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Wed
15
Apr

Housing, railroad, water utilities on council agenda

By Shelia Tomkins

The Guttenberg city council at its regular monthly meeting on April 6 heard a presentation on housing inspections, discussed railroad concerns and acted on water utility issues.

Mayor Russ Loven led councilmembers Virginia Saeugling, Fred Schaub, Dave Schlueter, Jane Parker and Steve Friedlein through the agenda. City Manager Mary Willett and City Attorney Michael Schuster were also present.

Lori Brockway from Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission spoke to the council about the UERPC certified building inspector program that Guttenberg can choose to take part in. She said the program covers rental and owner-occupied properties. "The purpose is to assure decent, safe and certified housing," said Brockway. She noted that Guttenberg currently has 38 buildings in observed poor condition. The program does not cover new building inspections. The City of Fayette is currently taking part in the program and Brockway shared information on that community's housing code. 

City Manager Willett reported on an idea for public art in the park being proposed by Umbrella Arts and recently presented by Juanita Loven to the park board. The board recommended that a community survey be taken to gather public input, and Willett said she will come up with a list of survey questions.

A public hearing was set for the May 4 council meeting regarding a fine levied against Pronto Market for a tobacco sales violation. The hearing will provide a means for the $300 fine to go into city coffers rather than to the state.

Wed
15
Apr

Roth reflects on 42 years at Guttenberg Fire Dept.


Firefighters Denny Roth (left) and his son Josh were honored at the 2014 Guttenberg Fire Department Banquet for 40 and 10 years, respectively, of service. (Press photo by Austin Greve)

By Molly Moser

Just before quitting time on Monday, Dec. 5, 1983, members of the Guttenberg Fire Department were called to the 400 block of South River Park Drive to fight flames that began inside Esser’s Shoes. The blaze required assistance from five additional fire departments (Garnavillo, Garber, Colesburg, Elkader, and Strawberry Point); 100 firefighters used 20 hose lines, five hydrants, and even Mississippi River water to drench the scene. 

Wed
15
Apr

Lawrence is VFW Teacher of the Year


Guttenberg VFW member Stan Blair presents teacher and veteran Brian Lawrence with the 2015 State of Iowa VFW Teacher of the Year Award. Lawrence was chosen above all other sixth to eighth grade teachers in the state. (Press photo by Molly Moser)

By Molly Moser

Brian Lawrence is a science teacher at Clayton Ridge Middle School. He is also a soldier. Lawrence spent 10½ years in the U.S. Army Special Operations with the 3rd Ranger Battalion and 20th Special Forces Group. He served during the Cold War and the Global War on Terror, and has been on multiple combat operations in Central America and the Middle East. Last week, he was named the 2015 State of Iowa VFW Teacher of the Year. 

“Brian is an inspiring teacher who continues to dedicate his daily instruction to further develop and maintain a future generation that displays outstanding character in the area of citizenship in our community, country and world,” said Principal Shane Wahls. “He has set clear and concise expectations while modeling the true meaning of citizenship and fostering the development and enrichment of lifelong values and beliefs that should characterize the “American Citizen.”  

In 1995, Lawrence was hired as an associate for the Garnavillo School District. While working full time, he completed Upper Iowa’s two-year teaching endorsement program in one year, and in 2001 – the first year Guttenberg and Garnavillo students shared classrooms – he led his own classroom for the first time. That fall, Lawrence and his eighth grade science students watched in awe as planes struck the Twin Towers. 

Wed
15
Apr

Voters reject school bond issue

By Shelia Tomkins

Voters in the Clayton Ridge Community School District, by a 4-1 margin, turned down a $10,000,000 proposed plan for school facility improvements. 

Unofficial results from the Tuesday, April 7, referendum showed 892 against the measure and 224 in favor. Sixty-percent approval was needed for passage. Approximately one-third of the district's 3,394 active registered voters went to the polls.

Wed
08
Apr

Rock the River Road Show Saturday at Lakeside

Tickets are still available for the fifth annual Rock the River Road Show set for this Saturday, April 11, at Lakeside Ballroom in Guttenberg. 

This year's headliners are the PastMasters, Steve Bobbitt and his tribute to Rod Stewart, local favorites Backwater, and special guests Carl Thompson and Mark Stumme of Midnite Express.

Scott Sanborn, well-known Eastern Iowa broadcast veteran, will be the emcee. 

Wed
08
Apr

New help for NE Iowa veterans


The Mobile Vet Center makes stops in Mount Pleasant on Tuesdays and West Union on Thursdays. (Photo courtesy of Troy Lewis)

By Pat McTaggart

Freelance Journalist

Combat veterans or those who suffered sexual trauma while serving in the military now have a new resource to help them in northeast Iowa.  

A Mobile Vet Center (MVC) is now visiting West Union every Thursday from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.  It is located next to Hardee’s near the intersection of Highways 150 and 18 and is set up to serve eligible veterans throughout northeast Iowa.

There are more than 200 Vet Centers located throughout the United States. The first one was established in Washington State by a group of Viet Nam veterans in 1979. Iowa has three Vet Centers, located in Cedar Rapids, Des Moines and Sioux City. They serve veterans and their families, providing counseling, professional readjustment, bereavement counseling, marital and family counseling and sexual trauma/harassment counseling, as well as other services.

The MVC is the only one in the state, and there are only 49 in the entire country. It is based out of Cedar Rapids, and stops in Mount Pleasant on Tuesdays in addition to its Thursday stop in West Union.  Scott Wallingford and Troy Lewis, both combat veterans, work in the MVC.  They each are retired military and each served for 23 years.

Wed
08
Apr

Scouts buy new wheels for kitten


Dr. David Connell held Oscar while Jennifer Smith and other members of Daisy Troop 7221 took turns petting him. "He wears his emotions on his sleeve," Connell says of the kitten, who purrs loudly when pleased. (Press photo by Molly Moser)

By Molly Moser

Born under a porch in downtown Guttenberg, a kitten now called Oscar was delivered to the Guttenberg Veterinary Clinic for euthanization last summer. Oscar’s hind legs were severely deformed from the knee down, and veterinarian David Connell explains the kitten would likely have become food for a hungry predator if left on his own. 

Thanks to the wisdom and kindness of the Guttenberg vet, and now thanks to a local troop of Girl Scouts, Oscar’s nine lives will be spent in good health and good company.

“It didn’t look like much else was wrong with him, so we decided to keep him here at the clinic,” said Connell. “He started scooting around, and we got a kick out of it.” In fact, Oscar has no trouble at all getting from place to place. He played with other kittens that were also at the clinic waiting to be adopted, and started gaining weight due to his healthy appetite. 

Daisy Troop 7221, led by Lynda Schaeffers, Stephanie Horns and Tessa Dietrich, toured the Guttenberg Veterinary Clinic just after Oscar’s second surgery, which removed the underdeveloped bones in one of his back legs.  Veterinary technician Shannon Knack talked to the scouts about Oscar’s situation, mentioning the possibility of a wheelchair for Oscar. “She wasn’t sure if they could afford it,” recalls Dietrich. 

Wed
08
Apr

Amanda Ihde family to hold benefit at Lakeside April 18


"I would like to thank friends, family and the community for everything they have done - from making food, sending gift cards and money for gas, or just a hand written card with well wishes. It's been very overwhelming to me how wonderful and caring everyone has been," Ihde told The Press. Clockwise from left are Chad, Kaysi, Amanda, and Haleigh Ihde.(Photo submitted)

By Molly Moser

When Amanda (Aulwes) Ihde was diagnosed with stage three breast cancer in the fall of 2014, the community assembled to support Amanda and her family. 

“The whole community, and the surrounding communities, have been overwhelmingly generous,” said Amanda’s mother, Linda Aulwes. “People in general have brought meals in for the family when she was too sick to cook, or sent gift certificates for gas or food.”

After months of chemotherapy treatments, Ihde is close to finishing that grueling stepping stone to recovery – but multiple trips to the University of Iowa in Iowa City have put a financial stumbling block in her young family’s path. A benefit has been organized to fundraise for medication, hospital expenses, gas and other medical costs. 

The benefit will be held on Saturday, April 18, at Lakeside Ballroom in Guttenberg from 3:00 p.m. to midnight. Topp Flight and Krankstate will provide musical entertainment from 7:00 p.m. to 12:00 midnight, and refreshments will include turkey and dressing sandwiches, sloppy joes, au gratin potatoes, baked beans, and a sale of homemade baked goods.

Wed
01
Apr

Easter egg hunt set for April 4

The annual community Easter egg hunt will be held in Guttenberg on Saturday, April 4, at 1:00 p.m., sponsored by Guttenberg Rotary Club and the Guttenberg Care Center

For the second consecutive year, the event will be held in the park south of Clayton Ridge High School on River Park Drive. 

In previous years, the event was held at the Guttenberg Care Center, but construction work caused a change in location. 

Wed
01
Apr

Accident claims life of Elkport man

An Elkport man died after the car he was riding in went out of control and crashed this weekend.

Zachary Lee, 22, of Elkport died Sunday, March 29, following a single vehicle crash on Glacier Road north of 395th Street in Clayton County.

He was a passenger in a 2006 Pontiac driven by Kyle Sear, 20, of Garber, who was injured in the crash.

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