July 31, 2018 - 4:57 pm - Posted in News

Sioux Center, Iowa — The Sioux Center Fire Department was summoned to a fire call yesterday morning.

According to fire chief David Van Holland, the Sioux Center Fire Department was paged about 9:35 a.m. for a report of some feed on fire at 380th Street and Hickory Avenue, two miles east of Highway 75 on the north side of Sioux Center.

He says when they got there they found that some feed on a feed truck on the road had gotten too close to the truck’s muffler, and was smoldering. He says they used minimal water to put out the feed.

No injuries were reported, and the damage was limited to the feed, says Van Holland.


Orange City, Iowa — Ten years ago, a fire in Orange City was the impetus for what became a package of new ideas called the “Phoenix Project,” which included not only the replacement of the destroyed building but also an events center and a performing arts center — and spawned more development including a hotel and an expanded convenience store. Now, Orange City leaders are attempting to answer the question, “What’s next?” and an answer is starting to come into view.

Marty Guthmiller is on the Orange City Development Board and is spearheading the new package of ideas, which is tentatively called “Phoenix 2.0.” He says a new name is being chosen, but tells us what the package will probably entail.

Guthmiller says that the beautification project is the slice of the pie that is furthest along, with city leaders asking engineers for an estimated cost for the first phase, which will probably be in the one-million-dollar-plus range. Pavers and other elements would be the second phase if approved.

He says the package also includes an idea about a “Dutch Village.” He tells us about it.

Guthmiller tells us the third element — a wellness facility — is probably the least-developed idea of the package at this point.

Guthmiller emphasizes that it’s very early in the planning stages at this point. He says it would be his preference to take the package to the voters to see if there’s support for a bond issue. Such a vote would take a 60 percent “supermajority” to pass. He says they may be ready to put something together for a ballot question in the spring of 2019.

Sioux City, Iowa – The Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC) held their 19th annual football media day on Tuesday, July 31, at the Delta Hotels South Sioux City Riverfront Conference Center in South Sioux City, Nebraska. The day featured comments from all ten of the league’s football coaches in preparation for the 2018 season.

One of the highlights of the day is the release of the preseason coaches’ poll. Morningside is the preseason pick to win the GPAC championship. The Mustangs totaled 81 points and nine (9) first place votes. Northwestern was picked second with 73 points and one (1) first place vote. Midland was third with 61 points. Coaches were not allowed to vote for their own team.

Northwestern finished second in the GPAC regular season last year with a 7-1 record and advanced to the 16-team NAIA Football Championship Series for the first time since 2014. They defeated Langston (Okla.) in the first round before bowing out to eventual national champion University of Saint Francis (Ind.) in the quarterfinals to complete a 10-2 campaign. 16 starters (6 offense, 6 defense, 4 special teams) and 26 letterwinners return from last year’s squad.

McCarty and his staff welcome the 2018 team to campus the weekend of Aug. 10-11 and begin practice on the 13th.

2018 GPAC Preseason Football Coaches’ Poll:

Place Team Pts (1st Place Votes)
1. Morningside 81 (8)
2. Northwestern 73 (1)
3. Midland 61
4. Concordia 52
5. Dordt 47
6t. Dakota Wesleyan 38
6t. Hastings 38
8. Doane 34
9. Briar Cliff 15
10. Jamestown 11

For the sixth year a media poll was conducted among those present at the press conference. Morningside was tabbed in the media poll to win the GPAC with 120 points and eight (12) first place votes, while Northwestern second with 108 points and Midland was picked third with 80 points and Concordia fourth by the GPAC media with 76 points.

2018 GPAC Preseason Football Media Poll:

Place Team Pts (1st Place Votes)
1. Morningside 120 (12)
2. Northwestern 108
3. Midland 80
4. Concordia 76
5. Dordt 69
6. Dakota Wesleyan 65
7. Doane 51
8. Hastings 43
9. Jamestown 33
10. Briar Cliff 15

Games for the 2018 season kick off on Thursday, August 23, with Dakota Wesleyan hosting Dakota State at 7 PM. Also in action on opening weekend are Morningside (vs. William Penn), Jamestown (vs. Valley City State), Midland (vs.MidAmerica Nazarene), Doane (at Friends University) and Hastings (vs. Peru Stat) on August 25 in non-conference play. The GPAC schedule will consist of nine games in the conference. League games will being on September 8th and 15th.

July 31, 2018 - 3:06 pm - Posted in News

Northwest Iowa — (RI) — Contrary to popular belief, wind energy projects do -not- lower surrounding property values, according to a study being released by the Center for Rural Affairs.

Center policy associate Lu Nelsen says opponents of wind power development who speak out at public meetings typically make the claim, but there’s no evidence to support it.

Iowa is one of the nation’s leading states for wind power generation, with much of it coming from our part of the state. More than one-third of our electricity comes from the wind. Iowa’s goal is 40-percent by 2020. Nelsen says other types of development often -do- have a negative impact on land values.

Nelsen says local officials and wind power developers need to be clear about what will happen with any new project, especially in regard to the land’s appearance post-construction.

The wind industry employs some 7-thousand Iowans. The study was conducted by the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab and the Universities of Rhode Island and Connecticut. The Center for Rural Affairs is based in Lyons, Nebraska.

Northwest Iowa — If you’re on Medicare you should be seeing a new card showing up in your mailbox sometime soon.

Julie Brookhart, a spokesperson for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, says the new cards will no longer use your Social Security number to identify you. She says that’s the only thing that is different, as it does NOT change your Medicare benefits. Brookhart says they’ve been getting requests for years to take the Social Security numbers off the Medicare cards as a security issue to help prevent identity theft.

The Social Security numbers have appeared on the cards since the program began back in 1966. She says the change was made for security reasons.

She says you can help ensure your new card gets to you.

You can also take care of it online.

Brookhart says the new Medicare card doesn’t replace any of the other cards you need for your health care.

Brookhart says once you get the new card in the mail, you should shred the old card that has your Social Security number on it.

July 31, 2018 - 11:24 am - Posted in News

Maurice, Iowa — A Hawarden teen was injured Sunday night when she crashed her car near Maurice.

The Sioux County Sheriff’s Office says the crash happened shortly after 9:00 Sunday night. Deputies say 17-year old Jewel Christensen was eastbound on 480th Street, about a mile south of Maurice, as Christensen met a westbound vehicle she moved to the right, lost control of her car, and entered the south ditch.

Authorities say Christensen was taken to the Floyd Valley Hospital in Le Mars by the Le Mars Ambulance.

Christensen’s Chevy sustained about $1-thousand in damage, according to deputies.

The Sioux County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by the Plymouth County Sheriff’s Office, Le Mars Fire Department, Le Mars Ambulance, Maurice First Responders, and SIoux Center Ambulance.

July 31, 2018 - 9:24 am - Posted in Sports

Des Moines Iowa — With the State Baseball Tournaments in the books the IHSBCA All-Star Series is set for Thursday August 2nd through Saturday the 5th. Games will be played at Duane Banks Field on the campus of the University of Iowa.

A Lakes Conference player will be a member of the Small Schools West Squad. Tray Jacobson of Estherville Lincoln Central earned a spot on the pitching staff. Cale Kramer of Hinton from the War Eagle Conference will be a part of the coaching staff. Teams were named by the IHSBCA for the Small Schools East and West along with Large Schools East and West.

The 32nd All-Academic Team has been selected by the Iowa High School Baseball Coaches Association. A panel of coaches selected these senior player’s who demonstrate outstanding academic, moral, and athletic characteristics.

First Team members will be honored at the All-Star Banquet, which will be held on Saturday, August 4th, at 10:00 am, at the Marriott Hotel Banquet Center in Iowa City. Earning spots on the Academic All-State first team were Dylan Kruger of Central Lyon, Jaden Snyder of West Lyon and Derek Ten Pas of Sioux Center all from the Siouxland Conference. They were joined by Jake Lynott of West Sioux from the War Eagle Conference.

Brady Wright of Central Lyon and Mitchell Rentschler of West Lyon were named to the second team.

The first team consists of the top 22 players, nominated by their coaches, who demonstrate outstanding academic, moral, and athletic characteristics. The next 22 players nominated and eligible, but not selected to the first team, receive a second team all-academic certificate.

July 30, 2018 - 4:31 pm - Posted in News

Sioux Center, Iowa — Two women were taken to the hospital in the aftermath of a two-vehicle crash near Sioux Center Monday morning.

According to the Sioux County Sheriff’s Office the crash took place one mile south of Sioux Center on Highway 75. They report that a 2001 Chevrolet Suburban, driven by 37-year old Maria Hernandez of Orange City was northbound on Highway 75, and slowed to turn into a business drive, when her SUV was struck from behind by a northbound2012 Chrysler Town & Country minivan, driven by 32-year old Sara Hulstein of Sioux Center.

Deputies say both drivers were taken to the Sioux Center Hospital by Sioux Center Ambulance.

Damage to the Hernandez SUV was estimated at about $12-thousand, while Hulstein’s minivan had an estimated $15-thousand in damage.

Deputies say Hulstein was ticketed for Following Too Close.

The Sioux County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by the Sioux Center Ambulance, Sioux Center Fire Department, Sioux Center Rescue, Sioux Center Police Department and the Iowa State Patrol.


July 30, 2018 - 4:03 pm - Posted in News

Rock Valley, Iowa — As usual, the announcement of the upcoming snowmobile races in Rock Valley sounds like one we should be making in December or January — not July. But these snowmobile races are a little different — they take place not on snow, but on water.

Called the “Rivers Bend Shootout,” the fourth annual races take place this Friday and Saturday at Rivers Bend, northwest of Rock Valley, according to Kelly Roder, one of the organizers of the event.

He says there are a number of races with prizes.

Roder tells us there are two days of racing action, starting this coming Friday afternoon, August 3rd.

He says most of the racers are from out of the area, but there’s also a local guy.

Roder says they’ll have concessions on-site as well.

Tickets for the Rivers Bend Shoutout are $15 per day or buy a 2-day pass for $25. Kids 8-17 years of age are $10 and $15, with 8 and under free.

It’s at the Rivers Bend Campground ponds. He says the area used to be the Van Zee gravel pits, and the City of Rock Valley has transformed it into a nice campground and some ponds.

Statewide Iowa — People with telephones in the 712 area code, which covers roughly the western third of Iowa, got nearly 10-million robocalls so far this year.

A robocall is an automated telephone call initiated by an autodialer for delivery of a prerecorded message. Some of these calls are legitimate, many are scams, and all are annoying.

An estimated 30 billion”robocalls” were made in the U.S. last year and so far this year, the pace of these nuisance calls in Iowa and the rest of the country is dramatically accelerating.

According to YouMail.com, 3.3 billion automated robocalls were made in the U.S. in April, which is a 34-percent increase from April of 2017.

Here in the 712 area code code we got nearly 9.9-million robocalls.The area code in Iowa getting the most automated calls is the 515. So far this year, there have been more than 33-million robocalls to phones with a 515 area code. In the 319 area code, there have been nearly 19-million robocalls this year and there’s been nearly 12-million into the 563 area code and in the 641 area code there were about 6.2-million .

By YouMail.com’s calculation, people with one of the five Iowa area codes got more than 135-million robocalls in 2017. A small percentage are legitimate, like pharmacies notifying patients they can pick up a prescription, but the vast majority are recorded messages from spammers and scammers.