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Category Archives: Local News

Local News 5.28.2018

Two records for heat were shattered in Marion County over the weekend.  The daytime high of 93 degrees Saturday afternoon broke a 38-year-old record of 91. Another record was crushed with 97 degree air reported for multiple hours Sunday, as the previous high mark of 93 was set in 1895.  Heat index values will top out in the mid to upper 90s during the afternoon and early evening again today, with highs in the low-to-mid 90s.  Residents are reminded to stay hydrated and take frequent breaks in shade or air conditioning, as well as to always double check their vehicles before locking them if traveling with pets and children.

Oskaloosa sophomore Noah VanVeldhuizen is a player for all seasons.  Most high school athletes would love to play in a state tournament four times;  VanVeldhuizen will be playing in his fourth state tournament this week in Fort Dodge.  Not in one sport, but in four different sports.  He’s been in state tournaments in baseball last summer, then the state football playoffs last fall, basketball last winter and golf this week.  VanVeldhuizen said making it to four state tournament is not an individual achievement, but a team honor.

Local News 5.25.2018

Summer may officially be weeks away, but it’s going to feel like summer this holiday weekend as high temperatures may reach record levels.  According to the National Weather Service, daytime highs in Marion County will top out in the low 90s. The record high Saturday is 91 set in 1980 and Sunday’s all-time high mark in Marion County is 93 set in 1895. Heat index values will top out in the mid to upper 90s during the afternoon and early evening.

The Wall That Heals, a three-quarter scale replica of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, is returning to Newton next week after a five year absence.  Bringing the wall back to Jasper County has been a priority for Doug Bishop, a member of Jasper County Veterans Alliance. Working with members of Post 111, Newton’s American Legion Hall, Bishop has wanted to bring the wall back to Newton ever since its last visit in 2013.  The wall is a nearly identical replica of the famed black granite wall that stands on the grounds of the National Mall in Washington, D.C. 

Local News 5.24.2018

Jefferson County is taking a unique approach to replacing aging bridges – old railroad tanker cars are filling in for old, wooden narrow bridges on Jefferson County roads, saving a significant amount of money in the process.  A company in Oklahoma supplies the tanker cars; they cut off the ends of the cars and the county then places them in areas without flowing water.  A three-man county crew installs the tanker cars. The job requires a backhoe operator, a skid operator and one other person – with about an inch thick of steel the railroad cars are especially good at withstanding the weight of newer farm equipment.

The investigation into the accident at 1111 Franklin St. is still ongoing, according to the Pella Police Department. In the accident report, the driver doesn’t remember the accident, but remembers waking up in the car after the incident. The report also lists the driver’s condition as, “illness/fainted.” Pella Police Lt. Paul Haase said that based on the driver’s statement, it is possible that the diver blacked out sometime between entering Franklin Street and when he hit the house.   On Tuesday, May 8, Kyle Martin, 18, of Pella, drove a 2008 Silver Mazda CX-7 into the side of the house at 1111 Franklin St. The family living in the house was not home during the accident. The family’s dog, who was the only one home at the time, was unharmed as well. 

Local News

65 young men and women donned their caps and gowns recently as the Pella Christian High School class of 2018 was reminded to stay vigilant in their soul care as they begin the next chapter of their life after high school.  As guest speaker Lois Vermeer read through the class’ Bible verse, 1 Timothy 4:12, she said she was reminded of Timothy’s faith journey, as he was brought up in the Christian faith by his mother and his grandmother, Lois.  When things get difficult, Vermeer said it may feel like you’re faced with challenges that are beyond your capability to handle. But relying on God will help you fill the deficit, she said.  In conclusion she reminded the graduates to acknowledge God in everything as they achieve their goals.

A Pella native is currently serving with the U.S. Navy as a civil engineer corps (CEC) officer, overseeing construction projects that support the Navy’s high-tech fleet of ships, aircraft, equipment and personnel around the world.  Ensign Jon Verhoef completed the Civil Engineer Corps Basic Qualification Course at the Naval Civil Engineer Corps Officers School (CECOS) May 11; he’ll be heading to Commander Fleet Activities Okinawa, Japan, and will serve as assistant public works officer.

Local News 5.22.2018

During a special Pella City Council meeting, a Policy and Planning session was scheduled to talk about a proposed microbrewery ordinance.  During a presentation, City Administrator Mike Nardini addressed many of the concerns posed by Planning and Zoning members, most revolving around the size and location of the proposed Gezellig Brewing Company.  Prior to the presentation and council discussion, audience members spoke about microbreweries during a public forum, with the vast majority backing the use in the city and highlighting the benefits.  Overall, the entire Pella City Council expressed support to allow microbreweries in Pella as long as they produce no more than 10,000 barrels a year, are not in the Central Business District, and require at least one person over the age of 21 if other youth are on the premises as part of a family-friendly atmosphere.

Newton Christian School will be offering a free parenting seminar from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. May 31 at the school. Jeanetta Nieuwsma, a licensed clinical social worker and therapist at Pine Rest Mental Health, will present the seminar entitled, “A Parent’s Guide to your Child’s Screen Time.”  Nieuwsma will share practical parenting advice, including a  time for questions and answers. 


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