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City working to save Grand Haven pier's catwalk, lighthouses

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (AP) -- Local officials are working to preserve historic structures along Lake Michigan amid a $2.1 million repair job on the Grand Haven South Pier.

This fall, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will resurface and raise portions of the pier. The project would require the city to either lift and support the catwalk, a metal structure on the pier that extends to and from the lighthouse, or scrap it entirely.

City officials have agreed unanimously to save the catwalk, but they have to figure out how to pay for the estimated $100,000 cost to lift the structure.

Girl blames herself for pit bull bite

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (WZZM) -- Grand Haven teenager Brittania Bird has wounds on her lips, cuts on her nose and a torn eye lid after a pit bull she was petting lunged and nipped her in the face.

My eye was my biggest concern,
she recalls.
Everything started going grey and blurry. I don
t want to go blind.

But Brittania, 14, and her father say they aren
t blaming the dog.

Holland Secretary of State Office Closed for 1 Day, July 14th

Holland Secretary of State Office Closed for 1 Day, July 14th

Minor remodeling at the Secretary of State Office in Holland, MI means the office will be closed for one day, Tuesday, July 14, 2015. The office, located at 587 E. Eighth St. in Holland, will resume normal hours at 9:00am on Wednesday, July 15th.

The project involves moving the Self-Service Station and changing counters to improve the flow of customers. Ruth Johnson, Secretary of State, says, “This is part of our commitment to continuously improve our service and the experience of customers who visit an office.” “Area residents can do many transactions on line also at ExpressSOS.com, but when they do visit our place of business, we want them to have the best experience possible.”

The closest Secretary of States Offices to Holland are Grand Haven, Hudsonville and Allegan.

To find additional information on offices, please go to www.michigan.gov/sos. You can also call 1-888-767-6424.

Four escape serious injury in Grand River boat fire

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (WZZM) -- Four people jumped ship when a 20-foot, 1988 Crestliner Nordic boat caught on fire late Sunday afternoon in the Grand River near the Harbor Island boat launch.

Police reported that one person suffered minor injuries in the incident.

All of the boaters were rescued from the water and transported by Sheriff's Department Marine Patrol and U.S. Coast Guard to Coast Guard Station Grand Haven following the 3:45 p.m. incident.

Boat catches fire on Grand River in Robinson Twp.

ROBINSON TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WZZM) -- An 18 foot Century boat caught fire late Saturday morning on the Grand River.

Ottawa County Sheriff's Office Marine Patrol received the call at 11:38 a.m. They worked together with the Robinson Township Fire Department on the scene.

The sheriff's office says the operator had recently bought the boat. He launched at Conestoga Camp Ground in Coopersville.

After launching, the operator went out to the middle of the river to warm up the boat while waiting for other people to come aboard from the same dock.

While waiting, he heard a "pop" sound come from the engine area. When he lifted the engine cover, flames emerged. There was an extinguisher on the boat, but the man was unable to put out the fire. After using up the extinguisher, he jumped off and was picked up by a passing boater.

Free soccer camp memorializes two lost teens

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (WZZM) -- Next week, hundreds of kids will take part in the largest known free soccer camp in the country. It was started by a guy in Grand Haven looking to take away the barriers that could keep a kid from learning the sport.

"I basically just made a statement I was going to help these kids out, and it just spiraled into a beautiful thing," Jon Dault said. Dault started his free soccer camp with the idea to give five to 10 kids a free soccer experience. He even planned to have it in his backyard. The first year blew up to 250 kids, though, and he knew he had something good, something the Grand Haven community needed.

"The camp was started for kids that wanted to go to camp, but there were hindrances of one sort of another, financially, that kept them from going. So, how do we have a camp where kids can come and get what other kids can get?" asked Dault.

Repairs for fire-damaged Chinook Pier bathrooms hit snag

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (WZZM) -- There's yet another delay in re-opening the public restrooms at Grand Haven's Chinook Pier.

The building was damaged by fire in April, and the city was recently given approval by the insurance company to remove the damage and renovate.

However, the bathrooms were built before the Americans with Disabilities Act and are not barrier free, so now the city is waiting again to find out what to do next, said city manager Pat McGinnis

"When they learned they'd have to tear up all the plumbing and redo the floor, the insurance company had second thoughts about the renovation approach and so, now we're back in limbo," McGinnis said. "We don't know if we're going to renovate or rebuild; we're waiting for a determination from the insurance. It's been another several weeks and we're waiting to find out which plan we'll be pursuing."