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Featured

Fire claims rural Tiffin mobile home

TIFFIN– A mobile home is a total loss after a fire broke out Sunday, Jan. 8, at 3153 Half Moon Ave. NW, just outside Tiffin.
The Tiffin Fire Department was called to the scene at 2:29 p.m., said Chief Brian Detert, and had the fire under control in about 45 minutes.
He said with help from the Oxford Fire Department, they were able to save a bedroom and part of the kitchen, but everything was ruined.
The Johnson County Sheriff’s Office and Johnson County Ambulance Service also assisted the fire departments.

McCaffery scores 1,000th point

Trojans ride roughshod over the Warriors in 92-56 win

IOWA CITY– It’s situation normal at Iowa City West High for the varsity boys basketball team as they continue to roll through the 2016-17 season. In the wake of an 80-71 pre-Christmas loss to Cedar Rapids Prairie, the Trojans rebounded to pound the Warriors of Cedar Rapids Washington, 92-56, Tuesday, Jan. 3, at West High.

No more through-traffic for snowmobilers in Tiffin

Pit stops to The Depot, Throttle Down still allowed

TIFFIN– Despite early snow activity, Tiffin residents could be seeing fewer snowmobilers downtown this year.
Due to the widening of Highway 6 as part of the Ireland Avenue updates, no sufficient right-of-way exists for snowmobiles between Grant Street and The Depot.
“Really we’ve created this kind of bottleneck and choked them out a little bit,” said City Administrator Doug Boldt. “They can’t get through there anymore.”
Derrick Parker, secretary of the Iowa Snowdrifters, brought the group’s concerns to the Tiffin City Council members’ attention at a Dec. 6 meeting.

‘Zat You, Santa Claus?

Harper Moses, 10 months, of Solon, calmly regards the man in the red suit with the beard during a visit by Santa Claus to Solon State Bank Dec. 16. (photo by Doug Lindner)

He knows if you’ve been bad or good

Theodore Bradbury (center) considers his answer carefully before answering a question from Santa Claus, who was visiting Bridge Community Bank in Solon Dec. 8. Also enjoying Santa’s company is Theodore’s brother Matthew. (photo by Doug Lindner)

Solon takes first at North Linn

Spartans suffer narrow loss to fourth-ranked Western Dubuque

TROY MILLS– It takes a team to come out on top.
That’s exactly what the Solon varsity wrestlers proved last weekend at the North Linn Varsity Lynx Invitational. All the Spartans showed up to wrestle Saturday, Dec. 17, in Troy Mills, taking first place ahead of Williamsburg.
“Anytime you can get all 14 wrestlers to place and score points as a team, that’s a great thing,” said Solon Head Coach Blake Williams. “That’s how you’re going to win tournaments like that– getting contributions from all 14, not just the champions.”

Lighting up the holidays

North Liberty couple creates annual “Gingerbread House”

NORTH LIBERTY– You may as well call them Mr. and Mrs. Kris Kringle.
The Crandalls– with a name uncannily close to the Christmas gift bearer– have delivered seasonal joy year after year with their holiday light display on Troon Court in North Liberty.
“Pretty much everybody expects it,” said Lorrie Crandall. “We’ll just be sitting out in the summertime and people will drive by and say, ‘We love your Christmas house!’ It really started because we enjoyed taking our kids around to see the lights when they were little. We ended up being one of those houses people go see.”

Running into winter

City staffer closes in on 1,000 miles to raise funds for Girls on the Run

NORTH LIBERTY– You won’t often find Nick Bergus jogging around the indoor track at the North Liberty Recreation Center.
“I don’t like running inside,” he said. “It’s definitely not my favorite.”
Despite his office in the North Liberty Communications Department being located virtually underneath the track, Bergus said he prefers outdoor runs– even in the winter.
“I’ve got my whole chart for outside temperature and what I need to actually wear,” he said. “This time of year I’m in the baklava and I’m wearing two layers on my legs and two or three layers on top.”

Waterfowlers honor missing friend, hunter

Solon waterfowlers hold autumn hunt in memory of Tanner Wymer

SOLON– A clear day, light southeast wind; with temperatures in the low 50s. It would be a great morning for a mid-autumn walk. Not so much for attracting geese to a picked corn field.
A small flock had worked the 30 decoys dotting the corn stubble west of nine layout blinds just outside Solon Oct. 23.
“Two geese were close enough for a shot, but we held up, thinking the group might circle once more,” explained Colton Dall.
It did not. Still, it was not a washout. A couple hunters worked a wooded creek, about 70 yards away, dropping a duck.

Cider house showcase

New Rapid Creek Cidery to showcase craft brews at Wilson’s Orchard

IOWA CITY– You might call him the Johnny Appleseed of Johnson County. Spend a little time talking apples with Paul Rasch and you easily imagine him sitting down with that iconic apple evangelist of the 19th century, quaffing hard cider and striking up a spirited conversation on the relative merits of heritage fruit trees and the ripening schedules of various cultivars.

Cedar Ridge wins Single Malt Gold

Unique crafting nets multiple wins for Swisher distillery

By Chris Umscheid
Solon Economist
SWISHER– About a year ago, Cedar Ridge Winery and Distillery started entering their more-aged products into prestigious contests in order to build credibility with the brand.
“We came into 2016 hoping to get four gold medals in international competitions,” Cedar Ridge owner Jeff Quint said. “As of last week (week of Oct. 3) we had earned 11, and we still have one competition left. The results this year have been very solid, very overwhelming for us.”

Lead2Feed

SHS business students use problem solving

SOLON– The Solon Community Food Pantry recently received an exceptionally large, 1,425-pound food donation from a very unique project. Four students in Jodi Leimkuehler’s Business Management class at Solon High School did not just talk about management, they actually became managers. Cael Starr, Clay Gerdin, Colton Spellman and Lucas Walker helped organize a competitive food drive between classes at Lakeview Elementary as part of Jodi’s Lead2Feed Service Leadership program.