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USD 431 breaks ground on new Lincoln Elementary School
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Members of the Hoisington USD 431 Bond Project Team ceremonially broke ground at the site where the new Lincoln Elementary School will be built. They were the first of many groups to be photographed Thursday morning who had a hand in the project, as well as students in the third, fourth and fifth grades to mark the historic occasion. - photo by Veronica Coons, Tribune staff


Members of the Cardinal Legacy Committee included:

Maggie Alderdice
Worked with local HEPA chapter and helped secure HEPA donation for new playground at Lincoln School (which will be matched by donation from Enola Logan fund).

Jim Blackwell
Helped find funding for committee activities, son was part of high school video production crew that produced testimonials/covered media tour.

Brian Hanzlick
Assistance with yard signs around town, helped coordinate open house.

Shelley Hanzlick
Main teacher in lead of 4th grade class project on Lincoln School, coordinated students who presented and served as tour guides for open house.

Patty Horton
Helped find funding for committee activities, worked with her daughter and her business to help make the signs used in informational display.

Geneva Myers
Helped with yard sign distribution and coordinated direct mailing.

Dean Stoskopf
Liaison with the school board, provided history and strategy.

Brian Wilborn
Chair Helped with yard signs, secured city resolution supporting the bond measure, helped with community outreach.

Dr. Dan Witt
Provided photos of Lincoln School and contributed columns in Great Bend Tribune and Hoisington

Lee Van Syoc
Treasurer. Helped with fundraising, coordinated all the yard sign delivery and pick up.

Denise Zink
Helped organize teachers and students for open house.

Jettie Zoller
Assisted with all communications efforts – from press releases to advertisements.

HOISINGTON - Thursday morning, USD 431 Superintendent Bill Lowry welcomed members of the Hoisington community to the official groundbreaking for the new Lincoln Elementary School to be built adjacent to the school that has served generations of Hoisington youth since 1926.

“Many people have volunteered many hours to make this vision become a reality. To them, I’d like to say thank you,” he said.
The new school is expected to be ready in time for the start of school in 2017.

In June, 2015, the $11.5 million project was given the thumbs up by voters in a special bond election. Support for the project was strong at 75 percent in favor, with nearly half of ballots mailed out being returned. The project will include construction of the building, as well as furnishing and equipping a new Lincoln Elementary School where the playground and field of the existing structure is located now. After completion, the older structure will be demolished.

Fifth grader Katria Kindscher opened the ceremony by singing the National Anthem. (see video at Kindscher was one of three fourth grade students of Shelly Hanzlick’s class at Lincoln Elementary School that presented the case for a new building at a public open house last spring. She and friends Addy Mason and Kortney Lang were honored in January at the Chamber of Commerce Annual Banquet for their efforts in support of the project including acting as spokespersons for their grade. The entire fourth grade class had taken part in creating a book, Lincoln Elementary School: the then, the now and the future.
Mason and Lang, as well as Hanzlick commented on the project later in the presentation.

Dean Stoskopf, president of the USD 431 Board of Education reminded the audience that the community had pulled together over the years when it needed to, including in the aftermath of the tornado that damaged many key buildings in the city 15 years prior this month. They included the high school, which underwent extensive rebuilding, and spurred the creation of Hoisington’s Activity Center.

Julia Debes, chairperson of the Bond Campaign Committee, admitted that 15 years ago, the future of Hoisington was the furthest thing from her mind. At that time, she was a sophomore in high school, and was going to prom with a senior. She looks forward to seeing the next generation of Hoisington children attend class in the new school.

Alan Hoffman, Chairperson of the Building Committee and Alan Charles, principal of Lincoln Elementary School, as well as Stewart Nelson with GNCN Architects and Mickey Starkey, superintendent of Nabholz Construction made brief comments also.
Hoisington Mayor Clayton Williamson finished the program with comments about the history of economic development the city has enjoyed in the past 15 years and his anticipation of seeing his great grandchildren attend school in the new building.

Members of the Hoisington USD 431 Bond Project Team were the first of several groups then to be given shovels to take part in the ceremonial groundbreaking. They were followed by members of the USD 431 Board of Education, other key players in making the project a reality, and the entire third, fourth and fifth grade classes of USD 431, each taking their turn posing with shovels and hard hats to mark the historic celebration.