The Essex Community Club Board is excited to welcome their new Executive Director, Emily Spencer!
"Born and raised in Waterloo, Iowa I grew up with a love of horses, reading and Girl Scouts. My desire to give back and work within the community started at an early age. By 14 I had my first job working with disabled children and numerous volunteering projects under my belt through Girl Scouts. After working my way through college I started my career with a manufacturing company. My community involvement was heavy for this company, ranging from promotion of the business to serving on the Community education board to becoming an ambassador with the chamber of commerce. Winning myself a number of national awards. This career brought me to Clarinda, IA in December of 2015. Everything changed that day, it's a familiar story. I met a man, fell in love and we are living happily ever after with our two sons on the family farm north of Clarinda. I couldn't be happier that my path has led me to the ECC and I'm looking forward to jumping right in."
The Essex Community Club is planning for the annual Labor Day celebration, in addition to recognizing the town's sesquicentennial. As always, they continue "Working for the betterment of Essex, Iowa!"
The Essex Community Club Board (from left to right) includes Brian Johnson - President, Heather Thornton - Vice President, Emily Spencer - Executive Director, Cassie Lundgren - Secretary and Candice Liljedahl - Treasurer.
In celebration of the Essex Sesquicentennial, the Essex Community Club is awarding a total of $4000 in grants to local non-profit organizations.
With the cancellation of 2020 Essex Labor Day festivities, due to Covid-19, Essex Community Club members wanted to express support & gratitude to community organizations which regularly volunteer and fund raise during the annual celebration.
Grant award recipients include:
$100-Page Co. Pork Producers; $100-Page Co. Cattlemen; $250-Fremont 4-H'ers; $250-Faith Covenant Church; $250-Presbyterian Church; $250-St. John's Lutheran Church; $250-American Legion Auxiliary; $850-Essex Community School Boosters; $850-Essex Childcare Center; $850-Essex Fire Department
2020 marked the Essex Sesquicentennial, and even though a traditional celebration wasn't possible, Pete and Dana Wenstrand found a way to mark the milestone. The Wenstrands recognized the 150 year anniversary by encouraging residents to plant 150 trees. Thanks to the businesses, organizations and individuals who participated, the goal was met!
Read the full KMA articles:
"Essex Residents Encouraged to Plant Trees to Mark Sesquicentennial"
"Essex Tree Initiative Meets Goal"
The Residential Sidewalk Replacement Program continues with the third phase breaking ground next month. Project chair Candice Liljedahl updated the Essex City Council on the plan, with the council agreeing to match up to $5,000 of the funds from the Local Option Sales Tax. Areas under construction include Denison Street and Iowa Avenue near Anderson Park leading to the downtown area. Nearly $30,000 has been invested in the project to date!
More than five years ago, a survey of Essex residents showed that sidewalk conditions were a major concern. Today, the Essex Community Club is close to completing a safe path to school, work and overall enjoyment!
Dana Wenstrand and Dave Jauron started the project by observing the state of each sidewalk in town. They found that 37% needed repair and 59% were non-existent. Charlie Hendrickson was hired to replace a small area near the post office on Iowa Avenue in 2015. Then, the ECC membership voted to continue the plan on a larger scale.
With the help of ECC Executive Director, Melissa Chambers, Candice Liljedahl chaired the project as it was decided to focus on the southwest part of Essex. The path from the south side of Omaha Avenue to the west side of Denison Street was chosen to create a walkway from the school to Anderson Park and downtown. Ramps have also been added to provide handicap accessibility and general ease of use.
Residents applied for grand applications and completed city permits to participate in the program. Close to $18,000 will be invested into the project including the 2015 phase. ECC has already received generous donations through fundraising efforts. We are well on our way to our goal of $10,000! Donors can purchase sidewalk "squares" for $100, but any amount is welcome.
Your tax-deductible donation is payable to:
Essex Community Endowment Fund (Memo: Sidewalk Project)
P.O. Box 334
Essex, IA 51638
Thank you to the following donors to date:
John & Lucy Bengston
CP Self Storage
Farmers Telephone Company
First Presbyterian Church
Bill & Tish Glasgo
Hackett-Livingston Funeral Home
Darwin & Belinda Holmes
John's Heating and A/C Services, LLC
Brian & Laura Kirchert
Dennis & Diane Liljedahl
Liljedahl Farms, Inc.
Main Street Storage / David & Donna Jauron
John and Kerry McBride
Jason & Lisa Nelson
David & Amy Rydberg
Joey & Amy Samuelson
Peter & Dana Wenstrand
Jolene & Brent Younggren
In celebrating our 100th year, the Essex Community Club is launching a new project to recognize business and individuals with the 1st ever "Best of Essex" awards!
Voting was held by members & guests present at the 2009 Essex Community Club Annual Meeting. We're happy to announce the 2010 "Best of Essex" awards!
Best New Business: Casey's General Store
Best Retail Business: Stitches & Baskets
Best Service Business: Tech Support Services
Best Service Business: Kirchert Electric
Best Store Front: Stitches & Baskets
Best Customer Service: Bank Iowa
Best Customer Service: Tri-Valley Bank
Best Entertainment: Essex Community School Activities & Sporting Events
Best Place to Play: Essex Golf Club
Best Landmark: Railroad Inn
Most Improved Storefront: Babe's Café
Best Pastor: Pastor James Ressegieu, Faith Evangelical Covenant Church
Best Park: Anderson Park
Best Restaurant: Babe's Café
Best Consultant: Dana Wenstrand, IMAGE, PT&C
Best Community Resource: Essex Childcare Center
Best Community Resource: Essex Lied Public Library
Best Specialty Food Retailer: Johnson Locker
Best Volunteer Organization: Essex Fire Fighters Association
Best Auto Repair: Johnny's Body Shop
Best Historian: Alice Almquist
Best Time to Play: Labor Day Weekend
The "Best of Essex" winners receive a certificate to display at their business. They may use the recognition in advertising or business promotion all throughout the year. Congratulations!
The Essex Community Club successfully raised $20,000 to help fund removal of two Quonset Buildings located at Essex Community Schools. $10,000 was donated by ECC from funds raised the past two years through Labor Day activities and Membership Dues. An additional $11,515 was raised through individual donations. The balance of $1,515 will remain in the Essex Community Endowment & Trust Fund for continued growth. Thank you to all who helped make this project a success!
Essex Community Club awarded $4,000 in grant money to go toward Business Community Development. The project estimates are over $25,500 in total investments! There were two qualifications for application:
Eight businesses, building owners and organizations applied. Following is a note of those groups and their project. Please join me in congratulating these winners and encouraging them on their projects.
$250: Essex Lied Public Library - replace a light and landscape
$250: Essex Post Office - deep clean brick exterior
$250: Dave & Donna Jauron - paint building exterior and landscape
$250: James & Kala Duysen - add awning to building
$500: Essex Community Schools - landscaping
$500: Essex Community Schools - playground improvements and painting
$1000: Curtis & Karen Riley - replace windows and paint building exterior
$1000: Essex Child Care Center - replace windows and paint building exterior
All projects must be completed by August 15, 2009.
Thanks to our ECC Membership for hard work this past year to raise the funds which have gone toward this project!