Community News


Waukon Chamber of Commerce seeking nominations for awards to be presented at annual meeting scheduled for February

The Waukon Chamber of Commerce is seeking nominations from community residents for awards to be presented at its annual banquet in February. Nominations are being accepted for awards including Years of Service, New Business of the Year, Business of the Year, Volunteer of the Year and Person of the Year honors.
The Chamber will bestow the honors upon more than one individual/group or local business fitting the following award’s criteria:

Years of Service Awards
Businesses celebrating a five-year increment anniversary (five-year, 10-year, etc.) in 2015 will be recognized at the annual meeting. Nominations can be made by business owners or anyone familiar with the business.


Faith, family and friends all instrumental in breast cancer recovery for Waukon’s Janet Kruger

Janet and Roger Kruger of Waukon enjoy spending time together and with their seven grandchildren, all pictured above. Janet underwent treatment for breast cancer two years ago but is doing well now. Submitted photo.

by Kelli Boylen
freelance writer


Fiesta Vallarta Mexican Restaurant opens its doors on Main Street in downtown Waukon

Fiesta Vallarta Mexican Restaurant, newly opened at 9 East Main Street in Waukon, recently received a First Dollar Visit from the Waukon Chamber of Commerce. Pictured above at the First Dollar presentation are, left to right, Waukon Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors member Sherrie Hunstad, Arturo, Albino, Nancy, Londy and Jose of Fiesta Vallarta Mexican Restaurant, and Waukon Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors member Tyler Halverson. Submitted photo.

Fiesta Vallarta Mexican Restaurant opened for business Monday, September 29 at 9 East Main Street in Waukon, former home of Main Street Entertainment. Business owner Jose Velarde said his appreciation for small towns led him to Waukon and the opening of his own business.
"I like the small towns, and I had been looking for a town like Waukon," Velarde shared. "When I saw there wasn't a Mexican restaurant here, I decided to try it."
The experience Velarde gained to open his own business came from working with his uncle in a Mexican restaurant in Ames, where he moved to after graduating from high school. "I had been working in the restaurant business for a long time and have seen that it is a good business to serve people, and I like that, so I decided to open my own restaurant," he said.


Waukon native Laura Larson honored at annual Fallen Fire Fighter Memorial

he name of Waukon native Laura Larson (seen near the middle of the above photo next to her own photo taped on the memorial) is etched in the marble Wall of Honor at the Fallen Fire Fighter Memorial in Colorado Springs, CO following her passing from ovarian cancer in May of this year. Larson's mother, Joanne Larson of Waukon, is pictured below during the annual Fallen Fire Fighter Memorial Observance weekend held in Colorado Springs, CO September 20 making a "rub" on a commemorative sheet of paper to capture the image of her daughter's name on the memorial. Submitted photos.

Laura Larson, the daughter of Joanne Larson and the late Ralph Larson of Waukon and a 1986 graduate of Waukon High School, was one of 168 firefighters honored at the 28th Annual International Association of Fire Fighters Fallen Fire Fighter Memorial Observance held in Colorado Springs, CO Saturday, September 20.
Larson, a Captain of Engine 56 with the Omaha Fire Department, died in May of this year from ovarian cancer at the age of 46. Her death was classified as a line-of-duty death due to years of inhaling toxic smoke ruled as contributing to her cancer. Her name is now forever commemorated after being engraved in the marble wall of honor that is part of the overall Fallen Fire Fighter Memorial located in the shadow of Pike's Peak of the Rocky Mountains.


Third annual local Fields of Faith event planned for Oct. 8

Students, parents and community members are invited to join thousands of others on athletic fields all across the nation Wednesday, October 8 to share their Christian faith with each other during the ninth annual national Fields of Faith event. Although in existence nationwide for those nine years, the local Fields of Faith event in Waukon is being held for just its third year that same evening at the Waukon High School football field after a successful inaugural event in 2012 that drew more than 400 local people, and a growing congregation of nearly 1,000 attendees last year.
The event will kick off with a performance again this year by the band "513FREE" which will take place at 6 p.m. The Fields of Faith program will begin at 7 p.m. with a series of speakers sharing their faith and other personal stories.


Waukon City Council agrees to a review of Third Street NE work

by Bob Beach

The Waukon City Council met in special session Tuesday, August 26 for further discussions about the paving project on Third Street NE. Mayor Loren Beneke told the Council that Veenstra and Kimm, Inc., an engineering firm based in Mason City, had agreed to review the engineering work on the project done by TeKippe Engineering, a division of Fehr Graham Engineering, the City's engineering firm.
City Attorney Jim Garrett told the Council that if Veenstra and Kim conclude that TeKippe made an error or errors in planning the project, the City may have a case to recover the cost of reviewing the project along with other damages.
Following a brief discussion, the Council unanimously agreed to pay Veenstra and Kimm, Inc. a fee of $3,200 to review the engineering work on the project.


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