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Remembering Bob LaGrange, and the Vinton icons he loved most

By Dean Close · 4:26pm July 29th, 2016
In the last few years of his life, Bob La Grange saw that the things he loved the most about Vinton are still in good hands. His grandson, Dan, had joined his son, Mike, as a pharmacist at LaGrange Pharmacy, in 2013, representing the fifth LaGrange generation to enter that field. Bob had retired from the business in 1994, after a half-century at the drug store.

The Brexit and the Declaration of Independence

By Dean Close · 11:54pm July 13th, 2016
Imagine the impact on Iowa if any of the following headlines were true: Ag Secretary Vilsack orders farmers to provide playthings for pigs USDA issues rules on shape of bananas, cucumbers Congress increases pensions of all federal employees; sends bill to Iowa Report: Deportees sent to Iowa accused in terror attack Crazy? Certainly.

Seriously? So soon? I know it's part of an American Flag's job to help the nation mourn. But already? Even before the folds from my months in a box have had time to disappear? I was the first thing you saw on Friday, when you arrived at the brand new baseball field in a small Iowa town which got its name from America's beginning.

The meaning of the famous photo that never was, but one day may be

By Dean Close · 10:25am July 7th, 2016
I have bad news for my fellow space-exploration lovers: That beautiful photo you saw this week of the Juno space probe approaching Jupiter is fake. Really. No, I am not one of those who believe that the moon landing was fake in 1969. I am sure that Juno -- complete with its LEGO figurines of Jupiter, Juno and Galileo -- is indeed circling the biggest planet in our solar system.

Raspberries after the rain

By Dean Close · 10:06pm June 14th, 2016
Life ain’t always funny When the sky turns unsunny And the blue up above Turns to black The wind and the lightning Can be utterly frightening As the water Leaves its muddy tracks But when windows do rattle As rain drenches the cattle And your little kids Jump in your bed An outdoor phenomenon Keeps right on growing on Offering more proof that God is not dead While most creatures cower From the cold falling showers Below the tops of the trees The water that splatte...

Letter to the Editor: Thank you to voters

By Vinton Today · 8:35pm June 13th, 2016
Dear Editor, Thank You to all voters in the Republican Primary who voted for me. Please vote for the Republican Candidates in November. Thomas Wiese

Letter to the Editor Trump racist or judicial bias?‏

By Vinton Today · 11:42am June 8th, 2016
Editor, I am not in any position to defend Mr. Trump shooting off his mouth. But, I know what he was talking about – judicial bias! This judge is/was a member of decidedly racist Latino organizations. It can certainly be suspected that this judge has a bias against a rich businessman. I am relating this story about a good friend of mine.

Letter to the Editor: Sheriff Candidate Support

By Vinton Today · 7:30am June 6th, 2016
Dear Editor, I support Vince Snyder for Sheriff of Benton County. As the Chief Deputy US Marshal of the Northern District of Iowa from 1991 to 2002 and then as the United States Marshal from 2002 until 2006, part of my duties was to hire competent Special Deputy US Marshals (guards) to assist full-time Deputy US Marshals in the transporting of federal prisoners to and from US district courts and prisons.

The Smart Alek’s Somewhat Serious Guide to Graduation Clichés

By Dean Close · 10:09am May 27th, 2016
Life does not consist of the number of breaths we take, but of the number of moments that take our breath away. Like when the water in the shower suddenly turns ice cold. Throughout the next few weeks, high school (and college) seniors – witnessed by millions of their friends and family members -- will sit in hard chairs and stuffy robes in hot gymnasiums, listening to graduation speeches.

Eggs, Puppy Dogs, Tassels and 24 Years, Trust me they ARE related

By Valerie Close · 12:06pm May 25th, 2016
A few weeks ago as I babysat our granddaughters, I had a flashback to my days as a homeschool mom who didn't get to send the kids to the breakfast at school: Me: Who wants eggs for breakfast? 2 little girls chorus: We want BROWNIES! Me: Well, I'm going to make some yummy scrambled eggs.

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