carol Rice doesn’t skip a beat when asked if she misses the action: “Absolutely.”

So when she retired last August, Rice found herself drawn to relief efforts with the California wildfires. For two weeks before Christmas 2017, Rice volunteered with the Red Cross by working in shelters in Ventura County and Santa Barbara. What struck her was the sheer devastation some people faced: “There are people who just have no means to go anywhere else, and the shelter is it till we can really figure out where they’re gonna be. So that’s sad. All these disasters people lose everything.”

Then came Hurricane Florence on September 14, 2018. Rice again felt the need to help and headed to Wilmington, North Carolina where she worked 12-hour shifts for seven days straight, took a day off, then worked 12-hour shifts for another six days. The extent of the flooding from the storm was far beyond what people expected: “The rivers rose, and rose, and rose…and [a client in the shelter] said when it got to four feet a boat was coming down the street and said, ‘Get in.’ People were on top of their roofs, being rescued.”

As was her experience in California, Rice got to work with other volunteers post-disaster toward a common and worthy goal: “With the Red Cross it’s really rewarding. Because you know you can take skills you had in nursing, and all people, all nurses from all these different disciplines—it’s not just emergency nurses or critical care—and it’s a lot of retirees…working together as a team.” Rice commended the organization; whether it’s a high school gym, a college ice arena, or a Piggly Wiggly warehouse, the Red Cross is there and they’ve set up with the trucks and the cots and the hot coffee.

Rice began her career in 1980 as an EMT at Detroit Receiving. She says, “I like using my hands, I like thinking quickly, so emergency was a great place to land.” When asked where she got her desire to help, Rice responds, “Well, you know, my mom was a teacher, both my aunts were teachers, you know, a long line of helpers.” She earned a nursing degree in 1984 and started her vocation. Stopping seems to be the issue: “I still think that once you’re a nurse, you’re always a nurse.”

Rice spent the majority of her ER nursing career at two Level 1 Trauma Centers in the Detroit area—Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak and Detroit Receiving—before rounding out her career at Allegan General. She explains what she loved about her job: “There is nothing like having someone come in and just figure out quickly how to stabilize that person. It’s really challenging.” She continues, “Working as a team to really save people, save lives. It’s a great team effort.”

Like many Americans, Rice watches the news regularly. And though the news may say otherwise, that things aren’t going very well in our country, Rice tells a different story: “You can really see the goodness of people in these disasters.” Rice affirms, “I’m taken back to the fact that I truly believe that people really are very good and have good hearts and really want to help their brothers and sisters on this planet. I think you see the best in people come out in these disasters.” She continues, “And it’s the hardest time. All these people who’ve just lost absolutely everything.”

Closer to home, Rice has volunteered with organizations such as Meals on Wheels in South Haven and Habitat for Humanity in Holland. She humbly describes Meals on Wheels as “really hard work! Getting people their food while it’s hot. That’s hard work.”

After Florence, Rice admits, “It’s hard to leave working there. Because when you come back home, you feel like, oh my gosh, how lucky am I to come back to my home, my life, that things are normal and not completely devastated or lost by disaster. It certainly makes you realize how much we have. How lucky we are.”

How can people help after disasters? Give to the Red Cross, says Rice. “Send a little money their way. Because it really gets to the people who need it.” Donations can be made here:

*Full disclosure: Carol Rice is my cousin. But I’d think she were awesome even if she weren’t related to me.


Sledding hill at Van Raalte Farm Park. Photo by Kathleen Schenck.

Holland Weekly’s Park of the Week: Van Raalte Farm Park

By Kathleen Schenck
Oct. 25, 2018

Van Raalte Farm Park takes you back to the late 1800s with its farmhouse and two Civil War era barns. But the grounds are what keep me coming back: a beautiful valley cut by a branch of the Black River, miles of wooded paths lined with fern and aster and the smell of fallen apples, fermenting. Or open wetlands where deer dart across the trail only to be quickly camouflaged by tall prairie cordgrass. On a recent walk I spied an Eastern Bluebird, perched on a branch and chirping happily in the autumn sun.

The 160 acre park is designated as a Dog Friendly Park according to the City of Holland website: Strangely there is a No Dogs Allowed sign at the west end of the 24th St. parking lot. On the east end of the parking lot near the play structures,  another sign reminds dog owners to please pick up after dogs, and is accompanied by baggies. Holland Weekly votes Dog Friendly all the way.

Enjoy a walk, run, or peaceful rest on a bench—several benches are well-placed on trails for taking in views. The trees shout with color but the park is inexplicably quiet mid-day for being so close to town and so easy to reach. And so lovely. Admission and parking are free.

Van Raalte Farm Park
1076 E 16th St, Holland, MI 49423
or enter on 24th St. just west of Country Club Rd.

Van Raalte trail. Photo by KS.
Mowed trail at Van Raalte. Photo by KS.
Van Raalte trail. Photo by KS.


Homegrown dragon carrot. Photo by Michael Tuccini.

Dragon Carrot Cake

by Kathleen Schenck
Oct. 25, 2018

Behold, the mighty dragon carrot! Heirloom and exciting, this purple on the outside, orange and yellow on the inside, sweet but spicy carrot holds a special place in home gardens and home gardeners’ hearts. If you don’t grow your own, check Holland Farmers Market. By October, these carrots will be as sweet as can be. Regular carrots are just fine to use in this recipe as well. But behold, the mighty dragon carrot!

PREP: 25 mins.
BAKE: 35 mins. to 40 mins.
TOTAL: 1 and 1/2 hrs. (to include cooling time)
YIELD: 1 cake (with 2 thin layers), 8 servings. If you are making this cake for a larger crowd, simply double the recipe for both cake and frosting. We find the recipe shared here about perfect for a hungry couple who likes leftovers with their morning coffee and tea.

1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup applesauce
1/3 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
Pinch ground cloves
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1 and 1/2 cups finely grated carrots
(walnuts and golden raisins optional)

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
4 oz. or one half an 8-ounce package cream cheese, room temperature
Dash salt
1/2 (depending on taste) teaspoon zest of orange, tangerine, or clementine
1 cup confectioners’ (powdered) sugar
2 teaspoons milk or orange juice, optional, to thin frosting if needed

To make the CAKE: Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease two 9″ round layer or pie pans with butter.

Whisk together the oil, applesauce, sugar, salt, eggs, spices, and baking soda.

Add carrots. Stir a few times to combine.

Add the flour, stir just until blended.

Add the raisins and nuts, if using, and mix until just blended. Pour into the prepared pans.

Bake the cakes for 35 to 40 minutes, or until a clean and dry butter knife inserted into the center comes out clean, or with just a few crumbs clinging to it. Remove the cakes from the pans after about 15 minutes, and place them on a rack to cool. Allow the cakes to cool completely before frosting them.

To make the FROSTING: Beat the butter and cream cheese together until smooth. Add the salt and zest. Beat in the sugar. Add a teaspoon or more of milk or juice if the frosting is too stiff to spread; add additional sugar if it’s too thin.

I don’t really frost the cake, per se. I place one cake on a serving plate and dump half the frosting on top. I then place the 2nd cake on top like a sandwich and dollop the rest of the frosting on top of that. No one’s complaining.

Refrigerate any leftover cake.

Dragon carrot cake. Photo by KS.


Best Halloween flair in town: house at E. 27th St. and Columbia Ave. Photo by KS.

Holland Weekly’s Tip of the Week: MI-TIME LINE at Secretary of State

By Kathleen Schenck
Oct. 25, 2018

Don’t be tricked by long lines at the Secretary of State!

At some point in their lives, every Michigander gets to visit the Secretary of State. Like a bakery with no cake, you take a number and wait…and wait. But there’s a service designed to cut wait times—or eliminate them altogether.

Enter Holland Weekly’s Tip of the Week: MI-TIME Line ( This feature allows you to a) schedule an appointment at an SOS branch, b) reserve a spot in line before you arrive, or c) check-in with your cell phone number once you’ve arrived at the branch and wait your turn. For the final two options you will need a cell phone, since the last four digits of your cell phone number will serve as your ticket number. You will receive texts updating you on your wait time, with a final text telling you to proceed to the window.

On a recent Friday I gave the feature a try. Here’s how it works:

  1. Navigate to the MI-TIME Line web page on a phone, tablet or computer:
  2. Reserve a spot in line remotely by clicking on the blue bar with the words, “Get in Line NOW!”. After clicking on the blue bar, it will take you to a page that says you can either click on another link that will take you to a map of all offices that use the MI-TIME Line, or you can simply click on your county. All counties are listed in alphabetical order.
  3. Click on Ottawa County, and two offices will come up: Hudsonville and Ottawa County PLUS (Holland) on 8th St. Choose your preferred location and click “Get Started”.
  4. You will be taken to a page asking you to enter your cell phone number. Do so, then hit “Go” or “Next”, depending if you are on a phone or computer.
  5. You have now arrived at the page that asks you to “Please click or touch box to join:” and the box has the words “Join Line Now”. Click on it and you’re in business!

The next screen informs you that the last four digits of your cell phone number is your ticket number, and to proceed to Window 1 with your documents (e.g. title, registration, proof of insurance). It’s at this point users should also receive a text message. The texts I received were from the phone number 682-888-5877. In all caps the first text read as follows: YOU MUST BE INSIDE THE BRANCH BEFORE CLOSING TIME and then listed the hours of operation. At the end of the text it stated “Commands “S” status “L” Leave “H” Help”. I did not use any of these commands, but from what I could gather you could use “L” if you wanted to leave the line altogether…cancel your order, so to speak.

Another text arrived immediately after the first that informed me of my wait time (40 minutes). I continued to receive texts as the clock ticked down. Users can request more time by responding with the command “M”.

I received a final text informing me I had reached the front of the line (hooray!) and to proceed to Window 9. It also thanked me for waiting.

Holland Weekly’s Tip of the Week is to go ahead and try this service. Heck, you can go thrifting in the same shopping center as SOS on 8th St. while you wait. Just keep your phone on and check it for text updates.

Michael Doyle, Communications Representative with Michigan Department of State, emails to say more than 146,000 customers have used MI-TIME Line at the Ottawa PLUS Office in Holland alone since the service began on July 12, 2016. He explains that the pilot program was announced in Detroit at the North American International Auto Show in January of 2014. If like me you missed the show, I hope reading about MI-Time Line here ultimately makes your next visit to SOS a real treat.


Holland Weekly brings a new kind of journalism to Holland, Michigan. We are independently as well as locally owned and operated. HW welcomes news tips, queries, and submissions on all things Holland. Contact us at Thank you for visiting.



Photo by Michael Tuccini

Sylvia Reads The Stars

Oct. 25-Nov. 1, 2018

Scorpio Oct 23 – Nov 22

It’s go time, Scorpio. You are brighter than ever, as this is your season to shine like golden topaz earrings found on a 1940’s dance hall floor.

Sagittarius Nov 22 – Dec 23

Get outside your comfort zone this week, Sagittarius. If you can swing a trip out of town—better yet, out of the country—now’s the time.

Capricorn Dec 23 – Jan 20

You will meet someone who can further a cause you deeply believe in, Cap. Stay open.

Aquarius Jan 20 – Feb 18

Compromise is key, Aquarius, especially for you this coming week. Even if you don’t see the other person’s point of view, make a real effort to meet them halfway.

Pisces Feb 18 – Mar 20

Is there beauty in getting jumped in a hotel parking lot in suburban Nashville? Nope. But another’s definition of beauty simply won’t do for you this week. You’re on a mission to define it, and then embody it, for yourself.

Aries Mar 20 – Apr 20

Out with the old, in with the new, Aries. It’s not just about raking those leaves to make way for fresh greenery in the spring. What can you get rid of internally to make room for something a little brighter?

Taurus Apr 20 – May 21

Taurus, I hate to tell you, but your closely-held concepts of love and romance will fly out the door this week. What will take their place?

Gemini May 21 – Jun 21

Apparently you need to do some maintenance, Gem, and I don’t mean on your car…though that probably wouldn’t hurt. Look at a problem from a different angle and take a beat. Then roll up your proverbial sleeves and get to work.

Cancer Jun 21 – Jul 23

Don’t let your anxieties get the best of you, tiny crab. Take them for a walk, and then lose the rascals. Run!

Leo Jul 23 – Aug 23

Leo, embrace your inner homebody. Spruce up the joint. Don’t leave it for someone else because you may just find the activity meditative.

Virgo Aug 23 – Sep 23

You’re likely to find something someone has lost by looking where no one else thought to look. When they thank you, take it in. Then let them take you out for caramel apples.

Libra Sep 23 – Oct 23

Fall is your season to grow, Libra. Try a new greeting each time you see a friend. Keep it clean…

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