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During times of crisis, people gravitate to history for context. This pandemic is no exception. Over the past several months, there is new found interest in the history of hospitals, caregiving and global pandemics. On this episode of River to River, guest host Rick Brewer is joined by historian Adam Davis to unpack the history of hospitals in medieval Europe and help us see the modern parallels of these systems and institutions.

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Katarina Sostaric / IPR File

The congressional district thought to be Iowa’s most reliably Democratic is seeing its largest Republican primary field in years. That’s after longtime Democratic Rep. Dave Loebsack announced his retirement from the 2nd District. Ahead of the June 2 primary, candidates are sparring over conservative credentials as they vie for the open seat in southeast Iowa.

Madeleine King / IPR File

The sixth annual Hinterland Music Festival, originally scheduled for July 31–August 2, 2020, has been postponed due to COVID-19 concerns. The festival has been rescheduled to August 6–8, 2021, at its usual location at the Avenue of the Saints Amphitheater in St. Charles.

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COVID-19 has touched all of our lives in some way. With nearly 18,000 confirmed cases in Iowa (as of May 27, 2020) more and more of us have had the disease, know someone who has had it or even lost someone to the disease. But for a variety of reasons many people feel uncomfortable sharing their personal experiences with COVID-19. They may fear they’ll be blamed for not taking enough precautions or that the loss of a loved one might be politicized. 

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Evictions and foreclosures can resume Thursday in Iowa as Gov. Kim Reynolds allows the public health emergency moratorium on those actions to expire and the coronavirus continues to spread in the state.

In mid-March, Reynolds suspended most evictions and foreclosures to prevent people from having to leave their homes during the first part of the epidemic.

Courtesy of Brother Trucker

In an effort to support local musicians and keep the music community engaged during this unprecedented time, IPR is bringing you a weekly live concert series every Tuesday night that we're calling #IPRTunesday. 

The entrance to Lakeside Casino near Osceola, Iowa.
Grant Gerlock / IPR

Large gatherings will be allowed to resume and more businesses allowed to reopen in Iowa next week under the latest changes to the state’s coronavirus emergency proclamation.

Gov. Kim Reynolds announced Tuesday that starting June 1, there will no longer be a 10 person limit on gatherings in Iowa. The state is asking large gatherings to limit participants to half of the venue’s capacity and take “reasonable measures” to ensure social distancing and hygiene practices.

Nick Rohlman / Special to IPR

Pandemic or not, musicians and songwriters want their music to be heard.  Iowa City's Jordan Sellergren released her new album "Sweet, Bitter Tears" on May 1.

courtesy of Hy-Vee

This pandemic spring has changed some pathways of getting food to hungry people, but there’s still plenty being donated and distributed to meet the increased need.

West Des Moines-based Hy-Vee, with stores in eight states, often makes donations to food banks, says Christina Gayman, director of public relations. But right now, many of its suppliers have approached the chain for help distributing their surplus. 

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A new report by the non-profit Trust for America’s health found that drug-related deaths rates in Iowa decreased by 15 percent while alcohol-related deaths decreased by 4 percent from 2017 to 2018.

Michael Leland / Iowa Public Radio

The state has allowed more Iowa businesses, organizations and parks to reopen. Iowans continue to adapt to the new normal, acknowledging that coronavirus is here with us, and resuming more community activities. 

Continue to follow the latest Iowa coronavirus news here, where we're posting news updates from Gov. Kim Reynolds, other state agencies, counties and businesses for the week of May 24-May 30.

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Businesses including movie theaters and museums may reopen today under a new proclamation from Gov. Kim Reynolds, further loosening COVID-19 restrictions on businesses. We hear from IPR state government reporter Katarina Sostaric about these efforts to reopen the state's economy during the pandemic.

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Even though many parts of life have slowed down lately, construction work continues to move forward. But building new houses, adding additions, patios, decks, and sidewalks might affect existing trees.

Grant Gerlock / IPR file

Gov. Kim Reynolds told reporters on Thursday that soon any Iowan who wants a test for COVID-19 will be able to get one. This comes as even more Iowa businesses are reopening on Friday and as hundreds of new confirmed coronavirus cases are reported daily. 

The state hit 400 known deaths from COVID-19 on Thursday.

"There is a societal cost to just shutting down and not realistically moving forward through this pandemic," Gov. Reynolds said during her Thursday press conference.

Mollie Ryan

EleanorGrace never imagined she’d be releasing a new song in the midst of a global pandemic. But that’s what happened, and she’s actually pretty excited about it.

Orchestra Iowa / Facebook

Orchestra Iowa, situated in Cedar Rapids and under the direction of Tim Hankewich, has announced its 2020-2021 season, which includes a yearlong celebration of Beethoven’s 250th birthday with a twist. They’re taking a unique focus and plan to pay tribute to Iowa’s Czech heritage and explore Beethoven’s works supported by his Czech patron, Prince Joseph Franz von Lobkowicz. 

The first in-person concerts of the season are currently scheduled for mid-September. 

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Higher education has had to adapt quickly during the pandemic. Many colleges and universities around the world have already made plans to not have in-person classes this coming fall. 

Lyle Muller/IowaWatch

Iowa hospitals received $190.3 million in CARES Act relief fund payments in April and were expecting as much as $360 million more in a second round of federal relief aid underway now, interviews and documents shared with IowaWatch show.

David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University

While schools are closed, we're creating a series of "Talk of Iowa" episodes that will be fun and educational for learners of all ages. Every Tuesday, we'll learn about Iowa wildlife, and every Thursday, we'll learn about Iowa history.

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The COVID-19 pandemic has radically changed two important parts of life for almost every adult in the United States -- our relationships with work and leisure time.

On this episode of Talk of Iowa, Charity Nebbe speaks with two men who study how we work and how we play. 

Evan Vucci / AP Photo

President Trump has fired four governmental watchdogs in recent weeks.

On this edition of River to River, host Ben Kieffer is joined by political scientists Dennis Goldford and Jim McCormick for a discussion about why the United States has an inspector general and why their dismissal matters.

Amy Mayer / IPR file

A new agreement with the U.S. Department of Agriculture makes Iowa the seventh state where some small meat lockers can sell products in other states.

Olivia Sun / The Des Moines Register via AP, Pool

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds on Wednesday announced more businesses will be allowed to reopen over the next several days after being closed to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Movie theaters, zoos, aquariums, museums and wedding venues are allowed to open Friday at 5:00 a.m. Wedding receptions will be exempt from the 10-person limit on most gatherings if the venue follows state public health guidelines. Swimming pools can also open Friday for lessons and lap swimming.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TnDm0LUkHe0

Republican Rep. Steve King is seeking a 10th term in the U.S. House of Representatives. He hopes to be reelected to the rural and conservative 4th Congressional District, which spans northwest and north-central Iowa. King has easily won nearly every election, but this time he is facing opposition from four other conservative Republicans who want his seat. 

Jason Bell

This Memorial Day weekend, renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma will perform Bach's six cello suites in memory of those lost during the pandemic and in honor of those serving on the front lines of the battle against coronavirus. 

"A Musical Memorial and Tribute: Yo-Yo Ma Plays Bach's Cello Suites Live" will take place live in the studios of WGBH (Boston).

DarQuan Jones (center) speaks to reporters in Des Moines with his father Daryl (left) and Des Moines NAACP president Kameron Middlebrooks (right).
Grant Gerlock / IPR

A 22-year-old black man in Des Moines said he wants to know why he was targeted by three white men who assaulted him last weekend. DarQuan Jones was attacked early Saturday morning in south Des Moines and told police at least one of the men used racial slurs during the incident.

Courtesy of The Nadas

In an effort to support local musicians and keep the music community engaged during this unprecedented time, IPR is bringing you a weekly live concert series every Tuesday night that we're calling #IPRTunesday. 

Dan Gold / Unsplash

We’ve been enjoying super low gas prices due to a number of reasons. People have been driving less, and there’s a worldwide oil glut. Here in Iowa we’re paying on average $1.75 per gallon. The national average is about ten cents higher $1.86 per gallon.

So gas prices have plummeted, no secret there, but did you know the number of speeding tickets in the state has jumped? On this segment of River to River, Ben Kieffer speaks to Sergeant Alex Dinkla of the Iowa State Patrol to explain the jump in speeding tickets.

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