Monday, February 24, 2014

Charger Boys Are SCC Champs

The Chariton varsity boys shown above are all smiles after winning the South Central Conference title outright with a 65-50 win over Eddyville-Blakesburg-Fremont at Eddyville Feb 15th.  It was the first SCC title for the Chariton boys since 1999.  It was Chariton's 14th win in a row, moving them to 17-3 overall and giving them a final SCC record of 9-1.  (Bill Howes photo) 

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Kerns Shares the History of Piper's

Chariton Leader, February 11, 2014
Kris Patrick, Staff Writer

Piper's Candy becomes prime tourist attraction
What is striped, lined in tin, a sweet treat, and one of the largest bust tour destinations in Lucas County?  Of course, it's Piper's Candy and Grocery Store.  Pipers is one of the longest established businesses in Chariton.  Actually, Piper Brothers Grocery opened in Chariton in 1903, just to the northwest of the town square.
Jill Kerns, current owner of Piper's enticed Rotarians to hold their meeting February 7th with the lure of chocolate.  Kerns is a graduate of Chariton High School and the University of Iowa with a Political Science degree  After graduation Kerns lived in Alaska for several years where she was a reporter for a national public radio station.  Kerns moved to Iowa in 1998 and purchased the Piper's store in 1999.
As residents of Chariton, it is easy to take for granted the great ambiance and delicious candies found behind the original door at the "local grocery."  The story behind the sweets and successful business strategies kept Rotarians focused on a special part of Chariton's history.  Of course the distinct Piper's Easter Eggs and turtles displayed on the table didn't go unnoticed.
Anyone who has worked in a family business understand the dynamics behind Joe L. Piper's desire to strike out on his own in 1905 and purchase the current building, which was built in 1888.  Joe L, bought the building from Mr. Stanley, who also owned a foundry.  Stanley gave Joe a little brass pig that still lives at Piper's.  Joe L. and his family expanded the business to include a bakery and slaughterhouse.
Farmers traded their wares for groceries, bread was shipped by train to the surrounding smaller towns, goods were hauled out to the then-thriving mining towns, and groceries were delivered several times a day to area homes.  Joe had the first delivery truck in the area and bread was delivered daily to Derby, Lucas and Williamson.
Joe L. left his business to two of his six sons.  Bob, took over the store after his brother's death.  He continued to offer the top quality products and excellent customer service.  In 1947 he and his wife Ruth added top quality homemade candy.  Bob learned his candy making skills from his brother John, who owned Piper's Candy in Iowa City.  Kerns continues to use the same recipes and techniques.
The 70's, 80's and 90's were hard on corner grocery stores.  
Ruth Piper passed away in 1978.  Kern's mother Anne worked for Bob, who developed his own candy recipes.  
Bob was adamant they were his own recipes, but Anne did learn his secrets.  Anne and her husband purchased the store in 1987 when Bob passed away.  
Anne brought in more gift items, but kept home deliveries, the same staff and the same products.  Kerns credits her mother for identifying what is so special about Piper's.  They kept the tin ceilings and original floors, added antiques and cultivated what it already was.  Anne started the tourism aspect with bus tours.  More and more people out of Des Moines and surrounding areas out on a day trip stop in the store commenting on how beautiful the area is with rolling hills and historic buildings.  
Kerns purchased the store in 1999 from her parents.  Anne is still an active part of the store.
The volume of candy has increased over the years and it has now made its way to every continent.  They still make the candy in small batches, work the chocolates by hand, and take pride in every piece made.  No preservatives are used and candy can only be made so far ahead.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Deadline Nears for Three Scholarship Opportunities

Lucas County Farm Bureau will be awarding a minimum of 2, $750 scholarships to 2014 graduating high school senors.  The only requirement on the application is that the senior's parents are currently Lucas County Farm Bureau members.  Applications are available at the Lucas County Farm Bureau office, 811 S. 4th St., by emailing, visiting our Facebook page "Lucas County Farm Bureau" or students may contact Sue Curnutte at the Chariton High School.
The deadline to return applications to the Lucas County Farm Bureau office is March 3, 2014.  The winners will be notified by the end of March/early April.  Certificates of recognition will be presented at the Senior Award banquet held in May.
The $750 will be paid directly to the college of choice for the student's second semester with submission of first semester grades to LCFB.
Lucas County Farm Bureau members can also find the Ruth B. Sayre scholarship application on the Members only side of the under Members Benefits, then Scholarships.
The County Women's Council (CWC) offers the Ruth B. Sayr scholarships for the purpose of fostering educational development of women.  Scholarship awards of $500 shall be paid to the educational institution where student recipient is attending.
Appluications do not have to be Farm Bureau members, as this is an award from the Country Women's Council organization.  IFBF has agreed to make the applications available to our members as IFBF supports this scholarship in honor of Ruth B. Sayre.  The deadline for submission is March 1, 2014.
The Iowa Farm Bureau Federation will award 54, $1,000 scholarship awards to students pursuing the completion of a two - or four-year degree.  Sons and/or daughters of Iowa Farm Bureau members are eligible to apply.
Six district winners will be selected in each of the nine Iowa Farm Bureau Federation districts for the fall tuition awards.
Applications for the 2014 IFBF Scholarship are due March 3, 2014 in the Lucas County Farm Bureau office.  Members should log on at to access the online 'fillable' scholarship form as handwritten forms will not be accepted.  If you have any questions or need assistance please call us at 641-885-5984.
Emails Needed
Lucas County Farm Bureau will soon be sending out its annual opinionaire via email to our members.  The opinionaire is one way for you, our members, to voice your views about issues affecting your farm and for us to collectively gather that information.  This can help shape future Iowa Farm Bureau Federation policy.
We'd like members to send us an email at using your current email address.  This will allow us to update our records and ensure that future opionionaires reach your inbox.
Please call us at 774-5984 if you have any question.

Nearly $100,000 Available to Lucas County

The Lucas County - South Central Iowa Community Foundation grant deadline is approaching.  To be considered for a grant, applications must be postmarked by March 1st.  Organizations must be tax-exempt, non-profit entities classified by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) organization or a government body (school, city, county) providing services within Lucas County, Iowa.  Applications may be obtained at the Foundation website under the Lucas County tab, or by contacting the Foundation office at 108 N. Grand in Chariton, IA 50049, 641-217-9105.
Lucas County SCICF Board of Directors are Adam Bahr, Betty Hansen, Mary Stierwalt, Ray Thurlby and Jim Wright.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Benefit for Gerald Briggs

The family of Gerald Briggs will be having a benefit in his honor on Saturday, February 22, 2014, starting at 5:00 p.m.  A chili and ham sandwich dinner, auction and DJ dance to follow.  It will be held at the Chariton Eagles Club located on the Old Highway 34.  Gerald was diagnosed with Lymphoma cancer stage 4 on November 15, 2013.  He is currently taking chemotherapy.  Please come join us in helping raise money to aid in travel and medical costs.
For more information please call Janet Briggs at 641-203-7741 or Joan Amos at 641-774-6621.

Chariton's National Register of Historic Places Nomination Receives State Nod

Chariton Leader, February 18, 2014
Kris Patrick, Staff Writer

Intrepid Chariotn supporters made their way through slippery and slushy roads to witness the hearing for Chariton's National Register of Historic Places nomination  (formally known as Lucas County Courthouse Square Historic District).
Architectural historian Molly Myers Naumann was unable to present the nomination due to the weather.  Meyers Naumann has spent the better part of a year preparing Chariton's nomination for historic District status.  In lieu of Myers-Naumann's presence, Alyse Hunter and Frank Meyers narrated the power point presentation.
The State Nominations Review Committee has had the report for several weeks and had reviewed it before the hearing.  Friday's formal hearing before the State Nominations Review Committee, was a crucial event in the process.
Attending the hearing from Chariton was Mayor Roger Manser, Ruth Comer and Ray Meyer, Alyse Hunter, Frank Meyers, Kris Patrick, Vern and Barb Vogel and Karen Wilker.
Meyers Naumann has reviewed the nomination with the State Historical Society of Iowa staff making changes along the way to reflect their input.
Hunter and Meyers were able to answer questions from review committee members concerning street pattern, which was a pivotal point in Chariton history, but not apparent to those living outside Lucas County, description of wooden awning structures found at various points on our square and the omission of the seven exterior iron and stone stairways found on all sides of our town square.
The review committee approved the application and it will make its way to the National Park Service after Meyer Naumann makes the recommended amendments and the state approves it.
The nomination is a long involved process and the Chariton group is very pleased with the outcome of the hearing.
Meyers Naumann has stated several times that she does not take on a project that she doesn't think will make it through the process.

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Hy-Vee Holds Annual Road of Gold Banquet

Hy-Vee Distribution Center honored their truck drivers at the annual Road of Gold Banquet held on February 1st.
Seventy-eight drivers received awards for safe driving.  Among them were two special award winners.
Clint Porterfield and Dan Johnson who completed two million consecutive miles without having a preventable accident.  They received special awards that included: caps, portraits, lambskin leather Road of Gold jackets, matching his and her gold and diamond watches for the driver, personalized crystal trucks, $2,000 and keys to a brand new black Volvo automatic semi-tractor to drive exclusively.
Bryan Rowland, Randy Jones, and Mike Snell each reached one-million consecutive accident free miles.  They each received special awards that included:   caps, wool and leather Road of Gold jackets, super-bowl style rings, necklaces for their spouses, portraits, $1,000 and keys to a brand new gold Volvo automatic semi-tractor to drive exclusively for the next five years.
Drivers are rewarded for every 200,000 miles they drive without preventable accidents.  They are also rewarded at the half-million and 1.5 million accident free mile mark.  The Chariton Drivers drove 19,983,673 miles in 2013 and hauled over one million pounds.  There are now 69 Hy-Vee drivers inducted in the Hall of Fame.

Fifth Annual Lucas County Fair Fundraiser