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The Hesston Record
347 B Old Hwy 81
Hesston, KS 67062
(620) 327-4831

PLAY BALL: Swathers Take The Field In 2018

Posted 11/19/2016

Hesston High School will be joining the other 10 Central Kansas League teams in the spring of 2018 by adding a baseball team.

The USD 460 Board of Education voted 6-0 on Monday night with little fanfare. Board President Zach Weaver made the motion, and Mike Weber seconded it.

Before the vote, Superintendent Ben Proctor reviewed the long process to add another spring sport for boys. He said he had reviewed various items that needed to be addressed since the board’s Oct. 10 meeting. He consulted with district lawyers, who determined that adding baseball would not run afoul of any Title IX gender equity issues.

Proctor shared numbers provided by Hank Humphreys showing that $37,855 in donations had been pledged so far. Those came from 54 individuals and one corporate donor, and the amount nearly covers the estimated $40,000 price tag for the first three years of the sport.

"Our intent is to take this over as a district and not make it a long-term private venture,” Proctor said.

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Mad Scientists In The Making At Library Lab

Posted 11/19/2016

Hesston youth have been tinkering, building and programming away their Wednesday afternoons at the Library Lab. 
Hesston Public Library Director Libby Albers said the Library Lab began taking shape as MakerSpaces have become increasingly popular. 

“Over the last two to three years we started to pull together materials that fell under that umbrella.  They’re DIY spaces where people can create, invent, and learn. It ranges anywhere from electronics to crafts,” she said. 

At Hesston Public Library, Albers said she and staff members began opening up closets and boxes to find materials for the Library Lab. 

“Currently, this is very low-cost because we already had the parts. We pulled out things we already had,” she said. 

Each Wednesday, Albers sees youth exploring their creative and inquisitive side. 

“It’s incredible. It’s kind of boundless in what they can come up with,” she said. 

Not having structured curriculum or goals has been key to unlocking imaginations. 

“No idea is a dumb idea.  We’ve seen the build mazes, structures, a lot of cool vehicles have come out of it,” she said. 

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Election Results Split Along Precinct Lines

Posted 11/19/2016

A contentious national campaign involving two candidates with historical low unfavorable ratings left its mark with Harvey County voters.
More than 70 percent, or 15,299 people, cast ballots in the Nov. 8 general election. Bette Rhine, with the clerk’s office, said the turnout was the highest she had seen for an election.

“It was definitely the presidential race that got people out,” she said.

“There was gentleman who came into the front desk who said he was 55 years old and had never voted before,” Rhine said. “I thought, ‘How can that be?’”

President-elect Donald J. Trump received 57.3 percent of the votes, compared to 33.5 percent for Hillary Clinton. The Board of Harvey County Commissioners certified results Monday morning that saw 263 provisional ballots added to the overall count. Another 126 ballots were disallowed. Rhine said 122 were voters who were not registered, four who didn’t provide proof of citizenship or photo identification and two others who had moved out of the county.

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Creating An Election

Posted 11/19/2016

While the nation tuned in to debates and suffered through election ads, Rick Piepho at the Harvey County Election Office was well over the elections. 

“We sent out ballots every day and this all starts when I send ballots to people out of the country and military personnel. We send those 45 days before the election,” he said. 

To have the ballots ready to be sent a month and a half in advance, Piepho must create each ballot, both paper and electronic. 

“I do all our own programming for paper and electronic, it’s all done in-house and all the printing is done in-house,” he said. 

For this November election alone, Piepho created 38 ballots to be used at the 12 polling sites in Harvey County.  

“We have to have different ballots for Emma or Garden townships because those township races are different.  In North Newton, they vote for Commissioner two - Randy Hague - or one - which is [Chip] Westfall’s district.

“Burton had a sales tax vote on the ballot that wasn’t on other Harvey County ballots,” he said. 

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Red Curtain Rising On Throughly Modern Millie

Posted 11/11/2016

By Record Staff

Hesston’s music department is taking audiences back to the era of speakeasies, flappers and jazz for a throughly modern performance. 

This year’s musical, Throughly Modern Millie, has 28 thespians and singers taking the stage on Thursday and Saturday evenings.

Darren Enns, Director of Hesston High’s music department, said he was very familiar with the show and was eager to see what Hesston High actresses had to offer.

“knew a lot of quality females would audition, so I needed a show to match, whereas last year, I knew I would have the guys to do Beauty and the Beast,” he said.

Enns said one of the greatest challenges each year is finding a show to match the talent pool at Hesston High. 

“I always have to think about numbers. I'm not going to do Seven Brides for Seven Brothers if I only have four brothers,” he said.

Enns said this year’s musical comes with all the elements of a great production, dramatic scenes, humor and a plot twist at the end. 

“With a crazy ending that takes everyone by surprise, and keeps getting weirder. Its worth the wait,” he said. 

To read more see this weeks print edition

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Taking A Crack At The Egg Industry

Posted 11/11/2016

By Jackie Nelson

The Jantz brothers are scratching up a living through the production of pasture-raised eggs.  The Jantz brothers operate a chicken farm just northwest of Hesston. The brothers each have barns with 15,000 chickens apiece. 

Their products can be found at Dillons, Target and Whole Foods under the Vital Farms label. 

Gaylon Jantz gave a tour of the operation as well as unscrambled some of the myths surrounding poultry farming.

“Most people don’t understand there are three or four different types of eggs, caged, cage free, range and pasture raised. Pasture raised are the top-tier of production as far as the health of the birds,” he said.

Jantz’s flock of 15,000 birds will have access to 40 acres of pastureland outside the football-field sized coop. 

“They can go out and get in the sunshine. And, they’re more in their natural environment. They can go and pick out grasses and bugs,” he said.

Jantz’s chicken coop is opened at 11 a.m., after most of the flock is finished laying.  The doors are closed half-an-hour after sundown.  The flock is free to roam in the meantime. 

However, Jantz said nature is not always an ideal place to be a domestic chicken.

“Out in the pasture there are predators - hawks for one. We are losing several birds a week to hawks,” he said. 

To read more see this weeks print edition

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Trailing Park Relocations Moving Forward

Posted 11/11/2016

By BLAKE SPURNEY

Hesston Record Staff

About 25 percent of residents who lived at Country Village mobile home park when the city of Hesston purchased the property in May have found new homes.

City Clerk Jason Thrasher said nine people had received a stipend from the city for moving. Eight of them received the maximum $7,000, and another got $2,000 because he owned a trailer but didn’t live in it. Two others have applied for the one-time payout, but their lots haven’t yet cleared inspection.

City Administrator Gary Emry said no one had challenged the stipend as being insufficient.

“All the applicants have found it to be sufficient in taking care of their moving needs, as far as I know,” Emry said. “No one has come to me and said that’s not enough to take care of my moving needs. I just haven’t had any negative feedback on it at all.”

To read more see this weeks print edition

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