River Valley

Wed
24
Jun

Friends of Pool 9 volunteers complete beach renovation


Dozer operator Ken Steiber removes the heavy growth of poison ivy and reshapes the beach surface. The Lansing beach area following renovation offers better beach accessibility and increased width of the beach area. Submitted photo.

Twenty Friends of Pool 9 (FOP9) volunteers and staff from the Upper Mississippi River National Wildlife and Fish Refuge McGregor District spent Friday, June 12 improving the beach area just upriver from Lansing. Shrubs, overhanging branches and poison ivy were removed and the beach was reshaped with a bulldozer. Brennan Construction of Lansing provide the equipment and Weymiller Marine transported it to the beach area. Ken Steiber operated the dozer, as he had done before for FOP9 during the 206 beach project.
The beach renovation project would not have taken place without the contributions of Brennan Construction and Weymiller Marine.  “This was a major donation by Brennan and Weymiller,” stated Bruce ReVoir, President of FOP9, “And we could not have done it without them. We thank them and appreciate their willingness to support FOP9 activities of this type.”

Wed
24
Jun

Ferryville to host evening bonfire, storytelling with Civil War historian

The Ferryville Tourism Council will be sponsoring an evening of family fun  Wednesday, July 1 near the south pavilion at Ferryville’s Sugar Creek Park, located on Highway 35. A bonfire and an evening of story telling around the fire will be held from 8-9:30 p.m.
The guest storyteller will be Civil War historian and author Bob O’Connor of Charles Town, WV.  O’Connor is the older brother of Ferryville resident Joanne White and he will be visiting Ferryville during that week. He is the author of 10 published books, including six novels and four non-fiction works. He has been a finalist four times in the National Book Awards competition.  He is also an artist in residence for schools and public libraries in West Virginia.

Wed
17
Jun

Energy audit saves Lansing resident's life


Deb and Kim Volker (left to right) of Lansing give credit to a home energy audit performed by Winneshiek Energy District's Green Iowa AmeriCorps program for saving Kim's life. A recent energy audit of their Lansing home revealed a water heater that was not properly ventilated and leaking LP gas. Submitted photo.

by Lissa Blake

It’s common knowledge that a home energy audit can help save money.
But for Lansing resident Kim Volker, it saved his life.
Volker, 63 years old, of Lansing, and his wife, Deb, have been doctoring for cancer for several years. Kim has CLL (chronic lymphocytic leukemia) and Deb has colon cancer.
While both are all too familiar with the fatigue associated with treatment, Kim came down with a respiratory ailment in October that he was unable to kick all winter. “I was coughing, tired and losing weight. I kept going to the doctor. They put me on five different antibiotics and none of them helped,” said Kim.
Kim was even referred to a pulmonologist in La Crosse, WI, “who really couldn’t explain the way I felt,” he said of his continued health mystery.

Wed
10
Jun

Mississippi River Adventure Day offers kids a free day of adventure on the river


Kids enjoy a short dip in the river to cool off during a past Friends of Pool 9 MRAD event on the Mississippi River. Submitted photo.

There are still openings for kids to have a day of adventure and learning from professionals at the Mississippi River Adventure Day (MRAD) sponsored by Friends of Pool 9. The  event is planned for July 14 and all costs for the day are paid by Friends of Pool 9.
Kids (ages 5-13) and parents will meet at the Lansing baseball diamond at 8 a.m. for check-in and instructions. They will then board the Mississippi Explorer boat or the USFWS boat and be transported to the beach area north of Lansing.
Planned activities (based on age level) include a birding boat ride, pollywogging for clams, seining for fish, getting close to river fur bearers, free swim time, canoeing, and a GPS search for buried treasures (these last two are planned for the 9-13 age group only).

Wed
03
Jun
Wed
27
May

Main Street Lansing’s Curt Snitker honored with Volunteer of the Year Award at Main Street Iowa Awards celebration


Curt Snitker, owner of Archive on Main in downtown Lansing, was presented with a Volunteer of the Year Award at the annual Main Street Iowa Awards celebration held May 1 in Des Moines. Snitker is the chairperson for the Design Committee of Main Street Lansing and is described as “an integral part of the Main Street Lansing program.” Pictured above at the awards presentation are, left to right, Iowa Governor Terry Branstad, Curt Snitker, Main Street Lansing President Bruce Palmborg and Director of the Iowa Economic Development Authority Debi Durham. Submitted photo.

Main Street Iowa hosted its annual awards celebration Friday, May 1 at the Community Choice Credit Union Convention Center (Iowa Events Center) in downtown Des Moines. The event to recognize local Main Street projects, activities and volunteers was attended by approximately 500 individuals representing communities across the state. Competitive nominations were submitted for 107 projects and activities within the five categories of design, economic restructuring, organization, promotion and overall program. Twenty-one projects received winner awards recognition and nine received honorable mention.

Wed
27
May

Second birding hike of the season May 30

The second birding hike of this season to be co-sponsored by the Ferryville Tourism Council and the Mississippi Valley Conservancy (MVC) will be held Saturday, May 30.  This is another in the MVC’s “Linked to the Land” series and is sponsored by the Mayo Health System-Franciscan Healthcare of La Crosse, WI.
The meeting place will be the Ferryville Village Hall at the south end of town  along Hwy. 35 at 7:30 a.m. for sign-in, directions, handouts and treats. Hikers will carpool to the trailhead in De Soto, WI for a hike at the newly named Cardinal Bluff Area. Expert guides will help identify birds that are both native to the area as well as some that are summer visitors.  

Wed
20
May

Friends of Pool 9’s Mississippi River Adventure Day scheduled for July 14


Adventurous 2011 MRAD kids reach to feel the moist skin of a flat-head catfish held by Jerry Boardman. Submitted photo.

Friends of Pool 9 will be offering another kids’ day on the beach this summer.  This will be the eighth year of the group’s Mississippi River Adventure Day.  The date selected for this year is Tuesday, July 14. The event is open to all children 5-13 years of age. All expenses for the day are paid by Friends of Pool 9. A parent or other adult is required for each child, however where a parent is bringing two or more children, Friends of Pool 9 will assign an adult to each additional child.
Registration must be completed online at friendsofpool9.org by July 1. Spaces are limited to the first 120 children and parents. While keeping proven activities of past years for younger groups (seining for fish, pollywogging for clams, touching the skin of a flathead catfish, dip-netting insects, free swim time, and visiting an eagle nest) a new format will be presented to the older children ages nine through 13 years.

Wed
20
May

New Albin Improvement League gets help from Keep Iowa Beautiful, Yeoman and Company


Volunteers from the New Albin Improvement League (NAIL) Neighbors Day make use of some of the tools they were able to purchase through the Yo-Ho Tools for a More Beautiful Iowa grant program facilitated by Keep Iowa Beautiful and Yeoman & Company of Monticello. Submitted photo.

New Albin Improvement League (NAIL) hosted its Spring Neighbors Day Saturday, May 2, with approximately 15 volunteers from New Albin making the day a huge success, according to event organizers. NAIL volunteers worked on several different jobs submitted to the committee and also some spring cleaning needed on City of New Albin property.
During this event, the committee was also utilizing new yard tools purchased through a grant from Keep Iowa Beautiful and Yeoman & Company (Yo-Ho Tools) out of Monticello. NAIL was able to purchase the tools from Sweeney’s Village Farm & Home in Waukon, fulfilling one of NAIL’s goals to purchase as many supplies as possible from local communities.

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