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Wed
30
Nov

Canadian Pacific Holiday Train to return to Lansing and New Albin the evening of December 7 ...

The Canadian Pacific (CP) Holiday Train will return to the rails this season on its first cross-continent tour in three years, following virtual concerts in the pandemic years of 2020 and 2021. The 24th Annual Holiday Train will again raise money, food and awareness for local food banks in communities along the CP network, making its way through northeast Iowa Wednesday, December 7 with stops in Guttenberg, Marquette, Lansing and New Albin before a final stop that day in La Crescent, MN.

Wed
30
Nov

Effigy Mounds National Monument signs agreement to become Tribal Sister Park to Ioway Tribe National Park

The National Park Service (NPS) Effigy Mounds National Monument and leaders of the Iowa Tribe of Kansas and Nebraska (ITKN) signed a first-of-its-kind agreement establishing the first Tribal Sister Park relationship between a U.S. National Park and a Tribal Nation’s National Park this past week. This agreement promotes cooperation and support between Ioway Tribal National Park, located along the south/northeastern border between Nebraska and Kansas, and Effigy Mounds National Monument, located in northeast Iowa. It enriches the experience and capacity of the personnel at both parks, strengthening the nation-to-nation relationship.

Wed
30
Nov

Board of Supervisors continues discussion on Veterans Memorial Hospital Board of Trustees; Special session scheduled for Wednesday afternoon


Iowa River Drive now open to all traffic ... Allamakee County officially reopened Iowa River Drive (County Road A26) Wednesday, November 23. Allamakee County Engineer Brian Ridenour said there is some finishing work to be completed yet next spring, with flaggers and pilot cars being used at that time for traffic control in order to avoid any further detours. The project began in mid-April of this year, resulting in a detour that took traffic through Lansing before heading north to New Albin. The six-mile stretch of roadway that was worked upon between just west of Wheatland Drive and the Iowa River Drive intersection with Great River Road (State Highway 26) involved grading, culvert replacements, small bridge replacement, areas of full pavement removal, areas of milling of the asphalt surface, and a new hot mix asphalt pavement being laid down the entire six-mile length of the project. Skyline Construction out of Decorah was the primary contractor on the project that resulted in the roadway being closed to through traffic for the past seven months.

by Joe Moses

The Allamakee County Board of Supervisors met in regular session Monday, November 28 to address a full agenda of matters including an update relating to the Veterans Memorial Hospital City-ownership to County-ownership conversion, discussion of improvements and increased maintenance of Hickory Nut Drive, and discussion relating to the condition of Allamakee County Courthouse restrooms, among other matters.

During Public Comment, Lansing area resident Doug Mullen discussed the City-ownership to County-ownership conversion of Veterans Memorial Hospital (VMH) following the passage of Public Measure AN in the November 8 General Election. Mullen noted that he believes many who voted in favor of the conversion did so due to their perception that a vote against the measure would result in the closure of the hospital.

Wed
23
Nov

Iowa River Drive to open to all traffic late this afternoon

Allamakee County officially will reopen Iowa River Drive (County Road A26) at 4 p.m. Wednesday, November 23. Allamakee County Engineer Brian Ridenour said there is some finishing work to be completed yet next spring, with flaggers and pilot cars being used at that time for traffic control in order to avoid any further detours. The project began in mid-April of this year, resulting in a detour that took traffic through Lansing before heading north to New Albin. The six-mile stretch of roadway that was worked upon between just west of Wheatland Drive and the Iowa River Drive intersection with Great River Road (State Highway 26) involved grading, culvert replacements, small bridge replacement, areas of full pavement removal, areas of milling of the asphalt surface, and a new hot mix asphalt pavement being laid down the entire six-mile length of the project.

Wed
23
Nov

End of a powerful era: Lansing Generating Station approaching its final days as Alliant Energy transitions to its clean energy blueprint


Powerful presence for nearly 75 years coming to a close ... The Alliant Energy Lansing Generating Station located just south of Lansing will be taken out of production and closing its doors as the year 2022 transitions into the new year. The plant originated in 1948 and at one time included four production units, three of which were retired from service during the timeframe of 2006-2013. The fourth and final unit will be retired at year’s end and the demolition and clean-up of the plant will take place throughout 2023 and 2024 as Alliant Energy transitions to its clean energy blueprint that intends to have all of its coal-fired power plants, such as the one in Lansing, retired by the year 2040. Photo by Susan Cantine-Maxson.

Part of the Lansing area landscape for nearly three quarters of a century ... The Lansing Generating Station, pictured at right looking north toward Lansing and pictured below looking to the south, has been a long-time industrial icon within the more natural landscape of the bluffs and river valley just south of Lansing for nearly 75 years. The facility is being retired from production and will be closed as this year transitions into the new year of 2023, with demolition of the plant facility and removal of its equipment to take place throughout 2023 and into the year 2024 as the site is planned to be returned to its more natural state by Alliant Energy. Photos courtesy of Alliant Energy.

Find some reflection by family members of some early and long-time employees of the Lansing Generating Station here.

by Susan Cantine-Maxson

As winter begins to make itself known around the Driftless region, residents cozy up in their homes, turn on the lights a little earlier than the day before and are thankful for consistent electricity which is supplied by Alliant Energy throughout Wisconsin and Iowa.

Wed
23
Nov

Canadian Pacific Holiday Train to return to Lansing and New Albin ...

The Canadian Pacific (CP) Holiday Train will return to the rails this season on its first cross-continent tour in three years, following virtual concerts in the pandemic years of 2020 and 2021. The 24th Annual Holiday Train will again raise money, food and awareness for local food banks in communities along the CP network, making its way through northeast Iowa Wednesday, December 7 with stops in Guttenberg, Marquette, Lansing and New Albin before the final stop of that day in La Crescent, MN.

Wed
23
Nov

November 30 is deadline to complete survey on local housing needs; more input needed from residents, commuters

The City of Waukon is working with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach on a program to help improve housing in the area. The Rural Housing Readiness Assessment program, or RHRA, has been implemented in over 40 rural communities across Iowa and has won numerous awards for assisting communities in the development of housing action plans.

The program begins with a self-assessment of the community that collects relevant plans, studies, resolutions and ordinances. As part of this assessment, input from the wider community is sought through a survey to help highlight housing needs from residents and people who travel to Waukon to work. November 30 is the deadline for the survey.

Wed
23
Nov

Holiday Parade in Waukon scheduled for December 8; Entries being sought

Members of the First Presbyterian Church in Waukon have assumed the role of organizing this year’s Holiday Parade in Waukon. The event is scheduled for Thursday, December 8, beginning at 7 p.m., in an effort to coordinate with the local Holiday Hop event being planned by Waukon businesses earlier that same evening.

Anyone from the general public, business community, school or any community organization is invited to decorate any vehicle, float, side-by-side or other creative avenue with lights and participate in the parade as it travels through downtown Waukon. All registered entries will be entered in a drawing for prizes, and there will also be a Grand Prize awarded for the most festive float.

Wed
16
Nov

An epic journey: Waukon graduate Owen Frieden logs more than 2,000 miles hiking the Appalachian Trail this past summer


Nearly 2,200 miles from start to finish ... Owen Frieden of Dorchester, a 2021 graduate of Waukon High School, is pictured both above and at right at the beginning and end of his journey this past summer hiking the Appalachian Trail across 13 states in 149 days. Although the Appalachian Trail is designated as beginning at Springer Mountain, GA, Frieden’s nearly 2,200-mile trek began at the Appalachian Trail Approach, where he is pictured above, at Amicalola Falls in Dawsonville, GA, which is one of the access points for Springer Mountain. Nearly 2,220 miles and half a year later, Frieden reached the Appalachian Trail’s ending destination of Mount Katahdin in Baxter State Park in east-central Maine, where he is pictured below raising his trekking poles in jubilation 149 days later, having completed his journey. Submitted photos.

Sunrise on McAfee Knob ... Waukon High School 2021 graduate Owen Frieden raises one of his trekking poles above his head in celebration of the sunrise view he has from McAfee Knob while hiking the Appalachian Trail this past summer. McAfee Knob is located on Catawba Mountain near Catawba, VA and is described by hikers as one of the highlights of the Appalachian Trail for its panoramic rock ledge and the view it provides. Submitted photo.

Variety of pathways ... The trek along the Appalachian Trail that Owen Frieden of Dorchester completed this past summer encountered a variety of pathways through the nearly 2,200-mile journey he covered in 149 days. Among those pathways were the wooden planks known as “bog boards” (photo above) that make their way through the Alpine Mountain environment in Maine, or the rock-lined path across the top of Franconia Ridge (photo directly below) in New Hampshire, or the dirt path (lower photo) cut through the Great Smoky Mountains National Park beautifying both North Carolina and Tennessee. Submitted photos.

by Lissa Blake

Looking back at how he spent his summer, Waukon High School graduate Owen Frieden has a lot to reflect upon. He hiked 2,194.3 miles across 13 states in 149 days, all on the Appalachian Trail in the eastern United States. Not only was the long journey the greatest adventure of his life thus far, he says he also made “an unfathomable number of friendships that will last a lifetime.” Frieden shared photos and commentary from much of his epic adventure on his Facebook blog: https://www.facebook.com/WOATH22.

Wed
16
Nov

Allamakee County voters approve hospital ownership conversion from City to County, follow most trends in other November 8 General Election ballot items

Nearly 60% of registered voters in Allamakee County cast a ballot in the November 8 General Election, resulting in 5,849 votes being recorded by Allamakee County residents. Although that local turn-out was part of this year’s statewide trend of being one of the largest voter participations in recent history for a mid-term election (at slightly less than 55% statewide), area voters also had added incentive with the inclusion of the much more local decision of determining the ownership fate of their local hospital.

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