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City Blog

Jul 01

July 4 + Fireworks

Posted on July 1, 2021 at 8:30 AM by Jessica VanderKolk

Please check out our video about fireworks laws and tips in Battle Creek.

Before we continue, a note about our office and service closures this weekend - 
  • City offices are closed on Monday, July 5, in observance of the Independence Day holiday.
  • Battle Creek Transit services will not run Saturday, July 3 through Monday, July 5. Regular schedules resume on Tuesday, July 6.
  • Full Blast Recreation Center is closed on Sunday, July 4. Flash Flood Water Park will be open 12-4 p.m. that day (shortened hours, due to a lifeguard shortage). Recreation facilities are open regular hours on Monday, July 5.
  • Republic is closed on Monday, July 5 for the holiday, so everyone will have a one-day delay in your curbside waste pickup. 
Back to fireworks. Our local ordinance changed after the state law changed in 2018, and the information in the video above reflects that.

We know many of you will celebrate this weekend, and enjoy the Field of Flight our at the city's Battle Creek Executive Airport. Please enjoy safely, and check out the two fireworks shows scheduled at the airport.

If you choose to display consumer fireworks in your neighborhood, please be kind to your neighbors, their sleeping children, scared pets, and veterans. These are community members who can feel the negative impact of fireworks.

Follow the days and times allowed for home fireworks, and follow safety precautions - like keeping a water bucket or hose nearby, lighting fireworks away from yourself and others, and taking special care with children. Sparklers can be a lot of fun, but they burn hot.

We know police enforcement is a big issue here. Fireworks complaints are important. The truth is, there may be more urgent calls our officers must respond to, and if they are able to get to the fireworks scene, the show might be over. But, you can take photos or videos, and send them to police via the
 online reporting portal. Police can still pursue the matter after the fact, if you share the information.

Enjoy your celebrations this weekend! Celebrate America! Please do so safely, and let's all take care of our community.

Mar 26

Republic / Waste Management updates

Posted on March 26, 2021 at 3:05 PM by Jessica VanderKolk

Dear neighbors,

We have a huge transition coming next week – no fooling. On April 1 we switch to Republic Services for our curbside garbage, recycling, and yard waste service. We had a contract with Waste Management for many years. We know this is a big change for all of us!

We have some updates to share, based on questions you have asked. We appreciate those. We hope these answers help you.

Republic Services logo with blue background


  • Some of you have watched neighbors receive new recycling carts, or rental garbage/yard waste carts, and you did not. We found our recycling database was not complete. We missed getting 500 of you into that database. If you signed up before Feb. 26, you can expect your carts by the end of next week. Republic will deliver from 9 a.m.-3 p.m. this Sunday, too. We are sorry for this mistake.

  • If you signed up for Republic carts after Feb. 26, expect those in mid-April. You still have garbage service in the meantime. You can place bags of garbage at the curb. We recommend doing that by 6 a.m. on your service day, so they sit out for less time before pick-up.

  • We hand-delivered door hangers to about 2,000 of you whose pick-up day will change. If you want to double-check, our interactive map is updated with Republic days and routes. See it by clicking here. You can also access it at

  • If you rent carts from Republic, you can expect the bills by mail after April 15. The bill is for the year, April 1 to March 31.

  • Once we reach April 1, call Republic for missed pick-ups and other needs at 888-249-5112. We know when you call this number now, you might receive a frustrating or inaccurate answer. Republic will not have our account active with customer service until April 1. We know this is frustrating, but we are working with it the best we can.

Waste Management

  • We have heard from multiple neighbors that the cart collection vendor has dumped trash from the carts without picking it up. We are checking into this. Thanks for telling us.

  • We know some of you have received new bills that are confusing. Waste Management told us they generated those bills when you paid past-due balances. This is why they reference resuming service. Please contact WM directly to handle these, at 866-797-9018.

Thank you for your continued patience during this transition. Please know we are working hard to answer your questions, and make this move as smooth as possible.

Have a great weekend,

Your city team

Feb 10

Winter water main breaks not uncommon

Posted on February 10, 2021 at 4:14 PM by Jessica VanderKolk

As we enter the February part of winter in southwest Michigan, neighbors have noticed that we have reported multiple water main breaks in a short period of time.

Most of the time - and this is true now - the fluctuating temperatures cause water main breaks. This is why we see an increase in the number of breaks during winter months.

The freezing temperatures drive the frost into the ground, causing the soil to move. When we experience temperatures warming and cooling throughout the winter, this process can happen over and over, causing additional breaks as the soils press on the pipes.

Sometimes we need to issue a boil water advisory once crews repair a main break. This depends on the repair; if the crew has to drain the water main or experiences negative water pressure, they will issue a boil advisory. These situations could allow bacteria into the system, so a boil advisory is always a precaution in this scenario. Typically, in 24 hours, we can cancel those advisories.

Once crews complete a repair, they typically release air from the water system by flushing nearby fire hydrants. However, you might see some air release from your faucet, because it can become trapped in home service pipes before crews flush it out.

You can sign up to receive text and/or email alerts related to our water system. Visit, and sign up for Water System Information under the Alerts category.

For home water tips to prevent freezing pipes, take a look at our Winter Water Check-in.

Two men in work vests and hard hats stand next to hole in street, with excavator nearby