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Chris Umscheid

No job too large or too small

North Liberty’s Home Repair Team builds on 20 years of excellence

NORTH LIBERTY– What started out as a simple handyman service 20 years ago has grown into an award winning, full-service design-build, handyman and remodeling business.
Home Repair Team (HRT) started in 1998 when Rob Hajek and his father-in-law Dale Steffen started doing small home repair projects and improvement jobs. His wife Julie came onboard in 2001 to handle the administration side of the business, and his father Dick Hajek joined the company in 2005. Dick Hajek and Dale Steffen both retired in 2009.

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Winter arrives but work continues on Oak Hill

CCA construction manager gives an update on progress

TIFFIN– Even with the onset of winter, work continues on the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) Community School District’s Oak Hill Elementary in Tiffin. The school, scheduled to open in August 2019, will house fourth- and fifth-grade students from Tiffin Elementary and North Bend Elementary in North Liberty. Amana Elementary and Clear Creek Elementary (CCE) in Oxford will continue to house their own fourth- and fifth-graders.

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CCA proposes 2019-20 academic calendar

Dates to remember

OXFORD– The School Board of Directors for the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) Community School District would like to hear from you, if you’ve got something to say about the 2019-20 academic calendar.
A public hearing will be held on the current proposed calendar on Wednesday, Dec. 19, at 6:30 p.m. at Clear Creek Elementary (CCE) in Oxford.
District Superintendent Tim Kuehl presented the draft calendar to the board during a Monday, Nov. 19, regular meeting at CCE.

Murder and mayhem take the stage at Liberty High

Liberty Lightning Theatre brings classic board game Clue to life

NORTH LIBERTY – Parker Brothers introduced a murder mystery board game named “Clue” to the United States in the late 1940s. Players chose a character, a weapon, and drew cards to deduce the murderer, the weapon used, and which room in a mansion the murder occurred in to win the game.
In 1985, the game was turned into a movie with a screenplay penned by Jonathan Lynn. Ten years later a musical version was created, which was revised and returned to Broadway this year. Lynn modified his theatrical (non-musical) script for the stage in 2016.

Harvey puts his paw prints on the CCA stage

The Creek’s thespians bring a classic to life

NORTH LIBERTY– Elwood P. Dowd is a happy man. Day in and day out, he meets new friends and generally lives without a care. His best friend, though, is a 6-3 white rabbit named Harvey, who nobody else can see. The trials and tribulations of his loving sister, Myrtle Mae Simmons, and her efforts to have Dowd committed to a sanitarium are the basis for “Harvey,” a two-act comedy-drama the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) High School Drama Department presented Thursday, Nov. 8, through Saturday, Nov. 10, in the Performing Arts Center in Tiffin.

Trying to fill the void

Johnson County to hold special election Dec. 18 for supervisor vacancy

IOWA CITY– Johnson County Supervisor Kurt Friese, 54, died on Friday, Oct. 26. His unexpected death sent shockwaves through the county, which have turned into a scramble to find a replacement to fill out the remaining two years of his term.

Serving those who served

CCA Middle School students welcome and feed local veterans

TIFFIN– Elizabeth, a seventh-grader at the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) Middle School summed up why she and several other students eagerly crowded behind tables of food, donned plastic gloves and served breakfast to a group of veterans.
“They helped for us, so we’d like to help out for them.”
Veterans and their families filled the commons area in the school Monday, Nov. 12, for the annual Springmier Community Library Veterans Celebration, which featured breakfast including casseroles, rolls, breakfast pizza, oatmeal and biscuits and gravy.

A golden opportunity

ICCSD donation of a house provides rare training opportunity for the NLFD

NORTH LIBERTY– A small two-story house and two little sheds used to sit on a parcel of land overlooking a wooded ravine just east of Liberty High School in North Liberty. The house was abandoned for some time and the Iowa City Community School District (ICCSD) purchased the land for future expansion of the high school. Eventually the structures would have to be torn down.

Supervisors close to finalizing land purchase for Behavioral Health Urgent Care Center

Multiple studies OK purchase and construction, Rettig still opposed due to flood risk

IOWA CITY– A long awaited comprehensive access center for behavioral emergencies and mental health crisis in Johnson County, the Behavioral Health Urgent Care Center (BHUCC), took another step toward becoming a reality as the board of supervisors received an update on the various studies being performed ahead of finalizing purchase of land for the facility.
Matt Miller, the project manager with Hart Frederick Consultants P.C., reported on the pre-purchase progress during a Wednesday, Oct. 31, work session of the supervisors.

Oak Hill

CCA board approves historic name for new elementary school

TIFFIN– The members of the Clear Creek Amana (CCA) school board faced a dilemma with far-reaching implications Wednesday, Oct. 17, during their regular monthly meeting in Oxford: What to call the new school, currently under construction in Tiffin.

A focal point in the community is due for a makeover

Oxford American Legion seeks donations for new Veterans Memorial

OXFORD– The Veterans Memorial in Oxford stands for all who have honorably served in the armed forces of the United States. Like many veterans, it has seen good times and bad, and has stood in the face of adversity.
But Oxford’s memorial has lost some of its luster and Oxford American Legion members have banded together to raise funds for a new one.
The current memorial replaced a wooden monument which bore the names of Oxford’s veterans placed some 25-30 years ago, possibly even 40, depending on who you ask.

Bringing a legend back to life

The DanceMor opens its doors again after four-year hiatus

SWISHER– Live music and dancing has returned to the historic DanceMor ballroom in downtown Swisher after a four-year hiatus.
The venue, originally a dance floor and stage covered by a circus tent, closed in 2014 and sat dormant until a young couple with an appreciation for the history, and a passion, set out to breathe new life into it.