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Featured

We’ll drink to that

Cedar Ridge celebrates long-awaited legislation and its most prestigious award

SWISHER– So far 2017 has been a very good year for Jeff Quint and his Cedar Ridge Winery and Distillery located near Swisher.
On March 28 a key piece of legislation, long fought for by Iowa’s distilleries, cleared the Iowa House of Representatives, 93-1. House File 607 allows Iowa distilleries to sell their products by the glass, and as cocktails, in their tasting rooms. It also increases a daily sales limit from two bottles per person to a full 12-bottle case and raises a state-imposed cap on the annual production of distilled spirits.

Fiala and Erhart Seniors of the Year

The Solon Senior Advocates have named Phyllis Fiala (left) and Jeanne Erhart (right) as the recipients of the 2017 Senior of the Year award. A presentation was made to the co-winners at the May 3 Solon City Council meeting by Sandy Hanson (center). A reception in honor of Fiala and Erhart will be held from 1-4 p.m. at the Timber DOME Lodge Friday, June 9. (photo by Doug Lindner)

Trouble in River City

The Music Man

By Chris Umscheid
North Liberty Leader
TIFFIN– A variety of mischievous characters have appeared on the stage in the Performing Arts Center at the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) High School in Tiffin, from The Cat in the Hat to Baron Bolligrew and Willy Wonka. Add Professor Harold Hill to the list.

Hole in one at Saddleback

Scott Seagren of North Liberty got a hole-in-one Sunday, Easter afternoon, on hole #17 at Saddleback Golf Course in Solon. It was witnessed by his 10-year-old son, Nolan Seagren. (contributed photo)

Lady Spartans make their mark at Drake Relays

Durr third in high jump, 4x4 breaks school record again

DES MOINES– Weather and track conditions were consistent through the weekend at the Drake Relays; cold, wet and windy. Solon’s girls responded, though, with highlight performances and others which still kept them near the top of the state’s high school track finishes, as they now head into their 2017 homestretch.
Drake is a late-season pause in the high school regular season. Top Iowa high school track and field performances share the limelight with regional and national college/university competition, special international elite events and Olympic rematches.

Solon 4x400 sets school record

Lady Spartans third at Jesse Day Invitational

DAVENPORT– With a school record in the final event, Solon’s girls capped an impressive showing at the Jesse Day Invitational Track meet April 13 in Davenport. Solon won four events, was second in two more, and double-placed in three individual events. The Lady Spartans scored in 14 of the 19 events in the meet.
“We had a strong feeling we could do some of the things we accomplished (at Davenport),” noted Solon Coach Brent Sands. “We only loaded a few events. Some of the faster girls only had two events. We want to give everybody a chance to run at this point.”

Sixth title for 5th Street Jazz

5th Street Jazz wins its in Class 3A competition at the 2017 Iowa Vocal Jazz Championships

SOLON– Solon High School’s 5th Street Jazz vocal ensemble participated in the Iowa Vocal Jazz Championships nine times and won the Class 3A title five times, but the group was not invited to participate in 2016.
It made this year’s competition special for Solon seniors.
“My sophomore year, I was in Blame It On Our Youth, and we got third at championships, so it was very hard last year, being in 5th Street and not qualifying,” Solon senior Elizabeth Hand said.

EGG-FREE FUN FOR ALL

North Liberty Leader
NORTH LIBERTY– Outside, finally.
After two consecutive years of packing the North Liberty Recreation Center gyms with candy, kids and their parents, the city’s annual Easter egg hunt was graced with nice weather.
“It was great to be outdoors for a welcome change,” said North Liberty Recreation Director Shelly Simpson.
While the event is usually in March, a later Easter holiday pushed the egg hunt (a misnomer, as no eggs are involved) to April, and– consequently– warmer, dryer conditions.

Testing the field

Girls 6th at Kingston: Kerkhoff wins 400, shuttle hurdle first against big schools

By Joe Wilkinson
Special to the Economist
CEDAR RAPIDS– You get better by running against the best. With that in mind, Solon posted a sixth-place finish in the J-Hawk Relays Saturday, April 1, at Kingston Stadium in Cedar Rapids.
“We see the cream of the crop from Eastern Iowa here each year,” observed Solon girls track coach Brent Sands, referring to the depth of the 14 teams, a combination of 4A and 3A schools. “It gives us a chance to face good competition– and let that help us through the year; to show we can compete.”

Women of Troy rule Kingston

Iowa City West wins J-Hawk Relays

By Chris Umscheid
North Liberty Leader
CEDAR RAPIDS– The Iowa City West High Women of Troy reigned supreme Saturday, April 1, at the Cedar Rapids Jefferson J-Hawk Relays held at Kingston Stadium in Cedar Rapids. West won the varsity meet with 102 points topping Decorah (72), Cedar Falls (66), Cedar Rapids Prairie (55), Linn-Mar (46), Solon (43), Waterloo East (42), the J-Hawks (40), City High (33), Dubuque Wahlert (30), Cedar Rapids Washington (24), Cedar Rapids Xavier (15), Cedar Rapids Kennedy (11) and Waverly-Shell Rock (10).

Comfort crafted with love

Solon WWII veteran presented with Valor Quilt by auxiliary

SOLON– Dean Moel, a veteran of World War II, was the recipient of a Valor Quilt Saturday, Jan. 28, at the Solon American Legion Stinocher Post. Valor Quilts are patriotic-themed quilts presented to selected veterans in honor of their service and sacrifice.
Solon Legion Auxiliary member Jean Stinocher, who assembled the blocks comprising the quilt before sending it out for final assembly, said, “He was very happy and proud to receive it.” And added, “We were happy to give it to him.”

A ship without captains

Football co-coaches resign amid turmoil

North Liberty Leader
By Chris Umscheid
TIFFIN– Clear Creek Amana (CCA) varsity football co-head coaches Ronnie and Matt Hughes resigned Tuesday, March 21. Matt Hughes posted his letter of resignation on the program’s Facebook page saying, “Today was one of the toughest decisions I have had to make because this community and its kids mean so much to me. There are many reasons behind my decision that most of you will not ever know- but please know and understand that I’m doing what I feel is in the best interest of the kids of CCA and my family.”