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Situated on the boundary between Oceana County and Newaygo County, with about half of the village in Newfield Township and half in Denver Township, Hesperia, Michigan is surrounded by the Manistee National Forest.

Hesperia Pond is in the northeastern portion of the village, and the South Branch of the White River flows in a southwesterly direction from the pond through the northwestern part of the village.

The chief routes through the village are East Loop Road (Michigan Avenue), Hayes Road (West South Avenue), Adams Road, 1 Mile Road (East South Avenue), and Maple Island Road (Division Street). Cities and villages within twenty miles of the village include Fremont, White Cloud, Walkerville, New Era, Shelby, and Rothbury.

As was the case with many other Michigan settlements, European-Americans first came to the area for lumbering, using the White River to move logs from the forests to the sawmills.

The first white settler in the area was Booth Perry, who came in 1856 or 1857. He persuaded Patrick McFarland and Alexander McLaren to settle nearby, and they joined him in February of 1858. However, the first resident of the village itself was Joseph W. Sweet, who hired Jeryma Streeter to clear his land and build his home before moving his family there in the spring of 1859. However, the first completed home was built by William Hoskins in 1858.

Shortly after, John P. Cook and Daniel Weaver went into business together, building a sawmill and opening a general store. Weaver had previously played a large part in founding and developing Fremont, which was originally known as Weaverville. Moving to the area that is now Hesperia, he and Cook promoted the village, building a dam on the White River that eventually provided electrical power to the village.

Thaddeus Water, Weaver's son-in-law, along with John P. Cook, laid out the town, naming it New Ocea, although the name was soon changed to Hesperia. A post office was established on August 2, 1867, and Hesperia was incorporated as a village in 1883.

Today, the village supports businesses that cover most of the needs of its residents, including a grocery store, variety store, hardware store, pharmacy, bank, real estate office, insurance company, auto repair shop, funeral home, hair salons, and restaurants.

The Hesperia Community Library, in town, serves residents of four townships, including the village. The Hesperia School District extends north to Beaver and Leavitt townships and south to Dayton and Greenwood townships. A new post office building was erected in 2001, offering a full line of postal services as well as rural delivery services to outlying areas. The Hesperia Area Fire Department protects the village, as well as Newfield, Denver, and Greenwood townships. Based in the village, it's emergency medical services are a collaborative effort of Newfield, Denver, and Greenwood townships. The village supports a police department with two full-time officers, augmented by county and state law enforcement personnel when needed. There are five churches in Hesperia, including Baptist, Catholic, Methodist, Presbyterian, and non-denominational congregations.

Public parks within the village include the dam site, the island and gazebo above the dam, Mill Pond, Vida Weaver Park, and Webster Park. The village also has a baseball field, soccer field, tennis court, rollerblade court, playgrounds, and other facilities.

Because of the White River, several lakes in the surrounding area, and forested areas, the larger Hesperia area is a destination for outdoor sports enthusiasts.

The focus of this guide is on the village of Hesperia, Michigan. Online resources pertaining to the village itself, or to local businesses, industries, schools, churches, organizations, attractions, events, and sports or recreational opportunities are appropriate topics.



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