Sports & Recreation
Branstad, Reynolds applaud State Fair Board’s decision PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Office of the Governor of the State of Iowa   
Friday, 10 January 2014 13:58

(DES MOINES) – Gov. Terry Branstad and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds today applauded the Iowa State Fair Board’s decision to maintain its cash payment system for food and drinks.

“I’m pleased the Iowa State Fair Board has listened to fairgoers’ concerns and decided to maintain its cash payment system,” said Branstad. “When making a decision affecting so many individuals, it’s important to find a consensus. This decision will ensure convenience and efficiency for State Fair visitors.”

Lt. Gov. Reynolds, who serves on the Board and joined the meeting via conference call, said, “The people of Iowa take great pride in their state fair, so it came as no surprise that Iowans were quick to express their opinion on the decision. I applaud the board’s decision today - which reflects the sentiment of a majority of Iowans - giving Iowans the ability to use cash for food and drink concessions.”


Statement by Governor Pat Quinn on Selection of Greg Maddux and Frank Thomas to Baseball Hall of Fame PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Grant Klinzman   
Friday, 10 January 2014 13:23

CHICAGO – Governor Pat Quinn today released the following statement regarding the selection of Greg Maddux and Frank Thomas to the National Baseball Hall of Fame:

“Fans on the North Side, South Side and all across Illinois are cheering today’s historic selection of Cubs hurler Greg Maddux and White Sox slugger Frank Thomas to the ranks of baseball greatness.

“I can think of few sports moments as electrifying as a Frank Thomas blast or a Greg Maddux ‘K.’ Both athletes were hard-working perfectionists who were dedicated to their craft and their teams.

“This unprecedented day for Chicago baseball fans is a reminder that Spring Training opens in just 36 days and the Cubs-White Sox World Series will be here before we know it.

“Congrats to Frank, Greg, their former teammates and coaches, and their families!”


News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Marco LaNave   
Thursday, 09 January 2014 10:42

During limited-time sale, fans may order personalized 2013 Midwest League championship rings

DAVENPORT, Iowa (JAN. 8, 2014) – Fans of the Quad Cities River Bandits can own a piece of history with a commemorative 2013 Midwest League Championship ring in a limited-time sale. Until Feb. 1, fans may purchase rings that match the ones earned by the team's players and staff, and each fan may personalize the championship hardware with his or her last name on the side of the ring.

Fans may order rings by completing an order form at Modern Woodmen Park, calling 563-324-3000 or visiting Each ring is $295, and all orders must be received and paid by Feb. 1.

“We are thrilled to offer River Bandits fans the opportunity to show their championship pride with rings identical to those earned by the team!” said River Bandits co-owner Dave Heller. “Our fans made Modern Woodmen Park the best place to win and celebrate two Midwest League Championships in the past three seasons, and these special-edition rings will give them a unique keepsake to honor that support.”

Pictures of the ring design are available at On the face of the ring will be “Midwest League Champions” around the border with the colored logo of the Q-C letters with cowboy hat and bandana in the middle of the ring. One side of the ring will have the year – 2013 – and the logo of the River Bandits' major league affiliate, the Houston Astros. The other side will have the raccoon logo from the River Bandits' cap and space for the wearer's last name. Rings are classic design in sterling silver with cubic zirconia, raised name, tooling and a customized wood presentation box.

The River Bandits will open the 2014 Midwest League season at Modern Woodmen Park Thursday, April 3. A full schedule of home and road games for 2014 is available at, and ticket plans for the 2014 season are now on sale.

UP NEXT: Season-ticket holders can still guarantee their same seats for the upcoming season, but time is running short! Ticket-plan holders must renew their plans with a $50 deposit per seat by Jan. 31, in order to keep the same seats as last season. Contact your account representative or call 563-324-3000 today to renew your ticket plan. To order ticket plans - with new lower prices - for next season, call the River Bandits box office at 563-324-3000 or visit to download the season ticket order form. Season ticket and mini-plan packages start at just seven games and begin at less than $40. Call a River Bandits account representative today to choose your seats and get the details of our various mini-plan packages.

ABOUT THE BANDITS: Having just been named Ballpark Digest's winner of Best Ballpark Improvement in America under $1 million, the River Bandits ownership is making one of the biggest improvements to Modern Woodmen Park since the ballpark was first built back in 1931! A new Ferris wheel, standing 112 feet over the playing field, is planned for this spring, along with a carousel, a new ride called a "Drop and Twist," an expanded zip line, and many other new games and attractions. In 2013, the team unveiled a new 220-foot long dual zip line, a rock climbing wall, and a number of new bounce houses. The team's major league affiliate, the Houston Astros, just saw all six of its affiliates reach the playoffs - the first time in a decade any MLB team can claim such success. The River Bandits were one of three affiliates to reach the championship round and one of two to win their league championship.


Gov. Branstad donates Iowa ham to Food Bank of Iowa, Louisiana soup kitchen following Outback Bowl wager PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Jen Sorenson   
Wednesday, 08 January 2014 13:53

(DES MOINES) – Iowa Gov. Terry E. Branstad today announced he is donating 100 pounds of Iowa ham to the Food Bank of Iowa in Des Moines, Iowa, and 100 pounds of Iowa ham to Grace Place Ministries soup kitchen in Monroe, Louisiana.

The donation comes after a friendly wager with Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal on the 2014 Outback Bowl, which featured the Iowa Hawkeyes and the Louisiana State University (LSU) Tigers. If the LSU Tigers beat the Iowa Hawkeyes, Gov. Branstad was to donate 100 pounds of Iowa pork to a Louisiana food bank and another 100 pounds of Iowa pork to an Iowa food bank.  LSU beat Iowa 21-14 on January 1, 2014.

“I’m proud of the season the Iowa Hawkeyes had and for their tremendous effort in the Outback Bowl against Louisiana State University,” said Branstad. “I’m pleased today to donate Iowa pork to two fine organizations that help feed the hungry in local communities. I would also like to thank The Deb & Jeff Hansen Iowa Select Farms Foundation for their generosity in donating the pork for this friendly wager.”

The Iowa ham will be delivered to the organizations by Iowa Select Farms.

“A core mission of the Deb and Jeff Hansen Foundation is hunger relief which is why we were glad to support Governor Branstad with his friendly wager,” said Jeff Hansen, President and CEO of Iowa Select Farms and co-founder of the Foundation. “We’re happy to be able to donate hams to both organizations in an effort to help both Iowa and Louisiana families in need.”

Iowa taxpayer dollars were not used for the friendly wager between Gov. Branstad and Gov. Jindal.


Iowa Select Farms, based in Iowa Falls, is Iowa’s largest pork producer with nearly 1,000 employees and 300 producers in Iowa. The owners of Iowa Select established the Deb and Jeff Hansen Foundation in 2006. Providing hunger relief for Iowans is one of the core missions of the Foundation, which to date has donated more than 1.5 million servings of pork to food banks, pantries and shelves across Iowa.

AHL Call-Up for Mallards’ McKenzie PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Sports & Recreation
Written by Brian Lavelle   
Wednesday, 08 January 2014 13:02
Second Mallard This Week to Sign P.T.O. with Iowa Wild

MOLINE, Ill. (January 8, 2014) – Quad City Mallards forward Jim McKenzie has joined the American Hockey League’s Iowa Wild on a professional tryout agreement, the Mallards announced today.

McKenzie, 29, is tied for the Mallard team lead in goals (11) and points (24) and leads the club in power play goals (4) and penalty minutes (67).  The St. Paul, Minnesota, native serves as an alternate captain and has registered a plus/minus rating of +3 while playing in each of the Mallards’ first 28 games.  McKenzie was in the midst of a five-game point-scoring streak (2-4-6) at the time of his call-up.

McKenzie joins defenseman Nicholas Rioux as the second Mallard in three days to sign a P.T.O. with Iowa.  He is the fourth Mallard to be called up this season.  Goaltenders Thomas Heemskerk (Iowa) and Ty Rimmer (Oklahoma City) have also both spent time in the AHL.

McKenzie, who was originally selected by the Ottawa Senators in the fifth round of the 2004 National Hockey League Entry Draft with the one hundred forty-first overall choice, is no stranger to the AHL.  He spent part of each of his first four professional seasons in the league, skating in a total of 67 AHL games and registering four goals and five assists for the Binghampton Senators, Lake Erie Monsters, Worcester Sharks and Peoria Rivermen.  McKenzie last saw AHL action in 2010-11 with Worcester and Peoria.  He spent the 2008-09 season with Binghampton, collecting five points in 44 games.

The 6’ 2”, 200-pound McKenzie joined the Mallards after helping the Allen Americans to the CHL President’s Cup title last spring.  McKenzie arrived in Allen for the stretch run of the regular season after beginning the campaign with the ECHL’s Evansville IceMen.  He notched two goals and two assists in 15 regular season games with the Americans before breaking loose for six goals and 13 points in 15 playoff games.  He recorded a goal and five assists in 12 games with the IceMen before heading to the Lone Star State.  Last year’s stint was McKenzie’s second with Allen.  In 2011-12, he scored twenty goals and totaled 44 points while piling up 168 penalty minutes in 54 games as an American.  The IceMen were McKenzie’s fourth ECHL club.  He previously played for the Elmira Jackals, Johnstown Chiefs and Stockton Thunder.

McKenzie turned pro after three seasons at Michigan State, where he scored 34 goals and recorded 76 points in 112 games.  In 2006-07, McKenzie capped off his college career by scoring a dozen goals and producing 30 points in 35 games while helping propel the Spartans to the NCAA title.  McKenzie spent three seasons in the junior ranks with the Green Bay Gamblers and Sioux Falls Stampede of the United States Hockey League before arriving in East Lansing.

The Mallards return to action on home ice tonight at 7:05 p.m. against the Brampton Beast.  That game is the Mallards’ first Winning Wednesday presented by T.G.I. Friday’s.  If the Mallards win a Wednesday night home game all in attendance win free tickets for the next Wednesday game.  In addition, $2 beer and hot dogs will be available during Wednesday night tilts.  After each Wednesday night game, fans can join the Mallards for a postgame party at T.G.I. Friday's next to the iWireless Center.

Tickets for tonight’s game and all Mallards regular season home games can be purchased at the iWireless Center ticket office, Ticketmaster outlets, through or through Ticketmaster charge-by-phone toll free at 1-800-745-3000.  The ticket office is open weekdays from 10:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and on game days from 10:00 a.m. until the start of the second period.

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