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Rich Paulsen - What’s Up

The county fairs are over and now onto the Iowa State Fair

We have have had some awfully hot weather for the county fairs, so let’s just hope the weather for the state fair gets a little nicer.

I’m sure the hot weather didn’t help the attendance at many of the county fairs around the area. I even felt sorry for the poor animals that had to be out in that heat. Welcome to summers in Iowa.

Iowa State Fair

The Iowa State Fair runs from Aug. 10 through Aug. 20 up in Des Moines. Now is a good time to buy your tickets before the fair starts. You can pre-purchase your tickets at Hy-Vee or Fareway. The price at the gate is $12 whereas you can purchase them early for only $8 per ticket.

Besides the usual standard fair food like corndogs and lemonade, there are more than 50 new menu items. Some of the new items include the apple taco, cheesy fried enchilada funnel cake, Iowa’s big pork leg and Thanksgiving balls, which are made with Iowa grown turkey.

We have company coming from Wisconsin that is going to take in the fair the same weekend the big solar eclipse will be coming to the area. They are headed to Lincoln right after the fair to take in the solar eclipse that will be in full totality over in Lincoln on Aug. 21.

McKinley Park Festival

Saturday is the McKinley Park Festival at the park. The event has several activities with a fishing contest and Bill Riley talent show as two of the main events. There is also a hog roast if you need a little dinner along the way.

The proceeds of the hog roast go to the park fund. The fisher “kids” get some free giveaways, dinner and chance at several prizes. It’s always fun to see the families out fishing together. The weather person is also calling for a nice day temperature-wise. The fishing starts at 4 p.m. with registration from 3:15 to 4. Come out and enjoy the evening.

Tax free

Tax free weekend is coming up the weekend of Aug. 5. It’s a great time to do some back-to-school shopping and save a little money along the way.

There are usually some great sales plus the incentive to save the sales tax charge on many items.

Sweet corn

Sweet corn sales are in full production. Most of the corn that I have bought seems to be a little smaller than in some years past. I thought the early spring rains would help it out, but the lack of rain over the last seven weeks looks to be taking a toll on the size of the ears. It is still nice and sweet and well worth the purchase.

Unemployment

The monthly unemployment rates are out for June. Iowa is now down to 3.2 percent unemployment as a state total. Union County is at 3.3 percent and most of the counties around Union County are even less than that. Adams County is at 2.2 percent, which is one of the lower totals in the state. The U.S. rate is at 4.4 percent.

It seems like almost every business is looking for people. One of Iowa’s main problems is drawing people to the state. I talked with Gov. Kim Reynolds a while back and she is working with Workforce Development on some possible solutions to the problem.

One of the biggest problems businesses have now is that people will not move or relocate. Rural areas offer plenty of employment opportunities, but getting folks out of the cities is the toughest job.

Thought for the week: “The only thing I regret about my past is the length of it. If I had to live my life again, I’d make the same mistakes, only sooner.” – Tallulah Bankhead

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