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Dog Retrieved from Weekend Fire

A house fire broke out Saturday evening around 5:00 PM.

The Oskaloosa Fire Department was called the fire in the 1000 block of First Avenue West where a house was engulfed in flames. The fire was quickly contained by firefighters. No one was home at the time except for the family dog.

Mahaska Health Partnership Emergency Services, along with the Oskaloosa Police Department, were there to look after the dog, Tank, until animal control could arrive on scene.

The cause of this fire is still under investigation. No damage estimates have been released. 

Oskaloosa Football Prepares for New Format to Old Shoe Game

The Oskaloosa football season is getting closer by the day and next Friday night is the Old Shoe Game.

Traditionally, the Old Shoe Game has been a scrimmage between Osky’s first, second, and third teams. But this year, to help with early season improvement and get better action on the field against true varsity starters, the format has changed.

Centerville will be bringing their varsity team to the Lacey Recreation Complex on Friday, August 18th. There will be four segments to the Osky vs. Centerville scrimmage.

The first segment will be each team getting at least two 15 play series alternating at their own 30 yard line. Following that, each team will get at least two 15 play series alternating in the red zone. The third segment will feature special teams for both sides, and the night will wrap up with kicking competitions. There will be a slight break in between each segment.

The Oskaloosa freshman team will scrimmage the junior varsity in a traditional intrasquad scrimmage prior to the varsity teams taking the field.

The gates to the Lacey Recreation Complex Stadium open up at 4:30 next Friday night and the admission is just one sports drink per person. The action on the field begins at 5:30 PM. The Activities Department will be at the stadium selling Activity Passes and Reserved Football seats.

Calling All Oskaloosa Deer Hunters!

The Urban Deer Hunting season is approaching and the season is to be held within the Oskaloosa city limits. The hunting season will run from September 16th, 2017 through January 10th, 2018. During this season, qualified hunters will be allowed to harvest deer within the city limits using bows and arrows.

Bow hunters interested in participating in this hunting season are required to pass an archery proficiency test, consisting of 5 shots, made from 20 yards. Hunters must score at least 80% accuracy, within an 8-inch circle target, to qualify for this hunt. Hunters are allowed two attempts to pass this test.

Two testing dates have been set for this upcoming season. This Testing will be held at “After Hours Archery” located at 216 North B Street. The dates and times for this testing are: Thursday, August 31st, from 7 PM to 8:30 PM and Saturday, September 2nd, from 10 AM to 11:30 AM.

Any hunter interested in participating in this hunting season must attend, and pass, one of these proficiency test. Hunters need to bring a current form of identification and their current/valid Iowa hunting license with them to this testing.

The Oskaloosa Urban Deer Management Program has an established set of rules, which each hunter must follow, to participate in this program.

During the previous season (2016/2017) hunters harvested 20 deer within the Oskaloosa City Limits. This was a 18% increase from the 2015/2016 season when 17 deer were harvested. The Iowa Department of Natural Resources has allotted up to 100 licenses to be used during the 2017/2018 city season.

Anyone with questions regarding this program is encouraged to contact Officer David Wilke, of the Oskaloosa Police Department, by calling (641) 673-3201 ext. 5906 or by email at: david.wilke@oskaloosaiowa.org

Below is the list of hunting rules within the city of Oskaloosa.

Deer Hunting Rules

Oskaloosa Football Looking to Make It Back to the Playoffs in 2017

Yesterday, we took a look at the Game of the Week schedule for the football season, which will be heard on 104.9 FM KBOE, kboeradio.com, and the KBOE mobile app.

Today, we’ll take a peek at the Oskaloosa Indians football schedule, which as always, can be heard on 99.5 FM/740 AM KMZN, with live video on radiokmzn.com, and the KMZN mobile app.

Osky gets to open their season against their archrival Pella at home on August 25th. In case you’ve been under a rock the last few years, Pella has won the last three Class 3A state championships in football while going 41-0. If you go back to the start of the 2013 season, Pella is 52-1 on the gridiron.

While this seems daunting, Oskaloosa has improved in several aspects over the last few seasons and a great 7-3 year in 2016 under first year Head Coach Jake Jenkins gives the Indians a reason to hope for similar success in 2017. That all starts against a new cast of characters for the Little Dutch, who beat Osky Week 1 of the regular season and in the first round of the playoffs last year.

That Week 1 matchup will be a huge contest, but it is a non-district game, so it will have limited implications for the playoffs. Osky will follow that with a road game against Grinnell in Week 2, which the Indians should be favored.

The Indians start Class 3A District 5 play with a Week 3 matchup against Fort Madison at home, another game that Osky will be expected to win.

Week 4 will be a date with Mount Pleasant on the road, and while the Indians handled the Panthers last year, this game could get tricky. Same will be said for the Week 5 home matchup against Solon, who won the district last year.

Week 6 is another tricky road game against Fairfield followed by a Week 7 home game against Keokuk.

Washington gets to host Osky this year in Week 8 and they will be looking for revenge for their one point loss in Oskaloosa last year which kept them out of the playoffs.

The Oskaloosa regular season will wrap up on the road against West Burlington/Notre Dame.

Oskaloosa will likely need to win 6 of the final 7 games to comfortably secure a playoff berth for the second straight year, but that will be no easy feat. Several interesting road games mixed with a tough matchup against Solon at home will test the Indians.

If Osky does fall twice during district play and finds themselves on the outside looking in, that Pella game could loom large. A win in that game to snap the 41-game winning streak of the Dutch could go a long ways to helping Osky grab one of the two wild card playoff spots in Class 3A.

As mentioned, all of the action this season can be heard on 99.5 FM/740 AM KMZN with a live video stream on radiokmzn.com and the KMZN mobile app every Friday night with help from the Oskaloosa Video Production program at OHS and MCG. Pregame will start at 7 PM with kickoff every week at 7:30.

Local Community Groups Looking to Work Together

An item on the agenda at both Mahaska County Board of Supervisors and City Council meeting yesterday included the discussion of the business plan for the Mahaska Development Partnership. The Chamber of Commerce, the Mahaska County Agricultural and Rural Development (MCARD), the Mahaska Community Development Group (MCDG) and Main Street Oskaloosa are four separate entities that have a desire to begin an appropriate partnership.

As the Board of Supervisors discussed this intended economic partnership for Oskaloosa and Mahaska County, it was a swift approval and acceptance of the memorandum.

Beth Danowsky, MCDG, approached the podium to speak about the organizations.

“The way we work right now, as economic development groups each group sets its own strategic plan, its own vision. And the idea behind this is, if we don’t take this first step to begin to work together then we’re going to continue to work in silos,” stated Danowsky. “And we don’t want to do that anymore, we want to begin to plan together; begin work together; begin to allocate our resources.”

A chair of each organization and a designee of the respective organization board would meet quarterly. There would be 8 members total on the board. After very little discussion, it was approved by the Board of Supervisors. The City Council, later in the day, discussed the business plan and the desire to work together

At-Large City Council member, Tom Walling, sat through the presentation of this plan.

“I strongly support the [plan] but there were several of us there that felt they still got a long way to go. I mean there’s some things to be worked out in our community about this and how we share and don’t duplicate, but grow it together,” Walling said. “They seem willing to work on that.”

With approval from both the City Council and Board of Supervisors, the partnership can now begin to move forward.

 

Baseball All-State Teams Announced By Coaches Association

It’s never easy to become an All-State athlete, but a few area baseball players received that honor, as the Iowa High School Baseball Coaches Association released their 2017 All-State Teams earlier this week.

In Class 1A, Twin Cedars senior Trace Embray was named to a utility position on the First Team. Embray pitched over 37 more innings than anyone else for the Sabers. He tossed 62 innings while going 8-2 with a superb .90 ERA while striking out 98 batters and walking only 19. Opponents only had a .150 batting average against him.

He was no slouch at the plate either, hitting .440 with 4 homers and 32 RBI. He also had a .567 on-base percentage, went 33 for 34 stealing bases, and struck out only twice in 75 at bats.

He is joined by a pair of area players on the Second Team: Moravia third baseman Tucker Babbit and Sigourney outfielder Avery Moore.

Babbit finished a great junior year in which he led Moravia with a .413 batting average and a .570 on-base percentage. He hit the only home run on the season for the Mohawks while driving in 23. He was also a thief on the basepaths, going 23 for 25 in swipes. He also did some work on the mound, going 4-2 with a 2.22 ERA as the #3 pitcher in the Moravia rotation.

Moore was a great multi-sport athlete and he wraps up his senior season with an All-State Second Team honor. Moore hit .477 in 2017, hitting a homer with 19 runs batted in. He went 35 for 35 in steals and reached base at a .578 clip. He scored 39 runs on the season in just 23 games for Sigourney.

There were no area players named in Class 2A, but there were four players from the area in Class 3A.

On the First Team, Pella’s junior catcher Jaden Rolffs and senior utility player Tyler Hillman were both honored.

Rolffs was the best hitter for the Dutch in 2017, batting .450 with a .522 on-base percentage. He hit 3 home runs with a team-leading 38 RBI. He also walked twice as many times as he struck out.

Hillman finished a great senior season where he was excellent on the mound while doing more than his share of damage at the plate. He went 5-3 with a 2.20 ERA as the Pella ace. At the dish he hit .400 with a team-leading 6 homers with 33 runs driven in. He had a .511 on-base percentage and walked a team-high 23 times.

On the All-State Second Team in Class 3A, Oskaloosa outfielder Tyler Miller and Grinnell shortstop Ethan Mitchell made the team.

Miller finished an outstanding freshman campaign that saw him lead the state qualifying Indians with a .444 batting average. He reached base at a .492 clip while driving in 22 runs. He also led the way in steals with a 23 for 27 mark.

Mitchell helped lead Grinnell’s bounceback season with a .409 average, a .485 on-base percentage, 2 homers, and 36 RBI, all team-highs. The junior was 11 for 13 in steals and also contributed on the mound with a 4-4 record and a 3.32 ERA.

Finally, Ottumwa senior Austin Shotts was named to the All-State Second Team in Class 4A as the third baseman. Shotts batted .476 with a .563 on-base percentage. He hit one homer with a team-leading 25 RBI. He walked 19 times to only 10 strikeouts and went 17 for 21 in stolen bases. He also went 4-2 on the mound with a 2.12 ERA.

It was a successful summer sports season and these players were the cream of the crop on the baseball diamond in our listening area.

Oskaloosa Football Season Tickets Available

Football season is right around the corner and season tickets are now available at the Oskaloosa High School Activities Office.

You can pick up your season tickets for Indian home games Monday through Thursday from 8:30 AM to noon or from 12:30 PM to 3:30 PM. You can also swing by Friday morning from 8:30 to 11:30 AM.

The Oskaloosa High School Activities Office is located on the north side of the school on the right side of the entrance to the gymnasium from the activity parking lot.

Oskaloosa opens the 2017 football season at home on August 25th against Pella. Other home games on the schedule include matchups against Fort Madison, Solon, and Keokuk.

You can hear all Indian games on 99.5 FM/740 AM KMZN and watch a live HD video stream on radiokmzn.com, and the KMZN mobile app.

2nd Annual MEGA Garage Sale & Bake Sale

The Oskaloosa Band Boosters are hosting their 2nd Annual Mega Garage Sale on Friday, August 4th (3-7 pm) and Saturday, August 5th (8-11 am).  In addition to a wide variety of items, there will also be baked goods, pop and water for sale.

All proceeds raised will support the 5-12 grade band programming in Oskaloosa, including supporting the Oskaloosa Marching Indians this fall as they perform at football games and travel out of town to competitions on the weekends.

Oskaloosa Fire Department Holds Dedication Ceremony

The header photo displays the generations at the Oskaloosa Fire Station where the youngest and oldest firefighter ‘cut the ribbon’ at the conclusion of the ceremony.

The last dedication of the Oskaloosa Fire Station occurred in 1909, Mayor Lewis Bacon led the ceremony over a hundred years ago.

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Historical pieces can be found throughout the new fire house. 

Our hometown fire station holds the title of second oldest standing fire station west of the Mississippi; the first going to a fire house in Davenport that was commissioned around the year 1904. The Okaloosa Fire station is unique in another way as well, it is the only one in Mahaska County that is staffed 24/7.

In November 2014, it was voted and approved to reconstruct and renovate the existing fire station. Upon completion, there are four bays to house trucks and emergency vehicles.

“North bay is longer than the others […] it’s longer to accommodate an aerial truck, with the aging buildings downtown, I believe it’s only a matter of time before we may see the need to use it,“ said Mayor David Krutzfeldt.

By maintaining the integrity of the original and historic buildings within Oskaloosa while upgrading them to modern standards, it allows for the longevity of the structure.

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Lockers of the currently employed firefighters at the station. 

Mayor Krutzfeldt said, “It [the fire station] along with the others [recently renovated buildings] stands as a testimony of how people working together for a common purpose can create the great things that will last far longer than we will. “

Fire Chief Mark Neff was full of emotion during his ceremony speech. After sixteen months of construction, it was only three weeks ago that all the firehouse equipment was all under one roof. Two-thirds of the equipment was located inside the old water department building.

Chief Neff graciously thanked: citizens of Oskaloosa; the mayor and council; Will Downing, Architect; DDVI, Inc; Oskaloosa Herald; Jennifer Main, Edward Jones; Musco Lighting; Oskaloosa Glass and Millwork; New Sharon Fire Department; and finally the staff at the Oskaloosa Fire Department.

“Fire house is a symbol of our community. This is your firehouse, we are just the key holders,” stated Fire Chief Mark Neff.

 

Sales Tax-Free Weekend is Coming Up

The statewide Tax-Free Weekend is happening on August 4th and 5th. This annual event takes place on the first Friday and Saturday of the month of August.

The exemption of sales tax applies to each article priced under $100.00; regardless of the number of items sold during a customer’s purchase. Clothing includes any piece of wearable apparel, however, there are numerous items that this broad description does not include:

Watches, jewelry, umbrellas, handkerchiefs, sporting equipment, any special clothing, or footwear designed for athletic or protective use; things not considered appropriate for everyday use.

Businesses open on these days are required to participate in the holiday. So that means, Oskaloosa residents, you’re in luck! Stores in the Penn Central Mall will be participating. Even though JcPenney’s is closed [as of July 30], that still leaves Maurices and Liberty Gifts. Along with other various apparel businesses in Oskaloosa like Brown’s Shoe Fit and Shoe Dept. 

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