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300 Belknap Place, Keokuk

A one man band in terms of home renovations was awarded a Best of Keokuk Award by the Keokuk Area Chamber of Commerce (KACC) on Aug. 24.

“Both winners are incredibly kind, deserving members of our community,” Jessica M. Martin, Executive Director of the Keokuk Area Chamber of Commerce, said. “They represent what it means to have pride in ownership and in our community.”

Gaston Gagnon and his wife Linda won a Best of Keokuk award specifically for their most recent home purchase and renovation at 300 Belknap Place. However, Gagnon was nominated for several residential property renovations, including the recently sold home at 252 Boulevard Road, and he is touted as doing all of the work to bring a property back to life. 

He and his wife, who is a Keokuk native, moved back to the area from Denver, Colorado, where Gagnon ran a residential renovation company on a larger scale. The two enjoy renovating smaller one-story homes to sell that others may have given up on or are nearly too far gone and this is their seventh property in Keokuk, Gagnon mentioned. Gagnon said the home at 300 Belknap Place will be for sale within the next couple of weeks.

“I do it to pass my time, I can’t just sit around and do nothing,” Gagnon jokingly said. “If anyone knows of another similar property, we are ready to take on another.”

Gagnon with Chamber Print.jpg

AUGUST 2023 BEST OF KEOKUK WINNER | Dairy Queen, Keokuk

Dairy Queen, at 2656 Belknap Boulevard, also won a Best of Keokuk Award for exterior updates and Michael Daughers, the new owner, was honored with a certificate on Aug. 24 from KACC. Daughters purchased the business from his parents in 2022 after they owned it for 31 years. His sister Brooke Daughters is the manager and both grew up working at the location.

Daughters said they have updated the roof, patched and painted the parking lot, and more. As well as provided an updated menu for the drive-thru window. 

“This is my whole life, so it felt right to buy the business,” Michael Daughters, Dairy Queen owner, said. “This town has been really great to us.”

The location is open from February to mid-October each year.

Dairy Queen Before After Print.jpg
DQ Chamber Social.jpg


Nominate an eligible location by filling out the following form and emailing photos to Entries should include before and after photos of the improvement project (however if you are nominating someone else, an after photo will suffice), along with a brief description about the project, the address, the name of the person/persons involved in the update and how it has enhanced the neighborhood/community of the Keokuk area (minimum of 100 words). Projects must be started, underway or completed by May 1, 2023, to receive an award in September or October of this year.

NOTE: Moving forward from Sept. 1, 2023, repeat properties will be unable to win a Best of Keokuk Award.

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