Editor’s note: This is part three of a four-part year in review.

JULY

Kiwanis receives over $40,000 to go toward new playground

The wooden playground at Edmundson Park was built in 1994. Twenty-five years later, the playground has reached the end of its lifespan. The Oskaloosa Kiwanis club received a windfall of over $40,000 from the Oskaloosa Community Development Foundation, one of several disbursements given out upon the dissolving of the foundation.

Sun Dome Project makes progress

The large dome representing the sun can be seen from the highway west of town. The project taking shape at Lacey Recreation Complex is a dream project of Musco President Joe Crookham.

“For years I have had a passion for understanding and recognizing how the solar system all works together and I think it would be well for all people on planet Earth to better understand what it’s all about.

The sun dome has been completed and the rest of the solar system is underway.

Southern Iowa Fair Queen

Hannah Koellner was named 2019 Southern Iowa Fair Queen on Monday, July 15. Koellner was also crowned Iowa State Fair Queen on Saturday, Aug. 10.

Southern Iowa Fair shows off new beef barn

The newly-completed beef barn housed 108 animals during the fair; up to 124 head can be accommodated.

The project was a decade in the making.

Rental Housing Inspection Program successful

According to city officials, the inspection program is on track. The program, which kicked off in 2018, was established to ensure safe and sanitary housing for renters in Mahaska county by establishing minimum standards and regular inspections for all housing units in Oskaloosa.

August

G

eorge Daily Youth Theatre celebrates 20 years

For two decades, George Daily Youth Theatre has shared with local youths the magical experience theatre can be. The auditorium itself celebrated its 20th birthday in 2017; in 2019 the youth theatre joined the two-decade club. Celebrations included a youth theatre performance of ‘The Most Epic Birthday Party Ever.’

Buttigieg visits Oskaloosa

Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg made a trip to Oskaloosa’s Smokey Row, with a large crowd packed in to listen.

Three charged in Shafer’s death

Three people were arrested following an investigation into the death of 24-year-old Ashley Shafer, who was found dead in the Skunk River on Aug. 6. On Aug. 20, authorities arrested Cody Vancenbrock, Nicholas Kelly and Holly Kelly.

September

Boston retires from OPD after 34 years

Lt. Troy Boston, of the Oskaloosa Police Department, served as an officer from June 22, 1985 to Aug. 30, 2019. Boston will be working at William Penn University.

It was a good run, Boston said.

“The best part about the job is the people that you get to work with, the people that you meet in the community,” he said, “and establish friendships and acquaintances is great.”

Boston said one reason why he joined law enforcement was because he wanted to help people.

“At the end of the day,” he said, “you feel better about yourself if you can help others.”

Neff announces retirement

Oskaloosa Fire Chief Mark Neff announced his retirement from the Oskaloosa Fire Department during the city council meeting of Monday, Sept. 16. Neff will be going to work for the State Fire Marshall’s Office after 24 years in Oskaloosa.

Class of 1969 floats into homecoming

Fifty years ago, the Oskaloosa High School senior class rode in their homecoming parade on a great white whale. The whale was re-created by members of the class of 1969. The classic float, constructed with wood supports and chicken wire stuffed with white napkins.

There were between 15 and 20 people working on the float. The homecoming events coincided with a 50-year class reunion.

Ritenour pleads guilty to child endangerment

Days before the start of her re-trial, Ritenour accepted a plea deal. The agreement dropped a murder charge if she pleaded guilty to child endangerment resulting in the death of her 18-month-old daughter, Ava.

Managing Editor Angie Holland can be reached at aholland@oskyherald.com and followed on Twitter @OskyAngie.

Managing Editor Angie Holland can be reached at aholland@oskyherald.com and followed on Twitter @OskyAngie.

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