Would you like to learn how to create your own prairie garden? The second installment in the new DIY Prairie Series will be from 10 a.m. Saturday at the Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge. This program will give you the information you need to establish your own prairie. From seed cleaning and planting to weed control and using a prairie garden for educational purposes, learn a new skill every month in this series. The February topic will be “Garden Planting.” Early planning can make prairie garden creation a snap. Learn the steps of designing a successful garden. For more information, check out the KCWN Community Calendar at wherehopeshines.org.
For some Oskaloosa Middle School students the numbers added up at Southeast Iowa Chapter Math Counts Competition this past Friday. This year’s competition was held on the Central College campus in Pella; Seven schools and 65 students participated in three rounds of competition in which students solved different types of math questions. The first round was the sprint round – students had 40 minutes to solve 35-40 problems. Next was the target round – answering pairs of questions for 8 problems. The final was the team round, where a group of four students collaborated to solve problems and show mastery of math concepts. This year Oskaloosa took a group of ten students who are also part of the Talented and Gifted program – Andrew Drost came in first place overall in the individual competion. His Team of Drost, Roach, Linder, and Nelson came in second overall! Lawson Morris came away with a fourth place finish overall in the individual competition as well.
Winter is here in South Central Iowa – widespread snow blanketed the area yesterday; Pella picked up six inches, while over in Knoxville they were just shy of 5″ of the white stuff. Additional snow is possible this evening, with a dusting up to two inches possible with a system expected after 6 p.m.
It was a deadly day on Iowa roads yesterday – Seven people, including two teenage sisters, were killed in vehicle crashes Monday across Iowa as a winter storm blanketed parts of the state with up to 8 inches of snow. Across the state, law enforcement agencies reported dozens of crashes that damaged more than 150 vehicles. Sgt. Nathan Ludwig, who has worked for Iowa State Patrol for nearly 20 years, said he could not remember another day this deadly on the roads. One of the deaths yesterday happened in a massive 70-car pileup near Ames on I-35.
A local business in Oskaloosa was destroyed by fire over the weekend – a massive blaze swept through International Ingredients Corporation at 2389 Highway 23 in Oskaloosa yesterday morning. The call to the Oskaloosa Fire Department went out at 11:04 am, and firefighters were able to see the smoke from almost the moment they left the station. Oskaloosa Fire Chief Mark Neff said an “all in” page went out to every Oskaloosa firefighter to respond to the station and gear up, and mutual aid was then asked of numerous South Central Iowa fire departments. Fatigue started to set in on firefighters after hours of fighting the blaze which was nearly the size of a city block. In all, nine departments battled the blaze: Oskaloosa, New Sharon, Cedar Township, Pella, Eddyville, Sigourney, What Cheer, Hedrick, and Ottumwa. The cause of the fire at this time in unknown; International Ingredient Corporation provides animal feed for everything from bees to horses, swine to cattle and companion animals.
Dressed up young ladies along with their spruced up dads and father figures took part in the annual Sugar Plum Fairy Ball Saturday, at Celebrate Community Church in Knoxville. Girls aged five to 12 got a chance to spend a night out with their father figures while enjoying a craft event, bingo, prize drawings, a dessert bar and a DJ. Photographers were also on hand to memorialize the night with photos of dads and daughters as well as pictures of daughters with special guest Miss Iowa 2017 Chelsea Dubczak.
Street food Netherlands-style is making it’s way to the west end of the Tulip City – Jason and Valerie Bandstra will open Dutchfix at 2610 Washington Street with a tentative plan to begin serving Dutch “street food” in April. The menu will have items that could be found in an Amsterdam fast food restaurant, Valerie said. Not all of their main menu items have been finalized, but one item they will offer is Frikandel. It looks like a hotdog, but does not have the same taste or ingredients. It will be homemade with chicken, pork and beef and no filler product. Dutchfix will use meats from local meat lockers, including In’t Veld’s Meat Market, Sully Locker & Market and Leighton Processed Meats.
The Shirley Carter murder case will get an even higher profile Friday night as the focus of a Dateline NBC episode. The one-hour program will air at 9 p.m.on WHO-TV. Dateline reporter Dennis Murphy has traveled twice to Iowa to interview Shirley’s husband, Bill, and other key figures in the case. He said the case is Shakespearean in nature, like something out of the Old Testament.
A fire at an apartment building in Knoxville resulted in a Knoxville Police officer being transported to the Knoxville Hospital and Clinics for possible smoke inhalation. The officer was transported shortly after he helped evacuate the building. Police Chief Dan Losada says the officer was treated and released. The fire was in an apartment building at 1804 Delores Street, and crews were dispatched at 3:01 PM yesterday afternoon. Smoke was visible from the street, but no flames could be seen. Thankfully no lives were lost in the fire; however about 12-20 people have been displaced by the incident.
Another fire in Knoxville happened this morning – emergency crews responded to reports of a structural fire at 902 E. Montgomery Street sometime after 8am; when crews arrived around 8:30am, flames were seen coming from a second story window and back upper portion of the home. Multiple area emergency crews responded to the call for help, and the fire was extinguished by around 9:30am. At this time the cause is unknown.