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Street Stroll, movie and sidewalk sale on horizon
new deh city update photo street stroll web
This will be a busy few days in Great Bend. Things start with the Summer Street Stroll in Jack Kilby Square Thursday night. - photo by Tribune file photo

 There will be a lot going on Thursday and Friday in Great Bend, Community Coordinator Christina Hayes said.

There is the Summer Street Stroll farmers market from 4 to 7 p.m. in Jack Kilby Square Thursday. Then, there will be the showing of the next free outdoor movie on Friday, featuring “Footloose” in Jack Kilby Square. 

In addition, there will be the Summer Sidewalk Sales this weekend. Over 30 stores are involved this year and that’s over 10 more than last year. 

The sales take place 4-8 p.m. Friday and resume at 8 a.m. Saturday. 

Hayes’ report was part of City Administrator Howard Partington’s biweekly departmental update. Other topics were:


• The city hosted an outdoor movie at the Barton County Fair on July 6, showing “Hook.” There were about 50 people in attendance and city officials overall for the first year of the screening it was a good number for City and the Fair, said Partington. 

• The Rocky Mountain Race week was last Thursday in Great Bend. Hank Denning and the Sunflower Rod and Custom Association crew were excited the rain cleared off by noon and racers “were able to strut their stuff down the dragstrip,” Partington said. Great Bend was one of four stops during that week and the facility received lots of compliments on the location, history and upkeep.  

Public Works

• Removed raised island at 10th and Patton and replaced with 84 tons of asphalt.

• Replaced 36” Stop signs at 10th and Patton with 48-inch signs and installed a flashing red beacon on each new sign.

• Mosquito spraying continues.

• Street Department helped with the Youth Academy reunion at the bowling alley

• Closed the flood-control gates at the low-water crossing through the flood control ditch northwest of town, on July 3 due to more than three feet of water flowing over it, and opened the gates on July 9. Water was below three inches deep when the gate was opened.


• On Thursday, July 7, officers participated in the Barton County Bicycle Rodeo. In this event, area law enforcement officers, including the GBPD and the Barton County Sheriff’s Office, work with the Health Department to teach children about bicycle safety.

• On Friday, July 8, the Police Department coordinated the Great Bend Youth Academy Alumni Reunion. This event, which took place at the Walnut Bowling Alley, featured bowling, go-carts, video games and mini golf for Youth Academy graduates. 

“Thanks to the Streets and Public Lands guys for their invaluable help in putting this event on,” Partington said. “This requires an enormous amount of labor and these departments consistently show up en masse to make this possible.” 

• On July 14 and 15, Chief Cliff Couch assisted the Kansas Law Enforcement Training Center by sitting on a hiring board for new academy Instructors. 

• Monday morning, Ethan Henderson and Joshua Seuss joined the Police Department. They will both undergo 14 weeks of intensive training at the Kansas Law Enforcement Training Center and 14 weeks of in-house Police Department training before becoming full-fledged solo officers.

• Officer Paul Millard is currently working with Cpl. Jefferson Davis, preparing to assume his new duties as the school liaison officer. He is already working on DARE Curriculum and other projects, and will be well-prepared to kick off the new school year along with USD 428.

 Fire/EMS/Inspection/Code Enforcement 

• All shifts attended in-house training on the new Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting (ARFF) unit for the airport.

• Installation of one of the power load systems has been completed and it is working great. This will be a great help when lifting patents. 

• Conducted testing for reserves and one full time position.