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Keokuk County IOWA

Discover Our Traditions with the 2013-2014 Visitor’s Guide

www.sigourneynewsreview.com


Welcome

Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County

On behalf of Keokuk County, Iowa we extend a warm welcome to you. Whether you’re visiting for a day or a week we encourage you to explore the pages of this guide to help plan your trip. During the summer months activities flourish throughout the County with community celebrations, fun runs, and races. Lake Belva Deer recreation area can accommodate boating activities, fishing, swimming and camping. Many of the sixteen communities will provide you with an unique recreational and dining experience. Several will even provide shopping, from the traditional to antiques. The Calendar of Events will help you plan your stay and maximize your experience. If you need more information you may visit us online at www.keokukcountyia.com or call us directly at 641-622-2902. We appreciate the opportunity to be a part of your travel plans and wish you safe travels as you explore the many wonderful places in Keokuk County, Iowa.

Michael Berg, Deke Wood and Michael Hadley Keokuk County Supervisors

Sigourney Area Development Corporation

As President of the Sigourney Area Development Corporation (SADC), I want to invite those interested in starting a business in a supportive community to consider Sigourney, “Where Tradition Meets Tomorrow”. We seek to have a robust community by promoting employment, which drives economic growth in the area. Ultimately this assists in providing for a high quality of life both locally and throughout Keokuk County. To strive for this, SADC serves a lead role in industrial, tourism and community development activities. Rural communities like ours are highly committed to their local businesses. Sigourney has over 200 businesses which receive strong patronage by area residents. Your new business can be confident of similar support. For more information contact the SADC office at 641- 622-2288, e-mail us at sadc@sigourney.com or visit our web site www.sigourney.com. We look forward to hearing from you!

Jeff Johnson

President, SADC

Sigourney News-Review The News-Review has proudly served Keokuk County since 1860 as their source for information, community news and activities in both print and electronic mediums. Visit our award winning website at www. sigourneynewsreview.com. More details about the News-Review are available on Page 55. We join the supporting businesses in sharing our communities with you throughout this visitor’s guide. For more information or to obtain more copies, please contact the SNR at 641-622-3110 or signred@lisco. com. Welcome to Keokuk County and enjoy your stay! SADC Industrial Park and Youth Soccer Fields 2012

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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Directory of Supporting Businesses AGRICULTURE SALES & SERVICE Hinshaw Trailer Sales ................................... 21 Keokuk County Implement ........................... 29 Leer Tiling and Construction ......................... 58 Ray-Man, Inc. .............................................. 40 STI ............................................................. 10

FINANCIAL INSTITUTIONS County Bank................................................ 37 Farmers Savings Bank .................................. 38 MidWestOne Bank ....................................... 60 Pilot Grove Savings Bank .............................. 16 White State Bank ......................................... 20

ANTIQUES Katwalque Antiques ..................................... 19

FLORIST The Garden Gate .......................................... 50

AUCTION AND REALTY Abell Auction and Real Estate, LLC ................ 20 Keoco Auction Co., LLC ..................................9

FUNERAL HOMES Holm Funeral Home ..................................... 58 Powell Funeral Home ................................... 19

AUTO BODY AND REPAIR Copeland Auto Body .................................... 51 Copeland Towing & Recovery ..........................6 Phelps Auto Supply ...................................... 42 Sigourney Body Shop ................................... 58

GOVERNMENT City of Keota ............................................... 39 City of Sigourney ......................................... 18

CONVENIENCE STORES Ahlbee’s Food & Fuel .................................... 13 County Line Mart ......................................... 35 Sigourney BP ...................................... 44

HEALTH CARE Family Practice Clinic, Carol Schmidt ARNP.... 21 Keokuk County Health Center .........................2 Keokuk County Hospice ................................ 56 Jack’s Corner Drug ....................................... 17 River Hills Community Health Center ............. 57 UI Family Care - Sigourney ........................ 15


Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide HIGHER EDUCATION Indian Hills Community College ..................... 13 William Penn University ............................... 12 INSURANCE Countryside Insurance .................................. 27 Craig D. Conklin Insurance ............................ 19 Gentry Insurance ......................................... 53 Horak Insurance........................................... 15 Insurance Services ....................................... 33 Lyle Insurance.............................................. 42 Town and Country Insurance ......................... 21 LODGING Belva Deer Inn ............................................. 26 Belva Deer Park & Recreation ....................... 22 Hydrangea House Bed & Breakfast ................ 56 Lake Darling State Park ................................ 37 MEDIA Fremont-What Cheer Vine ............................46 Keota Eagle ................................................. 46 Sigourney News-Review ...............................46 PROFESSIONAL SERVICES Atwood Electric, Inc. ......................................7 Keota Meat Processing ................................. 43 LaKappCo Heating and AC ............................ 16 Sigourney Cleaners ...................................... 58 Sloan Mohr Monument Co. ........................... 47 RECREATION Dumont Museum................................17 Lagos Acres Country Club....................43 Lake Darling State Park.......................37 Belva Deer Park & Recreation..............22

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RESTAURANTS Copper Lantern Sports Bar & Grill .................. 57 Pizza Ranch ................................................. 52 Victor’s Kitchen ........................................... 55 Walk ‘ER’ Drive Thru ..................................... 20 RETAIL Garcia Carpet ............................................... 33 Hinshaw Trailer Sales ................................... 21 H & M Farm and Home Store......................... 24 Katwalque Antiques ..................................... 19 Misc. On Main .............................................. 19 Sigourney TV and Appliance ......................... 56 Strobels, Inc. ............................................... 14 The Garden Gate .......................................... 50 The Greenley Companies .............................. 47 True Value and Kay’s Furniture ...................... 45 SKILLED CARE CENTERS Windsor Place/Sigourney Care Center ............ 20 VETERINARIANS Keokuk County Veterinary Clinic .................... 47 VINEYARDS Tassel Ridge Winery ..................................... 59 Wooden Wheel Vineyards ............................. 21


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Index

Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Welcome ....................................................... 3 Directory of Supporting Businesses .............. 4-5 Quality of Life

Sportsman Club ....................................... 38 Cultural Venues What Cheer Opera House.......................... 40

Keokuk County Libraries .........................7-9

What Cheer School Museum ..................... 40

Keokuk County Schools ....................... 11-14

Dumont Museum ..................................... 41

Local Higher Education ....................... 15-16

Keokuk County Historical Society ............. 42

Keokuk County Emergency Services .......... 17

Lewis Memorial Fountain ......................... 43

Recreation & Leisure

Keokuk County Courthouse ...................... 44

Lake Belva Deer Park .......................... 22-24

SS Peter & Paul Church............................. 45

County Conservation Areas ....................... 25

Keota Museum ........................................46

Belva Deer Cabins ............................... 26-27

Lancaster School .....................................46

Keokuk County Expo ........................... 28-29

Delta Covered Bridge Replica .................... 47

Keokuk County Fair..............................32-33

Local Flavors

Lake Darling State Park............................ 34

Tassel Ridge Winery .....................................48

Golf Courses ............................................ 35

Wooden Wheel Vineyards .............................49

Legion Park & Swimming Pool .................. 36

Keokuk County Communities ................... 50-54

Bowling & Gyms ................................. 37-38

Keokuk County Media ..............................55-57


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Keokuk County Quality of Life Keokuk County Libraries

Keokuk County Schools

Sigourney Public Library 641-622-2890 ................................................... Page 8

Sigourney Community Schools 641-622-2025 ...................................................Page 11

Wilson Memorial Library, Keota 641-636-3850 ................................................... Page 8

Keota Community Schools 641-636-2189 ...................................................Page 11

What Cheer Public Library 641-634-2859 ................................................... Page 8

Tri-County Schools 641-634-2636 ................................................... Page 13

South English Public Library 319-667-2715 .................................................... Page 9

English Valleys Community Schools 319-664-3634 ...................................................Page 12

Hedrick Public Library 641-653-2211 .................................................... Page 9

Pekin Community Schools 319-695-3707 ....................................................Page 12

Richland Public Library 319-456-6541 ................................................... Page 9

Keokuk County Career Academy 641-622-2025 ...................................................Page 14


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Keokuk County Quality of Life Sigourney Public Library 720 E. Jackson St., Sigourney Phone: 641-622-2890 Web: www.sigourney.lib.ia.us Sigourney is also home to a state of the art Public Library. The Sigourney Public Library (SPL) is located on Highway 92 East. It offers 7000 square foot of space, including a large community meeting room, study room, eight public access computers, Wilbur and free Wi-Fi. The SPL offers many programs throughout the year, as well: Summer Reading Program, winter adult reading contest, monthly book chat, weekly after school program, weekly toddler program, knitting club and so forth. Stop in and enjoy the wonderful and diverse selection of books, magazines, audio-books, CDs and DVDs. The SPL is definitely an influential and im-

Wilson Memorial Library, Keota 109 E. Washington Ave., Keota Phone: 641-636-3850 Web: www.keota.lib.ia.us The Wilson Memorial Library is located just a few blocks north of downtown Keota. The library features two floors of books, audio books, DVDs and videos, eight public access computers and wireless Internet. The library also features a public meeting room with access to a kitchen. The library as well has an extensive genealogy research area, including Keota’s Historical Museum located in the library’s lower level. The Library’s mission is to ensure the public, regardless of age, race, creed or sex, has the freedom

What Cheer Public Library 308 S. Barnes St., What Cheer Phone: 641-634-2859 Web: www.whatcheer.lib.ia.us The What Cheer Public Library is located in the city hall. We offer a great selection of books, magazines, audio books, movies and more. We have three public access computers with high speed internet and Wi-Fi inside and out. We hold a book/garage sale the weekends of the May and October Collector’s Paradise Flea Markets. Visitors to the What Cheer community may visit the library: Monday from 11 a.m. - 6 p.m., Wednesday from 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m., Thursday

portant part of the Sigourney community. The mission of the SPL is to provide equal access to information and ideas so all citizens can lead enriched lives through lifelong learning and are able to participate knowledgeably. With a convenient location on the east side of Sigourney and extended hours: Monday-Thursday from 11 a.m. - 7 p.m.; Friday from 11 a.m. - 6 p.m. and Saturday from 11 a.m. - 3 p.m., the SPL is very accessible. But today’s on-the-go reader may also access the SPL by email at sigopl@lisco.com, online at www. sigourney.lib.ia.us or on Facebook. to read and to freely choose from various sources of information and knowledge through a collection of print and non-print resources. The library serves the educational, informational and recreational needs of the community. The Wilson Memorial Library’s hours are: MondayWednesday from 11 a.m. - 6 p.m., Thursday and Friday from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. from 1:30 - 5:30 p.m. and Saturday from 9 - 11 a.m. With help from the State Library of Iowa and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation the What Cheer Public Library was able to create a place on the web where you, our customers, can explore, learn and get help with all your information needs. Check our website at www.whatcheer.lib.ia.us or contact us through our e-mail at wc.library@ mchsi.com.


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Keokuk County Quality of Life Hedrick Public Library

South English Public Library

109 N. Main St., Hedrick Phone: 641-653-2211 Web: www.hedrickiowa.com Hedrick’s first Library was started in 1923 and it is currently located in the Community Center at 109 N. Main Street. The library has a large variety of literatures to choose from including books, videos, tapes and magazines. It also has a nice children’s section, which provides a variety of summer reading programs.

407 Ives St., South English Phone: 319-667-2715 Web: www.southenglish.lib.ia.us The South English Public Library is much more than a place to check out books. We have programs and services for everyone. Eager, friendly, highly-trained librarians are standing by, waiting to help you. We have two public computers, videos, DVD’s, audio and large print books and a good children’s library. We are open 12 hours a week: Tuesday from 3 - 4:30 p.m., Wednesday from 3 - 6 p.m., Thursday from 2 - 6 p.m. and Saturday from 8 11:30 a.m. or by email at slibrary@netins.net.

Richland Public Library

all our community in a welcoming, respectful and businesslike atmosphere. Library hours: Tuesday-Thursday from 2:30 - 6:30 p.m., Friday from Noon - 5 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. - Noon.

100 E. Main St., Richland Phone: 319-456-6541 Web: www.richland.lib.ia.us The Richland Public Library, founded in 1938 by the Woman’s club, started with 200 books. Since then, our community has grown to approximately 580 people and our library’s collection has increased to over 9000 books, videos, DVDs and books-on-tape. A new library building was constructed in 1977 with a full basement public meeting room. We offer wireless access to our four public computers. Upon completion of our automation in 2006, we added a computerized library catalog for public use. The library’s mission is to improve the community’s quality of life by providing access to information for lifelong learning. The library provides our patrons with quality, current materials in a variety of formats for persons of all ages. The library actively promotes and encourages the use of its collection and technology. A wide variety of popular materials for reading and viewing are available. Information technology will be implemented in the library to ensure equal access to electronic information resources for all. Our mission promotes the enjoyment of lifelong learning through providing library services to


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Keokuk County Quality of Life Sigourney Community School District Central Office - 300 W. Kelly St., Sigourney Phone: 641-622-2025 Website: www.sigourneyschools.com A Welcome Message from Sigourney Superintendent, Benita Gonzales On behalf of all of us in the Sigourney Community School District (SCSD), I would like to welcome you to our community. The Sigourney schools have a long and distinguished history of service to children and families. We are proud of our students. They continue to achieve at high levels and make significant contributions to our community. Just as important as academic excellence, a heavy emphasis is placed on civility, citizenship and character development. It is our intent to deliver the very best instructional program possible to our students. Our curriculum is extensive, including college-level courses, special education options, effective student assistance programs and business opportunities, career connections, MacBook (laptop) for every 5-12 student, a variety of enrichment opportunities and

Keota Community School District Central Office - 500 N. Ellis St., Keota Phone: 641-636-2189 Website: www.keota.k12.ia.us Mission Statement: It is the purpose of Keota Community Schools to best prepare our young people so that they may achieve the highest quality of life that they possibly can. It is our goal to continue to improve our resources and methods to best produce students who are responsible, clear thinking problem solvers. District Standards for Kindergarten - Grade 12 (available on the website at www.keota.k12. ia.us). Location: Keota Community Schools are located in the southeast quadrant of the state of Iowa in Keokuk County. The district is approximately 40 miles southwest of Iowa City, between Sigourney and Washington. Keota Community Schools are part of Great Prairie AEA with centers in Ottumwa and Burlington. See Keota on a map (available on the website at www.keota.k12.ia.us).

much more. The district provides, in collaboration with other service providers, a full range of preschool choices. The elementary offers a full-day kindergarten program. Secondary students enjoy a full and rich selection of academic, vocational, practical work-experience and extracurricular programs. Our guidance counselor is available to guide students through their secondary studies, allowing students to meet state requirements for graduation and pursue their individual personal interests. The Board of Education in Sigourney is committed to excellence. The district has been recognized for their innovation and creativity at the state and national levels. Thank you for your interest in our schools. Our web site at www.sigourneyschools.com, is designed to help you learn more about the schools and our community. Please join us as we work together to create a bright and successful future for all of our students. Partners in Education, Benita Gonzales, Superintendent of Schools benita.gonzales@sigourneyschools.com 641-622-2025 (Central Office) Facilities: The present campus was started in 1960 with the construction of the elementary building, cafeteria and gymnasium. In 1973 the high school building was added to the north. The two buildings were connected and enhanced with the 2000 construction of an ICN room, second gym, elementary media center and classrooms.

Keota Education Foundation Established in 1998 P.O. Box 86, Keota, IA 52248 Website: www.keota.k12.ia.us The Keota Community School Foundation is a non-profit corporation established by the citizens of the school community with the support of the Board of Education. The Foundation operates independently of the school system. It was created and incorporated to: • Provide financial assistance through scholarships and loans for Keota High School graduating seniors, • Provide enhancement to current educational programs, • Improve the school’s physical facilities.


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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Quality of Life English Valleys Community Schools

Pekin Community School District

Central Office - Box 490, North English, IA 52316 Phone: 319-664-3634 Website: www.english-valleys.k12.ia.us Welcome to English Valleys Community Schools Located in southeastern Iowa and serving the communities of North English, South English, Kinross, Webster, Deep River and Millersburg, the mission of the English Valleys School District is to provide educational opportunities for all students to reach their potential as responsible, productive world citizens by challenging them with appropriate curriculum and instruction in a positive, caring environment. The EV Booster Club tries to be very active in the extra-curricular activities of all involved in any high school sport, be it football, cross country, track, basketball, volleyball, softball, baseball, cheerleading, drill team, golf or wrestling. The English Valleys Newsletter is prepared by Scott Romine and delivered to over 1400 box holders in the district and over 200 readers outside the district.

Central Office - 1062 Birch Ave., Packwood, IA 52580 Phone: 319-695-3707 Website: www.pekincsd.org The mission of the Pekin Community School, serving as a unifying agent of our communities, is to provide and promote lifelong learning through the commitment to quality educational programs that prepare the students to be effective, successful and responsible students. Probably the most exciting news is that Pekin is taking a huge step into the 21st Century Learning Environment! Every student in grades 9-12 is issued their own Apple MacBook laptop computer to keep with them 24/7 throughout the school year. They do a lot of their schoolwork and projects on these computers and use them as a resource to do their research on. In the lower grades, Pekin purchased portable computer labs to go in to each of the wings to improve the accessibility to technology for their classes. All of this is to improve our student’s skills and better prepare them to go on in to the 21st Century Workforce.


Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Quality of Life

Tri-County Community School District Central Office - Thornburg, Iowa Phone: 641-634-2408 Website: www.tri-county.k12.ia.us The mission for the Tri-County Community School District is “A connecting web for life-long learning” and the Tri-County “TROJANS” Visions and Beliefs are: • Teach the value of life-long learning in a safe environment • Respect for all and accountable for actions • Open doors to technology in challenging and meaningful ways • Justify the curriculum with appropriate assessments • Apply problem solving skills to real-life situations • Nurture the needs of all diverse learners. • Success = Student Effort + Staff and Parent Support Our school is located in approximately 20 miles south of Int. 80. To find us, take the What Cheer exit from Int. 80 south (Hwy 21), east at Hwy 22, the Thornburg “exit”.

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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Quality of Life

Keokuk County Career Academy SCSD Campus, Sigourney Phone: 641-622-3108, 800-726-2585, ext. 5277 Website: www.indianhills.edu/highschool The Keokuk County Career Academy (KCCA) is an emerging dynamic partnership between Indian Hills Community College and area high schools (Sigourney, Tri-County, Keota and Pekin). High school juniors and seniors are able to earn college credit. In addition, the academy “career connections” features career-focused college credit courses offered at no charge to the student. Career Connections provides students with a framework of courses preparing them to complete a diploma/degree in a variety of career-oriented programs like advanced manufacturing (machining and welding), entrepreneurship, nursing, computer networks and security, computer programming and geospatial technology. Career Connections features career-focused college credit courses offered at no charge to the student. The Keokuk County Career Academy, located at 907 E. Pleasant Valley in Sigourney, offers programs in Associate Degree Nursing/Practical Nursing, Computer Information Technology, Entrepreneurship, Machine Technology and Welding. WHAT IS INVOLVED IN THE PROGRAM? Career Connections provides students with a framework of courses that will prepare them to complete a diploma/degree in a variety of career-oriented programs like nursing, computer networks and security, computer programming, geospatial technology, machine technology, entrepreneurship and welding. Students will take Career Connections courses either in the morning or

afternoon and will attend their high school classes during the opposite time block. In most cases, students will be able to earn their degree at Indian Hills with only one more year of study after their high school graduation. ADMISSIONS PROCEDURES (1) Explore the Career Connections programs at our website, www.indianhills.edu/highschool.


Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Quality of Life William Penn University 201 Trueblook Ave., Oskaloosa, IA 52577 Phone: 800-779-7366 Website: www.wmpenn.edu A world of opportunity is available at William Penn University in Oskaloosa, Iowa. From excellent academic programs and a caring faculty to extracurricular activities and athletics, William Penn University challenges its students to make the most of their college experience. William Penn University is a liberal arts university founded by Quaker pioneers in 1873, with the ideal of providing quality education to all. That ideal hasn’t changed. William Penn is still devoted to providing a liberal arts education with a focus on technology, leadership and the Quaker values of simplicity, peace-making, integrity, community and equality. Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association, Penn offers 20 majors and 24 minors. William Penn has also received national recognition from its general education curriculum, the Leadership Core, as a character building college.

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Over the past decade the university has been growing and expanding significantly. With near record numbers for enrollment, Penn currently has students from over 40 states and 13 countries. The Musco Technology Center, completed in 2006, houses the university’s newest programs, Digital Broadcasting and the RN-BSN program. The 150,000 square foot Penn Activity Center is home to student recreational space including multipurpose gymnasium surface, artificial turf, fitness center, walking track and the PAC Café. All over the campus students will find opportunities to be involved in the school and stay active including: student government, campus ministries, departmental clubs and organizations, intramural athletics and fine arts. Also as a member of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA), Penn offers 17 athletic programs for men and women. Penn competes in men’s and women’s basketball, bowling, cross-country, golf, soccer, and track; also in baseball, softball, football, volleyball, and men’s wrestling. Dance, cheerleading and athletic bands add to the wide variety of athletics and school spirit at William Penn University


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Keokuk County Quality of Life Indian Hills Community College 525 Grandview Ave., Ottumwa, IA 52501 Phone: 800-726-2585 Website: www.ihcc.cc.ia.us Established in the early 1960s, Indian Hills Community College has built its reputation on outstanding programs, instructors, staff and facilities. The IHCC Main Campus is located in a picturesque setting in Ottumwa. The newest building added to the campus is the Rural Health Education Center, a state-of-the-art facility houses the college’s 20 health occupations programs. Indian Hills has a newly-renovated North Campus at the Ottumwa airport where the college’s two aviation programs – Aviation Pilot Training and Aviation Maintenance – and three other programs are taught. IHCC is one of the few colleges in Iowa to offer aviation programs. IHCC also has a campus in Centerville offering unique programs in Drafting/Virtual Reality Technology, Construction Management and Sustainable Agriculture/ Entrepreneurship. Arts and Sciences courses are available in both Ottumwa and Centerville. They are designed for students who want to complete a two-year degree and then trans-

fer to a four-year school. Many students take advantage of the partnership agreements Indian Hills has with over 20 four-year colleges and universities which allows for a seamless transfer of IHCC credits. The wide variety of technical education programs available at Indian Hills provides the skills and knowledge essential for successful entry into an occupation. Graduates of these technical programs often have a job waiting for them in their chosen field before they receive their diploma or degree. The Main Campus in Ottumwa has five residence halls with the traditional one-and two-person rooms as well as suites to accommodate up to five students. IHCC offers a four-day academic week which has proven to be very popular for students who are balancing their college schedule with work or family. The college sponsors more than 30 clubs and organizations provide opportunities for student involvement and leadership. Scholarships are available for members of those clubs and organizations. Intramural sports are also popular as is participation in the college’s chorus, jazz band and theatrical productions. Indian Hills also has nine athletic teams: men’s and women’s soccer, men’s and women’s cross country, volleyball, men’s basketball, golf, softball and baseball.


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Keokuk County Quality of Life Emergency Services Keokuk County and its communities are blessed with a wide variety of emergency service professionals from the Keokuk County 911 Dispatch Center, Keokuk County Health Center’s Ambulance Service, Keokuk County Sheriff’s Department, Keokuk County Emergency Management Agency, Keota Police Department, Sigourney Police Department and over one hundred volunteer firefighters/first responders protecting our homes and businesses. Each of these professionals are strong supporters of their individual communities and participate in a wide variety of activities including: parade floats, coaching youth athletic teams, elementary class field trip sponsors and/or presenters, scouting leaders, EDITH (exit drills in the home), carnival booth operators and child safety seat camps - just to name a few. • The KC 911 Dispatch Center is housed at the KC Sheriff’s Department and manned 24/7 with certified officers answering emergency calls and dispatching the county’s emergency services. • KCHC’s ambulance service has 3 ambulances in operation which are staffed by EMT-PS, EMT-I and

EMT-B. The EMT’s and Paramedics coordinate emergency and support services with “First Responder” groups in Keokuk County. Our ambulance service averages around 800 runs per year. • County “First Responders” often double as volunteer firefighters dispatched from eight of the nine different fire departments located across the county. • Nine communities in Keokuk County support and maintain volunteer fire departments including: Delta, Hedrick, Keota, Keswick, Ollie, Richland, Sigourney, South English and What Cheer. • The emergency management Coordinator has the responsibility for coordinating all the components of the emergency management system in the jurisdiction. These components consist of fire and police, emergency medical service, public works, volunteers, and other groups contributing to the management of emergencies. Keokuk County Emergency Management Agency assists public officials, schools, hospitals, business and industry and the public to promote preparedness, disaster response, recovery operations and will encourage mitigation efforts in all jurisdictions and to ensure the safety of all the residents of Keokuk County.


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Keokuk County Recreation & Leisure Lake Belva Deer Park Executive Director, Dave Long Phone: 641-622-3757 Web: www.keokukcountyia.com/Conservation Lake Belva Deer The Belva Deer Recreation Area is the Keokuk County Conservation Board’s largest and most heavily used outdoor recreation and leisure area. It is located on newly paved roads, throughout the park, just two miles east and two miles north of Sigourney, off Highway 92 on 240th Avenue. Facilities at the 1,669 acre park include ten picnic shelters, camping areas, showers with flush toilets, 8 miles of hiking and horse trails, 6.3 miles of walking trails around the lake, bicycling/ walking trail from Hwy. 92 to the park, seven fishing ponds and a 260 acre lake.

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There are no reservations taken to camp at Lake Belva Deer. Shelters are $20 to reserve them. A two week notice for reservations is appreciated. The shelters are free if no reservation is made. Camping Modern camping sites have concrete camping pads, 56 electric sites and water hookups, and access to sewer dump station. Showers and flush toilets are available. Primitive camping sites are walk-in access only. Sites provide a campfire grill and picnic table and are in close proximity to pit latrines and water hydrants. 56 modern sites are $15.00/ night 11 primitive sites are $10.00/night

The lake has a large beach area on the north side of the lake with plenty of space for family gatherings. The beach at Lake Belva Deer is open Memorial Day through Labor Day. The Equestrian Trails are closed from October through February.

Picturesque Lake Belva Deer Park


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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Recreation & Leisure Lake Belva Deer Park Executive Director, Dave Long Phone: 641-622-3757 Web: www.keokukcountyia.com/Conservation Hunting & Fishing Belva Deer Lake has been designed as a high quality fishing lake the year around sportsman. With over half the lake drainage area being owned and managed by Keokuk County, steps have been taken to insure excellent water quality. Many silt ponds were already in place when water began to fill the lake. At the upper end of the lake a 35-acre wetland has been constructed to prevent silt from entering the lake. Extensive planning was done to establish underwater structure habitat providing ample structure to concentrate the fish for anglers. Hundreds of trees, culverts, rock piles and pallet structures are placed in various areas. Underwater mounds, roadways, trenches and miles of spawning beds were constructed to insure excellent fishing for years to come. More than 1,309 acres of Belva Deer is open to public hunting. Species most often pursued are pheasant,

County Conservation Areas Executive Director, Dave Long Phone: 641-622-3757 Web: www.keokukcountyia.com/Conservation Keokuk County Rivers Three rivers meander through the Keokuk County countryside. The North and South Skunk Rivers flow through the southern portion of the county and the English River runs through the north. The Skunk River gets its name from the translation of its Indian name, Chacauqua, which means skunk. The North Skunk is the smaller of the two forks and has many tributaries from the north. It rises and falls rapidly with the spring melt and rainfall. The South Skunk is much larger than the North. Its southern tributaries are fewer in number. This fork does not rise and fall as rapidly or as often. The two forks meet to form the Skunk River three miles inside the southeast county line. Manhattan Bridge Access This 1 acre access on the South Skunk River is located on county road V5G, 4 miles north of Ollie. A cement boat ramp provides access to the river. Picnic tables and a restroom are provided for the comfort and convenience of the park user. Primitive camping is allowed at this area. Flathead Catfish, Channel Catfish and Carp are the most sought after fish in the South Skunk River.

Ice Fishing on the Lake deer, rabbit, squirrel, turkey and waterfowl. A mixture of timber, grassland and wetland will provide the avid hunter an excellent area to pursue their favorite game. All public hunting areas are marked with green signs and all refuge and private property boundaries are posted with yellow signs.


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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Recreation & Leisure The area is open to hunting and trapping. Delta Covered Bridge Park Located 5-1/2 miles southeast of Delta off country road G-48. The beautiful little park is a great place for picnics and nature study. Facilities include grills, a picnic shelter and restrooms. The bridge burned in 2003; below is a photo of the bridge before it was removed.

County Conservation Areas Continued

Executive Director, Dave Long Phone: 641-622-3757 Web: www.keokukcountyia.com/Conservation Chacauqua River Access The Chacauqua River Access is located 2 miles south of Sigourney on Highway 149. This 3 acre access has a cement boat ramp into the North Skunk River. Ample parking is available as well as a picnic table for the convenience of the user. Primitive camping is allowed at this area. Fishing the North Skunk provides the angler with opportunities for Channel Catfish, Flathead Catfish and Carp. Yenruogis County Park Yenruogis is located two miles north of Sigourney on land that was originally Kaiser Rock Quarry. Yenruogis is managed as a 76 acre multi-use area, so it has a wide variety of facilities and activities to choose from. The central focus of the park is a 10 acre lake. There are three main camping and picnic areas equipped with picnic tables, Map of County Conservation Areas grills and restrooms. Only primitive camping is allowed English River Wildlife Area at this park. Boats are allowed at this park, however, only electric Coffman Woods Preserve motors are permitted. Fishing for Bass, Bluegill, Crappie and Channel Catfish at Yenruogis is a year-round pastime of many county residents. Did you know Yenruogis is Sigourney spelled backwards? Yenruogis County Park Coffman Woods Preserve This 15 acre tract of timber is located 1 mile north of Chacauqua River Access South English. A picnic shelter and restroom are available for Delta Covered Bridge Park the park user. The majority of this area is undisturbed timber. English River Wildlife Area Manhattan Bridge Access Located in the extreme northeast corner of Keokuk County off Highway 22, this 782 acre undeveloped area is owned and managed by Iowa, Keokuk and Washington County Conservation Boards.

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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Recreation & Leisure Lake Belva Deer Cabins Lake Belva Deer Park; Reservations Accepted at Web: www.keokukcountyia.com/Conservation and click on ‘Lake Bevla Deer Cabins’ The Lake Belva Deer Park offers camping for the more discriminative tastes. While roughing it over a sizzling camp fire sounds good to many, there are a few who would rather have some modern conveniences while playing in the great outdoors. The park completed construction on five modern cabins in mid2006. The five cabins: Pine, Oak, Hickory, Spruce and Maple include amenities not unlike a hotel. The cabins are available all year round. All cabins are handicap accessible with a maximum of 6 people per cabin. Here are a few of the other amenities: • 1st Floor: 20 foot x24 foot and the 2nd floor loft: 10 foot x10 foot for a total of 580 square feet. • Kitchen Facilities: Stove, Refrigerator, Microwave, Sink, Cabinets plus 8 feet of counter top space. • Bedroom Downstairs: Queen sized bed and night stand. • Bathroom Downstairs: Handicap accessible with

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Modern amenities (shower, toilet, sink). • Bedroom Upstairs: 2 twin beds and night stand. • Heat and air-conditioning equipped. With all of this convenience, renters should bring their own linen, dishes, tableware and silverware to complete their stay. Cleaning supplies and garbage bags are supplied. Photos: 1) the Oak Cabin, 2) the Pine Cabin, 3) a spiral staircase leading to the second floor loft and 4) the oak eat-in kitchen.


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Keokuk County Recreation & Leisure Keokuk County Expo 400 220th Avenue, Sigourney • John Webb - 641.660.4054 • Ron Collins - 641.660.6343 • Neil Wehr - 641-660-3359 Facebook: www.facebook.com/pages/Keokuk-County-Expo Website: www.expokeokukco.com Keokuk County Exposition, Inc. was incorporated in 1976 as a nonprofit organization to build facilities and provide a fair and events dedicated to 4-H, FFA, FCCLA and other youth and farm oriented groups. It was built by volunteers with materials and funds contributed by dedicated citizens and organizations. The KC Expo grounds are located on the east edge of the Sigourney city limits, a half mile south of Hwy. 92. Expo grounds and facilities are available for rental, please visit the website at www.expokeokukco.com for complete details. All residents of Keokuk County are voting members in the election of 30 directors representing designated sections mentioned below. The Expo operation continues with all volunteer help and is the official county fair. 2013 Officers: President, John Webb; Vice President, Ron Collins; Treasurer, Karen Morris and Secretary, Peg Eversmeyer. 2013 Directors: District 1: Dick Morse, Ron Collins, Christy Bates and Rick Bethke; District 2: Carolyn Dyson, Rob Frank, Cindy Snakenberg and Gary Bayliss; District 3: Heather Haines, Amanda WanSteenwyk and Robin Handy; District 4: Sharon Fritchen, Tony Latcham, Keith Blair, Ira Blair and Elaine Blair; District At Large: Joan Colbert, John Webb and Neil Wehr; Sigourney District: Peg Eversmeyer, Merle Lane, Shannon Stevens and Betty Fair; 4-H: Shelly Koehn and Extension Director: Gene Mohling.

Upcoming Dates

• Expo Spring National Classic & Antique Tractor Pull - March 16 & 17, 2013* - 9 a.m. (both days) Southeast Iowa’s Only Indoor Tractor Pull -Come Rain or Sunshine. Saturday - 9 a.m. Antique & Classic; 6 p.m. National 5500 lb. Classic Championship; Sunday - 9 a.m. Classic & Open. To reg-

ister contact Jon Aller at 319-688-9607 or email at jaller5112@aol.com. *Annually third weekend in March. • Figure 8 Racing at the Expo Raceway, Sat., May 4, 2013*, Hot Laps start at 6:30 p.m. Pulses race as drivers from across Southeast Iowa intersect on the 8 track competing in five classes (Stock, ProStock, Open, Trucks and 2-Man Cruisers), all racing towards the checkered flag. Concessions available in both grandstand and pits, no one under age of 14 allowed in pits and no pets, please. *Check Keokuk County Expo website at www.expokeokukco.com for 2014 dates. • Figure 8 Racing at the Expo Raceway, Sat., June 15, 2013, Hot Laps start at 6:30 p.m. • ECI Professional Truck & Tractor Pull, Thursday, July 4, 2013*, 6 p.m. The East Central Iowa Pullers Association has been around for over 10 years. The ECI Pullers are an annual part of the Sigourney Independence Day Celebration and don’t miss this opportunity to catch these guys in action on July 4 at the Keokuk County Expo fairgrounds; concessions available in the grandstands. *Annual July 4th event. • Sigourney Independence Day Fireworks Display, Thursday, July 4, 2013* at dusk. The Sigourney Fireworks Committee, including the Sigourney Fire & Rescue Department, annually strives to bring the community an elaborate fireworks display at the Expo fairgrounds. For more information on the Sigourney Independence Day Celebration visit their website at www.sigourney-iowa.com. *Annual. • Keokuk County Expo Fair, July 16-21*, 2013 The annual Keokuk County Expo Fair showcases the talents of local 4-H and FFA members in a traditional fair-style competition. Details of the 2013 Expo Fair are available at www.expokeokukco. com. The Expo Fair also features a wide variety of open class competitions, the Annual Bill Riley Talent Show and the Expo Fair Queen Contest. The Keokuk County Expo Board of Directors are proud to announce the debut of the world’s #1 trib-


Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Recreation & Leisure Keokuk County Expo Continued

Tim

Matt

Chris

Rob

Adam

Photo from the Home Free official website at www.homefreevocalband.com.

ute band to AC/DC, Hells Bells to their stage on Fri., July 19. Gates open at 7 p.m. Complete concert details and ticket information are available online at www. expokeokukco.com. *Annually third week in July. • Home Free Concert, Wednesday, July 17, 2013 Five guys from Minnesota with five microphones and no instruments, Home Free books shows all over the world performing at everything from elite blacktie events to rowdy Expo Fair crowds. With a musical style they call “an eclectic mix of everything” they have taken a cappella in a direction that caters to every generation. • Hells Bells Concert, Fri., July 19, Gates open at 7 p.m., Show starts at 8 p.m. For 15 years and counting, Hells/Bells is the world’s #1 tribute to AC/DC! With authentic Photo from the Hells Bells official website costuming, the look, the at www.hellsbellsrocks.com. sound and all of the crazy antics of Angus Young, Hells/Bells is total energy, absolute adrenaline, visit their website at www.hellsbellsrocks.com or the Keokuk County Expo website at www.expokeokukco.com for more details. • Kid’s Night/4-H Night at the Figure 8 Races, Saturday, July 20, 2013*, Activities start at 5:30 p.m., Hot Laps at 6:30 p.m. Kid’s Night/4-H Night at the Expo Raceway is the Saturday night feature during the 2013 Keokuk County Expo Fair. Activities include: Kid’s Figure 8 car rides, fun games and characters. Concessions available on in the grandstand area, no one under the age of 14 allowed in the pits and no pets, please. *Annual.

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• Figure 8 Racing at the Expo Raceway, Saturday, Aug. 3, 2013, Hot Laps start at 6:30 p.m. • Labor Day Shoot Out at the Expo Raceway, Friday., Aug. 30 and Sunday, Aug. 31, with Hot Laps at 6:30 p.m. It’s a double race weekend this Labor Day Weekend at the Keokuk County Expo Raceway with two nights of racing action and the 2013 Points Championship is on the line. Bring the lawn chairs and come early to get the good seats. Points are earned on Friday night, but not on Saturday. Saturday is the Points Championship Race. Concessions available in the grandstand area, noone under the age of 14 allowed in the pits and no pets, please. Camping is available by contacting Ron Collins at 641-660-6343. *Annual. • Annual Expo Craft Show, Saturday, Sept. 14, 2013*, Doors open at 9 a.m. Booth Rentals: 8x10 area with 1 table, $45; 8x12 area with 2 tables, $55; 8x16 area with 2 tables, $65 and a spot outside, $45. For more information contact the Keokuk County Expo website at www.expokeokukco.com. *Annual.


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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

2013-2014 Calendar of Ideas & Events JANUARY 2013* Ideas - Things to Do Ice Fishing ...............................Lake Belva Deer Trivia Night ................................... Hi$ Auction Actual Events ......................................... Dates BINGO* ........................................ 6, 13, 20, 27 Keokuk County Fairgrounds, What Cheer Trivia Night ................................................. 26 Knights of Columbus Hall, Harper FEBRUARY 2013* Ideas - Things to Do 3D Bow Shoot..................... KC Sportsman Club Live Bands........................Ahlbee’s Food & Fuel Lil Savage Wrestling Tournament ............. SCSD Valentines Day .......................The Garden Gate Actual Events ......................................... Dates BINGO* ........................................ 3, 10, 17, 24 Keokuk County Fairgrounds, What Cheer MARCH 2013* Actual Events ......................................... Dates Expo Spring National Classic Antique Tractor Pull (indoor)* ................................................ 16-17 Keokuk County Expo, Sigourney BINGO* ................................... 3, 10, 17, 24, 31 Keokuk County Fairgrounds, What Cheer

Mother’s Day ..........................The Garden Gate Skeet Shooting ................... KC Sportsman Club Actual Events ......................................... Dates Collector’s Paradise* ................................... 3-5 What Cheer Flea Market, KC Fairgrounds Open Daily at 7 a.m. Figure 8 Races* .............................................4 Keokuk County Expo, Sigourney Hot Laps at 6 p.m. Figure 8 Races* ........................................... 11 Keokuk County Fairgrounds, What Cheer Hot Laps at 6 p.m. Municipal Pool Opens* ................................. 25 City of Sigourney, Legion Park

JUNE 2013* Ideas - Things to Do Harness Racing ......................... KC Fairgrounds Antiquing ..........................Katwalque Antiques Camping/Fishing ...................... Belva Deer Park Actual Events ......................................... Dates Keokuk County Relay for Life* ..................... 1-2 Show & Shine Car Show* ............................. 1-2 Keokuk County Relay for Life, Sigourney Sigourney High School (location, tent camping) Figure 8 Races* .............................................2 Keokuk County Fairgrounds, What Cheer Hot Laps at 6 p.m.

APRIL 2013* Ideas - Things to Do 3D Bow Shoot..................... KC Sportsman Club Fishing ....................................Lake Belva Deer Walking/Riding Trails................ Belva Deer Park Actual Events ......................................... Dates Earth Day-Keep Sigourney Beautiful*............ 21 City of Sigourney, citywide 1-3 p.m.

Keota Fun Days* .........................................7-8 City of Keota [June 13-14, 2014]

Easter Egg Drop* ......................................... 30 City of Sigourney, town square 10 a.m.

Hedrick BBQ Days* ................................. 15-16 City of Hedrick festival with carnival rides, parade, car show and much more

MAY 2013* Ideas - Things to Do Antiquing ..........................Katwalque Antiques Camping ................................. Belva Deer Park Fishing ....................................Lake Belva Deer

Figure 8 Races* ........................................... 15 Keokuk County Expo, Sigourney

Archaeological Artifact Show* ...................... 22 Keokuk County Expo, Sigourney *Annual Events


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2013-2014 Calendar of Ideas & Events JULY 2013* Actual Events ......................................... Dates Independence Day Celebration*................... 4-5 City of Sigourney festival with a parade, variety of community activities throughout the weekend [www.sigourneynewsreview.com] ECI Professional Truck & Tractor Pull* ..............4 Keokuk County Expo, Sigourney www.expokeokukco.com for more details Figure 8 Races* .............................................4 Keokuk County Fairgrounds, What Cheer Hot Laps at 6 p.m. Fireworks Display* .........................................4 City of Sigourney, City of What Cheer [dusk] Tri-In-July * ................................................... 7 Annual Super Sprint Triathlon, Sigourney www.triinjuly.com Keokuk County Fair* ............................... 11-14 Keokuk Co. Fairgrounds, What Cheer-Carnival rides, County Queen Contest, Horse Show, Open Class Exhibits Figure 8 Races* ........................................... 13 Keokuk County Fairgrounds, What Cheer Keokuk County Expo* ............................. 16-21 Keokuk County Expo, Sigourney [4-H/FFA], Bill Riley Talent Show, Co. Queen Contest www.expokeokukco.com Home Fire Concert ....................................... 17 Keokuk County Expo, Sigourney (acapella) Hells Bells Concert ....................................... 19 Keokuk County Expo, Sigourney (rock) Gates Open at 7 p.m. - www.expokeokukco.com Figure 8 Races* ........................................... 20 Keokuk County Expo, Sigourney Ollie Big Day* .............................................. 27 City of Ollie festival with parade

AUGUST 2013* Actual Events ......................................... Dates Figure 8 Races* ............................................. 3 Keokuk County Expo, Sigourney Collector’s Paradise..................................... 3-4 What Cheer Flea Market, Keokuk Co. Fairgrounds; Open Daily at 7 a.m. National Night Out*.......................................6 City of Sigourney - Community festival Labor Day Figure 8 Races .........................30-31 Keokuk County Expo, Sigourney [Champions] Five classes of racing both nights SEPTEMBER 2013* Actual Events ......................................... Dates Keokuk County Alzheimer’s Walk* ..................8 City of Sigourney; annual fundraiser with entertainment, art show, silent auction Expo Craft Show .......................................... 21 Keokuk County Expo, Sigourney Sigourney Citywide Garage Sales .................. 21 [www.sigourneynewsreview.com] Mustang Car Show ....................................... 15 Wagler Motors Inc., Sigourney OCTOBER 2013* Ideas - Things to Do Hogtober Fest ........................... City of Kinross 3D Bow Shoot..................... KC Sportsman Club Actual Events ......................................... Dates Collector’s Paradise.....................................5-6 What Cheer Flea Market, Keokuk Co. Fairgrounds; Open Daily at 7 a.m. Hunters Breakfast ........................................ 27 Sigourney Fire Department, Sigourney Keep Sigourney Beautiful ............................. 20 City of Sigourney *Annual Events


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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Recreation & Leisure Keokuk County Fairgrounds 13061 170th St., What Cheer Phone: 641-634-2201, 641-670-2484 Web: http://sites.google.com/site/keokukfairgrounds/ Historically, the Keokuk County Fairgrounds began holding a County Fair around 1889 and continues to host the annual event. The Fairgrounds are home to several other community events including Figure 8 racing during the summer months, Bingo during the winter months, harness racing and the What Cheer Flea Markets, just to name a few. Fairgrounds are located on the north side of the What Cheer city limits, with the western edge of the property abutting Highway 21 [from Int. 80, exit 201 - 20 miles south]. Visit their website at http://sites. google.com/site/keokukfairgrounds/. The facilities and events are governed by a community Board of Directors. Officers include: President, Earl McKay Jr.; Vice President, Jim Dalziel; Co-Secretary, Betty Armstrong and Juanita Roland; Treasurer, Roger Roland. The Executive Committee consists of: Bob Dugger, Jeannine Duncan, Gene Roland, Royal Roland and Dixie Shipley. The remaining board members are: April Adams, Jeannine Duncan, Betty Armstrong, Terry Burger, Susan Koehn, Royal Roland, Bob Dugger, Penny Headley, Barb Masterson, Earl McKay Jr., John Moode, Gene Roland, Dixie Shipley, Raymond Adams, Jim Dalziel, Keith Fisch, Jim Little, Juanita Roland, Roger Roland, Gloria Strohman, Karen Sieren and Janis Collins.

Upcoming Dates

• Bingo, Sunday’s in January-March 2013*, 1-4 p.m. in Thomas Hall. • Collector’s Paradise, May 4-5, 2013*, 7 a.m. Gates open, Early Bird Sales - May 4, 2013. The Collector’s Paradise a.k.a. What Cheer Flea Market is known as Southeast Iowa’s largest flea market and most diverse. Vendors fill the fairgrounds with items from Antiques, Collectibles, Old Tools, Primitives, Post Cards, Glassware, Stamps, Coins, Jewelry, Furniture, Baseball Cards and much more. For more information visit them at www.whatcheerfleamar-

ket.com. *Annual the first weekend in May. • Figure 8 Racing at the Keokuk County Fairgrounds, Sat., May 11, 2013, Hot Laps at 6 p.m. Pulses race as drivers from across Southeast Iowa intersect on the 8 track competing in three classes (Stock, ProStock and Open), all racing towards the checkered flag. Concessions available in both grandstand and pits, no one under age of 14 allowed in pits and no pets, please. *Check Keokuk County Fairgrounds website at http://sites.google.com/site/keokukfairgrounds/ for 2014 dates. • Harness Racing at the Keokuk County Fairgrounds.

The Fairgrounds are host to some of Iowa’s premiere racing action with the Iowa Harness Racing Association. 2013 race dates are available on their website at www.iowaharnessracing.com or visit the Keokuk County Fairgrounds website, http://sites. google.com/site/keokukfairgrounds/ for details on when to expect harness racing action. Nine different races were held in 2012 at the Keokuk County Fairgrounds throughout the racing season. • Figure 8 Racing at the Keokuk County Fairgrounds, Sat., June 2, 2013, Hot Laps at 6 p.m. • Figure 8 Racing at the Keokuk County Fairgrounds, Sat., July 4, 2013, Hot Laps at 6 p.m. Annually the City of What Cheer conduct their Independence Day Fireworks Display after this Figure 8 race at the county fairgrounds. Visit the FremontWhat Cheer Vine’s website at www.whatcheerpaper. com for Independence Day Celebration details. • Keokuk County Fair, July 11-14*, 2013 The Keokuk County Fairgrounds in What Cheer is filled with activities and events all weekend long for the 125th Annual Keokuk County Fair. The following


Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Recreation & Leisure Keokuk County Fairgrounds Continued

13061 170th St., What Cheer Phone: 641-634-2201, 641-6702484 Web: http://sites.google.com/site/keokukfairgrounds/

is a synopsis of the traditional Keokuk County Fair. Dates, times and/or contact numbers may change from year to year; visit the Keokuk County Fairgrounds website for current details at http://sites. google.com/site/keokukfairgrounds/. “Each year the Fair Board sponsors an hour of free carnival rides, New Generation Shows on Friday evening. Also Friday evening, the Keokuk County Fair Queen is crowned [Grandstand]. Immediately following is the Baby Pageant, Animal Scramble and Coin Search. Concluding the Grandstand events is the Hawkeye Pedal Pull for ages 4 to 11 years. Starting at 8 a.m., on Saturday morning is the Iowa Telecom 5K and 1 Mile Run & Rosie Phillips Fun Walk. At 9 a.m., a Horseshoe Pitching Tournament for the general public in the Horseshoe Pavilion.Also the annual Horse Show begins. Horses and riders of all ages and experience levels are welcome in this free event. The Floral Hall is open for viewing of the ribbon winning exhibits.” • Figure 8 Racing at the Keokuk County Fairgrounds, Sat., July 13, 2013, Hot Laps at 6 p.m. • Collector’s Paradise, Aug. 3-4, 2013*, 7 a.m. Gates open, Early Bird Sales - August 3, 2013. • Figure 8 Racing at the Keokuk County Fairgrounds, Sat., Aug. 11, 2013, Hot Laps at 6 p.m. • Collector’s Paradise, Oct. 5-6, 2013*, 7 a.m. Gates open, Early Bird Sales - October 5, 2013.

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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Recreation & Leisure Four Seasons Community Lodge

Lake Darling State Park 111 Lake Darling Road, Brighton, IA 52540 Phone: 319-694-2323 Email: lake_darling@dnr.iowa.gov Web: www.iowadnr.gov (search for name) Lake Darling Facilities and Activities * The new lake is scheduled for completion late 2013.

Picnicking/SheltersLake Darling State Park is a great place for a family cookout. A number of scenic picnic areas overlook the lake. An open picnic shelter is available for use and may be reserved online through the park reservation system. The newest addition to the Lake Darling landscape is the lodge [pictured above]. Completed in 2008, the lodge is quickly becoming a popular place for reunions, parties and weddings. Reservation for the lodge can be made online through the park reservation system at www.iowadnr.gov. Cabins-Camping cabins may be reserved for a 2-night minimum stay. The cabins sleep four and are equipped

Cabins

with a bunk bed, futon and table with chairs. They are located only a short distance from the modern rest room and shower building in the campground. Camping-Lake Darling has a large and well equipped campground. A total of 118 campsites are present, 81 with electrical hookups. The campground has 2 modern rest room buildings, as well as a conveniently located trailer dumping station. Half of the campsites are still available for self-registration on a first-come, first-serve basis. There is playground equipment in the campground. Lake Activities (swimming, boating, fishing)-The beach at Lake Darling is a fun spot for swimmers and sunbathers, young and old. There is a new playground in the beach area. Lake Darling is a popular boating lake for both power and non-power boats. There are boat rental opportunities through park staff. Any size motor may be operated on Lake Darling at “no wake” speeds. Lake Darling is an angler’s delight. Catfish and crappies are probably the most prevalent catch for most anglers. However, bullheads, bluegills, largemouth bass and carp are also plentiful. Trails-Several trails are present and hikers will see a variety of plant, animal and bird species. One of the trails extends through a re-established prairie and another winds through heavily wooded timber to a cemetery dating back to the 1800s. Lake Darling State Park was dedicated on September 17, 1950. J. N. “Ding” Darling, for whom the park was named, “set the gate,” a ceremony in which an honored guest closes the valve on the spillway, completing the impoundment process. Lake Darling State Park is 1,417 acres in size, including a beautiful 302-acre lake with almost 18 miles of shoreline. The park, with its beautiful wooded hills and valleys and lovely lake, offers something for outdoor recreation enthusiasts, young and old.


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Keokuk County Recreation & Leisure Lagos Acres Golf & Country Club

Sigourney Golf & Country Club

203 N. Keokuk-Washington Road, Keota Phone: 641-636-3411 Website: www.lagosacres.keota.net/

1103 200th Avenue, Sigourney Phone: 641-622-3400

The Lagos Acres Golf & Country Club is not only the beginning of a 17mile biking course through the City of Keota, it features a beautiful nine hole golf course. This course is located on the east side of the Keota city limits, just a mile north on W15 (County line Road). Visit their website at www.lagosacres.keota.net/ for detailed directions. The greens hold and the fairways are in great condition. The par 3s on this course bring on some tough yardages, ranging from 161 to 221. The course uses trees to separate holes and is surrounded by cornfields and a barn. Total Yardage: 3,022 Toughest Hole: No. 8, a 221-yard par 3, has a pond just to the right of the green. Easiest Hole: No. 9, a 446-yard par 5. Lagos Acres Golf & Country Club Course Map

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6 7 9 5

8 4

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Sigourney Golf & Country Club, Inc. is a 9-hole regulation length golf course in Sigourney. The course and club house are located just north of Sigourney off Highway 92 on the Keswick Road, 200th Avenue. This short layout provides for a fun golf experience for golfers of all skill levels. Guests must be accompanied by a member in order to play the course. After a brisk game, visit the full service Club House for a cool drink. Schedule an event by calling 641-622-3400.


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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Recreation & Leisure Legion Park West Spring St., Sigourney Website: www.sigourney-iowa.com

Located on the west side of Sigourney, Legion Park is home to five picnic shelters, grills, playground, basketball court, tennis court, horseshoe pits and the Sigourney Municipal Swimming Pool. Legion Park plays host to numerous community events including: Sigourney Independence Day Celebrations (Greased Pig Contest, Sigourney Lion’s Club Cuttie Kiddie Contest, State Fair Relay, Horseshoe Contest, 3-on-3 Tournaments and Volleyball Tournaments), Mr. Sigourney Contest (obstacle course), Sigourney Ball, Inc. youth athletic fields, Sigourney’s Movie in the Park and the Tri-in-July Contest. It is also the final resting ground for the Lockheed T-33A Shooting Star #58-0579, the above photo was taken by Glenn E. Chatfield on March 03, 2010. Tri-in-July Registrations are now being accepted for the Annual Tri-in-July Super Sprint Triathlon slated for Sun., July 7, 2013* - check out their website at www.triinjuly.com for a printable entry form. This 330 yard (5 lap) swim, 6 mile bike and 2 mile run triathlon has become a staple at the Legion Park in Sigourney with participants from across Southeast Iowa. Pictured below are

the 2010 participants standing for the National Anthem sung by Kimi Wood to start the days’ events. Course Details: Swim: The staggered swim begins at 7:30 a.m. sharp. The 5 lap (330 yard) course is in the Sigourney Municipal Pool. One lap equals down and back in the same lane. The transition is in the park up the hill from the pool. Bike: Our challenging 6 mile bike course takes you through the small picturesque town of Sigourney. Then a straight stretch of the course will take you out of town and back. All bikers must have an ANSI approved helmet to participate. Bikers without helmets will not be allowed on the course. No drafting allowed, volunteers will monitor participants in the race. Run: The 2 mile run includes a brief view of the Sigourney square. This is a great run to introduce you to the triathlon experience. Sigourney Municipal Swimming Pool Nestled between the Sigourney Ball, Inc. youth ball fields and the playgrounds of Legion Park in Sigourney, is the Sigourney Municipal Swimming Pool. The pool was recently renovated to include a children’s water slide and several water umbrellas for the young and old to enjoy. Aquatic Aerobics, swimming lessons and the Sigourney Swim Club are offered. The City of Sigourney provides Red Cross Lifeguard and CPR certified lifeguards at the pool. The Lifeguards also learn water rescue procedures from the Keokuk County Ambulance and Sigourney QRS instructors. For hours of operation or to order a summer swimming pass, visit the City of Sigourney website at www.sigourney-iowa.com or call the pool office [during season] at 641-622-2741.


Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Recreation & Leisure Keokuk County Bowl

21619 Highway 92, Sigourney Phone: 641-622-2223 With 8 lanes of bowling fun, the Keokuk County Bowl in Sigourney is ready to take ‘Family Fun Night’ to a whole new level. Come out for the lights, sounds and fun at Keokuk County Bowl. Play video games or order up a snack or a full dinner - Fun for all ages. Adults may relax with a beverage or browse through the bowing accessories in the Pro Shop. Sign up for league bowling or just come out for a night of family fun.

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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Recreation & Leisure Fountain Fitness, LLC

Keokuk County Sportsman Club

Two Locations: 21619 Highway 92, Sigourney 126 East Broadway Avenue, Keota Phone: (641) 660-0709 Email: fountainfit@gmail.com

20162 240th Avenue, Sigourney Website: www.kcsportsmens.com The Keokuk County Sportsman Club is housed on the Keokuk County Izaak Walton League campgrounds, two miles east and one mile north of Sigourney on Hwy. 92. This facility also offers a fully functional clubhouse, modern bath house and camping. Camping requiring hookups - $12; not requiring hookups - $6. The KC Sportsman Club offers 3-D bow shoots, trap shoots, day camps and fishing facilities. Skeet shooting is available one Saturday per month - dates to be determined. The 2012 3D Bow Shoot schedule featured seven individual tournaments and 2013 looks to be the same. For more information about membership or renting facilities, please visit their website at www. kcsportsmens.com or contact Club President, Travis Messer, tmesser@mchsi.com.

Looking for a fitness environment to meet your goals? Get started lifting light weights, treadmill or cycling where it’s nice and warm! Step up your program and lift heavier, or explore using resistance bands, kettlebells, exercise balls, dumbbells or barbells, WE HAVE IT! Your opportunities are endless! With your membership, you have access to BOTH facilities 24 hours a day Fountain Fitness LLC is owned by local owners Bill & Amy Halleran, Brian & Sonya Murphy, Casey & Amber Thompson, and Seth & Amanda VanSteenwyk. The owners all live and/or work in the Sigourney community and have seen the need for a fitness center in Sigourney for quite some time. General Information 1-Year Memberships $29.00/mo. Single $40.00/mo. Couple $50.00/mo. Family New! Fountain Fitness offers fitness classes to include Body Blast and Core on Command. These classes are instructed by Codi Workman, Fountain Fitness new personal trainer. Classes are very affordable at $3/session or $25/mo. for one class per day Monday Friday for Fountain Fitness members. Not a member, no worries...single sessions are $5 or $50/mo. for one class per day Monday - Friday.


Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Cultural Venues What Cheer Opera House

What Cheer School Museum

201 Barnes St., What Cheer Phone: 641-634-2080 (9-4 Weekdays) Listed on the National Register of Historical Places, this current three-story brick edifice on Barnes Street replaced the town’s first opera house, built in 1878 by the International Order of Odd Fellows and destroyed by fire in 1890. Today’s 585-seat Opera House presents a variety of events from spring through fall — country and gospel music, variety and comedy shows, even the Keokuk County Queen Contest. The show schedule runs from early April through November annually with a wide variety of performances. Visit their website at www.whatcheerfleamarket.com/opera-house for the current schedule and tickets information.

The Brick School Museum is located on South Burlington Avenue in What Cheer. It currently is the home of several Mining exhibits. One the first floor, a glass case contains Jobe Grudging’s mining tools. The second floor features the main coal-mining exhibit.


Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

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Keokuk County Cultural Venues Dumont Museum

20945 255th St., Sigourney Phone: 641-622-2592 Website: www.dumontmuseum.com

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Tucked away in southeast Iowa is one of the largest working train displays and the largest Oliver tractor displays in Iowa. Don’t believe me? Then drive, walk or ride to Sigourney, the county seat town of Keokuk County and see for yourself. Dumont’s Dreamworld Museum sits three miles south of Sigourney along Highway 149 and boasts the largest display of Oliver The Dumonts are constructing a new, even longer train exhibit with tractors and Roy Rogers memorabilia to be found in Iowa. But that room to grow. The Museum is home to hundreds of thousands of Roy is just the beginning of your jour- Rogers toys and collectibles, which are on display daily. ney into the past, because Lyle is a non-profit tax exempt 501(C)(3) corporation under and Helen Dumont have been collecting antique tracthe supervision of a rotating Board of Directors. tors and memorabilia for years. They are well known When traveling, visit the Dumont Museum, there throughout the Midwest for their restored antique are exhibits the whole family can enjoy, from the huge tractors and have accumulated other treasures inmodel railroad exhibit to Oliver and International traccluding sleighs, horse drawn machinery, toy trucks tors. There is even a collection of all 16 models of John and trains as well as a huge collection of antique GerDeere Patio Garden tractors and a complete line of man and French dolls and farm toys. Red Cub Cadet Garden tractors made by International In addition, their collection of Roy Rogers and Dale Tractor Works. Evans collectibles is second to none in the Midwest. Dumont Museum is open from 10 a.m. to 5 Other Hollywood collectibles include the chuck wagp.m. on weekends from May to Oct. 10th or by apon used in the movie “City Slickers” and much more. pointment through the week. Admission is $8 It all began in 1994, with plans for a large new buildfor adults and no charge for children under 12. ing that ultimately enclosed 24,000 square feet. Then For more information call 641-622-2592 or visthe goal was to make the Dumont’s personal lifelong it their website at www.dumontmuseum.com. collections available to the general public as well as To contact the Dumont Museum by email: oliver@ other community items of the past, for this and future lisco.com. Group tours are always welcome. generations. Mission accomplished! Dumont Museum


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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Cultural Venues Keokuk County Historical Society

Historical Society Museum

402 E. Elm St., Sigourney Phone: 641-622-3005 The Keokuk County Historical Society’s mission is to create and keep alive history; to discover, collect and preserve books, genealogical information, portraits and other historical articles; to promote display above articles; to ascertain and mark historical sites; to cooperate with Iowa State Historical Society. The Historical Society is operated and funded by membership dues; donations from individuals and business firms; tax fund, memorial donations and interest from endowments. The Historical Society and Museum hours of operation are Wednesday through Thursday, 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Group tours by appointment.

402 E. Elm St., Sigourney Phone: 641-622-3005 The Museum is home to thousands of items including tools, household items, clothing, military paraphernalia, trophies and High School Class pictures. Also a replica of a Broom Factory, Country Store, Post Office and a Wildlife display.


Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

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Keokuk County Cultural Venues The Stone House

Lewis Memorial Fountain

The Stone House on N. Shuffleton St. is the oldest house in Sigourney; it was given to the Keokuk County Historical Society in 1985 through the kindness of the Mohme family descendants. Built from 1855 to 1863, the stone was hauled overland from a Burlington quarry. Tours are available through the Keokuk County Historical Society at 641-622-3005.

The fountain was a gift to the City of Sigourney from Mr. and Mrs. John Q. Lewis in memory of their daughter, Ethel Beatrix. The three-pooled fountain was dedicated in 1940 and remains operational on the northeast corner of the Sigourney square. The fountain traditionally flows May through September and features a spectacular, rotating night light show.

321 N. Shuffleton St., Sigourney Phone: 641-622-3005


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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Cultural Venues Keokuk County Courthouse

101 S. Main, Sigourney Square Phone: 641-622-2320 Website: www.keokukcountyia.com Keokuk County is named after a famous Sac Indian Chief and means “Watchful Fox” or “He Who Has Been Everywhere”. Chief Keokuk advocated peace with the white settlers. Indians dwelling in this area were of the Sac and Fox tribes. Keokuk County was opened up for settlement in May 1843 and the organization of Keokuk County began in 1844. The location of the county seat of justice was a source of controversy. The southeastern portion of the county was the first to be settled so the people there felt the county seat should be located in the center of the population distribution rather than in the geographical center. The debate over the county seat location continued throughout the years. After lengthy discussions the commissioners moved the official county seat to the town of Sigourney in 1856. Sigourney was named after the author and poet Lydia Huntley Sigourney. She showed her appreciation by providing the trees, which were planted on the courthouse grounds and presenting fifty volumes to the town library. The murals on each of the four walls of this National Register of Historical Places are so detailed and breath taking, they deserve a trip to Keokuk County just to see them in person. The one on the east wall depicting how Keokuk County looked in 1912. There is a “modern” barn, a mowed lawn, and other buildings. Entering the picture from the left side is a “gasoline buggy”. The other paintings and marble structures are truly treasures, be sure to schedule a tour during your visit; for more details, visit the website at www.keokukcountyia.com. The Keokuk County Courthouse celebrated its’ 100th Anniversary with a Community Open House in September 2010.


Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Cultural Venues

Ss. Peter and Paul’s Catholic Church 3 miles south of Hwy. 92 on 330th Avenue Phone: 319-461-3281

Ss. Peter and Paul Catholic Church sits high atop a prominent hill in Clear Creek Township, three miles south of Hwy. 92 on 330th Avenue in eastern Keokuk County. The following is an excerpt from the “Clear Creek: A Torrent of Grace” Facebook page, created by Bob Heisdorffer. “The cornerstone for the church was laid on Wed., June 8, 1898. The following week, a local newspaper called it “one of the most notable events in the history of Catholicism in Clear Creek Township.” It was witnessed by at least 1,500 people, and some estimated the audience at 2,000 people. “The present church at Clear Creek is a fine example of vernacular architecture employing late Victorian Gothic stylistic details. The scale of the building is unusually large for a rural Iowa church. The building’s verticality dominates the landscape. The interior features three altarpieces of particular exuberance carved in Victorian Gothic style. The church also calls attention to German settlement in Keokuk County, Iowa.” “The nave and sanctuary have 14 windows. They

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feature brick, Gothic arches, cast stone sills and fixed sash with stained glass. Each window bears a beautiful painting, representing different saints. The paintings were very expensive, costing $50.00 each and were donated by various people from the church.” “The three altarpieces are original and quite notable, as high altars are increasingly unusual in Catholic churches in the wake of liturgical reform.” When the Diocese announced the church would be closed and sold, a group of community members came together and purchased the church for the sum total of $1. The group was intent on saving the church by raising funds for the much needed preservation. With the Deed in hand on June 19, 2009, Ss. Peter and Paul Clear Creek Historical Society Association went to work. Much restoration and preservation has been done through donations and volunteer work, but there remains much work yet to be done. Tours are available upon request by contacting the Clear Creek Heritage Society Association, c/o Dick Baker or Michael Berg, 22835 300th Ave., Harper, IA 52231. Or contact Michael Berg by calling 319-4613281. The church was included amongst the Keota 2009 Holiday Tour of Homes.


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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Cultural Venues Keota Historical Museum

109 E. Washington Ave., Keota Phone: 641-636-3850 Website: www.keota.lib.ia.us Keota’s Historical Museum is located in Wilson Memorial Library, where visitors can take a few minutes to explore the past. Keota’s museum preserves important artifacts commemorating the history of Keota and its citizens. The museum has become a historical refuge for community members as well as passing visitors. It has also become a quiet haven for individuals who are researching Keokuk County and family history. The museum, along with its extensive display of artifacts, also houses every Keota Eagle newspaper published since its inception in 1876.

Lancaster School The Lancaster School, the only one room school house left west of the Mississippi is still an education tool for many area students and visitors due to the restoration efforts of the Lancaster Heritage Society and George House of Lancaster. Elementary students annually attend a ‘class’ at the School with House as their teacher, sharing his experiences as both teacher and student in the very desks the children are seated. Lancaster School is located upon a picturesque plot just a few miles south of Sigourney; on Hwy 149 south, approximately 2 miles to County Road V5G, then southeast to Lancaster, 3 miles. The school was built in 1881 and was in use until it closed in 1964. A former student and teacher, George House of Lancaster, helped guide the restoration of the school. Lancaster School hosts an Open House annually in September, but tours are available by appointment. Contact George House at 641-622-2031 for arrangements.

Mid-America Publishing Corporation Newspapers Covering Keokuk County...

News-Review Serving All of Keokuk County Since 1860

Robin Handy, Editor 641-622-3110 • 641-660-4956 www.sigourneynewsreview.com

The Keota Eagle

Oldest Business Serving Keota and Community Since 1875

Tomisha Sprouse, Editor 641-636-2309 www.keotaeagle.com

Fremont-What Cheer Vine

Official Newspaper for Fremont, What Cheer, Delta, Keswick, Mahaska County, Eddyville and T-C Schools

Mendy McAdams, Editor 641-634-2092 www.whatcheerpaper.com

Advertising Opportunities

Ken Chaney SE Iowa MAP Publisher/Advertising Rep. 641-622-3110


Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Cultural Venues Delta Covered Bridge Replica North Center Street, Delta

Delta residents mourned the loss of their beloved Delta Covered Bridge to arson in August of 2003. “It was the only on of its kind west of the Mississippi,” said Dixie Shipley, Delta. “The bridge was a symbol for Delta.” In 2006, planning began in earnest to build a replica of the bridge. Through the dedicated efforts of the entire Delta community and a grant from the Keokuk County Endowment Fund, the dedication for the new Delta Covered Bridge Replica was held on September 7, 2009. The Replica is nestled in the protective shadow of the Delta Water Tower along Center Street, Highway 21. Delta welcomes visitors to enjoy the walk-through Delta Covered Bridge Replica during their travels.

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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Local Flavors

Tassel Ridge Winery Visitor’s Gallery - a place to relax and enjoy a refreshing vintage.

Schedule a tour aboard the Tassel Ridge Winery Grapemobile - Call today at 641-672-WINE.

Discover Iowa W ine! Tassel Ridge Winery Highway 163, Leighton (35 miles west of Sigourney) Phone: 641-673-WINE (9463) Website: www.tasselridge.com

Visit Tassel Ridge Winery in nearby Mahaska County, just 35 minutes west of Sigourney. Awardwinning wines are crafted in the family-owned winery surrounded by vineyards and picturesque farmland. Tour the winery with a friendly, knowledgeable guide who will explain wine production from vine to bottle. View the wine making operations from the Visitors’ Gallery as your guide gives you a brief history of grape growing and wine making in Iowa and a brief explanation of current vineyard practices and wine making from harvest through crush, fermentation, blending and bottling. Seasonally, and weather permitting, take a tour through the vineyards on the Tassel Ridge Grapemobile. Most of the Tassel Ridge wines are produced

from the 11 varieties of cold-climate grapes grown in the Winery’s 60 acres of vineyards. Taste wines ranging from dry to sweet, including fruit, fizzy, and dessert wines along with an iced wine. All of the more than 30 wines are produced and bottled on site. Tassel Ridge wines have won more than 150 medals in prestigious national and international competitions. Enjoy a picnic on the terrace or spacious lawn overlooking the vineyards. Take your own picnic basket or buy local cheese, bread, dipping oil, and chocolates in the Tassel Ridge Gift Shop. You will also find an array of unique wine-related gifts, wine-themed apparel, gourmet food items and much more in the Gift Shop. Tassel Ridge Winery’s experienced staff will be happy to assist you with food and wine pairing ideas that will take your everyday dining to the next level and delight your dinner guests. With Tassel Ridge wines, you can feel good about serving a local product while enjoying superior quality. Tassel Ridge Winery is located near Leighton just off Highway 163 between Pella and Oskaloosa. The winery is open year round, 9–6 weekdays, 10–6 Saturdays and noon–6 Sundays. Tassel Ridge Winery, 1681 220th St., Leighton, IA 50143, 641.672 WINE (9463), www.tasselridge.com, info@tasselridge.com.


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Local Flavors

Wooden W heel Vineyards

PO Box 305, 1179 Hwy 92, Keota, Iowa 52248 Phone: 641-636-2180 Email: mail@woodenwheelvineyards.com Website: www.woodenwheelvineyards.com

A Prairie Fine W ine! Come join us for a glass of fine wine in our historic Vincent Family Event Center. Easily accessible, we are located in southeast Iowa on Highway 92 between Sigourney and Washington. Our comfortable and charming space is the perfect place to relax with others or to just escape with a glass of fine wine. Our event center is ideal for gatherings such as weddings, receptions or any social event (a loft view on right). Our wine experts are always available to educate you about wine and demonstrate wine tasting techniques. Come taste a world of wine at Wooden Wheel Vineyards. History Mike and Connie Vincent purchased the farm and vineyard location from Mike’ father in 1979. While the farm crisis in the 80’s took them away from the farm, they always aspired to return with a viable agriculture enterprise. Returning to the farm in 2010, Mike and Connie planted their first vines and began a two year construction project building the event center and winery. Event Center Our Event Center is the last original building erected by John and Isabella. Mike and Connie are the fifth generation of Isabella Clark Wright to own the farm. The barn was built in the 1860’s and was 625 square feet. The most recent remodeling added 28’ to the south side. The Event Center now has over 3,000 square feet and can seat 300 people on the main floor plus an additional 40 in the loft.

This historic setting is the perfect place for a variety of business or social gatherings. The Vines In our quest for the finest wines, we have planed our own grapevines. Our varieties includes some of the newest varieties available. During the past two seasons, we have planted Brianna, Marquette, LaCrescent, Noiret and Regent. The Wine Uncle Johnnie - a semi sweet red The Judge - a dry red George G. - A full bodied, semi sweet white Charity Mae - A fruity blend semi sweet white Isabella - A fragrant sweet wine with a crisp finish and a light fruity body Hours The winery is open from 1-6 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. Stay in touch on their website or Facebook.


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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Communities Listed in Order of Population with Contact Information, individual Welcome provided by City Mayors

City of Sigourney - County Seat 100 North Main St., Sigourney Phone: 641-622-3080 Website: www.sigourney-iowa.com On behalf of the citizens of the City of Sigourney I, Mayor Patricia Miletich, invite you to visit the county seat of Keokuk County and enjoy our many activities. Our motto, “Where Tradition Meets Tomorrow” is an excellent representation of our town. “Our tradition” began when the city was founded in 1844 and named after poetess Lydia Huntley Sigourney by one of the town founders, James Stone. Visit our 100 year-old court house and the many artifacts within the building. Also visit the Keokuk County Historical Museum, which is a treasure for history buffs and genealogy seekers. The Stone House, the oldest structure in Sigourney, is located close by the museum. One of the historical landmarks for which we are most-noted is the Lewis Memorial Fountain in the town square. Built in 1940 by the Lewis Family, it is one of three of the same design in the United States. Operated by the city from May through August, it fea-

tures a rotating lighted water display. The Memorial Hall, built in 1922 as a memorial to the World War I veterans, contains the only auditorium in the city. “Our tomorrow” looks bright. We are pleased to welcome a new locally-owned motel, a new grocery store, a new assisted/independent living complex and a major business expansion. A modern Keokuk County Health Center opened in 2007; Prairie View, a condo development began in 2005; the Sigourney Public Library repurposed a vacant building into a wonderful and widely used space in 2005. We are a strong community re-investing in itself. Our school system is innovative in its approach to teaching and learning. We have a new Career Academy where high school students study a variety of trades from welding to health care. Sigourney is conveniently located near Ottumwa (pop. 25,000), Oskaloosa (pop. 11,000) and Iowa City (pop. 50,000). We are equally convenient to Chicago, Minneapolis, Kansas City and St Louis. Sigourney and Keokuk County is a nice blend of tradition and modern. We honor the past, but look forward to the future. We hope you look forward to visiting us and staying awhile.


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Keokuk County Communities City of Keota

City of Hedrick

309 E. Broadway Street; Phone: 641-636-2266 Website: www.keotaiowa.org Have you ever wondered why people call a place home? Let me tell you why a person can call Keota home. A person can walk down the street and be greeted by a simple “Hi. How are you?” or a kind smile from everyone they meet. There is always someone there to lend a helping hand or an ear to listen. Our variety of businesses cover all areas or a person could drive only 15 to 20 minutes to another town to find what you need. Keota schools excel in academics according to the state test scores. Our student to teacher ratio is very low, which we feel benefits the community greatly. As a rural community that focuses on farming, Keota also has the perk of living in town but still being able to enjoy all the scenery and smells of nature. On any given night a person can look up at the sky and see all its beauty. The town was established in 1873 and has been developing ever since. The town is always changing for the better, but the small town charm hasn’t changed since 1873. Don’t let me, Mayor Tony Cansler, make up your mind for you, come visit and be your own judge.

109 Main Street; Phone: 641-653-4914 Website: www.hedrickiowa.com Hedrick is small town charm combined with the services and culture of a larger city. The Hedrick House was donated by Marilyn Berry. This museum is one of the first homes built in Hedrick. It has been restored back to its original condition and is furnished with many antiques from this era. Hedrick is also home to several parks: Circle Memorial Park (Park Street), City Park, Perkins Memorial Park (Lake Street. City Park is located south of Hwy. 149 and has limited camping, a shelter, a basketball court, a new bathroom and new playground equipment. Tennis courts and youth ball diamonds are located at 2nd/Prairie. Hedrick has a 911 emergency system. Hedrick’s Volunteer Fire/First Responder Department consists of community members who give of their time day or night, to help those in need. The Carl Craft Civic Center is located at the corner of 2nd/Prairie Street. This building, which is avail— ...Turn the page for more on Hedrick


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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Communities City of Hedrick - Continued

City of What Cheer

able for rent, has a theatrical stage, full basketball court, modern kitchen facilities, public restrooms and an additional area for seating with tables and chairs. This is a large facility, which is often used for basketball tournaments, alumni events, auctions and wedding receptions. To rent the Civic Center, please contact the City Clerk at (641) 653-4914. The Hedrick community welcomes visitors every summer for their Annual BBQ Days; the third weekend in June. Hedrick is also home to several civic organizations: American Legion & Auxiliary, Lions Club, 4H Clubs, Girl and Boy Scouts. Founded in 1882, Hedrick is in the extreme southwestern corner of Keokuk County, just off Highway 149. Hedrick was named after Civil War General John Morrow Hedrick, who encouraged its development.

PO Box 408, What Cheer; Phone: 641-634-2590 Website: www.whatcheerpaper.com Welcome to What Cheer - Founded in 1865, originally named for the settlement’s founder, Peter Britton (Petersburg); the name was rejected by the Post Office. So in 1879, Joseph Andrews, a major and veteran of the American Civil War suggested the name ‘What Cheer’, and the town was officially renamed on Dec. 1, 1879. It is located 65 miles SW from Iowa City, 20 miles E from Oskaloosa and 32 miles N from Ottumwa. What Cheer offers opportunities for entertainment: a flea market, the 1893 Masonic Opera House, which still operates as a theater; the What Cheer Old Brick School Museum and the What Cheer Potters Whether you come for the day, or come to stay, we are confident you will see What Cheer as we do – a place to visit, to live, to play, to learn, to sightsee, to relax and a place to call home. Come visit us!


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Keokuk County Communities City of Richland

City of Ollie

Box 262, Richland; Phone: 319-456-2511 Email: cityofrichland@iowatelecom.net Facebook: /richland.iowa We’re a small Mid-Western town in the southeast part of Keokuk County. Being small doesn’t mean we don’t have a lot to offer. Our history goes back to 1838. Richland, Keokuk County’s oldest town, was established in October, 1838 by it’s earliest settlers. Before the organization of Keokuk County, this portion of territory was actually a part of Washington County. Richland’s significant pioneering achievements would include the county’s first court of law, the first post office and one of the first voting precincts. One humorous note of history told is that the settlers suggested calling the town “Frog Town”, following a torrential downpour and days of standing water, but chose Richland after the sun came out and exposed the richness of the dried soil. Prior C. Woodward is credited with laying out the town as it is mapped today on June 16, 1841.

PO Box 86, Ollie, Iowa 52576 Phone: 641-667-2223 Incorporated in 1882. The land for the town was donated by a Mrs. Fye and the town was named for Mrs. Fye’s daughter, Ollie. In recent years, Ollie’s population has topped out at 224 - But this little town is packed with pride and fun loving people. The community has received recent notoriety for being the home of Iowa’s #1 Barber, Miss Kitty Snakenberg (2008) and 100th Anniversary of the Ollie Motorcyle Club (2009). A bit of History Ollie High School graduated its final class in 1959. In the fall of that year, the independent school systems of Ollie, Richland, Packwood and Farson, along with the associated rural areas, were consolidated into Pekin Community Schools. The Ollie school building remained open for grades K-8. In the early 1970s, the Farson school closed and Ollie housed K-5 students from Ollie, Packwood and Farson. All students 6-8 then went to the Packwood building. Finally, in 1978, all students attend at the new Pekin complex.

City of Delta 104 N. 2nd St. W, Delta; Phone: 641-624-2061 Delta is located in the western part of Keokuk County on Hwy 21 (1 mile south of Hwy 92). Delta is a farming community, but many people commute for employment. Delta is also part of the Sigourney Community School District. Delta enjoys its’ community events: an annual Delta School Alumni Banquet, the 1st Saturday of June; the Saturday and Sunday after Labor Day is the annual Delta Day celebration. The Delta Ruritan Club and the Delta Town & Country Center also work to keep the community involved with activities: an annual flower show and an annual Halloween party. Delta has an active volunteer fire department. The Garrett and Springfield cemeteries are located close to Delta and on Memorial Day weekend, an avenue of flags are placed by local volunteers. The historic landmark, the Delta Covered Bridge, was destroyed by fire, September 3, 2003, but replica was built and located near the center of town along Center Street.

City of Keswick 209 E. Churchill St., Keswick Phone: 319-738-2621


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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Communities

City of South English

City of Gibson

407 Ives St., 52335; Phone: 319-667-2715

Phone: 641-634-2002 The Gibson community was laid out in 1880 as Nassau, but was renamed to Gibson in 1903 and was later incorporated in 1954. The town is located in the most Northwestern portion of Keokuk County at the intersection of County Roads V21 and G13 on 120th Street. Students attend Tri-County Community Schools.

South English is located at the junction of Highway 149 and 22 in the Northeastern portion of Keokuk County. The town was laid out in 1872. It is a part of the English Valleys Community School District.

City of Harper Phone: 641-635-2602 Harper is nestled among flourishing farmland just a couple of miles north of Highway 92 on County Road V67 in the Eastern portion of Keokuk County. Laid out in 1872, Harper came into being when the Rock Island railroad went through. The community was settled by German Catholic emigrants from the Kingdom of Baden, Germany. Today children of the community are a part of the Keota and Sigourney school districts.

City of Thornburg PO Box 43, 50255; Phone: 641-634-2622 The Thornburg community is the home of TriCounty Community Schools and is located just a half mile east of Highway 21 on Highway 22. Early history states, Squeedunk, a village that grew up in the midst of coal mines, was the forerunner of Thornburg.

City of Kinross City of Martinsburg

203 Grove St., 52335; Phone: 319-639-2458

PO Box 4, 52568

The community of Kinross gathers every October to celebrate “Hogtober Fest” with a hog roast, local bands and a family celebration of the thriving community Kinross once was. This fun loving community of Kinross is roughly 85 members strong and is located along Highway 22 in the most northeastern portion of Keokuk County. The youth of this community attend English Valleys School District.

Martinsburg is a small agriculture community located directly on Highway 149 in the southern portion of Keokuk County and is home to a new fuel station/ convenience store, Steady Run Station (2012). Students attend the Pekin Community School District.

City of Webster 403 Main St., 52355; Phone: 319-667-2628 Webster is a friendly community located at the junction of Highway 22 and 149. Situated nearly in the middle between Sigourney and Williamsburg, the community has the best of both worlds - small town living with shopping (Tanager Outlet Mall, Williamsburg) just a few miles away. Students attend the English Valleys Community School District.

City of Hayesville Phone: 641-622-9021 Hayesville has the distinct honor of being the smallest populated incorporated community in Keokuk County. It is located 3 miles west of Highway 149 on County Road G48 and students attend the Sigourney Community School District.


Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Media Sigourney News-Review 114 E. Washington, Box 285, Sigourney, IA 52591 Phone: 641-622-3110; Fax: 641-622-2766 Website: www.sigourneynewsreview.com The Iowa Newspaper Association’s awarding winning [2010, 2011, 2012], Sigourney News-Review recently celebrated its’ sesquicentennial [2010] for delivering news to Keokuk County. “Sharing the lives of our neighbors and friends is a vital part of what we do at the News-Review,” said Robin Handy, SNR Editor. “Presenting these stories has changed quite a bit over the last one hundred and fifty years. Events, activities, sports, business and government achievements are shared today via a multitude of mediums including our print newspaper, our award winning (2011, 2012) website (www. sigourneynewsreview.com), Facebook (/sigourney news review) and Twitter. While preserving our journalistic integrity, we continue to stay on the forefront of technology.” The SNR is also a source for custom printing projects for both your personal and professional needs. We offer a wide range of high quality products created to meet your personal specifications. Please contact any one of our highly trained media consultants. • Publisher/Advertising Sales Manager, Ken Chaney, signrpub@lisco.com, 319-330-6126; • Managing Editor, Robin Handy, signred@lisco. com, 641-660-4956; • Advertising Design Consultant, Gail Pilkington, signrads@lisco.com; • Administrative Assistant, Jessica Dobbins, signr@lisco.com or through the general office phone number, 641-622-3110. A Bit of History The Sigourney News-Review was established in 1960 after the consolidation of the Keokuk County News and the Sigourney Review by, then publisher, Don Adams. He successfully operated the thriving publication until his retirement. Current publisher, Ken

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Chaney and his wife, Zelda purchased the Sigourney News-Review on July 1, 1989 and after twenty years of ownership, sold the newspaper to Mid-America Publishing Corporation in January of 2008. He remains as the Publisher and Advertising Sales Manager. Mid-America Publishing Inc., was started in 1962 by the Archie family of Shenandoah. It has long owned, operated and printed newspapers throughout the state. This Publication The SNR is proud to join the supporting businesses featured in this 2013-2014 Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide in sharing our communities with you. For more copies, please contact the SNR at 641-622-3110 or signred@lisco.com.


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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Media Keota Eagle 310 E. Broadway St., Box 18, Keota, IA Phone: 641-636-2309 Website: www.keotaeagle.com Offering small-town hospitality and a real sense of community, Keota got its start in 1873 as a stop on the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railroad line. With a population of 1,025, Keota is situated on the eastern county line of Keokuk and Washington counties. Surrounded with rich Iowa farm ground, Keota is a great place to unwind and kick up your feet. The Keota Eagle was established in 1875 by George C. Miller and has been serving the community of Keota, Iowa ever since. The newspaper is a weekly publication printed each Wednesday and is owned by Mid-America Publishing Corporation. Tomisha Sprouse is the current editor, covering community news and events, Keota Community School District news, area sports, as well as county wide news and events. Visit us on our website, www.keotaeagle.com, to find a community calendar listing all the activities available in the community. Or find us on Facebook and Twitter.


Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide

Keokuk County Media Fremont-What Cheer Vine

114 E. Washington St., Sigourney, IA 52591 Phone: 641-622-3110 Website: www.whatcheerpaper.com The Fremont-What Cheer Vine is the new consolidated paper serving the communities of Fremont, What Cheer and all areas in between. The main office is located in Sigourney. Covering small town news, sports, events and advertising, the Vine is enjoyed weekly by its loyal subscribers. Readers are able to keep up with all that is happening in Keokuk and Mahaska counties, not only in print, but also our website: www.whatcheerpaper.com. The Vine is the official paper of the EddyvilleBlakesburg-Fremont and Tri-County school districts. It is the successor to What Cheer Paper, Village Vine, What Cheer Patriot, What Cheer Chronicle and What Cheer-Patriot-Chronicle. Covering both schools and numerous towns makes the Vine a value and necessity for many in the communities it serves. What Cheer and Fremont are small towns full of action from plays to fairs to racing and more and all these and much more are proudly covered by the Vine.

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Keokuk County Visitor’s Guide



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