The fight against cancer returns to Knoxville tomorrow – the best in nation Coaches vs. Cancer event kicks off at 8am tomorrow morning at the Knoxville high school. Celebrating its 10th anniversary this year, the event will feature a silent auction as well as alumni basketball games, varsity basketball games against Chariton and a survivor’s ceremony. Co-organizer of the event Jim Uitermarkt commented the event started on a whim ten years ago, and says its “jaw dropping” to see how the event has progressed and changed over the years.
Governor Kim Reynolds and acting Lt. Governor Adam Gregg will make a stop in Pella and Oskaloosa tomorrow as part of their Unleashing Iowa Tour. Reynolds and Gregg will have a public event at Smokey Row in Pella at 9 a.m. Following the forum in Pella, Reynolds and Gregg will be at Smokey Row in Oskaloosa at 11 a.m. as well.
The city of Pella is one step closer to more housing near the Bos Landen Golf Course after council approved additional items for the housing developments this week. Once completed, the project will add 100 additional housing units to Pella. Included in the plan is the possibility of up to 45 new homes in the area just off of Highway T-15, and 30 to 40 unit retirement cooperative south of the current Bos Landen clubhouse.
The city of Oskaloosa will be a bit quieter on Wednesdays this year – with attendance in decline for several years now, the Southern Iowa Speedway has decided to end events on Wednesdays. Race lovers don’t despair – there will still be plenty of activity at the Southern Iowa Speedway, including special events like ‘Redneck Rally Racing’, demolition derby and other fair-related racing; The Front Row Challenge will also return with a 2-day show. Racing across the nation has seen a gradual decline in attendance; other area tracks have also quit racing, including Des Moines, Eldon, and Bloomfield.
Crime in South Central Iowa continued its decline in 2017, and that’s good news for residents and law enforcement – Pella Police Chief Robert Bokinsky says arrests have been down every year since 2013, with traffic accidents and tickets issued also lower compared to 2016. Borinsky feels the decline in arrests is the direct result of better investigations by their department and the work of the Marion County Attorney’s Office leading to more effective charges, convictions, and prison time for habitual offenders. Why traffic accidents are down is less clear; from 258 in 2016 to 188 in 2017 – Borinsky says additional studies will need to be done to see if this is a sustainable trend.
The discovery of bones from three different woolly mammoths in Mahaska County in 2010 came as quite a surprise to residents; now the event is being celebrated in a new children’s book titled “Mahaska Mammoth: Woolly Dreams” Woolly Dreams tells the story of Woolly, a little mammoth who dreams of becoming a brave explorer. The book was written by Laura DeCook, Linda Fox, and Mary Jane Sullivan—all are members of Friends of Mahaska County Conservation, the organization sponsoring the book. It was illustrated by Karen Phelps, a former naturalist and current Director of Benton County Conservation. Woolly Dreams is available for purchase online at Amazon and barnesandnoble.com; all proceeds will benefit Friends of Mahaska County Conservation.
The driver in a fatal accident at the intersection of Shaw Street and Highway T17 this past Sunday has been identified – Connie Jo Galbraith was found in a pickup truck with the front of the truck against a tree, according to the Marion County Sheriff’s office. She sustained injuries to her leg and a laceration to her forehead. Once Galbraith was taken out of the vehicle she was flown to Mercy Medical Center in Des Moines where she later died from her injuries. The accident is still under investigation.
Democrat Fred Hubble made a stop at the Riverside Restaurant this past Sunday in Ottumwa, where the candidate for Iowa governor made his case for why he is best suited to replace Republican Kim Reynolds. Collective bargaining and Medicaid privatization came in for particular attacks, with Hubbell saying the state is losing too many teachers to other states and that the handling of health care, and in particular mental health issues, hasn’t matched the promises of Reynolds and her predecessor Terry Branstad. In a crowded field of candidates, Hubble said his 25 years in the private and public sector make him stand out.
Pella Regional Health Center Therapy Services department has moved a new location within the Iowa Orthopaedic Center to the west of the hospital. As of today, all patient appointments for physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech therapy will be at 500 Jefferson St. The entrance to the building is to the east, with parking around the building. Therapy Services will occupy the second floor above Iowa Ortho. Director of Therapy Services at Pella Regional Gene Schmitz says the staff is excited about the open space, new equipment, and furthering their close relationship with Iowa Ortho. The hospital’s inpatient care and at-home care programs will remain in the location they currently reside, which is near the entrance on the north side of the hospital.
In Oskaloosa, the Mahaska Health Partnership welcomed its first baby of 2018 at 4:12am on Thursday, January 4th – Adan Dean Martin weighed 6 lbs., 7 oz., and was 20 inches long. His parents are Patricia Snook and Travis Martin of Sigourney. As MHP’s first baby of 2018, Adan received a basket full of gifts from MHP and Whispering Tree Gifts, the Hospital Auxiliary’s gift shop located just inside Entrance #4 on the MHP campus. Adan wasn’t due until mid-January, so he came as a bit of a surprise to his 4-year-old brother Joshua; however he has since warmed up to the idea of being a big brother.