St. Johns Mint Festival crowns 2022 Royalty

A new Mint Queen and Court have been crowned in advance of the 2022 St. Johns
Mint Festival. On Thursday, July 21 an outstanding group of 22 young women participated in the annual Mint Festival Pageant, which consisted of a personal interview with a panel of judges, an on-stage speaking portion, and modeling formal wear.

The 2022 Mint Queen is Andrea McPherson, a St. Johns High School graduate pursuing a degree in architectural technology at Ferris State University. Andrea is active in Clinton County 4-H and currently serves as president of her 4-H club and is a member of the Fair Board.

The first runner up to the Mint Queen is Sarah Bovee, a junior at Grand Ledge High School. Sarah is involved in musical theater, the Madrigals choir, and is president of the Grand Ledge Key Club. Sarah was also voted Miss Congeniality by her fellow pageant candidates.

The 2022 Junior Miss Mint is Anna Glew. Anna will be entering 7th grade at St. Johns Middle School, where she is involved in cross country, track, musical theater, and Clinton County 4-H. In addition to winning the crown, Anna was voted as Miss Enthusiastic by her fellow candidates.

Little Miss Mint for 2022 is Rylee White. Rylee is a fifth grader at Oakview South Elementary in St. Johns. She plays soccer, loves going fishing, and enjoys writing and creating art.

The new Mint Festival Royalty will make their official debut in the Grand Mint Parade on Saturday, August 13 in St. Johns. Following the Mint Festival, they will serve as ambassadors of the festival at community events and parades around Mid-Michigan over the course of their year-long reign.

To learn more about the Mint Festival Pageant and new royalty, visit www.mintfest.org/pageant.

See more photos


National Night Out is Tuesday, August 2

Don’t forget National Night Out on August 2, a fun evening of free family fun.

On the first Tuesday of August each year the police department hosts a Community Picnic. The Kiwanis Club grills hot dogs, Andy T’s serves sweet corn, and popcorn and popsicles are available.

The Rotary Club supervises activities for the children. The St. Johns Police provide bounce inflatables, Laser tag, face painting, and have a display of fire trucks, an ambulance and a police car to explore.

Several local service agencies are also on hand to give out educational materials.


Coming up in the Arts

Japanese Notan Class with Andrea Czarnik will be held on Wednesday, August 10 from 1-3 p.m. at the Art & Soul Gallery.

The Yin-Yang symbol is one of the most famous and simple examples of a Notan design. Discover how to create a balanced Notan design in monochromatic black and white. You can make a simple pattern or experiment with creating a more complicated piece. This is a great class for middle and high school students too!

All materials for this class will be provided.

Note:A special black ink will be provided by the instructor.

Contact the gallery at 989-224-2429 or ClintinCountyArts1@gmail.com to reserve a spot.

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Join them for a Hand Build Pottery Class

On Thursday August 18 and September 1 from 6-9 p.m. both days you will have the opportunity to make up to three projects. A tray, a pomegranate scented oil diffuser, and air plant holders. 2 – 3 hour sessions and a pickup for final fired and glazed pieces day are included.

In this class you will learn to hand build up to three different projects.

All tools and supplies included. Includes all the tools, 10lbs of clay, firings, glazes,etc.

No experience required. $130 per person.

Contact the Art and Soul Gallery at ClintinCountyArts1@gmail.com or 989-224-2429 to sign up. This class is limited to 8 people.


Local band performs good old country at the Performance Shell on August 3

The Louie Longoria Band will have their guitars tuned and their voices ready for a full performance on Wednesday evening, August 3 starting at 7:00 in the beautiful St. Johns City Park.

Formed in 1991, the band has been playing their enjoyable brand of country music at various casinos around the state for the past 5 years.

“Louie’s band has gained a lot of notoriety around the state in the past few years,” said Bill Tennant, concert series coordinator. “They were recently informed that they will be inducted into the Michigan Country Music Hall of Fame on August 20 in Charlotte – a real testament to the level of this outstanding group.” The band has opened up for many grand ole Opry stars and had a #1 hit on clear channel station over the internet with “I Walk the Line Revisited.”

Band members include Louie Longoria lead vocals, acoustic guitar, Pat Keneally lead guitar, Dan Gokee lead vocals, bass guitar, Bobby Bryan on drums, and Barry Gokee lead vocals and steel guitar. 

The concert is sponsored by the Clinton County Arts Council (CCAC) and the City of St. Johns. It is open to the public free of charge but donations are gratefully accepted.

All concerts are presented rain or shine. The Lion’s Club food trailer will be available this year. Social distancing and safety precautions are strongly encouraged. The CCAC receives funding from the Michigan Arts & Cultural Council and the National Endowment for the Arts.


More outdoor concerts coming up

Friday Brown Bag Concert series continues July 29

This week’s Brown Bag concert features the Clique. Dan Templin and Kelly Sandula-Gruner offer up Jazz Ballads, Pops and Contemporary Mix.

This series of 8 concerts is being presented by the St. Johns Area Community Fund with support from the Forrest and Doris Swatman Downtown Celebration Fund. The concerts are held in the Rotary Park Pavilion by the CIS Trail and Depot rain or shine. There are some picnic tables available, but it is advisable to bring your favorite lawn chair.

The Concert Series

Aug 5 – Sally Potter – Banjo-Playing Americana Singer
Aug 12 – Kate Hinote Trio – Alternative Folk From Detroit With Guitar and Violin
Aug 19 – Steve Berkemeier – Singer/Songwriter Covering Songs You’ll Love
Aug 26 – Siusan O’Rourke and Zig Zeitler – Irish. Celtic. Folk

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It’s a Thursday thing in Downtown St. Johns

On August 4 Michael Gorham will be on hand to entertain you on Clinton Avenue from 5-7 p.m.


Spoon Man Returns to the Briggs

On Tuesday, August 16 Spoon Man returns to Briggs from 6:39 – 7:30 p.m. for an evening of music, comedy and audience interaction.

All ages are welcome to this free family program. Advance registration is appreciated, and is now available.


Superhero 5K coming up September 17

The Voice for Clinton County’s Children invites you to the 9th Annual Superhero 5K Run, Walk, or Fly! on September 17.

All proceeds support Clinton County children and youth who have experienced abuse at no cost to families.

Registration is open and sponsorships are welcome. To ensure signage and t-shirts, commitments would be appreciated by midnight on Labor Day September 5.

All information is available on the website VoiceForClintonCountyChildren.org. September 17 will your cape be ready?!


WIC makes a difference

Each month, more than 200,000 moms, babies and children less than five years of age receive much needed assistance from the Michigan Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program.

This Federally funded program serves low and moderate income pregnant, breastfeeding, and postpartum women, infants, and children up to age five who are found to be at nutritional risk.

Participants receive an electronic benefits card (EBT) for purchasing nutritious foods, such as milk, cheese, eggs, fortified cereal, peanut butter, whole grain breads and tortillas, fruit and vegetable juices, fresh fruits and vegetables, and formula at approved retail grocery stores and pharmacies. Participants also receive breastfeeding support, nutrition education, healthcare referrals, health counseling and immunizations. WIC also provides coupons to purchase locally grown fresh fruits and vegetables at farmers’ markets through the Project Fresh program.

WIC has a proven track record of demonstrating a positive effect on pregnancy outcomes, and child growth and development. Research shows that the earlier a pregnant woman receives nutritional benefits from WIC, the more likely she is to seek prenatal care and deliver a normal weight infant. For every dollar spent by this program, more than three dollars in subsequent health care costs are saved.

Additional benefits of the program include:
– Higher immunization rates against childhood diseases.
– Lower rate of anemia among children between the ages of six months and five years old.
– Significant improvement in children’s dietary intake of vitamins and nutrients.
– Significant increase in the number of women receiving adequate prenatal care.
– Dramatic decrease in the infant mortality among Medicaid beneficiaries.
– Improvement in weight gain and dietary intake in pregnant and postpartum women.
– Decrease in low birth weight and pre-term births.

To find out if you qualify for WIC, visit www.mmdhd.org or call: Clinton County branch office: 989-224-2195. WIC is an equal opportunity provider.