Cedar Rapids Storm Damage Response

Many Iowa communities were devastated by the powerful storms on Monday that left catastrophic damage in their wake. We encourage our friends, neighbors, and community to come together to provide mutual aid.

Donations will be collected throughout the weekend and can be dropped off in front of the Decorah Chick Hatchery in downtown Decorah. Donations will be accepted until 4:00 on Sunday.

Stevenson Tree Care is planning a trip to the Cedar Rapids area to assist in storm damage cleanup.

Items will be donated to a local Cedar Rapids Storm Response Group to be distributed to those in need.

Many people have been without power since the storm and may not get it for another week. Please keep that in mind when choosing items (especially food) to donate.

Please see the list of needed supplies below (flashlights and coolers are most needed):

Flashlights with Batteries
Large Coolers
Extension Cords – High quality
Candles – Long lasting
Gas Cans with Fuel
Bar & Chain Oil for chainsaws
2-cycle/4-cycle Oil
Non-perishable Foods – granola bars, peanut butter, crackers
Heavy duty yard waste bags
Tarps for covering damaged homes

Individuals or businesses with questions can call 563-382-3810.


Donations may be made to:
Venmo: @iowaderecho
Cash will be delivered on site


Wanted a good working dehimfidher  also a 14 year looking for a parttime job  phone 563-380-6335- eve’s please

New Minowa Players Announces Cast for “A Quarantine Cabaret”

New Minowa Players is pleased to announce the cast for our 2020 Young People’s Production, “A Quarantine Cabaret.“  The show will be presented virtually from August 7th to the 14th on the New Minowa Players website.  Those choosing to be in the virtual audience are free to access the recording anytime between August 7 and August 14. A link to watch the show will be available on our website and on the New Minowa Players Facebook page and Instagram account. The link will also be sent to everyone on the New Minowa Players email list. Anyone wishing to join the email list is invited to do so by emailing


The Young People’s Production is New Minowa Players’ annual offering featuring youth ranging in age from those entering middle school to those graduating college. This year, and often, the directors and musical director are also within that age group. Directors Indigo Fish and Hallie Johnson, along with music director Sam Wilson, had hoped to be directing “Little Shop of Horrors” now, but because of precautions surrounding COVID-19, an online performance will replace a staged show this year. Therefore, Fish, Johnson and Wilson will be directing “Little Shop of Horrors” next year, August 2021. This year “A Quarantine Cabaret” will replace the originally-planned show. All rehearsals and the performance are online.


“A Quarantine Cabaret” will be a series of musical numbers performed concert style. Songs are from a variety of musical theater shows. Those performing include Eliana Brodbeck, Davis Coppola, Indigo Fish, Erik Johnson, Hallie Johnson, Leila Johnson, Greta Jones, Alex Kane, Dylan Muhlbauer, Sarah Mumford, Kaj Spencer-Berg, Abby Trewin, and Sam Wilson.


“A Quarantine Cabaret” is sponsored by A&J Petersburg Agency, Bluff Country Bernedoodles, Decorah Bank and Trust, Family Table Restaurant, Gallery of Tops, Iroc Web Design Services, Pizza Ranch, Rick and Sheryl Scheffert, Sogo Snacks and JoAn Stevenson and Steven Nelson.

Seeing Things in 2020

We are halfway through 2020, and what a year it has been! Attend the community show, Seeing Things in 2020, in ArtHaus’ gallery featuring artists of all ages. Artwork of various mediums capturing 2020 from each artist’s unique personal perspective will be displayed at ArtHaus, which is dedicated to showing the works of people living and connecting with Decorah. Items will be displayed in the ArtHaus gallery from August 1 through August 31.

Do you want to submit work for this show? Find more information at and .

Seeing Things in 2020 is sponsored by Steven Nelson and Scarves in the Park.

Seeing Things in 2020

Calling artists of all ages: beginners, emerging artists, established professionals, hobbyists, youngsters, college students, and retirees.

We are halfway through 2020, and what a year it has been! Some of you have been creating beautiful pieces to comfort yourself and improve mental health during this time, while others wish to capture these unique events in history. We want to share your work, whether it be protest posters or plein air paintings of your hometown. Participate in a show that captures 2020 from your personal perspective at your local ArtHaus gallery, which is dedicated to showing the works of people living and connecting with Decorah.

For this community show, enter original work sizing up to 8.5”x11” for $5 and/or work sizing larger than 8.5”x11” for $10. Any amount of entries of any size and any medium, including but not limited to photography, ceramics, paintings, and posters, are accepted. Bring your artwork to the ArtHaus by Monday, July 20 to be part of our Seeing Things in 2020 show. Items will be displayed in the ArtHaus gallery from August 1 through August 31.

Seeing Things in 2020 is sponsored by Steven Nelson and Scarves in the Park.

Adventurers Scavenger Hunt at Porter House Museum

Bert Porter was an avid adventurer and collector.


He developed a natural history collection on his
trips through North America, South America, and
The Porter House Museum contains hundreds of
his butterflies, moths, beetles, spiders, rocks, and
fossils of all colors and sizes. Some of the
butterfly specimens in the collection were caught
by Bert over 100 years ago!


The unusual “grotto style” rock wall contains numerous rock and fossil
specimens, all hand-cut and placed over a six-year


We hid a glimpse of some of our favorites from
inside the Porter House collection around the
garden for you to find!


We encourage you to share your findings on our
Facebook page or with the social hashtag:

Luther College graduates receive Fulbright awards

Two Luther College graduates have been selected as Fulbright teaching assistants for the 2020-21 academic year. The U.S. Department of State and the J. William Fulbright Foreign Scholarship Board announced that Shannon Baker and Madeleine Flom-Staab, both class of 2020, have received a Fulbright U.S. Student Program award.

Given the coronavirus crisis and the U.S. State Department advisories against international travel, the Fulbright program has delayed the start of grants until after January 1, 2021.

Shannon Baker ’20, from Duluth, Minnesota, graduated with majors in English (Writing) and Spanish. She was selected for a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship in Peru. Baker’s interest in teaching English began on a mission trip to Nicaragua her first year at Luther, during which she volunteered each day at local schools.

“I absolutely loved it – the challenge of teaching one’s own learned-from-birth language, the job of connecting with the kids and watching them learn, I loved all of it,” said Baker.

Her interest in Peru grew during her semester studying in Chile, where she learned about the culture and history of Peru through the eyes of its South American neighbors.

One of the reasons Baker chose to apply for a Fulbright award is the program’s commitment to community engagement and mutual understanding across cultures. She looks forward to helping students share their culture and stories in their English classes. When not teaching, Baker hopes to connect with her host community by volunteering in a children’s home or other youth organizations. After completing her year in Peru, Baker plans to continue teaching, either in the U.S. or abroad.

“I could see this leading me on many paths: Spanish education, ESL education, linguistics…whatever it looks like, I am excited to see how my passions for Spanish, teaching, writing and sharing stories manifest within it all.”

Madeleine Flom-Staab ’20, from St. Paul, Minnesota, graduated with majors in German and psychology and a minor in social welfare. Flom-Staab received a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship in Germany, however, she has declined this award to accept a United States Teaching Assistantship in Austria.

Joseph Keeley ’20, a history and political science major from of Eden Prairie, Minnesota, has been named an alternate in the Fulbright U.S. Student Program for 2020-21 and may receive a Fulbright grant if funding becomes available for an English Teaching Assistantship in South Korea.

Luther College is home to more than 1,900 undergraduates who explore big questions and take action to benefit people, communities and society. Our 60+ academic programs, experiential approach to learning and welcoming community inspire students to learn actively, live purposefully and lead courageously for a lifetime of impact. Learn more at

The Fulbright Program

The Fulbright Program is the flagship international educational exchange program sponsored by the U.S. government and is designed to forge lasting connections between the people of the U.S. and people of other countries, counter misunderstandings, and help people and nations work together toward common goals. Since its establishment in 1946, the Fulbright Program has enabled more than 390,000 dedicated and accomplished students, scholars, artists, teachers and professionals of all backgrounds to study, teach and conduct research, exchange ideas and find solutions to shared international concerns. The Fulbright Program is funded through an annual appropriation made by the U.S. Congress to the U.S. Department of State. Participating governments and host institutions, corporations, and foundations around the world also provide direct and indirect support to the Program, which operates in more than 160 countries worldwide.

For further information about the Fulbright Program or the U.S. Department of State, please visit

Helping Hands for YOUR Resilience Garden

Please join the Resilience Garden Project! Seed Savers Exchange (SSE) wants to help you in YOUR garden this season. Through SSE’s Resilience Gardens Project and the COVID-19 Recovery AmeriCorps Program, SSE is looking to assist individuals and organizations with growing and seed saving in a socially distanced manner. We are hoping to use our time working with people who meet one or more of the following criteria:


  1. New to gardening – those who may want help with learning how to start and maintain a garden and/or need extra hands to find success while learning. This could be every once in a while, or regularly throughout the season
  2. New to seed saving – those who want help with learning how to add seed saving to a home garden
  3. Interested in growing surplus food for community donation – those who have the space, but require more hands and time (we have extra seeds and transplants available for this as well – let us know if you’d like some!)

It is our priority to help in a safe and effective way by following safety protocols and social distancing. All assistance is completely free of charge – and we want to help! Our aim is to help ensure local resilience by working towards area food and seed security. If you are interested in working with us, please click here to fill out this form. We hope to hear from you!


My name is Annika Krieg and I am looking for opportunities to tutor/nanny this summer! In light of the effect covid-19 has had on education, I would love to offer my services in order to provide your student/child with opportunities to continue learning and growing in these uncertain times. I just recently graduated with a BA degree in Elementary Education at Wartburg College and love spending time with kiddos. I have taught and worked with a variety of students in K-6 in one on one, small group as well as large group instruction settings. Needless to say, I have a lot of experience working with children, and I absolutely love it! Please don’t hesitate to let me know if you or anyone you know is interested, and feel free to share my name with anyone in need! I would love to reach out and get connected. Thank you!

Luther College community reflects on Nordic values during COVID-19 pandemic

DECORAH, Iowa – A unique project has recently wrapped up at Luther College where students and alumni were asked to reflect on how Nordic values are being utilized during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Maren Johnson, assistant professor and director of the Torgerson Center for Nordic Studies, was looking for a way to connect current students with alumni who share a passion for the Nordic region.

“Nordic Studies is thriving at Luther, with nearly 90 students in our classes, 18 of whom are majors,” Johnson said. “During this time of social isolation, I wanted to find a way to build community among current and former students.”

Nordic Studies is the in-depth study of the Nordic region (Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Finland and Iceland). The discipline examines how the literature, history, language, politics and culture inform and shape norms and values present in the region today.

Johnson invited people to identify some important Nordic values and social norms, and how they saw them being used to address the coronavirus crisis.

“Graduates from multiple decades responded. One alumnus witnesses the Nordic value of janteloven, the cultural code of humility and selflessness, in the hospital where he works. Several are discovering more fully the value of friluftsliv, or purposeful, immersive time outdoors, while being confined to the indoors has raised the importance of koselig or hygge which is embracing a ‘cozy’ way of life with a focus on contentment and wellbeing in one’s living space,” said Johnson.

As a clinical psychologist and educator, Timothy Baardseth ’00, said he is inspired by colleagues and staff at his hospital and graduate school as they embrace the egalitarian value that no person is either better or worse than anyone else.

“Their willingness to place the needs of their patients and students in front of their own is awe-inspiring,” wrote Baardseth. “I believe that the egalitarian spirit of the janteloven will ultimately be an underlying societal factor that helps us to overcome these tumultuous times.”

Trust was another common theme in the responses. In the Nordic region, there is trust among people and trust in public authorities and institutions. Equality, including gender equality, was mentioned as well by Ingrid Urberg ’84.

“The contributions of all members of society across a myriad of job sectors are necessary for a functioning and healthy community,” wrote Urberg. “This focus on equality and the practice of social solidarity has resulted in a robust and valued universal health care system which is serving the Nordic region well during the Covid-19 pandemic.”

To read all of the responses, visit

The Torgerson Center for Nordic Studies honors Luther College’s legacy as the first college in the United States founded by Norwegian immigrants. Its mission is to foster connections with today’s Nordic region through innovative programs and partnerships. It is the only endowed undergraduate Nordic studies center in the United States.

Luther College is home to more than 1,900 undergraduates who explore big questions and take action to benefit people, communities and society. Our 60+ academic programs, experiential approach to learning and welcoming community inspire students to learn actively, live purposefully and lead courageously for a lifetime of impact. Learn more at

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