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Category Archives: Local News

Local News 9.20.2017

An Iowa couple is having a sweet celebration for their 50th wedding anniversary – Bob and Kate Shaw of Spirit Lake decided to make their 50th extra-special by driving around Iowa handing out free ice cream.  On Monday, September 11th the couple made stops at the Mahaska Health Partnership, Mahaska Communication Group, and Oskaloosa Pizza Ranch, where they distributed free treats from an ice cream storage unit on the back of a 1967 Ford pickup.  

Habitat for Humanity is known for building new homes, but in Pella the organization is trying something different – moving an existing home to a new location.   Joel Verhoef, community development and volunteer coordinator for Habitat, says the non-profit was gifted a two bedroom, one bath bungalow built in 1926.  Originally located at 905 Union St, the home will move to property owned by Habitat at 412 E 1st St.  Construction on the foundation on the new lot will begin in the next few weeks, Verhoef said. Habitat is looking to move the home before the middle of November, and is in the process of accepting bids for the project.

Local News 9.19.2017

Folks in Texas were recently hit with a flood of water from Hurricane Harvey; now they’re about to get hit by a flood of love thanks to students at Jefferson Intermediate School in Pella.  Teacher Matt Raucsh, a former resident of Dickinson, Texas, says students and staff are sending a “Flood of Love” to a district in Texas, which includes $1,800 raised by the school and dozens of green hearts containing encouraging notes from 4th – 6th graders at the school. 

The Color Blast 5k fun run and walk isn’t the only race this weekend in south central Iowa – the 7th annual “Nana Jana” 5k fun run is also taking place this Saturday at the Dan D Farm five miles south of Knoxville.   Each year runners take part in the event to help raise awareness of ovarian cancer. Creator of the run Dan Dennison says the run started seven years ago after the passing of his wife from ovarian cancer. Dennison says at that time they were doing a corn maze and figured a fun run would be a good way to bring awareness to ovarian cancer. The run begins at 9 a.m. with registration beginning at 8 a.m. The cost is $25 for adults and $15 for children 12 and under.

A driver involved in An early morning accident north of Ottumwa was killed last Thursday – Around 1 AM on the morning of September 14, the Wapello County Sheriff’s Office received a 911 call of a single motor vehicle accident on Hwy 63 northeast of Ottumwa.  Upon arrival Deputies located a 1997 Isuzu Trooper in the median on its top – Leslie Palmer Lane Age 59 of Fairfield, IA. Lane was deceased at the scene.


Local News 9.18.2017

South-Central Iowa is experiencing extreme drought, but relief may be on the way – that’s the word from the Jeff Johnson, meteorologist in charge  of the National Weather Service Des Moines office, who says  conditions may be favorable for more rainfall throughout most of central Iowa during the next two weeks.  While the weather may be warmer than normal, Johnson says in the next 8 to 14 days there will also be more chances for precipitation. However, he says long-term the drought may stay in place as fall and winter tend to be drier times of the year.

A fifth-grade teacher from Pella has been named the state’s History Teacher of the Year and Iowa Council for the Social Studies Elementary Teacher of the Year.  Rebecca Helland teaches at Jefferson Intermediate School and was nominated for both awards. She is also a mentor teacher for Pella Community Schools as part of Iowa’s teacher leadership system. Helland says she aims to engage students by asking questions  worth exploring and give them a broad social studies experience in the classroom.  Her favorite moments?  Helland says she loves when students are leading the discussion in her classroom.

Local news 9.15.2017

The Oskaloosa Police Department is pleased to announce that Officer Brandon Blanchard has been selected as the Oskaloosa Police Department’s 2017 Officer of the Year.  Blanchard began his career with the Oskaloosa Police Department on November 12, 2013 and has worked as a patrol officer since joining the Department. Officer Blanchard was selected because of his tremendous work ethic, professionalism and caring compassion for his job and community. 

Another black bear has been roaming around south-central Iowa – this time near Montezuma.  Deputies from the Poweshiek County Sheriff’s Office and the State Game Warden officer positively identified a black bear southeast of Montezuma on the evening of September 12.  Officials say the bear has shown no signs of aggressive behavior, and it not considered a threat to the public – however if you see this or any bear, keep your distance and let authorities know where you saw the animal.  

Local news 9.14.2017

Herfst Feest is back in the Tulip City!  Shortly after autumn officially begins, Herfst Feest, Pella’s fall festival, will be held in Pella on Saturday, Sept. 23.  While Pella’s Historical Society has hosted their own Herfst Feest in previous years, this is the third year that the Pella Area Community and Economic Alliance has hosted events during Herfst Feest.  The festival begins at 7 a.m. as Pella’s Kiwanis Club will begin serving poffertjes at the Vermeer Windmill. Registration for the Many Hands for Haiti 5K Color Blast Run will begin at 7:30 a.m.  The Historical Society will give tours and artisan demonstrations at the Vermeer Mill and Historical Village Museum, along with wagon rides.  Live music by Ben Muller and a food competition will be offered at the Cellar Peanut Pub, and Pella’s Marching Dutch will host the Marching Dutch Invitational Competition at Pella Community High School’s stadium.  Children will also be able to participate in face painting, caricature drawing and other activities.