Author: Gardner News

Lady Blazers defeat SMN Indians 42-40

The Lady Blazers made the trip to Shawnee Mission North on Feb. 9 to take on the Indians and their star player LeLe Love. The Indians proved their scrappiness as they were able to just hang around throughout the contest, not allowing the Blazers to get a double digits lead.  With under a minute remaining, the Lady Indians took their first lead 40-39.  After a missed shot by the Blazers and an Indian turnover, senior Kynli Nelson hit a 3 point shot from the corner to put the Blazers up two with under 30 seconds remaining. A back and forth sequence ensured with a missed shot by the Indians and a missed free throw by the Blazers giving the Indians the ball back with 4 seconds remaining. After a time out, Skylar Washington made her defensive presence known as their star, LeLe Love turned the ball over vs pressure and the Blazers were able to escape with a hard fought 42-40 road victory. Washington led the Blazers once again with 15 points, while Kynli Nelson added 13.  Sofia Semon added 8 points and junior Jaden Sprague scored 6 in her first varsity start.  The Lady Blazers were back home on Feb. 13 as the fourth ranked team in class 6A Olathe NW comes to...

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Blazers claim 3 victories

Friday night Feb. 9 was a great night for the entire program.  All three teams claimed victories at SMN on their Winter Royalty Night.  The sophomores won 61 to 35.  Dayvin Johnson scored 22 points and Brock Stewart added 12 to lead the way. The Blazer JV won 46 to 43 in a tightly contested game.  Ethan Reynolds scored some clutch baskets late to help the JV claim the win. Last Tuesday, Olathe Northwest – the #1 team in 6A – lost to SM North.  So, the Blazers were taking on a team on their homecoming night that was flying high after a huge win. The Blazers took control of the game with an outstanding first half and managed to keep the Indians at arms length the rest of the night as GEHS claimed the victory 62 to 49. Teven McKelvey led the Blazers well-balanced attack with 16 points.  Brody Marshall contributed a double/double with 12 points and 10 rebounds.  Tydus Webb and Reid Frase scored 9 each and Tyler Rollwagen and Luke Jennings scored 8 apiece.  Jennings had a team high 11 rebounds and also led the Blazers with 8 assists on the night. The challenges get larger as last week’s #1 ranked team, ONW, rolls into Gardner for a match-up Tuesday...

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GEHS bowlers take on 3 other high schools

Feb. 9, the GEHS Bowlers took on Olathe West, Olathe South and Leavenworth at Olathe Lanes East. The JV Ladies finished in second place. Lily Giacchi had her best outing of the season finishing in seventh place overall.  The varsity ladies also managed a second place finish with three bowlers finishing in the top 10 individually, and Maddy Turner just outside the top 10 in 11th.  Violet Rude had her best showing of the season with a ninth place finish; the up and coming  Becca Mitchell in sixth and ever consistent Veronika Wojtas in second.  This hopefully is a sign of good things to come as we head into league and regional play in the next two weeks. The Junior Varsity Men finished in fourth, with Freshman Nathan Gregg just outside the top 10 in 11th and Freshman Ian Carpenter bringing home the bronze.  The varsity men finished in third just 40 pins behind Leavenworth, but Senior Leon Gaeta definitely had his best day of the year finishing first overall with a 214 average and 643 series on the day.  Another good sign of things to...

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C teams pick up win

The Lady Blazer girls’ basketball C team picked up a road victory Feb. 9 at Shawnee Mission North, 54-39. Mara Smith led the scoring with 12, Taylor Fergola and Alyx VanRheen each had 11, Trinity Taylor 7,  Maycee Beasley and Morgan Smith added 5 each. Next action for the girls was athome against Olathe Northwest There are four4 games remaining we are currently...

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Blazer sophomores, JV play at Mill Valley

Feb. 5, the Blazer sophomores and JV played at Mill Valley.  The sophomores lost 54 to 38 in spite of a 20 point performance from Dayvin Johnson.  The JV claimed a 6 point victory over Mill Valley to claim their seventh win of the season. On Feb. 6, the sophomores, JV, and varsity all played thrillers at SM West.  The sophomore squad came up 2 points short in spite of a solid performance. Tye Brown led the scoring with 13 points. The JV continued their excellent play as of late, but also came up just short in a 43-40 loss vs. a talented SMW team.  Ethan Reynolds had 10 points, and Corbin Schrack and Preston Rohr added 9 each. The varsity followed the same pattern and ended up in a wild finish vs. the highly-ranked Vikings.  Several clutch offensive plays for the Blazers helped propel them to their sixth win of the season 63-59, including four key free throws in the final 15 seconds from senior Tydus Webb.  Tydus led the Blazers in scoring with 17 points.  He received plenty of help from his teammates as Luke Jennings contributed 11, Brody Marshall and Teven McKelvey 10, Tyler Rollwagen 7, Reid Frase 4, and Corbin Schrack 2 in a well-balanced attack for...

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Former news editor testifies for transparency

Danedri Thompson Contributor Providing transparency and accessibility to your constituents should be a primary goal of all legislative bodies, but there are a few other reasons to support HB 2562. When I served as the editor for The Gardner News, readers would sometimes tell me a particular story was biased. That’s open to interpretation, and making videotapes of council meetings and planning commissions gave readers what they needed to form their own opinions without my filter. In the era of fake news, having live streaming video and an online archive of committee meetings works to lawmakers’ advantage as well. Gardner officials considered videotaping meetings for years before finally taking the plunge and doing so in 2011. Cost was a major concern. Initial cost estimates were bloated. One cost estimate said it would cost more than several thousands to provide the service. In 2011, city staff told council members the service would cost somewhere between $19K and $4K. It ended up costing much less than that. City finance manager said they installed a security camera, the kind you can buy at Sam’s Club for less than $200. In 2011, those meetings weren’t live streamed. They were uploaded to YouTube the day after a meeting, which required an hour or so of staff time once or twice a week. Last year, council upgraded all of its audio and video equipment in...

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Ribbon Cutting

Gardner Edgerton Chamber of Commerce hosted a ribbon cutting for Pattie’s Salon in downtown Edgerton on Feb. 9. Owned by Pattie Stuteville, who has lived in Edgerton for 19 years, the salon offers hair care for women and men. Staff photo by Rick...

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Mobile home

Traffic was temporarily stopped in Edgerton Feb. 7 about 8:45 a.m. on 56 Hwy as a house was being moved slowly down the road. About five officers flagged and rerouted traffic for the house and the four extra wide load vehicles assisting. Staff photo by Jan...

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Seniors have not fared well under KanCare

Sharon Watson Director of Public Affairs and Communications The Kansas Association of Area Agencies on Aging and Disabilities (k4ad), representing all eleven of the Area Agencies on Aging, across the State of Kansas, recently provided data to the Kansas legislature indicating seniors are not faring well under the current KanCare system. The data indicate the number of seniors receiving Home and Community Based Services under KanCare since 2010 has decreased by over 1,000.  The expenditures for community based services is down by over $14,000,000 from 2010.  The number of nursing facility KanCare residents is also down. And, yet, the Kansas aging population continues to rapidly increase.  The Kansas Statistical Abstract for 2016 indicates the population projection for people age 65 and over will increase by 82.4 percent from 2014 to 2044. Dan Goodman, Johnson County Area Agency on Aging Director and President of the k4ad, recently noted that ?in Johnson County alone, the senior population will increase by more than 40,000 from 2014-2024.? The Area Agencies on Aging are concerned that today’s seniors, particularly those seniors over the age of 85, are unable to gain access to KanCare services when needed, whether the senior chooses to remain at home or move to a nursing facility. With the implementation of KanCare, there have been two major changes.  The first is elimination of ?high-touch? case management for seniors at the local...

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ACJC names GEHS seniors as finalists

The Arts Council of Johnson County (ACJC) announced that six finalists from Gardner Edgerton High School have been nominated for the 2018 Shooting Stars Awards. Shooting Stars Program honors Johnson County high school students for achievement in the literary, performing and visual arts through recognition and college scholarships. Shooting Stars award recipients will be announced at the 21st annual Shooting Stars Gala. Finalists Kara McCormick, Production & Design; Hannah Collette, Theatre Performance; Chloe Akin, Three Dimensional Art; Kinsey McCormick, Two Dimensional Art; Olivia Schultz, Voice Classical; Tom Fabing, Winds & Percussion At the Shooting Stars Gala, nine first-place scholarships of $1,400 each and nine second-place scholarships of $700 each will be awarded to the top two finalists in each artistic category. Nine teacher honorariums of $350 will be given to teachers who nominated the top student in each category. The program is supported by Johnson County and area foundations, corporations and individual donors. Since starting 21 years ago, the Shooting Stars program has awarded more than $200,000 in college scholarships and almost $65,000 in teacher honorariums. Each year, Shooting Stars recognizes more than 100 students that demonstrate excellence in nine categories of literary, performing and visual arts. Arts teachers from Johnson County schools nominate the students for Shooting Stars. Teachers at schools outside of Johnson County also may nominate students that live in Johnson County. “Shooting Stars celebrate the...

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Irish Celebration with Celtique for 50 Plus

Celebrate National Irish American Heritage Month during an annual special event being planned by the 50 Plus department of the Johnson County Park & Recreation District. This event, called Irish Celebration with Celtique, involves a special performance by this local Irish band. Instruments used by the group include guitar, tenor banjo, bodhran, and keyboards. Participants will also enjoy Irish treats, as well as a chance to learn a basic Gaelic dance. To find this program in the My JCPRD Activities catalog and online listings, browse first under 50 Plus and then under special events. In the printed catalog and when using the website’s advanced search, look for the keywords ”Irish event.” This Irish Celebration with Celtique will take place beginning at 1:30 p.m. on March 2, at the Matt Ross  Community Center, 8101 Marty Street, Overland Park. The cost for this 90-minute event is $10 per person. For more information or to register, call (913) 831-3359. Please register for this event by Feb. 23 by calling (913) 642-6410. While JCPRD’s 50 Plus programs are primarily for people who are age 50 or older, interested parties who have not yet reached that magic age may still be able to attend. Persons 18 and older who are interested in a 50 Plus class are invited to call the 50 Plus Department at (913) 826-3030 for space availability. The My JCPRD Activities...

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Governor signs 4 executive orders dealing with transparency

Brianna Childers KU Statehouse Wire Service In Jeff Colyer’s second set of executive orders as governor, he signed four orders that he hopes will create more transparency that better informs Kansans about the inner workings of state government. During a news conference Feb. 8, Colyer detailed how each executive order will create transparency. He also recognized his guests from the Kansas Press Association (KPA), Kansas Broadcasters Association, and the Sunshine Coalition. Doug Anstaett, KPA executive director, spoke briefly in support of the governor’s executive orders. “We trust this new emphasis on transparency, both by the governor and state legislators,...

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Varsity plays hard against Louisburg

The 8th grade varsity team played Louisburg and played hard.  The Huskies fell though 45 to 25.  Justice Burton led scoring with 8 points followed by Derek Toomey with 7 points. The 8th grade varsity team played Paola and played tough all game.  The Huskies fell 46 to 21.  Leading scorer was Billy Bottcher with 6 points followed by Kaden Crowell with 5 points.  The 8th grade team will travel to Baldwin...

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JV plays well against Shawnee Mission North

The JV girls took on the Shawnee Mission North Indians on Feb. 9 with a well played game. The entire first half was evenly matched, with the halftime score being 12-13, SMN in the lead. In the second half, the GEHS girls came back strong, outscoring their opponent 23-13, with the final score being 35-26. Leading scorers were Jaden Sprague with 12 points, Alyx Vanrheen with 9 points and Katie Whittley with 7...

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Sports Potpourri

Mac Stevenson Kansas is an above-average basketball team when the Jayhawks are hitting at least 45 percent of their three-point shots. When that isn’t happening, KU is a below-average ballclub. Coach Self’s biggest problem the last few games is the complete disappearance of guards Svi Mykhailiuk, Lagerald Vick, and Malik Newman; they have been non-factors on offense and ineffective on defense. All three are capable of playing terrific basketball, but that’s been missing from KU’s arsenal. When Self lost Billy Preston (6-10, 240) because of the NCAA’s refusal to make a ruling on his eligibility, that put a dagger in KU’s chance to be a formidable team. Incidentally, that entire issue has been swept under the rug and KU’s fans deserve an explanation as to what the problem was. After last Saturday’s games, Texas Tech has a stranglehold on the Big 12 championship. Kansas State played TT even the first half, but the Wildcats couldn’t stay close in the second half and lost 66-47. From here, it looks like Texas Tech will win an undisputed Big 12 championship. Kansas State had a horrendous shooting night; the Wildcats hit just three of 17 three-point shots for a 17.60 percentage. And K-State committed 18 turnovers, which contributed to the second-half collapse. Kansas still has time to right the ship and make a decent showing at the NCAA Tournament; nevertheless, it’s doubtful...

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Winter Royalty

Photo courtesy of USD 231 GEHS  Winter Royalty candidates are: from left to right. Lydia Brown and Tom Fabing; Lindsey Hohn and Tyler Henry; Ashley McCurdy and Jensen McDermott; Lauren Molenda and Cole Nhingsavath; Gracie Moorehouse and Tucker...

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No, big corps shouldn’t get tax cuts to create jobs

Jim Hightower Guest Columnist Governors and mayors insist that giving our tax dollars to corporations to lure them to move to our cities is good public policy. The corporations create jobs, those workers pay taxes, and — voila! — the giveaway pays for itself! Does it really work that way? Unfortunately, no. Good Jobs First tracked the 386 incentive deals since 1976 that gave at least $50 million to a corporation, then tallied the number of jobs created. The average cost per job was $658,427 — each! That’s far more than cities and states can recover through any kinds of taxes those jobholders would pay in their lifetimes. The rosy job-creation claims by incentive dealmakers also tend to be bogus, because they don’t subtract the number of jobs lost as a result of these deals. Amazon, for example, has leaned on officials in every major metro area to subsidize its creation of a nationwide network of warehouses, data centers, and other facilities. In a 2016 report titled “Amazon’s Stranglehold,” the Institute for Local Self-Reliance found that more than half of Amazon’s facilities had been built with government subsidies. And Good Jobs First found that since 2005, Amazon has received more than $1 billion from taxpayers to build their private business. Each handout was made in the name of local workers — and, yes, Amazon does employ thousands. But the...

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City receives innovative recreation program award

Gardner received this year’s Kansas Recreation and Park Association (KRPA) Innovative Recreation Program award for its Smoke on the Trails/Grand Slam Beer and Wine Festival held in September 2017. This annual KRPA award recognizes outstanding new or innovative programs that represent Kansas’ best in the Parks and Recreation field. The award-winning, first-time event involved the combination of a barbecue competition and a beer and wine sampling social held on the same day within the same general location. The Smoke on the Trails competition was a Kansas City BBQ Society sanctioned event, drawing nearly 70 competitive teams. The Grand Slam...

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Not a fan, watching sports not my thing

Joan Dorsey Contributing columnist Well wasn’t that a Super Bowl? I have to admit I am not a big sports fan. I like basketball, but the rest of the sports are just a foreign language to me. I have been sucked into watching Super bowls for the last how many years? I enjoy the half time shows. I like to watch the commercials. They are a topic of the people at work the next day. Plus they are entertaining; my attention span is short enough that a five second commercial holds me till the next one comes on. I am just not a sports fan. When my son was really young and played T-ball, I would roll my eyes and wish I was elsewhere. It was hot, there were bugs, and he really didn’t want to be there either. We agreed on that. My daughter played tennis in high school, and I didn’t mind tennis. I got the idea of the game and had played some very informal tennis when I was younger. I liked volleyball. I understood the idea, and it was easy to follow. Football is a whole different language to me. However, I watched the whole game Sunday. I have a tendency to cheer for the underdog. I always feel they should stand a chance. Plus the other team had won five times already. So I...

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Gardner council amends personnel policy; vacates right of ways

Rick Poppitz Special to The Gardner News Gardner city council met on Feb. 5 and had a full agenda of items to work through. They approved several agreements and contracts, adopted four resolutions and approved an ordinance. There were no executive sessions Aquatics Center filter replacement The council considered pool filter replacement for the Gardner Aquatics Center. Jason Bruce, parks superintendent, said the filter system currently in use at the new pool at the Gardner Aquatic Center is an 11 year-old system which is not operating at its appropriate flow rate and is failing to backwash. In 2017, overtime was incurred because staff had to come in for two hours every other night after closure to manually backwash the filter. Inadequate filter performance also caused the Aquatic Center to shut down for four days in the 2017 season due to cloudy water and that costs the city about $2,465 per day in lost revenues. In addition, $1,350 was spent on service calls related to the pool filter. A request for proposals resulted in three bids for the project. Staff recommended the lowest bid of $188,730 from Capri Pools and Aquatics of Edwardsville, Ill. Carrothers Construction Co.  of Paola, Kansas was a close second at $189,000. After discussion, council decided to go with Carrothers because of the local proximity, in case maintenance and repairs are needed. Personnel Policy Manual The...

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