Author: Dean Close

March Madness, VSHS-style: Alumni basketball tourney set for March 25

A popular event the past couple of years has been the Vinton-Shellsburg Alumni Basketball tournament. This year, the tournament will take place Saturday, March 25, beginning at 10 a.m. in the VSHS gym. Those interested in entering a team may contact Myra Kearns at mdkearns40@gmail.com, or via phone at 319-472-2298. “We are trying to put together a ‘March Madness’ theme,” says Kearns. The registration deadline is March...

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‘Lion’ coming to Palace for 3-day run; tells story of Indian boy’s search for his family

By Rose Trafford, Vinton Palace The Academy Award nominated film Lion is coming to the Palace for just a short three days, so come see it when you can! Lion was nominated for six Academy Awards: Best Picture, Best Supporting Actor, Best Supporting Actress, Best Cinematography, Best Original Score, and Best Adapted Screenplay. Lion is the story of young Saroo, a five-year-old Indian boy (played by the delightful and adorable Sunny Pawar). In his home in India, he lives with his mother and older brother. They are quite poor, so his brother and him often steal coal from trains in order to sell it and make money at the market. One day when they are on a job, Saroo falls asleep at the back of the train. He doesn’t see his brother when he wakes up, and, assuming he is on the train, he boards it. He realizes that his brother isn’t on the train, and he finds himself a thousand miles away in Calcutta. Not only is he far from home, but he doesn’t speak the local language. He goes back to the train station to buy a ticket home, but the ticket seller doesn’t recognize the name of his village. Saroo is left on his own on the street. If you’ve ever seen Slumdog Millionaire, you’ll know the challenges of a child living on the street in...

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Dictionary Day: 3rd-graders receive books from Kiwanis

Thursday was one of the most highly-anticipated days of the school year for Tilford and Shellsburg Elementary 3rd-graders. Lexa Speidel presented each student a dictionary on behalf of the Vinton Kiwanis Club. The students spent some time discovering the unique and entertaining things in the books, including the “World’s Longest Word. In math, the students had been working on multiplication; the dictionary includes a “times table.” Several tried to read the 1,909-letter word that represents the a protein with hundreds of amino acids. Some of the students with older siblings recalled how their older brothers or sisters brought home...

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Benton Co. Community Foundation now accepting grant applications

Grant applications can be submitted to the Benton County Community Foundation for its 2017 grant cycle. The deadline to submit applications is midnight (CST) March 15, 2017. Grants are awarded to projects in the following areas: art and culture, community betterment, education, environment, health, historic preservation and human service. The online grant application may be found on the Community Foundation’s website at www.bentonccf.org. Grant recipients will be announced in June 2017. Completed applications must be submitted no later than midnight (CST) March 15, 2017 to be considered for funding. First-time grant applicants should contact Dotti Thompson, Program Manager, at (319) 243-1358 prior to submitting an application. Grant applicants must be a 501(c)(3) designated organization (or government entity) serving Benton County in order to be considered for funding. For more information, please contact the Community Foundation of Northeast Iowa at (319)...

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Sign up for Little Vikes Drama Camp under way

The 2017 Little Vikes Drama Camp will open with orientation and workshops on June 5 & 6. At the end of camp on June 6, campers will be given their casting assignments for the main production, There’s a Monster in my Closet, and a short meeting will be held with the directors. There’s a Monster in my Closet features a cast including Emily and her friends, her brother Tom and his friends, and many Dream World inhabitants including monsters, Sandman, the Dream King, Sprites, Fairies, and Dream Weavers. The VSHS Drama Department will be performing this show in April, giving Little Vikes Drama Campers the unique opportunity to see the show and then perform it. Several VSHS Drama students will assist in the direction and mentoring of Little Vikes Drama Company Cast. Little Vikes Drama Camp format features an environment in which children can gain familiarity with live theatre, cultivate their imaginations, discover their own individual talents, acquire vital communication skills, and learn to work in cooperation with the other members of a cast and crew. Little Vikes Drama Company productions are warm, rewarding experiences that leave wonderful, lasting memories! Marcy Horst is the coordinator. Click HERE for a registration...

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VSHS Cabaret to include band, choirs and special performances, Friday

The annual Vinton-Shellsburg High School Cabaret concert will take place a 7 p.m. this Friday, March 3, in the VSHS auditorium. The concert will include performances by the Symphonic Band, Treble Choir, Chamber Choir, Concert Choir and Jazz Band, as well as special acts by students Cassie McClain, Casey Funk, Lindsey Miller, Sam & Gabe Schmidt, and Davia Herger. Cabaret performances include selections from the Broadway musicals Wicked, Pippin, Cabaret, Mamma Mia, and Thoroughly Modern Millie.  Also performed will be arrangements of popular hits by Enya, Dolly Parton, Toto, and more. Tickets are still available for pre-sale through today, March 2.  $10 Adults / $8 Students/Seniors.  Contact Mr. Waymire to reserve your seat. Tickets will also be available at the door on Friday night. $12 Adults / $10...

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VS teachers inspired after week with Marines

When the latest group of U.S. Marine recruits successfully completed the Crucible – the 54 hour challenge which calls on them to prove they are mentally and physically strong enough to become Marines – a pair of Vinton-Shellsburg teachers was among the crowd waiting to welcome, congratulate and eat with them. VSHS Associate Principal Tony Islas and Family Consumer Science Teacher Annalise Duffy had spent the week at with the latest recruits, spending a few days at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot, along with a day at Camp Pendleton and another day the Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, with several dozen other educators from throughout the U.S. “We were able to sit down and have dinner and speak with a recruit just about their personal experience with the Marines and where they were going with the opportunities the Marines had to offer them,” says Duffy, who ate with a Nebraska recruit who had two weeks of training left. “Those Marines had just finished the 54-hour Crucible test, and we got to have their first meal with them since starting the Crucible and since officially becoming Marines,” Duffy explains, adding that at the top of the hill at the end of the Crucible, the drill instructors call the recruits a “Marine” for the first time and hand them their Eagle, Globe and Anchor. “It was truly one of the best...

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Out of the Darkness Walk: Community support helps Daisy Johnson quickly exceed fund-raising goal

Since the death of her father, Steve, in October 2014, Daisy Johnson and her family – Mom Jeanne and siblings Charlee and Kort – have received a constant show love and support from the Vinton community, and the farming and wrestling families whose lives Steve had touched for so many years. That support has been demonstrated yet again, as Daisy has already exceeded her Out of the Darkness Walk goal, with nearly $1,800 already pledged to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. She had originally set a goal of $500. Daisy, now a freshman at UNI, is among several UNI students participating in the walk this Saturday, April 1. The Walk takes place at the Gallagher-Bluedorn Performing Arts Center, from 2 to 4:30 p.m. The event includes a memorial ceremony, a three-mile walk and speakers. The UNI event will be one of nearly 400 Out of the Darkness Walks involving more than 250,000 participants. Since arriving at UNI, Daisy has already met other students whose lives have been affected by suicide, and she hopes to make sure those each student and family touched by suicide or depression can receive the same kind of support she had had – especially those whose struggles have been so private that virtually nobody knows of their pain. “It is very hard at times for me and my family, but my goal is to help...

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Benton County Board of Supervisor Minutes 2/21/17

February 21, 2017 The Benton County Board of Supervisors met in regular adjourned session with Supervisors Wiley, Primmer, and Bierschenk present. The meeting was called to order at 9:00 a.m. Unless otherwise noted, all actions were approved unanimously. Primmer moved/ Bierschenk seconded: Approve the minutes of February 14, 2017. Motion carried. Bierschenk moved/Primmer seconded: To set land use hearing date of Tuesday March 21, 2017, at 9:15 a.m. for Brandon and Jennica Jordan in part of the NW ¼ NE ¼ of 27-85-9. Motion carried Bierschenk moved/Primmer seconded: To set land use hearing date of Tuesday March 21, 2017 at 9:30 a.m. for Ross Hanson in part of the SE ¼ NE ¼ of 35-85-10. Motion carried. Primmer moved/Bierschenk seconded: Approve payment of checks numbered 222402 through 222557, payroll checks numbered 139349 through 139372, and ACH deposits numbered 30110 through 30236, vendor checks numbered 222558 through 222562. Motion carried. Primmer moved/Bierschenk seconded: To approve Resolution # 17-13, Changing Employee status. Motion carried. RESOLUTION #17-14 CHANGING EMPLOYMENT STATUS OF CALEB STEWART FROM PART-TIME EMPLOYEE TO FULL-TIME EMPLOYEE WHEREAS, the Benton County Sheriff’s office has a need for a full-time jailer; and WHEREAS, Stewart has been employed by Benton County as part-time since, and WHEREAS, the Sheriff recommended that Stewart have his employment status be changed from part-time to full-time, NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED by the Benton County Board of...

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A Thank you for Mrs. Julie Clingman

Mrs. Julie Clingman is a dedicated and caring volunteer at Tilford Elementary.  She has helped countless students and has spent a lot of her own time and resources to help students learn. She’s spent the past 15 years helping with our elementary schools, including volunteering her time in the library at West Elementary and Lincoln Intermediate. She is incredibly knowledgeable about history and current events, which is evident by the education and excitement about history that she is passing on to the students. Children look forward to spending time with her and researching various topics. Here’s what the students have to say about spending time with Mrs. Clingman: Mrs. Clingman has helped us learn many things about different topics including history, animals, places, people, holidays, foods, cultures and important events around the world. One major way she helps us learn is by helping us research. We have to include important dates and details and use bibliographies. We have to use good sources and put the information in our own words. Mrs. Clingman helps us organize our information to be put in Google Presentations. We have to put the slides in order to make sense with our notes that we read. We practice good communication by mailing letters to people and companies, making phone calls and interviewing people. We have invited people to visit us at Tilford so we can...

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VSHS students share their performing skills at annual Talent Show

Students with a variety of experience, from first-time performers to guys and gals who have been singing for a decade or longer, took turns on the stage of the Vinton-Shellsburg High School Auditorium during the annual Talent Show. In addition to several songs, the show included a couple of entertaining games, including Cookie Face, as well as some performances by the students who competed in recent Speech events. See a video of the event HERE. See more photos...

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