• Power fails for 1,306 in Marion County

    Power to 446 Marion County residences and businesses failed for two hours Friday because of equipment failure on one of several transmission lines serving the area, a Westar Energy spokesman said. Power failed around 9:45 a.m. Friday in portions of Marion, Florence, and the area around Marion Reservoir. It was restored around 11:45 a.m. Westar originally estimated that 1,308 homes and businesses — nearly half the total served in that area — were without power but lowered the estimate after repairs were made.

  • Reservoir algae warning extended

    Swimming continues to be banned at Marion Reservoir after state health officials on Thursday extended a blue-green algae warning in effect since June 26. Humans, pets, and livestock should not drink or come in contact with reservoir water, and pets should not be allowed to eat dried algae.


  • Peabody gears up for Fourth of July events

    Peabody is set for its annual Fourth of July events, which include the largest ground display of fireworks in the state and more than a million explosions, culminating in the traditional “Battle of New Orleans” finale. Events actually started Saturday with the seventh annual Bob Phillips Memorial Texas Hold ‘Em Tournament. Events pick up again Thursday with the annual alumni dance at the Peabody American Legion. There is a $5 cover charge and attendees must be at least 21 years old. The dance is from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m., and proceeds go to a scholarship for a Peabody-Burns High School student. There is also a carnival Thursday.

  • Recreation board sets aside $20K for pool

    Beth Peter, Peabody-Burns Recreation Commission president, Peabody City Council members Monday night that the recreation commission set aside $20,000 for repairs to the Peabody Municipal Pool. The money will come from the 2014 budget. “That donation is a terrific gift to all the people who use the pool and we certainly appreciate it,” Mayor Larry Larsen said after Peter’s announcement.

  • Poker tournament funds scholarship

    Friends and family of the late Bob Phillips gathered Saturday evening at Peabody American Legion to participate in the seventh annual Texas Hold ‘Em Poker tournament to raise money for a scholarship in his name. Organizers said 34 people played in the tournament.

  • Dogs suspected in sheep deaths

    Every summer sheep owned by Gary and Marilyn Jones, who live south of Peabody in a neighborhood commonly referred to as Mayesville, stay in a pasture a short distance from the Jones farm. “If we have decent rain and there is grass, they will stay there all summer,” Marilyn Jones said.

  • Tornado sirens actually work

    Peabody residents who had been listening to the police scanner earlier this month might have been concerned when someone said over the airways the tornado sirens were malfunctioning. However, even though the telephone line to the siren was somehow disconnected from the pole and laying in a mess for months or possibly years, the sirens were still able to be activated in an emergency, Police Chief Bruce Burke said.

  • State cuts continue to affect disability organizations

    State funding to a local mental health disability organization was again a subject discussed Monday by county commissioners. Harvey-Marion County Community Developmental Disability Organization director Elizabeth Schmidt said her organization took a cut of nearly $20,000 to its administrative funds, despite an “unprecedented” caseload of 237 individuals during the past year.

  • Rumors swirl after EMS firing

    Monday’s seemingly abrupt firing of Marion County’s ambulance director created both a storm of protest and an uneasy calm of official no-comments Tuesday. While all three county commissioners refused to explain their reason for dismissing longtime EMT and former Marion City Council member Steve Smith, Smith’s supporters were quick to condemn the commissioners.

  • Scrutiny of wind farm urged

    It’s not uncommon for citizens to attend Marion County Planning and Zoning Commission meetings to voice concerns regarding proposed zoning issues. What is uncommon is when Bob Gayle of Florence showed up at the April committee meeting with a 21-page, single-spaced briefing book with 59 pages of supplemental materials to articulate his concerns about the proposed wind farm under development by Windborne Energy LLC.


  • Samaritan rescues, returns dog

    A dog is home safe and sound with her family after an adventure that found her traveling from near Florence to Sterling. Jazz, an Australian shepherd, went missing from the home of Jeff Wyss in rural Florence on Saturday.

  • Despite no A/C, Kapaun site to expand hours

    Despite the lack of air conditioning, a handful of dedicated volunteers at the Father Kapaun Museum is going to dedicate their time to open the museum on a regular basis to serve the high volume of people trekking down the rural roads to Pilsen. Since Father Emil Kapaun received the Congressional Medal of Honor last year, attendance at the museum has nearly tripled, volunteer Rosemary Neuwirth said.

  • Contractors re-lay highway as they go

    Drivers could see flames shooting out from under a piece of equipment Monday on a road construction project between Lincolnville and Marion on U.S. 56/77. A contractor is heating up the highway, grinding off the top layer, and re-laying the material as recycled asphalt, all in one go. The result is an active construction zone only a couple hundred yards long that leaves a completed surface in its wake.

  • Longtime game warden protected humans, too

    Marvin Peterson, state game warden for Marion County and half of Morris County since 1992, retired in June after a 32-year career. He said the people he met made his district a good place to work. In return, he was always friendly back, said Neal Whitaker, who worked with him for 20 years as a ranger at Marion Reservoir.

  • Rain puts a damper on garden tour

    Rain throughout much of the day Saturday severely cut into attendance at Marion City Library’s annual garden tour fundraiser. “The gardens were lovely, but due to the weather attendance wasn’t great,” librarian Janet Marler said. “It was very nice even with the small attendance. Everything was so green and lush.”

  • Know the rules for fireworks

    People celebrating July Fourth by shooting personal fireworks inside Peabody city limits will have to follow a few rules. Fireworks can be shot from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. today and from 8 a.m. to midnight July 3 and 4.

  • Be safe on Independence Day

    Using fireworks on our nation’s birthday is American as apple pie. It is equally safe if a few and common-sense rules are followed. The annual celebration is an exhilarating event that brings joy to everyone but also has the possibility to be hazardous. Preparing for a safe holiday is as important as preparing for all potential disasters. If you create a plan that everyone knows you will lessen dangers of the event and create a safe environment.


  • Delores Stroda

    Former Marion resident Delores M. Stroda, 81, died Friday at the Medicalodges of Herington. Funeral Mass was Tuesday at St. John Catholic Church in Herington. She was born March 8, 1933, in Lincolnville to Albert Frank and Albina Elsie (Melcher) Bezdek. She graduated from Lincolnville High School in 1951.

  • Joan Thompson

    Former Western Associates employee Joan B. Thompson, 84, of Cedar Point died Saturday at Saint Luke’s Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri. Services were to be at 10 a.m. today at Elmdale United Methodist Church. She was born July 28, 1929, in Emporia to Robert and Grace Smith Bartlett.

  • Rachel Friesen

    Hillsboro resident Rachel Friesen, 88, died June 9 at Hillsboro Community Hospital. She was born Jan. 15, 1926, to George and Sara (Harms) Kornelsen in Greensburg. She married Vernon Friesen. He preceded her in death.



  • If rain keeps up, corn crop could be golden

    At this stage of the wheat-growing phase this year farmers were very pessimistic about the crop quality, however it is the exact opposite with corn. “I’ll say it with guarded breath because we’re still a long way from the bin, but the corn is looking awesome,” Marion County extension agent Rick Roberts said. “In my opinion we’re set up to have a special kind of harvest, but again it’s not in the bin so it can still go south.”

  • Alfalfa faces challenges

    Spring and early summer has been an interesting — and frustrating — time for many hay growers in Marion County. Farmer Brad Wiens said he usually starts harvesting a first cutting of alfalfa early in May, but March and April were so dry there was nothing worth cutting. Fortunately alfalfa recovers well when it does get moisture.

  • Wiebes big cheeses of their business

    It is hard to fathom what 1,800 lbs. of cheese would look like, but it is what Jason and Sheri Wiebe can make with one day’s worth of milk from their dairy cows outside Durham. The Wiebes have been making cheese at Wiebe Dairy and distributing it for more than 10 years. They make several varieties and ship out several thousands of pounds of cheese a month in 40-pound blocks across the country and locally.

  • Horsing around is his pastime

    Larry Britton of Florence isn’t usually found far from a horse, in fact nearly every day he can be found riding one of his three horses around Florence. “It’s the only place my family will let me ride by myself,” he said. “They get worried when I ride outside of town alone in case something were to go wrong.”

  • Students to compete in ag challenge

    Marion County students ages 12 through 19 as of Jan. 1 can compete in an agriculture Challenge of Champions at 7 p.m. July 16 at the Marion High School agriculture education building. The program is to recognize outstanding Marion County 4-H and FFA members and students interested in agriculture. Students 16 through 19 are eligible for cash prizes with the winner advancing to compete for a scholarship at the state fair.


  • One more trip to my soap box

    The Married Daughter and What’s His Name volunteered to be in charge of the Fourth of July parade again this year. I just heard from the Daughter that they have raked in donations worth $600 for prizes for winning parade entries in this 93rd celebration. Not too shabby. The prize money is in the form of Peabody Bucks so that when you win, you will spend your winnings locally. Good idea! Here are the categories. There is a $50 prize for the best decorated kid’s bike, a $50 prize for the best decorated golf cart or lawn mower, and a $50 prize for the coolest car. Prize offerings for floats are $250 for first place, $150 for second place, and $50 for third place. There is no specific theme for the parade so my best advice is to do something wonderful with red, white, and blue and be extravagant.

  • Thank you, Marion County

    Tuesday was my last day at Hoch Publishing. After five years, eight months, and 16 days, I am I’m glad Hoch Publishing has someone as talented and familiar with the area as David Colburn to take the lead in my place. I worked with David during one of his previous stints as a reporter here, and he has a knack for finding news, as well as a great eye for photography. With award-winners Olivia Haselwood and Oliver Good on staff, I expect good things for the newspapers, but the time is right to take my career in a new direction.

  • Days of Yore

    Sharon Kessler, head cook at Peabody Senior Center for the past 20 years, retired on Monday. Jewell Koehn, 76, of Peabody died June 30 at Via Christi-St. Francis Regional Medical Center in Wichita.


  • Carol Makovec to celebrate 70th birthday

    Lifelong Marion County resident Carol Makovec will celebrate her 70th birthday Saturday at a family cookout in her honor at Central Park in Marion. Birthday wishes may be mailed to her at 3232 Quail Creek Rd., Ramona, KS 67475. She was born July 8, 1944, to John and Irma Reznicek. She graduated from Centre High School and married Robert Makovec in 1963. They have five children, 16 grandchildren, and 12 great-grandchildren.

  • Fund established for Circles grads

    People who complete Circles of Hope’s anti-poverty training can now receive small low-interest loans. For example, someone could receive a loan to buy a vehicle, which can be very important to getting or keeping a job, said Ashlee Gann of Families and Communities Together, the financial agent for Circles of Hope.

  • Howard Baker dies due to stroke

    Howard Baker, husband of Burdick resident and former U.S. Senator Nancy Kassebaum, passed away June 26 in his hometown of Huntsville, Tennessee after complications from a stroke. Baker was born in Huntsville to Dora Ann and Howard Baker Sr., who was a U.S. Representative.

  • Super Swimmers win rain-shortened meet

    Only 32 events were completed in the home swim meet on Saturday that was suspended because of weather. The Peabody Super Swimmers were leading with 279 points when the competition ended. Abilene followed with 188.5, and Solomon had 68.5. Competitors who finished in the top three in an event included: Girls Ages 8 and younger 25-meter butterfly: 3. Janessa Sutton. 25-meter backstroke: 2. Sutton. Ages 9 and 10 100-meter freestyle: 3. Mya Winter. 100-meter freestyle relay: 2. Janessa Sutton, Lexi Davis, Madelynn Hutchison, and Winter. 25-meter butterfly: 3. Davis. 25-meter backstroke: 1. Davis, 2. Winter. Ages 13 and 14 100-meter freestyle: 3. Jane Timm. 100-meter freestyle relay: 1. Kallie Hutchison, Lexi Schreiber, Madyson Foth, and Sydney Hodges. 50-meter butterfly: 1. Hodges, 2. Foth, 3. Schreiber. Ages 13 and 14 100-meter freestyle: 2. Kayla Page, 3. Emma Schroeder. 100-meter medley relay: 1. Page, Adriana Newman, Schroeder, and Raegan Schreiber. 50-meter butterfly: 2. Schreiber. Ages 15 through 18 100-meter medley relay: 2. April Newfield, Mackenzie Young, Lily Harris, and Mallory Harris. 50-meter butterfly: 2. L. Harris, 3. M. Harris. Boys Ages 8 and younger 100-meter medley relay: 1. Christopher Spencer, Thomas Craig, Kael Hutchison, and Jefferson Glover. 25-meter butterfly: 1. Glover. 25-meter backstroke: 1. Glover. Ages 9 and 10 100-meter freestyle: 1. Alex Caldwell, 2. Josh Bergman, 3. Hunter Navrat. 100-meter medley relay: 1. Johnathan Glover, Philip Young, Noal Reynolds, and Caldwell, 2. Corbin Marple, Alex Young, Navrat, and Bergman. 25-meter butterfly: 2. Reynolds, 3. Young. 25-meter backstroke: 1. Caldwell, 2. Glover, 3. Reynolds. Ages 11 and 12 100-meter freestyle: 1. Koby Schroeder, 2. Julian Craig, 3. Jacob Garber. 100-meter freestyle relay: 1. Craig, Graber, Schroeder, and Lukas Spencer. 50-meter butterfly: 1. Craig, 2. Spencer. Ages 13 and 14 100-meter freestyle: 1. Zach Stephy, 3. Jordan Anderson. 100-meter freestyle relay: 2. Anderson, Max Caldwell, Reid Graber, and Stephy. 50-meter butterfly: 1. Reynolds, 3. Anderson. Ages 15 through 18 100-meter freestyle: 1. Nicholas Preheim, 3. Jaydin Hutchison. 100-meter medley relay: 2. Austin Reynolds, Garret Schroeder, Hutchison, and Preheim. 50-meter butterfly: 1. Preheim.

  • BURNS:

    Marie Clark attends shower for granddaughter

    Williams family has grandchildren as dinner guests


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