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Q: What was the name of the grocery store on the corner of Ansborough and Falls, where Rudy’s is now?

A: The old Waterloo city directories list Blotts Super Market in the 1950s, Vic’s Super Market from 1962-71, Ron’s Super Valu until 1977 and then Gordy’s Foods until 1983.

Q: How many railroad cars does it take to be a mile long?

A: It depends on the length of the cars as well as the couplings. Train enthusiast websites suggest an average of about 70 to 80 cars to equal a mile in length.

Q: Is there a phone number to call to hear a recording of the winning lottery numbers?

A: Call (515) 323-4633.

Q: I got a letter from Sky Trak asking for donations for senior citizens. Is this legitimate?

A: Not that we could find. There’s no listing for the group on any of the credible sites like the Better Business Bureau or Charity Navigator that record information on charitable groups.

Q: Is it legal for an employer to withhold tips for every six months?

A: We found conflicting information and recommend you contact the Iowa Division of Labor directly — (515) 242-5870 or

Q: How many people were at the Super Bowl this year?

A: Attendance was 67,600.

Q: Where is NBC’s “Early Today” news show televised from? How many children does its weatherman Bill Karins have?

A: The show airs from New York. And Karins has two children, according to his NBC bio.

Q: Where can I write to Fred Hubbell and his wife?

A: Send mail to Hubbell for Governor, P.O. Box 8037, Des Moines, IA 50301.

Q: Are Eddie Murphy, Arsenio Hall and James Earl Jones still living? We don’t hear much from them anymore.

A: They’re all still alive.

Q: When was the dog track in Waterloo in operation? Also, when did the Tama casino open?

A: The Greyhound Park opened in 1986 and closed in 1996. The Meskwaki Casino opened in 1992.

Q: Can you print the contact information for Sen. Joni Ernst?

A: Write to the senator at 111 Russell Senate Office Building, Washington, D.C., 20510; call (202) 224-3254; or send email through

Q: Is it possible for a completely blind person to get a gun permit to carry in Iowa?

A: According to Black Hawk County Sheriff Tony Thompson, “Iowa law does not preclude anyone with disabilities from owning or carrying weapons in the state.”

Q: How old is Gov. Kim Reynolds?

A: She is 58.

Q: Is the great actress Olivia de Havilland still living? She also had a sister that was an actress. What was her name?

A: De Havilland is still alive — she’s now 101. Her sister was the actress Joan Fontaine; she died in 2013.

Q: How old is Lionel Richie?

A: He is 68.

Q: Has President Trump donated his president’s salary to any charities?

A: President Donald Trump has donated his $100,000 quarterly salary to a different government agency every three months, most recently to the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Calls are taken on a special Courier phone line at 234-3566. Questions are answered by Courier staff and staff at the Waterloo Public Library.

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