News

Wed
19
Dec

Carrying on the Tradition

LINDA MOWERY-DENNING/Ellsworth County Independent-Reporter

Deanna and Rick Soukup continue the Soukup family’s retail history in downtown Ellsworth.

LINDA MOWERY-DENNING/Ellsworth County I-R

This is one of Deanna’s favorite designs.

The night before Jacob Palmer’s funeral, Edie Grogg of the Ellsworth Service Center called Rick and Deanna Soukup for help.

Dozens of tow truck drivers planned to honor their Salina colleague with a procession to the memorial service at the First Church of the Nazarene. The 32-year-old Palmer was killed in early November when his wrecker rolled into a ditch on the Kansas Turnpike.

Unfortunately, organizers needed two 3-by-5-feet black and yellow banners and a casket cover as part of the tribute and they didn’t have them.

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Wed
12
Dec

Hold the Presses

Photo Courtesy of Ellsworth High School Journalism Class

Members of the Ellsworth High School yearbook staff are: Front row — Courtney Wise, Kelsey Ashbaugh and Taylor Holecek and back row — Parker McGowan.

Ellsworth Junior-Senior High School yearbook staff members have won the Kansas Scholastic Press Association’s (KSPA) All-Kansas award for the 2018 issue of the Elkan.

The award is the highest award given in the organization’s yearly yearbook critique service. Students on the staff were co-editors Taylor Holecek and Courtney Wise, Kelsey Ashbaugh, Kylie Ashbaugh, Mena Blanding, Parker McGowan and Kourtney McKinney. The yearbook advisor is Dawnae Bunch, journalist teacher.

In the Nov. 4 notification by KSPA, the staff was praised for a well-written, attractive design book.

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Wed
12
Dec

Developer plans more than 20 family homes across county

These are an artist’s conception of the singlefamily homes Missouri developer Pete Ramsel plans to build in Ellsworth County, starting in 2019.

If all goes as planned, Missouri developer Pete Ramsel hopes to break ground in the spring of 2019 on a group of single-family homes that has the potential to affect every town in Ellsworth County.

Ramsel visited Ellsworth County Monday, Dec. 3, to meet with officials in Ellsworth, Holyrood, Lorraine, Kanopolis and Wilson and determine the availability of lots.

Discussion in each of the communities centered on “workforce” housing for families in search of moderate income, affordable homes.

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Wed
12
Dec

A Very Czech Christmas

ALAN RUSCH/Ellsworth County Independent-Reporter

Colton Covieo and his brother, Casey, visit with Santa Claus Saturday during a visit to the Iron Lion in Wilson as part of the Wilson Chamber of Commerce’ Santa Day. Santa was accompanied by, back row from left, Jessica Wonderlich, 2018 Miss Kansas Czech-Slovak Queen second runner-up; Emma Carlin, the 2018 Miss Kansas Czech-Slovak Queen; and Haley Piroutek, 2018 Miss Kansas Czech-Slovak Queen first runner-up.

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Wed
12
Dec

Childcare officials field questions, ideas

More than 50 parents, board members and others attended a meeting Dec. 5 at the Ellsworth Childcare and Learning Center to offer suggestions on ways to move the financially-troubled non-profit service forward.

The center, which opened in 2012, serves 49 families and 75 children in Ellsworth, Rice, Lincoln and Saline counties.

The center’s president-elect, Sarah Kueser, and other board members also fielded audience questions, most of which targeted funding issues.

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Wed
05
Dec

Tariffs continue to shrink farmers’ pocketbooks

For John Thaemert and other Kansas farmers, the most recent round of newly negotiated U.S. trade agreements has more questions than answers.

Like most small, independent producers, Thaemert, who farms more than 1,000 acres of wheat, milo and soybean crops near Sylvan Grove, has the same hope each year as he drills seed — that what springs forth results in good yields at a fair price.

But trade tariffs imposed this year have affected market prices, which, in turn, hurt farmers like Thaemert just trying to make a profit.

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Wed
05
Dec

Ho, Ho, Ho Jolly Old Elf visits Kanopolis

At left, Carinne Halfhill smiles as she eats the Christmas cookie she decorated Saturday during an Afternoon with Santa at the Fort Harker Commanding Officers Quarters in Kanopolis.

ALAN RUSCH/Ellsworth County Independent-Reporter

Malle Schwerdtfeger wears a Santa hat while visiting with the Jolly Old Elf himself Saturday during the Kanopolis Recreation Commission’s annual Afternoon with Santa at Fort Harker in Kanopolis.

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Wed
05
Dec

Former center head faces theft-related charges

Stephanie Roehrman, former director of the Ellsworth Childcare and Learning Center, is set to make her first appearance Tuesday, Dec. 11, in Ellsworth County District Court.

Roehrman, 47, who was booked into jail Nov. 20 in Salina on an outstanding warrant, faces multiple counts of theft from the center over a three-year period, from May 2015 to September 2018.

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Wed
05
Dec

Kanopolis settles KOMA violation

Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt has executed a settlement with the Kanopolis City Council to resolve a violation of the Kansas Open Meetings Act (KOMA).

In September, the attorney general’s office received a complaint alleging that the Kanopolis City Council violated the KOMA by improperly taking binding action in an executive session.

Upon investigation, the attorney general’s office determined that the council violated the KOMA by recessing into executive session to discuss non-elected personnel, and taking binding action to terminate the city clerk without holding a public vote. The council at a later meeting took a public vote to ratify the clerk’s termination.

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Wed
05
Dec

Child care directors seek answers

Directors of the Ellsworth Childcare and Learning Center have a question and they’re asking for help in arriving at an answer: “How can the center become solvent without creating additional burdens on center families and the community?”

That is the focus of a community meeting at 6 p.m. Wednesday at the childcare center.

The center, which opened in 2012, serves 49 families and 75 children in Ellsworth, Rice, Lincoln and Saline counties. It has 26 employees.

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