SMALL-TOWN IMPACT: An early morning fire last Monday destroyed an icon business in Marquette, a Northeast Iowa tourist-destination town. The blaze destroyed the 140-year-old Marquette Hardware Store antique store that long has been a popular visitor attraction while being operated by the same family for the last 69 years. Altogether, four buildings were lost in the village’s downtown and five families were displaced.
BIG, BAD CARP MOVE NORTH: Invasive Asian carp — not the common carp — are spawning farther upstream in the Mississippi River than previously documented — as far as Pool 9, which borders Allamakee County in Northeast Iowa. If they prove they can thrive in the Upper Mississippi River, the potential impact is not good. The species — actually, four types — compete for food with game fish and lower water quality, thus also hurting the fishing industry. They already are a nuisance in the Illinois River and have been found in several interior Iowa rivers, including the Cedar and Iowa.
LONG, SLOW THAW: The frozen-pipe problem that has affected so many homeowners, businesses and local governments in Eastern Iowa through the late stages of a long, bitterly cold winter is so extensive — and spring’s arrival has been so slow to date — that it may be mid-April before all of the pipes are running free of ice again.Comments: firstname.lastname@example.org or (319) 398-8262