Olathe News Briefs

For Immediate Release
April 26, 2010

This Edition of E-News
•    Experts Share Perspective on Olathe Economic Development
•    Mahaffie Is Finalist in Eight Historic Wonders of Kansas Contest:  Voting Underway
•    Human Relations Commission Award Winners
•    Mahaffie Events Planned

City Council Agenda
The Olathe City Council will meet Tuesday, April 27th at 5:00 p.m. at the Ball Conference Center for a special meeting (see story below).  To see the complete agenda for this meeting, visit the City’s website at www.OlatheKs.org.

Economic Development Summit Planned for April 27th
Released 4/26/2010
The Olathe City Council and the Olathe Chamber of Commerce will participate in an economic development summit beginning at 5:00 p.m. at the Ball Conference Center in Olathe.  The event is designed to provide insight into current and future economic conditions as well as identify trends and priorities for economic development in the future.  In addition, the Council will assess current economic development priorities and targets and begin developing strategies to be at the forefront in the future.

The event includes a forward looking economic scan with economist Chris Kuehl with Armada Corporate Intelligence.  In addition, a panel of local and regional economic development experts will provide insight into future trends.  The panel will be moderated by Barb Hake with the Kansas Department of Commerce and include: Tim Cowden with the Kansas City Area Development Council, Tom Thorton with the Kansas Bioscience Authority, Steve Kelly with the Kansas Department of Commerce and John Lenio with the firm of CB Richard Ellis.

Following the panel discussion and questions from the audience, the City Council will discuss economic goals and objectives as the City moves forward.


Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm Finalist for Statewide 8 Wonders of Kansas History Contest:  Votes Will Determine Winners!!!
Released April 26, 2010

On April 22, the Kansas Sampler Foundation announced that the Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm is one of 24 finalists for the “8 Wonders of Kansas History” contest.  Mahaffie was one of 170 historic sites nominated and is the only historic site in Johnson County to be named a finalist.
To vote for Mahaffie, visit http://www.kansassampler.org/8wonders/.  Voters will be asked to select eight historic sites and may vote three times per email address.  Paper ballots also can be downloaded at the same website and mailed or faxed to the Kansas Sampler offices.  
Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm Historic Site is the only working stagecoach stop open to the public on the Santa Fe Trail.  The site gives visitors a taste of life on an 1860s farm with hands-on activities year-round.  Depending on the time of year, visitors can help plant and harvest crops, do laundry, ride the stagecoach, learn about children’s games, weed the garden, watch a blacksmith at work, cook on the cook stove or make butter or soap.
This program is a project of the Kansas Sampler Foundation, a non-profit organization that promotes Kansas and Kansas’ heritage.  Criteria requires that a nomination represent significant history as well as give the public something of visual magnitude to see.  The contest purpose is to educate the world about Kansas and to encourage travel in the state.  The history contest is one in a series organized by the Kansas Sampler Foundation.

Olathe Human Relations Commission Award Winners Announced
Released 4/27/2010
On April 23, 2010, the City of Olathe and the Olathe Human Relations Commission (OHRC) held the 7th Annual Community Awards Program.  The event recognizes individuals and entities for meritorious service in the pursuit of cultural diversity and advocacy of human rights that benefit Olathe citizens.
Award nominees are reviewed by the Olathe Human Relations Commission.
This year’s winners include Olathe Mayor Michael Copeland, who received the OHRC Chairman’s Award for his continued demonstration of humanitarianism and involvement as a community leader.  Copeland’s support of events such as the Cultural Learning Links and charities such as the Mayor’s Christmas Tree Fund were also cited.
Betty Lou Hinderks, the Humanitarian Award winner, was recognized for her ongoing dedication to supporting the residents at the Santa Marta Senior Living Community.  The 83-year-old acquired volunteers, donations and manpower to bring memory support residents a beautiful garden courtyard in the facility.
El Centro, Inc. received the Organization Award for its services to families of all backgrounds by providing support, instruction and counseling on credit and financial issues that build lifelong money management skills.  Their outreach and community involvement on issues such as: home ownership, fair housing, equal opportunity, senior programs, domestic violence intervention, and family support work in concert with the OHRC’s mission.
Olathe students Kyle Barry, Andrew Knott, Avery Knott, Alec Hollenbeck and Kelsey Kersten were winners of the Youth Award for work helping families in need.  Their efforts led to providing meals to 500 families during the 2009 Holiday season.
The Humanitarian Award was given to Claudia Sandoval Ramirez recognizing her work on the Olathe Police Advisory Council.  As vice chair, she has been instrumental in working to reduce the language barrier between Spanish speaking families, the English speaking community and law enforcement.
Nedra Locke, another Humanitarian Award recipient, was recognized for her work with the Olathe Branch of the NAACP and organizing the June’Teenth Celebrations in Olathe.  Locke is the first Afro-American female to hold a supervisory position at Water One and to serve on the City of Olathe’s Planning Commission.
The final Humanitarian Award recognized Sherry Suddarth, who has worked supporting persons with developmental disabilities for over 25 years.  Among her many other accomplishments, Suddarth has been critical in helping many citizens with developmental disabilities achieve gainful employment.
The Educator Award was presented to Darla Fisher, an educator from Oregon Trail Junior High.  Fisher was highlighted for her services to Olathe Youth Court students and families, mentoring and development of projects that help students serve needy families.
The event included two awards presented by the Olathe Persons with Disabilities Advisory Board.  The first, the Accessible Community Award, was presented to Dr. Robert Maile.  Maile has worked at the Kansas School for the Deaf for over 20 years as both an assistant superintendent and the superintendent.  His efforts have led KSD staff and the Olathe community to have a stronger sense of concern for others.
The second Accessible Community Award, and final award of the event, was presented posthumously to Arden MacDowell.  MacDowell was a longtime community leader and advocate for the deaf and hearing impaired.  Hearing impaired herself, she served on the Olathe Citizen’s Police Advisory Council and at the Johnson County Community College.  She was a tireless advocate for grater communication with the deaf community and working to get deaf and hearing impaired residents actively involved in their community.


Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm to Attend Statewide Promotion
Released 4/27/2010
Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm will be one of over 150 Kansas communities represented at the 21st annual Kansas Sampler Festival, offering stagecoach rides at the event.  This "all Kansas, all weekend" event will be held in Leavenworth at Ray Miller Park on Saturday, May 1st from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Sunday, May 2nd from 10:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.
The Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm Historic Site, 1200 Kansas City Rd., Olathe, is the only working stagecoach stop open to the public on the Santa Fe Trail.  The site gives visitors a taste of life on an 1860s farm with hands-on activities year-round.  
The festival is designed to provide the public a sample of what there is to see, do, hear, taste, learn, and buy in Kansas.  In addition to helping the public plan Kansas day trips and learn about Kansas offerings, the festival will also showcase Kansas musicians, historic performers, artists, authors and Kansas foods.  Kansas products will be sold in the Kansas Mercantile tent and in some other tents.
A project of the Inman-based Kansas Sampler Foundation, the festival was originally held on the Penner Farm near Inman for eight years and then has made two-year stops in Pratt, Ottawa, Independence, Newton, Garden City and Concordia.  
Festival director Keyta Kelly said, "We looking forward to welcoming everyone to Leavenworth for this living brochure of Kansas!"
Ray Miller Park is located at 4201 South 4th Street.  Festival admission is $5 for adults; $3 for children 7-14.  For more information call 913.417.7575 or go to www.kansassamplerfestival.com.


Celebrate Reading with the Reading Trails Fun Fest
Released 4/27/2010
Kick-off summer reading with the annual Reading Trails Fun Fest from 11:00 a.m. to 4;00  p.m. Saturday, May 1.  The event is offered by the Olathe Junior Service League and hosted by the Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm, 1200 Kansas City Rd., Olathe.  Admission is free; stagecoach rides are $1 per ride.
The event will feature hands-on activities from the Santa Fe, Oregon and California Trails including leather stamping and panning for gold as well as entertainment by Mark Gardner, a Santa Fe Trail historian and musician.  The West Olathe Hy-Vee will have food available for purchase.

Celebrate Mother's Day with Tea Party at Mahaffie
Released 4/27/2010
Dress in your Sunday best to enjoy a special Sunday for mothers and daughters.  Learn about 19th Century beauty treatments, make a craft, enjoy treats, tea and a stagecoach ride. Musical entertainment will be provided by the Arethusa Quartet.  
The Mother’s Day Tea will be held from 1:30-3:30 Sunday, May 2.  Admission is $20/mother-daughter pair and each additional person is $5.  Admission includes a carnation for all mothers. This event is for daughters ages 12 and up.  To register, call the Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm at (913) 971-5111. Registrations are due by Friday, April 30.

For Immediate Release
April 19, 2010

This Edition of E-News
• Best Tasting Water Is in Olathe
• First Budget Public Outreach Session Set For April 28th
• Community Awards Program April 23rd
Detours for Local Residents Near 127th Street Project
• Project May Have Minor Impact on Water Pressure
• Historic Cemetery Tours Planned in Olathe
• Girl Scouts Recognize Mahaffie


City Council Agenda
The Olathe City Council will meet Tuesday, April 29th at 7:00 p.m. in the Council Chamber at City Hall for a regular session meeting. Regular session meetings are broadcast live on OGTN (Comcast channel 7, AT&T channel 99 and on the City’s website). To see the complete agenda for this meeting, visit the City’s website at www.OlatheKs.org.


Olathe Water Again Rated as Best Tasting
Released 4/19/10  

At their 2010 Conference and Exhibition on March 30th through April 1st, the Kansas Rural Water Association (KWRA) held its “Best Tasting Water in Kansas contest. For the second time in the last three years, Olathe water was judged best. Olathe won the honor the last time it competed in the contest in 2008.

This year, 19 water systems from cities and water districts competed in the event that is judged by a broad cross-section of individuals in the public drinking water industry including officials from city and rural water systems, State of Kansas officials and consultants.

As the Kansas state winner, Olathe will now compete in the national “Great American Taste Test” in Washington, D.C. in 2011.



First Budget Public Outreach Session 4/28
Released 4/19/10

 The Olathe City Council goes to great lengths to engage residents in the budget process. Believing “it is their money”, the Council feels it is important to hear from as many residents as possible about how it should be spent.

In addition to developing a new interactive website and conducting “budget road shows”, City staff is planning its first public budget outreach session. The session is scheduled for Wednesday, April 28th at 7:00 p.m. in the City Council Chamber. It will include a presentation outlining the City’s financial structure and the current budget, provide opportunity for direct input and questions, and showcase the many other opportunities to become involved in the budget process.

Given the challenging economic times, resident input is more important than ever to ensure limited resources are applied to areas that are most important. To learn more about the budget, visit the budget section of the City’s webpage, www.OlatheKs.org, or call (913) 971-6489.



City of Olathe to Host Annual Community Awards Program on April 23
Released 4/19/10

The City of Olathe and the Olathe Human Relations Commission will recognize individuals and entities for meritorious service in the pursuit of cultural diversity and advocacy of human rights that benefit Olathe citizens at the seventh Annual Community Awards Program. The event runs from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. on April 23 in the Council Chamber of Olathe City Hall, 100 E. Santa Fe.

The theme of the event is "Diversity Makes the Difference", and the guest speaker will be Dr. Dan Richardson, CEO of the Kansas State Olathe Innovations Campus.

Individuals living and working in the city of Olathe or living and working elsewhere who have contributed to the promotion of human rights to the benefit of the citizens of Olathe will receive awards at the event in the following categories:
• Olathe Human Relations Commission Humanitarian Award
• Commission/Organization Award
• Educator Award
• Youth Award (19 or under)
• Olathe Human Relations Commission Chairman’s Award
• Accessible Community Award

For more information about the awards programs or for special accommodations, call the City of Olathe Office of Human Relations at (913) 971-8790.



127th Street from Mur-Len to Brougham to Close to Local Traffic
Released 4/19/10

As part of the 127th Street improvement project, 127th Street between Mur-Len and Brougham will be closed to all traffic beginning Tuesday, April 20th. It is currently open to local traffic only.

Detours will be provided along arterial routes, and a specific detour will be in place for residents in the Wingfield Club apartments. This portion of the project is planned to be completed by the end of May, weather permitting.



Project May Have Minor Impact on East Side Water Pressure
Released 4/19/10

As part of the 127th Street improvement project, area water lines are being relocated and improved. As a result, Olathe Water customers on the east side of the city may experience occasional drops in water pressure over the next three weeks. Though there may be some decline in pressure at times, the City will continue meeting normal residential demands and all requirements for fire protection.

Drops in pressure are most likely to occur during peak lawn watering periods in the early evening hours, and residents are encouraged to water lawns during early morning hours if possible to help minimize likelihood of pressure decrease.



Learn Olathe History with Mahaffie’s Spring Cemetery Tours
Released 4/19/10

Residents and visitors will have an opportunity to learn more about Olathe’s history and the historic Olathe Memorial Cemetery at the Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop’s Spring Cemetery Tour on Sunday, April 25. The tour will explore the symbols, historical figures, and landscapes of the cemetery.

Mahaffie staff will lead visitors on an informational tour of the historic Olathe cemetery. These tours will differ from the popular fall tours where visitors meet re-enactors in period clothing portraying historic Olatheans. The tour will require a lot of walking and refreshments will be provided.

Tours will leave from Northview Elementary, 905 N. Walker, at 1:30 p.m., 2:30 p.m., 3:30 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. Tickets are $3 for adults or $2 for children ages 5-11. The ticket guarantees your tour time. Tickets are available at the Mahaffie Heritage Center, 1200 Kansas City Rd., Wednesday through Saturday 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. and Sunday from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00p.m. Tours are limited to 30 people per tour. For more information call (913) 971-5111.



Mahaffie Honored with Girl Scout Gold Award of Excellence
Released 4/19/10

The Girl Scouts of Northeast Kansas and Northwest Missouri recently recognized the Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm Historic Site with a Gold Award of Excellence. This award recognizes a group in the community that has partnered with Girl Scouts and whose service has made an outstanding contribution resulting in outstanding benefits to girls and/or reached considerable more girls than in a single service unit.

This award was presented at the Council’s Adult Volunteer Recognition Luncheon held Saturday, April 10.

“We feel honored to have benefitted from all of the work Girl Scouts have contributed,” said Alexis Woodall, interpretive specialist for special events. “Mahaffie looks forward to continue strengthening the partnership by providing quality programs.”

The Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop has been a partner with the Girl Scout program for many years including Brownie Girl Scout Day, a historic Valentines program, earning the Stitch-it Try It, a Brownie campout, working in the Mahaffie garden and assisting with other special events. Since 2006 four troops and two individual Olathe Girl Scouts have contributed over 500 volunteer hours at the site. In addition, six girls have successfully completed Silver Award projects and eight Junior Girl Scouts have earned their Bronze Award.



For Immediate Release
April 12, 2010

This Edition of E-News
• Olathe Named Tree City USA
• 311 Illegal Signs Netted in Most Recent “Sign Sweep”
• Earth Day Activities 4/22
• Living History Competition at Mahaffie
• Scouts Converging on Olathe Saturday
• Friends of Library Supper

City Council Agenda
The Olathe City Council will meet Tuesday, April 13th at 7:00 p.m. in the Council Chamber at City Hall for a study session meeting. To see the complete agenda for this meeting, visit the City’s website at www.OlatheKs.org.



Olathe Named Tree City USA for 27th Year
Released 4/12/10

The Arbor Day Foundation has announced that Olathe, Kansas has been named a “Tree City USA”. This is the 27th consecutive year Olathe has received the designation.


The honor recognizes Olathe’s commitment to placing an emphasis on trees and going to great lengths to care for its “urban forest”. Trees not only provide aesthetics to the community but improve property value and overall community quality of life.


In all, the City cares for about 50,000 trees in its street medians, parks and around public buildings. Olathe is home to the nation’s largest Soapberry tree located on the near Ridgeview Road and College Blvd., and has the Kansas City area’s only ISA Board-Certified Master Arborist on the City’s staff.


The City of Olathe grows trees from the seedling stage in eight areas around the city to provide large trees for tree replanting in its spade operation.

For more information about the Tree City USA recognition, visit the Arbor Day Foundation’s website, www.arborday.org.



Most Recent Sweep Nets 311 Signs
Released 4/12/10

 The City’s recent “sign sweep” in late March resulted in the removal of 311 temporary signs placed in public right of way, city medians, public/parkland and attached to light or power poles. The signs removed typically advertise businesses.


Signs illegally placed in public areas are not only an eye sore, but can obstruct driver view and be problematic for pedestrians using sidewalks. Temporary signs may be placed on private property by the property owner or with the owner’s permission, but there are regulations limiting duration and size.


Earth Day Activities Set for April 22nd
Released 4/12/10

The City of Olathe and the Olathe Chamber of Commerce will be hosting a community Earth Day event at the Corporate Ridge Business Park (K-10 and Ridgeview) on Thursday, April 22nd, to mark Earth Day’s 40th anniversary. The event begins at 9:00 a.m. and runs through the evening.

Between 9:00 a.m. and noon, Good Neighbors and Good Stewards of the Earth will hold presentations on subjects including: sustainability at the regional and county levels, the City of Olathe’s facilities conservation improvements program and how to use less and save more at the a home or business. The presentations will be held at the HealthRidge Fitness Center.

Activities are planned between 11:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. that include vendor booths highlighting green products and services, Farmer’s Market produce, document shredding, and gas cap checks. Hy-Vee Barbecue will be available for $5 per person.

For more information visit: http://www.olatheks.org/Development/Sustainability


Mahaffie Hosting Regional Living History Competition
Released 4/12/10

The Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm Historic Site will host a two-day Old West regional living history competition, providing unique opportunities for site visitors. The event will be held on the Mahaffie grounds, 1200 Kansas City Rd., Olathe, Saturday, April 17 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday, April 18 from noon to 3:00 p.m.

Presented by the Reenactors Guild of America, the two-day event will include a competition of Old West living history skits. A fast-draw competition is planned for high noon on Saturday. Visitors may watch the competitions and shop from Western vendors and artists including local artist Don Dane. Visitors also can ride a real stagecoach and have their picture taken as a gunfighter or frontiersman or as a woman in the old-time photo booth. Plus, kids will enjoy a rubber-band shooting gallery and other activities. Food will be available for purchase. 

The Ft. Riley Commanding General's Color Guard is scheduled to appear on Saturday only at 11:30 a.m. and 3:00 p.m. 

Regular site admission applies: $6.00 for adults, $4.00 for children, and Olathe residents receive $1.00 off with proof of residency. Site admission includes children’s games and a stagecoach ride.



Olathe Scouts to Invest Time in Olathe
Released 4/12/10

On Saturday, April 17th, hundreds of boy scouts will converge in Olathe to participate in work day projects. At Lake Olathe, scouts will be collecting trash, clearing underbrush, mulching, painting, and making repairs. They will be supported by City staff with canoes and safety boats for shoreline cleanup, equipment and material.

Scouts will also spend the day on the Indian Creek Trail, collecting trash near the trail and along the creek’s shoreline.

For more information contact Matt Armstrong, (816) 569-4978, marmstro@bsamail.org.



Friends of the Olathe Public Library Annual Soup Supper
Released 4/12/10

The Friends of the Olathe Public Library will host its annual soup supper at 6:00 p.m. on April 23rd at the Indian Creek Community Church, 12480 S. Black Bob Road. The event will feature Dr. Bill Worley, who will portray Dr. James Naismith, the inventor of basketball. Naismith invented basketball as a game in 1891 while a graduate student at the YMCA International Institute in Springfield, MA. Coming to the University of Kansas in 1898, he organized the first male basketball team and “coached” it for nine years. Worley will talk about the original 13 rules of basketball and how Naismith envisioned the game as a passing and running game only. He will bring copies of the rules and replicas of the original basketball and basket.

Tickets are $10 per person, and friend membership is not required. Reservations and payment are due by April 19th, and no refunds will be issued. To register on-line, visit www.olathelibrary.org or call 913-971-6879. Checks should be made out to Friends of the Olathe Public Library and mailed to 201 E. Park, Olathe, KS 66061.


 For Immediate Release
April 5, 2010

 This Edition of E-News
• Recreation Scholarships Available
• Open House Scheduled for K-7 Improvements South of Old 56 Highway
• Mahaffie Croquet Tournament Set as Fundraising Event
• Friends of Library Public Book Sale
• Unique History Event at Mahaffie Set for April 10th
• Olathe Students Volunteer to Spruce Up Animal Shelter
• Brownie Event Planned for Mahaffie

 City Council Agenda
The Olathe City Council will meet Tuesday, April 6th at 7:00 p.m. in the Council Chamber at City Hall for a regular session meeting. Regular session meetings are broadcast live on OGTN (Comcast channel 7, AT&T channel 99 and on the City’s website). To see the complete agenda for this meeting, visit the City’s website at www.OlatheKs.org

Recreation Scholarships Available
Released 4/5/10  

The Olathe City Council believes all residents should have opportunities to participate in Olathe recreation programs. In 1994, the Council created the Recreation Scholarship Program to provide low income and moderate income residents the opportunity to enjoy the many recreation activities in Olathe. Scholarships are awarded to residents based on annual level of income, with the approved applicant paying 50% of the program fee for most recreational programs and summer swim memberships.

In order to be considered for a scholarship, an applicant must submit a completed application form and provide income verification. Income verification must consist of either: 1) IRS income tax return filed April of this year and child support verification-if applicable; 2) pay stubs for one month; 3) proof of being a recipient of federal assistance-if applicable. Processing and determination of eligibility for scholarship awards may take two weeks or longer based on submittal of all information required, so please plan ahead and have your scholarship approved in advance of activity deadlines.

Scholarships funds are limited, and availability for classes are based on a first come, first serve basis. Residents interested in learning more about the scholarship program and to obtain an application can visit the recreation section of the City’s website, www.OlatheKs.org, or call Teresa Wilson at (913) 971-6479.



K-7 Corridor Open House
Released 4/5/10

The City of Olathe and the Kansas Department of Transportation (KDOT) will hold an open house public meeting on Thursday, April 8 from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m., at the Ball Conference Center, 21350 W. 153rd St. (Lone Elm and 153rd St.), in Olathe. The meeting is for anyone interested in learning more about the proposed improvements and Environmental Assessment for the K-7 Corridor between 183rd Street and Old 56 Highway.

The City of Olathe and KDOT invite the public to drop in any time between 5:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. to talk with the project team and look at exhibits about:

• Past recommendations for K-7|
• The K-7 Environmental Assessment process for 183rd Street to Old 56 Highway
• Next steps and schedule for the study

The City of Olathe and KDOT plan to complete the environmental documentation process for the K-7 corridor through Olathe from 183rd Street to Old 56 Highway. Environmental documentation is required when federal funds will be used for highway improvements. The study and environmental documentation is expected to take between 12 and 18 months to complete.

The study will establish the Area of Potential Effect (APE) of the future K-7 Freeway and define the interim plan to improve Lone Elm Road to a four-lane arterial. K-7 will be converted to a freeway when future development, traffic needs and funding warrant. Timing for these changes will depend on the travel needs of the area, but currently, funds are not available for the transition of Lone Elm Road to a future K-7 freeway.

The K-7 Corridor Management Study was initiated in 2004 by KDOT and local communities to study the K-7 corridor from 223rd Street in Miami County to K-5/Muncie Road in Leavenworth. The study was needed to address technical elements, local concerns and necessary improvements for the total future transportation system, including the local street networks, and the basis for current and future improvements on K-7 in the metropolitan area.

After meeting with the public, conducting technical analysis and looking at development plans for the corridor, the highway type was recommended to be a freeway. In collaboration with the City of Olathe, the study recommended that K-7 should be a freeway through Olathe and be realigned along Lone Elm Road from near 183rd Street to Old Highway 56.

Since completing the K-7 Corridor Management Study in 2006, the City of Olathe and KDOT have been building on that original study to plan for the future and address development occurring in the area. Comments from the community asking for interchanges at 167th Street, 159th Street and 151st Street prompted KDOT and the City of Olathe to review those access points. The Preliminary K-7 Freeway Design Study from 183rd Street to Old Highway 56 added interchanges at 167th Street and 151st Street and an overpass at 159th Street. These proposed access changes were presented at a public meeting in 2008.

Construction on the I-35 and Lone Elm Road interchange will be completed open to traffic in June 2010. This new interchange will serve the community until Lone Elm Road becomes the K-7 freeway from near 183rd Street to Old Highway 56 which may be 10 to 30 years in the future. The City of Olathe began designing the interchange at I-35 and Lone Elm Road in 2002 to provide direct access from Lone Elm Road to I-35.

For further information contact Kimberly Qualls (785) 640-9340 or kqualls@ksdot.org, or visit the project section of the City’s website, www.OlatheKs.org.

Direct Link: http://www.olatheks.org/PublicWorks/Construction/K7_EAoverview


First-ever Mahaffie Croquet Tournament May 8: Teams Forming Now!
Released 4/5/10


Teams are forming now for the first-ever Sunflower Wickets croquet tournament. This unique event is being hosted by the Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm Foundation in support of the preservation, programming and promotion of the Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm Historic Site located at 1200 Kansas City Rd. in Olathe.

Sunflower Wickets will be held Saturday, May 8th at Stagecoach Park, located across the street from the Mahaffie historic site. Registration and a continental breakfast will begin at 9 a.m. with play beginning at 9:30 a.m., followed by lunch and awards at 11:30 a.m. Prizes will be awarded to the top four finishing teams.

Croquet was a popular in-expensive sport throughout the country in the mid 19th century, and similar events have proven immensely popular across America.  

In addition to playing croquet, guests may participate in a hat decorating contest and bid on a hand-pieced and hand-quilted, “Butternut and Blue” quilt donated by Donna Frenzl, a prominent local quilter and long-time Mahaffie volunteer.

The event is being supported by the Missouri Croquet Association, Olathe Historical Society, delish! Catering and the Olathe Junior Service League Sustainers.

Two-person teams are now forming. For more information about forming a team or tournament sponsorship opportunities, contact Mahaffie at (913) 971-5111.


Friends of the Olathe Public Library Preview Sale and Spring Fling Book Sale
Released 4/5/10


The Friends of the Olathe Public Library will have its first Preview Sale of the year from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Friday, April 9th at the Olathe Indian Creek Branch Library, 12990 S. Black Bob Road. The Preview Sale is open to OPL Friends members, and memberships are available for purchase at both library locations or at the door that evening. Memberships are $7 for students and seniors (60 and over), $10 for adults and $20 for families.

The sale includes a wide array of materials that are sorted by categories. Those include: mysteries, fiction, inspiration, westerns, large print, romance, cookbooks, children/teens, DVDs, CDs, videos, biographies, arts/poetry and much more. During the Friends Preview Sale, the categories of old/collectible books, autographed books, music (some old sheet music) and collectible Little Golden Books will be available. Attendees this evening are able to purchase one Little Golden Book and get one free (equal or lesser value).

The Spring Fling Book Sale will be open to the public from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on Saturday, April 10th, but it will briefly close from 12:30 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. Beginning at 1:00 p.m., the doors will reopen and participants can purchase a plastic bag at the door for $5 and fill with materials. Buy two bags, get one free. The sale will close early if sold out or material selection is low. Due to space considerations, strollers are not allowed in the sale.

For more information, contact Rita Patterson (913) 971-6879.

Mahaffie Plowin’ and Plantin’ Event Offers Taste of 1860s Farm Life
Released 4/5/10

The Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm’s Spring Plowin' and Plantin' event will give visitors a taste of spring on a 1860s farm, including planting. The event will be held Saturday, April 10 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Depending on the weather and ground conditions, activities may include horses and mules plowing the fields to prepare for the planting of the spring wheat. Mrs. Mahaffie's stove will be cooking traditional dishes, and stagecoach rides are planned. All activities are included with regular daily admission of $6/adults, $4/kids ages 5-11. Olathe residents receive $1 off admission with proof of residency.

No registration necessary. For more information call (913) 971-5111.


Students Volunteer to Spruce Up Animal Shelter
Released 4/5/10

On Saturday, March 27, 2010, several student volunteers from Olathe schools assisted with painting and sprucing up the Olathe Animal Shelter, 505 E. Sunvale Drive.

Captain Kathy Tytla, whose duties include overseeing the shelter, said “it’s important that we adopt out the animals from the shelter and as part of that we wanted the interior to reflect a professional and inviting atmosphere. We thought this was a good opportunity to involve students from our community and it turned out to be a great success”

Melissa Newmaster, Jenny Dwyer and Monique Buckner are members of the National Honor Society at Olathe South High School and after working on another project with the City, were told of the idea to paint the shelter. They put out the word to friends and Jessica Lane, Amanda Katzer, Mikayla Reynolds and Krista Knight, fellow society members, all responded to assist.

Karen Anderson is a student at Indian Trail Jr. High. Karen asked her family; parents Mike and Maggie and brother Rich to participate in this event as part of her birthday celebration. They could not turn down her request, so it became a family project for the Andersons as well.

Captain Tytla, Animal Control Supervisor Cathy Hammack and Animal Control Shelter Clerk Theresa Baehr all participated in the project. Captain Tytla said that “overall it took about 6 hours and the shelter looks far better for everyone’s efforts. We truly appreciate everyone’s time and energy on this project”.

With this story the Olathe Police Department wants to remind everyone that they always have dogs and cats available for adoption. For more information, visit the animal shelter section of the City’s website, www.OlatheKs.org or call (913) 971-6362.


Mahaffie Brownie Girl Scout Day April 10
Released 4/5/10


The final 2010 session of the “Mahaffie Brownie Girl Scout Day” will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Saturday, April 10th at the historic site. Brownies can earn a special Mahaffie patch only offered during this program as well as the Stitch It Together Try-It Patch.

The Mahaffie patch program will be held from 10 a.m. to noon and will include a stagecoach ride, 19th century games, chores and 19th century laundry. The Stitch It Together program will be held from 12:30-2:30. Participants should bring a sack lunch for between the programs.

The cost is $10/Brownie Scout with no charge for accompanying adults. A half-day option is available for $6/scout. The cost includes the patches that will be given at the end of the program. Pre-registration is required and is due Friday, April 9. Brownie Scouts can register individually or as a troop. For more information or to register, call (913) 971-5111.  This program is limited to 60 Brownie Scouts, payment is due the day of the program.


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