Fallasburg, MI – It was a night to remember. After much anticipation and preparation, the “Christmas in Fallasburg” party rolled in with fanfare last Saturday on Dec. 9. Snow was on the ground and we didn’t get the promised arctic blast by the local weatherman.
The Covered Bridge was all lit up and created a great photo opportunity at night. Just driving across the bridge in the silence of the night was an experience in itself. Of course the bridge allows only One-Way traffic at the speed of walking under the fine of $5.
I always feel nervous before each event, including my own, after all the marketing and promotions. The Christmas party is a premier event for the Fallasburg Historical Society (FHS).
“We never know how many people will come out,” said FHS president Ken Tamke.
However, the party turned out to be the most successful party ever with 75 people in attendance.
“The fire was magnificent,” said Tamke. “Villager Craig Wood spent the whole year building it.”
The party started in 2006 and it is Tamke’s brainchild. Previously the FHS hosted a “wild game” dinner at the Fallas House. The Fallas House is small and not too many people could attend.
“We never made any money on it,” Tamke said. “The caterer did.”
Tamke lobbied to use the one-room schoolhouse instead, get a band, serve beer and wine, and to have a potluck.
“There was a brush pile in the field that first year, so we lit it,” Tamke said. “Craig Wood took over the fire. We’ve been going with the same formula ever since.”
The FHS volunteers put a lot of work into getting the old one-room schoolhouse ready for the annual event. This includes decorations, large round tables and a buffet style dinner, while making sure everything works including the heater and electricity.
In other words, it was a true old-fashioned Christmas.
It is also the favorite FHS event considering the atmosphere in the historic pioneer village of Fallasburg all decorated for Christmas.
People packed out the schoolhouse like never before. There was standing room only between 6:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. This year, we enjoyed newcomers and a younger crowd as well. There were families with children.
It was heartwarming to see the oldest member of the FHS Edwin Roth, 97, come in with his daughter Jeanne Roth Vandersloot. Roth never misses out on an FHS event.
Everybody enjoyed the music by live band Hawks & Owls. They played non-stop. The spirit of the night was in meeting new people as well as enjoying old friends. Even some people on snowmobiles stopped by. With new people involved also appeared new dishes like the delicious French green bean casserole, as well as the mainstay meatballs in two different versions, turkey and stuffing.
We headed out to the bonfire, that warmed up the night in a large radius around it. People gathered in a circle around the bonfire for great conversation and to enjoy the warmth of the fire.
As we came back, the bell rang in the belfry announcing the end of the festivities.
I feel honored to be a part of the FHS preservation efforts including the Christmas magic in Fallasburg.
Thank you for a great year. Looking forward to 2018. Happy holidays.
Copyright (c) 2017. Emma Blogs, LLC. All rights reserved.
Fallasburg, MI – The weather outside is frightful with an arctic invasion coming our way, but I am definitely looking forward to tomorrow’s Christmas party in Fallasburg.
It has become a tradition much like baking, shopping and writing Christmas cards. It’s like recapturing part of the past magic of Christmas that we all have experienced as kids.
It’s all the Christmases of the past coming together into one. We each have special memories of Christmas tied to our childhood past.
Every year we meet out there inside the old Fallasburg one-room schoolhouse to share camaraderie, to break bread and enjoy Christmas music.
First you have to cross the Covered Bridge at the speed of no more than a walk. And then you immerse yourself into the magic of the pioneer village.
I live three miles from the village, and I have discovered it early on after moving out into the northeast corner of Kent County. The village is located approximately three miles north of Lowell. It nestles on the banks of the Flat River.
The Patina of time has settled in on the historical buildings from the 1850s like the Tower Farm. It’s a bygone era of a simpler time in the village.
You can hear the horses and coaches cross the bridge. The party runs from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., and it is capped off with a bonfire.
The Fallasburg Historical Society (FHS) has been managing the village since 1965. As with any historical preservation, the challenges are many. They range from funding to labor for the upkeep on the buildings.
Without a dedicated team of volunteers, none of the events throughout the year would be possible.
March Expo in Lowell
Spring into the Past Museum tour
Fallasburg Covered Bridge Bike Tour
Fallasburg Village Bazaar
Christmas in Fallasburg
As we wish you a peaceful holiday, we hope that you can join us in our historic preservation efforts by volunteering time or a money donation.
Get ready for an action-packed fun-filled weekend in the pioneer village of Fallasburg on Sept. 16 & Sept. 17 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The third annual Fallasburg village bazaar is this weekend.
Attention vendors: the set-up starts today Friday, Sept.15 from noon to 8 pm.
If setting up tomorrow, you must be done by 10 am when the village bazaar officially opens.
Below is just a sampling of the treasures ahead of you.
We Anticipate good weather and fun treasure seekers.
The village will be decked out in its autumn glory. Come and experience history of the 1850s village founded by John Wesley Fallass.
Once you enter the Fallasburg Park on Fallasburg Road hang a second right at the Covered Bridge Road, and mainly cross the iconic Covered Bridge into the village that nestles on 42 acres on the banks of the Flat River.
The vendor booths will be located along the Covered Bridge Road between the historical buildings. That is on the lawn in front of the Tower Farm and by the Misner House with abundant parking.
Following is a list of vendors:
Nancy Price Stroosnyder of the Whites Bridge historical society at the first annual Fallasburg village bazaar.
Fallassburgh Flats vintage baseball team
Rock art by Doug & Marcia
Lowell, Crew, Whites Bridge Historical Society group and metal detecting outfit.
Rock Art, Sandy’s Fudge, Anna Maria with gnome and fairy houses, Shabby Chicnaniggans signs and furniture, soaps & sachets, greeting cards, Thunderstorm Metal Art, James $ Heather Babala, metal, stone and glass.
The new vendors include Susan Clarke with silk scarves dyed organically in leaves and berries, Larry Rowland with birdhouses, Bettany Tania with jewelry made from guitar strings and antique vintage tins.
You can still get a spot by contacting Michelle Emas at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 1-616-648-0048.
The 12 by 12 feet booths are $50, and 12 by 24 are $100 for both days.
The Fallasburg Historical Society (FHS) requests that you set up on Friday between noon and eight. Same day set up should be complete by 10 a.m. prior to the opening of the Fallasburg bazaar event.
“I hope that the weather cooperates,” liaison Michelle Emaus said. “Colbie will have her lemonade stand with pink, yellow and pomegranate lemonade.”
Emaus said the camaraderie among the vendors is fantastic.
“We hope to grow the event,” she said. “We want to encourage people to cross the Covered Bridge. It is growing with vendors and attendance.”
As with any event, Emaus said it’s the people who make is so great.
The vintage Fallasburg Flats baseball team will hold a tournament on Saturday from 10 a.m. at the Fallas Field across from the one-room schoolhouse.
“No fear.” They play baseball without gloves. Check them out.
Local author Emma Palova will have her book signing of Shifting Sands Short Stories inside the schoolhouse from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on both days. Come and chat with the author about the egotistical characters in the book like the perfect math professor Martin Duggan.
We will have refreshments.
Also the Fallasburg Historical Society will have an informational table at the shelter during the Fall Festival for the Arts. Stop by and say hi.
Local author book signing at the Fallasburg pioneer village during Fall Fest for the Arts and Fallasburg Village Bazaar
By Emma Palova
Lowell, MI -I find history being the biggest Partner
on my life’s journey. I have to think back to the Soviet invasion of former Czechoslovakia on August 21, 1968, which has formed my life and the career of a writer all the way to the present author.
If it wasn’t for the Soviet invasion, my father former professor Vaclav Konecny would not have defected the occupied country for the USA. He was one of thousands of expatriates who illegally left the country in protest of the suppression of the Prague Spring reformist movement led by Alexander Dubcek.
I write about this in the Greenwich Meridian where East meets West memoir about the Konecny family immigration saga spanning three generations.
My writing has been inspired by the leader of the 1989 Velvet Revolution, late president Vaclav Havel. I embarked on my professional writing career as a correspondent for Czechoslovak Newsweek, based in New York City.
History continues to inspire me, because I find in it similarities to today’s problems and solutions in the society.
“I have a lifelong passion for history & politics which in turn fuel my writing,” Emma Palova said in a recent interview for the Lowell Ledger.
Palova has been writing about the Fallasburg Historical Society (FHS) events since mid 2000s. In 2015, she designed the “The next 50 years of Fallasburg” campaign for the FHS.
FHS president Ken Tamke commented about the collaboration between the historical society and Emma Palova of Emma Blogs, LLC.
Murray Lake Elementary students at Fallasburg
FHS’ collaboration with Emma Palova was born out of necessity. Our website was old, outdated, and had too many people trying to fix it. Realizing the importance of a viable website integrated with social media, but also realizing that a re-design and launch of something new and fresh would take time and money, FHS sought to take an intermediate step so as not to lose our cyber presence completely. We were familiar with Ms. Palova’s writing as a reporter for the Lowell Ledger. A proposal was drafted. Ms. Palova was able to help publicize ongoing FHS events through social media sites and through a blog she created, “Fallasburg Today,” in this interim period. The same charming coverage present in her writings for the Ledger helped Fallasburg engage its followers and supporters by keeping them informed and up to date while undergoing our website remodel.
Now, three years later, with a sparkling new website, FHS found Ms. Palova’s work to be indispensable. Lacking familiarity and comfort with technology aside, Ms. Palova captures nicely the feeling of Fallasburg and its residents. Her coverage of events attracts people to become involved as volunteers, donors, and participants. Her knowledge of social media fills a gap that in today’s world, is integral in communicating our message. FHS could not be happier with Emma Palova and the contribution she makes to the Fallasburg Historical Society.
In the spirit of collaboration, FHS vice-president Tina Siciliano Cadwallader offered that Emma could use the Fallasburg one-room schoolhouse museum for her book-signing events.
A successful first book signing was held at the museum on July 16.
“I couldn’t be happier, so many of my fans from the newspaper years came to the event,” she said. “Moreover, my parents, whom I write about the Greenwich Meridian saga also attended.”
Emma Palova’s next book signing event of Shifting Sands Short Stories will be held during the Fallasburg Fall Festival for the Arts and the Fallasburg Village Bazaar on Sept. 16 & Sept. 17 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the one-room schoolhouse museum. Everyone is welcome.
Come and explore the ambiance of the 1850s Fallasburg pioneer village and chat with the local author and journalist, who has been covering area events for more than two decades.
The feature photo shows FHS volunteers Addie Abel (right) and Dotty Blain (left) doing what they do best. That is assisting at most of the events held at the Fallasburg one-room schoolhouse, including Emma’s book signing.
“I share the same passion for history with all the FHS volunteers,” Palova said.
Summer is almost here as spring winds down. It’s been a busy and productive time in the pioneer village for the Fallasburg Historical Society. (FHS) March and April showers have in fact brought May flowers, but the rains also delayed our much-needed roof replacement on the Fallas House.
Through the benevolence of the late Harold Englehardt of Lowell and his bequest, the Grand Rapids Community Foundation’s Lowell Area Community Fund, awarded monies to FHS to get the job done in what we hoped would be mid-March. Mother Nature strikes again, yet Villagers and volunteers came to the rescue. Craig Wood’s young crew scaled the slippery slope and patched new critter invasion routes which just seemed to appear as soon as we got the last ones secured. Not to worry. The weather did improve and Risner’s Roofing & Home Improvement of Lowell installed a beautiful new roof. Thank you, Grand Rapids Community Foundation, Lowell Area Community Fund, Risner’s, and timely help from Village volunteers. We couldn’t have done it without you!
Speaking of timely help, Fallasburg Historical Society’s Calvin College History Department Intern, Brianne Lynn, under the direction and mentorship of Lowell Area Historical Museum’s Executive Director, Lisa Plank, has completed her term assignment. Brianne has brought FHS ever closer to having all their accession pieces (the stuff that people donate, and the treasures we acquire) digitally cataloged in a wonderful software program and website developed by the Lowell Museum’s software guru, Jeff Ostrander. The site, “The Past Online,” allows anyone with a computer, tablet, or smart phone to access documents, pictures, and artifacts that comprise our collections, for research, or just out of historical curiosity. Have a look: www.thepastonline.org
And, while you’re surfing check out www.fallasburg.org Last December, FHS engaged Addorio Technologies, LLC, of Lowell, to redesign and launch a new website. The first steps were to create basic “Home” and “Contact” pages for the Society which went live in January. The subsequent work, the fun part, has been in development and has just gone up on our site. This work comes courtesy of the Lowell Cable Television Endowment Fund which awarded FHS a grant for the implementation of additional Internet pages. These pages will highlight and provide a means for registration and payment for “Events” like the upcoming 23RD Annual Covered Bridge Bike Tour on Sunday, July 9, and the Fallasburg Farmhouse Soiree on Saturday, August 5.
On another Internet page, you’ll find links to other organizations like “The Past Online,” Lowell Area Historical Museum, and the Fallassburgh Flats, our Vintage Base Ball Team. Of course, there’ll be a “Photo Gallery” page with four seasons of village pictures and historical tidbits. But, the page I’m most excited about is “History’s Mysteries.” Every museum has them, pictures you can’t identify of people and places, artifacts that baffle-what is that? Well, Fallasburg has their share, and you’ll be able to play history detective. We’ll put them up on the site, and who knows what might happen. Thank you to Addorio, and the Lowell Cable Television Fund. Technology is daunting to us old-schoolers, but you’ve helped us broaden our horizons and share our resources as only technology can do!
Murray Lake Elementary students at Fallasburg
Murray Lake Elementary school students at Fallasburg
Lowell Community Expo at Lowell High School in late March brought together Fallasburg Historical Society legends Ed Roth, Dottie Blain, and Addie Tower Abel, along with current FHS Treasurer, Alan Rumbaugh, Board Members Melanie Brim and Tracy Worthington, all as goodwill ambassadors from the Village. The group was out to make new friends and so they did. A local Boy Scout, John Lothian, in pursuit of his Eagle Scout Badge wants to follow up on our new roof and paint the Fallas House for his community service project. Recently retired from Grand Valley State University, Communications Specialist, Mark Kuzee, stopped by. He has relocated to the Lowell Area with his wife Sue, has a penchant for woodworking, and finds exciting the challenges of maintaining historic properties just like our man of many hats, Alan Rumbaugh. We’ve already pressed Mark into service making custom siding patches for critter holes in the wildlife refuge we call Fallasburg Village.
Spring cleaning in Fallasburg was undertaken in several Saturday morning sessions. Tina Cadwallader polished up the Schoolhouse and got it ready for Murray Lake Elementary School’s 1ST Grade Class visit. Alan Rumbaugh, Lisa Sostecke, Mark Kuzee, Frank and Patty Brechbiel and even Fallasburg Intern, Brianne Lynn spiffed up the Misner House filling a dumpster. And, yours truly recycled what amounted to the evolution of the personal computer: old monitors, keyboards, CPU’s, printers, and yes, mice, too.
“Spring into the Past,” a creation of the Tri-Rivers Museum Network on the first weekend in May is a collaboration of what has grown to 41 local museums that share the geography of three rivers. The Flat, the Thornapple, and the Grand Rivers roughly define a boundary. All FHS museums were open for the weekend as were other network museums, free of charge, with regional tours encouraged. Fine weather and sunshine insured a steady stream of visitors and the Fallassburgh Flats, FHS’s Vintage Base Ball Team initiated their 2017 season with an intra-squad scrimmage on Fallas Field. For more information on the Flats and their season schedule: www.fallassburghflats.com
On Monday, June 19, 2017 at the Lowell Chamber of Commerce, 7:00 p.m., FHS will hold our Annual General Meeting. This is an opportunity for our members to have a voice and our friends to offer an opinion. Most importantly, it’s a chance to get for all of you to get involved! We can’t do it without you! We hope you’ll come out and join us!
Honor a veteran on this Veteran’s Day 2017
Fallasburg veterans biographies
Fallasburg, MI -The following information is from Faded Footsteps website by Alan Teelander of Lowell. Teelander is dedicated to compiling military information on veterans from all over the USA.
World War II
Conrad Allan Bradshaw, US Navy, World War 2, Lowell, MI 49331 N42°59.034, W085°19.109
Conrad Allan Bradshaw in the U.S., Naval Intelligence Personnel Duty Locations and China Muster Rolls, 1942-1945 Record Image Index-only record Add alternate information Report issue Name: C A Bradshaw Rank or Rate: Ensign Branch of Service: United States Navy Arrival Date: 1 Apr 1944 Muster Roll Date: 30 Apr 1944 Duty Unit or Comments: Personnel In India Duty Location: Calcutta, India
C A Bradshaw in the U.S., Naval Intelligence Personnel Duty Locations and China Muster Rolls, 1942-1945 Record Image Index-only record Add alternate information Report issue Name: C A Bradshaw Rank or Rate: Ensign Branch of Service: United States Navy Muster Roll Date: 17 Oct 1944 Duty Unit or Comments: Change Rank To Lieutenant Jr. Grade
C A Bradshaw in the U.S., Naval Intelligence Personnel Duty Locations and China Muster Rolls, 1942-1945 Record Image Index-only record Add alternate information Report issue Name: C A Bradshaw Rank or Rate: Lieutenant Jr. Grade Branch of Service: United States Navy Muster Roll Date: 30 Nov 1944 Duty Location: Calcutta, India
C A Bradshaw in the U.S., Naval Intelligence Personnel Duty Locations and China Muster Rolls, 1942-1945 Record Image Index-only record Add alternate information Report issue Name: C A Bradshaw Rank or Rate: Lieutenant Jr. Grade Branch of Service: United States Navy Arrival Date: 1 Apr 1944 Muster Roll Date: 31 Dec 1944 Duty Location: Jorh, India
C A Bradshaw in the U.S., Naval Intelligence Personnel Duty Locations and China Muster Rolls, 1942-1945 Record Image Index-only record Add alternate information Report issue Name: C A Bradshaw Rank or Rate: Lieutenant Jr. Grade Branch of Service: United States Navy Muster Roll Date: 31 Aug 1945 Duty Location: Jorh, India
Civil War veteran
George Rummel (Rommel), Company K, 16th Michigan Infantry, Fallasburg, Michigan 49331
George was born in Germany as was his wife Anna Spencer as evidenced by son George Rummel Jr’s death certificate (in the gallery).
U.S. Civil War Soldiers, 1861-1865 about George Rummel Name: George Rummel Side: Union Regiment State/Origin: Michigan Regiment Name: 16 Michigan Infantry Regiment Name Expanded: 16th Regiment, Michigan Infantry Company: K Rank In: Private Rank In Expanded: Private Rank Out: Private Rank Out Expanded: Private Alternate Name: George/Rommel Film Number: M545 roll 36
Fallasburg village & covered bridge intrigue Calvin College history intern
By Emma Palova
Fallasburg, MI- It was the famous Fallasburg Covered Bridge wooden span over the Flat River, that enticed former Calvin College student Katelyn Bosch to the Fallasburg historical village.
Bosch started the internship offered jointly by the Fallasburg Historical Society and the Lowell Area Historical Museum (LAHM) in February.
She got hands-on experience under the mentorship of LAHM director Lisa Plank and FHS president Ken Tamke.
“The FHS was looking to get their collections organized and preserved,” she said.
Bosch sorted through photos printed on tin photographs aka lithographs.
Bosch especially enjoyed pictures from the area Women’s Clubs, as well as poems from John W. Fallas.
“I helped with organizing of the artifacts so the historical society can effectively manage the collection,” she said.
Bosch mainly worked on artifacts from the Misner House, approximately 170 artifacts. However, there are three times as many left, according to Bosch.
The digitalized collection includes pictures of documents and people connected to the Misner House. An online project under the auspices of the LAHM will make the collections of the area historical museums accessible to the public at large in the near future.
“The goals of the internship were to begin the process of computerizing and organizing the Fallasburg collection while introducing Katelyn to museum collection management methods,” said Plank.
Bosch concentrated on two-dimensional artifacts including photographs, letter and documents.
“Katelyn’s work forms the foundation of the ongoing process of organizing the society’s collection,” Plank said. “In the future, it will be available to the public.”
Tamke said that the digital capturing and cataloguing of the FHS pictures, documents and artifacts is extremely important.
“It will give access, when “The Past Online” goes live, to scholars, history buffs, genealogists and schoolchildren alike,” said Tamke. “It may help us identify pictures without names and fill in some blanks of our history.”
The FHS is proud to be on the ground floor of “The Past Online” website which has been specifically developed for the Lowell museum by Jeff Ostrander.
“Our intern Katelyn Bosch from Calvin College has been wonderful to work with,” said Tamke. “She has helped me to understand and become proficient with the data entry tasks she has undertaken with our accession pieces.”
The FHS wishes Bosch the best in her post-graduate studies in University of West Virginia’s Public Administration program.
“It also cannot be understated, the importance of this collaboration with Lisa Plank and the Lowell Museum,” said Tamke. “Lisa has shared her knowledge with Katelyn Bosch, making her internship of great value in the world of small museum management.”
Mark your calendars for the 2nd annual Fallasburg Village Bazaar to be held on Sept. 17 & Sept.18 at the Fallasburg village.