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Tue
11
Jun

Defying high water, McGregor’s Beer and Bratz Garden opens for the season


After a spring plagued by Mississippi flood waters, McGregor’s Beer and Bratz Garden welcomed customers for the first time this season on June 4. Manager Ravon Thornton (left) and kitchen staff member Sara Whiteaker made light of the high water, which still surrounded the restaurant at the time of opening, but has since receded. (Photos by Audrey Posten)

With the building still surrounded by water, as well as much of the parking lot in front of it, a bridge was installed to allow customers to cross what manager Ravon Thornton called “the moat” to enter McGregor’s Beer and Bratz Garden.

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

After a spring plagued by Mississippi flood waters, McGregor’s Beer and Bratz Garden welcomed customers for the first time this season on June 4.

“This time, we were determined this was going to be the opening date,” said manager Ravon Thornton.

Located right along the Mississippi River, high water isn’t an unusual foe for the long-time restaurant this time of year.

“You have to expect that here,” Thornton shared. “But not for this length of time.”

Tue
11
Jun

Great River Care Center fundraiser will benefit Turner Park splash pad project

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

Great River Care Center, in McGregor, has come up with a creative way to raise funds for the splash pad at nearby Turner Park. The facility will host “Splash into Summer: Chalk the Walk,” on Friday, June 28—an event that challenges people to decorate a portion of the park’s track using chalk.

Held from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m, at Turner Park, the event will also feature a Rooster Andy’s Chicken Q, live music and lawn games for the whole family.

The idea came about, explained Great River Care Center (GRCC) Activities Director Debbie Johnson, because June 28 is National Food Truck Day.

Tue
04
Jun

Mason’s mark forever felt not just at Effigy Mounds, but entire NPS


On May 25, Effigy Mounds National Monument honored the life and legacy of local conservation advocate Tim Mason, who, around a decade ago, was instrumental in uncovering violations at the park.

Part of “Tim’s Day on the Land” included a volunteer service project of removing invasive garlic mustard from Effigy Mounds.

Former chief ranger Bob Palmer was one of several Effigy Mounds officials who shared memories of working with Tim Mason. Palmer said Mason, through his efforts, was able to speak not only for the Effigy Mounds employees, but for the park itself.

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

Effigy Mounds National Monument honored the life and legacy of local conservation advocate Tim Mason on May 25, with a volunteer service day of removing invasive garlic mustard from the park, as well as an evening program that recognized Mason’s work to preserve and protect Effigy Mounds and its resources.

Mason, who passed away in September 2018, worked seasonally at Effigy Mounds for 19 years, beginning in the 1970s. However, it was in 2010, as a private citizen, that he made his biggest mark at the park he loved, alerting the Office of Inspector General to violations of the National Historic Preservation Act and the Archaeological Preservation Act. 

Tue
04
Jun

Celebrate summer at Monona Hay Days


Enjoy being “in the heart of the great outdoors” at Monona Hay Days, this Friday and Saturday, June 7-8. (NIT file photo)

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

Enjoy being “in the heart of the great outdoors” at Hay Days, Monona’s annual summertime celebration, this Friday and Saturday, June 7-8.

“When we choose a theme each year, we try to make it new and exciting,” said Teresa Graham, head of the Monona Hays Committee. “We want to show what a great area we live in, and Monona is in the heart of the great outdoors.”

“We want to make people want to come to Monona,” added Monona Chamber and Economic Development Executive Director Rogeta Halvorson. “We have all these great amenities and recreational opportunities and we want to show them off.”

Tue
04
Jun

Water Under the Bridge: Local artists challenged to create work inspired by theme

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

The Left Bank Shop and Gallery in McGregor is challenging the public to submit artwork for its second special exhibit of the season, entitled “Water Under the Bridge.”

“We’ve done artist challenges before,” open to those who sell their work at The Left Bank, said gallery director Camille Sweet, “but we thought, ‘Why keep it just to our artists? Let everybody challenge their creativity.’”

Artists are tasked with creating pieces based on the theme “water under the bridge.” 

“We want to see what inspires people about the area,” Sweet said.

Tue
28
May

MFL MarMac students compete in Iowa High School Bass Team Championship


MFL MarMac students Kashton Mathis (left), TJ Hexom, Maccoy Pritchard, Braden Landt, Logan Engelhardt, Brittney Kober, Cullen McShane and Bryce Diehl (not pictured) participated in the first-ever Iowa High School Bass Team Championship. The team of Pritchard, Kober, Landt and Engelhardt placed second overall.

Kober, Engelhardt, Landt and Pritchard placed second with a 2.92-pound bass, and were just one of three teams to catch a fish that day. Their efforts were rewarded with trophies, rods and reels.

One team earns second place overall

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

MFL MarMac students moved from the classroom to the water earlier this month to participate in the first-ever Iowa High School Bass Team Championship. The event, held on Pleasant Creek Lake near Palo, was also the school’s first foray into a fishing competition.

Brittney Kober said the students were introduced to the idea by principal Larry Meyer.

Tue
28
May

Wetlands Centre offers variety of programs to help youth connect with nature this summer


Area youth can connect with nature this summer through a variety of programs and day camps offered at the Driftless Area Wetlands Centre in Marquette. (NIT file photo)

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

From dipping a net in the wetland and testing water quality to casting for trout and digging for dinosaur “fossils,” the Driftless Area Wetlands Centre in Marquette will offer countless opportunities for area youth to connect with nature this summer.

“We want to help kids learn how to love nature and the outdoors,” said Wetlands Centre Director Alicia Mullarkey. “We want to help them see what’s right outside their door and get them excited about what’s here.”

Tue
28
May

City of Monona turning over solid waste collection duties

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

Starting in July, Monona will turn over solid waste collection in the community from its own city workers to Town and Country Sanitation. 

The city council approved a contract with the Boscobel, Wis.-based company at its May 20 regular meeting.

Although pleased with the level of service the city has been able to provide residents and businesses, mayor Lynn “Marty” Martinson said the move will be more cost-effective in the long-run, saving on paying personnel, landfill fees, vehicle operation and repairs. The city, he noted, has also been unable to save enough over the last few years to replace the current garbage truck.

Tue
21
May

STEAM class engages students in new way


Students like Eyon Pergande are enjoying the middle school’s new STEAM class. Available to both seventh and eighth graders, STEAM includes hands-on activities and real-world applications based largely around the students’ interests. (Submitted photo)

Eighth graders Landon Johnson (left) and Cayden Pester work on snap circuits in their STEAM class. (Submitted photo)

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

A STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and math) class offered at MFL MarMac Middle School has proved successful in its first year, largely by allowing students to follow their own interests.

Available to both seventh and eighth graders, STEAM developed from the “Day in the Life” activities held at the school the past few years, which gave kids a hands-on way to learn more about potential career fields.

Tue
21
May

Vote on new MFL MarMac fieldhouse could come as early as September

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

Residents of the MFL MarMac Community School District could vote as soon as September on the construction of a new fieldhouse at the Monona Center. The second Tuesday of that month is one of three options available for the district to hold an election over the next year; the other two are the November general election and the first Tuesday in March 2020.

“I’m just throwing it out there,” said superintendent Dale Crozier at the May 13 school board meeting. “I talked to our architect firm and they’re ready to go.”

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