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March 14, 2019

Valley News

Valley Speedway, City Attorney Top Board Agenda by John Unrein

A public hearing and conditional use permit renewal vote for Valley Speedway were among the agenda items at the March 11th Board of Alderman meeting. Speedway owner Dennis Shrout was in attendance to answer any questions presented. City officials reported that complaints about noise at the Speedway have been reduced to a few a year. Alderman Headley requested Shrout highlight what has led to the reduction in complaints. “We have a curfew that we meet and have never broken, and we put mufflers on all of our cars that meet the sound decibel requirement that we agreed upon. If they don’t have a muffler, they don’t race. We are set on enforcing these rules. We spend a lot of time and money adhering to them. We also spend a lot of time promoting Grain Valley and our community,” Shrout said. No citizens in attendance chose to speak for or against renewal of the permit for Valley Speedway. The Board of Alderman unanimously approved the renewal of the conditional permit for the next four years. Racing season at the Speedway runs from April to October at the Speedway per the conditions of the permit. The Board of Alderman also unanimously approved the 9th Plat, Phase B development of the Rosewood Hills subdivision. The plat is fairly small, consisting of 24 lots and is the land furthest north within the city limits currently in the subdivision. There will be another ingress and egress point added to Dillingham as well as the current trail being extended along the east side of the road. Previous business on the agenda also

contained a motion to rescind action taken at the January 28th, 2019 Board of Alderman meeting. Mayor Mike Todd explained that the board met on that evening in closed session and voted to exercise the city’s right to disengage the city attorney and city prosecutor James Cook. The mayor went on to state that the person in that role was a contractor and not an employee of the city: therefore, the action should have taken place in open session. The matter was considered again in open session to assure proper transparency and was voted on unanimously. “The city attorney and city prosecutor serve at the pleasure of the Board of Alderman per city ordinance and that the Missouri lawyers ethics rules make clear that a client always has its choice of legal counsel. Restructuring of the administration department at City Hall has led the Board of Alderman to seek request for qualifications for city attorney and city prosecutor positions. The Board has decided to bring in an outside firm to sit as an interim sitting attorney,” Todd said. The city hopes to decide their longterm city attorney and city prosecutor as soon as possible. “I just want to make clear on my behalf as well as the Board of Alderman that this decision was not a punishment or a poor reflection of Mr. Cook’s work for the city, but rather simply a result of the city’s growth and interest in exploring all of its options ongoing for new council. We are thankful for Mr. Cook’s years of service to the city. His reputation and competence remain untarnished in our view,” Todd said.

Vol. 2, No. 11


Good News

Two Students Heading to National Speech and Debate Tournament Grain Valley High School’s (GVHS) Speech and Debate team continued to rack up honors at this past weekend’s National Speech and Debate Association National Qualifying Tournament at Lees Summit High School. Brian Winckler, GVHS Speech and Debate sponsor, was thrilled with his team’s performance at the tournament. “This is only Grain Valley’s 2nd year in the National Speech and Debate Association, and last year we finished with only 1 top 7 finalist. This year, we were fortunate to have 7 Finalists and 2 National Qualifiers. Senior Scott Overfield will be making his second trip to Nationals and sophomore Hannah Lytle will be making her first,” Winckler said. Lytle defeated a senior who Pictured Left to Right: Senior Scott Overfield, was the 2017 National Champion Sophomore Hannah Lytle, GVHS Speech and in the Big Questions debate in Debate Coach Brian Winckler. order to earn her spot at Photo credit: GVHS Speech and Debate Team Nationals. “The Big Questions debate is a The qualifying tournament at Lee’s debate that is based in a philosophical Summit High School was the first time question. This year the topic has been Lytle had competed in the event, and she whether humans are based in selfhad only a week to prepare. interest. As a debater in this event, I had “When it was announced that I had to prepare a five-minute speech on both won and would be going to nationals I sides of the issue that is backed up by was very excited! It felt like a huge evidence,” Lytle said. accomplishment that I had been able to “When you get your schedule, you are defeat a nationally known debater,” Lytle told what side you are on and you have said. to get ready to debate your assigned “I was so proud of myself for keeping side. Throughout the tournament, you calm, but I was mostly grateful to my debate both sides multiple times.”

see DEBATE on page 3

Local News

Page 2

Looking Back:

Sni-A-Bar Welcomes the USDA and Mizzou by Marcia Napier Grain Valley Historical Society

E. A. Trowbridge, Dean and Director, University of Missouri College of Agriculture, in 1945 on the occasion of the ending of the Trust and the sale or the Farm said, “Creep feeding calves, work with various legume hays, methods of utilizing pastures, use of Atlas sorgo and building a great purebred herd of Shorthorns, all this work has been conducted in the 30-year period. Parties from this and foreign countries have made frequent visits to the Farm, with the intended result that information has been spread far and wide concerning activities there underway. In fact, the Farm has become a sort of shrine for those interested in agriculture and livestock production and improvement.” In addition to the grading-up program, numerous other agricultural experiments were conducted at Sni-ABar throughout the 30 years of the Trust. Because the University of Oklahoma and the University of Kansas do not have an agricultural college, most of the research was conducted by students and

professors from the University of Missouri and the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). The results of research conducted over a 30-year period have been printed in several books, University of Missouri pamphlets, and USDA bulletins, but for this writing I will only provide a summary of some of the more well know experiments: The second phase of the Farm, the show herd of purebred cattle was developed and became famous worldwide.

Police Blotter

The following information is derived from the Grain Valley Police Department daily calls for service log for the week of February 27—March 5, 2019. 1100 Block Hickory Ln 700 Block Main St 700 Block Main St 800 Block Country Hill 900 Block Sandy Ct 600 Block Tisha Ln 600 Cross Creek 300 Block Lois Ln 800 Block San Kar S Outer Belt Rd 100 Block Sni-A-Bar Rd 200 Block Aaron Ln 700 Block Main St 700 Block Main St

Parking Complaint Citizen Contact Citizen Contact Agency Assist (CJC) Unattended Death Harassment Disturbance Area Check Disturbance Motor Vehicle Check Agency Assist (CJC) Motor Vehicle Accident Citizen Contact Citizen Contact

Alarm Stolen Auto Motor Vehicle Check Suspicious Person Leaving the Scene of Accident Suspicious Person Disturbance Animal Complaint Disturbance Suspicious Vehicle

March 3, 2019 600 Block BB Hwy 600 Block Tisha Ln 700 Block Harvest 1200 Block Pamela EB I70 West of GV exit 1200 Block Pamela 1900 Block Hackberry Ct Sni-A-Bar & Hamilton 300 - 400 Blk Woodbury Dr 400 Block Whitestone Dr Sni-A-Bar & Buckner Tarsney

Suspicious Activity Harassment Disturbance Security Check Stranded Motorist Security Check Alarm Suspicious Person Emergency Snow Route Motor Vehicle Accident Motor Vehicle Accident

600 Block Creek Ridge Dr 200 Block Young St 700 Block Willow Dr 1000 Block Long Dr 1000 Block Long Dr 800 Block San Kar 700 Block Main St 1100 Block Graystone Ct 100 Block McQuerry 800 Block San Kar

Stolen Auto Stealing from Auto Citizen Contact Parking Complaint Area Check for Suspicious Activity Stolen Auto Citizen Contact Runaway Juvenile Citizen Contact Property Damage Agency Assist (CJC) Assault Found Property Suspicious Activity Citizen Contact

March 4, 2019 500 Block Main St 400 Block Joseph Ln 700 Block Main St 700 Block Main St 700 Block Main St 700 Block Main St 700 Block Main St

Trespass Animal Complaint Citizen Contact Citizen Contact Citizen Contact Citizen Contact Stolen Entry Confirmation

March 2, 2019 1200 Block Pamela 1100 Block Sandy Ln

March 5, 2019 1400 Block Hilltop Ln 500 Block Main St 600 Block Yennie 600 Block Valley Ridge Ct 200 Block Amanda Ln 700 Block Main St Rust and BB Hwy

Hit and Run Accident Agency Assist (CJC) Harassment Alarm Check the Well Being Warrant Surrender Agency Assist (CJC)

Area Check 911 Hangup

February 27, 2019 EB I-70 On Ramp 1100 Block Buckner Tarsney EB I-70 On Ramp 200 Block Front St 300 Block Cross Creek Dr 1300 Block Cross Creek 700 Block Shorthorn 400 Block Oakwood Ln 300 Block Crestview February 28, 2019 700 Block Par 100 Block Eagles 3300 Block Outer Belt Rd 1000 Block Deer Creek 700 Block Main St

Steer calves from the upgrading demonstration were fed out to study market value using different feeding methods.

1100 Block McQuery 1200 Block Phelps Dr 500 Block Shorthorn Dr 800 Block Nelson Ct 600 Block Brome

A practical method of feeding calves before weaning, known as creep feeding, where calves while still nursing had continual access to grain in an enclosure not available

March 1, 2019 600 Block Westview Dr 700 Block Main St 700 Block Main St 1400 Block Willow Dr 700 Block Main St

see LOOKING BACK on page 5

Vehicle Slide Off Motor Vehicle Check Traffic Control Leaving the Scene of Accident Parking Complaint Stealing Area Check for Suspicious Person Leaving the Scene of Accident Suspicious Activity

Valley News

Grain Valley News is a free community paper, published weekly on Thursdays online at and on the 1st and 3rd weeks of the month in print. Cory Unrein | Co-Owner/Publisher John Unrein | Co-Owner/Production Manager Cathy Allie | Staff Writer, Proofreader Diana Luppens, Switch Focus Studios | Contributing Photographer John Overstreet | Contributing Photographer

Mail: PO Box 2972 Grain Valley MO 64029 Phone: 816.809.7984 Email: Sign up for our weekly emails and join us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram @grainvalleynews).



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w w w. g ra i n va l l e y n e w s . c o m

Page 3 Voters to Decide on $7.5 Million Bond Issue April 2nd The Grain Valley School District Board of Education has placed a $7.5 million-dollar school bond issue on the ballot for the April 2 election to allow for an addition of 1½ classroom wings onto Grain Valley North Middle School and other improvements in the district. North Middle School has seen significant growth in recent years and class sizes are increasing. The school is projected to have as many students as South Middle School in as few as six years. Passage of the bond issue would result in a full build-out to North Middle School, consistent with the original design of the school which included three full wings of classrooms to accommodate a student capacity similar to that of South Middle School. The building currently has 1½ classroom wings. Additional parking would also be added at North Middle School as a part of the project. An additional project as an alternative bid associated with this bond issue is the replacement of the artificial turf at the high school stadium. The district reports the current turf has exceeded its anticipated life expectancy and is due for replacement. Passage of this bond issue does not require raising the district tax levy rate.

Rendering of the addition planned for North Middle School. Graphic credit: Grain Valley Schools

DEBATE continued from page 1

coach, Mr. Winckler, and my teammates for encouraging me all day. It was awesome to have that support in such a stressful time.” “As I head toward nationals, I am most excited to gain experience against some of the best debaters across the United States! I hope to find good ways and techniques that I can use to better myself and bring back to my team to allow the Grain Valley speech and debate team to continue to grow.”

National Qualifying Tournament Team Results: Big Questions Debate: Hannah Lytle, 1st place (National Qualifier) Dramatic Interpretation: Scott Overfield, 2nd place (National Qualifier);

Zephaniah Felden, 6th place; Tori Seever, 7th place.

International Extemporaneous Speaking: Dean Mobley, 7th place

Program Oral Interpretation: Ledezma, 6th place

The National Speech and Debate Tournament will be held in Dallas, Texas the week of June 16-21, 2019.


Humorous Interpretation: Jack Rucinski, 7th place

Business News

Page 4

DED Releases January 2019 Jobs Report Missouri’s unemployment rate edged up a tenth of a point to 3.2 percent in January, increasing slightly from 3.1 percent in the final two months of 2018, though the current rate is still three-tenths of a point lower than the year-earlier value. Missouri’s rate has now been at or below the corresponding U.S. rate, which was 4.0 percent in January, for 46 consecutive months. Employment in Missouri increased substantially over the month. Missouri nonfarm payroll employment increased by 9,300 jobs from the revised December figure,

reaching 2,903,400 in January. In the goods-producing sectors, construction employment was up by 2,600 jobs on a seasonally adjusted basis. Manufacturing employment was little changed over the month. In the private service-providing sectors, the largest gain was in health care and social assistance (+4,100). Leisure and hospitality employment was up by 2,300, while professional, scientific, and technical services added 1,000 jobs. The main exception to January’s growth was in information, where employment dropped by 1,000.

Over the past year, nonfarm payrolls in Missouri have grown by 23,100 jobs, or 0.8 percent. In the goods-producing sectors, employment was up in both construction (+2,100) and durable goods manufacturing (+5,700). In the private service-providing sectors, employment in health care and social assistance jumped by 9,500. Large employment gains also occurred in accommodation and food services (+7,600) and professional, scientific, and technical services (+6,500).

Business News is provided weekly by the Grain Valley Partnership, whose mission is to be a leader in the growth of Grain Valley. The Grain Valley Partnership is located at 1450 SW Eagles Parkway, and can be reached by phone, 816-443-5162 or via email at

Learn more about the Partnership:

Meet the Candidates Forum Tuesday, March 19th

The Grain Valley Partnership will host a “Meet the Candidates” Forum at City Hall on Tuesday, March 19th. A reception will be held at 6:00pm with the forum beginning at 6:45pm. All aldermen will be present at the

reception. Only those running unopposed will be a part of the forum. Ward 1 candidates Dale Arnold and Tom Cleaver and Ward 2 candidates Chuck Johnston and current Alderman Nancy Totton will participate in the

forum. Ward 3 current alderman Shea Bass is running unopposed and will not participate in the forum. Moderators will use pre-established questions. The event is open to the public.

Grain Valley Partnership Businesses: As a part of your partnership, you are entitled to a sponsored article in the Business section of Valley News. To schedule an interview to highlight your business, contact Cory Unrein,

Upcoming Partnership Events: March Coffee Connection Friday, March 15, 2019 8:00am—9:00am Grain Valley Cosentino’s Price Chopper

April Partnership Luncheon Tuesday, April 2, 2019 11:30am—1:00pm

Meet the Candidate Forum Tuesday, March 19, 2019 6:00pm reception; 6:45pm forum City Hall Council Chambers

Business After Hours Thursday, April 11, 2019 5:00pm—7:00pm

Thank you to the following businesses for supporting this tournament. If you are interested in a sponsorship opportunity, please contact Tasha Lindsey by phone, 816-443-5162 or via email at

Learn more about the Partnership:

Page 5 LOOKING BACK continued from page 2 to larger cattle, was developed. Tests of the use of supplements to corn for fattening cattle, the comparative value of alfalfa, clover, lespedeza, and soy bean hay as roughage were carried out over a number of years.

Atlas sorgo as a silage crop was introduced. It produced 2 to 4 tons an acre more than corn and became the most widely used silage crop in the state. It was especially well suited to the drought in the late 1930s.

In 1930 a field was seeded to lespedeza, the first use of the crop in the state of Missouri and contributed to the introduction of this crop for pasture and hay and revolutionized the grazing practice of the state.

Beginning in 1929, many hybrid seed corns were developed at Sni-A -Bar by the University of Missouri. Starting in 1936 a study of calf herd vaccination to control Bangs disease, or contagious abortion, was made at Sni-A-Bar by the Bureau of

Animal Industry, Washington, D. C. At various times, swine, sheep and Missouri mules were brought to the farm for countless studies. Sni-A-Bar was visited by livestock men from every state and all foreign countries where livestock was a dominant industry to study the practices in operation. Instructors for livestock judging teams used the Farm and facilities for their students. Likewise, county agents and vocational agriculture teachers brought students and delegations of farmers to study the

methods of livestock production, management of crops and use of crops for feeding. Prominent breeders and government official from foreign countries were frequent visitors. Finally, the USDA, the National Livestock Record Association and the National Research Councils used the facilities for presentation of information to special groups interested in the betterment of agriculture.

Next week learn about the famous Sni-A -Bar Show Cattle.

‘Here comes the sun’ moments in government by Brian Hunhoff

Little darling, it’s been a long cold lonely winter Little darling, it seems like years since it’s been here Here comes the sun (doo doo doo doo) Here comes the sun, and I say it’s all right George Harrison’s song of spring is a fitting start to my Sunshine Week salute to everyday heroes bringing light to local government. “Why do you want to know that?” is a question most reporters have heard when asking for public documents. It generally becomes a Freedom of Information teaching moment from the journalist to the reluctant keeper of records. Many years ago, I was covering a county commission meeting when a department head stood to speak. Before addressing commissioners, he turned to a radio reporter next to me and gruffly ordered him to turn off his tape recorder. Say what?! We insisted my friend had every right to tape comments at a public meeting, but it took a while to convince the surly official. He clearly didn’t know the first thing about open meeting laws. It goes with the territory. The press must sometimes teach Sunshine 101 to public officials on Main Street, U.S.A. This column recognizes some of those public servants and intrepid reporters with symbolic citations from my Sunshine Week playlist. “Here comes the sun” sun” award to Hilde Lysiak, a plucky 12-year-old reporter who made headlines on a visit to Patagonia, Arizona. Riding her bike to investigate a

tip, Lysiak was stopped by Patagonia town marshal Joseph Patterson and asked for ID. Lysiak gave her name and said she was a reporter. Patterson said, “I don’t want to hear about any of that freedom of the press stuff.” Lysiak said he also threatened to put her in juvenile detention. In a second encounter, Lysiak began video-taping Patterson and said, “You stopped me earlier and said I could be thrown in juvie? What exactly am I doing that’s illegal?” Patterson warned her (inaccurately) against posting the video online. “If you put my face on the Internet, that’s against the law,” he said. Lysiak posted a YouTube video of their exchange on her Orange Street News website. She later received an apology from Patagonia mayor Andrea Wood who said the town respects her First Amendment rights. “House of the rising sun” sun” award to Brenda Fisk, mayor of Paint Rock, Alabama (population 200). Mayor Fisk drafted a resolution to close town board meetings to non-residents and members of the press. She told the Jackson County Sentinel, “What goes on in Paint Rock is the business of the people who live in Paint Rock.” Fisk said she had “personal reasons” for proposing the move, “but I since found out that I cannot do that.” “I can see clearly now” now” award to Kirby Delauter, a county councilman from Frederick, Maryland. Delauter once threatened to sue the Frederick NewsPost for “unauthorized use of my name.” The newspaper responded with an editorial using his name 26 times. They

also explained why newspapers in America are actually allowed to write about public officials without their permission. Delauter later apologized. “Let the sunshine in” in” award to Jerry Toomey, former mayor of Mitchell, South Dakota. A citizen called Toomey “a drunk” during the public forum portion of a Mitchell City Council meeting. His accusation set off a heated exchange and stemmed from an earlier altercation between the two men in the citizen’s driveway. In an interview with the Mitchell Daily Republic, Toomey called the incident “a black eye” for the city, but added, “The public forum has a critical place in government and it is important to let people voice their issues, valid or not.” “Ain’ Ain’t no sunshine” sunshine” award to the Kentucky State Police spokesman who sent the following email to the Barbourville Mountain Advocate: “From this point forward when KSP is working on an investigation, you are to wait until OUR press release is sent out before putting anything on social media, radio, and newspaper … If this continues, you will be taken off our media distribution list.” Jon Fleischaker, general counsel for

the Kentucky Press Association, said the order violated the First Amendment and state agencies cannot withhold information “just because they don’t like what the media outlet is writing.” “Walking on sunshine” sunshine” award to Art Cullen, Pulitzer Prize-winning editor of the Storm Lake Times in Iowa. Cullen’s editorials about agricultural impact on his state’s poor water quality were not popular with some prominent Republicans. The GOP-controlled Iowa Senate stalled a resolution to recognize his national writing prize. Cullen responded, “I would not want the support of a den of philanderers and oafs.” He added, “I honestly do not care if I am ever honored by the Iowa Senate, the U.S. Congress, or any other institution of dysfunction and cynicism.”

Brian Hunhoff of the Yankton County Observer is a member of the South Dakota Newspaper Hall of Fame. He received the 2005 S.D. First Amendment Committee Eagle Award “for protecting the public’s right to know” and the 2014 Golden Quill award for editorial writing. He is a two-time winner of the National Newspaper Association Freedom of Information Award.

Community Voices

Page 6

Wayne’s World

The Love of Dog by Wayne Geiger

I am an animal lover. I guess I always have been. Over the years, our family has had our share of dogs, cats, rodents, reptiles, and birds. I’m not alone. According to the American Pet Products Association, sixty-eight percent of U.S. households (85 million families), own a pet. I prefer dogs—like most people. Dog owners have edged out cat owners for years, despite the recent social media campaigns that involve cute cat videos. I just love dogs. In fact, I used to be Facebook friends with Boo, widely accepted as the “World’s Cutest Dog.” He was the incredibly adorable Pomeranian who became an Internet sensation with more than 17-million followers. One look at Boo brought an immediate smile. Recently at church, I was in conversation with a friend who let me know “my dog died.” As he talked about his dog’s passing, his eyes grew moist. I knew at that point, he too was a dog lover. He said, “I’ve had plenty of dogs, but there was just something special about this one.” I confessed that I understood. Not only did I sympathize with his loss, but I also empathized. I know the joy and pain of owning an animal. Snickers is my wife’s dog. She is Silk Terrier—a gift for my wife on her birthday about six years ago. Snickers is not my wife’s dog because she was a gift, but rather, she has chosen my wife as her primary person of affection. I know this because, despite my calls for attention, Snickers follows my wife around everywhere. When my wife goes to the restroom, Snickers awaits outside the door. When my wife leaves the house, Snickers will whimper at the door for a while. It’s not that I haven’t tried. Despite the fact that I participate equally in the lion’s share of the work to maintain Snickers’ happiness and comfort, she remains unimpressed. I make sure that she has adequate food and water. I let her out 37 times a day to do her

business or to chase the pesky squirrels that taunt her from the yard. I give her treats at the end of the night. But, she always finds her place next to my wife. Snickers does appreciate my affection from time to time and she can be coaxed to leave my wife’s side—if I have food or a treat. But after the temptation has materialized into consumption she is back to my wife’s side. I’m not hurt, in fact, that’s okay with me. I told my wife, years ago, I will never get too close to another dog. Hershey was an eight-pound Yorkshire Terrier. She was my dog or at least that’s what I liked to believe. Hershey was part of the family, perhaps more, because she was treated like royalty. We made sure she had special treats, a special bed, and regularly got froufrou’d. We even allowed her to lick the bowl when we finished our ice cream. Hershey was loving and playful and enjoyed the endless array of toys we provided. She loved to play tug of war and growled ferociously, playfully enjoying the conflict. Hershey was the first one at the door when I arrived after a long day—her little tail wagging excitedly. Unlike Snickers, Hershey didn’t always want to be held for long periods of time. Although she loved a good tummy rub, she generally had more important things to do like ensure our safety. Although only eight pounds, Hershey was our self-proclaimed guard dog. Although invited to sleep on the corner of our bed, she never would. Rather, she would strategically position herself between our family and the front door. Her love and devotion manifested itself in our protection. Hershey was an intricate part of the family and had a special place in our heart. Unfortunately, Hershey left too soon. She had some health conditions unbeknownst to us. My wife found her one day laying underneath the back porch unresponsive and lethargic. When my wife came to get me to share the news, I knew something was wrong. She said, “you need to come quick.” Her face was guarded, but intensely emotional. I held my breath as she said, “Something is wrong with Hershey.” A million thoughts and questions rushed into mind. Hershey was laying on the kitchen floor, panting. I’ll never forget her looking up into my eyes as I stroked her fur. Generally, her brown eyes were warm, loving, and inviting, but not today. In her current state, she appeared to be unaware of her surroundings. I’m not even sure she recognized me. She had a look of fear and pain. My face had the

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same look, I’m sure, as I cradled her in my arms like a child. We rushed her to the vet, but despite the great care and professionalism, they informed us that the most-loving thing we could do was to say goodbye. The words didn’t immediately sink in. As our family stood in that sterile exanimation room, time stood still. I was in a state of shock and disbelief. It was one of the hardest decisions I have had to make. The decision to remove her pain meant to intensify mine. There was no win/win. Along with my family, I wept in the vet’s office and gazing deeply and lovingly into her eyes held her close and said goodbye. In the days that followed, my pain was intense and did not pass quickly. I would tear up regularly. I vividly remember driving home several days later and becoming emotional knowing that Hershey would not be there to meet me at the door and me saying out loud, “what’s wrong with me! It was just a dog!” As the years have passed, the pain has not disappeared, but merely subsided. As I conclude this paragraph, I allow a tear to run down my cheek. The remnant and reminder of true, unconditional love. Instead of asking,

“what’s wrong with me?” I’m thankful for what’s right. Although “just a dog,” Hershey had a special place in our family. There’s something beautiful about having a pet. We adopt them into the fabric of our family. Sometimes, we invest a great deal of resources into them. Sometimes, we give them our hearts. It’s a risk that we’re willing to take. We know that, perhaps, one day we will have to say goodbye, but the love and devotion in the journey, we decide, is well worth the pain. As a pastor, I’m asked on occasion if there will be animals in heaven. I reply that the Scriptures talk about all kinds of animals. In fact, Jesus comes back riding on a white horse. I also chuckle and tell them there will be at least one dog in heaven—Hershey. She’ll come running to meet me when I arrive. Naturally, Snickers will be there too, but she’ll probably run to my wife—unless, of course, I have some kind of treat.

Wayne Geiger is the Pastor of First Baptist Church Grain Valley, an Adjunct Associate Professor of Speech at Johnson Country Community College, and a freelance writer.


Page 7

New League Year Preparation Underway for Chiefs by John Unrein

The NFL’s new league year began at 3:00 pm CST on Wednesday, March 13th. The legal tampering (two words that don’t sound like they go together) period began at noon on Monday, March 11th and continued to the start of the new league year. Thus, free agency has begun and continuing preparation for the upcoming draft on April 25th-April 27th. This is a busy time behind the scenes for organizations like the Kansas City Chiefs. It has already yielded the additions of running back Carlos Hyde, safety Tyrann Mathieu, and linebacker Damien Wilson. Teams around the National Football League have listened to player evaluations of potential free agents from their professional scouts. Coaches have viewed countless hours of game film to see if the tape matches the assessment. Targets that the team deems desirable will be in the hands of general managers such as Brett Veach. Salary cap managers have calculated the amount of money that can be spent in the opening of free agency versus the amount of money that can be saved by trading or cutting players that are no longer seen as fits for their current team. Enter the Chiefs recently floating that their best edge rusher, Dee Ford as available via trade for the asking price of a second round draft pick. Testing from the NFL Combine and player pro days from college campuses are also being organized, along with formal and informal player interviews that have been conducted of incoming talent. Among some of the things teams mull over will be Wonderlic Test Scores, SPARQ results, and the stacking of potential depth charts for all 32 NFL teams. This homework is done so that each team can make the most informed decision on how they allocate their draft


Prep Events Soccer: Girls Varsity Jamboree vs. Pleasant Hill, St. Teresa’s @ Pleasant Hill High School Monday, March 11, 2019 at 5:00pm Golf: Boys Varsity Tournament vs. Oak Grove @ Adams Pointe Friday, March 15, 2019 at 8:30am Baseball: Boys Varsity vs. Rock Bridge @ Rock Bridge High School Saturday, March 16, 2019 Soccer: Girls Varsity Tournament @ Platte County High School Saturday, March 16, 2019 at 9:00am Track: Varsity Invitational @ University of Central Missouri Monday, March 18, 2019 at 1:00pm

resources via picks. Teams in the league are huge believers in measurables over time. You may have heard former NFL Network Draft Analyst Mike Mayock refer to this before he accepted his current role as General Manager of the Oakland Raiders. Measurables over time, mean how your scores as a prospect can predict the potential success you have in the league, along with your longevity. It shouldn’t surprise anyone that a league posting billion-dollar profits has narrowed this down to a science. According to the National Football League, the Wonderlic is a 50-question test administered to prospects at the scouting combine. Originally designed by the United States Navy in 1936, the test is intended to determine an individual’s problem solving and critical thinking skills. The test takes approximately 12 minutes and a score of 20 correct responses is considered average. The Wonderlic is not without controversy, as it has inflated the draft stock of certain prospects who didn’t pan out, while it has given a false measure to others that they may not be successful in the league or in need of extra support. Nonetheless, it is used a measuring stick used for a player’s cognitive abilities. SPARQ stands for Speed, Power, Agility, Reaction, and Quickness. It is five -part physical test that has been around since 2004 and came to prominence under Seattle Seahawks General Manager John Schneider’s use fueling back to back Super Bowl Appearances by his team in 2014 and 2015. The five elements measured in SPARQ testing include a player’s weight and height, their vertical jump, their 40-yard dash time, kneeling power ball toss, and 5-10-5 cone agility test. Most NFL teams are known to have some type of physical

scoring index such as SPARQ that they use for evaluation. All 32 teams around the league are also stacking mock depth charts of other teams. The purpose is to see with the naked eye each team’s needs as they enter free agency and the draft. Organizations may pontificate that they are interested in drafting and acquiring the best talent available regardless of position. However, at the end of the day teams are motivated to fill their positions of need with the best talent available. Having every team’s potential depth chart allows your team to know who they are in competition with for players in

Offense QB P. Mahomes C. Henne E.J. Manuel C. Litton

HB Dam. Williams C. Hyde Dar. Williams

LT E. Fisher A. Wylie D. Gordon

LG C. Erving K. McKenzie

free agency and the draft. Below are potential offensive and defensive depth charts for the Kansas City Chiefs as they enter the new league year. They do not include Dee Ford (traded to 49ers), Justin Houston (recently released), Eric Berry (recently released) or current free agents not under contract with the team as their situations are in limbo. One could also potentially put Safety Daniel Sorensen and Linebacker Reggie Ragland in this mix as their names have bantered around as candidates for trade or cut due to the money they are going to make next year or them not being a fit for the Chiefs new 4-3 defensive scheme.

FB A. Ripkowski J.D. Moore

WR T. Hill D. Robinson S. Coates B. Pringle D. Grayson

C A. Reiter J. Murray T. Koroma

WR S. Watkins G. Dieter M. Kemp J. Crockett

RG Dr. L. Duvarney- Tardiff R. Hunter

TE T. Kelce D. Yelder T. Wells

RT M. Schwartz P. Murphy J. Senior

Defense WDE T. Kpassagnon C. Walker WLB

A. Hitchens D. O’Daniel T. Smith C. Ward D. Johnson S. Durham

D. Nnadi X. Williams J. Hamilton



R. Ragland M. Spaight R. Davison D. Sorensen A. Watts L. McQuay


3 Tech C. Jones J. Ivie H. Mondeaux MLB

SS T. Mathieu J. Lucas E. Murray H. Jones-Quartey C. Cooper

SDE B. Speaks R. McCray III

D. Wilson B. Niemann


K. Fuller T. Smith D. Wade


Community Calendar March 18, 2019

March 25, 2019

Senior Coffee Weekly on Mondays Grain Valley Community Center, 713 S Main 9:00am—11:00am Time to visit with friends and make new ones. Free.

Senior Coffee Weekly on Mondays Grain Valley Community Center, 713 S Main 9:00am—11:00am Time to visit with friends and make new ones. Free.

Senior Yoga Weekly on Mondays Grain Valley Community Center, 713 S Main 10:30am—11:15am $2 or Free for SilverSneakers, Silver & Fit, and Renew Active Members

Senior Yoga Weekly on Mondays Grain Valley Community Center, 713 S Main 10:30am—11:15am $2 or Free for SilverSneakers, Silver & Fit, and Renew Active Members

March 19, 2019

Board of Alderman Meeting Grain Valley City Hall, 711 Main 7:00pm

Meet the Candidate Forum Grain Valley City Hall, 711 Main 6:00pm reception; 6:45pm forum Park Board Meeting Grain Valley Community Center, 713 S Main 7:00pm

March 20, 2019

Storytime for Families Mid-Continent Public Library, 101 SW Eagles Parkway Wednesdays from 10:00am – 10:30am Come share the early literacy experience with the whole family. Hear stories, sing songs, join in movement activities, and more. Planning & Zoning Commission Meeting Grain Valley City Hall, 711 Main 6:30pm—8:30pm

March 21, 2019

Kindergarten Registration Event Held at all Grain Valley Elementary Schools 4:30pm—6:00pm Children must be at least five years old on or before July 31, 2019 to attend Kindergarten in 2019-20 school year. Beaded Duck Mid-Continent Public Library, 101 SW Eagles Parkway 6:30pm - 8:00pm Join Tina Gatewood as she shows us how to make these cute little beaded ducks. This is a two-week class, and each class lasts 90 minutes. There is a one-time hands-on material fee of $14.

Reservations Now Being Accepted for Community Garden Plots Gardeners eager for spring may now reserve garden plots in the City’s Community Garden. Grain Valley Parks and Recreation offers a Community Garden, located on the northeast corner of Walnut and Main, for residents. Garden Plots (4’ X 12’) are $10.00 and include beds with garden soil and irrigation.

Gardeners provide plants, tools, and are responsible for maintaining the plot throughout the growing season. Garden plots will be tilled and ready for planting after April 15th. Plot reservations must be made in person at the Grain Valley Community Center, 713 Main, or by phone: 816-8476230 ext. 9.

March 27, 2019

Storytime for Families Mid-Continent Public Library, 101 SW Eagles Parkway Wednesdays from 10:00am – 10:30am Come share the early literacy experience with the whole family. Hear stories, sing songs, join in movement activities, and more.

March 28, 2019

Petite Picassos Grain Valley Community Center, 713 S. Main 6:30pm—7:15pm $10/participant. Children 4 to 7 years with an adult will paint an 8x10 canvas. 816-847-6230

March 30, 2019

Community Volunteer Day for Grain Valley Assistance Council Meet at First Baptist Grain Valley, 207 W. Walnut Street 9:00am Volunteers with 2 wheeled dollies/hand trucks are especially welcome, but all willing volunteers are asked to arrive at 9:00am at First Baptist Grain Valley, 207 W. Walnut Street.

April 2, 2019

General Municipal Election Polls open 6:00am—7:00pm

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Grain Valley Parks and Recreation offers a Community Garden, located on the northeast corner of Walnut and Main, for residents. Garden Plots (4’ X 12’) are $10.00 and include beds with garden soil and irrigation. Photo credit: Valley News staff

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Valley News: March 14, 2019