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Iowa energy connections // September

Decorah-based company steals the spotlight on the sidelines

You know the scene. It’s the fourth quarter. Victory is imminent. The crowd goes wild. And an iconic orange cooler is hoisted high to give the winning coach a Gatorade shower. 

Whether you’re watching little league or the Super Bowl, that prominent manufacturer of sports-themed beverage and food products is a client of Iowa Rotocast Plastics; a family-owned business based in Decorah, Iowa who manufactures Gatorade’s sideline series. What started in 1983 with one product created in a garage, IRP is now the manufacturer and supplier of equipment for Anheuser Busch InBev, MillerCoors, PepsiCo, Coca-Cola, Constellation Brands, Nestlé Waters, and many more.

“IRP’s continued growth is still based on relationships. Working with Fortune 500 companies as clients, we’re able to service their ongoing needs because of the strong ties our regional sales representatives have created,” said Kerry Trenkamp, IRP marketing director.

All elements of design and production are kept in-house, in Decorah. “We work with stadiums, arenas, venues and resorts across the country. If you’ve ever been to an NFL game, collegiate sporting event, or major concert, you’ve used something that was designed and manufactured right here in Iowa,” said Trenkamp.

Throughout IRP’s evolution from small business to industry leader, Black Hills Energy was ready to support its growth, providing the safe, reliable natural gas needed to keep production going 24 hours a day.

IRP is the manufacturer and an authorized distributor of Grizzly Coolers; a testimonial to its custom rotational molding capabilities. This year, Black Hills Energy partnered with Grizzly on a raffle to raise awareness about how important it is to call 811 before your dig. On National Call Before You Dig Day, eight lucky winners took home a Grizzly cooler, including Darlene H. of Grimes, IA.

And no, the victory didn’t include a Gatorade shower.

No mountain is too high

 

Casey Woodside isn’t afraid to get out of his comfort zone. So when he married a hiking enthusiast, he didn’t let his fear of heights get in the way of climbing the Rocky Mountains.

“When my wife Abby and I got to the top, it was drastically different than anything I experienced growing up in the Midwest,” said Casey, admitting that he might have felt a little nervous at the peak.

It’s no surprise then that the native Minnesotan who overcame his fears didn’t blink when he came across a new adventure to take a position in the energy industry.

“It’s rewarding to be part of the process of safely delivering an economical and efficient fuel source to our customers. The more I learn about the energy industry – the new technologies being used, the important role energy plays in the lives of all of our customers – the more I see that what we do every day is not only beneficial, but vital, for us all,” said Casey.

“It’s rewarding to be part of the process of safely delivering an economical and efficient fuel source to our customers. The more I learn about the energy industry – the new technologies being used, the important role energy plays in the lives of all of our customers – the more I see that what we do every day is not only beneficial, but vital, for us all,” said Casey.

Casey is a business development manager for Black Hills Energy. Based in Grimes, Iowa, Casey has taken his role of ensuring customers have access to safe, reliable natural gas to new heights. Sometimes that means partnering with communities and economic development groups to extent natural gas infrastructure to an unserved or underserved area to assist community growth. Other times, Casey works with teams from throughout Black Hills Energy to create innovative solutions.

“My favorite part of my roles is for our team to figure out a way for us to reach new customers and provide them with the safe and reliable services we provide,” said Casey. “Utilizing new strategies like liquefied natural gas applications has allowed us to reach new customers that were previously too far from our existing infrastructure. We also work on green initiatives to create renewable natural gas from waste water treatment facilities, landfills and other operations where the methane is not currently being captured. This has been great way for us to partner with the communities and customers we serve to reach their sustainability initiatives.”

Casey serves as the Vice President of the Grimes Kiwanis where he leads efforts to serve meals to those in need over the holidays, organize an annual Easter egg hunt for more than 1,000 children, and support efforts for the Kiwanis Miracle League. He also coaches little league baseball in Johnston, Iowa where he and his wife live.

No word yet on what mountain he plans to hike next, but Casey is sure to reach the peak (no matter how nervous he really is).

Make sure your furnace is ready

 

It's officially fall and as we gear up for the changing seasons, now is a good time to make sure your furnace is ready for the temperatures to dip.

First step: Clean

Check and replace your filters if needed. Then, make sure your ducts are clean and call in a professional if needed. Finally, check your vents and clear them of any dust and debris that could block air flow.

Second step: Test

You don’t want to find out that your furnace is on the fritz during the season’s first snow. Turn it on to make sure it’s working well.

Third step: Do a safety check

While you’re in the productive homeowner zone, go ahead and replace the batteries in your carbon monoxide and smoke detectors.

Finally, cross your fingers for a long, beautiful fall that you can enjoy with peace of mind that you’re all set for winter.

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Iowa energy connections

 

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