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Shianne Fisher

New police station in North Liberty’s future

Council split on how to select design firm

NORTH LIBERTY– If there’s one thing North Liberty City Council members can agree on, it’s that a new police station needs to be built. They’re less in sync about who should design it.
“I don’t object to the fact we need a police station as soon as possible,” said council member Sarah Madsen at a meeting Tuesday, June 13. “I’m just trying to balance what is the most responsible use of time and money.”
She added that each council member was elected by and should best represent the residents of North Liberty and their taxpayer dollars.
“It’s an extraordinary ask,” she said.

Take a rock, leave a rock

Facebook group beats summertime boredom with childhood craft

NORTH LIBERTY– It’s a simple idea, really, said North Liberty Rocks organizer MaryAnn Hines.
Paint, hide, find and repeat– rocks, that is.
“It’s just a community spirit project is what it is,” she said. “And, I love this community.”
Which is why she started the North Liberty Rocks group on Facebook last summer. With over 150 members, the group is the place to get clues for where to find rocks and to post selfies with found ones, as well as give hints as to where you’ve hidden your own.
“It’s actually a concept that’s taking off all across the country,” said Hines.

Swimming, boating ban before city council

First reading approved regarding city-owned ponds

TIFFIN– It’s silly, said City Administrator Doug Boldt, but needs to be done.
“Ironically after however many years we’ve had these detention/retention ponds, we’ve had some issues with kids swimming in the big one, the one with the fountain,” Boldt informed the Tiffin City Council at a meeting Tuesday, June 6.
He requested the council’s permission to draft an ordinance banning swimming, since technically there’s nothing in writing that says people can’t.

Water’s Edge firm presents multi-year aquatic study to council

Outdoor, indoor pool enhancements could cost $6-7 million

North Liberty Leader
NORTH LIBERTY– Does North Liberty need another outdoor pool?
North Liberty City Council members floated that idea and others at their most recent meeting Tuesday, June 13, after hearing from Dave Schwartz, owner of Water’s Edge Aquatic Design.
“What you’ve got is a nice facility, it really is,” said Schwartz. “But your population is challenging. And that’s a good thing.”

Finding his place

Mercy Family Medicine of Solon welcomes seasoned MD Acherkan

SOLON– Dmitriy Acherkan always knew he wanted to be a doctor.
“I don’t even recall the time when I made this decision. It was pretty obvious from, I don’t know, 4 or 5 years old, that I was going to be a doctor,” he said.
Dr. Acherkan joined Mercy Family Medicine of Solon a few months ago but has practiced medicine for over 30 years.
He reminisced on his early career as a surgical oncologist, which allowed him to care for patients from discovery of a tumor through surgery or chemotherapy.

More food, earlier start for Blues & BBQ

Volunteers needed for annual festival July 8 at Centennial Park

NORTH LIBERTY– Things may look and feel a little different this year at North Liberty’s annual blues fest.
It all starts with the event’s new logo, a bright yellow and blue guitar, and a greater emphasis on its mascot, Otis the Pig. There’s also the Pig & Pint Prelude dinner, parking and shuttle services, and earlier start times for food and kids’ activities.
“We’re excited for our new logo to last the next several years,” said Jillian Miller, community engagement coordinator for the City of North Liberty. She also praised the event’s new presenting sponsor, Veridian Credit Union.

Diamonds are this town’s best friend

NLYBS celebrates 25th anniversary season

NORTH LIBERTY– Around a thousand area kids have their last at-bat or final pitch of the summer next week as North Liberty Youth Baseball and Softball (NLYBS) wraps up its 25th anniversary season.
It’s a bittersweet end for not only the players, but also the countless parents and volunteers that flood Penn Meadows Park every weeknight for two months.

Fireworks OK in Tiffin, for now

TIFFIN– It’s too late for Tiffin.
When Governor Terry Branstad signed the fireworks bill into law last month– allowing their sale and use for the first time since the 1930s– he and the state legislature didn’t give local governments enough time to react, said Tiffin City Administrator Doug Boldt.
“That’s something a lot of people aren’t happy about, that this is coming so late,” he said during a Tiffin City Council work session Tuesday, June 6.

ISU solar car to make a pit stop in Oxford

Clear Creek Amana graduate helps build “Penumbra”

AMES– Bryan Kalkhoff is home for the summer, but still reminiscing on the hours spent helping to build a solar car this past school year.
“I wanted a way to really reinforce what I was learning in class,” said Kalkhoff, a recent Clear Creek Amana graduate. “School can only teach you so much.”
The North Liberty resident jumped at the opportunity to join PrISUm his freshman year at Iowa State University. The student-led solar car team has been in business since 1989, having developed 12 award-winning vehicles in its journey to change the paradigm of transportation.

Making noise for music ed

Community rides bikes, plays instruments at first “Musicycle”

NORTH LIBERTY– Over 500 underclassmen and around 100 upperclassmen are anticipated to christen the halls of Liberty High School in August. And, for the Iowa City Music Auxiliary, that means a third orchestra, band and choir to support.
“We use the money for transportation to festivals, entry fees for festivals and band uniform cleaning, mostly,” said Lisa Goodfellow-Mertens, past president of the auxiliary. “That dry cleaning adds up.”

Council moves on original town urbanization project

“Old Tiffin” to get a facelift

TIFFIN– Tiffin City Council member Jim Bartels remembers early discussions regarding the modernization of “Old Tiffin”– the four-by-three block area south of Highway 6, home to College, Grant and Summeryhays streets.
“Ten to 15 years ago, all we did was talk about it,” said Bartels. “We didn’t even have a plan.”
The council has come a long way since then.

Catch "Another Episode" May 18 in North Liberty

Outdoor binge-watching event to feature jumbotron

North Liberty Leader
NORTH LIBERTY– Everyone’s doing it: binge watching.
And this summer, the City of North Liberty invites area residents to watch their favorite TV shows together– outdoors– in front of a giant screen.
“It’s about taking people away from their couches and bringing the community together for an otherwise isolating activity,” said Jillian Miller, the city’s community engagement coordinator.