Sibley, Iowa — Sibley is 150 years old. Normally the Good Old Summertime celebration is in June. But this year, since both Sibley and Osceola County are 150 years old, those in charge decided to combine the festival with the Osceola County Fair which is on now.

Sibley Chamber Director Ashley Ackerman tells us what’s up, starting with this Thursday.

Festivities continue on Saturday, says Ackerman.

She tells us how they’ve been celebrating 150 years so far.

For more information, check out the Sibley Chamber of Commerce or “Osceola County Fair – NW Iowa” on Facebook.

Sibley, Iowa — It’s a special edition of the Osceola County Fair in Sibley. Both the county and the City of Sibley are celebrating 150 years this year.

We talked with Osceola County Fair Board President Steve Voss, and he highlights some activities going on right now and this week for us.

The Osceola County Fair continues with activities later in the week.

Of course, there are too many activities to list them all on the radio, but you can find the full schedule below.

Ames, Iowa – The Iowa Department of Transportation is now accepting grant applications for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Fiscal Year 2022 Diesel Emission Reduction Program (DERA) for diesel fleets in the state of Iowa.

As part of the Energy Policy Act of 2005, DERA is designed to achieve significant reductions in diesel emissions among on-road or non-road vehicles and equipment, including school buses, medium and heavy-duty transit buses and trucks, marine engines, locomotives, and non-road engines, equipment, or vehicles.

Iowa school districts, transit systems, or company fleet managers should go to the DERA grant website to read the program information guide and find out more about the grant process. The website includes a list of previous DERA awards.

Applications are being accepted through Sept. 9, 2022.

The total amount of available DERA funds in Iowa is $884,780, which includes a base grant amount of $353,912 and an Environmental Protection Agency incentive bonus of $176,956. In addition, the state is matching that base grant amount with monies from Iowa’s Volkswagen Environmental Mitigation Trust Fund settlement.

Ames, Iowa — The beauty and diversity of pollinators can be enjoyed within the home garden or landscape, if some basic steps are taken to assure their habitat.

In a recent publication called “Gardening for Butterflies and Pollinators,” horticulture specialists with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach explain the life and role of common pollinators, and actions Iowans can take to increase their numbers.

Pollinators are animals that help plants reproduce (produce fruits and seeds) by carrying pollen from one flower to another. Specifically, pollinators carry pollen from the male flower parts to the female flower parts, enticed by the nutrients they derive from the nectar and pollen.

Common insect pollinators in Iowa include honey bees, bumble bees, solitary bees, beetles, butterflies, flies, ants and wasps. Bats, birds and other animals that visit plants can also be pollinators.

The publication lists common nectar-providing plants for the Iowa garden, including trees and shrubs. A list of caterpillar host plants is also provided.

The authors also explain the importance of plant location (full-sun is better), moisture, shelter and protection. For the best pollinator garden, avoid pesticides and be cautious with herbicides.

Once a site is selected, growers should remove existing plant debris or vegetation, such as sod and weeds. Follow good gardening practices, including plant spacing, planting depth, irrigation (especially when plants are young and getting started), and use mulch for weed control and moisture conservation.

It may take several years for butterfly and pollinator habitat to establish and flower, but the results can add another layer of beauty to your property, while helping plants and crops that depend on pollination.

Authors were Laura Jesse Iles, director and extension entomologist with the Plant and Insect Diagnostic Clinic at Iowa State; Nathan Brockman, director of entomology, Reiman Gardens; Donald Lewis, professor and extension entomologist at Iowa State; and Aaron Steil, consumer horticulture specialist with ISU Extension and Outreach.

For more information, contact Laura Jesse Iles at 515-294-0581 or

Photo courtesy of Iowa State University Extension and Outreach

Ashton, Iowa– The Ashton Fire Department was called out for a fire call on Thursday, July 14, 2022, near Ashton.

According to Ashton Fire Chief Andy Gacke, at about 4:15 p.m., the Ashton Fire Department was called to the report of a fire in the median of Highway 60 in the Ashton area.

The chief says the fire department saw two small areas of fire with smoke over the southbound lane of Highway 60 as they approached the scene, which they quickly extinguished.

Gacke says no injuries were reported.

He tells us they think the fire may have been caused by a vehicle with hot brakes, or perhaps by smoking materials tossed out by a motorist on Highway 60.

Chief Gacke reports that the damage was limited to a 100′ by 20′ area of grass.

He says the firefighters who responded were on the scene for about fifteen minutes.

Sibley, Iowa — The Sibley group who is trying to get a mural artist to come to town to paint a free mural has an update for us.

You may remember that we told you at the end of June that an effort, spearheaded by Darcee Schneidermann of Sibley was underway to win a contest sponsored by the Iowa Economic Development Authority. If they win the contest, they get a mural in town, painted by an area artist.

The group needed to make a 60-second video promoting the community, and they needed at least 500 people to vote for their video to continue, and when that part of the contest was finished, they had exceeded the goal.

Recently, the group found out where they were to go from here. Schneidermann tells us that their next assignment was a one-page essay explaining what “pride” means to the community and how the community supports small businesses. She says she was told that essays will be scored on creativity, passion and authenticity. The entry was submitted this week. She says a panel of judges will score Sibley’s video and essay and the highest-scoring community will win the mural.

But she reminds us, that even if they don’t win, she has what you might call a “Plan B.”

Schneidermann tells us they hope to put the mural on the west wall of Northwest Iowa Publishers on the southwest end of Main Street.
First update, posted Jun 28, 2022
UPDATE: Schneidermann says at the last count, they had 550 votes, so they move on to the next round of the contest. They get their next assignment on July 6th.

Original story, posted Jun 28, 2022 at 4:10 p.m.:

Sibley, Iowa — A Sibley resident has spearheaded an effort to win a contest and have a mural painted in the town.

Darcee Schneidermann tells us about it.

The contest is known as the COMMUnity Contest. She tells us how the contest works.

You can go to the Sibley Chamber Facebook page for a link to vote. Schneidermann tells us there are 26 other communities vying for the honor. She says if they don’t win the contest, she has a “Plan B,” you might say.

Schneidermann tells us they hope to put the mural on the west wall of Northwest Iowa Publishers on the southwest end of Main Street. She tells us Susan Sembeck, Ashley Ackerman, and Josh Earll are helping her with the effort. She says the video was submitted through the Sibley Chamber of Commerce since an individual can not submit one.

Sibley, Iowa — A Lake Park man faces a ten-year prison sentence in connection with the death of a Lake Park woman in July of 2020,

Court documents say 50-year-old Christopher Michael Bosma had entered not guilty pleas to one count of Vehicular Homicide-Intoxication, a Class B Felony; and one count of Vehicular Homicide-Reckless Driving, a Class C Felony, in the death of 34-year-old Kelsie Sturm of Lake Park. But he changed his plea in a plea agreement and the charge of Vehicular Homicide-Intoxication was dismissed.

Authorities say in the late afternoon of July 18, 2020, Bosma was the driver of a Polaris Ranger 900XP that was eastbound on the Ed Winkel Memorial Trail and turned north onto Warbler Avenue and allegedly accelerated recklessly causing Sturm, a passenger, to be ejected from the vehicle. Sturm later died of her injuries.

July 13, 2022 - 5:13 pm - Posted in News


Statewide Iowa — If you’re a farmer or an agriculture landowner, you’re probably busy. But here’s a reminder that busy farmers and landowners need to keep in mind. If you haven’t yet certified your acres — your time is almost up.

According to the USDA, agricultural producers who have not yet completed their crop acreage reports after planting should make an appointment with their local Farm Service Agency (FSA) service center before the applicable deadline. July 15th — this Friday — is a major deadline for most crops, but acreage reporting deadlines vary by county and by crop. Producers should make an appointment as soon as possible to avoid missing earlier deadlines.

FSA officials remind us that in order to be eligible for many programs, including disaster assistance, you will need an acreage report on file. To ensure you can benefit from FSA programs, they ask you to call your local FSA office to make an appointment to report your acreage if you haven’t done so already. As a reminder, perennial forage is eligible for continuous acreage reporting, which allows producers to report their acreage once and keep their certification in place until they make a change.

They also tell us that continuous acreage reporting provides an opportunity to substantially streamline producers’ applications for assistance. With protracted drought conditions across the Great Plains and the Western United States, producers who had previously filed a continuous acreage report benefitted from a streamlined application process for disaster programs like the Livestock Forage Disaster Program. Officials encourage producers to continue taking advantage of this tool and simplify their ability to apply for assistance.

An acreage report documents a crop grown on a farm or ranch and its intended uses. Filing an accurate and timely acreage report for all crops and land uses, including failed acreage and prevented planted acreage, can prevent the loss of program benefits.

For more information, click here, or call your local county FSA office soon.

July 12, 2022 - 3:37 pm - Posted in News

Sibley, Iowa — A Sibley man has been arrested and faces five felony counts of sex abuse.

According to criminal complaints filed with the Osceola County Clerk of Court, 32-year-old Mitchel Duskin of Sibley is accused of sexually abusing a juvenile family member on multiple occasions between 2018 and November 2021. The documents note that the victim in these cases was 10, 11, 12, and 13 years of age at the time of the incidents.

Duskin faces five counts of Second Degree Sexual Abuse, a class B felony. According to Iowa code, if convicted of a class B felony, Duskin could face 25 years in prison.

A warrant for his arrest was issued on May 18th. He was arrested last week, and at last report, Duskin remained in the Osceola County Jail in Sibley in lieu of a $10,000 cash or surety bond. Arraignment has been scheduled for Monday, July 25th, 2022.

Sibley, Iowa — Officially, since the departure of former City Administrator Glenn Anderson in March, the City of Sibley has been without someone at the helm. But that all changed recently.

Everly native Susan Sembach has been Sibley’s city clerk for a while, and has been serving in the lead role in the interim, but now she says she will have an additional role.

You may have noticed that Sembach didn’t say “city administrator.”

Sembach tells us about her background.

She gives us her thoughts about taking the position.

Sembach says she looks forward to helping Sibley grow.