Watts Happening Podcast

Watts Happening Podcast

Enjoy captivating interviews with characters from the Eastern Iowa Corridor as Gary Watts sits down with local business leaders, accomplished athletes, industry experts, and more! Watts Happening Music Intro Composed by Ace Jones ( www.AceJonesMusic.com )


June 6, 2023 38 mins

We’re excited to be joined by the President & CEO of the Community Foundation of Johnson County, Shelly Maharry!

Shelly just celebrated five years at the Community Foundation and has a passion for connecting donors with good causes in our community. Join Gary and Shelly as they discuss the role of community foundations, the importance of endowment building, the joys of living in Johnson County, and much more!


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Does your golf game need some improvement? Our guest this week, Sean McCarty, is here to help!

Sean is the Head Pro at Brown Deer Golf Club in Coralville as well as a veteran professional golfer who has played such competitive circuits as the PGA tour and US Open.

Find out why slicing a shot shouldn’t ruin your entire game, as he shares how mental toughness and routine can give you a competitive edge. Listen as Ga...

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We are joined this week by Doug Alberhasky! In addition to being the owner of Iowa City’s iconic John’s Grocery, Doug is also an IC brewery historian and local expert on all things beer.

Join Gary and Doug as they discuss the background of John’s Grocery, the beer brewing process, and Iowa City’s historic brewery roots - such as downtown’s beer caves and IC’s prohibition “beer mafia”. 

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“The Ironmen” is an upcoming film based on famed Iowa Hawkeye, Nile Kinnick. On this week’s podcast, we are joined by the film’s producer, Joe Heath!

Joe is an Iowa City native who has been in the film industry for nearly 20 years. Join Gary and Joe as they discuss “The Ironmen”, the history of the Hawkeyes & Nile Kinnick, what’s needed to create a major motion pictures film, Joe’s other upcoming film endeavors, and mu...

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This week we are joined by the founder of Valor Wealth Planning, Mike Young. 

Mike is also an advocate for mental health and is working to start his own foundation, One More Sunset, which will help to identify and assist people suffering with suicidal depression. Join Gary and Mike as they discuss mental health and the options for support that are available.

Video Version 🎥 https://youtu.be/PTmPyYaXvB8


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Ep 18 | Jack Tank | Iowa Agriculture & Ag Insurance Expert

We are joined this week by Jack Tank, owner of Ag Risk Insurance. 

Join Gary and Jack as they discuss all things Iowa agriculture - including the state’s family farms, the cost of land, farmland conservation efforts, the profitability of raising cattle, and much more!

Video Version 🎥 https://youtu.be/R89EP8CxwYs

Music by local artist...

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We are joined this week by Charlie Becker, who has been making a difference at Camp Courageous for over 43 years. 

Camp Courageous is a non-profit organization located in Monticello IA that provides year-round recreational and respite care opportunities for individuals with special needs and their families. Join Gary and Charlie as they sit down to discuss the history of the camp, the amenities and offerings that Camp Cour...

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Ep 16 | Bill Windauer | World War History Enthusiast

We’re excited to be joined this week by Bill Windauer, a retired Hawkeye football & NFL player with an enthusiasm for all things World War history!

Join Gary and Bill as they discuss experiences touring historic war sites across Europe, key battles in WWI & WWII, lesser known historic details about each engagement, and much more!

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Learn more about local real estate trends, luxury home demands, the art of the remodel, and much more in this week’s episode of the Watts Happening Podcast!

In this new episode, Gary is joined by Adam Pretorius of Elevation Homes. Adam is an accomplished Realtor® with LKR as well as a local expert on luxury real estate. Join Gary and Adam as they dive deep into the Iowa City real estate market and discuss the ins and outs ...

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We are excited to be joined by Iowa City’s City Manager, Geoff Fruin!

Geoff has been part of Iowa City’s local government for over a decade and has served as City Manager since 2016. Join Gary and Geoff as they discuss the community’s continued growth, Iowa City’s great parks & trails, upcoming local events, projects on the horizon, and much more!

Be sure to check out the video version of the podcast on the Wa...

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We are honored to be joined this week by Jordan Montgomery of Montgomery Companies!

Jordan is a motivational keynote speaker and highly regarded performance coach whose clients have included elite athletes, business executives, sales organizations, and entrepreneurs. Join Gary and Jordan as they discuss the various aspects of leadership, personal growth, and overcoming hardship.

Be sure to check out the video vers...

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Ep 12 | Mike Messier | Local Insurance Expert & Gary’s Friend of 40+ Years

We are excited to be joined this week by local insurance expert, Mike Messier!

Gary and Mike are longtime friends that have known each other nearly 45 years. Join these two old friends as they kick back to discuss a variety of topics - such as the trials of door-to-door sales, smart investing strategies, the importance of life insurance...

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On this week’s episode, Gary is joined by famed local cyclist Oscar Beasley, as well as his son, John Beasley. 

At 95 years old, Oscar has just recently concluded a nearly 50 year career of avid cycling. Since the 1970s, Oscar’s cross-country cycling trips have taken him all over the country in addition to numerous international cycling trips across the world.

Join Gary, Oscar, and John as they discuss the inspiri...

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On this week’s episode, Gary is joined by Ryan Heiar, the City Administrator of North Liberty.

Join Gary and Ryan as they discuss all things North Liberty, such as upcoming development projects, the community’s rapid growth, what city events to look forward to this year, and much more.

Be sure to check out the video version of the podcast on the Watts Group YouTube page!

Video Version 🎥 https://bit.ly/3J...

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On this week’s episode, Gary is joined by Tom Casavant, an accomplished local endurance swimmer as well as a professor of engineering at the University of Iowa.

Join Gary and Tom as they discuss the exciting world of endurance swimming - including the challenges of 13-hour channel swims, what it’s like to encounter sharks while swimming on the open ocean, and much more!

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We are honored to be joined this week by two eastern Iowa high school football coaching legends, Butch & Lance Pedersen!

Butch Pedersen has coached the West Branch Bears’ football team for nearly 40 years and has achieved one of the winningest records in all of Iowa high school football history. His son, Lance Pedersen, has been the head football coach of the Mount Vernon Mustangs for over 10 years and was recently nam...

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We are excited to be joined this week by avid local cyclist & Eastern Iowa Market President of West Bank, Jim Conard!

Join Gary and Jim as they discuss how to get started with cycling, the different types of cycling events available in the Corridor, our local cycling organizations, and much more!

Be sure to check out the video version of the podcast on the Watts Group YouTube page!

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We are excited to be joined this week by the Mayor of Cedar Rapids, Tiffany O’Donnell!

Mayor Tiffany has been an active community leader for over 20 years and is also the CEO at Women Lead Change. Check out the wonderful conversation that Gary and Tiffany had regarding the growing Cedar Rapids community and all of the great things that are coming to the City of Five Seasons.

Be sure to check out the video version of the podcast on th...

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This week, Gary is joined by Karen Schumacher of Crescendo Leadership Development!

Karen is a local author and leadership coach who has partnered with over 100 companies in her career to help inspire and empower their teams. Join Gary and Karen as they discuss formulating positivity, healthy relationships, energizing your thoughts, and much more!

Learn more about Karen and Crescendo Leadership Development by visit...

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January 24, 2023 65 mins

In this week’s episode, Gary sits down with Randy Laing, a local ironman triathlete with many impressive races under his belt. 

Join Gary and Randy as they discuss the intensity of endurance events, triathlon training regiments, and much more!

Be sure to check out the video version of the podcast on the Watts Group YouTube page!

Music by local artist, Ace Jones - www.AceJonesMusic.com

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