Olathe News Briefs

This edition of e-News: Sept. 24, 2012

  • City Council
  • Go Green Johnson County Fair
  • Prescription Drug Disposal
  • Street Closed for Gas Line Maintenance
  • Last Wednesday Farmers’ Market on Sept. 26
  • Lab Receives Honors
  • Students to Help Public Works

City Council
Released Sept. 24, 2012
The Olathe City Council meets next Tuesday, Oct. 2 in the Council Chamber at City Hall. Regular sessions are broadcast live on OGN (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.


Go Green Johnson County Fair
Released Sept. 12, 2012
Johnson County's Sustainability Program is sponsoring the fourth annual Go Green Johnson County Fair 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 26 at the Courthouse Square, 111 S. Cherry. There will be information about how to “go green” from community environmental organizations and the sustainable efforts of Johnson County Government.

Go Green Johnson County Fair features fun for all ages including exhibits about energy efficiency, recycling water quality and transportation. There will be live music and food for sale. All attendees will be entered to win great door prizes including a Kindle, a rain barrel and more.

Eco Elvis will perform from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and the Stone Lion Puppet Theater will entertain the crowd with roaming performances of larger-than-life puppets. There also will be a live wild animal exhibit from the Ernie Miller Nature Center.

Also, electronic waste will be collected for recycling. Items that will be accepted for a small fee include TVs ($15) and computer monitors ($10). Computers, DVDs, gaming devices, cellphones, stereos, printers, copiers and fax machines will be accepted free of charge. The collection will take place on the corner of Loula Street and Kansas Avenue.

The event take place rain or shine. For more information go to http://www.jocorecycles.org/gogreen.html.


Prescription Drug Disposal
Released Sept. 24, 2012
The Olathe Police Department and Drug Enforcement Administration will collect unwanted or unused prescription drugs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sept. 29 at Olathe City Hall. The service is free and anonymous.


Street Closed for Gas Line Maintenance
Released Sept. 24, 2012
 Southern Star Gas Pipeline, Inc. will maintain gas lines at 141st Street and Mur-Len Road from Sept. 24 to 28. Southbound Mur-Len will be closed reducing traffic to one lane.

Updated street closings can be found at www.olatheks.org/PublicWorks/Alerts.


Last Wednesday Farmers’ Market on Sept. 26
Released Sept. 24, 2012
 The Wednesday edition of the Olathe Farmers’ Market, which starts at 3 p.m., will end this week for the 2012 season. The Saturday market, which starts at 8 a.m., will continue through Oct. 20.

The market is located at 200 W. Santa Fe St. at Poplar Street and Kansas Avenue in downtown Olathe.


Lab Receives Honors
Released Sept. 24, 2012
The Kansas Water Environmental Association recognized Municipal Services Laboratory Manager Dewayne McAllister with the 2012 Water Environmental Federation Laboratory Analyst Excellence Award. The award recognizes individuals for outstanding performance, professionalism and contribution to the water quality analysis profession.


Students to Help Public Works
Released Sept. 24, 2012 
Students in the Olathe North High School Student Naturalist program will assist the City of Olathe Public Works and Parks and Recreation employees add plants to a canal Wednesday, Sept. 26 at Mahaffie Pond.

ONHS partners with the City of Olathe through the Parks and Recreation Department’s Volunteers in the Parks program. The partnership provides ONHS students with opportunities to do environmental work.

Public Works created the canal at Mahaffie Pond earlier this year to help manage stormwater. The students and city staff will plant grass plugs along the banks of the pond to help stabilize the soil. Aquatic plants also will be planted for improved aesthetics, algae control and soil stabilization of the dam and the shoreline.

During the past year, the student naturalists have helped with trash pick-up and the application of beneficial bacteria to the pond. 


This Edition of e-News: Sept. 17, 2012

  • City Council
  • Street Closed for Gas Line Maintenance
  • City to Rebroadcast Old Settlers Parade
  • Parks Program Looking for Volunteers
  • Mahaffie Wild West Show This Weekend
  • Environmental Services Division Honored

City Council
Released Sept. 17, 2012
The Olathe City Council meets at 7 p.m. Tuesday in the Council Chamber at City Hall. Regular sessions are broadcast live on OGN (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.


Street Closed for Gas Line Maintenance
Released Sept. 17, 2012
Southern Star Gas Pipeline, Inc. will conduct gas line maintenance at 153rd Street west of U.S. Highway 169 all week. The road will be closed both eastbound and westbound beginning Monday, Sept. 17 for the entire week. Traffic will be detoured to the signal at 154th Street. The work will move 141st Street and Mur-Len Road the following week, Sept. 24 to 28. Southbound Mur-Len will be closed reducing traffic to one lane.

Santa Fe Street, as part of the Santa Fe Streetscape project, will remain closed this week from Chestnut Street to Kansas Avenue for the construction of the raised intersection and brick work at Cherry Street.

Updated street closings can be found at www.olatheks.org/PublicWorks/Alerts.


City to Rebroadcast Old Settlers Parade
Released Sept. 17, 2012
Beginning this week, OGN (Comcast channel 7, AT&T channel 99 and on the City’s website) will replay its live broadcast of the Old Settlers Celebration parade at 1 p.m. Mondays, noon Wednesdays, 8 p.m. Thursdays, 7 p.m. Fridays, noon Saturdays and 7 p.m. Sundays. The parade will be rebroadcast through Dec. 31.


Parks program looking for volunteers
Released Sept. 17, 2012
The City of Olathe Parks and Recreation Department is looking for people interested in giving their time to the Volunteers in the Parks program.

The program, which began 30 years ago, provides a variety of volunteer opportunities for individuals, children, families and groups. They include park and trail clean-up projects, landscaping and gardening, working with special populations, improving habitats for fish and wildlife and historical programming.

Volunteers can adopt a park or trail for long-term projects or participate in one-time tasks. School groups also can participate.

More than 100,000 volunteer hours were logged through the Parks and Recreation Department in 2011. The City is on pace to reach that number again this year.

To volunteer, visit www.olatheks.org/secure/Volunteers/group or call 913-971-9720.


Mahaffie Wild West Show This Weekend
Released Sept. 17, 2012
Don’t miss the 15th annual Wild West Show and Bullwhacker Days Saturday, Sept. 22 and Sunday, Sept. 23 at Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm Historic Site. This popular event offers visitors a variety of experiences and live entertainment to provide a taste of life in Kansas during the old west featuring daily arena shows, live entertainment and children’s games.

Wild West Show and Bullwhacker Days will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Sunday at Mahaffie, 1200 Kansas City Road. Regular daily admission applies: $6 for adults, $4 for kids ages 5 to 11 and free for children younger than 4 years old. To help kickoff October Harvest for Harvesters, visitors will receive $1 off per admission for every two cans of food donated.

Free event parking with a shuttle to Mahaffie will be available at nearby Olathe North High School. Accessible parking will be available at Mahaffie. 

For more information, visit www.mahaffie.org or call (913) 971-5111.


Environmental Services Division Honored
Released Sept. 17, 2012
 The Harold Street and the Cedar Creek wastewater treatment facilities received Silver Peak Performance awards from the National Association of Clean Water Agencies in recognition of complete and consistent National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit compliance in 2011. Silver award designations are presented to member agency facilities that demonstrate among the highest standards in wastewater treatment.

To see a list of city awards, visit www.olatheks.org/CityAwards .


This edition of e-News: Sept. 10, 2012

  • City Council
  • City Lifts Burn Ban
  • Santa Fe Closed for Improvements
  • Olathe Wins Procurement Awards
  • Wastewater Collection Receives Award
  • City Fleet Awarded CMAQ Grants
  • Mahaffie Wild West Show Sept. 22 and 23

City Council
Released Sept. 10, 2012
The Olathe City Council will meet next Sept. 18. The meeting will begin at 7 p.m. in the Council Chamber at City Hall for a regular session. Regular sessions are broadcast live on OGN (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 http://www.olatheks.org/.


City Lifts Burn Ban
Released Sept. 10, 2012
The Olathe Fire Department has lifted the city’s burn ban because of improved weather. The fire department will continue to monitor and assess weather conditions.

A permit is required by ordinance in Olathe to conduct open burning, which doesn’t include grills and fire pits. For more information about open burning, go to www.olatheks.org/Fire/Inspections/Burn, or by calling 913-971-7900.


Santa Fe Closed for Improvements
Released Sept. 10, 2012
Starting Monday, Sept. 10, Santa Fe Street will be closed from Chestnut Street to Kansas Avenue for the construction of the raised intersection and brick work at Cherry Street. The closure will last for approximately two weeks. Detours will be provided. 

For more project details about the Santa Fe Streetscape, go to www.olatheks.org/PublicWorks/Construction/SantaFeStreetscape.

Updated street closings can be found at www.olatheks.org/PublicWorks/Alerts.


Olathe wins procurement awards
Released Sept. 10, 2012
The City of Olathe Procurement Division recently won several awards that recognize its purchasing efforts. The awards demonstrate that the city is spending taxpayer dollars wisely and responsibly.

Procurement Manager Judy Meisel received the Distinguished Service Award from the National Institute of Government Purchasing. The award has recognized individuals who have provided extraordinary service to their government entity, the community, the institute or the purchasing profession since 1950.

For the fifth time, the Procurement Division earned the 2012 Excellence in Achievement Award from the Universal Public Procurement Certification Council. The award recognizes the pursuit of professional excellence through the achievement of agency certification. The Procurement Division is proud to have 100 percent certified staff. This is the fifth year that Procurement has won the award.

The Procurement Division has won the Achievement of Excellence in Procurement Award from the National Procurement Institute (NPI) for the third consecutive year. NPI is the official public sector purchasing affiliate of the Institute for Supply Management. The mission of NPI is to facilitate the educational and professional development of its members. Organizations win the award by demonstrating excellence in professionalism, innovation, productivity, e-procurement and leadership attributes of the procurement organization.


Wastewater Collection Receives Award
Released Sept. 10, 2012
The Olathe Wastewater Collection Program recently received the Category II Collection System Award for outstanding operations in the area of wastewater collection at the 2012 Kansas Water Environment Association and Kansas Section of the American Water Works Association joint annual conference.

The award is a testament to the high level of service provided by the city’s wastewater treatment plant staff and demonstrates their commitment to the health and safety of the community.


City Fleet Awarded CMAQ Grants
Released Sept. 10, 2012
The Mid-America Regional Council recently awarded Congestion Mitigation Air Quality (CMAQ) grant funding to Olathe’s Public Works Vehicle Maintenance Division in excess of $660,000 the next couple of years.

Vehicle Maintenance will use a $105,600 grant to replace four diesel solid waste trucks with trucks that use compressed natural gas. And two $277,702 grants, each in 2013 and 2014, will allow the city to add idle reduction technology to vehicles in the City’s fleet. Both grants will pay for improvements that are expected to result in substantial fuel savings and show a return on investment in about two years.


Mahaffie Wild West Show Sept. 22 and 23
Released Sept. 10, 2012
Enjoy daily arena shows, live entertainment and children’s games during the annual Wild West Show and Bullwhacker Days Sept. 22 and 23 at Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm Historic Site. This popular event offers visitors a variety of hands-on experiences and live entertainment to provide a taste of life in Kansas during the old west.

Wild West Show and Bullwhacker Days will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 22 and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., Sunday, Sept. 23 at Mahaffie, 1200 Kansas City Rd. Regular daily admission applies: $6 for adults, $4 for kids ages 5 to 11 and free for children younger than 4 years old. To help kickoff October Harvest for Harvesters, visitors receive $1 off per admission for every two cans of food donated.

Stagecoach rides will be free, provided by Olathe Chamber of Commerce and Convention and Visitors Bureau. Entertainment includes stagecoach robberies, reenactments and live music.

Free event parking with a shuttle to Mahaffie will be available at nearby Olathe North High School. Accessible parking will be available at Mahaffie. 

For more information, go to www.mahaffie.org or call (913) 971-5111.


This edition of e-News: Sept. 4, 2012

  • Olathe’s Drivers Named Safest in State
  • Road Work to Minimally Affect Old Settlers
  • Library Lot Unavailable During Old Settlers
  • Olathe LINK Named Best Newsletter
  • City No Longer Selling Yard Waste Bags
  • Chef Challenge Winners Announced
  • Too Cool to Drool Returns Sept. 9
  • Sorghum Harvesting Added to Grandparents Day

Olathe’s Drivers Named Safest in State
Released Sept. 4, 2012
Olathe’s drivers are the safest in Kansas and the Kansas City area, and among the safest in the country, according to a report released last week by Allstate.

The eighth annual Allstate America’s Best Drivers Report indicated that Olathe drivers were 15.2 percent less likely to get in automotive collisions compared to the national average, making it the safest in Kansas and 14th safest in the country. Among cities in Kansas, Olathe tops Kansas City (21), Overland Park (29), Topeka (37) and Wichita (42).
Kansas City, Mo., was ranked 16th in the country. It was the only Missouri city in the metro area to make the list.

According to the report, which assessed claim data of the country’s 200 largest cities, the average Olathe driver has a collision every 11.8 years.

Souix Falls, S.D., took the top spot with its drivers 27.6 percent less likely to get in collisions than the national average.

For more information, go to www.allstatenesroom.com.


Road Work to Minimally Affect Old Settlers
Released Sept. 4, 2012
The Santa Fe Streetscape road construction project should have minimal effects on the annual Johnson County Old Settlers event downtown Sept. 6 to 8. The construction zone still will be present, but no work will occur during the event. Sidewalks along Santa Fe Street will be lined with orange fencing. Disabled access will be provided at Cherry and Santa Fe streets.

For details on the streetscape project, please visit us online at http://www.olatheks.org/PublicWorks/Construction/SantaFeStreetscape.

More information on Johnson County Old Settlers including events map, parade route and directions are available at http://www.johnsoncountyoldsettlers.com/index.php


Library Lot Unavailable During Old Settlers
Released Sept. 4, 2012
The Olathe Public Library parking lot won’t be accessible during Old Settlers from Sept. 6 to 8, but the library’s regular hours will remain the same.

The lot at 201 E. Park St. will be used for the annual downtown event. Parking during Old Settlers will be available on nearby streets and in the downtown parking garage across from the library.

Anyone returning items during Old Settlers can drop them off in boxes on Park Street or the Indian Creek Branch at 12990 South Black Bob Rd.Items also can be returned to off-site locations at the Price Chopper locations at N. Parker and Santa Fe streets and 151st Street and Mur-Len Road, Crossroads Shopping Center at Santa Fe and Mur-Len or at the Olathe Family YMCA at 21400 W. 153rd Street.


Olathe LINK Named Best Newsletter
Released Sept. 4, 2012
The Olathe LINK was named best external newsletter in the National Association of Government Communicators 2012 Blue Pencil & Gold Screen Awards. It beat out the National Institutes of Health’s NIH News in Health, which was awarded second place.

NAGC’s annual international awards program recognizes government communications products and their producers. This year, 41 local, state and federal governments and government agencies were recognized in a variety of categories including print publications, photos and Facebook pages.

The Olathe LINK debuted June 1, 1985.

U.S. Congressman Kevin Yoder’s office accepted the award on behalf of the City during the awards program June 5 to 8 in Arlington, Va.


City No Longer Selling Yard Waste Bags
Released Sept. 4, 2012
The Olathe City Council approved an amendment to the municipal code Tuesday, Aug. 21 that removed language allowing the city to sell yard waste bags to residents. The city still will sell yard waste carts.


Chef Challenge Winners Announced
Released Sept. 4, 2012
Mason Halfert, of Olathe North High School, and Zach Wong, of Blue Valley Northwest High School, each were awarded $700 scholarships for winning the second COUNTRY Chef Challenge. They beat two other teams ofstudents from the Olathe School District’s program Les Arts Culinaires. Each student on those teams was awarded a $500 scholarship.

Halfert and Wong won by creating a dish of duck and potatoes made from ingredients bought at the Olathe Farmers’ Market. A panel of local celebrity judges chose the winner.


Too Cool to Drool Returns Sept. 9
Released Sept. 4, 2012
Join the City of Olathe Parks & Recreation Department in a community event when Too Cool to Drool returns Sunday, Sept. 9 at Black Bob Bay. You and your favorite pups are invited to a dog-only swim to close out another great aquatics season. Small dogs, 25 pounds or less, have the pool to themselves at 1 p.m. Bigger dogs can join at 2 p.m.

Pre-registration is encouraged and the first 75 pups will receive a special doggie bag filled with four-legged and two-legged friend treats. To register, call 913-971-8643.The cost is $10 per dog.


Sorghum Harvesting Added to Grandparents Day
Released Sept. 4, 2012
Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm Historic Site has added harvesting of animal feed sorghum to its Grandparents Day offerings from noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 9. Grandparents who accompany a paid child admission can save $6 at the city-owned living history site at 1200 Kansas City Rd.

James “Beatty” Mahaffie grew sorghum, which became a valuable sugar substitute as sorghum molasses during the Civil War.

In addition to sorghum harvesting, regular weekend programming such as stagecoach rides, cooking on the wood-burning cookstove, touring the historic Mahaffie house, blacksmithing and farm chores will be available during Grandparents Day. And grandparents also will get a souvenir photo in a commemorative frame and a family tree to take home and fill out with their families. Registration is not required for this event. For more information about Mahaffie go to www.mahaffie.org, visit its Facebook page or call 913-971-5111.