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Doug Lindner

Solon Speaks

8th graders create new positive podcast

SOLON– And now for some good news.
2020 was a year with a lot of negative reports, but a group of Solon eighth graders are looking to put the accent on the positive in 2021.
The Solon Middle School students, part of Kerri Coons’ talented and gifted classroom, created a new podcast, Solon Speaks.
Four of the podcast’s staff– Bri Henning, Makayla Keller, Lucy Miller and Piper Artley– introduced the new project at a school board meeting Dec. 17, 2020, and later to members of the Solon City Council during a Jan. 6 session.

Trail Ridge not quite there

City officials raise density concerns

SOLON– Everyone loved the Trail Ridge Estates plan.
But some loved it less than others.
Solon City Council and Planning and Zoning (P&Z) Commission members split over support of the proposed subdivision during a virtual joint session Thursday, Jan. 14.
No official vote was taken, but an informal poll taken by Mayor Steve Stange indicated three of five council members supported a new concept plan with four of the six commission members opposed.
Those in opposition cited concerns for overall density and the ratio of multifamily units to single family dwellings.

Every shave a close one

Spartans keep winning tight games Comeback against Maquoketa, OT thriller against Mt. Vernon

SOLON– Every night’s an exciting night when Solon plays this season.
The varsity Spartan basketball team extended its winning streak to 10 with two more closely contested home games last week.
Solon came back Jan. 12 from a hefty early deficit to top Maquoketa 57-50, then outlasted Mount Vernon in overtime Friday, Jan. 15, in a 74-70 scoring fest.
Against the Mustangs at home, the Spartans found their stroke at the charity stripe.

Solon settles for 6th at Ed Hadenfeldt

Taylor first, Ebert second at home tournament Spartans fall to South Tama, 45-29

SOLON– Neighboring powerhouse Lisbon grappled its way past North Scott for the team title at the Ed Hadenfeldt Wrestling Invitational Saturday, Jan. 16.
The host Spartans battled to sixth, with Hayden Taylor taking the championship at 160 pounds. Caleb Ebert captured second at 152, and David Karam (145) and Gage Marty (220) placed third.
Solon finished with 137 team points, battling with Cedar Rapids Prairie (177.5), Pella (160.5) and West Liberty (156.5) for the top spots behind No. 2 (1A) Lisbon with 288.5, and eighth-ranked (3A) North Scott with 259.5.

District readies for state assessment

Rebound from COVID layoff expected

SOLON– After a one-year, COVID-induced hiatus, Solon students will take a statewide assessment in 2021.
And while districts nationwide are dealing with a learning gap due to school closures and online curriculum, Solon’s administration expects to bounce back.
The Iowa Statewide Assessment of Student Progress (ISASP) was introduced two years ago, explained Solon Community School District (SCSD) Director of Teaching and Learning Josh Lyons during a Dec. 17 school board meeting.
SCSD students took the ISASP during the 2018-2019 school year with paper and pencil, he noted.

Board takes peek at 2022-2023 school calendar

SOLON– Solon’s school board went back to the future.
Board members were presented with a draft of the school calendar for 2022-2023 during a Dec. 17 meeting.
According to Solon Community School District (SCSD) Superintendent Davis Eidahl, the calendar was prepared based on previous years by administrative assistant and board secretary Kris Wentzien.
Eidahl reviewed the draft to ensure 180 school days and a minimum 1,080 hours of student contact.
The first day of school would be Tuesday, Aug. 23, 2022, and the last day for students would be Thursday, May 25, 2023.

Its been a wonderful job

After three decades, Kris Brown writes last chapter as director

SOLON Think of the Solon Public Library and you think of Kris Brown.
For decades, the two have been synonymous.
But with the dawn of 2021, Solons longtime library director is calling it a career.
Her last day is scheduled for Friday, Jan. 15, 2021
Even though she turns 70 in May, Brown is leaving reluctantly. Personal health issues have been the deciding factor.
Its just been difficult, especially with COVID, Ive not been able to work with the public for probably the last six months and I dont feel Im contributing enough, she noted.

No post-Thanksgiving surge

Eidahl provides COVID update at school board meeting Parents asked to consider game plan for possible closures

SOLON The Solon Community School District (SCSD) made it past Thanksgiving with no serious surge in COVID-19 cases, but its urging parents to be prepared in early 2021.
Superintendent Davis Eidahl provided an update on the districts response to the pandemic during a Dec. 17 school board meeting.
So (we) really appreciate our families and their efforts with mitigation outside the school day, which were pretty sure had a positive impact on our current data, he noted.

3 more months

City and school renew community center lease New location at fire station?

SOLON– Three months at a time.
The City of Solon and the Solon Community School District agreed to a three-month lease for the former middle school and current community center on South Iowa Street.
The new lease begins Jan. 1, 2021, and runs through March 30, 2021.
Council members approved their side of the agreement at a regular meeting Dec. 16.
The city scaled back the operation of the community center in an attempt to cope with high utility bills and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on recreation programs.

Kunkel ready for sheriff’s role

Priority on domestic violence, technology investigation

SOLON– You don’t get to say it very often in Johnson County.
There’s a new sheriff in town.
Brad Kunkel will take the reins from retiring Sheriff Lonny Pulkrabek with the end of the calendar year.
The rural Solon resident and former city council member soundly defeated Al Fear in the June primary and was unopposed in the Nov. 3 general election.
Now he’s prepared to make good on his campaign pledges and is working with Pulkrabek on a smooth transition.

Spartans take down Indians

Solon edges Marion, blows out No. 3 Camanche late

SOLON– Chalk up two more quality home wins, both against Indians.
Solon’s varsity boys’ basketball team pulled out a 49-48 thriller against Marion then clamped down on Camanche (third-ranked in Class 2A) Saturday, Dec. 19, for a 68-44 win.
For Camanche, it was the first loss of the season.
The Spartans won the game in the final period.

Spartan wrestlers 4th at packed Ft. Madison invite

Dual wins against Clinton and Maquoketa

FORT MADISON– Solon crowned two champs and came away with fourth place at a crowded Fort Madison Invitational Dec. 19.
Hayden Taylor (160 pounds) and Gage Marty (220) captured first place, while Lucas Kampman (170) took second and Caleb Ebert (152) came in third.
Dubuque Hempstead walked away with the team title, rolling up 248.5 points. From there, it was the best of the rest with Cedar Rapids Kennedy a solid second with 169.5 and Burlington Notre Dame third with 145.5.
The Spartans’ 141.5 points edged out host Fort Madison (141) for fourth.