HEADLINES

  • Seniors recognized for academic excellence

    Hillsboro High School seniors rose and returned to their seats often Saturday during commencement to receive numerous scholarships and awards, like a game of musical chairs. In all, 20 of 37 students earned recognition for educational awards or scholarships, while an additional seven students graduated with academic honors. Danae Bina, Morganne Hamm, Erin Wiebe, and Molly Wiebe were named valedictorians while Addie Lackey was named salutatorian.

  • After debate, council approves flex plan match

    Despite council member Marlene Fast’s objection to feeling blindsided, Hillsboro City Council passed a program Tuesday to match an employee health care flex account up to $500 a year despite it not being an agenda item. The tied vote with council members Fast and Shelby Dirks against, passed after a tie breaker vote by Mayor Delores Dalke, who still had some reservations about paying the money up front if not all employees are going to match the contribution.

  • County can't send immediate alerts

    On its website, Marion County encourages residents to sign up to receive updates about severe weather and other emergencies by text message or email. Recent storms suggest that residents shouldn’t depend on those messages as their first line of defense. The National Weather Service in Wichita issued a severe thunderstorm warning for western Marion County at 5:54 p.m. May 7, but the county’s Nixle alert wasn’t sent until 6:18 p.m., 24 minutes later. With the storm reported near Moundridge moving at 50 mph, it would have been between Hillsboro and Durham by the time residents received the message.

  • Test plot mirrors county fields: short and sparse

    About 40 farmers turned out for a free breakfast and a tour of Kansas State Research and Extension’s test field Thursday. Farmers came from all over the county, but all noticed one thing: fields were shorter and sparser than average no matter what variety of seed was planted.

  • Carving dedicated to all soldiers, and one in particular

    With Memorial Day approaching, Nanette Lowry of Marion has put up a statue to commemorate all soldiers who have been killed in action, but it isn’t a seasonal decoration to be put out at Memorial Day and Veterans Day. “I don’t ever want us to forget,” Lowry said.

  • County to buy grader

    On a day with little action, the longest item of discussion Monday for county commissioners dealt with buying a new grader for the road department. With the trade-in of a 1995 grader in the department and a $35,100 six-month rental price, the total purchase price would be $106,760 in 2015. The grader would be used to run the county’s shoulder machine.

  • Art and Music Stroll is June 1

    Main St. Merchants gathered Monday to finalize plans for the Art and Music Stroll on June 1. More than 20 stops will be included on the stroll, beginning with Gallery 101 and including a new stop at Prairie Oaks Alpaca Shop featuring soft serve ice cream.

  • Trap, archery, and air rifle class offered

    Residents can take safety classes for trap shooting, archery, and air rifles from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. May 31 at French Creek Cove at Marion Reservoir. The class is part of Quail Forever Youth Day and is for ages 8 to 16, and lunch will be served. For more information and to sign up, call (620) 732-3946.

  • Physicians clinics merging at St. Luke

    St. Luke Physicians Clinic will have the same care and providers but under a new name as of June 2. It and Marion Family Physicians will join in a new clinic called St. Luke Medical Clinic located at 537 S. Freeborn St.

  • Scam impersonates postal service

    The Postal Service is warning customers of a recent scam that seems to be gaining popularity. Scammers are sending people fake emails claiming a package is awaiting them at the post office because it failed to be delivered or payment for postage is requested. The e-mail provides a link customers are requested to click to print a new label for their package. Once the link is opened, a virus is downloaded to the customer’s computer.

  • County added to disaster list

    The U.S. Department of Agriculture has updated the drought disaster list this week to include Marion County. The declaration means low-interest emergency loans are available through the USDA Farm Service Agency. County farmers have eight months to apply for loans to help cover part of their losses due to drought conditions. For more information contact the local FSA office or visit http://www.fsa.usda.gov.

  • Dry cleaner irons the stars and stripes for veterans' funerals

    In addition to pressing numerous shirts, pants, suits and dresses, as well as delivering laundry and doing clothing alterations, Donna Rosiere had time to iron the wrinkles out of an American flag on Thursday. The flag will be given to a deceased veteran’s family as part of a funeral. “We do it to honor any veteran who served in a conflict,” Rosiere said. “It looks nicer.”

DEATHS

  • Vernon Friesen

    Vernon W. Friesen, 85, died Sunday at Parkside Homes in Hillsboro. He was born Aug. 9, 1928, to Jesse and Lydia (Wiens) Friesen at Ingalls. He is survived by his wife, Rachel Friesen of Hillsboro; two sons, Terryl of Arlington, Texas, and Donnel of Lenexa; two daughters, Sarita Blosser of Goessel and Jody Heizelman of Lindsborg; three brothers, Orval of Freemont, Calif., Norman of Shafter, Calif, and Andy of Wichita; a sister, Arlene Dahl of Maple Grove, Minn.; and 10 grandchildren.

  • James Guthrie

    A memorial service for James “Jim” Guthrie will be at 2 p.m. Saturday at Peabody United Methodist Church. He was born Feb. 26, 1937, in Peabody and died Jan. 12 in Silver Springs, Md.

  • Jerry Myers

    Jerry Dean Myers, 75, of Hillsboro died Sunday at Newton Medical Center. He was born April 6, 1939, to Edwin and Delores (Spunaugle) Myers in El Dorado. He is survived by his son, Michael Myers of Marion; two daughters, Michele Carlson of Wichita and Melissa Kruse of Marion; two brothers, Gary Myers of Pratt and Michael Myers of McPherson; and five grandchildren.

  • Eileen Nickles

    Eileen K. Nickles, 54, of Hillsboro died Friday at Via Christi-St. Francis in Wichita. She was born April 22, 1960, to Ralph and Margaret (Unruh) Funk at Goessel. She is survived by her mother, Margaret Funk of rural Hillsboro; four sons, M. Michael Nickles of Wichita, Jeremy Lee Nickles-Owen of Barton County, Nicholas C. Nickles of Wichita, and Jacob Isaac Nickles of Topeka; two daughters, Angela Nicole Nickles of Wichita and Valerie Eileen Nickles; two brothers, Melvin Funk of Pueblo, Colo., and Vernon Funk of Lehigh; three sisters, Carol Houdyshell of Wichita, Linda Funk of Wichita, and Annette King of Hillsboro; and eight grandchildren.

  • Lorene Whitcomb

    Lorene May Whitcomb, 93, of Marquette died Saturday. She was born March 14, 1921, to Dean and Letha (Cunningham) Morgan in Elkhart. She married Warren Whitcomb on Aug. 21, 1940, in Cottonwood Falls. He preceded her in death in 1976. She was also preceded in death by her sons, Leroy Whitcomb and Randall Louis.

  • IN MEMORIAM:

    Martha Conkle, Calvin Ridgeway, Ralph Thrash

DOCKET

HOME AND GARDEN

  • Florence library to repair windows

    A little extra money can go a long way, and Florence Public librarian Ali Johnson hopes the $1,000 grant from the Florence Community Foundation will be enough to finish repairing the library’s old and ailing windows. The grant was awarded to the library at Monday’s Florence City Council meeting.

  • Volunteers hope new patio brings fun and shade

    Guests of the Harvey House Museum in Florence often visit to tour its inside, but now an outdoor space can also be enjoyed despite the hot summer sun. Last week a two-man crew consisting of George Grimmett Jr. and his son, Tyson, finished a roofed patio to enclose the current bricked patio.

  • Old and new materials used in playground project

    When childcare provider Michelle Regnier approached construction technology teacher Lucas King about building a new playground for Sunshine Country Preschool, she never expected it would grow so large. “I had plans for him to just build one from scratch,” Regnier said. “He took the design and just ran with it.”

PEOPLE

SCHOOL

  • Hillsboro High School names students of the month

    Every month the faculty and staff of Hillsboro High School recognize one boy and one girl as students of the month. Students chosen for the month of May are Allison Weber and Reece Berens. Weber is a member of the tennis, basketball, and softball teams. She is also a member of book club, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, 4-H, and yearbook staff.

  • Largest class in Tabor history graduates

    Saturday was a day for Tabor College seniors to reflect on their time as scholars while looking ahead to the next step. In Hannah Vogt’s charge to graduates, she had all students close their eyes and think about the time they laughed the hardest and the time they were the saddest during their time at the school.

SPORTS

  • Exchange student uses skills learned in home country to excel in sports

    Leo Sontag is no stranger to a life of sports. The exchange student from Brazil has been playing soccer since he could walk, and even spent some time training to play professionally before coming to Hillsboro. He said the skills he learned at home helped him excel in sports in the U.S.

  • Hiebert, Showwaler lead Goessel golf team

    Two seniors from the Goessel golf team, Reece Hiebert and Zach Showalter, led the Bluebirds to a first-place finish as a team on Monday at Carey Golf Park in Hutchinson. The Wheat State League and Heart of the Plains League, two leagues with 1A and 2A schools, compete once a year. Goessel placed first with 392 points, followed by Central Christian, 412; Centre, 445; Pretty Prairie, 458; and Peabody, 471. Hiebert totaled 93 for second place individually, Showalter hit 97, Lawton Makovec scored 100, Lucas Hiebert came in at 102, and Kellen Froese hit 109.

  • Hillsboro softball team heading to state

    After losing in the softball regional championship round last season, Hillsboro senior Danae Bina said she felt something she did not want to feel again. “It was the first time in any sport I didn’t go to state,” she said. “It feels tremendous to go after we didn’t last year.”

  • Trojan baseball finish season in heartbreaker

    The Hillsboro High School baseball team seemed poised for a regional title showdown with Little River Tuesday during its game against Inman, but it was not meant to be. The game started in the Teutons’ favor as they scored two runs in the top of the first inning. The Trojans quickly rebounded, though, tying the score with RBIs from Jordan Faul and Jakob Hanschu.

  • Goessel boys place third on final event

    Track fans know that the 4x400-meter relay is often a deciding factor in team scores. This race is the last event at a track meet and this scenario played out at the Wheat State League meet Thursday in Goessel. Wakefield had a commanding lead in team points, with Peabody-Burns one point ahead of Solomon and eight points ahead of Goessel. Solomon did not have an entry in the relay, so Goessel had to score eight points to pass the Gorillas.

  • Goessel girls win league track meet

    On a beautiful Thursday afternoon and evening, the Goessel girls collected points from many events to win the Wheat State League track meet. Olivia Duerksen set a meet record with a high jump of 5 feet and took first place. She also ran in the winning 4x400-meter relay and the winning 4x100-meter relay.

  • Trojan golfers round out season

    Hillsboro High School golfers finished their season Monday in Belleville at the regional tournament. Evan Ollenburger shot a 51 on his first nine and improved his back nine by five strokes, shooting a 46 to tie for 11th place with a final score of 97.

  • Track teams prepare for state competition next

    Hillsboro High School track teams finished the regular part of their schedule Thursday at the Central Kansas League meet in Halstead, placing in the bottom half of team standings. Many athletes who had seen success over the course of the season, though, continued doing so.

  • Tabor hires local physician as team doctor

    Dr. Greg Erb has a passion for sports, after playing them in college and high school. That passion, and that of his physician’s assistant Josh Smith, led Erb to accept a position Tabor College’s athletic physician. Erb came to Hillsboro as a sports and family physician at Hillsboro Physicians Clinic earlier this year. Smith joined the team at Hillsboro Clinic in February.

  • Tabor baseball team makes world series

    After winning three consecutive games in the opening round of the NAIA national tournament last week, Tabor College has advanced to the school’s first ever NAIA World Series appearance. The Bluejays faced Viterbo University in the championship of the Hutchinson bracket, winning 5-1 after defeating them 3-2 in the first round of the bracket.

MORE…

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