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News

No Beef Days

Solon’s annual celebration limited to socially distant events Buy your Beef Days Bundles starting July 1

SOLON– “Due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, we’ve made the difficult decision to cancel our traditional 2020 Solon Beef Days events,” the Facebook post said.
With that, Solon’s Beef Days Committee announced on June 16 what many suspected.
“This decision did not come easy, but after careful consideration and conversations with city officials and local health agencies we have decided that Beef Days could not go on like normal under the current social distancing guidelines and other restrictions set forth for our state,” the post continued.

Wilson’s Orchard and Farm opens farm market, bakery, cidery and strawberry patches for U-pick and pre-picked fruit sales

IOWA CITY– Wilson’s Orchard and Farm opened for its first-ever summer season on Saturday, June 20. Despite a late frost in May, the strawberry plants flourished. This year, Wilson’s will harvest its first crop of strawberries.
The addition of strawberries to the farm is part of an effort to further diversify the crops and products, allowing the business to extend the season to six months, from June through December. It also means providing a wider variety of locally grown produce to our community.

Black Lives Matter

Solon grads share their experiences with racism Over 100 march through Solon

SOLON– Black Lives Matter to white people, too.
And that is making a difference, according to a few Solon High School (SHS) graduates.
SHS alumni led a throng of about 150 people on a march through Solon Sunday, June 14, demanding justice for black Americans.
The Black Lives Matter (BLM) supporters shouted the names of the most recent victims in America’s race war as they walked from the SHS parking lot to the bandstand downtown.
Leading the crowd were Solon graduates Ainslee Eastman, Cate Neumann, Sydney Lawson and Ellie Hawkins, and 17-year-old Quincy Jagnow of North Liberty.

His work is done

Ely’s Jim Miller leaves behind the legacy of a lifetime of service

ELY– A lifetime of service to the people of Ely, Cedar Rapids and the surrounding area came to an end on Sunday, June 7, as 87-year-old James “Jim” Miller died at his home, in Ely. Miller was born in Cedar Rapids in 1932, graduated from St. Wenceslaus Catholic High School, and served in the United States Army during the Korean War. In 1955, Miller married Kathryn “Katie” Bush, who survives him. Of Katie, Miller frequently said, “If I looked for 100 years, I could never find a better wife than Katie.”

Modern Piping steps up for hands-free conversion projects

High school, Lakeview, Spartan Stadium to see upgrades

SOLON– With a boost from Modern Piping, Inc., of Cedar Rapids, the Solon school district is converting plumbing fixtures in three facilities to hands-free use.
According to Mike Shive, of rural Solon, Modern Piping donated the plumbing labor involved.
As part of the company’s community goodwill program, executive staff identified several non-profit donations to provide relief from the COVID pandemic.
Converting the existing fixtures at Lakeview Elementary, Solon High School and Spartan Stadium was one of them, Shive said.

Iowa State Fair Board votes to postpone

Options for 4-H and FFA youth livestock shows are under review

DES MOINES– The Iowa State Fair Board, the governing body overseeing the Iowa State Fair, voted to postpone the 2020 Iowa State Fair until Aug.12-22, 2021, amid ongoing Coronavirus (COVID-19) concerns. The decision was made to protect the health and safety of all Fairgoers.
After a thorough review of possible options, carefully reviewing current health guidelines and examining operating limitations, it became clear holding the 2020 Iowa State Fair, which attracts approximately one million people over 11 days, would not be responsible.

SIS celebrates with Flipped Parade

SOLON– This was the way school ended in 2020.
Solon Intermediate School (SIS) hosted a Flipped Parade Friday, May 29, to say farewell to some students and to say a socially-distant hello to others.
Teachers and staff holding signs lined the rear parking lot of the school and a parade of vehicles carrying students and families rolled slowly through.

Supervisors survive primary challenge

Green-Douglass, Sullivan and Porter hold off challenger Phinney to retain seats

IOWA CITY– The three incumbents on the Johnson County Board of Supervisors held off a challenge from a newcomer in the Democratic primary election Tuesday, June 2.
Supervisors Lisa Green-Douglass, Rod Sullivan and Royceann Porter faced challenger Dean Phinney in a ballot box battle for three seats.
Green-Douglass garnered 18,875 votes (77 percent), Porter pulled in 16,961 (69 percent), and Sullivan, the longest-serving Supervisor of the trio, picked up 15,923 (65 percent) while newcomer Phinney mustered only 6,989 votes (28 percent).

Drowning reported at Lake Macbride

SOLON– The body of an Iowa City woman last seen near a watercraft on Lake Macbride has been located.
According to a press release from Johnson County Sheriff Lonny Pulkrabek, officers responded to Lake MacBride State Park near Solon for a possible drowning Sunday, June 7, at approximately 5:31 p.m.
Initial reports indicated Makeda Scott, 21, of Iowa City, was last seen in the water near a watercraft and had not resurfaced. Responding units attempted to locate Scott and the search was suspended around 9 p.m., the release noted.

Overwhelming advantage

Primary election win presumptively clears Kunkel’s path to sheriff

IOWA CITY– Brad Kunkel will likely be Johnson County’s next sheriff.
Kunkel, a sergeant and the public information officer for the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office, defeated Al Fear, a sergeant with the Patrol Division of the Cedar Rapids Police Department, with an overwhelming 82 percent of the vote in a Democrat primary election Tuesday, June 2. Kunkel, of rural Solon, had 19,469 votes to 4,128 for Fear, a resident of Swisher.

P&Z to review fringe area rezoning

City to seek developer’s agreement when Dillon’s Furrow land subdivides Residential sought for 72 acres

SOLON– The City of Solon intends to keep tabs on a proposed residential development within its southern 2-mile fringe area.
At a June 3 meeting, council members voted to send a rezoning request by Nick Hemann, of rural Solon, to the city’s Planning and Zoning (P&Z) Commission for review.
Hemann is asking Johnson County to residentially rezone 72.16 acres located east of Dillons Furrow Road NE, just over a mile from Solon’s southern border.

Preparing for a return to school

Board reviews distance learning data, early planning for 2020-2021

SOLON– In mid-March, the Solon Community School District (SCSD) had to move fast to put together a plan for distance learning.
Now the district has to figure out how to bring kids back to school.
SCSD board members reviewed voluntary participation numbers during the final months of the school year and listened to an overview of the district’s Return to Learning plan at a regular meeting May 21.
Superintendent Davis Eidahl walked board members through both reports.
Eidahl complimented district staff for quickly adapting to a model of remote learning for the final months of the year.