County commission hears about concealed-carry law
OSWEGO — The Labette County Commission on Monday received a primer on the concealed carry law from an instructor and Labette County Sheriff Robert Sims.
Oswego Police Chief George Elliott is a concealed-carry instructor and Sheriff Sims said one of his officers would get certified soon to teach the classes.
The new law, which goes into effect July 1, will allow citizens with concealed-carry permits to bring firearms into many public buildings,...
Erie USD 101 hires new superintendent
By Colleen Surridge
CENTRAL PLAINS — Central Plains USD 112 superintendent Steven Woolf has been chosen by the Erie USD 101 Board of Education as the new superintendent of schools for the 2013-14 school year.
Woolf will officially begin his duties July 1, replacing current superintendent John Wyrick, who has taken the position of superintendent at Altamont USD 506 beginning July 1.
Woolf received bachelor’s and master...
Mattox plans to renovate building for use by retailer
By Jamie Willey
A Parsons businessman has invested further in the downtown area, buying a vacant building with plans to renovate it.
Dave Mattox, owner of Bleacher Gear, 1730 Main, bought the building at 1719 Main that most recently housed a used book store. The building also was the home of a couple of pool halls, including Jim’s Plaza Pool in the 1980s and ’90s.
Mattox, a member of Downtown Parsons Inc., participated ...
Firefighters fight excess weight
By Colleen Surridge
A comprehensive study released by the U.S. Fire Administration finds the No. 1 cause of death for on-duty firefighters is heart attack — a fact not lost on some Parsons firefighters.
As firefighters pass the age of 30, their chance of a heart attack while on duty steadily increases, and 44 percent of firefighter deaths are directly related to heart attacks - not trauma.
Nearing 50, the statistics w...
Train engine catches fire in Chetopa
CHETOPA — A Union Pacific Railroad locomotive’s engine area caught fire briefly Thursday night in Chetopa near 12th and Hardin.
According to U.P. spokesman Mark Davis, the fire happened about 9:30 p.m. on the 134-car train traveling from Wyoming to Louisiana.
Chetopa emergency crews and firefighters responded to the scene, but the fire was out upon their arrival.
The train crew had turned off the locomotive and the fire went out. There were no...
Timber Creek plans to expand
The owner of Timber Creek Meats plans to erect a new building on North 16th Street near U.S. 400.
Cory Steves bought the property and plans to construct a 40-foot by 50-foot building on an empty piece of land south of Stockyard Travel Plaza. Parsons city commissioners will consider an economic development incentive package during their regular Monday evening meeting that would include a $15,000 retail recruitment grant, a $50,000 loan with 4.2...
News & Notes
Cherry Blossom canceled
CHERRYVALE — Today’s Cherry Blossom Festival in Cherryvale has been canceled because of the weather. Most activities will be rescheduled for Sept. 7. The mini track meet will take place May 18. Call Jim Blaes, (620) 891-0072, for questions on the track meet.
CHETOPA — There will be an open house honoring Mary Ann Prose’s 80th birthday from 2 to 4 p.m. May 11 at the Mae Lessley Community Center in Chetopa...
Neosho to sell cars, other items in auction
ERIE — Neosho County plans to have a surplus auction soon.
During their regular Friday morning meeting, county commissioners approved a bid from Buntin Auction Service, Erie, to conduct the auction. Buntin will receive a fee of 10 percent of the auction gross. No other bids were received.
The sale, which is tentatively set for June 1, will include eight vehicles from the sheriff’s department as well as computers and desks from the courthouse, ...
Commissioners indicate their opposition to BARC proposal
By Jamie Willey
A group pushing to make the city more animal friendly stressed that tethering dogs is at least psychologically abusive, if not physically abusive, on Thursday, but city commissioners seem to be opposed to a proposed anti-tethering ordinance.
After a discussion between the commission, the Basic Animal Rights Committee and the state director for The Humane Society of the United States, Midge Grinstead, the...
State Humane Society official sees animal cruelty in town
By Colleen Surridge
Midge Grinstead, Kansas state director of The Humane Society of the United States, saw firsthand Thursday animals in the community whose owners were in violation of the city of Parsons and state cruelty laws.
As a part of their efforts to have an anti-tethering law implemented in Parsons, members of the Basic Animal Rights Committee took Grinstead on a short tour around the city before taking her t...
Official hopes to restart women’s program
By Ray Nolting
Public Health of Labette County, formerly the Labette County Health Department, may restart its women’s health program.
Department Administrator Debbi Baugher discussed the possibility with Labette County commissioners in a Thursday work session about her budget.
Betty Benedict, the nurse practitioner who ran the department’s women’s health program, retired in December 2008; Baugher never replaced her o...
LCC names four 2013 Distinguished Alumni
Labette Community College recently announced the names of four recipients of the 2013 fifth annual Distinguished Alumni Award sponsored by the Labette Community College Foundation and Alumni.
Distinguished Alumni honored this year will be Keith Shaffer of Altamont, Alice Beachner, Sharon Brown and Kanak Patel, all of Parsons.
The Distinguished Alumni Award was developed by the Foundation and Alumni Association Board of Labette Community Colle...
KSU plans field day for Parsons
Wheat and corn production will take center stage at the Kansas State University Southeast Agricultural Research Center’s Spring Crops Field Day May 22 near Parsons.
The event, which focuses on crop opportunities and challenges in Southeast Kansas, will be at K-State’s Parsons field, immediately south of U.S. 400 on Ness Road (North 32nd St.).
“Our wheat performance test, which includes 10 soft and 20 hard varieties, will be a highlight of thi...
News & Notes
Tent City postponement
The Safe Haven Outreach Mission Tent City fundraiser scheduled for today and Saturday has been postponed because of weather. The event was rescheduled for 2 p.m. May 17 to noon May 18. Anyone with questions can call 421-4417 or 717-1444.
LCHS Theatre send-off
The Labette County High School Theatre will send off its seniors with a final production of the 2012-13 theater season. An evening that will include Broadway music...
Nonagenarian celebrates birthday with Harley ride
ST. PAUL — It took her 98 years, but Lorene VanLeeuwen finally grew the courage to ride a motorcycle this month.
“It was good. I don’t know why I didn’t do it a long time ago. It’s just like flying,” Lorene said.
The ride took place on Sunday, April 21, in St. Paul as part of an annual gathering with her family. For the last 10 years, VanLeeuwen’s children and grandchildren ride and drive to St. Paul for the annual “Granny Run” around the time...
Man chooses to be tried by judge in meth-making case
An Independence man decided Monday he would rather face a judge than a jury for the charges against him.
A jury trial for Ozell Pouncil Jr., 49, was called off for this week in Labette County District Court and he agreed that District Judge Robert Fleming could hear the case based on a set of stipulated facts. The case will be heard Thursday morning.
The decision came after Judge Fleming ruled on a series of pretrial motions in the case.
Altamont dedicates new playground
By Colleen Surridge
ALTAMONT — Altamont Grade School fourth- and fifth-grade students stood before a large audience holding signs made by their class to thank all those who donated to make possible the new school playground dedicated Wednesday.
Site Council member and parent Misty Mustain said the Altamont Grade School PTO has been hard at work for the last three years to improve the quality of the playground equipmen...
Deputies find drugs in home
CHANUTE — A search of a Chanute home Monday turned up drugs and firearms, leading to two arrests.
The Neosho County Sheriff’s Department searched 514 N. Evergreen in Chanute on Monday. They arrested Kyle Scott Eustice, 25, and Tracy Lynn Winterhalter, 22, both of the residence.
Both are being held without bond, and the search warrant for their home followed a two-month investigation.
According to the sheriff’s department, investigators are see...
Officers arrest burglary suspect
COLUMBUS — On Monday evening, the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Department responded to a report of property damage at a home northwest of Columbus.
Officers discovered that the home had been burglarized, with a chainsaw, tools and other items stolen.
A short time later, the Columbus Police Department was conducting an investigation into a trailer that had been reported stolen from within the city limits.
Before 8 p.m., the sheriff’s department wa...
Bartelli gets LCC faculty award
Labette Community College has announced that Robert Bartelli, economics and financial services instructor, was named the 2013 Distinguished Faculty Award recipient.
The Distinguished Faculty Award is presented annually. Faculty members must be nominated by students or LCC employees to be considered by the selection committee. Criteria for the award include teaching effectiveness, college service, student involvement and community service. All...