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Iowa National Guard to permanently close Algona Readiness Center

Sgt. John G. Finken, a Johnston, Iowa resident and military police officer with the 186th Military Police Company at Camp Dodge, Johnston, Iowa climbs an obstacle as part of a course during the Iowa Army National Guard Best Warrior Competition at Camp Dodge, Johnston, Iowa, on March 20, 2016. (Iowa National Guard photo by Sgt. Zachary Zuber)
Sgt. John G. Finked climbs an obstacle as part of a course during the Iowa Army National Guard Best Warrior Competition at Camp Dodge, Johnston, Iowa, on March 20, 2016. (Iowa National Guard photo by Sgt. Zachary Zuber)

DES MOINES – As a result of force structure and stationing study findings, the Iowa National Guard will permanently close the Algona Readiness Center, effective Spring 2017. The unit previously assigned to the Algona facility – Battery B, 1st Battalion, 194th Field Artillery – has been consolidated and is moving to Camp Dodge in Johnston, Iowa. Approximately 90 Soldiers are currently assigned to Battery B, 1st Battalion, 194th Field Artillery.

The 20,400-square foot Algona Readiness Center, constructed in 1994, is the thirteenth armory to be closed as part of a state-wide consolidation and facilities upgrade program initiated in 2000 by the Iowa National Guard.

As part of that plan to relocate military units into higher demographic areas, close outdated armories, consolidate units on a regional concept, and upgrade existing facilities through renovation and new construction, the Iowa National Guard has consolidated units and closed armories over the past 16 years in Sioux Center, Villisca, Mapleton, Atlantic, Clarinda, Glenwood, Hampton, Jefferson, Chariton, Newton, Eagle Grove and Centerville.

The Iowa National Guard has enjoyed a long relationship with the city of Algona, dating back continuously to 1889, when the first Iowa National Guard unit, Company F, 6th Regiment, formed and first met in the Grand Army of the Republic Hall on East State St.

Over the past 127 years, Algona units have mobilized for multiple emergency response missions, natural disasters, peacekeeping missions, the Korean War, and Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom. The Iowa National Guard is extremely proud of the legacy of service accomplished by Algona and Kossuth County Citizen-Soldiers.

Iowa National Guard personnel and property will be vacated from the facility within 180 days after its closure, and the Readiness Center will be transferred to the city of Algona for its use.

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