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Wed
06
Jan

A (half) marathon of generosity: Driftless Half-Marathon donates to area organizations and awards scholarships


Allamakee County Sheriff’s Department ... Left to right: Allamakee County Sheriff Deputy Ross Kolsrud with K9 Tyr, Driftless Half-Marathon Founder Amanda Hess and Allamakee County Sheriff Clark Mellick. Submitted photo.

Lansing Emergency Medical Services (EMS) ... Left to right: Lansing EMS volunteers Matt Wagner, Conrad Rosendahl, Steph Hill, Janet Hess and Brittany Darling, and Driftless Half-Marathon committee members Amanda Hess, Becky Rea and Kayla Smith. Submitted photo.

Lansing Police Department ... Left to right: Driftless Half-Marathon founder Amanda Hess, Lansing/New Albin Police Chief Conrad Rosendahl, and Driftless Half-Marathon committee members Becky Rea and Kayla Smith. Submitted photo.

Lansing Fire Department ... Left to right: Lansing Fire Department volunteers Tony Becker and Troy Hill, and Driftless Half-Marathon committee members Amanda Hess, Becky Rea and Kayla Smith. Submitted photo. Not pictured in any of the photos are other Driftless Half-Marathon committee members Amanda Robley, Maryann Baldwin, Rebecca Manning and Brooke Welsh, as well as additional donation recipient Harpers Ferry Fire and Rescue.

DHM Scholarship recipients ... Left to right: Waukon High School 2020 graduate Maddie Ellingson and Kee High School 2020 graduate Kinley Schobert. Submitted photos.

by Julie Berg-Raymond

A group of volunteers in Allamakee County ended 2020 – a difficult year, by any estimation – on a positive note, by donating $4,500 to organizations that serve their communities, as well as awarding scholarships to a pair of local high school graduates.

The volunteers, organizers of the third annual Driftless Half-Marathon (DHM) held October 10 between Harpers Ferry and Lansing, recently presented checks to the Allamakee County Sheriff’s Department K9 Fund; the Lansing Volunteer Fire Department; Lansing Volunteer EMS; the Lansing Police Department Kindness Campaign; and the Harpers Ferry Volunteer Fire Department and EMS.

“The majority of our donations (totaling more than $13,000 since the race’s founding) go to those who help make the race safe,” says DHM Founder and Director Amanda Hess. “Our medical volunteers are out on the course before and after the runners.”

Wed
06
Jan

Year in Review - Part II: Top local news stories from July-December 2020


New CEO at VMH ... Michael Coyle, the new CEO of Veterans Memorial Hospital in Waukon, pictured in his office at the hospital. Coyle brings years of experience to the position and began his duties August 3 following the retirement of Mike Myers, who served Veterans Memorial Hospital in that CEO role for 22 years. Submitted photo.

To read the the full article, Year in Review - Part 2: Top local news stories from July-December 2020, pick up this week's print edition or subscribe to our e-edition by clicking here.

Below is a portion of that article, July through August, summarizing the top news stories that appeared in The Standard.

Wed
30
Dec

Home of retired rural Lansing couple destroyed by fire early during the week of Christmas


Rural Lansing home burns the week of Christmas ... The home of Max and Cherrie Ruch of rural Lansing burned to the ground Monday, December 21. Pictured in the photo above, Max Ruch sits in a chair surrounded by the Christmas presents they were able to save from the home’s sun porch as the home he and his children built burns out of control. Submitted photo.

by Susan Cantine-Maxson

Monday, December 21, Cherrie Ruch was in the kitchen making Christmas cookies when she noticed a lot of smoke behind the rural Lansing home she and her husband, Max, own on River View Road along the Mississippi River. Her husband came into the kitchen asking why it was so smokey outside.

When they checked, the fall leaves and dried foliage behind their house were on fire. They quickly began filling containers full of water, trying to douse the flames. When they realized that the flames had also spread below their A-frame house which was built on piers, Cherrie called 9-1-1. In a matter of minutes, their house was ablaze.

Wed
30
Dec

Year in Review - Part I: Top local news stories from January-June 2020


Iconic Waukon restaurant destroyed by February blaze... Dave’s Gus & Tony’s Pizza and Steakhouse, located at 508 West Main Street in Waukon for just shy of 40 years, was completely destroyed by a fire reported around 9:30 a.m. Monday, February 10. Heavy smoke was originally seen pouring from the top of the building, and a mother and two children awaiting the late start to the school day at home in the living area above the restaurant were rescued early on through a second story window by passers-by using a ladder. The entire complex of three business buildings was evacuated, with the adjacent Edward Jones Investments and Waukon Chiropractic buildings, along with their residential living spaces, also sustaining damage but remaining standing as of now. Waukon Fire Chief Dave Martin says the fire started in the main floor area of the restaurant grill, but he says the actual cause of the blaze remains under investigation and required the knocking down of unstable exterior walls before being further looked into. Chief Martin says the future of the remaining buildings sustaining damage will be determined by the appropriate agencies in the near future. Additional photos are available at the Photo Galleries link found on this webpage.

To read the the full article, Year in Review - Part I: Top local news stories from January-June 2020, pick up this week's print edition or subscribe to our e-edition by clicking here.

Below is a portion of that article, January through February, summarizing the top news stories that appeared in The Standard.

JANUARY
Veterans Memorial Hospital physicians and staff have announced that the First Baby of the Year Contest was won by Sophia Mae Hernandez, daughter of Veronica Santoyo and Mario Hernandez of Postville. Sophia was born Monday, January 6 at 6:17 p.m., weighing 8 pounds, 4 ounces and measuring 19-3/4 inches long. Dr. Dave Schwartz assisted with the delivery.

Wed
23
Dec

Patterson Creek Social Club’s ditch tree display means even more this holiday season


One of the many you’ll see along Patterson Creek Drive ... The tree pictured above was decorated by Kelly Urell of Waukon, and was one that went beyond just decorating the tree with its creativity. More than 40 trees along Patterson Creek Drive northwest of Waukon off State Highway 76 have been decorated this year by area families, individuals and organizations in a holiday tradition that continues to grow since it first began 10 years ago. Submitted photo.

Trees celebrating heritage ... The Patterson Creek Social Club tree is done by Andy Schlitter and Maureen Fahey of Waukon and this is a tree that has been decorated almost every year since the ditch tree tradition started 10 years ago. After Christmas they flip the sign and it says, “Irish you a happy St. Paddy’s Day!” Submitted photo.

Trees that give back ... The tree pictured above is called the Giving Tree, and although it’s technically located on adjacent Haymeadow Drive, it’s certainly been a popular addition to the ditch tree tradition. The tree is decorated by Kris and Eaton Coté, and just some of the many toys and fun things remain on it that kids could pick off as a gift as they drive by with their family. Submitted photo.

Trees in memory of loved ones ... Pictured above is one of more than a half dozen memorial trees decorated in memory of loved ones along Patterson Creek Drive. This one is decorated in honor of Tom Baxter by his family and features many of his favorite things, such as the Iowa Hawkeyes, dairy products from his career at Calhoun Creamery, and all things Irish. Submitted photo.

Trees in their honor ... The tree pictured above was decorated by Haylee Hanson of Lansing in honor of teachers. There were also trees in honor of Veterans Memorial Hospital and other front line and essential workers who have risked so much this year during the COVID-19 pandemic to keep doing their job. Submitted photo.

Trees that show their passion ... The tree pictured above was decorated by the Dan and Jane Sivesind family of Waukon. It shows their passion for the dairy industry with ribbons and awards from showing dairy cattle, as well as ear tags and twine string garland. Submitted photo.

by Lissa Blake

During a holiday season that follows the kind of year that 2020 has been, when people likely need something to really lift their spirits, a group of local friends, neighbors and families has found a way to add even more meaning to what has become an annual tradition.
What started out 10 years ago as just a fun way to dress up a few scraggly ditch trees along Patterson Creek Drive, has blossomed into an eclectic display of more than 40 trees decorated by a variety of people in an even wider variety of themes.

“I’m incredibly impressed with the selection this year. There are so many cute, creative, commemorative and comical trees,” said Elizabeth Mahr, a Waukon High School  and Iowa State University graduate.

Wed
23
Dec

Allamakee County Freedom Rock now protected by steel shelter constructed and generously donated by Waukon native


Covered in generosity ... The Allamakee County Freedom Rock located in the Waukon City Park received a protective covering Wednesday, December 16 courtesy of Waukon native Greg Dougherty of Gillette, WY. Dougherty’s company, Greg’s Welding, Inc. with locations in Wyoming and North Dakota, constructed the steel frame for the shelter in Wyoming before transporting the pieces of the structure to Waukon, along with a crew that assembled the finished product pictured above with help from local contractor Kelly Concrete, with all labor and materials generously donated to provide shelter for the Freedom Rock before winter sets in. Standard photo by Joe Moses.

Waukon native gives generously ... Waukon native and 1977 Waukon High School Greg Dougherty is pictured above standing next to the Allamakee County Freedom Rock in the Waukon City Park. Dougherty, owner of Greg’s Welding, Inc. in Gillette, WY, donated the design, construction and installation of a steel protective shelter that was installed over the Allamakee County Freedom Rock Wednesday, December 16. Standard photo by Joe Moses.

Committee thrilled with completion ... Waukon native Greg Dougherty (center) of Gillette, WY stands under the new Freedom Rock shelter with Allamakee County Freedom Rock Committee members, Waukon Park and Recreation Wellness Director Jeremy Strub (left) and Ardie Kuhse (right), who began the process to bring a Freedom Rock to Allamakee County back in 2016. Dougherty learned of the Allamakee County Freedom Rock this past summer while home visiting his mother and other family members, and continued to follow its progress before offering to donate the construction and installation of the steel shelter now protecting the monument. Standard photo by Joe Moses. Additional photos can be found in a Photo Gallery on this website.

Additional generosity aids in completion ... Local contractor Kelly Concrete added its own bit of generosity to the completion of the new shelter over top the Allamakee County Freedom Rock located in Waukon City Park. Owner Chad Kelly and his crew dug and poured the concrete footings to which the shelter’s four corner posts are anchored, and also provided the services of the company’s crane truck (pictured above) to lift the steel roof structure and hold it in place while it was secured to the metal posts supporting the structure in each of the shelter’s four corners. Standard photo by Joe Moses. Additional photos can be found in a Photo Gallery on this website.

Shelter kicks off Phase II of monument project

by Joe Moses

The Allamakee County Freedom Rock project took another step forward Wednesday, December 16 with the installation of a steel shelter over the monument honoring veterans in the Waukon City Park (see photo above).

Greg Dougherty, a Waukon native now residing in Gillette, WY, donated the steel shelter in addition to the services of his company, Greg’s Welding, Inc. with locations in Wyoming and North Dakota. Dougherty and a crew comprised of foremen from his company made the more than 12-hour journey from Gillette to Waukon in transporting the steel shelter and then installed it at the site of the Allamakee County Freedom Rock.

Wed
23
Dec

Musicians, fans come together to celebrate and support blueswoman and Waukon native Vicki Price following her successful cancer surgery


Vicki and Joe Price ... Submitted photo taken by Bradley Cook.

Benji Nichols ...

David Zollo ...

Mike McAbee ...

Rad Lorkovic ...

Mike Munson ...

‘Christmas at T-Bock’s’ virtual concert will feature several regional musicians, plus Joe and Vicki Price

by Julie Berg-Raymond

It would be difficult - indeed, it may be impossible - to adequately express the importance of music in all of our lives. Whether we’re celebrating, mourning, dancing or dreaming, music has always offered a way to punctuate the experience of living a fully human life.

In the great bluesman Willie Dixon’s estimation, music (particularly, for him, blues music) is also a way of “calling on God”; and the past year has seen many of us doing exactly that, as we have turned to musical artists of the past and present for what their work makes possible - an experience of the connection to something greater than and beyond ourselves. In the wail of a steel guitar, the sigh of a tenor sax, the moan of a perfectly turned blue note, we hear the echo of our own longings; we know we are not alone.

Wed
16
Dec

Honoring a local hero and others on that “date which will live in infamy”...

Members of the local Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) and American Legion Posts joined with members of the Lawrence D. “Bud” Anderson family (pictured above) near his gravesite (pictured below) at Mt. Olivet Cemetery outside of Waukon Monday, December 7, a date honored each year as Pearl Harbor Day after the Japanese attack on that U.S. Navy shipyard located on the island of Oahu in the state of Hawaii in 1941 - a day labeled by then U.S. President Franklin D. Roosevelt as “a date which will live in infamy”. The gathering marked the date of that surprise attack that ultimately drew the United States into World War II, and also marked the date that 23-year-old

Wed
16
Dec

Ultraviolet lights streamline sanitation in Allamakee County ambulances and hospital


Allamakee County EMS receives donation of ultraviolet lights ... Representatives of the various Emergency Medical Services (EMS) departments in Allamakee County are pictured above with ultraviolet light systems recently purchased by the Allamakee County Community Foundation through the generous support of area individuals, organizations and businesses. The ultraviolet lights will be used to enhance sanitation measures in all area ambulances and at Veterans Memorial Hospital in Waukon. Pictured above, left to right, are: Front row - Mindy Koenig - Postville Area Ambulance, Cheryl Livingston - Veterans Memorial Hospital Ambulance, Brittany Darling - Lansing EMS and Becky Benzing - Harpers Ferry Rescue Squad; Back row - Conrad Rosendahl - Lansing EMS, Randy Plaht - Postville Area Ambulance and Loren Mitchell - Waterville Ambulance. Submitted photo.

Area individuals, organizations and businesses help make the purchase through Allamakee County Community Foundation challenge grant

Amid rising numbers of positive COVID-19 cases, Allamakee County medical providers have a new avenue for stopping the spread. Harnessing the power of local generosity, the Allamakee County Community Foundation (ACCF) has purchased 12 quick-sanitizing ultraviolet (UV) lights for the six ambulances services of Allamakee County, along with special eye protection glasses, replacement bulbs and two larger lights for Veterans Memorial Hospital in Waukon.

“We are grateful to the people, organizations and businesses of Allamakee County who donated to this cause,” says Betty Steege, ACCF coordinator. “EMS touches us all, and the medical community needs our support more than ever as the virus continues to present challenges in our area.”

Wed
16
Dec

Allamakee County Public Health offers information on COVID-19 vaccination locally

Allamakee County Public Health recognizes there is a lot of information regarding the new COVID-19 vaccine. To help explain the local process, Allamakee County Public Health officials offer the following clarifications:

• COVID-19 vaccines will be distributed in phases and County Public Health will adhere to guidelines and plans as provided by the Iowa Department of Public Health.
• The first allotment - called Phase 1A - will be prioritized for long-term care facilities and healthcare workers. Long-term care facility vaccinations are contracted through pharmacies, and most local healthcare workers will be vaccinated by Allamakee County Public Health.
• The vaccine is not yet available to the general public and local healthcare providers are not able to give it to their patients at this time.

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