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Angie Kemmerer Nominated for 2021 National History Day Teacher of the Year

Angie Kemmerer. Submitted photo.


WASHINGTON, D.C. and FORT SCOTT, KANSAS–Mrs. Angie Kemmerer, a teacher at Fort Scott Middle School and Fort Scott High School in Fort Scott, Kansas, was nominated for the Patricia Behring Teacher of the Year award in the senior division of the National History Day (NHD) National Contest. The award is sponsored by Patricia Behring in recognition of the pivotal role teachers play in the lives of students.

Each of the 58 National History Day affiliates may nominate one high school teacher for this award, and Mrs. Kemmerer is the senior division nominee from Kansas. Every nominee for the $10,000 award is a teacher who demonstrates a commitment to engaging students in historical learning through innovative use of primary sources, implementation of active learning strategies to foster historical thinking skills, and participation in the National History Day Contest. All nominees will receive $500 as a result of their nominations.

The nominees for the Behring Award have shown a dedication to teaching that goes beyond the classroom,” said Dr. Cathy Gorn, National History Day Executive Director. “These educators are leading examples for their peers and invaluable resources for their students. I congratulate Mrs. Kemmerer on her well-deserved nomination.”

The national winner will be selected by a committee of experienced teachers and historians, and announced on Saturday, June 19, 2021, at the National History Day National Contest Awards Ceremony to be held virtually due to COVID-19. Nominees’ work must clearly illustrate the development and use of creative teaching methods that engage students in history, and help them make exciting discoveries about the past.

About National History Day® (NHD):

NHD is a non-profit organization based in College Park, Maryland, that seeks to improve the teaching and learning of history. The National History Day Contest was established in 1974 and currently engages more than half a million students every year in conducting original research on historical topics of interest. Students present their research as a documentary, exhibit, paper, performance, or website. Projects compete first at the local and affiliate levels, where the top entries are invited to the National Contest at the University of Maryland at College Park. NHD is sponsored in part by, HISTORY®, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Park Service, Southwest Airlines, the Crown Family Foundation, The Better Angels Society, the Pritzker Military Museum & Library and the Diana Davis Spencer Foundation. For more information, visit

About Kansas History Day

Kansas History Day Foundation’s mission is the promotion of interest among elementary and secondary school students in history and historical research by providing the students an opportunity to compete and display publicly the results of their historical research and by rewarding them for their efforts and interests. Kansas students have a long history of success in History Day at all levels, including the national level. KHDF’s aim is to make sure that all Kansas students have the opportunity to continue this successful and winning tradition. Please visit our website for more information,



FSHS Talent Show This Saturday

Fort Scott High School To Host Talent Show and Pageant


The annual FSHS Talent Show and Miss(ter) FSHS Pageant is this Saturday, April 24 at 7 p.m. at the FSHS Auditorium.


The event features singers, actors, dancers, musicians, and comedy. The first-place winner receives $50, second place earns $40, and third place takes home $30.


This year’s emcees are junior Thespian President Christina King and junior Thespian Secretary Jenna Stockstill. Judges include high school teachers William Hall, Reyna Valenzuela, and Sara Jackman.


The Miss(ter) FSHS Pageant features senior males from various high school sports and activities escorted by a senior female. They model their “sports attire” as they perform a short talent and then model their evening gowns. The contestants compete for the title based on audience response.


Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Seating is limited and the $6 tickets must be purchased at Masks are required.

CHC/SEK to host Pfizer vaccine clinic on April 25

People aged 16 and older can now receive the Pfizer vaccine with parental consent through Community Health Center of Southeast Kansas.
CHC/SEK will host a Pfizer vaccine clinic from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sunday, April 25, at the 924 N Broadway. The clinic will be by appointment only. This is a two-dose vaccine that is given 21 days apart.
Individuals can request a vaccine appointment on the CHC/SEK website Click the COVID Vaccine Request button. After selecting the “first dose” button, there is an option to select the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine. CHC/SEK representatives will contact the recipients to schedule a date for the vaccine.
For those without web access, the health center has a toll-free number, 866-888-8650 and a second number for Spanish-speakers 620-240-8940 to make vaccination appointments.

As with all COVID-19 vaccines, there is no out-of-pocket costs to vaccine recipients.

Legislative Update by State Senator Caryn Tyson

Caryn Tyson


April 16, 2021


Governor Vetoes Tax RELIEF that would Slow Government Growth

It is not a surprise but disappointing the Governor vetoed Senate Bill (SB) 50.  The bill would provide some RELIEF for Kansas taxpayers by allowing them to keep more of their hard-earned money.  There were several items in the bill.  There are too many to list but here are a few key items.  It would give Kansas taxpayers the option to itemize whether they itemize on their federal return or not.  The bill would also increase state standard deductions by $500 so individual deductions would increase to $3,500 and married filing jointly to $8,000.  It also would allow a deduction on money spent on business meals.  Additionally, it would allow net operating losses to be carried forward and would allow all to expense tangible property deductions, something corporations in Kansas can already do.  It would also extend the corporate filing deadline by 30 days past the IRS deadline.


The Governor called the bill “irresponsible”.  Since when is it irresponsible to lower the tax burden for Kansans, especially since taxes collected from July 2020 to March 2021 are up $232.8 million above estimates.  The Department of Revenue estimates that SB 50 will decrease taxes collect by $94 million.  The responsible action would be to make SB 50 the law decreasing taxpayers’ burden, especially with the hardships they have faced this past year.  There will be an attempt at a veto override in early May when the legislature returns to Topeka.



The Kansas unemployment system has been one of the largest mismanaged disasters in Kansas.  It did not happen overnight.  It has been building for years and when the Governor shut down most businesses last year, the system that had been a failure became a complete disaster.  Over the years the legislature has allocated money to update the system, but it was never completed.  Kansas had one of the highest numbers of known fraudulent unemployment applications in the nations.  The unemployment funds have been depleted and businesses that pay unemployment tax were looking at major increased payment obligations.


Senate Substitute for House Bill (Sen Sub HB) 2196 addresses all these issues.  Representative Sean Tarwater lead the effort and I was glad to help.  We spent many hours on this legislation.  It is unique because we were trying to mandate a new unemployment system.  The bill establishes an oversight council that is a major stakeholder in the project to help keep the system update on target.  The bill also changes the tax table for businesses and shores up funds with federal corona virus relief aid.  The bill passed both chambers unanimously.


It is an honor and a privilege to serve as your 12th District State Senator.


Chamber Coffee hosted by Bourbon County Conservation District on April 22


The Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce invites members and guest to a Chamber Coffee hosted by Bourbon County Conservation District, Thursday, April 22nd (Earth Day) at 8 a.m. will be held at inside the 4-H building at the at the Bourbon County Fair Grounds Fort Scott, KS.

Coffee, donuts, juice and snack like fruit and cheese will be served, and attendees may register to win a special drawing. Also, they will have the Soil Tunnel Trailer set up for everyone to view and it is part of their educational Conservation Day that happens annually.

Attendees are strongly encouraged wear masks and follow social distancing guidelines.

Chamber members and guests are invited to Chamber Coffee events each Thursday at 8 a.m. to network, make announcements, hear about happenings in the community as well as learn about the host business or organization.


Obituary of Otis Wayne Atkins

Otis Wayne Atkins of Nixa, Missouri, passed away peacefully on April 15, 2021, surrounded by his loving children and grandchildren. Wayne was born in Corpus Christi, Texas, on January 11, 1944, to Ola Wilma Owens and Otis F. Atkins. He had one sister, Coleen Leavel. Wayne attended public schools and graduated from Appleton City High School in Appleton City Missouri in 1961.

Wayne earned a football scholarship and attended Fort Scott, Kansas Community College from 1961-1963. From Fort Scott, Wayne attended Central Missouri State University in Warrensburg, Missouri, on a football scholarship from 1963-1965. Wayne returned to Fort Scott in 1965 after college and went to work for Mid-Continental Restoration Company. He had loved the time spent in Fort Scott while going to college and was happy to return. He worked in the waterproofing industry from 1965-2018 when he retired from Atkins Weatherproofing, a family business.

In 1971, Wayne met and married Karen Mabery, a hometown Fort Scott girl. They had two children: Karalee Michelle Taylor and Frank Dewayne Atkins, both of Nixa, Missouri. Wayne was a loving father to both of his children. He never missed a school function or sporting event for his kids. They will always remember their father as their biggest cheerleader. He was a doting grandfather to Madison, Tru, and Kelby. AND, an adoring great-grandfather to Sophie, Taxen, and Asher. He took pride in everything his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren did and accomplished.

Wayne had a special relationship with Karen’s family. He considered Frank and Faye Mayberry as his other parents. He loved them dearly. He felt a special bond with the entire Duncan “clan.” He had loving aunts in Lois and Ruth and hunting buds in uncles Hurschel and Livian.

Wayne Atkins was a hard-working man who dearly loved his family. They WERE his life and his greatest accomplishment. All he achieved was for his family. Wayne was a man who didn’t ask for much and appreciated all he had. He was a great example to the men who he worked with in his younger years and to his employees in his later years. He worked hard and taught by example. He was a gentle man who never raised his voice to make his point. He will be greatly missed by all who knew him.

Graveside services for Wayne will be 3:00 p.m. Wednesday, April 21, 2021, at Memory Gardens under the direction of the Konantz-Cheney Funeral Home. Memorials may be made to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Center and left in the care of the Konantz-Cheney Funeral Home, 15 W Wall St., P.O. Box 309, Fort Scott, KS 66701. Condolences may be submitted to the online guestbook at

Drug Take-Back Day April 24

Drug take-back day designed to counter pill abuse, environmental contamination 

[Bourbon County, Kansas] – Local agencies are partnering with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration April 24, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., for the 20th annual Drug Take Back Day. The event is designed to prevent pill abuse and environmental contamination by ridding homes of expired, unused and unwanted prescription drugs. 


Prescription drug abuse and disposal are both a public and environmental health threat. Improper disposal of medications via sewers or landfills leads to surface water contamination. Returning unused or unwanted medications to a pharmacy, or bringing them to a law enforcement agency are reliable methods for keeping these substances from entering the water supply.


Bourbon County residents are encouraged to bring unwanted drugs to these area locations for disposal:


Medicine Shoppe Pharmacy

421 W Main St, Chanute, KS 66720


Nevada Police Department

120 South Ash St., Nevada, MO  64772


Pittsburg Police Department

201 N. Pine St., Pittsburg, KS  66762


Sites cannot accept liquids, needles or sharps, only pills or patches. The service is free and anonymous with no questions asked. Collection sites will follow local COVID-19 guidelines and regulations.


With funding from the USDA, the K-State Pollution Prevention Institute (PPI) is offering education and outreach sessions to various communities in Kansas and Missouri with a focus on rural access to safe drug and sharps disposal. If your organization or community would like to learn more about safe disposal as a way to prevent drug abuse and keep toxic waste out of landfills, contact PPI by calling 800-578-8898.


For more information about proper disposal of prescription drugs or the Take Back Day event, visit


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FS Street Advisory Board Meets April 22

The Street Advisory Board will meet on Thursday, April 22nd, 2021 at 4:00 p.m. at the City Commission Meeting Room at 123 S. Main Street. This meeting is open to the public.

This meeting will be made available via the City’s you tube channel at City of Fort Scott.

FS Design Review Board Meets April 21

The Design Review Board will meet on Wednesday, April 21st, 2021 at 3:00 p.m. in the City Hall Commission Meeting room at 123 S. Main Street, Fort Scott, Kansas. This meeting will be held to consider the signage on the north and south walls at the Unsung Heroes Park and any other matters that may come up before the Board.

This meeting will be made available via the City’s you tube channel at City of Fort Scott.