Category Archives: Bourbon County

No Water Line Break, No Boil Order For Uniontown.

Uniontown is located 17 miles west of Fort Scott.

This morning workers were doing maintenance of a water pump in Redfield and air got into it, Uniontown Clerk Sally Johnson said.

“They flushed the line and everything is OK, I just got off the phone with Bobby (Rich, the city superintendent),” she said at 4:45 p.m. Sept. 13.

“If air is in the line, just let it run until water comes,” she said. “The air in the line may make it cloudy.”

“There is no water line break and no boil order for Uniontown,” Johnson said.

This, despite rumors starting on Facebook.

What’s Happening In Fort Scott Sept. 13 By the Chamber of Commerce

Save the date!! 16th Annual Gordon Parks Celebration – Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of the film “The Learning Tree” – Thursday, October 3rd, FSCC Ellis Fine Arts Center, 2108 S. Horton (See flyer below)

Karole Graham, Stephen Perry and S. Pearl Sharp, cast members in “The Learning Tree” film by Gordon Parks, will receive “Gordon Parks Choice of Weapons Award” at the annual celebration this October 3-5, 2019 in Fort Scott, Kansas. The celebration is in honor of Fort Scott native Gordon Parks, noted photographer, writer, musician, and filmmaker. This year’s celebration is a special one as we will be celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Gordon Parks-directed film The Learning Tree that was filmed in Fort Scott

Save the date!! The Fort Scott Writing Festival & Author Fair – Saturday, October 19, 9am-3:30pm, at The Lowell Milken Center For Unsung Heroes, 1 S. Main St. (See flyer below)

8:30am – 8:50am       Registration and Refreshments
8:50am – 9:00am       Welcome
9:00am – 12:00pm     Writing Workshops with experienced, published authors – 50 min. break-out sessions  **Registration required**
12:00pm – 1:30pm     Lunch Break and set up for Authors’ Fair
1:30pm – 3:30pm       Authors’ Fair and mini-workshops **Free to the public**
(Multiple authors will be set-up to market, sign and share their writing journey with participants.)
$35 per participant by October 15th, late registration $45.

High School and College students FREE w/current student ID

Registration available in person at the Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce, Hedgehog.INK Book Store, or online HERE

It’s time for the Fall Town-wide Garage Sale presented by the Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce: Friday and Saturday, September 13th and 14th (See flyer below)
The official garage sale maps will be available at the Chamber, 5 Corners Mini-Mart, Bids & Dibs, Casey’s, Don’s Smoke Shop, and Pete’s (all 4 locations)
Weekly Livestock Sale at Fort Scott Livestock Market. Starting at 10am on both Fridays & Saturdays
Fridays:  Cows, Pairs, Big Bulls
Saturdays:  Stocker & Feeder Cattle, followed by any cows
& bulls that come in late Friday & Saturday. Cafe open both sale days. You don’t have to be a buyer, just to come watch the sale and visit the cafe!

Fort Scott High School Activity Fair – Free fun for all ages prior to the first home football game! FSHS front/west lawn, 1005 S. Main, 5:30-6:30pm (See flyer below)

Free games, face painting, prizes, food and fun, hosted by various FSHS clubs, sports & activities

Any organization/business that would like to donate food, beverages, or prizes may contact FSHS Senior Lauren Madison by phone or text at 620-215-0802 or email


Friday Night Concert in the Park – Heritage Park Pavilion, 1st & Main, 7pm

Friday Night Concert in the Park – Sponsored by the Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce

This Friday Night Concert will feature three sets (and a brief open mic period):
#1 – Steve Fortenberry -traditional, gospel & light classical
#2 – Rob Hunt and friends – gospel & hymns
#3 – A bluegrass/gospel group Come early and bring a lawn chair as seating is limited.  In the event of bad weather we will move to The Common Grounds Coffee Shop

The concerts are organized by Ralph Carlson. If you or someone you know is interested in performing, contact Ralph at

2019 Friends of Tri-Valley Foundation Fall Golf Classic
4-Person Scramble – Saturday, September 14th at Woodland Hills Golf Course, 2414 S. Horton in Fort Scott (See flyer below)

$200 per team includes green fees, cart & lunch. Deadline to enter is September 6th

This fundraiser will help the Friends of Tri-Valley Foundation to support programs for our neighbors with intellectual/developmental disabilities in Allen, Bourbon, Neosho, and Woodson counties

For more information, contact Tricia at 620-431-7401, ext. 230 or

Farmer’s Market – Skubitz Plaza (in front of the historic fort)

Saturday Mornings, 8:00am – 12:00pm

Fort Scott Farmers’ Market is a farmer driven and run market. The farmers work hard to produce the very finest produce available. We also provide a great venue for community organizations to promote their mission and raise funds

We are focused on fresh locally produce farm products

DOWNTOWN – MERCHANT MADNESS SIDEWALK SALE! Saturday, September 14, 2019, 9am-5pm (See flyer below)

Special drawings at each retailer! Shop local, shop Fort Scott!

11 participating stores including:

While you are out and about for the Fall Town-wide Garage Sale & the Art in the Yard Festival at Bobbi Kemna’s, stop downtown and see what drawings & discounts the Downtown merchants have for you during this sidewalk sale!

The trolley leaves from Boiler Room Brewhaus at Wall
& National Downtown to go to the Art Festival and returns on the half-hour
Sidewalk Book Sale at Hedgehog.INK – 16 S. Main,

9am-5pm (See flyer below)

Bags of books for sale: $4/small, $8/large

14 “Art In The Yard” hosted by Bobbi Kemna – 1366 215th St., just north of Fort Scott (known as Old 69 Hwy.),
9am-5pm (See flyer and trolley schedule flyer below)”Art In The Yard”, hosted by Bobbi Kemna, will feature all forms of art (no crafts) – paintings, pottery, jewelry, metal art, fabric art

Live music, BBQ, FSHS Thespians selling beverages, dessert table, kettle corn

Ride “Dolly the Trolley” shuttle for FREE from Boiler Room Brewhaus (10 S. National Ave.) to event and back

14  Storytime at Hedgehog.INK – 16 S. Main, 10:30am (held the second Saturday of each month) (See flyer below)

Storytime and special activity. This month: disco/rap with Jaymie & Kenzie Murphy

15 Louk Family Outing (30 players) at Woodland Hills Golf Course – 2414 S. Horton (time to be determined)
15 Team Trivia at the Boiler Room Brewhaus –
10 S. National, 3-5pmExciting, fun and challenging team trivia. Put your team together (maximum of 8 teams, maximum of 5 members on a team)

$5 per person. Cash prizes for winning team. Pre-register at the tap room

Chamber Board Meeting – Papa Don’s, 10 N. Main St., 12-1pm
16 Maker Monday for kids & teens – Fort Scott Public Library, 201 S. National Ave., 4-5pm
16 Community Book Club – This month’s meeting will be held at Sylvia Trujillo’s home: 500 Sunset Dr., 7-8pm

This month’s book is “The Night Circus” by Erin Morgenstern. For more info, email Sara Coon at


Retailer’s Roundtable Meeting with the Chamber of Commerce – Lowell Milken Center, 1 S. Main St., 8:30-9:30am

“Retailer’s Roundtable” for Downtown Businesses who sell merchandise –
to share ideas on events, promotions, etc., in an effort to increase foot traffic Downtown. This is intended to be a smaller group focused on retail. Then at the Quarterly Downtown Meet & Greets, we can share ideas that have been discussed in the Retailer’s group

Not much of a prepared agenda at this first meeting, just sharing of ideas and reviewing upcoming events scheduled in Downtown.  So, bring any ideas you may have – looking ahead over the next quarter, six months, year.  Can be from a small little promotion type thing that all it takes is some advertising & promotion, to a bigger event that we would need to recruit a committee or service club to take on.  Since we only have an hour, we will probably try and stay somewhat focused on the time frame of now through first quarter 2020

Story Time, hosted by the Fort Scott Public Library –

201 S. National, 10-11am

Join Miss Val and other local families for a themed story time, featuring 2-3 books read aloud, songs or fingerplays, craft, and snack, along with a play table for before and after the stories. All story times welcome any age children and teens
Some themes are based around seasons, holidays, and annual events, while others are chosen by regular attendees
For more information, visit
Enjoy stories, songs, crafts, and snacks related to our theme in the downstairs event room. Hope you can come. Tell your friends!
17 T.O.P.S Meetings held weekly on Tuesdays at Buck Run Community Center, 735 Scott Ave., 10:30am
17 Fort Scott Kiwanis Meeting – FSCC Heritage Room,
2108 S. Horton, 12-1pm
17 Community Bingo at Country Place Senior Living (3rd Tuesday of every month) – 820 S. Horton, 2-4pm

Residents and the public are invited the 3rd Tuesday of each month for Community Bingo at Country Place Senior Living

Visit our website here:

17 Farmer’s Market – Skubitz Plaza (in front of the historic fort)

Tuesday evenings, 4-6pm

Fort Scott Farmers’ Market is a farmer driven and run market. The farmers work hard to produce the very finest produce available. We also provide a great venue for community organizations to promote their mission and raise funds. We are focused on fresh locally produce farm products

17 City Commission Meeting – City Hall, 123 S. Main, 6-7pm
18 Rotary Meeting – Presbyterian Church,  308 S. Crawford St., 12-1pm
Adult Coloring Program – Fort Scott Public Library,
201 S. National Ave., 2-4pm
Join us in the library events room for a relaxing afternoon of coloring and conversation. Library provides coloring pages, pens and pencils, and snacks. Bring your own beverage of choice (no alcohol, please)
TAG – Teen Advisory Group – Fort Scott Public Library –

201 S. National, 4:15-5:15pm

Join Teen Advisory Group members in the library events room. This event is exclusively for middle and high school students. We have meetings weekly, including a games & snacks night, community service project, book club meeting, and craft night each month. Members can help the library develop programs, displays, and book collections that better serve teens! Make a difference in your community while having fun at TAG! Each meeting includes food, drinks, and a good time with your fellow teens. See you at TAG, and bring your friends!
Join us for the weekly Chamber Coffee of the Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce and a celebration at Lowell Milken Center at 8am. This week’s Chamber Coffee is being hosted by The Lowell Milken Center For Unsung Heroes in honor of the 20 year anniversary of the Irena Sendler Project. (See flyer below for more info)
Location: 1 S. Main St.
19 Horticultural services at the Bourbon County Courthouse every Thursday – 210 S. National, 9am-3:30pm (See flyer below)

Krista Harding, Horticulture Agent for the Southwind Extension District, has office hours at the Extension office inside the Bourbon County Courthouse every Thursday. In an effort to better serve residents of Fort Scott and the surrounding communities, Krista is there weekly to answer questions and offer advice on lawn and gardens, trees and shrubs, flowers and insect. Bring your spotted leaves, strange looking insects or wilted flowers and let her help you! This a free service and is available to all community members. Questions? Call 620-223-3720

19 KSU Beef Stocker Field Day (See flyer below)

Join us as we celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the KSU Beef Stocker Field Day. The program will include the latest practical information to help you make the most of significant changes occurring in the beef industry. We’ll offer management tips to help you optimize your stocker operation and provide greater flexibility in the future. Registration is $25 per participant if you register on or before September 10th. Late registration is $35. A CAB Natural Prime Ribeye lunch from Niman Ranch will be provided. For more information, contact Louis Schreiner at 785-532-1267.

For the brochure and registration form, click HERE

To register online, click HERE

19 Pioneer Kiwanis Meeting – FSCC Heritage Room,

The Lowell Milken Center For Unsung Heroes invites you to a book signing event celebrating the 20th Anniversary of “Life in a Jar: The Irena Sendler Project” on Thursday, September 19th from 3:30-5:30 p.m. (See flyer below)

Author of the book “Mommy, Who Was Irena Sendler?” Cathy Werling, along with characters from the book Megan & Blair Felt, will be there to sign autographs. The book will be available for purchase and refreshments will be served

Cathy Werling is a retired Fort Scott elementary teacher and author of:
– Why Did Grandpa Cry?
– Why Did Sergeant Stubby Go To War?
– Mommy, Who Was Irena Sendler?
– What If Higgins Had Given Up?

For more information, call
The Lowell Milken Center at
620-223-1312, or visit the website at

19 Thursday Card Players – Buck Run Community Center, 735 Scott Ave., 6-9pm

Free weekly event to anyone that wants to play cards, drink coffee, eat snacks, and socialize

A Star is Born, or Died – Boiler Room Brewhaus,
2 S. National Ave., 7-9pm
Join Boiler Room Brewhaus on Thursday evenings from
7-9pm for karaoke fun. Cheer on your favorite local star!
Weekly Livestock Sale at Fort Scott Livestock Market. Starting at 10am on both Fridays & Saturdays
Fridays:  Cows, Pairs, Big Bulls
Saturdays:  Stocker & Feeder Cattle, followed by any cows
& bulls that come in late Friday & Saturday. Cafe open both sale days. You don’t have to be a buyer, just to come watch the sale and visit the cafe!
Citizenship Ceremony – Fort Scott National Historic Site,

1 Old Fort Blvd., 10:30am

Citizenship Ceremony – reflect on the privileges of U.S. Citizenship as you witness new citizens take the oath of allegiance to their newly adopted country

The United States District Court for the District of Kansas will hold a special naturalization ceremony at the Fort Scott National Historic Site in Fort Scott, Kansas on Friday, September 20, 2019 at 10:30 a.m. The Honorable Teresa J. James, United Stated Magistrate Judge for the District of Kansas, will preside over the ceremony on the grounds of the Fort. The ceremony features musical performances from the Fort Scott High School band, orchestra and choir, and an address from a local distinguished citizen. The Pittsburg State University ROTC will present the colors

Approximately 100 applicants will be naturalized at the ceremony, which is open to the public. In case of rain or other inclement weather, the ceremony will be held at Fort Scott Memorial Hall

20 Ribbon Cutting Ceremony for the FSCC Agriculture Building Expansion – 2108 S. Horton, 4pm (See flyer below)

Refreshments provided by FSCC Collegiate Farm Bureau. We’d like to thank our generous donors for making this happen: the Boileau family and the Cleaver family

Questions? Contact Sara Sutton or Blake Davis at
620-223-2700 ext. 3280 or ext. 3110

20 Fort Scott Community College 100th Anniversary Celebration Banquet – 2108 S. Horton, 6:30pm (See flyer below)

FSCC would like to invite EVERYONE to the Centennial Celebration dinner (Sept. 20th) and the Centennial Tailgate Party (Sept. 21st) to celebrate our 100 years of excellence!!

The dinner will be $10.00 per person and reservations can be made over the phone by call 620.223.2700 ext. 0 or online by going to Seating is limited for the dinner on September 20th, so get your ticket soon!

The tailgate party will start at 4:30 at Frary Field with free hamburgers, hot dogs, chips, etc. No reservation needed, just show up and help us celebrate this momentous occasion.

For more info on the upcoming centennial events, click


Friday Night Concert in the Park – Heritage Park Pavilion, 1st & Main, 7pm

Friday Night Concert in the Park – Sponsored by the Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce

This Friday Night Concert will feature “Christian Strings” (local area dulcimer players), gospel and hymns directed by local Marilyn Adcock
The concerts are organized by Ralph Carlson. If you or someone you know is interested in performing, contact Ralph at
20 80’s Party at Boiler Room Brewhaus featuring live music by “80 & Out” – 10 S. National, 7-10pm (See flyer below)

Live music by 80 & Out, plus a costume contest and more! $5 cover charge.

Cornerstones of Care Awarded Family Preservation Grant in Eastern Kansas

Kansas Department for Children and Families Awards New Family Preservation Grants

Three agencies awarded grants for four catchment areas


With the goal of providing vulnerable families access to strong evidence-based programs, Governor Laura Kelly today announced new grantees for the state’s family preservation program.


“At the beginning of my administration I canceled previously awarded family preservation grants because of the lack of transparency,” Kelly said. “Today, I am pleased to say that the Department for Children and Families with assistance from the Department of Administration have chosen well qualified partners to assist in our efforts to strengthen families.”


“I am excited that these new grantees include familiar faces and new partners,” Department for Children and Families Secretary Laura Howard said. “DCF looks forward to working together to reduce risk and safety concerns for children and keep Kansas families together.”


Family preservation is a voluntary service provided to families with a child at risk of entering foster care. It includes both short term case management services and intensive in-home services. The program also may serve pregnant women using substances to help the mother find and maintain substance use treatment.


Beginning Jan. 1, three grantees will manage the four DCF regions.

  • Cornerstones of Care of will manage the contract in the East region. Cornerstones provides intensive in-home services in several Missouri counties including the Kansas City area. The agency also is providing family services for the DCF Kansas City region and functional family therapy for the Kansas Department of Corrections.


“We’re beyond honored and grateful to grow our partnership with the State of Kansas across the DCF East region,” Cornerstones of Care president and CEO Denise Cross said. “We strongly believe in prevention services and will work closely with children, families and community partners through a trauma-informed philosophy. Together, we can keep children safe and families together.”


  • DCF awarded DCCCA the contracts in the Kansas City and Wichita Regions. DCCCA has 12 years of experience providing family preservation services in Kansas. The agency also has more than 30 years as a prevention services provider and more than 43 years as substance use disorder and addiction  provider.


“Given DCCCA’s experience with family services, expertise in substance abuse programming, ability to engage communities and our mission of improving lives, these family preservation grants allow us to combine our strengths,” DCCCA CEO Lori Alvarado said. “Our ultimate goal is to strengthen families and support them to nurture their children, which helps reduce the number of children in care.”


  • DCF awarded TFI Family Services the contract for the West region. TFI previously provided family preservation services in Kansas from 2005 to 2009. The agency also has provided recruitment, training, retention and support of foster families across Kansas since 1996.



“TFI Family Services is honored to be selected as the provider for family preservation services in the west region,” TFI CEO Michael Patrick said. “We are excited that our TFI caseworkers and therapists will have the opportunity to serve some of our most at-risk families and ensure they remain safely together as a family.”




In order to maintain transparency throughout the process, DCF partnered with the Department of Administration to use a traditional request for proposal process that included:


  • DCF grant review teams representing each region and administrative staff
  • Technical review for evidence-based practice models, child welfare experience, staffing ratios, accreditation and letters of support.
  • Cost proposal review by fiscal staff


In total, DCF received two proposals for the west region, three proposals for the east region, four proposals for the Kansas City region and five proposals for the Wichita region.


The contract term awarded is Jan. 1, 2020 through June 30, 2024.

To report child abuse or neglect or to request services, please call the Kansas Protection Report Center at 1-800-922-5330.





Life In A Jar: 20 Years Later, Celebrating Sept. 19

Irena Sendler

It all began 20 years ago, when an assignment from a  local high school history teacher changed the lives of many people, including an unsung hero.

Irena Sendler was a Polish Catholic social worker, who risked her own life to rescue a significant number of Jewish children during WWII.

Her story was unknown to the public for 60 years until three high school students from Uniontown, Kansas uncovered its details in September of 1999 and shared Irena’s story with the world, according to a press release from the Lowell Milken Center for Unsung Heroes.

Sendler died in 2008 but not before meeting the teacher and three students who discovered her story.

Twenty years ago this week, Life in a Jar: the Irena Sendler Project was started by Uniontown High School students Elizabeth Cambers Hutton, Sabrina Coons Murphy, and Megan Stewart Felt in Norm
Conard’s high school history class, according to the press release.

Megan Felt has gone on to become the program director of the Lowell Milken Center for Unsung Heroes, while the former history teacher, Norm Conard, has become the executive director.

“The Life in a Jar Project and Irena Sendler’s story has completely changed my life,” Felt said. “I have learned a powerful history, met wonderful people, received scholarships and support to complete both of my college degrees, and changed my career path so I can help others have the special experiences I have had.”
“Those who have been involved in the project over the last 20 years realize we all have a responsibility to make a positive difference in the world around us,” she said. “I am so grateful for that day in 1999 when we started this incredible journey of bringing Irena’s story to the world.”

Throughout the last 20 years, the play has been performed more than 375 times with more than 50 students involved in the project.

The performances have been all across the United States, Canada, and Poland.

The website that the students created has had more than 50 million hits, according to the press release.

The center continues the encouragement of searching for unsung heroes.

A Celebration

The Lowell Milken Center for Unsung Heroes is pleased to announce the 20th Anniversary Commemoration of Life in a Jar: The Irena Sendler Project.

On September 19 from 3:30 –5:30 p.m. at the Lowell Milken Center, 1 South Main Street in Fort Scott, there will be a special book
signing for Mommy, Who Was Irena Sendler?

Even after the story became known, that emotional connection of Irena’s story continues to reach across generations, according to the press release.

Megan’s daughter, Blair, also learned a life-changing lesson from both the courage of Irena Sendler’s selfless acts and those of
her own mother’s determination to share Irena’s story, according to the press release.

The Lowell Milken Center is located at the corner of First and Wall Streets.

The book, available in paperback for $9.95, can be purchased and signed by the author and two of the characters featured in the story,  Felt and her 9-year-old daughter, Blair.

Megan Felt and her daughter, Blair, help tell the story of Irena Sendler’s courage in a new book written by Cathy Werling. Submitted photo.

Their goal of making Irena Sendler’s story known to the world continues.

Life in a Jar: the Irena Sendler Project by Jack Mayer is also available during the book signing. This is the story of the students’ discovery of Irena Sendler and her efforts to save the Jewish children from the Warsaw Ghetto.

Cathy Werling is a local children’s book author at the Lowell Milken Center For Unsung Heroes in Fort Scott.

Cathy Werling, the author of Mommy, Who Was Irena Sendler? is an award-winning elementary educator from Fort Scott. Her passion for helping students develop positive character traits and seek out worthy role models led to her part-time work at the Lowell Milken Center for Unsung Heroes.

Through her series of books, four so far,  about these humble heroes, Cathy hopes to inspire elementary children to realize that they, too,
have the power every day to make a difference in the lives of those around them.

About the Lowell Milken Center

The Lowell Milken Center is a non-profit 501 c (3) that works with students and educators within a range of diverse academic disciplines, to develop projects focused on unsung heroes. Once their projects are finished, the center advocates for the student’s unsung heroes by sharing them in its’ Hall of Unsung Heroes or the center’s website so people all over the world discover their individual influence and obligation to take actions that improve the lives of others.

The Hall of Unsung Heroes is located in Southeast Kansas and showcases some of the top projects developed in collaboration with the center.

Buying Locally Benefits Community

This sign is placed at each participating local Bourbon County business owner and includes a list of all the businesses.

There is a grassroots movement across the county to help small towns stay viable.

Bourbon County has its’ own organization for encouraging small businesses.

Live Local BB started in July 2017 to raise community awareness of the benefits to using locally owned business over non-locally owned businesses, including internet businesses.

The initial public meeting of Live Local BB was in September 2017, pictured here. The event was held at Sharkey’s Pub.

Geoff Southwell, president of Live Local BB said his businesses have experienced sales because of awareness that they are locally owned.

Southwell owns Miller Feed and Oil  and The Butcher Block  in Fort Scott.

“Individuals and businesses come in and specifically buy from us because we are local,” he said. “With the Butcher Block, we got some commercial accounts to have us cater, because we are local.”

“Ever since I have “joined the movement” I have really tried to “think Local First” and I think that, being able to be on the board with several other entrepreneurial folks has really brought to light how to ‘think local first'” said Chrystal Cowan, a member of the organization. “In my life I have taken it beyond the normal, everyday items- those are easy…. Get gas locally, buy groceries locally, feed, shoes, etc… the list goes on and on.  Instead I now have the mindset of, how can I utilize my locals.”

She gives an example of a recent birthday party.

“We had a birthday party for my daughter a few weeks back, and I ordered pizza (and) I forgot to pickup ice cream,  and really didn’t want to hassle with going to the other end of town,” Cowan said. ” I reached out to Brita at Papa Don’s (Restaurant)and she was able to sell me a tub of ice cream as well.  I knew going in, that she may not have enough stock to sell me a tub, but I thought I would ask, and that particular time it worked out!  Now ice cream isn’t something that Brita typically sells by the gallon, but it just so happened that her inventory allowed her an extra for me to buy. I could go on and on about how many times I have tried to come up with a way to purchase something from someone local, or called them with weird requests… but I think my point is that it may take a little bit of thinking outside of the box, but I have learned to try and just think local first.”

Cowan has been asked why she got involved with Live Local BB, since she works at a local insurance company.

” My response to that question, and my response on behalf of any of our professional services businesses is this- You can buy what I sell online, you can travel outside of the county and utilize an agent. But if you click the link and fill out the form to get a quote, are you really getting what you need? Are you going to have a person that you can call on a Sunday, or text on a Tuesday night at 10 pm, and the answer to that is, no you won’t…  so why do I think that Live Local is important – every business in this town is important, and it’s important we support each other in any way that we can.”

“The numbers (facts on money benefitting the community) vary slightly depending on the study, but it’s pretty close to 60 cents of a dollar will stay in a community with a locally owned business and 40% with a non-local business,” Bryan Holt, a member of Live Local BB, said. “Retaining 50% more dollars in our community is a great thing!”

The benefits of money staying in the community include job creation, keeping the money in the local economy where it can be respent and also providing community involvement in the form of charitable giving to local organizations, according to the MSU study listed below.


Links for reference are the following provided by Holt:


The Live Local BB organization is comprised of locally owned businesses within Bourbon County.

“We have over 80 businesses in our group,” said Geoff Southwell, president of the organization.

Locally owned businesses can be identified by an orange sign in the window of the business. To see the list of local business, click below:

live local

Geoff Southwell speaks during the initial Live Local BB meeting in Sept. 2017.

” We have a desire to see the community grow and become stronger,” he said. ” We wanted to give the community a means for identifying locally owned businesses, with owners who live in Bourbon County. We have ‘Live Local’ signage placed at each business which identifies them as locally owned.”

“We feel we have made an impact on the community to use locally owned first,” Southwell said.



The Live Local BB sign can be seen in local businesses and includes the list of participating businesses.




Bourbon County Commission Minutes August 27

August 27, 2019                                              Tuesday 9:00 am

The Bourbon County Commission met in open session with all three Commissioners, the County Counselor and the County Clerk present.

Tammy Helm with the Fort Scott Tribune and Nancy Van Etten were also present.

Jeremiah Hill met with Jim Harris, Jerad Heckman and the Commissioners; he said the motor grader had cut a diagonal ditch across the road on Poplar between 205-215th; Jerad said he felt the water was coming from the driveways cutting the ditch in the road. Jeremiah said when a ditch gets cleaned the dirt is getting pushed into the fence; Jim said they have been instructed not to do this if there is a fence there. Jeremiah discussed an area where this was done, Jim said they have to clean up the shoulders to build the road that he has requested, Jim said when it is dry enough they will go back and smooth out the area; Jeremiah said when this is done, it changes the flow of water. Jeremiah discussed the drive entrances now being higher than the road. Jeremiah discussed the roads and the intersections getting narrower. Jeremiah presented pictures of piles of dirt and debris that the graders are leaving on the roads.

Jeff discussed KDOT’s grant for bridges, he said there is $5 million available; Jeff said he felt they needed to prioritize the bridges and apply for some of the grant money.

Jim said they are out of chips and are planning to start making chips today; Jim said they will probably have to buy ice control this year.

Lynne discussed the revenue from the Road & Bridge Sales tax; he said it was down $6,500 for August and $10,000 for July. Jim suggested that the revenue from Road & Bridge Sales tax be monitored weekly.

Jim said the older New Holland tractor has a cracked block.

Jeff discussed the road north of Redbud Nursery; he said a few years ago the County reclaimed the road and said the root of the problem there was that a contractor had filled in a ditch forcing the drainage under the road. Jeff said he has witnessed the same issue around the County in other areas.

Lynne discussed gravel in the ditch at Range and 105th; Lynne said the gravel was washed off of the road due to concrete placed in front of a culvert in the area.

Jeff said he received a report from Jim’s neighbor about the ditch north of his property; Jim said they are building a ditch in the area.

Cheryl & Frank Adamson met with the Commissioners regarding a hearing that was held between the City of Fort Scott Commissioners and Kevin “Skitch” Allen. Kevin won a place on the General ballot for a Fort Scott City Commissioner. The City Commissioners claimed that Kevin was not a city resident; after the hearing and based on the information that the City presented at the hearing, it was determined that Kevin met the criteria to be a resident. Cheryl questioned the ordinance that stated the candidates needed to be residents; Kendell said it is a City of Fort Scott ordinance.

Lynne made a motion to go into a 10 minute executive session for confidential data relating to financial affairs or trade secrets of corporations, partnerships, trusts and individual proprietorships, Nick seconded and all approved, (the session included the Commissioners, Jody Hoener, Kendell Mason and Richard Goldstein). No action was taken.

Bill Martin, Bobby Reed, Ben Cole and Alvin Metcalf met with the Commissioners to discuss the 2020 budget. Also present for this meeting were Frank and Cheryl Adamson, Nancy Van Etten, Rachel Pruitt, Dave martin, Robert Uhler and Tracy Reed. Bill Martin said he was reviewing the 2020 budget and asked for an explanation of the proposed budget. He said he noticed a $39,674 increase in the Sheriff departments wage budget, he questioned if this was to cover the wages of the Sheriff Deputy that has been being paid by a grant, Lynne said no this wasn’t the reason for the increase. Bill said the position is still there, but isn’t being paid for by the grant any longer; Bill said he will be over in wages in 2020. Bill said he noticed that each one of the elected officials was getting a pay raise in the budget; Bill said he only requested a 3% increase for his wages, Bill said he wanted no more than a 3% increase. Bill discussed two of his exempt employees that there was not a raise budgeted for (Bill said the two employees hadn’t received a raise since 2012 or 2013), but other exempt employees getting a raise. Bill said when the hourly employees received raises last year, his exempt employees did not receive a raise; Bill suggested finding money to get them a pay raise as well, he said they are good employees that do above what is expected. Bill said he wasn’t attacking a person, but questioned the budget for Economic Development; he said in 2019 $60,000 was budgeted, but in 2020 $100,000 has been proposed for the Economic Development budget. Lynne said Economic Development is the only way to turn the ship around by addressing what is causing the population decline. Jeff Fischer told Bill he admired how Bill had tried to address wages and retention; Jeff said they had previously adjusted his deputies’ wages to help address retention and said at that time they had planned to address salaried individuals in the future. Jeff previously compared the wages of Bourbon County to other like counties and said they realized there was a gap in some areas. Jeff said other like counties pay their Sheriff $67,000, Bourbon County pays $45,900. Bill said every year he presents a budget with raises, but said this lacked action. Lynne discussed the Sheriff budgeting $4.00/gallon for fuel, he said they have offered the Sheriff a fuel tank to save money on the fuel, but Bill did not accept the tank. Bobby Reed said they have been kicked to the curb for 7 years; Lynne said each Commissioner was ok with the way the budget was done. Lynne said they were told that the new jail wasn’t going to cost anymore, Bobby said he didn’t say that, Lynne said when the new jail was presented it was promised it could operate on the same amount of money; Bobby asked who said this, Lynne said he (Bobby) did, Nick said this was always told to taxpayers that it wasn’t going to cost anymore; Bill said it was presented that there wouldn’t be any more cost for the employees to run the building. Bill said the operation of the jail is covered by the sales tax; he said the ballot stated that the sales tax could be used to refurbish the old jail, pay the bond for the jail and the operations. Lynne said the County is getting less revenue from sales tax and that we have to be able to make the payments. Bill said he did not want a raise. The Commissioners said they would like to address the exempt employees next year; Bobby said it could be addressed if they are still here. There was a brief discussion over Allen County receiving reimbursement from inmates for medical care while in jail, Jeff said he hasn’t seen any reimbursements for Bourbon County inmates; Bobby said this is submitted to the County Attorney and it is then up to the court to collect the money. Alvin Metcalf said when he goes to work every day, his family doesn’t know if he is coming home or not. He said other people don’t have the same worry. Alvin said when they come to the Commissioners nothing gets accomplished. Lynne said other departments budgets have been reduced significantly. The Commissioners said it is budgeted in 2020 and planned to give a longevity bonus based on years of service. Jeff said in January of 2020 they will assign a value to each position. There was a discussion over the declining population and the healthcare costs that the County has incurred. Bill said he didn’t feel comfortable taking a raise with the unknown. Bill said he didn’t do his job for the pay, but was doing it for the civic duty. Jeff said a large portion of the previous raises given were given to his department. Lynne said they realize that in a few years they will have to address wages for the hourly employees. Jeff said that previously the Sheriff’s department was losing employees to the City of Fort Scott and the County Commissioners addressed their wages then, he said they are making progress and it is getting better. Jeff said they need to be working together to move the community forward.

City of Fort Scott representatives Rachel Pruitt, Cheryl Adamson, Randy Nichols and Dave Martin, as well as Jim Fewins, Jody Hoener and Barbara Ritter met with the Commissioners. Rachel Pruitt presented a draft document of a Property Tax Relief for the City of Fort Scott. This program is to help local businesses prosper and grow. This is a program they are trying to create to help move current businesses from building lease to business building owners. Rachel discussed property taxes being a barrier to owning property for the businesses. If the program is created there will be different qualifications. If approved, the program will offer the approved applicant different percentages of the taxes that they have to pay over a ten year period. Barbara Ritter said the tax burden keeps them from purchasing, so they continue to lease. Rachel said this program would be to help with business retention and is an expansion tool to keep current businesses. Jeff questioned the impact for the other counties that are doing this.

Lynne said Joe Bisone presented him with a picture of a development they are working on; they hope to build 107 units near Hammond on Condensory Road made out of Hempcrete. The plan for the first phase will consist of 7 units.

Lynne made a motion to go into a 30 minute executive session for consultation with an attorney for the body or agency which would be deemed privileged in the attorney-client relationship, Jeff seconded and all approved, (the session included the Commissioners and Justin Meeks). No action was taken.

Lynne made a motion to go into a 3 minute executive session for personnel matters of individual non-elected personnel, Nick seconded and all approved, (the session included the Commissioners and Justin Meeks). No action was taken.

At 12:02, Lynne made a motion to break for lunch and reconvene at 1:30, Nick seconded and all approved.

Emergency Manger Will Wallis met with the Commissioners, Jeff made a motion that Lynne sign the EMPG Funds document, Nick seconded and all approved and Lynne signed the document. Will discussed disaster KDEM #4449; 70 Kansas counties (including Bourbon County) are a part of this disaster and there are nearly 500 applicants in the program. Will said he would question if there was a 6 month debris removal deadline.

Deb McCoy presented a letter to Jeff and Kendell; the letter from Deb thanked Kendell for the work she does.

Economic Development Director Jody Hoener met with the Commissioners; they discussed the strategic plan and the vision for Bourbon County.

Nancy Van Etten met with the Commissioners regarding research she had done; previously Fort Scott Lake property owners met with the Commissioners regarding a possible building of condos on a lake lot. In September 2004, Mel Cummins petitioned Bourbon County to subdivide a lake lot for multiple single dwellings. At that time, the Cummings property was outside the 3 mile zone, so the County had jurisdiction over the Cummins property. The County Commissioners held a hearing in October 2004 and the Commissioners denied the petition to subdivide the property.

Lynne made a motion to go into a 5 minute executive session for consultation with an attorney for the body or agency which would be deemed privileged in the attorney-client relationship, Jeff seconded and all approved, (the session included the Commissioners and Justin Meeks). No action was taken.

At 3:56, Lynne made a motion to adjourn, Nick seconded and all approved.



(ss) Lynne Oharah, Chairman

(ss) Jeff Fischer, Commissioner

(ss) Nick Ruhl, Commissioner


Kendell Mason, Bourbon County Clerk

Approved Date 09/03/2019


Several Musicians Featured At Friday Night Concert in the Park

The Free Friday Night Concert will feature three different sets.

Steve Fortenberry on the guitar,  does special stylings on his solo guitar and plays traditional, gospel and light classical pieces.

“I am really looking forward to hearing some of his new creations on the guitar,” said Ralph Carlson, event coordinator.

Rob Hunt and friends will be performing a mix of gospel and hymns. “Rob has performed for us before and is an outstanding keyboard player,” Carlson said.

“In addition, I have not quite concluded booking a bluegrass and gospel group who you have heard before and is well-liked,” he said. ” I believe we will have a good show for you. I plan to have a brief open mike period for anyone who would like to play and or sing.”

In the event of bad weather, the event will move inside to the Common Grounds Coffee Shop. Come early and bring a lawn chair as seating is limited. Heritage Park is located at 1st and Main street in downtown Fort Scott, at 7 p.m.

FSCC Celebrates 100 Years

A public program to start the Fort Scott Community College Centennial Celebration was one of speeches, a prayer and a song on Monday morning at the Ellis Arts Center on the campus.

Students, guests and the public were invited to hear the experiences of former students and teachers, then eat a quick hot dog lunch and some cake and cookies in celebration of the community college’s 100th year.

Speakers were  FSCC President Alysia Johnston who welcomed the crowd and introduced Kansas Senator Caryn Tyson. Tyson then presented the college with a commendation from the Kansas Senate for its’ 100 years of serving the community.

The speakers at the Centennial Celebration were FSCC Vice President of Student Services Janet Fancher, retired FSCC instructor Jack Gilmore; Mark Muller, FSCC Class of 1979; Tyson; retired FSCC instructor Marcel Normand; Gina Findley Shelton, class of 1999; Jim Barrows, class of 1968 and Johnston. A letter read by Fancher from  Esther Anne (Weeks) Sewell, class of 1941, who is 96 years old.

Additionally, FSCC Class of 2013 Taylor Bailey produced an introductory video, narrated by Tyler Covey, class of 2019. FSCC President’s Ambassador Hannah Reel led the flag salute and Dusty Drake, lead minister at Community Christian Church, said the closing prayer.

FSCC President Alysia Johnston, left, receives the commendation for the school of 100 years of continuous education in the county from Kansas Senator Caryn Tyson, right.
The speakers at the Centennial Celebration from left: FSCC Vice President of Student Services Janet Fancher, retired FSCC instructor Jack Gilmore; Mark Muller, FSCC Class of 1979; Kansas Senator Caryn Tyson; retired FSCC instructor Marcel Normand; Gina Findley Shelton, class of 1999; Jim Barrows, class of 1968 and FSCC President Alysia Johnston. Not pictured is Esther Anne (Weeks) Sewell.

Following the program and lunch, the crowd was asked to stop by the tree planted in honor of the celebration near the front of the building, where a fly-by drone took an aerial photo of the group.

Some of the students, faculty and guests who stayed to be a part of the aerial picture taken by a drone, to commemorate the celebration.
A tree was planted in front of the Ellis Arts Center in commemoration of the 100th Anniversary of FSCC.
The plaque placed in front of the tree planted at the Ellis Art Center. John Bartelsmeyer, Kenny Blake and Stewart Gulager helped to provide the plaque to the college.

During the welcome FSCC President Alysia Johnston told the audience that the school was established in 1919 and is the oldest continuous public community college in Kansas.

FSCC President Alysia Johnston welcomes students, faculty, guests and the public to the Centennial Celebration program Monday morning at the Ellis Arts Center.

The school, established in 1919, was originally located at the Fort Scott High School building until 1967 when it moved to the 150-acre current site, and 200 students started classes. At this time, FSCC also began offering classes in Paola, according to information provided by the college.

In 1973 the administration building was completed and was later named the Dick Hedges Administration Building.

In 1982, Arnold Arena was completed, with one side a rodeo arena and the other a basketball gym, weight training area, athletic dressing rooms, classrooms, a computer lab and athletic offices. Arnold Arena just completed a renovation of the gym in Sept. 2019.

In 1986, the college acquired the cosmetology school from Pittsburg State University and N. Jack Burris Hall was completed in  1989.

A dormitory was opened in 2002 and named  Chester Boileau Hall.

In 2004, FSCC purchased and renovated the former Sisters of Mercy Convent on Burke Street for the nursing program. Also in 2004, the college remodeled a wing of the former Miami
County Hospital in Paola, which then became the FSCC Miami County Campus.

The Gordon Park Museum and Center of Diversity also was established in 2004 at FSCC to honor Fort Scott native Gordon Parks, a photographer, writer, poet, musician and filmmaker.

The Danny And Willa Ellis Family Fine Arts Center was opened in 2009 which included a 600-seat theater, community meeting rooms, the Gordon Parks Museum the Kathy Ellis Academic Hall.

The Kansas National Guard Armory was purchased in 2010 and houses the John Deer technician program and the welding program.

The cosmetology department moved to a newly remodeled space in 2014 on campus and the rodeo program opened a new rodeo building.

This year, an addition to the Burris Hall which was provided by donations from the Chester Boileau and Lonnie Cleaver estates, opened with new offices, classrooms, bathrooms, and a trophy display area for the FSCC Livestock and Meat’s Judging Teams awards.

There will be a banquet on Sept. 20 as part of the continuing celebration, and a tailgate party with free food at the Greyhound Football Game, Sept. 21 at 7 p.m.

For more information: 620-223-2700.






The 2019 Gordon Parks Celebration to feature Photo Contest: Life Lessons Learned

The 2018 Gordon Parks Photo Winner was Kole Wagner with this photo, “First Love”. The theme was: “I am Inspired By.”  Submitted photo.


Fort Scott-The Gordon Parks Celebration, scheduled for Oct 3- 5, 2019, at Fort Scott Community College, will feature a photo contest sponsored by Merl Humphrey Photography and inspired by a quote by the Gordon Parks-directed film The Learning Tree.

The theme of the contest, “My Learning Tree, Life Lessons Learned” is for any amateur photographer. Photographers are invited to capture the essence of this metaphor from Mr. Park’s film.

Non-professional photographers of any age and skill level are invited to take pictures for the project and may enter up to two photos. There will be a first place ($100), second place ($75) and third place ($50) prize and up to five honorable mentions. All photos submitted will be on exhibit during the 16th Annual Gordon Parks Celebration on Oct. 3 – 5, 2019. All photos will also be posted on the Museum Facebook page.

Photographs must be submitted via e-mail to All photos must be JPEG in format and limit file size to less than 2 MB. All entries will be confirmed via email. Photographers should submit (in their email) a title, along with their name, address, email, and phone number. If under 10 years old please include parent’s information. Photos should be received via email by Wednesday, September 25, 2019 at the latest.

For more information email or by phone call 223-2700, ext. 5850.



Steps for Improving Fescue Lawn Quality

Krista Harding
District Extension Agent, Horticulture
Southwind Extension District
111 S. Butler
Erie, KS 66733
Office: 620-244-3826
Cell: 620-496-8786


Above normal rainfall this year meant one thing – the lawn mowers have never stopped running! Our fescue lawns did not go dormant this year and the crabgrass hasn’t slowed down either. You might be surprised at how much of your lawn is actually crabgrass and not fescue. If you are thinking about renovating your lawn, September is the time to do it. Renovating doesn’t have to be done by plowing under the current turf and starting from scratch. Instead, lawns can be thickened up by overseeding.

To start the overseeding process, mow the grass short (1-1.5 inches) and remove the clippings. This will make it easier to get good seed-soil contact and increase the amount of light that will reach the young seedlings. The success of overseeding is dependant on good seed-soil contact. Thatch can prevent the seed from reaching the soil and germinating. If the thatch layer is ¾ inch or more, use a sod cutter to remove it. A power rake can also be used to reduce a thatch layer.

Next, the soil should be prepared for the seed. Holes must be made into the soil for the seeds to fall into. A verticut machine can be used. It has solid vertical blades that can be set to cut furrows into the soil. Another option is to use a core aerator. This machine will punch holes into the soil and deposit the cores on the surface of the ground. Each hole will produce an excellent environment for seed germination and growth. Machines to do such work can often be rented, so check around.

Fertilizer should then be applied at the rate suggested by a soil test or a starter fertilizer should be used at the rate suggested on the bag.

Seeding is the next step. For overseeding, use half the amount needed compared to seeding bare ground. For tall fescue, the normal rate for bare seeding is 6 to 8 pounds per 1000 square feet so the overseeding rate would be 3 to 4 pounds per 1000 square feet. You don’t necessarily have to overseed with the same variety you planted before. The quality of a lawn by can be raised by overseeding with a fescue variety that has better growth habits. Many stores carry blends of several newer high-quality tall fescues.

Finally, water everything in and then keep the seedbed constantly moist to insure rapid germination. Frequent light waterings are better than deeper, infrequent watering as the seedlings become established.

Fertilize with a high nitrogen fertilizer again 4 to 6 weeks after seeding to keep plants growing well and to build up food reserves.

On a side note, many homeowners often want to overseed bare spots under trees, but have minimal luck. The turf will sprout as fall progresses and will get established by winter. It continues to look good going into spring. However, the next summer it begins to die out again – despite any care it is given.

In many cases, this is due to too much shade or the type of turf planted isn’t a good fit for the location. Tall fescue is the only widely used lawn turf in Kansas that can survive some shade. All other cool and warm season turfs need more sunlight.

Instead of establishing grass under trees, consider underplanting the tree with shade tolerant ornamental plants. Examples include ground covers such as vinca minor vines, Boston ivy or liriope, or plants such as hostas or hardy ferns.

Krista Harding is a K-State Research and Extension agent assigned to Southwind District. She may be reached at or 620-244-3826.

K-State Research and Extension is an equal opportunity provider and employer.