Tag Archives: repair

Sen. Pavlov and Rep. Lafontaine Paint with Blue Water Habitat

[This story is adapted from a Times Herald article by Crystal Garcia.  To view the original story, click here.]

Sen. Phil Pavlov, R-St. Clair Township, and Rep. Andrea LaFontaine, R-Richmond, teamed up with Blue Water Habitat for Humanity and the city of Port Huron Wednesday, August 3, to help two elderly and disabled homeowners paint their homes.

The efforts were part of a program called Brush with Kindness, which focuses on improving the exteriors of homes, said Eric Wood, an AmeriCorps member who serves as a volunteer coordinator with Habitat.

“It’s good not only to build houses for people, but also to improve the neighborhood as a whole,” Wood said.

Pavlov said the project not only is an improvement to the homes, but “an improvement to your local community.

“With the housing collapse, there is plenty of a supply of housing,” he said. “Now, we’re just fixing the ones that need a little extra attention.”

Pavlov has been involved in legislative volunteer projects like this before . This is Lafontaine’s first year.

“I like doing this stuff,” she said. “It’s a way to give back to the community, and it’s awesome when you can see a finished product and know it benefited someone.”

Carol Limberger, owner of the Wells Street home, said she couldn’t have had the work done without the volunteers. She has lived there for 42 years, she said.

“They’re great,” she said. “They’re doing a real good job. I really appreciate it.”

Rep. Genetski Helps Preserve Retired Chapel at Felt Estate

[Adapted from a Holland Sentinel article by Jim Hayden. Photos by Jim Hayden.]

On Monday, July 11, Rep. Bob Genetski (88-Saugatuck) donned shorts to give a 107-year-old church a new look. He and about a dozen other volunteers joined the Legislators Building Communities event, sponsored by the Felt Estate, at the Chapel in Shore Acres Park in Laketown Township. “I’m always happy to be in the district instead of Lansing,” he said.
As a former history minor, the lawmaker said he wanted to help the preservation project.

The former Gibson Christian Reformed Church was moved in April from its site at the corner of 65th Street and 140th Avenue to its new home across from the Felt Mansion.

The Gibson congregation built a new facility adjacent to the old church. In November 2009, the congregation offered the building to Laketown Township. The board accepted the donation earlier this year. Inspired by its architectural integrity and history, a handful of determined volunteers began the process of restoring the chapel to its original condition. The July 11th session topped off a weekend of work. The church’s bell was installed Saturday.

The church will be used for weddings to complement the reception business at the mansion. The church can hold 80 people. The Felt Mansion ballroom seats 100, so people could be married at the church and hold the reception at the mansion.

The daughter of Dorr Felt, builder of the mansion, was married in the church. Felt’s daughter had the church painted for the affair. Felt build the mansion in 1928.

From the website for The Felt Estate:

The Felt Estate is a preservation project located between Holland and Saugatuck, Michigan. Our mission is to preserve history through preservation of the Estate; protect the environment with responsible use of the natural and built environments; and educate through tours, classes, field trips, and seminars. The Felt Estate and Shore Acres will be an integral part of West Michigan Landscape – aesthetically and economically, by providing and educational and beautiful location for residents and visitors.

We believe strongly in making an economic, environmental, and social investment in our West Michigan Community by being responsible stewards of each other and the world we share.

Preservation is, in the end, not just about places. It is first and foremost about people. Life is like a restoration project.