Opinion

Ice fishing memories

Local Columns

Boy oh boy what a change: When the new year started a couple of months ago we were looking at a very mild winter. The ice wasn’t as thick as it usually is at that time of year, and there wasn’t much snow around either. Flash forward to early March and there’s plenty of ice and too ...

NK won’t get something for nothing this time

Editorials

It may be time for North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un to try Plan B. His initial strategy in dealing with President Donald Trump ­—trying to get something for nothing — flopped badly. Trump and Kim held their second face-to-face meeting this week in Hanoi, Vietnam. But Trump departed ...

God be with you: A better way to say goodbye

Local Columns

The English-speaking world’s most common expression of farewell, “goodbye,” originated in the 16th century as “God be with you.” Through a series of metamorphoses over the next two centuries it became the contraction we use today. Its history notwithstanding, I dislike the term. ...

Traveling to see Iowa’s history

Local Columns

When I was in sixth grade, we took a class on Iowa history. I don’t remember how often we had the class, but I do remember that at least once a week my whole class trooped down to the lunchroom in the lower level of the old Stanhope school building to watch a program on public television ...

A thank you for a job well done

Editorials

During a big winter storm, lots of people like to stay inside, sipping their favorite hot beverage while they watch the white stuff pile up outside. But one group of people goes out in every storm, and the work of these unsung heroes makes it possible for everyone to travel in snowy ...

Good Samaritans all around us

Local Columns

The last two weeks have been harsh — weather-wise, that is. Mother Nature gave Hamilton County and Iowa in general much more than our share of snow and cold. It’s often during these difficult times that we realize the goodness and generosity of people in our community. You know, people ...

The changing world of fishing

Local Columns

On a recent or past episode of Fishing the Midwest television depending on where you live, we talked about some of the changes that have taken place in the world of fishing. I’ve been fishing for a little more than 5 decades and have seen many changes. Most of those changes have been for ...

Iowa Central looks to the future

Editorials

Robbers traditionally had to go somewhere, often wearing a mask and packing a gun, in order to steal some money. Now, a new breed of bandits can help themselves to someone else’s money with a few keystrokes on a computer. Stopping these cyber crooks requires a new set of security ...

Gone fishing

Local Columns

There are lots of fishing seasons and ways to go fishing. In some parts of the world right now it’s ice-fishing season, but in others it’s open water season. In some places it crappie season, in others it’s perch season. In some places we go spinnerbaiting for bass or jigging for ...

A simple act of kindness

Local Columns

So there I was, standing in a short line at a busy convenience store waiting to pay for the cup of coffee I was holding. The customer in front of me was purchasing an energy drink and a tin of chewing tobacco, so you know he is decades younger than me. For some reason, his was a lengthy ...

Outgrowing your dream

Local Columns

At a monthly luncheon with a group of other aging baby boomers, a conversation with a few old friends turned to the matter of unachieved goals. Now in retirement, what life goals did we not achieve during our younger years? I quickly identified my unachieved goal: learning to fly. As a ...

Must have tools for fishing

Local Columns

Some fishing friends and I got into a conversation recently, and as usual, the talk turned to fishing. We talked about ice-fishing and we talked about open water fishing. We talked about techniques for fishing and we talked about favorite places to go fishing. After exhausting all those ...

Jumpstart spring indoors

Local Columns

Spring. Are you counting down the days? Why not bring a breath of spring indoors by forcing flowering branches. The term "forcing" in horticulture terms is a method to speed up plant growth by artificially controlling heat and light to encourage early flowering. With branches from ...

Trade mission is a good move

Editorials

The marketplace for Iowa’s many agricultural and manufacturing products extends well beyond the borders of the Hawkeye State. Increasingly, international sales are an important part of the picture. That’s why Lt. Gov. Adam Gregg and Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig are taking part ...

Just how cold was it?

Local Columns

The recent cold snap generated a lot of “I remember when it was so cold…” comments. Most of us who have been around Iowa for a while can remember periods of sub-zero temperatures and how we coped with them. My first few years were spent in Kossuth and Winnebago counties up on the ...

Warm sweaters and cuddly cats

Local Columns

Having a cat in your lap is something like putting on a sweater to chase away the chills of a frigid January like what we’re suffering through. The same could be said for a cool fall day, too. This is the time of year when my cat Maxine and her habit of quietly leaping onto my lap is ...

Houseplant hints

Local Columns

During the cold winter weather, there is not much gardening to do outside. But for those with houseplants, we will take a look at the importance of water, as a variety of water quality factors should be considered. Water plays a role in transporting nutrients from the soil up through the ...

The best method of snow removal

Local Columns

It was about 9:15 on a recent Saturday morning. We had received three inches of snow the night before, the outside temp was 12-above and I was working up the ambition to go outside to remove snow from our driveway. Comfortably (and warmly) ensconced in my recliner I was watching Iowa ...

School memories

Local Columns

One of the reasons I like to read obituaries is because I get to see where the deceased went to school. If they were in their 80s or 90s when they passed, it’s a chance to see the names of Iowa schools that no longer exist. In fact, it’s not unusual for some of those towns to no longer ...

Plan to attend Pork Congress

Editorials

For more than four decades, the Iowa Pork Producers Association's Iowa Pork Congress has been an event where pork producers and assorted experts gather to share views and information about an industry that has long been vital to the state's economy. The annual incarnation of this very popular ...