GC officials pitch public art to supervisors

Robert Maharry

Grundy Center Main Street Director Lisa Bienfang and city councilwoman Amanda Grineski addressed the board of supervisors about a unique proposal aimed at bringing in more outside visitors and sprucing up the county seat: public art.
“We’re looking for something that not only beautifies the alleyways but adds culture and livelihood to our communities,” Bienfang said. “There’s a lot of opportunity to not only bring culture and art to the area, but to get people involved as well.”
The new initiative, known as Alley CATS (Community Art Through the Streets), is open ended at this point, and local artist Grant McMartin has agreed to work on the first mural during Felix Grundy Days next month. Bienfang told the board that she found inspiration during a recent visit to Le Mars in northwest Iowa, where the city is working to clean up blighted areas. No official action was taken.
County Sanitarian Carie Sager reported that Gregory Risse, the owner of a property in Fern recently declared a public health nuisance, is no longer incarcerated, has been served papers and is attempting to rectify the matter—particularly an open septic tank that a neighbor’s dog fell into and the lack of any indoor plumbing. He now has until September 1 to do so.
“I can tell that some things have been moved around, but it’s still a mess,” Sager said. “I hope he cleans it up and the county doesn’t have to worry about it. But we’ll see how that goes.”
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