Flu Activity Increasing in Iowa

Stay home when ill to avoid spreading virus

After weeks of low influenza levels in Iowa, the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) reports statewide surveillance indicates flu activity is increasing. The flu season typically peaks in February and can last as late as May.

If you have flu symptoms, help out your family, friends and co-workers by staying home to avoid spreading the virus, said IDPH Deputy Epidemiologist, Dr. Ann Garvey. Its also important to remember to cover your coughs and sneezes and clean your hands frequently to help yourself and others stay healthy.

IDPH recommends all Iowans age 6 months and older receive the flu vaccine. Getting vaccinated now will offer protection throughout the flu season, and will also help keep those traveling over Spring Break healthy as they visit areas where flu levels may be higher.

The flu is a respiratory illness caused by viruses and is among the top 10 causes of death in Iowa. It spreads easily from person to person and can cause mild to severe illness. The flu comes on suddenly and symptoms may include fever, headache, tiredness, cough, sore throat, nasal congestion, and body aches. Illness typically lasts two to seven days. Influenza may cause severe illness or complications in people such as the very young or very old, or those who have underlying health conditions.

Contact your health care provider or county health department to find out where the vaccine is available in your community.


Sheldon To Be Part Of Brand New Blue Zones Category

Sheldon’s Blue Zone effort received some interesting news recently.

Greta Giese at the Northwest Iowa Lifelong Learning and Recreation Center says they received this news on Friday.<script language=”JavaScript” src=”http://www.kiwaradio.com/mp3/audio-player.js”></script><br><object type=”application/x-shockwave-flash” data=”http://www.kiwaradio.com/mp3/player.swf” id=”audioplayer1″ height=”24″ width=”220″><br><param name=”movie” value=”http://www.kiwaradio.com/mp3/player.swf”><br><param name=”FlashVars” value=”playerID=1&soundFile=http://www.kiwaradio.com/mp3/GretaBZPa.mp3″><br><param name=”quality” value=”high”><br><param name=”menu” value=”false”><br><param name=”wmode” value=”transparent”><br></object>

She says they are going to restructure the program to reflect the unique needs that smaller communities have versus communities of over 10,000 people.<script language=”JavaScript” src=”http://www.kiwaradio.com/mp3/audio-player.js”></script><br><object type=”application/x-shockwave-flash” data=”http://www.kiwaradio.com/mp3/player.swf” id=”audioplayer1″ height=”24″ width=”220″><br><param name=”movie” value=”http://www.kiwaradio.com/mp3/player.swf”><br><param name=”FlashVars” value=”playerID=1&soundFile=http://www.kiwaradio.com/mp3/GretaBZPb.mp3″><br><param name=”quality” value=”high”><br><param name=”menu” value=”false”><br><param name=”wmode” value=”transparent”><br></object>

All the communities that have been selected as Blue Zone communities are over 10,000 people.  She says that means that small northwest Iowa communities are in a bit of a holding pattern for now, but we have reason to continue to be excited about the possibility of being a Blue Zone Community.<script language=”JavaScript” src=”http://www.kiwaradio.com/mp3/audio-player.js”></script><br><object type=”application/x-shockwave-flash” data=”http://www.kiwaradio.com/mp3/player.swf” id=”audioplayer1″ height=”24″ width=”220″><br><param name=”movie” value=”http://www.kiwaradio.com/mp3/player.swf”><br><param name=”FlashVars” value=”playerID=1&soundFile=http://www.kiwaradio.com/mp3/GretaBZPc.mp3″><br><param name=”quality” value=”high”><br><param name=”menu” value=”false”><br><param name=”wmode” value=”transparent”><br></object>

She says the Blue Zones Selection Committee wants to make sure the people of the northwest Iowa communities that were being considered realize one thing above all else:<script language=”JavaScript” src=”http://www.kiwaradio.com/mp3/audio-player.js”></script><br><object type=”application/x-shockwave-flash” data=”http://www.kiwaradio.com/mp3/player.swf” id=”audioplayer1″ height=”24″ width=”220″><br><param name=”movie” value=”http://www.kiwaradio.com/mp3/player.swf”><br><param name=”FlashVars” value=”playerID=1&soundFile=http://www.kiwaradio.com/mp3/GretaBZPd.mp3″><br><param name=”quality” value=”high”><br><param name=”menu” value=”false”><br><param name=”wmode” value=”transparent”><br></object>

Giese says people should continue to support the Blue Zones project by finding out more information about the project at bluezonesproject.com and by reading the book “The Blue Zones” by Dan Buettner.  She says if you don’t want to purchase a copy, there is one available at the Sheldon Public Library.

On Friday, Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield announced that Ames, Cedar Falls, Cedar Rapids, Clinton, Davenport, Mason City, Muscatine, Ottumwa, Sioux City, Spencer and Waterloo were the 11 finalist communities.

By Scott Van Aartsen News Director


Tax Help Available At NCC

If you need help filing your taxes, help might be as close as Northwest Iowa Community College in Sheldon.

For the ninth year in a row, NCC is working with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) as a Volunteer Income Tax Assistance or “VITA” site. Accounting program students past and present, Administrative Secretarial program students and Health Information Technology students are working together to provide free income tax filing assistance for basic tax returns for people with low and limited income, individuals with disabilities, non-English speaking, and elderly taxpayers.

Low and limited income is defined by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) as $49,000 per household.   The Northwest Iowa Community College Accounting program students will be doing free federal and state tax e-filing.

Appointments can be made Fridays: February 10, 17, 24 and March 2, 9, 16, 23 and 30 from 10:10 a.m. to 3:25 p.m.   Appointments can also be made on Wednesdays: February 8, 15, 22, 29 and March 7, 14, 21, 28 and April 4 from 4:00-7:00 p.m.   Again, there is no charge for this service.

Clients may call 712-324-5061 or 800-352-4907, extension 183 to leave a message and an administrative secretarial student will contact them to schedule an appointment.

By Scott Van Aartsen News Director

 


Orange City Dealership Purchased By Le Mars Company

Punt Chevrolet of Orange City has been purchased by a Le Mars dealership.

Motor Inn of Le Mars acquired the Orange City dealership on February 3rd.  Officials with Motor Inn say that they had been looking to get a Chevrolet dealership in Le Mars, and then the opportunity presented itself to purchase Punt Chevrolet in Orange City.

They say customers should expect to see a better selection of makes and models in Orange City within the next few weeks.  They also say they’re excited to be in Orange City.

Motor Inn will be offering both sales and service as well as a parts department.

By Scott Van Aartsen News Director


Two Woodbury Teens Behind Bars Facing Felony Charges After Remsen Assault

Two Woodbury County teens are behind bars after an assault near Remsen.

The Plymouth County Sheriff’s Office reports that about 1:15 AM on Wednesday (2/8), their deputies responded to a call at a rural residence east of Remsen for an assault complaint.

The owner of the residence reported that four males forcefully entered the residence and committed an assault on one of the residents.  Two of the suspects were identified by the victim. The deputies later located two of the four suspects at a home in Sioux City.

The two were arrested and transported to the Plymouth County Jail.   They were identified as 19-year-old Gregory Steven Hueser of Sioux City and 17-year-old Beau Joseph Mogensen of Moville. They were charged with Burglary in the 1st Degree, a Class B Felony, and both are currently being held on $25,000 bond.

The Plymouth County Sheriff’s Office reports that investigation into the incident is continuing and more arrests are expected.

By Scott Van Aartsen News Director


Sioux Sheriff’s Office Wants To Know Who Owns Construction Material Found On Road Near Sioux Center

The Sioux County Sheriff’s Office is trying to find out why there was construction material on the road after an Orange City man struck it with his van on Tuesday (2/7).

The Sioux County Sheriffs Office reports that about 9:20 PM, 52-year-old Curtis Ahrenholz of Orange City was driving a 2006 Dodge van eastbound on county road B40, about a mile east of Sioux Center, when he struck construction material that was on the roadway.

Anyone with information about the construction materials is asked to call the Sioux County Sheriff’s Office.

No injuries were reported.

The Dodge van received $500 in damages.

The Sioux Center Police department assisted the Sheriff’s Office at the scene.

By Scott Van Aartsen News Director