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Picking cherries is dangerous. Step ladders are too short to reach the top of the tree. Extension ladders are too unstable to rest reliably on the bendy upper branches where the ripest cherries grow. One is tempted to climb to get them, suspending fear of heights, defying the law of gravity …

I recently joined an online message board for my neighborhood in Iowa City. It has open invitations to meet for coffee as well as anxious pleas for information leading to the return of a favorite cat, along with adorable photos. One post that has been getting a lot of attention is by a woman…

Too often these days, Americans and our government seem to be incapable of agreeing on what the best course of action is, regardless of the issue. This is especially true when we are talking about immigration and immigrants.

Too often these days, Americans and our government seem to be incapable of agreeing on what the best course of action is, regardless of the issue. This is especially true when we are talking about immigration and immigrants.

Have you ever attended Chocolate Stoll? I didn’t know anything about it in 2014 when my neighbor, Ann Booth, asked me if I would help out with the children’s activities that year at Chocolate Stroll. Not knowing what I was getting into, I cheerfully agreed because I mainly heard the word “ch…

We are obsessed with the idea of immortality—which is ironic because we spend most of our lives complaining about life. When somebody reaches the age of 100, we want to know their secret. Was it something they ate? Or didn’t eat? Was it exercise? Or geographic location? We are even fascinate…

I love those “heist” movies where a criminal mastermind assembles a team of experts to pull off a brilliant caper (generally for a noble and ultimately legal cause). But it is somewhat reassuring to hear about what happens when a really dumb criminal gets caught attempting a crime so idiotic…

In-person activities are finally returning to Southeast Linn Community Center. Beginning June 1, we will once again offer congregate meals, social activities and extended access to the food pantry and clothing closet.

Clearly a lesson of the past 14 months is not to take things for granted. It’s a lesson taken to heart by members of the Class of 2021 as they approach the final days of their high school career. They’ve told us: “We’re grateful for the senior celebrations we’ve been able to have.”

In the days of the Viet Nam draft, anti-war protesters argued it was unfair that an 18-year-old wasn’t old enough to buy beer, but he was old enough to die for his country. I never quite understood that. Were they saying that the draft age should be raised or the drinking age should be lower…

I’m writing to share the joy and sadness I experienced this past work week with the purpose of advocacy for our community to take responsibility for its actions. No, I’m not writing about vaccination, although I continue to believe in the benefits of COVID vaccination for Iowans. (Think of t…

May is National Historic Preservation Month, a time for towns and cities across the country to celebrate historic places in our communities. Lisbon’s historic properties and districts include the Stuckslager home, Lisbon United Methodist Church, Main Street Historic District, and Meyers Farm…

You have to feel a little sorry for Prince William. Here he is, 38 years old, in the prime of life, filthy rich, never has to work, married to the charming and beautiful Catherine “Kate” Middleton. You’d think, “Here’s a guy who’s got it made.” But you’d be wrong. Because, instead of sailing…

Now that Harvey Hunter of Stuart, Iowa, has been charged with first-degree harassment for a voicemail, calling for Gov. Kim Reynolds to be “hung for treason,” he is claiming his comment is protected under the First Amendment. And he didn’t mean it literally anyway. And when it comes right do…

The 2021 session of the Iowa Legislature will end in a few weeks, and one big issue moving toward a final vote would make charter schools easier to create as an alternative to the traditional K-12 public schools.

We are almost at the one-year mark of when our lives turned upside down with the Pandemic. During this time, life has continued, albeit in a strange way. I think back now to March and April of 2020 and the conversations I had then, wondering if this would all last for more than a month or tw…

A few days ago, during what was probably the coldest day of the year, I looked outside our frosted dining room window and could not at first believe what I saw. There, huddled on the telephone wire was a robin!

Kudos to the Mount Vernon Housing Commission and City of Mount Vernon for its commitment to offering a range of housing options in the community. It takes work to make sure there are opportunities for everyone, from singles, to young families to retirees to find appropriate housing. The firs…

  • Updated

We are almost at the one-year mark of when our lives turned upside down with the Pandemic. During this time, life has continued, albeit in a strange way. I think back now to March and April of 2020 and the conversations I had then, wondering if this would all last for more than a month or tw…

  • Updated

A few days ago, during what was probably the coldest day of the year, I looked outside our frosted dining room window and could not at first believe what I saw. There, huddled on the telephone wire was a robin!

  • Updated

Kudos to the Mount Vernon Housing Commission and City of Mount Vernon for its commitment to offering a range of housing options in the community. It takes work to make sure there are opportunities for everyone, from singles, to young families to retirees to find appropriate housing. The firs…

Through the years, the Iowa Legislature has chosen an official a state flower and a state bird. Theres also a state tree and even an official rock. It may be time for lawmakers to designate an official state punctuation mark, too.

I think theres been a switcheroo. I accept that Iowa generally has terrible weather. In fact, we Iowans take pride in our bad weather. But what I do not accept is when we have to put up with somebody elses bad weather. Take this February. (Please, just take it!) The normal high temperature f…

Wow. Thats all we can say. What a performance of Tristan Wirfs in his first Super Bowl performance. To think, in the span of four short years from being a standout athlete on the Mount Vernon football, wrestling and track teams, to playing at the University of Iowa, and now being part …

  • Updated

Through the years, the Iowa Legislature has chosen an official a state flower and a state bird. Theres also a state tree and even an official rock. It may be time for lawmakers to designate an official state punctuation mark, too.

  • Updated

I think theres been a switcheroo. I accept that Iowa generally has terrible weather. In fact, we Iowans take pride in our bad weather. But what I do not accept is when we have to put up with somebody elses bad weather. Take this February. (Please, just take it!) The normal high temperature f…

  • Updated

Wow. Thats all we can say. What a performance of Tristan Wirfs in his first Super Bowl performance. To think, in the span of four short years from being a standout athlete on the Mount Vernon football, wrestling and track teams, to playing at the University of Iowa, and now being part …

On Feb. 2, the U.S. House of Representatives impeachment managers filed a 77-page Trial Memorandum Brief in support of the impeachment of Donald Trump. To read the brief, simply Google: house judiciary impeachment brief.

  • Updated

On Feb. 2, the U.S. House of Representatives impeachment managers filed a 77-page Trial Memorandum Brief in support of the impeachment of Donald Trump. To read the brief, simply Google: house judiciary impeachment brief.

When Amanda Gorman, the amazing 23-year-old poet laureate, spoke at Joe Bidens presidential inauguration, I was struck by how some of the words in The Hill We Climb rhyme. And how some of them dont quite rhyme.

  • Updated

When Amanda Gorman, the amazing 23-year-old poet laureate, spoke at Joe Bidens presidential inauguration, I was struck by how some of the words in The Hill We Climb rhyme. And how some of them dont quite rhyme.

Its time to address the elephant in the room, or maybe the missing elephant in the room. On Jan. 23, Linn County League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan organization, held their first legislative forum via video conference. All Linn County elected officials were in attendance, except for two. …

Comedian Woody Allen once quipped that he wanted to be emperor of the worldso he could meet girls. Sadly, you might finally achieve your wildest dream, only to discover that you cant escape your own private nightmares.