Cedar Rapids, Friday
We've gotten a few emails over the past week asking about the floods here in Iowa. Suffice it to say, all of the BHGP founding fathers are fine, and our homes are dry (save for a little water in the basement of the HS compound). We're lucky, though. I drove through Cedar Rapids this weekend, and the damage is simply indescribable. The Cedar River crested at 32 feet, a full 12 feet higher than the prior record. Iowa City (where OPS's old house was flooded) and Des Moines weren't much better off.
Fortunately, the waters are receding. The Iowa River, which cuts through Iowa City, crested Saturday night, two days sooner - and more than two feet lower - than had been projected on Thursday. The Cedar River is down to 24 feet, though it's not expected to be within its banks until the end of next week.
The bad news, of course, is that the water has to go somewhere, and that likely means trouble for southeast Iowa this week. Levees broke Saturday in Columbus Junction, where the Cedar and Iowa rivers meet, and city officials are talking about 15 feet of floodwater and the complete destruction of the town.
For a true account of the flood from someone more directly affected, read the latest post by BHGP friend of the program Mike Hlas. Also, the Des Moines Register has put together a few videos that give a better visual representation of just what has happened (be sure to watch the footage of Iowa City and Cedar Rapids).
If you wish to make a donation to those affected by the storms, the Grant Wood Chapter of the American Red Cross will be glad to help.