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Tue
09
Apr

Art in the Alley Fund-raising for project continues

Art in the Alley Fund-raising for project continues
Dubuque is one of several Iowa cities with art in its alleyways. A movement is underway in Elkader to launch a similar project that would beautify the alley from City Hall to Founders Park.

By Pam Reinig
Register Editor

Efforts are currently underway to raise funds for a project that would transform the long stretch of alley from Elkader City Hall to Founder’s Park into a walking art gallery.

Art in the Alley, as the effort is known locally, has long been discussed by the Main Street Elkader Design Committee as a way to beautify the alley and draw more visitors to town. The project received seed money for Phase 1 in the form of a $10,000 matching grant from the Upper Mississippi Gaming Corporation. The committee has raised about half the money it needs through fund-raising events like the recent Abbie’s Artwork show, private donations and downtown building owner investments.

Tue
02
Apr

Moving on Gibney gets ready for new a challenge

Moving on Gibney gets ready for new a challenge
Ann Gibney, who is retiring at the end of the school year after more than 30 years at Central as a faculty member, is the new Elkader Chamber Coordinator.

By Pam Reinig
Register Editor

Ann Gibney is ready to finish one chapter and begin another.

    A teacher for more than three decades, Anny will retire at the end of the school year. And soon after she says her final good-byes, she’ll start a new job as Elkader Chamber Coordinator.

The decision to pursue the Chamber position came several weeks after Ann announced her retirement.

“I saw the advertisement in the paper and I thought ‘I can do that,’” Ann said. “I love Elkader, and I know I’m going to enjoy promoting it. People may not realize that without the school and a strong business community, we wouldn’t have such a vibrant community. I’m excited for the opportunity to share that message with everyone.”

Tue
26
Mar

Conversations with Your Congresswoman Finkenauer makes infrastructure tour

Congresswoman Abby Finkenhauer

By Pam Reinig
Register Editor

Northeast Iowans last week had an opportunity to meet one-on-one with Congresswoman Abby Finkenauer during an infrastructure-focused tour that also included small group meetings with constituents. In addition to a stop in her hometown of Dubuque and a tour of a storm-damaged school in Waterloo, Congresswoman Finkenauer spent an hour at the Guttenberg Public Library listening to concerns of residents there.

Finkenauer, who represents Iowa’s first congressional district, serves on the committee of transportation and infrastructure. Her “Conversations with Your Congresswoman” events are designed to highlight the important work being done and still needing to be done with flood mitigation and aging infrastructure.

Tue
19
Mar

MEET CENTRAL’S GEOGRAPHY WHIZ

MEET CENTRAL’S GEOGRAPHY WHIZ
Central 8th grader Olivia White has qualified for the next level of competition in National Geographic’s annual GeoBee.

By Pam Reinig
Register Editor

It’s not unusual for Olivia White to stop mid-paragraph when reading a novel and turn to a map to locate a village or country mentioned in her book. Neither is it unusual for her to research the traditions and lifestyles of people she’s reading about.

“Did you know there are people who drink curdled horse milk?” she asked. “I read about it so I checked it out just to be sure. Yup, there are people in Central Asia who really like that sort of thing.

A bright, articulate and engaging 8th grader at Central Middle School, Olivia’s vast knowledge of all things related to geography is paying off. She and her parents, Bernie and Melodie White of Volga, recently learned that Olivia is a semi-finalist in the National Geographic GeoBee competition, which will be held at the University of Northern Iowa on March 29.

Tue
12
Mar

Taking a stand NE Iowans make their opinions known

Hundreds showed up in Des Moines last week to share their opinions on a bill that would prevent state funds from being used for land acquisitions.
Hundreds showed up in Des Moines last week to share their opinions on a bill that would prevent state funds from being used for land acquisitions.

Dozens of Northeast Iowans were among the hundreds of conservation-minded people who last week descended on Des Moines to voice their disapproval of proposed changes to policies overseeing public land acquisition. Specifically, they were there to oppose two bills calling for changes in the way local conservation boards and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources acquire and use land.

Representatives from Allamakee, Winneshiek, Fayette and Clayton counties traveled together by bus to the Iowa State Capitol Building. According to Clayton County Conservation Board Director Jenna Pollock, who made the trip, there were comments from participants that the only time they get up that early is to go hunting or fishing or check on the cows calving.  
The two bills that motivated the trip were House File 542 and Senate Study Bill 1221.

Tue
05
Mar

Making a difference Mom helps son—and others—find jobs

Taylor Dahlquist
Taylor Dahlquist now works in a company his family launched to help find jobs for people who need employment support.

By Pam Reinig
Register Editor

Despite a strong desire to hold down a job, Taylor Dahlquist had difficulties finding work. Prospective employers were reluctant to give him a chance to prove that a young man like him—a young man with disabilities—would be reliable, productive and capable of working without constant supervision.

Realizing that many disabled people faced a similar challenge, Taylor’s mom, Carrie, set out on a mission to find jobs for them. Taylor’s dad, Patrick, and other family members assisted her. The result was CHOICE Employment Services, a family-owned agency based in Decorah since its inception in 2012. The agency has served over 100 people, including Taylor.

Tue
26
Feb

Central project Learning to make healthier choices

Kendra Crooks, an ISU Youth Outreach employee, helps Central students Caitlin Mussman and Blake Hunt plan a balanced meal and snack.
Kendra Crooks, an ISU Youth Outreach employee, helps Central students Caitlin Mussman and Blake Hunt plan a balanced meal and snack.
Caitlin Mussman samples a tangelo
Central 4th grader Caitlin Mussman samples a tangelo. She later gave the fruit a “thumbs up.”

By Pam Reinig
Register Editor

Here’s something to chew on: Studies have shown that relying on fast food and “junk” food can hurt how well children do in the classroom.

Researchers at Ohio State University and the University of Texas, Austin, report a 20 percent difference in the test scores of kids with healthy diets and those with a heavy reliance on processed, salty and deep-fried foods.

That’s of significant concern to educators. So to help students make healthier decisions about meals and snacks, Central school nurse Meghan Bergan applied for and received a grant that has enabled her to do nutrition education with 4th graders.

Tue
19
Feb

Cold realities of winter Missed school days, budget impacts

Makenzie Thorson making a snow angel
Snow days don’t seem to bother area youngsters. Makenzie Thorson, Elkader. took time last Tuesday to enjoy the near 8-inch snowfall. Makenzie’s parents are Dustin and Jaimie Thorson. Jaimie submitted the photo.
Kelly Tyer, measuring snow
According to this measurement and photo by Kelly Tyer, it snowed nearly 8 inches last Tuesday and 8 more over the weekend.
Elkader Bridge
Angie Marovets shared this photo taken at the entrance to the white water feature with the Clayton County Courthouse visible in the background.

By Pam Reinig
Register Editor

Next year, I’m paying closer attention to the Farmer’s Almanac. I don’t know how often their long-range weather predictions have been correct since they started publishing in 1818 but they certainly nailed it this winter.

The almanac’s forecast for the current season was released August 21, 2018. It predicted “teeth chattering cold and plentiful snow” for the Midwestern states. When we made it through November, December and into early January without experiencing either, I was ready to thumb my nose at the venerable publication.

And then, January 11, 2019, happened. That’s the date of the first significant snowfall across the state—and once it started snowing, it hasn’t stopped. And as far as “teeth chattering cold” goes, well, new records were set January 29-31 when wind chills reached -62 degrees in Elkader. That shattered the old record of -47 set in January 1996.

Wed
13
Feb

Abbie’s art Rarely viewed treasures to be exhibited

Painting of a Lady
Yellow Roses
Yellow Rose with Blue Pot (top) and Jeptha’s Daughter (bottom, left) are two of several works by the late Abbie Granni Griffth that will be displayed at an event later this month.

By Pam Reinig
Register Editor

A public look at a private art collection is set for later this month when pieces by Abbie Griffith Grannis go on display for the first time in 15 years.

Abbie’s impressive body of work includes many still life watercolors but there are also numerous oils on canvas, charcoal drawings and painted china pieces. Most of the art was created before 1915 when Abbie was a young woman. The pieces were last seen in 2004 at an Elkader Opera House exhibit.

“Grammie’s artwork was part of our lives—it was in her home and in our homes, and it was always treasured,” said her grandson, Bob Griffith of Elkader. Griffith and his sister, Nancy Griffith Kuehl, also of Elkader, as well as other members of their extended family own most of the pieces.

Tue
05
Feb

Central school upgrade Sports can be viewed in concessions area

A new camera system streams the action across the Internet so it can be enjoyed on this 55-inch TV.
With help from Alpine Communications, Central has been able to solve the issue of missing the action in the gym while enjoying a snack in the new concessions area. A new camera system streams the action across the Internet so it can be enjoyed on this 55-inch TV.
Mounted near the ceiling of the gym
Mounted near the ceiling of the gym, the camera gives a panoramic view of the action on the floor.

By Pam Reinig
Register Editor

If you’re a parent, relative, friend or classmate of a Central athlete, you’ve probably had this happen: You’re sitting in the stands watching the game and you decide you need something to eat. You want to avoid the rush so with time on the clock you ease out of your seat, make your way down the bleachers and out the gym door. Just as you’re digging into your snack, a loud roar erupts from the crowd and you know you’ve missed something big.

Thanks to collaboration between Central Schools and Alpine Communications, fans will never miss another big sports moment. The school recently unveiled a system that enables fans to see real-time action from the gym on an LED smart TV located in the new concession area. The equipment, which was researched and installed by Alpine, is part of the school’s nearly $7 million capital improvements project.

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