Author: Kate Campbell (Page 1 of 30)

Sarah Bell Highlights the Kansas Museum of History

Sarah Bell spoke about the Kansas Museum of History where she has just taken the position of Director of Education and Museum.  Although the museum is currently closed for a major renovation, she encourages everyone to plan a visit once the changes are complete in 2024.  

Sarah showed images of the displays in the museum prior to the current renovation.  The museum displays sought to provide information in chronological order.  The focus was on key artifacts and used interactive elements intended to stimulate conversations about what is historically significant.  The John Brown exhibit, for example, asked questions about whether Brown was a hero or a terrorist.  A teepee and a grass lodge show the way that Native Americans lived.  A locomotive positioned in the center of the museum underlines the key roll that the railroad played in Kansas history.   William Allen White’s printing press was  

These artifacts and many others will continue to be on display, but the new arrangement will emphasize themes over time rather than chronology.

As the public awaits the re-opening of the museum, they can visit the many other historical sites maintained by the Kansas State Historical Society and enjoy “Museum After Hours” presentations at 6:30 p.m. on the second Friday of each month.

Scott Wagner Champions Lawrence Regional Airport

Central Rotarian Scott Wagner assumed the role of manager of the Lawrence Regional Airport last fall in addition to his duties as a Management Analyst for the City. He clearly is an excellent cheerleader for the airport, able to tout statistics about operations and about the economic impact of the airport, well as describe the many aviation-related events that have taken place recently.

The airport sits on 492 acres north of Lawrence. Although it does not provide any commercial service, it is a base for charter services and repairs of charter planes. Hetrick Air Services and Eurotec are there, and LifeStar air ambulance keeps staff and a helicopter on site.

The airport was established in 1929, and its terminal was built in the 1980s. FAA grant money will soon allow improvements to the terminal and the parking area.

Scott reports that there have been a variety of tours and open houses at the airport during the past year, an Aviation Youth Camp sponsored by Parks and Rec, and fly-in events such as the Air Race Classic and the Kansas Air Tour. “Unite and Take Flight” offered airplane and helicopter rides as a fundraiser for United Way of Douglas County, bringing many residents to the airport for the first time.

Scott poses with his wife and fellow Central Rotarians in front of a Eurotec helicopter at the United Way event.

Evers Makes Connections at PETS

 Jim Evers, PE – Lawrence Central Rotary and Jennifer Jones, PE, Rotary International at 2022 Heartland Pets in Wichita, Kansas

Thanks to DGE Stephanie Meyer and everyone involved in planning the 2022 Heartland PETS Conference last weekend in Wichita.  It was the best training programs I have attended in a long time and provided helpful information to help me prepare for my year as President.  

I also want to thank Rotary International President Elect, Jennifer Jones for her inspirational message and insightful leadership for our great organization.  She is a perfect role model to show my granddaughters they can accomplish anything they commit to.  Thank you Jennifer. 

Jim Evers, President Elect 
Lawrence Central Rotary

Dinsdale Shares Lawrence Past

Dr. Bob Dinsdale, a soon-to-be-retired ENT physician at LMH, is a long-time Lawrence resident with a decades-long passion for history, especially the stories of the people and events that have shaped our town. His walking tours around the community provide insight into little-known facts and trivia about Lawrence and the people who preceded us.

Dinsdale shared the stories of Charles Langston and John Lewis Waller, contemporaries in Lawrence during the late 1800s.  Well-educated and politically active, together they helped to shape the community.  Eventually their grandsons Langston Hughes and Andy Razaf met in New York City where together they fostered the arts and political activism that helped create the culture of the Harlem Renaissance.   

 

Protecting Plants Is A Challenge

Jennifer Smith writes a weekly column in the Lawrence Journal World concerning plants and other things horticultural.  A veteran of the Kansas Department of Agriculture’s extension service, she plays a significant role by inspecting  nurseries and greenhouses for pests that might infest local plants.

Her work is established by law.  The USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) runs the Plant Protection and Quarantine (PPQ) program to  “safeguard U.S. agriculture and natural resources against the entry, establishment, and spread of economically and environmentally significant pests, and facilitates the safe trade of agricultural products.”

What is a pest?  Weeds, algae and fungi, and insects all can damage plants.  The pests may be endemic–that is, indigenous to a locale–or exotic–that is, imported from elsewhere.  A pest creates an economic or environmental hazard.  

The emerald ash borer is a prime example of an exotic pest.  The Emerald ash borer was not identified as a problem when it first appeared in the United States.  Once it was, specialists tried all sorts of mitigation strategies, but they have been unable to halt its spread in the United States.  Other examples of exotic pests include Canadian thistle, the Japanese beetle, and the gypsy moth.

What can citizens do to assist in the difficult effort to detect, trace, and enforce against infestations?  

  • Avoid monoculture and mix species in your landscape
  • Shop for plants locally
  • Plant species native to Kansas
  • Take time to identify problems that may occur in plants in your landscape

 

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