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Featured

Solon 4x400 sets school record

Lady Spartans third at Jesse Day Invitational

DAVENPORT– With a school record in the final event, Solon’s girls capped an impressive showing at the Jesse Day Invitational Track meet April 13 in Davenport. Solon won four events, was second in two more, and double-placed in three individual events. The Lady Spartans scored in 14 of the 19 events in the meet.
“We had a strong feeling we could do some of the things we accomplished (at Davenport),” noted Solon Coach Brent Sands. “We only loaded a few events. Some of the faster girls only had two events. We want to give everybody a chance to run at this point.”

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The state of Swisher

Mayor Chris Taylor helps chart the future of small-town Iowa

SWISHER– Running for city office, and most recently for chair of the Johnson County Democrats, both sort of came about by accident, said Swisher Mayor Chris Taylor.
Happy accidents, he noted, that began with his bid for a Swisher City Council seat in January 2014.
“I remember sitting at my kitchen table and thinking, ‘Well this isn’t something I’ve done before,’” he shared. “I have no background in politics, but I thought it’d be a good way to get to know my community better, help the community ask some bigger questions about what it wanted to be, where it wanted to go.”

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Sixth title for 5th Street Jazz

5th Street Jazz wins its in Class 3A competition at the 2017 Iowa Vocal Jazz Championships

SOLON– Solon High School’s 5th Street Jazz vocal ensemble participated in the Iowa Vocal Jazz Championships nine times and won the Class 3A title five times, but the group was not invited to participate in 2016.
It made this year’s competition special for Solon seniors.
“My sophomore year, I was in Blame It On Our Youth, and we got third at championships, so it was very hard last year, being in 5th Street and not qualifying,” Solon senior Elizabeth Hand said.

EGG-FREE FUN FOR ALL

North Liberty Leader
NORTH LIBERTY– Outside, finally.
After two consecutive years of packing the North Liberty Recreation Center gyms with candy, kids and their parents, the city’s annual Easter egg hunt was graced with nice weather.
“It was great to be outdoors for a welcome change,” said North Liberty Recreation Director Shelly Simpson.
While the event is usually in March, a later Easter holiday pushed the egg hunt (a misnomer, as no eggs are involved) to April, and– consequently– warmer, dryer conditions.

Testing the field

Girls 6th at Kingston: Kerkhoff wins 400, shuttle hurdle first against big schools

By Joe Wilkinson
Special to the Economist
CEDAR RAPIDS– You get better by running against the best. With that in mind, Solon posted a sixth-place finish in the J-Hawk Relays Saturday, April 1, at Kingston Stadium in Cedar Rapids.
“We see the cream of the crop from Eastern Iowa here each year,” observed Solon girls track coach Brent Sands, referring to the depth of the 14 teams, a combination of 4A and 3A schools. “It gives us a chance to face good competition– and let that help us through the year; to show we can compete.”

Women of Troy rule Kingston

Iowa City West wins J-Hawk Relays

By Chris Umscheid
North Liberty Leader
CEDAR RAPIDS– The Iowa City West High Women of Troy reigned supreme Saturday, April 1, at the Cedar Rapids Jefferson J-Hawk Relays held at Kingston Stadium in Cedar Rapids. West won the varsity meet with 102 points topping Decorah (72), Cedar Falls (66), Cedar Rapids Prairie (55), Linn-Mar (46), Solon (43), Waterloo East (42), the J-Hawks (40), City High (33), Dubuque Wahlert (30), Cedar Rapids Washington (24), Cedar Rapids Xavier (15), Cedar Rapids Kennedy (11) and Waverly-Shell Rock (10).

Comfort crafted with love

Solon WWII veteran presented with Valor Quilt by auxiliary

SOLON– Dean Moel, a veteran of World War II, was the recipient of a Valor Quilt Saturday, Jan. 28, at the Solon American Legion Stinocher Post. Valor Quilts are patriotic-themed quilts presented to selected veterans in honor of their service and sacrifice.
Solon Legion Auxiliary member Jean Stinocher, who assembled the blocks comprising the quilt before sending it out for final assembly, said, “He was very happy and proud to receive it.” And added, “We were happy to give it to him.”

A ship without captains

Football co-coaches resign amid turmoil

North Liberty Leader
By Chris Umscheid
TIFFIN– Clear Creek Amana (CCA) varsity football co-head coaches Ronnie and Matt Hughes resigned Tuesday, March 21. Matt Hughes posted his letter of resignation on the program’s Facebook page saying, “Today was one of the toughest decisions I have had to make because this community and its kids mean so much to me. There are many reasons behind my decision that most of you will not ever know- but please know and understand that I’m doing what I feel is in the best interest of the kids of CCA and my family.”

“Storage Wars”

Wears to auction off storage contents on nine episodes

Solon’s Emily Wears to appear on “Storage Wars”

SOLON– Local viewers of A&E’s “Storage Wars” will see a familiar face next month as Solon’s own Emily Wears guest stars. “Storage Wars” follows a group of treasure- and wealth-seeking buyers who bid on the contents of abandoned storage units. Wears appears in nine episodes, starting Wednesday, April 12, conducting the auctions.

CHAMPIONS

DES MOINES– They were on a mission, and the mission was accomplished.
“This has been our goal since the beginning,” Connor McCaffery said in postgame comments Saturday, March 11, in the interview room at the Wells Fargo Arena in downtown Des Moines after the West High Trojans knocked off defending State Class 4A champions West Des Moines Valley, 64-50, to claim the title. The Valley High Tigers denied the Trojans the championship last year by defeating West, 46-39.

Blue Hearts beat true

Group gives mutual support, reaches out to community

NORTH LIBERTY– “It was the Dallas mass shooting when the officers were attacked this past summer,” recalled Darci Roehler, wife of a Coralville police officer. “Four or five of us were on Facebook that night, messaging each other back and forth.”
“Unable to sleep, worried,” added Jennifer Downes, a fellow police wife and co-founder of the Blue Hearts of Johnson County. “We were just kind of seeking each other out because we understood…. We were friends, some of us for 15 years. We just kind of found solace in each other that night.”
Roehler said they were all glued to the TV.

Bullseye

Ben McAtee shoots 296 to top boys at state archery tournament

Solon Economist
DES MOINES– Solon sophomore Ben McAtee took individual honors at the 2017 National Archery in the Schools Program (NASP) state tournament March 3-4 in Des Moines..
McAtee scored a 296 out of 300 to earn first place for high school boys , first place for 10th grade boys and first place overall at state for boys out of 284 entrants.
The Solon High School Archery Team finished in seventh place out of 23 teams with an overall score of 3,294, and qualified for the national tournament.