Home News Thursday Afternoon News, June 3rd

Thursday Afternoon News, June 3rd


Pickup And Motorcycle Collide

(Le Mars) — Emergency crews responded to a pick-up and motorcycle accident that happened this (Thursday) morning at approximately 8:00 a.m. The accident happened at the junction of First Street northeast and Second Avenue northeast, just on the north side of the Fareway grocery store. Le Mars Police are investigating the accident and say the motorcycle driver sustained what would be referred to as minor injuries. The driver of the pickup did not get injured. Responding to the accident scene were the Le Mars Ambulance Services, Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department, Le Mars Police Department and the Plymouth County Sheriff’s Office.





Luxembourg Descendants Ready To Celebrate Lux Fest

(Alton) — Luxembourg is a tiny European nation of only 990 square miles nestled between Belgium, Netherlands and Germany, and 150 years ago, several people from Luxembourg migrated to the United States. Many of those immigrants ended up in the region of northwest Iowa between Remsen and Marcus
to the south and Granville, Hospers, and Alton to the north. This weekend, descendants of Luxembourg are celebrating the 150 years of the migration of Luxembourg citizens as part of what is known as “Lux Fest.” Judy Stokesberry of Remsen serves as the president of the Luxembourg Heritage Society of Northwest Iowa. She says Peter Gehlen, known as the founder of Gehlen
Catholic School in Le Mars, is perhaps the best known name of the Luxembourg migrants. Stokesberry says Gehlen was influential in convincing his fellow countrymen to settle in northwest Iowa.

Stokesberry says the Luxembourg immigrants settled in this region mainly because of the fertile soil and wide open spaces.

The Lux Fest was to have happen a year ago, but because of the COVID virus, the festival was postponed until this year. Stokesberry says a special visitor is scheduled to appear at Lux Fest. His Excellency, Gastron Stronk, Ambassador from Luxembourg to the United States will visit Lux Fest.

Stokesberry says many of the Lux Fest events will take place on Saturday at Alton. She says there will be an array of vendors, including food vendors, located at the park. The president of the Luxembourg Heritage Society of Northwest Iowa says Luxembourg flags will be on display at Remsen, Alton, Le
Mars, Granville, and Hospers cemeteries indicating those people that were originally born in Luxembourg and migrated to the United States.




New Barge Port Opens On The Missouri River

(Blencoe, Iowa) — A cooperative based in Fort Dodge has built an 11-million dollar barge terminal on the Missouri River near the small Iowa town of Blencoe.  The NEW Cooperative Port of Blencoe is about 50 miles up river from Council Bluffs. The port has the capacity to load and unload up to nine barges at a
time. Test runs began in April. The official opening is today. The Missouri River terminal may help reduce operating costs for western Iowa farmers.
Shipping commodities like corn, soybeans and fertilizer by barge is cheaper than transporting the materials by trucks or trains. One tow managing 15 barges can handle as much material as 870 semis according to the Iowa D-O-T.
The Port of Blencoe is now the northernmost access point to barges on the Missouri River. Barge traffic out of Sioux City ended around the turn of the century due to a combination of factors, including a lack of consistent river depth for navigation. State officials say the Army Corps of Engineers has agreed to maintain a nine-foot depth in the Missouri near the Port of Blencoe to accommodate barge movement.




Make-A-Wish CEO Pleads Guilty To Embezzlement

(Des Moines) — The former C-E-O of Make-A-Wish Iowa has pleaded guilty to embezzling from the charity.
Forty-year-old Jennifer Woodley was arrested in late January. The Associated Press reports Woodley has entered a written guilty plea to two counts of first-degree theft and one count of fraudulent practices. She’ll be sentenced in July and the A-P reports prosecutors will recommend probation rather than prison, plus require some sort of restitution. Woodley was accused of giving herself a 10-thousand dollar bonus and of using the Make-A-Wish foundation’s credit cards to make thousands of dollars worth of personal purchases. Woodley is the mother of four children. Two daughters have undergone brain surgery. One of them received a trip through Make-A-Wish Iowa before Woodley became the group’s C-E-O.




Governor Reynolds Rules Out Run For US Senate

(Lake View, IA)  —  Governor Kim Reynolds is ruling out a run for U-S Senate in 2022.  Reynolds told reporters in Lake View Wednesday, “I can say with great confidence I am not leaving Iowa.”  She was asked whether she might run if Senator Chuck Grassley doesn’t seek re-election.  The state’s first female governor plans to run for another term next year.  Reynolds will make a formal re-election announcement later.  She says she has some things she wants to continue work on and loves this state.  Reynolds took over as governor four years ago when Terry Branstad became U-S ambassador to China.  She won a four-year term in 2018.

(photo contributed.)




Ernst Helps Introduce Legislation to Improve Military’s Sexual Assault Response

(Washington, DC)  —  U-S Senator Joni Ernst is co-sponsoring legislation aimed at improving the military’s response to sexual assaults.  The Iowa Republican is a sexual assault survivor and former National Guard commander.  The bill calls for the Department of Defense to evaluate options for establishing a Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC) military operational specialty and reporting its findings and recommendations to Congress.  The measure is in response to a Fort Hood committee’s report on growing concerns of SARC’s lacking the training and resources needed to be effective at providing support to military sexual assault victims.





Heat Awareness Day as Temps Warm Up in Iowa

(Johnston, IA)  —  Today (Thursday) is Heat Awareness Day in Iowa and temperatures are expected to climb into the 80s and 90s the next few days.  National Weather Service meteorologist Jim Lee says it’s a reminder of the hazards of hot weather.  Lee says “anytime anybody’s working outside, they need to be aware that time in the sun and time of physical exertion can lead to heat stress syndrome.”  Lee says it is very important to never leave your child in a vehicle unattended for any length of time when it’s warm.  Forecasters are calling for the warmest weather of the season through the weekend.  Lee says to drink plenty of fluids and take breaks in the shade.





Sioux City Man Pleads Guilty to New Year’s Day Fatal Shooting

(Sioux City, IA)  —  A Sioux City man is pleading guilty to second-degree murder in a New Year’s Day drive-by shooting.  Eighteen-year-old Anthony Bauer was initially charged with the first-degree murder of 18-year-old Mia Kritis, but entered guilty pleas Wednesday to four other counts in a deal with prosecutors.  Police said Bauer and two others fired 27 shots into a home during a party January 1st, killing Kritis and injuring three others.  Brothers Christopher and Carlos Morales are also charged in her death.  The alleged driver – 20-year-old Liliana Gutierrez – will stand trial in August.