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ISU Extension & Outreach, Winneshiek County office will reopen to the public on Monday, June 1, 2020. 



ISU Extension & Outreach, Winneshiek County office will reopen to the public on Monday, June 1, 2020.

We take serving Iowans seriously, and we are prioritizing the health and safety of our community and staff. We will be taking precautions to ensure the safety of staff and the public. Please stay home if you have had a fever or feel sick and contact us by phone 563-382-2949 or email us at




Alexandria McIntyre | Winneshiek County

Iowa State University Extension and Outreach

Office Assistant


325 Washington Street, Suite B

Decorah, IA 52101




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Luther College community reflects on Nordic values during COVID-19 pandemic

Luther College community reflects on Nordic values during COVID-19 pandemic

DECORAH, Iowa – A unique project has recently wrapped up at Luther College where students and alumni were asked to reflect on how Nordic values are being utilized during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Maren Johnson, assistant professor and director of the Torgerson Center for Nordic Studies, was looking for a way to connect current students with alumni who share a passion for the Nordic region.

“Nordic Studies is thriving at Luther, with nearly 90 students in our classes, 18 of whom are majors,” Johnson said. “During this time of social isolation, I wanted to find a way to build community among current and former students.”

Nordic Studies is the in-depth study of the Nordic region (Norway, Denmark, Sweden, Finland and Iceland). The discipline examines how the literature, history, language, politics and culture inform and shape norms and values present in the region today.

Johnson invited people to identify some important Nordic values and social norms, and how they saw them being used to address the coronavirus crisis.

“Graduates from multiple decades responded. One alumnus witnesses the Nordic value of janteloven, the cultural code of humility and selflessness, in the hospital where he works. Several are discovering more fully the value of friluftsliv, or purposeful, immersive time outdoors, while being confined to the indoors has raised the importance of koselig or hygge which is embracing a ‘cozy’ way of life with a focus on contentment and wellbeing in one’s living space,” said Johnson.

As a clinical psychologist and educator, Timothy Baardseth ’00, said he is inspired by colleagues and staff at his hospital and graduate school as they embrace the egalitarian value that no person is either better or worse than anyone else.

“Their willingness to place the needs of their patients and students in front of their own is awe-inspiring,” wrote Baardseth. “I believe that the egalitarian spirit of the janteloven will ultimately be an underlying societal factor that helps us to overcome these tumultuous times.”

Trust was another common theme in the responses. In the Nordic region, there is trust among people and trust in public authorities and institutions. Equality, including gender equality, was mentioned as well by Ingrid Urberg ’84.

“The contributions of all members of society across a myriad of job sectors are necessary for a functioning and healthy community,” wrote Urberg. “This focus on equality and the practice of social solidarity has resulted in a robust and valued universal health care system which is serving the Nordic region well during the Covid-19 pandemic.”

To read all of the responses, visit

The Torgerson Center for Nordic Studies honors Luther College’s legacy as the first college in the United States founded by Norwegian immigrants. Its mission is to foster connections with today’s Nordic region through innovative programs and partnerships. It is the only endowed undergraduate Nordic studies center in the United States.

Luther College is home to more than 1,900 undergraduates who explore big questions and take action to benefit people, communities and society. Our 60+ academic programs, experiential approach to learning and welcoming community inspire students to learn actively, live purposefully and lead courageously for a lifetime of impact. Learn more at

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Iowa Eviction and Foreclosure Prevention Program

The Iowa Finance Authority has launched the COVID-19 Iowa Eviction and Foreclosure Prevention Program, which will provide mortgage and rent assistance to eligible Iowans who are unable to meet those obligations due to COVID-19. This has become necessary since the Governor’s moratorium on foreclosures and evictions was phased out after the last proclamation dated 5/26/20.

Rental assistance will cover up to four months (this can include up to two months in arrears) beginning with April 1 rent payment, ($3,200 maximum); this includes manufactured home rent and lot rent

Mortgage payment assistance will cover up to $3,000 maximum, beginning with April 1 mortgage payment (this can include up to two months in arrears).

To be eligible, you must be a current renter or homeowner who is at risk of eviction or foreclosure due to a documented COVID-19-related loss of income on or after March 17, 2020. Your household income must not exceed 80% MFI (Median Family Income) at the time of application. You are not eligible if you are currently receiving the $600 additional CARES Act unemployment benefit.

Applications are open now and will continue until all funds have been exhausted. You can learn more and apply here:

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The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, is preparing to reopen camping

ST. PAUL, Minn. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, St. Paul District, is preparing to reopen camping at its
parks in eastern North Dakota, Minnesota and western Wisconsin, June 1.
Campgrounds were closed to start the season due to COVID-19 concerns and a need to protect employees
and the public. While the campgrounds are reopening, visitors are encouraged to contact Corps staff at the
park you are visiting to ensure other recreation areas such as beaches, boat ramps and playground areas are
open. The status of these facilities is also available at:
Individuals with paid camping reservations at closed campgrounds will be contacted by email about
cancellations and full refunds will automatically be processed through the website with no
cancellation fees. Individuals should not contact the website to request a refund as that will lead to a
cancellation fee being charged. All reservations must be made via Self-pay vaults are
closed so cash and checks will not be accepted for camping.
Corps officials have suspended the collection of day use fees for its swimming beaches and boat ramps
until Oct. 1. The Corps is also extending the expiration date of USACE and America the Beautiful annual
passes for seven months for those who previously purchased annual passes for the year.
While visiting Corps recreation areas, visitors are encouraged to practice social distancing and other
COVID-19 safety precautions required and recommended by local, state and federal authorities, to include
the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. CDC guidance on visiting parks and recreation facilities
can be found online at
In addition to COVID-19 safety precautions, Corps staff remind everyone to be smart while you are on the
water and to always wear your life jacket.
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Oneota Community Co-op Re-Opening Store to Public Beginning June 1


Oneota Community Co-op Re-Opening Store to Public Beginning June 1

DECORAH, IOWA 5/27/2020

The Oneota Community Co-op in Decorah, Iowa has taken extraordinary measures to keep customers and staff safe during the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak. Since March 11, the store was closed to customer traffic and immediately launched an online and phone ordering system with curbside service. Beginning Monday, June 1 the Co-op will open its doors to the public and continue the online and phone ordering system to accommodate the needs of customers. Physical store hours will be 10:00 am to 7:00 pm every day.

“Since day one, we have offered the safest way to purchase groceries in our area,” said General Manager David Lester, “and that will continue with the re-opening of the store” he continued. The Co-op Deli will also re-open with many new options for take-home meals and other grab and go options that were previously not available.

For nearly 11 weeks we have been offering the safest way to buy groceries in northeast Iowa during the COVID-19 outbreak. Now, with our doors about to open, we will continue to offer the safest shopping environment for our staff and customers, but we need your help. We ask that you join in the effort to keep us all safe:

  • Wear a mask. We will be requiring customers to wear a mask into the store. During the first two weeks of re-opening the Seamsters Union of Winneshiek County have provided us with enough masks to give out to customers who do not have one. A suggested donation of $3-$5 for each mask will be much appreciated to keep this group making masks for our community!
  • Practice good hygiene. There are multiple hand sanitizing stations throughout the store – including in our entryway. Please use them, our employees are doing the same.
  • Wash your hands. A portable hand washing sink will be placed in our entryway and we expect customers to wash and/or sanitize their hands before entering the sales floor. Public restroom access will not be available in-store.
  • Limit the number of those shopping. To keep a safe number of customers shopping in the store, we ask that you try to limit your shopping group to yourself or one other person.
  • Plan ahead. Keep your shopping trip as efficient and brief as possible. We want to make sure you find everything you are looking for and we will have some staff on the floor to help you find everything you need.
  • Socially distance yourself. Please maintain physical distance between yourself and others. We recommend a minimum of 6 feet. You will also see floor decals and other signage to help remind you.
  • Elevated cleaning procedures. Our employees adhere to strict CDC and National Cooperative Grocer cleaning standards. Additionally, we have enhanced these standards to clean and sanitize high frequency touchpoints like door handles, registers, trash receptacles, keypads and self-service dispensers.
  • Pay by credit/debit. Please come prepared to pay with a bank/credit card or mobile pay, if possible. Cards are more hygienic than cash payment.
  • These are only a few of the changes we are making. Please check out our latest store update post on our website – – for more information!

Storefront/Curbside Pick-up Continues

On Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday we will continue to fulfill online and phone orders with storefront/curbside pick-up. The deadline for online orders is 6:00 pm the prior day (Monday, Wednesday, Saturday). Phone orders will be accepted only from 9:00 am to 10:00 am Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday with same-day fulfillment. You may also email your order to with the same 6:00 pm deadline as online orders.

About Oneota Community Food Co-op

Located in downtown Decorah, Oneota Community Food Co-op is a cooperatively-owned grocery store specializing in local, organic, and sustainably produced products since 1974. For over four decades, the Co-op has been the leading provider of whole foods at a reasonable cost, with an emphasis on organic, local and bulk foods. The Oneota Community Food Co-op was named the 2020 Outstanding Single Store by Progressive Grocer. Located at 312 West Water Street in Decorah, or online at

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