News

Wed
02
May

'Bring Mom Back Home' to West Union

 

Denver and Dayton Steinlage (l-r) can’t wait to bring their mom, Candace Steinlage, back home during the First Annual “Bring Mom Back Home” celebration from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday, May 12, in downtown West Union. Festivities on Mother’s Day weekend kick off with the Gundersen Palmer Lutheran Hospital and Clinics 5K at 9 a.m. followed by a Car Show and Shine at NAPA Auto Parts starting at 10 a.m. Buck Hollow will perform downtown from noon to 2 p.m., and all area businesses are encouraged to be open and promote their products and services to area patrons. Chris DeBack photo

 

'Bring Mom Back Home' to West Union

 

 

By Chris Deback
cdeback@thefayettecountyunion.com

 

 

 

Be sure to “Bring Mom Back Home” to West Union on Saturday, May 12, to kick off the celebration of Mother’s Day weekend. 

The “Bring Mom Back Home” retail event will run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. with a number of festivities taking place in downtown West Union. 

It all gets underway with the Gundersen Palmer Lutheran Hospital and Clinics “Fun” Run/Walk 5K with registration at 8:30 a.m. The walk will start at 9 a.m. 

Wed
02
May

Red Giant: Wholesale Fireworks opens in old Signode Building

 

Red Giant Wholesale Fireworks recently moved into the old Signode Building in West Union. Owners Terry and Julie Redfearn (l-r) of Hazel Green, Wis., have spent the last year bringing the building up to code. The owners of Tri-State Fireworks, a fireworks retail store in Hazel Green and Independence, recently decided to try their hand at the wholesale side of the fireworks business to supply their own retail stores and pick up any other business they could. (Chris DeBack photo)

 

Red Giant: Wholesale Fireworks opens in old Signode Building

 

 

 

By Chris Deback
cdeback@thefayettecountyunion.com

 

It has been a year since Terry and Julie Redfearn of Hazel Green, Wis., purchased the Signode building in West Union. 

The owners of Tri-State Fireworks, a Wisconsin-based fireworks retailer, have spent the last year bringing the 36,000-square-foot former manufacturing facility up to code for their next business venture: wholesale fireworks. The couple will use its new fireworks company, Red Giant Wholesale Fireworks, to supply its current and two new retail fireworks locations, plus pick up any other business they can along the way. 

Wed
02
May

A day in the life of Prom

The final touch for these NFV Prom attendees, Tommy Rolison and Hailey Smith, was pinning on the boutoniere and clasping the wrist corsage that the couple picked out from Old Mill Floral. All dressed up and ready to go, it was time for the couple to pose for a few photos prior to heading off to the Grand March that was held at the NFV Performing Arts Center.

 

A day in the life of Prom

 

 

By Meagan Molseed
mmolseed@thefayettecountyunion.com

 

 

 

“It’s hard to believe it’s my Senior Prom,” North Fayette Valley senior Hailey Smith said softly as she unzipped the garment bag to reveal the shimmery green dress she had chosen for the occasion with the theme “Diamonds Are Forever.”

“It doesn’t seem real that we’re already here,” the young woman continued as she shooed away her golden retriever, Whitney, who was eyeing the floor length gown with curiosity.  “It’s exciting and kind of sad at the same time.” 

Hailey, like many of the other North Fayette Valley juniors and seniors, started her day bright and early last Saturday in preparation for the annual tradition.

“I was up at 6:30 this morning, ” she said with a wide grin.  “I was just too excited!”  

Wed
25
Apr

Fertilizer plant fire leads to evacuation

 

A fire broke out at the old fertilizer plant, which still contains fertilizer, owned by Farmers Union Co-op in Ossian on Friday afternoon. Due to the volatility of the situation and the number of children in close proximity to the blaze, students from DeSales School and DeSales Childcare Center were evacuated, but due to the quick response by local emergency response crews, officials stated that the children were not in danger at any point. (Zakary Kriener photo)

 

Fertilizer plant fire leads to evacuation

 

 

Zakary Kriener

News Writer
zkriener@fayettepublishing.com

 

 

 

The Ossian Fire Department, along with the Winneshiek County Sheriff’s Office, Winneshiek County Emergency Management, Calmar Fire Department, Castalia Fire Department, and Calmar Police, responded to a fire call at the Farmers Union Co-op’s old fertilizer plant in Ossian on Friday afternoon.

The 9-1-1 call came in at 12:15 p.m. and advised that a fire had broken out at the facility, which still contains fertilizer.

Due to the volatility of the situation, children at nearby DeSales School and DeSales Childcare Center were evacuated and relocated to South Winneshiek Elementary/Middle School.

Wed
25
Apr

Decorah eagles face onslaught of challenges

 

Taken during the most recent spring snowfall, the Decorah eagles sit side-by-side to protect the young eaglets. Although the recent spate of winter weather has affected the bald eagles in both Decorah nests, Raptor Resource Project officials are hopeful the young eagles in the nest near the Decorah Fish Hatchery (pictured) and the un-hatched eggs in the Decorah north nest will all be unaffected long-term by the extended winter weather. (submitted photo)

 

Decorah eagles face onslaught of challenges

 

Zakary Kriener

News Writer
zkriener@fayettepublishing.com

 

 

 

The Decorah Eaglecam was first launched in 2009 in the form of a camera that refreshed a new image of the beloved local bald eagles once every two minutes. The camera began live-streaming video of the eagles’ nest two years later through Ustream, and soon after, the world fell in love with the Decorah eagles.

Since its launch, the live feed has seen a total of over 355,900,000 views, making it the world’s most popular live-streaming video.

Wed
25
Apr

WC and Starmont foster a relationship of collaboration

 

As many rural Iowa school districts do in an effort to be more cost-effective, West Central (pictured) and Starmont have begun to share programs in an effort to offer more educational and extracurricular activities to their students. Currently, the two schools share baseball and wrestling. They shared West Central’s spring play and are looking into sharing cross country and FFA next fall.  file photo

 

WC and Starmont foster a relationship of collaboration

 

 

By Chris Deback
cdeback@thefayettecountyunion.com

 

While there has been zero talk of Starmont and West Central merging into one school district, that hasn’t kept their superintendents from collaborating on school programs. 

 

In February 2017, Troy Heller, Starmont and Tripoli shared superintendent, and Fred Matlage, West Central and Sumner-Fredericksburg shared superintendent, began discussing how a relationship between the two schools just 12 miles apart could be mutually beneficial.

Each superintendent wanted to emphasize that neither of them has ever discussed any kind of whole-grade sharing or school district consolidation. However, their discussions are part of a trend that has been going on over the last two decades to give students in rural Iowa the best education possible for the cost. 

Wed
25
Apr

Chief Pisanti resigns from Fayette

 

Fayette Police Chief Richard Pisanti recently resigned from his leadership duties after taking a similar chief’s position with a department in Tallahassee, Fla. Pisanti’s last day with the Fayette Police Department will be Friday, May 11. 

 

Chief Pisanti resigns from Fayette

 

 

Zakary Kriener

News Writer
zkriener@fayettepublishing.com

 

 

 

 

The City of Fayette will be on the hunt for a new leader for its police department with the resignation of its Police Chief Richard Pisanti. 

Pisanti is leaving the Fayette Police Department to take a chief’s position with a police department in Tallahassee, Fla., which is the state’s capital. His last day with the department will be Friday, May 11. 

Wed
25
Apr

Highway 150 the next corridor?

 

Could Highway 150 be the next four-lane corridor in Iowa? That is what the Highway 150 Coalition, made up of representatives from cities along Highway 150, is currently exploring. Shown is the intersection of Highways 150 and 18 in West Union. (Chris DeBack photo)

 

Highway 150 the next corridor?

 

 

By Chris Deback
cdeback@thefayettecountyunion.com

 

 

 

 

Could Highway 150 become the next four-lane corridor in the state of Iowa?

A group called the Highway 150 Coalition, made up of representatives from a number of cities along Highway 150, are working to make that a reality. 

The concept was originally thought up by Lloyd Bigler, a native of Postville who now lives in Waverly. He spoke with Craig Johnson, Iowa Senate District 32 representative and chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee, about the matter last fall.

Wed
25
Apr

'The Hat' a good fit for new owner

 

After completing some improvements, new owner Nick Polfer is set to reopen The Top Hat on Friday, April 27. He said that area residents can expect a clean, casual atmosphere in his bars, with numerous domestic beers on tap and a short-order food menu that includes some delicious burgers. Chris DeBack photo

 

'The Hat' a good fit for new owner

 

 

By Chris Deback
cdeback@thefayettecountyunion.com

 

 

 

 

The Top Hat, affectionately called “The Hat,” has been a landmark in West Union for many decades.

The landmark will live on as Nick Polfer of Postville plans to reopen The Hat on Friday, April 27, after closing it for a few weeks this month to make some renovations. Polfer finalized his purchase of the longtime West Union business from previous owner Roy Guenther on April 1.

“The history behind The Top Hat is awesome,” Polfer explained. “It has been The Top Hat for a long time, and it will stay that. It was a landmark before it burnt down, and they moved it up here. It has a lot of history behind it, which is very cool.” 

Wed
18
Apr

April hailstorm in Ossian

 

Mother Nature seems to be a bit confused this spring, as last week brought a little bit of everything to residents of northeast Iowa, including hail that was larger than a quarter on Friday morning. Earlier in the week, the area experienced rain, thunderstorms, a 60-degree temperature day, and even snow. (submitted photo)

 

April hailstorm in Ossian

 

 

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