Eighty million years ago, this part of Kansas was part of an inland sea. More recently – say the last 3.5 million years or so – the area was a savannah with trees. Soil samples suggest the wildlife refuge we call Cheyenne Bottoms has been a wetland for 100,000, says Pam Martin, an educator for Kansas Wildlife & Parks at the Kansas Wetlands Education Center.
The 26-foot-tall Mayor's Christmas Tree in the courthouse square will be even taller this week, after city employees cap it with a magnificent topper, according to Community Coordinator Christina Hayes. City employees will add the custom-made decoration as the City of Great Bend hosts its first Business After Hours, from 5-7 p.m. Thursday. Downtown businesses will stay open until late, in the first of a series of "Thirsty Thursdays."
It looks like a big Christmas present now, but this Saturday evening the wrapping paper will come off of the Great Bend Public Library's "Bookstore." The unveiling will take place following the 5:30 p.m. Home for the Holidays Parade.
The Barton County Sheriff's Office has arrested a "person of interest" in last Saturday's shooting death of Damon Galyardt. No one has been charged in the 25-year-old Great Bend man's death, which is being investigated as first-degree murder, and no one is considered a suspect.
Those who visited the Great Bend Farm & Ranch Expo on Thursday could attend free programs by experts in the commodity markets. There was also a drawing for a $5,000 drone, complete with training, just for attending the KBUF Risk Management and Market Forum. Larry Brown from Scott City was the winner.
The Barton County Sheriff's Office is investigating an aggravated burglary that was reported Wednesday night at All Seasons Mobile Home Park. Sheriff Brian Bellendir announced that two suspects were arrested.
Damon L. Galyardt, 25, had everything to live for – including the future birth of his daughter – when his life was cut short the night of Nov. 11, 2011. On Thursday Galyardt's killer, Jeffrey Wade Chapman, was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for at least 25 years.
Mike Johnson and Mike Minton will return to the Barton Community College Board of Trustees for another term, and they will be joined by Bob Mead. All were winners in Tuesday's election, according to the unofficial results released by the Barton County Clerk's Office.
State Board of Education member Sally Cauble thought it was an April Fool's joke when Deputy Commissioner Dale Dennis asked her to explain the purpose of postcards published by the board to "inform legislators and celebrate public education in Kansas." Dennis, who is in the Kansas Board of Education's Division of Fiscal and Administrative Services, also wanted to know what the budget was for these items, and he wanted to make sure they weren't in violation of the law that prohibits state officers from lobbying in the state. He wasn't kidding.
A Kansas veteran is asking Barton County District Judge Ron Svaty to show no leniency when sentencing the woman convicted of stealing more than $100,000 from funds earmarked for honoring World War II veterans.
Stolen property was recovered from All Seasons Mobile Home Park, 4 NW 30 Road, at Area 9, Lot 12, Sheriff Brian Bellendir said. Deputies executed a search warrant at a residence there last Wednesday, April 1.
PAWNEE ROCK - A sunrise pageant is planned for Easter morning at the Pawnee Rock State Historic Site, one-half mile north of U.S. 56 and the town of Pawnee Rock. The pageant starts at 7 a.m. on Sunday, April 5.
On Thursday, Governor Sam Brownback signed into law Senate Bill 45, the permitless concealed carry legislation, earning praise from the National Rifle Association's Institute for Legal Action and criticism from Everytown for Gun Safety and a related group, the Kansas chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America.
SALINA - The training is intense at Crisis City, a hands-on All Hazards Emergency Response Training Center west of Salina. Great Bend Fire Department sent five firefighters for training on Tuesday, and five more on Wednesday, Capt. Travis Parmley said.
Participants from state, local and private organizations across Kansas took part in a two-day emergency response exercise at Crisis City, Tuesday, March 31 and Wednesday, April 1. Great Bend Fire Department sent several people.