Whew!  Where is this summer going?  It won’t be long now before the kids are heading back to school.  Let’s all be careful driving and watch out for those school buses.  We want to keep our kids safe.

September is shaping up to be a fun month. Be sure and put the Burdick and Hope festivals on your calendars.  Burdick’s Labor Day Celebration line up looks fun and you sure don’t want to miss the homemade ice cream.   Come out on September 7 and support this great community.

Hope’s Heritage Festival is getting bigger and bigger every year.  I can’t believe all the things that they have added to their line up this year.  Come out on September 12 and see me at the Turtle Races; always a fun time.

DSC_1649Speaking of the Turtle Races, I am desperately in need of some volunteers for that.  All my usual helpers have prior commitments on that date.  I could use someone to help me set up or tear down and I need at least one other person to help with the kids, watch the turtles between races, and help run the races.  Anyone that would like to volunteer would be greatly appreciated, even if you can only give me an hour before you go enjoy your day at the festival.

IMG_20150502_094324046This past weekend, I put on my Tourism board hat and headed off to Wamego for the Kansas Sampler Festival. The event is held every year and changes locations every two years. Its main goal is to provide the public a sample of what there is to see, do, hear, taste, buy, and learn in the state. There are exhibitors, vendors, entertainers, and historical performers.

Dickinson County had a tent and both Herington and Hope were represented along with 6 other exhibitors from our county. The event set a new record this year with 12,054 people attending, and let me tell you, at the end of the day on Sunday, I felt like I had talked to every one of them!

The Herington booth was manned by myself, Ed & Giesla Mueller, Kayla Hendricks, and Stephanie Gilbert. Hope had a gorgeous booth that was manned by Danielle Coup, Amy Coup, Brandee Gentz, Bri Peterson, PatIMG_20150502_133308617 Coup, and Marcia Cook. Be sure and give all these folks a big pat on the back if you see them! I feel so great about our time there and really feel like we made some genuine connections that will result in visitors to our area.

Next year the event moves to Winfield, Kansas and the committees are already thinking about new and fun things we’re going to do to represent our towns.

After an insanely busy month in February, it’s looking like March will be a little more comfortable pace. Make sure to mark your calendars for a few important dates, however.

IMAG1911G&R Auto Parts will be having their annual Spring Farm Filter Sale March 2 through 12, with the traditional customer appreciation lunch on Friday, March 6 from 11:30 am to 1pm. Be sure and come out and enjoy.

Discs Unlimited is gearing up for a great season and they’ll kick it off ondiscs unlimited March 28 with the Discs Unlimited Open at the Herington Country Club and Father Padilla Park.

If you have ever had to deal with the VA, you know how frustrating it can be. The VFW Post 1281 will once again be hosting a VA Veteran Services rep on March 21 from 8 am to 12 noon to help you nagivate the system. People that have attended this in the past have reported great things about it. They will also be serving a free will donation breakfast that morning.

The Hospital Auxiliary will be hosting a book fair on March 16 in the Physical Therapy hallway. Come out and pick up something new to read and support your local hospital!

If you have not purchased your tickets for the Benefit Memorial Dinner for Sam & Celia Gonzolas yet, please do so soon. The event is on March 14 and will sure to be a good time. Great food, silent auctions, and a performance by the Clearview Band. You can get tickets from Nelda Darwin or Brandy Collins.

Add in a blood drive, election primaries, and a Cash Mob and March is shaping up to be FUN! Be sure and see our tabletop calendars or the community calendar on our website for full details!

Join us in a round of applause for all the winners at our Annual Awards Banquet!

Educators of the yearEducators of the Year, Jean Brunner from Centre, Phil Berndt from Herington, and Barb Lorson from Rural Vista-Hope


Lifetime business achievement awards




Lifetime Business Achievement Award winners, Bill & Rohani Alcorn and Ray Mueller accepted a posthumous award for his father, Verlon Mueller








Citizens of the YearYoung Citizen of the Year, Joey Thiel. Citizen of the Year, Pam Dalton. Senior Citizens of the Year Jewell Swinney and Sharon Killer (not pictured)




Keep Calm Logo  with spaceI’ve said it again and again: my friends who told me that I would get bored living in a rural area just didn’t know what they were talking about. Every time you turn around in the Tri-County Area, there are just a plethora of choices of fun or interesting things to do.

This Saturday the VFW is hosting a breakfast where you can get VA help from a VA Services specialist and the Burdick Bunch Relay for Life team is hosting a “Tee off for the Cure” fundraising tournament. A local knitting and crochet group meets every Tuesday in the Herington Library and on August 14, the Herington Library is hosting a Great Gardening seminar where you can learn about soil conservation and organic gardening.

Both the Herington Senior Center and the Hilltop Community Center have a full and varied schedule of interesting activities – be sure and check out the tabletop calendars around town for a full list.

Bingo is available two days a week at the American Legion and the VFW, the American Legion is doing a Shrimp Boil out at the lake, and for the youth, the Herington Youth Group has two activities planned in the next few weeks.

If Festivals are your thing, we’re on the cusp of FOUR different festivals in the next eight weeks: Herington Vintage Days on August 21-23, Burdick’s Labor Day Celebration on August 31 & September 1, Hope’s Heritage Festival & Car Show on September 6, and Lincolnville’s Octoberfest on October 4.

So much fun! Be sure and check out the tabletop calendars or the Chamber’s on-line community calendar for all the details. www.tricountycofc.com/calendar

Please remember that the Chamber office will be staffed by volunteers from August 8 – 15, so new UPS packages will only be processed between 12noon and 1pm. You can drop off prelabeled packages any time between 9am and 4pm, but if you need to pay for a label it can only be done between 12noon and 1pm.

photo scavenger hunt tshirt logoArgg, matey! Looking to win $500 in booty (Local Bucks) and have a good time in the process? Gather your crew and sign up for the Wild Wench Photo Scavenger Hunt. You’ll have adventures across the Tri-County area. Sign up by July 21st and everyone on your team will receive a free t-shirt! Check out the Chamber’s Facebook page or talk to any Fun Committee member for more details.

Much thanks go out to our Fun Committee for all their hard work putting this event together and for the successful Horse Apple Bingo game last Saturday. Congratulations to Ruth Smith for picking the right square and winning $500 in Local Bucks and much thanks to Susan Mueller for bringing out a bevy of “critters” to help us pick a winner.

The Chamber’s Fun Committee members are Greg Wolff, Chardy Bayes, Brandy Moorman, Kristin Korgol, Tisha Backus, Leslie Mayes, and Stephanie Gilbert. The Fun Committee is always looking for new members; our next meeting is July 22nd at 4pm in the Chamber office when we will be finishing up the plans for the Wild Wench Photo Scavenger Hunt and starting to plan the Christmas Festival.