Northwest Iowa — Scammers continue to prey on unsuspecting northwest Iowans. The Sioux County Sheriff’s Office says the latest flavor of scam includes a threat that the caller will be arrested.

Sioux County Sheriff’s officials are saying that numerous scams are being reported in the area. They say that the scammer says you need to contact them back within 24 hours or they will arrest you. According to the Sheriff’s Office, they have received reports of callers claiming to be with the IRS and scammers claiming to be with “local law enforcement.”

The Sheriff’s Office reminds folks that the IRS will not call, they send out letters. If Law Enforcement Officers leave a voicemail they will identify who they are and what agency they are with and will include their office number to call.

They tell us that law enforcement officers and dispatchers are aware of these scams; however, if you want to make a report you may call your local agency on their non-emergency line. Phone numbers are listed below.

Sioux Center Police Department: 722-0761
Orange City Police Department: 707-4251
Rock Valley Police Department: 476-5716
Hawarden Police Department: 551-4430
Sioux County Sheriff’s Office: 737-2280

October 12, 2018 - 3:27 pm - Posted in News

Northwest Iowa — Many Iowa growers will be storing, not selling, their soybeans this harvest season, given low commodity prices and troubles with international trade.

Iowa State University Extension ag engineer Kris Kohl recommends farmers cool down the storage bin and make sure the moisture level isn’t too high when the beans are harvested.

For soybeans with a higher moisture content, it’s sometimes best to dry them using natural air and to avoid firing up the heaters.

Precautions need to be taken when drying soybeans.

Some growers might want to take their soybeans to a commercial elevator and run them through a corn dryer, but he says the risk of fire is far too great.

Orange City, Iowa — The Sheldon Marching Orabs will be one of more than twenty high school marching band from four states to take the field in Orange City Saturday for the 2018 Dutchmen Field Championships.

Normally the Orange City event takes place the same day as the State Marching Band Festival in Orange City, but that was not the case this year. Marching Orabs Director, Cliff St. Clair says it’s going to be nice to not have to rush to make both competitions.

The Dutchmen Field Championships mark the final competitive event of the year for the Marching Orabs. St. Clair says the kids are happy to see the competition season come to an end, and for good reason.

While Saturday’s competition in Orange City may be the finale to the Marching Orabs season, St. Clair says it’s just a transition for the Orab musicians.

Saturday’s Dutchmen Field Championships are hosted by MOC-Floyd Valley, and will take place at De Valois Field, on the campus of Northwestern College. The event is open to the public, for a small charge, with gates opening at 2:15 Saturday afternoon, with the first Class 1A Band, South O’Brien, taking the field at 3:00. The Marching Orabs are scheduled to perform Saturday afternoon at 5:00.

You can view the complete schedule for the Dutchmen Field Championships by CLICKING HERE.

October 12, 2018 - 12:48 pm - Posted in News

Alton, Iowa– A semi-trailer was damaged in a fire that closed Highway 60 for a while on Tuesday, October 9, 2018, near Alton.

According to Alton Fire Chief Quintin Van Es, about 9:50 a.m., the Alton Fire Department was called to the report of a semi-trailer with its driver’s side back tires on fire near mile marker 15 southbound on Highway 60, just south of Alton.

The chief says the fire department saw lots of smoke and flames from the back of the tanker trailer as they approached the scene. He says they used caution at first because they weren’t sure what the trailer had in it. But after they found the driver and he assured them that the tanker was empty, they were able to extinguish it in about five minutes with some water, and poured more water on it to make sure it was completely out.

Van Es says no injuries were reported, but they did have to close Highway 60 for 20 minutes.

He says the cause of the fire appeared to have been either hot brakes or something mechanical in nature.

Chief Van Es estimates that there was about $10,000 damage.

He says they used about 1,000 gallons of water to fight the fire, and the eight firefighters who responded were on the scene for about 40 minutes. He says the Sioux County Sheriff’s Office and the Iowa State Patrol assisted on the scene, providing traffic control.

Sioux Center, Iowa — Dordt College in Sioux Center has placed an associate professor on leave after the college received information regarding inappropriate contact with students.

KIWA has obtained an email sent by Dordt Provost Dr. Eric Forseth to the Dordt campus community in which he says Dr. Bradley Miedema, associate professor of music, and director of instrumental ensembles at Dordt, has been placed on leave, pending a further decision from the college’s Board of Trustees at their regular meeting next week.

Forseth’s email says the college is working with those involved to move forward in ways that acknowledge the seriousness of the actions, and in ways they believe will lead to a Christ-centered resolution, healing, and hope.

According to the email, Dordt Campus Ministries and Student Services are working to serve the campus community as the college seeks to fully understand the nature of this situation, and find the best ways forward.

Dr. Forseth’s email says Dordt remains committed to their mission to equip students, alumni, and the broader community to work effectively toward Christ-centered renewal in all aspects of contemporary life.  He says they value their students’ and employees’ well-being, and are committed to ministering to those affected by this situation.

Forseth also invited and encouraged the Dordt community to commit the situation to God in prayer in the days ahead.

Northwest Iowa — Seven of the fourteen contenders for the Northwest Iowa Regional Dream Big Grow Here business grant contest are from our part of Northwest Iowa. They come from Orange City, Sanborn, Rock Rapids, and Rock Valley.

Economic development professionals in the area, who organize the contest say that the Dream Big Grow Here contest is an opportunity for entrepreneurs and small business owners to fulfill their dreams of self-employment or expansion of their current business. The contest allows entrepreneurs the chance to submit their dreams to start or expand a business, then encourage friends, family, and customers to vote for them online. The finalists will present their idea to an audience and judges in a pitch-off event for a chance to win thousands in cash prizes.

Entrepreneurs in Cherokee, Lyon, Monona, O’Brien, Osceola, Plymouth, Sioux and Woodbury counties were to submit their business or startup ideas by October 5th.

Those in the contest from our area include:

Brad Gabel of Brad’s Breads of Orange City, who says he’d like to run a small European-style Bakery in Orange City.

Jodi Krikke of JAK Sprat in Sanborn, who says her earring business is run on the kitchen table, and she’s expanding so she could use some system upgrades.

Lindsay Millard of Lindsay’s Flower Patch in Orange City, who says they’re expanding, and a greenhouse would be helpful for them.

Fifteen-year-olds Daniel Stillson and Carter Schuurmans of SnSLabz in Rock Rapids, who say their 3-D printing business is expanding too, and they will need an additional 3-D printer and supplies to take their business to the next level.

Shay Van Schepen of Shaybe’s Boutique in Rock Valley, who says that her home-based clothing boutique is expanding and would like to move to a storefront or buy a trailer.

Nineteen-year-old Ashley Van Sloten of Dutch Dogs LLC in Orange City, who says she’s planning to start a pet boarding, daycare, and grooming service next year. And she’d like to give the pets a fun, safe outdoor play area.

Bart Ver Mulm of Orange Creek Farms in Rock Valley, who says their operation is a small family farm focused on retail high-quality meats instead of selling the whole animals like most farm operations.

Other entries are from Oto, Sioux City, Akron, and Correctionville.

Voting on the submitted ideas is underway now through October 19th. During the voting period, the entrepreneurs are recruiting others to vote for their entry at www.DreamBigGrowHere.com. The top three vote-getters will advance to a regional pitch-off competition, along with two additional entrants chosen by a selection committee. Each finalist will have access to the University of Northern Iowa’s Business Concierge Services, as well as receive personalized coaching from the Small Business Development Center and UNI’s Center for Business Growth and Innovation.

The regional contest will be held the evening of Thursday, November 15th. The finalists will have the opportunity to showcase their ideas with first place receiving $4,000, second place receiving $2,000 and third place receiving $1,000 to grow their business.

October 11, 2018 - 12:34 pm - Posted in News

Northwest Iowa — We are only in the second week of October, but the state’s top doctor is recommending you get your flu shot.

Iowa Department of Public Health Medical Director Caitlin Pedati says the time is right.

She says if you get a flu shot now you don’t have to worry about being protected.

Doctor Pedati says the warmer weather we’ve had lately probably doesn’t make people think about winter and the flu.

She says others might worry getting the vaccine too early would allow it to wear off.

Doctor Pedati says there should be an ample supply of the vaccine.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends everyone six months of age or older get the flu vaccine.

October 11, 2018 - 10:36 am - Posted in News

Statewide Iowa —  The Iowa Department of Public Safety Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) is warning of a scam targeting citizens by misrepresenting themselves as staff of the Department.

According to the DCI, they have been receiving reports from citizens that scammers are posing as employees of the “Iowa State Police”.  The callers are claiming they have a seized vehicle with drugs inside and that the vehicle is registered to the citizen.  Citizens are reporting that they are receiving multiple calls from the same 712 area code phone number.  If the citizen does not answer or hangs up on the initial call, a secondary call is being reported as coming from “911” whereas the callers are verbally aggressive, claiming they are with the “Police” and that they have a warrant for the citizen’s arrest.

The DCI says if you receive a phone call similar to the one mentioned above, you are asked to contact your local law enforcement and the Iowa Attorney General’s Office Hotline at (515) 281-5926 or (888) 777-4590.

Here are some helpful hints from the DCI to help prevent being targeted by fraudulent scam calls:
If you get a call from someone who claims they are collecting money on behalf of the DPS—even if a caller ID device shows the DPS—hang up.
The DPS does not demand immediate payment via prepaid debit cards.
Do not provide or confirm personal information or financial information to anyone who calls.

October 10, 2018 - 6:16 pm - Posted in News

Orange City, Iowa — The Orange City Police Department is seeking the public’s help in identifying the driver of a vehicle that was seen in southwest Orange City about 7:00 Sunday evening (October 7th) in the vicinity of Michigan Avenue Southwest and Highway 10 in southwestern Orange City.

Orange City Police say about that time someone attempted to burglarize a residence in that part of Orange City. Officers stress that the driver of the vehicle they seek isn’t necessarily considered a suspect in the crime, but may very well be a witness who has valuable information to help them solve this crime.

Although the images are grainy, it appears the vehicle is a white two-door car with a sun roof.

If you recognize this car, and no who the driver is, or if this is your car, the Orange City Police would like to talk with you. Please call them at 712-707-4251, or call their 24-hour number at 712-737-3307.

October 10, 2018 - 3:48 pm - Posted in News

Sioux Center, Iowa — The Family Crisis Centers of Northwest Iowa have received a grant to continue operating in the upcoming year. The grant was part of more than $3.9 million in grants that were given to assist 50 agencies with homelessness assistance initiatives during the 2019 calendar year by the Iowa Finance Authority Board of Directors.

Family Crisis Centers Executive Director and CEO Shari Kastein tells us more about the grant.


Kastein tells us about the “homelessness” designation and explains how that fits into what they do.


According to Kastein, the Family Crisis Centers are not a government entity, so they are not funded directly by the government. She says they are a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, funded by grants and private donations.


Kastein says that they also do a couple of fundraisers throughout the year, such as a golf tournament that took place in September and a wine gala and auction that happens in March.

She tells us their services are free and confidential, and they’re available 24/7. She says if you or someone you know is experiencing abuse call 1-800-382-5603 any time. You can find out more at familycrisiscenters.org.