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Solon Economist

Iowa State Fair Board votes to postpone

Options for 4-H and FFA youth livestock shows are under review

DES MOINES– The Iowa State Fair Board, the governing body overseeing the Iowa State Fair, voted to postpone the 2020 Iowa State Fair until Aug.12-22, 2021, amid ongoing Coronavirus (COVID-19) concerns. The decision was made to protect the health and safety of all Fairgoers.
After a thorough review of possible options, carefully reviewing current health guidelines and examining operating limitations, it became clear holding the 2020 Iowa State Fair, which attracts approximately one million people over 11 days, would not be responsible.

SIS celebrates with Flipped Parade

SOLON– This was the way school ended in 2020.
Solon Intermediate School (SIS) hosted a Flipped Parade Friday, May 29, to say farewell to some students and to say a socially-distant hello to others.
Teachers and staff holding signs lined the rear parking lot of the school and a parade of vehicles carrying students and families rolled slowly through.

Supervisors survive primary challenge

Green-Douglass, Sullivan and Porter hold off challenger Phinney to retain seats

IOWA CITY– The three incumbents on the Johnson County Board of Supervisors held off a challenge from a newcomer in the Democratic primary election Tuesday, June 2.
Supervisors Lisa Green-Douglass, Rod Sullivan and Royceann Porter faced challenger Dean Phinney in a ballot box battle for three seats.
Green-Douglass garnered 18,875 votes (77 percent), Porter pulled in 16,961 (69 percent), and Sullivan, the longest-serving Supervisor of the trio, picked up 15,923 (65 percent) while newcomer Phinney mustered only 6,989 votes (28 percent).

Drowning reported at Lake Macbride

SOLON– The body of an Iowa City woman last seen near a watercraft on Lake Macbride has been located.
According to a press release from Johnson County Sheriff Lonny Pulkrabek, officers responded to Lake MacBride State Park near Solon for a possible drowning Sunday, June 7, at approximately 5:31 p.m.
Initial reports indicated Makeda Scott, 21, of Iowa City, was last seen in the water near a watercraft and had not resurfaced. Responding units attempted to locate Scott and the search was suspended around 9 p.m., the release noted.

Overwhelming advantage

Primary election win presumptively clears Kunkel’s path to sheriff

IOWA CITY– Brad Kunkel will likely be Johnson County’s next sheriff.
Kunkel, a sergeant and the public information officer for the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office, defeated Al Fear, a sergeant with the Patrol Division of the Cedar Rapids Police Department, with an overwhelming 82 percent of the vote in a Democrat primary election Tuesday, June 2. Kunkel, of rural Solon, had 19,469 votes to 4,128 for Fear, a resident of Swisher.

Living by the new rules

Baseball, softball prepare to play with COVID guidelines Fans to be allowed at games

SOLON– There will be no handshakes after the game.
It’s one of the many changes Solon Community School District (SCSD) fans and players can expect in order to provide the safest environment possible while still playing baseball and softball in the summer of 2020.
But fans of both will be allowed to watch games as the truncated season kicks off June 15.
“We are allowing fans to attend games,” SCSD Activities Director Casey Hack confirmed. “We are encouraging social distancing and asking our fans, players, and coaches to follow these guidelines.”

P&Z to review fringe area rezoning

City to seek developer’s agreement when Dillon’s Furrow land subdivides Residential sought for 72 acres

SOLON– The City of Solon intends to keep tabs on a proposed residential development within its southern 2-mile fringe area.
At a June 3 meeting, council members voted to send a rezoning request by Nick Hemann, of rural Solon, to the city’s Planning and Zoning (P&Z) Commission for review.
Hemann is asking Johnson County to residentially rezone 72.16 acres located east of Dillons Furrow Road NE, just over a mile from Solon’s southern border.

Preparing for a return to school

Board reviews distance learning data, early planning for 2020-2021

SOLON– In mid-March, the Solon Community School District (SCSD) had to move fast to put together a plan for distance learning.
Now the district has to figure out how to bring kids back to school.
SCSD board members reviewed voluntary participation numbers during the final months of the school year and listened to an overview of the district’s Return to Learning plan at a regular meeting May 21.
Superintendent Davis Eidahl walked board members through both reports.
Eidahl complimented district staff for quickly adapting to a model of remote learning for the final months of the year.

Don’t ignore the extra burden

No time like a crisis to check your mental health

SOLON– It’s a strain.
“Trauma is a big scary word but that’s kind of what we’re living through right now,” noted Troy Ward of Ward Counseling Services. “I can’t do the things that I used to be able to do, I don’t know when I’m going to be able to do them again.”
That’s hard to deal with, Ward said, and if you are an individual already struggling in some way, you just had a lot more piled on your plate in the last two months of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Ward has been offering free telehealth services for the uninsured and underinsured during the outbreak.

Baseball and softball restart June 15

Spartans and Lady Spartans open at home June 17

SOLON– You’ll have about a month of varsity baseball and softball.
The abbreviated season will pick up where it would have been if a global pandemic had not wiped out months of competitive high school sports.
The Spartans and Lady Spartans both open with doubleheaders Monday, June 15, on the road at Manchester against the West Delaware Hawks, and both make their home debut Wednesday, June 17.

Preparing for a return to school

Board reviews distance learning data, early planning for 2020-2021

SOLON– In mid-March, the Solon Community School District (SCSD) had to move fast to put together a plan for distance learning.
Now the district has to figure out how to bring kids back to school.
SCSD board members reviewed voluntary participation numbers during the final months of the school year and listened to an overview of the district’s Return to Learning plan at a regular meeting May 21.
Superintendent Davis Eidahl walked board members through both reports.
Eidahl complimented district staff for quickly adapting to a model of remote learning for the final months of the year.

Library to offer curbside pick-up June 1

Porch delivery for homebound on Fridays

SOLON– After Gov. Kim Reynolds announced libraries could reopen Friday, May 15, the Solon Public Library received lots of calls from patrons expecting quick access.
But the library’s benchmark for phasing in services was a 14-day COVID-19 downward trend in both Johnson and Linn counties.
Staff didn’t feel comfortable reopening quite yet, noted Library Director Kris Brown, especially with Linn County’s numbers.
“So we’re starting slowly with curbside,” she said.