Page 1


the katy


singing sensation

Nicolle galyon

from Hollywood

to Hutch

Fall 2012



Discover Reno County’s


finger-lickin’ fare



dear readers,

Volume 05 / Issue 02


Publisher John Montgomery Advertising Director Dave Gilchrist Advertising Sales Manager Darren Werth For Advertising Rates and Information

(620) 694-5700 ext. 210 sales Executives

Tammy Colladay Shelby Dryden Tyler Goertzen Mitch Hixson Anita Stuckey Thomas Sullivan ad designers

Kim Hoskinson Marcos Medranos Jessica Price Sam Wilk Photographers

Aaron East Brian Lingle Deborah Walker

Contributing Writers

Amy Bickel Amy Conkling Anne Maxwell Gloria Gale Kathy Hanks Richard Shank Patsy Terrell

Production and Editorial Services for Hutchinson Magazine provided by:

I love barbecue.

I was unaware just how much I loved barbecue until I moved to Kansas and had the pleasure of tasting famous Kansas City barbecue. I never looked back. With that first pulled pork sandwich, I learned of the intricacies that come with barbecue and how no two sandwiches (or sauces) are the same. Thus began my attraction to trying any and all barbecue—especially in Kansas. After photographer Brian Lingle told me about Lavon’s Bakery and BBQ in Buhler, I knew we had a good story on our hands. Our finger-lickin’ guide to Reno County’s bountiful barbecue options will keep you full this season. Writer Kathy Hanks hit the trail in search of the juiciest, smokiest and quirkiest locations for barbecue nearby. What we found was enough information to fill eight pages this fall with mouthwatering bites. Also this season, Richard Shank takes us down memory lane as we revisit famous Hollywood hits that were filmed in Hutchinson. The Quillin family invites us over to see their home with its splash of color and we discover one groovy business that is in the art of albums. We hope you enjoy this and much more this season!

— Katy, Editor Follow us on twitter @hutchinsonmag find us on facebook:

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

Editor Katy Ibsen Designer Jenni Leiste COPY EDITOR Christy Little GENERAL MANAGER Bert Hull Publishing Coordinator Jenni Leiste Editorial comments (866) 655-4262 Subscriptions

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The Hutchinson News Circulation Department Elizabeth Garwood 300 W. Second | Hutchinson KS 67501 (620) 694-5700 ext. 115 (800) 766-5730 ext. 115

Send your comments and suggestions to


Fall 2012

contents 46 Hutchinson’s silver screen



Reno County’s barbecue rendezvous Prepare for finger-lickin’ good eats

Lifestyle 8

Hollywood’s history in Hutch for the perfect backdrop

the forever home

Dianne and Dick Kovarna build a dream come true

12 lady in red

Amy Quillin’s home is a testament to energy and color



One artist’s journey from smalltown talent to the national stage

Across the country, miles of trails are created from a nationwide network of unused rail line corridors—Missouri just happens to have the longest

18 The Voice of Nicolle Galyon

22 Preserving summer’s bounty

Canning summer vegetables has become a popular hobby

26 a farming tradition

Yoder Elevator is rejuvenated with the help of Mark and Rose Nissley

30 rock of ages

54 Limestone Crush

In Every Issue: 2 dear readers 64 Calendar Travel

Hutch Talks

tHe katy


singing sensation

Nicolle galyoN

from HollywooD

to HutcH

Fall 2012



60 Richard Hollowell Chief executive officer of the Cosmosphere

62 Lori Mulch-Hart

Assistant manager of the Kansas State Fair

Recycled album art makes a breakthrough for one couple

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

Discover reno county’s


finger-lickin’ fare

On the Cover Roy’s Hickory Pit Bar-B-Q (Photography by Aaron East)

stillwater bank

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012


departments 8 Lifestyle • 18 profile Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012


The Forever Home Dianne and Dick Kovarna build a dream come true


he curving rock drive leads to a quintessential tan farmhouse that overlooks a pond. Horses graze inside a wooden fence, and flowers bloom along the walkway to the front door. Inside, a cold glass of pink lemonade sits on the kitchen island as Dianne and Dick Kovarna talk about what they built—the home where they plan to grow old. Able to work from anywhere, the Kovarnas searched Kansas for the perfect home. The couple wanted something that was big enough for their newly blended families, an open floor plan that allowed for conversation and a scenic location away from a busy city street.

Sto ry by Amy B ic kel


Ph otog r aph y by A aro n E ast

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012



The Kovarna Home

Dianne Kovarna feeds one of the family horses at their home in the sand hills prairie. OPPOSITE PAGE The home features a wrap around porch and scenic views, far from a bustling city.

In the details

passion for fine wine. One feature of the kitchen is the built-in wine racks. “Dick and I enjoy wine, and when we have friends over, we like to have wine close by,” Dianne says.

couple of green thumbs. A garden of flowers circles the home. Dianne says she likes to work in the flower garden but admits Dick has a real passion for the hobby. “I thought I liked flowers, but then I met Dick,” she says.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

Wildlife. Another feature of the home is its remoteness, which attracts wildlife such as deer, turkey and quail. “I love to listen to the quail at night,” Dick says, noting he even stocked a few on the acreage last year.

10 1

Blending a family

When Dianne and Dick Kovarna married in 2010, the two not only combined households, but families. While not all of the children live in the house full-time, there usually is a collection of kids—some with spouses—along with a 2-year-old grandchild.

Dick has four children, Lacey, 30; Zach, 26; Abby, 16; and Nate, 13. Dianne has three children: Ashley, 26; Michelle, 24; and Jeff, 21. Lacey and husband Justin are the parents of Easton, 2. Dianne worked with special-needs children in a school district before the couple married, and she stays busy as the children’s coordinator at Prairie Dunes Country Club and volunteers with TECH, an agency that assists people with disabilities. She is involved with St. Francis Community Services, a foster-care agency, and the couple foster two boys with special needs. “We’re a family with a lot of children,” Dianne says. When building a house, the couple wanted to accommodate the big family both on the inside and the outside. Incorporating outdoor activities into their lifestyle, the couple have four therapeutic horses. “It’s like a summer camp,” Dick says, adding that the kids can grab a couple of poles and head to the stocked fishing pond, paddle out on the pond in the family rowboat or catch a breeze on the swing.


Moreover, on a warm summer evening, the family enjoys sitting outside and listening to the crickets chirp and the song notes of the bobwhite quail that reside in the nearby pasture. “It’s a wonderful place to be,” Dick says.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012


“We considered a lot of homes in a lot of neighborhoods in a lot of communities,” Dianne says. While a few houses in locations like Liberal, Pratt and Salina might have met their requirements, it was on a 13-acre patch of sand hills prairie where the couple discovered the site of their dream house. On this ideal spot they built their vision. “It’s our forever home,” Dick says, adding they moved in two days before Christmas in 2008. “When I came out here [the first time] it was nothing but a bare piece of ground.” “It’s overwhelming building your forever home while blending a family,” Dianne says. “But it all worked out.”

Open-space concept


With a clean slate to work with, the couple made a list of what they wanted in their forever home. For Dick, a must-have aspect was a re-creation of a two-story farmhouse with a wraparound porch. “I love the farmhouse look,” Dianne says. “When I was little we lived in old farmhouses.” The couple considered many floor plans, but Dick found their home’s prototype while on the road for his job as a project coordinator for a pipeline services company. “I knocked on the door and asked if I could take a look around,” he says. He ended up purchasing the homeowner’s blueprints. They put their own detailed touch to the plan, which features five bedrooms and three-and-a-half bathrooms in the 3,100-squarefoot space on the first two levels. The blueprints include the openfloor plan Dianne wanted, starting with a spacious foyer detailed with black marble floors, an ornate wood staircase and an upstairs loft landing. The open-space concept continues on the main floor, connecting the living room, dining room and kitchen together; arched entryways separate the spaces. With seven children and two foster children between the two of them, “I wanted a space where we could all visit no matter what room we are in,” Dianne says, “It works great for entertaining.” When staking out the home, Dick and Dianne made sure the living room and dining room windows looked out to the large backyard pond, along with the couple’s horse pasture, Dianne says, adding that she had Dick move the stakes to make sure the view was perfect.

Christmas someday

There are still a few projects that the couple would like to accomplish in their forever home, Dianne says. Both have affection for wine and are working to finish their walkout basement into an entertainment room that includes a bar and wine cellar. When completed, they would have another 1,500 square feet of finished space. Dick says he promised Dianne he would 1 Family is have the project done by Christmas. He important to the already started laying the slate flooring, Kovarnas, which is a symbol of the home. “But I never gave her a year,” he says with a chuckle. A covered 2 Dianne, however, says she just wants porch allows for lazy evenings perfection. The couple, after all, has lived watching the sun set. in many homes throughout the years, both separate and together. This is the last one—a Dick and 3 Dianne in their home they built together, Dianne says. custom home. “I’m not planning on building any more forever homes,” she says. A kitchen fit for 4

a full house.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012



The Kovarna Home


Lady in red amy Quillin’s home is a testament to energy and color


ucked away inside the rolling country hills east of Hutchinson is the home of Ty and Amy Quillin. Its unique style and features begin from afar, as visitors notice the red shingles that shade the home’s front windows. But walk inside and the distinctive style goes above and beyond. “I would say Amy has an eclectic, artsy style,” says Ty. Amy agrees as they sit on funky yellow, blue and red custom-made couches adorned with a bright floral style—the perfect contrast to the great room’s calming honey yellow hues splashed across its walls. The 2-year-old home, which Ty and a family friend built, boasts four bedrooms and threeand-a-half bathrooms, a full basement, a breakfast nook area and a sunroom. It sits on 20 acres of the 160 acres that Ty’s father owns, complete with a swirling, sandy driveway, a pond, livestock and the best views of a picture-perfect Kansas sunset on the prairie. Sto ry by Amy Co n klin g

• Ph otog r aph y by D eb o r ah Walker

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012



The Quillin Home

“I try to get something to bring back and display in our home with every trip we take.” –Amy Quillin

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

The Quillin family relaxes in the great room of their lively home: from left, Gus, 13, Willow, 8, Amy and Ty.



Amy Quillin will be the first to admit red is her favorite color and has been for quite a while. That’s why it comes as no surprise to her family and friends that the color of passion made its way throughout the Quillin home—inside and out. “Ty and I bought red couches for our first home, and I fell in love with the color. We still have those couches, I just couldn’t part with them,” she says.


#1: Roof: The Quillin home stands out from afar with its unique red tin awnings. While they’re only featured on the home’s front windows, it’s just enough color to stand out as guests make their way up the Quillins’ windy, rolling driveway. #2: Fire Hydrant: A family friend who happens to work at one of Hutchinson’s fire stations gave an old fire hydrant to Amy. It greets guests before they walk through the front door, which also happens to be red. #3: Tables: The Quillins’ dining room table is oneof-a-kind. The old print shop table was converted into their dining table and completed with red legs. An antique dealer found the table and immediately thought of Amy. They refinished the tabletop and then added the legs to make into a more formal table, finished off with a coat of the common fire-engine red paint that is a common theme in the Quillin home.


Great rooms The grandest room in the house—a space dedicated to lounging, cooking and dining with its pine hardwood floors—features a wide variety of the Quillins’ unique tastes and touches. Backsplash tiles above the red gas oven and stove are handmade, with designs swirling across the red, yellow, blue and purple tiles. Each kitchen cabinet and drawer features knobs of different shapes, sizes and colors, working perfectly with the colorful mix-and-match dinnerware shown through glass doors. A kitchen island boasts granite countertops against the espresso-antique finish of the kitchen cabinets that were made at a mill in Salina. The kitchen’s back entryway includes red cubbies, one for each family member, which provide some organization to the typical family’s “dumping ground” of shoes, backpacks, purses and jackets. Off of the great room is a pumpkincolored nook. “We call it our skybox, since we enjoy watching the kids play whiffle ball,” Amy says. The space overlooks the pond, rolling hills and fields of the backyard. Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

The dining room table, from an old printing company, stands between the kitchen and lounging area and melds the two together. The lounging area reflects a family gathering place, complete with a mixture of family photos in colorful frames and artwork. “I have a thing for antique furniture,” says Amy. “I try to get something to bring back and display in our home with every trip we take.”

“Ty and I bought red couches for our first home, and I fell in love with the color.” –Amy Quillin



The Quillin Home



A bright red oven and range continues the color scheme into the kitchen.


An antique print shop table turned dining table is a statement piece.


Red cubbies keep the kids organized.


Willows room is a princess’ dream complete with a crystal chandelier.


Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012


“I would say Amy has an eclectic, artsy style.” –Ty Quillin


Antique storeowners in Downtown Hutchinson know Amy Quillin by name. They know her style and frequently contact her with treasures they’ve found and know will be the perfect complement in her home. Quillin uses her creativity as owner of Amelia Beadelias jewelry boutique, as well as her graphic design background, to visualize just how to use an antiquated or worn-down gem that some consider junk. “I look at it and can see what it will be in the end,” Amy says. The end results happen to be beautiful additions to her eclectic home, including: Mail sorter turned to wine storage: An antique dealer came across an old Hutchinson Post Office wooden mail sorter, complete with worn-out messages etched on the side from 1913. The sorting spaces were the perfect size to hold the Quillins’ wine collection, allowing the colorful and various-shaped bottles to be the centerpiece.

Personal space Amy passed her unique decorating style down to the Quillin children, Gus, 13, and Willow, 8. Gus’ room is the perfect combination of sports and country with vibrant cherry red walls. A life-size John Wayne cutout stands tall along the cowboy décor as well as baseball collectibles. Willow’s room, meanwhile, yells all-girl with its party pink walls, a crystal chandelier, fuzzy turquoise and green pillows and chairs that balance it all with the blue and green floral bedroom. The master bedroom boasts an extra-tall bed. “It takes me a ladder to get into bed,” Amy jokes. The white frame contrasts nicely with the bright yellow and green color palette along with teal frames showcasing pictures of their children. Both Ty and Amy have their own walk-in closets that lead into the master bath, complete with his-and-hers sinks and vanities, a Jacuzzi tub and heated tiles. “There’s nothing like walking on a warm tile floor on a cold morning,” Amy says. “It’s one of my favorite parts of the house.”

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

Stained-Glass Wall Sconce: When Amy’s childhood church in Nickerson was closing its doors, her mom was there to find some keepsakes. She came across a beautiful section of original stained glass from the church, showcasing the Alpha and the Omega. It now is used as a wall sconce in the Quillins’ entryway. Barn Door turned EntryWay Table: Amy came across an old barn door, refinished it and turned it into the perfect entryway table.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012


Nicolle Gaylon has become a local legend after making an appearance on NBC’s The Voice.



Nicolle Galyon

the voice of Nicolle Galyon One artist’s journey from small-town talent to the national stage


t’s ironic that Sterling native Nicolle Galyon landed a life-changing gig on NBC’s popular reality music competition show, The Voice. The irony lies in the fact that Galyon ranks her vocal talents below her pianoplaying and song-writing skills. “I never sang in front of anyone growing up—it was only my passion for songwriting that spurred me to sing,” the 28-yearold says. “I was writing these songs by myself, but when you write a song and are excited about it, you want people to hear it. My fear of singing in front of people became less from my love of writing. I had to sing in front of people, or no one else would hear my songs.” Nothing like singing in front of a live studio audience of several hundred people, followed by millions of viewers, to shake out the nerves. “It’s crazy that people would call me a singer, because I still think of myself as a piano player first and songwriter second,” says Galyon, who now lives in Nashville and is making quite a name for herself as a county music songwriter and former contestant on The Voice.

Keys of excellence

Galyon was born and raised in Sterling, where her family still lives. She fell in love with the piano at the same time she was learning how to read and write in kindergarten at just 5 years old. “I had a babysitter who watched me after school who taught piano lessons,” Galyon remembers. “I would just sit on the floor and watch her give lessons. I was enamored with it and thought

it would be such a dream to play the piano. My mom never had to tell me to practice.” Her enthrallment with the piano continued well into her junior high and high school years, even when she became involved with everything that small-town schools have to offer. “I played three sports, was the yearbook editor, the church pianist, every little thing you could do I wanted to be a part of,” Galyon says. “But my piano and competitions— that was my own thing. It was something that none of my friends were doing. Something that gave me confidence and independence.” Galyon’s big break came her senior year in high school, when after more than a decade of lessons and competition, she won the guest soloist position with the Hutchinson Symphony. Hutchinson piano teacher Priscilla Hearn had the pleasure of teaching Galyon in high school. “When she studied with me, she played classical, but all along she said that really wasn’t her type of music,” says Hearn. “She also knew that to be a better player, the best way to do that was to do it the classical way.” It really didn’t matter what Galyon was playing, though, as long as she was playing. And it was this extreme desire that helped her excel in songwriting, according to Hearn. “While it’s not absolutely necessary, it helps a lot for any musician to have strong piano background,” Hearn says. “When they’re composing and they’re doing it at the piano, they can hear all of the notes at one time, whereas with their voice they’re only able to produce one line of music at a time.”

Sto ry by Amy Co nklin g • Ph otog r aph y by D eb o r ah Walker

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012


Nicolle revealed First Concert: Amy Grant

in the blind auditions and then filmed the battle-round segments Fond Music Memory: Riding in fall 2011. By Christmas, she back and forth to Hutchinson knew her fate on the show but from Sterling, listening to 102.1 had to keep it a secret for all of FM and 102.9 FM on the radio in January and February 2012 until her mother’s car. her episode aired. “I think my career has more momentum than Not So Fond Music Memory: it’s ever had, right now,” Galyon says. “The show gave me a lot of Not knowing top-40 songs or confidence.” groups. Galyon remembers oftentimes not having a clue why Holidays: Galyon loves her friends always fussed about New Kids on the Block and other Christmas but really loves the Fourth of July. She’s only missed popular boy groups. one July 4th celebration in Sterling since she moved to Nashville Driving First: Galyon’s more than 10 years ago. first driving experience on the interstate came when she drove herself out to Nashville for college. Husband: Galyon’s husband, Rodney Clawson, is a songwriter The Voice Experience: There from the Panhandle of Texas. They married in October 2007 in were definitely some awkward Sterling. moments on The Voice, Galyon says. She actually competed

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012



Nicolle Galyon

Small-town superstar

Galyon frequents Sterling every six to eight weeks. The reason? Family. Namely younger brother Cooper, who was born right before she graduated from high school and moved to Belmont University in Nashville for college. He’s the same little brother who happened to make an appearance on The Voice auditions show in L.A. with Galyon’s mother. “My parents had this surprise baby when I was a senior in high school,” she says. “When I graduated and moved away, I had this baby brother, while my other brother was in second grade and another was in seventh grade. All of those years of my brothers going to my activities and I wanted to return the favor and go to their stuff. I felt my youngest brother wasn’t going to know me at all unless I went back to visit often.”


Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

Life of a Songwriter

It’s definitely a life behind the scenes, and that’s exactly what Galyon wanted when she became attracted to the writing process. “I just want my songs to be out there in the world,” she says. “If I’m the vehicle for that, it would be awesome.” She’s now a vehicle for 10th season American Idol runner-up Lauren Alaina and Josh Kelly, who’s married to actress Katherine Heigl. For inspiration, Galyon simply relives her childhood memories of growing up in Sterling. With each word she writes, she thinks of her small hometown. “I consider my hometown my audience,” she says. “I’m constantly channeling my childhood and thinking about the people in my community. If they would like a certain song, lyric and idea, then I think I’m being true to myself.”


Preserving summer’s bounty Canning summer vegetables has become a popular hobby


ith today’s attention on locally grown food, a renewed interest in home canning quickly followed. A new generation has discovered what our parents and grandparents knew—those neat rows of glass jars filled with produce are a welcome sight long after the garden has faded. “You’ve got summertime in a jar,” says Cathy Forbes, who started canning about 10 years ago as a creative outlet. She sells jams and jellies at the Reno County Farmers Market and likes to experiment with different combinations, one of her favorites being a peach and rosemary jam, and she’s trying out a new chocolate-covered strawberry jam. She cans about 36 jars a week during the summer, depending on what’s available. “I’m a firm believer in buying in season,” she says. Research tells us that products canned promptly after harvest may be more nutritious than fresh produce that isn’t consumed shortly after picking. Within a couple of weeks, even refrigerated produce can lose half of its vitamins. Shannon Knipp appreciates the difference in taste of the home-canned products created by her mother, Jane. “I would much rather open up a can of something made lovingly by someone than open up a can of something I bought at the store,” says Shannon. “It’s a skill I desperately want to learn. It’s on my bucket list,” she adds.

Inspiration Jan Steen began canning so he could keep what he was growing in his garden instead of giving it away. He bought the book Canning & Preserving for Dummies, some supplies and tried it. Three years later he has gotten the family involved and says, “It’s nice in the middle of winter to break open something you grew.” A benefit of canning is knowing what you created. “Canning your own food, you know what’s going into the product, especially if you grew it yourself,” says Jan. Canning is a way to preserve food at home and can save you half the cost of buying commercially prepared food. The high water content in most fresh foods makes them spoil easily, but canning eliminates this worry. Methods vary depending on the food, but the USDA offers detailed instructions on the internet as well as the Ball Blue Book of Canning and Preserving Recipes. Sto ry by Patsy Ter r ell

• Ph otog r aph y by A aro n E ast

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012



Lasting Garden

Hutchinson resident Cathy Forbes began canning 10 years ago as a creative outlet.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012


Jan Steen found canning to be a valuable activity to share with his children, Harris and Madalyn. Harris works on canning pizza sauce.

Canning resources USDA guidelines Blogs devoted to Home Canning

The reward

Canning is a sense of accomplishment and a valuable endeavor. “You know you have something to eat. People want to be prepared in case of a storm or power outage. You’ve always got something there,” says Cathy. At the farmers market she sells jams and jellies, but she also cans many standard garden items and pickles asparagus, beets, mushrooms and garlic for her family.

Sometimes those unexpected items can develop a life of their own. Pat Buxton has been nicknamed, “The Asparagus Lady” because of her pickled asparagus. She makes about 24 quarts a year to share with friends, including her knitting buddies at Shannon’s store, Yarn. “I put it on every relish tray I have and in every Bloody Mary I serve,” she says. Shannon understands the value of those signature recipes because she is the third generation in her family to appreciate “Pokey’s Cinnamon Pickles,” a treasured recipe from her grandmother May Bell (aka Pokey). Shannon says, “I cry like a little baby and then [my mother will] do the cinnamon pickles.” Pokey’s handwritten note at the top reads “good luck.” For Jane, canning can be a tradition. “It’s a way to remember people,” she says. “As the grandparents and parents age and die, it gives you a chance to

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012



Lasting Garden

remember what they did.” Jane generally only cans what they grow, so in lean years there will be fewer jars. Some of the jars she still uses are ones her grandmother or mother sent home with her, full of their own canned goods. Today there are also blogs and Facebook fan pages devoted to canning. People share recipes and post photos of their latest cr e at ion s. For those interested in canning, Cathy suggests finding someone who has the basic supplies, • Selecting and washing borrow them, and fresh food at its peak try to follow the • Peeling or otherwise USDA guidelines for preparing food for canning safety. “Watching an experienced person • Hot-packing many foods prepare a item you • Adding acids (lemon juice or are wanting to can vinegar) to some foods and buy the Ball Blue Book of Food • Using clean canning jars Preservation and and self-sealing lids read it thoroughly, • Processing jars in a water or caref u l ly a nd pressure canner exactly follow USDA guidelines for safety,” -National Center for Home Food Preservation she says. T he K- St ate Extension office in South Hutchinson will test pressure gauges for free if people are interested in canning with a pressure cooker. Shannon knows it’s an opportunity to bring people together. “There’s a new appreciation for the things made by hand. We value people’s time and talent,” she says. “I get this gorgeous little jar of deliciousness, and on the top in my mother’s perfect handwriting is exactly what it is and what year it was canned,” says Shannon. “It’s a little piece of history— delicious history—that you get to eat.”

Proper canning practices include:

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012


At the Yoder Elevator, new owner Mark Nissley assists Leland Schrock with a dropoff of grain.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012



Yoder Elevator

a farming tradition Yoder Elevator is rejuvenated with the help of Mark and Rose Nissley


n the early morning light of what would soon be a hot summer day, a local farmer pulls his open-air tractor and small wagon onto the scales at Yoder Elevator. He needs feed for his dairy cattle. Mark Nissley has plenty. The scene is familiar in the Amish community of Yoder— an unincorporated town surrounded by small farms with a simpler way of life. The family-owned elevator is where the Amish and local farmers come to do business. During harvest they bring in their carts or wagons filled with grain to be dumped in the elevator bins, much like what farmers did generations ago. Such independent elevators are few and far between in these modern times. Struggling to survive, these elevators often are swallowed up by big-business agriculture dominated by large cooperatives and private chains. But these facts don’t matter to Mark and his wife, Rose, when they contemplated the move from their native Indiana to the Reno County community. The small elevator needed an owner, and the Nissleys needed a change.

Taking on a challenge

Moving to Yoder was a big step for Mark and Rose. The couple and their four children left the comforts of Elkhart County, Indiana, where Mark had a dependable 19-year job as a purchasing agent in the recreational vehicle business. “It’s the RV Capital of the World,” Mark says. “A lot of people leave the farm to go to RV factories.” Mark and Rose both grew up on farms—they wanted to return to their roots. They left on a whim in the summer of 2007. Rose’s brother, Leroy Hershberger, who

Sto ry by Amy B ic kel • Ph otog r aph y by D eb o r ah Walker

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012


“Like a farmer, you’re never caught up. There is always something to look forward to in the future.” –Mark Nissley

Mark and his wife, Rose, learned plenty of lessons in running a grain elevator after moving from Indiana to Yoder.

lives in the area, told them the elevator was for sale; 12 weeks later the couple found themselves in Yoder. “We might not have moved if we would have thought about it a little longer,” Rose says. “We bought our house sight unseen.” Yet, while both were raised on farms, neither had dealt with the business of taking in grain. It wasn’t easy, according to Mark, noting that some learning curves were more expensive than others—especially dealing with grain. “Some hit the pocketbook harder,” Rose says of life lessons. “I call it our college education.” Nevertheless, Mark, who lost his arm in a forage wagon accident at age 5, is used to tackling daunting tasks, taking such challenges in stride. The couple are working to update the aging structure, built in the 1950s. The latest update was a new scale. “It’s an ongoing effort to keep up the structure and the facility,” he says, then chuckles. “Like a farmer, you’re never caught up. There is always something to look forward to in the future.” Another challenge is surviving as a small independent operation. There was a time when almost all grain elevators were independently owned, whether it was a private operation or a cooperative of local farmers. That included one in Yoder, a town founded in 1906 as a central point of commerce for the surrounding Amish communities. But those days are nearly gone—fewer farmers are farming more acres. The private, single-location elevators have been lost amid the agriculture evolution and the rise of big cooperatives and companies. The Kansas Grain and Feed Association, a trade group that represents Kansas elevators, had 573 company members who operated 860 elevators in 1980. Today, there are only a couple hundred companies operating

the same number of elevators, according to the organization. Only a handful of Kansas’ elevators are private, familyowned operations. Producer Cargill leases the storage facilities and takes charge of the grain, which puts ease on the Nissleys. Since they own the facility as well as manage the operation, it helps that many Amish, typically farmers managing a smaller acreage, patronize the operation. “That’s really how I’d prefer agriculture to be,” Mark says of small family farms. “I enjoy being in the business of helping small farmers.”

A need fulfilled

During the June harvest, modern technology mixes with Amish tradition at the Nissleys’ elevator. Grain trucks and semis rumbled onto scales along with the Amish’s tractorpulled wagons and grain carts. Rose helps run the scale office while Mark dumps the grain into the bins. For the Amish, who don’t have cars or modern conveniences, a local elevator is valuable, too. “I’m glad to see them here,” says Amish farmer David Petersheim from his dinner table on a weekday afternoon. “We need an elevator.” Mark and Rose have been good to the community—David’s wife, Loretta, adds, “They fit in here well.” The Yoder community turns out to be a perfect fit for the Nissleys who are Amish-Mennonite.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012



Yoder Elevator


Rock of ages Recycled album art makes a breakthrough for one couple


verything from the Deep Purple to Peter Frampton could be found in the eclectic array that was once Terry McCoy’s record album collection. But as the years wore on, it was evident his lifelong passion wasn’t just playing music—it was taking up space. With the assortment numbering more than 250 albums, Terry and his wife, Mary, decided it was time to downsize.

Sto ry by An ne Ma x well

Collectors bought several albums—but only the ones in pristine condition. The beloved ebony vinyls with a simple scratch or tiny imperfection were unwanted, leaving the Hutchinson couple with an entirely different predicament. “We thought, ‘Are we going to have to take these to the dump?’” asks Mary. “I knew we couldn’t do that.”

• Ph otog r aph y by D eb o r ah Walker

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012



Album Art

Terry McCoy works on another eclectic set of coasters made from records as part of his and his wife’s business, Recycled Album Art.


Sound venture

In the summer of 2008 the McCoys devised a method to repurpose the albums. A cabinetmaker by trade, Terry appreciated that the album covers were 12.5”-by-12.5,” a perfect square that wouldn’t leave behind a lot of waste but gets rid of edge imperfections. “We have glass tables and are always using coasters,” he says. So they decided to utilize the album covers to create 30 sets of coasters. Once completed, they posted them online—and they all sold. Now, the McCoys had a whole new problem. Inasmuch as music is a passion, it is also extremely personal. Prospective buyers weren’t looking for just any album. They sought music that reminded them of the summer of their 16th birthday, their first heartbreak or something even deeper. Once active album sellers, the couple re-enlisted in the acquisition game. “Our downsizing didn’t work,” Terry says with a grin. “It backfired,” Mary adds. The McCoys took to online marketplaces and estate sales as well as local resources to find the albums they needed. “It has surprised me how much [coasters] can mean,” says Mary.

Making music

The process begins in Terry’s woodshop behind the couple’s home. First, the album cover is mounted on a solid piece of nine-ply Baltic birch plywood and then sanded. “We learned the hard way you don’t want to sand them as individual pieces,” Mary says with a chuckle as she recalls some of their missteps. They are then cut into nine individual squares with a table saw, then receive cornering with a router and finish sanding. Cork pads are added on the bottom for protection. From there the process is moved to the headquarters of the business, which is nestled neatly in the tiny basement of their home. Crates of albums line the floor, alphabetized and meticulously organized. Above, vertically stored on Masonite are the coasters awaiting four coats of polyurethane finish to give longevity and shine.

A set of near-finished coasters awaits coats of polyurethane. RIGHT Terry and Mary with a treasured set of coasters.

Among the albums awaiting final touches are Bruce “The Boss” Springsteen’s Born to Run, the Righteous Brothers’ Unchained Medley and the coveted Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Images of a serious Ringo and John decked out in psychedelic colors make up the squares of one group of coasters, while a set fashioned from the opposing side of the album jacket is composed of a mischievous Ringo and Paul. Some covers look as though they just shed their plastic covering and rarely saw the light of day. Others have a weathered, well-loved look, which just adds to the authenticity and treasured existence. “The wear is what makes them really good,” Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

Terry says, knowing full well the measure of appreciation it takes to make the worn marks. “We want them to look at it and smile.”

Harmonious Success

Nearly 1,200 coaster sets (nine 4”-by-4” coaster tiles) have been sold, and some are more difficult to let go of than others. “We had an Elvis one with a blue vinyl that was hard to see go,” Terry muses. The coasters end up all over the world— Australia, the United Kingdom, France, Canada and even Malta. No matter where they are going, customers who want a personalized gift for that special music lover during the holiday should order early.

get groovin’

The McCoys’ playlist Terry and Mary’s personal oldies, top-10 bands worth listening to. 1. Yes “Owner of a Lonely Heart” 2. Eagles “Hotel California” 3. The Who “Who Are You” 4. The Doors “Light My Fire” 5. Santana “Black Magic Woman” 6. The Allman Brothers “Whipping Post” 7. Phil Collins “In the Air Tonight” 8. Styx “Come Sail Away” 9. Eric Clapton “Layla” Creating such personalized treasures is only part of the gratification. The McCoys take pleasure in knowing they are preserving a lost art. Album covers barely make a splash on the pop culture scene now that most music is downloaded. Gone are the days of holding an LP in one’s hand and feeling “like you owned something,” Mary says. Best of all, none of the album goes to waste. Every inch of the cover is used—the front, back and even the liner notes in some cases. The vinyl records are heated in a convection oven and molded into a whimsical shape known as “wacky bowls,” and scraps from the covers are fashioned into greeting cards by Mary. “It just feels really good to me,” Mary says. “These albums would get shoved away in a musty basement and would then be going to a landfill.” Of their venture Terry says, “You’ll have three or four good ideas in your life—and most people don’t act on them.” Thankfully for music aficionados the world over, the McCoys did.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012



Album Art

10. Heart “Crazy on You”

Scan this Q.R. code to get this playlist on Spotify.

features 36 Reno County’s barbecue rendezvous • 46 Hutchinson’s silver screen


s f o ro d e a t go


re a p P r e c k i n ’ anks l i by Kathy H n East r aro ge tory S

y by

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Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012


finger-lickin’ good


or those with a desire to avoid the typical chain restaurant dishes found in Any City, U.S.A., it’s recommended they come hungry to Reno County and seek one of the local “Mom and Pop” barbecue spots. Each offers a relaxed, picnic-like setting, decorated in country and western themes. While the hosts are gracious and welcoming, they are also shrouded in mystery. Come enjoy the food—but don’t ask for the recipe. These dedicated connoisseurs spend time slowly cooking the meats over a variety of woods that add to savory smells; they secretly simmer delicious sauces, and with the first bite, it’s evident why barbecue aficionados around the country add several area restaurants to their can’t-miss lists.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012




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Finger lickin’ tidbit: Mike’s secret barbecue sauce, bottled in Kansas City, is shipped around the world, including Afghanistan. Soldiers will take pictures of themselves at these far off outposts holding the sauce.

Gabriel Hubbard doesn’t mind the long line backed up to the door at noon. Whenever the Manhattan attorney is in Hutchinson on business he stops at Roy’s Hickory Pit BarB-Q (1018 W. Nickerson Blvd.) “It’s worth the wait,” he says. Tucking his red- and blue-striped tie into his dress shirt, he digs into a plate of steaming pulled pork. “Excellent,” he declares. Welcome to Roy’s, where Anne Armstrong joyfully greets customers as if they are her special invited guests, then takes their order at the busy counter. Armstrong’s effervescent personality and quick service might be the No. 2 and No. 3 reasons why Roy’s is celebrating 30 years in business. Of course, the food is the No. 1 reason, according to happy customers like Hubbard. Mike Armstrong, Anne’s late husband, bought the business from Roy Fry. Mike developed his own barbecue sauce recipe

while working for his father at the Rambler Steakhouse. That was back in 1982, and it was a fledgling business that could only seat 12 people at one round table. But by 1992 they expanded to seat 36 customers, and business was moving along. However an unexpected fire in 1996 set them back. “It was a malfunction in the flue of the brick pit and a disaster,” says Anne. All that was left was the shell of the building. It took 90 days to rebuild. “But, thanks to our loyal customers we came right back without a hitch,” she says. With Roy’s secret sauce and the in-house barbecue brick pit, also a closely kept trade secret, business has flourished. Having become an icon for diners from across the region, Roy’s has catered everything from a birthday dinner in Nantucket Island to a bachelor party in Las Vegas. Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

Once the lunch crowd left on a recent afternoon, Anne sat down to talk about the business with her son Ryan Collum, who has stepped up to keep the business going when Mike died in 2007 from cancer. Before his death, Mike spent five months training Ryan and Anne on the business. He shared the secret sauce recipe with Ryan. “He told me never to write it down, but keep it in my head,” Ryan says. Mike also spent the last months of his life teaching Ryan how to cook the meats in the pit. Now it’s Ryan who is at the restaurant every day at 5:30 a.m. seeing to the slow cooking of the meats. Anne knows Mike would be so proud of the milestone they just reached. “The secret to Roy’s is consistently delicious food and great service, day after day, week after week, year after year,” says Anne.

The History of

Barbecue Traditionally barbecue originated in the Caribbean. While visiting an island a Frenchman saw an entire pig being cooked in the ground. The story goes that he described the method as “barbe a queue,” meaning from beard to tail. In the southern U.S. it was the Spanish who introduced the pig dish to the American Indians, according to Lake E. High Jr. with the South Carolina Barbeque Association. South Carolina recognizes there are four barbecue sauces, including mustard-based, vinegar-based and light and heavy tomato-based. While the South has its claim to early barbecue, Kansas City as a meat-packing center of the U.S. has also grown in popularity for its unique barbecue. Hickory is the primary wood used for smoking in Kansas City, where barbecue is characterized by different types of meats, including pork ribs, smoked sausage, beef brisket, beef ribs, smoked/ grilled chicken and smoked turkey.

Owners Anne Armstrong and Ryan Collum are dedicated to continuing the delicious flavors at Roy’s Hickory Pit Bar-B-Q.

It’s in Kansas City, Missouri, where the American Royal World Series of Barbecue takes place each October. The event last four days and is the largest championship barbecuing competition in the world. Meanwhile technique of barbecuing has evolved from the hole in the ground. It can vary from slow cooking, known as smoking, or baking in an oven, or braising and grilling.















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Finger lickin’ tidbit: “My goal is to hit all the different sauces,” Phillips says. People are encouraged to “get sauced” at the sauce bar where more than a dozen sauces are available and can be blended.


OPPOSITE Daniel Phillips, owner of Dannyboys Smoke House, offers a Sauce Bar where a variety of familiar and obscure sauces wait for delicious barbecue.

A sign on the wall at Dannyboys Smoke House (307 N. Main St.) warns the customers that “finger-lickin’ is required, but make sure they are your own fingers.” It was Dan Phillips’ grandmother, Floy Hopkins, who nicknamed him Dannyboy and taught him the art of good side dishes such as baked beans, coleslaw, potato salad and pickles. “She was an inspiration,” says Phillips, owner of Dannyboys, who describes his barbecue meats and sides as “comfort foods,” like Grandma Floy used to love to make. He had been in the restaurant business for more than 25 years and began his career at Mr. K’s Steakhouse, starting as a dishwasher and building experience so that one day he’d have his own business. Phillips has been influenced by all of the experiences he has encountered through the restaurant industry, and for the past six years, he has applied that experience to his own business, Dannyboys Smoke House. The location once was a bar, but Phillips added an industrial restaurant smoker in the kitchen that can cook enough meat for about 1,000 people. All meat is hand-rubbed before it hits the smoker; no sauce is applied.

“Some places inject the meat with sauces and spices, but the original natural flavoring of the meat goes away,” Phillips says. “We serve our meat naked. “We believe the real barbecue is in the meat, not the sauce,” he adds. Phillips wants his customers to taste the quality of meat and then choose from more than 20 different varieties of sauces, from chipolata to the inferno “Cannonball” variety. While ribs are his favorite to prepare, he smokes everything from beef brisket to turkey and ham, a good variety for their catering portion of the business. Phillips and his wife, Karen, are partners. He does the cooking, and she does the marketing. He admits to being constantly busy, but they do close Sunday afternoons. “I just love what I am doing,” he says. “My favorite part is the daily challenges. As long as our customers are happy with the food and the service, that’s what is important.” Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012











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Gary Manear, left, Chris Schrueder and LaVon Manear are the dream team behind LaVon’s Bakery & BBQ, where the pies are just as famous as the smoked meat.

Tucked away a block away from Buhler’s Main Street, good food has driven customers to LaVon and Gary Manear’s quaint restaurant inside their earth berm home, which they built. Stepping into LaVon’s Bakery and BBQ (216 N. Maple St.) is like stepping into the corner delicatessen with an old meat case displaying the day’s specialties from homemade Verenike to cowboy calzones. But the smell wafting across the room comes from the brick smoker where slow-cooking beef is being prepared. There’s a homey feel to the restaurant decorated with eclectic western items. It’s easy to think the restaurant is in the Rockies, but outside the window is a Kansas landscape. LaVon describes herself as a girl who has always liked to grill. Top that with a love for baking pies and bread, and the couple knew it was the right thing to turn half their home into a business, which they opened in 1988 thinking they would only offer carryout. LaVon quickly learned many of her customers liked to sit. They have dining space for about 18 inside, but in the fall and spring, the patio is filled with tables and seats about 30 customers. Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012


Finger lickin’ tidbit: Gus Noble stops in for his daily glass of iced tea and a chance to visit with LaVon and the other coffee drinkers who gather every afternoon. “I’ve tried to patronize her since she opened,” Noble says. From the beginning he has been pleading with her to make him a possum burger. In 24 years, that’s one item she has declined to add to the menu.

There are a lot of things that make LaVon’s Bakery and BBQ unique. Certainly the barbecue is the backbone of the restaurant with Gary’s handmade brick wood smoker in the kitchen. He likes mulberry and pear wood for slowly cooking the meats, but along with the barbecued beef, pork and turkey, and their own special sauce, they serve local ethnic dishes. La Von makes Veranika, which is cottage cheese inside a dough pocket smothered with smoked ham gravy. Bierocks and enchiladas are other specialties. Every day LaVon bakes fresh pies, cookies and buns for the sandwiches. Everything is made from scratch, including the buns for the sandwiches and the Zwiebach, a German roll. Special orders fill her time when the restaurant is closed as she bakes cakes for all occasions and cinnamon rolls. “We started with barbecue, but I’m glad we offer other things,” LaVon says. Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012


Steve Knackstedt knows his way around barbecue at Knackies BBQ-Deli & Bakery, but his homemade sauces are the pièce de résistance.






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Finger lickin’ tidbit: You can find some of Knackies’ famous recipes online such as Knackies’ Easy Baked Beans, Meat Loaf and Summer Dogs for the kids.


The phone rings often inside Knackies BBQ-Deli & Bakery, a small dine-in restaurant and catering business. Kay Knackstedt takes orders for upcoming catering events in between talking about her passion for the business on Inman’s Main Street, just over the McPherson County line. What began as a small commercial bakery in her home in 1990 to supplement the family’s income so she could stay home and raise her three sons has blossomed into a thriving business. Today the boys are almost grown and great help in the business, which has prospered into full-time work not only for Kay and her husband, Steve, but their oldest son, Jade. Kay claims the secret to their success is Steve’s house “BearB-Cue” sauce, which they manufacture and bottle in plastic bear bottles at Hillsboro in Inman. This led to the name BearB-Cue, and the secret sauce is sold in area markets and shipped all over the world. For the past 15 years, a highlight for the Knackstedts’ is a twice-a-year catering event for about 150 players of the Kansas State University’s football team. They have also made appearances at the Kansas State Fair, Cosmosphere and the Underground Salt Museum. Along with catering (Monday through Saturday), the restaurant is open 5 p.m.-8 p.m. Fridays for a buffet and 5-8 Saturday nights, when customers can order off the menu. They are also expanding as they prepare to open a new restaurant in McPherson (111 S. Maple). With such success, the Knackstedts value the many lifelong friends they have made through the years of business in Kansas. Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012



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Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

e of Th


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e e n r c S Hutchinson may not be Tinseltown, but those who lived here during the 1950s may have felt otherwise. Two of the country’s premier motion picture companies, Columbia Pictures and Twentieth Century Fox, scoured the nation in search of what the directors call “the right look” and settled on locations in Reno County and the surrounding area. At least one of the two productions, Picnic, has retained the distinction

as a “classic” and remains a favorite for those who lived in the area during that time. Perhaps Picnic told the story of life in rural America during the 1950s in somewhat the same way that The Andy Griffith Show did 10 years later. In the spring of 1955, Kansas was experiencing its normal cycles of droughts and floods with the citizens wondering whether the record-breaking heat of the previous summer would return for an encore.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012


Hutchinson to Hollywood Meet two famous locals who made it big in Tinseltown.

Aneta Corsaut

Aneta Corsaut grew up in the city and graduated from Hutchinson High School in 1951. She would become a well-known character actress in a number of television westerns including Gunsmoke and Johnny Ringo but is best remembered for her role as Helen Crump in The Andy Griffith Show. For six years from 1960 to 1968 she played the role as a Mayberry schoolteacher and significant other of Griffith. Eighteen years after the series was discontinued, in 1986, the cast and crew got back together for a remake of the show. In the remake, Helen Crump would become Mrs. Andy Griffith. Corsaut died in 1995.

Delos Smith

The legendary Delos Smith Jr. grew up in Hutchinson, and after graduating from the University of Kansas, he went east for graduate school at Harvard. He entered the performing arts as the impresario of the General Motors Symphony for a radio show that was broadcast for six years starting in 1930. Soon, he would find himself singing, acting, directing and producing on Broadway and on the London stage. Then it was on to Hollywood, where he would become a confidante of actress Marilyn Monroe and act in a number of television shows and movies. He is best remembered for his part in the movie One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest. His 1981 retirement would bring him back to Hutchinson where he would live the final 16 years of his life. Smith died in 1997 at the age of 91 and would bequeath a trust valued at $20 million to fund a senior center in Hutchinson and community improvement projects in the city.


To hype the world premiere of Wait Till The Sun Shines, Nellie, a parade welcomed actors from the film. OPPOSITE Honoring the local filming of Picnic , the Reno County Historical Society hosted a screening in 1988.

Two years earlier, William Inge, who grew up in Independence, had penned an awardwinning Broadway play titled Picnic. Columbia Pictures took note and decided the story line, which centered around a Labor Day picnic where a drifter meets and falls in love with a local beauty queen, just might have the makings for a good movie. Reputedly, Columbia Pictures cut a check in the amount of $350,000 to Inge for rights to the play. Joshua Logan, a director for Columbia Pictures, soon found himself in Inge’s hometown of Independence hoping to find the location but found the area lacking. In a subsequent flight west across Kansas, Logan was taken with Hutchinson’s grain elevator skyline and plentiful supply of flat terrain in Reno County. In a driving tour of the area, Logan found three houses in Nickerson, including one with a wraparound porch at 1106 East Avenue A St. that met Columbia’s specifications. The home also was near a railroad track and in sight of a grain elevator, other necessities for the film’s plot. And a lake, at nearby Sterling, provided the right looks for a swimming scene. The only thing lacking in the Hutchinson area was a mythical home for an affluent grain dealer, but a trip north to Salina found the Country Club Heights neighborhood to be fitting. The cast resembled what would become the greats and near-greats of the motion picture industry, including William Holden, Kim Novak, Rosalind Russell and Susan Strasberg, who celebrated her 17th birthday on the day of her arrival in Hutchinson. Novak, now 79, is the only surviving member of the cast. On May 9, 1955, an 85-member cast and crew took over the two top floors of the Baker Hotel (now Plaza Towers) and in six weeks of shooting would drop no less than $15,000 in lodging fees alone. Dozens, perhaps, hundreds, of local residents were extras in Picnic. The Hutchinson Chamber of Commerce and its executive director, Ray Faubion, is said to have acted as the go-between with Columbia Pictures and provided office space for the locals to make applications as extras.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

Breakouts A Hutchinson News story reported, “The pay won’t be fabulous, but it’ll be adequate, and you’ll have lots of fun.” Two extras from Hutchinson were later contracted for small speaking roles, but ironically, their scenes were filmed in neighboring towns. Hutchinson attorney Abe Weinlood, who perfected a fine speaking voice in Reno County courtrooms, did the same in the movie’s opening scene playing the part of a railroad brakeman conversing briefly with actor William Holden before opening a door allowing him to jump from the moving train as it passed through Salina. Weinlood’s daughter, Diane Lee, a Hutchinson accountant, was a small child at the time of the filming but remembers her dad commenting that he was paid the hefty sum of $50 for his part in the movie. Henry Pegue, a department store owner, also had a small speaking part as the town’s mayor at an award ceremony filmed in the Riverside Park in Halstead.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012



Others like Bonnie Fee and her friends jumped in the car for the 15-minute trip from Hutchinson to Nickerson to watch the filming. “The days were hot, but we saw the filming as a part of history,” Fee says. “It seemed that there was a lot of waiting between the scenes.” On May 9, 1955, filming was under way, and those passing through the eastern edge of the city near Fourth and Halstead Street noted that streets were closed for a few hours as a Lincoln convertible cruised the area with Robertson behind the wheel. His passenger, William Holden, would play a major starring role in Picnic. The film has Robertson telling his former college buddy Holden how his father owned the complex of elevators. Soon, the two were on their way, 174 feet in the air, to the top of what was then Security Elevators where they gazed out upon the Reno County landscape. Fearing rains could slow film production, Columbia Pictures rented the grandstands at the Kansas State Fair and built interior sets under the grandstands for use should the need arise. On June 19, 1955, filming wrapped and on the following morning the cast and crew were on a chartered plane headed home to California, except for Novak, who left the city on a train. In the movie’s final scene, Holden jumps a train in Nickerson for a ride to Tulsa. Moments later, Novak boards a bus near downtown Nickerson for the trip to Tulsa for a rendezvous with Holden.

The tales

The filming produced its share of stories worth repeating, and at least one was verified in a chance meeting many years later with Holden. When Novak entered the Hutchinson News for an interview, the typewriters stopped and all heads turned in the direction of the 23-year-old actress. Early on Sundays, Novak could be seen walking the four blocks from the Baker Hotel to attend Mass at St. Theresa’s Church on Fifth Avenue. Then, there was a story of Holden chinning himself hanging out a 12-story window of the Baker Hotel late one night, suffering the effects of a heavy night of drinking. When a Hutchinson businessman encountered Holden years later while on a safari in Africa, he asked the actor if the story were true and received a quick confirmation. Picnic opened at theaters in November 1955 to acclaim from film critics, and it became a profitable venture for Columbia Pictures. During the 1956 Academy Awards, Picnic took home Oscars for Best Art Direction and Best Film Editing, and it was nominated for Best Actor in a Supporting Role, Best Director, Best Music and Best Picture. In 2002, the American Film Institute ranked Picnic the 59th best movie produced in the 100-year history of the organization.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012


Sister scenes Four years earlier, in 1951, Twentieth Century Fox crisscrossed Kansas in search of a site for a movie titled Wait ’Till the Sun Shines, Nellie, a story about a small-town barber who traces the 50-year history of the small mythical town of Sevillinois starting in 1895. George Jessel, the film’s producer, visited Kansas in the aftermath of the 1951 floods and seemed most impressed with locations in the Emporia area, but when the flood waters were slow in receding, he traveled west to see what else might be available. In a flight over tiny Castleton, 10 miles south of Hutchinson, they noted the tiny berg had a red depot, a feature the crew needed, and in a closer inspection decided that all else would meet their expectations. During the filming, the only building in Castleton used in the movie was the depot, with the remaining structures being fictitious storefronts. By August 15, 1951, the halls of the Stamey Hotel at Fifth and Main Street were sold out to a cast of 20, including actress Jean Peters, and a crew of 80. Several scenes included the lobby of the Stamey Hotel lobby, but the scene that got the most attention was a parade staged between a four-block stretch from Fifth and Main Streets to Fifth and Washington Streets. Locals observing the filming were awestruck how it took hours to film a two-minute scene. According to local legend, a familiar-looking man flew his high dollar airplane into the Hutchinson Airport one afternoon and asked for assistance in calling a cab for a ride into the city where he had a reservation in the Bisonte Hotel. A bystander at the airport offered the stranger a ride. As they motored down Eleventh Street, the stranger introduced

With floats and music, the Wait Till The Sun Shines,x-- Nellie parade traveled between a four-block stretch from Fifth and Main Streets to Fifth and Washington Streets.

himself as the famed Howard Hughes. Again, according to legend, Hughes was in town for a rendezvous with actress Jean Peters.

Meet me in Hutch

Filming in Reno County wrapped up August 27, 1951, but that would not be the last word from Hutchinson on its 12 days of fame with a Hollywood film crew. Soon, Mayor Bill Shaw, along with City Manager Willis Shaffer, were on a plane to Hollywood with a petition in hand, signed by 10,000 Hutchinson residents, asking Twentieth Century Fox to hold the world premiere for the movie in Hutchinson. Jessel and his leadership team took one look at the massive petition and scheduled the premiere in Hutchinson for May 14, 1952. On that day, a real parade with a local band playing music and Jean Peters riding atop a convertible converged on Hutchinson. The cheering crowd, estimated at 25,000, was reported as the largest parade turnout in Hutchinson’s history. That evening, all of Hutchinson attended a gala at the Sports Arena with Jessel taking the stage and entertaining the audience as emcee. Although Hutchinson would attract several other productions, nothing would equal the pair of movies filmed here in the 1950s. Cliff Robertson revisited the area in 1971 to appear in a movie titled Ace Eli and Rodger of the Skies and never declined an interview request from Kansas media outlets. No, Hutchinson may never be a mecca for movies and motion picture productions, but the salt city has had its moments and made the most of each.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012


Limestone Crush Across the country, miles of trails are created from a nationwide network of unused rail line corridors— Missouri just happens to have the longest

Sto ry by G lo r ia G ale • Ph otog r aph y co u rtesy o f Mi s so u r i D ivi s io n o f To u r i s m

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012



Katy Trail


The Katy Trail is 225-mile rail-trail managed by the Missouri State Parks.

other Nature may be on the run in the 21st century, but in 1870 her majesty was in full bloom. Today, the mature landscape stretches across a 240-mile swath of Missouri River bottomland known as the Katy Trail. It was all part of a plan in 1870 as builders laid rails for the Missouri-Kansas-Texas (M-K-T) line that would follow the path of Lewis and Clark up the Missouri River reaching out to the Kansas border. The goal for the M-K-T was to head west, shuttling cargo along miles of rail corridor and win the race to be the first railroad to reach the “Indian territories.” The train has long since ceased operation, but the rail corridor, edging the bluffs along the river and weaving through quaint towns and gentle pastureland, left an ideal path for outdoor enthusiasts to discover. The Katy Trail is a gem in Missouri’s green necklace of trails—something that didn’t go unnoticed by the late Edward D. “Ted” Jones, major benefactor for construction partnering with the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, which acquired the right-of-way in l986. Notably, the entire trail is part of the American Discovery Trail and designated as a Millennium Legacy Trail.

A new chapter for the land Defined by a serpentine, relatively flat, crushed limestone path, The Katy Trail snakes its way from Machens, just outside of St. Louis, westward to Clinton, providing an 8-foot-wide passage for bicyclists, hikers, birders and walkers along the picturesque landscape. As it meanders through the rural countryside, over half of the trail is bound by the Missouri River on one side and ancient limestone bluffs on the other. The trail is filled with a variety of dense forests, wetlands, valleys, open pastureland and farm fields—all contributing to an abundance of botanical species. Open year round, the trail is especially popular in the fall when the sugar maple, sumac and bittersweet blaze with color. Wildlife also abounds in the various habitats, especially among birds. It’s common to see red-tailed hawks, turkey vultures, bald eagles in the winter, and because the trail is located along the Missouri River flyway, migratory birds like Canada geese. Blue herons, sandpipers and belted kingfishers are regularly sighted. All along the trail, 30 trailheads provide amenities including lodging, dining and campgrounds, bike rentals, restrooms, etc.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012


Amtrak and Shuttle Services Amtrak provides four daily passenger trains operating between St. Louis and Kansas City. Other Missouri stops include Kirkwood, Washington, Hermann, Jefferson City, Sedalia, Warrensburg, Lee’s Summit and Independence. Amtrak allows a limited number of unboxed bicycles on trains between St. Louis and Kansas City. Reservations are required, and a service charge applies. Passengers must assist in loading, securing and unloading bicycles. To receive a train schedule or to make reservations, call (800) USA-RAIL.

“For outdoor enthusiasts, the Katy Trail provides an energetic way to experience all the beautiful landscapes Missouri has to offer for bikers and hikers. The entire corridor is filled with interesting places to visit no matter how long you ride,” says Dawn Fredrickson, Katy Trail coordinator for Missouri State Park. “There really isn’t a typical day for bikers or hikers. If you’re reasonably fit, biking 10 miles an hour is about average,” she says. “For example, Clinton to Sedalia is 35 miles – Sedalia to Pilot’s Grove is another 26 miles. At each of the trail head stops there are numerous services from lodging, food, bike services and parking.” Combining your Katy Trail with a wine-tasting tour is easy since the trail just happens to cut through Missouri wine country. For nearly 100 miles Highway 94, which the Katy Trail follows, is often called the “Missouri Weinstrasse,” German for “wine road.” Many of the towns near the weinstrasse still retain a German flavor. For those who prefer grain instead of the grape, there’s also a variety of microbreweries to sample.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012



Katy Trail

Katy Trail Services and Local Contacts Clinton Chamber of Commerce Sedalia Convention and Visitors Bureau Pilot Grove information (660) 834-4300 Boonville Chamber of Commerce New Franklin Rocheport information (573) 698-3210 Columbia Convention and Visitors Bureau Hartsburg Merchants Association (573) 657-9599 Jefferson City Convention and Visitors Bureau Kingdom of Callaway Chamber of Commerce (800) 257-3554 Hermann Area Chamber of Commerce Marthasville Chamber of Commerce (636) 433-5242 Washington Chamber of Commerce Augusta Chamber of Commerce Defiance Merchants Association (636) 798-2222

Various points of interest are found along the trail, including cafĂŠs, bed and breakfasts, wineries and lakes, all adding to its allure.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

St. Charles Convention and Visitors Bureau

Shuttle Services Show Me MO Tours out of St. Louis offers a shuttle service for hikers and bicyclists who use the Katy Trail. (314) 781-0015

To maximize your experience, the Missouri Department of Natural Resources recommends bringing plenty of water, a hat, a tire patch kit, extra bike tube and plenty of sunscreen. Begin your journey at any one of the trailheads listed below. Drive your car and park or take the Amtrak. You can arrange for a shuttle service to return or stay overnight in numerous lodging options from quaint bed and breakfasts, hotels or campsites within the communities, “Which, by the way, these rural towns love,” says Fredrickson. Throughout the year, various events are scheduled all along the trail. September brings a Wine Walk in Boonville. From October 6 to 10 is the Annual Beer Festival in Augusta, and in December, two Christmas walks are planned in Augusta. “There’s always a place or event to explore on this unique trail. Bike for a day or a week. A couple of good websites list just about anything you would need to know before beginning your trip,” says Fredrickson. “Though open year round, the Katy Trail is gorgeous in the fall. Plan ahead and start rolling.” Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

“There really isn’t a typical day for bikers or hikers. If you’re reasonably fit, biking 10 miles an hour is about average”



Katy Trail

–Dawn Fredrickson Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

Hutch talks



Hollowell chief Executive Officer of the Cosmosphere

4} What does the future hold for the Cosmosphere? The Cosmosphere has a wonderful future. … We never stop wondering and dreaming about what is “out there” and beyond what we can see, which makes the Cosmosphere’s mission of “Honoring the Past and Inspiring the Future of Space Exploration” as relevant today as any day past or future. We are developing relationships with emerging space exploration companies to bring those resources to bear in support of Cosmosphere operations and exhibits, and we continue building connections with Foundations for future funding considerations. By nurturing relationships with the Smithsonian, with renowned astronauts who are friends of the Cosmosphere, and other museum and space exploration industry leaders, we plan to stay at the forefront of visibility and opportunity. 5} Have you ever wanted to be an astronaut? I don’t want to disappoint anyone, but I have to say no. During the time I grew up, spaceflight was very much in its infancy. I wanted to be a baseball player but learned later on that talent was a key requirement. 6} As a native of Hutchinson, what do you believe makes the community so special? One of the best things about Hutchinson is that we have so many people of all age groups committed to the community. With the arts, downtown revitalization, outreach to children through education and services, Chamber of Commerce programs, and special programs like the Ulster Project and United Way, these various organizations are truly working to enhance the way we live.


native Kansan who grew up in Hutchinson, Richard Hollowell is now in the driver’s seat of one of the region’s largest attractions, The Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center. After a dedicated career in accounting and plant management with two successful drywall companies, Hollowell began to prepare for retirement with a 2011 return to the area. “It was determined, with much help from my wife, that I simply wasn’t ready for retirement,” he says. After filling a role in operations, in 2012 Hollowell became the chief executive officer and is loving every day of this new endeavor. 1} What inspired you to become involved in the Cosmosphere? After coming on board, and before I knew it, going to work every morning was fun and the days were rewarding. The other employees were so committed to and had such a love of the Cosmosphere. Walking in every day under the Blackbird is inspiring, and every walk into the galleries to check on details there included looking at amazing artifacts and rediscovering history. I’m inspired every day and still having fun. Isn’t that the best kind of job to have? 2} What would many people be surprised to learn about the Cosmosphere? Visitors often seem surprised as they comment on the

quality and quantity of artifacts on display and the extraordinary way the story of space exploration is told. I think also that people do not realize the Cosmosphere is a nonprofit institution or that it was initially expected, 50 plus years ago, to selfsustain on ticket sales and other internal revenue sources without an endowment. We need to fund an endowment for the future. 3} What is your favorite exhibit? That’s easy. The SR-71 Blackbird and the Apollo 13 Command Module Odyssey are awe-inspiring. I am reminded by the famous words, “Houston, we have a problem,” that nearly all problems are in fact opportunities and with a team approach can be solved.

7} If you had three wishes for Hutchinson, what would they be? 1. My hope is that the Cosmosphere will be preserved as one of the premier space museums in the world so that future generations, especially here in the central United States, may continue to enjoy the treasure that we know it to be today. 2. I would not only wish for, but work for, increased economic growth, which in turn fuels many positive aspects of our community. Bringing tourists to Hutchinson to visit the Cosmosphere is just one cog in the wheel. 3. Another wish would be that those who have had the vision and inspiration to revitalize the Hutchinson Downtown area continue their efforts and receive the support of the citizens of our city. I think it is simply amazing. 8} How often do you sneak astronaut ice cream? As often as I can!

I nte rvi e w co n d u cte d an d e d ite d by k at y ib s en • Ph otog r aph by B r ian Lin gle

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012


Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

Hutch talks



mulch-hart Assistant Manager Kansas State Fair

but most of all it is the people. Seeing young children laughing and playing in the Steckline-Lair Fountain, or their faces when they discover where milk comes from, is priceless. It isn’t just the fairgoers that keep me motivated but the entire Kansas State Fair team. We have a group of hard-working staff and volunteers who work extremely hard to ensure others enjoy their experience. 3} Why is the State Fair such a valuable event for Hutchinson? Annually, Hutchinson gets to play host to the largest event in the state—not bad for a city the size of Hutchinson. The community has the opportunity to benefit from the 10-day event as well as from over 400 events scheduled on the fairgrounds throughout the year. In addition to the many scheduled events the Kansas State Fairgrounds is open yearround for individuals to enjoy. I can’t tell you how many individuals use the grounds to teach their teenagers how to drive, bring their children to fish at Lake Talbott, walk their dogs and even some run laps around the grounds. 4} If you had a goal for the fair, what would it be? To celebrate another 100 years! 5} What is your favorite event at the fair? I love the livestock and animal events. These events are what make the fair unique. 6} How does our fair compare to others across the nation? In the fair industry, the Kansas State Fair is considered one of the premium fairs. We are viewed as being one of the most progressive fairs while maintaining the history of fairs past. The Kansas State Fair is also viewed as a fair that continues to highlight agriculture and agriculture education. For many reasons some fairs have seen a significant decline in agricultural-related activities; however, the Kansas State Fairs’ agricultural component remains strong.


espite the fact that Lori Mulch-Hart, assistant manager of the Kansas State Fair, grew up in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, she has become a Kansas transplant who eats, sleeps and breathes the Kansas State Fair. After graduating from Truman State University, Kirksville, Mo., in clothing and textiles retail, MulchHart dabbled in retail and marketing. In 1999 she began her career with the Kansas State Fair as the special events and sponsorship director. “After four years [as sponsorship director] I accepted the position as assistant manager,” she says. “The experiences afforded me at a young age, with a strong work ethic and foundation for my future at the Kansas State Fair.” Fortunate for Kansans, we’re still benefiting from Mulch-Hart’s hard work and dedication. Here’s her preview of the 2012 fair. 1} What’s in store for this year’s fair? What are the highlights? The 2012 Fair is the 100th official Kansas State Fair. We plan to begin a yearlong celebration that concludes with a big party in 2013. Highlights of the fair include Horse Palooza, an equine (horse) education and entertainment day; Sea Lion Splash, featured at

7} Can we get a teaser on the butter sculpture?! Sure, it is going to be made out of butter.

Gottschalk Park; Ron Diamond will return on Bretz Law Arena; and we have a Centennial Mosaic Tile project that all fairgoers can participate in.

8} Who is your right-hand man when fair time comes? I have many right-hand men and women. My right and left hand is my husband, Kelly. He has learned over the years that when your spouse works at the fair, everyone in the family works at the fair. He takes the week off from his job at UPS and assists in any way he can. A great friend, Cindy O’Neal, helps me through the thick and thin of most fair activities, namely those of the Kansas Fairgrounds Foundation. We have laughed together and cried, but always get the job done and are ready for the next challenge.

2} You’ve worked on the fair for almost 15 years. What keeps you so enthused? There are many aspects of the Fair that keep me enthused,

9} If you could live on any fair food for the rest of your life, what would it be? Our Lady Gudalupe Cheese Enchiladas!

I nte rvi e w co n d u cte d an d e d ite d by k at y ib s en • Ph otog r aph by B r ian Lin gle

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012

Hutchinson Magazine: Fall 2012


best bets





Kansas State Fair

Noon, 2 and 4 p.m. Kansas Cosmosphere and Space Center Enjoy a free guided tour in the Hall of Space with your paid admission to the museum.

Yoder Turkey Dinner



11 a.m. North of Yoder (3506 E. Longview Road) Annual home-cooked turkey with all the fixin’s. Buses welcome. (620) 663-4244

Dillon Lecture Series

10:30 a.m. Hutchinson Sports Arena The Dillon Lecture Series welcomes Candy Crowley, CNN’s chief political correspondent and anchor of State of the Union with Candy Crowley. Tickets are $10 at the door.

October 20

Second Saturdays at the Cosmosphere

september 8

Kansas State Fairgrounds Celebrate 100 years of the Kansas State Fair. Featuring various events, informational booths on all things Kansas and plenty of fair food.

Partridge Pedal Party

10 a.m. Partridge Community Church parking lot This community festival takes on a Bicycle Theme with a bicycle show, history exhibits, local entertainment, unicycle hockey, various rides, food vendors, games, contests and crafts.

23 september

Run for the Rocks

8 a.m. Carey Park Lace up for the 2nd annual half-marathon benefiting the Boys and Girls Clubs of Hutchinson and Hutchinson Recreation Commission.

Hutchinson Magazine | Fall 2012



Small Town 140 Characters Conference 9 a.m. Historic Fox Theatre The Small Town Conference offers discussion in social media and social networks. This particular conference will carry themes of agriculture, small business and small town issues.

Please submit event information to: hutchinsonmagazine@ (Dates and times subject to change)


Fall 2012 issue of Hutchinson Magazine.


Fall 2012 issue of Hutchinson Magazine.