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News

On location at Sam’s Main Street Market

“East of Middle West” cameras and crew invade grocery store

SOLON– It was a little bit of movie magic.
Customers at Sam’s Main Street Market shared the aisles with movie cameras, sound equipment, actors and technicians from the production crew of “East of Middle West,” on the afternoon of Aug. 28.
For about seven hours, scenes were filmed throughout the grocery store, including at the front register as rush hour was starting for owner Sam Lensing and his staff.
“I was kind of worried it might hinder the flow,” Lensing said. “It went pretty smooth.”
Lensing said the film’s director wanted a lot of bodies moving around in the background.

City puts hotel/motel tax on November ballot

Could impose up to 7% tax

SOLON– They know it’s likely coming at some point.
Solon City Council members voted to place a hotel/motel tax proposal on the ballot for the Nov. 5 city-school election.
The measure will require a simple majority for passage.
The city has been preparing for the possibility of a hotel or other short-term rental properties for months.
The Solon Planning and Zoning (P&Z) Commission has been working on a number of revisions to the city’s zoning code, including the creation of bed and breakfast (B&B) and short-term rental ordinances.

City and school elections combined in November

Filing period for candidates runs through Sept. 19

JOHNSON COUNTY– It’s time for the presidential candidates to step aside.
There’s a local election to be held this November.
For the first time since a change adopted by the Iowa Legislature in 2017, local city council and school board elections will be combined Tuesday, Nov. 5.
According to the Johnson County Auditor’s Office, city and school elections will be combined in November of odd-numbered years.

Supervisors and farmers at odds, again

Johnson County’s proposed ordinances may impact animal agriculture

IOWA CITY– Six farmers and supporters of agriculture addressed the Johnson County Board of Supervisors during the public comments portion of a work session Wednesday, Aug. 14, in the county’s administrative building in Iowa City.

Graham Champions 4-H Club

2019 Johnson County Fair Results

DES MOINES– Area participants in the 2019 Johnson County Fair received the following awards listed by event and award received.
Olivia Bonnema received the following recognitions:
Educational Presentation: Excellence Award.
Junior Pet: Champion Junior Pet.
Poultry: Non-Commercial Standard Pair, one male one female fowl of same breed blue,
Non-Commercial Standard Individual, male or female fowl.
Britt Bowersox was the recipient of the following recognition:
Breeding Beef Cow/Calf: Champion Commercial Cow/Calf, Grand Champion Cow/Calf.

CAT grant makes a splash (pad)

No pump and dump for Solon Work delayed until final plans approved

SOLON– Solon’s splash pad should be cooling off kids next summer.
The site at the Solon Recreation and Nature Area (SRNA) has been prepped and is ready to roll, and the city is only waiting on final approval of its plans by the Iowa Department of Public Health.
The water amenity has been delayed by a change in the original plan, explained Public Works Director Scott Kleppe.
“What threw a wrench into this for the most part was the recirculation, recycling of the water,” he said.

Creek Fest puts the “Fun” in Tiffin

Something for everybody at Tiffun Creek Fest

TIFFIN– This year’s Tiffun Creek Fest offered an afternoon and evening of fun for all ages. The Saturday, Aug. 10, event kicked off with a Kid’s Fishing Derby and featured Tiffin City Council member Jim Bartels as the Grand Marshal for the afternoon parade.

Roll camera, ACTION!

“East of Middle West” begins filming in Solon 1990s vehicles and extras needed this month

SOLON– “We’ve got some scenes that we’re going to need a bunch of extras,” noted Bill “Ginks” Ginkens.
Ginkens, of rural Solon, spent much of his summer as location scout for “East of Middle West,” a feature film written and produced by University of Iowa (UI) graduate Mokotsi Rukundo and directed by Brian Lucke Anderson.
The independent film was scheduled to film at various locations in and around the Solon area from Thursday, Aug. 8, through the end of the month.

You’ll scream for Moo Moo’s Ice Cream

Solon couple supports local businesses with cool treats

SOLON– It’s a ritual of summertime in a city: somewhere, off in the distance, the faint tones of “The Entertainer” are heard. Closer, and closer the music gets. And then, the kids make the realization, “The Ice Cream Truck is coming!” The quick dash home follows, with frantic pleas to mom for money for the ice cream truck, while the music gets louder and louder. Panic ensues as it seems to take an eternity for mom to get her purse and dig out some spare change, or a dollar bill.

School board adopts progress goals

95% of most students to be proficient in reading, writing and math

SOLON– The new goals are really similar to the old goals.
Just with some tweaking.
The Solon Community School District’s (SCSD) Board of Education adopted annual goals for its strategic plan at a July 9 meeting.
New to the annual review is a Social Emotional Mental Health component, and board members approved a $6,780 one-year, per-student subscription for a Social Emotional Learning (SEL) screening tool to be implemented with the 2019-20 school year.

Kelsey Bumsted named Iowan of the Day

DES MOINES– The Iowa State Fair Blue Ribbon Foundation and Cookies Food Products presented Kelsey Bumsted, of Solon, as an Iowan of the Day for the 2019 Iowa State Fair.
Bumsted is an exemplary role model and prominent leader in her small town of Solon. Endlessly volunteering for the betterment of her community and its residents, Bumsted is "all in" for Solon Community Schools and served in many different capacities from PTO treasurer, or working at the book fair, to volunteering as a resource for Kindergarten round up, all for the success of Solon Community School District.

Council upgrades tower lease

T-Mobile to pay $1,500 a month

SOLON– T-Mobile’s antenna is staying on top of the city’s water tower.
City council members approved a five-year lease for the mobile carrier at a July 3 meeting.
T-Mobile will pay the city $1,500 a month, over the next five years, to rent a 15-by-20-foot area on the elevated tower.
Although the initial term is five years, the lease includes three automatic five-year renewals, with the rent increasing by 10 percent each term. After 20 years, an automatic extension kicks in for up to nine one-year periods, each with a one percent hike.