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  • Writer's pictureChristina Grosshans

SPY's Newsletter 7/6/2023

SPY’s Community Newsletter


Sunfield Farmers Picnic News

The members of the Sunfield Farmers Picnic Board started planning for the 2023 Picnic in March. The Picnic is scheduled for August 18, 19 and 20 in Sunfield, Michigan. The Board has room for volunteers and invites anyone who is interested in participating on the board to contact President Jeff Gibbs at 517-566-3355. One of the most important positions in need of filling is for an individual or a group to coordinate the Grand Parade scheduled for Saturday, August 19, 2023. This individual or group would coordinate the parade lineup near the old Sunfield Elementary School and field telephone calls and emails from interested participants in conjunction with DeAnna Clark, board secretary. Your help is so necessary and valued! Please send suggestions and/or questions to Mark your calendars for the Sunfield Farmers Picnic: Friday, August 18 through Sunday, August 20, 2023!

Craft Show For Missions

Adopt-A-Highway Is Coming Up

Our illustrious “Captain Highway” a.k.a. Derek Desgranges, fearless leader of the SPY’s Adopt-A-Highway project, wants to remind everyone about Saturday July 15th. will be the second highway trash pick-up of the season. The SPY's pick-up trash along M-43 from Round Lake Road on the west side of town to Shaytown Road on the east side of town, three times a year in conjunction with the Michigan Department of Transportation program.

Again, if for any reason you can’t make it for the July 16th. pick-up day, but would still like to help out by doing some picking up on a different day of that week, just give Derek a call at 269-838-7686 and get some bags and he will give you a small section to take care of.

What do you say, let’s have a great turnout and spiff up the roadsides leading into our community.

The BIG Car---Truck---Tractor---Bike Show

Is Coming!

Position Opening MAEAP Technician

The Eaton Conservation District (ECD) is seeking to hire a full-time (40 hours per week) Michigan Agricultural Environmental Assurance Program (MAEAP) Technician. This involves an innovative, proactive program that helps farms of all sizes and all commodities voluntarily prevent and minimize agriculture pollution risk. This position will administer MAEAP in Eaton and Ingham Counties and is responsible for delivering on-farm technical assistance including risk-assessments, coordination of local, state, and federal resources to help reduce environmental risks, and assist producers in making progress toward MAEAP verification.

Any questions pertaining to the position may be directed to Rachel Cuschieri-Murray by calling (517) 543-1512 ext. 5.

To see an application log on to

Applications accepted by 12:00 noon Friday, July 21st, 2023, or until filled.

Preferred start date is August 14, 2023.

Parting Comments

• Deep Thought of the Week: It is better to debate a question without settling it than to settle a question without debating it.

• Notable Quote: "The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government, lest it come to dominate our lives and interests."---Patrick Henry (1736-1799)

• That’s Puny Department: Always remember, adultery is a sin. You can’t have your Kate and Edith too.

• Did You Know Section: Mark Ford Motor Company sold more than one million Ford Model T's in 1919, and each of those Model T's used 100 board feet of wood for the parts such as frame, dashboard, steering wheels and wheels.

Because of the amount of wood that had to be used in the cars, Henry Ford decided he wanted to produce his own supply. He enlisted the help of Edward G. Kingsford, a real estate agent in Michigan, to find him a supply of wood. Coincidentally, Kingsford’s wife was a cousin of Ford – making the partnership a reality.

In the early 1920s, Ford acquired large timberland in Iron Mountain, Michigan, and built a sawmill and parts plant in a neighboring area (which became Kingsford, Michigan). The mill and plants produced sufficient parts for the car but generated waste such as stumps, branches and sawdust. Ford suggested that all wood scraps were to be processed into charcoal.

A University of Oregon chemist, Orin Stafford, had invented a method for making pillow-shaped lumps of fuel from sawdust and mill waste combined with tar and bound together with cornstarch. He called the lumps “charcoal briquettes.” Thomas Edison designed the briquette factory next to the sawmill, and Kingsford ran it. It was a model of efficiency, producing 610 lb. of briquettes for every ton of scrap wood. The product was sold only through Ford dealerships. Ford then named the new business Ford Charcoal and changed the name of the charcoal blocks to “briquettes”. At the beginning, the charcoal was sold to meat and fish smokehouses, but supply exceeded demand.

By the mid-1930s, Ford was marketing “Picnic Kits” containing charcoal and portable grills directly from Ford dealerships, capitalizing on the link between motoring and outdoor adventure that his own Vagabond travels popularized. “Enjoy a modern picnic,” the package suggested. “Sizzling broiled meats, steaming coffee, toasted sandwiches.” It wasn’t until after World War II that backyard barbecuing took off, thanks to suburban migration, the invention of the Weber grill and the marketing efforts. An investment group bought Ford Charcoal in 1951 and renamed it to Kingsford Charcoal in honor of Edward G. Kingsford (and the factory’s home-base name) and took over the operations. The plant was later acquired by Clorox in 1973.


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