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Doug Lindner

Macbride alcohol ban takes legislative twist

Administrative rules committee sends amendment to legislature

DES MOINES– It’s up to the Iowa Legislature now.
The implementation of an alcohol ban at Lake Macbride State Park’s beach was delayed by a legislative review committee, and the Iowa House and Senate will have their chance to fix the problem.
A ban on “alcoholic liquor, beer, and wine” from beaches at Lake Macbride State Park and Pleasant Creek State Recreation Area in Linn County was approved by the Iowa Natural Resources Commission at an Aug. 11 meeting and the amended rule was to go into effect Wednesday, Oct. 5.

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Maybe next year: City declines parade move

Football parents ask for return downtown

SOLON– The City of Solon reluctantly rained on hopes to relocate the Solon High School Homecoming Parade back downtown later this month.
The request, presented at a Sept. 7 city council meeting by members of the Solon Football Club, came too late to deal with the logistics of closing Main Street, Mayor Steve Stange said.
The parade, set for 7 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 21, was before the council as a consent agenda item, but football parents were seeking to modify the event application and revert the route to its previous path.

Getting ready for the show

“It’s going to rival any professional theatre that I’ve ever worked in, or seen.” – Jessica Frerich

SOLON– It’s going to be worth the wait.
The Solon Performing Arts Center (PAC) is scheduled for completion at the beginning of December, with a grand opening for three performances of “Disney’s The Little Mermaid” set for January.
The new 809-seat auditorium, an addition to the high school, was approved by Solon Community School District voters as part of a $25.5 million bond issue in September 2014, which also included the construction of a new fifth through eighth grade middle school.

Sidewalk cafes can serve May to November

City lowers fees for outdoor eateries

SOLON– The Solon City Council significantly reduced the price of hosting outdoor service for Main Street restaurants.
In response to feedback from two downtown eateries, council members voted, at an Aug. 17 meeting, to slash the cost of renting public sidewalk and street space and eliminated a per-day fee. The city also extended the outdoor service season from May 1 to Nov. 1.
The ordinance and its accompanying policy have been in place since June, but none of the qualifying Main Street establishments have taken advantage.

DOT to overhaul Hwy. 1 sidewalks

State program helps smaller towns with ADA compliance

SOLON– Long stretches of sidewalk along Highway 1 in Solon will be replaced next year as part of a state program to address accessibility issues.
About three-quarters of a mile of sidewalk will be reconstructed as part of the Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT) project, which will be let in December for the 2017 construction season.
The new sidewalks will come at no cost to property owners, thanks to the state’s plan to deal with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) of 1990.

Council wants park back

City decides to dip into park fund for flash flood repairs

SOLON– After a spring flood in 2013, Randall Park sat idle and unused for most of the year as the city worked with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to determine the park’s fate.
Record water levels engulfed the park again Aug. 11-12, but this time the city isn’t waiting to take action.
At a regular council meeting Aug. 17, council members voted to utilize a park fund to rehabilitate the park as soon as possible.

New guidelines close SCSD open enrollment

Solon school board approves more space for local growth

SOLON– The Solon school board approved changes which should effectively muzzle open enrollment for at least the upcoming school year.
At a special meeting Aug. 15, board members agreed to new guidelines which lowered the number which triggers the closing of a grade level to open enrollment.
“The takeaway is the new policy would basically close open enrollment for all practical purposes unless we had a very small kindergarten class,” board member Tim Brown said.

Parish wrestles with decision

Fate of former St. Mary church building hangs in the balance

SOLON– Although it’s been rarely used in the last 20 years, there are still a lot of memories for Solon residents in the former St. Mary Catholic Church.
But the need for cemetery space and concerns about the continuing dilapidation of the building have prompted a church committee to recommend its demolition, which led to an informational meeting held July 26 in the church’s parish hall.
Close to 100 people attended the meeting to listen to Father Tim Sheedy and architectural consultant Alan Wieskamp describe the condition of the church building and discuss potential next steps.

DNR gives City of Solon green light for GSR project

New grant sought for generator

SOLON– For a long time, Solon’s water storage has been up in the air.
It’ll soon be coming back down to earth.
For the last two years, the City of Solon has been working to address the growing demand placed on its water distribution system with the construction of a new ground storage reservoir (GSR).
The 400,000-gallon water tank would be located on 0.6 acres of land adjacent to the Solon Recreation and Nature Area (SRNA) which the city purchased from St. Mary Catholic Church at a price of $25,000.

Why not us?

Solon upsets No. 1 seed Wahlert

DES MOINES– Well, why not?
Solon absolutely thumped the No. 1 seed in the opening round of the 3A baseball tournament Tuesday, advancing to a semifinal against Harlan (28-5) Friday at 1:30 p.m. at Principal Park in Des Moines.
The Spartans shelled Dubuque Wahlert, 12-2, in a game shortened to six innings by the mercy rule.
Solon jumped out to a first-inning lead right off the bat, but salted the game away with four-run spurts in the fifth and sixth innings. The Spartans loaded the bases with no outs in each of those innings.

Lady Spartans take third

Solon comes back once again against Boy-Hull/Rock Valley

FORT DODGE– If you’d have told Solon softball coach Jim White at the beginning of the year that his team would take third place in the state tournament, he’d have been ecstatic.
Denied a chance at the 3A title game, Solon’s Lady Spartans rebounded one last time for the 2016 season, defeating No. 11 Boy-Hull/Rock Valley, 6-3, in the third-place game at the state softball tournament Friday.
Solon, ranked No. 3, finished the year 34-10.

Construction to start on Hwy. 1/Main Street signalization project

SOLON– Within a month, the intersection of Highway 1 and Main Street will likely be fully signalized.
According to City Engineer Dave Schechinger, construction of the traffic signals was expected to begin after Beef Days and be completed some time in August.
Schechinger reported on the status of the project at a July 6 meeting of the Solon City Council, noting a pre-construction meeting had been held with contractor Advanced Electric Service.
Advanced submitted the lowest of six bids for the project– $98,430– and was awarded the project at a March 2 meeting.