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      Solar panels light up Ottumwa's trails

      The lights will be brighter on a section of Ottumwa's walking trails.

      New solar panel lights were revealed at a ceremony held at the Ottumwa John Deere factory Wednesday. The solar panels will help light the trail at nighttime for safer use and an improved quality of life.

      The panels were part of a project put together by the Wapello County Trails Council, John Deere and Ottumwa's Parks Department.

      "You know, it's important to not only have the community but to John Deere as well, because it goes to the quality of life in Ottumwa and we're all Ottumwans," said Andy Hansen, factory manager of the Ottumwa John Deere. "Most of the people that work for John Deere live in this community, we want to have a great quality of life outside of work and it's a great way for us to contribute to improving things for all of us."

      Hansen said he doesn't know what's next in the continued improvement of the trails, but he is excited to see what is to come.