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1/31/2008

OBAMA AND SEBELIUS

Filed under: political musings, Barack Obama — Peg Britton @ 3:51 pm

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Associated Press picture taken when Obama visited BCCC and was introduced by Gov. Sebelius. She has been suggested as a possible running mate with Obama.

[For more stories and pictures on Barack Obama and his family, click on “Barack Obama” under “categories” on the right navigation bar.]

SOUP SUPPER SATURDAY AT THE CATHOLIC CHURCH

Filed under: prairie musings, Ellsworth — Peg Britton @ 7:49 am

Saturday, February 2, 2008;  5:00 to 7:00 p.m.
St. Bernard’s Catholic Parish Hall

Serving Homemade Soups
(Chili, Chicken Noodle, and Vegetable Beef)
Pie and Drinks

Sponsored by Catholic Youth for Christ
FREE WILL OFFERING

Proceeds to benefit our mission trip to Louisiana this summer to assist our sister
parish in rebuilding their parish hall which was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina.

Everyone is invited to attend.
Following the Soup Supper, CYO will sponsor a Texas Hold ‘Em Tournament, card games, and more for an evening of fun.  Daycare provided.

Deneen Shively

1/30/2008

K-STATE 84, K.U. 75

Filed under: prairie musings — Peg Britton @ 10:02 pm

ELLSWORTH ANTIQUE MALL

Filed under: Shop — Peg Britton @ 6:20 pm

Mark and Josie Roehrman, owners
201 N. Douglas Ave.
Downtown Ellsworth
785.472.4659
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The Ellsworth Antique Mall is in the historic “Wellington building” that was constructed in the 1860s. Mr. Wellington later gutted the building in 1898 leaving the basement and main walls and rebuilt the interior. Structurally, the building is very much the same as it has been for over 100 years, but this century has seen a transformation in the building with the new owners, Mark and Josie Roehrman.

With this as a background, it seems only appropriate that this famous Ellsworth structure serve as the home for two local treasures— the Ellsworth Masonic Lodge dating from 1889 to 2003 and the Ellsworth Underground.

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When Mark and Josie Roehrman acquired the building, they slowly started the restoration process to further preserve the building. It began with scrub buckets, coats of fresh paint and removal of over 100 year’s accumulation of “stuff”.

In 2003, they added Ellsworth Espresso coffee bar, UPS in 2005 and Spooners and Maypo’s in 2006 (see “EATS”). The restoration of the Underground has been ongoing since they purchased the building.

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The entry floor of the Antique Mall has Ellsworth Espresso, Spooners ice cream bar, Maypo’s Deli, Bears and Buddies, the Christmas Store and the UPS shipping counter. Mark also built two bathrooms for the area and new stairways…one up and two down.

The Roehrmans are not finished. They have more plans — more additions are hidden away in their creative minds.

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Beyond that there are 50 to 60 individual vendor stalls containing everything imaginable—collectibles, Depression glass, pinball games, letter openers, shoe horns, dolls, quilts, vintage sewing items, lead vases, jewelry, Mickey Mouse and Christmas items. If you look long and hard, you’ll probably find what you are wanting.

By the entry you’ll find books written by local and area writers that are on consignment, informational brochures and someone to help you find what you want.

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In 2003, Mark and Josie started cleaning the basement of the building. I saw it before the clean up and all the rooms were piled ceiling high with “stuff”. It’s a huge area and the enormous accumulation of materials had to be removed. Eventually, Mark got it spic and span and noted all kinds of interesting things. There had been access to the street and to adjacent building basements joining the various parts of the Ellsworth Underground.

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There was a bowling lane in the basement with the date “1907” chalked on one wall. There were two other businesses in the basement although no one is sure what they were….except to say they were for men-only. The barber shop, a mainstay of frontier underground services, was in the basement of Seitz Drug Store which adjoins the Antique Mall building.

Mark built a long bar in the basement out of floor joists from the Dryden Hardware building and there are wall murals painted by ECF inmates. It’s a very attractive, rugged frontier kind of area. The Underground is used only on special occasions and by reservation. Josie and Carol Panzer usually prepare all the food to order, but occasionally local caterers bring in specific items. There are luncheons, wedding rehearsal dinners, Christmas parties and meetings for larger groups. It was also a very lively place during the Great American Cattle Drive celebrations and for their Halloween Haunted House and various parties. Their room rental and food prices for their services are very reasonable.

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The Masonic Lodge occupied the second floor of the building for over 100 years. I’d like to note here that my husband, two sons, two grandfathers, a great-grandfather and my father-in-law were all Masons in this lodge and left large footprints in those rooms. Much of the grandeur of that period remains and I encourage you to view the rooms to note the ornate woodwork, stages, mural and 1887 Roosevelt organ. The second floor is used for meetings, receptions, organ recitals, and vendor displays. If you have a use in mind for the main room, Josie will make every effort to accommodate you.

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The Ellsworth Antique Mall is definitely the place to visit if you are in Ellsworth. If you want to see the Underground, you’ll have to make arrangements for a tour.

1/29/2008

REMEMBER RYAN JONES AND “FALL FROM GRACE”?

Filed under: prairie musings — Peg Britton @ 5:39 pm

I blogged Ryan Jones several times; perhaps you remember. While he was a film studies student at K.U. he made a 75 minute documentary on Fred Phelps called “Fall From Grace”. It provides an unprecedented inside look at Fred Phelps of Topeka’s Westboro Baptist Church.
His film debuted on Showtime cable network in December. They had a showing in Salina where I was able to see it.

Now, Showtime viewers can see the film at scheduled times over the next 18 months or on demand. In addition, Netflix purchased the DVD rights to the film and will make it available for download at www.netflix.com in March.

Jones, from Wichita, has recently moved to New York City to pursue a career in film. He said: “It’s an amazing deal. To go from being a class project two years ago to being shown on Showtime and released as a DVD is almost beyond my comprehension.”

K.U. has a terrific film program, and has for years. Ryan is a product of that program. We can expect great things from this young man so remember his name.  Kudos to Ryan Jones.

KANSAS SAMPLER FOUNDATION AND THE “8 WONDERS OF KANSAS” ARE…

Filed under: political musings — Peg Britton @ 3:14 pm

According to the Kansas Sampler Foundation the “Wonders” are: Big Well; Cheyenne Bottoms/Quivira National Wildlife Refuge; Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum; Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center; Kansas Underground Salt Museum; Monument Rocks and Castle Rock; St. Fidelis Catholic Church (Cathedral of the Plains); Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve and the Flint Hills.

Take a look!

GREAT PLAINS MANUFACTURING REQUEST ACCEPTED BY CITY COUNCIL

Filed under: political musings, Ellsworth — Peg Britton @ 12:12 pm

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It has been a long time coming, but the good news is here. The Ell-Kan aka Craft World building will no longer stand vacant at the edge of town. Soon there will be activity under the roof as the new-to-Ellsworth industry revs up and that will generate additional activity about town.

GPM will be a huge addition to the town and think how much better for us it will be since it’s a well-established, thriving business rather than a questionable start-up one.

In their meeting last night the Ellsworth City Council approved the package request by Great Plains Manufacturing.

GPM will use industrial revenue bonds to finance the project. This makes them eligible for 100 percent property tax abatements. The abatement will be be minor in comparison to the money the company and their employees bring into the city and county.

Roy Applequist, company president, gave an overview of their company and the plans they have for their expansion. Linda Salem gave a nuts and bolts report of the funding mechanisms they will be using including the abatement.

The council asked some good questions and unanimously voted in favor of the abatement.

The sales tax that will be generated from having 50 employees will be significant. And, with the potential of new families moving here, that brightens all corners of our community with possibilities.

The company will have a payroll of around $650,000 a year.

There will be 50 new local jobs. If they can’t all be filled, there is a possibility ECF could supply inmate help, but never to exceed 12 positions.

The ECF will, and can only, use inmate labor outside the grounds if they have openings they can’t fill. While a company has inmate labor outside the grounds they must continue to advertise those jobs as open, and if someone meets the qualifications the inmate loses the job. Johnnie Goddard, EFC warden, is great in this arena. He knows that some companies need the additional labor, and he will help provide it when necessary, but feels inmate labor is a supplement labor force not a replacement labor force. They only use inmate help outside the grounds where they can’t fill positions any other way.

The pay range is from around $12 to $22 depending on experience. There will be positions open for welders, machinists, painters and assembly line workers.

Projects like this take a lot of work on the part of many. Jonathan Mitchell, city administrator, and Rob Fillion, executive director of Smoky Hill Development Corp., put in hours of work and negotiations to make this possible.

This is a real opportunity for growth in Ellsworth and calls for a loud YEEHAW.

LITTLE PIG, LITTLE PIG, I’LL BLOW YOUR HOUSE DOWN….

Filed under: prairie musings — Peg Britton @ 8:44 am

One will need anchors to keep noses into the wind today.

I had a note from a friend last night and it indicated she wasn’t watching Dubya. So I asked.

“Oops, sorry, no. I was watching the biography of the Gambino family in New York”, she said.

You’re not missing a thing, I thought, except for the fact we’ll never ever have to listen to a State of the Union address from this man again.

Then she wrote, “Come to think of it, there are surprising parallels. It ended with John Gotti going to prison for life and handing over the reins of the “family” to his son, John Jr, who wasn’t nearly as bright, or as respected, and was ill-equipted to be the leader….hummmmm.”

Yes, she’s right. Lots of parallels.

And Sebelius continued stiffly, “We ask you, Mr. President, will you join us? It’s time to get to work.”

And I went to bed.

I should have gone to the city council meeting.

Here we go again! It’s snowing horizontally making it a most miserable day. It is a first class blizzard and the ground will soon be covered with snow. I’m one of the few fortunate ones as I don’t have to go anywhere today.

For those who are interested, the Governor is announcing the “8 Wonders of Kansas” on the Capitol steps later on this morning. After this they are going to have eight more contests to pick the state’s individual “wonders”. That should take us to the year 2016. Wake me up when we get to “People”. That should be interesting.

Why do people think they need “endorsements”? We have a generation of adults who were once kids who never learned what it was to lose. Everyone got an ice cream cone after the game as there were no losers. The losers were convinced they didn’t really lose. Well, those folks have grown up now and seem to need “endorsements” or another ice cream cone, something to prove they aren’t losing the game, or they are still winning.  However that goes.

Thanks for tuning in.

1/28/2008

THERE IS HOPE FOR SPRING…

Filed under: prairie musings — Peg Britton @ 5:22 pm

It was 78 degrees at 3:40 downtown today. I witnessed it! Tomorrow we’re going to have winds in the 25 to 45 mph rang with rain/snow and freezing temps. It’s Kansas. The weather is going to do flip-flops the rest of the week.

We talked with the “airman” yesterday who’s stationed at Nellis AFB in Nevada. He misses Kansas. He talked about it when he was in TX and he continues to talk about it. He really likes his home state and he’s not alone. There is plenty to do in Las Vegas, he says, but he misses the peace and quiet of home…weather and all.

PANZER’S ORNAMENTAL CONCRETE

Filed under: Shop — Peg Britton @ 5:07 pm

Don and Carol Panzer, owners
604 W. Highway 140
785.472.1305

Local entrepreneur Don Panzer has started several local businesses, turned them into very successful enterprises and then sold them…only to start another. His latest venture is commonly referred to as yard art or yard statuary. It’s located in the former Doc Ptacek veterinary clinic at the west edge of Ellsworth.

Don has to stay busy. Of his latest enterprise, he says, “You either love yard art or you don’t”.

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Don is shown here sanding a form for a statue of a baby lamb. It’s one of 130 molds that he fills with fine sand concrete so the finish is smooth. He has license agreements with K.U., K-State and Ft. Hays to use their logos and molds. He pays them a fee for such use plus the universities get a 10% royalty off the sale of each item that goes directly into the scholarship program for students.

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The greenware is cured 14-35 days, depending on the weather, then given three base coats of paint. Then it is decoratively painted and given two more coats of clear coat. Don and Carol Panzer do all the work on each item. They have one helper, Tyler Base, who also helps them with their work.

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In addition to penguins, lambs, ladybugs, football boys and dozens of other items, there are school memorabilia…like wall plaques and stepping stones.

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In addition to buying his yard art at the “factory”, you can find it at Stutzman’s Greenhouse in Hutchinson, the Flower Nook in Salina, the Garden Center in Russell, and the Home Centers in Lincoln and Beloit.

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ON THE DEMOCRATIC SIDE WITH BARACK AND HILLARY

Filed under: political musings, Barack Obama — Peg Britton @ 2:13 pm

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Thinking about the election this far in advance is rather a waste of time, yet I do it. I guess it’s because I can’t get on Barack’s bandwagon quite yet, as others seem to be doing. I’m among the “uncommitted”.

My guy, Dennis Kucinich, dropped out of the race. He was a Wellstone Democrat and that has always appealed to me.

Paul Wellstone — though passionately liberal — was noted for his civility. The Minnesota senator, who died in a plane crash, did not attack or disparage opponents or their ideas; he advanced his beliefs, and would put forth compelling reasons why you should agree with him.

That is what politics, in my mind, was always supposed to represent: You vote with your conscience, you stake out territory, and you give what you can while protecting what you must.

But, I never really thought he had much of a chance. It has taken me years to remember how to spell his name. My political views run parallel to his and he’s a good man. But he’s not going to be the Democratic nominee.

So, I’ve leaned toward Hillary for many reasons. She works well with both parties and does have experience to take the wheel immediately and move forward. I think she would appoint good, strong cabinet members unlike the ilk Bush has appointed. She’s a known quantity. We know who she is and what we’re getting with her. I’ve thought Bill was a strong plus until the last week or so. Now, I’m not sure.

Barack is a very unknown quantity, imo. He promises change, which we all want, but how he is intends to go about it doesn’t seem at all clear to me. What kind of leader would he be to preside over Iraq and Afghanistan and how does he intend to fix the monetary and economic morass that Bush created. During his visit to Kenya, he stirred up tribal leaders and their government. Does he intend to get us involved in Kenya’s political hotbox of national affairs?

Obama is a charismatic speaker, marvelous debater, has great body language and a way of bringing people together. He is remarkably intelligent.

He and Clinton essentially have the same goals: bring troops home from Iraq, establish some kind of universal health insurance, scale back the Bush tax cuts and create a mechanism so illegal immigrants can gain citizenship.

He has very little foreign policy experience which was evident when he said he’d meet with hostile foreign leaders without preconditions. He created a problem in Pakistan when he said he’d invade their county to hunt down terrorists if Pakistanis did not. He hasn’t handled questions on the use of nuclear weapons diplomatically.

Additionally, he has never managed anything larger than his own office with a handful of employees, or his campaign with a few dozen more. That’s a little like a being a farmer whose managerial experience includes hiring a few farmhands and putting him in charge of a large corporation with a couple million employees. All of that bothers me. I also wonder who he would appoint as his cabinet members.

So, since some of you have asked, I’m tentatively siding with Hillary at the moment. At least until the 5th.

[For more stories and pictures on Barack Obama and his family, click on “Barack Obama” under “categories” on the right navigation bar.]

1/27/2008

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MACKENZIE

Filed under: prairie musings, family — Peg Britton @ 1:01 pm

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It doesn’t seem possible that my granddaughter, Mackenzie Britton Vahalik, is 25 years old today. It seems like only yesterday when……yadda yadda yadda.

I remember well the day she was born. Brit and I went to hold her the next day. She was a beautiful baby and had been selected from all the other babies for the “bath demonstration”. We still chuckle at that. Her 15 minutes of fame.

Then overnight a terrible snow storm dumped two feet of snow all over this part of Kansas preventing the family from coming back to Ellsworth. They had all the emergency snow removal equipment in force in Salina to get physicians, nurses and employees to the hospital to work.

As the storm was worsening, Jack Gillam got a friend with a big 4-wheel vehicle and, with great effort, they made it to Asbury Hospital to get baby Mackenzie and her parents and took them back to Gillam’s to stay until the storm passed over and roads were cleared.

Betty and Jack devised a bed for her in Mead paper box lined with soft linens. She was happy as could be for several days in her own little world.

I’m sure Jack and Betty also remembered all those days when they attended her wedding in August.

Twenty-five years doesn’t seem so long ago…but I miss her so much. I miss all my grandchildren. It goes with the territory.

1/26/2008

PEGGY NOONAN SAYS IT BEST

Filed under: political musings — Peg Britton @ 1:44 pm

Peggy Noonan was a speechwriter for Reagan and Bush the First.  In case you missed it, here’s what she had to say in the WSJ yesterday about the problems the GOP is facing:

On the pundit civil wars, Rush Limbaugh declared on the radio this week, “I’m here to tell you, if either of these two guys [Mr. McCain or Mike Huckabee] get the nomination, it’s going to destroy the Republican Party. It’s going to change it forever, be the end of it!”

This is absurd. George W. Bush destroyed the Republican Party, by which I mean he sundered it, broke its constituent pieces apart and set them against each other. He did this on spending, the size of government, war, the ability to prosecute war, immigration and other issues.

Were there other causes? Yes, of course. But there was an immediate and essential cause.

And this needs saying, because if you don’t know what broke the elephant you can’t put it together again. The party cannot re-find itself if it can’t trace back the moment at which it became lost. It cannot heal an illness whose origin is kept obscure.

GREAT PLAINS MANUFACTURING COMING TO ELLSWORTH

Filed under: prairie musings, Ellsworth — Peg Britton @ 10:59 am

When we talk about economic development, we don’t speculate about bringing a large manufacturing plant employing hundreds to Ellsworth as we once did. That’s sheer folly.

We learned years ago that the days when companies would establish themselves in small towns and hire hundreds of employees were rare and over. The concept of luring a large corporation to Ellsworth, or any rural community like ours, died a slow death. Some communities even built large plants thinking they could woo companies to them. “Build it and they will come” mentality.

Many remember the large building on Highway 156 as the Craft World building. Older citizens remember it as the Ell-Kan building.

The Ell-Kan building was built to manufacture wiring harnesses for Ford Motor Company. At one time there were 750 employees working three shifts at the plant, most were bussed in from Salina. When companies like that pull out, it can break the backbone of a community. We’ve learned better from this experience about how we want our town to grow and prosper.

Instead, we’ve learned, I hope, to bring one family at a time to our town to increase our population until the numbers bring about the need for new services, shops and small manufacturing. If we can’t increase our numbers, we’re stymied. It is the presence of people who create the need for jobs, not the other way around. We need good schools, ample housing and water and the jobs will follow. When we lose these, we are doomed.

The Ell-Kan building continued to see some activity after the wiring harness boom, but then as needs diminished for its use, it sat lonely and vacant for over 10 years. Phillips Lighting used it for storage and there may have been other storage uses, but primarily, the building has been waiting for a new owner. All who were in a position to do so have worked hard to find someone who “fit” that building to come and take a look at us.

The Salina Journal carried an article today by Tim Unruh regarding Salina-based Great Plains Manufacturing expanding their operation into the former 130,000 square foot Ell-Kan building. This will mean 50 new jobs for the area. The big challenge for Ellsworth is to find 50 people to work there without robbing other places of their employees. We need to lure more people to move to Ellsworth so that we can provide a steady work force to keep all our engines running.

The company manufactures a broad line of agricultural planting, seeding, tillage and spraying equipment. They plan to build two types of tillage equipment in Ellsworth. One is a harrow line currently being built at its Tipton plant and a “Turbo-Till” line that is built in Salina.

Lack of production space elsewhere is the reason for the expansion. Great Plains also has plants in Lucas, Kipp, Abilene, Enterprise, Assaria and Tipton. Roy Applequist, owner and president of Great Plains, made the announcement.

Incidentally, Kansas lost 3,441 jobs due to mass layoffs in December. Kansas had 27 mass layoffs in December resulting in 3,441 jobs losses, according to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics. That is up from so few layoffs in November that the bureau doesn’t identify the number of job losses. A mass layoff is 50 or more jobs at a time. We’re getting 50 new jobs. We need to get 100 new people to move to town.

Great Plains will be negotiating with the Ellsworth City Council regarding tax abatement at their regular Monday evening meeting.

The Great Plains expansion fits well with other exciting things happening in Ellsworth…the hospital expansion into the Century building and Mosaic Industries renovating the former downtown grocery store building for office and client space. Mosaic serves mentally and physically challenged adults.

Because of a hard-working Drovers National Hall of Fame Board of Directors, donations of money and contributions of work, our downtown signature building is being restored.

Unlike many small communities west of I-35, Ellsworth is really on a roll right now. We have a beautification project in progress for our downtown area and other businesses are taking a look at us. Let’s keep our forward-looking attitudes in action and work to maintain Ellsworth as one of the finest little towns in Kansas.

1/25/2008

GREAT PLAINS MANUFACTURING TO MOVE INTO FORMER EL-KAN BUILDING

Filed under: Ellsworth — Peg Britton @ 7:16 pm

According to the Ellsworth County Independent Reporter website today:

The Salina-based Great Plains Manufacturing, Inc., announced Friday it is in the process of purchasing Ellsworth’s former El-Kan building to manufacture tillage equipment.

With the purchase will come about 50 jobs, company president Roy Applequist told the Ellsworth County Independent-Reporter.

TRUE VALUE HARDWARE - ELLSWORTH

Filed under: Shop — Peg Britton @ 12:30 pm

Ted and Cynthia Edgerle, owners
212 North Douglas Ave.
Downtown Ellsworth
785.472.3202

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Ellsworth has a long history of continuously supporting a downtown, locally-owned hardware store. The Ellsworth hardware business was started by T.G. O’Donnell in 1899 and remained in O’Donnell hands for many years. After T.G.’s death, the business fell into the hands of his three unmarried daughters; Kathleen, Marion and Eleanor. Eventually they found it too difficult to continue operating the business and it was sold to John and Carla Freisen.

After many years of operation, the Freisens sold the business to Don and Carol Panzer who added the True Value line to expand the advertising capability and benefit Ellsworth shoppers.

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Pete and Alice Donley and Ted and Cynthia Edgerle purchased the business from Panzer several years ago, moved the across the street to increase their square footage of display space and expanded the modern concept of an old-fashioned, locally-owned hardware store. We miss the well-worn wooden floors and pot-bellied stove that warmed our backsides on cold winter days, but many new, good things are in place in their present location so one tends to forget the days of yore.

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Ted and Cynthia Edgerle are the present owners of True Value Hardware.

You can find almost every variety of nut, bolt and nail, doodads like cork bottle stoppers, plumbing and electrical supplies, hunting gear and equipment, paint, yard and garden equipment and supplies, small appliances, household items and a wide variety of gifts.

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Ted and his son, Matt, are certified, small engine mechanics and are on duty full time. They run the back end of the store where there is a huge service and repair business. Breakdowns in equipment are a common occurrence and in small towns repairmen are hard to find. They service what they sell and a whole lot more. They provide exceptional service throughout the store.

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One of the most unique and personalized services they offer at Tru Value is their wedding registry. They put the bride and groom’s names and date of the wedding on the store window. Inside they place a large rack containing all the bridal registry items near their front door so that you can immediately find items to choose for gifts. It is one of the best of its kind.

They are a full service store, and always have been throughout their history. If they don’t have what you want, they can find it for you. They gift wrap, deliver and serve as personal shoppers for customers. We’re very fortunate to have such a wonderful store in Ellsworth and it brings in customers to Ellsworth from all over the area.

THAT FAMILY AGAIN…

Filed under: political musings — Peg Britton @ 10:15 am

Back to the Phelps family…

I believe all the Phelps family members work outside the Westboro enclave except for Shirley Phelps-Roper who runs the “church/cult” operation. They are, for the most part, attorneys who generate their own outside income to perpetuate their church activities and pickets.

My question is: Why do firms hire them as employees? Why do people hire them for legal services? Doesn’t one family member provide legal counsel to the Department of Corrections…a taxpayer supported entity? Isn’t Topeka full of attorneys? Aren’t there other choices.

Just asking…

1/24/2008

LARRY GRIFFITH TO THE RESCUE…

Filed under: prairie musings — Peg Britton @ 5:22 pm

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Along with almost everyone in Central Kansas, we suffered from the ice storm that ravaged this part of the state. Since there has been no let up in the ice and snow, we’re just now getting around to cleaning up the mess. Some limbs are still buried under ice and will rest there until the spring thaw.

Larry Griffith has done a lot of tree trimming and “cherry picker” work for us, like hanging bat houses, so we called him back as he has the equipment necessary for the kind of work we needed done. All the trees on Ally’s property were severely damaged by the storm as were several of ours.

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Two of the dump trucks were on their way to the tree dump and are missing in this picture. You can see the amount of equipment Larry had for our project.

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The arched limbs over the driveway are the subject of conversation between Larry and landowner Ally. They decided the limbs had to be removed.

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Limbs laden with heavy ice were broken and strewn underneath trees….everywhere.

FEMA helped those whose houses were flooded with surface water. I wish someone would have offered help with limb removal.

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Brit wielded a chainsaw and kept us supplied with firewood for most of his life. Now, that time is past and he has more time to concentrate on keeping his birds supplied with suet and seed. Look at that concentration.

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Ringo is resting on the deck with one eye on the lookout for voracious squirrels who might attack the bird feeders at any moment.

This tree trimming, cleanup project has been a work in progress for two days and they aren’t on the downhill side of it yet. Alas.

1/23/2008

SHIRLEY AND HER HATEMONGERS

Filed under: political musings — Peg Britton @ 9:55 pm

Shirley Phelps-Roper announced her gay bashing Westboro Baptist Church family members who are such an embarrassment to Kansas will be picketing the memorial services of recently deceased actor Heath Ledger.

He played the part of a gay cowboy in the movie Brokeback Mountain. They see that as a reason for them to picket.

Roper indicated her clan will also be picketing the Academy Awards this year.

It’s their right to picket and that right should be protected. They are so full of hate that I wonder how they can face the day each morning. They equate their hatred of gays to being good Christians. whatever happened to “love thy neighbor”?

MICHELLE OBAMA’S MAKING CALLS FOR HER HUSBAND…

Filed under: prairie musings, political musings, Barack Obama — Peg Britton @ 8:20 pm

It’s K.U. game time and our cable crashed. Bad weather can’t be an excuse for it being down. Brit is faunching at the bit.

I had a personal call from Michelle Obama tonight asking for support for her husband. It wasn’t really all that personal since it was a recording, but the system found my number and called. Had it really been her in person, I would have liked visiting with her.

I would have asked when they last talked to Barry’s grandmother, Madelyn. Did they go see her at Christmas time? How is she getting along? Isn’t she really proud of her grandson and wouldn’t she like to tell us just how proud in a little photo session, like they arranged for his “other” grandmother in Kenya? Maybe they’d like to recall some old memories when he lived with her all those years in Honolulu.

He’s going to have to recognize her, or something is going to have to change, before he gets my vote….and I like the guy. I just don’t like the way “I presume” he treats his grandmother. I sure could be wrong about it. All he has to do to satisfy me is have his picture taken with her and tell us how wonderful she was to take care of him when he was growing up.

Actually, political calls rub me the wrong way no matter how they originate. We can get rid of most annoying calls thanks to an act of Congress with no-call sign up except it exempts members of Congress so they can make political calls that they assume aren’t annoying. The best response to that special privilege is to hang up on them.

Political calls are only going to become more frequent and more annoying until the election is over.

And, Heather called again today. She’s a recording too, but she shouldn’t be calling as I’m on her no call list. It was her boss who hung up on me when I asked that he stop his harassing calls. They want to lower my interest rate on credit cards, that I don’t have, through some plan they have to offer that I don’t want. It doesn’t matter to me what the interest rate is. If you can’t pay for a purchase at the end of the month before their 20% interest kicks in, don’t buy it. Their interest, no matter how much it is, will eat you alive. Household Management 101.

Thelma has been out of her docking cradle a few times today to show her stuff to various visitors. Ringo just looks the other way in dismay.

Tammy Gutierrez makes green chili and pork hot tamales to sell. Two kinds. We had the green chili tamales tonight and they were excellent. I just learned of this today from Meredith, a font of information. She was right about how good they are even though she doesn’t eat them. It was good hearsay information.

K.U. 83, Iowa State 59. K.U. is really an awesome team to watch.

It seems like the days are just flying by. Incredible.

Thanks for tuning in.

[For more stories and pictures on Barack Obama and his family, click on “Barack Obama” under “categories” on the right navigation bar.]

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