Rod Sullivan, Supervisor, Johnson County, Iowa

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September 15, 2016

Sullivan’s Salvos     9/20/16

In this edition:

*Wilson’s Apple Orchard
*Cyclo-Cross World Cup
*Marketing Hawkeye Football?
*Did You Know?

*Wilson’s Apple Orchard
         Fall is upon us, and fall in Johnson County would not be complete without a trip or two to Wilson’s Orchard.

Located just off Highway One at 4823 Dingleberry Road, Wilson’s is part nature park, part orchard. Surrounded by old oak forest, the farm occupies both sides of a valley with Rapid Creek winding through the land. Joyce and Robert ‘Chug’ Wilson first fell in love with this ground in 1980 and set to work building an orchard of apples that tasted like apples should. They planted over 120 varieties over the years, all chosen based on one simple criterion: great taste.

At Wilson’s you will find all kinds of apples – big ones, small ones, green ones, yellow ones, and purple ones – each with its own flavor and texture. The varieties ripen from the beginning of August through October. In October you can find a variety of pumpkins as well!

Wilson’s Orchard is a great family place. On weekends, take a tractor ride out to do your picking and strolling. At the barn you’ll find apple turnovers, hot out of the oven. Fresh apple cider is on offer as well as dried fruit and plenty of other cool stuff. Fruit, family and fun – they all come together at Wilson’s Orchard.

Best of all, your support of Wilson’s Orchard is support for local food and a strong local economy. They are proud of the food they grow and happy that every customer can come see how (and why) they do it. Their farming and marketing involve low inputs, low food miles and low carbon emissions, which is way good for our community. Plus they have the apple turnovers…

         Wilson’s is open 10-6 every day from the first of August until the end of October. You still have plenty of time to stop by this wonderful Johnson County landmark!

*Cyclo-Cross World Cup
Johnson County and the City of Iowa City are thrilled to host the Telenet UCI Cylco-Cross World Cup & Volkswagen Jingle Cross Cyclocross Festival. Our community and state are deeply passionate about cycling and couldn’t be more excited for the opportunity to host some of the world’s greatest cyclists. This website serves as a showcase for all activities and experiences associated with the World Cup visit to Iowa City.

Schedule of events:
Thursday, September 22
Opening Ceremony – Iowa City Welcomes the World

Friday, September 23
Full day of racing, food, drink and music. cyclo-cross racing begins leading up to the World Cup events on Saturday. Deschutes Brewery will be featured at all beverage stations on the North Pole, Whoville Village, and the infamous Mt. Krumpit summit. Friday’s events will include racing under the Musco lights, and the deejay and party on Mt. Krumpit that fans have grown to love.

Saturday, September 24
The Northside Oktoberfest benefiting Iowa City area non-profits showcases the Bohemian nature of the Northside Marketplace with great craft beers, neighborhood food, beer games, Iowa football and much more! Join us on Saturday, September 24th, as we take over the streets of the Northside, just blocks north of downtown Iowa City! New for 2016! As an added perk for 2016, your Oktoberfest ticket provides you with one complimentary ticket to the 2016 Telenet UCI Cyclo-Cross World Cup. The City of Iowa City will provide complimentary parking garage access for the entire day! Complimentary shuttles to and from the fairgrounds.
“Christmas Comes Early” at the Johnson County Fairgrounds, Iowa City. Site Map for location of activities.
Included in Whoville Village:
Grinch’s Kid’s Zone
Strider bike course and kids races for the little ones age 18 months all the way up to 10 years old to take place Saturday afternoon before the big World Cup event! Several races for kids of all ages to race the Infamous Grinch!
Bouncy House, Face Painting, Games, and Push bike race course for the little kids.

*Marketing Hawkeye Football?
         As you know, I am a huge fan of Hawkeye sports. As I sit in Kinnick Stadium, I am noticing a disturbing trend. It strikes me that the UI is marketing Hawkeye football in ways that border on exploitative.

         My first example: each home game there is a “Kid’s Captain” who is a patient of the Children’s Hospital. This young person stands out at midfield, while the announcer explains what he/she has been through. Then the crowd roars.

         I am torn by this. When I was that same age, I would have probably loved being the “Kid’s Captain.” I certainly think it is nice that they take the kid to the game. And it calls attention to the outstanding Children’s Hospital right across the street. So I understand why they do it.

         I just can’t help feeling that there is something exploitative there. Don’t get me wrong; I’m sure no kid is coerced into being the Captain. I wonder more about the hundreds of kids who are not selected. Would a kid be selected whose parents were not current on payments? I also worry about the UI using some kid’s illness to make football fans feel good about the institution. It seems to walk a fine line. And do you want to be the one person in the stadium who does not stand and clap during this? Good luck!

         I am also concerned about the militarization of Hawkeye games. Sure, there has always been a color guard, and we always sing the Star Spangled Banner. But it just keeps growing. There is a “Military Hero” honored every game. Through the magic of technology, Nile Kinnick speaks to us while we see him in his Navy uniform. There are whole games that serve as “salutes” to our military – ironically, these “salutes” always feature aberrations of the US flag as part of the team uniform.

         Don’t get me wrong – I support our troops. I support our veterans! But sitting in Kinnick Stadium, I feel manipulated. I showed up for a football game, and I got a Veteran’s Day Parade instead. The UI is purposely trying to associate itself with our troops. Again, I worry about the UI using our veterans to make football fans feel good about the institution. It seems to walk a fine line. And again - do you want to be the one person in the stadium who does not stand and clap during this? Good luck!

         This is especially troubling in light of the Colin Kaepernick issue. My buddy Ted Cruz just introduced legislation calling for a “boycott of athletes that disrespect our flag.” See, UI? You are one step closer to Ted Cruz’ world. And that is a scary place!

         Even writing this opens me up to criticism. By questioning the UI’s role in the race to be more military, I will be criticized for hating our troops. It is not true, but that demonstrates the danger of continuing down this path.

         The messages are so mixed: On one hand, we hear the UI saying, “Look at us – we know football is not the most important thing.” But every other action they take indicates that football is the most important thing.

         Perhaps I’m just a grumpy old man. But I’d rather see the Hawkeyes just line up and play football. Spare me the attempts at using veterans and sick children to manipulate my feelings.

*DID YOU KNOW?  Wilson’s now makes hard apple cider. Although they do not sell the hard cider at the orchard, it is available on tap and in bottles through a variety of area restaurants and retailers.

Anyone interested in learning more about County government should take a look at the County website-

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As always, feel free to contact me at 354-7199 or I look forward to serving you!



Anonymous Chopper Tom said...

Hello Mr. Sullivan. I am a bit disappointed. I am a dedicated Veteran, and I'm extremely proud the University of Iowa chooses to honor our Veterans any chance they can. Veteran's should be honored at every opportunity, because without their sacrifices, we may not be able to enjoy the freedoms that many people take for granted. I hear many of my fellow Veterans who served in the Vietnam War, were not only never honored when they came home, but actually ridiculed, which was deplorable. Honoring our country's Veterans should be an every day occurrence, not just when it is convenient. If you feel manipulated by the University honoring our Veterans, then you have the options to show up late, or go to the concession stand while everyone else in the stadium pays tribute to our country's true heroes. It is because I know, as a Veteran, how important it is for people to show appreciation to the extremely small percentage of us who have actually fought for and sometimes died for this outstanding nation. Honoring our Veterans is greatly appreciated by our Veterans, and if the University of Iowa wants to honor Veterans, then I applaud them with all my heart and soul. I am disappointed because those who have served, who have given up a part of or much of their life so you and I can be free to write whatever (for the most part) we want to write, deserve to be honored. I'd like to finish by thanking our Veterans for everything they have given up for the cause of Freedom and love of this country. The sacrifices people give so that others may live under the umbrella of freedom is the true meaning of honor. Remember, true honor and respect are earned, not given. I, and most of the country, think our Veterans have earned all the respect and honor we as a society can offer. Showing respect to our Veterans should never be criticized, but should be encouraged. All too easy, the public forgets the costs our Veterans endure. So, any event or gesture in honor of Veterans should be encouraged, not criticized. This Sir, is why I am disappointed in your blog. As every Veteran will attest, Freedom is not free. But many Americans seem to forget that, until they are impacted, which is pretty sad. Go HAWKS!

November 17, 2016 at 9:40 PM  

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