Friday, March 20, 2009

Washington Rotary donates $10K to local senior center

The Columbus Junction Senior Center is getting a little bit of help rebuilding after last years flooding. The Washington Rotary Club donated $10,000 to the cause yesterday. Rotary Club member Paul Horak says they were able to secure the funds through the organization's regional body. Horak says since Washington didn't suffer flood damage, it seemed best to focus their efforts on a neighboring town. Columbus Junction Senior Center officials say they were pleasantly surprised by the donation, and are very grateful. They say reconstruction is almost complete and they hope to open in about a month.

Allergy season approaches

Spring is in the air, and for many that also means allergy season is rapidly approaching. J.R. Fikuart is a pharmacist at Nu-Cara in Washington. He says allergy sufferers should check on things like the pollen count before heading outdoors. Fikuart says drugs like Claritin and Zyrtec are some of the best allergy treatments available. He says they're also available in generic form. He says other drugs like Benadryl are also very effective, but can make the user groggy and cause dry mouth and eyes. Fikuart says he and other pharmacists are happy to answer questions about allergies.

WHS Speech team headed to state

Three members of the Washington High School Speech Team will be competing in the All-State Individual Speech showcase later this month. Andrew Schneider will be performing radio news, While Brian Langr and Nolan Bread will compete in storytelling. An all state performance is the highest individual speech award in Iowa. Breard and Langr also received All-State honorable mentions for their acting performances. The All-State contest will be held March 30 at the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls.

WJH Band awards

Washington Junior High band students recently earned high marks in two major contests. In the large group concert band competition in Ottumwa, they received an overall rating of one, which is the second highest score on a scale of eight. Band members also recently participated in the solo and ensemble night. Members played as duets, trios or quartets. There were three elementary solos, and and two junior high solos. 7th grade pianist Madeline Hora, 8th grade clarinet player Keri Murphy and elementary clarinet player Cathy Meserole received the title of Oustanding Performers.

Kalona Playground Committee receives more money

The Kalona Playground Improvement committee is receiving donations from many area businesses. Jan Knebel with the committee says she received a call from the Iowa City Wal-Mart. She says they are giving the playground project a check for $1000. Jan will be going to their morning meeting next Tuesday, March 24th to receive the check. Knebel says the donations helps to bring them closer to their goal of a fun and safe playground for all the kids in the community.

IMS to host concert

IMS will host the annual Midwest Regional Mennonite Orchestra Festival this weekend. IMS Principle Tony Miller says the Festival is comprised of Bethany Christian, Central Christian, and Iowa Mennonite and will culminate with a concert Sunday afternoon at 3:00 p.m. Miller says each individual orchestra will perform a selection, followed by the Festival Orchestra combining all schools together. An offering will be taken to help defray festival costs.

Purple Martin workshop

A workshop-seminar on attracting Purple martins will be held next Saturday, March 28, beginning at 9:10 A.M. at the CAM Iowa Clothing Center, 1005 Nutmeg Ave in Kalona. Jim Walters is one of the coordinators and says the Purple martin is one of our most wanted songbirds since a well-maintained colony brings joy to any neighborhood. He says martin populations are rebounding across North America as people put up improved housing and learn proper monitoring techniques. There will be a $2.00 registration fee and lunch will be available at the site. The event will be held next Saturday, March 28 at the CAM Iowa Clothing Center in Kalona.