HPPR People & Communities

People

‐present day pioneers & innovators‐leaders‐veterans‐characters 

Communities

‐demographics‐in/out-migration‐community development‐community organizations & enterprises‐social capital‐social entrepreneurism

www.firstthings.com

Due to medical appointments and grandkid visits, I’ve spent several days driving across central and western Kansas the last few weeks. During that travel time, gusting north winds have shaken and tossed my silver Toyota like a terrier shaking a rat, leaving me to hope that spring weather lore is more than a wishful thought. Now that the beginning of the month is here and I have a few more journeys to make, that old saying about March, “In like a lion, out like a lamb,” appeals to me.

news9.com

Kindhearted souls from across the country have banded together to help farmers and ranchers left reeling by the wildfires that ravaged over a million acres last week.

As Wide Open Country reports, one Texas rancher has donated $30,000 worth of hay to feed misplaced livestock. Ranchers across the Lone Star State have followed suit; since last week flatbeds stacked with hay have been seen rolling onto the Llano Estacado from points south.

www.colorado.gov

On the eastern plains of Colorado is a rehab clinic for the homeless who are addicted to drugs and alcohol – an unusual site given that most such facilities are based in cities.

As Colorado Public Radio reports, the Fort Lyon Supportive Residential Community, located in Las Animas, Colo., is also unique in that most drug and alcohol treatment providers for the homeless push “housing first” programs.

Lindsey Bauman

Help is coming and is here – where the prairie is singed to the earth – and at all hours.

Jeff Kay was up at 2 a.m. Monday to help unload a couple of trucks carrying hay for ranchers affected by the Clark County wildfires.

“It’s unbelievable the way the farming and ranching community has come together,” said Kay, who operates Ashland Feed and Seed. “There are donations coming from all over the world.”

Immigrants vital to Colorado, national economy

Mar 14, 2017
NY - http://nyphotographic.com/

In Colorado, one in 10 residents, or just under 533,000 people, were born in another country, making them a vital part of the state’s economy.

It's all in the perspective

Mar 10, 2017

Last week I wrote about my gardening efforts to encourage black swallowtail butterflies to lay eggs. My hopes were that these would become caterpillar hordes that would munch my fennel and dill until bare stems remained. We’re almost at the naked stick stage, and I’ve learned that folks don’t always see things my way. We’ve had friends and family drop by to enlighten me about my insect cultivation practices.

A beautifully tough place to live

Mar 10, 2017
Sarah Nishimuta / Woodward News

It's hard for people who don't make their living on a ranch or farm, growing crops, grassland and cattle to understand how this week's fires have devastated residents here.

Last night I had someone who does not live here call me and try to console me by saying, "Well, ash is good for the grass." All I could say to that was "Wha?"

Courtesy El Quartelejo Museum

There is no Trump in Kansas, but Scott County has Pence.

Not that there is evidence of political aspirations in this little town. It sits just off Cherokee Road, surrounded by treeless farmland, where it has been floundering for more than a century.

It’s unlikely that its founder, J.W. Pence, has any blood connection to Vice President Mike Pence – or that the 85 percent of Scott County voters who supported the Trump/Pence ticket did so because there was a town of Pence in their county.

Glimmer721

Kevin Costner’s character Ray in the movie Field of Dreams listened to a mysterious voice telling him, “If you build it, they will come.” Against others’ advice, he sacrificed a cornfield to construct a baseball diamond in the middle of Iowa farm country. If you’ve watched this film, you know the end of the story. Shoeless Joe Jackson, members of the banned 1919 Black Sox team, and others show up to play some spirited games.

Pedro Figueiredo

For more than 400 years, the only halt to England's annual Pancake Race was World War II.

Tradition runs deep in Olney, anchored by St. Peter and St. Paul − the church with the tall spire along the bank of the River Great Ouse in the heart of England.

It's here the bell has been tolling every Shrove Tuesday, calling the community to the Shriving service, the day before the 40 days of Lent. Even through the War of the Roses, legend has it the annual Pancake Race was run in Olney.

Creative Commons

A north central Kansas filmmaker’s drone video of wheat harvest is premiering at a New York City film festival next month.

As The Wichita Eagle reports, Doug Armknecht’s video called 'Beauty & Bounty' documents his wife’s family’s 2016 wheat harvest in Osborne County and is premiering at the New York City Drone Film Festival, which takes place March 17 to 19.

Colorado rancher shows support for Trump in a big way

Feb 26, 2017
9 News

An eastern Colorado rancher is showing his support of President Donald Trump in a way only a rancher, or farmer, could come up with.

As 9 News reports, rancher Doug Koehn of Limon, in frustration at some of the negativity coming from opponents of Trump, hopped on his plow and carved the word “TRUMP” in big block letters into his field.

The letters are approximately 800 feet wide and 800 feet long, a mile-long Trump, Koehn told 9 News.

Public Domain

Miners may have headed to the mountains hoping to discover gold nuggets and tiny gilt grains in streams and veins of rock. Unlike those adventuresome characters, we’ve stayed home on the prairie and discovered treasure in our Kansas garden after experimenting with new crops. One such Eureka moment arrived in the form of beta-carotene, vitamin A rich sweet potatoes.

City of Garden City, KS

A British national daily newspaper published an in-depth article this week about the foiled mosque and apartment complex bombing plot in Garden City lastt fall, sharing fears that Somali residents still feel even months after three southwest Kansas men were apprehended by FBI agents and charged with domestic terrorism.

NY - http://nyphotographic.com/

Citizens of Garden City, Kansas and Amarillo, Texas participated in yesterday’s “Day without immigrants” protest, intended to showcase the role immigrants play in the national economy.

As The Garden City Telegram reports, the absentee rate at Garden City public schools Thursday was higher than usual, with 18.5 percent of the district’s 7.713 students absent. And nearby Tyson Fresh Meats, the area's largest employer of immigrants, also reported higher absenteeism, did not provide specific numbers.

Mud blessings

Feb 18, 2017
Creative Commons CC0

Chinese philosophers are on to something with their Yin and Yang concepts. Light balances dark, silence/noise, joy/sorrow, and in our case, mud offsets dust.

Yes, mud. Icky, gooey, sticky mud. Like cat hair, it latches onto anything it touches, finding its way from roads, yards, and pastures onto shoes and pant legs and into homes. It finds its way into the oddest places—a speckle stuck to a grocery sack, a chunk dropped by the door, a smear on a purse.

City of Garden City, KS

In Kansas, some rural towns are booming while others are dwindling. Garden City, Kan., for instance, attracts people from across the globe. The population is young, growing, and extremely diverse.  And the large immigrant community provides the workforce that fuels the local economy.  None of this happened by accident, as the story notes.  Frank Morris reports.

Creative Commons CC0

Kansas Magazine is asking people to share their favorite places to eat.

As the Dodge City Globe, the statewide magazine – a division of the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism – has a survey currently asking for state residents to nominate their favorite local restaurant.

Douglas Pancoast, HABS delineator

In celebration of the 150th anniversary of Fort Hays in its present location, a program about Buffalo Soldiers will take place from 2 to 4 p.m. Sunday in the Historic Fort Hays Visitor’s center in Hays, Kansas.  

The program is free and open to the public and will be presented by Barrie Tompkins, a founder of the Nicodemus Buffalo Soldier Association, who has appeared in two TNT movies as a buffalo soldier – 1997’s “Teddy Roosevelt’s Rough Riders,” and 1998’s “The Buffalo Soldiers.”

Luke Runyon / Harvest Public Media

This story is part of the special series United And Divided, which explores the links and rifts between rural and urban America.

The bell signals the start of second period. A trio of young women take seats in English class, their attention quickly drifting outside the walls of the high school in Fort Morgan, Colorado, eager to talk about what they’re working toward.

“I want to become an FBI [agent],” says freshman Mariam Mohammed. “It’s my dream.”

Finney County removed from sanctuary county list

Feb 14, 2017
NY - http://nyphotographic.com/

Finney County Kansas has been removed from a list categorizing it as a sanctuary county

As the Garden City Telegram reports, the Center for Immigration Studies has officially removed Finney County from its list of sanctuary territories after a concerted effort by Sheriff Kevin Bascue and County Administrator Randy Partington.

Holly Bailey / Yahoo News

Amarillo saw something of the national spotlight in the wake of President Donald Trump’s controversial travel ban.

A Yahoo News story noted that Amarillo has long been a safe haven for refugees. For the last several years, Texas has led the United States in refugee resettlement and Amarillo accepts more refugees per capita than any other city in the state. Amarillo has, for the most part, provided a welcome home to these settlers fleeing terror in their homelands.

www.goodfreephotos.com

When I talk to friends who love to live in cities, they often wonder what we do for fun in our rural setting.  Even my former students who live in a nearby small town frequently asked, “Don’t you get bored in the country?  All you have to do is watch grass grow.” Anyone who reads my essays knows I don’t get bored even though we don’t have any neon lights or busy city streets lined with businesses that cater to people who just want to have fun.

Creative Commons CC0

In an effort to improve rural eating habits, the Sunflower Foundation recently approved a statewide $120,000 pilot project focused on community-based strategies to address food access needs in rural areas.

Creative Commons Zero - CC0

Weather forecasters have a miserable job. On one hand, they predict impending catastrophic weather and save lives. Think of residents if Oklahoma who made it to shelter before devastating F5 tornadoes bore down on their neighborhoods and businesses. On the other, these predictions are often wrong. A  cell fritzes out, leaving the audience to compare yesterday’s hero to the boy who cried wolf. It’s a dilemma.

Valarie Smith

A high school student in Garden City, Kansas has organized a rally for to show support for the southwest Kansas community’s diverse population in light of President Donald Trump’s executive orders last week to build a border wall on the Mexico border and the U.S travel ban for citizens of seven predominantly Muslim countries.

KGOU

Indian tribes in Oklahoma are seeking skilled doctors and chefs to work and serve in their rural communities.

KGOU reports that tribes in Oklahoma have struggled to compete with more urban areas for highly trained workers. The problem exists despite the fact that the tribes offer competitive salaries and other incentives.

When it comes to doctors, many tribes even offer to repay student loans, undergraduate and medical school loans, as well as offering scholarships.

Twitter

A Texas Mosque that was burned down last week raised almost a million dollars for its rebuilding in an astounding show of support from well-wishers.

The New York Times reports that the Victoria Islamic Center raised over $900,000 on Saturday and Sunday, through an online fund-raising campaign and cash and checks from the local community.

Quilted treasures

Jan 28, 2017

I’d be the first to tell you I’m not a quilter and unlikely to become one unless catastrophe requires me to recycle old clothing remnants into blankets to warm me or my loved ones in the cold of winter. While I don’t have patience to construct such intricate coverlets, I admire those who do. When our youngest daughter learned to quilt in a high school sewing class, I was thrilled she’d continue a family tradition that has waned since my great-grandmother last sorted through her ragbag to come up with pieces to create a lovely blue and red star heirloom that my mother treasures.

Luke Clayton

The process of curing and smoking ham is easy and something than anyone can accomplish at home.

Pages