There will be a Mercy Health Foundation dedication ceremony to add to the local Emergency Medical Services transportation fleet, 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 12 at the Timken Company, 4505 Campbell Drive.
The community is invited to attend this special presentation and may contact the Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce at 620-223-3566 or firstname.lastname@example.org with questions
or for more information.
The Timken Foundation, Canton, Ohio, donated $25,000 which helped purchase an EMS vehicle.
The purpose of the Timken Foundation is to support entities such as hospitals, recreational, educational, cultural, social, and other charitable institutions, according to information provided by Rachel Pruitt, City of Fort Scott Economic Development Director.
An EMS transport vehicle costs approximately $100,000, according to Mercy Foundation President Jared Leek.
Additional funds were raised by fundraising events and private donations.
The new transport ambulance will be owned by Bourbon County and managed by the City of Fort Scott, according to a link provided by Dave Bruner, City of Fort Scott.
A transport ambulance looks more like a van than a traditional ambulance but has better longevity, fuel economy, easier service and maintenance than a traditional ambulance but comes with all of the same equipment, according to the link.
On April 1, the operation of the local EMS will transition from Mercy Hospital to Bourbon County EMS. Mercy Hospital closed in December 2018.
” We currently have four ambulances staffed 24-7 during the period that the emergency room is closed,” Bruner said.
Currently, there are eight full time and 16 part-time employees in the EMS, according to Bruner.
This includes paramedics, who have two years of schooling and have advanced life support certification. There are also Emergency Medical Technicians, who have six months of school, then must pass national certification, EMT Clint Lawrence said.
“We have to have a minimum of two people for each vehicle on duty,” Lawrence said. “Right now we have four vehicles because each of our patients has to go out of town to another hospital.”
Fort Scott Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Lindsay Madison said Project 17 has a user-friendly Wix platform available to businesses who have under $1 million in revenue.
Madison also said the Chamber is finalizing its Business Locator Map Pinpoints and Ads, with a focus on shop, dine, play and stay businesses.
She said there is ad space on the Skubitz Plaza Downtown Directory Sign, for $100 a year.
Madison said the KOMB 103.9 Home, Sport, Farm and Garden Show is April 5-6.
Ally Turvey, from the Fort Scott Convention and Visitors Bureau, said the bureau is continuing to sponsor the downtown family movie nights. This year the entertainment evenings will move to Skubitz Plaza and one of the four films featured is about Sgt. Stubby: An American Hero.
The City State Bank Ribbon Cutting begins at 5 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 7.
Hedgehog.INK will have a book signing featuring author Gerri Hilger. (Editors note: the book signing will be rescheduled from Feb.7, due to weather.)There will also be a story time Saturday featuring author Joyce Love, reading her rendition of “The Three Little Pigs.” In addition, local artist Jean Solomonson will lead the children in card making.
Madison informed the attendees of the Google live stream”Give Your Website a Refresh” on Wednesday, March 6 from 11 a.m to noon at the Lowell Milken Center. Attendees will learn about search engine optimization and best practices for creating a search-friendly site.
Also, there will be a Bill Drury Seminar, May 7 from 8 a.m. to noon, with a focus on “Effective Leadership For First Line Managers and Supervisors,” Madison said.
There are grants available for downtown businesses to refresh a facade, see Rachel Pruitt with the City of Fort Scott for more information.
Carl Brenner, Fort Scott National Historic Site, said there are student position openings at the fort this summer.
Martha Scott, Friends of the Fort, said subscriptions are continuing for installing flags at residences/businesses in celebration of national holidays. The group charges $35 a year and will install and take down the flags.
Business owner, Jared Leek, said Valentines Day has been sold out at Crooner’s Lounge, but days before and after are available for reservations. He said on Feb. 16 Elton Dan, an Elton John impersonator will perform at the Liberty Theater. Leek also said that the Bourbon County Arts Council has six events coming this year downtown, the first one is March 9.
Pat Lyons, Lyons Twin Mansions, said they and the Courtland Hotel are part of a “Most Romantic Weekend In Kansas” promotion on Valentine weekend.
Fort Scott City Manager Dave Martin gave updates on healthcare, the Craw-Kan Cooperative broadband project, Mark McCoy’s group to unify the city/county governments, and parking issues downtown.
Fort Scott Economic Development Director Rachel Pruitt said Fort Scott Lofts, formerly Western Senior Living, now only require 20 percent of residents to be 55 years old and older.
Pruitt also said the Warrior Convoy parade through town, in connection with Adam LaRoche’s Wounded Warrior Hunt, will be May 1 this year.
Fort Scott Codes Director Rhonda Dunn said a possible U.S. Cellular cell phone tower downtown is in the design phase and stated it is a process that the public will be allowed input on.
Lee’s Paws and Claws Animal Shelter is having an online Facebook auction that includes several large appliances: computer, refrigerator, freezer. The auction closes today, Feb. 7 at 8 p.m.
For over a decade the Good Neighbor Action Team has been helping Fort Scottians with painting, helping rid yards of debris, building handicap ramps and other needed projects.
The team provides help for those who are not able to do the job themselves.
“A lot of times, people need a truck or chainsaw to get debris off their property,” Craig Campbell, a member of GNAT, said.
The volunteer group does all kinds of work, but GNAT doesn’t do roofs.
“We don’t put volunteers on roofs,” Campbell said. “There are grants available with no payback through USDA, also there are low-interest loans for different income levels and ages. We can put tradespeople together (for jobs like that), it requires expertise.”
“If people can’t provide materials or funds to help, we can help with that,” he said.
“Funds come from donations from social clubs, for example, Pioneer Kiwanis, who is a constant donor to our cause,” he said.
“When a group takes on a project, a church, for example, will help fill in the funding gap on the project they are working on,” Campbell said.
“I need to work with churches,” Campbell said. “They are a good source for locating people who could use GNAT help.”
Additionally, churches are a reliable source for providing volunteer workers for projects.
“We get a lot of volunteers from churches,” he said.
The volunteers are asked to give three hours of work per project.
“We think in terms of a three-hour time slot (for the project),” Campbell said. “From 9 a.m. to noon on a Saturday. For a volunteer to do that is wonderful.”
GNAT has tried to handle the project workloads using the model of Habitat For Humanity, he said.
Work project recipients are asked to provide family and friends to assist GNAT workers.
“We bring five people, you bring five people,” Campbell said.
In addition, proof of income is required with one of the following: income tax return, pays stubs from the last two paychecks, a Vision card or Healthwave card.
“We are getting started thinking about the season (for projects) which is from March to October,” he said. “There will be an emphasis on painting this year.”
Applications can be picked up at the Beacon, 525 E. Sixth; the Chamber of Commerce, 231 E. Wall, or city hall, 123 S. Main.
“You can return the application to the place you picked it up, or to Jara Martin at 824 S. Main,” Campbell said.
Completion of an application, doesn’t guarantee acceptance of a project request.
The local animal shelter is seeking a new facility and selling the old one located southeast of Fort Scott.
The following is an interview with Treasurer Kathy Dancer and Corresponding Secretary Kate Sweetser, two members of the board of directors of Lee’s Paw and Claws Animal Shelter:
Why the move?
“The current shelter, which was built and then expanded thanks to a generous gift from Lee Weast, is fantastic but has presented two challenges.
One is that fundraising has not provided the income required to run a 4,000 square foot facility.
The other is that the location on a gravel road seven miles from town has made it harder to attract both volunteers and potential adopters.”
“Lee’s Paws and Claws Animal Shelter is owned and operated by the Shirley Yeager Animal Friends Foundation. The foundation’s board of directors has made the decision to transition to a more sustainable business model.”
“Part of this transition involves rightsizing to a smaller, more affordable facility located in the city. Our organization relies on adopters, volunteers, and donors. Being located in Fort Scott will help meet the needs of the humans involved. ”
“Another key part of the transition to a sustainable business model is the implementation of a foster care program for dogs. Dogs who have been in foster care are better socialized and therefore more easily adopted.
Our goal is to have a smaller facility that will serve as a cat shelter, an office, and an intake and adoption area.”
Who made the decision?
“The time and expense associated with maintaining our current facility has been an issue for several years. The current executive board has been exploring options for about a year now. The first decision to offer the current facility for sale was made a few months ago and the board agreed unanimously to sell the current building and acreage.
The second decision was to transition to a foster model and relocate closer to town while the current facility is on the market. Some board members wanted to stay at our current location until it sells and others wanted to transition as soon as possible. The decision was a difficult one and involved lengthy discussions and number-crunching, but in November of 2018, the board voted to begin the downsizing process and transition to a foster program in early 2019.”
“The current executive board consists of Randy Shannon, chair; Matt Messer, vice-chair; Kathy Dancer, treasurer; Rhonda Dunn, recording secretary; and Kate Emmett-Sweetser, corresponding secretary. The general board of directors includes the executive board members as well as Marianne Crane, Barb Ritter, and Rob Shaw. Ann Gillmore-Hoffman is board member emeritus.”
Where is the current facility located?
“We are currently located at 721 240thStreet, between Fort Scott and Garland. The 4,000 square foot facility (which is for sale) is situated on 19.8 acres which includes a pond and a tornado shelter. “
What are you looking for in town?
“We are looking for 1000-1500 square feet which could house an office, intake room, adoption area, and a few cat suites. We want a location which is affordable to maintain and easy for volunteers and potential adopters to access. We have a few potential rental and purchase options which we will discuss at our next executive board session.”
Tell about the animal foster program.
“Our goal is to develop a network of foster homes for dogs waiting for adoption. A foster home is a better temporary situation for dogs than a shelter because the animals live in a home where they receive more attention and are socialized with family members, both humans and other pets.
The state requires that we inspect and license all animal foster homes, so the process can take several weeks. Once a foster home is approved, they are licensed for a year. When placing a dog in foster care, our organization will have the dog spayed or neutered and vaccinated. The foster family will provide for the daily needs of the dog and coordinate with shelter personnel to give potential adopters opportunities to meet the foster dog. We plan to host adoption events on a regular basis at our new location. Foster applications are available on our website at www.LeesPawsAndClawsShelter.org/fostering.html.”
The annual Homes for the Holiday Tour will no longer be every year but will switch to every other year, according to Bourbon County Historic Preservation Association Chairman Rhonda Dunn.
“Bourbon County HPA pioneered the concepts of homes tours and was the only homes tour in this area for many, many years,” Dunn said. “Now there are several other homes tours in the area and some of them on the same weekend. So the crowds we once enjoyed visiting the houses in our town are now staying closer to home at other tours.”
“Above everything else, the Homes for the Holidays tour takes the generosity of homeowners to open their houses to the tour and to the public,” she said. “Participating in the homes tour requires a lot of time and effort on the part of the homeowner. The most famous of Fort Scott’s historic homes have been on the Homes tour several times. It is difficult to find a ‘new’ home for the tour and it has become increasingly more difficult to get homes committed to participate in the tour.”
” So after much consideration, the HPA has decided to try a bi-annual format in hopes of having a strong, vibrant tour for many years to come,” she said.
“The tour has evolved through the years with the addition of the Stocking Stuffer Craft Show, the Moonlight and Mistletoe evening event, quilt shows, churches, etc.,” Dunn said. ” An event like HFH takes a large amount of volunteers to put the event together and nearly year-round preparation.”
There will still be Moonlight and Mistletoe Party.
Moonlight and Mistletoe is Friday, December 7, from 6-8 pm at the Courtland Hotel.
Tickets are $25 for the event and are available at the Convention and Visitors Bureau or Chamber of Commerce.
Hors doerves will be served, with a cash bar. Tours of the hotel and spa will be available.
“The Bourbon County Historic Preservation Association would like to thank everyone for the many years of support of the Homes for the Holidays tour, most especially the home’s owners and volunteers that made the event possible,” she said. ” Mark your calendars for December 6/7/8, 2019 for the Homes for the Holidays Tour.”
Anyone interested in opening their home for the Homes Tour or volunteering to help with the event next year can contact Rhonda Dunn at 620-224-1186.
There is still much to entertain that weekend in Fort Scott, she said.
The Candlelight Tour at the Fort Scott National Historic Site is December 7 and 8.
Tours on December 7 will begin at 6:30 p.m. and leave every 15 minutes until 9:00 p.m.
On Saturday, December 8, the tours will start at 5:00 p.m. with the final tour leaving at 8:45 p.m.
Please arrive 10 minutes early to allow time to park, present/pick up your ticket, and get oriented.
“That includes treats, hot chocolate, glow necklaces, Christmas Carols with Fort Scott High School Thespians, and Santa might even make an appearance while on the tour,” Dunn said.
Enjoy a FREE regular tour of Fort Scott on Dolly the Trolley on Saturday, December 8, leaving on the hour beginning at 10 am, with the last tour at3 pm.
In addition, the shops throughout Fort Scott are open.
“Our boutique shops, bookstore, and antique shops are open on Saturday,” Dunn said. “There are some people on your gift list that are impossible to buy for. Rely on the knowledgeable advice of our expert shopkeepers. Gifts take on a special meaning when you purchase them from a live shopkeeper in a brick and mortar shop!”
Dunn said local restaurants are also open for a family’s dining experience.
“You can immerse yourself in the Christmas Spirit with a drink and incredible meal at Nate’s Place or Crooner’s Lounge,” she said.” Enjoy Fort Scott’s very own Holiday Ale at the Boiler Room Brewhaus.”