Tag Archives: siouxland

Nicer weather in Siouxland

15 Apr

The last few days have been a bit of a roller coaster weather-wise in Siouxland. The nicer days are appearing, being replaced with rainy days, which is good, since there was limited snowfall over the winter.

But nicer days are great for getting out and looking images and exploring the area once again.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Siouxland summer is ending, Rural Woodbury County

27 Aug

It’s raining today. It’s been raining a lot this summer in Siouxland. No storms, just a nice rain. August is ending and fall is approaching. Fall is my favorite time of year. The light is very sweet to photograph in, and then there are the colors. So I thought I would take one last opportunity to add to summer’s passing with a few photos.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Siouxland’s Tulip Festival Time, Orange City

30 Apr

The Orange City, Iowa, tulip festival celebrates its Dutch heritage in May of every year in Siouxland. The community has a parade, the residents dress up in Dutch costumes that represent different segments of that historical society and walk down the street in their costumes as an announcer explains the history behind each. Orange City residents young and old participate, performing dances from their “native” land during the day. There are other activities as well as a carnival. It’s a pleasant way to spend half your day or more. In addition, there are some Dutch pastry treats that are made this time of year for visitors to get a taste of Dutch hospitality and tradition.

There used to be demonstration area set up in a small building in town where people could watch wooden shoes being made as well. A resident from the Netherlands moved to Orange City a few decades ago bringing with him his tools for creating wooden shoes which he did for many years until he passed on. As explained by a current resident, the wooden shoes withstood the work in wet fields that people encountered and didn’t rot as did leather shoes. But that demonstration area has disappeared in time.

Also throughout the community, an abundant crop of tulips can be found growing, weather permitting, that is no late frosts which would kill the blooms. And it’s pleasant to stroll the streets, watch the people dressed in traditional garb and enjoying celebrating their heritage by making it come alive for a weekend to share with visitors.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux CIty, Iowa


Siouxland evening sky, Sioux City

27 Apr

Spring has finally arrived in Siouxland, even if it is a little later than normal. This weekend thunderstorms and some tornadoes are appearing throughout various states in the Midwest. Sunday Sioux City was spared storms that hit other areas, but it also meant this area didn’t get much rain either, something it really needs as well. But as storm clouds pass in and out of the area and the day grows dim, one doesn’t always see spectacular evening skies, but they can still be pleasant nonetheless.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

In Siouxland, politics is not for the faint of heart

11 Sep

Earlier this year I visited the city of Royal, Iowa, towards the eastern edge of Siouxland to meet a woman who in her 80’s decided to run for the position of mayor in her town of roughly 400 people in 2012. Florence “Fluff” Ihry won that election.  An active community member her entire life, Ihry explained that she was reluctant, even when asked by a number of people to run for mayor and to continue to help her community in a way she never expected. A two year term, Ihry is again running for the position of mayor at the age of 85.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Siouxland Memorial Day at Floyd Cemetery, Sioux City

28 May

I have lived in Sioux City now almost 12 years. And have attended a number of Memorial Day ceremonies at the Floyd Cemetery in town performed by local American Legion posts and the Marine League and the women counterparts to each of these. The Floyd Cemetery ceremony was not always well attended, but it was always very intimate, with the few people there to honor to those who fought for their country and those who died. Gravestones mark the burials of men who fought in the Civil War, and later. So it was sad to find out Monday morning that the Floyd Cemetery Memorial Day ceremony was not to be, but instead a ceremony would be held at Graceland Cemetery. A larger place, more room for more flags and people, but missing would be the feeling of those long ago warriors, ghosts, who could be standing or sitting in the shade of the older trees at the Floyd Cemetery, receiving their due in heartfelt tributes, and watching the proceedings knowing they had done well.

But in recent years, the American Legion Posts and other organizations have been suffering a decline in membership, something I will address in a later musing, having talked with various members of the local Posts over the last few years.

But this doesn’t mean to diminish the tribute given to those brave men and women who serve and did serve which took place at Graceland Cemetery. I am just thinking that maybe Floyd Cemetery’s Memorial Day service received its own Taps Monday.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

Siouxland’s Ingemann Danish Church and Memorial Day, Moorhead

27 May

I recently learned that once a year, a church in the Loess Hills of Siouxland holds a Sunday service on the day prior to Memorial Day. The Bethesda Lutheran Church of Moorehead, Iowa, holds a Memorial Day service each year at the Ingemann Danish Lutheran Church. Pastor Carla Johnsen has been tending her flock for the past 12 years. Pastor Johnsen explained,” Every year we come out here (to the Ingemann Danish Lutheran Church) because this church is part of our roots. This was the original Danish church built here in the country.” She explained there was a divide over holy Danes and happy Danes and the church’s congregation split in two. “So we come back here every year to remember God’s faithfulness. That is part of our story, and generation after generation God has been faithful and continues to be to this day”, she said.

Pastor Johnsen said during her sermon that people should remember and celebrate their past, their history and remember those who came before. After service inside the church, the congregation comes outside, Taps is played, then a few American songs are song and the group then enjoys fellowship with one another by having coffee and cookies and other refreshments. The Ingemann Danish Church, built in 1884, was eventually listed on the National Historic Register of Places in 2012.

More photographs of the Memorial Day service and celebration can be found here.

Jerry Mennenga

Sioux City, Iowa

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