UPDATED AFTER PRINT DEADLINE
  • Florence water safe to drink, use

    Florence water is safe to drink, as Kansas Department of Health and Environment today lifted a boil water advisory placed in effect last week. Laboratory testing samples indicated no evidence of contamination. All conditions that placed the system at risk of contamination have been resolved, KDHE officials said.

HEADLINES

  • County punts, Larsen still in limbo for EMS

    Commissioners made no decision Monday on the reinstatement of Larry Larsen, apparently reacting in part to a letter they received that instead has them scurrying to consult the same law firm used to help fire the Peabody paramedic in October. “This is way big,” Commission Chairman Dan Holub said. “We got a letter today to be read at this meeting in opposition to Larry being rehired, but there are accusations that we’re not going to read it out loud. We’re not going to go there again, that happened before.”

  • Camper burns, cause unclear

    John Antoszyk’s recreational vehicle wasn’t really for recreation. Sure, he took it to Marion County Lake every so often in the summer, but it’s main purpose was a home-away-from-home for the career construction worker. “That was supposed to be my house tomorrow night,” Antoszyk said Monday afternoon. Only, it burned up Monday morning.

  • Iced out: Storms cause damage throughout county

    The ice came and the power went. A continual light rain Thursday began to freeze that evening, with temperatures hovering between 25 and 30 degrees over a two-day period Friday and Saturday.

  • Detour traffic and icy roads concern county

    Treatment of icy roads and vehicles circumventing construction of the U.S. 56/77 and K-150 roundabout drew attention from commissioners Monday. Commissioner Randy Dallke asked sheriff Rob Craft to clarify who was responsible for dispatching county crews when road conditions get icy.

  • Life on Colorado plains was filled with adventure for Bob and Millie Vinduska

    Millie Vinduska, 88, of Pilsen knows what it is like to live out on the vast open prairie of eastern Colorado in a sod house with no plumbing or electricity. “I loved it,” she said. “It was a challenge.”

  • Don't let the mail scam you this Christmas

    ’Tis the season when it’s important to know the difference between a Christmas card from a friend or relative and a card from someone who is trying to scam you. Postmaster Lori Kelsey at Marion received notice from several customers in the past two weeks about suspicious offers they received in the mail.

  • The many talents of Taco the parrot

    Don’t bother asking Barry Guinn’s Amazon parrot if it wants a cracker. “Taco” prefers peanuts. Guinn said peanuts are one of the bird’s greatest passions — the smell, the taste, the salty reward.

OTHER HEADLINES

  • Barker bit by tough questioning at Kiwanis

    An otherwise chummy visit from state representative John Barker turned to a bit of hot debate Tuesday at Marion Kiwanis Club when USD 408 superintendent Lee Leiker questioned Barker about automatic raises legislators received for daily expenses while in session. Leiker asked Barker whether he thought that should be a voted-on issue, made public.

  • Man allegedly uses car without ignition interlock, goes to jail

    Hillsboro Police arrested Toby Lee Jones, 25, of Hillsboro at 9:10 a.m. Nov. 27 for allegedly operating a motor vehicle that was not equipped with an ignition interlock device. Hillsboro police chief Dan Kinning said Jones’s girlfriend, Maranda Simhiser, reported that Jones took off in her car just before 8 a.m. without her consent.

  • Son allegedly kicks down parents' door

    A Hillsboro man was arrested on multiple charges after he allegedly “kicked down” the front door of his parents’ house on Nov. 22 at 112 N. Jefferson St. The incident occurred between 7:15 and 10:50 p.m. after Larry and Cecilia LaPlante of Hillsboro allegedly asked their son, Derrick LaPlante, 31, of Hillsboro, to leave their home, police chief Dan Kinning said.

CHRISTMAS HAPPENINGS

  • Marion's annual Christmas Home Tour to focus on decor

    The walls of four homes will be festively decked with more than just boughs of holly this year for Marion City Library’s annual Christmas Home Tour. Event patrons can expect to visit a bona fide log cabin, a restored apartment in downtown Marion that used to be a hospital, a home inspired by Pinterest projects, and a lakeside abode with a panoramic view and a parrot that talks and sings.

  • Marion Main St. open house to be Sunday

    At least eight businesses will be participating in Marion Main St. Open House 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 6 and will include refreshments and door prizes. Nadien Iseli, owner of Central Park Antiques, got together with the seven other businesses to plan the event.

  • Past Country Lakes performer to give Christmas concert

    Holiday decorations are springing up all over Marion County, and the sounds of Christmas will be in the air in Hillsboro on Friday as well. Hillsboro resident David Vogel, who runs Vogel Design and owns Instaboro, will perform “A Down Home Christmas Concert” at 7 p.m. Friday at Hillsboro Mennonite Brethren Church.

  • "A Down Home Christmas" to be this weekend

    “A Down Home Christmas,” presented by Kessler Kreations, returns Friday and Saturday to Hillsboro. A Christmas concert by David Vogel, and featuring Vance Klassen, Daniele Melton, and Hanna Vogel, will kick off the event 7 p.m. Friday at Hillsboro Mennonite Brethren Church.

DEATHS

  • John Backhus

    John H. Backhus, 86, died Nov. 29 at Good Shepherd Hospice House in Manhattan. Funeral service will be 1:30 p.m. Friday at the Our Redeemer Lutheran Church in Herington. Burial will follow at the St. John’s Lutheran Cemetery, North Tampa, and a prayer service will be 7 p.m. Thursday at the church.

  • JoAnn Berry

    JoAnn Berry, 69, of Penrose, Colorado, died Nov. 25. Her son, Boone Berry, with children Madison and Calli Berry, live in Florence. A Colorado resident for nearly 50 years, JoAnn was a member of the Colorado Democratic Party, Canon City Chamber of Commerce, and Miniature Club.

  • Brad Cody Sr.

    Brad Cody Sr., 61, died Nov. 25 at Salem Home in Hillsboro. Family will have services at a later date.

  • Rex Graham

    Rex C. Graham, 85, died Nov. 26 at Newton Presbyterian Manor. He was born October 6, 1930, in Newton to Earl and Clara Graham.

  • Kay Heidebrecht

    Kay E. Heidebrecht, 76, died Nov. 28 at Harry Hynes Memorial Hospice, Wichita, Kansas. Visitation was Tuesday at Zeiner Funeral Home in Marion.

  • Frances Lais

    Frances Donella Lais, Wichita, died Nov. 25 in Wichita. Funeral service will be 1 p.m. Friday at the Salem United Methodist Church in Newton. Interment will be at the Prairie Lawn Cemetery in Peabody.

  • Norma Jean Wagner

    Norma Jean Wagner, 83, died Nov. 5 at her home in Sandpoint, Idaho. No services were held.

  • IN MEMORIAM:

    Thomas J. Anderson
  • IN MEMORIAM:

    Henrietta Thomas

DOCKET

OPINION

  • Rotting from the top

    It’s said a fish rots from the head down, a proverb that affixes blame to leadership for an organization’s failures. The fish head for the travails of Marion County EMS has been the county commission, despite protestations from those bunkered in the courthouse that the problems mostly all originated “out there” among divisive and disgruntled EMS staff.

  • ANOTHER DAY IN THE COUNTRY:

    She could do what she could do
  • CORRECTIONS:

    Criminal cases

PEOPLE

  • Hamm to celebrate 80th with card shower

    Shirley Riffel of Newton and Dennis Hamm of Sioux Falls, South Dakota are requesting a card shower for the 80th birthday of their mother, Wanda Hamm. She was born Dec. 10, 1935. She has lived in Marion most of her married life and has sold Avon makeup products for about 40 years.

  • Helmer Thanksgiving reunion held at lake

    An annual Helmer Thanksgiving family reunion was held at the Marion County Lake Hall on Thursday. Jerry and Barbara Bessel and Darla Gore, descendants of the George Helmer family, were host for the potluck dinner.

  • Ladies Night brings 'lots of good times'

    ‘Tis the season to go shopping, and Marion women got a jump start Nov. 23 with an evening just for them. Ace Hardware staged its second Ladies Night, and owner Kent Carmichael said that the turnout was good.

  • Christian church holds annual Thanksgiving meal

    Marion Christian Church had its annual Thanksgiving dinner after services Nov. 22. The church’s fellowship committee puts the event on every Thanksgiving as a way of showing thanks to its members.

  • Parkside Homes to have open house

    Parkside Homes will hold a Christmas open house from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Dec. 7. The event will feature the band Freedom 724 at 6:30 p.m. along with other activities throughout the evening. Soups, Christmas treats, and other goodies will be available.

  • Senior menu

  • MEMORIES:

    10, 25, 35, 50, 60, 100, 125 years ago

SCHOOL

SPORTS PREVIEW

  • MHS Warriors look to rebound after down year

    There are plenty of reasons for optimism for the Marion High School boys’ basketball team. Perhaps the greatest such reason is the most obvious one: Last year is over. Having lost just two seniors to graduation, the Warriors look to build themselves back into a winning team.

  • Massive senior class gives Marion girls' basketball a leg up

    Experience for high school athletics is like gold. Playing the game makes it easier to understand. As coaches like to say, it “slows down.” Marion High School girls’ basketball has a treasure trove of experience. Seven seniors headline the roster, complemented by sophomore Kourtney Hansen, who received an all-league honorable mention in her freshman season.

  • MHS wrestling: New leaders, similar goals

    The Marion Warriors wrestling team faces a question of leadership this season, coach Chad Adkins said. “Leadership will be different this year,” Adkins said. “We are definitely down in that category. We are going to have a challenge ahead.”

  • Centre girls basketball in rebuilding mode

    Centre girls’ basketball lost six seniors to graduation last spring, and one foreign exchange student who was a starter. On the plus side, four letterwinners — seniors Ally Basore and Abigail Svoboda and juniors Summer Espinoza and Shelby Pankratz —return to anchor the team.

  • Centre boys basketball has nowhere to go but up

    As Richard Idleman takes over the reins of the Centre High School boys’ basketball team, he is faced with the task of nurturing a team that had few upperclassmen the previous year. The varsity ended the season with a disappointing 1-6 record in the Wheat State League and 3-17 overall.

  • Trojan wrestlers prepare to rock

    There is energy in the Trojans wrestling room, and it is not just kinetic. In the first week of practice, wrestlers seem focused and ready to rock. Coach Scott O’Hare promoted a crisp and fast-paced atmosphere, circling up the team to review wrestling moves and breaking each review with a collective “Ready, Break,” punctuated by a clap that echoed off the walls.

  • Trojan boys look to youth to fill gaps

    Hillsboro coach Darrel Knoll describes his team as one with “five upperclassmen,” which is positive spin on the fact the Trojans return just one senior, Austin Cross, from last year’s 9-12 squad. Having a 6-foot-6 post player is a good place to start, even though Cross is relatively new to the game.

  • Returning letter winners give Hillsboro girls plenty of options

    Going into the 2014-15 season, Hillsboro coach Nathan Hiebert didn’t have enough returning letter winners to field a starting five. This year the Trojans return seven, including leading scorer senior Alex Ratzlaff, and the difference in practices is “huge,” Hiebert said. “It takes time to get up to speed and understand what the game is, and practice has been nice the first week because we have more experience,” he said. “We’ve been able to get a lot more in a lot sooner.”

  • Goessel girls hope to continue winning ways

    This year’s Goessel girls’ basketball team will look familiar, sporting four returning starters and two other letter winners from the 2014-15 team. One year ago the Bluebirds had a record of 19-4, with a Wheat State League record of 7-0. The Bluebirds will go into the season with high expectations for themselves, and from others. The team is ranked fourth in 1A Division 1 in the Kansas Basketball Coaches Association preseason poll.

  • Bluebirds look for starters to emerge

    The Goessel boys’ basketball team will seek to develop young players in a hurry, as just one starter from last year’s squad returns. That starter, Zach Wiens, will be expected to be a team leader, coach Curtis Guhr said. The 6-foot-3 senior should be a presence inside the paint, averaging 13.3 points and 8 rebounds per game.

  • Warriors hope to continue winning trend

    The Warriors are ready to come out and play. Peabody-Burns boys’ basketball team may have lost eight seniors from the 2014-15 rosters, but head coach Caleb Good feels that the team has potential to grow and will give it all they have.

  • New PBHS coach aims for more competative team

    As his first year of coaching begins, Peabody-Burns girls’ basketball coach Scott Bauer is looking forward to see where this season leads the team. “I’m probably learning more than they are,” Bauer said, “but it’s exciting to get back into basketball, since in college I played football.”

SPORTS

  • Bluejays' season ends in blowout

    Tabor’s season came to a close Saturday with a 51-6 loss at the hands of No. 1-ranked Morningside in Sioux City, Iowa. The Bluejays stayed in the game early on, trailing 6-0 at the end of the first quarter. However, they were outscored 38-0 in the second and third quarters to put the game well out of reach.

  • Bowling results

UPCOMING

  • Calendar of events

  • Rec to hold painting class

    A painting workshop, “Winter Buddies,” will be sponsored by the Marion Recreation Commission from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. Thursday in the community center basement. Paintings will be on a 16- by 20-inch canvas. Cost to participate is $15. Space and supplies are limited.

  • Commodities to arrive Dec. 9

    Government surplus commodities will arrive at Marion County senior centers Dec. 9. Marion Senior Center will begin distribution from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Dec. 10.

MORE…

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