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GH Waterfront Stadium project getting updated design

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (WZZM) -- Plans are changing for a multi-million-dollar project designed to improve the Grand Haven Waterfront Stadium. After a series of public meetings, city leaders backed off some ideas and added new ones.

On Monday night, the city council is discussing an updated design which could have similarities to Rosa Parks Circle in Grand Rapids.

Earlier Monday, the stadium was empty - typical during the winter months when they're no show. "Nobody wants to go down there and hang out," said Grand Haven City Manager Pat McGinnis."

However, just down the road inside City Hall there was much more activity, fueled by new ideas.

"We want to do it right," said McGinnis.

Grand Haven hosts first New Year's Eve ball drop

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (WZZM) -- The City of Grand Haven got more into the New Year spirit this year.

For the first time the city hosted a ball drop to ring in the new year. The official party was held at the intersection of Washington and First. Locals say it had a positive impact on the surrounding businesses as people gathered to watch the Michigan State game before midnight and the ball drop. The local feel of Grand Haven's celebration was a nice change for some, who didn't want to deal with the crowds in Grand Rapids.

Aaron Thomas, the head chef at the Brew House, a local restaurant says, "we just wanted to be promoting the town. Making it a fun night for everyone. It's always been a fun time in Grand Rapids with the ball drop and when they suggested coming here we thought that would be fun."

Trial delayed for sledding accident lawsuit

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (WZZM) -- Six years after a sledding accident killed a Nunica boy, a lawsuit filed by the boy's family is being postponed.

In 2009, 11-year-old Chance Nash died hours after hitting a stump or log while sledding at Duncan Memorial Park in Grand Haven. His family sued the park commission, claiming negligence in maintaining the park.

The trial was scheduled to start in February.

Our partner the Grand Haven Tribune reports a judge postponed the hearing 60 to 90 days after attorneys agreed they needed more time.

Woman in wheelchair hurt after being hit by SUV

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (WZZM) -- A woman is recovering from non-life-threatening injuries after a car hit her wheelchair Wednesday evening, according to our partner the Grand Haven Tribune.

Emergency crews responded to the intersection of Jackson and Beacon just before 7 o'clock on a report of an accident.

The woman had been crossing Jackson with her son when an SUV hit her. The driver said he didn't see the wheelchair until just before the crash and couldn't avoid hitting the woman, despite slamming the brakes and swerving. It was dark out and roads were wet at the time.

The woman and her son were not using a crosswalk.

An ambulance took the woman to Mercy Health Hackley Hospital in Muskegon.

Grand Haven eyes fundraising to fix pier catwalk

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (Grand Haven Tribune) -- The city continues to look at ways to fund restoration work on the trademark catwalk structure that sits atop Grand Haven's south pier.

The catwalk connects the entrance light and inner light to the shore along the south pier — a structure that's also set to be repaired at some point in the future by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. This will require the catwalk to be temporarily moved, or removed if the city does nothing.

"If the corps comes in and wants to do this, it's going to cost $200,000 to lift up the catwalk without making any repairs," City Councilman Mike Fritz said.

This has created some sense of urgency as an ad hoc fundraising committee meets periodically to drum up ways to fundraise for the catwalk.

Gun sales are up in the Tri-Cities after recent attacks

NUNICA & ROBINSON TWP., Mich. (Grand Haven Tribune) -- Renegade River owner Mike Hewitt said sales at his Nunica store are up a little higher than usual, probably due to the attacks and President Obama's comments on firearm regulation. November, December and January are the months with the highest sales of firearms anyway, but the recent incidents have probably had some impact, he said.

Hewitt believes sales are also up because of his recent move from the Village of Spring Lake to the strip mall adjacent to I-96 and the new M-231 highway.

Hazmat team called to Grand Haven plant

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (WZZM) -- A hazardous materials team was called Friday night after a reported explosion at a Grand Haven plant.

Our partner the Grand Haven Tribune reports firefighters were dispatched around 9 p.m. to Polyply Composites on Marion Avenue near Beechtree Street.

The hazmat team was called because of chemicals used at the factory, which produces fiberglass parts. According to the fire chief, there is no danger to people who live nearby. The fire was reported to be under control shortly before 10 p.m.