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Supervisor GOP candidate forum Wednesday

Six Republican Clay County Board of Supervisor candidates running for three open seats in November’s general election, will meet in a public forum sponsored by the Spencer-area media. The local media — Spencer Daily Reporter, Spencer Radio Group and Spencer Municipal Utilities — will host the public candidate forum from council chambers at Spencer City Hall from 6:30-8 p.m. Wednesday, June 1, ahead of the June 7 primary.

Two bioretention cells to be constructed in Spencer

Two bioretention cells will be coming to the city of Spencer in the future, the contract having been awarded on May 16. Local engineering firm Kruse, Cate & Nelson will be the design engineers for the project.

“There’s two separate cells, one’s going near the entrance off of Highway 71, north of the community state bank building,” Engineer Brian Schmidt said. “The other one is northwest of the main (Iowa Lakes Community College) campus building.”

Spencer students celebrate final week of school

Before being let out of school for the summer, Spencer's students took some time to enjoy their final days of school. Johnson and Fairview Elementary students enjoyed a field day with a variety of different activities on Thursday. Kids ran, jumped and used their minds to beat their classmates to the finish line in games of fun.

Celebrating Poppy Day in Spencer

Ahead of memorial weekend, the American Legion promoted Poppy Day by selling poppies at the post office, Hy-Vee, Fareway and Bomgaars. All proceeds from the poppy sale will go toward veterans in need. Above: Jan Tanner, chair person of the Legion's Poppy Day, brings a smile to shoppers faces with poppies.

Hospital reports low numbers of COVID-19 infections

COVID-19 reports from Spencer Hospital continue to report low raw numbers. During the hospital’s board of trustees meeting, Hospital President Bill Bumgarner said numbers continue to be down both nationally and in Iowa, though they have been increasing in the last few weeks.

Spencer substitute teacher pay increased

The pay for substitute teachers serving the Spencer Community School system was approved for a $5 increase by the Spencer School Board during its meeting on Thursday.

Main Street welcomes national consultant

Spencer Main Street hosted Kathy La Plante, consultant from Main Street America, who reviewed the Main Street program’s progress and provide recommendations for the downtown last week. Main Street America is a national organization that seeks to revitalize downtowns through preservation-based economic development, and this visit is part of a partnership with Main Street Iowa. La Plante, senior program officer and director of Coordinating Program Services at Main Street America.

‘Read Beyond the Beaten Path’

With school out for summer, the Spencer Public Library has officially kicked off its Summer Reading Program, running from May 27 to July 31. Anyone can sign up starting on Friday, May 27, from 12:30-5 p.m.

“But they can sign up anytime after that, they can come up to the front desk, or we have online sign up too,” Librarian Robin Munson said. “That was something COVID brought to us, which is a nice new feature.”

Outdoors: St. Sauver, 'American Heroes' visit Lakes Area

On May 22-24, the Iowa Great Lakes Fishing Club brought “American Heroes Outdoors” and its host Scott St. Sauver (a retired U.S. Army veteran and now fishing guide in northeast South Dakota), and television crew to the Iowa Great Lakes to film a future episode for Bally Sports North that will air in 2023 and as a livestream on Waypoint Outdoors TV this fall.

Outdoors: Get hooked on fishing during free fishing weekend June 3-5

Iowa residents can try fishing without buying a license on June 3-5 as part of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources’ free fishing weekend. All other regulations remain in place.

“A summer of family fun is just a short drive and a fishing pole away,” said Joe Larscheid, chief of the Iowa DNR’s Fisheries Bureau. “You'll be reeling in fish and making new memories in no time!”

Outdoors: June is Invasive Species Awareness Month

In an effort to increase awareness of invasive species and the impact they have on Iowa’s ecosystems and economy, Gov. Kim Reynolds recently proclaimed June as Invasive Species Awareness Month in Iowa.

Each year, public and private organizations spend millions of dollars in an effort to control invasive plants, insects, diseases and animal species in Iowa’s woodlands and urban areas.

Outdoors: Help protect Iowa’s forests — leave firewood at home

Memorial Day weekend and throughout the summer, thousands of Iowa will be camping and building campfires. The Iowa Department of Natural Resources encourages campers to buy firewood from where they will burn it instead of bringing it from home.

“Moving unseasoned firewood around the state can threaten the health of our forests by spreading insects like emerald ash borer that live in firewood,” explained Tivon Feeley, DNR Forest Health forester.

Spencer Rotary supports Cherish Center fundraiser

Spencer Rotary donated $250 to Cherish Center for their Cherished Daughter’s Dance fundraiser, from 6-9 p.m., Sunday, June 5, in the Roof Garden Ballroom in Arnolds Park. (Above) Lori Swanson, office manager and Cherished Daughters Dance coordinator, and Executive Director Shantel Pausley, accepted the donation.

NEW Co-op Foundation supports regional 4-H efforts

The NEW Cooperative Foundation recently donated $50,805 to 22 counties totaling to be 3,387 individual 4-H members. The money is donated for half of each 4-H youth’s dues in NEW Cooperative’s trade territory, which includes Calhoun, Carroll, Cerro Gordo, Cherokee, Clay, Crawford, Dickinson, Emmet, Greene, Franklin, Hamilton, Hancock, Humboldt, Kossuth, Monona, Palo Alto, Plymouth, Pocahontas, Sac, Webster, Woodbury and Wright counties.

Newly rebranded North Central to welcome public

North Central International calling Spencer home, with a completely remodeled facility, will host an open house, June 9.

“The building we occupy is 45 years old, and the Fox/NCI family has been operating out of it for the past 23,” said Boone Bjorklund, general manager of the Spencer location. “We explored building a new facility, but we wanted to keep the highway exposure and made the decision to reinvest in our current location.”

May is Beef Month: How important is cattle feeding to northwest Iowa?

ORANGE CITY — In total, 17 counties in northwest Iowa had over 1 million head of cattle and calves in 2021. These same northwest Iowa counties were home to over 81,000 beef cows and 64,000 dairy cows in 2021.

Subtracting the calves born, the cows and first-calf replacement heifers, there were an estimated 614,000 head of feedlot cattle that would have provided an estimated 392 million pounds of boneless retail beef.

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