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Fire damages NW Grand Rapids home

GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) -- Firefighters say they're not sure what started a blaze that damaged a home on the city's northwest side.

It happened around 12:45 a.m. Tuesday at a home on the corner of Garfield Avenue and Crosby Street NW.

Women's Resource Center hosting Wine, Women & Chocolate

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WZZM) -- There's a delicious event coming up that will benefit the Women's Resource Center:

Wine, Women & Chocolate.

Women's Resource Center Executive Director Sharon Caldwell-Newton stopped by WZZM 13 News at 5 to share details.

Last year, WRC served over 900 women, most of whom are financially strapped and living near poverty. Because of this, WRC doesn't charge these women fees for its many career development services, but instead relies on support from the community to keep resources accessible to the women most in need.

Fundraiser for Crash’s Landing & Big Sid Sanctuary

Fundraiser for Crash’s Landing & Big Sid Sanctuary

Make a difference on Wednesday, October 22 for the precious cats of Crash's Landing by visiting one of 14 different Pizza Hut’s.

Print the flier from Crash Landing & Sid’s Sanctuary web site. Present the filier to one of 14 Pizza Hut locations from 11am – 11pm for Dine-in, Carry-out or Delivery to get 20% of your bill donated to Crash’s Landing and Sanctuary for their assistance with stray cats.

John Ball Zoo ready for 500,000th visitor

GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) - If you head to the John Ball Zoo this week, you could be the 500,000th visitor of 2014.

As of Monday afternoon, the zoo was at 494,000 guests for 2014. The previous record for attendance for a season was last year when almost 470,000 people visited the zoo. The zoo says they plan to hit the 500,000 visitor some time today before 11:30 a.m. The zoo started the countdown yesterday at 11:00 a.m.

Kevin O'Neill, the CEO of the zoo says that "There will be plenty of hoopla when that magical 500,000th visitor walks through the gates!"

The half-millionth guest will receive a family membership to the zoo and a zoo-themed prize package.

Fire at Spring Air Mattress in Grand Rapids

GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) -- Fire broke out Friday morning inside a mattress facility on the city's northwest side, near the border with Walker.

The flames started about 10:15 a.m. at the Spring Air building in the 600 block of Myrtle NW.

Workers at the facility, along with firefighters, were able to put the fire out before it spread to the building.

John Ball Zoo holds annual Zoo Goes Boo event to celebrate Halloween

GRAND RAPIDS (WZZM) - John Ball Zoo is helping West Michigan families get into the spirit of Halloween with its annual Zoo Goes Boo event.

Last year more than 14,000 people showed up during for six days of fun. Organizers have decorated a "Kooky not Spooky" trail where kids can trick-or-treat. Zookeeper, Kristi Koole says they will hand out more than 300,000 treats during the event.

"There are decorations covering the whole trail. We have inflatables. You can meet a live mermaid and take part in other entertainment and games,"' she said.

Boo at the Zoo runs the next two weekends, October 17th - 19th and 24th - 26th. The event runs each day from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Admission is $7. For more information on Boo at the Zoo go to theJohn Ball Zoo's website.

Opinion: This is the Way I see It-Government Cell Phones

Opinion: This is the Way I see It-Government Cell Phones

Free Cell Phones; what will the next giveaway be?

I, along with a lot of other people, often wonder why the government ever decided to give away free phones to people. I can’t even begin to imagine the cost that is shared by every working person in the United State of America.

I see people who are covered with tattoos, smoking cigarettes, buying beer & booze and have a nice vehicle with these phones and wonder, if they can afford all these things, why can’t they afford a phone? Don’t they have family members that can be of help to them? Family are supposed to help their own.

I grew up in a large family who took care of themselves. We didn’t have a phone in our home until it was almost time for me to graduate from high school but we all seemed to survive. If it was something really important, we had a neighbor who was gracious enough to let us use their phone but that was rare.