Local News Archives for 2023-12

Downtown Hastings Ball Drop to bring in New Year for 14th time

The 14th annual Ball Drop in Hastings this New Year’s Eve has many features to enjoy.  Music, dancing, hot chocolate, fire pits, children's activities, a warming tent, and a spectacular light & sound show at midnight are all part of the evening.


DJ music by John Anderson and live musical entertainment by Zack Franklin will keep the mood swingin' until the ball drop at midnight, officially ending 2023 and welcoming in 2024 with the singing of Auld Lang Syne.


It all starts at 9 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 31 at the corner of State and Jefferson streets in downtown Hastings.

Hastings Leaf Pickup - DONE!

City of Hastings DPS have officially completed the fall Leaf pickup as of 2p.m. Thursday afternoon.  They completed a 2nd round of pickup as well.


Great job!

Student in trouble for bringing a gun to school

A student is in trouble when they tried to bring a gun to the Delton School Monday.

Thanks to quick thinking by students, the Delton staff were alerted and the firearm was spotted on one of the busses.

Both the elementary and high school went into a short lockdown as staff identified the student and took away an airsoft gun.

Students were then able to return to classes.

WBCH Stuff Our Station for Barry County Kids

Barry County United Way staff and volunteers  picked up toys collected from the WBCH 'Stuff Our Station for Barry County Kids' campaign. Lani Forbes said over 450 Children are signed up for the program to date  to receive gifts.   


Some of the construction crew from Katerberg VerHage Inc., working on the downtown Streetscape project,  chipped in to help load the gifts collected! 


WBCH would like to  Thank everyone who donated gifts and to our partners who collected gifts: McDonalds of Hastings, PFCU Branches in Caledonia & Lake Odessa and Southside Pediatrics!


Slow Down, Move Over Law Awareness

WBCH News Dave McIntyre spoke this morning with Matt Spencer about Michigan's Slow Down & Move Over Law. Matt's son Keagan, a third generation towing operator was killed November 4th while on the side of the M-6 Freeway. If you see an emergency response vehicle or roadside worker with flashing lights on the side of the road, drivers must slow down and move over...It's the LAW! Click on the link below to listen to Matt's story to help spread awareness. 


WBCH Stuff Our Station FINAL Update

This morning, Lani Forbes from Barry County United Way joined Chad Henry on the air and gave our listeners a FINAL update on Toys for Barry County Kids for WBCH Stuff our Station Campaign. Toys will be picked up this Friday Dec 15th and will be taken to Barry County United Way. Click on link below to listen.  You can drop off gifts at Hastings McDonalds, PFCU Branches Caledonia & Lake Odessa and Southside Pediatrics.


Hastings City Council - Dec. 11

The issue of waiving system improvement fees in the amount of $268,050 for Copper Rock Construction, the developer for the Hastings Riverwalk Lofts mixed-use housing project,  drew considerable discussion at Monday’s Hastings City Council meeting. 


Some council members felt it was not appropriate to reduce or waive the fees for developers when individual property owners are required to pay those fees for utility hookups, while others supported the idea of waiving the fees as incentive to help Copper Rock to continue moving forward with the project.


Copper Rock plans to construct over 130 market rate housing units at the site on Mill Street along the Thornapple River, working with the Barry Community Foundation which currently owns the former Royal Coach property.  Total development cost is expected to be around 32-million dollars.


In the end, the motion for the waiver request was approved by a 6 to 3 vote.


Also approved was a Workforce Housing PILOT ordinance  to encourage the development or rehabilitation of workforce housing for persons and families whose household income is not greater than 120% of area median income.


Approval was granted to a request from Carl Schoessel to hold the annual New Year’s Eve Ball Drop and community celebration in downtown Hastings, complete with music on the street, fireworks, and other festivities to ring in 2024.

The Grinch in Delton


The Grinch cut  down the Delton Home Town Christmas tree and hauled it to another road and left it there sometime during the night.

The tree all decorated  for the season was growing on the Delton School property near M-43.  When discovered it was destroyed, members of the community planted a new tree in its place and decorated it.


Fatal Crash

A 72 year old Dowling woman was killed in a two vehicle crash Friday morning on M-37/M-43 Highway (West State Street) near the Hastings city limits.


Police say the woman was turning left out of a driveway to head west on the highway when her car was struck by an eastbound vehicle driven by a 34 year old Hastings woman. The crash occurred in front of the Dollar Tree store.  


The Dowling woman was pronounced dead at the scene, while the other driver was taken to Corewell Health Pennock Hospital with minor injuries, according to Hastings Police Chief Dale Boulter.


The names of the drivers have not been released. The crash remains under investigation.


M-37/M-43 Highway was shut down for over three hours. Traffic was detoured on Cook Road and Green Streets until the accident scene was cleared.


Hastings City Police were assisted at the scene by Michigan State Police, the Barry County Sheriff’s Office, Barry Township Police, Hastings Fire Department, Thornapple Township Fire Department, Mercy Ambulance, Michigan Department of Transportation, Legacy Towing and off-duty responders.

Delton Kellogg Elementary School Ribbon Cutting

Delton Kellogg Elementary School at 327 N. Grove Street will celebrate the completion of the School's addition and renovation  Saturday, Dec. 9th at 7:00p.m. with a Ribbon Cutting followed by a tour of the School.

MSU Extension statewide public listening sessions, including Kalamazoo

Whether it’s supporting the dedicated professionals who drive the state’s agriculture economy or empowering children to develop leadership skills, helping others is central to the mission of Michigan State University Extension, the community outreach arm of the university.

The MSU Extension is holding a series of public listening sessions at various locations across the state as part of an ongoing strategic direction process. Through these sessions, the organization hopes to gather input from a diverse group of people to determine where MSU Extension is, what is working well and opportunities for improvement.

This information will be then used to help shape MSU Extension priorities and service for years to come.  Whether you’ve used MSU Extension services or not at all, everyone has a valuable perspective, and is encouraged to attend, youth, parents, all MSU Extension affiliated faculty and staff and curious community members.

The next Listening session is Dec. 18th in Kalamazoo from 4 to 6:30pm at Delta Hotels by Marriott, 2747 S. 11th Street, Kalamazoo, MI 49009

Register now at:

Pre-registration is highly encouraged. Walk-in registration may be limited due to facility capacity.

If you have questions contact Kathy Walicki at  or 231-873-2129 or Marie Garcia at   or 517-353-9464


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