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Iowa City Police Chief Hargadine announces retirement

HargadineIowa City Police Chief Sam Hargadine has announced his retirement from the Iowa City Police Department, effective June 30. He has accepted a position as the Executive Director of the Iowa Police Chief’s Association.

Chief Hargadine has served the Iowa City community as Police Chief since August 2005. During his tenure in Iowa City, Chief Hargadine has been instrumental in implementing a number of important initiatives. Community outreach and interagency collaboration have made great strides under his direction. The Police Chaplain program was implemented in 2013 and enlists volunteer Chaplains to counsel crime victims, provide support for officers and their families, and help the Iowa City Police Department engage with community members. More recently, Chief Hargadine has advocated bringing the Crisis Intervention Team (CIT) model to Iowa City. Led locally by Johnson County, this model develops partnerships between law enforcement, mental health providers, and healthcare professionals to more effectively respond to mental health crises and substance abuse issues. The CIT program also stresses using interagency collaboration to help individuals in crisis enter into treatment rather than utilize more costly and less effective emergency room visits or serve jail time. 

Chief Hargadine has also taken the lead on engaging in a fact-based and public discussion on the issue of disproportionate minority contact and strategies to reduce disproportionality. He worked extensively with St. Ambrose University to collect and analyze traffic stop data for disproportionality.  The Iowa City Police Department is one of two police departments in the state that uses traffic stop data in this manner.

In 2007, Chief Hargadine brought the Crimestoppers program to Iowa City. The program has helped solve a homicide, as well as several armed robberies and multiple other crimes in the community. He was also involved in the successful passage and implementation of the under-21 bar ordinance in Iowa City. This ordinance has been credited with creating a more family-friendly downtown atmosphere.

Most recently, the Iowa Police Chief’s Association honored Chief Hargadine with their prestigious Police Chief of the Year award.

“We thank Chief Hargadine for over a decade of distinguished service to the City of Iowa City. His many contributions to the Iowa City Police Department have strengthened our community significantly. We wish Chief Hargadine continued success in his new position,” said Interim City Manager Geoff Fruin.

Summer 2016 Party in the Park schedule announced

Connect with friends, family and neighbors this summer at Party in the Park. The 2016 season begins Thursday, June 2 at Glendale Park, located at 1250 E. Jefferson Street. The fun begins at 6:30 p.m. Bring your lawn chairs or blankets and enjoy live music by Old Capital String Band, games, arts and crafts, and frozen treats. Party in the Park is a no-fee event and is open to the public. Check out the full schedule of events below.

Sponsored by the City of Iowa City’s Parks and Recreation Department and the Neighborhood Outreach Division, Party in the Park gives residents a chance to enjoy their summer evenings outdoors with friends and family while exploring the City’s many beautiful natural spaces and neighborhoods.

For more information, contact Joyce Carroll, Parks and Recreation Department Arts Supervisor, at or 319-356-5100, or Marcia Bollinger, Neighborhood Outreach Planner, at or 319-356-5237.

2016 Party in the Park events:


  • 6/2/16         
    Glendale Park   —  1250 E. Jefferson Street         
    Entertainment: Old Capitol String Band

  • 6/9/16
    Tower Court Park  —  1124 Tower Court               
    Entertainment: Nancita!

  • 6/16/16
    Reno Park  —  516 Reno Street 
    Entertainment: Bob & Kristie Black

  • 6/23/16       
    Fairmeadows Park  —  2500 Miami Drive
    Entertainment: Mike Haverkamp

  • 6/30/16       
    Creekside Park  —  1858 7th Avenue Court          
    Entertainment: Cedar Creek Cobras


  • 7/7/16         
    Willow Creek Park  —  1117 Teg Drive
    Entertainment: Ron Hillis

  • 7/14/16
    Court Hill Park  —  2825 Friendship Street
    Entertainment: Loren & Margaret Brumm

  • 7/21/16 
    Wetherby Park  —  2400 Taylor Drive
    Entertainment: Pennies on the Rail

  • 7/28/16       
    Oak Grove Park  —  700 Page Street
    Entertainment: Larry  Mossman & Peter Rolnick


  • 8/4/16         
    Highland Park  —  Highland Avenue & Keokuk Street
    Entertainment: Marc & Brandi Janssen

  • 8/11/16       
    Mercer Park  —  2701 Bradford Drive
    Entertainment: Kalimbaman & the Yahoo Drummers



Iowa City Police Chief named Iowa law enforcement executive Of the year

HargadineOn May 19, 2016, law enforcement executives from across the state met for annual Iowa Police Chief's Association (IPCA) Law Enforcement Coordinating Committee (LECC) conference  in Coralville, Iowa. During the awards ceremony, Iowa City Police Chief Sam Hargadine was recognized for his commitment and dedication to the Iowa City community and the law enforcement profession.

Iowa City Police Chief Sam Hargadine was awarded the Law Enforcement Executive of the Year award by the Iowa Police Chiefs Association. Chief Hargadine, has a lengthy history of service with time in the U.S. Army and over 30 years of law enforcement service that includes serving as a Police Captain for the Columbia, Missouri Police Department, and 11 years as the Police Chief for Iowa City, Iowa

During his tenure as the Iowa City Police Chief, he has streamlined his department, raised the level of professionalism and made the Iowa City Police Department a place where officer recruits strive to be employed. Chief Hargadine, upon coming to Iowa, immediately dove into service for the Iowa Police Chiefs Association and for all of Iowa law enforcement. He has served on the Board of Directors for the 6th Judicial Correctional District, as liaison to the Iowa City Area Crime Stoppers Board of Directors, the Iowa Police Chiefs Association LECC Training Committee, as the Iowa Police Chiefs Treasurer and presently as the Vice-President of the Iowa Police Chiefs Association.

His efforts have benefited Iowa law enforcement agencies by providing guidance and leadership that has allowed for a legislative voice, improved training, and overall collaboration of various law enforcement agencies. "When one thinks of a law enforcement leader in the state of Iowa, Chief Sam Hargadine is most certainly one that comes to mind," stated Iowa Police Chiefs Association President Jeremy Logan. "Chief Hargadine sets that standard for law enforcement executives and is a critical asset to the law enforcement community, our association and our state."

Lucas Farms celebrates neighborhood history on Memorial Day weekend

The Lucas Farms Neighborhood Association, Friends of Historic Preservation, and Johnson County Historic Society have teamed up to coordinate a two-day event on Memorial Day weekend that will highlight and celebrate the neighborhood’s rich history.

Saturday, May 28
On Saturday, May 28 from 1 to 4 p.m., a “Tour de Farm” bike ride is scheduled with several historic stops throughout the course that feature exhibits or child-friendly activities. The ride kicks off at Faith United Church of Christ at 1609 Deforest Avenue, next to Mark Twain Elementary School. Two routes will be offered -- a shorter one for families with young children, and a longer four-mile route that will include additional historic stops. No registration is needed. Helmets are required, and children must be accompanied by an adult.

Some of the historic points along the ride will include the Lucas show ring and old circus grounds, several historic Moffitt houses as well as stories of people who lived in them, Victory Gardens, Dead Man’s Cave, and the former Florence Street vineyard.

Sunday, May 29
The following day, Sunday, May 29, the second annual “Lucas Farms History Day” is scheduled, with events organized throughout the neighborhood from 1 to 4 p.m. Five separate activity sites are planned. Signage will be posted to guide visitors to interest points. Visitors may walk or bike to stops of interest, or take the free shuttle bus, provided by Iowa City Transit, to each stop from Mark Twain Elementary School. The stops and activities are listed below. There will be no charge for any of the events unless indicated.

Mark Twain School, 1355 Deforest Avenue

  • Vintage Car Show
  • Parent-Teacher Organization (PTO) activities for families
  •  Welcome Station for Twain alumni
  • Shuttle bus hub (no charge for use of the shuttle)

Highland Avenue Park / Assembly of God Church, at Highland Avenue and Keokuk Street:

  • Bouncy house and other free activities for kids
  • Pony rides for $2 per person

Plum Grove Historic Site, 1030 Carroll Street:

The historic Plum Grove House officially opens for the season as part of the Lucas Farms History Day event. Plum Grove was the retirement residence of Gov. Robert Lucas and his wife, Friendly. Lucas was the first governor of the Territory of Iowa, from 1838 to 1841. In addition to the season opening of Plum Grove, this stop will entertain visitors with:

  • Historic reinactors, including Abraham Lincoln
  • Performances by the Liberty Band of Iowa 

For more information on Plum Grove events, contact or call 319-351-5738. 

Neighborhood Walking History and Garden:

Start the Walking History and Garden Tour at any of the tour stops, where maps and tour information will be provided. Approximately nine neighborhood gardens will be open, with historic stops along the way.

Friends of Historic Preservation Tour of Historic Homes:

Friends of Historic Preservation will offer a tour of historic homes on Summit Street, Kirkwood Avenue, Walnut Street, and Florence Street. Tickets are $10 per person and may be purchased at any of the featured homes. A complimentary wine-tasting is scheduled at a former neighborhood vineyard. For more information on the historic home tour, contact or 319-351-1875. 

For more information about the Lucas Farms neighborhood events, contact Judy Nyren at or 319-351-6913.

ICPL Summer Bus Program Begins May 26

An Iowa City Public Library card is your child’s ticket to ride an Iowa City Transit bus free this summer.

The Library will provide free bus rides to children through 12th grade, and the adult caregivers who are with them, on any Iowa City Transit bus route, between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. every weekday beginning Thursday, May 26. Eligible bus riders should show their Iowa City Public Library card to the bus driver to gain free access to the bus.

Children can catch a ride home anytime the same day with a Ride & Read bus pass, which is issued by showing a Library Card at any public service desk at the Library.

Parents, if your child doesn’t have an Iowa City Public Library card, visit for information about how to apply for a card. Complete your application online, then stop by the Help Desk within two weeks to pick up your card. You can also apply in person at the Help Desk any time the Library is open. Adults will need to show photo identification (current driver’s license or passport) and proof of resident address (current driver’s license, mail with a current post mark; current lease) in order to obtain a Library Card.

Photo identification is not required for children under age 14.

The summer bus program ends the week day before the first day of school.

For more information, please call the Library at 319-356-5200.

ICPL Announces Totally Tweens Summer Lineup

The Iowa City Public Library’s Totally Tweens program has an exciting lineup of activities and programs for students in third through sixth grades as part of the On Your Mark, Get Set … Read! Summer Reading Program.

Totally Tweens will meet at 2 p.m. every Tuesday in June and July, beginning June 7, in the Storytime Room, unless otherwise noted.

June 7: Amazing Race

Start off your summer cracking clues and completing challenges. Bring a friend to make a team of two, or come alone to be paired up with a new friend.

June 14: Popcorn Olympics

Pop into the library for a tasty competition. Test your aim with the Popcorn Toss, show off your coordination in the Popcorn Cup Catch, plus other corny contests. Enjoy the taste of victory (and popcorn) at the end.

June 21: From IC to NFL with Nate Kaeding

Former NFL kicker Nate Kaeding will talk about his football career and answer questions about life in the NFL.

June 28: Yoga with Karen

Interested in yoga? Join Children’s Librarian, Karen Gordon to learn the basics. Starting with the 4 B’s –Brain, Body, Breath, and Balance. Yoga helps build self-confidence and self-esteem, flexibility and strength.

July 5: LEGOs and LittleBits

Get creative with engineering and electricity by designing and constructing a part of a city.

July 12: Insect Zoo Bug Olympics

Join our special guests from the ISU Insect Zoo for these Olympic Events: Cockroach Pulls, Roach Races, and Cricket Jumps. Then get up close and personal with the other awesome multi-legged creatures at the Bug Olympics Display.

July 19: Pizza Workshop

Find out how pizza is made in a restaurant, then make and eat your own mini pizza. Please contact us ahead of time with any food allergies. We may not be able to accommodate all allergies.

July 26: Life Size Games

Do you love board games but always wished they were bigger? The library has the solution. Come in today to play some games as big as you are.

Don’t forget our special finale, a Glow-in-the-Dark Lock-In from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 5.

Celebrate the end of the Summer Reading Program by staying late at the Library. We’ll have glow-in-the-dark games, temporary hair colors, snacks, and more. Please note that parents and/or caregivers must fill out a permission slip at the Children's Desk prior to the event. Tweens will be dropped off in Meeting Room A and picked up by the after-hours book drop at 9:30 p.m.

The Iowa City Public Library Summer Reading Program will be held May 31 through July 31; registration begins May 31. Patrons can either register in-person at the Library or online at

For more information about Totally Tweens, call the Library at 319-356-5200.

Register now for Youth Summer Fun program

The Iowa City Parks and Recreation Department is proud to announce a new summer program for teens. The Youth Summer Fun program will run 5-9 p.m., Monday through Friday beginning June 6-August 19. The program is open to students in grades 7-12, and will include many activities such as basketball, volleyball, double-dutch, crafts, gardening and more! No fee is required and enrollment is on-going, however pre-registration is encouraged as space is limited.

To register, click the link below and download the registration form. Completed forms should then be brought to Robert A. Lee Community Recreation Center, 200 S. Gilbert Street. Sorry, no online registration available. All forms must be signed.

If you have questions about the Iowa City Parks and Recreation Youth Summer Fun Program, contact Chad Dyson at or call 319-356-5100.  

Iowa Valley Habitat for Humanity to break ground on the first Habitat home in Hills

What: Iowa Valley Habitat Memorial Build Groundbreaking Ceremony

When: Friday, May 20, 5:30 pm

Where: 404 Brady Street, Hills, IA


Hills, IA. – On May 20, 2016, starting at 5:30 pm, Iowa Valley Habitat for Humanity will break ground on its second annual Community Memorial Build. Future Habitat home owners, Jacques Ngendo and Mami Karasisi and their two children, will join friends, community members and supporters for a special ceremony marking the start of construction of the Habitat home being built at 404 Brady Street in Hills, Iowa.

The Memorial Build gives community members the chance to memorialize loved ones while creating a lasting, local impact for a family in need. Donors have a wide range of giving options: inscribing a garden paver, purchasing a memorial tree, sponsoring a Day of Remembrance at the construction site, and more. 

In honor of a generous contribution made by an anonymous donor and other donations made in memory of Patrick Hughes, this year’s Memorial Build is possible through collaboration between memorials for loved ones while giving special recognition of Patrick Hughes.

Patrick served almost 20 years as president of Iowa City Federation of Labor and up to his death served as a member of the central committee of the Johnson County Democrats. Patrick also worked for several years for The United Way of East Central Iowa as an AFL-CIO Community Services Liaison. More recently, Patrick worked at Iowa Valley Habitat for Humanity as a construction manager and taught temporarily at Kirkwood Community College as a carpentry instructor. He passed away on August 6, 2014.

Christy Shipley, Construction Manager at Iowa Valley Habitat, remembers Patrick fondly. “He made a human connection with everyone he worked with, caring about everyone. His knowledge was vast in many areas. He always worked with a whistle and a smile and was dedicated to quality workmanship.”

Construction of the Memorial Build home in Hills is part of Habitat for Humanity’s annual Home Builders Blitz. In June, professional homebuilders from across the country will help nearly 250 families build strength, stability and self-reliance through shelter. In the Iowa City and Hills area, members of the Greater Iowa City Area Home Builders Association, the Iowa City Carpenters’ Local 1260, Hills Bank and Trust, Eldon C. Stutsman, Inc., Riverside Casino and Golf Resort, will join Iowa Valley Habitat to underwrite and construct a place that Jacques and Mami can call home.

More information on the Community Memorial Build honoring Patrick Hughes and the Home Builders Blitz is available at or by calling 319-337-8949.

About Iowa Valley Habitat for Humanity

With a foundation in ecumenical Christian principles, Iowa Valley Habitat for Humanity (IVHFH), a tax-exempt, non-profit housing organization, unites diverse communities to build, rehabilitate and maintain safe, decent and affordable homes for hard-working families in Cedar, Iowa, Johnson and Washington Counties. Each home Iowa Valley Habitat builds has a variety of aspects that make it extremely energy efficient, helping the environment and ensuring that the new Partner Homeowner will spend less on utility bills.

Next Coffee with a Cop scheduled Friday, May 27 at Mercer

Mercer Park Aquatic Center at 2701 Bradford Drive in Iowa City will be the site of the next Coffee with a Cop, where area residents are invited to join their neighbors, friends and co-workers to discuss community issues with neighborhood police officers. The event, hosted by the Iowa City Police Department, will be held from 9:30 to 11 a.m. This is an opportunity to ask questions, voice concerns and get to know police officers in a relaxed setting over a cup of coffee -- no agenda or speeches are planned as part of the program.

Additional information about the Coffee with a Cop program is available at For other questions, or to schedule Coffee with a Cop in your neighborhood, contact Officer David Schwindt at or 319-356-5275.