News

Wed
13
Feb
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Greenleaf receives $300K for improvements to housing

The City of Greenleaf recently received a $300,000 federal grant to rehabilitate about nine homes in the city. Low-to-moderate income families in Greenleaf can apply for that grant money to replace siding, roofs and windows. City clerk Wanda Uffman said city officials will attend a Feb. 19 meeting in Topeka to learn more about the grant they received.

According to Uffman, the city has been working for over a year to apply for the grant, and the city’s efforts to demolish unsafe structures in the city over the past decade helped them get this grant.

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Wed
13
Feb
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USD 108 board votes to add bowling

Bowling will be added to WCHS athletic offerings in the 2019-2020 school year. The decision, made at Monday night’s USD 108 Board of Education meeting, followed several months of study, discussion and information gathering. The motion to add bowling passed 7-0 and included language to revisit in the near future the possibility of adding baseball and/or softball.

Voting yes were Joe L’Ecuyer, Jill Hoover, Rod Stewart, Kevin Elliott, Rhonda Manley, Brad Jones and Brad Owen.

Estimated bowling startup costs, prepared by 7-12 principal Vicki Enyart, were $2,336 for team jerseys and ball bags. Annual operating costs were estimated at $6,020. This includes tournament entry fees, supplies and coaching salaries. Enyart said the United States Bowling Congress offers four $2,500 grants annually to new high school programs across the nation. John Metz of Washington Bowl has offered the facility for practice at no charge and has expressed an interest in coaching, Enyart said.

Wed
06
Feb
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New Year’s baby

Liam Brent Lehman, the son of Brent and Callie Lehman, of Linn, was the first baby born at Washington County Hospital in 2019. See story on Page 2.

Photo by CARRIE HEITMAN PHOTOGRAPHY

Liam Brent Lehman, the son of Brent and Callie Lehman, of Linn, was the first baby born at Washington County Hospital in 2019

 

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Wed
06
Feb
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Linn Lutheran tops bee

The oral spelldown participants in Saturday’s Washington County Spelling Bee were the top three finishers from grades 6-8 in the written portion of the event. Claire Beikmann is seen here spelling one of her words during the oral spelldown.

The oral spelldown participants in Saturday’s Washington County Spelling Bee were the top three finishers from grades 6-8 in the written portion of the event. Claire Beikmann is seen here spelling one of her words during the oral spelldown

 

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Wed
30
Jan
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Bott improves land through grazing

Raymond Bott will receive this year’s Range Management Award for his work to improve the grass on former CRP land.

Raymond Bott said cows have four big feet and one big mouth, so they are capable of walking for their food. The Washington man’s cows, which he owns and manages with the help of his son, Luke, graze pasture and crop fields year-round and are fed very little hay each year. Bott’s commitment to rotational grazing, cover crops and soil health have earned him this year’s Col. Donald C. Peterson Range Management Award from the Natural Resources and Conservation Service.

Bott said the grassland he owns, which is all located in the Kimeo area, was in CRP for 20-plus years, and he wanted to get it out for a long time. The land came out of CRP between 2007-2010, and the Botts were left with “clumpy” grass typical of expired CRP, he said.

“If we are going to have the land we might as well try to make it profitable,” he said of his efforts to set up a rotational grazing system about 10 years ago after the land came out of CRP.

Wed
30
Jan
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Wilsons plant thousands of trees

Reed and Christine Wilson, of Clyde, are this year’s Fish and Wildlife Habitat Stewardship Award winners for the county. They posed with a few of their 400 oak trees.

Reed Wilson’s love for hunting, fishing and wildlife has inspired him to plant more than 3,400 trees and shrubs. The nearly 400 young oak trees that line a creek north of Clifton have been Wilson’s greatest project, he said, adding that he hopes those trees provide plenty of acorns for deer, squirrels and turkeys in another 25 years. The commitment to providing future habitat and food for wildlife has earned Reed and Christine Wilson, who live in Clyde, this year’s Fish and Wildlife Habitat Stewardship Award.

“I have had a love of fishing and hunting as well as wildlife in general as long as I can remember,” said Reed Wilson, who is a claims manager for Farm Bureau. “I had about an unlimited number of acres to hunt while growing up.”

But times were changing in Kansas, and he said he was concerned that the day would come when he would have to own or lease land in Kansas to be able to hunt here. He owned no farm land.

Wed
30
Jan
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Cromwells receive award for terrace work

Jody and Kevin Cromwell, of rural Haddam, have been named this year’s Soil Conservation Award winners and will be honored at Saturday’s annual conservation banquet.

Terraces cost a lot of money to put in, Kevin Cromwell said, so he does his best to maintain them so that he doesn’t have to put them in twice. The excessive rain the second half of last year was hard on his terraces, he said, and the effort to repair those terraces since has been “more than normal.” Kevin and Jody Cromwell’s commitment to soil conservation has earned them this year’s Soil Conservation Award, which the rural Haddam couple will receive at Saturday’s annual banquet.

“I don’t have a field without a terrace or waterways,” Cromwell said.

The Cromwells just completed about a year ago the installation of terraces on a field they recently purchased. That land had little to no terraces despite being farmed for many years by previous owners. Cromwell said he is committed to terraces because they protect the field’s topsoil. He said he has a field that lost so much topsoil prior to being terraced that it can barely grow grass.

Thu
24
Jan
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Former Greenleaf dentist retires

Dr. David and Cheri Hamel, pictured here in a News photo from June 1977, operated a dental practice in Greenleaf until the 1990s. The couple has had a practice in Marysville and retired at the end of December.

BY CYNTHIA SCHEER

Dr. David Hamel, of Marysville, retired from dentistry at the end of December. He previously practiced in Greenleaf for about 19 years.

Hamel was a dentist for 41.5 years and began his career in Greenleaf in June 1977 after he graduated with distinction in the Top 10 percent of his class earlier that year from the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

Hamel, who grew up near Horton in Brown County, said he decided to move to Greenleaf because his home-town dentist, Dr. Jerry Young, was from Washington County, and Hamel wanted to find a small community to raise his family.

 

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Thu
24
Jan
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Number of deer-vehicle collisions increases in 2018

According to the Washington County Sheriff’s Office there were 155 deer/vehicle collisions in the county in 2018. The number of collisions in December was the most since at least 2014. Last year had the second largest number of collisions in the past five years.

The number of vehicle-deer collisions increased in Washington County last year, according to information from the Washington County Sheriff’s Office. According to accident reports there were 155 deer collisions in 2018, which was an increase of eight accidents over 2017.

According to the sheriff’s office there were 141 deer collisions in 2014, 142 collisions in 2015, 170 collisions in 2016 and 147 collisions in 2017.

 

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Thu
24
Jan
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Area has fifth-wettest year on record

BY CYNTHIA SCHEER

The 40-some inches of precipitation recorded for the area during the past year has earned 2018 a place in the record books. According to Mary Knapp with the Weather Data Library, a National Weather Service co-op site located south of Washington recorded 42.75 inches of precipitation in 2018, which ranks the year as the fifth-wettest on record for Washington. The normal, or 10-year average, for the year is 31.88 inches.

The wettest year on record was 1993 when the National Weather Service recorded 53 inches for Washington.

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