Kalona starts reopening city services to public

By Ryan Schlabaugh
Posted 5/28/20

I hope that everyone was able to enjoy Memorial Day weekend. If you went to Sharon Hill Cemetery you may have noticed that the memorial to the unknown soldier has been reset, with a new flag, plaza …

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Kalona starts reopening city services to public

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I hope that everyone was able to enjoy Memorial Day weekend. If you went to Sharon Hill Cemetery you may have noticed that the memorial to the unknown soldier has been reset, with a new flag, plaza and seating area for reflection. We are proud to be able to provide an updated area to the public.

On behalf of the Kalona City Council, I would like to thank Jim and Bridget Johnson and the staff at The News for all of their hard work throughout this time. We are fortunate to have a local paper that has been proactive in getting information out to the public. Again, with their help I would like to share a current timeline and some changes that will take place in Kalona. 

 

City Hall

On June 1, the Kalona City Hall will welcome walk-in traffic to City Hall between the hours of 8 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. Should you need city services but are unable or uncomfortable meeting in person, contact City Hall at 319-656-2310.

We would encourage you to visit Washington County Public Health’s website to stay updated on COVID-19. Their website is www.washph.com.

 

Recreation

On May 26, the YMCA will be opening the Kalona Community Center for use. Numerous changes have needed to be implemented due to COVID-19. We must adhere to the governor’s proclamation to open in a socially responsible manner to provide a safe environment for members and staff.

Visit the YMCA of Washington County website at WashingtonY.org or CityOfKalona.org to get updated information on re-opening details.

During the May 18 City Council meeting, the YMCA presented a plan for opening the Kalona city pool this summer. The council accepted their plan.

That plan is on hold until the governor opens pools for use again. We are ready in partnership with the YMCA when that announcement is made. Together we are working through the logistics of capacity, usage and cleaning schedules that need to be in place before we open. 

 

City Park

These are the current Kalona City Park conditions. Again, these may change with a new proclamation from the governor, but at this time:

• Play structures and courts are currently closed.

• Ballfields are currently closed to the public and organized groups.

• The campground is open for self-contained camping.

• Currently all restrooms and shower houses are closed.

Summer ball programs through Tri-County youth sports were canceled through their board of directors for summer 2020. The YMCA will be looking to do an abbreviated baseball and softball program for both boys and girls this summer. Keep an eye out for information and registration forms. 

 

Food Pantry

The communities of Wellman, Riverside and Kalona have partnered to provide those in our area experiencing food insecurities with food boxes. We have seen a tremendous outpouring of community support that has allowed us to provide more than 15,000 pounds through roughly 600 food boxes.

We will be hosting our fourth Pop-Up Pantry on Saturday, May 30, from 9-11 a.m. at 711 A Ave. (city shop) in Kalona.

Should you be experiencing food insecurity and need emergency food, contact your City Hall or call 319-936-9354. 

 

Kalona Public Library

On June 1, the Kalona Public Library will open to the public for limited in-person use and curb side pick-up. Our library staff has done a great job of keeping patrons engaged and reading throughout this time. Check for updates at Kalona.lib.ia.us for public uses hours and rules.

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In closing, I’d like to ask for your patience and understanding for not only our city services, but to our business community as well. This has been a difficult time, and I know everyone is trying their best to work toward opening back up in a socially responsible manner.

There will be changes and possibly some mistakes, but we will need to work together to continue to move Kalona forward.

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