Archives for August 2011

Humboldt Grads Aid Streetscape Project

Humboldt High School alumni have made a significant donation help the city’s streetscape beautification project move toward a large grant. Ex-Cubs have contributed over $5,200 so far and Humboldt’s Downtown Action Team is on the lookout for more donations. As we reported here earlier in August, another fifty thousand dollars needs to be raised to fill out Humboldt’s part of a grant deal that, when met, will bring an additional four-hundred-thousand dollars toward the beautification plan.

Road Testing to Cause Short Delays This Week

K-DOT crews will be strength-testing stretches of highway in parts of the area the next few days. As part of the Major Modification and Pavement Preservation programs, each year KDOT conducts falling weight deflectometer tests on highways throughout the state. A falling weight deflectometer is a device equipped with a series of weights that checks the strength of asphalt pavement. You’ll see pilot cars and work crews today through Thursday in our area, including the length of US-54 in Allen county, U.S. 169 from the Allen-Anderson county line to Welda; and K-68 in Miami County, from the Franklin-Miami county line east to U.S. 169.

Heismeyer Resigns As AC Hospital President

Allen County Hospital’s quest for a new hospital complex will continue with a new President. That in the wake of today’s announcement that Joyce Heismeyer is stepping down as hospital head after three-and-a-half years in the post. Heismeyer will become Chief Operating Officer of Kansas Heart Hospital in Wichita, a position the hospital says will bring her significantly closer to her family. Allen County Hospital’s ongoing negotiations with the Allen County Board of Supervisors over location of a new hospital, as well as a new operating agreement, should continue smoothly, according to parent company H-C-A Midwest Health System. Heismeyer’s last day on the job here will be September 30th.

Anderson County Wreck Injures Couple

Kansas Highway Patrol troopers say a Garnett man suffered serious injuries in a crash yesterday near Greeley. His wife, the driver of the car that crashed, suffered less-serious injuries. Troopers say Patricia Douglass was southbound on US 169 just North of Greeley about 10:45 yesterday morning. She struck a guardrail and crossed the highway, going over the top of the other guardrail, hitting the embankment beyond the bridge. Then the 1998 Mercury Grand Marquis rolled onto its top. She was taken by ambulance to Anderson County Hospital while her husband, Dale Douglass, was taken to St. Lukes in Kansas City.

Jenkins to Visit Iola

Congresswoman Lynn Jenkins will visit Iola tomorrow. Jenkins says so far this August her Congress to Kansas tour has been a great success. The event in Iola is tomorrow, a town hall meeting at the Allen County Courthouse, at 12:30 p.m. Jenkins said, quote: “Whenever I return home to Kansas, I truly enjoy my time traveling around our state talking with folks and listening to their thoughts and concerns about issues we face as a nation. I hope you will be able to stop by and voice your concerns on the issues of the day.”

Notable Kansans Named

The first five notables to be honored this morning were Arthur Capper, Charles Curtis, Karl Menninger, Satanta, and Charles Sheldon.

Arthur Capper was born in Garnett and was the first native-born Kansan elected governor. He served five terms as a U.S. senator and owned and published /Capper’s Weekly/ and the /Topeka Daily Capital/. Capper established what later became known as Easter Seals Capper Foundation, whose mission is to enhance the independence of children with disabilities. He also initiated programs that eventually became the 4-H movement.

Charles Curtis was born near Topeka and attended the school that is now Kaw Mission State Historic Site in Council Grove. He spoke three languages-English, French, and Kansa. He became a lawyer and was elected with President Herbert Hoover in 1928, becoming the first American Indian U.S. vice president.

Karl Menninger was born in Topeka and graduated from Harvard Medical School. He founded the Menninger Clinic in Topeka with his father, Charles Menninger. He also wrote influential books such as /The Human Mind/ and /The Crime of Punishment/. Under the leadership of Karl Menninger and his brother, Will, the Menninger Foundation gained a national reputation for psychiatric treatment.

Satanta was a Kiowa chief whose name meant white bear. He spoke four American Indian languages, English, and Spanish. Satanta led many campaigns across the plains in defense of his homelands. Because of his eloquent speech and his ability to convey the needs of his people, he was called the orator of the plains. He signed the 1867 Medicine Lodge Peace Treaty and fought to keep the Kiowa hunting grounds.

Charles Sheldon was the minister of Topeka’s Central Congregational Church. He was known for the book /In His Steps/, which was published in 1897 and ranks as the 39th bestselling book of all time. Sheldon worked with African American “Exodusters” to improve Topeka’s Tennessee Town community and helped sponsor the first African American kindergarten west of the Mississippi River. He also campaigned for the preservation of the family.

The public is invited to the remaining Notable Kansan events, where the rest of the names will be announced, five at each event: 3 p.m. Thursday, August 25, at Shawnee Indian Mission State Historic Site, Fairway; 10 a.m. Wednesday, August 31, at Fort Scott National Historic Site, Fort Scott; 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, September 7, at Kansas Aviation Museum, Wichita; and 9:30 a.m. Thursday, September 15, at the Kansas State Fair, Hutchinson. Each event will feature comments by Governor Brownback, introduction of special guests, singing of the state song, and a brief reception. Events commemorating the top 12 events in Kansas history will be held later in the fall.

USD 257 is off NCLB’s "Improvement" Status

Not where it needs to be, but better — and that improvement in the graduation rate of students with disabilities over the past few years means Iola USD 257 comes off the list of schools on what’s known as “improvement status” under the No Child Left Behind act. Iola is one of 24 districts that have been on improvement status and are now off that list. State officials say 34 districts have been added to the list this years. After the 2008-09 school year, USD 257 was placed on improvement status due to substandard achievement in one category. Iola High School needed 75 percent of its students with disabilities to graduate in four years. Only 55% had done so in 08-09. The desired level now is 80%. USD 257 didn’t make that goal, but because the district has improved each year since being placed on improvement status, rates have improved annually and the district is just over 3% shy of the goal.

Sheila Lampe Named New Iola Chamber Director

A new leader for the Iola Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber says Sheila Lampe has accepted the position of Chamber Director. Lampe is former Executive Director of the Woodson County Chamber of Commerce and Program Director for S-E-K, Incorporated. In those positions she worked with economic development, workforce development, retail development and retention, and promoted tourism, throughout the region of southeast Kansas. She also served on the Governor’s Council on Travel and Tourism and Kansas Sampler Foundation Board. She replaces Jana Taylor who stepped down to pursue another opportunity. Again, we welcome Sheila Lampe as new Director of the Iola Chamber of Commerce. She starts September 15th.

Enrollment Up At Allen Community College

Encouraging enrollment figures at Allen Community College in Iola. After a one-year hit last year when enrollment fell off after ten straight years of growth, student numbers should be up this fall. The college today reporting preliminary enrollment numbers for the fall semester are up sixty-seven students from last year. Two thousand eight hundred fifty-six students are enrolled for the coming term. The number of hours students have signed up for is also up slightly: about one percent. As is the case nationwide, college officials point to economic necessity and the need for more affordable education as big reasons community college enrollments are up almost everywhere. Along with increased enrollment comes a hike in demand for dorm space. In fact, at Allen Community College, the dorms are overflowing. We’ll report on student housing there tomorrow.

Crash Saturday Injures One

A Tennessee man was seriously injured in a crash this weekend in Allen County. Kansas Highway Patrol troopers say 45-tyear old Danny Olsen of Spring City, Tennessee was southbound on US 169 south of Humboldt on Saturday evening about 8 and tried to exit at the ram to 1150th street. He lost control and rolled his Chevy Blazer one time, which threw him out. The SUV came to res on the north side of the off-ramp. He was takend to KU Medical Center.