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West Central Community Action in Atlantic Shares Countdown to Christmas Wish List

News

December 2nd, 2022 by Ric Hanson

(Atlantic, Iowa) – It’s not just kids who have Christmas wish lists. This holiday season West Central Community Action in Atlantic has put together a Countdown to Christmas Wish List. West Central Community Action serves all of Cass County and works with all three Cass County school districts. West Central facilitates a variety of services, primarily for lower income people, including Head Start early education, Childcare Resource and Referral, the Family Development and Self Sufficiency program, and Low-income Energy Assistance Program (which helps with heating and utilities costs). Besides programs, the West Central Community Action location in Atlantic offers a clothing closet and a toiletries pantry.

Their Wish List for 2022 focuses on stocking the clothing closet and toiletries pantry for winter. Healthy Cass County encourages those looking for opportunities to give locally this holiday
season to donate items on West Central’s Christmas Wish List—whether that’s just a few items, a whole lot of one item, or an item for each day in December. West Central welcomes donations at their location in downtown Atlantic (304 Chestnut St., Atlantic, IA 50022) during open hours (Monday through Friday from 8:00 AM – 4:30 PM).

Those looking to donate after collecting items throughout December are encouraged to donate on December 27 after 9:00 AM. West Central also appreciates cash and check donations and gift cards to area businesses selling toiletry items. Questions can be directed to West Central Community Action at 712-243-5421. West Central Community Action in Atlantic’s Countdown to Christmas Wish List:

December 1 – Snow Fun – Waterproof gloves or mittens
December 2 – Cozy Feet – A pair of warm socks or winter boots
December 3 – A roll of toilet paper
December 4 – Dish soap
December 5 – Hand soap
December 6 – Deodorant
December 7 – Laundry detergent
December 8 – Another roll of toilet paper!
December 9 – All-purpose household cleaner
December 10 – Paper towels
December 11 – Deodorant
December 12 – Another roll of toilet paper!
December 13 – Toothpaste
December 14 – Box of feminine hygiene products
December 15 – Deodorant
December 16 – Dish soap
December 17 – All-purpose household cleaner
December 18 – Body lotion
December 19 – Box of feminine hygiene products
December 20 – Deodorant
December 21 – Another roll of toilet paper!
December 22 – Keep those feet cozy – another pair of warm socks or snow boots
December 23 – Snow Fun – Another pair of gloves or snow pants for kids (high need)
December 24 – More laundry detergent!

For information on community wellness events or resources, follow Healthy Cass County on Facebook @HealthyCassCounty. Healthy Cass County is a community-focused volunteer network formed to promote the health and well-being of Cass County residents. Reach out to Cass County Wellness Coordinator Brigham Hoegh at bhoegh@iastate.edu or call 712-249-5870 for more
information. Healthy Cass County welcomes participants from across Cass County.

‘Tis the season for lighted parades

News

December 2nd, 2022 by Ric Hanson

(Radio Iowa/KJAN) – Summertime may be high season for daytime parades in Iowa, but with sunsets trending earlier and earlier — communities around the state are hosting nighttime parades to celebrate this winter holiday season. There were parades Thursday night in Creston, Decorah and Mount Pleasant. On Saturday, Atlantic and Oskaloosa are having Lighted Christmas Parades.

In Atlantic, the annual Lighted Parade, sponsored by McDermott & Son Roofing, will fill the downtown corridor with holiday cheer this Saturday, starting at 6 PM. Bailey Smith, Executive Director at the Atlantic Area Chamber of Commerce said “The Fireworks and Lighted Parade is a holiday tradition that Atlantic families look forward to every year. It’s always fun to see how creative people get with their lighted displays.”

Each float will have a holiday theme, lighting and music. Awards will be given for: Best Overall, Best Holiday Spirit and Twinkle Twinkle award. Winners will be notified before the parade. Fireworks, sponsored by A.M. Cohron & Son, kick off the Christmas magic over the Rock Island Depot, starting at 6 PM. You can also enjoy the Festival of Trees taking place now through Sunday at the Catholic Parish Center, in Atlantic. For more information, see our story on the kjan.com News page, or visit www.atlanticiowa.com.

Amy Brainard, director of Oskaloosa Main Street, says this weekend marks the 35th year for Oskaloosa’s parade. “We have over 60 entries. All of our entries will be lighted and a dozen of those are actually new,” she says. “They’ve never been in the parade before, so it’s really exciting to see the parade growing.” It’s not just the floats that will be illuminated on Saturday night. Three-hundred-thousand (300,000) L-E-D bulbs have been strung around the city square in Oskaloosa and images will appear on the buildings. “Downtown becomes Oskaloosa’s Christmas canvas,” she says, “so they use the buildings to paint with lights.”

Lighted parades are also being held Saturday in Bondurant, Coon Rapids, DeWitt and Janesville.

Gov. Reynolds appoints Elizabeth Batey as District Associate Judge 

News

December 2nd, 2022 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES– Gov. Kim Reynolds has announced her appointment of Elizabeth Batey as a district associate judge in Judicial Election District 2A.  Batey, of Greene, Iowa, currently serves as a magistrate for Butler County and practices law with the Vickers Law Office in Greene, Iowa. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Iowa and her law degree from the Drake University Law School with high honors. 

Batey fills a vacancy created by the addition of four new district associate judge positions authorized by the legislature in this year’s session. Judicial Election District 2A includes Bremer, Butler, Cerro Gordo, Floyd, Franklin, Hancock, Mitchell, Winnebago and Worth counties. 

Santa makes an early visit to Marne next weekend

News

December 2nd, 2022 by Ric Hanson

(Marne, Iowa) – The Marne Community Club will host the annual Santa Visit and pot luck supper, Saturday, December 10th, at the Marne Community Center. Supper starts at 6:00 p.m. Everyone is welcome! Just bring a pot luck dish to share. Santa will arrive at around 6:30 p.m. He’ll be visiting with all the kids and handing out bags full of goodies.

Gov. Reynolds announces $13.97M in sixth round of Destination Iowa funding for quality of life and tourism  

News

December 2nd, 2022 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES – Today (Friday), Governor Kim Reynolds and the Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) announced $13.97 million in grant funding for the following two projects through Destination Iowa. The $100 million program, announced in April, invests in transformational projects that will bolster the quality of life in Iowa communities and attract visitors and new residents.

The City of Davenport has been awarded $9,600,000 toward three signature projects that combine art, architecture and play. The projects to receive funding include Main Street Landing, an all-season riverfront plaza for both recreation and events; technology enhancements to the lighting on the Davenport Skybridge; and the creation of an evanescent light field at the Figge Museum. These projects are part of a larger creative placemaking effort and represent 40% of $193 million in public and private investment in the Davenport riverfront area.

The City of Clear Lake has been awarded $4,370,000 toward their Clear Lake Surf District project, which will assist in the expansion and relocation of Clear Lake’s Music Enrichment Center to allow for improved performances and educational experiences; gateway and streetscape enhancements around and on Buddy Holly Place; and waterfront connections from the Surf Ballroom to the lakeshore. This award represents 40% of $35.2 million in public and private investment in the Clear Lake Surf District.

IEDA began accepting applications on May 9 and will continue to review applications as they arrive through December 31 or until funding runs out.  Applications are scored based on eligibility, completeness, and the project’s ability to meet the program goal of creating transformational tourism attractions. Cities, counties, nonprofits and other organizations can apply for Destination Iowa grants through four separate funds: Economically Significant Development, Outdoor Recreation, Tourism Attraction, and Creative Placemaking.

Funded projects must be completed by June 30, 2026.

Sioux City Fire Dept. issues warning about overloading circuits with space heaters

News

December 2nd, 2022 by Ric Hanson

(Radio Iowa) – The Sioux City Fire Department is issuing another warning about the use of space heaters after an early morning fire Thursday heavily damaged a home. Captain Ryan Collins says the fire started when an electrical circuit got overheated. “One of the breakers in the electrical panel continued to trip even though they continued to reset it and then they started smelling smoke seeing a light haze inside,” he says. “And then once they got out of the structure they could see through the attic vents that there was a fire in the attic,” Collins says.

The residents did get out safely. Collins says these types of fire happen more often when it turns cold and people plug in space heaters. “Space heaters typically will pull anywhere from 12 to 15 amps which will quickly use up all the available electrical power on a circuit — most circuits are 15 amps or 20 amps,” Collins says. “So we want people to be cognizant of when they’re using space heaters that they don’t overload those circuits. Make sure that you only have one space heater plugged into an outlet.”

Four children died in a Mason City fire in November after firefighters say an electrical power strip overheated. Firefighters say too many space heaters and other appliances plugged into a power strip can cause it to overheat.

Red Oak man arrested Thu. night on drug charges in Shenandoah

News

December 2nd, 2022 by Ric Hanson

(Shenandoah, Iowa) – The Shenandoah Police Department reports two separate arrests took place Thursday night. Officers conducting a traffic stop at around 10:30-p.m. in the 1000 block of S. Fremont Street ended up arresting 36-year-old Andrew Paul Carson, of Red Oak, for OWI/1st offense. In addition, Carson was charged with two-counts Possession of a Controlled Substance, and Possession of Paraphernalia. He was unable to post a $3,300 bond and was being held in the Page County Jail.

And, at around 7-p.m., Thursday, Shenandoah Police were called to the 2300 block of N. Blossom Street, for a reported disturbance. An investigation resulted in the arrest of 29-year-old Jordan Allen Mick, of Shenandoah, for Disorderly Conduct and Public Intoxication. Mick was booked into the Page County Jail, and held on a $600 bond.

Iowa GOP chair says his party will back Iowa Democrats if they hold Caucuses first, against party rules

News

December 2nd, 2022 by Ric Hanson

(Radio Iowa) – The Iowa G-O-P’s chairman says he’ll back Iowa Democratic Party leaders if they decide to resist a proposal that would kick the Democratic Party’s Caucuses out of the lead spot in the 2024 presidential campaign. President Joe Biden has proposed South Carolina’s Presidential Primary go first, followed by primaries in New Hampshire, Nevada, Georgia and Michigan. The REPUBLICAN National Committee has voted to keep the Iowa G-O-P’s Caucuses first.

Iowa G-O-P chairman Jeff Kaufmann says if Democrats in Iowa decide to follow state law and hold their Caucuses on the same night as Republicans do, he’ll back them up. “They will find in the Republican Party of Iowa and in me personally, a very strong partner in making sure that they can be successful,” Kaufmann says.

A panel of national Democrats is meeting in Washington, D.C. today (Friday) to consider Biden’s list of five state primaries he’s proposing lead the party’s presidential nomination process in 2024. Iowa Democratic Party chair Ross Wilburn says Iowa does not have the luxury of conducting a state-run primary and Republicans who control state government are not likely to support legislation to switch from Caucuses to a Primary.

Tips on keeping stress levels from bounding during the holidays

News

December 2nd, 2022 by Ric Hanson

(Radio Iowa) The song says this is “most wonderful time of the year,” but for many, the holidays only mean longer hours of work, heaps of bills and higher blood pressure. Steve Courtright, a professor of management and entrepreneurship at the University of Iowa, studies stress at work. He says research finds the typical person’s stress levels bound 30 to 40-percent during this final month of the year. “They also report more positive emotions during this time of year, feelings such as love and connection,” Courtright says. “So these are happening hand-in-hand with one another, which actually tells us a little bit about stress. Stress can occur simultaneous with also positive emotions that we feel, so it’s not all doom and gloom during the holidays.”

It takes a little work, but we can recognize if we’re getting grouchy at our desk and we may need a short walk outside to focus. Courtright says some people are feeling the double-whammy of an extra workload at our jobs and we come home to added responsibilities there, too. “We have budgets to finish up and we have all these quarterly reports to send and things like that, but also it can be that I’m also trying to buy presents for my family, we’re preparing for family gatherings, we’re trying to decorate the house,” Courtright says. “Any time we face those demands, we tend to appraise those demands as either threats or opportunities, and really, how we appraise those demands makes all the difference in terms of how cranky we’ll be as a result.” We need to adjust our thinking, he says, to zero in on the things that make us happy during the holidays, and reframe the things that might otherwise stress us out.

“So for example, I’m stressed because we have a family gathering. Well, focus on the joy of the family gathering as much as possible rather than all the different preparation with it,” Courtright says. “Or, I don’t have enough money for presents this year. Maybe reframe that as we can have a more simplified Christmas this year and for some, that might mean we’re gonna do more fun family activities, and for others that might mean we’re focusing on religious aspects.” If you’re feeling stressed, Courtright says, know that you’re far from alone. You can embrace the stress, he says, if you harness those positive emotions and think about things that bring you joy.

Finkenauer now Special Envoy in Biden Administration

News

December 2nd, 2022 by Ric Hanson

(Radio Iowa) – Former northeast Iowa Congresswoman Abby Finkenauer is now working in the Biden Administration. Finkenauer’s title is Special Envoy for Global Youth Issues. A news release indicates she will be the State Department’s principal public representative on youth-related programs and issues. Finkenauer worked on Joe Biden’s 2008 presidential campaign and, as a member of congress, publicly endorsed Biden before the 2020 Iowa Caucuses.

Finkenauer served four years in the state legislature before being elected to one term in the U.S. House in 2018. She lost a 2020 campaign for a second term and unsuccessfully sought the Iowa Democratic Party’s U.S. Senate nomination this spring.