• Family voids patient's ballot

    A provisional ballot cast by a nursing home resident who didn’t have identification was disqualified Monday after a relative of the voter refused to supply the voter’s identification. The ballot was cast in USD 410’s referendum on whether to increase local funding for the school budget. County Clerk Tina Spencer spoke with the nursing home about getting ID so the vote could be counted, but the nursing home wasn’t able to get ID from the voter’s family. Spencer told county commissioners at the canvass Monday that the relative thought the family member should not be voting.

  • Teens' racing costs cyclist his leg

    Curtis Girk, 31, of Peabody did not expect his life to change as he crested a hill on his motorcycle on June 11. However, it changed in a second when he was sideswiped by a car racing another at 120th and Eagle Rd. and Injuries sustained in the accident resulted in the amputation of Girk’s left leg.

  • Will Marion take a swing at baseball?

    A guest at Monday’s City Council asked Marion to step up to the plate and become the smallest town in America to host a professional minor league baseball team. Bob Lipp is attempting to co-found a low-level pro baseball league in Kansas with Doug Bender. He told council that with a few minor tweaks to the fields the city could host an independent minor league team.

  • Movies on Main St. keep tradition alive

    For decades Main St. has been a popular nighttime hangout for kids who want something to do other than drink or get into trouble. “It’s more fun than drinking, I think,” Landon Pederson said while hanging out one night last week.

  • Colburn returns to edit newspapers

    Marion native David Colburn rejoined the staff of Hoch Publishing Company on Monday. He is the new news editor of the Marion County Record, Hillsboro Star-Journal, and Peabody Gazette-Bulletin, taking over for Adam Stewart. Colburn has a long history in journalism that started while he was still a student at Marion High School. He was an intern as a high school senior and worked as a reporter for two summers in college and again from 2006 to 2007 and 2011 to 2012. He is a Marion High School graduate and has bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Kansas.

  • Hunting as teen triggers odd hobby for machinist

    Mike Carroll is a machinist by trade. He’s used to fabricating parts that fit together. But while his job at Marion Manufacturing gives him some insight, it did not prepare him for the challenges of building his own rifle. Currently he is undertaking a project to rebuild an 1898 Mauser action rifle. “Building my own rifle is more about testing my abilities,” Carroll said. “Sure I could get something just as good from a gun shop, but it wouldn’t be mine. By the time I complete it, it will fit me exactly the way I like it.”

  • Florence nears decision on levee

    Florence residents could receive unforeseen flood insurance bills in the near future if the Federal Emergency Management Agency does not re-accredit the city’s levee. Without accreditation, insurance rates would be “significantly high,” according to county planning and zoning director Tonya Richards.

  • Accident sends 2 to hospital

    An accident near K-256 and Upland Rd. involving a van and a Marion County dump truck sent two Marion residents to the hospital Tuesday afternoon. The accident happened just after noon when a Ford van driven by Thomas Schrag, 52, of Marion rear-ended a county dump truck driven by Even Stout, 63, of Marion as he slowed to turn onto Upland Rd.

  • Youth center in limbo

    A burst pipe that closed the Marion Youth Center in December was fixed within a week. What hasn’t been fixed nearly six months later are volunteer and funding issues that have kept the doors shuttered. “It’s been a struggle to find volunteers,” center volunteer Pam Bowers said. “We would like the kids to have more ownership and have some fundraisers to help offset the costs, but they haven’t progressed any further than just ideas.”


  • Engine shop changes locations

    Andrew Strauser opened Route 56 Repair off U.S. 56 near Pizza Hut about a year ago, but has recently moved the business to the first block of the alley between Freeborn and Roosevelt Sts. in an effort to get more visibility. “People drive by the old location and call and ask if we’re closed, but we’re still out here to help the community,” Strauser said.

  • Sign gets new lights

    Electrician Harvey Sanders recently changed 400 light bulbs on Marion National Bank’s time and temperature sign. “I changed out about 100 on each side,” Sanders said.

  • Repairs make church parking tricky

    Crews of Vogts-Parga are currently repaving a section of Lawrence St. between Elm St. This is creating tight parking for Sunday services at Marion Presbyterian and Christian churches. Presbyterian Pastor Jeremiah Lange asked parishioners to use the church’s parking lot which was still accessible by the alley.

  • State challenges Holub's statements

    A state mental health official is challenging County Commissioner Dan Holub’s assertion last week that red tape and budget cuts for mental health providers “are setting these people up to fail.” In a letter to this newspaper one day after Holub’s comments were reported, Angela de Rocha, communications director to the secretary for aging and disability services, cited evidence that she said indicates Kansas ranks 20th among 50 states in funding for mental health, spending 71 percent more per resident than other states do on average.

  • Rain halts surprisingly good harvest

    Rod Just and his father, Eugene Just, said Friday they were pleased about how their wheat harvest had gone so far, with yields around 20 bushels per acre. The father-son duo typically farm together during the summer and average yields around 40 bushels per acre on a good year. “Last year it was a great year, so comparing it to this year is sad, but we’re happy because it could have been much worse,” Rod Just said.

  • Property values up 2.4 percent in county

    Property values in Marion County are up about $17 million, or 2.4 percent, appraiser Ray Cook said Monday. Included is $2.7 million in new construction. Another $2.7 million increase comes from property exempt in 2013 coming onto the tax rolls, Cook said. Appraised value of existing residential property increased by $2.3 million, less than 1 percent. Oil and gas values were up; personal property was down.

  • Old maps may be only of their kind

    William Meysing has been a history buff since he was old enough to ride a bike, and since his grandpa told him stories of pioneers who settled in Marion County. So when he sent out several letters three decades ago, asking for historic information about the area, he was shocked at the history he received back.

  • Mother encourages son's dream, but he falls in TV audition

    Aspiring 17-year-old singer Justin Terrel has no shortage of love, support, and believers in his vocal ability. In preparation for his audition to sing on the NBC TV series “The Voice,” his mother, Sharon Terrel of Marion, wanted to show him just how tightly knit his support net was.


  • County gives 8.7 percent pay raises

    Marion County Commission approved a new pay plan Monday that will raise 56 employees’ wages an average of 8.7 percent — but the approval is contingent on department heads’ confirmation that the changes will not put them over budget for 2014. The commission approved the changes after an hour in closed session. Commissioner Randy Dallke voted against the new pay plan.

  • City ponders bleak financial future

    Budget Year One for Marion’s reconstituted City Council, disdaining past approaches that Mayor Todd Heitschmidt labeled “reactionary,” began with an unprecedented 13-hour work session this past weekend that included visions for both a bright future and a very dim present. Actively considered by the four council members present were sizeable increases in bills for electric, water, sewer, and trash service — plus a property tax increase, a hiring freeze, and cuts in payments to such things as Chingawassa Days, the Chamber of Commerce, the library, and the Recreation Commission.

  • Council brainstorms goals for city

    Liberally citing from a self-help book for business leaders, Administrator Roger Holter led Marion City Council members on a two-hour consciousness-raising and goal-setting journey Friday night to kick off their weekend budget retreat. Holter urged members to reject the idea that analyzing situations, then looking for solutions was the best way to lead.

  • Bid for former Arlie's building tabled

    Marion City Council members declined to act Monday on a bid from Ditch Diggers Inc. of Salina to purchase the former Arlie’s building and three adjoining lots in Batt Industrial Park. The $160,000 bid is nearly $75,000 less than the $223,160 the city owes on the property, about $100,000 less than the city’s total investment. The price offered for the building, $128,028, is $70,000 less than the asking price of $198,500.


  • Jona Baltzer

    Jona H. Baltzer, 89, a farmer, vocal music instructor, church musician, and for nine years director of the Kansas Mennonite Men’s Chorus, died Saturday at Via Christi Hospital on St. Francis in Wichita. Services will be 11 a.m. Thursday at Hillsboro Mennonite Brethren Church. Pastor Wally Kroeker and the Rev. Daryle Baltzer of Wichita will officiate.

  • Darlene Goering

    Darlene J. Goering, 82, who was a homemaker, Sunday school teacher, and church organist at Burns, died June 18 at Sunshine Home, Buhler. Services will be 10 a.m. Monday at Burns Countryside Church. Pastors Arlen Busenitz and Jeremy Goering will officiate. Burial will follow in the church cemetery.

  • Lorene Jost

    Lorene E. Jost, 96, died Sunday at Parkside Home in Hillsboro. Services were to have been this morning at Parkview Church in Hillsboro. Jost Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements.

  • Geraldine Mills

    Former Marion resident Geraldine “Gerry” Mills, 82, died Tuesday at Life Care Center in Andover. A graveside service with Pastor Carl Helm officiating will be at 1 p.m. Friday in Marion Cemetery. Visitation will be from noon to 4:30 p.m. Thursday at Zeiner Funeral Home. She was born Aug. 31, 1931, in Mountainsburg, Arkansas, to George and Lillian Teague Peters. She married Lee Mills on June 13, 1967, in Newton. Together they owned and operated an auto body shop, with her as secretary and bookkeeper.

  • Lawrence Winkley

    Retired farmer and stockman Lawrence W. Winkley, 93, died Sunday at Marion Assisted Living. Services will be at 9:30 a.m. Friday at Eastmoor United Methodist Church. Interment will be in Marion Cemetery. Visitation will be from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday at Zeiner Funeral Home. He was born July 31, 1920, in rural Marion County to John W. and Maude (Waite) Winkley.


    Roselma Griggs, Maynard Janzen



  • Fiddle player enjoys mellow lake

    Finish carpenter Kim Schmidt, former fiddle player for the Greenhorns, traveled from his home in Goessel to Marion County Park and Lake on Friday for a relaxing weekend of camping and music. “I don’t get out here enough,” Schmidt said. “It’s a really nice place to come. It gets busy but it’s not overrun with people.”

  • Many attend Picnic on the Lawn in Florence

    Several gathered Saturday at the Harvey House to take part in the annual Picnic on the Lawn. Mountain oysters, fish, and side items were heaped onto plates and enjoyed under a newly constructed paved patio built in honor of Neva Robinson.

  • Bluegrass at the lake draws record attendance

    Bluegrass at the Lake plus blue-green algae at Marion Reservoir possibly led to record attendance this weekend at Marion County Park and Lake. “It was probably the busiest weekend I’ve worked since I started eight years ago,” Lake Superintendent Steve Hudson said Monday. “We sold over 91 camping permits this weekend alone, and that did not include the 10 to 12 campers that registered earlier in the week.”

  • Redneck in Ramona serves as venue for creativity, laughter

    Redneck. The name itself conjures imagery of less-than-clever country folk who probably wouldn’t understand the definition of their own stereotype, if they were able to sound out all those big words. However, those who organize and participate in the Redneck in Ramona Independence Day celebration not only understand the pigeonhole, they turn it upside down, celebrate it with creativity, and flaunt it as a venue for social interaction, camaraderie, and good-spirited laughter.

  • Fireworks schedules vary by area

    Independence Day is coming, and that means many people will want to celebrate with fireworks. When people may legally discharge fireworks depends where the person is in Marion County. Rural areas of the county have a longer period for fireworks sales and discharge than cities. county
  • June 27 and 28 — 8 a.m. to 11 p.m.
  • June 29 through July 3 — 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • July 4 and 5 — 8 a.m. to midnight. Fireworks may be discharged at Marion County Park and Lake inside Lakeshore Dr. They may not be discharged at Marion Reservoir. Hillsboro Fireworks may be sold in Hillsboro June 27 through July 5. Times for use:
  • July 1 through 3 — 10 a.m. to 11 p.m.
  • July 4 — 10 a.m. to midnight. Marion Fireworks may be sold in Marion July 1 through 4. Times for use:
  • July 1 and 2 — 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.
  • July 3 and 4 — 9 a.m. to midnight. peabody Times and dates for firework discharge and sale will be published next week after Peabody city council discusses the issue at next week’s meeting.
  • Peabody park no stranger to big events or crowds

    Members of the Peabody Fourth Fest committee think that Peabody’s population will swell by 3,000 to 5,000 by the time the lights at Peabody City Park are turned off July 4th and the 93rd annual fireworks show begins. A crowd that size will comfortably fill the viewing area normally occupied by the football field, stone bleachers, and grassy area inside the park’s sports complex.

  • Button designer shares memories of July Fourth and family

    Sarah Robinson Hebert is a descendant of several early day Peabody families. She is a lifelong Wichita resident whose close relationship with her grandparents brought her to Peabody for many holidays. The annual July Fourth celebration was a great family event for Hebert and her extended family — her parents, both sets of grandparents, cousins, aunts and uncles, and all of her great-grandparents.

  • Garden tours an adventure for guests

    Visitors to Julie and Dwight Nelson’s home during Saturday’s fifth-annual Flint Hills Garden Tour will see many items re-purposed from different kinds of farm-related machinery. “It’s definitely rustic out here,” Julie Nelson said.

  • Business climate heating up, county developer says

    Economic development in Marion County has been trending upward since the recession of the late 2000s, officials say. “I think we’re through the darkest days,” county developer Teresa Huffman said.

  • Ice cream comes in many flavors and unusual places

    Right around the time someone realized there was nowhere in Marion that sold soft serve ice cream, Jeff Methvin, owner of Methvin’s Prairie Oak Alpaca Farm Store, installed an ice cream machine in his small shop on Main St. across from Central Park. Unlike other machines in town, his can deliver eight flavors, which can be rotated to include 30 additional flavors.


  • The scandal that wasn't

    Newspapers are strange animals — almost as strange as governmental bodies they cover. Often, stories we spend the most time working on are stories that get the least ink in print. While we normally leave such tidbits on the pile of news we decide for good reason not to report, some inkling might prove instructive.

  • Fish or cut bait

    It’s time to move forward — or move on — with two longstanding civic projects, Marion’s youth center and the Central Park stage and restrooms. Both sit at crossroads, desperately needing financial support. As important as money is, understanding and civic support may be even more important to both. The youth center needs not just dollars but also volunteers willing to serve as chaperones and citizens willing to understand that it never will be a solution to perceived problems with high school students rather innocently hanging out on Main St.


  • Kiwanis nears 'round robin' with other clubs

    Marion Kiwanis club needs to have meetings with two other clubs in its district to complete an interclub “round robin,” interclub chairman Al Ash said Tuesday. A golf tournament later this year will allow the club to cross Council Grove off the list, so the only one yet to be scheduled is Lindsborg. A previous attempt to meet with Lindsborg was foiled by car trouble Marion Kiwanians encountered on their way. Kiwanis will provide dinner for Circles of Hope on Thursday and set up for a Red Cross blood drive July 14 at Eastmoor United Methodist Church.

  • Democratic women to meet

    Marion County Democratic Women will meet at noon Thursday at Marion Senior Center. Members are being asked to bring pasta for Marion Food Bank.


    Patrons get first taste of shared garden produce

    Miles Brookens

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


  • Yogis enjoy outdoor class

    At the end of Shannon Hoffer’s first summer yoga class in Marion, a light rain began, followed by a double rainbow arching over Central Park. “It was perfect timing,” Hoffer said. “It was like Mother Nature and I were right on point.”

  • League baseball numbers are up

    Even with fewer teams, Marion’s rec league baseball and softball numbers are up by 42 from last year. A total of 257 kids ages 3 to 18 are participating in the summer leagues.

  • Marion swimmers take 3rd at Abilene

    With a score of 343 points, Marion Swim Team placed third Saturday at Abilene. Marion swimmers who finished in the top three in an event include: boys 8 and younger 25 butterfly: 2. Jack Lanning. 25 backstroke: 2. Lanning. 25 freestyle: 2. Lanning. 25 breaststroke: 3. Lanning. 9 and 10 100 medley relay: 1. Campbell Winter, Cross Brown, and Johnny Zieammermann. 100 freestyle relay: 2. Winter, Zieammermann, and Brown. 100 individual medley: 2. Winter. 100 freestyle: Brown 25 butterfly: 3. Winter. 25 backstroke: 1. Winter, 3. Brown. 25 breaststroke: 2. Brown. 11 and 12 100 individual medley: 1. Will Alleven. 50 butterfly: 1. Alleven. 50 breaststroke: 2. Alleven. 13 and 14 200 medley relay: 2. Evan Calhoun, Logan Waner, and Will Alleven. 200 freestyle relay: 1. Waner, Calhoun, and Alleven. 100 individual medley: 2. Waner. 100 freestyle: 2. Waner. 50 butterfly: 2. Calhoun; 3. Waner. 50 backstroke: 1. Calhoun. 50 freestyle: 3. Waner. girls 8 and younger 100 medley relay: 2. Cadence Craig, Ella Mackey, and Daisy Thouvenell. 100 freestyle relay: 2. Craig, Mackey, and Thouvenell. 25 butterfly: 1. Craig. 25 backstroke: 1. Craig. 25 freestyle: 1. Craig. 25 breaststroke: 1. Craig. 9 and 10 100 medley relay: 2. Emily Hake, Amy Gale, Emma Calhoun, and Shannon Taylor. 100 freestyle relay: 2. Hake, Calhoun, Taylor, and Gayle. 100 freestyle: 2. Hake. 100 individual medley: 2. Calhoun. 25 butterfly: 3. Calhoun. 25 backstroke: 1. Gale; 3. Hake. 25 freestyle: 3. Gayle. 25 breaststroke: 1. Gayle. 11 and 12 200 medley relay: 2. Kennedy Fahey, Grace Winter, and Cameron White. 200 freestyle relay: 2. Fahey, Winter, and White. 100 individual medley: 1. Fahey. 100 freestyle: 3. White. 50 butterfly: 1. Fahey; 3. Winter. 50 freestyle: 1. Fahey. 50 breaststroke: 1. Fahey. 13 and 14 200 medley relay: 2. Courtney Herzet, Michaela Regnier, Carley Stapleford, and Shelby Wilhelm. 200 freestyle relay: 2. Herzet, Alli Molleker, Stapleford, Wilhelm. 100 freestyle: 3. Herzet. 50 backstroke: 2. Molleker; 3. Herzet. 50 freestyle: 3. Herzet. 15 to 18 100 freestyle: 3. Kristen Herzet. 50 butterfly: 3. Herzet. 50 backstroke: 2. Herzet. 50 freestyle: 3. Herzet.

  • Wrestlers travel to Colorado

    Marion wrestlers attended a team camp last week in Gunnison, Colorado, where they pinned down a 12-4 record to claim ninth place out of 30 teams from New Mexico, Texas, Colorado, and Kansas. “It was a really positive experience for the kids and the team,” coach Chad Adkins said.


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