Tag Archives: featured

National Building Fire

On February 7, an apartment in the Boone National Building caught fire. Unfortunately, one person died in the fire and 24 people were left homeless. I happened to be out and about shortly after the fire had been put out by the fire departments of Boone, Ogden, Ames, Stratford, and Gilbert. I took a few pictures of the aftermath.


National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

National Building Fire

It was one of those February mornings where the temperature was well below zero. I can’t imagine what it was like for the people involved in the fire. Hopefully everybody has since found new housing or have been able to return to their aparments.

Town Sign Project: Guthrie County

I need to start today by wishing Andy a happy birthday. Happy birthday Andy!


May 17, 2016

June 25, 2019

Soup Supper Fundraiser

Baby Got Rack - Boone County Fair 2018

Boone County Fair - 2018

I hope your birthday is as amazing as you want it to be!

+++++++

Last weekend I got to get out and harvest more town signs. This time I hit up Guthrie County.

Here are some facts about Guthrie County:

+ Population: 10,954
+ Guthrie Center is the county seat.
+ Stuart is the largest town, but is partially in Adair County
+ he county was formed on January 15, 1851 and named after Captain Edwin B. Guthrie, who had died in the Mexican–American War.

Guthrie County has one of the ugliest courthouses I’ve ever seen. Right up there with Story County:


Guthrie County Courthouse
Guthrie County Courthouse

The Guthrie County Freedom Rock is located in Guthrie Center.


Guthrie County Freedom Rock

Guthrie County Freedom Rock

Guthrie County Freedom Rock

Here is the Guthrie County Photo Map:


Guthrie County Photo Map
Guthrie County Photo Map – Boundaries, not close, I’m sure.

With Guthrie County knocked out, here is the updated Photography 130 Conquest Map:


Town Sign Project - 14 Counties
PURPLE=COMPLETED

14 counties completed. 14.1% of the Cyclone State conquered!

Here are the Guthrie County signs:


Stuart, Iowa
Stuart, Iowa (Partially in Adair County)
The City of Stuart Welcomes You
Population: 1,648

Guthrie Center, Iowa
Guthrie Center, Iowa
Welcome to Guthrie Center
Population: 1,569

Lake Panorama, Iowa
Lake Panorama – Census Designated Place
Lake Panorama
Population: 1,309

Coon Rapids, Iowa
Coon Rapids, Iowa (Mostly in Carroll County
Coon Rapids – In the Heart of Corn Country
Population: 1,305

Panora, Iowa
Panora, Iowa
Welcome to Panora and Lake Panorama
Population: 1,124

Adair, Iowa
Adair, Iowa (Mostly in Adair County)
Adair Iowa – Home of the Bombers – Welcome to Adair – It’ll make you smile!
Population: 781

Bayard, Iowa
Bayard, Iowa
Welcome to Bayard
Population: 471

Casey, Iowa
Casey, Iowa
Welcome to Casey Iowa – Since 1869

Menlo, Iowa
Menlo, Iowa
Welcome to Menlo – A Town of Few & Friend of All
Population: 353

Bagley, Iowa
Bagley, Iowa
Welcome to Bagley – 1882
Population: 303

Yale, Iowa
Yale, Iowa
Yale – Est. 1882 – Not the Biggest, But the Best – Annual July 4th Celebration

Jamaica, Iowa
Jamaica, Iowa
Welcome to Jamaica – Est. 1882
Population: 224

I think there is a chance that some people might consider my picks for Guthrie County to be controversial this week. It turns out my Hardin County picks weren’t controversial, but Guthrie is an entirely different county.

Adair and Coon Rapids are not eligible for Guthrie County awards as they are mostly in other counties.

Guthrie County has a pretty good collection of town signs. However, there are a couple stinkers out there. Stuart’s is awful. But Guthrie Center has one of the worst signs I’ve seen so far.

It was a little harder to pick the best sign. I enjoy the roughness of the Bayard sign. I enjoy the tropical feel of the Jamaica sign. I like the festive nature of Yale’s sign. I like the fun of Casey’s sign. However, it Menlo. Menlo clearly has the best sign in Guthrie County!


Menlo, Iowa
Menlo – Best in Show – Guthrie County

There are a couple of towns that had alternate signs:


Adair, Iowa
Adair Alternate

Menlo, Iowa
Menlo Alternate

The famous White Pole Road runs through Guthrie County. Many of the best signs are on that road.

Here is the current list of Best in Shows:


Moingona, Iowa
Best in Show – Boone County

Coon Rapids, Iowa
Best in Show – Carroll County

Ricketts, Iowa
Best in Show – Crawford County

Dexter, Iowa
Best in Show – Dallas County

Scranton, Iowa
Best in Show – Greene County

Menlo, Iowa
Best in Show – Guthrie County

Stanhope, Iowa
Best in Show – Hamilton County

Ackley, Iowa
Best in Show – Hardin County

Lynnville, Iowa
Best in Show – Jasper County

Haverhill, Iowa
Best in Show – Marshall County

Bondurant, Iowa
Best in Show – Polk County

Collins, Iowa
Best in Show – Story County

Badger, Iowa
Best in Show – Webster County

Woolstock, Iowa
Best in Show – Wright County

Here is the updated BENNETT POWER RANKINGS:


Ricketts, Iowa
#10. Ricketts

Dexter, Iowa
#9. Dexter

Menlo, Iowa
#8. Menlo

Templeton, Iowa
#7. Templeton

Farnhamville, Iowa #3 - East Side
#6. Farnhamville

Haverhill, Iowa
#5. Haverhill

Pilot Mound, Iowa
#4. Pilot Mound

Moingona, Iowa
#3. Moingona

Coon Rapids, Iowa
#2. Coon Rapids

Ackley, Iowa
#1. Ackley

The next county we will visit is Audubon County.

Selfie Project – February 2021

Another month of 2021 is in the books. Which means it is time to share my favorite selfies from last month’s SELFIE PROJECT collection. I don’t want to break my arm patting myself on the back, but I am pretty pleased with the February collection. I didn’t get out that much, but I did get a little bit, and unlike January, I was able to incorporate a few other people in my selfies. Not many people, but a couple people are sprinkled in here and there.

Here are my favorites from February:


Day 32 - February 1, 2021
February 1

Day 33 - February 2, 2021
February 2

Day 34 - February 3, 2021
February 3

Day 35 - February 4, 2021
February 4

Day 36 - February 5, 2021
February 5

Day 38 - February 7, 2021
February 7

Day 39 - February 8, 2021
February 8

Day 41 - February 10, 2021
February 10

Day 43 - February 12, 2021
February 12

Day 45 - February 14, 2021
February 14

Day 46 - February 15, 2021
February 15

Day 47 - February 16, 2021
February 16

Day 49 - February 18, 2021
February 18

Day 51 - February 20, 2021
February 20

Day 52 - February 21, 2021
February 21

Day 54 - February 23, 2021
February 23

Day 55 - February 24, 2021
February 24

Day 57 - February , 2021
February 26

Day 58 - February 27, 2021
February 27

Day 59 - February 28, 2021
February 28

If you want to check out all of the selfies so far this year, click on the link below:

Selfie Project – 2021

Hopefully in March, a couple other people can percolate into my selfies.

WPC – WEEK 285 – LINES

74 straight weeks of double digit submission and we did it before I even got out of bed on Monday morning! LINES seemed to be a popular theme! I mean, who doesn’t like LINES?

But you didn’t come here to listen to me talk all tommyrot about participation rates. You came to see the submissions:


WEEK 285 - LINES - MICKY AUGUSTIN
Micky Augustin

WEEK 285 - LINES - AARON BARNETT
Aaron Barnett

WEEK 285 - LINES - BILL WENTWORTH
Bill Wentworth

WEEK 285 - LINES - JOE DUFF
Joe Duff
“Lines in the ceiling, floor, and walls. Plus the lines for Covid vaccine. Got mom vaccinated; well organized and looking like they are starting to hit their stride. Lots vaccinated this weekend.”

WEEK 285 - LINES - MICHELLE HAUPT
Michelle Haupt

WEEK 285 - LINES - SHANNON BARDOLE-FOLEY
Shannon Bardole-Foley

WEEK 285 - LINES - SUSANNA FUNK
Susanna Funk
“The Manitou Incline has 2,000 feet of stairs which are actually lines! And my hamstrings felt every one of them.”

WEEK 285 - LINES - TAMARA PETERSON
Tamara Peterson

WEEK 285 - LINES - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT
Christopher D. Bennett

WEEK 285 - LINES - TAMARA PETERSON
Tamara Peterson

WEEK 285 - LINES - KIO DETTMAN
Kio Dettman

WEEK 285 - LINES - KIO DETTMAN
Kio Dettman

WEEK 285 - LINES - KIO DETTMAN
Kio Dettman

WEEK 285 - LINES - DAWN KRAUSE
Dawn Krause

WEEK 285 - LINES - ELIZABETH NORDEEN
Elizabeth Nordeen

WEEK 285 - LINES - JESSE HOWARD
Jesse Howard

WEEK 285 - LINES - MONICA HENNING
Monica Henning

WEEK 285 - LINES - CARLA STENSLAND
Carla Stensland

But enough dwelling on the past. Time to look to the future. We are all interested in the future, for that is where you and I are going to spend the rest of our lives. And remember my friend, future events such as these will affect you in the future! This week’s theme:


WEEK 286 - PLAY
PLAY

PLAY! Another great theme for Year 8 of THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE.

A PLAY image is simply an image where the composition includes either something that is PLAYed or somebody PLAYing. There are all types of things that can be PLAYed. Games to musical instruments to sports to people.

Of course, PLAY has multiple meanings. A PLAY can be words on a piece of paper that tell a story or a PLAY can be acting out those words on a stage. It is more than just humans that PLAY. Animals also PLAY.

Think about the following old proverb when you are considering your PLAY interpretation:

All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy,
All play and no work makes Jack a mere toy.

Meditation on these words will no doubt lead to a fascinating PLAY image.

Then send me your submission(s) by 11 AM CST next Monday. The picture has to be taken between 12:01 PM today and 11 AM next Monday. This isn’t a curate your photos project. This is a get your butt off the couch (unless you are taking your picture from the couch) and take pictures challenge.

You can send your images to either bennett@photography139.com OR you may text them to my Pixel 5.

That is all I got, so if the good Lord’s willin’ and the creek don’t rise, we will all be sharing our idea of PLAY in this place that is little more than a little PLAYed out next Monday.

Austin & Porter 2020 A

Today was the second Sunday of Lent. If you couldn’t make it to a worship service, I have your back.. Here is a devotional from Rev. Dr. Moody Colorado:

Living to benefit the Lord

Mark 8:34-38
By Rev. Dr. Moody Colorado, Northeast Region Superintendent

When He had called the people to Himself, with His disciples also, He said to them, “Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake and the gospel’s will save it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him the Son of Man also will be ashamed when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels.”

Prayer:
Heavenly Father, we worship and thank you, and we rejoice for this day that you have made.
Jesus, Son of God, we claim you and proclaim you as our Savior and our Lord.
Spirit of God descend upon us and help us to love God with our hearts, our minds and our soul.
Amen.

What shall it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?

There was a young man in the 12th Century Italy, who was scared of losing his own soul because his father was rich, a textile businessman. This young man kept telling his friend, “What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and lose his own soul?” This young man took some of his father’s merchandise, sold them and tried to give the money to the priest to be given to the poor as needed. The father asked the church to discipline the young man. The young man appeared before the church authorities and his father. Instead of apologizing to his father, this young man removed all his clothes and gave them to his father. Totally naked he declared that from then on he will be a poor monk and the Heavenly Father shall be his provider. From his hometown’s porciuncula, or little church, he reached the world with his preaching and became to be known as St. Francis of Assisi. His disciples, the Franciscans, reached many nations around the world. Francis even preached to a Muslim leader in Egypt.

What shall it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?

I used to work as a manager of a Gold Mining Business in the Philippines. Working in the mountains is so complex which included dealing with illegal miners, rebels and the military operations. I knew I have seen hell when my wife and I almost died in one of the gun-battles. Our lives could have been wasted in search of gold. One director of the Mines Bureau told me, “There is no job worth dying for.”

I shared this with my father, Isaac Colorado. He himself gave up his military career for the sacrificial work of a pastor in the country. My father admired my professional job and he also said that the Mines Director may be correct, except for the evangelist’s job. He said that after dodging the bullets in the military service, God somehow showed him that there is a job really worth dying for—the salvation of the world. Its Jesus’ sacrificial job and we are invited to join this very humbling work. The apostle Paul expressed the concept for us, “For me to live is Christ and to die is gain. (Philippians 1:21)”

We are living in difficult times. Many lives are being lost. I pause and think and hope that it’s not too late to make use of our lives that benefits the Lord and our soul.

We need to care for ourselves and for each other. But let us not forget to keep the main thing as the main thing for the Church. Jesus the Christ is our Lord whose job was and is to save the whole world. I like the United Methodist Church because we can act locally and make an impact globally. Coming from the Philippines I see myself as an evidence that the global UMC system of American Methodist Mission works great. Let us not lose our great task of evangelizing the world. When we are able to save the soul of the world, we have practically saved our own.

Let us pray:
Make me a channel of your peace
Where there is hatred let me bring your love
Where there is injury, your pardon Lord
And where there’s doubt, true faith in you.
Make me a channel of your peace
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned.
In giving of ourselves that we receive.
And in dying that we are born to eternal life.
The love of God, the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, the inspiration of the Holy Spirit be with you all. Amen.

Next Sunday I will share a devotional from Reverend Ron Carlson.

+++++++

A couple months back I got together with the Degeneffes for the annual photo shoot with Austin & Porter. Here are some of my favorites:


Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

Degeneffe Boys - 2020

While I may have lost the Howard account in 2020, it was good to see that I still hold the Degeneffe account for now. There are plenty more of the Degeneffe boys to come!

2010-07-01 & 2010-07-05

There weren’t many pictures in the folder 2010-07-05, so I decided to combine it with 2010-07-01 Skydive 2.

The pictures in the folder 2010-07-01 Skydive 2 are from when Shannon did get to go skydiving. The pictures from 2010-07-05 Market are from when I did a quick spin around Beaver, Iowa to look at the ruins of the once mighty city. Just kidding, Beaver was never mighty, but at least it was the embarrassment that it has become.


Welcome to Beaver, Iowa

Welcome to Beaver, Iowa

Welcome to Beaver, Iowa

Welcome to Beaver, Iowa

Welcome to Beaver, Iowa

Welcome to Beaver, Iowa

WEEK 26 - MARKET - CHRISTOPHER D. BENNETT

The Dumbest Thing Shannon Bardole has Ever Done

The Dumbest Thing Shannon Bardole has Ever Done

The Dumbest Thing Shannon Bardole has Ever Done

The Dumbest Thing Shannon Bardole has Ever Done

The Dumbest Thing Shannon Bardole has Ever Done

The Dumbest Thing Shannon Bardole has Ever Done

The Dumbest Thing Shannon Bardole has Ever Done

The Dumbest Thing Shannon Bardole has Ever Done

The Dumbest Thing Shannon Bardole has Ever Done

The Dumbest Thing Shannon Bardole has Ever Done

The Dumbest Thing Shannon Bardole has Ever Done

The Dumbest Thing Shannon Bardole has Ever Done

The Dumbest Thing Shannon Bardole has Ever Done

The Dumbest Thing Shannon Bardole has Ever Done

The Dumbest Thing Shannon Bardole has Ever Done

The Dumbest Thing Shannon Bardole has Ever Done

By adding these pictures to the Photography 139 Gallery, I was able to restore the following historic “An Artist’s Notebook” entries to their original glory:

WELCOME TO BEAVER, IOWA

RWPE #26 – MARKET

In the post about Beaver, Iowa, there is an interesting discussion in the comments section about which town is worse: Beaver or Dana.

Next Saturday’s walk down memory lane will definitely involve flowers.

Postcard Recreation Project – More Downtown Boone

I need to start today by wishing Micky a happy birthday. Happy birthday Micky!


Pie In Your Face!

August 30, 2019

2019  Computer Mine Holiday Card

Every once in awhile I will let people behind the curtain at Photography 139. Very few people and not very often. But Micky is the reason (more or less) for my using the term “harvest” so many times when referencing taking pictures.

You see, back in the day, the west bathrooms at the Computer Mine were loaded up with hunting magazines. Now Micky isn’t necessarily the person that brought them in and dumped them in the dumping station and while I’m definitely no hunter, when you are about your business, you read what is handy.

The writing in hunting magazines is amateurish at best. Plus they try to whitewash the fact that they are murderizing animals that never really did anything to them. So these articles about personal hunting experiences almost always include a sentence about how before or after the hunter murderized the animal they said a prayer thanking God for the opportunity to murderize the animal. But they never use the term murderize (and not because it is just a word I invented) or shoot or kill. They always whitewash it with the word harvest. Like they just picked an ear of corn or some tomatoes from their grandma’s garden.

I would frequently discuss these articles with Micky and I started to use the term “harvest” to mock hunting magazines. I’m not anti-hunting, it just isn’t for me. However, I am very strongly anti-bad writing.

All of that being said, Micky, I hope your birthday is amazing as you want it to be and you get to murderize all the animals you want. But only the ones that have it coming. Like the beavers that destroyed your dock*.

+++++++

This collection of pictures from THE POSTCARD RECREATION PROJECT is another collection of postcards of downtown Boone intersections. I wish Boone still had that sign that hung over Story Street near 9th greeting people to Boone. I have wondered why they chose that location for it. I get that Story Street is the main street in Boone, but back in the day there would have been 2 depots that served railroad passengers. The Fort Dodge, Des Moines and Southern depot was a block north of the sign. The Chicago & Northwestern Depot was about a block to two blocks west. I guess they chose the location because it was about equidistant from both depots.

Here are the postcards. You can see the old sign in three of them:


Boone, IR 787 - Original
Boone, IR – 787 Original

Boone, IR 787 - Redux
Boone, IR 787 – Redux

Story St. from 10th St. North, Boone, IA - Original
Story Street from 10th Street – North – Original

Story St. from 10th St. North, Boone, IA - Redux
Story Street from 10th Street – North – Redux

Story Street lookin South, Boone, Ia - Original
Story Street Looking South – Original

Story Street lookin South, Boone, Ia - Redux
Story Street Looking South – Redux

The Main (Story)Street, Boone, Iowa - 2226 - Original
The Main (Story) Street – Original

The Main (Story)Street, Boone, Iowa - 2226 - Redux
The Main (Story) Street – Redux

The Story St. from 10th St. postcard put me on the right path for a future THE POSTCARD RECREATION PROJECT post. However, the next THE POSTCARD RECREATION PROJECT post will feature a church.

+++++++

This is your reminder that THIS WEEK’S THE WEEKLY PHOTO CHALLENGE theme is LINES:


WEEK 285 - LINES
LINES

A LINES image is simply an image that heavily incorporates LINES into the composition of the image.LINES that appear in a photograph CAN BE framed and positioned by the photographer to draw the viewer’s eye towards a specific point of interest. LINES draw the viewer’s eye to a specific direction of an image.

You can use all sorts of lines in your composition. You can use horizontal LINES. You can use vertical LINES. You can use diagonal LINES. You can use converging LINES. There are just so many options!

Of course, the term LINES has more than one meaning.

Think about the following quote from Martin Luther while considering your LINES image:

God can draw a straight line with a crooked stick.

Meditate on these words and you will no doubt create a fascinating LINES image. No matter how crooked you think you are.

Happy photo murderizing… I mean happy photo harvesting!

*Truth is that I wish he would’ve live trapped the beavers and rehabilitated them.

Marshall County Auxiliary Images

This entry is a collection of images from when I cruised around Marshall County harvesting their town signs. I started in Melbourne and ended in Marshalltown. The weather was kind of cruddy on that day, but I still got to see and photograph some real interesting things.

Have a look:



Melbourne – That viaduct has sadly been torn down.


Haverhill


Ferguson


Laurel


Gilman


Dunbar


I find this rock thing fascinating. I don’t get it at all. Which makes me love it even more.


Montour – It says Colonial on the side of the bread.


Le Grand


Just really enjoyed the spelling here.


Liscomb


Albion


Marshalltown


I actually went to Marshall County before Carroll and Crawford, but I bungled the order of their release. I believe the Wright County auxiliary images are the next to be released.

Town Sign Project: Hardin County

Last weekend the weather finally cooperated enough for me to get out on the open road and doing some good old fashioned town sign harvesting. On Saturday. The weather immediately went back to being terrible on Sunday. But on Saturday, it didn’t snow and the temperature was above -30 degrees wind chill. Some of the back roads were still a little rough and the ditches were definitely overflowing with snow, but it was good enough for me to get out there and harvest some signs!

Here are some facts about Hardin County:

+ Population: 17,534 (2010)
+ County Seat is Eldora.
+ Largest town is Iowa Falls.
+ Hardin County was formed in 1851. It was named after Colonel John J. Hardin, who died in the Mexican–American War.

I’ve recently decided to share a picture of the County Courthouse and the Freedom Rock for each county, if I find both. I decided to do that AFTER I returned home, so the pictures of both are not as good as they will be in the future:


Hardin County Courthouse
Hardin County Courthouse

Hardin County Freedom Rock
Hardin County Freedom Rock

I have shown the photo map of several counties, but not of the whole state of Iowa, so here is the Iowa Photo Map:


Iowa Photo Map - Post Hardin County
Iowa Photo Map as of February 24, 2021

Here is the Hardin County Photo Map:


Hardin County Photo Map
Hardin County Photo Map – Boundaries Probably not even close.

With Hardin County knocked out, here is the updated Photography 139 Conquest Map:


Town Sign Project - 13 Counties
PURPLE=COMPLETED

13 counties completed. 13.1% of the Cyclone State conquered!

Here are the Hardin County Signs:


Iowa Falls, Iowa
Iowa Falls, Iowa
Welcome to the Scenic City – Iowa Falls – Home of Ellsworth Community College
Population: 5,238

Eldora, Iowa
Eldora, Iowa
Iowa River Greenbelt Community – Eldora
Population: 2,732

Ackley, Iowa
Ackley, Iowa (Partially in Franklin County)
Ackley
Population: 1,589

Hubbard, Iowa
Hubbard, Iowa
Hubbard
Population: 845

Alden, Iowa
Alden, Iowa
Welcome to Alden – Best Town by a Dam Site
Population: 787

Radcliffe, Iowa
Radcliffe, Iowa
Welcome to Radcliffe – Farms, Families, & Friends
Population: 545

Union, Iowa
Union, Iowa
Welcome to Union – Est. 1872
Population: 347

Steamboat Rock, Iowa
Steamboat Rock, Iowa
Steamboat Rock – The Valley of Friendliness
Population: 310

New Providence, Iowa
New Providence, Iowa
Welcome to New Providence – Est. 1855
Population: 228

Whitten, Iowa
Whitten, Iowa
Welcome to Whitten Iowa – Since 1882
Population: 149

Buckeye, Iowa
Buckeye, Iowa
Welcome to Buckeye – The End of the Line on 359
Population: 108

Garden City, Iowa
Garden City, Iowa
Welcome to Rebel Country
Population: 89

Owasa, Iowa
Owasa, Iowa
Welcome to Owasa
Population: 43

Gifford, Iowa
Gifford, Iowa
Welcome to Gifford – Established in 1875
Unincorporated Community

I was recently told that my picks for best town signs was controversial. That this person was holding back, but they wouldn’t be holding back any longer. I also will not hold back on my opinions.

Hardin County has maybe the strongest collection of town signs to date. There aren’t any that I would consider bad. But the worst town sign in Hardin County is Eldora. While it isn’t a conventionally terrible sign, it isn’t even a real town sign. Union has almost an identical sign in front of their town hall. Owasa’s sign is a little weak. Garden City’s sign isn’t even a town sign. It is a sign for the school district. It shouldn’t even be on this list.

Who has Best in Show for Hardin County? Now normally, this might be a battle. There are some really good signs in there. Then Ackley shows up with a bull statue as part of their sign. Checkmate Hardin County!


Ackley, Iowa
Ackley – Best in Show – Hardin County

There were a couple towns with alternate town signs:


Ackley, Iowa
Ackley – Alternate

Alden, Iowa
Alden – Alternate

New Providence, Iowa
New Providence – Alternate

The Union town sign is the sign I think about the most. I don’t understand the picture of the tar heel on their sign. My research as only found that Union holds a Tar Heel Days town festival, but I don’t know why. If somebody knows, let me know and then I’ll let the people know.

Here is the current list of Best in Shows:


Moingona, Iowa
Best in Show – Boone County

Coon Rapids, Iowa
Best in Show – Carroll County

Ricketts, Iowa
Best in Show – Crawford County

Dexter, Iowa
Best in Show – Dallas County

Scranton, Iowa
Best in Show – Greene County

Stanhope, Iowa
Best in Show – Hamilton County

Ackley, Iowa
Best in Show – Hardin County

Lynnville, Iowa
Best in Show – Jasper County

Haverhill, Iowa
Best in Show – Marshall County

Bondurant, Iowa
Best in Show – Polk County

Collins, Iowa
Best in Show – Story County

Badger, Iowa
Best in Show – Webster County

Woolstock, Iowa
Best in Show – Wright County

Here is the updated BENNET TOWN SIGN POWER RANKINGS:


Scranton, Iowa
#10. Scranton

Ricketts, Iowa
#9. Ricketts

Dexter, Iowa
#8. Dexter

Templeton, Iowa
#7. Templeton

Farnhamville, Iowa #3 - East Side
#6. Farnhamville

Haverhill, Iowa
#5. Haverhill

Pilot Mound, Iowa
#4. Pilot Mound

Moingona, Iowa
#3. Moingona

Coon Rapids, Iowa
#2. Coon Rapids

Ackley, Iowa
#1. Ackley

That’s right! A new number 1! I now stand and wait for the opinions on my rankings to be brought!

I think Alden’s sign is close to breaking into the rankings. Steamboat Rock and Buckeye also have great signs!

I’m not sure what county I will visit next, but I’m hoping to get out on the road again this weekend!

Tenderloin Appreciation Society – Working at Home

Would you believe that I haven’t posted a tenderloining post since February 5… of 2020? I mean, that just flat out sucks people. I know there are much worse things that have happened due to the horribly mismanaged pandemic, but throw that log on the dumpster fire too.

It isn’t that I haven’t had any tenderloins in the last year. I’ve been to Cole’s for their tenderloin. Sat outside in a Slater park, re-acquainting myself with greatness. And… that is it. I’ve had a few home tenderloins, but I think that this is the only tenderloin I’ve had from a restaurant.

Now make it a second tenderloin I’ve had since the beginning of the pandemic. Usually on Friday, my Mom picks up lunch from a local restaurant and brings it to me, to eat in the moments when I put down my pick. Usually that means garlic chicken from New China or the Friday rib special from Jimmy’s.

We’ve been trying to branch out in the last few weeks. A couple Fridays ago she brought me the tenderloin from Toby K’s Hideaway. Now this is a tenderloin that I’ve had and enjoyed before, but have never officially reviewed.

It isn’t quite fair to review it under these circumstances, for reasons I will get into, but I think a fair overview of the tenderloin is that it is a good, but not great tenderloin. I’d definitely knock a few of these down, but it doesn’t belong in the Tenderloin Pantheon. So few do.

Here are some cruddy cell phone pictures:


Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway
The problem with properly reviewing this tenderloin is pretty obvious in this picture.

Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway
Yes, that is clearly my bathroom in the background. Yes I considered cropping that out. Yes I chose not to crop it out.

Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

Whenever I review a tenderloin, I order it with what they put on it. There is a proper way to dress a tenderloin and it is the following:

+ Mustard
+ Ketchup
+ Onions
+ Pickles

Look at this picture again:


Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

Now you’ll notice that they have dressed the tenderloin with the following:

+ Mayo
+ Onions
+ Pickles
+ Tomato
+ Lettuce

As you can see…


Tenderloining at Toby K's Hideaway

I went ahead and added the mustard and ketchup. I didn’t hold the lack of mustard and ketchup against them because most restaurants serve the tenderloin without mustard and ketchup. Since they are on the table and you can dress the tenderloin with whatever amounts of mustard and ketchup you want.

I personally don’t believe that lettuce or tomato belong on a tenderloin. A burger. Fine. A tenderloin. Nope.

I don’t hold it against a restaurant that does it though. Well, don’t hold it against them much. Some restaurants will have a menu item called the “Tenderloin Deluxe”. All it is, is a tenderloin that they’ve added lettuce and tomato to the mix. Nice try restaurant. You aren’t getting an extra 75 cents out of me.

Usually when I get a tenderloin with lettuce and tomato, to effectively review it, I will eat the first half of it with the lettuce and tomato and then remove them and enjoy the rest of the tenderloin the way God and the pig intended it.

Here is where it gets problematic. The tenderloin I was presented with included mayo. That would normally be a major strike against it. Maybe you like mayo on your tenderloin. That is between you, the pig, and your maker. But it goes 100% against the standards set by the Tenderloin Appreciation Society at The Council of Nicea.

The problem is, I can’t hold that against the restaurant. Putting mayo on the tenderloin was not their idea. My Mom asked them to add mayo. I don’t know why. She must take me for a godless heathen.

So here is my review, but because of the mayo issue, it is for entertainment purposes only. As opposed to the seriousness you give my normal tenderloin reviews.

THE GOOD

+ Toasted bun.
+ Right kind of bun.
+ Good bun to tenderloin ratio.
+ Good breading.
+ Good cut of meat. Could have been thicker though.
+ Onion rings were delicious.

THE BAD

+ Standard tenderloin is served with lettuce and tomato. Lettuce and tomato don’t belong on a tenderloin.
+ A tad greasy. Yeah, it is a tenderloin, but greasy enough that this should’ve been drained longer.
+ Prefer a thicker cut of meat.
+ Red onions.

THE UGLY

+ Mayo. Not their fault, but mayo!

I hope to have another tenderloin to review in the near future. Even if that means going through the Dairy Queen drive-thru and having a pork fritter. Just kidding! A pork fritter is NOT a pork tenderloin. But, I could get desperate.