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Monday morning read: Grow: Johnson County expands, local school shooter drills, Four Cedar Rapids children recognized by fire department

(from left) Grow: Johnson County project director John Boller, production manager Jason Grimm and volunteer Pat Ryan of Iowa City, plant candy onions at the Johnson County Historic Poor Farm in Iowa City on Friday, April 20, 2018. Grow: Johnson County is entering its third season providing organic produce for Table to Table to distribute to food pantries. (Cliff Jette/The Gazette)
(from left) Grow: Johnson County project director John Boller, production manager Jason Grimm and volunteer Pat Ryan of Iowa City, plant candy onions at the Johnson County Historic Poor Farm in Iowa City on Friday, April 20, 2018. Grow: Johnson County is entering its third season providing organic produce for Table to Table to distribute to food pantries. (Cliff Jette/The Gazette)

Grow: Johnson County expands food production, education efforts- Math, science and even literacy can all be taught by the back of a seed packet.

Scott Koepke, education director for Grow: Johnson County, uses that philosophy when teaching kids and adults alike soil science and gardening skills. Grow: Johnson County, a nonprofit operating on the Johnson County Historic Poor farm to grow fresh produce for area pantries, is ramping up its education efforts to supplement its growing food production.

“We knew from day one we absolutely wanted education to be a critical part of what we do,” said John Boller, program director for the organization. “We see this as a great hands on learning opportunity.” Read more...

School shooter drills not just for staff anymore- The nervous parents were sitting in classroom desks when loud pops rang out in the hallway.

Hearts started pounding and faces went pale. Everyone scrambled to the teacher’s larger, heftier desk and crawled underneath — huddling in the classroom’s only place where a shooter might not see them. 

Under the desk, many held their breath until Marion police Officer Tom Daubs gave them the all-clear. Read more...

Four Cedar Rapids children recognized by fire department for quick thinking in the face of danger- Four Cedar Rapids children were recognized by the Cedar Rapids Fire Department for their quick thinking when a fire broke out at their home earlier this month.

During a visit to the fire department’s Central Station, Riley Chrystal, 14; Lucy Chrystal, 10, Miles Chrystal, 8 and Alyvia Fortmann, 6; were presented the bravery award.

Lucy said that a little before 2 a.m. on April 2, she and the other children were asleep on the bottom floor of their split level home at 3208 Pebble Drive SW when a noise woke her up. Read more...

New initiatives to reduce prescription opioids leaves patients behind- She calls them her “little pieces of gold.”
Cindee Lee-Voeller has been hoarding the tiny pink pills as if they truly were pieces of gold. They buy her time, energy and the chance to live normally. 
To her, the oxycodone is invaluable.
Lee-Voller has been molding her days around the pink pills in that bottle. Without it, the 56-year-old said her chronic back pain from degenerative bone disease feels “like someone is stabbing me repeatedly.” Read more...

Randy Dobnak pitches Cedar Rapids Kernels out of losing skid- Randy Dobnak was anxious to get back on the mound. 

The Cedar Rapids Kernels starting pitcher had not competed since an April 11 game at Peoria in which he yielded 10 hits and eight earned runs in 3 2/3 innings pitched.

Six weather-related game postponements in a row delayed his next start and further exacerbated the need to get past that bad outing with a better one. Read more...

 

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