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AAA is predicting that 48.9 million people will travel during the five-day holiday period. That number is up about 2 million from last year and the highest number AAA has recorded since it began tracking travelers in 2003.

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Traditionally, the Fourth of July weekend is the busiest period on Iowa waters. Boating, paddling, fishing and swimming are even more popular with what are often the warmest temperatures of the year.

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The Council Bluffs Fire Department will once again offer local children a chance to cool down from the summer. The department’s hydrant party season begins today.

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Participants will paddle the West Nishnabotna River while learning about conservation and habitat practices along the river and looking for birds and other wildlife. Nic Salick with Pheasants Forever will lead the program.

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Experience nature in a new way as Pottawattamie County Conservation combines nature, art and exploration in the adult education series, “A Pottawattamie County Almanac,” with award-winning instructor Ron Cisar.

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The City of Council Bluffs recently received a 2018 Tree City USA Award at the 29th Annual Community Forestry Awards Luncheon in Des Moines. The award was presented by the Arbor Day Foundation and the Iowa Department of Natural Resources on April 3.

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Together, teams of fearless individuals sprinted across the cold sand into the freezing waters of Lake Manawa on Saturday, nervous laughter transformed to shrieks as men, women and children willingly submerged themselves for Special Olympics Iowa.

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Area residents are invited to join experienced birdwatcher and Pheasants Forever biologist Nic Salick for a special evening hike at 7 p.m. April 17 at the Hitchcock Nature Center north of Council Bluffs, weather permitting.

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The keynote speaker for the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach — West Pottawattamie County Master Gardener Spring Garden Conference will be Kim Todd of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

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The trout stocking and family trout fishing event scheduled for this Saturday at Big Lake has been postponed due to unsafe ice conditions, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources announced Tuesday.