By Steve Peterson
Hawarden Councilors unanimously approved a $1,000 request from West Sioux Youth Wrestling representatives to help fund the 2013-2014 wrestling season.
Mark Van Oort and Mark Rens made the presentation to councilors Oct. 23.
“We would like funding for one more mat space and safety,” said Van Oort. “We will have about 35 to 50 kids participating.”
“The mat will serve as a much-needed thing to continue our program,” he said. “It’s grown year by year.”
“We welcome any kid kindergarten to eighth grade but it’s mostly kindergarten to sixth grade,” said Van Oort. “We encourage them to stay active. It’s good for the winter to release their energy so they’re not watching video games as the world pushes for physical fitness. The program we provide is really positive.”
“We have 20 volunteer coaches and parents from the Hawarden and Ireton area,” he said, “and with that support, it is bound to be more and more successful.”
“I think we’ll get 50 kids,” he said. “The easier we can make it, the more kids will be involved.”
He told the council the wrestling mat will cost $6,500 to $7,000 and has a life expectancy of 10 years.
“We have other costs such as singlets,” said Van Oort.
The group will meet at West Sioux Elementary School in Ireton this winter as it outgrew its previous Ireton location.
Transportation to and from Hawarden is being worked on, said Van Oort.
The West Sioux Youth Wrestling group will also be seeking funds from West Sioux Athletic Boosters Club.
“It’s a zero cost program to families,” said Van Oort, adding there are some equipment costs such as replacing 10-and-20-year-old mats.
“We believe we have $6,000 raised already,” said Van Oort.
“We’re trying to get kids to buy into it and get families to continue to bring their kids. But we have just outgrown our mat space,” said Van Oort. “We appreciate the support.”
In other business, the Council:
• Heard a request from Robby Munns regarding the purchase of property at 303 19th St. The vote to continue to pursue the sale, draft a resolution and hold a public hearing, was 4-0 in favor.
Munns suggested a price of $500.
The city did not have any plans for the lot, said Administrator Gary Tucker.
I have done work on cleaning up the property at Calliope Addition in the past, said Munns, adding he plans to use the lot for a storage rental unit.
“I keep my property very well-groomed. I cleaned the property at 1910 Avenue C, mowing it and tore down three large trees at my expense,” said Muns. “In the past I have paid $300 for a lot.”
“We should not give property away. We could consult with a realtor about fair market value,” said City Attorney Jim Pickner.
“I don’t think there is a way we can recoup our investment,” said Councilor Joel Fluit.
• Approved a lease with Gary Wilkison regarding a city lot.
The vote was 3-1. Councilor Monte Harvey voted no. The lease is for two years.
Hawarden Mayor Ric Porter noted the Ninth District American Legion and Auxiliary recently held its fall conference at the city offices and thanked the city.
“I thank the city employees for working so well with the contractors on the electric project and the Central Avenue projects,” said Porter.
Soo Motel will be demolished the first week of November reported Public Works Director Tom Kane.
Hawarden Councilors met at 11th Avenue and Central Avenue to tour Central Avenue street improvement progress.
During the tour city officials said the Central Avenue concrete overlay project is in its final stages and should be ready for vehicles next week.