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Friday News, August 31

Cultural Assessment Survey Results Announced

(Le Mars) -- The Le Mars Arts Center will announce the findings of a recent Cultural
Assessment Survey this afternoon at 4:00 p.m.  Members of the community and various sectors
within the community, including the Le Mars Convention and Visitors Board, Plymouth County
Historical Museum, the Le Mars Community Theater, Chamber of Commerce, Le Mars Municipal
Band, Plymouth County Fair Board, Le Mars Arts Council, and the local media participated in
an assessment of Le Mars cultural events last year.  Mary Sundt Jones, past Arts Division
Administrator of the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs conducted the survey and compiled
the results.

Bridge Replacement Completed -- Noble Avenue Open

(Le Mars) -- The Plymouth County Secondary Road Department has announced that people can
again travel on Noble Avenue between County Road C-70 and 320th Street as a bridge replacement project is now completed.

Plymouth County Farm Bureau To Hold Annual Meeting

(Le Mars) -- The Plymouth County Farm Bureau organization will hold its 94th annual meeting
Tuesday evening, September 4th at the Plymouth County Fairgrounds Century Hall.  District Director Mark Bohner offers a preview of the meeting.

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Eammon Byrne, the CEO of Plymouth Energy will be the featured speaker.

Le Mars Prepares For Sprint Triathlon

(Le Mars) -- Next Saturday, September 8th, the Le Mars YMCA, Le Mars Hy Vee, and Wells Enterprises, Incorporated will be hosting the Le Mars Sprint Triathlon.  The triathlon consists of three events including a 300 yard swim, a 15 mile bike ride, and a 5K run.  Organizers are expecting good participation from various parts of the Midwest.  Approximately 175 participants from eight different states are expected to compete in the annual event.  The Le Mars YMCA is encouraging people if you choose not to participate, then at the very least, come out and cheer for those particating.  The event kicks off at 9:00 a.m.

Healthiest State Walk Scheduled for October 3

(Des Moines) -- Iowa wants to be Healthy.  As part of Governor Terry Branstad's desire to
have Iowa as the healthiest state in the nation, October 3rd has been designated as the day
Iowans are encouraged to walk one kilometer, or about a half a mile.  More than 291,000
Iowans participated in last year's kick-off walk for the Healthiest State Initiative.  Le Mars had a couple thousand people participate last year with walks around downtown, at Gehlen Catholic/Floyd Valley Hospital, the YMCA, Le Mars Community School, Dean Foods, and near Wells Corporate offices.

Northey Speaks About Presidential Race and Agriculture

(Boone) -- Both President Obama and Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney have conducted extensive campaign stops in Iowa, a major swing state, with the hopes of persuading voters to their side.  But is agriculture a part of the political rhetoric? Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey says he believes both candidates do have agriculture on their minds when they visit the Hawkeye state.

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Northey further explains the positions of the presidential candidates.

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Northey says although the farm bill may not have as much significance with this presidential election as with elections of the past, he says it is most definately on the minds of Iowa farmers.  Northey was a speaker at the Farm Progress Show held near Boone.


Biplane Makes An Emergency Landing

KNOXVILLE, Iowa (AP) - A biplane on its way to an airshow for antique aircraft has landed safely on a state highway near Knoxville in south-central Iowa.
Authorities say the plane was headed from Spokane, Wash., to Blakesburg when its engine failed. It landed on Iowa Highway 5/92 about a half-mile west of Knoxville around 10:20 a.m. Thursday.
No injuries have been reported, and Marion County authorities say the plane didn't sustain any damage.
The plane was towed to the Knoxville airport for repairs.
Knoxville is about 35 miles from Blakesburg.


Fort Dodge Man Sentenced To Prison For Meth

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - A 32-year-old man from Fort Dodge has been given 5 1/2 years in prison for conspiring to make methamphetamine.
Federal prosecutors say Phillip Farmer Jr. was sentenced Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Sioux City. He had pleaded guilty in May. Farmer must serve five years of supervised release after he leaves prison.
Prosecutors say that from December 2009 through July 2011, Farmer bought or otherwise acquired pseudoephedrine so he and others could make meth. Prosecutors also say Farmer admitted
selling meth in the Fort Dodge area.

Farmers Talk Drought At Farm Show

BOONE, Iowa (AP) - Farmers typically attend the annual Farm Progress Show in Boone to look to the future.
They want to see the latest equipment, seed, and chemicals, and they want to learn about where the markets are headed.
At this year's three-day show that ended Thursday, plenty of people spoke about the drought, but they noted the last few years have been good. And even during this hot, dry summer, the harvest
might not be as bad as it seems.
While some individuals will lose money, farmers overall may earn more than last year's record net income of more than $100 billion.
Crop insurance and commodity prices are helping to compensate for lower yields.
The USDA estimates farm income of $122.2 billion in 2012, up about 3.7 percent from last year.


Police Dog Dies From Heat

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Authorities say the brutal heat is suspected in the death of a Des Moines police dog found dead inside a patrol vehicle.
Harley, a Labrador retriever assigned to the narcotics team, was found Wednesday afternoon. The temperature had already reached the low 90s.
Police Sgt. Chris Scott says Harley had been working with his human partner, Officer Brian Mathis, on Wednesday. Scott says it was Mathis who found Harley dead in the vehicle.
Investigators are checking how long Harley was left inside the vehicle and whether the air conditioner was on or some windows were rolled down.
Scott says the department has "lost a fellow officer who just happened to be a dog."


Thursday Afternnon News, August 30

(Le Mars) -- The way into the heart of the community is often through food, and The Le Mars Community Educational Enhancement Project, known as LEEP, has figured out how to tap into that very thing.  After 3 years of raising over $10,000 for Le Mars Community Schools with an event called Taverns for Textbooks, the LEEP Board has decided to take it another step with the first annual MENuMASTERS Fundraiser on September 22nd.
LEEP, was created by members four years ago with the idea in mind that schools didn't have enough money for funding the things they need. Board President Gayle Vonk tells us why she invests her time in LEEP.

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LEEP Treasurer Julie Beitelspacher says that the organization has come up with a really good method for considering what to do with the funds they raise.

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Aside from providing new textbooks, an example of what LEEP has funded includes sending Franklin School 5th graders to visit the Iowa Science Center in Des Moines.

Vonk and Beitelsbacher are co-chairing the upcoming MENuMASTERS event with Linda Mayrose.
Excited to be a part of bringing something new to Le Mars, Mayrose says she's looking forward to the event.

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Each business owner and chef, from John MacGregor at the Education Station to Steve Ohm from Motor Inn, will decorate their cooking booth to reflect their business. Food will be served from 5 until 8pm on Saturday the 22nd and live music will go till 10pm. Tickets for this LEEP fundraiser are $25 and are available at Linda Mayrose Real Estate, Prime Bank or by calling 712-548-6889.  

Police Arrest Former Grocery Employee For Theft

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - A former employee has been accused of stealing $11,000 from a grocery store in Iowa City.
49-year-old Robert Frazier, of Muscatine, surrendered to face one count of felony theft.
Police say the $11,000 was taken from October 2011 to May 2012 when Frazier worked at a Fareway store. Police say Frazier admitted taking the money.
A Johnson County jailer said Thursday that Frazier has left custody. A phone listed for Frazier is no longer in service. Online court records don't list the name of his attorney.


Issac May Help Some Drought Areas

ST. LOUIS (AP) - Some key farm states punished by the nation's worst drought in decades benefited slightly from recent rains, with a bigger dousing forecast from the remnants of Hurricane Isaac.
The weekly U.S. Drought Monitor map released Thursday shows that the section of the continental U.S. in the worst two categories of drought - extreme and exceptional - remained relatively unchanged
at 23.2 percent as of the report's Tuesday cutoff.
But thanks to rains last weekend, the amount of Iowa in the two worst drought classifications fell by 9 percentage points to 58.3 percent. Illinois saw a 7 percentage point drop-off while Kansas'
numbers slid 6 points.
Forecasters expect portions of the Midwest to get as much as 12 inches of rain within days due to Isaac, now a tropical storm.


Fire Destroys Police Chief Home

SHELLSBURG, Iowa (AP) - A fire has damaged the home of a police chief in east-central Iowa.
The fire was reported about 5:45 p.m. Wednesday at the home of Shellsburg Chief Marty Evans.
Authorities say the fire likely started in the garage and spread to the house. The cause is being
Three people in the home at the time escaped without injury.
Evans has worked for the city since 1997.

Police Officer Injured While Responding To Party

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - Police say four people were arrested after an officer was attacked while checking out a report of a loud party in Iowa City.
Officials say the officer was sprayed in the face with an air freshener when one of the residents opened the door early Thursday.  Police say when the officer grabbed the man, his roommate kicked
the officer in the head and hit him with a microphone from the officer's uniform.
After the two men were arrested, police went into the apartment and found 10 people inside. All were underage. Police also found bottles of beer and liquor.
The two men face a variety of charges, including assault. They and two other roommates were all charged with a disorderly house.
The officer, who was not identified, suffered minor injuries.




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