Elma, Iowa

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A Great Place to Visit... A Better Place to Live

The little town that could... The community of Elma is a community of re-birth and endless growth. Through many catastrophes in its early days, the citizens of Elma, with their spirit of hometown pride, persevered and rebuilt the community at every turn. This hometown spirit and constant strive to make Elma the "best little bedroom community around" is still alive today . It is evident among the families who reside here, as well as in the businesses, organizations, and Mennonite cultures that dot our landscape. The people of Elma invite you visit this website to learn more about our affordable housing, new medical clinic (opening October 2020!) excellent Pre-school and early childhood center, recreational trail, community wellness center, museums, golf course, nursing home with assisted living facilities, many Mennonite greenhouses and shops as well as numerous other local businesses.

Read about other great things happening in Elma at the links below!

Watch for news early next year about Elma Trail Days returning July 9-10-11 in 2021; please mark it on your calendars!
-The Elma Trail Days Committee

Governor Reynolds visit Elma, Sept. 2020 Shrink Smart 1 Shrink Smart 2

Elma Community Complex Project

Exciting improvements ahead for Elma!

Elma Community Complex Project

NEWS RELEASE:  October 21, 2023

The Elma Community Complex project is close to wrapping up the project but is asking for financial help one last time to help finish the project. 

This fall a fence was installed around the playground, landscaping was started, and new gutters were installed.  Remaining items to be completed are: adding playground equipment for the day care, landscaping, adding interior and exterior signage, remodeling the bathrooms, and completing our donor wall. We estimate another $25,000 will finish the project.     

To date over $1,300,000 has been raised through private donations, grants, and fundraisers. The committee continues to seek out grant and donation opportunities.  Recent grants received include Tossed & Found Grant for gutters and Howard County Community Foundation grant for signage.   

All sized gifts are welcomed and appreciated and can include cash, grain, or direct distribution from your IRA.  For more information please contact Shannon Gebel, Elma City Clerk, at 641-393-2543 or elmacityclerk@gmail.comDonations can be mailed to Elma Community Complex, City of Elma, PO Box 497, Elma IA 50628.For a complete list of grants & donations to date, please click on this link:Donations & grants thru September 2023

 

                                                                                     Daycare with fencing        

     Impact Statement                                                                  Completion Phases

NEWS RELEASE:   July 10, 2023

Recently some of the murals from the former brick school building were incorporated into the exterior of the building. Shout out to the students from the Iowa State University Design program who helped design this as part of the Shrink Smart Program.  This project has been done in phases as funding allows. Playground fence and equipment, landscaping, signage, gutters, and renovations of the bathrooms in the ECC, along with a few finishing touches throughout, are a few of the areas left to complete. 

 News Release-Sept. 14, 2022: The Elma Community Complex (ECC) is making great progress but is not finished yet!]

Library- The library has moved but is still settling in to the new space.  The library is in need of furniture, technology installation and office equipment to resume full services.

Daycare-Flooring is being installed into the new daycare addition and they hope to move in soon.  The daycare also needs to complete the outdoor play area. 

City Clerk's Office-Construction is now complete and we are just waiting for the cabinets to be installed.  Shannon hopes to move into her new office soon!

We also plan to add entrances and parking lots on the east and south sides and make updates to the exterior portion of the building.  We plan to incorporate the murals from the former school building into the exterior of the building.  We also plan to remodel the bathrooms in the hallway of the ECC. The new medical building clinic was built and completed as part of this project in 2020 and the community room was also finished in 2021. 

We need an estimated $72,000 to complete all phases of the project. There are several ways to support the project:

-Rummage Sale and Bake Sale 9/16/2022 & 9/17/2022

-Gifts of Grain- Deliver the corn or soybeans to IAS in Elma.  An account has been set up at IAS under City of Elma-Elma Community Complex.  IAS will send City of Elma- Elma Community Complex a check for the grain.  Farmer will receive a receipt for their gift.  Gift is non-deductible on taxes but farmer does not have to declare this amount of grain as income for farming operation. 

 -We also accept cash donations or IRA distributions.  These donations can be mailed to Elma Community Complex, City of Elma, PO Box 497, Elma IA 50628.

The great news is donations would be matched thanks to Joe & Kathy Whitinger.  They have pledged another $100,000 if it can be matched!  Any and all size donations are accepted and appreciated.  Local medical services, increased day care capacity, and fully handicap accessible library adjacent to the day care and bus-stop are just a few of the ways the Elma area will benefit when the Elma Community Complex project is complete.  The ECC project involves all non-profit organizations and is being done in phases as funding allows.  The first phase involved the deconstruction of the former brick school building and was completed in the spring of 2020.   The second phase, building a medical clinic on Busti Avenue, is complete and Regional Health Services of Howard County will open the medical clinic in late 2020. The third phase will be re-purposing a portion of the gymnasium into a city clerk's office and  multipurpose community room, and bathroom renovations.  The fourth phase involves adding a larger infant room onto the existing day care and re-purposing the current infant room into a 3 year-old-preschool.  The fifth phase is renovating the remaining portion of the gym into a library and then wrap up the project with finishing the parking lot and landscaping.  To learn more, including ways to donate to the project click here :   E.C.C. Project

Maddie Poppe concertNews Release 8/1/2021:   On Sunday September 5th the 2018 American Idol Winner Maddie Poppe will be taking the stage in the ball diamond of the Elma Park! Our favorite local singer, Danni Bilidt Johnston will be opening for Maddie.  Fireworks will wrap up the evening.  Maddie, a Clarksville Iowa native, is singer/song writer  known for singing a mix of pop, country and folk music.  She is a multi-instrumentalist- playing the guitar, piano, and ukulele.

Danni Bilidt Johnston was the 2017  Tree Town Karaoke Winner is also known for singing a variety of music from Carole King to Fleetwood Mac, to Pat Benatar and Pink. The performances will be on the stage in the ball diamond at the Elma Park, located at 328  190th ST in Elma Iowa.  Bring your own lawn chairs.  Cost is $20.  NOTE:  NO COOLERS will be allowed at the park for this event!  Concert starts at 5:30pm.  Concessions will be available.  Check back for details!   Come early and bring the family.  Our park is well shaded with a great playground and NEW SPLASH PAD!  All ticket sales go to the Elma Community Complex Project.  See all the news on the E.C.C. project here:  Elma Community Complex Project.  ***CONCERT TICKETS ON SALE NOW. LIMITED NUMBER AVAILABLE. ***  To purchase your concert tickets in advance, please go to this link:  Maddie Poppe concert tickets

News Release July 3, 2021:  On Sunday September 5th the 2018 American Idol Winner Maddie Poppe will be taking the stage in the ball diamond of the Elma Park! Our favorite local singer, Danni Bilidt Johnston will be opening for Maddie.  Fireworks will wrap up the evening.  Maddie, a Clarksville Iowa native, is singer/song writer  known for singing a mix of pop, country and folk music.  She is a mult-instrumentalist- playing the guitar, piano, and ukulele.   Danni Bilidt Johnston was the 2017  Tree Town Karaoke Winner is also known for singing a variety of music from Carole King to Fleetwood Mac, to Pat Benatar and Pink.  The performance will be on the stage in the ball diamond at the Elma Park, located at 328  190th ST in Elma Iowa.  Bring your own lawn chairs.  All tickets will be sold at the gate.  Cost is $20.  Concert starts at 5:30pm.   Concession stand will be available.  Check back for details!   Come early and bring the family.  Our park is well shaded with a great playground and NEW SPLASH PAD!  All ticket sales go to the Elma Community Complex Project.  

 

Bob Savre of First Citizens Bank in New Hampton presented a $3,000 grant check to Renee Burke, Elma Public Library Director.   Bob Savre of First Citizens Bank in New Hampton presented a $3,000 grant check to Renee Burke, Elma Public Library Director.

News Release July 2, 2021:  The Elma Public Library was greatly honored to be the recipient of a $3,000 grant from First Citizens National Bank Charitable Foundation, Inc. through their branch in New Hampton.  The new library is part of the Elma Community Complex or ECC project, a collaborative project in Elma combining the Elma Library, the City Clerk's office and the Elma Early Childhood Center under one roof. The ECC will also host a 50 person capacity multi-purpose room with upgraded technology and a kitchenette for educational programs, entertainment, meetings, or community and private events.  The grant money will help the new library purchase furnishings for the circulation desk and patron learning areas in the library. The learning areas will be comfortable, welcoming and appealing to patrons. "We are excited for the extra space and technology updates. The expansion of the library and day care will offer more resources through the library and expanded day care services for families in our community. The library will be able to offer a wider variety of programming to citizens of all ages," stated director, Renee Burke.  We continue to fundraise as our goal is to raise $1.2 million to cover the cost of all six phases of our project. To date, $934,200 has been raised and committed through private donations, grants, and fundraisers. We continue to seek out grant and donation opportunities.  For more information on the project, please contact the Elma Public Library at 641-393-8100 or visit the Elma Iowa website or Facebook page. 

News Release June 21, 2021:  The City of Elma was 1 of 26 recipients of the Rural Innovation Grant. This $20,000 grant will go towards the Elma Community Complex Project's library renovations. Here is a link to the news release:  https://kwwl.com/.../gov-reynolds-announces-400000-for.../

 

       Crowds gather for the Elma Clinic dedication                Max & Georgia Schmidt of KMax Farms                Kyle Teeling of RHSHC & Erin Ludwig of E.C.C.                 Patty Steven thanks KMax Farms                Plaque commemorating the building dedication

News Release June 11, 2021:  On June 11th Regional Health Services of Howard County held an open house at the Elma Medical Clinic and KMAX Farms dedicated the building in honor of Jerry Steven. Trent Thiele, of KMAX Farms, dedicated the building in honor of Jerry Steven. KMAX Farms was given the rights to naming the building because of their financial support of the project.   Jerry was a long time resident of Elma and had served as city councilman, mayor, and county supervisor and loved by many. Jerry passed away last summer. Patty, Jerry's wife, accepted the honor.

 

groundbreaking on day care addition  Groundbreaking on daycare addition.  L-R board members Scott O'Brien, Taylor Smith, Director Sarah Brophy & board president Tom Platte.

News Release June 7, 2021:   This past week the Elma Early Childhood Center broke ground on their day care addition.  The day care will be adding a larger infant room onto the existing day care and re-purposing the current infant room into a larger three year-old-preschool. The addition to the day care will expand its capacity up to 16 infants and provide for more ease in separating infants, toddlers and school age kids.  The day care addition is part of the Elma Community Complex project, a multi-phase community betterment project focused on expanding medical, day care, and library services for the area and is being done in phases as funding allows.  The new medical clinic building was completed and opened earlier this year and the renovations on the multi-purpose community room in the former gymnasium began this spring. The walls are studded up, electrical and plumbing is roughed in and we are waiting for the sprinkler system to be installed which will be followed up with sheet rock.  The handicap accessible room with kitchenette will be used for library programming for adults and youth, community meetings and gatherings (city council meetings, family gatherings, etc).   Capacity will be around 50 people. The goal is to have this available for community use later this summer.  The final phase is renovating the remaining portion of the gym into a library and city clerk's office and then finishing the parking lot and landscaping.  Fundraising continues as the goal is to raise $1.2 million to pay for all phases of the project.  To date, $919,403 has been raised and committed through private donations, grants, and fundraisers.  For more information please contact Shannon Gebel, Elma City Clerk, at 641-393-2543 or elmacityclerk@gmail.com.  You may also visit elmaia.com and the Elma, Iowa Facebook page for more information or contact committee members.


 

                                                                         

       Renee Burke, Elma Library Director, Erin Ludwig ECC committee member, and Shannon Gebel, Elma City Clerk  standing in the future multi-purpose community room that will be adjacent to the library and daycare.   "I couldn't be more excited to see this progress in what is going to be our multi-purpose community room," shared Renee Burke Elma Library Director. "Our current meeting room seats 12 while this will accommodate nearly 50. It will be fully handicap accessible with kitchenette and technology. This will be useful for library programs but also a place for employers to train employees and a place for family gatherings such as bridal showers and reunions. The location is an asset because it next to our beautiful library and park.  We hope to begin using it this summer!"

 

June 21st, 2021 News Release:   The City of Elma was 1 of 26 recipients of the Rural Innovation Grant. This $20,000 grant will go towards the Elma Community Complex Project's library renovations. Here is a link to the news release:  https://kwwl.com/.../gov-reynolds-announces-400000-for.../

June 11, 2021 News Release:  On June 11th Regional Health Services of Howard County held an open house at the Elma Medical Clinic and KMAX Farms dedicated the building in honor of Jerry Steven. Trent Thiele, of KMAX Farms, dedicated the building in honor of Jerry Steven. KMAX Farms was given the rights to naming the building because of their financial support of the project.   Jerry was a long time resident of Elma and had served as city councilman, mayor, and county supervisor and loved by many. Jerry passed away last summer. Patty, Jerry's wife, accepted the honor.

                       

 

March 17 News Release:   "What A Great Week! The Elma Community Complex committee has been informed that they will be receiving a $4120 Child Care Challenge Fund and $111,884 from Investing in Iowa's Child Care Fund. The ECC was also granted a $3965 grant from Elma Area Community Foundation and a $15,000 grant from the Howard County Community Foundation," stated committee member Erin Ludwig."Fund-raising during COVID has presented some challenges but we are still focused on raising 1.2 million. It is a fund-raising marathon, not a sprint. To date, we have $834,967 committed to the project. The ECC Committee is hopeful that as more people see the progress that has been made and how it will impact our community, they will consider joining in supporting this worthy community project."  The Elma Community Complex (ECC) project is a multi-phase community betterment project focused on expanding medical, day-care, and library services for the area and is being done in phases as funding allows.

The Child Care Challenge Fund and Investing in Iowa's Child Care Fund, in support of the day-care addition, allows for the construction begin later this spring or early summer. The day-care will be adding a larger infant room onto the existing day-care and re-purposing the current infant room into a three year-old-preschool. The addition to the day-care will expand its capacity up to 16 infants and provide for more ease in separating infants, toddlers and school age kids. The Elma Early Childhood Center continues to have a waiting list. "If we want young families to continue to live here, we need to provide the day-care services and amenities that they need. This is what this project is all about—from medical services to day-care to library," shared Bruce Weigel, committee member. He was also quick to add how the whole community can benefit from employers to senior citizens.

Renovations on the multi-purpose community room in the former gymnasium is being worked on now. The handicapped accessible multi-purpose community room with kitchenette will be used for library programming for youth and adults, community meetings and gatherings (city council meetings, family gatherings, etc.) The multi-purpose room will have a capacity of around 50 people.

The first phase was the deconstruction of the elementary school while the second phase was the completion of the Regional Health Services of Howard County Elma Medical Clinic building. Both of these phases are completed. The third phase involves renovating a portion of the former gym into a community room and city clerk's office; the fourth phase involves adding an addition on to the day care; and finally, the fifth phase is renovating the remaining portion of the gym into a library and then wrap up the project with finishing the parking lot and landscaping.

For more information please contact Shannon Gebel, Elma City Clerk, at 641-393-2543.  You may also visit elmaia.com and the Elma, Iowa Facebook page.

March 3, 2021 News Release:  Plans are underway to have a Fish Fry Fundraiser on Friday March 5th. This is a fundraiser for the Elma Community Complex! We continue to make progress- the Elma Medical Clinic opened in January and in February renovations of a portion of the gymnasium into a multipurpose community room began. The project is progressing as fundraising allows. We have $699,698 committed thus far to the 1.2 million dollar project.

Elma Medical Clinic                                                            Clinic Providers                                                 Fish Fry

 

Website sponsored by The BRIDGE Organization, Inc.

BRIDGE: Building Relationships In the Development of a Greater Elma

Website sponsored by The BRIDGE Organization, Inc.

contact us online hereThis website is proudly sponsored by The BRIDGE Organization, Inc. to serve the Elma area. The mission of BRIDGE is dedicated to enhancing the social and economic development of the Elma area through innovative resources, programs and partnerships. Please read more about The BRIDGE Organization under the organizations category in the business menu tab above. You may contact The BRIDGE Organization by phone at 641-229-7063, by postal mail at P.O. Box 15, Elma IA 50628 or contact us online here. A BRIDGE project completed in 2016 upgraded this ElmaIa.com website to make it mobile ready for reading on smart phones, tablets or other mobile devices.  Additionally, this new website allows us to upload video clips to the site and to produce video clips of events, activities, sites and eventually aid our businesses in the creation of their own promotional videos as well.

 

 READ ABOUT A 2018 AWARD PRESENTED TO BRIDGE AT THE FOUR LINKS BELOW!

 

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