Press Release Announcement
Back to Project:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – Kalona, Iowa – Friends of Bunker Mill Bridge, on
Tuesday, May 26, in a meeting at the Kalona Chamber of Commerce discussed and
voted on several measures. By unanimous vote, the group authorized The N. Skunk
River Greenbelt Association (NSRGA) to finalize the appointment of Scott Allen as
Executive Director of the Friends working for the bridge project. "It was clear that the
group (and town) needed someone local to do the hours of work that it takes to support
the bridge. Allen stepped up months ago. Many of you might not know that Scott is a
direct descendent of the Bunkers. It is that legacy that prompted him to be part of and
President of the original Save the Bridge group and now to give up a permanent
position at Pleasant Valley Garden Center & Flower Shoppe to take on the project. He is
charged with making his own paying job as a consultant to NSRGA." stated Julie
Bowers. "Direct donations for flowers, t-shirts for the bridge opening fund are still
welcome, but having Scott on board will allow us to work for money for the bridge,
rather than continue with asking for money from grants that just isn't available. We own
a bridge, we have to fund it. A real jewel has been created at Bunker Mill Bridge and
people are spending time there which requires more of a presence this summer."
The Friends also moved and voted that there is no need to hurry towards the existence
of their own group, noting that the Trade Mark of the name and the mission of the group
are sound, and they wish to continue a full collaboration with NSRGA and Workin'
Bridges through, at least, 2015. Mike Riddle stated, "I don't see any need to rush
through that process while we are still working to get the bridge restored." Mike has
taken over the responsibility of the cash donation boxes which can be seen around town.
The friends also rejected the creation of a a titled board of directors, stating that those
titles seemed to go to people's heads, but we just all want a say and a vote. The point,
show up at the meetings and be part of the process. The next meeting will be Tuesday,
June 17 at 6:30 at the event barn of Dennis and Irma Altenhofen, long time supporters
of the project.
Other News - Window Views – A window display can now be viewed in Washinton at
Richard Gilmour's building next to Cafe Dodici where owner Lorraine Williams has
iron flowers available to donors . The window showcases the replica King Iron Bridge
sign created at Max-Cast in Kalona and the stringer recognition names that were created
by Nels Raynor at BACH Steel. Doris Park and Danielle Bombei made sure the
Washington window was in place before their big summer celebrations begin. A
window display is also being planned for the Stuart Yoder building on the main drag in
Kalona. Friends of Bunker Mill Bridge joined Kalona Chamber of Commerce in May,
the windows serve to point to the value we bring to the community and point to ways
folks can donate.
In related news: Building Donated – Scott Allen's internet research revealed a vintage
1920's steel building in Iowa City, free to a good home. Allen followed up with a quick
e-mail and phone call and Bowers joined him for the site visit the next day to meet with
Jeannette (Chadek) Fulton. The find, a 12'x16' vintage and historic steel building that
had been moved to Carl Chadek Trucking Service Inc. to serve as a Scale House, from
it's original use on the Coralville Pipeline. The building is a donation from the Carl
Chadek Trucking Service and The Family of Carl and Frieda Chadek. The building is
being moved to open up more space for the new Chadek Park and Community Gardens.
More related News – Old Mill Marketplace – The shack is in great shape and will
serve as the new home for the start up of Old Mill Marketplace at Bunker Mill Bridge.
Scott's retail experience will help define Old Mill Marketplace this summer: the sky is
the limit but with a budget and a goal: art, farmer's market, cold water and soft drinks,
bug spray and sun screen will all be available at the marketplace. The building will be
moved by Phil Gehman early on Monday June 9. NSRGA moved and the group
approved the use of under $1000 of contingency funds for bridge construction to set up
the move and the marketplace. These funds will be replaced by sales. The goal is that
the seed money will jump start the capital funding for bridge opening, about $30,000 is
needed for installation of stringers and planks.
Music • Fun • Food – David Zollo is the first performer booked on June 24, 6:30 pm
for Almost Acoustic Tuesdays at Bunker Mill Bridge. NSRGA is promoting bridge
restoration through a summer series of music. More will be revealed and more details
will be forthcoming. Musicians should contact Julie Bowers at 641.260.1262
- Image:Image Description:Friends of Bunker Mill Bridge