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News

The Johnson County Fair Association cancels 2020 Grounds and Grandstand Entertainment

IOWA CITY– Due to the ongoing social distancing guidelines and additional precautions taking place to help slow and reduce the spread of COVID-19, the Johnson County Agricultural Association made the difficult decision to cancel the grounds and grandstand entertainment for the 2020 Johnson County Fair.

5th Street traffic signals coming later this year

Project comes in over budget; LOST funds to pay difference

The new traffic signal at the intersection of Highway 1 and 5th Street will be similar to the one built on Main Street in 2016.

At a May 6 meeting, Solon City Council members approved a low bid for the construction of a traffic signal for the intersection of Highway 1 and 5th Street.

SOLON– Construction on a long-anticipated traffic signal for the intersection of Highway 1 and 5th Street begins later this year.
At a May 6 meeting, Solon City Council members approved a low bid of $286,931.50 from Price Electric, of Robins, for the project.

An educational journey ends

Jodi Rickels finishes back where she started

SOLON– Jodi Rickels was very much influenced by her teachers.
“I was one of those kids that just loved, loved, loved school,” she said. “I was the one who would cry on the last day of school each year. I didn’t want it to end.”
As a little girl, she played school at home. As a young student, she volunteered for anything to stay in the building.
It was a natural extension of what she already loved to do, and her large family was involved in a lot of school events. Her father also owned and operated the local school buses.

Katie Moore had no idea how worldly her education would be staying close to home and attending the University of Iowa.

IOWA CITY– Growing up 12 miles north of the University of Iowa (UI), Katelyn Moore was reluctant to become a Hawkeye. She wanted to go farther away. But a family dinner outing ultimately changed her mind, and led her to an education that has taken her around the world.
One night in Solon while at a restaurant with her parents, Moore chatted with a fellow patron who asked about her college plans. When she mentioned she was considering elementary education, the man invited her to Iowa City for a campus visit. He happened to be Dean emeritus of the UI College of Education Nicholas Colangelo.

Two men battle at the ballot box for Johnson County Sheriff

Winner of June 2 primary will likely be the next sheriff

JOHNSON COUNTY– Two men will be on the June 2 Democrat primary election ballot for the position of Johnson County’s Sheriff. And, with nobody on the Republican ticket, the winner will most likely become the successor to retiring Sheriff Lonny Pulkrabek.
Pulkrabek, a Democrat, announced his retirement last year along with his intention to challenge Republican Bobby Kaufmann for Iowa House District 73, which includes Solon, the easternmost part of Johnson County, and all of Cedar County.

Waiting for the green light

Coberly ready to start cutting hair again

SOLON– Lisa Coberly is anxious to go back to work.
But she’ll have to wait until Governor Kim Reynolds and the Iowa Department of Public Health decide it’s safe.
Coberly’s Solon Barber Shop has been shuttered since a March 22 proclamation in which Reynolds closed a slew of retail businesses.
“I saw it coming,” she said. “I was expecting it. It still kind of broke my heart when it actually happened.”
Coberly admitted she’s happiest when working. It’s been hard not seeing her customers.

Graduation May 17 and July 19

Beef Days Sunday pegged for traditional graduation

SOLON– There will be two graduation ceremonies for Solon High School’s seniors.
A modified event will take place as originally scheduled, Sunday, May 17, in the Solon High School (SHS) parking lot.
The second, a traditional graduation ceremony, is set for Sunday, July 19, at 2 p.m.
The Solon Community School District (SCSD) Board of Education is expected to approve the plan at a special meeting May 7.

Changes on hold

Supervisors’ UDO amendment discussion delayed until July 9

IOWA CITY– Throughout the development of Johnson County’s Comprehensive Land Use Plan and its companion Unified Development Ordinance (UDO), the Johnson County Farm Bureau and the County’s Planning, Development, and Sustainability Department (PDS) have been at odds with each other.
On Thursday, April 9, both entities were in complete agreement.

Fisher selected for 2020 Iowa Governor’s Scholar Program

DES MOINES– Kenji Fisher of Solon is among 424 seniors from across the state chosen for the 2020 Iowa Governor’s Scholar Program.
The Governor’s Office, the Iowa High School Athletic Association (IHSAA), and title sponsor, the Iowa Farm Bureau have recognized Iowa’s top academic students since 2003. The seniors being honored were selected by their schools as the highest academic achievers and will receive a recognition plaque and certificate. In addition, each student’s most influential teacher will also receive a certificate of appreciation.

Meals on wheels

Big Grove donates 60 meals for shut-ins

SOLON– They were thinking of each other.
And it ended up helping the community.
Solon Community Food Pantry organizer and senior activist Sandy Hanson had been contacted by several people wanting to donate money to help furloughed restaurant workers.
She called every restaurant in town to see how they were doing.
After leaving a message with Big Grove Brewery managers Andrew Mitchell and Doug Goettsch, she learned they were wondering about her.

Lakeview teachers flip for students

Reverse parade packs SRNA parking lot

SOLON– Solon is known for hosting long parades.
Vehicles lined up in the Solon Recreation and Nature Area (SRNA) Saturday, April 25, and stretched out north and south on Racine Avenue as Lakeview Elementary teachers and students connected from a safe distance in a “flipped” parade.
Lakeview staff lined the SRNA parking lot with their vehicles and stood by with signs, balloon wands and happy waves as students and their families drove through with their own signs and decorations.

Rickels recognized by state professional association

SOLON– Jodi Rickels was a finalist for the 2020 Iowa Elementary Principal of the Year award, sponsored by the School Administrators of Iowa (SAI).
"We are pleased to recognize school leaders who provide high-quality learning opportunities for students in Iowa," said SAI executive director Roark Horn.
Her peers nominated Rickels for the award, and she will be recognized at SAI's regional district meeting.