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Food bank adds donations via text in hopes of boosting lagging donations


July 29th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Summertime is one of the hardest times of year for food banks as donations drop off dramatically. Brian Barks, spokesman for the Food Bank for the Heartland, says they’re launching a new effort allowing people to “text” donations to the agency. Barks says the signs are clear the economy isn’t getting any better. “Families are having a hard time making ends meet,” Barks says. “If you think, when’s the last time we heard of a company saying we’re adding upper, high-paying jobs? The jobs we’re adding to the economy are lower-level, service-related jobs.”

A recent “Map the Meal Gap” study was compiled by the group Feeding America and Barks says the results were troubling. “The study that’s done each June says 211,000 people in our service area are at risk for hunger,” Barks says. “That number has been pretty much flat the last three years. What that tells us is the issue of hunger isn’t getting any worse but it’s not getting any better.”

It’s hoped the new texting program will lure more people into donating cash to the food bank. They just need to text the word “feed” to 501-501 from a cell phone. “And all you do is type in ‘yes’ and hit ‘send’ and you’ve made a $10 donation,” Barks says. “That will allow us to provide 30 meals to people who need it.”

The Omaha-based facility supplies food items to 325 food pantries, homeless shelters and soup kitchens in 93 counties across western Iowa and Nebraska. Last year, it provided food to 19,000 families in need, in addition to helping emergency shelters, after-school programs, senior housing sites and rehab centers.

(Radio Iowa)

Last Full day of the Cass County Fair is today (Monday, 7/29)


July 29th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Fair is beginning to wind down, in Atlantic. Today marks the last full day of activities, and it begins at 8-a.m. with the Beef Show, followed by the Best of Iowa at 9:30, where contestants select a recipe using an Iowa product or products, as the main ingredient. The recipes are prepared in front of a judge, and are evaluated on the presentation, the number and use of Iowa products, and the finished product. All finished products will be arranged on a tasting table for the public to sample, and the Union Leaders 4-H Club will provide cookbooks for sale, listing all the recipes. Awards will be presented following the contest.

Other scheduled events include: The Watermelon Feed, beginning at 11-a.m.; The Dairy/Goat show at 12:30; Meat Goat Show at 1-p.m.; Skid Loader Rodeo at 2-p.m., and the Style Show along with building awards, at 4:30.

The evening wraps-up with the Parade of Champions at 6, followed by the Grand Champion Beef Selection at 7, and the finals of the skid loader rodeo, at 8-p.m.

On Tuesday, the Livestock sale gets underway at 8-a.m., along with the release of the static exhibits.

Iowa early News Headlines: Mon., July 29th 2013


July 29th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press…

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) — Officials closed Interstate 29 in western Iowa Sunday to check for bridge damage after a fiery semitrailer truck crash that killed one person. A northbound truck flew off an overpass over Avenue G in Council Bluffs around 3:30 p.m. yesterday. I-29 traffic was rerouted Sunday while Iowa Roads Department engineers evaluated the bridge.

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Several Nebraska and Iowa cities set new record low temperatures early yesterday. The National Weather Service says record lows were set Sunday in Des Moines and Ottumwa, Iowa. In Des Moines, temperatures fell to 51 to break the record of 53 set in 1925. Ottumwa residents saw temperatures fall to 48.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Lottery offers plenty of options, and judging by the operation’s last record-breaking year, state residents are definitely taking their chances. Lottery officials announced last week that during the fiscal year ending June 30th, the Iowa Lottery sold $339 million in tickets, gave out about $201 million in prizes and yielded almost $85 million for the state, most of which now goes into the general fund.

BLAKESBURG, Iowa (AP) — The Wapello County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the explosion of small bomb in a library book drop in the small southeast Iowa community of Blakesburg. The Ottumwa Courier reports librarian Rebecca Brittain says the “homemade bomb” was found in the Blakesburg Public Library’s book drop on Wednesday morning. No one was hurt, but some books were destroyed.

Marion County man arrested in Red Oak, Sunday


July 28th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

A man from Marion County in south central Iowa was arrested Sunday evening, in Montgomery County. The Red Oak Police Department reports 46-year old James Edward Stone, of Pleasantville, was arrested in the 100 block of West Coolbaugh Street in Red Oak, at around 4:30-p.m.  Stone was wanted on a Contempt of Court charge for Failure to Appear & Failure to Pay, Child Support. He was being held in the Montgomery County Jail on $2,000 cash bond.

I-29 closed after fiery Iowa crash that killed 1


July 28th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

(Updated 5-a.m. 7/29)

A bridge along Interstate 29 in Council Bluffs was closed for a little more than 5-hours Sunday while authorities conducted a damage assessment following a fiery semitrailer truck crash that killed one person.  According to Council Bluffs Police, a 2005 Volvo semi was traveling north at around 3:30-p.m., when for reasons unknown, it crashed through the guardrail separating I-29 northbound and I-29 southbound at Avenue G. The truck flew across Avenue G and hit an embankment between the bridges on the north side of Avenue G before becoming fully engulfed in flames.

Firefighters contained the blaze and fuel spill in about 10 minutes. Once the flames were extinguished, the body of the male driver was discovered. The man’s identity had not been verified as of early this (Monday) morning, but authorities say they believe they do know who he is. His name will be released pending confirmation through an autopsy slated for today, and notification of family.

While the crash remains under investigation, officials say speed, alcohol and medical reasons could be factors. Anyone who witnessed the crash is asked to call the Council Bluffs P-D’s Traffic Unit at 712-328-4948.

I-29 traffic was rerouted Sunday while Iowa Roads Department engineers evaluated the bridge, which was re-opened to traffic by around 8:30-p.m.

Drug arrest in Red Oak, Sunday


July 28th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

A Red Oak man was arrested this (Sunday) afternoon, on drug-related charges. According to Red Oak Police, 22-year old James Leroy Christensen, Jr., was taken into custody in the 600 block of North Highland Avenue in Red Oak, at around 12:10-p.m. Christensen was charged with Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, and then released on a citation.

Sioux City Native: Col. Bud Day, Medal of Honor recipient, dies at 88


July 28th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

MIAMI (AP) — Retired Col. George “Bud” Day, a Medal of Honor recipient who spent 5½ years as a POW in Vietnam and was Arizona Sen. John McCain’s cellmate, has died. He was 88.

Col. George "Bud" Day (IA Aviation Museum/photo)

Col. George “Bud” Day (IA Aviation Museum/photo)

Doris Day said Sunday that her husband died Saturday at his home in Fort Walton Beach after a long illness. Col. Day was born in Sioux City, where the airport is named after him. In 2011, Day was inducted into the Iowa Aviation Hall of Fame, at the Iowa Aviation Museum, in Greenfield.

Day was one of the nation’s most highly decorated servicemen since Gen. Douglas MacArthur. He later became a tireless advocate for veterans’ rights. He received the Medal of Honor for escaping his captors for 10 days after the aircraft he was piloting was shot down over North Vietnam. In all, he earned more than 70 medals during service in World War II, Korea and Vietnam.

Doris Day said her husband will be buried at Barancas National Cemetery in Pensacola.

3 juveniles arrested on drug & alcohol charges in Audubon, Sunday


July 28th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Audubon Police Department reports three juveniles from Audubon were arrested today (Sunday), on charges of Possession of Marijuana, Possession of Alcohol, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. The arrests stem from an investigation into an incident at the Legion Park on July 16th. The juveniles were charged and referred to the Juvenile Court District.

On Saturday, Police in Audubon arrested 38 year old, Christopher Lee Hansen, of Audubon, for Interference with Official Acts and Driving without a valid motorcycle license. Hansen was transported to the Audubon County Sheriff’s Office where he posted bond and was released. That same day, 38 year old James Raymond Nottingham, of Wadsworth, Illinois was arrested on charges of Domestic Abuse Causing Injury by Dangerous Weapon (3rd offense), and Operating a Motor Vehicle Without Owners Consent. He was also cited for Failure to Have a Valid License. The arrest stems from an incident that occurred on July 25th. Nottingham was being being held in the Audubon County Jail, Sunday. The Audubon Police Department was assisted in handling the incident by the Iowa State Patrol.

And, on July 12th, officers with the Audubon Police Department arrested 29 year old Roger Allen Schmidt of Audubon, for Open Container of Alcohol in a Public Place. Schmidt was cited and released at the scene.

Cass County Fair – Day 4 (Sun., July 28th 2013)

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 28th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Fair continues its 6-day run here in Atlantic, today. The Swine show kicked-off activities early this morning, at 7:30. The Commercial Exhibits building opens at 10-a.m. The Thrashing and Antique Equipment Show is slated to run from 11-a.m. until 3-p.m..

Other events include the Decorator’s Showcase from Noon until 4-p.m., where young people have an opportunity to decorate one room in their own style. Participants select coordinating textures and colors, consider a formal, informal or semi-formal look, then put those selections into a display. Each member is allowed one-hour for the contest. Local businesses have donated and loaned samples of wallpaper or fabric as a starter for 4-H’ers to use.

The Poultry and Dog show, and Skid Loader Rodeo events begin at 2-p.m., the Texaco Country Showdown for new music talent gets underway at 3-p.m., “Share the Fun” at 5-p.m., with Cass County 4-H’ers showing-off their talent, and the Horse Fun Show is at 6-p.m., along with the Tractor Pull.

(Updated 1:23-p.m./NWS) Record Low set in Atlantic for July 27th

News, Weather

July 28th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Cold northwesterly winds over the last, combined with an area of high pressure settling south from Canada, resulted in record to near record cold across central Iowa this (Sunday) morning.Clouds helped keep temperatures warmer across the northeast parts of the state, but residents in central and western Iowa saw their thermometers dip into the 40’s to around 50-degrees.

Atlantic broke a 24-hour record Low temperature overnight. The 24-hour low for the period beginning 7-a.m. Saturday and ending at 7-a.m. today, was 41-degrees. That broke the previous record of 47 set in 1962 and 1971. The Low temperature for July 28th will also be a record breaker. At 7-a.m. in Atlantic, when the National Weather Service gauge was re-set, it was 43-degrees, which beats the previous record of 45 set in 1925.

Sioux City also broke a record low temperature overnight, when the Sioux Gateway Airport registered a temperature at 6:48-a.m., of 44-degrees. The previous record low was 50, set in 1925 and then again in 1994. Record lows of 48 and 51 were set in Ottumwa and Des Moines, respectively, also. Both previous records were set in 1925.

Other reports of record low temperatures set this morning include (City/Low/previous record low): Audubon at 45 degrees (46/1994); Bedford at 47 (51/1920); Mount Ayr 44 (49/1925); Estherville 45 (46/1925).