• City endorsed insurance pitch

    Many Marion residents received letters last week that appeared to be from the city. They arrived in envelopes with the city’s return address, were printed on what appeared to be city letterhead, and had Mayor Todd Heitschmidt’s signature, endorsing Sewer Line Warranties of America to sell insurance for sewer lines running from homes to the public utility connection. Despite appearing to be from the city, the letters were in fact mailed by the company, with the city’s blessing. Marion City Council approved endorsing Sewer Line Warranties of America and providing a list of utility customers to the company on Oct. 14.

  • No one files for District 1 commission seat

    The District 1 county commission seat, which includes Hillsboro, Durham, and Lehigh, will feature a blank line on ballots on Aug. 5. County Clerk Tina Spencer said no one inquired about the position or filed by the noon deadline Monday.

  • Artists to share passion

    Gerald Wiens has a passion for nature. He has a master’s degree in wildlife biology to prove it. When he took his first job as director of Chaplin Nature Center near Arkansas City he began taking photos of animals and nature to help teach visitors of the center.

  • Speaker urges veterans to share stories

    Guest speaker John Barker reminded veterans of the importance of sharing their stories Monday morning during Memorial Day services at the Civil War Monument in Marion Cemetery. Barker encouraged family members and friends of veterans to inquire about their stories because of the catharsis that can come with talking about war memoires.

  • Lakes all clear on 1st algae warnings

    Kansas Department of Health and Environment released its first warnings and advisories for blue-green algae Thursday, and Marion County Lake and Marion Reservoir were absent from the list. Both lakes have had public health warnings or advisories for blue-green algae in recent summers, but after heavy rains last summer, the lakes cleared up. Contact with or ingestion of blue-green algae can be detrimental to the health of humans and animals.

  • Marion teachers get $800 raise

    Marion teachers got an $800 increase in their salaries last week when the school board ratified the new negotiated agreement for teachers. The change raises the base salary for a brand new teacher to $34,000 a year. It is about a 2.3 percent raise for new teachers, while for teachers at the top end of the salary schedule, it is about 1.5 percent. Teachers may also qualify for raises based on years of experience or continuing education.

  • Resident raises concerns, roundabout discussed

    Several issues of concern were presented to Marion City Council on Tuesday. Norma Kline asked the council to pay a $112 bill to Flaming’s after an air conditioner in Marion Senior Center kitchen went out at the beginning of the month. It was found to be non functioning because of city power lines, she said.

  • Florence neighbors step up for dog left alone and in need

    There’s a dog in Florence with no family. Neighbors have been feeding him over the fence for several months, since the dog’s family moved away and left him in the backyard. Ali Johnson, who lives down the street from the dog, also has been feeding him when she can, along with several other neighbors.

  • Doctor pledges love in Paris

    Dr. Paige Hatcher’s trip to France in April resulted in more than recognition at an international forum on quality and safety sponsored by the British Medical Journal. She said “yes” to the love of her life. Hatcher began practicing in Marion in October. Her fiancé, Scott Dodson, is a park ranger for the U.S. Corp of Engineers at Marion Reservoir.


  • Commission discusses pay

    County commissioners met Tuesday in a closed meeting for to discuss employee pay. Commissioners stayed in executive session for 3 hours and 30 minutes, discussing personnel. No action was taken upon return to open session.

  • Rifle salute memorializes Pilsen veterans

    About 40 people traveled down the dusty roads to Pilsen to attend Memorial Day services at Pilsen Cemetery. The more than 70 Pilsen residents who had served and were laid to rest in the cemetery were named for their contributions. Two residents were remembered for never coming home, Father Emil Kapaun and Dean Klenda.

  • St. Luke has election

    Bruce Skiles was elected to the Hospital District No. 1 board Tuesday to fill Ken Vinduska’s position, and Linda Carlson and Linda Allison were re-elected to three-year terms. Carlson received 19 votes; Skiles and Allison, 18 each; and Gene Winkler, 12. Vinduska left the board after 10 years.

  • Pete stands signless

    The past few years Pete the chain saw carved rhino has called city hall home. He was decorated with a sign that said, “Hello, my name is Pete.” A few months ago that sign went missing. A few city employees noted Pete’s missing sign for a few months but thought that perhaps it had been broken and was being repaired. In fact it has been swiped.

  • Kids travel to the land of Oz

    Marion Public Library librarian Janet Marler is an avid fan of “The Wizard of Oz” and passes that knowledge onto her kids and grandchildren, but this year she is holding events at the library to share it with residents young and old in honor of the film’s 75th anniversary. On Thursday, munchkin sized residents were invited to partake in a kids day of Oz activities planned and designed by Rachael Thurston. Activities included making a tornado in a bottle, pin the heart on the Tin Man, musical yellow brick road, crafts, cards, and a photobooth complete with an Oz backdrop.

  • Cookie company sees no limits

    After four years, Marty Fent has seen his business grow locally, but he does not want to stop there. “We’re going statewide,” he said.



  • Monroe Suderman

    My Mom and Dad always sang in the church choir. Each had a good sense of humor. Years ago I received a letter from my dad that started like this: “When your mother and I join that Great Heavenly Choir in the Sky, your mom and I will be toe-to-toe on the sixth floor of the Oak Lawn Mausoleum in Conroe, Texas.” It actually didn’t work out that way. Instead, they moved to Oshkosh to be closer to family. However, if they needed a good bass, Dad surely joined that Heavenly Choir when he passed away on May 21, 2014, at the age of 93.


  • An invisible epidemic

    Last week we received a press release about rape and sexual assault statistics, but statistics are too impersonal and sterile to adequately reflect reality. A study in 2011 found that nearly one out of every five women in the United States has been the victim of rape or attempted rape. Do you know five or more women? If so, you probably know someone who has been raped. Are you related to five or more women? If so, you probably have a family member who has been raped. There is a very good chance you don’t know it, though. Rape is one of the most under-reported crimes, largely because of the stigma attached to it and its victims, and the society’s tendency to find some way to blame the victim.

  • Why the rhino?

    As the first full weekend in June approaches, organizers are nearing the panic mode as they complete preparations for Chingawassa Days. Those who have followed the events through the years may have noticed the event’s logo, along with ads and posters promoting the weekend, often include a rhinoceros. Early versions showed the silhouette of a classic rhino. As time passed, the rhino has been transformed into a more cartoon-like figure, usually standing on two legs. He also gained a name. “Pete the Rhino” has been seen boarding a railcar, standing with outstretched arms in front of a classic railcar, wearing a “buff” pirate-style hat on his head, standing in a disco pose with one upraised arm, and this year will be seen in a rock-n-roll pose with his guitar, and in full gallop promoting the rhino run.


  • Marion farmers market reorganizing

    Marion Pride is working to reorganize a farmers market for Wednesday evenings in Central Park. Carol Laue is spearheading the effort. “I’m really excited about getting the farm and art market started again,” she said.

  • Farmers market vouchers available

    Farmers market vouchers are available for seniors through the Department on Aging. To receive a $30 voucher, a senior must earn a monthly gross income of $1,800 or less, or $2,426 for a family of two.

  • Cases to celebrate 65th anniversary

    The children of Rosse and Janice Case of Marion are requesting a card shower to celebrate their 65th wedding anniversary on June 12. Both were born in Marion and were high school sweethearts. They have lived in Marion all their lives.

  • Coaches tell Kiwanis about state events

    Marion High School baseball coach Roger Schroeder and track and field coach Grant Thierolf told Kiwanis on Tuesday about their teams’ upcoming trips to state competition. Schroeder said this year’s baseball team, which is 22-1 so far, has broken the school records for wins, runs, and fewest runs allowed. Facing two of the best teams they’ve seen all year in regionals helped prepare them for state, which is Thursday and Friday in Topeka.

  • Tabor alumnus joins state agency for children and families

    Andrew Wiens of Topeka has been appointed to serve as legislative and policy director for the Kansas Department for Children and Families. Wiens formerly served in Gov. Sam Brownback’s office. The native of Topeka graduated from Tabor College, where he studied philosophy, history, religious studies, and business management.

  • Democratic Women meet

    Marion County Democratic Women heard reports from the district meeting and the reception for Jill Docking on April 26 at their monthly meeting on May 23. Those who attended the district meeting were Eileen Sieger, Connie Fisher, and Janet Bryant.

  • Reception planned for Armstrong

    A farewell reception for St. Luke Hospital CEO Jeremy Armstrong will be from 1 to 3 p.m. June 5 in the St. Luke Hospital lobby.

  • Tampa farmers market is June 4

    Beginning June 4 a monthly market will be held at Tampa Senior Center. A meal will be held at 6 p.m. before the market. Public and all vendors are welcome.


    Quilters complete project

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


  • Sunshine Country Preschool has graduation

    Graduation for students at Sunshine Country Preschool on May 14 was entwined with music of the students’ selection. The ceremony was held in the basement of the city building and began with student introductions. Diplomas and perfect attendance awards were given as students described their future college and career plans.

  • Turning 2: Double plays take precision, instinct

    The Marion baseball team has advanced to its second consecutive state tournament, and this year the Warriors are the No. 2 seed. In keeping with the theme of twos, shortstop Dylan Seacat and second baseman Zach Robson spoke Thursday about how to turn a double play. The seniors have been Marion’s starting middle infielders for three years, and they often played youth baseball together before that.

  • 12 Warriors headed to state track

    Marion High School had 12 track and field athletes qualify for the state track and field meet Friday at regionals, with six qualifying in multiple events. “It was arguably the toughest regional meet,” coach Grant Thierolf said. “We performed very, very well.”

  • Nicholas Meyer competes for state FFA office

    Marion High School graduate Nick Meyer received an Agricultural Future of America scholarship worth $3,200 May 21 at the Hillsboro Cooperative Grain and Supply office. Meyer, who plans to attend Kansas State University majoring in agricultural engineering, is the 15th recipient of the scholarship since 1999.

  • Students visit 4-H center

    Marion Elementary School students traveled to Rock Springs 4-H Center last week for a field trip. Various games were participated in including Native American and GPS games.

  • 3 Centre FFA members in running for state office

    Makenzie Deines, Karl Riffel, and Kevin Lewis are among 20 state FFA members competing for state office this week at the FFA State Convention at Kansas State University. The group will be cut to 10 on Friday and from that six will be chosen for various offices.

  • County students graduate from HCC

    Ceremonies for the practical nursing program at Hutchinson Community College took place on May 8 at Central Christian College in McPherson. Three of the 54 students who received their pins were from Marion County. They included Linda Bach of Peabody, Michelle Hajek of Lost Springs, and Melia Vinduska of Marion.

  • 10 from Centre qualify for state meet

    The Centre track squad may be small, 19 in all, but it is mighty, sending 10 athletes, five girls and five boys, to the state track meet later this week in Wichita. Coach Alan Stahlecker is ecstatic.


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