News

Wed
24
Dec

Lighting contest winners named

Judging for the Christmas lighting contest sponsored by the City of Guttenberg and Guttenberg Development & Tourism took place the night of Thursday, Dec. 18. Winners are as follows. Prizes are in the form of credits on city utility bills.

Business

First place, $50 - Kuempel Hardware

Second place, $30 - Blooming Branches

Wed
24
Dec

Clayton Ridge school board considers facility plans

The Clayton Ridge Board of Director’s held a work session on Wednesday, Dec. 17, in the high school library.  Members in attendance were Janice Andregg, Jason Reimer, Christine Aulwes and  Mike Finnegan. Dr. Hoffmann arrived at 8:15 p.m. Absent were Kathy Ihde and John Heying.   Also in attendance were Allan Nelson, Kris Einck, Shane Wahls, David Schlueter, Mary Seifert and Brian Schwartz.

The work session was held to study goals and priorities for the school improvement master plan.Superintendent Nelson presented election rules and offered opinions on possibly changing facility goals to match the final design.  Input from a faculty meeting held earlier in the day was also shared. 

Wed
24
Dec

Film premiere brings new life to Rathskeller


Liz Smith, left, and Kari Houghtaling filmed a full-length tribute to their favorite film, Home Alone, in Guttenberg over a three-day weekend during last winter’s polar vortex. The film premiered in Guttenberg on Friday, Dec. 19, in the Rathskeller, hosted by Shepherd Gallery and Creativity Center. (Press photo by Molly Moser)

By Molly Moser

Nearly 150 guests walked the red carpet at Friday night’s premiere of Abode Solo. Dressed in glitz, glamour, and holiday sweaters, attendees flocked from Guttenberg, Milwaukee, New Orleans, Duluth, Iowa City, Des Moines, Minneapolis, and Dubuque to see the Home Alone tribute acted and produced by Guttenberg native Liz Smith and her close friend Kari Houghtaling.

Wed
24
Dec

GMH and UnityPoint conclude discussion on alignment


UnityPoint Health Dubuque and GMH have been exploring a closer partnership for more than a year. In October, the GMH Board of Directors announced a pause in discussions to give hospital leaders time to evaluate key issues important to the GMH employees, physicians and community. (Press photo by Molly Moser)

By Molly Moser

After more than a year of partnership discussions, UnityPoint Health Dubuque has announced their decision to conclude alignment discussions with Guttenberg Municipal Hospital. As a result of this decision, the Letter of Intent between the parties has been withdrawn.

“UnityPoint Health is anchored in a belief that healthcare is local,” says David Brandon, president and CEO of UnityPoint Health Dubuque. “While we continue to believe an alignment between our two organizations can strengthen healthcare in Clayton County, it has become clear that GMH needs to have a wider discussion about the future of healthcare in their community. We respect that, and until this conversation occurs, it is not in either of our organizations’ best interest to pursue a closer alignment.” 

GMH Board Chair Penny Hansel said, “We have learned a lot over the past several weeks and right now, the circumstances are not right for pursuing this. We appreciate UnityPoint Health’s understanding and respect for our community.”

Wed
17
Dec

Deadline reminder for scholarships

The grade transcript deadline for receiving Dollars for Scholars scholarship money is Jan. 7, 2015.

The letters should include a grade transcript and a completed recipient form. The recipient form (CR Dollars for Scholars Recipient Form) can be found at http://www.claytonridge.dollarsforscholars.org under the Students and Parents link.

The letters must be postmarked on or before Jan. 7, 2015. Please address letters to:

Wed
17
Dec

School board discusses financing

A special school board work session was held on Thursday, Dec. 11, and called to order by Vice-President Janice Andregg at 5:15 p.m. Board members present were Andregg, Christine Aulwes, Jeff Hoffmann, Mike Finnegan, John Heying and Jason Reimer. Also in attendance were Allan Nelson, David Schlueter, Kris Einck, Shane Wahls, Mary Seifert and Matthew Gillaspie.

Wed
17
Dec

City makes planning for train derailment a top priority


With trains becoming longer and potentially hauling increased amounts of crude oil, city officials are enhancing the existing disaster management plan to include derailment-specific training and actions. (Press photo by Austin Greve)

By Molly Moser

In response to the July 2008 derailment just outside of Guttenberg, the Dakota Minnesota and Eastern Railroad (a subsidiary of Canadian Pacific Railroad) agreed last week to pay $625,000 to settle a civil complaint filed by the state of Iowa and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. Four diesel locomotives that derailed were submerged in the river for days, leaking over 4,000 gallons of diesel oil and other petroleum products. The leak caused floating slicks of oil across a 10-mile stretch of Bluff Slough.

"This settlement covers just a portion of the losses," said DNR Fisheries Biologist Karen Osterkamp, who estimates that recreational and ecological losses are much higher. Turtles, mudpuppies, water birds, mussels, and fish were impacted immediately, and the long term effect of the petroleum still in the sediment remains unknown. The settlement is expected to go into effect after a 30-day comment period, at which point dollars would be used for Mississippi restoration.

In May of this year, another accident involving the railroad and a single vehicle caused all but two of Guttenberg’s 13 railroad crossings to be blocked by train cars for an extended period of time. “At the same time, the Marina Road was closed because of high waters –  so there was only one crossing open at the far south end of town,” said Guttenberg Mayor Russ Loven. “If there was a derailment affecting the same amount of the town we would have many challenges, especially if it were some type of volatile material.”

Wed
17
Dec

Washington professor writes on paddle pilgrimage


Ashley Hess snapped this photo of her father, John, with Dr. David Ellingson (right), whose book Paddle Pilgrim recounts his experiences with the people and places along the entirety of the Mississippi River. (Photo submitted)

By Molly Moser

Many have made the journey. They get their feet wet in the headwaters at Lake Itasca, and then paddle stroke after stroke, day after day, all the way to New Orleans. For professor and Lutheran minister Dr. David Ellingson, it was a journey of two million strokes over 65 days. 

A few thousand strokes in, Ellingson’s kayak cleared turbulent waters below Lock and Dam 10 and was welcomed ashore by two people on the small sandy beach that is Guttenberg’s shanty neighborhood.

“It was a Saturday afternoon. My daughter Ashley and I were down at the shanties with a little fire, sitting around in lawn chairs listening to music,” recalls Guttenberg city councilman John Hess. They invited Ellingson to pull his kayak up on the beach and started to chat. 

Wed
10
Dec

Edgewood woman dies in crash

Shari Harbaugh, 24, of Edgewood died following a single-vehicle crash in rural Clayton County west of Guttenberg on Sunday, Nov. 30.

According to a report from the  Iowa State Patrol, the crash is believed to have happened about 11:00 p.m. on Garber Road southeast of Lynx Avenue.

Wed
10
Dec

City council acts on settlements, moves forward on cluster mailboxes

By Shelia Tomkins

    The Guttenberg city council at its regular monthly meeting on Dec. 1 passed the first reading of an ordinance requiring cluster mailboxes in the city, settled two long-standing lawsuits against the city, and heard a presentation from the county emergency management director.

Mayor Russ Loven led councilmenbers Virginia Saeugling, Fred Schaub, Dave Schlueter, and Jane Parker through the evening’s agenda. City Attorney Mike Schuster and City Manager Mary Willett were also on hand.

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