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Bourbon County Garden Club: Encouraging Gardens and Providing Community Service

Submitted photo of a pocket garden that club members have planted in Fort Scott.

Bourbon County Garden is a group of local gardeners that gather to learn, grow, and share in their passion of gardening, according to a press release from the club.

They have provided care of many of the downtown area garden spots.

This garden at the north end of downtown Main Street is one of projects of the Bourbon County Garden Club. From the club's Facebook page.
This garden at the north end of downtown Main Street is one of projects of the Bourbon County Garden Club. From the club’s Facebook page.

Club meetings are  the 4th Thursday of the month at 6 p.m. from March to October.

The Bourbon County Garden Club met at the Common Grounds Coffee Shop in this May 2022 photo. Taken from the clubs Facebook page.

“Our members take turns hosting our meetings, so the location changes depending on who is hosting,” President Austin Bolinger said.

Austin Bolinger is the president of the Bourbon County Garden Club. From the club’s Facebook page.

“We have 60 people on our email list, and about 1/2 of those are active in the club,” Bolinger said.

The list of members:

Aaron Houser

Jan Hedges

Janet Irvin

Dora Jasinski

Betty & Dale Johnson

Leah Lewis

Deb McCoy

Diana Morriss

Linda Noll

Clara Schofield

Norma Sellers

Priscilla Sellers

Ashlee Shakir

Kate Sweetser

Judy Wallis

Robin Whitlock

Stana Parsons

Judy Warren

Margaret Kerr

Helen Carson

Bill Hoyt

Darcy Sinn

Krista Harding

Ann Stark

Jenni Wilcoxen

Deborah Hyland

Pam Speer

Heather Wilson

Janette Danley

Martha Kraai

Barbara Woodward

Honey Bidwell

Barbara McCord

Delphine Parks

Austin Bolinger

Estevan DeBoer

Makensie Griffin

Sheryl Bloomfield

Jim Logan

Marcile Logan

Rachel French

Calista Rchards

Brenda Alter

Deb Lust

Doris Ericson

Paula Blincoe

Rondi Anderson

Sandy Areu

Whitney Beth

Karen Billiard

Maggie Brenner

Sharon Campbell

Kelly Collins

Maggie Davenport

Rita Emmerson

Connie Findley

Constance Gates

Martha Jane Gentry

Lindsey Gulager

Teri Hamilton

Rosemary Harris

Rhonda Hassig


This is the club selling plants at the May 2022 Fort Scott Farmers Market, annual event for the club. From its Facebook page.
The club sells plants at the first Fort Scott Farmers Market in May each year. Taken from their Facebook page.

Complimentary Pocket Garden Drawing Winners Announced

Recently the club awarded two community residents with consultation and installation of a pocket garden.

“Bourbon County Garden Club recently held a drawing to award a pocket garden to lucky Bourbon County residents,” according to the press release.

A pocket garden is an area on a homeowner’s property that is a gardening challenge.

“This might be a corner where curbs and sidewalks intersect, by a mailbox, or by a driveway and a pocket garden can beautify that area,” according to the press release.

The winners, Marianne Crane and Gabrielle Martin, will get an initial pocket garden consultation, along with the plants and installation of the plants in the garden. The maintenance of the garden is the winners’ responsibility.


“The benefits of planting a pocket garden include improving a problem area of your yard, collaboration with neighbors to create multiple attractive garden corners, pollination for bees and butterflies and engagement in a healthy outdoor activity,” according to the press release

About the club

Bourbon County Garden Club encourages growing plants in these areas that provide three seasons of bloom and fourth season of winter interest. Example pocket gardens in Fort Scott are located at Pine and Eddy Streets, 8th and Crawford Streets(all four corners), and 9th and National Avenue(SE corner).


For more information on planting a Pocket Garden or joining Garden Club, email Austin Bolinger at [email protected] or visit the Bourbon County Garden Club Facebook page.

Ruritan Plans Summer Entertainment For Uniontown Community

Uniontown City Park. The flower garden at the northeast corner of the park is in memory of Doris George by Carol and Hershal George.

Movies/Music in the Park, sponsored by Uniontown Ruritan Club, will provide Uniontown school district  residents with some free family fun this summer in the park on the town square.

“At the beginning of this year, we had a brainstorming session to consider various ideas for community service projects for 2023,” Mary Pemberton, one of the committee members, said.  “Mauriel Whisenhunt and I suggested something that would highlight and make use of the beautiful city park, bring people together, and provide entertainment for all ages.  One of our ideas was Movies in the Park.  That idea was well received and expanded to include music.  We decided to put on one Movie in the Park event each month and another separate Music in the Park night each month during June-July-August.”

Submitted graphic.

“Our schedule kicks off on June 9th with a Movie in the Park night,” Mary Pemberton, one of the committee members” said. Each movie night starts at 7 p.m. with games and activities such as: sidewalk games, corn hole, spikeball, dodgeball, washer toss, face painting and rock painting.  Then at 9 p.m. seating begins for the movie – this is an outdoor movie showing, so bring your own chair or blanket.”

The group has planned music entertainment on alternating evenings this summer.

“Alternating movies and music means the next event, on June 23rd is a music night,” Pemberton said.  “Music nights feature food trucks from 5 to 7:30 p.m.  Musical performances are from 7-8:30.  We have arranged for different genres of music each month – Mike Miller (gospel), Rick Hite (country/folk) and Ridge Runnerz (classic rock/country).”

“On June 23rd and July 14th there will be special performances by a mother/daughter duo who are both world class baton twirlers,” she said.  “We enticed them out of ‘retirement’ for these performances and I witnessed part of a practice session when they were refreshing their skills and working out a routine.  They are amazingly talented – you won’t want to miss this; baton twirling is an art you don’t see locally at this skill level and Kristi  and Lexie are truly awe-inspiring.”

The movies, music, games/activities and entertainment are all FREE and Uniontown school district residents are invited, she said.

“We are also giving away free hot dogs/chip/drink at the first event, a free ice cream social in July,  and free popcorn to munch on during each movie,” Pemberton said.   “Tips for the musicians and/or free-will donations are accepted, but not required.”

Food trucks will be available on certain dates.

” Food trucks include Los Tres Pollitos on June 23;  on July 14 the Ruritan Club is selling pulled pork BBQ sandwiches; and on August 11 the Hot Pink Heifer food truck is here,” Pemberton said.  “Additionally, the Sunshine Shak will be here most evenings with sweets, snacks and drinks for sale.”

The complete schedule of events can be found on flyers posted at businesses around Uniontown and on social media.

For more information contact her at 620-224-9654 or stop by 103 3rd Street in Uniontown.

Ruritan Club Music in the Park Committee members are Pemberton, Mauriel Whisenhunt and Randy Rathbun.

“In addition, several Uniontown High School clubs are helping on the event nights,” Pemberton said. “The Uniontown High School  FFA  is grilling and serving hot dogs on June 9; the  UHS Art Club is doing face painting and assisting with rock painting each movie night; UHS Cheerleaders are assisting with games and will perform at each movie night.  We also wish to thank Rhonda DeWitt with the First Missionary Baptist Church for allowing us to use their movie screen and popcorn machine.”

“Ruritan is a nationwide service organization and our club performs a variety of services or projects each year that benefit the community and residents in and around Uniontown,” she said.  “Last year we financed and built public restrooms which are located across the street from the park.”

The public restrooms are just across from Uniontown’s downtown park.


Fort Scott’s Labyrinth To Be Dedicated May 28

Pictured are people painting the initial labyrinth lines in fall 2022 at the vacant lot across from First Presbyterian Church at 308 S. Crawford. Submitted photo.

In nearly every culture, walking labyrinths are a single path to a center used for prayer and meditation, or just a brief walk, according to Pastor Christopher Eshelman of Fort Scott First United Methodist.

“We find examples all over the world, from petroglyphs to indigenous basket weavings, stamped coins and labyrinths themselves,” he said. “In this sense, a labyrinth is not a maze or a puzzle – there are no dead ends (and no Minataur!).”

Building a labyrinth in Fort Scott, was Eshelman’s idea.

“Walking labyrinths is one of my favorite spiritual disciplines and I’ve been building them for several years – everything from temporary chalk on concrete or painters tape on a gym floor to mowing them into fields or, in this case, arranging stone to form the path boundaries,” he said.

The Fort Scott Labyrinth was completed last month, and will be dedicated on May 28 at 11:45 a.m., right after the Methodist church service is over.

Pictured is the completed labyrinth with benches. Submitted photo.

“It just really got finished in the last month or so and we are formally dedicating it on Sunday, May 28th with a brief ceremony, he said. “We added the benches and sign a few months ago using funds from a grant given by the Healthy Congregations program of the UMC’s Great Plains Conference. Anyone can use the space.”


The labyrinth is a place to meditate.

“It’s a personal favorite practice and it is a way of transforming the space from an abandoned lot into something beautiful,” Eshelman said. “This site, where people once bought food to nourish their bodies now serves as a space to nourish mind and spirit. It is a great way to engage people in walking, exercise, and spirituality as well as deepening the connection and cooperation between our two congregations.”

The labyrinth is sponsored by First Presbyterian Church and First United Methodist Church.

The Presbyterian Church logos, left and the Methodist Church Logo, right. Submitted graphics.

“The Presbyterians now own the land, which was the former site of Whiteside’s Grocery at 3rd and Crawford,” he said. “The Whiteside’s are longtime members of First United Methodist, where I now serve as pastor. With permission of their Sessions board, I and a few volunteers initially laid it out with marking paint and then gradually added stone – some is debris from the site and some is stone gathered and donated from nearby fields and projects by one of our members. What was once scattered now contributes to a place of wholeness.”

Memorabilia from Whiteside’s Grocery Store, now the site of the labyrinth. Submitted photo.

“It is a space where you can, quite literally, center yourself,” he said. “It really is what you make of it and what you bring to it. There is no wrong way to walk a labyrinth so long as you are respectful of the space and others who use it. One of my favorite experiences was a time I was trying to very seriously instruct a group of Cub Scouts in the ancient practice… and they did not care. They just wanted to play. When I finally got out of the way and let them runs and skip, they immediately started playing follow the leader and exploring the space. It was wonderful. Our design copies one that was laid in the floor of Chartres Cathedral in France between 1200 and 1220AD and used as a pilgrimage spot.”

Chartres Labyrinth design. Submitted photo.




Help Build the Field of Honor at Fort Scott National Historic Site on Friday May 26

Photo credit: National Park Service. Staff and community members set up the Field of Honor in 2022.

Symbols of Sacrifice, an annual event at the Fort Scott National Historic Site, was started about 10 years ago to commemorate those killed in wars the U.S. has fought in.

The first event was organized by the late Anne Emerson and the Friends of Fort Scott National Historic Site and was on Sept. 11, 2013.

“The Symbols of Sacrifice event began in 2013 (http://www.friendsofthefort.com/2013/08/symbols-of-sacrifice.html) with events around September 11th developed by the Friends of Fort Scott NHS,” said Carl Brenner, FSNHS Program Manager for Interpretation and Resource Management.  “It has occurred on September 11th until  2018 when it was moved to July 4th for that year. Beginning in 2019 we moved the event to Memorial weekend to be more inclusive of everyone who have made the ultimate sacrifice to keep our country free.”

Memorial Day was originally known as Decoration Day and originated in the years following the Civil War, becoming an official federal holiday in 1971, according to a FSNHS press release.

The Field of Honor with its approximately 7,000 flags commemorate the ultimate sacrifice members of the United States Armed Forces have made to keep this country free, according to the press release.


Volunteers Needed

Members of the community are invited to join the Fort Scott National Historic Site park staff in placing the flags for the “Symbols of Sacrifice” Field of Honor on Friday morning, tomorrow, May 26, according to the press release.

Volunteers,  individuals and groups, are asked  to plan on working from 8 a.m. through 1 p.m. Volunteers are also asked to help remove the display on Tuesday, May 30, according to the press release.

To find out more and to become involved, please contact the park at 620-223-0310, email us at [email protected], or just come out and help.


Symbols of Sacrifice continues the entire Memorial Day Weekend, Friday, May 26 through, Monday, May 29, and the Field of Honor will be open throughout the weekend, according to the press release.

There will be guided fort tours daily at 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. This is an all-weather event.

Fort Scott National Historic Site


About the Fort

From April 1 to September 30, Fort Scott National Historic Site, a unit of the National Park Service, will be open for its summer hours of operation.

The site exhibit areas and visitor center are open daily from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Park grounds are open daily from a half hour before sunrise until a half hour after sunset. To find out more or become involved in activities at the Fort, please contact the park at 620-223-0310 or visit our website at www.nps.gov/fosc.


Taco Azul Food Truck: A Mom and Pop Business

Submitted photo of Taco Azul fare.
Erin and Sebastian Macik, Fort Scott, are owners of Taco Azul, a food truck that they hope will turn into a restaurant business.
The Taco Azul Food Truck. Submitted photo.
They make Mexican street tacos, using pork, beef, or chicken, in flour tortillas or handmade corn tortillas; homemade salsas, and also street corn on the side, Erin said.
“We’ve been prepping and planning for over a year now,” Erin said. “Sebastian picked up the food truck in April, and we plan to fire it up at the Good Ol’ Days festival here in Fort Scott at the beginning of June.”
“We hope to open up a restaurant in the future, but for the short term, our plan is to stay local and get a good customer base before expanding,” she said.
“You will see us at Fort Scott’s Good Ol’ Days Festival to kick off the summer, and then we’ll be set up by the Washateria on National Avenue for the most part,” Erin said. “We’ll be posting consistently on Facebook so people know where to find us. We are really looking forward to the summer!”
Sebastian Macik taught third grade in Mexico City, and discovered true Mexican street tacos while he was there.
“Coming back state-side in 2014, he started searching for the real deal in the U.S. without much luck,” she said. “All that time he was working on his own tacos: making his own salsas and corn tortillas, trying out various marinades and cooking techniques, until they became exactly what he was looking for. When the opportunity arose to get a food truck, it was a no-brainer. We’re excited to offer this in Fort Scott! Mexico City-style tacos are unlike anything you can find at any chain restaurant in the United States.”
Erin and Sebastian Macik with their children. Submitted photo.
Contact info: 

Jayci Cosens: Teacher of the Year at Fort Scott Middle School

Jayci Cosens, who teaches 7th grade science, is the recipient of this years Dale Hammons Award, Teacher of the Year, for the Fort Scott Middle School.
Fort Scott Middle School.
“The criteria we used was someone that builds strong relationships with students and staff, sets high expectations for their students and themselves, listens well to their peers, works well with others, and sets a positive example for students,” said FSMS Principal Zach Johnson.
“I feel very blessed to teach at USD 234,” Cosens said. “It is a district filled with great educators, administrators, support staff and students. The middle school is full of other teachers who are just as deserving of this honor as I am. I have spent the past decade learning from them about what great teaching looks like.”
Cosens began her teaching career at Fort Scott High School in 2001, after graduation from Pittsburg State University.
“I taught for three years and quit teaching in 2004 to be a stay-at-home mom following the birth of our first son….and returned to the classroom in 2011, when our youngest started kindergarten and I taught for one year at Heritage Christian in Olathe.
“I started teaching 7th grade science at the (Fort Scott) middle school in 2013,” Cosens said. “Along the way, I have coached interscholastic and intramural volleyball, basketball, and track both at the high school and middle school level.”
Have you always taught science there?
“I have always taught science, but my minor is in history, so I could also teach history in the future. Over the years, I have taught grades 6-12 in: General Science, Physical Science, Biology, Anatomy and Physiology, and Health. During my ‘stay at home’ years, I also went to nursing school (graduated with an ADN in 2010 from Fort Scott Community College and I still keep my nursing license current. I worked as a nurse for five years (2010-2015) in the intensive care unit and emergency room.”
Why did you choose teaching as a career?
“I actually started college planning to go into Physical Therapy. All through my undergraduate classes, I would find myself thinking, “When I have my own classroom, I will teach this concept this way’ and would then quickly have to remind myself that I was not going to be a teacher! In my senior year, I finally changed my major to education. I guess the short answer is that I chose teaching as a career because I felt like God was calling me to this profession, I just ignored that call for the first few years of college!”
What is the best part of teaching for you?
“For me, it’s probably building relationships with my students. Teaching in a small town, I get the opportunity to see them go on from 7th grade and graduate high school and beyond. I love seeing them excel in the paths they choose and know that I was a small part of their journey. Teaching is never boring! Each day (and each class) is different and that means that I am always having to adapt and change. What worked in one class might not work in another, and I have to quickly figure out how to change what I’m doing to stay effective. Science is never boring either! Students have a natural curiosity about the world around them. Helping them better understand it is rewarding every day.”
What is the biggest challenge?
“Trying to find new ways to keep kids engaged is a challenge. Our whole society, not just kids, has become more and more distracted. The things that worked to engage students twenty years ago when I started my career may not necessarily work with this generation of students. At the same time, I think educators are trying to overcome the idea that every single thing that happens in school has to be fun and entertaining. That’s just not the reality of the real world. Some things are boring, it doesn’t lessen their value.”
Care to name family?
“I grew up just outside of Redfield (my dad told me to say that) and graduated from Uniontown High School in 1996. My parents are Steve and Marci Williams (he told me to say this too). I have been married to Chad since 2002, he’s a 1995 Fort Scott High School graduate and owns 1842 Wealth Management, a retirement planning group. We have two sons. Dryden is 19 and just finished his freshman year at Fort Scott Community College where he’s also a part of the baseball team. Cal is 17 and will start his senior year at FSHS in the fall-he plays football, basketball, and baseball. We have a very large extended family in Fort Scott and chose to raise our family here where our sons would be surrounded by grandparents, aunts and uncles, and cousins.”
About Dale Hammons, in whose memory the award is given.
 Hammons was a 1946 graduate of Fort Scott High School, Johnson said. He graduated Pittsburg State University, then became a full time assistant principal at Fort Scott Junior High in 1977.
“Mr. Hammons was instrumental in helping the 1983 transition from the Fort Scott Junior High School to what is now Fort Scott Middle School,”  Johnson said. “Mr. Hammons will long be remembered as an effective middle school principal who was loved and respected by students, and staff.”
Editors note
This last paragraph incorrectly had Phil Hammons as the title.
The following is from Betsy Hammons Reichard, his daughter:
“While overseas in the Army, dad took many correspondence courses through the University of Maryland and earned his Bachelor’s degree in Military Science. After he retired from the Army in 1970, he went to PSU and earned his Master’s degree in Counselor Education and then his Education Specialist. Dad truly was loved and respected by students, staff and throughout Fort Scott and beyond. The day of his funeral, stores closed and flags were flown at half mask in honor of him. This award is special to our family and I am always thrilled to know who receives it.
Congratulations Jayci!
Betsy Hammons Reichard

Elks Fishing Derby Turn-out Was High on May 20

Millie Lipscomb gives instruction to the fisherman at  Elks Fishing Tournament on May 20.

It was the highest number of children to participate in the Elks Fishing Derby for years.

“The best turn-out we’ve had in three to five years,” said Millie Lipscomb with the Fort Scott Elks Lodge.

Fifty-six youth aged 2 to 12 years old participated in the event held at Fort Scott Community College Lake for two hours on May 20. In addition there were many accompanying adults.

“Ronnie Coulter started this event at least 25 years ago,” Lipscomb said. It is a catch-and- release the fish event.

The tournament gave prizes for the most amount of fish caught and the largest fish caught in the time period.

In addition, the Elks provided a hot dog lunch for the children who fished.

Children were provided a hot dog meal following the Elks Fishing Derby, by the Elks.

Prizes were selected individually by the winners from a table with items appropriate to the age.

Birklee Culberton selects a prize from the 7 to 11 year old prizes.

Following are the winners:

Two to six year old winners in the Elks Fishing Derby.

In the 2-6 year olds, first place for number of fish was Aubrey Thompson, second place was Cash Culberton and a tie for third, with Jackson Tash and Clayton Gander the winners.

For the largest fish caught, the winners were Aubrey Johnson, first place; Chance Hyer, second and Linden Bishop, third.

In the 7-11 years old category:

Seven to eleven year old winners at the Elks Fishing Derby.

Number of fish caught winner: Birklee Culberton, first; Hunter Holtz-Sherifff, second; and James Logan, third place.

Size of fish winners were Hunter Holtz-Sheriff, first; Madison Tourtillot, second; Kendrick Simon, third.


In the 12-15 years old category:

Twelve to 15 year old winners at the Elks Fishing Derby.

Number of fish winners: Tristan McClune, first; Daniel Cook, second; and a tie for third place: Jordan Finnell and Ty Cooney.

Size of fish winners: Daniel Cook, first; Mason Tourtillot, second; and Jordan Bunnell, third.





Two Economic Development Projects Moving Forward: Pork Processing Plant, Sports Complex

The Fort Scott City Commissioners, from the May 17 Special Meeting on Youtube. From lower left, clockwise: City Attorney Bob Farmer, Commissioner Edwin Woellhof, Commissioner Tim VanHoecke, Mayor Matthew Wells, Commissioner Josh Jones and City Manager Brad Matkin. Not present: Commissioner Kathryn Harrington,

A meat processing plant is back in the works for Bourbon County.

“I have been working to bring about the meat processing plant, a pork processing plant,” Fort Scott Mayor Matthew Wells said in an interview.

Billy Madison is the owner of the business, S.H. Pork Processing.

“This plant will provide farmers with an outlet for their pork processing,” Madison said. “And provide 15-30 new jobs.”

This is an artists rendition of the S.H. Processing Plant that Madison will build. Submitted.

To view a prior 2021 story on Madison’s pork processing plant coming to Fort Scott:


2023 plans have changed location

In 2021, the project was to be just south of the LaRoche Baseball Complex, but that was changed to a location agreed to by Madison and the City of Fort Scott.

“At this juncture I am not at liberty to say the location,” Wells said.

Wells noted that nothing has been signed, nor no one committed to this yet.

“The city approved to send out letters to respective parties involved (at a special Fort Scott city meeting on May 17) and (will) survey the property to define the boundaries and move forward in the process of securing the land,” Wells said.

Following completion of this preliminary work, the Fort Scott Planning Commission will get involved, Wells said in the May 17 special city meeting.

In the 2021, the pork processing plant site was to be located on 47 acres south of the Kansas Department of Transportation facility on Hwy. 69 south of the LaRoche Ball Park.

“That place didn’t have an entrance and we spent eight months getting an entrance to get on the property to do the engineering of the property,” Billy Madison, owner of the proposed meat plant said in a fortscott.biz interview on May 17.

Madison said that in March 2023, he “received an order to cease and desist in the (pork processing plant) plans from Rob Harrington (Director of the Regional Economic Development Inc.), “because they are going to build a sports complex there,” he said.

Sports Complex

At the May 16 regular Fort Scott City Commission meeting, Rob Harrington asked the city to authorize establishing STAR Bond and TIF District financing tools as part of the sports complex planning.

Sales Tax and Revenue (STAR) Bonds are a financing tool that allows Kansas municipalities to issue bonds to finance the development of major commercial, entertainment and tourism projects, according to https://www.kansascommerce.gov/program/community-programs/star-bonds/. The bonds are paid off through the sales tax revenue generated by the development. The intent is to increase regional and national visitation to Kansas.

Tax Increment Financing (TIF) is a real estate redevelopment tool applicable to industrial, commercial, intermodal transportation area and residential projects, https://www.kansascommerce.gov/program/taxes-and-financing/tif/. TIF uses the increases in real estate tax revenues and local sales tax revenues to retire the bonds sold to finance eligible redevelopment project costs (K.S.A. 12-1770 et seq.) or to reimburse the developer on a pay-as-you-go basis.

This project will require many steps because they will be working with the developer, the county, the state and the city council.

At the city meeting on May 16, Fort Scott City Attorney Bob Farmer told the Fort Scott City Council that they will have to partner with the Bourbon County Commission, because some of the proposed land is theirs.

The sports complex developer, along with the Kansas Department of Commerce,  will look at a list of  the developer’s ideas, then the state has to see if it is eligible, Farmer told the city council.


House To Be Auctioned To Benefit Fort Scott Parks

Chris Yoder, Devon, and three of his sons, Melvin, Willard and Joseph, work on stabilizing the roof of the  house at 1311 S. National in January 2018.
1311 S. National Avenue, May 2023.


The vacant house at 1311 S. National Avenue has the beginning work of rehabilitation done by several volunteers and others.


“We were notified by the Fort Scott Codes Department in 2017 of a house on National that they thought could be rehabbed,” said Carolyn Sinn, a member of the Youth Activity Team, which took on the project to repair then sell the house to benefit Fort Scott’s Ellis Park.

A veteran living in the home at the time was relocated.

“He was relocated with help from a lot of people in the community,” Sinn said. “To a quality place.”

The city thought the house was salvageable and YAT paid $4, 101 for it, which included the prior years taxes, she said.

The Youth Activities Team, the Good Neighbor Action Team and the Fort Scott Fire Department helped with the demolition, Sinn said.

A new roof and windows (paid for by Peerless Products, Fort Scott) were put on the house.

“We hired Amish carpenters to repair the porch and stabilize the garage,” she said. “Jeff Allen did some electrical work for us a donation.”

Then the COVID-19 Pandemic happened.

“The work got stopped,” she said. “During COVID, materials got out of control.”

All together they have invested approximately $26,000 in the house.

“When it was over, we looked at it again and decided to sell the house and hopefully get it back on the tax rolls,” Sinn said.

The YAT asked the City of Fort Scott to auction it off and any money made will be transferred to the parks committee, to be used for sensory park equipment, she said. Sensory equipment allows more easily accessed playgrounds for children of all abilities.

The City of Fort Scott voted to allow the YAT to sell the house at the commission meeting on May 16, 2023.

The original YAT was comprised of Sinn, Eric Bailey, Laura George, Tom Roberts, Paul Martin, Larry Fink and Diana Mitchell.

Following the sale of the house, the YAT will be dissolved, Sinn said.

“We have a lot of enthusiastic people in the community now,” she said.

Through the years YAT has raised money for upgrades and improvement to Ellis Park, on 12th Street, near the Fort Scott Middle School.

They installed lighting, put in a sand volleyball court, a basketball court, a walking trail, and UMB Bank helped with building a pavilion at the park.

“With the Healthy Bourbon County Action Team we raised $37,600 for the sensory equipment in the park,” Sinn said. “That money we gave to the city parks committee for sensory equipment in the park on Dec. 14, 2022.”



Recent Industrial Park Business: Jurassic Fireworks

Cindy Delise straightens up a shelf in the Jurassic Park Retail Store in the Fort Scott Industrial Park on May 12.

Summer is almost here and the 4th of July is the keystone event of the season for many people

Fireworks are a big component in celebrating the independence from Britain in 1776, that the day commemorates.

Fort Scott has its own distributor of fireworks, since October 2021, in the industrial park just off of Hwy. 69, south of the city.

The Jurassic Park Fireworks retail store at 4500 Campbell Drive.

Jurassic Fireworks, 4500 Campbell Drive, sells both wholesale and retail fireworks. This building is the former site of Firstsource Solutions.

The business is owned by a father-daughter partnership of Frank and Bree Elliot, Colorado.

“This is a family run business, started by his father in 1965,” said Cindy Delise, Fort Scott, who mans the business here, and whose title is distributor.

“I’m the only employee here currently, but we are taking applications for the season,” she said.

The fireworks season is June 26 to July 6 in Fort Scott. During that time the hours are 8 a.m. to midnight.

Regular hours are 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. the rest of the year, Delise said.

Jurassic Fireworks, Fort Scott, can be reached at (919) 369-8710.

They have retail stores in Wyoming, Colorado, Missouri, Texas and Indiana, as well.

Family Fun Outing: Shead Farm Homestead Festival on May 20

The Third Annual Shead Farm Homestead Festival is Saturday, May 20 at 2468 Cavalry Rd. near rural Garland, south of Fort Scott.

The Larry and Vickie Shead farm, rural Garland.

The day is geared toward sustainable living by a family that is doing just that.

“A lot of people were wanting to know about sustainable living,” Vickie Shead, the matriarch of the family, said. “God is good and we are trying to keep up with all He is leading us to do.”

Sustainable living means understanding how our lifestyle choices impact the world around us and finding ways for everyone to live better and lighter, according to the United Nations Environment Programme https://www.unep.org/explore-topics/resource-efficiency/what-we-do/sustainable-lifestyles

The festival will feature 36 vendors or activities that use creative ways to teach garden/farm knowledge.

“There is no charge to vendors,” Vickie said.  “This is to benefit entrepreneurs who are wanting to start a business.”

“Come join us for a fun filled educational event for the whole family,” said Vickie, who along with her husband Larry and their children and grand children will be hosting the event. “It’s a great family outing!”

Vickie and Larry Shead, 2020, from her Facebook page.

In addition to the Shead family,  they have 106 volunteers helping at the festival, for which they are grateful.

On tap will be live music, lots of children’s activities, a farm tour, and farm store, vendor booths and a food court.

The admission fee for a single ticket is $5 or for a family (4+) $20.

To view a map of the Shead Farm vendors/activities:


The Shead’s have a signature product, Veggie Powder, with all the greens grown on the property.

Greens powders are a dietary supplement that aims to help people reach their daily intake of vitamins and minerals, according to https://health.unl.edu/are-greens-powders-actually-beneficial-our-dietitian-weighs

Festival activities include:

Educational garden games/activities

An animal arena

A story station

Learning  how to milk cows

Learning how to make butter

Learning how to do laundry without electricity

The farm tour includes the gardens, greenhouse, animals, beekeeping and learning how to graft a fruit tree.

For sale will be animals, worm farms, plants, berries, carts, compost and trees.

Vendors will be selling soaps and salves, honey, eggs, spices, baked goods, baskets, weaving, spinning wool, plant propagations, farm decor and kitchen items.

The Sheads will be selling walking tacos for $5, and Supercharged Cookies for $2. A snack shack will be selling cotton candy, lemonade, ice cream and pastries.

Shead Farm Store items for sale will be Veggie Powder, toys, hats, aprons, books,quilted Items, bouquets, and more.

Contact them at

Good Ol’ Days Festival June 2-3: A Fun Place for The Family

Vendors lined Main Street in 2017.

It’s that time of year, the 42nd Annual Fort Scott Good Ol’ Days, with theme this year: “Back to the bricks”.

It’s a few days of all manner of entertainment: shopping, live music, eating and seeing friends.

The event kicks off on Friday, June 2 at 6 p.m. with a parade.

Parade goers line the streets of Main and Wall to view the Good Ol’ Days Parade in 2019.

Bring a lawn chair and line up along the parade route: Main Street from 6th Street north to Wall Street then west to National Avenue, then south to 6th Street.

The parade grand marshal this year is retired Fort Scott Chief of Police Travis Shelton.

Click here for parade application

Click here for vendor application.
Click here for the Good Ol’ Days website.

At 8 a.m. Saturday, June 3 will be the race called the Dragoon Charge.

Then historic downtown Fort Scott will come alive with craft vendors, food trucks, pony rides and so much more, according to the Good Ol’Days Facebook page.

“We have some great entertainment lined up for the weekend,” Shawn O’Brien, chairman of the Good Ol’ Days Committee, said.

“We will have a stage in front of the pavilion at 1st and Main,” he said. “There will be live entertainment featuring some great local musicians.”

On Friday night June 2 from 7-8:30 PM  the Whisky Outlaws, a Red Dirt and Classic Country band will perform, then from
8:45-10 p.m. Bobby Degonia will perform Solid Old and New Country music.

On Saturday June 3 from 10 AM-1 PM, Zane Grimes will perform, then from 2PM – 5PM – Bill and Monica’s Excellent Adventure, who are a 90’s Tribute Band, then from 7PM-10PM, 80’s and Out.

“We will have many activities for kids like we have in the past,” O’Brien said. “The bounce houses will be located at Third and Main this year. They will run from 9 a.m. to noon then from 1-4 p.m. They will be $5 per session for unlimited bounces.”

Caricature drawings and a balloon artist will be on Skubitz Plaza free of charge, he said.

“Care to Share, a local helping organization,  will host their second annual fundraiser “Children’s Cove” on Skubitz Plaza,” O’Brien said. “They will have fun games and much more to offer. For further information please contact Lavetta Simmons.”

“The annual Red Garter show will have their showcase,” he said. “They will have one show on Friday Night at 7 PM. Then they will have shows every hour on the hour starting at 10 AM on Saturday. Their final show will be at 5 PM.”

Plate with chicken, mashed potato and potato Salad.
From the Good Ol’ Days Facebook page.

Tickets for the Good Ol’ Days events are on sale  at the Fort Scott Chamber of Commerce and Regional Tourism Center at 231 E. Wall St.

VENMO QR code for making event donations.


From their Facebook page:

Fort Scott Good Ol’ Days Festival

Draft Schedule of Events

Where To Find Everything Fun!

Friday, June 2nd

11:00 AM – 2:00PM (on the hour) – Trolley Rides – 231 E. Wall St (Chamber of Commerce) – Adults-$6.00, Children 12 and under $4.00
4:30 – 6:00 PM – Chicken Mary’s Dinner – Wall Street, $8.00 Chicken, 2 sides, & water
6:00 PM – Good Ol’ Day’s Parade  – Starting at 6th & Main St., proceeding north along Main St. to Wall St., west to National Ave., south to 6th St.
After Parade – Pioneer Harvest Tractor Display – Wall & Main (on Wall Street between Main and National)
6:00 PM – 9:00 PM – Tulsa Gellyball – Skubitz Plaza
7:00 – 10:00 PM – Street Dance – Pavilion at 1st & Main
Bring your lawn chairs!  Live music for all ages!
7:00 PM – Red Garter – Skubitz Plaza
7:00 PM – 3rd Annual Cornhole Tournament – Fisher South Ball field, Sign-up Friday Morning.  Link for more information

Saturday, June 3rd

8:00 AM – Noon – Farmer’s Market – Wall Street – East of Main to Scott
8:00 AM – Dragoon Charge 5K Run or Walk – Frary Stadium (9th & Main), Link for more information
9:00 AM – 6:00 PM – Pony Rides – 1st Street east of Main
9:00 AM – 6:00 PM – Tulsa Gellyball – Skubitz Plaza
9:00 AM – 3:00PM (or until out of shirts) – Tye Dyed T Shirt – 2nd and Main
9:00 AM – 6:00 PM – Pioneer Harvest Tractor Display – Wall & Main (on Wall Street between Main and National)
9:00 AM – 12:00 PM – Kids Fun Area on Skubitz Plaza  (Bounce Houses, Obstacle Course, Interactive Light Race Arena, and Dry Slide)
9:00 AM – 6:00 PM – Children’s Care to Share Cove – Skubitz Plaza
 10:00 AM – Baby Contest – Memorial Hall (3rd & National), Registration Begins at 9:00 AM
10:00 AM – 2:00 PM – Caricatures – Skubitz Plaza
 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM (every Hour) – Red Garter – Skubitz Plaza
10:00 AM – 2:00 PM (on the hour) – Trolley Rides – 231 E. Wall St (Chamber of Commerce) – Adults-$6.00, Children 12 and under $4.00
10 AM – 3:30 PM – Programs and Tours – Fort Scott National Historic Site
11 AM – 3 PM – Pavilion at 1st & Main –  Music TBD
11 AM – 11:30 AM – Artillery Demonstration – Parade Grounds, Fort Scott National Historic Site
Noon – 4:00 PM – Balloonist – Skubitz Plaza
NOON – 12:30 PM – Jr. Duck Stamp Art Contest Award Presentation – 2nd Floor Infantry Barracks, Fort Scott National Historic Site
2 PM – 3 PM – Native American Dance Presentation – Parade Ground, Fort Scott National Historic Site