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In your email and online every week.


"Don’t sail out farther than you can row back."



Take a seat, right over here on this collapsible camping chair — or what we in the Midwest commonly refer to as “bag chairs.” Not to be confused with “bean bag chairs,” these novelty chairs became commonplace in the 1980s, and seemingly everyone now has a number of them stowed away in their vehicle trunks and hatches. After all, you never know when you may be at a camping trip, sporting event, a beach or a picnic and need a chair.

Before an ISU football tailgate several years ago, my wife and I realized that we could not find our bag chairs. No worries, I said, and I made a quick trip to a nearby box store, only to find two hot-pink-colored chairs remaining. So I bought them, and we stood out like flamingos in the parking lots of Jack Trice Stadium. Then when we returned home, I found the other 18 that we have.

It could have been worse. If you were like me and did not read the weight capacity for most of these chairs, you quickly realized that the 200-pound limit really does mean 200 pounds. Not 207 pounds. It was then when I began to understand the difference between plastic, aluminum and steel frames.

Of course, what good is a bag chair without a bag made of the same polyester or nylon fabric and a handy shoulder strap? This sure beats carrying those oldfashioned webbing chairs that my dad had. You know, the ones that left the weave impressions on the back of your legs?

Some friends and I were relaxing on bag chairs recently, and one of them remarked how the person who invented these things must have made a zillion dollars. That got me thinking, who did invent these chairs, and when? After a bit of research, I learned that it was Joseph Mathias Arnold, a citizen of the French Republic who resided in Belgium. He filed a patent in 1911 for the “combined collapsible chair and bag.” It apparently took a while to catch on.

Impress your friends with that fact when you pull out a bag chair at your next tailgate. Or if you happen to need a few, just let me know.

Thanks for reading.

Shane Goodman
President and Publisher
Big Green Umbrella Media
515-953-4822, ext. 305

Seen around town

Brad Watson, Bill Boord and Paul Breese at Urbandale Education Foundation Alumni Golf Tournament held at Hyperion Field Club on June 29.

Residents can help fight hunger at biking fundraiser

The Urbandale Food Pantry is hosting the 2021 Pedal for the Pantry - Presented by F&G fundraiser on Sunday, Aug. 29. Participants can register to ride virtually or in-person. One hundred percent of registration fees will go to support the Urbandale Food Pantry.

All riders participating in the event will also receive discounts on drinks for support in donations to the pantry at local breweries including Kinship Brewing Co., The Handlebar, 515 Brewing Co., Confluence Brewing Co., Captain Roys, The Triangle Tap, Stormys, Firetrucker Brewery, Reclaimed Rails Brewing Co. and Brightside Aleworks. Participants will receive a T-shirt and wristband.

The virtual ride option has riders pick their favorite trail and ride around town with family and friends, stopping at their favorite breweries along the way.

The in-person VIP ride option offers an onsite 45-minute ride on a bike trainer at the Urbandale Food Pantry. During the onsite VIP ride, participants will ride alongside local celebrities, challenge each other with miles rode, listen to music, and enjoy refreshments.

Riders can register for the event at UrbandaleFoodPantry.org/events.

Pedal for the Pantry helps raise funding to provide food assistance to our neighbors in need. It is no secret that a community with access to food is a more productive, more positive, and more secure place. Join in helping fight food insecurity in Central Iowa. 

Urbandale Public Library updates

The Urbandale Public Library will be closed Sept. 5-6 in observance of Labor Day.

In recognition of Deaf Awareness month, the Urbandale Public Library is again partnering with Telecommunications Access Iowa and Relay Iowa to host a series of events this September. The purpose is to help educate area residents about Deaf culture and resources available to the deaf and hard of hearing.

• Deaf Awareness Month Informational Fair, Sept. 9, 5-7 p.m., all ages, in-person. This event will feature a variety of organizations that work with the deaf, hard of hearing, deaf-blind or those who have difficulty speaking to connect to their communities.

• Deaf Awareness Youth Program, Sept. 11, 3 p.m. families, in-person. Join library staff to play ASL games and more.

View all programs by visiting www.urbandalelibrary.org to find the online calendar and register or call the library at 515-278-3945.

Upcoming events

• Urbandale Historical Society Ice Cream Social is Sunday, Sept. 12, 2-4 p.m. at Urban House, 4010 70th St. The Urbandale Historical Society will serve ice cream with pie or cake and water, lemonade or coffee. Visit the Urban House and Barn, and enjoy visiting with friends during the afternoon.

• State of the City Address will be presented Thursday, Sept. 30, 6 p.m. at Fire Station 43, 15100 Meredith Drive. The public is invited to attend Mayor Andeweg’s State of the City Address. An open house with light refreshments will be held from 5-6 p.m. The presentation will start promptly at 6 p.m. A time capsule dedication will take place at the conclusion of the event. RSVP at www.Urbandale.org/RSVP.

• Historical program: The Roller Skating Rink in Urbandale will be presented Sunday, Oct. 10, 2 p.m. at Urban House, 4010 70th St. The Urbandale Historical Society will host this program. Come to learn more about this  popular recreational venue for young people, enjoyed during the 1950s. Bring your memories and stories to share with others during the meeting.


Joke of the week:

What's the best way to carve wood?

Whittle by whittle!!!

Your Urbandale Living magazine

Mailed to residents of Urbandale the first Thursday of each month. 

This month's cover story: 

Roll call

Back to school means a return to the classroom.

By Darren Tromblay

As hard as it may be to believe, sunscreen and swimsuits will soon be replaced by hoodies and backpacks. Fall is on the way, and, with it, a return to the classroom. Unlike 2020, this school year will begin in the classroom. Urbandale Community School District will welcome all students back into the classroom — the 100% online option will not be offered. Masks will be optional for students and staff. While concerns linger, many are hopeful that the school year will bring some stability for staff, students and families.


Read this month's issue
Commitment to community

Readinger stays active in Urbandale

By Lindsey Giardino

For Kay Readinger, in addition to planting her roots in the Urbandale community, she’s made a commitment to being involved and meeting new people.

Readinger and her late husband, Dale, were both raised in Atlantic and moved to Urbandale in the early 1960s after residing in Dearborn, Michigan, for a few years. They didn’t want to raise their family in the busy Detroit metro, so they packed up and headed to Urbandale — a town of 5,000 people at the time — where they knew no one.

The Readingers’ first house was on the east side of town. Back then, it sat on a dirt road with no sidewalks, and they had a cornfield behind them. Their first neighbors became the couple’s “best friends forever,” but they desired to meet even more people, so Kay and Dale started looking for ways to get involved in the community — the beginning of a lifelong trend.


Read More
Tranquil, not triggered

By Steve Smith

One thing that usually raises my blood pressure and elicits a less than gracious response is when I’ve changed lanes to comply with a “right lane closed ahead” sign, and someone flies by me on the right. Invariably the “lunatic” is allowed to merge into my lane several hundred feet ahead of me, which usually triggers my frustration.

Sadly, the absence of gentleness, which should mark a follower of Jesus, is increasingly missing in the actions and interactions of believers with others in a culture where outrage is the new normal.

In James 1:19, God's people are commanded, “…But let everyone be quick to hear, slow to speak and slow to anger.” Unfortunately, the exact opposite is frequently true. What steps can be taken for us to become more tranquil and less triggered? I’ll offer two suggestions.

First of all, it helps to see ourselves realistically. We can all identify “lunatic” drivers, but rarely consider that some people put that label on us. 


Read More
Urbandale Public Library News

By Brianna Ryan, Programming and Outreach Assistant

Here’s what’s happening at the Urbandale Public Library.
The library will be closed Sept. 5-6 in observance of Labor Day.

Virtual and in-person programs

View all programs by visiting www.urbandalelibrary.org to find our online calendar and register or call us at 515-278-3945.

• Kids All Iowa Reads Book Discussion, Aug. 18, 3 p.m., ages 8-12 only, in-person. Join us to discuss this year's Kids All Iowa Reads Selection, “Pie in the Sky” by Remy Lai and decorate a cupcake.

• Third Thursday at Hoover’s, Aug. 19, 6 p.m., for all ages, virtual. Hear from film director Darroch Greer about the Lafayette Escadrille.


Read More

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