Failure. Baseball dying in tiny Farmersburg. Eighty mile an hour winds and farming. Living in Iowa four times over 60 years. A meeting that changed a life. A passion for planting things. 

These topics from seven speakers will come alive April 20 in Iowa City at Poindexter Coffee in the Graduate Iowa City Hotel at the Spring Storytelling Event — “Home Grown.” 

“This is a wonderful lineup to signify what it means to be ‘home grown.’ That can mean different things and the evening will celebrate that,” said Investigate Midwest Executive Director Erin Orr. 

This is a live storytelling event on the “Home Grown” theme, brought by Investigate Midwest and its IowaWatch newsroom.

Storytellers include:

Emma Barber and Jeremy Wilhelm farm near Mount Vernon. Their story: “From Zero to 80 mph Winds: Year One of Rhubarb Botanicals & Lamb’s Quarter.”

Scott Koepke is the founder of Garden Bridge Outreach. His story: on “Bloom Where You’re Planted.”

Ann McGlynn spent 15 years working as a reporter in the Midwest until she met a family who changed her life. Her story: “Finding Home Again.”

Forrest Meyer has lived in Iowa six decades and will share his story: “Grown Here, But Home Here?”

Lyle Muller, a retired longtime Iowa journalist and Investigate Midwest board of directors member, will tell the intriguing tale: “The Day Baseball Died in Farmersburg.”

Simeon Talley is a retail store owner in Iowa City. His story: “Failure Is a Gift.”

The event will be hosted by Iowa Public Radio’s Charity Nebbe. The evening offers other live music, food and drinks for purchase, trivia, and a silent auction. A ticket purchase comes with one free beverage including a signature cocktail or mocktail.

Doors open at 5:45 p.m. with speakers starting at 6:30 p.m.

Students from the University of Iowa event planning program have worked on this event as part of their semester’s studies.  They include: Abby Feldmann, West Des Moines; Rose Foley, Orland Park, Ill.; Riley Schuchard, Clear Lake; Marissa Ulrich, Cedar Falls; Ellie G Schlapkohl, Clive; and Jasmine Pizano, Marion.

Stories will later air on Iowa Public Radio at a time to be announced later.

April 20 also marks the first anniversary since the former IowaWatch joined Investigate Midwest. “What a great way to mark this milestone,” Orr said. “We hope you come and join us.”

Investigate Midwest is an independent, nonprofit newsroom. Its mission is to serve the public as a watchdog over influential corporations and institutions through in-depth and data-driven investigative journalism. It was founded in 2009.

Type of work:

News Based on facts, either observed and verified directly by the reporter, or reported and verified from knowledgeable sources.