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Water Main Break Causes Sanitary Sewer Overflow in Dubuque

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A broken water main pipe at Lowell and Woodworth Streets caused debris to clog a sanitary sewer pipe in the 2400 block of Hempstead Street. Untreated wastewater flowed from the manhole down Hempstead Street before entering the storm sewer system at the intersection of Kaufmann Avenue at Hempstead Street.

The City of Dubuque Water Department crew responding to the water main break notified the Public Works Department of the overflow at approximately 1:30 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 27. The debris causing the pipe blockage was removed and flow directed back into the pipe by 2:30 p.m.

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources cautions people to keep their children and pets away from the noted area, which is posted, for forty-eight (48) hours.

For more information, contact the Iowa Department of Natural Resources' Manchester Field Office at 563-927-2640 or John Klostermann at 563-589-4250.

 

March is Red Cross Month, A Time to Recognize Everyday Heroes

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The American Red Cross is recognizing the country's everyday heroes during Red Cross Month.

"Everyday heroes help those in need in Iowa," said Leslie Schaffer, Regional Executive for the Iowa Region. "They are our volunteers, our blood donors, people who take our classes or those who make a financial contribution to help us help others. During Red Cross Month we thank them for their support."

March has been recognized as Red Cross Month for more than 70 years. All of our presidents, including President Barack Obama, have designated March as Red Cross Month to recognize how the American Red Cross helps people across the country and around the world. On Thursday, March 5, Governor Terry Branstad will sign a proclamation declaring March as Red Cross Month in Iowa.

The Red Cross responds to nearly 70,000 disasters big and small in this country every year. It provides 24-hour support to members of the military, veterans and their families at home and around the world; collects and distributes about 40 percent of the nation's blood supply and trains millions of people in first aid, water safety and other life-saving skills.

Here in the Iowa Region, the Red Cross has responded to 137 local emergencies, mostly single and multi-family fires since January 1, assisting 363 individuals. In fiscal year 2014, Iowa Region Red Cross volunteers responded to 527 disasters, assisted 383 military families and trained 48,345 people in lifesaving skills. And, people from this area donated 43,789 units of blood.

The Iowa Region has also partnered with various organizations across the state, including the Iowa State Marshal's office, to install 564 smoke alarms as part of the Red Cross Home Fire Preparedness Campaign.

"This month is a great time for people to become part of the Red Cross." Schaffer said. "They can become a Red Cross volunteer, work on a preparedness plan for their household, give blood or take a Red Cross class."

The Red Cross is not a government agency and relies on donations of time, money and blood to do its work. An average of 91 cents of every dollar the Red Cross spends is invested in humanitarian services and programs.

Join us at the Best Western Plus, located at 3100 Dodge Street in Dubuque on March 17 from 7:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. as the Red Cross celebrates everyday heroes in Iowa.

About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.

 

Finley Nursing Scholarships Available

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UnityPoint Health Finley Health Foundation and the Finley Hospital School of Nursing Alumni Association announce 2015 scholarship applications are available for individuals pursuing a degree in the nursing field.

Annually, the Finley Health Foundation and Alumni Association award scholarships to qualified area students who are interested in pursuing a career in nursing through an accredited nursing program. Additionally, scholarship opportunities are available for current health care professionals seeking an associate's degree in nursing, bachelor's degree in nursing, master's degree in nursing or nurse practitioner degree.

"As we celebrate Finley's 125 years of service to the Tri-State area, we are more mindful now than ever before of the importance of supporting individuals entering the nursing profession," said Barbara Potts, Finley Health Foundation Executive Director. "It is an honor and privilege to steward the many gifts that have made this scholarship program successful for the last 30 years."

In 2014, Finley Health Foundation and the Alumni Association awarded $12,500 in scholarships. Scholarship award announcements for this year's recipients will be made by May 1, 2015.

Scholarship eligibility requirements and application can be found at unitypoint.org/dbqscholarships. The application deadline is March 31, 2015.

For scholarship information contact the Finley Health Foundation at 563-589-2358.

 

Applications Now Available for City of Dubuque Arts and Cultural Grants for FY 2016

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The City of Dubuque and the Arts and Cultural Affairs Advisory Commission are soliciting competitive applications from all interested parties for two distinct arts and culture funding programs for the fiscal year (FY) 2016 grant cycle, which runs July 1, 2015, through June 30, 2016.

Since 2005, the City of Dubuque has awarded over $2.3 million to area arts and culture organizations and other non-profits for programs that reach thousands of Dubuque adults and children each year. In addition, these funds have leveraged about $968,000 in other community support for arts and culture events and programs.

Guidelines and applications forms for both the special projects grants program and operating support grants program are available at www.cityofdubuque.org/grants.

Over the past two years, the arts and cultural affairs advisory commission and City staff worked to better align the special project arts grant program with the City Council's goals and priorities, best practices in community art funding, and the art needs of the Dubuque community. "We have examined how we can use arts and culture to engage all community members, make our residents more participatory, and ensure that arts, culture, preservation and heritage programs and events are welcoming and inclusive to those outside of a traditional audience," said Ellen Henkels, secretary of the arts and cultural affairs advisory commission.

The City of Dubuque seeks to fund artistic, creative projects that utilize community engagement at their core. Engagement features an active, two-way process in which one party motivates another to get involved or take action-and both parties experience change and growth. It promotes consistent community interaction that is a step beyond the conventional.

Eligibility for the special projects grant includes not only established, 501(C)(3) organizations, but non-profits that operate under an umbrella organization or groups that are acting as a non-profit. "The accessibility of the grants to a wide array of dynamic thinkers and groups in the community was important. We want to fund great art ideas," said Henkels. "Any non-profit group may apply for an art project through this grant, even if its primary mission is not dedicated to the arts."

The minimum grant awarded through the program will be $1,500 and the maximum will be $8,500. City staff is offering two grant workshops specific to the special project funding on April 14, 2015, at noon or at 5 p.m., in the Lacy Board Room, 3rd Floor, Carnegie-Stout Public Library, 360 W. 11th St. The deadline for applications is May 15, 2015.

The operating support fund is designed to assist 501(C) (3) arts and cultural organizations located in the city of Dubuque that primarily serve Dubuque residents with year-round arts and culture events, programs, and services and can demonstrate a record of programmatic and administrative stability. A workshop specific to operating support grants will be held at noon on March 18, 2015, in the Aigler Auditorium, 3rd Floor, Carnegie-Stout Public Library, 360 W. 11th Street. The deadline for applications is April 10, 2015.

All grants are reviewed by the arts and cultural affairs advisory commission and approved by the City Council. Current members of the commission include Sue Riedel (chairperson), Katherine Kluseman, Marina O'Rourke, Ellen Henkels, Gina Siegert, Julie Steffen, and Jessica Teckemeyer.

For additional information, please contact Megan Starr at econdev@cityofdubuque.org or 563-589-4393. Complete application materials are posted online at www.cityofdubuque.org/grants.

 

 

Fish Habitat Program

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On March 11 at 7pm Swiss Valley Nature Center is hosting IDNR Fisheries Biologist Scott Gritters.

He will discuss the improvement of the overwintering fish habitat and other designs that help the survival of some of our favorite sport fish - bluegill, crappie, and bass.

Scott Gritters is a Fisheries Biologist for the Iowa DNR and will walk us through the habitat needs of these fish and how the IDNR along with other organizations are working to improve the overwintering areas locally.

Call 563.556.6745 with questions.

 

City Staff Advocate for Historic Tax Credit Program

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City of Dubuque staff have testified to state legislators in Des Moines in recent weeks in support of Iowa's Historic Preservation and Cultural and Entertainment District (HPCED) Tax Credit Program.

Iowa's HPCED Tax Credit Program was launched in 2000 and allows property owners or developers to claim tax credits equal to 25 percent of qualified rehabilitation costs for eligible historic properties in Iowa. More specifically, it provides a state income tax credit for the sensitive rehabilitation of historic buildings, ensures character-defining features and spaces of buildings are retained, and helps revitalize surrounding neighborhoods.

Dubuque's greater downtown has been transformed through projects that have utilized the HPCED tax credit program, along with the federal rehabilitation credit. Combined with others, these programs have revitalized Dubuque's Main Street, Millwork District, and other adjacent areas. To date, completed Dubuque projects have benefited from over $38 million in HPCED tax credits and leveraged $163.5 million in total investment. HPCED tax credits were utilized in the rehabilitation of more than 30 historic Dubuque buildings, including the Heartland Financial Building (former Walsh Store), Roshek Building, Platinum Building, Cooper Wagon Works Building (now home to Crust restaurant and Eronel), the Cottingham & Butler and Security Buildings, the Hotel Julien, Iowa Inn, German Bank, Schmid Innovation Center (Caradco Building), and Novelty Ironworks Building. These projects have brought thousands of jobs and hundreds of residential units to Dubuque's downtown.

State legislators are currently considering revisions to the HPCED program and City of Dubuque staff shared concerns and advocated to keep the program compatible with all of the scenarios and typical funding sources that impact the types of eligible projects. Assistant City Manager Teri Goodmann testified to the Iowa Administrative Rules Review Committee, a joint Senate/House of Representatives committee that oversees state executive branch agency rulemaking, at their Feb. 6 meeting. Jill Connors, from the City of Dubuque Economic Development Department, testified on Feb. 11 at a public hearing held jointly by the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs and the Iowa Department of Revenue.

Connors also attended a meeting organized by Smart Growth Development/Coalition, a non-profit group based in Dubuque that has been leading efforts on issues regarding the State Historic Tax Credit Program administrative rules change. The meeting in Des Moines was attended by developers, CPAs, tax attorneys, and representatives from the Iowa Economic Development Authority, department of revenue, department of cultural affairs, attorney general's office, and the National Trust for Historic Preservation.

After considering public input, the department of cultural affairs and department of revenue intend to present their final draft of the rules to the Administrative Rules Review Committee before March 13. If the committee finds these rules acceptable, they are expected to be adopted and in effect by May 1.

 

American Advertising Federation of Dubuque Announces ?Local Advertising Awards

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On Friday, Feb. 20, the American Advertising Federation of Dubuque (AAF Dubuque) presented two honorable awards to members of the local advertising community at their annual American Advertising Awards (formerly ADDYS) ceremony. 
 
The AAF Silver Medal Award is presented annually by AAF Dubuque to an outstanding member of the local advertising community. The Silver Medal Award Program was established by the American Advertising Federation to recognize men and women who have made outstanding contributions to the advertising industry. This year, AAF Dubuque awarded Jeff Wilson, Production Manager at McCullough Creative, with the AAF Silver Medal Award. Wilson got his start in the advertising business in 1983 working for Jack McCullough at what is now McCullough Creative. His skills grew hand-in-hand with the company's offerings, making him an integral player in McCullough Creative's evolution with the industry. Wilson also brings a vast amount of knowledge and positivity to the table each day, which made him such a deserving candidate of this award.
 
AAF Dubuque also recognized one of their own with the Member of the Year award. The Member of the Year Award is given to an individual who has worked hard over the year to be a driving force behind the American Advertising Federation of Dubuque. This year, AAF Dubuque presented board member, Stephonie Schmitz, with the Member of the Year award. Schmitz joined the AAF Dubuque Board of Directors in 2013 as the American Advertising Awards Co-Director. Each year, she has helped organize, manage and execute many projects and details that go hand-in-hand with the planning of AAF Dubuque's largest event. Her effective and efficient communication to all members involved in the process has made the planning for this event smooth even amongst the many changes.

 

The Irish Hooley’s 2015 Saint Patrick’s Day Celebration

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The Irish Hooley's 2015 Saint Patrick's Day Celebration will take place Tuesday, March 17, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at the Knights of Columbus Meeting Hall, 781 Locust Street, in Dubuque.

In honor of Saint Patrick's Day, The Irish Hooley is offering a free evening of music, film, dance, travel information and general celebration for everyone of Irish heritage and anyone "Irish at heart" on March 17, the historical date marking the death of Saint Patrick of Ireland in 460 AD.

Partake of dinner and drinks or just enjoy the music. Irish and American food and beverages will be available (alcohol is only for those 21 years of age and older) inside the KC 510 Hall. Admission is free. This is a family friendly event appropriate for all ages.

• 5:30 - 6:30 An Irish Seisiun featuring music by Emily & Alison Ott and John Eby.

• 6:30 - 7:00 Travel in Ireland Part 1; a brief presentation by Mike & Judy Siegert.

• 7:00 - 7:30 Travel in Ireland Part 2: Saint Patrick's Way & the Irish Whiskey Trail.

• 7:30 - 8:00 Irish Dance Presentation by the McNulty School of Irish Dance.

• 8:00 - 8:30 It Never Rains in an Irish Pub - a brief excerpt from The Irish Pub Film.

• Announcing "An Irish Sunday" at the Julien Dubuque International Film

• Festival plus the Irish Hooley festival lineup and other events for 2015.

Parking is available in the KC Hall Parking lots, the City of Dubuque Parking Ramp across the street from the hall, and along the downtown streets.


The mission of The Irish Hooley is to promote understanding of Irish and Celtic culture through an annual series of music, dance, film, and educational events, fostering international dialogue and exchange throughout the Dubuque Metropolitan Region (operating as an established 501(C) 3).

Our goals are to create and promote sustainable, annual educational and cultural concerts and events in partnership with other area non-profit organizations including The Four Mounds Foundation and Project Heart, The University of Dubuque, The Dubuque Symphony Orchestra, Dubuque Fire Pipes & Drums, Dubuque American Legion Post 6, The Ancient Order of Hibernians (AOH) - Dubuque Divisions 1 & 2, The Julien Dubuque International Film Festival, and the Knights of Columbus, Council 510 to play a prominent cultural role in the greater Dubuque area. We raise a significant portion of revenue through grants, sponsorship, and donations for the long-term growth and success of our organization and to support our own charitable giving (donations to and partnership with other like-minded non-profits). We also strive to expand the level of transparency and engagement within the community and to involve more young people in our events so they gain a greater appreciation for their heritage and grow into leadership positions within our organization over time.

 

 

Becoming an Iowa Outdoor Woman Workshop

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Pheasants Forever, Iowa DNR, and Dubuque County Conservation Board will sponsor the "Becoming an Iowa Outdoor Woman" Workshop at Swiss Valley Nature Center in Peosta on Saturday, March 7, from 9am to 1pm.

"Becoming an Outdoor Woman" ("BOW") means becoming a more competent, more confident and aware individual. BOW is an outdoor skills program that offers women a chance to grow. 20,000 + women attend BOW events every year!

If you are 18 years old or older and are interested in becoming an Iowa outdoors woman, join us for a fun filled day of outdoor activities and education at Swiss Valley Nature Center. Registration will begin at 8:30 am and activities will kick off at 9:00 am. Activities for the workshop include: firearm education, fly casting, fly tying, snowshoe hike, women's outdoor fashion and MORE.

For more information or to register call Jenny Ammon at 563.556.6745.

 

34th Annual Gaelic Gallop 8K and 2 Mile Fun Run/Walk

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Total Fitness Rec Center will host the "Runnin' O' the Green" in Dyersville from the west side of the community on Saturday, March 14, 2015. The race will again start at St Francis Xavier School Auditorium and Gymnasium, 203 2nd St SW in Dyersville.

There will be something for everyone - fun for the whole family:

• Leprechaun Leap for kids 6 & younger (a 50 yard dash)

• Irish Jog for kids 7-12 (a 1/2 mile Fun Run/Walk) New this year

• 2 Mile Fun Run/Walk for all ages. Now including Kids Divisions

• 8K Road Race for the more serious runners of all ages (5 mile loop)

We hope people come out for the run and stay for the day's festivities.

The race schedule is as follows:

8:15 am - Check in and Registration opens
9:30 am - Leprechaun Leap
9:35 am - Irish Jog
10:00 am - 8K Road Race-shotgun start
10:05 am - 2 Mile Run-shotgun start

Online Race Registration will be available through noon on March 13 at www.totalfitnessdyersville.com

Already registered? Pre-registered participants can pick up their race packets from 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm Friday, March 13, in the Total Fitness Lobby. Total Fitness is located at 1110 -16th Ave Ct SE in Dyersville.

Packets are available on race day from 8:00 am to 9:3 0am at St. Francis Xavier Auditorium. Parking will be limited.

Join us for all of the Irish fun on Saturday, March 14! Dyersville will host the Annual St. Patrick's Day Parade downtown at 1:30 p.m.

 

The relationship between paint and mood

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Painting is one of the easiest and least expensive ways to transform the look of a space. The colors homeowners choose for their walls can give rooms their own unique feel and even affect the moods of the people within them.

Finding the right shade for a bedroom or kitchen involves more than just selecting the first color that catches your eye. Design experts and psychologists alike say it may be worthwhile to choose a color that helps you feel good rather than just following design trends. The paint color you pick may add energy to a space or create a tranquil retreat where you can unwind at the end of the day.

Blue
To create a spa-like environment and a more serene space, look to shades of blue in soft variations. Cool blues are soothing colors that can help lower stress levels and promote sleep. That's why blue is a frequent fixture in bedrooms and bathrooms. Just be advised that too much blue can make a room appear cold and stark, so balance out blue with some warmer accents.

Orange
Many people do not immediately consider bright orange for their homes, but when used as an accent shade, orange can really brighten up a home. Orange is considered a shade that expands creativity and imparts a youthful appeal to a space. Consider an orange accent wall or a burst of color with orange throw pillows. If pumpkin orange is a little too bold for you, tone it down by choosing a more pastel, peachy hue, which is equally warm and energizing.

Red
Red stimulates energy and appetite, which is why the shade is so popular in restaurants and home dining spaces. Red is a good choice for social gathering rooms but may not be the wisest choice for a bedroom, as the color may prove overstimulating.

Green
Green can evoke composure and tranquility and works in any room of the house. Since green is the primary color of nature, it also works well for those people who want to bring some of the outdoors inside and work with the fresh starts and new growth that green can inspire. To make green feel less subdued and sleepy, work with its complementary opposite, red, by using a few bold red accents here and there to balance out the tranquility of green.

Purple
People have long related purple to royalty, and this dramatic color can add a formal, regal aspect to a home depending on the hue. Purple also may help stimulate the creative side of the brain. In paler shades of lavender, purple can seem almost ethereal and spiritual. Some designers suggest avoiding purple in a bedroom because that is a place you want your brain to rest rather than be stimulated.

Yellow
Few colors are more vibrant than yellow, which can help stimulate conversation and make thoughts more focused. A luminous shade of yellow is an ideal way to make any space more welcoming and bright. Just use it sparingly, as too much yellow may not be a good thing. Yellow accents mixed with touches of purple can offer the balance needed to prevent yellow rooms from overwhelming residents and guests.

Home decorators should keep in mind that colors can be blended to create the desired environment. A color scheme based on complementary colors, or those opposite on the color wheel, may fit. Otherwise, analogous color schemes, or those colors that are next to one another on the color wheel, can create a variation that suits your design needs.

 

Snack foods that promote better sleep

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According to the National Sleep Foundation, changes in sleep patterns are a part of the aging process. Many people experience difficulty falling asleep and then staying asleep as they age, and that difficulty can make men and women over 50 feel more tired during the day.

But even though difficulty sleeping may be a part of aging, that does not mean men and women over 50 cannot take steps to improve their sleeping patterns. For example, certain snack foods may help to improve quality of sleep, especially when these foods replace less healthy snacking options. While men and women over 50 should always consult with their physicians before making any changes to their diets, the AARP notes that the following are a handful of snack foods that promote better sleep.

• Almonds: Magnesium is a mineral with muscle-relaxing properties, and almonds contain enough magnesium to help men and women get a better night's sleep. A small amount of almonds before bed might be enough to make falling and staying asleep easier.

• Bananas: Much like almonds, bananas provide a substantial amount of magnesium. Bananas also contain the amino acid tryptophan, which many people associate with Thanksgiving turkey. While tryptophan might be most often associated with the sleepiness people feel after eating a holiday meal, it also has been linked to better sleep quality, so a banana shortly before bed might be just what you need to fall and stay asleep.

• Cheese and crackers: One more traditional snack may just help you get a better night's sleep. Cheese and crackers contain tryptophan and carbohydrates, which can induce a better night's sleep and help you fall asleep sooner.

• Cherries: Cherries contain the sleep hormone melatonin, and the AARP notes that recent studies indicated that participants who drank tart cherry juice on a daily basis fell asleep more quickly and slept longer and better than participants who did not.

• Hummus: The primary ingredient in hummus is chickpeas, which are loaded with tryptophan, folate and vitamin B6. Folate has proven especially beneficial to older men and women who need help regulating their sleep patterns, while vitamin B6 helps the body regulate its clock.

• Peanut butter: Peanut butter is another snacking item loaded with tryptophan. Spread some peanut butter on a carbohydrate, whether it's a slice of toast or some crackers, before going to bed, and you may enjoy a better, longer sleep.

• Walnuts: Like cherries, walnuts contain melatonin, which can contribute to a longer, more restful night's sleep. Walnuts also can help regulate stress, which is a leading cause of sleeping difficulty.

Many men and women experience difficulty sleeping as they age. But the right foods may just help combat such problems and help men and women get a more adequate night's sleep.

 

Home remedies for joint pain can provide relief

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Stiff, painful joints affect a vast number of people. According to the American College of Rheumatology, arthritis and other rheumatic diseases afflict roughly 23 percent of Americans, while Canadian Health Surveys indicate that nearly 17 percent of the Canadian adult population have arthritis. The number of people living with arthritis is expected to increase as the Baby Boomer generation continues to age. 

Treatments for joint pain and stiffness range from medication to physical therapy. Finding the right regimen may take some effort, including some trial and error. For those looking for treatments they can try at home, consider these homespun remedies. (Note: Check with a physician to confirm the safety of alternative treatments before adding herbs to or modifying your existing medications.)

• Exercise more. Regular movement helps to maintain flexibility in the body's joints. Those with joint pain may shy away from exercise, but they could be doing themselves a disservice. Low-impact exercises, like swimming and water aerobics, can work out muscles and joints without adding extra stress. Walking can replace jogging or running, and yoga and pilates may be just the thing for deep stretching.

• Lose weight. Joint pain is often tied to obesity. Losing just a few pounds can ease up strain on certain joints, such as the hips, feet and knees. Shedding weight can improve mobility and decrease pain and potential future damage to joints. Exercise goes hand-in-hand with healthy eating to lose weight.

• Consider hot and cold therapies. Using a heating pad, hot shower or bath or an ice pack can work wonders on arthritis-related pains. Hot treatments will loosen up stiff joints, while cold therapy is best for acute pain relief. Do not apply hot and cold packs to the skin directly, as this can injure the skin. Wrap them in a towel first before application.

• Include anti-inflammatory foods and beverages in your diet. Explore the many different natural foods and herbs that are purported to reduce inflammation in the body. Ginger, turmeric, flaxseed, grape juice, and bromelain can alleviate inflammation and stiffness. Foods such as fatty fish and nuts high in omega-3 fatty acids also will help fight inflammation. Blueberries, garlic, celery, and kelp should be included in diets as well.

• Go for a massage. The Arthritis Foundation says regular massages can help reduce pain and stiffness and improve range of motion. The massage therapist should have experience working on people with arthritis. In addition, massages should be performed by licensed physical therapists and guided by a doctor's recommendation.

• Increase magnesium intake. Magnesium can alleviate pain and reduce inflammation. It is best ingested through dark, leafy greens but also can be taken in supplement form. Magnesium oil can be applied topically to sore joint areas.

Joint pain can impact daily life and make activities less enjoyable. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways that do not require harsh medications to loosen joints and combat pain.

 

Bird Banding Program Offered

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Iowa DNR and the Friends of the Mines of Spain will sponsor a bird banding program with David Shealer on March 8 at the Mines of Spain Recreation Area. The program will begin at 1:00 pm at the E.B. Lyons Interpretive Center, located at 8991 Bellevue Heights south of Dubuque.

David Shealer, a Professor at Loras College, will identify, weigh, measure, sex and determine the birds' health.  Assist in the capture of songbirds and get a chance to hold and look at various songbirds found in the area. This is a good chance to learn to identify and get familiar with birds at your feeders.

Adults and children alike will enjoy this program, where you get a hands-on and up-close look at songbirds found in our area. The feeders at the center have numerous birds coming and going all year long, with over 15 different species of songbirds utilizing the feeders during the winter. Some of the birds that will be banded might include the Black Capped Chickadee, White Breasted Nuthatch, Cardinals, Downy Woodpecker, Goldfinch and Tufted Titmouse.

The E.B. Lyons Interpretive Center will be open from 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. with the program starting at 1:00 p.m. Come early, stay late and explore the various exhibits and aquariums found throughout the center or take a hike on one of the trails that start just outside the interpretive center.

For more information about the program or the Mines of Spain call the E. B. Lyons Interpretive Center at 563-556-0620. To learn about upcoming programs visit the park's website at www.minesofspain.org.

 

Gallery C announces new exhibit Chaos and Collapse

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Clarke University Art Faculty members Jessica Teckemeyer and Louise Kames will present the exhibition Chaos and Collapse at Gallery C in the Schmid Innovation Center Friday, March 6, through Sunday, April 26. A reception for the artists will be held Friday, March 6, from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. at Gallery C, located at 900 Jackson Street, Dubuque in the Schmid Innovation Center.

Teckemeyer will display sculptures from her Meeting Our Shadow and Creation series. Each sculpture in the Meeting Our Shadow series is a response to tragic events of Sandy Hook Elementary, the Colorado movie theatre shooting, and the Boston Marathon bombing. Both murderer and victim are represented as archetypes. The artwork explores themes including inner confrontation, violence, vulnerability, and death. The Creation series continues her investigation of making the unreal become tangible through sculptural forms. Formally, the sculptures combine actual plant life with fragmented animal bodies. The artworks question what we know to be true as the combination violates the rules of nature in favor of the notion of chaos.

Kames will exhibit pastel drawings of organic imagery, roots and leaves arranged in an iconic manner. The drawings present the viewer with timeless, meditative spaces. In many cases the still life subject of drawings has been reclaimed from compost piles and roadside clippings. The paradox that natural decay can be beautiful suggests a universal yet everyday cycle of death and resurrection.

Jessica Teckemeyer maintains an active studio practice and is an Assistant Professor at Clarke University in Dubuque, Iowa. She received her Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities. Teckemeyer's artworks have been featured in six solo exhibits and shown in over 40 group exhibitions. Recently she has received Best in Show for the Social & Politically Engaged Art at the Reece Museum in Tennessee, Second Prize at the Tallahassee International hosted at the Florida State University Museum of Fine Arts, and $10,000 in Iowa Arts Council Grants supported through the National Endowment for the Arts.

Louise Kames holds a MFA degree in drawing and printmaking from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is a professor of art at Clarke University where she chairs the Art and Art History Department. Her drawings, print and installation-based work are exhibited widely including solo exhibitions across Iowa and the Midwest region. She is a regular participant in regional, national and international juried exhibitions. Kames enjoys the creative and cultural exchange offered at artist residencies. Kames created site-specific installation works for Dubuque's Voices from the Warehouse Exhibit in 2005 and 2010. The 2010 installation, Sacred Grove, was selected for inclusion in Beacons, An Exhibition of Luminous Art at the Urban Institute of Contemporary Art in Grand Rapids, MI and the 2012 Iowa Artists: Print at the Des Moines Art Center.

Gallery C is pleased to have the artists present for the Opening Reception on Friday, March 6, 5:30 - 8:30pm. All are invited and welcome to attend this exhibition, and to participate in the expanding art scene in the Millwork District. There is no charge and refreshments will be served.

Gallery C, Carolyn M, is located in the Schmid Innovation Center at 900 Jackson Street in Dubuque, IA. Main entrance doors are on Jackson St near 10th Ave. The Gallery is open daily. Be a part of the gallery's evolving exhibitions that create dialog, engage the community, and enrich the experience of the arts in Dubuque.

 

Red Cross to Hold Training Classes

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Each year, more than 5 million people learn how to save a life in American Red Cross training classes, and people in northeast Iowa can join the ranks of these everyday heroes by taking a class now.

First Aid and CPR/AED courses teach people how to perform CPR and use an AED, what to do if someone is choking, and how to prevent and respond to other emergencies until advanced medical help arrives. Course participants also learn how to control bleeding as well as how to care for seizures and other sudden illnesses.

Most classes are held at the Red Cross office located at 2400 Asbury Road in Dubuque. Classes are scheduled for March 8 and March 16 at varying costs.

Red Cross training courses meet OSHA guidelines, feature hands-on skills practice and include 2-year certifications, free digital materials and skill refreshers.

People can visit redcross.org/training or call 1-800-RED-CROSS for details and to register for a class.

The Red Cross is the nation's leading provider of health and safety courses, such as CPR, First Aid and Lifeguard training. Each year, more than 6.5 million Americans participate in Red Cross training programs, including first responders, educators, babysitters, and people who want to be prepared to help others in an emergency.

 

Comedy Competition Returns to Diamond Jo Casino

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More than 50 comics from around the country will compete in the 4th Annual Comedy $10K Competition from April 29 through May 2.

Comedians will compete over four days for their share of $10,000 in prizes, with a grand prize of $3,000. Local radio personalities will host the preliminary rounds on Wednesday, April 29, through Friday, May 1, with shows at 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. Kristi Lee of The Bob and Tom Show will host the semifinals at 7 p.m. and finals at 9 p.m. on Saturday, May 2. Comedian B.T., originally from Muskogee, Okla., took home the top prize in 2014.

Ticket prices start at $10 for all shows and go on sale Saturday, Feb. 14, at 10 a.m. at www.diamondjodubuque.com; the Diamond Jo Casino's Diamond Club, Mississippi Moon Bar Box Office or by calling 563-690-4800.

Visit www.diamondjodubuque.com to view all upcoming concerts, comedy, Club 84 and other special events at Mississippi Moon Bar. Mississippi Moon Bar is age restricted; attendees must be 21 years or older.

 

CABARET AUDITIONS SET

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Auditions for the musical Cabaret, to be presented July 24-26, July 30-31 and August 1-2, will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. Monday-Tuesday, March 30-31. Callbacks will be from 7 to 9 p.m. Wednesday, April 1. Auditions and callbacks will take place at the Grand Opera House and will be open to all ages.

Those auditioning should prepare approximately 32 bars of a song in the style of the musical. Dress comfortably for a movement audition and be prepared to dance. Readings will be provided.

Cabaret will be directed by Joe Klinebriel, with music direction by Kristen Eby and choreography by Megan MacLeod.

Perusal copies of the script are available and can be checked out from the Grand Opera House business office, 135 W. Eighth St., second floor. They must be returned. Business hours are 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Monday-Friday.

Information on upcoming auditions and other Grand events are available at www.thegrandoperahouse.com or by calling the business office at 563-588-4356. Specific questions about "Cabaret" can be directed to Jill Keck at office@thegrandoperahouse.com.

 

Fish Habitat Program

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The  Dubuque County Conservation Board will sponsor a Fish Habitat Program at Swiss Valley Nature Center on Wednesday, March 11, at 7:00 pm.

Scott Gritters, Fisheries Biologist with the Iowa DNR, will discuss how multiple agencies have implemented projects to improve the winter habitat of many Centrarchids (or, to the layperson, bluegills, crappie and bass).

Scott will discuss the needs of these fish during the winter months and how the DNR is better designing habitats based on their observations. This program will be very informative; participants will get a chance to learn about their river and find some new places to throw the bobber!

Scott Gritters is a Fisheries Biologist for Iowa DNR out of Bellevue, Iowa. He loves the river and enjoys educating the public on the river's many diverse systems. Scott is well versed in his fisheries knowledge and is a very passionate speaker. Do not miss this program!

This program is free and all are welcome to attend.

Call 563.556.6745 with any questions.

 

City Welcomes Applications for Next Round of City Life

 

Nominations open for Second Annual Iowa Job Honor Awards

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New initiative aims to encourage disadvantaged jobseekers and energize the work ethic across Iowa, by celebrating "A New Kind of Hero"

DES MOINES, IA - The Iowa Job Honor Awards is accepting nominations for its second annual awards event, to be conducted June 10, 2015 at the Quad Cities Waterfront Convention Center in Bettendorf, Iowa. Launched in 2014, the Awards celebrate Iowans who have overcome significant barriers to employment and the employers who hire them.

"Our society celebrates lottery winners, celebrities and professional athletes," notes founder and director Kyle Horn. "We rarely hear inspiring stories of individuals who have lifted themselves from poverty through the hard work and perseverance that leads to meaningful employment. It's time for a new kind of hero."

The Second Annual Iowa Job Honor Awards will be presented at the Iowa Association of Business and Industry annual conference on June 10-12, 2015 in the Quad Cities, before an audience of several hundred Iowa business leaders.

Top employee honorees will bring home $500 each, and winners in both the employee and employer categories will receive engraved awards. Biographical videos will be presented for all honorees. "Expect some deeply moving personal stories," says Horn. Previous honorees have overcome physical and mental disabilities, criminal convictions, limited English proficiency, and long-term unemployment in their struggle for employment.

Nominations are invited through the organization's website, www.JobHonor.org before the April 3, 2015 deadline. Inspiring videos of last year's honorees can also be viewed at the website.

"In the midst of Iowa's talent shortage, it's time for employers to get serious about Iowa's untapped workforce," says Horn. "Individuals who have overcome patterns of failure or challenges such as disability are not only highly qualified employees, but frequently they demonstrate a remarkable work ethic and loyalty."

About the Iowa Job Honor Awards:
The Iowa Job Honor Awards is an annual awards event celebrating Iowans who have overcome significant barriers to employment, and the employers who hire them. IJHA's mission is to rekindle hope and energize the work ethic across Iowa, through the celebration of a new kind of hero.

 

Germ-zapping robot fights infection at Finley Hospital

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Fighting hospital infections is an ongoing priority for Finley

Approximately one out of every 20 hospital patients nationwide is affected by infections, such as Clostridium difficile (C. diff) and Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). In order to reduce health care-associated infections (HAIs), UnityPoint Health Finley Hospital has added a Xenex UV light disinfection system to help the fight.

HAIs are infections patients acquire while receiving care for another condition. The Xenex robot has been scientifically proven to be effective against dangerous pathogens, including C. diff, influenza and staph bacteria, including MRSA. Studies showed the Xenex robot was twenty times more effective than regular cleaning protocol. This is crucial in reducing infections in hospitals because C. diff spores can live longer on hard surfaces and other pathogens can live for days or weeks.

"Quality care is at the center of everything we do and that's why we've invested in technology to help reduce the number of health care-associated infections for our patients," said David Brandon, President and CEO at Finley. "We selected the Xenex system because studies at other health care organizations have credited the system for helping reduce MRSA and C. diff infection rates by more than 50 percent."

At Finley Hospital two separate departments - Environmental Services and the Operating Rooms - will have staff specially trained to operate the Xenex robot.

To disinfect a room after standard discharge cleaning processes are complete, staff wheel the Xenex robot in the room, place it next to the bed, begin the automated system and exit the room. The Xenex UV light disinfection system uses ultraviolet (UV-C) light 25,000 times more powerful than sunlight to destroy bacteria, viruses, fungi and bacterial spores. The robot emits pulses of the UV light that reaches nearly every surface of the room and breaks up the DNA of any pathogens present. This process causes the pathogen to explode, rendering it unable to reproduce. The entire Xenex disinfecting process takes approximately 15 minutes.

Unlike other disinfection processes and systems, the Xenex robot does not leave a chemical residue, such as mercury or hydrogen peroxide. Xenex stands as the only "green" technology used in automated room disinfection, now utilized in over 250 hospitals and VA facilities nationwide.

"Every day at Finley Hospital we strive to provide the best outcome for every patient. Eliminating health care-associated infections is a key component of providing that high quality care," said Brandon. "With UV light disinfection, we have taken our commitment to infection prevention to a new level not previously possible."

 

2015 BIENNIAL JURIED EXHIBITION

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The fifth Dubuque Museum of Art Biennial Juried Exhibition opens Saturday, March 14, 2015, generously sponsored by Premier Bank and Marella fine gift shop.

The Dubuque Museum of Art organizes this popular and competitive exhibition every two years to highlight the quality and variety of artwork currently being produced by regional artists. To enter the competition artists must live within a 200 mile radius of Dubuque, and only artwork created in the last two years qualifies.

Special thanks to this year's juror, Mrs. Jane Milosh, Director of the Smithsonian Provenance Research Initiative, Office of the Under Secretary for History, Art, and Culture. Mrs. Milosch will present a gallery talk on May 31st and will announce the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place awards for the Biennial at that time.

The 2015 Biennial was the most competitive call for entries yet with 176 artists submitting 508 works of art. Of those, 59 works by 48 artists were selected by the juror for the exhibition.

A Member Reception will be held Friday, March 13, 2015 from 5:00 to 7:00 PM. The reception will also celebrate the new exhibitions Finding Beauty: Photography by Robert Rivoire and a salon style installation of works from the DUMA permanent collection.

The Dubuque Museum of Art is located at 701 Locust Street. Phone (563)557-1851 or visit www.dbqart.com.

 

The Grand Opera House presents THE DROWSY CHAPERONE

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The Grand Opera House will present "The Drowsy Chaperone" at 7:30 p.m. Fridays-Saturdays, February 27-28 and March 6-7; and 2 p.m. Sunday, March 1.

A parody of American musical comedy of the 1920s, the musical sets the stage with the houselights down. A man in a chair appears on stage and puts on his favorite record: the cast recording of a fictitious 1928 musical. The recording comes to life as the man in the chair looks on. 

Tickets are $20 for adults and $12 for those younger than 18. Tickets can be purchased through the Grand Opera House box office, 135 W. Eighth St.; by calling 563-588-1305; or by visiting www.thegrandoperahouse.com.

Performances and free parking are sponsored by Radio Dubuque, Mediacom and Dupaco Community Credit Union.
For more information, visit www.thegrandoperahouse.com or call 563-588-1305.

 

Dubuque County Conservation Board Summer Camp Schedule

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The following camps will be offered the summer of 2015 at the Swiss Valley Nature Center. Please pay close attention to the details of the camps' ages, fees and quantity limits.

Toddling into Nature - Age 3 - "Turtles" ($4 per camper)
Session 1: Thursday & Friday, June 18 & 19, 9:00 am to 11:30 am
Session 2: Thursday & Friday, June 25 & 26, 9:00 am to 11:30 am
Toddlers will enjoy learning about the famous reptile known as the TURTLE. They will learn about their adaptations, native turtles and where to find turtles. Your child will explore the outdoors through games, books, and hands-on activities. This camp will be limited to 12 participants and registration is required by June 5, 2015.

Sapling Camp - Ages 4-6 - "Growing Wild" ($5 per camper)
Session 1: Monday & Tuesday, June 15 & 16, 9:00 am to 12:30 pm
Session 2: Monday & Tuesday, June 22 & 23, 9:00 am to 12:30 pm
This camp is designed for preschool age and first year school students. The two-day schedule will include activities involving outdoor recreation, reading, snacks, songs, crafts, games, and hiking, all associated with growing plants. Nature is full of wonder and our 4-, 5-, and 6-year-olds will have no problem embracing the awesome world of photosynthesis! Parents are encouraged to stay during camp but are not required. A snack is provided during this camp, but pack a lunch for your child as one will not be provided. This camp will be limited to 15 participants at each session and requires registration by June 5, 2015.

Maple Camp - Ages 7-9 - "Explorer Camp" ($7 per camper)
Session 1: Tuesday-Thursday, July 7-9, 9:00 am to 1:00 pm
Session 2: Tuesday-Thursday, July 14-16, 9:00 am to 1:00 pm
This camp is made for those children who cannot get enough of the outdoors. Children ages 7 to 9 will love the hands-on activities focused on the environment and how they fit into it. Explorer camp will have the kids learning about the magic that exists every day in our many habitats! We will hike, read, explore and more! A snack is provided during this camp, but pack a lunch for your child as one will not be provided. This camp will be limited to 20 participants at each session and requires registration by June 26, 2015.

Oak Camp - Ages 10-12 - "Watersheds" ($15 per camper)
Tuesday-Friday, July 21-24, 9:00 am to 2:00 pm
This camp is taking the next step into the outdoors. Participants will discover watersheds! We will explore different water habitats and get a chance to travel to streams, rivers and ponds. This camp will be limited to 20 participants and requires registration by July 10, 2015.

T.E.A. (Teen Extreme Adventures) - Ages 13-16 ($25 per camper)
Monday-Tuesday, July 28-29 (Overnight)
This camp will be an opportunity for participants to practice team building, learn about outdoor skills, camping, fire starting, and water recreation. Participants will canoe, picnic, hike, and learn about Aldo Leopold. This camp will be limited and requires registration by Wednesday, July 17, 2015.

Day Camps - Ages 5-12 - "Adventures at Swiss" ($4 per camper)
Tuesday, August 4, 9-11 am
Thursday, August 6, 9-11 am
These two day camps will allow children to hike and learn about the treasures of NE Iowa through hands-on activities. Preregistration by July 21, 2015.

To register supply the name of the camper and his/her parent or guardian, your address, email address, and phone numbers where you can be reached. Indicate which camp and how many campers you want to register in each. After this information plus the registration packet (found on www.dubuquecounty.org/conservation) and the program fee are received at Swiss Valley Nature Center, Summer Camps, 13606 Swiss Valley Rd., Peosta, IA 52068, your child will be registered.

Camps will be filled on a first come, first served basis.

If you have any questions please call the office at 563.556.6745 or email jammon@dbqco.org

 

13,000 GIRL SCOUTS GEAR UP FOR COOKIE SEASON

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City's FY2016 Budget Public Meetings Start Feb. 4

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The Dubuque City Council will hold a series of public meetings to review City department/division budget details as part of the Fiscal Year (FY) 2016 recommended budget review process. The City Council will then hold a final public hearing on Thursday, March 12, to adopt the FY2016 Operating and Capital Budgets.

The public is invited to attend and provide input at these meetings as City staff from each department and division present FY2016 budget information to the City Council.

Budget meetings are also aired live on Dubuque's CityChannel (digital channel 85.2, analog channel 8) on the Mediacom cable system and streamed live and archived on the City's website at www.cityofdubuque.org/media.

All meetings begin at 6:30 p.m. and are held in the City Council Chambers on the second floor of the Historic Federal Building at 350 W. Sixth St.

SCHEDULE:

February 4, 2015: Information Services, Legal Services, City Manager's Office, City Council, City Clerk and Cable TV

February 5, 2015: Library, Planning, Finance, Human Rights, Airport and Building Services

February 10, 2015: Housing, Parking, Transit and Economic Development

February 23, 2015: Purchase of Services, Park, Recreation, Five Flags Civic Center and Grand River Center

March 3, 2015: Health Services, Emergency Management, Emergency Communications, Police and Fire

March 5, 2015: Water, Water & Resource Recovery Center, Public Works and Engineering

March 12, 2015: Public Hearing to adopt the Fiscal Year 2016 budget

Dubuque City Manager Michael Van Milligen will present the FY2016 Recommended Budget document to the City Council at their regular meeting on Monday, Feb. 2. The recommended budget materials will also be posted on the City of Dubuque website on Monday, Feb. 2, at www.cityofdubuque.org/FY2016budget and printed copies will be made available for viewing at the City Clerk's Office in City Hall, and available for checkout from the Carnegie-Stout Public Library Reference Desk.

For more information, contact Budget Director Jennifer Larson at 589-4110 or jlarson@cityofdubuque.org.

 

 

Harness the power of purple

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February babies have something special to celebrate. Amethyst, a beautifully colored gemstone, just happens to be the birthstone for the month of February.

According to the International Colored Gemstones Association, amethyst, a violet variety of quartz, has been coveted for centuries by royalty and even religious figures. Amethyst has even been described in religious teachings as a symbol of the Spirit of God by Moses. These violet stones have been worn in priestly robes, and the Russian Empress Catherine the Great commissioned miners to search for more amethyst in the Ural Mountains of Russia. A large amethyst is among the closely guarded gemstones in the British Crown Jewels.

Amethyst stones are purported to carry various powers. The ancient Greeks believed they protected against intoxication. That is why the stone is named for the Greek word "amethystos," meaning sober. Wine was often served out of amethyst goblets to prevent overindulgence in the beverage. Even today people who are trying to overcome addictive behaviors are known to carry amethyst stones.

Some also view amethyst as a symbol of spirituality and piety. The stone has been used as ornaments on crosses and in various religious ceremonies. A 15th century Papal ring is said to have amethyst stone on it.

Amethyst was once considered more valuable than diamonds. Those who wear amethyst jewelry should take heed that the stone can change color to yellow or brownish red when heated. Some amethysts are also pale or colorless in daylight and can lose their color with extreme exposure to sunlight. Therefore, wearers should not wear amethyst while sunbathing or when they are exposed to ultraviolet light.

Amethyst jewelry can make anyone feel like royalty. It may be a fitting birthstone for February, when people are looking to overcome adversity or avoid the perils of overindulgence during Mardi Gras or Super Bowl festivities. It also makes a perfect symbol of love and affection for Valentine's Day, as some believe amethyst strengthens the bond of love in a relationship.

Shoppers can find amethyst jewelry stores throughout the year, but certain pieces may go on sale in late January and into February to take advantage of birthstone gifts.

 

Fun facts about February

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February is the shortest month of the year, but many people have no idea why that is. February is the only month to have fewer than 30 days, but there is no scientific reason behind that distinction, though there have been various changes to the calendar throughout the centuries, and eventually February became what it is today.

The Romans developed a 10 month calendar that began with the Spring equinox in March and ended in December. There is belief that what is now February was overlooked when this calendar was created, as winter weather had little to do with the harvest in the northern hemisphere, where Rome is located. Romans essentially considered the winter a period of time with no distinctive months.

When the second king of Rome, Numa Pompilius, took to the throne in 713 BC, he had plans to make the calendar more accurate by synchronizing it with the actual lunar year, which is roughly 354 days long. Thus, two new months, January and February, were added to the end of the calendar. Both January and February had 28 days.
At the time, even numbers were considered bad luck, and these months were not looked upon favorably by the king. So he decided to make changes once more and added a day to January to make it 29 days long. February was left untouched, remaining an "unlucky" month and one devoted to honoring the dead and performing rites of purification, as the word February comes from februare, which means "to purify."

February remained the last month of the year for roughly 200 years until the calendar was reevaluated and February was reassigned as the second month, with January being the start of the new year.

This new 355-day calendar simply could not stay in sync with the seasons because it did not account for the amount of time it takes the Earth to orbit the sun. Therefore, an extra "month" of 27 days was added after February 23 each year to play catch-up. Sometimes this extra month was overlooked or not scheduled in time, continuing the calendar conundrum.

Julius Caesar was responsible for tackling calendar problems further when he was in power. He wished to make the calendar solar-based, like the one Egyptians used, instead of the older lunar-based calendar. This led to the creation of the Julian calendar. Ten days were added to the calendar year in various months, and February was increased every four years (leap year) to 29 days to coordinate the calendar year to the solar cycle of roughly 365.2425 days.

February remains the shortest month of the year. Through the years there has been no widespread attempt to reorganize the calendar once more to even out the months and give extra time to February. As a result of the shorter number of days, February has some unique attributes. In common years, February can pass without a single full moon. The next time this will happen is in 2018. Once every six years, February is the only month that has four, full seven-day weeks.

February starts on the same day of the week as March and November in common years, and on the same day of the week as August on leap years. February ends on the same day of the week as October every year. In leap years, it is the only month that begins and ends on the same weekday.

People born on a leap year technically celebrate their birthday only once every four years, but most observe it on the 28th. Celebrities born on February 29 include Tony Robbins, Antonio Sabato, Jr., Mervyn Warren, and Dennis Farina.

Despite its status as the shortest month, February is packed with many events, including Valentine's Day and Groundhog's Day. Americans celebrate the birth of two presidents in February, as well as Black History Month. Mexicans celebrate Flag Day in February, while residents of St. Lucia celebrate their Independence Day. February is also a time for families, especially in Canada, where Family Day is celebrated on the third Monday of the month in many provinces.

February is also an important month for sports fans, as two teams face each other in the Super Bowl on the first Sunday of February.

No one really knows for certain why February was relegated to the shortest month. However, with so much trivia and special events surrounding the month, it is still a special time of year.

 

Red Cross and Dubuque Firefighters to Install Smoke Alarms in Sheridan Village Apartments

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Project follows two fires at the complex in November and December

American Red Cross volunteers and the Dubuque Fire Department will be going door-to-door installing smoke alarms and sharing fire safety information on Saturday, January 31, 2015, as part of a campaign in Iowa and across the country to reduce deaths and injuries from home fires by as much as 25 percent over the next five years.

The smoke alarm installation project follows two fires in as many months at the Sheridan Village Apartments on Getty Terrace in November and December 2014. The Red Cross comforted those affected and helped 29 people with their immediate needs like food, clothing and a safe place to stay after both fires. On Saturday, Red Cross volunteers and firefighters hope to install a smoke alarm in every bedroom in the complex, which totals about 153 bedrooms.

Red Cross volunteers and Dubuque firefighters teamed up on October 11, 2014, and canvassed the Terrace Heights neighborhood in Dubuque as part of National Fire Prevention week and the kick off to the Red Cross Home Fire Preparedness campaign. The campaign focuses on joining fire departments and community groups together to install smoke alarms in communities and encouraging everyone to practice their fire escape plans. The Red Cross and Dubuque Fire Department installed 121 smoke alarms in October.

Simple Steps to Save Lives
Even as the Red Cross and other groups install smoke alarms in some neighborhoods, they are calling on everyone to take two simple steps that can save lives: check their existing smoke alarms and practice fire drills at home.

There are several things families and individuals can do to increase their chances of surviving a fire:

• If someone doesn't have smoke alarms, install them. At a minimum, put one on every level of the home, inside bedrooms and outside sleeping areas. Local building codes vary and there may be additional requirements where someone lives.

• If someone does have alarms, test them today. If they don't work, replace them.

• Make sure that everyone in the family knows how to get out of every room and how to get out of the home in less than two minutes. Practice that plan. What's the household's escape time?

For more than two years, the Red Cross in Iowa has worked closely with the Iowa State Fire Marshal's Office, local fire departments and community groups, and with the help of more than 850 volunteers, has successfully installed more than 3,300 smoke alarms in Centerville, Lake City, Ottumwa, Des Moines, Newton, Arlington, Nevada, Dubuque and Riverton.

The Red Cross responds to nearly 70,000 disasters each year in the United States and the vast majority of those are home fires. In Iowa, the Red Cross responded to 697 home fires last year and assisted 2,149 adults and children. You can help people affected by disasters like home fires and countless other crises by making a donation to support American Red Cross Disaster Relief. Your gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small. Visit redcross.org, call 1-800-RED CROSS or text the REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.

 

City Awarded Preservation Grant for Eagle Point Park

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The Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA) has announced the City of Dubuque will receive a $15,000 historic preservation grant through the DCA's Certified Local Government (CLG) program. More than $90,000 was awarded to 12 Iowa communities.

The City was awarded a $15,000 CLG grant for Eagle Point Park, located on Shiras Avenue in Dubuque. The project will include an archaeological survey and a nomination of Eagle Point Park to the National Register of Historic Places. The 164-acre park opened in 1909 and overlooks the Mississippi River and Lock and Dam #11. In the 1930s, the City received a WPA grant to make park improvements and hired noted landscape architect Alfred Caldwell as park superintendent. Caldwell's use of native materials and the Prairie School aesthetic in the design of these buildings makes Eagle Point Park one of the most outstanding parks in the Midwest.

The CLG program was established as part of the 1966 National Historic Preservation Act to create federal, state and local governmental partnerships, provide historic preservation training and technical assistance, and encourage preservation and wise use of historic resources at the local level.

Dr. Julie Schlarman, a historic preservation consultant, will provide an in-kind donation of professional services valued at $12,000 for listing Eagle Point Park in the National Register. Listing the park will provide the City with access to funding available only to National Register properties. The National Register nomination also will give the City's Leisure Services Department additional information about the history of the park's architecture and gardens that can direct planning for their maintenance and upkeep.

The Leisure Services Department will contribute the $10,000 required cash match from savings on other park projects. This funding will be used for a Phase 1 archeological survey to locate any prehistoric or historic cultural resources in the park landscape. Total project cost is estimated at $25,000.

 

Photo Exhibit at Dubuque Museum of Art

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Finding Beauty: Photographs by Robert Rivoire
February 20 - May 31, 2015
Sponsored by Cottingham & Butler

Beauty is the focus in the Kris Mozena McNamer Gallery at the Dubuque Museum of Art February 20 - May 31, 2015. Experience 15 images captured by Galena, Illinois photographer Robert Rivoire exquisitely presented in this solo exhibition.

Robert Rivoire was born and raised in Connecticut. He studied at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, California. He worked in business and management for most of his career but always pursued his photographic practice. After retiring and moving to Galena with his wife in 2007, he was able to take up photography again full time.

A member reception for new exhibitions will be Friday, March 13th from 5 to 7 PM.

The Dubuque Museum of Art is located at 701 Locust Street and open Tuesday-Friday 10:00 A.M. - 5:00 P.M. and Saturday & Sunday 1:00 P.M. - 4:00 P.M. with daily Admission of $6 for Adults, $5 for Seniors, $3 for Students, free for kids every day, and free to all on Thursdays thanks to Prudential Financial. 

Phone (563) 557-1851 or visit www.dbqart.com

 

Women of Achievement

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The Dubuque Women's Leadership Network is now accepting nominations for the annual Women of Achievement recognition banquet!

The Women's Leadership Network wants you to think of a woman who is deserving of special recognition - someone in your workplace, family or community who is an inspirational leader, amazing team member, rising success or tireless contributor - then please nominate her for a Women of Achievement Award! Your nominations are crucial in the success of this awards banquet!

Nominees DO NOT need to be a part of Women's Leadership Network to be recognized.

All nominated women and recipients will be recognized at our awards dinner and ceremony starting at 5:30 p.m. at the Grand River Center on April 16. All are welcome to attend this great event and anyone that is nominated will be admitted free of charge!

Please submit your nomination at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/woa2015

We are taking nominations until end of business March 20.

For more information about the event visit www.dubuquewln.org.

Thank you in advance for taking the time to nominate a deserving woman in your life!

 

Did you know?

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People frequently take human hair for granted, especially if they have it in abundance. While hair can help keep your head warm, there's more to hair than what meets the eye.

For a healthy individual with no hair diseases, hair is very strong with enormous tensile strength. In fact, human hair is about as strong as copper wire of the same diameter. That means one strand of hair can support up to 100 grams in weight. Considering the average head of hair contains about 100,000 to 150,000 strands of hair in all, the combined strength of human hair could feasibly support up to 12 tons, or the equivalent of two African elephants.

 

Revised Sledding Ordinance Goes Into Effect

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Residents can also request additional areas be approved for sledding

Dubuque has joined a growing list of communities across the country that are taking steps to address liability and safety concerns related to sledding on city-owned properties. A revised City of Dubuque ordinance limiting sledding on city-owned property to two parks that was adopted at Monday's City Council meeting went into effect today. The ordinance only applies to activities on city-owned properties and does NOT apply to private property or public property owned by other governmental entities.

The ordinance was revised due to safety and liability concerns and does not ban sledding but instead restricts sledding, downhill skiing, snowboarding, or tobogganing on city-owned property to certain areas within Bunker Hill Golf Course and Allison-Henderson Park designated by signage. Additionally, the ordinance prohibits riding inner tubes on city-owned public property.

Communities across the country are considering similar restrictions after accidents on city-owned property resulted in significant injuries, lawsuits, and large financial settlements against some communities in recent years. Examples include Boone, Iowa ($12 million); Sioux City, Iowa ($2.75 million); and Omaha, Nebraska ($2.4 million).

State code grants immunity to cities for skateboarding, inline skating, bicycling, unicycling, scootering, river rafting, canoeing, and kayaking but it does not for sledding and other associated winter activities. City officials have asked state legislators to address this gap and add winter activities to this list to limit the liability of municipalities. The intent of the amendment to Dubuque's ordinance is not just to avoid a lawsuit, but also to avoid serious injuries to residents by limiting sledding to areas where the city has an opportunity to create as safe an area as possible.

"We want Dubuquers to continue to enjoy outdoor activities in our parks year-round and we understand that sledding, especially on Bunker Hill, is a very popular activity," said Leisure Services Manager Marie Ware. "Our goal in restricting sledding to the designated areas is to help our residents enjoy sledding in a safe manner while minimizing the city's liability."

Dubuque residents requesting that additional city-owned parks and property be approved for sledding can submit those requests to the leisure services department for consideration. A printable request form, in addition to details and background information on the sledding ordinance amendment, is available at www.cityofdubuque.org/sledding.

Those requests will be reviewed by the City's Leisure Services Department staff for safety considerations. If those provisions are met, the request will be recommended to the parks and recreation commission, which would consider making a recommendation to the City Council for amending the ordinance to include additional areas. The ordinance amendment approved on Jan. 5 by the City Council was first approved by the parks and recreation commission before being considered by the City Council. Ware added that safe sledding areas require inspections, ongoing evaluations, and maintenance throughout the season. "While we do not have the resources to do that for all of our other 47 parks, we will certainly consider requests on a case-by-case basis," she said.

Sledding in city parks other than designated areas within Allison-Henderson Park and Bunker Hill Golf Course is considered trespassing. Violators will be informed of the ordinance and warned. Repeated violations could result in a civil infraction. For additional information, please call the City of Dubuque Leisure Services Department at 563-589-4263.

 

Auditions Set for The Drowsy Chaperone

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?The Grand Opera House will present "The Drowsy Chaperone" Feb. 27-28 & March 1 & 6-7, 2015.

Auditions will be held on Saturday, Jan. 3, from 1 to 3 pm; Sunday, Jan. 4, from 1 to 3 pm; and Monday, Jan. 5, from 7 to 9 pm at the Grand Opera House.

Auditioneers should bring their own short selection of music of your choice (preferably in a three ring binder with all cuts clearly marked). Dress comfortably for a movement audition. Readings will be provided. Familiarity with the script/show is strongly encouraged, but not required.

We anticipate a cast of approximately 14 lead and supporting roles plus a large singing and dancing ensemble. Bring your schedule/availability through March 8, 2015.

Auditioneers are strongly encouraged to arrive at the start of audition sessions (1p Saturday & Sunday; 7p Monday) to allow enough time for completing paperwork, group acting auditions, group dance auditions, and individual music auditions.

"The Drowsy Chaperone" is directed by Ryan Decker; Music Director is Rob Shepherd, and Choreographer is Gretchen Breitbach.

Perusal copies of the script are now available and may be checked out from the Grand Opera House Business Office, 135 W. 8th Street, 2nd Floor, Dubuque, and must be returned. Business hours are 9 am to 4pm Monday through Friday.

Information on upcoming auditions and other Grand events is available at www.thegrandoperahouse.com or call the Business Office, 563-588-4356. Specific questions about "The Drowsy Chaperone" may be directed to Jill Keck at office@thegrandoperahouse.com

 

Easy ways to start living healthier every day

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Contrary to popular belief, adopting a healthy lifestyle is not a difficult undertaking. In certain instances, convenience may need to be sacrificed in favor of nutrition, but many people find that living healthy is not nearly as difficult as they assumed it would be when they initially decided to make a change.

When men and women decide they want to start living healthier, many mistakenly assume they must abandon their existing habits entirely and start from scratch. But the following are some easy ways to start living healthier every day.

• Eat more fruits and vegetables. One of the best and easiest ways to live healthier is to begin eating more fruits and vegetables. Instead of unhealthy snacks like potato chips and cookies, snack on a piece of fruit, and never sit down to a meal unless you include some vegetables to go along with the main course. Studies have shown that men and women whose diets are high in fruits and vegetables are less likely to develop certain types of cancers, including cancers of the digestive tract. In addition, the United States Department of Agriculture notes that people whose diets are rich in fruits and vegetables have a lower risk for heart disease, including heart attack and stroke.

• Slow down your eating routine. Some people may already be eating the right foods, but they may just be eating too much of them. It takes time for your body to let you know it's had too much to eat, so eating too fast can increase your risk of overeating. While eating, try to limit distractions that can take your attention away from how much you're eating. If you're always watching television or checking emails on your phone while eating, try a few days of distraction-free, careful eating, and you may find yourself eating less and feeling more energized after a meal.

• Skip the second glass of wine. The much publicized medical benefits of wine are somewhat misleading. According to the Mayo Clinic, when consumed in moderation, red wine can help prevent heart disease. That's because alcohol and antioxidants found in red wine have been shown to increase levels of high-density lipoprotein, often referred to as "good" cholesterol, and protect against artery damage. But wine also contains sugars that can fatten the liver, and a fatty liver can contribute to a host of serious health problems. If you already drink wine, limit yourself to one glass per day. If you are not a wine drinker, then it's important to note that many doctors believe the potential benefits of drinking wine do not outweigh the potentially negative consequences associated with alcohol consumption, which include neurological problems and an increased risk for heart disease.

• Get more sleep. Inadequate sleep affects the body in a variety of ways. Many people are aware that one poor night's sleep is certain to affect their energy levels the following day, but fewer may know of the link between sleep duration and chronic disease. For example, the Harvard Medical School notes that studies have linked insufficient sleep to type 2 diabetes, as the body's ability to process glucose can be compromised by poor sleeping habits. Other medical conditions that have been linked to insufficient sleep include obesity, heart disease and mood disorders. While you might be proud of your ability to function on minimal sleep, the long-term effects of insufficient sleep can be dire, so be sure to get at least seven hours of sleep each night.

Choosing to live healthier does not mean you need to completely overhaul your existing lifestyle. In fact, you can make several easy everyday changes to dramatically improve your overall health.

 

Stop colds before they start

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The stuffy nose, aches and pains that often accompany the common cold can leave sufferers feeling miserable for a week or more. Cold season seems to kick into high gear when the temperatures drop, but this can be the year you don't come down with a case of the sniffles. The following cold prevention tips can increase your chances of making it to spring without losing any days or sleep to the common cold. 

• Keep kids clean. School-aged kids tend to carry home lots of germs, so when kids get home after a long day at school, make sure they wash their hands thoroughly and change into fresh outfits. Such precautionary measures can keep colds and other illnesses from running rampant through your house.

• Go outdoors and get some fresh air. It's a myth that cold air will bring on a cold. In reality, being outside instead of congregating indoors with other sick people may decrease your risk of getting a cold. Don't be afraid to go outside when the temperatures drop for fear of getting sick. Fresh air and exercise can be good for you.

• Drink plenty of fluids. Keeping your body hydrated will help flush toxins out of your body, strengthening your immune system and making it more capable of fending off colds.

• Keep your distance. Did you know the cold virus can be shot up to three feet away when someone sneezes? The virus travels on the small droplets of saliva and mucus that get propelled from the nose and mouth of a sick individual. If you know someone is sick, stay as far away as possible and wash your hands frequently, paying special attention to your fingertips.

• Wipe down surfaces. The cold virus can live on surfaces for up to 24 hours. That means a sick person can easily transfer a virus by touching a computer keyboard or remote control he or she shares with others. Use disinfecting wipes or warm, soapy water to clean off doorknobs, telephones, light switches, cabinet handles, and anything that is frequently touched around a home or business.

• Let it out gently. Blowing your nose forcefully or pinching your nose to hold back sneezes can irritate nasal passageways and make them more vulnerable to infection.

• Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. If you are well, keep your hands away from your mouth, nose and eyes. Viruses are especially good at entering the body through the mucus membranes located in these areas of the body. A combination of frequent handwashing and avoiding touching your face can keep colds at bay.

• Maintain your exercise routine. Regular exercise can boost the body's immune system and help it to fend off foreign invaders, including the cold virus. A recent study found that taking vitamin C in addition to daily exercise can reduce your risk of cold and cut the duration of the cold should you get one. Before taking any supplements, speak with your doctor to make sure they won't interact negatively with other medications.

• Recognize that antibiotics are not the answer. Antibiotics are only effective at treating bacterial infections, not viruses, which means they are ineffective at fighting the cold virus.

• If you do get sick, play it smart. Should you succumb to a cold in spite of your best efforts, steer clear of others so you are not spreading the virus. Rest and fuel your body with healthy foods and beverages. There's no need to visit a doctor for a cold unless you have a fever after several days of being sick. Colds normally last between seven and 10 days. If your symptoms do not improve or if they seem to be worsening, visit your doctor.

 

CityChannel Dubuque to Air ‘From the Archives’

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The City of Dubuque Cable TV Division is tapping into its media vault to unveil a new showcase on CityChannel Dubuque titled "From the Archives." This new showcase features old programs and video footage recorded by Cable TV personnel since the mid-1980s and often shows a Dubuque that looks much different than the city we know today.

"From the Archives" programs include the placing of the bell tower on City Hall in 1990, an interview with noted Iowa artist and one-time Dubuque resident Francesco Licciardi in 1989, architect Alfred Caldwell's 1991 return to Eagle Point Park to see the buildings he built there in the 1930s, music from the Iowa Sesquicentennial celebration in Eagle Point Park in 1996, and footage from the Grand Excursion in 2004.

"From the Archives" presents one program per week airing at four different times on CityChannel Dubuque: Tuesdays at 9 a.m. and 9:30 p.m., Fridays at 2 a.m., and Sundays at 5 p.m. Following each airing will be a promotional announcement for the next week's program. "From the Archives" will premiere on Tuesday, June 10, at 9 a.m. with the 1988 Field of Dreams press conference at Carnegie-Stout Public Library featuring stars James Earl Jones and Kevin Costner.

For the past six years, Cable TV Coordinator Craig Nowack and Video Producer Erich Moeller have been gradually digitizing old videotapes stored in the basement of City Hall Annex. "‘From the Archives' is a fun way to look back at some of Dubuque's recent history, and a great way to see what Dubuque used to look like," said Nowack.

CityChannel Dubuque is the City's government access cable channel found on channel 8 or digital 85.2 on Mediacom's cable system in Dubuque.

The channel is also streamed live on the City's website at www.cityofdubuque.org/media.

Viewers can access the channel's program guide at www.cityofdubuque.org/cabletv.

"From the Archives" programs will eventually be available for on-demand playback on the City's website.