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Featured

Clippers’ Homecoming Court announced

2020 King and Queen were crowned in virtual event on Sept. 30

TIFFIN– Homecoming at Clear Creek Amana (CCA) High School looks very different this year due to concerns and considerations related to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, with the traditional parade and dance indefinitely postponed in the name of safety.

Soothe-ing influence

Alicia Bogard wants her massage therapy business to provide relief

SOLON– These are stressful times, and Alicia Bogard hopes people make the time to take care of themselves.
It’s hard for people to realize how deeply the events of this year have impacted them, and like never before, time to heal is needed, she said.
Bogard is hoping to provide calm in the storm with Soothe, the massage therapy studio she opened in February.
“Massage isn’t just for your muscles, it’s so therapeutic for your mind and your emotions, too,” she said. “In that space of time, you’re receiving nurturing and kindness, things that are so important for our well-being.”

Council OKs “shouse”

Board of adjustment approves conditional use for shop house

SOLON– It’s a shop. It’s a house.
It’s a “shouse.”
Solon City Council members approved a combination building to be used as a principal residence on Solon’s south side during a Sept. 16 meeting.
The council action backed up a decision by the Board of Adjustment (BOA) on the previous night to allow a conditional use request by Mike Bails for a one-acre corner lot at 1809 Racine Ave.
City Administrator Cami Rasmussen said Bails brought the idea for a combined storage building and living quarters to her a while back.
“It was unusual, didn’t clearly fit into the zoning code,” she said.

An event for the whole community to participate in, virtually

CCA school board approves the student leadership council Homecoming plan

OXFORD– It is doubtful any aspect of the school year is left untouched by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, including the annual fall tradition of Homecoming. The student leadership council at the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) High School, in Tiffin, wrestled with how to continue the time-honored celebration while balancing health and safety concerns. On Wednesday, Sept. 16, members of the council, along with teacher and advisor Matt Trosky, presented a plan to the district’s school board of directors for approval.

Homecoming festivities: No parade, no dance

SOLON– Homecoming will look quite a bit different in 2020.
The traditional Wednesday parade is anticipated to be replaced with a pep rally at Spartan Stadium, capping off with the crowning of the Homecoming King; and the Saturday dance will be converted to an outdoor event at the stadium, according to Solon High School Instructional Coach Amanda Stahle.
The Homecoming Queen will be announced and crowned at halftime of the Friday Sept. 25, varsity football game against the Vinton-Shellsburg Vikings.

Outnumbered but making a statement

Supporters of President Trump sail the Coralville Reservoir on Labor Day

NORTH LIBERTY– Johnson County has long been a bastion of the Democratic Party, with 57,631 (active and non-active) registered voters as of Sept. 1, according to the Iowa Secretary of State’s Office. In contrast, the Republican Party has 20,693 (active and non-active) registered voters in the county in its ranks.
Despite being heavily outnumbered, Johnson County Republicans took to the Coralville Reservoir and Mehaffey Bridge on Labor Day Monday, Sept. 7, to show support for President Donald Trump during a “Make the Rez Great Boat Parade.”

Ranshaw House renovation moves forward

NL council approves bid after reductions

NORTH LIBERTY– Phase Two of the renovation of the historic Ranshaw House, in North Liberty, was granted the green light Tuesday, Sept. 8, as the North Liberty City Council approved a bid from Wolfe Contracting, Inc., of Muscatine.

Three positive cases

SCSD adds COVID dashboard to website

SOLON– So far, so good for the young but already tumultuous school year.
Solon Community School District (SCSD) classes began Monday, Aug. 31, and as of Friday, Sept. 11, three positive cases among students were reported.
The district placed a COVID-19 dashboard on its website under the “District Return to Learn” menu, tracking positive tests for students and staff, as well as absenteeism and quarantine numbers.

Maybe something virtual this fall, maybe something next spring

CCA School Board ponders the fate of Homecoming 2020

OXFORD– It is practically a cliché to say nothing has been left untouched, unchanged, by the ongoing COVID-19 crisis.
However, after a spring which saw all high school sports cancelled, schools closed and graduations cancelled, done drive-through style in school parking lots, or held virtually, another annual high school tradition is in jeopardy of being unlike any other.

Dawn of a new day

Methodist Church readies remodel for Sunday School From flip phones to smart phones

SOLON– It’s time to adapt for the Solon United Methodist Church (SUMC).
The COVID-19 pandemic shook up an already changing cultural landscape for many churches, but provided a silver lining for the local Methodists.
The global shutdown early in 2020 allowed the SUMC to tackle a messy basement remodel and pave the way for a new Director of Christian Education.
The renewed focus on families and youth will be front and center as the church re-launches live Sunday School classes Sept. 13.

Sharing his passion

New location allows Jewelry by Harold to offer classes, and keep the craft alive in NL

NORTH LIBERTY– The making of fine jewelry is both a time-honored craft and an exacting art form.
For Harold Van Beek, owner of Jewelry by Harold in North Liberty, it is also a passion he wishes to share with others.
Van Beek, a native of The Netherlands, came to the United States in 2005 after visiting Iowa City since the late 1970s to spend time with friends of his family. “I’m ‘Harold,’ I’m named for someone in Iowa City, and so are my siblings. My son (Laurens) is named after someone in Iowa. So yeah, it’s been quite an adventure.”

Firehouse campaign trying to push past COVID

$500k contribution moves project closer 2021 construction possible

SOLON– When things were looking bleak for fundraising, a Solon family came through.
The Dennis and Jana Munson family of rural Solon donated $500,000 to the Solon Firehouse campaign.
“Obviously, our hats are off to the Munson family,” said firefighter and Firehouse organizer and Greg Morris. “Dennis and his family are just committed to what we provide and do for our community. They all view it as an important entity of our community.”
Morris was on the treadmill when his phone rang with a number he didn’t recognize.