2019 Remsen Bell-Enterprise Year in Review: May - August

Thursday, January 9, 2020


For the third year in a row, in honor of Earth Day, Arbor Day, and Community Banking Month, Iowa State Bank (ISB) has given back to the community of Remsen by planting a tree along the walking trail, located between the baseball and football fields. Iowa State Bank employees Ashley Schuttpelz, Scott Jones, and Jill Barinsky met with first graders from Remsen St. Mary's and MMCRU - Remsen Elementary to have a short lesson to explain what Earth Day is, why it is important, and how planting trees is one of the many ways to help make the Earth a better place to live on Tuesday, April 23, 2019. The students got their hands dirty and helped plant the beautiful Princeton Yellow Maple tree. By splitting into pairs, each pair did their part by helping to push dirt into the hole and leveling the dirt off, among other tasks. Iowa State Bank commemorated the event by putting a small sign by the tree which states "Courtesy of Iowa State Bank. April 23, 2019. Princeton Yellow Maple - Can grow to be 45 ft. tall and is planted for the beauty it brings to scenery. The fluorescent yellow foliage that is displayed by the shade tree is sure to naturally draw attention to its splendor of color and beauty."

St. Mary’s teachers Vicki Heeren, Tonya Galles, and Kris Full applied for and received three Iowa Governor’s STEM Scale-Up Programs for the 2019-2020 school year. School districts, libraries, museums, and other organizations across the state applied for the STEM programs. Mary Trent, the Northwest Iowa Regional STEM Manager, said the board received 106 applications from this region alone. Each of the teachers will attend professional development throughout the summer in order to be able to implement the new programs this fall. These new programs will be added to an already enhanced STEM curriculum.

MMCRU High School students invite the public to their play performance of "An Absolutely True Story (As Told By a Bunch of Lying Liars)", will take place at the Sawyer Center Marcus Grace Church in Marcus on Saturday, May 4 at 7 p.m. and Sunday, May 5 at 3 p.m. This play is a short comedy by Ian McWethy. Also featured will be the State Speech Showcase.

Students from MMCRU High School’s Instrumental and Vocal Music Departments competed at the Iowa High School Music Association’s Class 1A Solo and Ensemble Contest on Saturday, April 6, at South O’Brien High School in Paullina. The instrumental and vocal students earned the following ratings: Instrumental Superior (I) Ratings: Percussion Choir, Low Brass Quartet. Instrumental Excellent (II) Ratings: Allison Gregg - Clarinet Solo, Faith Olson - Flute Solo, Abby Van Maanen - Clarinet Solo, Mattie Dias - Saxophone Solo. Vocal Superior (I) Ratings: Madison Nicks - Solo, Savannah Johnson - Solo, Madison Nicks and Dakota Kasner - Duet, Madison Nicks and Jaydn Steffen – Duet. Vocal Excellent (II) Ratings: Trevor Schneider and Dakota Kasner – Duet. Performing for comments only: Makenzie Meyer – Solo. No III, IV, or V Ratings were received.

The Remsen EMTs are sponsoring a Mother's Day Breakfast on Sunday, May 12, 2019, at the EMT building on Fulton St. from 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 noon.

The Remsen Chamber of Commerce was planning on sponsoring a Trivia Night featuring Big Daddy from 99.5 Radio on Saturday, May 4, 2019. According to a post on the Remsen Chamber of Commerce Facebook page, made on May 2, they stated, "Trivia night has been canceled due to low participation. We hope to hold a Trivia Night next February or March. Please watch for updates!"

Members of the MMCRU Skills USA Chapter competed in the Iowa Skills USA leadership and skilled trades competitions with three other schools. As the smallest district competing, MMCRU had four teams medal and qualified one for nationals. The following are the groups and their placements: Community Service: Cade Owens, Kaelee Letsche, and Christa Lux - first place and National qualifiers. Teamworks Construction: Cade Owens, Jordan Marks, Andy Maass, and Wyatt Rassel - second place. Team Welding Fabrication: Isaac Goeken, Evan Cluck, and Andy Prescott - third place.

Cabinetmaking: Rian Vasher - third place.

Teachers from several Sioux City Diocesan Catholic schools were represented at a recent computer science day of training, held at St. Mary’s Schools in Remsen. Computer science teacher Kris Full applied for the Code.org Computer Science Fundamentals training that was conducted by NewBoCo, the regional provider for Code.org. The St. Mary’s technology team and administration had decided to implement a computer science curriculum in all grades from kindergarten through twelfth grade. “For a limited time, Code.org was providing certified trainers and materials for their elementary curriculum,” said Full, “so we were able to schedule them during one of our professional development days. All of our teachers, PreK-8, were able to participate.”

It was a special day for the Nelson family and St. Mary’s School family, as Seth Nelson became a member of the Catholic Church at the RSM Easter School Mass. While traditionally new members are received into the Catholic Church on Holy Saturday, Seth received the sacraments of the Catholic Church the following week in the presence of his classmates and the entire RSM school family, and many parishioners.

Second graders receiving First Holy Communion on Sunday, April 28th at St. Catherine's in Oyens were the following: Front row, from left: Damian Gonzalez, Juliann Mohning, Dylan Schroeder, Katherine Doidge, and Talan Blackford. Second row, from left: Colt Krier, Jayda Decker, Lan Glassmaker, Faith Spenner, Jayze Bunkers, Brodey Penning, and Benedict Roder. Third row, from left: Ethan Klein, Amaya Gengler, Samantha Peterson, Kaden Steffen, Chloe Homan, Kinley Tentinger, and Ethan Klein. Back row, from left: Connie Peterson, Deacon Rick Roder, Father William McCarthy and Janell Wimmer.

On Thursday, April 18, 2019, MMCRU Middle School Student Council members participated in an all day Service Day for residents of Remsen. The Student Council Community Service Committee came up with the idea of finding residents around town who needed a little extra help cleaning up this spring.

After 21 years at Remsen-Union Schools, Mr. Clint Leonard will be retiring from being the Board Secretary/Business Manager. In May 1998, Mr. Leonard was hired as Remsen-Union's Board Secretary/Business Manager and has been here ever since. He will work at the school until the end of June, which is the end of the school's fiscal year. Clint and his wife, Michelle, have lived in Remsen since moving from Le Mars to work at Remsen-Union in 1998. They have one son, Cody, who lives in Sioux City and a granddaughter, Reagan, whom Clint is looking forward to help babysit in his retirement.

Village Northwest Unlimited held a Chamber Coffee on Fri., May 10, 2019, from 8:30 - 10:30 a.m. at the EMT building on Fulton St. They served cinnamon rolls and beverages to hungry guests. Village Northwest Unlimited is located in Sheldon.

Happy Siesta Health Care Center employees came together and took a picture on Monday, May 13, 2019, to commemorate National Skilled Nursing Care Week (NSNCW), formerly known as National Nursing Home Week. Employees pictured above include: Back row, from left: Todd Bevard, Dietary Manager; Lisa Loring, Administrator; Mary Harwick, Dietary Aid; Terri Conover, Atrium Housekeeping Supervisor; and Courtney Block, C.N.A. Front row, from left: Sharon Nicholson, Business Office Manager; Kathy Frederes, Social Worker Designee; Jennifer Kuiken, Director of Nursing; Jody Marsh, Housekeeping Supervisor; Janice Marsh, C.M.A. and C.N.A.; Sammy Grosenheider, Activity Director Main Unit; Keely Reiter, C.N.A.; and Amy Woten, C.M.A. and C.N.A.

A Retirement/Chamber Coffee was held for Mike Ruden on Wednesday, May 15, 2019 from 8:00-10:30 a.m. at the EMT Building, hosted by the City of Remsen staff. Mike was honored with a plaque from the City of Remsen which stated the following, "Presented to Mike Ruden in appreciation and recognition for loyal service to City and Citizens of Remsen. We thank you. October 3, 1983 - April 30, 2019. Congratulations on your retirement."

MMCRU's 2019 Valedictorian & Salutatorian. Daymion Edward George, Valedictorian, is the son of Penny Vanderweide and the late Stephen George. He has a cumulative GPA of a 3.898. Cody Richard Allen Dias, Salutatorian, is the son of June Pallesen and Michael Dias. He has a cumulative GPA of a 3.858.

Remsen St. Mary’s Class of 2019 Valedictorian & Salutatorian. Will Galles, son of Mark and Tammy Galles, is the Valedictorian for the class of 2019. 4.00 GPA. Daughter of Greg and Erin Schroeder, Olivia Schroeder is Remsen St. Mary’s High School Class of 2019 Salutatorian. 3.93 GPA.

American Bank would like to show their appreciation to their customers and support to farmers during May Beef Month by inviting you to a BBQ on Tuesday, May 21 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at American Bank.

MMCRU High School will hold their commencement exercises on Sun., May 19, 2019, at 2:00 p.m. in the MMCRU High School gymnasium in Marcus. The 2019 graduating class includes: Jazzmine LeAnne Bruneau, Evan Jeffrey Cluck, Carolynn Brittany DeYoung, Cody Richard Allen Dias, Daymion Edward George, Ethan Phillip Gorczynski, Allison May Gregg, Jared Dean Hinspeter, Dean Roland Jenness, Joel David Johnson, Dakota James Kasner, Halle Grace Kenney, Andrew John Maass, Nicole Marie Maass, Jordan Kenneth Marks, Zachary Alan Means, Courtney Elaine Miller, Olivia Lynne Mohr, Madison Nichol Nicks, Ariana Nicole Norfolk, Jose Jesus Perez, Drew Patrick Pierce, Andrew William Prescott, Conner Floyd Rassel, Wyatt Gregory Rassel, Emily Ann Rigney, Jocee Ann Roberts, Shelby Rae Rodgers, Robert Thomas Russell, Heather Marie Schmidt, Trevor Eugene Schneider, Jadee Lynn Shimitz, Jadyn Sue Steffen, Brandon Ross Stodden, and Madison Lea Treinen.

Remsen St. Mary’s will hold their commencement ceremony on Sunday, May 19, 2019, at 2:00 p.m. in the Lorne Nilles Memorial Gym. St. Mary’s class of 2019 includes: Kelsey Jo Behrens, Brooklyn Jade Frederes, Will Nicholas Galles, Shay Michael Galles, Lexi Ann Harpenau, Hailey Marie Klein, Miranda Rose Loutsch, Sydney Ann Lewis, Bailey Sue Penning, Rachael Anne Renken, Olivia Marjorie Schroeder, Kaitlyn Jean Van Den Top, and Megan Marie Wurth.

On Wednesday, May 15, Remsen St. Mary’s held the May Crowning Service in the Lorne Nilles Memorial Gym to honor the patron saint of the school. The second grade and senior classes presented a statue of Mary with candles, flowers, and a crown of roses as symbols of our love and devotion to Mary. After May Crowning, Remsen St. Mary’s held the 2019 High School Awards Ceremony.

Seniors at MMCRU High School celebrated their Awards Night on Tuesday, May 14, 2019 starting at 7 p.m at the MMCRU High School Commons.

The City of Remsen is declaring an amnesty from the landfill disposal cost during the above designated dates of June 1 - 7, 2019.

Junior Kaitlyn Goth competed in both the 3000 and 1500 meter runs at the Iowa State Track and Field Meet in Des Moines. In the 3000, Goth finished one place out of the medals in 9th place with a time of 11:48.79 run in 95 degree heat. In the 1500, Goth ran a season best time of 5:20.41 and finished in 22nd place.

On Wednesday May 1, Remsen St. Mary’s held its Grades 7-12 Spring Music Concert in the Lorne Nilles Memorial Gym. Both band and choir are directed by Mrs. Steph Dickes and all of the songs followed a peace theme. The band and choir students presented Mrs. Dickes with a card and gift thanking her for her service to the music program for the last four years as she is moving to Omaha after the school year.


Cheryl A. Schrunk, age 72, of Mapleton, passed away on Saturday, April 20, 2019, at the Pioneer Valley Living & Rehab of Sergeant Bluff.

Paul Francis Mai, age 63, of Alton, passed away Thursday, May 9, 2019 at University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha, Neb.

Mariann Clara Harnack, 93 years old, of Remsen, died Sunday, May 26, 2019, at Good Samaritan Society in Le Mars.


The Luxembourg Heritage Society of Northwest Iowa is planning a Sesquicentennial Celebration June 6-7, 2020 of the arrival of Luxembourgers in this area. The Society will meet at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, June 8 to continue planning the festival. The group will gather in the meeting room of the Remsen Public Library. Anyone interested in Luxembourg immigration or in helping plan the celebration is encouraged to attend.

It was a wet and rainy morning on Monday, May 27, 2019, but that did not stop people from attending the Annual Memorial Day Program, which was held indoors at the Remsen St. Mary's High School Gymnasium. This 10 a.m. program was sponsored by the American Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars. The Role Call of the 374 individuals whose flags are on the avenue of flags, including Washington St. Boulevard, Happy Siesta Health Care Center, Bavarian Meadows Assisted Living, Remsen Cemeteries, St. Mary’s Catholic Church, St. Paul Lutheran Church, and Christ Lutheran Church, and MMCRU School. Each flag symbolizes an individual who is no longer here to commemorate this day. The dedication of twelve new flags took place next with family members and friends presenting the flags. Mike Ruden posted the flags. The twelve new inductees were: Louis Anthony Arens, Irv Beck, Jim Beck, Carel K. Connor, James L. Grunden, Robert LaVerne Jaminet, Leander F. Konz, Howard K. Lang, Dale A. Loutsch, Martin Schreiner, John E. (Buck) Thiel, and Cyril F. Tritz.

For teachers Steve and Melissa Utesch, retirement looks good. They have been teachers in the Marcus-Meriden-Cleghorn, now MMCRU School District, since the early 1990s. “We knew this was our year. We’ve been planning this for a while, so it’s been fun anticipating all of our new adventures,” Steve said. “We are so fortunate we are able to retire together. It just makes everything that much sweeter,” Melissa added. Melissa began teaching 7th and 8th grade language arts at McCook Middle/Jefferson South Dakota, School District in 1990. She was hired by MMC in 1992 to teach fourth grade and the last 10 years she has taught second grade. Steve has taught at MMC since 1991. He has taught every grade from 2nd-6th grade plus Title One Reading. He has also taught in every building that has been part of the MMC/MMCRU School District. Steve was head wrestling coach and assistant football coach at MMC. He also taught Driver’s Ed at MMC. “We are looking forward to spending more time with our children and grandchildren and helping out when needed. We don’t know who is more excited, our family or us. They have been making all sorts of plans for us,” Steve said.

The MMCRU girls' track team qualified four events to the state track meet through their performances at the regional qualifying meet in Sioux Rapids on Friday. Kaitlyn Goth qualified in the both the 1500 and 3000 meter runs, Emily Dreckman qualified in the high jump, and the team of Faith Olson, Dreckman, Ellie Reuter, and Taylor Harpenau qualified in the 4 X 800 meter relay. Pictured above are Reuter, Olson, Goth, Harpenau, and Dreckman. Remsen St. Mary’s brought two golfers to the meet and both will be moving on to state. Tori Galles will be making a return trip after qualifying as an individual last season as only a freshman. She had the fifth best score on the individual leaderboard with a 96 total. She shot a 47 on her first round and added a 49 on her second trip around the course.

Along with the Akron-Westfield team earning a trip to state, three other Plymouth County athletes earned individual bids to the state meet. Sidney Tritz snagged the final spot on a tie for sixth place for the second week in a row as Westwood’s Makenna Harding also advances as an individual with a score of 98. Tritz will be following in similar footsteps as Galles last year as the freshman earns a bid to state. Her first round score was a 50 and she followed that up with a 48.

MMCRU - Remsen Kindergarten Graduation was held at MMCRU in Remsen on May 23, 2019 at 6:30 p.m. The kindergarten graduates all performed a poem or a riddle individually and sang a few songs as a group and received their kindergarten diplomas. Congratulations to the MMCRU - Remsen Kindergarten Class of 2019. Pictured above are the two kindergarten classes (28 kindergarteners) at MMCRU - Remsen Elementary taught by Mindy Ruhland and Lindsey Wheatley. Front row, from left: Bentley Messelhiser, Maelin Galles, Kholton Ruden, Jaxon Schuttpelz, and London Loutsch. Second row, from left: Nash Gotto, Kara Peterson, Brady Mouser, Ryder Youde, Breanna Herman, Kenten Galles, and Joseph Price. Third row, from left: Presley Daum, Karsin Donovan, Eli VanDerSchaff, Hope Hengtgen, Addlyn Schuppan, Maria Francavilla, Levi Hoffman, and Josie Staab. Back row, from left: Teacher Mindy Ruhland, Avery Helmrichs, Blaine Ortmann, Bennett Poeckes, Ellie Staab, Brody Gaskill, Brynn Gengler, McKinley Gergen, Charity Hengtgen, and Teacher Lindsey Wheatley.

The Remsen Public Library held their first summer reading program for the year on Wed., June 5, 2019, at 10 a.m. Outer Space Buddies Galaxia and Pandora took center stage to inform children about a "Universe of Stories". They came to spread their anti-bulling message through dance and encouraged kids to "Be Buddies NOT Bullies". Galaxia and Pandora asked the children how someone could be a good friend and how bullies made someone feel. The children learned some dance moves and performed a dance routine at the end of the program. Also, they learned some fun facts about the planets of the solar system. Volunteers from the audience even came up to portray all the planets of the solar system, complete with asteroids and space ships all floating in the galaxy as well.

Remsen’s Annual Kids Days, sponsored by the Remsen Chamber of Commerce, will be held on Mon., June 17 and Tues., June 18, 2019.

A retirement open house was held for Clint Leonard and Steve and Melissa Utesch at the MMCRU High School Commons on Thursday, May 23 from 4-6 p.m. Pictures and memories of their years of service were on display for people to see. Students made pictures of what they thought retirement was. Many tasty treats and drinks were available for guests.

The St. Mary's Little Hawks Preschool held their end of the year Preschool Celebration. The children spent the last couple weeks making their graduation caps and reviewing their songs. The program began with the children saying the pledge of allegiance, then they sang five songs, and ended with the meal prayer before joining their families for snack and juice.

Little Royals Preschool students held their Graduation Party on Thursday, May 23, 2019. Families were invited in for a snack and a program followed by the awarding of diplomas. Kate Reuter and Miranda Olsen are the preschool teachers at MMCRU - Remsen Elementary.

A Chamber Coffee honoring Connie Plathe's 30 years of service to WesTel Systems was held on Friday, June 14, 2019 from 8:00-11:00 a.m. at the VFW, hosted WesTel Systems. Many friends, family, coworkers, and people of the community gathered to help Connie celebrate and to enjoy cake and other treats with coffee and juice.

The Remsen Public Library held their "Universe of Stories" themed second summer reading program on Wed., June 12, 2019, at 10 a.m. Mike Prestby Magic presented "Take Me to Your Readers", which was a fun program with magic, comedy, a puppet, and a real white rabbit. Stories, tricks, jokes, and experiments were performed including a thumb trick for the kids to try, treats aliens might like, stories about Simon the Star, three different rope lengths to all the same length trick, planet cards, rocket race, hypnotic wheel, missing puzzle piece reappearing, Hocus the Rabbit making his appearance, among others tricks and stories.

Remsen Municipal Utilities partnered with Missouri River Energy Services to provide fifth graders from MMCRU and RSM Schools with Energy Efficient Units to learn more about how to save energy.

The MMCRU fourth and fifth grade Math Bee students participated in the Dordt College Math Bee on Tuesday, May 14th. Even though it was an extremely hard test this year, they did well. One of the fourth grade teams placed fifth and had two individuals in the top 10, Karsen Galles and Conner Galles. One of the MMCRU fifth grade teams placed sixth and also had two individuals in the top 10, Eoin Hogg and Lukas Peterson. It was a GREAT day to be a Royal!

A Children's Pedal Tractor Pull was held during the Kids Days Carnival in Remsen on Monday, June 17 at 7:15 p.m. Children, ages four to eleven, took part in the event, which was sponsored by Remsen Community Action Club (RCAC). The Granville Implement Club is in charge of the event. All participants received a candy treat, and first, second, and third place winners received a certificate. The first place winners advance on to compete in the next round held at Marshalltown. Winners for the Four-year-olds: Jaidynn Osterman (third place), Audrey Brownmiller (second place), and Owen Klein (first place). Winners for the Five-year-olds: Meeka DeBoer (first place), Veda Krienert (second place), and Lily Cowgill (third place). Winners for the Six-year-olds: Keaton Sheehan (second place), Owen Richtr (first place), and Hayden McKinley Gergen (third place). Winners for the Seven-year-olds: Jackson Schroeder (first place) and Lily Matgen (second place). Not pictured: Gavin Krienert (third place). Winners for the Eight-year-olds: Ashley Mouser (first place) and Ethan Klein (second place). They were the only two competing in this age group. Winners for the Nine-year-olds: Sydney Newlon (first place) and Faith Spenner (second place). They were the only two competing in this age group. Winners for the Ten-year-olds: Carter Jungers (first place), Mia Matgen (second place), and Breeana Sheehan (third place). Winners for the Eleven-year-olds: Evan Cowgill (second place), Rylie Spenner (third place), and Sophia Etter (first place).

Since the spring of 1979, volunteers in the Remsen community have been coming forward to help save lives. On Saturday, June 29, community members will join Remsen EMS volunteers to celebrate the organization’s 40th anniversary. A street dance featuring the band “Locked and Loaded” will play in front of Beer City from 8 p.m. to midnight. Cost to attend the dance is $20 per person with proceeds being used to purchase two defibrillators, valued at $30,000 each. Remsen EMS members are front from left, Lisa Schiltz, Taylor Weiler, and Abby Phillips. Back row, Tyler Schiltz, Jeff Stoos, Talon Penning, Mike Sparr, Jeanie Sanow, John Hansen, JT Sanow, Kevin Rollins and Rick Nitzschke. Not pictured, Scott Allen, Julie Brazil and Kevin Ortmann.

The Loutsch Family is planning their annual 4th of July Tractor Parade through Oyens. They will be in Oyens at around noon, on Thursday, July 4.


A girl, Rosie Jule Orcutt, born May 23, 2019, to Chris and Susie Orcutt of Savage, Minn.

A girl, Eve Marie Pepper, born April 24, 2019, to Josh and Erica Pepper of Remsen.


Harold M. Schmit, 90, of Hospers, died Saturday, June 1, 2019, surrounded by his wife and children at Happy Siesta Health Care Center in Remsen.

Joseph M. “Joe” Kass, 99, of Marcus, passed away on Tuesday, June 4, 2019 at Heartland Care Center in Marcus.

Marlys (Seivert) Gramlow-Britton, age 78, of Remsen, died Thursday, June 13, 2019 at Happy Siesta Health Care Center in Remsen.

Sister Joan Stoffel, OSF, former superintendent of schools for the Sioux City Diocese, died Tuesday, May 28, 2019 at Clare House, Mount St. Francis, Dubuque, Iowa. She was 85. Services were held May 31 at St. Francis Chapel in Dubuque.

Robert “Bob” Cyril Niehus, 62 years old, of Remsen, died Friday, June 21, 2019, at Floyd Valley Health Care in Le Mars.


The Life Skills Training Center will be holding their 22nd Annual Quilt Auction on Saturday, July 27th at 2 p.m. in Century Hall at the fairgrounds during the Plymouth County Fair. Shelly Thomson, Life Skills Training Center's Marketing Development Director, said "We are now at about 52 quilts (as of June 24), and they are available anywhere from king size to lap blankets. We also have a beautiful selection of baby blankets in there, as soft as can be and vintage quilts." Many individuals and organizations donate quilts for the auction. Christ Lutheran Church in Remsen donates quilts towards the auction every year. A quilt donated from the Ladies Aid group is on display at American Bank in Remsen. Thomson stated, "Christ Lutheran Church every year comes with beautiful handcrafted quilts for us that they generously donate. It's normally anywhere from a full size to a queen size and sometimes baby ones too." Sandy Kroeger, one of the members of the Ladies Aid, explained that the group has a great time making quilts. "We meet once a month, the first Monday of the month. Our group is open to the public. We have about eight members, and we have a few non-members that show up also. We always have potlucks so we eat good too. It's a nice fellowship gathering." Just this year, the Ladies Aid has donated 30 quilts to many different organizations. Kroeger stated, "Last year we made 72 quilts. We give them to places such as Kidney Dialysis Center, Police, EMTs, Oyens, and our church adopts a family at christmas time and every one of the family members gets a quilt too. Anyone that gets baptized at Christ Lutheran gets a quilt and our graduates get quilts as well."

Interim administrators will fill two positions at St. Mary’s School in Remsen for the 2019-20 school year. Ron Olberding will serve at St. Mary’s PK-8 principal. Patty Lansink will serve as St. Mary’s High School Principal for the next year. In addition, Kim Phillips will serve as PK-12 lead teacher while also continuing to teach middle school language arts half-time. Phillips is working to complete coursework to obtain her Masters in Education for school administration degree through Creighton University. She will be an integral part of maintaining direct communication between the interim administrators and RSM stakeholders.

Once again the Tri-State Cruisers will be rolling into downtown Remsen on Wed., July 10, 2019 at approximately 5:00 p.m. and stay around till 9:00 p.m.

The Remsen-Union High School Class of 1969 celebrated their 50th Class Reunion on Saturday, June 22, 2019 at the Remsen Golf Course Clubhouse. Members of the R-U Class of 1969 that attended the recent 50th Class Reunion include: Back row, from left: Robert Hamilton, Dave Sanow, Mike Delperdang, Glenn Williams, Dale Scheitler, Rod Langel, Robert Wiederholt, Rick Juhl, Mark Sudtelgte, and Marcel Konz. Front row, from left: Judy Bauler, Mary (Kohler) Brinkman, Shirley (MacKay) Benson, Carol (Peterson) Ritz, Marsha (Wittkop) Flewelling, Linda (Featherston) Harden, Betty (Schroeder) Homan, Linda Nitzschke, Sue (Bleil) Gernhart, and Rhonda Narin.

The Remsen Public Library held their "Universe of Stories" themed third summer reading program with Fax Gilbert presenting "Mime, Masks, and Magic" on Wed., June 17, 2019, at 10 a.m. Fax Gilbert is a professional mime, magician, playwright, and educator and grew up in Boston, Mass., but has been living in Iowa since 1990. During the past 28 years, Fax has brought his special blend of knowledge and entertainment to over 5,000 schools, festivals, libraries, and communities throughout the United States. Fax told his stories to the children through mime by using his body and facial expressions. He also had fun showing the kids how masks can help tell a story as well. He finished his program with a little magic. There were many chances for audience participation and the children really enjoyed themselves during the program.

Jeff and Nancy Beal "The Real Beals" joined the Remsen Public Library on Wed., June 26, 2019, at 10 a.m. and presented their stage of the "Universe of Stories" Summer Reading Program to children and friends from Bavarian Meadows. They entertained the crowd with songs such as "The Hokey Pokey", "Pete the Cat", "Rockin' Robin" and old favorites such as, Patsy Cline's “Walk-in’ after Midnight” and "Jolene" by Dolly Parton, among many other selections and song requests. Children then had a chance to ask Jeff some questions about how his "One Man Band" equipment all worked and what was all included in his contraption. According to the Remsen Public Library's Facebook Page, they are "looking into having Jeff and Nancy make a return visit for an evening of country and oldies tunes!"

The heat didn't stop community members from enjoying the EMS Street Dance. On Saturday, June 29, community members joined Remsen EMS volunteers to celebrate the organization’s 40th anniversary. A street dance featuring the band “Locked N Loaded” played downtown (in front of Beer City) from 8 p.m. to midnight. Proceeds from the street dance are being used to purchase two defibrillators, valued at $30,000 each. Businesses/organizations that sponsored the street dance included: Bavarian Meadows, JB Propane, Smith Insurance, The Triangle, Beer City, Matgen Insurance, Arens Lawn Care, St. Mary's, American Bank, Schorg Ag, Barry's Electric, Frericks Repair, Carl's Body Shop, Mrs. B's, Van's Sanitation, KD Parts & Repair, Neal Chase Lumber Co., David and Rachel Keffeler, Remsen Farmers Coop, Mouser's Excavating, Iowa State Bank, Leanne's Styles & More, Frederes Plumbing & Heating, and Feeck Crop/Krier Insurance.

This summer will be the 70th Reunion for the descendants of the Nis and Herling Nielsen families.

The event will take place on Sunday, July 14, 2019, at 12:00 noon at the Beck Park air conditioned shelter house in Remsen. You are asked to share one hot dish and one cold dish. All tableware and beverages will be provided. Please bring family albums or pictures and clippings to share with the group.

The fifth Summer Reading Program for this year at the Remsen Public Library took place on Wed., July 3 at 10 a.m. with children showing off their singing talents at Karaoke. Children performed solos, duets, and gathered into small groups to sing some fun songs. They looked up at the television screen to read the lyrics off of YouTube lyric videos for the different songs and shared a microphone. There was a long list of songs for the kids to choose from.

The Plymouth County Conservation’s Have Nature Will Travel program, in it's third year, took place on Wed., July 3, 2019, from 1-2:30 p.m. at Beck Park in Remsen. This year, the theme was a Park Mystery.

Kevin Ortmann of Remsen received a nice surprise on Wednesday night, July 10, just before the Tri-State Cruiser's Car Show. He was reunited with an old friend of his, the same 1978 Delta 88 Holiday Edition Vehicle he drove during high school. It was now back home. Stan and Jan Scheitler of Country Classics along with Toby Scheitler and Nick Pick (good friends of Kevin's) all came together to present this surprise to Kevin. Nick Pick helped get the ball rolling on the surprise, "We were on our way back to town one day and I said to Kevin 'I got to show you something quick'. We drove off to Country Classics, and Kevin's car was sitting there. He got pretty excited. We pulled in and looked all through it, took some pictures, and he told me 'I'd just love one last ride in it.' I called Toby right away and Stan and Toby went and got it." Toby Scheitler stated, "We saw if she (the car) would run and then got her running. We just kept working on it and got her road worthy to come here and have some fun tonight." Stan and Jan along with Nick and Toby presented Kevin the keys to his car just before the Tri-State Cruiser Car Show. Kevin was very surprised. He looked all through the car and trunk before driving it downtown for the car show. At the car show, Kevin stated, "This was the one and only car I ever owned." Toby playfully replied, "Oh yeah, because you wouldn't fit in another one nowadays!" This brought many laughs to the group. Toby and Nick reminisced about all the fun they have had with this particular car over the years, "We all three had a lot of fun in this thing. Lots of stories, lots of memories."

Family members of Jim and Lou Arens gathered for a picture before the banner was hung in St. Mary’s Gym. The Oswald Arens family was top bidder of the “Name the Gym Auction” at the 2019 Friends of St. Mary’s Ball. Pictured above, from left, are Patrick, Stacie, Greg, and Megan (children of Lou and Peggy); Deb Staab, daughter of Jim Arens; Peggy Arens, wife of Lou; brothers, Rob and Jerry; Mollie, daughter of Peggy and Lou; and brother, Joe Arens. The St. Mary’s Gym will be known as the Jim and Lou Arens Memorial Gym until July of 2020.

The Remsen Public Library invited children to come build and create with Legos for the Summer Reading Program on Wed., July 10, 2019, starting at 10 a.m. Children built all sorts of different buildings, landscapes, and contraptions. Those that didn't want to play with Legos colored or took part in a word find.

An Appreciation Coffee was held for Norine Harvey on Saturday, July 13, 2019 from 1:30 - 3:30 p.m. at Three Sisters' Bistro in Remsen. Many members of the community stopped by to thank Norine for all she has done with St. Mary's Schools and Parish for the past 16 years. This Appreciation Coffee was organized by Norine's friends, Marlene Goecke and Karen Waldschmitt. Norine is the wife of Keith Harvey, and they live in rural Remsen. The couple has four children, Jason and his family live in rural Kingsley, while Angie, Nick, and Rachel all live in the Des Moines area. Norine has worked as Development Director at St. Mary's Schools and Parish since 2003.

Pictured above are some of the First Saturday of the Month Work Crew at the Recycling shed, from left: Jake Draayer, Linda Slota, Larry Kobberman, and Mary and Rich Riedemann. The recycle group recently donated $8,000 to pay for a new technology server for the St. Mary’s MS/HS and elementary buildings. Recycle funds totaling $10,000 will also pay for the paving of the off-street parking across the street from the school on the east side of St. Mary’s High School. Many thanks to all who work at the shed, pick up recycling, and deliver the product for the Remsen recycle program!

The 2019 Plymouth County Fair king candidates are, front from left, Keaton Langel, Kaleb Koerselman, Daytona Foley, Carter Meinen, Cole Moffatt and Frankie Vondrak. Back row, Camden Schroeder, Joel Jauer, Levi Hemmelrick, Brayden Utesch and Cale Anstine.

One of these 19 young ladies will be crowned the 2019 Plymouth County Fair Queen on July 24. They are, front from left, Kylie Beelner, Alka Eliades, Chloe Calhoun and Madeline Hurt. Second row, McKenna Weiland, Isabelle Fegley, Molly Vondrak, Jaiden Davison, Jacenta Sargisson, Kendra Ericson and Emily Mairose. Back row, Emma Webb, Ashley Beitelspacher, Kristen Heimgartner, Kara Pridie, Sophie Knuth, Audra Penning, Kara Albrecht and Miranda Ball.

his summer St. Mary’s tried something new in offering a Summer STREAM Success Studio Camp. The idea was to provide some fun STREAM (Science, Technology, Religion, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) activities that focus on God’s gifts in creation. Fifty-nine students participated in various activities and completed a variety of projects ranging from carving a CO2 car, sewing a denim pencil bag, constructing a sail car while designing the most effective sail, experimenting with Kitchen Chemistry to discover various properties of liquids, building LEGO Mindstorm NXT robots, as well as programming through Blue Bots, Cubelets and IPad coding activities, and Google’s Tour Creator and Juxtapose photo apps.

Melissa from the Blank Park Zoo in Des Moines visited the Remsen Public Library for the last Summer Reading Program of the season on Wed., July 17, 2019 at 11 a.m. She is an Interactive Educator and part of the Education Department at Blank Park Zoo. She brought four animals to talk about and show the children. She would talk and give a little bit of background about each animal and then ask anyone if they had any questions about the animal. Animals included the Three-Toed Box Turtle named Babs, Claussen the Tiger Salamander, Rachel the Ferret, and Ka the Kenyan Boa Constructor.


Dick and Sue Sievers of Remsen will celebrate their 40th Wedding Anniversary on Friday, July 12, 2019. The family will get-together to celebrate the special occasion. Dick Sievers and Sue Heidesch were married on July 12, 1979, at St. Mary's Catholic Church in Remsen.


A boy, Maddox Joseph Ruba, born June 25, 2019, to Michael and Michelle Ruba of Shawnee, Kan.

A girl, Nora Jean Hoffman, born June 7, 2019, to Alex and Alicia Hoffman of Remsen.


Donna Jeanne Anderson, passed away on May 24, 2019, in Santa Barbara, California, where she resided for 45 years.

Paul Peter Mueller, age 78, died peacefully at Sanford Hospital in Sioux Falls, S.D., on June 24, 2019, surrounded by family.

Arlene M. Schlenger, 93, of Cherokee, and formerly of Remsen, passed away Saturday morning, July 6, 2019, in the Cherokee Specialty Care.


The engagement and approaching marriage of MacKenzie Schleis and Jesse De Groot, both of Remsen, is made known by the parents of the couple, Chad and Monica Gravenish, Brian and Kayla Matgen, all of Remsen; Jayne Stock of Hinton; and Jonathan De Groot of Orange City. The couple will be married at a 4:30 p.m. ceremony on Saturday, August 10th, 2019, at Prairie Winds Event Center in Orange City. The reception and dance will follow at the Prairie Winds Event Center.


Karen Harnack's last day at Thompson, Phipps & Thompson in Remsen was Friday, July 26, 2019, as she retires to start a new chapter in her life after sixteen and a half years with the firm. At the Thompson, Phipps & Thompson Office, Karen Harnack poses with a beautiful bouquet of flowers she received at her Retirement Celebration, which was held on Monday, July 22. Karen's last day at Thompson, Phipps & Thompson was Friday, July 26, 2019.

The 2019 Plymouth County Fair King Joel Jauer and Queen Kara Albrecht, were crowned Wednesday evening at the Pioneer Village Stage. They along with their court, will be busy with activities at the fair, which runs through Sunday, July 28.

A strong performance from Blaine Harpenau on the mound, a solid defense behind him and one string of players reaching base was enough for Remsen St. Mary’s to get past the better-seeded Martensdale-St. Marys in a Class 1A quarterfinal held at Principal Park on Saturday, July 27. The Hawks were the only lower-seeded team to win their quarterfinal game over the weekend as they came out on top of a 4-2 final score. Remsen St. Mary’s improves to 27-7 as they will face second-seeded Alburnett in Thursday’s (August 1) semifinals with a 1:30 p.m. scheduled first pitch. Alburnett won their quarterfinal game 13-4 over South Winneshiek.

The Living Tree Program at the Remsen Golf Course has made some updates since its inception three years ago. According to a pamphlet about the program at the clubhouse, "For your donation of $150, you receive: A quality evergreen/hardwood tree planted by the Remsen Golf Course; Recognition on the donor plaque and map located in the clubhouse; Maintenance and watering of the tree for the first year (after the first year the tree will take care of itself). Donation includes replacing trees that die within the first two years of planting; and A certificate of appreciation." Golf Course Manager Russ Delperdang explained what the Living Tree Program entails, "What we do is offer people to donate $150 towards a tree. They've got three different sayings you can have on there, "In memory of", "In honor of", or "To celebrate". We've had people that are interested in a Breast Cancer cure so they have a tree out there, and some class reunions have donated money towards a tree. Then we have trees donated for their spouses or deceased members of their family. That type of thing, it's entirely up to them."

The Le Mars Area Chamber of Commerce honored Cindy Harpenau of Mid-Sioux Opportunities, Inc. with the 2nd Quarter Boss of the Quarter award. Harpenau was nominated by Angie Langel and staff. Harpenau has been the director of the WIC and Maternal/Child Health programs with Mid-Sioux Opportunity, Inc. for 25 years. In the time Harpenau has been with Mid-Sioux Opportunity she has developed good working relationships with other community resources to better serve our families.

Just months after a buzzer-beater sent Alburnett past Remsen St. Mary’s at the Class 1A state basketball tournament, the Hawks dropped Thursday’s (August 1) Class 1A state semifinal by baseball’s equivalent, a walk-off in the bottom of the seventh in what was a 4-3 final score.

The Remsen Chamber of Commerce held their 21st Annual Golf Tournament on Wed., August 7, 2019, with a 10:30 a.m. shotgun start at the Remsen Golf Course. Twenty teams participated in the four-person best ball golf outing. The Remsen Chamber of Commerce appreciates and thanks the following businesses for participating in this year's event: American Bank (two teams), Carl's Body Shop (two teams), City of Remsen, Floyd Valley Healthcare, Iowa State Bank, Matgen Insurance (two teams), Mid-Sioux Opportunity, Inc., Miller Auto, MMCRU Schools, Mrs. B's Convenience Store, Northwest Iowa Mutual Insurance, Remsen Farmers Coop, Remsen Processing, Remsen VFW & American Legion, Smith Insurance Services, Schorg Ag Supply, and WesTel Systems.

A non-denominational church, Remsen Bible Fellowship, will be starting services on Sunday, August 18, 2019, at the V.F.W. Hall in Remsen, starting at 10 a.m. Pastor Will Dole will lead the services. According to Pastor Dole, the group had been meeting as a bible study first, "We started as a Bible Study last September." When asked how many people participated in the Bible Study, Dole replied, "It's varied a lot. The first couple meetings, we had over 30 people. Lately it has been around ten." Dole attended the Le Mars Bible Church before starting a church in Remsen, "Most of us are from Le Mars Bible Church. That's where we attended church. There are quite a few people who live over here (Remsen), so we just started talking to the leadership over in Le Mars about would it be a good thing to start a church over in Remsen that would be closer for them and for people that aren't a part of church over here that might be interested." A new non-denominational church called Remsen Bible Fellowship will start services on Sunday, August 18 at 10 a.m. at the V.F.W. Hall. Pastor Will Dole, pictured above in his home, will lead the services.

The weather was nice for Mid-Sioux Opportunity's Annual Chamber Hot Dog Feed, which took place on Friday, August 9, 2019 from 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. in their garage building. Members from the community came together to enjoy hot dogs, chips, cookies, and a drink.

On Wednesday, July 10th, approximately 130 classic cars owned by Tri-State Cruisers rolled into downtown Remsen for their weekly cruise night. Knowing that the participants enjoy having food available in the towns they cruise to, Phil and Derek Ahlers organized a team to support the cause. Phil and Derek gathered up six picnic tables from Beck Park so the cruisers would have a place to eat. They purchased 200 boneless pork chops from the Remsen Processing Center and also bought all the buns, pop and chips. Chris Bohnenkamp and Dan Sheehan from The Plymouth County Pork Producers volunteered to grill the chops and Abby Phillips, Deb Bonnstetter, Chris Sonnichsen, Pam Arens, and Teryl Ahlers volunteered to serve the sandwiches, chips, and pop to a very grateful crowd of cruisers. Many compliments were received on how delicious the pork sandwiches were and how nice it is to have food available for the cruise nights. Proceeds for $425.00 from the meal were presented to Stephanie Loutsch with the Remsen Chamber on Thursday, August 8th and is to be used for downtown beautification in Remsen.

Butterflies, especially the Painted Lady butterfly, seem to be on the rise in Iowa this year and can be seen not just in gardens but also along the highways and roads. Victoria DeVos, Naturalist with Plymouth County Conservation stated, "I have seen a massive number of them (Painted Lady butterflies) in the past couple weeks on the roads. According to the following article, the weather in the south has pushed them here in larger than normal numbers. We do see this butterfly, just not as many as we have been seeing lately."

A grant totaling $2,000 from the Community Foundation of Greater Plymouth County (CFGPC) and an additional $1,500 from the City of Remsen helped to fund the new umbrella at the Remsen Swimming Pool.

Remsen St. Mary’s 34th Annual Parish Auction was held on Sunday, August 11. The day began with the 8:00 a.m. Mass, followed by the breakfast social at 9:00 a.m. and the auction started at 10:00 a.m. Many food items were available at the food stand including breakfast and lunch items. Different classes sponsored different food stands selling anything from baked goods to root beer floats to lemonade. The sweepstakes winners were also announced at the auction. Children had lots of fun playing on one of four different bounce houses from Backyard Bounce.

The Marcus-Meriden-Cleghorn-Remsen-Union Community School District welcomes seven new teachers for the 2019-2020 school year. The new school year begins on Friday, August 23, 2019. New teachers for the MMCRU School District include, Front row, from left: Tajie DeRocher, Middle School Math; Tara Meinen, Middle/High School Instrumental Music; Abby Christensen, High School Science; and Angeleah Hoefling, Marcus Elementary/High School Special Education. Back row, from left: Travis Sprague, Marcus Elementary PK-4/High School Principal; Andrew Wotherspoon, Middle/High School Vocal Music; and Melissa Ruden, Remsen Elementary/Middle School Art.

The Kobberman residence on Jackson St. is ready for Back-to-School. They have decorated their yard with lots of Back-to-School décor, such as a yellow school bus stating “Back to School”, an apple with the saying “A+ Teacher Lives Here”, the Little Red School House, some different kinds of pencils, students with a chalkboard stating “Have A Successful New School Year!” and a crayon box with tall crayons.

Remsen St. Mary's added new three faces to its staff for the 2019-2020 school year. The new year begins on Friday, August 23, 2019. Patty Lansink (left) and Ron Olberding (right) will serve as interim administrators at St. Mary’s School in Remsen for the 2019-2020 school year. Lansink will be high school principal and Olberding will be PK-8 principal. Insert picture: Kathy Brandt will be the TK-12 music teacher.

Iowa State Bank lenders Nathan Van Corp (Sheldon), Mark Kleinwolterink (Sheldon & Sanborn), and Scott Jones (Remsen) were recognized by the SEDC for their work in utilizing the SBA 504 loan program and SEDC Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) program. The Board of Directors of the Siouxland Economic Development Corporation (SEDC) is pleased to announce it has selected Iowa State Bank, as the SEDC Lender of the Year for 2018/19. This annual award is given to commercial lenders in the Siouxland area who have demonstrated a high regard for customer service and have successfully, consistently, and creatively utilized the SBA 504 Loan Program and SEDC Revolving Loan Fund Program (RLF) to further economic development in Siouxland.

Michael Eckers visited the Remsen Public Library on Tuesday, August 13, 2019, at 7 p.m. to present his program, “WWII Landings at Normandy”. A crowd of thirty-plus people attended the free program to learn about the history of D-Day, with some facts specifically about how Iowans played a part in this history.

To help meet a need for housing in Remsen, which was a main point brought up by the Remsen Comprehensive Plan, the City of Remsen has been working to address the issue by constructing the West Development, which is a development for residential lots. According to Remsen City Clerk, Rachel Keffeler, “The West Development is now substantially complete.” Wes Boyer, engineer with Bolton and Menk, answered some questions about the West Development in Remsen. He stated, “The Remsen West Development project started at the beginning of July 2018 and substantial completion was met on July 3, 2019. Bolton & Menk, Inc., was the engineer on behalf of the City of Remsen for the project. The prime contractor was Bainbridge Construction, LLC. Bohle Construction was the grading subcontractor for the project. Remsen Municipal Utilities also played a role in the construction of the project.” When asked about the time table of the project, Boyer replied, “Excessive rain in the Fall of 2018 and Spring of 2019 slowed progress. However, once conditions allowed, the project resumed and work was satisfactorily completed.” “This project consisted of the construction of full utilities and streets for the development of 22 residential lots. The project was the first of two phases. Utilities included sanitary sewer, storm sewer including a detention pond, and watermain. The development is located on a hillside in the northwest corner of Remsen with great views overlooking the Remsen Municipal golf course and surrounding countryside. Lots vary in size, but are generally just shy of 0.30 acre lots.” explained Boyer.

The Remsen EMTs recently received a $1,000 donation from Remsen Youth & Recreation to help with their fundraising efforts for two new defibrillators. Pictured above, from left, Remsen EMTs Mike Sparr, Abby Phillips, and Julie Brazil receive the donation from Remsen Youth & Recreation board members Katrina Homan, Angie Waldschmitt, Todd Tentinger, and Lee Harpenau.

During the St. Mary’s Parish Auction on Sunday, August 11, 2019, Fr. Bill McCarthy received a surprise gift from the parish, a brand new 2019 Chevy Equinox AWD Premier. This gift was a way for the parishioners to show their appreciation for Fr. Bill’s service to the community for the last 13 years. Pictured above, Fr. Bill with his brand new vehicle and Jeremy Bunkers telling a surprised Fr. Bill and a tent full of people about the surprise.

Wings Air Rescue (formerly Mercy Air Care), a part of Med-Trans, was at the Remsen Baseball Complex on Monday, August 12 at 7:30 p.m. to show Remsen EMTs and Remsen Fire Dept. the new aircraft and answer any questions people might have. The only change is the name, color of aircraft and uniform, but the crew remains the same. Remsen EMT Abby Phillips stated, "They have a new aircraft and so they came out and showed us how we would load the new aircraft, what we would do to help them so nobody gets hurt, reiterate about the landing zone that they need, like whether it's on a corn field or on the street somewhere or on the road somewhere, so that was kind of the stuff that they wanted to go over with both the EMTs and the Fire & Rescue squads. And then the next thing would be to have the public come and take a peek at their new helicopter that they would be flying in so people can see that and hopefully the kids won't be scared if they ever had to fly in it. It was basically just to learn about their helicopter to keep us safe, keep them safe and learn their stipulations that they have to go over with us." Susie Pick of Remsen works as a flight nurse for Med-Trans/Wings Air Rescue. She has been working as a flight nurse for ten years. She explained what Med-Trans/Wings Air Rescue was doing in Remsen on Monday night, "So basically just showing them the new helicopter, instructing the ambulance crew and the fire crew with things we need for landing zones, asking them what we can do for them teaching wise, etc. Just showing the helicopter off to the community and showing them what we have to offer. We basically bring the ICU to our patients along with carrying two units of blood and two units of plasma, and TXA for resuscitation of trauma patients in the critical “golden hour”.”

Bunker Hill, Inc., received the Iowa Farm Environmental Leader Award at the Iowa State Fair on August 14th. The award was presented by Gov. Kim Reynolds, Lt. Gov. Adam Gregg, Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig and Iowa Department of Natural Resources Director Kayla Lyon.

On Saturday, August 17 and Sunday, August 18, the second annual Ryder Cup competition was held at Remsen Golf Club and Sioux Golf and Country Club. After Saturday in Alton, the Best Ball and Alternate formats ended with a lead by Sioux Golf of 13.5 to 6.5 by the eight two-man teams from each course. The event was continued in Remsen on Sunday playing Best Shot and Singles Match Play formats. Down the stretch, Remsen came back ferociously for a total of 26.5 to Sioux Golf 23.5, winning the two-day tourney and will hold the traveling trophy until next year.

The St. Mary’s School and Parish Community is pleased to announce Sarah Garvin as the Director of School Advancement. Sarah explained what this job entails, “In a short summary, I will generate new enrollment, new funding streams and ideas for school improvement for St. Mary’s Schools and on occasion St. Mary’s Parish.”

The Plymouth County Knights of Columbus members are preparing for the 39th Annual Plymouth County KC Phonothon, which raises funds for people with disabilities and specifically Life Skills Training Center in Le Mars, on Wednesday, September 4, 2019. This is the biggest fundraiser of the year for Life Skills.

The 42nd annual Remsen Demolition Derby took place on Saturday night, August 17. The event, sponsored by the Remsen Community Action Club (RCAC), was held at the Remsen Derby Arena.

RCAC welcomed five different classes to this year’s derby: Modifieds, Limited Weld, Street Stock, Compact, and FWD Hobo. This year there were a total of 51 cars participating. Children ages four to nine got a chance to participate in the Power Wheels Derby. New this year, youth ages nine to seventeen could compete in the Lawn Mowers division. The derby is RCAC’s biggest fundraiser of the year.

Father Philip F. Dreckman, SJ, celebrated 70 years as a member of the Society of Jesus on August 17, 2019.

Students and teachers in the MMCRU School District went back to the classroom Friday, Aug. 23. This will be the fourth year of a sharing agreement between the two districts. One of the things everyone will notice at the school buildings are the new branding logos. MMCRU Superintendent Dan Barkel stands outside of the MMCRU Middle School in Remsen where new window clings and logos portray the district’s new branding. The project is a part of the district’s five year strategic plan to bring the students, staff and community of Marcus, Meriden, Cleghorn and Remsen closer together. The districts are in their fourth year of whole grade sharing.

The new school year is almost here and the staff at Remsen St. Mary’s is busy preparing for their students to come back on the first day on Friday, Aug. 23. Remsen St. Mary’s Schools is under new leadership this year, as the district welcomes Ron Olberding as its pre-K-8th grade principal and Patty Lansink as its 9-12th grade principal. “Ron and Patty will be awesome as they are both great leaders with a ton of experience,” said Kim Phillips, RSM lead teacher. With new leadership at the helm, changes have also been made to the district’s technology advances, specifically at the grade school level. RSM Elementary Teachers Kathy Rupp, Janell Wimmer and Nicole Andrick work on the new Chromebooks students in grades 2-4 will get to use in the new school year.


A girl, Paisley Diane Sheehan, born July 5, 2019, to Neil and Krystal Sheehan of Remsen.


Julie Marie Huber-Benson, the beloved daughter of Jerry and Gina (Bates) Huber, was born November 11, 1981 in Spencer, Iowa. On July 25, 2019, following a lengthy battle that she fought so determinedly and courageously, Julie was surrounded by the palpable love of family and friends as she began the next journey of Life.

Mark Poeckes, age 75, of Remsen, passed away Sunday, July 28, 2019, at Mercy One Siouxland Medical Center in Sioux City.

Peter “Pete” Alvis Thill, 68 years old, of Sioux City, passed away Thursday, August 1, 2019, at Touchstone Living Center in Sioux City.

Arlene Virgine (Koch) Letsche Wolf, age 96, of Remsen, passed away Friday, August 23, 2019, at Happy Siesta Health Care Center in Remsen.

Gerald “Jerry” Charles Schroeder, age 84, passed away on August 24, 2019 holding the hand of the love of his life, Marian Bowker Schroeder.

(Continued in the January 16, 2020 issue of the Remsen Bell-Enterprise)