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Changes coming in holiday lights
new deh city update pic
The citys Christmas lights are starting to go up around town. There are some changes planned for the displays this year. - photo by DALE HOGG Great Bend Tribune

 It may be early, but as Christmas decorations are starting to go up around town, the Great Bend City Council Monday night discussed holiday lights.

Great Bend Public Lands Director Scott Keeler and City Administrator Howard Partington have been working with Chad and Steph Boone on the new Christmas display that was authorized at budget time. The Boones are the ones who install the lights timed to music set up on the north end of the Courthouse Square.

They are adding a few decorations to complement the ones that were already being used, Partington said. “They have come up with a great new set to music display that will go in just west of the raptor center at the zoo.”

On another lighting note, Partington said Park Department employees are evaluating the damage that was done to the lights on top of down town buildings caused by the storms that passed through this year. “These are not the city’s lights, but we have helped with them in the past.”

These may or may not be repaired by Christmas time, he said. City crews have a lot of other holiday tasks to get done and might not get to this.

Also, in past years, the train at Brit Spaugh Park has been lit up with lights for Christmas. But, due to the recent painting of the train and the need to allow time for the paint to set, there will not be lights attached to it this year.

Keeler and his staff may try to shine spot lights on it instead.

The lights were part of Partington’s departmental update. Other items included:


• The Police Department participated in the Zoo Boo event on Oct. 24. “Officer Jefferson Davis put a great deal of effort into planning and coordinating our booth, and multiple officers and citizen volunteers did a great job of helping us run it,” Partington said. In addition to the booth, Darren the DARE lion mascot was also on hand to work the crowd that was waiting.

• The Department is coordinating the implementation of the StarChase vehicle tracker program that the council recently approved. This is a system that launches a tracking device on to a fleeing vehicle so it can be followed.

• Officer Ryan Taylor graduated from the Law Enforcement Academy on Friday, Oct. 24. Although Taylor still has to complete the department’s field training program, Partington said the department now has a full staff.

Public Works

• Helped with Zoo Boo.

• Repainting fire hydrants that needed touched up, started flushing fire hydrants at the Great Bend Airport

• Repaired main on 10th Street between Jefferson and Madison (line was hit by contractor).

• Taste and odor complaint at 1317 Sherman, flushed the city line and problem on the customer side.

• Dirty water complaint at 1015 Hubbard, flushed the city line and problem on the customer side.

• Sanitarian: 699 year to date complaints, nine new complaints by citizens, 19 complaints completed by citizens, four abatement notices sent and five vehicles brought into compliance.

As a side note to the sanitarian report, City Sanitarian Gregg Vannoster announced he was resigning.

Fire/EMS/Inspection/Code Enforcement

• The Fire Department will be working with the Water Department to flush fire hydrants.

• Five firefighters along with airport personnel are attending aircraft fire fighting certification training in Salina. This will allow them to work with the new fire fighting truck stationed at the airport.


• It’s been a busy couple of months, Community Coordinator Christina Hayes said. Show Your Panther Pride isn’t over because the Great Bend High School football team won the district championship.  Explore Great Bend Month kicked off this week so lots happening within the stores to get people to shop local First this holiday season.