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Cedar Rapids barbecue joint serves free meals in Spencer

Willie Ray Fairley Jr. could have celebrated the fifth anniversary of opening Willie’s Q Shack with a party at his Cedar Rapids location; instead, he spent the day, July 8, cooking and serving free meals to the people of Spencer in the Hy-Vee’s parking lot.

Spencer man faces kidnapping, assault charges

A Spencer man was set to be arraigned July 8 on four felonies and one misdemeanor charge after police say he kidnapped and assaulted a woman in June.

Debris fire extinguished on the Fourth

An early evening event on the Fourth of July drew response from four Spencer Fire-Rescue vehicles.

Engine 993 was out around 5:30 p.m., and came across an odor and after investigation at Shine Bros., 225 10th Ave. SE, called for additional resources. Three other units responded.

Hands-on healing

Samaritan’s Purse, a nondenominational evangelical Christian organization, organized by Rev. Franklin Graham arrived on scene shortly after the June 22 flooding and has been offering flood relief cleanup to aid the citizens of Spencer.

Based out of Hope Church, the group organizes local volunteers and finds places for them to help.

Jaime Keoshian, program manager with Samaritan’s Purse, is searching to find volunteers willing to serve the community.

Peterson opens doors to history

Sunday afternoon, the Kirchner Farm Machinery Museum (above) opened its doors — as it will on the first Sunday of each summer month — in celebration of the building’s 50th anniversary. This season, a special lineup of events to celebrate the rich history and community spirit. This milestone marks half a century of preserving and showcasing the agricultural and industrial heritage of our region. The celebration will feature special exhibits, guided tours and refreshments.

Contractor taking over debris collection, transportation

A private contractor has taken over the task of collecting flood-damaged personal property, processing the items and hauling what is left to the regional landfill.

Clay County issues Disaster Emergency

On June 22, a storm system caused severe weather and record flash flooding resulting in significant damage to public and private properties. Clay County issued a Disaster Emergency Severe Weather and Flooding Proclamation. The proclamation, set to expire July 26, provides relief for the county:

Black Hills Energy working to restore natural gas service

Black Hills Energy is continuing its emergency response procedures in Spencer. As flood water began to recede technicians began assessing the damage and going door to door turning off service to customers impacted by flooding.

Lutat hired as ISU Extension regional director

AMES — Melissa Lutat has accepted the position of regional director for Iowa State University Extension and Outreach serving Dickinson, Emmet, Clay and Palo Alto counties in north-central Iowa. She begins the position July 31. As regional director, Lutat will provide administrative leadership to county extension office staff and guidance to county extension councils.

Main Street Market canceled

Spencer Main Street announced that the previously planned weekly Main Street Market events, originally scheduled to begin July 11, have been canceled. Annually, the combined agriculture and artisans offered goods at the Clay County Courthouse in Spencer.

FEMA opens Spencer Disaster Recovery Center

The Federal Emergency Management Agency opened a Disaster Recovery Center in Spencer on July 2, giving city residents and others hit hard by the June 22 flood another way to apply for disaster recovery assistance.

The center is a combined effort between FEMA and the U.S. Small Business Administration, which aids in long-term disaster efforts by supplying low-interest loans and other services. FEMA spokesperson Tiana Suber said the DRC will remain open "until the needs are met."

High School Musical Theater Awards highlights on IPTV

JOHNSTON — Iowa PBS will present the 2024 Iowa High School Musical Theater Awards Showcase on Tuesday, July 9, at 8 p.m. This two-hour highlights program showcases the opening number and finale, selections from the various medleys performed by the students and the announcement of the Triple Threat Award. It will be rebroadcast Sunday, July 14, at 4 p.m. and will be available for a limited time for on-demand streaming on and the PBS App.

Multi-Agency Resource Center to open Friday at fairgrounds

Spencer residents affected by recent flooding will have access to a wide range of disaster recovery resources at a Multi-Agency Resource Center opening this Friday at the fairgrounds.

Library offers day care, flood relief information

The Spencer Public Library began hosting day care, from 1-4 p.m., for Spencer-area aged children on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. The program is hosted in the library’s round room and children’s library area, led by library staff and Spencer Schools elementary teachers.

Hundreds of Spencer homes inspected for structural damage

A specialized team of licensed architects, engineers and building inspectors has been giving free, rapid structural safety assessments on hundreds of homes in Spencer this week as part of state efforts to keep people safe following the June 22 flood.

Hog thief facing felony charges in Clay County

The Clay County sheriff’s office arrested a man from Pocahontas on June 21 after officials say he stole more than $15,000 worth of butcher hogs from area farms.

Corey Edward Goeders, 27, has been accused of two counts of theft in the second degree after a Palo Alto County Sheriff’s investigation found that he had stolen butcher hogs from three sites in Clay County on at least two occasions.

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