On August 10, 2020, a severe wind storm (Derecho) tore through the Midwest. It left a path of damage and destruction from the Western edge of South Dakota/Nebraska to Northwest Ohio, 770 miles in 14 hours.
Iowa was hit hardest, with wind gusts reaching 140 mph. In my hometown, Cedar Rapids, it damaged or destroyed every building it touched in our 75 square mile city as well as at least 65% of our tree cover. Many of us were without power for 8-12 days (9 for me) and navigating our city was difficult, to say the least.
The strength of our city and state were shown in the days after and still are today. Iowa Strong isn't just something we say around here, it's something we live. From clearing trees out of streets to helping our neighbors, we worked together and put any differences we had aside. We fed, clothed, checked in on neighbors. We stood strong and kept going because that's what we do in Iowa.
As we are in the midst of the holiday season, I still see us being Iowa Strong. One family is making dinners 6 days a week, offering them to ANYONE who is hungry. Many others are offering donations to this family to keep up the great thing they are doing. Check out their page, Bridge under the Bridge. Another hometown hero, Willie Farley, took his business (Willie Ray's Q Shack) to the streets during the weeks after the storm to feed many.
I've decided to do something to further my effort to help my city, county, state recover as well. I designed this ornament/magnet and will be donating part of the profit to nonprofits helping us rise up and rebuild. They will be available for $10/each. Message me if you're interested in purchasing them.
Again, let us never forget, we are IOWA STRONG!