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Featured

Aiming for excellence

Swisher American Legion program promotes responsible firearms, developes young minds

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.

Off road

Bruce Koffron trails behind Jana Holmes and Michelle Lobeck as they slog cross country through farmland southeast of Solon as part of the Solon Survivor Extreme 5K, held Saturday, March 9, as a fundraiser for the Solon Sluggers 12U baseball team and the University of Iowa Children’s Hospital. See next week’s edition for more photos and results. (photo by Doug Lindner)

Flapjack happy

Ten-month-old Ben Stoner of Oxford munches on breakfast while attending the 40th annual Optimist pancake fundraiser with his grandfather, Dick Stoner, Jr. For more photos of the event, see page 20. (photo by Doug Lindner)

A cluster of controversy

Supervisors give initial approval to Dooley subdivision

Feeling the synergy

Members of the Solon Middle School Show Choir Synergy finish one of their numbers during a performance at the Solon Musical Showcase Friday, March 1, in the Solon High School gymnasium. The members of Synergy took first place in the Class 3A middle school division of the Indianola Show/Jazz Encounter in February. Turn to page 20 for more photos of middle school performers. (photo by Doug Lindner)

Common threads tell unique stories

NORTH LIBERTY– Quilts are so much more than scraps of fabric, cut by hand and stitched together with careful placement, more than warm comfort on a cold night, even more than American folk art handed down through generations.
Quilts are testaments to lives well lived, celebrations of life’s milestones, congratulatory gifts of honor.

Trojans still 4A state champs

DES MOINES– The Iowa City West High Trojans are still the reigning Class 4A Champions after a three-game campaign at the Boys State Basketball Tournament in the Wells Fargo Arena.
The team, coached by Steve Bergman, went on a rollercoaster ride, which ended with its second consecutive state tournament trophy, the fifth for the program and the fourth for Bergman.
But it almost didn’t happen.

Tiny twirlies

The Tiny Kix class from Just For Kix dance studio in North Liberty finishes a routine at the Solon Dance Spectacular 2013 on Feb. 15. The 4- and 5-year-olds pictured are Olivia Fuller, Addison Wagner, Rachel Mundt, Kynzly Farr and Ella Keune. (photo by Lori Lindner)

For the love of it

Ellis honored for 20 years as “The Voice of the Spartans”

SOLON– Don Ellis loves sports. He loves Solon. He especially loves Solon Spartans sports. For 20 years, he’s been the guy sitting next to the official scorekeeper and the scoreboard operator with a microphone in his hand doing the announcing at Solon High School sporting events.

show case

Solon’s instrumental and vocal music programs take the stage in a group concert

Solon’s instrumental and vocal music programs take the stage in a group concert

Community to UNIte for Nora March 2

SOLON– Almost two years old now, Nora’s world should revolve around potty-training, picking a bedtime story and being the center of attention for parents Ben and Michaela Sanderson of Ely.
These days, it is all that and more. Nora is fighting acute lymphoblastic pre-B cell leukemia. Intense chemotherapy will continue for at least two more years. That means normal toddler times take a back seat to bone marrow biopsies, leukemic cells, and making it to doctor appointments through sometimes icy, snowy conditions.

Market value

Cedar Rapids’ NewBo is a place for all tastes

CEDAR RAPIDS– There are two strict rules to guide Cedar Rapids’ NewBo City Market almost-anything-goes atmosphere: it has to be fresh. It has to be fun.
That’s why it is the place to be each Thursday and on weekends, where you can shop for farm-fresh produce, watch a cooking demonstration, experience a trendy flash mob by a local opera theater company and enjoy a relaxing glass of wine, all in the same place, any time of year.
“The idea behind NewBo is to make it a place people want to come to,” said NewBo City Market Director Ann Poe.