Front Page » Table of Contents » Archive: City: October 2009

WICHITA, Kan. - Friday night, Wichita State University's feminist group FOCUS (Feminists On Campus Uniting Students) will be hosting an event at the CAC Theater from 7:00 pm -10:00 pm. Join us in celebrating and supporting a woman's right to choose while enjoying local folk and rock n' roll music!

Artists: Michelle Monger, Degenerate List, Justin France

Speakers: Peggy Bowman, Kari Ann Rinker

Organizations: WSU FOCUS, Peggy Bowman Second Chance Fund, Kansas National Organization for Women, Planned Parenthood of Kansas & Missouri

Click here to RSVP on Facebook to attend this concert!

WICHITA, Kan. - The 7th Annual Tallgrass Film Festival takes place this weekend in Wichita.

It is a 3 day Independent film festival taking place in 6 different downtown locations. It is the largest film festival in Kansas and features over 100 films. Visit the website to purchase tickets, see the schedule of films, you can even plan and create your personal schedule for the weekend.

This will be the third year that I will be attending the Opening Night Gala. It always features an excellent film followed by a fun after party with food, an open bar and entertainment. Tonight's Gala features a film called The Good Indian.

KANSAS CITY, Kan. - Members of a local chapter of the national activist group, Billionaires for Wealthcare, came out of their homes in Kansas City this weekend to make an unusual appearance on that city's streets. Well-heeled, the group of about twenty protesters arrived in style, by limousine. They carried signs that said, "Whatever happened to an apple a day?" and "Fight Socialism, End Medicare Now!"

These weren't billionaires. Their group was comprised of local progressive activists providing a bit of irony. However, it may have taken some real conservatives awhile to catch on. A right wing Tea Party Protest was commencing at the same time in front of the NBC station, with the goal of admonishing the local affiliate for airing Keith Olbermann's shows. Though it wasn't the original intention of the Billionaires group, the progressives decided to mingle with the conservatives.

Don't Get Raped in Kansas

WICHITA, Kan. - My eyes are being opened to the problem of sexual assault in Kansas. The more information that I seek, the more alarmed and outraged I become. The fact that one rape occurs every seven hours in Kansas is a fact that I find unacceptable. The fact that the ordeal of many victims is often intensified by current post assault procedures currently practiced by hospitals throughout the state... well, that is a fact that I find inhuman.

A recent sexual assault on the campus of Wichita State University is what began my education in this area. Initially, it was the "tips" for lowering the risk of rape that prompted me to contact WSU campus police. The "tips" that obviously indicate that women should shoulder the responsibility to protect themselves from potential attackers, rather than counseling drunk frat boys on how NOT TO RAPE WOMEN. Well, every journey must have a starting point and that was mine.

TOPEKA, Kan. - If we are serious about growing our community and changing the prevailing images that weigh us down, we need work toward a paradigm shift and shed the cow town mentality that is enemy number one to progress. It won't work anymore to fix things on the cheap, put things off and take shortcuts. If we are serious about attracting individuals who have good jobs to offer and the ability to solidly contribute to our tax base over the long haul we need to transcend the here-and-now in our planning.

To do this, we start with small things. Small feats often have more of a positive psychological impact on a collective than you might think. When we begin to achieve progress on small levels it empowers people; it sets the wheels into motion as a segue to additional substantial positive changes. To change a community, you have to first begin to improve the perceptions of it from within. Little by little community image improves, people feel empowered and take a more active role in their government. Pretty soon, people start to actively shape the future of their community by demanding progress. They realize that it is much more powerful to stand with ideas rather than let other people come up with them first and oppose.

WICHITA, Kan. - Workers of Local Lodge 639 at Bombardier Learjet in Wichita, KS, ratified a three-year agreement by a 95 percent vote on Saturday October 3.

The agreement calls for yearly raises and a 14 percent immediate increase in the pension plan. The company and the Union entered into a partnership agreement to explore ways to hold the line on health care, leaving the cost of one plan unchanged and the other with modest increases.

IAM negotiators also made numerous improvements in contract language, bucking a current trend of companies demanding concessions and cuts from employees. IAM leaders say the Learjet contract shows there are ways to weather the economic storm without using tough times to attack worker pay and benefits.

"There were no takeaways in this contract," said District Lodge 70 Directing Business Representative Steve Rooney.

Shakespeare in the Heartland

LAWRENCE, Kan. - As a student at the University of Kansas, I am proud of the fact that our theatre department is known for stellar productions. Seriously, we're talking about an academic department that has seen Scott Bakula, Don Johnson, Paul Rudd, and Mandy Patinkin grace its stages at one point or another. Although all of those actors' time at KU is in the distant past, the tradition of quality performances continues to this day.

That is why I'm quite excited to tell you about the KU production of Shakespeare's Macbeth, which begins a very limited run this weekend.

Seeing in Full-Blown Color

WICHITA, Kan. - "You say the word hell, and that's where all of you are going," shouted a lone fundamentalist preacher in front of the Rhatigan Student Center at Wichita State University last Tuesday, September 29.

In this same spot, this man and his associates have preached for the past week and a half to students on campus that, he says, "worship the Shockers."

Most students that I have talked to aren't particularly excited about their mascot like students at different universities are. In fact, they may be as big of fans of the wheat this man devours in his communion bread every week.

As I observed this situation, I decided it was best to ask him about sports. Did he ever play football, or any other sports? "Well," he said, "I played some ball in my day, but now that I am working for the Lord, I have not focused on sports as much." The key, I thought, was to get him talking about something completely unrelated to his original plan and purpose.

WSU's That Gay Group! took the initiative to stand close to this man and his friends with signs and a rainbow flag. When the rainbow flag touched the man, he said, "Get this off of me!"

BLUE SPRINGS, Mo. - A Missouri billboard is enlightening, but maybe not in the intended way. It says more about the state of our citizenry and the state of general knowledge (or lack thereof) than it does about Obama.

A red and yellow billboard posted along I-70 near Blue Springs is gaining attention from the local media. Watching the following video made many points, some that I would assume that the person that paid for the billboard did not intend. Check it out and then read on:

OTTAWA, Kan. - On Saturday, September 26, the Franklin County Democratic Party held a food drive in Ottawa. Country Mart, a local grocery store, was generous enough to allow the county party set up outside their doors. A group of dedicated local Democrats stood outside for six hours and collected an amazing amount of food, tolietries, and other household essentials. The drive benefited two Ottawa pantries, Hope House and ECKAN.

The community of Franklin County and Ottawa answered the call of help to those less fortunate. In such difficult economic times the volunteers received several large, generous donations. Through this food drive, the citizens of Ottawa displayed an amazing showing of giving and compassion to our fellow community members who need the donations.

GREENSBURG, Kan. - In May of 2007, Greensburg was struck with tragedy. A colossal tornado ripped through the town of 900, killing 11 people and destroying 95 percent of the community.

Left with nothing, the town made the decision to rebuild as the "greenest town in rural America." But now, as reported in the New York Times, Greensburg's efforts are setting them apart as one of the most environmentally-advanced towns in the country.

Mike Estes owns a John Deere dealership in Greensburg that has received the United States Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design platinum certification, the highest level possible and a goal that has yet to reached by some of the country's biggest cities. Greensburg is also home to a LEED platinum certified arts center and six other buildings anticipate to reach this level.

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