North Iowa Times

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Tue
24
Feb

Bickel steps down as fire chief after 30 years


New McGregor Hook and Ladder No. 1 fire chief Jerry Thornton (left) and retiring chief Dan Bickel pose in front of the department’s new truck. The truck is named “Richard” in honor of former fireman Rick Walters, who bequeathed the department $50,000 to go toward the purchase of a new truck when he passed away. (Photo by Audrey Posten)

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times Editor

Dan Bickel stepped down as  the fire chief of McGregor Hook and Ladder No. 1 earlier this month after holding the post for 30 years.

Bickel said the firemen have held an election once each year, in February, since the department’s inception over 140 years ago. This year, Jerry Thornton, who’s been assistant chief for 27 years, was elected chief. Tom Sauer was named assistant chief, while Trampus Thornton will be the foreman and Tom McElwaine the assistant foreman. Tom Luber was named the training officer and Rory Lindner the assistant training officer. The secretary/treasurer will be Kent Pfeiffer.

Tue
24
Feb

Swede Ridge quilters enjoy fellowship, making a difference


Eunice Carlson, Shirley Jensen, Jean Peterson, Olga Corlett, Lois Davis, Edith Nading, Dorothy Peterson and Helen Borcherding gather around one of the 114 quilts they made last year. (Submitted photo)

Cheryl Corlett hems the quilts once the other ladies tie and pin them. (Photo by Audrey Posten)

Yvonna Redemske and Edith Nading show off the blocks tediously cut and pressed by fellow quilter Jean Peterson. Much of the material used for the quilts is donated. (Photo by Audrey Posten)

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times Editor

For several generations, the ladies of Swede Ridge Lutheran Church have quilted for a cause.

Every year, starting in October, the women get together each Wednesday to make quilts for Lutheran World Relief. They work through the month before taking a break for the holidays in November and December, then return to quilting in January, not stopping until the beginning of May, when the quilts make their way to Minneapolis. From there, quilts from all over the country are distributed to those in need around the world.

Tue
24
Feb

DNR looks to collect 200 more samples for CWD testing

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times Editor

The Iowa DNR launched a special deer hunt in part of Allamakee County Feb. 21 in an effort to collect 200 additional samples from the Harpers Ferry area after three wild deer killed there during the recent hunting season tested positive for chronic wasting disease (CWD).

The three new “positives” brought the total number of confirmed cases of CWD in wild deer in Iowa to four, after one harvested near Harpers Ferry also tested positive in 2013.

Tue
24
Feb

McGregor Hook and Ladder No. 1 has new truck


Accepting a grant from Upper Mississippi Gaming Corporation Board President Norm Lincoln (right) that aided in the purchase of McGregor Hook and Ladder No. 1’s new fire truck are (left) Dan Bickel, Tom Sauer, Tom Luber and Jerry Thornton. (Submitted photo)

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times Editor

McGregor Hook and Ladder No. 1 took possession of its new fire truck, a 2014 International, in January. 

The truck, which holds 1,100 gallons of water and has a 1,250 gallons per minute pump, was purchased from Simon Fire Equipment in Farley, Iowa. The truck itself is brand new, said former fire chief Dan Bickel, but the pump and box are used, salvaged from another truck that was involved in a fire.

“It was paid for by a unique set-up,” Bickel said of the $200,000 truck. “There was no loan, bond or taxes assessed.”

Tue
24
Feb

City of McGregor, MMU vow to have better communication

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times Editor

The McGregor Council and members of the McGregor Municipal Utilities (MMU) board agreed to move forward with better communication between one another Feb. 18, following misunderstandings between the two regarding the movement of utility poles for the upcoming sewer rehab project and proposed work along C Street.

Several poles are in the street right-of-way and need to be moved. MMU was aware of some, but not all, until its January meeting.

Tue
17
Feb

Strub, Keehner advance to state wrestling tournament


MFL MarMac senior Chase Strub (top) advanced to the state wrestling tournament after claiming the 195-pound title at the IHSAA 1A Dist. 3 tournament Saturday. Strub, who has been unbeatable in the last two months, said his key to victory will be staying on offense. (NIT file photo)

Bulldog senior Gatlin Keehner (top) finally punched his ticket to the state wrestling tournament after placing second in the 285-pound bracket at Saturday’s district tournament. Keehner competed at districts two other times throughout his career, but came up short. (NIT file photo)

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times Editor

MFL MarMac wrestlers Chase Strub and Gatlin Keehner are headed to state. Strub was the IHSAA 1A Dist. 3 tournament champion at 195 pounds, while Keehner placed second in the 285-pound bracket, on Feb. 14.

“Chase Strub started off the day with a pin and ended the day with a pin,” said head coach Chet Bachman. “Chase wrestled well all day long. He seemed determined and focused and was aggressive, which is how you become the district champ.”

Tue
17
Feb

Marquette delves further into tourism, economic development matters

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times Editor

The Marquette council approved the city’s fiscal year 2016 budget of $2,612,459 at its Feb. 11 meeting.

The estimated local tax levy rate per $1,000 valuation on regular property is $6.24, up 35 cents from this year, meaning a $100,000 home will be assessed $624 for the city’s share of property taxes.

The fiscal year 2016 budget, which will run from July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016, is down from the estimated end balance for the current fiscal year, which is projected at $3,156,088. At $1,295,000, capital projects are the city’s biggest expenditure. 

Tue
17
Feb

Monona council to look more closely at annexation plans

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times Editor

Monday night, Monona councilmen Andy Meyer and Jason Schubert volunteered to further develop the city’s annexation plans, better determining the municipal boundaries that would be created if the city limits were expanded.

The council has discussed land annexation for several months, largely singling out the area where the Birdnow Dealership is located, as well as across the highway, where Kwik Star, TJ’s Pizza and Monona Auto Center reside, as prime opportunities. Areas to the west of town have also been considered.

Mon
16
Feb

Dawn Dummermuth Slyfield

 

On Feb. 1, at the youthful age of 85, Dawn Dummermuth Slyfield of McGregor, Iowa, went to be with the Lord, and her previously departed husband Jack Slyfield. 

Dawn passed away while in Hospice care at Silverado Memory Care Community in The Woodlands, Texas. Dawn worked endless years as a speech therapist. She enjoyed playing tennis throughout most of her life, even competing in the Senior Olympics many times in her later years.  

Dawn is survived by her son Skip; daughter Shannon; and son-in-law Michael Silvestre. 

Tue
10
Feb

Roses of remembrance


Connie Halvorson shows off the nearly 60 years worth of roses from her late husband, Roger. (Photo by Audrey Posten)

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times Editor

People often appreciate roses for their beauty, their scent, the gesture of love they symbolize. But for Connie Halvorson, the beauty isn’t just in the bloom, which has long since crinkled and crunched, its color and scent fading. It’s the memories—nearly 60 years worth.

Connie met her late husband, Roger, in Oct. 1954, when he was going to Upper Iowa University and she was a student at Fayette High School.

“He was my practice teacher. That’s how we met,” Connie recalled. For them, it truly was love at first sight. “We decided on our second date that we were going to get married.”

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