Bagge's berries

My editor almost moved me to a different assignment a couple Fridays ago, but he should have known I would put up a fight for the chance to spend the morning at Bagge's Strawberries in Independence. Since this was for our Accent cover, I knew I could focus less on the people picking and more on details, which suited me just fine. Shoot one, eat one, shoot one, eat one... I'm not sure I can go back to eating supermarket strawberries after that. The season ends this weekend, so hurry up and enjoy them while you can!


slow going

Almost three years to the day after the flood damaged the National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library, it finally began moving to its new foundation. I've checked in at the museum and Czech Village periodically over the past few months, then made my first attempt at a time-lapse video (ever) on the first day of the move. A week later the building was pivoted, and my second time-lapse was incorporated in that evening's story for KCRG. The building still needs to be lifted onto its new foundation, about 500 feet away from its original location and above the 2008 flood level. The guys at Patterson Moving have been great about getting us onto the site for photos inside the building as it moves, which is really just unreal. Below, early morning baking at Sykora back in April, when the museum was originally supposed to start moving. Pastries and structural moving in one story, what more could you ask for?

Beth Westlake of Iowa City, former Miss Czech Slovak Iowa (from left), Zoe Wolter, 17, of Cedar Rapids and Czech Prince Eijah Wolter, 14, of Cedar Rapids wait for the National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library to start moving.
National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library CEO and President Gail Naughton cheers after breaking a bottle of champagne on the side of the museum before moving begins

The old floor of the National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library is left exposed two hours after the building began moving to its new location.
Lance Matyiko of Expert House Movers of Virginia Beach, Virginia, takes measurements while the National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library is moved on Wednesday, June 8, 2011, in Cedar Rapids. Because of the museum's proximity to a curve in the river's edge, the building was moved at an angle.

The path of the pivot can be seen in the mud as steel plates are moved from the back to the front of the National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library on Saturday, June 18, 2011, in Cedar Rapids.
A worker waits to hook up a chain while pivoting National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library.

Workers move a tarp to make way for the National Czech and Slovak Museum and Library.


Gardening vicariously

I have a bit of a black thumb, aside from two houseplants I've successfully kept alive for a month or so now. So I'm in awe of the gardens I photographed last week.

12 in 4

Yup. 12 games, four days. That's a whole lotta soccer. While I always shoot plenty of action, it tends to all look alike after so many games, so the real fun is the players' reactions. I should mention that, like last year, we spent the first day hiding under jackets as we tried to tone in bright sun, had slightly more shade the second day under a canopy brought by another photog, and finally took over the press box the third day. Posted in chronological order, purely for my convenience, given the number of photos I'm sharing..

Pro tip: buy some neutral or green shirts for photographing sports, so as to not anger the photo gods and keep your karma in check.

Above: a ref calls offsides after a goal by West. Below, he overturns the offsides call, allowing the point. I was shooting two games on adjacent fields, so I perched at the top of the stands and turned around when I heard cheering from either side.

Never underestimate the ability of a mess of red curls to elevate a photo from average.

Above: Regina star Johnny Rummelhart (what a good soccer name, huh?) barrels past the goalie on the way to his third goal of the game (below). Register photog Chris Gannon had such a good angle on this, from midfield.

The two guys kept going at each other. "Are you guys going to shake hands?" asked the ref as Xavier's Michael Tessmer (8) goes in for the hug.

Points scored in overtime always ellicit the best reactions.