North Iowa Times

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Sofie Davis

Sofie Davis, 105, of McGregor, died Friday, Dec. 27, 2019, at Great River Care Center in McGregor. Sofie Edel, the daughter of Bernt and Johanna (Peterson) Juvik, was born Nov. 9, 1914, in St. Olaf. She was baptized and confirmed at Norway Lutheran Church, St. Olaf. She graduated from country school in rural Wagner Township and was awarded her honorary high school diploma from Central Community Schools on her 103rd birthday. Sofie was united in marriage with Raymond Davis on Sept. 22, 1937, at Norway Lutheran Church, St. Olaf. Sofie and Raymond farmed the Davis family farm south of McGregor for many years. After Raymond’s death in 1979, Sofie moved to Garnavillo, where she lived for 22 years. She then moved to McGregor, where she lived on her own until age 98. At that time, the Great River Care Center became her home. 

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Dec

What's on tap? Old Man River unveils four house brews


A few weeks ago, Old Man River Restaurant and Brewery unveiled its first four house brews since re-opening in March. The selections include a “Red Horse” red ale, “Paddle Boat” porter, “Rocky Banks” IPA and “Romance the River” cream ale. (Photo courtesy of Old Man River)

Head brewer Dave Koepke helped bring Old Man River’s new beers to life, utilizing the establishment’s state-of-the-art, Austrian-made, copper equipment. (Photo by Audrey Posten)

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

Something new is on tap at Old Man River Restaurant and Brewery. A few weeks ago, the downtown McGregor business unveiled its first four house brews since re-opening in March.

The selections include a “Red Horse” red ale, “Paddle Boat” porter, “Rocky Banks” IPA and “Romance the River” cream ale, all brewed in the state-of-the-art, on-site facility.

“We’re covering all the bases,” said head brewer Dave Koepke. “We’ve got the hoppy. A lot of people like the ambers and the reds, and the cream ale for the light beer drinkers and the people who don’t like too many hops. Then there’s a dark beer.”

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Dec

‘Christmases here are a lot merrier’


Sally Schneider and Bart Knight pose with just a portion of the gifts donated through Pocket City Pub’s giving tree. (Photos by Audrey Posten)

“It always blows my mind how generous people are,” said Great River Care Center Activity Director Debbie Johnson. “They go above and beyond.” Here, Johnson places a newly-received hat on resident Lorraine Ayers’ head.

For fourth year, Pocket City Pub patrons purchase gifts for care center residents

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

The “little bar with a big heart” has done it again. For the fourth year in a row, Christmas was a bit brighter for residents at McGregor’s Great River Care Center thanks to the patrons of Pocket City Pub.

Since 2016, the downtown McGregor establishment has sponsored a “giving tree,” anonymously connecting patrons with care center residents for whom they can buy Christmas gifts.

Mon
23
Dec

Monona native honors parents with over $13K in donations to nonprofits


Twelve Monona nonprofits will benefit from over $13,000 in donations Daniel De Sotel made last week in honor of his parents, Raymond and Darlene De Sotel. Pictured (front, left to right) are Brooklyn Moose (Girl Scouts), Nathan Friedlein (Cub Scouts), Layla Landt (Cub Scouts); (second row) Barb Collins (city of Monona), Linda Knockel (MCED), Carol Goettler (Butterfly Garden), Shirley Seitz (Butterfly Garden and library), Pat Martin (Butterfly Garden), Ila Benzing (Butterfly Garden), Donna Thompson (library); (third row) Ty Eggers (Boys BSA Troop), Christine VanHorn (Girl Scouts), Alexandria Duffield (Girl Scouts), Madison Duffield (Girl Scouts), Pam Havlicek (library), Emma Koether (Girls BSA Troop), Will Koether (Boys BSA Troop), Marlene Franzen (Girls BSA Troop), Danielle Friedlein (Cub Scouts), Lukas Friedlein (Cub Scouts), Sophie Landt (city of Monona), Rogeta Halvorson (MCED); (back) Dave Scott (Monona Historical Society), Angie Voelzke (Butterfly Garden), Dave Smith (fire department), donor Dan De Sotel, Jim Eggers (Boys BSA Troop), Alena Toberman (Girls BSA Troop), Reilly Franzen (Boys BSA Troop) and Jim Langhus (Boys BSA Troop and Butterfly Garden). (Photos by Audrey Posten)

“This evening has nothing to do with me. This is all in honor of my mother and father, Raymond and Darlene De Sotel, and to give back to the community they loved and served all their lives,” shared Daniel De Sotel, who presented the contributions at an event Dec. 17.

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

Christmas came early for 12 Monona nonprofit organizations last week. They’ll benefit from over $13,000 in donations a Monona native has made in honor of his parents.

“This evening has nothing to do with me. This is all in honor of my mother and father, Raymond and Darlene De Sotel, and to give back to the community they loved and served all their lives,” shared Daniel De Sotel, who presented the contributions at an event Dec. 17.

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Dec

Casino marks 25 years in Marquette


Casino Queen Marquette will celebrate 25 years in Marquette on Dec. 26. Over 12 million people have passed through the doors since 1994, enjoying not just gambling, but live entertainment and an extensive buffet. (Photo by Audrey Posten)

Over 12 million people have visited attraction since 1994

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

The Miss Marquette Casino opened in the city of Marquette on Dec. 26, 1994, offering what the North Iowa Times detailed then as “over 30,000 square feet of excitement” in the form of three dice tables, three roulette wheels, 20 blackjack tables, a poker room and 620 nickel, quarter and dollar slot machines.

“The clang, clang, clang of the slot machines was all you could hear,” recalled Amy White, marketing manager at Casino Queen Marquette, as the establishment’s been known as since 2017. “People stood in line to get in. It was the place to be.”

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McGregor Council OKs splash pad design revision


The McGregor Council has approved a revised concept design for phase I of the Turner Park splash pad that will make it easier to add features at the site down the road.

This plan shows how the simpler ground sprays can be turned into more extensive above ground water features during phase II of the project.

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

The McGregor Council, at its Dec. 18 meeting, approved a revised concept design for phase I of the Turner Park splash pad that will make it easier to add features at the site down the road.

The revision includes extra concrete for more space, as well as several additional ground sprays that can be turned into above ground water features during phase II of the project. A second water activation bollard will allow the splash pad to be set up into two zones, including one for smaller kids.

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Dec

Monona Council awards contract for North Page Street improvements

The Monona Council, at its Dec. 16 meeting, approved the final plans, specifications, cost estimate and form of contract for the city’s North Page Street Improvement Project, and awarded the contract for the work to Bacon Concrete, LLC.

The Postville-based company will complete street improvements from the intersection of West Center and Page streets north to the railroad tracks. Plans include replacing the street surface, adjacent sidewalks, property drive-in entrances and all curb and gutter with Portland Concrete Cement. Water main replacement, storm water drainage improvements and sanitary sewer manhole structure upgrades will also be included in the project.

Bacon Concrete’s bid came in at $419,620.87, slightly below the $419,717.75 cost estimated by city engineer Jon Biederman, with Fehr Graham. 

Tue
17
Dec

Memories from Christmases past


Lillian Thornton and Marlene and Harry Abel recently shared some of their childhood Christmas memories. (Photos by Audrey Posten)

Shirley Connor fondly remembers her mother’s dressing, which always included raisins and apples.

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

Lovingly decorated trees, a hearty meal with family, visits from Santa Claus—What are considered traditional staples in today’s Christmas celebrations aren’t so different from how people enjoyed the festive season in the 1930s and 1940s. 

“We always had a tree,” recalled Shirley Connor, who was among a group from Great River Care Center and Turner Pointe Assisted Living, in McGregor, that recently shared some childhood Christmas memories. 

There weren’t any artificial trees then, she noted, and families rarely purchased a tree from a lot.

Tue
17
Dec

Canton turns over Monona city administrator role to Collins


Dan Canton will retire as Monona’s city administrator at the end of this week. Barb Collins, who was previously mayor and most recently served as deputy clerk, will now step into the position. (Photo by Audrey Posten)

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

Monona City Administrator Dan Canton will retire at the end of this week, relinquishing the role he’s held for nearly 10 years to Barb Collins, who’s most recently served as the city’s deputy clerk.

Canton started in Monona on June 24, 2010, following 10 years with the city of Minneota, Minn., and 18 as manager of a cooperative oil company in southwest Minnesota. The job, he said, offered he and wife Linda an opportunity to be closer to a rural property they own outside Decorah. The couple fell in love with the spot, which they’ve named Birch Point, as newlyweds in the 1970s.

Tue
17
Dec

MFL MarMac school board endorses ballot statement for facilities project petition

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

The MFL MarMac School Board, at its Dec. 9 meeting, endorsed the ballot statement for a petition that, if signed by at least 122 school district electors, would compel the board to call a special election for the proposed $7.8 million facilities bond referendum. 

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