This September, the Walnut Valley Festival will give young musicians in its audience the opportunity to perform on its festival stages in Andy May’s Acoustic Kids Showcases – as it has every year since 1991. Supplementing the National and International instrument championship competitions for which the festival is famous, this non-competitive program mentors the next generation of musicians, recognizing their achievements at every level, beginner through pro. It is designed to provide a positive performance experience in a professional setting for young pickers and singers through age 16. Participation in Acoustic Kids is free with festival admission, but preregistration is required. Registration will be available as long as there is room in the showcases. You can register online at andymay.com where you can also find additional details. More information is also available at www.acoustickids.com or by calling 615-428-1008
Archives for August 2019
Watch out for imposters posing as religious clergy asking for gift cards… that warning today from Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt…
The City of Arkansas City will shift to a four-day sanitation schedule due to the closure of all City offices September 2 in observance of Labor Day. The Cowley County Landfill also will be closed September 2nd. Next week, all of Monday’s and part of Tuesday’s routes will be collected September 3. The part of Tuesday’s route to be collected is from Madison Avenue south to the Mill Canal, and from Summit Street east to E Street and southeast through Sleeth Addition. The remainder of Tuesday’s route and all of Wednesday’s routes will be collected September 4. Thursday’s and Friday’s routes will be unaffected by the holiday. All refuse should be placed at normal pickup locations by 6 a.m. on the scheduled day of pickup. There will be no return pickups. No recycling will be collected Saturday, August 31.
Organizers of the Walnut Valley Festival have announced that plans are set for this year’s Land Rush, and the Winfield Fairgrounds are in good shape for use during the festival. Campers should be aware, however, that some extremely low-lying portions of the campground may still be unusable in September. Current plans call for areas that are not generally used for camping to be made accessible in order to compensate; look for updates on social media and on-site. They also ask that patrons be flexible, and to camp in as compact a way as possible, so as to be courteous to other campers and make sure everyone who wishes to can enjoy the campground picking and jamming. The festival, for the first time this year, incorporated an online preregistration element before the initial line-up. Land Rush consists of a traditional “race” to claim campsites shortly before the start of the annual festival. As festivalgoers have arrived earlier and earlier each year to claim their spots in the campgrounds, organizers have had to create an organized and equitable process for lining up campers without clogging city streets and major highways in Winfield. WVA took preregistrations from July 1-31. In early August, staff sent notices to those who preregistered, informing them which row they will need to park in when they arrive on grounds, and when they should plan on arriving. Those who did not take part in the preregistration should plan on arriving at 1pm this Thursday, and should enter grounds from the 14th Street Side. For updates on camping and other matters related to the Walnut Valley Festival, check the website and social media. The Walnut Valley Festival, which will be held Sept. 18-22, 2019, draws a crowd of 10-15 thousand people.
Chip sealing continues this week in Arkansas City. Work is scheduled on Eighth Street starting today, where the Public Services Department crews plan to finish chip sealing on North Eighth Street from West Cedar Avenue to West Kansas Avenue. Work will continue Tuesday if needed. All vehicles need to be removed from the street, but can be returned at night after work is complete. You will need to find alternative routes to work and school while the work is ongoing.
An update today from Arkansas City Public Information Officer Andrew Lawson, about a hit and run that happened last week. Now, police say the dark blue 2000-2005 Toyota Celica they had been searching for, is no longer being sought in connection with the hit-and-run accident in which it was involved. They say they made contact with the driver of the vehicle after coming upon it while on routine patrol. The driver was cited for the violation that caused the accident, as well as leaving the scene of the accident. Police do however, want to thank all who provided tips on potential suspect vehicles. Each one was investigated in an effort to locate the suspect involved. Police however, have not released the name of that driver or any other details.
Lights, camera, ACTION! Netflix has announced that it plans to film a paranormal series in Newkirk. According to Netflix, the upcoming show will be set in a fictionalized version of the town, with filming set to begin in September. The show is titled “Hunting Jessica,” and is based on a fantasy novel of the same name by Elizabeth St. John… an Oklahoma author. The series combines elements of fantasy and horror to tell the story of Jessica, a small-town girl who lives in Devil’s Bend, where one day, a shocking murder happens. Native American folklore also plays into the plotline. St. John, the author of the novels, based the book in Newkirk… saying the town’s perfect for the kind of show it is. Filming is expected to begin the second week of September, and will premiere in early 2020 on Netflix. They are also using as much Oklahoma talent as possible, from actors to set crew. The entire series will be filmed in Newkirk. All of the footage will be done in Newkirk. The series has the potential to revitalize and bring more attention to Newkirk according to the Newkirk Chamber of Commerce… along with financial benefits. The series is set to film for six weeks for the first season, with a premier in February.
A former bar owner in Winfield, who also worked as a Cowley County sheriff’s deputy has been arrested. Blake Porter owned O’Kelley’s Sports Bar and Grill for more than a decade. He also worked as a Cowley County deputy from 1994 to 1996. Porter is now an inmate at the Cowley County Jail, after being taken into custody for sex crimes. Porter faces one count each of rape and aggravated criminal sodomy, and two counts of aggravated indecent liberties with a child. The charges… according to investigators… involve one victim, who is under the age of 14. O’Kelley’s Sports Bar & Grill was closed in August 2010 as part of a bank foreclosure and later sold. Several other bars have operated there since then.
Arkansas City Police are seeking a suspect vehicle in connection with a hit-and-run accident that happened last Saturday, August 17th, on 11th Street. Police say a dark blue 2000 to 2005 Toyota Celica passenger car was northbound on 11th Street around 8:25pm last Saturday, and as it approached West Kansas Avenue, it continued northbound across the street… entered a private drive, and ran into a closed garage door. Neighbors who came outside witnessed the vehicle backing down the driveway and fleeing. A partial license plate was obtained, and parts were left behind that helped to identify the vehicle, which police say will have damage to its front bumper and possibly its hood. Both inner
fender liners and a front ground effect were left behind at the scene, and will be missing from the vehicle. Anyone with information that could help police to locate the vehicle is asked to contact the Arkansas City Police Department at (620) 441-4444.
The Kansas Corporation Commission is collecting data and analyzing recent injection well activity in Reno County in an effort to uncover the cause of a series of earthquakes in the Hutchinson area. Amid damage reports and a concern for public safety, the KCC is conducting an investigation and will evaluate whether additional action is needed to safeguard Kansans. In 2015, the KCC issued an order reducing injection rates in portions of Harper and Sumner counties after the number of earthquakes in that area began to trend upward. In 2016, the Commission issued a second order limiting injection in additional areas when earthquake activity there started to rise. This investigation and evaluation process is ongoing and dependent upon the complexity of the evolving fact finding process. Accordingly, a precise timeline for completing the investigation has not yet been determined.