Olathe news briefs for week of Sept. 4, 2012


Olathe’s Drivers Named Safest in State

Olathe’s drivers are the safest in Kansas and the Kansas City area, and among the safest in the country, according to a report released last week by Allstate.

The eighth annual Allstate America’s Best Drivers Report indicated that Olathe drivers were 15.2 percent less likely to get in automotive collisions compared to the national average, making it the safest in Kansas and 14th safest in the country. Among cities in Kansas, Olathe tops Kansas City (21), Overland Park (29), Topeka (37) and Wichita (42).

Kansas City, Mo., was ranked 16th in the country. It was the only Missouri city in the metro area to make the list.

According to the report, which assessed claim data of the country’s 200 largest cities, the average Olathe driver has a collision every 11.8 years.

Souix Falls, S.D., took the top spot with its drivers 27.6 percent less likely to get in collisions than the national average.

For more information, go to www.allstatenesroom.com.

Road Work to Minimally Affect Old Settlers

The Santa Fe Streetscape road construction project should have minimal effects on the annual Johnson County Old Settlers event downtown Sept. 6 to 8. The construction zone still will be present, but no work will occur during the event. Sidewalks along Santa Fe Street will be lined with orange fencing. Disabled access will be provided at Cherry and Santa Fe streets.

For details on the streetscape project, please visit us online at http://www.olatheks.org/PublicWorks/Construction/SantaFeStreetscape.

More information on Johnson County Old Settlers including events map, parade route and directions are available at http://www.johnsoncountyoldsettlers.com/index.php

Library Lot Unavailable During Old Settlers

The Olathe Public Library parking lot won’t be accessible during Old Settlers from Sept. 6 to 8, but the library’s regular hours will remain the same.

The lot at 201 E. Park St. will be used for the annual downtown event. Parking during Old Settlers will be available on nearby streets and in the downtown parking garage across from the library.

Anyone returning items during Old Settlers can drop them off in boxes on Park Street or the Indian Creek Branch at 12990 South Black Bob Rd. Items also can be returned to off-site locations at the Price Chopper locations at N. Parker and Santa Fe streets and 151st Street and Mur-Len Road, Crossroads Shopping Center at Santa Fe and Mur-Len or at the Olathe Family YMCA at 21400 W. 153rd Street.

Olathe LINK Named Best Newsletter

The Olathe LINK was named best external newsletter in the National Association of Government Communicators 2012 Blue Pencil & Gold Screen Awards. It beat out the National Institutes of Health’s NIH News in Health, which was awarded second place.

NAGC’s annual international awards program recognizes government communications products and their producers. This year, 41 local, state and federal governments and government agencies were recognized in a variety of categories including print publications, photos and Facebook pages.

The Olathe LINK debuted June 1, 1985.

U.S. Congressman Kevin Yoder’s office accepted the award on behalf of the City during the awards program June 5 to 8 in Arlington, Va.

City No Longer Selling Yard Waste Bags

The Olathe City Council approved an amendment to the municipal code Tuesday, Aug. 21 that removed language allowing the city to sell yard waste bags to residents. The city still will sell yard waste carts.

Chef Challenge Winners Announced

Mason Halfert, of Olathe North High School, and Zach Wong, of Blue Valley Northwest High School, each were awarded $700 scholarships for winning the second COUNTRY Chef Challenge. They beat two other teams of students from the Olathe School District’s program Les Arts Culinaires. Each student on those teams was awarded a $500 scholarship.

Halfert and Wong won by creating a dish of duck and potatoes made from ingredients bought at the Olathe Farmers’ Market. A panel of local celebrity judges chose the winner.

Too Cool to Drool Returns Sept. 9

Join the City of Olathe Parks & Recreation Department in a community event when Too Cool to Drool returns Sunday, Sept. 9 at Black Bob Bay. You and your favorite pups are invited to a dog-only swim to close out another great aquatics season. Small dogs, 25 pounds or less, have the pool to themselves at 1 p.m. Bigger dogs can join at 2 p.m.

Pre-registration is encouraged and the first 75 pups will receive a special doggie bag filled with four-legged and two-legged friend treats. To register, call 913-971-8643.The cost is $10 per dog.

Sorghum Harvesting Added to Grandparents Day

Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm Historic Site has added harvesting of animal feed sorghum to its Grandparents Day offerings from noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 9. Grandparents who accompany a paid child admission can save $6 at the city-owned living history site at 1200 Kansas City Rd.

James “Beatty” Mahaffie grew sorghum, which became a valuable sugar substitute as sorghum molasses during the Civil War.

In addition to sorghum harvesting, regular weekend programming such as stagecoach rides, cooking on the wood-burning cookstove, touring the historic Mahaffie house, blacksmithing and farm chores will be available during Grandparents Day. And grandparents also will get a souvenir photo in a commemorative frame and a family tree to take home and fill out with their families. Registration is not required for this event. For more information about Mahaffie go to www.mahaffie.org, visit its Facebook page or call 913-971-5111.


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