Davenport, Iowa (July 31, 2010) -- Many people will never have an opportunity to see a baby chick hatch from an egg. But Gary and Diane Kaasa, who live east of Eldridge, are trying to change that. Their chicken birthing exhibit returns to the Expo Building at the Mississippi Valley Fair for the second year in a row.

The fair runs Tuesday through Sunday, Aug. 3-8, at the Mississippi Valley Fairgrounds, 2815 W. Locust St., Davenport.

"Basically, it's the same as last year," Gary Kaasa says. "We're going to be hatching about three dozen chicks every day at the fair. We've done a similar project for years and years at a school."

Visitors to the Kaasa's booth can watch chicks hatching and can also view an educational DVD about the process. The Kaasas also will be on hand throughout the fair to answer any questions.

This year the couple also will have a mock farm setup on display.

"We have a small barn that will also act as a brooder for the chicks," says Kaasa. "It will have a little picket fence around it so we can leave all the chicks right there at the fairgrounds so people can kind of watch that, too."

A brooder is a heated container used to confine chicks with their feed and water until they are old enough to go outside.

"We had a lot of fun last year," Kaasa said. And the couple heard a lot of positive comments about their exhibit. "According to everybody we talked to last year, we were the most popular thing at the fair."

He said youngsters loved the chicken birthing exhibit because they'd never seen anything like that before.

"The older people loved it, too," Kaasa said. "We heard more stories about chicks being heated by potbelly stoves because it was cold outside and things like that. It was fun to hear all that."

Daily admission tickets to the Mississippi Valley Fair, good for viewing exhibits like the Kaasa's and grounds attractions, are $10 for adults and $3 for children 4-12. Children 3 and under are admitted free.

Fair Fun Cards, which cover daily admission to the grounds and each night's 8 p.m. grandstand show, are $40 each and are for sale at Hy-Vee stores, Taco Bells, the fair office and online at mvfair.com. Grandstand show admission is by Fun Card only.

For more information, click on www.mvfair.com or phone (563) 326-5338.


Sands Resorts, AVTT and Operation Gratitude Donate the First
Harley Davidson in the Hall of Heroes.

MYRTLE BEACH, S.C., July 30 -- A Fort Bragg soldier recently returned from Afghanistan received a Harley Davidson Sportster during an Appreciation Ceremony in the Hall of Heroes at the Rawcliffe Center in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.  The donation was made by Lee Rawcliffe, owner of Sands Resorts and Don Allen, CEO of American Veterans Traveling Tribute ("AVTT").  A second soldier will be receiving a Sportster in the fall.

The soldiers, randomly selected as the Operation Gratitude milestone 500,000th Care Package recipients last December, are US Army Staff Sgt. William Fullerton, a squad leader from 82nd Division Special Troops Battalion and US Army Sgt. Michael Herne, an infantryman with 82nd Airborne Division.

SSG Fullerton on his Harley
During the presentation ceremony, Staff Sgt. Fullerton graciously accepted his gift as family, friends, and military supporters applauded the efforts of all servicemen.   A luncheon and reception followed.  A similar event is planned for Sgt. Herne in the coming weeks.

"Our purpose is to show continuous support for Americans who protect our country," said Lee Rawcliffe.  "Our plans include more future recognitions to these courageous Americans."  In 2009, Sands Resorts dedicated the Hall of Heroes as a tribute to American Heroes.  Since then, there have been ongoing projects to recognize both Wounded Warriors and VFWs.

Operation Gratitude sends care packages filled with fifty or more assorted snack, entertainment and personal care items to US Service Members deployed in combat.  The volunteer-based non-profit will send its 600,000th care package this December.

Operation Gratitude ( www.OperationGratitude.com ) is the 501 (c) (3) non-profit, volunteer-based organization that annually sends 100,000+ care packages filled with snacks, entertainment items and personal letters of appreciation addressed to individual U.S. Service Members deployed in hostile regions.  Our mission is to lift morale, bring a smile to a service member's face and express to our Armed Forces the appreciation and support of the American people. Each package contains donated product valued at ~$125 and costs the organization $15 to assemble and ship. Since its inception in 2003, Operation Gratitude has shipped more than 550,000 packages to American Military deployed overseas.  For more information: opgrat@gmail.com

Team Josh Productions is seeking volunteer grips and production assistants for the short film entitled BOO!, set to shoot on Friday, August 6th and Saturday, August 7th. Filming will take place on location in Waterloo, IA and Evansdale, IA.   Volunteers should have knowledge of lighting and grip gear, but no experience is necessary.
BOO! is a kid-friendly comedy about a group of mischievous children on Halloween night. The PG tale will be directed by Adam Orton, whose previous films Knights of Caemonshire and In the Silence have won Gold Eddy Awards in the Cedar Rapids Independent Film Festival.
Volunteers can contact Beau Batterson at Batterson_68@hotmail.com

Council will Help State Implement Federal Health Care Reforms

CHICAGO - July 30, 2010. Governor Pat Quinn today signed an executive order to create the Illinois Health Care Reform Implementation Council. The council will help the state implement the health care reforms contained in the federal Affordable Care Act (ACA).

"Making sure that everyone in Illinois has access to quality, affordable health care is one of my highest priorities," said Governor Quinn. "This council will help my administration effectively implement the new federal law and make sure that every person's right to decent health care is protected."

Implementation of the federal ACA will improve the health of residents throughout Illinois by increasing access to health care, reducing treatment disparities, controlling costs, and improving the affordability, quality and effectiveness of health care.

The council will make recommendations to assist the state to: establish a health insurance exchange and other consumer protection reforms; reform Medicaid; assure high quality care; identify federal grants and other non-governmental funding sources; and foster the widespread adoption of electronic medical records.

The council will submit its first report to Governor Quinn by Dec. 31, 2010, followed by periodic reports on the implementation of its recommendations.

Members of the council will include directors of the Illinois Departments of: Healthcare and Family Services, Insurance, Public Health, Aging, Human Services, Department of Central Management Services, Labor, Financial and Professional Regulation, the Governor's Office of Health Information Technology and the Governor's Office of Management and Budget. Members may be represented by a designee.

A designee from the Office of Governor will serve as the council's chair and the directors of the Department of Insurance and the Department of Healthcare and Family Services will serve as vice-chairs. The council will receive administrative support from the agencies appointed to it.

The council will hold meetings across the state to inform the public about the opportunities and responsibilities under the ACA, soliciting recommendations for the implementation and reporting on those recommendations.

A copy of the Executive Order is attached.


July 30, 2010 - At last night's annual meeting, the Quad City Symphony Orchestra announced that Allen Ohmes is retiring from his duties as Concertmaster, effective at the conclusion of the 2010-11 Season. Allen Ohmes joined the QCSO as Concertmaster in 1963 and has excelled in this leadership position for 47 seasons.

"Allen and I were scheduling this year's Chamber Music series when he told me of his plans to retire," explained Music Director Mark Russell Smith. "Allen's artistic legacy is one that will be carried on by this organization for years to come."

The QCSO's Spring Chamber Music concert, scheduled for May 21, 2011, in the Hotel Blackhawk's Gold Room will be dedicated to Allen's retirement.


New Law Strengthens Penalties for Unpaid Wages; Helps Workers to Recover Wages More Quickly

CHICAGO - July 30, 2010. Governor Pat Quinn today signed a bill into law to increase protections for Illinois workers who are not paid the wages they have earned. The new law amends existing state law to help thousands of Illinois workers recover unpaid wages more quickly.

"Illinois workers deserve every penny they have earned, on-time and in-full," said Governor Quinn. "This important legislation will help Illinois workers recover unpaid wages faster and will further crack down on wage theft throughout our state."

Senate Bill 3568 strengthens the rights of Illinois workers who have been victims of wage theft. The bill makes both first and repeat wage theft violations more serious crimes. Civil and criminal penalties for wage theft will increase under the new law, and repeat offenders can face up to three years in prison.

Workers will now be able to take alleged violations directly to the state circuit court and collect all costs and reasonable attorney's fees. The Illinois Department of Labor (IDOL) will also establish a streamlined process to resolve small claims. For the first time ever, employees will be expressly allowed to file class action lawsuits against employers. Additionally, workers will be protected from retaliation for reporting alleged violations in public forums.

A recent study by the University of Illinois at Chicago's Center for Urban Economic Development underscored the negative impact of wage theft on more than 300,000 workers in Chicago and suburban Cook County, as well as the economy overall. The study found that nearly half of the approximately 1,100 low-wage workers surveyed experienced at least one pay-related violation. The study estimates that full?time, year-round workers participating in the survey annually lost an average of $2,595 out of total earnings of $16,753, due to workplace violations.

In 2009, the IDOL recovered $3.1 million in unpaid and underpaid wages and continues to provide assistance to workers for the collection of wages and final compensation that include unused vacation pay, commissions, bonuses or other fringe benefits. Under Illinois law employees must receive their final wages, vacation pay, commissions and bonuses on their next regularly scheduled pay day. Further information on the law's requirements and penalties are available at www.state.il.us/agency/idol.

Senate Bill 3568 was sponsored by Sen. William Delgado (D-Chicago) and Rep. Elizabeth Hernandez (D-Cicero) and will take effect on Jan. 1, 2011.



Washington, DC - July 29, 2010 - Congressman Bruce Braley (D-Iowa) secured $20 million in Community Development Block Grants late Thursday night for Midwest Flood Recovery efforts. Braley introduced the amendment as part of the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Appropriations bill after visiting First District communities devastated by record flooding last weekend.

"The floods last weekend devastated homes and small businesses in Iowa," Braley said. "I am fully dedicated to helping my constituents rebuild, and am happy to have secured funds that will be critical to the recovery process. Iowans are strong and resilient, and this money will help them achieve a speedy and successful recovery. The CDBG funds I've secured are more flexible than other federal funding streams and, hopefully, will provide critical assistance to homeowners and small businesses in the First District."

Rep. Tom Latham (R-Iowa), chairman of the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Subcommittee, spoke in support of Braley's amendment during debate on the House floor tonight.

Braley's amendment provides a $20 million increase in Community Development Block Grant funding to assist communities in the Midwest affected by the flooding. This funding will be offset by decreasing funds for non-personnel expenses within the Department of Housing and Urban Development.

For more information about flood recovery in Iowa's First District, visit http://Braley.house.gov/disasterrelief.

# # #

The Lottery
3:00 p.m.
81 min | USA| English | 2010  Documentary
Madeleine Sackler
Cory Booker, Geoffrey Canada, Joel Klein

Shot by award-winning cinematographer Wolfgang Held, The Lottery uncovers a ferocious debate surrounding the education reform movement. Interviews with politicians and educators explain not only the crisis in public education, but also why it is fixable. A call to action to avert a catastrophe in the education of American children, The Lottery makes the case that any child can succeed.  In a country where 58% of African American 4th graders are functionally illiterate, The Lottery uncovers the failures of the traditional public school system and reveals that hundreds of thousands of parents attempt to flee the system every year. The Lottery follows four of these families from Harlem and the Bronx who have entered their children in a charter school lottery. Out of thousands of hopefuls, only a small minority will win the chance of a better future.

Tickets at the door.

General Admission

$10 for 1 movie ticket
$18 for 2 movie tickets (1 person watches both movies back to back)

Please join us for a social time from

4:30 p.m to 5 p.m.
(snacks provided and included in the cost of 1 movie ticket)
Drinks sold separately.


Laws will Improve Safety in Nursing Homes, Increase Staffing

and Quality Standards, and Fight Fraud and Abuse

CHICAGO - July 29, 2010. Governor Pat Quinn today signed historic legislation that transforms Illinois' system of care for frail older adults and persons with disabilities. The new law is the product of months of research and deliberation initiated by the Nursing Home Safety Task Force that Governor Quinn appointed in October. The task force was charged with ensuring all Illinois nursing home residents are safe and receive the treatment appropriate for their condition.

"Today begins a new era of nursing home care in Illinois," said Governor Quinn. "Older adults who require 24-hour care deserve a safe, high-quality home, and persons with mental illness must have the care and treatment they need to live full and productive lives in their communities. This law protects Illinois' most vulnerable adults."

Senate Bill 326, sponsored by Sen. Heather Steans (D-Chicago) and Rep. Barbara Flynn Currie (D-Chicago), resulted from strong collaboration between state agencies, members of the Illinois General Assembly, advocates, home and community based service providers, residents and the nursing home profession, led by Governor Quinn's Nursing Home Safety Task Force.

The new law remakes the system of admission to nursing homes, ensuring that only those in need of 24-hour skilled care are admitted. The law also strengthens the screening process to prevent residents with violent criminal histories from being placed with vulnerable, older adults.

The law sets higher nursing home quality and staffing requirements, raises penalties for violations, and increases inspections and monitoring. The new law also requires nursing homes to help all residents achieve their highest level of functioning and prepare to transition to more independent, community-based living.

Governor Quinn also signed Senate Bill 2863, sponsored by Sen. Jacqueline Collins (D-Chicago) and Rep. Harry Osterman (D-Chicago), which will reduce fraud and abuse in nursing homes. An initiative of the Office of the Attorney General, the law requires prompt reporting of fraud, abuse and neglect in nursing homes, broadens the definition of criminal neglect, and requires greater disclosure by nursing home owners.

"We have to do everything we can to protect vulnerable nursing home residents and make sure they are safe," said Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan. "These bills significantly strengthen the process for protecting nursing home residents from those who may pose a threat. And they provide us with critical tools needed to target nursing home fraud."

Governor Quinn formed the Nursing Home Safety Task Force in October 2009, to respond to concerns for the safety of nursing home residents by thoroughly examining current regulatory policies and coordination among state agencies, and identifying necessary changes in legislation, regulation and policy. The task force held public meetings, heard testimony from more than 50 advocates, academic experts, nursing home residents and their families, and gathered hundreds of public comments through an interactive Web site, www.nursinghomesafety.illinois.gov.

The task force released its final report in February that included 38 recommendations, which served as a blueprint for this reform legislation. State agencies, nursing homes and advocates continue to collaborate to develop new nursing home rates and assessments, as called for in the legislation.

Both laws go into effect immediately.


Davenport Parks and Recreation Presents:

5th Annual Doggie Dip

Sponsored by Unified Financial Strategies, LLC

Benefiting the Humane Society of Scott County

During these DOG days of summer, what better way to show your

best friends you care than a little dip in the pool!

Admission $3 per pup!

Friday, August 13th


Fejervary Family Aquatic Center

1800 W. 12th St (Near the IMAX Theater in Davenport)

Purchase raffle tickets at the event - GREAT prizes will be given out.

Purchase your raffle tickets in advance and we will send you a complimentary VIP

admission ticket. Call us at 563-359-3475.

Other vendors on site promoting Happy Healthy pets!

*Current vaccination records will be required at the event.*

Help the Humane Society!

UFS will match a portion of the cash donations.

Trey Research Games Enhanced With Two New Additions

We will also be accepting non-cash donations at the event, desired

items include : Toys, laundry detergent, dryer sheets, blankets, etc.

For questions regarding event, please contact 563-326-7812 or