October 25, 2017 - 11:07 am - Posted in News

Orange City, Iowa — A Remsen man’s vehicle was damaged after he went into the ditch to avoid another vehicle near Orange City on Monday, October 23rd.

The Sioux County Sheriff’s Office reports that just after 8 am on Monday, 47-year-old Jared Farmer of LeMars was driving a 2013 Bell 6 x 6 dump truck northbound on Jackson Avenue, three miles south of Orange City. Sixty-year-old Daniel Gengler of Remsen was driving a 2011 Kia Optima northbound on Jackson Avenue behind Farmer. According to the report, Gengler attempted to pass Farmer as Farmer began turning left onto 490th Street. Gengler then attempted to avoid striking Farmer and entered the west ditch.

The Kia received $3,500 damage.

No injuries were reported.

October 25, 2017 - 9:23 am - Posted in News

Remsen, Iowa — A Granville woman and a passenger in her vehicle were taken to a hospital after an accident near Remsen.

The Plymouth County Sheriff’s Office reports that about 3:00 PM on Saturday, October 21, 2017, 48-year-old Paula Steffes of Granville was driving a 2017 Chevy northbound on L14, six miles north of Remsen. Twenty-one-year-old Colton Elter of Cokato, MN was southbound on L14 in a 2007 Ford pickup.

The report says that the Elter pickup crossed the center line and collided with the Steffes car head-on. The deputy who covered the accident says that it is believed that Elter fell asleep, which caused him to cross into the path of the oncoming vehicle. He says there was no sign of impairment to either driver.

The Remsen Ambulance took Steffes to Orange City Health System Hospital, while the Alton Ambulance took a passenger in her vehicle, 13-year-old Emily Steffes to that hospital. A family member in a private vehicle took Elter to Floyd Valley Hospital in Le Mars.

Steffes’s Chevy sustained $20,000 in damages, and Elter’s Ford pickup sustained $22,000 in damages. Both vehicles were considered totaled. A cornfield also sustained about $100 in damages.

Elter was charged with driving on the wrong side of the highway.

Sioux County, Iowa — The location of what is called a “Pizza & Policy”event in Sioux County this Thursday evening has had to be moved, apparently at the request of the original venue.

A press release from the “Sioux County Conservatives” say the event, which features speaker Dr. Steve Kirby, has been moved from its original location of the Pizza Ranch, to the Sioux Center Library.

The press release accuses a group of what it calls, “far-left activists”, of putting together a campaign of people from out of the area to call and complain to the Pizza Ranch Corporation.

The release claims Pizza Ranch hadn’t verified claims that the activists reportedly made about the event’s speaker, but says Pizza Ranch didn’t want the negative attention that comes with hosting such an event.

The press release says the Sioux County Conservatives do not believe efforts to suppress free speech should succeed. As a result, the Pizza & Policy event will be held at 7:00 pm this Thursday, October 26th at the Sioux Center Library. They say pizza will be provided.

The complete Press Release from the Sioux County Conservatives may be viewed below:

For immediate release
Sioux County Conservatives

***Pizza & Policy moved to Sioux Center Library Oct. 26***

The location for Thursday’s Pizza & Policy event with Dr. Steve Kirby has been moved to the Sioux Center Library. An organized group of far-left activists put together a campaign of people from out of the area to call and complain to the Pizza Ranch Corporation.

The event will begin at 7 p.m. Pizza will be provided.

These Leftists made claims about the speaker, Dr. Kirby, to Pizza Ranch. Pizza Ranch said it has not verified those claims, but it didn’t want the negative attention that comes with hosting an event like this and did not have time to research it.

The Leftist tactics are a move straight out of Saul Alinsky’s “Rules for Radicals.” Clearly Sioux County Socialists, Indivisible Iowa and the individuals responsible were waiting until just before the event in hopes we would have to cancel.

We do not believe efforts to suppress free speech should succeed. Events happen in our area we disagree with, but we do not demand those events not be allowed to happen or threaten violence should they happen.

Clearly the unhinged Left does not want you to hear from Dr. Kirby. They are trying to stop Dr. Kirby from speaking about Islam just a week after celebrating their OC Pride weekend.

It is an interesting combination considering the punishment for homosexuals in some Islamic countries.

Dr. Kirby has a Ph.D in Foreign Affairs from Virginia. He’s an author, researcher and presenter. He will speak about Islam.

October 24, 2017 - 3:56 pm - Posted in News

Ankeny, Iowa — An Orange City woman who is a professor at Dordt College in Sioux Center has received a regional honor.

Dr. Deb Bomgaars of Orange City was awarded the Northwest Iowa Regional Nurse of the Year award at the Iowa Nurses Association Annual Meeting on October 20th in Ankeny. The association says she was selected by her peers in the region because of her outstanding contributions to the nursing profession in her community.

According to the Iowa Nurses Association, she entered nursing in 1984, having received a diploma in Nursing from St. Joseph Mercy School in Sioux City and began working as an RN in the Orange City Area Health System. In 1995, she received a BSN from Briar Cliff and earned an MSN in the Nurse Educator Track from Nebraska Methodist College of Allied Health Sciences in Omaha in 2007.

That same year the association says she joined the new BSN program at Northwestern College as full-time faculty where the association says she was highly respected as a nursing educator. She continued her own professional advancement, earning a Ph.D. in Nursing from South Dakota State University. In 2015 she was appointed as the Director of the Nursing Department at Dordt College.

The association says that under Bomgaars’ leadership, Dordt College is undergoing curriculum changes converting the RN to BSN program to a generic BSN program and will be admitting students to the new program in the fall of 2018.

Sioux Center, Iowa — A Sioux Center man has been arrested following the investigation into reports that he had inappropriate contact with a student at Sioux Center Christian School.

Sioux Center Police Chief Paul Adkins says 35-year old Curtis Van Dam, a teacher at Sioux Center Christian School, was arrested Monday morning (October 23rd) and charged with Lascivious Acts With a Child, a Class “C” Felony, and Lascivious Contact With a Minor, a serious misdemeanor.

Adkins says a complaint was filed with the Sioux Center Police Department on Wednesday, October 18th, alleging inappropriate contact between Van Dam and a student attending Sioux Center Christian School.

Upon investigation, Adkins says a search warrant was issued and executed on Saturday (October 21st) for the residence of the suspect.

The charges state that the defendant allegedly committed a lascivious act with a child on October 17th, and lascivious conduct with a minor approximately 3 weeks earlier.

Van Dam was arrested and transported to the Sioux County Jail.

Chief Adkins says the investigation into further allegations continues, and additional charges are anticipated.

Adkins stressed that an arrest is merely an allegation, and all defendants are presumed innocent until proven quilty.

Orange City, Iowa — An Orange City business that manufactures products for race cars is one of five Iowa companies to be approved for a tax incentive to aid in an expansion of their business.

K2W Precision began life about 20 years ago as Keizer Aluminum Wheels, according to K2W’s Nate Deweerd.

Deweerd says Keizer Aluminum Wheels morphed into K2W Precision about four years ago.

He says the tax incentive announced by the Iowa Economic Development Authority will allow K2W to avoid paying sales tax on the materials used for their expansion.  Materials, he says, that will be purchased from local companies.

Deweerd says he and his partner, Wade Huisman, are excited about the expansion project.

The expansion project is forecast to add up to ten additional jobs, which would effectively double the current K2W workforce.

Other Iowa business receiving similar tax incentives for expansion include Cottington and Butler Insurance in Dubuque, BCI in Cedar Falls, the Zoetis plant in Charles City, and Frontier Natural Products in Norway, Iowa.

October 21, 2017 - 1:55 am - Posted in News

Sheldon, Iowa — Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math — known by the acronym “STEM” — has been a hot topic in recent years. Twice each year, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach has been partnering with area colleges to hold a “STEM Fest” for area youth. And it’s time for another one — at Northwest Iowa Community College in Sheldon.

We talked to O’Brien County Extension County Youth Director Sarah Fiddelke about the upcoming event on November 4th, which she says is a little different this time.

She says online registration for the event, which is for fourth through eighth graders, begins on Sunday.

She says that while the focus will be on the science behind health and healthy living, registration is the same as in past years. Participants pick the color track that best matches the four presentations in which they want to participate.

In past years, STEM Fests have filled to capacity, so it might be a good idea to have your kids register as soon as they are able.

October 20, 2017 - 10:48 am - Posted in News

Orange City, Iowa — Arguably one of the most conservative communities in the state will be hosting its first-ever Pride Festival this weekend.

Organizer Michael Goll lives in Orange City, with his husband. Goll admits this event is shaking things up a bit but he says it’s important to build support within and around Orange City’s LGBTQ residents.

Orange City is the seat of staunchly conservative Sioux County and is home to Northwestern College, a Christian liberal arts school. Goll is a Northwestern graduate and says organizers decided to celebrate the community’s LGBTQ culture because, as Goll says, “Why not?”

Goll adds it’s vital to demonstrate that LGBTQ people in Orange City contribute to the community and are everyone’s neighbors. The event begins Friday and includes live music, storytelling and food. It goes through Sunday, when it will conclude with brunch and show tunes.

Northwest Iowa — The company that built the Dakota Access oil pipeline that runs diagonally across Iowa, from the northwest to the southeast, is making donations to emergency responders in Lyon, Sioux, and O’Brien counties. In fact, they’re making the donations in every county the pipeline crosses in Iowa and three other states.

Mike Futch, vice president of Energy Transfer Partners, explains the motive.

The pipeline crosses 18 counties in Iowa and also carves a path across Illinois and North and South Dakota. Futch says they want to be good corporate partners with every county the pipeline touches.

In Iowa, the total donation is $360,000 to units in 18 counties. The total donation in the four states adds up to one-million dollars as the pipeline covers 50 counties. Chuck Fry, vice president for liquid pipelines at Energy Transfer, says the pipeline passing through Iowa is now fully assembled and carrying petroleum.

The company is also giving the state of North Dakota 15-million dollars for protest-related expenses.

October 20, 2017 - 12:13 am - Posted in News

Rock Valley, Iowa — The Rock Valley Fire Department has had a busy couple of days with three fire calls in two days.

The biggest one was when 45 acres of corn stubble burned in a fire on Wednesday, October 18, 2017 near Rock Valley.

According to Rock Valley Fire Chief Brent Eshuis, about 1:35 p.m., the Rock Valley Fire Department was called to the report of a field fire at Dogwood Ave and 325th Street, three miles southwest of Rock Valley. The chief says the fire department saw the field on fire as they approached the scene.

He says it looked like they had picked the cornfield for ground ear corn, so there were lots of stalks. He says the farmer was in the middle of stalk chopping when the fire started.

Eshuis says no injuries were reported.

The fire department was assisted by the Hull Fire Department who brought a grass rig, the Sioux Center Fire Department, who brought a tanker and a grass rig, and the Hudson Fire Department, who also brought a tanker and a grass rig. Three farmers also used tractors and disks to fight the progress of the fire.

He says the cause of the fire appeared to be something hot on the stalk chopper or maybe a spark from hitting a rock. He says no equipment was burned in the fire, and that only corn stubble was damaged.

Eshuis says they used 4,000 gallons of water to fight the fire, and crews were on scene for an hour and a half.

He says the Rock Valley Fire Department responded to two calls on the previous day. The first one came in about 12:25 p.m. He says this was also a field fire, but it was much smaller. He says it was likely caused by hot exhaust. He says it was in corn stubble between two areas of standing corn, but due to calm winds, it didn’t spread. He says they were able to put it out using only 50 to 100 gallons of water.

The other fire call was a few minutes before 6 p.m. that day. The call was of a propane tank on fire at 1718 15th Street in Rock Valley. But Eshuis says when they got there they discovered that someone had started grill on a deck, and somehow grease was burning between the bottom of the grill and the grill’s propane tank. He says by the time they got there it was out and the grill had been moved away from the house and was disconnected from the propane tank.