Davison Community Fund grants discussed at Common Ground

DAVISON — The Davison Community Fund issued just under $8,100 in grants this spring, the money to be used for supporting park improvement, opportunities for youth and ensuring families meet basic needs.

Connie Hill with the Davison Community Fund told community representatives at the June 1 Common Ground meeting the grants that were made a few weeks ago and were made to help several causes across the Davison community.

She said the grants will go toward installing handrails on the trails at the Robert Williams Nature and Historical Learning Center, 10069 E Atherton Rd., in Davison Township.

Also, the money will go to add playground equipment for young kids at the Jack Abernathy Regional Park, specifically to the little park area by the baseball diamonds.

Hill said the DCF is also going to support the creation of an outdoor archery range for Davison Community Enrichment and Recreation for young children who participate in the program.

A grant was also provided for the general operation of Outreach East.

“Outreach, which like all charities, lost their opportunities for major fundraisers the last year and a half during COVID -19,” said Hill.

She said the DCF also assisted Family Promise, an organization that helps stabilize homeless families in Davison and across Genesee County.

Hill said the Davison Community Fund recently achieved the milestone of giving more than $50,000 in grants to support Davison community.

Grant application for next year will be announced sometime near the fall.

Todd Ferguson reported that the Davison Education Foundation recently awarded scholarships this year. The recipients were students who are going into nursing and they received a two-year (freshman and sophomore) scholarship for $5,000.

Ferguson said it’s been a difficult school year, and the Davison Education Foundation is going to be doing something special for all the Davison Community Schools staff in the coming weeks, but he couldn’t reveal the details just yet.

Davison City Manager Andrea Schroeder reported the Friday night car cruises have resumed and will happen weekly on Main Street in Davison from 6-8 p.m. She said volunteers are needed.

“Even one additional volunteer a week would help out,” she said.

LaDawn Hastings, director of the Davison Chamber of Commerce, said the Chamber turned 70 years old in May, but admitted COVID-19 restrictions made celebrating the occasion impossible.

“Being we were struck down with the COVID and all the restrictions, we weren’t able to do a good job, but we’d really like to,” said Hastings. “We’re going to celebrate at the festival Thursday (tonight, June 10) and encourage all the Chamber members and past people who served on the board, the presidents and the ambassadors to attend. It should be a very fun time.”

Davison Township Police Chief Rick Freeman announced the June 1 Common Ground meeting would be his last before his June 30 retirement. He announced that Ofc. Harold Payer is retiring same day.

Freeman said the department recently hired one new officer, Blayne Fortune, and was picking up another new hire with Ofc. Dexter Taylor, who was expected to start this week.

Davison School Superintendent Kevin Brown said the district’s new bus lot off Lapeer Road and Alger Drive is almost completed.

He also told the Common Ground members the district would be breaking ground on the new auditorium just prior to the June 14 school board meeting at 6:30 p.m.

Casey Reed, director of Parks and Recreation for Davison Township, said the opening weekend for Lake Callis went well, despite cooler weather.

She said the annual fishing derby held at the lake on opening day was well attended and the biggest fish pulled out of the lake that day was a 16-inch pike.

Connie Elkins, co-chair of Common Ground, said Outreach East is looking for another building, something with about 4,000 square feet.

“We would like to stay in the Davison community,” said Elkins. “The M-15 corridor is our target market.”

Elkins announced Meijer has agreed to do a double match June 19 to help support Outreach. Anyone shopping at Meijer that day should ask the store to match a $10 donation, which will provide $20 to Outreach East.