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Featured

Sharing the bragging rights

West, City split two-day baseball doubleheader

IOWA CITY– In Iowa City, the winning football team gets “The Boot.” The volleyball team gets “The Spike.” In baseball, bragging rights are on the line and this year both City and West can say they won as the teams split a doubleheader conducted Monday and Tuesday, July 8 and 9.

Local tradition turns 10 on the Fourth of July

JOHNSON COUNTY– Thanks to the commitment of one area neighborhood, a patriotic tradition continues.
Residents of the Hickory Heights development, situated off Lake Manor Road between the communities of Solon, Shueyville and North Liberty, have celebrated the July 4th holiday for 10 years now, in much the same fashion as thousands of small communities across the country; with a parade featuring color guards, fire trucks, decorated vehicles, and horses adored in red, white and blue finery bringing up the rear, followed by family-friendly cookouts and even live music to entertain the crowds.

Rare white deer drawing a crowd near Twin View

SOLON– Traffic slowed on the highway. Neighbors out for a walk stuck around for the show, too, In the first days of July, word of the albino deer got around quickly.
For several evenings in a row, and occasionally around dawn, the snow white deer, with pink inner ears and nose, would be grazing in a just-cut hay field four miles west of Solon on County Road F-16, next to Twin View Heights.

As American as baseball and apple pie

Oxford parade marks Independence Day

OXFORD– Major General Robert Sentman, USA (ret.), dressed in full cavalry attire, and carrying the cavalry guidon, maintained a steady pace as he rode his horse along the streets of Oxford Thursday, July 4. Behind him the American Legion carried our nation’s flag, fire trucks sounded their horns and sirens, political parties advertised their candidates, and antique cars and tractors followed while candy flew toward eager children at the curbs.

Solon’s Dinosaur Man

SOLON– He is a father of four and the father of a U.S. patented invention. A veteran Navy officer, he has flown in Dr. Tom Dooley’s helicopter and was on the last American ship to leave Vietnam after evacuating refugees from north to south as the Korean conflict wound down. He has schooled many on the mastery of industrial arts, from high school and college students to convicted prisoners. The product of his woodworking artistry can be seen in everything from funeral homes and library buildings to iconic rural barns and decorous churches.

How about a little KISS ?

This hard rockin’ dude with all the hair is none other than North Liberty City Council member Terry Donahue, dressed to resemble a Kiss band member. Donahue and other members of the North Liberty Centennial Committee donned costumes and makeup for the North Liberty Fun Days parade on Friday, June 14, to promote the upcoming Hairball concert and other centennial celebration festivities scheduled for July 12-13. For more information about the July events, visit northliberty100.org. For more photos of North Liberty Fun Days 2013, see page 20. (photo by Lori Lindner)

Rollin’ along the highways & Byways

Great Eastern Iowa Tractorcade comes through Johnson County

JOHNSON COUNTY– Fourteen years and still rolling.
WMT Radio sponsored the 14th annual Great Eastern Iowa Tractorcade June 9-11, with approximately 530 tractors motoring their way across the highways and byways of southeast Iowa.
The event began as an idea from local radio personalities at WHO Radio, who worked with WMT Radio– A Clear Channel station and one of the area’s leading agricultural reporting entities– to bring vintage and contemporary tractor owners together in a central location, said Clear Channel’s Renee Uthoff, who organizes WMT’s event.

Nurturing business

New La Montessori Nurtury to host open house for public July 8

NORTH LIBERTY– Parents of very young children will soon have a distinctive new choice for child care in North Liberty.
La Montessori Nurtury will open July 10 under the ownership and guidance of Lillian Myers, at 70 Circle Dr., Ste. A. The former location of the Montessori Children’s Garden preschool– which expanded into a larger space nearby– has been newly remodeled and designed specifically for infants and toddlers.

Washing the Blues away

NL blues festival abbreviated by rain

NORTH LIBERTY– Steady rains, high winds and intermittent thunderstorms postponed the North Liberty’s blues festival from its original Saturday date.
And even though Mother Nature still wasn’t smiling the next morning, plenty of people put on sunny dispositions and came out for the abbreviated event anyway.

CLOSED DOORS

After hours of discussion and deliberation by school board, Kim Blankenheim retains her job

SOLON– Dozens of parents and students paced through Solon High School’s darkened cafeteria, eyes peeled through the library windows to watch a dear friend fight for her job. They anxiously waited for the closed session to open, and the theatrics to cease. Most everyone that night was there for one reason, Kim Blankenheim.

Eight in a row

Four doubleheader sweeps get Solon’s baseball team moving in the right direction

SOLON– The Solon varsity baseball team is on a roll.

Swisher junior shooters aiming for excellence

Swisher American Legion program promotes responsible firearms for developing minds

By Chris Umscheid
Solon Economist
SWISHER– In an era of tense controversy over the use and possession of firearms, one group in this northwest Johnson County town is learning to respect guns, rather than fear them.
And they’re learning life lessons while learning to shoot.
For two years, the American Legion Post 671 in Swisher has sponsored a Junior Shooting Sports Program, one of the legion’s many family and youth programs. Participants from ages 12 to 18 use an air-powered rifle shooting a .177 caliber pellet as they learn gun safety and marksmanship.