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Doug Lindner

Spartans push Sabers, but fall, 62-38

Solon draws to within three in third quarter

SOLON– In the third period, Solon had Central DeWitt’s lead whittled away to three points on a breakaway by sophomore Kinnick Pusteoska.
It forced a Saber timeout and had Solon Head Coach Matt Lesan pumping his fist on the sidelines.
But Central DeWitt senior Tucker Kinney was not to be denied and his game-high 27 points led the Sabers past the Spartans in the fourth quarter for a 62-38 win in Solon Dec. 17.
The loss moved the Spartans to 2-4 on the season.

Saving Santa

Helen Proffitt restores Golden Age department store Santa Santa’s Kitchen display featured at tree walk

SOLON– It was the year Helen Proffitt saved Santa.
Proffitt, of rural Solon, spent several months restoring a 5-foot 1961 Harold Gale Santa Company Santa for display at Solon’s annual tree walk Dec. 7.
The Santa figure, along with two elves, were featured in a three-walled Santa’s Kitchen in a corner of the Solon United Methodist Church Family Life Center, along with hundreds of other donated items.
Many of those, including Santa and the elves, came from the collection of Toni Russo of Solon.

New recreation director hired

Tom Harder started Dec. 16

SOLON– Solon has a new recreation director.
Tom Harder, a native of Iowa City, started the new post Dec. 16.
Harder replaces Ben Flaherty, who served in the position from September of 2018 to Nov. 7. Flaherty accepted a new job with the City of Ames.
Recreation Administrative Assistant McKenzie McIlrath served as an interim coordinator while the candidate search was underway.
According to City Administrator Cami Rasmussen, interviews were conducted in November and the position was offered and accepted by Harder.

Spartans pick up wins at South Tama duals

Solon falls to Indee, Nebraska powerhouse

TAMA– Solon’s varsity wrestlers picked up steam over the weekend at the South Tama County Duals.
The Spartan grapplers went 3-2 with big wins against Vinton-Shellsburg, Iowa City Regina and Des Moines East, and narrow losses against highly-ranked Independence and Omaha Burke of Nebraska.
“I thought our wrestlers improved with their effort and fight from Thursday (dual losses to West Delaware and Lisbon),” Solon Head Coach Blake Williams said. “In both meets we lost, we competed. We stressed that before each meet to go out and compete.”

Solon loses in 2OT to Benton

Spartans turn it around Saturday against CPU

SOLON– It could have been a soul-crushing loss.
But the varsity Spartan basketball team shook it off.
After watching a nine-point first-half lead evaporate, Solon fell in double-overtime to Benton Community, 57-52, in the home basketball opener Friday, Dec. 13.
And when the Spartans hosted the Stormin’ Pointers of Center Point-Urbana (CPU) the next day, they fell in a 16-0 hole before their first points hit the scoreboard in the second period.
When the final horn sounded, however, Solon emerged with a 48-46 win.

Wastewater escapes to Mill Creek

Faulty pump contacts cause release: DNR investigates spillage

SOLON– A pump malfunction at the Solon wastewater treatment plant apparently caused thousands of gallons of partially-treated sludge water to be released into Mill Creek.
Public Works Director Scott Kleppe told city council members at a Dec. 4 meeting bad contacts in a pump had caused it to turn itself on Monday evening, Dec. 2.
“There’s nothing on that tank that alerts us of a high level or an overflow situation,” Kleppe reported.
The pump continued to run until it was discovered Tuesday morning by public works staff, he said.

Community Center condensed

City signs 6-month lease, cuts back on space

SOLON– The city will be downsizing its community center starting Jan. 1.
In an attempt to control costs, city representatives negotiated a new six-month lease with the Solon Community School District for the former middle school at 313 S. Iowa St.
The new lease was approved by council members at a Dec. 4 meeting, and awaits consideration by the school board later this month.

Williamsburg edges Solon

Spartans drop opening dual, 47-27

WILLIAMSBURG– It was too big of a hole.
Solon’s varsity wrestling team couldn’t overcome an early 30-point deficit and dropped the opening dual of the season 47-27 to the Williamsburg Raiders Dec. 5 in a rockin’ Solon High School gymnasium.
“We knew going in this would be a very tough dual,” noted Solon Head Coach Blake Williams. “Williamsburg is a very solid team year in and year out. Overall, I thought we wrestled okay even though the final score might not reflect that. We split the 12 contested matches 6-6.”

Matt Lesan returns to Spartan sideline

Solon, Upper Iowa standout to lead varsity basketball team

SOLON– When the current Solon High School opened, Matt Lesan was an eighth grader.
He was there the day crews put up the basketball hoops in the new gymnasium and he snuck in to sink the first shot in the west side basket.
Former coach Ed Hansen had beat him to the east side.
Lesan went on to become Solon’s most prolific scorer, and now he’s back on the sidelines as the head coach for the varsity Spartan basketball team.

Council approves two tax relief requests

$60,000 total for two businesses

SOLON– They were similar requests.
At a Nov. 20 meeting, Solon City Council members approved two Tax Increment Finance (TIF) applications for two separate buildings on the city’s south side.
Both requests sought an amount equal to three years of property taxes. Both failed to qualify for the city’s existing tax abatement program.
Both were approved by council members.
But there were some significant differences.

Sold!

Council approves deal with Pattison for 120 W. Main St. City approves first of competing offers

SOLON– City council members selected the proposal that was ready to roll.
Citing financial and legal readiness, the city approved selling an empty lot next door to City Hall to developer Mark Pattison during a Nov. 20 council meeting.
North Corridor Properites Investments will take possession of 120 W. Main St. in December and begin construction on a two-story mixed-use building with two commercial units on the ground level and a single, upper-level residence.
The city considered a competing offer from Uptown Main LLC, represented by developer Al Wells.

“Disney’s Beauty and the Beast” is tale as old as time

SOLON– It was a classic story of love and redemption.
The Solon High School Drama Department’s fall musical, “Disney’s Beauty and the Beast” was presented to the public in the Center for the Arts Friday through Sunday, Nov. 15-17.
Director Sami McAtee reported all three shows were almost sold out. “The kids worked so hard to make the magic come to life and we cannot wait until the spring show, to share the magic again,” she said.