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Published: Wednesday, Sept. 4, 2013 11:04 a.m. CDT • Updated: Wednesday, Sept. 4, 2013 11:06 a.m. CDT

Primetime Fellowship

43 Primetimers of Community Heights Alliance Church left Newton  at 10 a.m. Thursday,  Aug. 29, for the monthly outing at Rathbun Lake.

It was a hot day, but  participants were comfortable with the breezes on the new J&K luxurious 85-foot houseboat owned by Kris Koestner. While touring Rathbun Lake, attendees enjoyed a deluxe meal aboard. The buffet featured J&K’s famous pulled pork, homemade rolls, shaved meats and cheeses, salads of all kinds, baked beans, jumbo peeled and deveined shrimp with J&K’s special sauce, honey flavored chicken wings and drummies, cocktail smokies, relishes, plenty of munchies, Sister Cindy’s homemade fudge brownies and favorite beverages.

Koestner has enjoyed Rathbun Lake from the beginning, working on the construction of the dam that eventually produced the beautiful destination area. While cruising, Koestner shared how the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers manages the 55-square miles of public land and water at Rathbun Lake. Koestner was well-known in Centerville, and after his graduation from high school, he was a full-time employee working for the Corps. The Corps manages six park areas for camping, swimming, fishing, boating and other day use activities. Land management practices on Rathbun’s 22,900 acres of land include native prairie reestablishment, controlled burning and wetland development. Vehicle access also is controlled to reduce erosion and impact to prairie ecosystems.

The Corps of Engineers partners with the Iowa Department of Natural Resources to develop the Honey Creek Resort State Park, the first “destination state park” in Iowa, at Rathbun Lake. The resort park has an 18-hole golf course, 105-room lodge, indoor water park, meeting facilities, restaurant and 28 cabins. The Iowa DNR also licenses 14,800 acres for wildlife management, 375 acres for the Rathbun Fish Hatchery and 800 acres for Honey Creek State Park. The South Central Dirt Riders Club manages the 125-acre Rathbun OHV Park to provide off-road opportunities to visitors of Rathbun Lake.     

Primetimers (for those age 55 and older) are welcome to Primetime Potlucks on the third Monday of each month at 6 p.m. in the Community Heights Alliance Church Gathering Room. Bring a favorite dish to share. The small green baskets are for donations to cover the plastic and paper eating utensils. Don’t bring serving  spoons, as the group uses church servers. There will be no Primetime Potluck on Nov. 25, as the church’s annual Thanksgiving outreach to the community will be that day.  Primetime outings are usually the last Thursday of each month, and participants are required to sign up for these due to making reservations. The Sept. 26 lunch in Kalona is limited to 40 (first come, first served). The cost is $13 plus tip and $2 for gas. There will be shopping after lunch.

Due to fall leaves, Boone Scenic Valley Railroad suggested Oct. 10 for lunch at Golden Corral. The group will leave the church at 10 a.m. and board the train at 1:30 p.m. The cost is $20 plus $2 for gas. Watch for Primetime news in church bulletins and news articles in Newton Daily News.

For more information, call the church office at (641) 792-1620.

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