Author: Dean Close

Vinton runner Yessak ends HS career by setting more Dunkerton HS records

Jordan Yessak, the Vinton native who finished his career running at Dunkerton High School (where his father Jason was a coach, teacher and AD before taking a similar job in Keokuk) ended his high school track career at the State meet. Jordan had qualified for three events. On Thursday he competed in the 3200M, placing 13th in Class 1A with a time of 10:01, the 2nd-fastest time of his career. His fastest time was last week at the District meet, where he broke his own record 10:00.93. On Friday he ran the anchor leg on the Dunkerton distance medley...

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Benton Co. Supervisors meeting agenda, May 23

BOARD OF SUPERVISORS MEETING May 23, 2017 at 9:00 a.m. Benton County Board of Supervisors Room ** Agenda is not printed in any particular order, only time specific items will be addressed at certain times 1. 9:00 A.M. Call to Order 2. Approve minutes 3. Approve Claims 4. 9:05 A.M. Brian Unsen, CPA, Eide Bailly 5. 9:30 Mark Greenlee land use hearing for Steve and Rhonda Bernhardt a part of the SE ¼ of the SE ¼ Sec 22 T85N R9W 6. 9:45 Judy Funk review 17/18 Heartland Renewal 7. 10:15 a.m. Discuss selling Fireworks in Benton County 8. 10:45 a.m. Engineer Re: Approve Utility Permit for ECI REC in Taylor Twp • Approve Utility Permit for ITC Midwest in Iowa & Kane Twps 9. DHS Building Discussion 10. Reports – committee meetings, liaison, Etc. 11. New Business/Public Interest Comments 12....

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Extension announces Summer Discovery Camp schedule

The them of the 2017 Extension Summer Discovery Camp is: “No Bones About It….Biomechanical Engineering for Young Scientists” Students will learn to “Think Like a Biomedical Engineer”..by using engineering design and applying it to biology and medicine, you will help solve a healthcare problem. Learn how the body moves and doesn’t move when injured. Do you like to be challenged and figure out the best way to help solve a problem? If so, this is the camp for you! Campers will: work on range of motion of their feet and legs, design and build a knee brace and sneakers and other daily hands-on activities. Registration fee is $30. Camp schedules: * Keystone – June 5-9 from 9:00 am to 11:30 am * Vinton – June 5-9 from 1:00 pm to 3:30 pm * Atkins – June 12-16 from 9:00 am to 11:30 am * Urbana – June 12-16 from 1:00 pm to 3:30 pm * Blairstown – June 19-23 from 9:00 am to 11:30 am * Van Horne – June 19-23 from 1:00 pm to 3:30 pm * Atkins – June 26-30 from 9:00 am to 11:30 am * Vinton – June 26-30 from 1:00 pm to 3:30 pm * Belle Plaine – July 3 and July 5-7 from 8:30 am to 11:30 am * Atkins – July 3 and July 5-7 from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm Download...

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VS alums join Wartburg National Society of Leadership and Success

Congratulations to VS alumni members Kylie Miracle and Sara Jorgensen on being inducted into the Wartburg College chapter of the NSLS, the National Society of Leadership and Success. The two were inducted on May 7, in Waverly. They join about 150 previous Wartburg inductees. The Wartburg chapter began in 2016. See more about the NSLS HERE....

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Despite struggles at State, 2017 track season was ‘overwhelming success,’ says Viking coach

After winning the District Track meet and hoping for a repeat of last year’s success at the State Track Meet, where they brought home the Runner-Up banner, the VS Vikings discovered it “just wasn’t our weekend” in Des Moines, said Coach Aric Chvala. “After a district meet in which nearly everything went as well as we thought they could, State was just about the opposite,” says Chvala. “We were riding high and very optimistic but it just wasn’t our weekend. Once things started not going the way we wanted we just weren’t able to get it turned around.  We did things that were uncharacteristic of what we had been like all year and unfortunately since it happened at the last meet it will be the last memory for most people of a season that had a lot of highlights.” Yet, says Coach Chvala, the Vikings had a season that was an “overwhelming success.” “I don’t want the things that didn’t go well to overshadow the things that did,” he said. “We had nine people who had never competed at the State meet before that now have that experience under their belts.” Chvala also listed several successes achieved by Viking athletes: Tyler Bartz earned his 8th state meet medal, finishing 6th in the 400. “If you medal in every event possible that would be 16, so 1/2 of his high school...

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Track tradition: Daughter of Vinton native follow’s mom’s example, sets middle school records

Twenty-nine years after Amber (Lucas) Lampe set an 8th grade record for Vinton Middle School track, she is watching her daughter help set records of her own. In 1988, Amber, the daughter of Steve and Joyce Lucas of Vinton, set a Vinton Middle school record in the 200 meter hurdles event, a record that she held until 2007. That was the last year before the Vinton and Shellsburg schools merged districts and teams. Now, Amber and her husband, Chuck, who was also a track athlete, are watching their daughter, Ella, beginning to set records of her own. Ella, a 7th-grader at Dallas Center-Grimes, and her 4 x 400 relay team, set a new record earlier this month at the Mike Henderson middle school track meet in Ankeny. Her team finished in a time of 4:23, seven seconds faster than the previous records. She was also a member of the sprint medley team which won its event at that meet. Her 4 x 400 team also set a new conference meet record later in the season. Long-time VS Middle School coach Don Lyle remembered Amber as a talented athlete who held that 200M hurdle record for several years. Coach Lyle looked up the old records to discover that Amber had set the 8th grade record of 31.41 in the 200 meter hurdles in 1988 and held that record until it was...

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Honoring ‘Miz:’ Union Valedictorian Hilmer presents teacher Kerrie Michael with award from Governor

Union High School Class of 2017 Valedictorian Bobbie Hilmer will find out in July if all of the extra work she put in during her senior year paid off in three or more college credits in English. But even if Hilmer, the daughter of Robert and Kimberly Hilmer of Dysart, does not earn those extra college credits, the journey she took with that class – and its teacher – will be one of her favorite high school memories. Hilmer was among the 2017 Union graduates who spent much of the last year struggling through the challenging and time-consuming workload of the Advanced Placement (AP) Literature Class. That comprehensive class includes a significantly higher work load and many more reading assignments than other English classes. And says the teacher, the “deep thinking students must do in AP Lit goes beyond what they have done prior in complexity.” Hilmer accomplished becoming Valedictorian while taking that AP Lit class and also being involved in a variety of activities, from FFA to NHS and participating in speech, color guard, jazz band, tennis, theater, Academic Decathlon, Mentors in Violence Prevention and the Silver Cord volunteer program. Apart from her studies school activities, Hilmer, who was named the 2016 Benton County Fair Princess, is also involved in a variety of 4-H programs. She is also a volunteer camp counselor and worked a variety of part-time...

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ISU team to bring solar-powered car to area June 21

One hundred twenty Iowa State University students are putting the finishing touches on the world’s first Solar Utility Vehicle. Named “Penumbra,” this solar-assisted electric vehicle has been made to change the paradigm of transportation. During the month of June, members from PrISUm (the ISU student organization that manufactured the car) are traveling to all 99 counties in the state of Iowa to showcase the vehicle. Benton and Buchanan County ISU Extension and Outreach offices and Click Stop are hosting a #SunRun99 stop at Clickstop in Urbana Iowa. “During this time, everyone is welcome to check out this vehicle and even go for a quick spin!” said Smeet Mistry, Team PrISUm’s tour contact. Like most vehicles found in dealerships across the state, Penumbra contains four seats and features Bluetooth audio and wireless charging for cell phones, Mistry explained. Where the differences begin is how Penumbra is powered. Instead of having a gas or diesel tank, Penumbra receives its energy from the sun. As the vehicle drives across the state, the sun recharges the on-board batteries. Fully charged, Penumbra has a “best in class” 200-mile range. On a sunny day, a constant speed of 40 mph can be achieved without any energy from the batteries. Once Penumbra completes #SunRun99, the vehicle will be flown to Australia to compete in the 2017 Bridgestone World Solar Challenge. Interested in learning more about the...

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Vikings finish 3rd at sectionals; Cummings qualifies for Districts

The Viking were at Maquoketa Country Club where they shot the best round of the year and finished third. Benton Community was the sectional champion carding 300 with Central DeWitt finishing second with 310. Both advance to districts as a team. The Vikings finished the day with a 342. Other team scores: 4th Marion 343, 5th Maquoketa 358, 6th Anamosa 362, 7th Center Point-Urbana 364, 8th West Liberty 398. Tanner Cummings carded 80 to advance to district play Friday in Manchester with a chance to qualify for State. Tanner shot a 38 on the first nine and a 42 on the second nine for an 80, which put him in a three-way tie for the qualifying positions. Mike DeLong carded 82 while David Bray came in with 87. Broc Shaw carded 92 with Barett Shaw and Jace Rake finishing with 102 and...

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VSEA honors retirees, name Jon Temple as Teacher of the Year

Vinton-Shellsburg educators and support staff who are retiring at the end of this school year received recognition at the annual VS Education Association reception at the Vinton Skate Center Wednesday afternoon. VS staff created special memory books full of photos and stories about teachers Don Lyle and Herb McNeill, who retire this year after more than 40 years of teaching. Award recipients were: Teacher of the Year – Jon Temple Friend of Education – Shawn Van Fossen Member of the Year – Marsha Furlong 2017 retirees with length of service, include: Don Lyle – 46 yrs. Herb McNeill – 42 yrs. Lynette Voss – 34 yrs. Kim Isbell – 32 yrs. Vicki Waggoner – 28 yrs. Bev Anderson – 29 yrs. Kathy Flaugh – 24 yrs. Sheila Mason –24 yrs. Karen Helms – 21 yrs. Lisa Boeckmann – 19 yrs. Cinda Yoars – 17 yrs. Kris Birker – 16 yrs See photos of all the retirees and honorees HERE....

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Influential teacher: Senora Lash receives award at Governor’s Scholar Recognition Ceremony

As a teenager taking her first year of high school Spanish, Michele Lash decided that her career would be teaching that language. Recently, Senora Lash, as she is known to her Vinton-Shellsburg students, received recognition from Iowa Governor Terry Branstad for her influence on students. The person who chose Sra. Lash for this honor is 2017 VS Valedictorian Jamie Thompson. Among Thompson’s honors this year was being recognized at the Governor’s Scholar presentation. Each honoree there is asked to choose one teacher to honor for helping them succeed in high school. Thompson chose her Spanish teacher. Mrs. Lash was not able to attend the ceremony with Thompson, but the student recently had the privilege of personally handing  her teacher the award from the Governor. “I am planning on minoring in Spanish in college and Señora really helped foster my interest in Spanish language and Hispanic cultures,” explains Thompson. “She was always helping me with new vocabulary and grammar that I wanted to incorporate into conversation. I travelled with her to Costa Rica, and she even helped us form a Spanish Club this year. Vinton is lucky to have a dedicated and knowledgeable teacher like Señora Lash.” Like Lash, Thompson plans on incorporating Spanish into her career, although she hasn’t made any final decisions on what that career will be. “I am not exactly sure what I’ll end up doing,”...

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FFA Banquet: Chapter presents awards, honors officers and hears from Principal Kingsbury

Wearing overalls and a couple of his favorite hats, VS High School Principal Matt Kingsbury complimented the VS FFA members on their successes, and shared a bit of his farm experience. Mr. Kingsbury’s unique speech was part of the annual FFA Awards Banquet, which took place Saturday in the VSHS auditorium. “It was interesting,” Ag teacher Melissa Heeren said of the principal’s presentation. “He talked about how he has ties to agriculture and has worked on a relative’s farm through college, and he showed us his favorite outfit to wear while working on the farm, two favorite hats, and...

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