Category Archives: Youth

FSHS Thespians Direct Children’s Production of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas 

FSHS Thespians Direct Children’s Production of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas 


The Fort Scott High School Thespians present their children’s theatre production of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas by Kathryn Schultz Miller.


Performances are at 7 p.m. on Dec. 8 and 9 at the FSHS Auditorium. Doors open 30 minutes prior to showtime.


The mini-musical is based on the traditional Christmas poem by Clement C. Moore with a modern take including Izzy the Christmas mouse played by Theodore Bowman, Rosie the red-nosed reindeer played by Mary Racer, and other holiday favorite characters such as reindeer, elves, and even the Abominable Snowman. Audience members will get to join in the fun throughout the performance. Cast members include fifty local children in 1st-8th grades.


‘Twas the Night Before Christmas’ is produced by FSHS Theatre Director Angie Bin with assistance from Levi Bin. Direction and design is by the FSHS Thespians. Junior Cooper George serves as Director with junior Mykael Lewis assisting. Junior Alyssa Popp is the Stage Manager.


Tickets are all reserved seating and are $6 from or at the door. Seating is limited.


# # #


Contact: Angie Bin, 620-719-9622, [email protected]


CASA Christmas Celebration is December 8

Sending on behalf of Chamber Member

Bourbon County CASA…..

Change a Child’s Story!

You are cordially invited to a

Christmas Celebration

to benefit Bourbon County CASA

Friday, December 8th 2023

Mitch and Colleen Quick’s Residence

2086 Justice Road

Fort Scott, Kansas 66701


Heavy hors d’oeuvres and full bar provided

Giving Levels

Payable with your reservation response card


$25 per person

$50 per couple


$50 per person

$100 per couple

Guardian Angel

$75 per person

$150 per couple


$125 per person

$250 per couple


$500 per person

$1000 per couple


$1,000 per person and over

Mail your selected giving level to:

Bourbon County CASA

PO Box 146

Fort Scott, Kansas 66701

Click here to RSVP, please RSVP by

Friday, December 1st.

Contact CASA Director Christa Horn with any questions or for more information 620-215-2769.

Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce | 231 E. Wall Street, Fort Scott, KS 66701

2023 Fall Extravaganza is November 20: Shopping To Support the Swim Team

Fort Scott Middle School.

The annual 2023 Fall Extravaganza is Monday,  November 20 from 5-8 p.m. at the Fort Scott Middle School. The event began in 2009.

“Fort Scott High School Swimming is sponsoring the event,” said Madeline Martin, the swim coach for both boys and girls teams.
“The purpose of the event is to help our swimmers raise money to attend the 2024 Summer Olympic Swim Trials as well as bring an opportunity to town to support local businesses.”

“We have 56 booth spaces this year, a few more than last year in addition to several new vendors,” Martin said.

On  Facebook:

Below is a list of vendors for the event:

About FSHS Swim Teams

“We have 11 boys coming out this year through our cooperative agreement with Frontenac and Pittsburg (school districts),” Martin said. “This girl’s season I am planning on 15+ girls from our COOP with Pittsburg, Frontenac, Arma, Colgan, and Humboldt ( school districts).”

The swim team practices from Monday-Friday in Pittsburg at the YMCA.

“Boys swimming has been active in Fort Scott since the winter of 2019 and then girl’s season began the spring of ’20 but was cut short due to COVID,” she said. “Angie Kemmerer began coaching the team and this will be my third year as swim coach.”

The money raised from booths at the Fall Extravaganza will allow the student-athletes to go to the Summer Olympics in Indianapolis, Indiana in June 2024.

“We are going to be spectators at the Summer Olympics,” she said. “The kids are excited to go watch some of their favorite athletes in person and watch a high-level competition in person.”



World Famous Vienna Boys Choir Coming to Fort Scott on Nov. 10

Photo credit: Lukas Beck.

The Vienna Boys Choir is coming to Fort Scott Community College on Friday, Nov. 10. The performance will be at 7 p.m. at the Ellis Fine Arts Center on the campus of Fort Scott Community College, 2108 S. Horton.

Fort Scott Community College

“FSCC was excited to partner with the Vienna Boys Choir to highlight our wonderful facility and offer the community of Fort Scott a performance from this famous choir,” Tom Havron, FSCC Vice President of Student Affairs said. “All excess revenue generated from the performance will go to student scholarships from the FSCC Foundation.”


“The Vienna Boys Choir is one of the most famous choirs in the world, and one of its oldest,” according to a press release. “In 1498, Emperor Maximilian I moved his court to Vienna to establish the Chapel Imperial there, along with the Vienna Boys Choir. Over the centuries, the court attracted musicians like Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Anton Bruckner. Joseph Haydn, Michael Haydn, and Franz Schubert were themselves choirboys.

“The 100 boy choristers between the ages of nine and fourteen are divided into four choirs. Between them, the choirs give around 300 concerts each year, attended by almost half a million spectators around the world. Since 1924, the boys have sung over 1000 tours in 100 different countries, which has resulted in a staggering 29,000 performances. At the Sunday services in Vienna’s Imperial Chapel, they perform with members of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra and the State Opera Chorus. The Choir frequently appears with major orchestras, conducted by Joana Mallwitz, Zubin Mehta, Riccardo Muti, Christian Thielemann, and Simone Young. Recent highlights include appearances at the Salzburg Festival and the Vienna Philharmonic’s New Year’s Concert.

“The Vienna Boys Choir’s singing tradition is listed by UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) as an intangible cultural heritage in Austria. Professor Gerald Wirth, himself a former choirboy, is the Artistic Director of the entire Campus.”


“Today the Vienna Boys Choir is a private, non-profit organization, which relies on sponsorship and donations. The Choir maintains a primary school, a junior, and a senior high school. 300 boys and girls between the ages of six and 19 attend the Choir’s Schools in Vienna’s Augarten Park. All receive individual voice lessons and sing in one of the choirs. The Choir’s education is open to all, regardless of their origin, nationality, or religion. About a third of the students go on to become music professionals.




FSHS Thespians Announce Auditions for Children’s Christmas Show


The Fort Scott High School Thespians are holding auditions for ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas by Kathryn Schultz Miller.


Auditions are open to children in 1st-8th grades and take place from 6-8 p.m. on Nov. 13 OR 14 in the FSHS Auditorium. Children do not need to prepare anything in advance, but should plan to stay for the duration of the audition time on one of the nights. Parents should be present at the beginning for information and to fill out audition forms.


Rehearsals will generally occur Monday-Thursday from 6-8 p.m. Performances are Dec. 8 and 9 at 7 p.m. in the FSHS Auditorium. There is a $30 participation fee for children cast in the show.


‘Twas the Night Before Christmas is produced by FSHS Theatre Director Angie Bin with direction and design by the FSHS Thespians. Please contact Bin at [email protected] or 620-719-9622 with any questions.

Award-Winning Teacher and Students Visit the Lowell Milken Center



Paige Franzen, Kadence Huck, and Callahan Levi, winners of the $2,500 First Prize in the Lowell Milken Center’s 2023 International Discovery Award competition, will be guests at the LMC on Thursday, November 2nd.

These 11th-grade students from Nashua-Plainfield High School in Nashua, Iowa, along with their award-winning social studies teacher, Suzy Turner, a 2022 LMC Fellow, are in Fort Scott to collaborate with the LMC staff on the production of a new exhibit panel for the Center’s Hall of Heroes.

The new exhibit will feature Unsung Hero Christine Grant, the subject of the students’ award-winning project. Their documentary, Why Not Us? Dr. Christine Grant’s Pursuit of Gender Equality, shares the story of Dr. Grant’s significant contributions to furthering gender equality in collegiate sports. As the decades-long athletic director at the University of Iowa, Grant embraced the historic passing of Title IX, building a highly recognized and unprecedented women’s athletic program.

Through their interviews with Grant’s previous students, mentees, and colleagues, the Nashua students were able to provide firsthand insight into the legacy she left behind. This information will be a valuable resource as the Lowell Milken Center staff works with Suzy Turner and her students to create a powerful new exhibit.

About the Lowell Milken Center: The Lowell Milken Center is a non-profit 501 © (3) that works with students and educators within diverse academic disciplines to develop projects focused on unsung heroes. Once their projects are finished, we advocate for the student’s unsung heroes by sharing them in our Hall of Unsung Heroes or our 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 proudly located in Southeast Kansas and showcases some of the top projects developed in collaboration with the Center.





Fort Scott High School Performs Guys and Dolls on Nov. 7,9, 11


The Fort Scott High School Performing Arts Department presents the musical Guys and Dolls at 7 p.m. on Nov. 7 and 9 and at 2 and 7 p.m. on Nov. 11 at the FSHS Auditorium.


Guys and Dolls is a musical fable of Broadway based on a story and characters of Damon Runyon with music and lyrics by Frank Loesser and book by Jo Swerling and Abe Burrows. It is considered by many to be the perfect musical comedy.


The musical follows the tale of gambler Nathan Detroit as he attempts to find a spot for his underground craps game and his girlfriend Adelaide as she laments about their very long engagement. We also watch as the smooth high roller Sky Masterson courts Missionary Sarah Brown as the result of a bet. According to Music Theatre International, “Guys and Dolls takes us from the heart of Times Square to the cafes of Havana, Cuba, and even into the sewers of New York City, but eventually everyone ends up right where they belong.”


Detroit is played by senior Jericho Jones, Adelaide is portrayed by junior Emma Guns, sophomore Levi Fairchild plays Masterson, and sophomore Junie Fisher stars as Brown. Over twenty other FSHS students serve as craps shooters, Hot Box dancers, and missionaries.


Audiences will also enjoy a live orchestra made up of 16 professional musicians from the surrounding communities for this year’s show.


The musical is led by Theatre Director Angie Bin, Music Director Whitley Chesney, Technical Director Christina King, and Choreographer Mesa Jones.


Tickets are $8 for adults and $6 for students and children. All tickets are reserved seating at or at the door. Advance purchase is encouraged as seating is limited. Doors open 30 minutes prior to showtime.


Guys and Dolls is presented through special arrangement with Music Theatre International (MTI). All authorized performance materials are also supplied by MTI,


# # #

Increasing Childcare Slots Availability

Childcare providers are able to increase child capacity,
thanks to The Healthy Bourbon County Action Team.

Recent funding from the Bourbon County Childcare Coalition, an initiative formed by The Healthy Bourbon County Action Team in Fort Scott, already is making a big difference to the capacity of local childcare providers at a time when Kansas is facing a childcare crisis.

“A recent survey by the coalition found that 95 percent of adults seeking childcare said they would return to the workforce if they had access to high quality childcare,” said Jody Hoener, HBCAT president and CEO. “Childcare is incredibly important not just to our economy, but to the wellbeing of our families.”

The survey found that individuals seeking care for their children are on an average of nearly three waitlists and have been for more than 23 weeks.

This fall, HBCAT was awarded a $45,000 grant from Child Care Aware of Kansas and an additional $3,500 from the Patterson Family Foundation to address capacity.

Within just a few weeks, those funds had been passed on to the coalition, which worked with local providers to understand what they needed to be able to create new slots.

“Ultimately, with the help of this grant, childcare providers will be able to increase 51 childcare slots,” said Rachel Carpenter, HBCAT executive director.

Of the funding, $32,000 is being spent on capacity-building equipment and materials at numerous providers.

Among them: Lana’s Daycare, owned by Lana Beerbower, where the funding was used to buy a larger refrigerator, which increased food storage to accommodate additional children.

The daycare also was able to expand activity spaces to accommodate additional children through the purchase of an outdoor playhouse, activity table, play mat, drawing mat, and carpet.

For Tiny Tots, owned by Susie Castleberry, it was used to buy a bigger food pantry, additional individual cubbies for childrens’ belongings, and an extended playground with safety fencing.

“That will enable us to increase our slots because we can have play areas for both toddlers and older children, and we’ll be able to have more food on hand to serve them,” Castleberry said. “It will help us comply with regulations and serve more children safely.”

“We’re grateful and super excited,” she said. “We’ve been wanting to be able to help more families.”

At Happy Kids Daycare, owned by Lindsay Knopp and Afton Brown, funding was used for curriculum and staff training, as well as salaries for additional employment.

“This means the ability to serve more children in a more impactful way, and for our teachers to have the tools they need to be effective,” Knopp said.

“Having a proven curriculum and early intervention to use with the children we serve is huge for them. It’s a building block that will better prepare them for school with modules in social, emotional, and academic areas, and in daily skills that will prepare them for success.”

Funding also will be spent by the coalition on a new provider recruitment coordinator ($2,000) and on quarterly training for providers, including materials and keynote speakers ($11,000).

About The HBCAT

The mission of The HBCAT is to increase access to healthy food and physical activity, promote commercial tobacco cessation, enhance quality of life and encourage economic growth. The problems of health inequity and social injustice are complex in nature and inextricably linked to key economic indicators. A healthy workforce is a prerequisite for economic success in any industry and in all cities.

The HBCAT formed the Bourbon County Childcare Coalition to bring high quality, affordable childcare to the county.

HBCAT is building up the childcare infrastructure, which is a critical piece to workforce development. Affordable childcare will open opportunities for individuals to use The HBCAT’s services at the Center for Economic Growth.

As a result, they will have access to career opportunities through Southeast KANSASWORKS or to create economic stability through starting a business through PSU Small Business Development Center.

Learn more at Find HBCAT on Facebook at

Keeping Safe at Halloween

A downtown Halloween Parade in 2013.

Kids may have to bundle up for the scariest night of the year tonight because of cold weather, and Fort Scott Police Chief Jason Pickert gives parents some other tips to keep them safe.

“Fortunately, there are lots of easy things parents and kids can do to stay safe on the spookiest of holidays,” Pickert said.

Here is his list:

  • Carry glow sticks or flashlights, use reflective tape or stickers on costumes and bags, and wear light colors to help kids see and be seen by drivers.

  • Don’t let little ones walk by themselves. Make sure they are joined by an older sibling or an adult for trick-or-treating.

  • Remind kids to cross the street at corners or crosswalks.

  • When selecting a costume, make sure it is the right size to prevent trips and falls. Choose face paint over masks when possible. Masks can limit children’s vision.

  • Drivers – Slow down and be alert! Kids are excited on Halloween and may dart into the street. Turn on headlights early in the day to spot kids from further away.



Safety Advocates Offer Tips to Protect Your Children this Halloween

 Safe Kids Kansas, the Kansas Poison Center, and the Office of the State Fire Marshal remind families to make safety part of their fall festivity planning.

“On average, children are more than twice as likely to be hit by a vehicle and killed on Halloween than on any other day of the year, according to a press release from Safe Kids Kansas. “Drivers need to slow down and be extra alert, especially in neighborhoods, as there will be more children on the streets and sidewalks – and those kids may be focused on gathering candy and the excitement of the holiday rather than being careful while crossing streets.”

“Review safety rules with your kids before they leave the house,” according to the release. “Trick-or-treaters are often out when it’s dark and more difficult for drivers to see them. Children younger than age 12 should not be crossing streets alone on Halloween without an adult or responsible teenager.”

It’s a good idea for children to have a cell phone with them in case of an emergency, but remind them to pay attention to their surroundings, and not be distracted by texting or talking on the phone, said Cherie Sage with Safe Kids Kansas.

“Parents and kids should also be careful with candy,” according to the release. “It’s best to check sweets before children are allowed to eat them. Only eat treats in original and unopened wrappers. Also, be aware kids are in candy-seeking mode, so keep medicine locked up and away, and keep the Poison Help Line programmed into your phone: 800-222-1222.”

“According to the National Fire Protection Association, nearly half of home structure fires happened because decorations were too close to a heat source,” according to the press release. “Most of these incidents were started by candles. Play it safe and use battery-powered candles or lights. Remember to make sure your family has working smoke alarms on every level of your home and inside and outside every sleeping room.”

Safety tips from these organizations:

Decorate Safely

  • Keep flammable materials such as hay bales, corn stalks and paper decorations away from heat and flame sources, like candles, light bulbs and heaters.
  • Use battery-operated candles in jack-o-lanterns and when decorating pathways and yards.
  • Set a reminder to blow out any candles and unplug lights at the end of the evening.
  • Talk to your teens who may be attending parties and haunted houses to look for the exits and have a way out in case of an emergency.
  • If using dry-ice, make sure you use gloves or tongs when handling it and do not put it in cups where it could be swallowed and cause severe burns.

Walk Safely

  • Stick to sidewalks or paths. Don’t walk through neighbors’ yards, as there may be a hazard you can’t see.
  • If there are no sidewalks along your street, walk on the road facing traffic as far to left as possible.
  • Always stop and look before you cross the street, and cross at corners using signals and crosswalks whenever possible. Make eye contact with drivers before crossing.

For more tips on how to keep kids safe on Halloween and throughout the year, visit

Halloween Benefit Run for Piper Weeks This Saturday

The Fort Scott Recreation Center is facilitating an event to help a local Fort Scott High School in her battle with cancer.

“Piper Weeks is a high school student here in town who is diagnosed with bone cancer,” said Lucas Kelley, recreation director. “She is currently undergoing treatment. All proceeds from this race will be donated to the Weeks family to help with treatment costs.”

Lucas Kelley is the director of Fort Scott Recreation Center. Submitted photo.

This Halloween-based 5k Run/Walk is on Saturday, October 28, 2023 at 9 a.m.

“It is called the Spooky Scurry,” he said. “The route begins at Frary Stadium (at FSHS, 1005 S. Main) then goes south on Main Street, east on East National, south all the way to the end of Cooper Street and back. The total route is 3.1 miles. We are encouraging all participants to wear their Halloween costumes for a chance to win the prize of tickets to the Enchant Christmas Light Show in Kansas City this winter.”

“The purpose of all our 5k Run/Walks is to help provide for a need in the community,” he said. “The cost is $30 per participant. Participants can register at Buck Run Community Center (735 Scott Avenue) or the day of the race starting at 8 a.m.”


The recreation staff has created a Venmo account to accept donations for the Weeks family. To make a contribution you can do that on Venmo with the following QR code.

A reminder that 100% of the money raised will go to help Piper Weeks with her cancer treatments.

Halloween Parade Tomorrow in Downtown Fort Scott

Halloween Parade

The Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce announces this year’s Halloween Parade will be held Saturday, October 28th at 11:00 a.m. in Downtown Fort Scott.

Prior to the parade, starting at 10:00 a.m., there will be special activities including pictures with a spooktacular backdrop at the City Scales building on North Main and face painting by Fort Scott High School Thespians.

The parade trick-or-treats merchants along Main Street, starting at La Hacienda, south to 2nd Street, crossing the street then heading north back to Skubitz Plaza. Any businesses or organizations in the community not located along Main Street are also welcome to set up a table on the sidewalk providing treats, coupons, or other handouts for kids. Children are encouraged to bring a sack or bag to collect treats along the parade route.

Following the parade, a free slice of Papa Don’s pizza and a drink will be served to kids in costumes.

The Chamber is currently seeking sponsors and donations for the pizza lunch following the parade.

Contact the Chamber if interested at 620-223-3566

Fort Scott Area Chamber of Commerce | 231 E. Wall Street, Fort Scott, KS 66701