With four kids, Deanna Ewbank was frustrated that there weren’t more organized activities in Edgerton.
“It seems like if you wanted to do anything you had to leave and go to Olathe or somewhere else,” Ewbank said. “I think the kids seem to get into trouble more when they don’t have something to do.”
With a little help from a newly formed committee – the Edgerton Recreation and Cultural Arts Committee – Ewbank hopes local kids, and adults too, will have more to keep them occupied in town.
The Edgerton City Council recently approved and appointed a group of citizens to serve on a recreation and cultural arts committee, and Ewbank serves as vice chair. An Edgerton resident for about seven years, Ewbank had mentioned to staff at city hall that she’d be interested in organizing activities for residents. Mayor Don Roberts appointed Ewbank along with seven other community members to serve for two years on the newly formed group.
The committee sponsored its first event — a St. Patrick’s Day teen dance on March 17 and will host a Nintendo Wii tournament at the elementary school on Saturday.
Committee chair Bryan Wilson said the group’s mission is to serve the entire community, not just kids.
“We have a combination of things. We’re going to be working on not only the sports set-up basketball, soccer and those kinds of things,” he said. “We’re also going to be looking at cultural arts – kind of a whole package for the whole community.”
When the group meets, Wilson said members continually throw out ideas. A scrapbooking event is a common idea. Ewbank said she’d like to see a community garden.
“I think that would be a lot of fun to do. Maybe get some kick ball games,” she said. “I would like to see outdoor activities. Really anything to get the kids off the computer and the video games and outside interacting with other kids.”
And daily activities during the summer would be especially welcome, the mother of four said. An Edgerton church serves lunch during the summer while school is not in session, and Ewbank would love to see a daily activity scheduled in conjunction with the lunch bunch as well.
“I know there are people throwing out different ideas – maybe a barbeque, trying to tie in some different sporting events,” Wilson said. “I know that we’ve had talks about looking back into soccer. There are some different events we’d like to really start pushing to open up the door to the community.”
The eight-member committee is also looking to expand. City council members will consider appointing two more people to the committee at a meeting March 25.
Wilson said there have always been things to do in Edgerton, and now there are a lot of people interested in helping out.
“There were a couple of different points where (the city) had parks and recreation committees set up, and they’ve had different things to do,” he said. “It’s been more about keeping those people involved. That’s been kind of on and off.”
Wilson said the group will discuss fundraising at its April meeting, and the hope is they will grow along with the community.
“For us, we’ve had more people interested in helping now and that’s going to be the biggest thing for us,” he said. “I think there’s a really good chance this thing could really grow.”
Those interested in helping the committee should call city hall at (913)893-6231.