Olathe news briefs for the week of Nov. 21

City Council
The Olathe City Council will meet Tuesday, Dec. 4, at 7 p.m. in the Council Chamber at City Hall for a regular session. Regular sessions are broadcast live on OGN (Comcast channel 7, AT&T channel 99 and on the City’s website). For a recap of the previous Council meeting, visit the City Clerk’s webpage.

Thanksgiving holiday schedule for City offices, library
City of Olathe offices will be closed on Thursday, Nov. 24, and Friday, Nov. 25, for the Thanksgiving holiday.  There will be no trash and recycling curbside collection on Thanksgiving Day.  Customers whose trash and recycling is collected on Thursday will be serviced on Friday; Friday customers will be serviced on Saturday.  Residents are reminded to place carts at the curb by 8 a.m. The Household Hazard Waste facility will also be closed on Saturday, Nov. 26. For more information, visit OlatheKS.org/OMS.

The Olathe Public Libraries will close at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 23, and remain closed on Thursday, Nov. 24 and Friday, Nov. 25.

 

Olathe Community Center Thanksgiving holiday hours 
In observance of the Thanksgiving holiday, the Olathe Community Center will be closed Thursday, Nov. 24. The community center will be open on Friday, Nov. 25, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Holiday group exercise and swim schedules are available online.

Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm open Thanksgiving weekend
Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop and Farm will be closed for the Thanksgiving holiday on Thursday, Nov. 24. The historic site will be open on Friday, Nov. 25 from 12 to 4 p.m. 1860s living history activities include blacksmith and cookstove demonstrations, exhibits in the Heritage Center and the Agricultural Heritage Livestock Barn, and stagecoach rides, weather and ground conditions permitting. Admission is $7/adult and $5/child ages 5-11; Olathe residents receive $2/off admission. Visit the Mahaffie Market inside the Heritage Center to find unique gifts and stocking stuffers, including farm and animal related toys. The site is open year-round from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and from noon to 4 p.m. on Sunday.  Activities vary seasonally.  Visit Mahaffie.org or call 913-971-5111 for full details.

 

Olathe Community Center pools closed Nov. 28 – Dec. 2          

The Olathe Community Center pools will be closed Monday, Nov. 28, through Friday, Dec. 2, for warranty work. The pools are scheduled to reopen on Saturday, Dec. 3 with the regular pool schedule. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

 

Save the date for the annual WinterFest and Mayor’s Christmas Tree Lighting

Kick off the holiday season with the annual Celebrate Olathe – WinterFest and the Mayor’s Christmas Tree Lighting on Friday, Dec. 2, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Olathe Community Center, 1205 E. Kansas City Rd. Join Mayor Michael Copeland and special guest Joe Lauria, Fox 4 meteorologist, as they light the Mayor’s Christmas tree. Then, enjoy an evening of music, free activities, and a visit with Santa Claus! Free shuttle service will be available at Olathe North High School, 600 E. Prairie St. Learn more at OlatheKS.org/ParksRec/CelebrateOlathe.

 

Hometown Holidays celebration offers something for everyone

Olathe’s Hometown Holidays celebration gives you a reason to celebrate throughout the season with great ways to entertain family and friends.

·       Dorr Family Light Display: Beginning Thanksgiving night, this entertaining light show is on display nightly at Stagecoach Park, 1205 E. Kansas City Rd.  Enjoy the dazzle of more than 40,000 lights and 16 million color combinations. The festive drive-up show will be filled with animation, elves, and music through your vehicle radio on FM 100.9.  Don’t miss the chance to take an “elfie” with elf guides Jingle, Jangle, and Judy. The 2016 show will run through New Year’s Eve. Enjoy the display Monday through Thursday from 5:30 to 10 p.m. and Friday through Sunday from 5:30 to 11 p.m.  Donations benefit the Mayor’s Christmas Tree Fund.

·       Celebrate Olathe – WinterFest and the Mayor’s Christmas Tree Lighting: Friday, Dec. 2, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Olathe Community Center, 1205 E. Kansas City Rd. Join Mayor Michael Copeland and special guest Joe Lauria, Fox 4 meteorologist, as they light the Mayor’s Christmas tree. Then, enjoy an evening of music, free activities, and a visit with Santa Claus! Free shuttle service will be available at Olathe North High School, 600 E. Prairie St. Learn more at OlatheKS.org/ParksRec/CelebrateOlathe.

·       Breakfast with Santa at Mahaffie: Saturday, Nov. 26 and Saturday, Dec. 10, from 8:30 to 10 a.m. at the Heritage Center, 1200 E. Kansas City Rd. Enjoy breakfast with Santa in the Heritage Center at Mahaffie. Activities will include making a craft, listening to Christmas carols by the Carolers of Note, and sitting for a family photo with Santa! Cost is $8/person ages three and up. Admission will include visiting the grounds and Mahaffie House. Registration is required and limited to the first 100 participants. Register online, by phone at 913-971-8563, or in person at the Olathe Community Center. Visit Mahaffie.org for event details.

·       Christmas Open House on Saturday, Dec. 3, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Mahaffie Stagecoach Stop, 1200 E. Kansas City Rd. Decorate a graham cracker gingerbread house for $4 each, make Christmas crafts, and ride the stagecoach, weather and grounds permitting, $3 each, for ages three and up. Santa will be in the Heritage Center to hear children’s Christmas wishes from 1 to 3 p.m. and Santa’s photographer will be available to take photos of visitors with Santa for $5 each. Music entertainment takes place throughout the day. Admission is free. Visit Mahaffie.org for event details.

Seeking vocalists for Olathe MLK Celebration Ensemble
Middle and high school students as well as community vocalists are being sought for the Olathe MLK Celebration Ensemble, a community choir that will be featured at Olathe’s 17th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration on Sunday, Jan. 15, from 3 to 5 p.m. The ensemble is under the direction of Dr. Cynthia “Mama J” Johnson, an educator, national speaker, performer, and consultant. Full details, including a rehearsal schedule, are available at OlatheKS.org/News/2016/11/15/MLK. Email vlvaughnwest@olatheks.org or mamaj@mamaj.org with questions and/or to confirm interest.

Olathe Public Library Programming
Please visit the events calendar for an updated list of programs. Questions can be directed to 913-971-6874 for children’s programming or 913-971-6888 for adult and teen programming. The Olathe Indian Creek Library, 13511 S. Mur-Len Rd., Suite 129, and the Olathe Downtown Library, 201 E. Park St., are open Monday through Thursday, from 9 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., Friday, from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday, from 1 to 5 p.m.

·        Safe Sitter ® Babysitting Classes on Wednesday, Nov. 23, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Downtown Library. Youth ages 11-16 will learn how to handle emergencies when caring for young children. The class will cover choking infant and child rescue. The class will not cover infant/child CPR. Register on the events calendar or call 913-971-6888.

·        Junior Makers on Wednesday, Nov. 30, from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. at the Downtown Library.  Children in grades 1-5 will make dioramas.  Register on the events calendar or call 913-971-6874.

·        Busy Babies: Babywearing Dance Class on Monday, Nov. 28, from 10:15 to 11 a.m. at the Indian Creek Library, and on Thursday, Dec. 1, from 9:15 to 10 a.m. at the Downtown Library. Delight and stimulate your baby’s senses with an array of fun activities during storytime break.  Strap, wrap, or just carry your baby for a warm-up, fun routine, and cool down.  Dress to move!  This program is for children newborn to 24 months with accompanying adult. Register on the events calendar or call 913-971-6874.

·        Book Munch After-Hours on Thursday, Dec. 1, from 6 to 8 p.m. at Perkins Restaurant, 1828 E. Santa Fe St. The group discusses a variety of book-related topics, including current reading. Food and drinks are available for purchase. Registration is not required.

·        Preschool Dance Party on Friday, Dec. 2, from 10:30 to 11 a.m. at the Downtown Library, for ages five and younger with accompanying adult.  Tickets will be handed out 30 minutes before on a first-come, first-served basis.

·        KC Brick Lab Fun Build: A LEGO Minecraft Build-and-Play Event on Saturday, Dec. 3, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Downtown Library.  There will be special displays and bricks for free building.  Registration is not required for this drop-in event.

·        R.E.A.D. to a Dog on Saturday, Dec. 3, from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. at the Indian Creek Library.  Check in at the Children’s Services Desk for a reading time on a first-come, first-served basis. Trained therapy dogs are provided by Pets for Life, Inc.

2016 Nancy Quinlisk Chandler Volunteer of the Year Award announced

Two volunteers were recognized with the Nancy Quinlisk Chandler (NQC) Volunteer of the Year Award at the annual volunteer recognition reception on Friday, Nov. 4.

Teen volunteer Alexis Proctor began volunteering in 2014.  She has been actively involved in the community garden, Mahaffie Trick- or-Treat Off the Street, Friends of the OPL book sales, Meet and Eat summer lunch program, summer reading kick-off, as well as other library outreach events.  Proctor has volunteered193 hours.

Robin Sundahl began library volunteer service in December 2011.  She has assisted with shelving for nearly five years at the downtown library, participated in activities like the Friends of the Olathe Public Library (OPL) book sales and the Novel Tea, and presently serves on the Friends of the OPL Board as secretary.  During her tenure at the library, she has donated over 1,194 hours of service.

The NQC award was established in 1994 to honor Nancy Chandler. Chandler, then president of the library board, along with Olathe resident Rita Shelton, started the Homebound Program, now known as Library To You (LTY).  Nominees for this award were submitted by library staff and advisory board members.

Holiday shopping tips from the Olathe Police Department
While shopping and running errands for the holidays, remember these crime prevention tips from the Olathe Police Department:

  • Know your surroundings
  • Keep an eye on the people in front and behind you
  • Look for suspicious persons or situations when you are in any area
  • Shop with a friend or relative. There is safety in numbers
  • Remember where you parked your car to eliminate confusion and stress that may present you as a better target for a criminal
  • Park your vehicle in a well-lit area
  • Place cell phones, GPS devices, holiday packages and other valuables out of sight
  • Lock your vehicle doors and shut your windows
  • Don’t advertise your belongings:
    • Carry your purse close to your body. Don’t swing it loosely
    • Don’t display large amounts of cash
    • Take only what you may need
    • Reduce items in your pockets or purse
  • Walk with confidence
  • Avoid talking to strangers
  • Try not to carry too many packages
  • Approach your vehicle with your keys in your hand
  • Don’t approach your car if anyone is standing nearby
  • Trust your instincts:
    • Be cautious
    • Avoid situations where you don’t feel comfortable
    • Leave immediately and contact security or police if you see anything suspicious or if something doesn’t feel right

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