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Filed under: prairie musings — Peg Britton @ 12:35 pm


Waiting for the parade… Kyle and Todd, Kenz, MiMi, Emily, moi, Aimee and Ally.  Kurt in the striped shirt  and Julie.  Karen and Gabe are missing.


Here they come…


The EHS marching band…that once numbered well over 100, is being reborn.  They did a commendable job Saturday and will only improve.  I was proud of each one of them.


MiMi, who is formally joining the family in a May wedding, experienced Ellsworth for the first time. The stage coach and team are owned by Ken Wasserman of Salina.


Gabriel, the newest member of our family…son of Aimee and James, rarely left Karen’s arms.

Cowtown Days was very successful, imo. There was a very good turnout in spite of the fact there were football games, Santa Fe Days and other festivals in progress nearby. It was a beautiful day…a great day.


Filed under: prairie musings, family, Tyler Britton USAF — Peg Britton @ 7:49 am

Two grandsons share the same birth date today…just different years.  Rod is 33 and Tyler hits the big 21. Too bad I don’t have some baby pictures to post.

Mackenzie, Meredith and I are going to celebrate their birthdays at Orozco’s with huevos rancheros.  Rod is celebrating with a quiet dinner at home with Genn.  Drew is joining them.  Tyler.  Well, who knows?  He’s 21 after all.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY GUYS.  I hope you have a long string of very happy birthdays.

It’s a beautiful day today in your hometown…. wish you were here.



Filed under: prairie musings, Joshua Svaty — Peg Britton @ 9:38 am


Secretary of Agriculture, Joshua Svaty, spoke to a group of 50 Lion’s Club members, and assorted friends, at the United Methodist Church in Marquette last night.


Ryon Carey, Granddaughter Mackenzie Vahalik, Svaty and I conferred following the meeting.

Svaty served as state representative of the 108th district for seven years before being appointed recently to the Secretary of State position.

In his speech, he described the responsibilities of his department as two-fold:  regulatory and promotional that serve all Kansans. 

There are 17 program regulators who have diverse responsibilities for food safety, dairy production, natural resources, water management, poultry, grain and grain storage all weights and measures, etc.

The department is in charge of licensing and inspecting restaurants.  Josh signs the order to close a restaurant and has closed two since taking office.  He said it is difficult to stay on top of unlicensed restaurants that spring up over night in southwest Kansas, some selling tacos out of the back of a bus.

The Ag Department develops extensive groundwater use control area regulations, for the people.

For more about the Dept. of Agriculture and the job Josh loves, click here.



Filed under: political musings, print news — Peg Britton @ 3:18 pm

Dem activists aren’t complacent, they’re pissed
by John Aravosis (DC) on 9/25/2009 10:59:00 AM
Democrats are worried that their fundraising is going down. And they should. But the reason isn’t because Democratic activists have become complacent. Democratic activists are pissed, and see no reason to fund a party that doesn’t have a backbone or the desire to keep its promises.

Democrats said a struggling economy is only partly to blame for the poor fundraising performance and acknowledged a more perilous problem: satisfaction among activists that the party now holds the White House, 60 votes in the Senate and 60 percent of the House.

“There was a little sense of complacency that set in despite our best efforts to warn people,” said Rep. Chris Van Hollen (Md.), chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. “We made it very clear: Beware.”

You beware.



Filed under: prairie musings — Peg Britton @ 1:52 pm


Art and Kathy Kohls are responsible for this photo.  One comes to me each Friday.   They say the milo is the same but the coating differs in color.  This is a typical scene at this time of year  from my part of the world.  The fields of soy beans are also beautiful and profuse with color.


Filed under: prairie musings, political musings — Peg Britton @ 1:30 pm

I took the following pictures at the McPherson County Democrats fundraiser last Wednesday.  Governor Mark Parkinson attended as the McPherson County dems came in first in a state contest in attracting new members and he was the bonus attendee.


Good Shepherd Turkey Ranch and Ryon Carey supplied the chickens and turkeys that went into the vast array of sandwiches and appetizers.  Alan Jilka is on the right with Chef Danny in the background.


Chef Steve Pope with “one handsome dude” Governor Mark Parkinson, who is also very nice and smart.


Frank Reese, Lindsborg, owner of Good Shepherd Turkey Ranch and Ryon Carey, Lindsborg. Both are dedicated to preserving and protecting heritage chickens, turkeys, geese and ducks, etc.


Gov. Parkinson visits with Dick and Louann Bergen, Salina.  They have a common bond with  the Bergen sculpture that is on top of the capitol dome.


Sec. of Agriculture, Josh Svaty, visits with Boon Vidricksen, Salina. Boon and Vidricksen Distributing generously supplied an assortment of premium beers for the occasion. Josh spoke to the group and introduced the Governor.  Josh will be speaking Monday in Marquette at 7:15 at the Methodist Church.


Alan Jilka, right, visits with Phyllis and Paul Winkler of Lincoln. Boon and Josh are in the background.


Lindsborg News Record owner/editor, John Marshall, and Shirley Jacques, chair of the Saline County Democratic party.

The gathering was as I hoped…a lot of fun.  I had the opportunity to visit with friends I haven’t seen in a long time.  Meredith gained a lot of attention as the Governor mentioned her in his speech.  She was Josh Svaty’s kindergarten teacher and they had a good time talking about that.


Filed under: prairie musings, Ellsworth — Peg Britton @ 12:40 pm


Here’s the new sign for the old Ellsworth Antique Mall.  It’s more than antiques now and more signage will appear soon in the windows….like “Maypo’s Deli”, “Fried Chickie Tanning” (or something like that…), “Spooners Homemade Ice Cream”…etc.  It will say more about what they are.  The signs are being made by Edith Pennington whose husband painted the mural in Maypo’s Deli.


Work in progess. There will be bricks, trees and plantings in the “dirt” area and an underground watering system for the trees.  It’s going to be so nice.  I’m really excited about how much better downtown will appear to visitors…and all of us…after it is completed.  We tend to get so accustomed to “things” that aren’t the best they can be that it’s a good thing when people get together with foresight to make improvements.


This isn’t downtown Ellsworth, but it’s not far away.  I took this Wednesday evening on our way to Lindsborg as we passed over the Kanopolis dam.  The clouds were outstanding…much better than those I captured.


Filed under: prairie musings, family — Peg Britton @ 12:15 pm


Here’s a nice surprise for my grandsons…their mother cheerfully working away. She is a treasure. Speaking of grandsons…two of them, Rod and Tyler, share a birthday on the 30th.  Rod will be 33 and Tyler 21.


Filed under: prairie musings, friends, recipes, Ellsworth — Peg Britton @ 9:07 am

It feels like winter.  It is 52 degrees, inside and out; however, the drizzle is confined to the outside.  It’s darker inside than out. That makes it winter in my books.  I really like this kind of weather but am hesitant to mention it as most people find it depressing and skew their faces at the thought.

My friend, Nancy Morrison, just pulled out and is headed for Shreveport.  It was raining.  She drove in rain coming from Denver yesterday so we both knew it would get here in time to go with her to Shreveport. She and Mackenzie will pass each other on I-35.  Yesterday on I-70 she passed our friend, Diane, who was leaving here after a visit and returning home to Denver. This has been a major depot for visitors lately, just as I prefer it to be.

Nancy and I enjoyed a hot pot of coffee this morning.  I’ve not had any for some time and looked forward to a good excuse to make some.  It will satisfy me until the next overnighter arrives who drinks coffee. I’ve been drinking high protein E.A.S. in the morning instead…and it’s hardly the same as a big jolt of caffeine.

I hear…but have no way of knowing for certain…that Bruce Kopitar is going to use his new land (the Aylward ranch) for a hunting preserve.  Well, maybe that’s okay, and preferable to a wind farm or smelter plant, but I’d have much rather seen it in the hands of locals and used as has been in the past by Gary Donley.  Hunting preserve owners tend not to care about the same things as farmers and ranchers…like keeping an upper hand on the invasion of musk thistle and eastern red cedars that can overtake land rather quickly and migrate to good ranch land where such things are kept under control by competent ranchers.

One unresponsive child, that I know of, was Life Watched out of here due to the wreck at the intersection of highways 14 and 156 south of the Good Sam home.  That is so sad.

I have some pictures of the Governor’s reception in Lindsborg Wednesday evening and will try to get them posted today.  My computer techie will be arriving today and can iron out some of the problems I’m encountering with pictures and mail.

Last night we had one of our family favorite meals that you might want to try… Wolferman’s English muffins for a change, but regular bread, toasted, will suffice.  Load the top of the muffins with thick slices of ripe, homegrown peeled tomatoes (store bought isn’t the same), and several slices of crisp bacon (not the pre-fried kind).  Top that with some thin cheese sauce…about the consistency of heavy cream.  I think you’ll like it if you like what goes into it.

Time to get my mail and take Ringo to town.  He loves his rides with me but they aren’t as much fun for him as they were with Brit where he got to help drive and sit in the front seat. Or so he says (smile!).

I borrowed the following. Ally sent it to me.

Live like a dog: Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly. Remember, if a dog was the teacher you would learn things like: When loved ones come  home, always run to greet them. Never pass up the opportunity to go for a joyride. Allow the experience of fresh air and the wind in your face to be pure ecstasy. Take naps. Stretch before rising. Run, romp, and play daily. Thrive on attention and let people touch you. Avoid biting when a simple growl will do. On warm days, stop to lie on your back on the grass.. On hot  days, drink lots of water and lie under a shady  tree. When you’re happy, dance around and wag your entire body. Delight in the simple joy of a long walk. Be loyal. Never pretend to be something you’re not. If what you want lies buried, dig until you find it.

Remember to stop in the Art Gallery and take a look at Charlie Roger’s waterscapes.  I think most of them were painted when he managed the Huntington Hartford Gallery in California.

And many thanks to friends, particularly Linda Ralph Kohls, who read my blogs and catch errors.  Regretfully, names are getting progressively illusive for me and she helps a lot with that.

This hasn’t taken long to write, but long enough that the skies are clear and mostly bright…at least for the time being.

Thanks for tuning in…



Filed under: prairie musings, Ellsworth — Peg Britton @ 3:44 pm

I heard all the emergency vehicle sirens today and figured it might be another hay bale fire.  It wasn’t long after that I heard a helicopter hovering overhead and knew there had been another wreck.  Again…at the intersection of 14 and 156 south of town.

That intersection is terrible.  Caleb told me that from his perspective of viewing it about every day  during construction that it was going to be much worse for accidents than the previous intersection they were supposedly improving.  He was right.

There are blind spots and the intersection is huge.  Cars come from the southwest downhill at 70 to 80 mph.  The intersection isn’t square with the world.  They removed the rumble strips on 14 and there’s hardly a stop sign made that is large enough to grab everyone’s attention.

In the case today, so I heard, a car was T-boned.  There were two children in the back seat…and lots of blood.  I don’t know who they life-watched out of here, but someone was seriously hurt to require it.

That makes two wrecks within a week at that intersection.  I can’t count how many since it opened…but too many.


Filed under: prairie musings, family, friends, Ellsworth, Artists — Peg Britton @ 1:30 pm

The Ellsworth Antique Mall is now called the Ellsworth Village Mall.  The new name does a better job of explaining what they are.  There are antiques, as usual, but there are other shops as well….the Maypo Deli, the Espresso Bar, the saloon, Christmas shop, doll shop  and several other shops.  And there are tanning booths.  It’s still under the ownership and management of Mark and Josie Roehrman.

If you’re going by Boot’s Plant Shop…or better yet, stopping in to buy something…take a look at the blooming cactus in the window.  There are several blooms fully opened with several more on the way.  Margaret can give you the low down on the plant.


Here’s an up close look at the flowers.  They look surreal.


The worker bees at the gallery….Robert Rogers (Charles Roger’s son), Steve Steinhaus and Meredith Vargo are hanging  a collection of Ellsworth artist Charles Rogers seascapes today.  It’s a display of 14 paintings you’ll want to see as Charlie’s seascapes haven’t been available for viewing for some time.  I don’t think I’ve seen them all together like this since there were in the Rogers Gallery in the old Baker Hotel by the railroad tracks.  The building was demolished for safety reasons years ago and the paintings were put in storage..


Meredith offers advice on leveling up the paintings and is in charge of distributing the nails.   The Gallery is operated by volunteer help and donations.  It’s a valuable asset to the community and it helps a lot if everyone contributes in one way or another.


Tonight is the McPerson County Democrats fundraiser and gathering for the Governor. It’s the most active Democratic county committee in the state, chaired by my friend, Ryon Carey.  They’ve been working on food and drink for days and it will be a great gathering for Gov. Mark Parkinson.  Frank Reese is in charge of most of the food. Beverages have been donated by Vidrickson Distributing and Smoky Hill Winery.

A light meal of sustainably raised Kansas foods, wine, beer and beverages will be served.  Take a look of what that means…

Chicken Mousse Rounds;  Mini Egg Frittata, Sausage Stuffed Basil, Chicken and Spinach Spanakopita in Phyllo Pastry;   Monique Chicken Salad Wedges;  Enrique’s Turkey Fajitas; Mini BBQ Turkey Wedge;  West Texas Ranch Chicken Wings; Wood-lei Chicken Wontons; Mesquite Smoked Turkey Breast Sandwich;  Periled Chicken Dumpling;  Smoked Salmon and Herbed Egg Salad Involtini; Turkey Bacon Wrapped Provolone with Asparagus Tips.  Guest Vegan Alternative’s: Mélange of Fresh Peach Frappe; Tortilla  Stuffed with Sautéed Curried Vegetables; Basil Three Cheese Stuffed Penne.

The chickens and turkeys used in the appetizers were free-range and pampered by Frank Reese and Ryon Carey.   Ryon has organized and planned the event down to the last tooth pick.  He knows how to entertain.  Meredith and I will be attending as it well could be the best social event of the winter.

My friend, Nancy, will be passing through tomorrow and spending a night or two with me before driving to Shreveport.  Granddaughter Mackenzie should arrive about the same time.  My nephew and his family will be here for the cowtown celebration on Saturday. This has been a good week.

Mike Brooks just called and said there was a dead armadillo south on 156.  He even offered to bring it to me …or something like that.  It was very nice of him to call and let me know that there are armadillos in our part of the country…a lot more than I thought.

It looks like they are going to have to put guards on all the hay bales in the country to ward off the arsonists.   We have some very sick people running around loose and they are a danger to everyone.

Thanks for tuning in…



Filed under: prairie musings, political musings — Peg Britton @ 12:09 pm

Rep. Jerry Moran is not a moderate Republican.  Maybe once long ago he was, but he isn’t close to that now.  He jumped on George Bush’s bandwagon early on and turned right at every opportunity after that.

Moran is in a race for the U.S. Senate against uber conservative Rep. Todd Tiahrt.

Daily Kos said:  “Jim DeMint, best known as the most right-wing member of the U.S. Senate (and last seen endorsing Joe Wilson’s embarrassing tantrum against the president last week), endorsed Moran. This qualifies as a pretty big surprise, as the consensus had long been that Tiahrt was the more conservative of the two.”

“The Swing State Project blog noted that Moran also got conservative Sen. Tom Coburn’s endorsement last spring, and “the somewhat more mainstream figures of John McCain and Richard Burr will also headline Moran fundraisers in D.C.”

Given the two options, I’d still take Moran over Tiahrt, but I hope other options emerge.


Filed under: political musings — Peg Britton @ 8:55 am

Congressman Todd Tiahrt held a town hall meeting on health care reform and made the false claim that H.R. 3200 will set a cap on doctors wages.  His accusation has been debunked across the board by various institutions including the non-partisan  His audience knew this and proceeded to simply laugh at him for lying to the crowd.

It’s a short video…click here to see it.

Twenty-six Lies About H.R. 3200 from
A notorious analysis of the House health care bill contains 48 claims. Twenty-six of them are false and the rest mostly misleading. Only four are true.


Our inbox has been overrun with messages asking us to weigh in on a mammoth list of claims about the House health care bill. The chain e-mail purports to give “a few highlights” from the first half of the bill, but the list of 48 assertions is filled with falsehoods, exaggerations and misinterpretations. We examined each of the e-mail’s claims, finding 26 of them to be false and 18 to be misleading, only partly true or half true. Only four are accurate. A few of our “highlights”:

etc etc……see FactCheck for the facts.



Filed under: Ellsworth, print news — Peg Britton @ 1:47 pm

WANTED!  Visitors for Ellsworth Cowtown days/Drovers.

Saturday September 26, 2009.  Downtown Ellsworth, 1st Street and Cowtown Plaza.

7 to 10 am Senior Center Breakfast

11:00 Cowtown Old Fashion Saturday:  Parade, Sand Dig, Balloon Booth, Cake Walk, Dodge Ball Tournament, 3 on 3 Basketball Tournament, Clothing Sidewalk Sale, Disc Challenge, Bobbing for Apples, Find the Ball Game, Jelly Bean Guess, Penny Pitch Game, Regata Races, Inflatables, Bean Bag and Ring Toss, Glitter Tatoos, Hamburgers, Hot Dogs, Funnel Cakes.

3:00 Shooting of Sheriff Whitney

4:00 Bank Robbery

5:00 Hanging, Fast Draw Competition, Blacksmith, Stage Coach Rides at the Veterinary Clinic, Tomahawk Throwing, Saddle Display, Can Can Girls, Broom Maker, Old Fashion Photo Booth, Greased Pig Contest, Tug-O-War Contest, Backseat Driver Races, Svaty’s Farmers’ Market, Backward Bicycle Booth, Horse Shoe Tournament, Pop Bottle Ring Toss.

5:00 Cook out with Kiwanis Club and Drovers Beer Garden

7:00 Texas Hold-em Contest

8:00 to 10:00 Street Dance with Blaine Younger Band.


Filed under: print news — Peg Britton @ 1:24 pm

This Ad Was Supposedly Posted to Craig’s List Personals: (And even if it weren’t, it is still funny.)

To the Guy Who Tried to Mug Me in Downtown Savannah night before last. Date: 05-27-09, 1:43 A M EST.

I was the guy wearing the black Burberry jacket that you demanded that I hand over, shortly after you pulled the knife on my girlfriend and me, threatening our lives..

You also asked for my girlfriend’s purse and earrings.  I can only hope that you somehow come across this rather important message.

First, I’d like to apologize for your embarrassment when I drew my pistol after you took my Jacket.  The evening was not that cold, and I was wearing the jacket for a reason.  My girlfriend had just bought me that Kimber Model 1911 .45 A CP pistol for my birthday, and we had picked up a shoulder holster for it that very evening.

Obviously you agree that it is a very intimidating weapon when pointed at your head, wasn’t it?

I know it probably wasn’t fun walking back to wherever you’d come from bare foot since I made you leave your shoes, cell phone, and wallet with me.  [That prevented you from calling or running to your buddies to come help mug us again].

After I called your mother, or “Momma” as you had her listed in your cell, I explained the entire episode of what you’d done.

Then I went and filled up my gas tank as well as four other people’s in the gas station on your credit card.  The guy with the big motor home took 150 gallons and was extremely grateful!

I gave your shoes to a homeless guy outside Vinnie Van Go Go’s, along with all the cash in your wallet.  [That made his day!]

I then threw your wallet into the big pink “pimp mobile” that was parked at the curb … after I broke the windshield and side window and keyed the entire driver’s side of the car.

Later, I called a bunch of phone sex numbers from your cell phone. Ma Bell just now shut down the line, although I only used the phone for a little over a day now, so what’s going on with that?

Earlier, I managed to get in two threatening phone calls to the DA’s office and one to the FBI, while mentioning President Obama as my  possible target. The FBI guy seemed really intense and we had a nice long chat (I guess while he traced your number etc.).

In a way, perhaps I should apologize for not killing you … but I feel this type of retribution is a far more appropriate punishment for your threatened crime.

I wish you well as you try to sort through some of these rather immediate pressing issues, and can only hope that you have the opportunity to reflect upon, and perhaps reconsider the career path you’ve chosen to pursue in life.

Remember, next time you might not be so lucky.

Have a good day!



Filed under: prairie musings, Ellsworth — Peg Britton @ 4:54 pm


Dr. Gary Parks has had paintings on display at the Ellsworth Art Gallery for the past month.  Saturday morning the gallery board hosted a reception for him and his family.  Pictured above are his parents, Betty and Leonard Parks, and wife Pam by one of his paintings of sunflowers.  Gary grew up in Ellsworth and has for many years practiced internal medicine in Pueblo Colorado.


Gary visits with members of the Fox family….home for a visit.


A new exhibit will be hung at the library …it’s always nice to visit the gallery…so stop by.


The group at the gallery sang Happy Birthday to Tom Zouzas who was celebrating his 89th birthday. His wife, Chris, made her famous baklava for the occasion.   A crowd of about 80 people came and went during the two hour reception.  Gary is an extraordinary conversationalist so it made the event just a whole lot of fun.


Filed under: prairie musings — Peg Britton @ 11:49 am


Looking south on Dougas Ave. before revitalization  efforts began.  Notice there are no street lights on the other side of the street.  They’ve all been removed.


The areas where concrete has been removed will be replaced with bricks; many will be memorial bricks inscribed with family names .  Somewhere there will be trees as well.  It’s going to be very nice when completed.


This is Lonnie Soukup’s corner looking north on Douglas from the railroad tracks. The construction crew is doing a good job of keeping traffic flowing and creating minimum pedestrian obstacles.


This is Meredith’s dill patch breeding ground  for black swallow-tail butterflies.  For years she’s taken caterpillars, like the above,  to school as a learning experience for elementary students.  They watch the caterpillars evolve into a chrysalis then into a butterfly.


When granddaughter Mackenzie and husband Luke come to visit, Meredith invites Luke to peruse her pantry.  It’s a special moment for them.  He leaves with boxes of pickles, fruit, tomatoes, etc. to enjoy back in Texas.


Our Japanese Pagoda tree that Ally gave us 30 years ago was profuse with blooms this year.  The branches were so heavily laden with flowers that some touched the ground.


Here’s one of the musical groups that performs at the First Thursday Art Rush in Salina at Dick Bergen’s art studio.  The only one I know in the group is Ann Zimmerman,  Salina attorney and musician.


Rich Bergen, of Bergen Gallery, at the Art Rush.


This is Machelle Vanek’s produce stand during the last days of the farmers’ market.


Kansas Originals had a very successful day at their Annual Festival yesterday.  The entertainment, arts, local crafts and BBQ are a draw for success.  It’s all Kansas!  Everything at Kansas Originals is Kansas grown and made in Kansas by Kansans.


This was the sign up booth at Kansas Originals…there was a steady stream of people for the two hours I was there.  It brings people from all around the area and those who are passing by who stop out of curiosity to see what is going on.

Thanks for tuning in…



Filed under: prairie musings, Tyler Britton USAF — Peg Britton @ 8:11 am

I’ve never seen an armadillo in Kansas.  I’m sure they are around, but I’ve never seen one.  My friend, the Crystal Queen, said there is a dead one along the low road to Kanopolis.  It was a rarity to her as well, or she wouldn’t have made special mention of it.  I had a friend from here, originally from OK,  who maintained she saw them all over the place, as thick as rabbits.  She saw things I never saw.  I might have to saunter over to Kanop to see what I can see along the way.

Don’t forget the Dr. Gary Parks reception at the art gallery tomorrow from 10 to 12.  And….remember there also will be a full day of activities at Kansas Originals.  With a little planning, you can do both.


Here are two of America’s finest airmen.  Kurt Williams took the picture of his nephew Greg, left, and Tyler when they stopped in his office for a visit.   Both young men are very happy with their work and feel the Air Force is the place to be right now.

Thanks for tuning in…



Filed under: prairie musings, family, Ellsworth, Tyler Britton USAF — Peg Britton @ 8:41 pm

It has been three months since I’ve seen my fave internist.  Today was a regularly scheduled appointment with all the usual tests….and I passed them all with flying colors.  My Lupus is in remission, we think.  All indications point to a sleeping el lobo. I’m not even taking any meds for blood pressure or cholesterol as those levels are fine.  Next week I’ll be down to three pills (two for Lupus and one for blood sugar) plus fish oil, CoQ-10, vitamins, etc. That’s a huge improvement from the first part of April.  I updated my seasonal flu and pneumonia shots.  H1N1 shots will be available in October.  I can’t afford to get sick as it will throw me back where I was initially with Lupus, so I’ll have to be careful where I go and what I do.

A strange thing has happened  in the last month or so:  my hair is curly.  After having hair as straight as a board all my life, it started curling.  We have no idea why.

I forgot the season premier of Bones tonight.  I’ve never seen Parks and Recreation, and I like Amy Poehler, so I watched tonight but I found it disappointing.  I figured if I didn’t like the Office, I wouldn’t care much for P and R.  So I turned back to Rachel and MSNBC.  I can always count on her.  But I do like Bones and regret not seeing the season premier.  I’ll put up with a couple more evenings of Jay Leno so I don’t miss Ricky House, but after that, I’ll give up on Jay.  I don’t think his new show is very good.  I’ll go back to my regular viewing…Jon Stewart then Charlie Rose. I watch  David Letterman and Jimmy Kimmel during Rose’s commercial breaks.

Downtown Ellsworth is a bevy of activity with the onset of the revitalization project.  It’s exciting and will be a wonderful new look for our community.  The crews are doing a very good job of keeping their work compartmentalized so that you can still navigate downtown, if need be.  I learned to use the side streets whenever possible.

I took Ringo to town with me, to get mail and run a couple errands.  As I came from the INDY office, I saw Ringo running aimlessly by Darr’s.  He’d managed to jump out of the car window and then must have had second thoughts about it as the noise from all the machinery was deafening and he does not like loud noises. He was happy to get back in the car and come home to peace and quiet.

Tomorrow I’m going to Salina to meet with our birthday group.  There are four of us.  Two are my age and we’ve been friends for 75 years.  The third is younger, much younger, and is very kind to put up with us old folk.  We’re going to Freddie’s for hamburgers as that was the choice of the birthday girl who has never been there. We’ll talk ourselves hoarse about everything under the sun then head home until the next time.

Grandson Tyler started working the day shift on Monday and I hear from his dad that he just loves it.  He was going to tutor his “little brother”, Nathan, after work last night as he’s behind in his lessons. I think he’s a 4th grader. Tyler spends a lot of time with Nathan and I’m sure they both benefit from it.  Nathan lives with his grandparents and they appreciate Tyler’s help.

Some of our Kansas City relatives will be here for the downtown celebration on the 26th. We have two new additions to the family…MiMi and Gabe… whom we are most anxious to meet.  It will be a great day.

Thanks for tuning in….



Filed under: prairie musings — Peg Britton @ 2:43 pm

Bruce Kopitar was the highest bidder at the auction for tract 5 of the Aylward Ranch.  He paid $1,452,000 for the parcel of 1,711 acres. The amount of land and price paid suggest one must look beyond traditional farming methods to reap a return on the investment. It isn’t known what he intends to do with the land. At least, I certainly don’t know.

Kopitar is owner and president of U.S Tower Corp. in Woodlake CA. He also has an office in Lincoln KS located at 702 E. North St.  He manufactures towers in their industrial park.  Just this year US Tower has deployed over four hundred towers in combat zones and domestic settings throughout the world.

Kopitar is also owner of Wireless Eye, part of the aerospace and defense industry.

Here is some background information on him.
According to an article in the Foothills Sun-Gazette:

“The former defense contractor’s U.S. Tower has been producing surveillance towers for the federal government’s use domestically and overseas. The 33-foot quick erect antenna masts (QUEAMs) are used to set up communication relays quickly in enemy territory. They are also solar powered, so they don’t require cables or a power source. They are shipping about 200 towers per month overseas to Iraq and Afghanistan”, according to this article written in Jan. 2006.

“Since 1998, Kopitar has also been developing surveillance antenna that are also solar powered and streams live video footage to a secure location miles away where it can be viewed by technicians 24 hours a day. ”

“Because of the increasing concern of domestic terrorism and our position in the heart of the nation’s food basket, we expect to move a lot of surveillance equipment,” Kopitar said. “The government is very concerned about the water and food supply in California.”

“Wireless Eye towers use wireless surveillance over Internet protocol (WSOP) technology, where Homeland Security grade cameras are attached to a lightweight tower that is solar powered. In other words, the 75-foot towers can be dropped off in the middle of nowhere because they do not need Internet cable connections or electric power sources. Kopitar said the technology is already being used to watch construction sites, small businesses who can’t afford security guards, waterways, farms and ranches.”

“It can also identify a human up to 10 miles in total darkness,” Kopitar said. “It can even track where they have walked because of a trace of heat using thermal imaging.”

Kopitar is also an avid hunter and may intend to use the land as a hunting preserve.  We’ll just have to wait until he wants to share that information.  It appears he would be an asset to any community.

Thanks for tuning in…

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