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Kimmswick’s mayor confident levee will keep Mississippi at bay

KIMMSWICK, MO – On the floodwatch the town of Kimmswick in Jefferson County is once again dealing with rising floodwaters from the Mississippi River.

In fact, projections have the town potentially facing the second highest crest ever, only being eclipsed by the Great Flood of 93.

A levee is currently protecting the town and its many boutique type stores and restaurants from floodwaters.

There is a lot of floodwater from the Mississippi River on the other side of the levee and more is coming.

Kimmswick`s Mayor Phil Stang walks the levee every day to make sure it is holding.

In fact, he lives right across the street.

The Army Corps of Engineers is checking the levee as well.

Phil tells Fox2/News 11the levee has been built multiple times over the years.

This year the levee originally went up in April but then was made higher because of the increased flood projections.

The levee protects Kimmswick`s main business district including the popular Blue Owl Restaurant and Bakery.

The Blue Owl owner, Mary Hostetler, says business has been down some because people think Kimmswick is closed.

Two of the three roads in and out of the town are shut down because of flooding, the only road left is a windy, two-lane road.

But Kimmswick is still open.

The Mayor and others are confident in the levee but closely watching the mighty Mississippi, “Anybody who doesn`t respect this beautiful river which is the major highway in the united states is an idiot because not only is it beautiful it`s also very powerful. And any minute it could decide that it wants to get bigger and wider,” said Mayor Stang.

“The people have the impression that because we had to build a levee, because our main road is underwater and Windsor Harbor is underwater that they can`t get to town- there`s no way to get into town, that the businesses are closed, that`s not true at all,” said Mary Hostetler.

Safety concerns prompted the Mayor to cancel the annual Strawberry Festival, a major money maker for Kimmswick which was set for this weekend.

The Mississippi is projected to crest in Kimmswick next Monday at 44 feet.

Mayor Stang says the levee should hold to 46 feet.

He tells us he will be watching the levee closely as the week goes on to see if any adjustments need to be made for it to withstand the floodwaters.

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