Sibley, Iowa — There’s a special patriotic picnic to be held this Saturday, June 30th, at Hawkeye Point north of Sibley. And it will honor all veterans.

Hawkeye Point Foundation Chair Mike Earll tells us about the “Old Fashioned Fourth of July Picnic” and patriotic musical concert. He says they’re excited to be able to put on the event.

He says the public from around the area is invited and encouraged to attend the free event.

He says the music will be provided by local vocalist and musician Dalton Peterson and will include “sing-alongs.”

Earll says there will be enjoyable activities for all ages.

Earll says to make sure you bring your lawn chairs. He says the weather forecast is not all that promising for Saturday, so if they end up having to postpone the event, they have decided that it will be next weekend instead — on Saturday, July 7th.

June 29, 2018 - 3:40 pm - Posted in News

Sibley, Iowa — A Sibley home received major damage in a fire that was reported late Friday morning.

Sibley Fire Chief Ken Huls tells KIWA that his department was paged for a house fire in southeast Sibley at about 11:00 Friday morning. The original page was for a house that had smoke coming from every window.

Chief Huls says when his crews arrived there was a large amount of smoke visible coming from the structure. Due to Friday’s high heat and humidity, Huls immediately put out a call for manpower from the Ashton and Ocheyedan Fire Departments under their Mutual Aid Agreement. A short time later, Huls requested firefighters from Little Rock, as well.

Huls says when firefighters made entry into the home they discovered flames in the living room of the home, as well as in the basement underneath. He said that when firefighters attempted to enter the basement to attack the flames in that area, they were hampered by fire that was coming up the basement steps. He says once they were able to knock that fire down, they entered the basement and discovered flames on the overhead beams that serve as floor joists for the living room above.

He says fire crews were able to get the blaze knocked down in about an hour, using what he estimates to be between 20 and 30-thousand gallons of water, as well as what he termed, “a lot of foam”.  Firefighters were on-scene for about 1-1/2 hours.

Huls says there was nobody in the home when the blaze broke out, and none of the fire crews were injured battling the fire. He says the living room and basement area of the home sustained heavy fire and water damage, with the rest of structure receiving smoke and water damage.

Chief Huls says the fire appeared to have originated in the basement of the home, and appeared to be electrical in nature. Huls estimated that damage to the home would top $100-thousand, which he said would probably qualify it as a total loss.

June 28, 2018 - 7:25 pm - Posted in News

Northwest Iowa — After multiple heavy thunderstorms in recent days, many rivers across the region are running at or above flood stage. Some areas of northwest Iowa have seen 12-inches of rain — or more — in the past ten days.

Hydrologist Mike Gillispie at the National Weather Service in Sioux Falls tells us the Floyd River basin is starting to return to normal.

He says the Rock River is starting to look a lot better and will continue to go down.

He tells us the Little Sioux is basically on the way down, with a few exceptions.

He says those hoping the Iowa Great Lakes will be back to normal by the Fourth of July are going to be disappointed.

Meanwhile, on the Missouri River, he says efforts are being made upstream to minimize flooding in the Missouri River valley.

The forecast calls for mostly hotter and drier weather for the next several days, which will help with flooded fields and roads.

June 28, 2018 - 3:57 pm - Posted in Sports

Spirit Lake, Iowa — The Iowa Department of Natural Resources issues a weekly fishing report on Thursdays in an effort to provide the latest information heading into the weekend. The weekly fishing report is compiled from information gathered from local bait shops, angler creel surveys, and county and state parks staff. For more information contact the Spirit Lake fish Hatchery at 712-336-1840.

Black Hawk Lake
Water temperatures are in the low 70’s. Water levels are 15 inches over the crest of the spillway. Water clarity is around 2 feet. Bluegill – Slow: Try Town Bay, Ice House Point, and the North Shore. Use a small hair or tube jig with a small piece of crawler fished under a bobber in 3-6 feet of water. Target deeper fish this time of year on the rock piles near Gunshot Hill, Cottonwood Point, and the East Basin. Walleye – Fair: Use leeches fished under a bobber in the shoreline along Ice House Point. Boat anglers have had some luck on the rock piles near Gunshot Hill, Cottonwood Point and the East Basin. Black Crappie – Slow: A few have been picked up from Ice House Point, the floating dock, the stone piers and the inlet bridge. Catch fish up to 11 inches with crawlers and leeches fished under a bobber. Look for post-spawn crappie out deeper. Largemouth Bass – Good: Catch largemouth all over the lake using traditional bass lures. Many anglers have found good bass action at the Ice House Point, the east shoreline,and the lake side of the inlet bridge. There is a 15 inch minimum length limit on largemouth bass in Black Hawk Lake. Muskellunge – Fair: There is a 40 inch minimum length limit on musky at Black Hawk Lake. Channel Catfish – Fair: Use stink bait, cut bait, or crawler fished on the bottom along Ice House Point and in Town Bay. Look for fish along rocky shorelines this time of year.

Brushy Creek Lake
There is a 15 inch minimum length limit on largemouth bass in Brushy Creek Lake, and a 40 inch minimum length limit for musky. Walleye – Fair: Use minnows and leaches in 15-20 feet of water. Black Crappie – Fair: Try minnows on a jig in 10-20 feet of water. Yellow Perch – Fair: Fish along the vegetation to find perch. Largemouth Bass – Good: Catch bass along weed lines near shore just about anywhere with traditional bass lures. There is a 15 inch minimum length limit on largemouth bass in Brushy Creek Lake. Muskellunge – Fair: There is a 40 inch minimum length limit for musky on Brushy Creek Lake.

Storm Lake (including Little Storm Lake)
Storm Lake has a daily limit of 3 walleye and all 17- to 22-inch walleye must be released; no more than one walleye longer than 22 inches may be taken per day. Walleye – Fair: Boat anglers are doing well trolling crank baits or drifting crawler harnesses on the edges of the dredge cuts around the lake in about 8 feet of water. White Bass – Fair: Use crankbaits; most action has been from boat while fishing dredge cuts.

Swan Lake
Bluegill – Fair: Use a small jig tipped with crawler along the dam and off the jetties. Most fish are 6-7 inches.

Yellow Smoke Park Lake
Bluegill – Fair: Use a small jig fished under a bobber with a minnow or piece of crawler around structure in 5-10 feet of water. Yellow Smoke is known for its big bluegill consistently reaching 9 inches or more.

Beeds Lake
Black Crappie – Good: Drift fish or troll with tube jig or a small minnow. Bluegill – Fair: Use a small piece of crawler under a bobber in 2 to 4 feet of water.

Clear Lake
Clear Lake is 7 inches above crest. Surface water temperature is 74 degrees. Walleye – Good: Try a slip bobber and leeches or crawlers fished near the edge of vegetation in 3 to 6 feet of water. Yellow Bass – Slow: Use a small jig tipped with a piece of crawler at the edge of vegetation. Channel Catfish – Good: Catfish are biting baits fished on the rock reefs and off the jetties. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Try a spinner or topwater bait in the open spots in the vegetation. Muskellunge – Fair.

Crystal Lake
Bluegill – Fair: Bluegill are biting. Use a small piece of crawler and a bobber in 2 to 3 feet of water. Largemouth Bass – Fair: Bass are biting spinners and plastic baits. Black Crappie – Fair: Drift or troll small tube jigs in the dredge cut.

Lake Smith
Largemouth Bass – Good: Largemouth bass are biting on a variety of baits. Bluegill – Good: Bluegill are biting. Use a small piece of crawler and a bobber in 2 to 3 feet of water.

Silver Lake (Worth)
Largemouth Bass – Good: Largemouth bass are biting on plastic baits. Bluegill – Good: Use a small piece of crawler and a bobber in 2 to 3 feet of water.

June 26, 2018 - 5:01 pm - Posted in News

Northwest Iowa — With the floodwaters subsiding and the immediate danger to life and property going down, many northwest Iowa farmers are now thinking about their crops — wondering if they’re alright, or what to do if they aren’t.

We had a chance to talk to Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Crop Field Specialist Joel De Jong. He tells us the crops run the gamut from exceptionally nice — to ruined.

He says the thought of replanting has entered some farmers’ minds. And it’s all a waiting game now to dry out and know what the weather is going to do.

He says replanting can also be a gamble for another reason.

For more information, you can call De Jong at the Plymouth County Extension Office in Le Mars.

June 26, 2018 - 4:59 pm - Posted in News

Sheldon, Iowa — Sheep producers from across the area will convene on Sheldon on Thursday, June 28.

Travis Hawkins, who is the president of the Northwest Iowa Sheep Producers tells us about the meeting.

He says the meeting will be at the Pizza Ranch meeting room in Sheldon, starting at 6:00 p.m. He says the buffet will be available to members for the reduced price of $5. No RSVP is needed, says Hawkins. You can just show up.

He says after the presentation, they’ll have their business meeting.

All sheep producers and those interested in lamb and wool are welcome to attend. Questions or items for the agenda can be addressed to Hawkins at or (712) 552-7801. He says you can find more information at or on their Facebook page.

June 26, 2018 - 11:56 am - Posted in Sports

Northwest Iowa — Brackets are out for Class 1A and 2A baseball tournament action.

Sibley-Ocheyedan is in Class 2A District 2, and will open tournament play at Sioux Center against Sheldon on Saturday, July 7th at 5 pm in the upper bracket quarterfinals. The winner will meet West Lyon at Larchwood on Tuesday, July 10th at 7 pm. In the lower bracket it’s Sioux Center taking on Western Christian at Sioux Center at 7 pm. The winner will meet West Sioux at Larchwood on Tuesday, July 10th at 5 pm.

For Class 1A District 1 Brackets CLICK HERE

For Class 1A District 2 Brackets CLICK HERE

For Class 2A District 1 Brackets CLICK HERE

For Class 2A District 2 Brackets CLICK HERE

June 25, 2018 - 11:51 pm - Posted in News

Sibley, Iowa — A Sioux City man faces a five-year prison term after pleading guilty to felony drug charges in Sibley.

The Osceola County Sheriff’s Office reports that 41-year-old Julius Dean Kracke of Sioux City pleaded guilty to Possession of Meth, third or subsequent offense, and Possession of Marijuana, third or subsequent offense.

They say that on January 23, 2018, a search warrant was carried out in Sibley. Kracke was subsequently charged.

Kracke was sentenced to a prison term not to exceed five years for each charge. They tell us the sentences will be served concurrently. On each offense, Kracke was also assessed the minimum fine of $750 and a 35% surcharge of $262.50, court costs and restitution of all court-appointed attorney fees. However, the fine and a 35% surcharge was suspended.

Related story:

June 25, 2018 - 4:02 pm - Posted in News

Northwest Iowa — With all the flooding that northwest Iowans have been experiencing, the American Red Cross is also helping out.

Mark Tauscheck, who is the Regional Communications Officer for the American Red Cross Serving Greater Iowa provided an update on their flood relief efforts.

He says their primary focus has been several communities in northwest Iowa. He says that working in partnership with local county emergency management, the Red Cross has been distributing clean-up kits to impacted residents around the region.

Red Cross clean-up kits contain items including a collapsible mop handle, mop heads, heavy-duty broom head, a squeegee head, bleach, garbage bags, rubber gloves, heavy duty work gloves and a large sponge. All these items come in a heavy-duty bucket.

Tauscheck says they have Red Cross vehicles from around the state loaded up with the clean-up kits and driving into the hardest-hit communities. He says Red Cross volunteers coordinate with local first responders to identify neighborhoods the Red Cross should target and then Red Cross volunteers literally drive up and down the streets offering these clean-up kits to residents.

He says they anticipate they will continue clean-up kit distribution for the next several days.

Sanborn city officials have told us that they have the Red Cross kits at City Hall, and if you are a Sanborn resident affected by the flood you can come and pick one up. Similarly, Osceola County Emergency Management says Red Cross clean-up kits are available to Osceola County residents. Contact Osceola County Emergency Management or any Sibley Firefighter.

Tauscheck tells us how many kits had been distributed by Saturday.

Pocahontas = 20
Cerro Gordo = 400
Webster = 1
Kossuth = 140
Cherokee = 37
Osceola = 187
Clay = 32
Sioux = 91
Plymouth = 14
O’Brien = 80

Total: 1,002

Red Cross cleanup kits are available to Osceola County residents. Contact Osceola County Emergency Management or any Sibley Firefighter.