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Wed
21
Nov

Green Valley Bridge now open to traffic ...

The Allamakee County Board of Supervisors toured several projects following its Tuesday, November 13 meeting, including the Green Valley Bridge, pictured above, which has been completed and is now open to traffic as of last Thursday, November 15. Replacement of the bridge was a cost-share project following recent flooding events, with the State of Iowa providing 80% of the project funding and the City of Waukon and Allamakee County splitting the remaining 20% of the cost. The temporary access, consisting of gravel fill and a culvert located just to the south of the bridge project and used to access neighboring businesses, homes and other buildings during the Green Valley Bridge construction project, will not be maintained and will be removed next spring with the availability of an excavator, according to Allamakee County Engineer Brian Ridenour. Standard photo by Joe Moses.
 

Wed
21
Nov

Concerns arise with English Bench Watershed #9 ...

English Bench Watershed #9 was viewed Tuesday, November 13 by the Allamakee County Board of Supervisors, with Allamakee County Engineer Brian Ridenour, Allamakee County Emergency Management Coordinator Corey Snitker and representatives of the Allamakee County Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD), including LuAnn Rolling, Brianne Wild and Don Elsbernd, also in attendance. Ridenour was notified October 30 about concerns with the watershed including dirt slides (evident in the broken ground near the middle of the above photo) and a leak at the base from an 18-inch overflow pipe (pictured near the pooled water to the right in the above photo) fed by a large pond area not pictured but located to the left of this photo view. State of Iowa experts, including geologists and engineers, will be inspecting the watershed and providing a recommendation prior to further discussion of the matter at the December 3 Board of Supervisors meeting. Standard photo by Joe Moses.
 

Wed
21
Nov

Makee Drive being prepared for one-mile paving project in Summer 2019 ...

Preliminary work is well underway on the Makee Drive paving project just north of Waukon, with grading, widening of the roadway shoulders and other preparation work continuing yet this year and the paving of the roadway scheduled for completion during Summer 2019. Allamakee County Engineer Brian Ridenour indicated that the preliminary work being done now will allow for multiple freeze/thaw cycles throughout the winter and spring months to accommodate better settling of the roadway foundation prior to paving. The project involves the paving of a one-mile section of the roadway from its intersection with State Highway 9 east to its intersection with Four Corners Road. Standard photo by Joe Moses.
 

Wed
21
Nov

#AllInAllamakee: Revision of Allamakee County Comprehensive Plan underway Public can still provide input through survey

by Lissa Blake

It’s a group effort to overhaul the County’s comprehensive plan and a number of area stakeholders have been working toward that end. Allamakee County is currently partnering with Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission (UERPC) to develop a new comprehensive plan for the County.

According to Allamakee County Zoning Administrator Tom Blake, the County’s current plan has been in place since 2002. He said although counties are supposed to review and update their plans about every 10 years, it usually takes 15-20 years for that to happen.

“The Planning and Zoning Commission refers to this plan any time there is a request for a change in zoning,” said Blake.

Wed
21
Nov

State of Iowa’s first post-election audit confirms vote results from local precinct

The process to conduct the first statewide post-election audits in Iowa history began Wednesday morning following the November 6 General Election. The Iowa Secretary of State’s Office randomly selected precincts in all 99 counties to conduct a post-election audit. County auditors and staff began the process of hand-counting ballots in those precincts to ensure the vote totals are accurate in comparison to those tabulated by the voting machines used in this year’s election. The post-election audits were completed throughout the state of Iowa this past week.

“Post-election audits add another layer of integrity to the election process,” Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate said. “We want every Iowan to know that your vote counts, and it will be counted correctly.”

Wed
14
Nov

Honored as a “Hawkeye Hero” ...

John and Eileen Curtin of rural Waukon wave to the fans at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City as John was honored as a “Hawkeye Hero” on the football field during the first quarter of the Military Appreciation Day Iowa Hawkeye football home game vs. Northwestern Saturday, November 10. Curtin was nominated for the honor this past summer by his daughter-in-law, Olivia Curtin, who is married to the Curtins’ youngest son, Brad. The honor involved John and his wife, Eileen, being heralded by the Kinnick Stadium crowd as they stood near the 20-yard line during a first quarter media time-out while John’s history as a military veteran serving in Vietnam was announced over the stadium speaker system and photos of John were also shared on the stadium video screen. The Curtins also got to visit the field of Kinnick Stadium prior to the ballgame and toured the stadium press box, where they were able to meet Iowa Hawkeye football broadcaster Ed Podolak.

Wed
14
Nov

New flagpole dedicated at Public Safety Center ...

Retired Navy Master Chief Carl Christianson of Waukon provided introductions and opening remarks during the Thursday, November 8 flagpole dedication ceremony held at the Allamakee County Public Safety Center north of Waukon. Local veterans John Regan, Commander of the VFW and Tom Regan of the local American Legion assisted Allamakee County Sheriff Clark Mellick in preparing the American flag for its raising during the flagpole dedication ceremony (pictured above). Following the raising of the flag, Judge John Bauercamper of the First Judicial District addressed the public and veterans in attendance by discussing the symbolism and significance of the flag and the history of the Allamakee County Sheriff’s Department with 29 sheriffs having served since the County’s establishment.

Wed
14
Nov

Allamakee County voters don’t necessarily follow broader trends in 2018 General Election results

Byrnes, Schellhammer returned to Supervisors seats by Allamakee County voters, Egan edged by Osmundson in Iowa House District 56

Wed
07
Nov

Vietnam Veteran John Curtin to be honored as a “Hawkeye Hero” this Saturday during Iowa football game


Honored as a Hawkeye Hero ... John and Eileen Curtin of rural Waukon take a moment following the Memorial Day Parade held in Waukon in 2014, when John was named Grand Marshall of the parade. John served in the U.S. Army from 1968 to 1969 before being wounded three times in Vietnam and earning the Purple Heart. He is now also being honored as a “Hawkeye Hero” this Saturday, November 10 during the Iowa football game at home vs. Northwestern, an honor his family nominated him for. Submitted photo.

Family pride ... The children and grandchildren of John Curtin of rural Waukon coordinated the above photos that were then arranged in a three-section frame and given to him to help announce his honoring as a “Hawkeye Hero” at the Iowa vs. Northwestern football game this Saturday, November 10. Pictured above in the three photos, left to right are John’s son, Brian, and his wife, Michelle, and their kids, Alex and Hudson, of Urbandale; John’s daughter, Kelly Brown, and her husband, Nick, and their children, Caleb, Jace and Nathan, of Lisbon; and John’s son, Brad, and his wife, Olivia, and their children, Payton and Dawson, of North Liberty. Submitted photos.

by Lissa Blake

Since serving in Vietnam 50 years ago, U.S. Army Veteran John Curtin has continued to honor his country and his service in the military by participating in many area events.

However, this Saturday, November 10, Curtin, himself, will be honored for his military service during one of his favorite pastimes, an Iowa Hawkeye football game.

Curtin, of rural Waukon, was nominated by his family this past summer to be a “Hawkeye Hero” for a day. During the Iowa vs. Northwestern Military Appreciation Day football game this Saturday at Kinnick Stadium in Iowa City, Curtin will be recognized during a media time-out in the first quarter of the game, where a brief piece of his military story will be told and some photos will also be shared on the stadium’s big video screen. Further details of Curtin’s honoring taking place this Saturday appear elsewhere with this story in a colored box.

Wed
07
Nov

Remembering her hero: Waukon’s Helen Stegen recounts the service of her uncle, Harris Quanrud


Proud of his service ... Helen Stegen of Waukon holds the display case that houses the medals and other honorings of her uncle, Harris Quanrud, who served in the U.S. Army during World War II. Stegen said her uncle and his love for children had a big impact on her life and the lives of her two sons, Lee and Lloyd. Photo by Lissa Blake.

Harris Quanrud ... Submitted photo.

by Lissa Blake

When Waukon’s Helen Stegen reflects upon the gifts she received in life, she treasures the fact she had her very own war hero in her uncle, Harris Quanrud.

“He was my hero … and still is,” said Stegen, now 81 years old.

Stegen was born Helen Forde in 1937. Her mother, Harriet Quanrud, was a sister to Harris Quanrud, who was born August 4, 1915.

“I was just three years old when Harris went into the Army, in April of 1941,” remembered Helen.

Although she was young, she said she can vividly remember her mother and aunt Barbara sitting on top of a heater, crying. “And I cried too, because they were crying. I had never seen my mom cry before,” said Helen.

Helen remembered the Quanrud family having a schedule for corresponding with Harris when he was overseas. “Each of his three sisters and his mom had a specific day of the week they would write to him. My brother, Jim, and I wrote to him as well,” she said.

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