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Volume 34 • Issue 3 March 2017
ON THE COVER More than music | 16
Wichita Symphony concertmaster John Harrison is an inventor, computer programmer and multimedia artist.
Robinson Middle School teacher wins Horizon Award | 9
Douglas Clay Hahn photo
Features From the Publisher’s Files.....................4 Performing Arts Calendar.....................7
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People & Places........................................8 Cinema Scene........................................10 Movie Review.........................................11 Cook’s Library........................................12
Spring Home & Garden Guide | 22
East Wichita News
Dateline....................................................13 Focus On Business................................20 Wichita Homes......................................23
Publisher Paul Rhodes Managing Editor Travis Mounts Production Abbygail Brown Reporters/Contributors Sam Jack, Patsy Terrell, Philip Holmes, Jim Erickson
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Now in our 34th year! The East Wichita News is a monthly newspaper focused on the people and places on Wichita’s East Side. It is delivered free to most homes within our coverage area, although distribution is not guaranteed. Single copies are available in a variety of Eastside locations. One copy per person, please. Visit our website for more - www.eastwichitanews. com. Email story ideas and photographs to email@example.com. Visit us on Facebook.
Symphony on ice: Music, hockey and ice share a weekend A couple weekends ago, I took in a pair of Wichita’s long-standing entertainment options. On a Saturday night, my oldest son, Isaac, and I happened onto a pair of last-minute tickets to the Wichita Thunder hockey game. On Sunday, my youngest son, Aaron, accompanied me to the Wichita Symphony’s performance of “Carousel,” where the full orchestra shared the stage with cast members from Music Theatre Wichita for a unique performance of the classic musical. I found the symphony performance to be comfortable and relaxing, with plenty of...legroom. Our aging but still venerable Century II was built in a time when every square inch of building was not built with the idea of getting the most out of every last dime. Intrust Bank Arena (IBA), is a fantastic addition to the city. It has much more bathroom space and snack space than the city’s blue, riverside UFO, but when it comes to actual seats, IBA doesn’t hold a candle to Century II. You see, I’m a tall guy, with somewhat large feet, so it’s a tight fit for me to squeeze into arena seats or airplane rows. Now, don’t get me wrong in moment here. My experiences at IBA have been very positive. I shared the Thunder’s very first game there with 13,000 of my closest friends. I watched Bon Jovi from the back row of the upper level behind the stage. I’ve cheered on the Thunder numerous times, and had fantastic seats for the Oklahoma City Thunder’s very first exhibition game in Wichita. But I have a very specific beef with Row H at IBA. Whatever genius was responsible for designing the interface between the removable seats on metal and the permanent seats affixed to con-
Travis Mounts | Managing Editor
crete decided to run a giant plastic bar along the backs of all the Row G seats, chewing up what little footroom there was for Row H occupants. So, in addition to having my legs cockeyed just to fit between the seats, I had to turn my feet at weird and uncomfortable angles to fit. There were no cupholders. Isaac and I struggled to maneuver the drinks and pizza we bought for dinner. And to add insult to injury, my beloved Thunder, who are struggling mightily this season, lost 4-2 for their 19th loss in 20 games. The next afternoon at the symphony was a different experience. The concession lines were slow. The bathroom traffic was illogical and congested. And we were comfortable. In Century II’s Concert Hall, the rows of seats were magnificently far apart from each other, with more width across each seat. My legs stuck out in front of me. My feet rested at natural angles. I could feel my toes. Now, if we could just combine the two events. I would pay money to see a tuba player on ice, using his instrument to shove a flautist into the glass, or watch someone try fire a puck into a timpani drum. But as a starting point, let’s just take the seating at Century II and place it around a hockey rink. That would be music to my ears...and legs.
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Cuba is now more accessible for Americans
If you’ve ever We had to declare From the Publisher’s Files dreamed of going to a reason for traveling Cuba, that dream is to Cuba, from one of now a reality. 12 options on the list. Like many baby We picked “journalboomers, I’ve long istic activity” which been fascinated with seemed wildly approCuba. I was born in priate for an old news 1957, the year that hound like myself. Fidel Castro’s revOther options include olution was taking agriculture, religious Paul Rhodes | Publisher root. All the history and educational activbetween our two ities, and there’s even countries since then simply left me, like an option called “support for the Cuban many others, with a curiosity that would people,” which we learned was being used not go away. by many American visitors. So the middle of last year, when my Restrictions or not, Cuba was glad to girlfriend Kim suggested that we should have us there. And we were glad to be consider a winter respite in Florida’s hisvisiting Cuba. toric South Beach area, we extended our All kinds of tour groups are available to vacation plans a little bit farther. arrange travel to Cuba, and those options Ninety miles farther, to be exact. are growing daily. But Kim and I normally At the time, travel to Cuba by U.S. like to arrange our own travel plans, and citizens was just beginning to open up. that wasn’t a problem. By early October, we were able to book a Once we determined our general categoflight from Miami to Havana, Cuba. Since ry for travel to Cuba, we were able to use then, we’ve learned, direct flights to Cuba that detail to book our flights, and make are now available from several U.S. cities. lodging accommodations. Havana abounds Knowing how quickly the desire to travel with hotels, but we chose to rent an apartto Cuba would grow, Kim and I wanted to ment in the heart of Old Havana, which travel there as soon as possible. Obviously, was where we wanted to focus our travels. visitors from other countries have been We used Airbnb, which has helped us traveling to Cuba with only limited interwith travel all over the U.S. in the past. ruptions, and Americans have been getting For a fraction of the cost of a hotel in there through other, more circumvented, the area where we wanted to stay, we were routes. able to book a comfortable one-bedroom And we were not mistaken. In fact, we apartment with modern conveniences in found Havana to already be bustling with a historic building right across the street American visitors like ourselves, even with from the Capitol of Havana. That historic the travel “limitations” building, modeled after our own Capitol in that are in place. Washington, D.C., is undergoing a com-
Paul Rhodes poses for a picture in one of the famous restored antique cars in Havana.
A view down a street in Old Havana, with a newer building in downtown Havana in the background. Kim Swansen/East Wichita News
plete renovation to once again house the Cuban Parliament. From that vantage point, most of Old Havana was within walking distance for us. We used a taxi a few times, a bicycle taxi once (it was outrageously priced compared to a regular taxi) and on our final day in Havana we took a tour ride all over the city in one of the famous restored antique cars that you hear about and see in pictures. Ours was a red-andwhite 1954 Ford Mercury convertible, and was a stylish way to spend an afternoon. The Cuban people were warm and welcoming, and the country is rich in history, culture and cuisine. I have had some fantastic international travels in my life, and Cuba ranks right up there as one of the best experiences ever in terms of safety and cultural experiences. In the days ahead, I’ll be sifting through the photos we shot and the notes I made while in Cuba, and sharing more next month. I know a lot of people are interested in what Cuba has to offer visitors, and what it’s like to travel there from the U.S. now that restrictions have been lifted.
Wichita Festivals, Inc., producers of Riverfest and Autumn & Art at Bradley Fair, have announced a new event that will debut in downtown Wichita this summer: Wichita Vortex Music Festival, with headliner Dwight Yoakam. Scheduled for Aug. 4-5, the festival combines live music, Wichita pride and the rare chance to camp in the heart of the city at the confluence of the Arkansas and Little Arkansas rivers. The festival’s main stage will be located in the gated area between the Mid-America All-Indian Center and the Keeper of the Plains. “Events and festivals – particularly those that gather us together in the heart of Wichita – are part of our identity as a community and can help us continue to grow as a dynamic, welcoming city,” said Mary Beth Jarvis, president and CEO of Wichita Festivals, Inc. “So, we’re very excited to announce our newest offering, a unique experience that will entertain locals, draw regional visitors and add to our area’s quality of life.” Yoakam, touring in support of his popular bluegrass album, “Swimming Pools, Movie Stars ...,” will headline the outdoor concert on Friday, with opening acts beginning at 4 p.m. The remainder of the line-up has an Americana and alt-country flair, including national acts Pokey LaFarge, Lindi Ortega, Moreland & Arbuckle, and regional favorites Carrie Nation & the Speakeasy. Saturday morning, an allyou-can-eat pancake and sausage breakfast will be accompanied by a performance featuring regional favorites, the Cherokee Maidens. In addition to live music, attendees will enjoy local craft brews, a food truck rally and late-night activities including a midnight movie and glow-in-the-dark games. Tickets are on sale online at WichitaVortexFest.com. Five hundred Vortex early bird passes will be available at the discount rate of $45. Once Vortex early bird passes are gone, standard issue festival passes will be available for $65 (until sold out or July 27). Starting July 28, any remaining regular festival tickets will be sold as the $85 Procrastinators Pass. For those who want premium seating and bar access, up to 400 Vortex VIP passes will be sold for $100. Those who wish to camp can purchase a $50 Happy Camper Overnight pass, which includes a campsite for up to four people and tickets to the Pancake PackUp Party, 9-11 a.m., Saturday morning. Tickets for just the pancake breakfast and morning entertainment are $15.
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Country star Yoakam to headline new music and camping festival
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Symphony in the Flint Hills to celebrate Chisholm Trail Michael Martin Murphey will be special guest
Faces wanted. At East Wichita News, we’re already working on feature stories for upcoming editions. If you know of someone whose face (and story) should appear on these pages, please let us know!
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Symphony in the Flint Hills will bring the Chisholm Trail to life this year at its iconic annual prairie event on Saturday, June 10. For the event’s finale, the sunset concert will feature the Kansas City Symphony with country western singer-songwriter Michael Martin Murphey, who will share his passion for cowboy culture and grasslands conservation. “As we celebrate the 150th anniversary of the Chisholm Trail at this summer’s Symphony in the Flint Hills, we can’t think of a better way to end our annual event than having a true cowboy — Michael Martin Murphey — perform with the Kansas City Symphony during the sunset concert,” said Christy Davis, executive director for the Symphony in the Flint Hills. “Murphey is not only an iconic western musician, he’s also an advocate for protecting and preserving grasslands. It’s an honor to feature an artist who shares our passion for this landscape.” Michael Martin Murphey is best known for topping the charts in pop, country, bluegrass and western music. Known as the “Cosmic Cowboy” in the 1970s, Murphey has made more than 35
albums in his career with hits including “Wildfire,” “Carolina in the Pines” and “What’s Forever For.” The real-life rancher with Texas roots has also been a long-time activist and outspoken supporter for the American West, which led to the creation of the Murphey Western Institute. “The goal of Murphey Western Institute is to protect the life-sustaining mountain, prairie and plain landscapes that continue to inspire my music,” said Murphey. This year’s Symphony in the Flint Hills will take place at Deer Horn Ranch in Geary County. To celebrate the 150th anniversary of the famous trail that brought cattle from Texas to Kansas in the years following the Civil War, there will be several surprises for attendees to enjoy. The day-long event will include presentations about the Chisholm Trail, education about the Flint Hills region, covered wagon rides, cowboy poetry, a silent art auction and food and beverage. After the sunset concert, the day will conclude with dancing, stargazing and a story circle. Tickets for the 2017 Symphony in the Flint Hills Signature Event will go on sale at 10 a.m., Saturday, March 4. General admission tickets are $90 plus sales tax for adults and $50 plus sales tax for children 12 and under.
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The Symphony in the Flint Hills concert last year ended with “Home on the Range.” Helping with the lyrics on stage were youths from the KSU Summer Chorale Institute.
Through March 26 – “Golden Girls,” Roxy’s Downtown. A theatrical parody of the beloved series starring John Bates, Tom Frye, Kyle Vespestad, Monte Wheeler. Tickets $20-$30. Call 316-265-4400. March 3-5 – “Honk!” performed by Music Theatre for Young People. Shows at 7:30 p.m. March 3 and 4, and 2:30 p.m. March 5, at Mary Jane Teall Theater inside Century II. Advance tickets are $12 for adults and $10 for students, available at www.wichitatix. com. Tickets at the door are $15. Ugly looks quite a bit different from his darling duckling brothers and sisters. The other animals on the farm are quick to notice and point this out, despite his mother’s protective flapping. Feeling rather foul about himself, the little fowl finds himself on an adventure of self-discovery, all the while unknowingly outwitting a very hungry Cat. Along the way, Ugly meets a whole flock of unique characters and finds out that being different is not a bad thing to be. For more information, visit www. mtypks.org or call 316-262-6897. March 5 – Wichita Symphony Youth Orchestra spring concert, 3 p.m. at Century II. General admission tickets $15, $8 for youth 13-18. Visit www. wichitasymphony.org.
March 11-12 – “Von Oeyen Plays Grieg,” Wichita Symphony Orchestra.
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Shows at 8 p.m. Saturday and 3 p.m. Sunday. Tickets $20-$65. Visit www. wichitasymphony.org. March 12 – “Hiding Placing,” by Ballet Magnificat, 6:30 p.m., Countryside Christian Church, 1919 S. Rock Road. A ballet about Corrie Ten Boom, a woman who hid Jews during the Nazi occupation in the 1940s. Tickets are $10 at the door, or call the church office at 316-686-7206. March 21-23 – “Once,” presented by Theater League, Century II. This tale of a Dublin street musician won eight Tony Awards in 2012, including Best Musical. Tickets start at $35; visit www. wichitatix.com. Show is rated PG. March 23-April 9 – “Life Could Be a Dream,” The Forum Theatre Company. Shows at 8 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday, and 2 p.m. Sunday. $25 for Friday-Saturday shows, $23 for Thursday and Sunday. The show is about Denny and the Dreamers, a fledgling doo-wop group preparing to enter the Big Whopper Radio contest. Shows performed at The Wilke Center, First United Methodist Church, 330 N. Broadway. Purchase tickets online at www.forumwichita.com or call 316618-0444. March 26 – Delano Jazz Orchestra concert, 3 p.m. at West Side Baptist Church, 304 S. Seneca. The orchestra will perform big band jazz tunes from artists like Count Basie, Buddy Rich, Stan Kenton and Maynard Ferguson. Local jazz trumpeter Scott Strecker will be the featured soloist. Admission is free, donations are accepted. Do you have an event for the Performing Arts Calendar? Email East Wichita News at ewn@eastwichitanews. com.
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March 8-19 – “Good People,” Wichita Community Theatre, 258 N. Fountain. Written by David Lindsay-Abaire, the play pays respects to the authors old South Boston neighborhood and its insurmountable class divide. Performances at 8 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday, 7 p.m. Sunday March 12, and 2 p.m. Sunday, March 19. Tickets $14, $12 for seniors/students/military. Special opening night ticket price of $10 on March 8. Call for reservations, 316-686-1282.
Performing Arts Calendar
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Through March 25 – “East Side/ West Side Story,” Mosley Street Melodrama. Written by Carol Hughes. Tickets for dinner and show $30, $26 for seniors/children; show only, $20. Call 316-263-0222. Uncensored version, March 4 at 11:15 p.m. Cost $20; rated “R,” nobody under age 17 admitted.
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East Wichita News People and Places • Wichita State University’s College of Engineering has named its newest class of Wallace Scholars. The 2017 Wallace Scholars were announced Friday, Feb. 17. Wallace Scholarship recipients will receive $28,000 each to attend Wichita State for four years. Wallace Scholars are a community of more than 40 engineering students from every class and nearly every major within the College of Engineering. Wallace Scholars are involved on the WSU campus and within the Wichita community to promote engineering, math, science and community service. The 2017 Wallace Scholars include Kameron Koeber, a Northeast Magnet High School student; Trent Madden, a student at Andover High School; Liana Savage, a student at Wichita East High School; Garrett Sims, a student at Andover High School; and Brooke Taylor, a student a Northeast Magnet High School. • The Wichita State University Cohen Honors College is proud to announce nine recipients of the Koch Scholars program for the fall 2017 semester. Selected from approximately 100 applicants, these nine recipients will each be awarded between $30,000 and $50,000 during their four year attendance at WSU. This competitive scholarship program targets high school seniors enrolling in the College of Engineering or the W. Frank Barton School of Business. Scholarship selection is based on high academic achievement including GPA and test scores, work, volunteer and leadership experiences, an essay and an interview process. Koch Scholars will be honored at a luncheon on Friday, April 7, at Koch Industries. The Koch Scholars program is made possible by a $1.54 million pledge from Koch Industries and the Fred and Mary Koch Foundation. The fall 2017 semester marks the third freshman class to participate in the Koch Scholar program. Eastside recipients include Camille Buranday, Wichita East, computer science; Zakariyya Hassan, Wichita East, aerospace engineering; and Trent Madden, Andover High, engineering.
• The four inductees into the 2017 Kansas Pro Indoor Football Hall of Fame have been named. They are Rick Lee, Morris Lolar, James McCartney and Paul Savage. Induction will take place at halftime of the Wichita Force indoor football game at Intrust Bank Arena on March 25. For information, call 316-264-5222. Lee has been involved with football for more than 25 years, and has coached 10 years at Wichita Collegiate School He is the longest-serving pro indoor football coach in Kansas, with 11 seasons under his belt. He has been an offensive line coach with two indoor franchises in Wichita. He is now in his third season with the Wichita Force, which won the 2016 championship. He coached for the now-defunct Wichita Wild, which won championships in its final two seasons. Lolar was a player for the original Wichita Warlords indoor team and head coach of the Oklahoma Crude in Enid. He coached for the Wild in the Indoor Football League, first as defensive coordinator and then as head coach. In 2013, Lolar led the Wild to a 12-2 record and the CPIFL title. He has coached at Bethel College, Northwest Mississippi Community College, Independence Community College, Texas A&M University-Commerce, Friends University, and at Wichita East and Wichia North high schools He was an all-city defensive selection at Wichita South, a two-time NAIA All-American with Friends, and was with the Edmonton Eskimos in the Canadian Football League. He is an inductee in the Wichita Sports Hall of Fame and the Friends Athletic Hall of Fame. McCartney, a Hesston native, was a two-time KCAS Player of the Year at Bethel College in 2008 and 2009. He began his professional career in 2010 with the Wild. He spent four years with the team, earning CPIFL all-team honors in 2013 and back-to-back championships in 2013 and 2014. Savage has coached 10 years of pro indoor football in Kansas and is the second-longest serving Kansas pro indoor coach, only behind Rick Lee. He has coached indoor football with
the Wichita Warlords, the Wichita Wild and the Wichita Force. Savage has 30 years of total coaching experience, including at Wichita East and Wichita South, Hutchinson Community College, Friends University and Bethel College. He joined “Sports Daily” on KFH radio in 2001 and has worked on various local sports talks shows since. In 2003, he founded the Wichita Sports Hall of Fame and Museum. He has been inducted into the Kansas Baseball Hall of Fame, Wichita Biddy Basketball Hall of Fame, the Wichita Southeast Athletic Hall of Fame. • New officers have been elected to lead the Kansas Chapter of the Western Music Association. They are president Orin Friesen of Benton; vice president Jim Farrell of Andover; secretary Sharon Chesmore of Derby; and treasurer Roy Pethtel of Haysville. Jeff Davidson of Eureka is the immediate past president. Friesen has been a long-time radio personality on KFDI FM in Wichita. He served as general manager of Prairie Rose Chuckwagon Suppers near Benton and performs with the Prairie Rose Rangers. Farrell is a recording engineer, former Nashville musician, and producer. He owns and operates Jim Farrell Studios in Towanda and performs with the Diamond W Wranglers. Roy Pethtel is also a fan who has been active with WMA. He is also prolific at reciting cowboy poetry. “Sharon Chesmore is western music’s number one fan,” said outgoing president Jeff Davidson. “As a volunteer, she works tirelessly to promote western music and the WMA.” The Kansas WMA chapter sponsors various shows and projects to promote western music. The organization meets quarterly for business discussions and jam sessions. WMA members receive the Western Way magazine which is the only professional magazine dedicated to the promotion of western music. • Approximately 5,400 undergraduate students at the University of Kansas earned honor roll distinction for the fall 2016 semester. The students, from KU’s Lawrence and Edwards campuses and
the schools of Health Professions and Nursing in Kansas City, Kansas, represent 91 of 105 Kansas counties, 48 other states and territories, and 39 other countries. Following are the Eastside students who earned distinction: From Wichita: Geoffrey Amenda Jr., Cameron Christian, Jessica Clinton, Alexander Corby, Zahava Davis, Garrett Farha, Elizabeth Frank, Simon George, Holly Harpel, Patrick Hullings, Zora Jenney, Caleb Johnson, Jacob Johnson, Benjamin Johnson, Daniel Kamen, Ally Lowden, Kara Maloney, Patrick Maloney, Henry Moore, Allegra Morton, Andrew Murray, Vishnu Nagireddy, Kristina Nguyen, Eleanor Oberg, Kim Pham, Chadwick Sevart, Mitchell Sheets, Jordann Smith, Sydney Staehr, Reagan Strange, Haris Vrahliotis, Tiffany Bouddhara, Daniela Calderon, Jacob Camenzind, Mark Camenzind, Elizabeth Carroll, Gretchen Choe, Hannah Clough, Randy Do, Anna Hu, Emily Jordan, Caleb Maloney, Schyler Merrills, Kikelomo Ojo, Kyle Ta, Brandon Tomas, Jazil Ahmed, Lueke Anderson, Cara Davis, Connor Fleming, John Olson, Marcette Perales, Danielle Peterson, Calvin Rhinesmith, Emma Seiwert, Kayla Buckley, Linda Smith, Joseph Casella, William DeVries, William Gunderson, Jenae Hesse, Emanuela Kelly, Samantha King, Audrey Klenda, Ryan Kuchinskas, Kylie Mank, Jack Martin, Abigail Streit, Charles King, Tyler Cargill, Ryan Downing, Garrison Freeman, Trevor Scheopner, Julie Vo, Philip Aaby, Levi Aldag, Grace Binter, Tyler Florers, Karam Hamada, Ahmad Hamdeh, Meer Husain, Austin Huynh, Andrew Johnston, Diana Kim, Anna Korroch, Zoe Lai, Brandon Le, William Lecompte, Asia Leeks, Rylan Minar, Alexis O’Malley, Olutuminiun Osunsanmi, Gary Patterson, Juliette Rishell, Tiger Ruan, Madeline Schulte, Dylan Severson, Cierra Smallwood, Charles Topliff, JaShawn Walker, Virangika Wimalesena, Kevin Zhong, Douglas Jenkins, Ali Oatsdean, Madison Reid-Tedesco, Brantley Straub, Kenneth Altendorfer, Emily Angstadt, Grant Blizzard, Collin Bruey, Cora Burgoyne, Claire Byers, See PEOPLE, Page 14
Jill Bajaj with some of her students at Robinson Middle School. Bajaj was recently recognized as one of the best first-year educators in Kansas. Contributed photo
Q: What have you learned in your first year of teaching? What was most surprising or challenging? A: During my first year of teaching, I learned to be a masterful multi-tasker, to have peripheral vision that can see everywhere in the classroom at all times, and to maintain my sense of humor. I learned to rely heavily on the wisdom and sage counsel of those seasoned teachers who generously shared their time and resources with me. Most importantly, I learned that teaching engaging, rigorous math lessons is very important, but building relationships and truly being “present” with students is even more important. Q: What does getting this recognition from the state of Kansas mean to you? A: I was very humbled and honored to receive this award. It was so affirming to know that educators I greatly respect think I am doing a good job.
Q: How have your students and colleagues reacted? A: My colleagues have been wonderfully supportive and encouraging. Truly, I think this award speaks volumes about how collaborative and supportive the staff at Robinson Middle School is, and how the Wichita District as a whole supports, mentors, and encourages first year teachers. My students were very excited for me – especially when I was surprised in my classroom with a group of school leaders, lots of balloons, and a TV camera. They were all hoping to be on TV. Q: What drew you to the teaching profession and/or to Robinson Middle School in particular? A: I worked in the field of business for several years and then stepped out of the workforce for a period of time to raise my kids. During this time, I began tutoring students at Coleman Middle School through their “Success in the Middle” program. I absolutely loved it and ultimately decided to go back to school and get an education degree. I have always heard great things about Robinson (and am married to a Robinson Ram alumnus!) so I was thrilled when I had the opportunity to take a position teaching sixth grade math there. I love my sixth-graders and love being part of the Robinson community.
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Robinson teacher wins Horizon Award
Robinson Middle School teacher Jill Bajaj was recently among 32 recognized as among the most-outstanding first-year educators in Kansas. Bajaj won a Horizon Award, sponsored by the Kansas State Department of Education. She shared some of her thoughts on the award, and on starting out as a teacher, with the East Wichita News.
March 2017 - 10
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‘Fifty Shades Darker’ and ‘Jackie’ are both murky The theme of consensual BDSM as an acceptable variation of sexual activity pops up on the big screen now and again, but never seems to catch on: “The Last Tango in Paris,” “Exit to Eden,” and “Secretary” all made stabs at the general theme, without inspiring any movie progeny. Now we have “Fifty Shades Darker,” based on volume two of a trilogy of novels that has been selling well. I don’t expect “Fifty Shades Darker” to be the beginning of a trend, either, at least not a trend that will show up in mainstream movie theatres. In “Shades,” Dakota Johnson still has some charm, but Jamie Dornan’s needing a shave does not counteract his lack of masculine charisma, and little attempt is made to bring the characters to life. Kim Basinger shows some signs of becoming a satisfactory villain, but only toward the end. Surprisingly, the movie is not erotic. It includes more undressing than actual nudity, among other signs of timidity. Hints of dark secrets in Dornan’s past are held off for development in part three. What character development there is is devoted to Johnson’s increased interest in occasional abuse, which is presented as a simple fact that needs no explanation. In the literary volume two, Dornan’s character becomes a really repellant stalker; at least we are spared that. I read most of the source material, before deciding life was too short somewhere near the middle of the third volume. So I can say that they did not give the moviemakers much to work on. Oh well. “Jackie” would seem to have offered some real substance as Natalie Portman’s Jackie Kennedy tries to protect the reputation of her murdered husband. But despite her talk of his “legacy,” all she really seems to deal with are the details of his funeral. I am told that back in 1963, she would not have had to worry about tabloid sensationalism about JFK’s notorius (even then, among the media) sex life; it’s hard for me to believe that, but she doesn’t seem to be concerned about
it, for whatever reason. Portman’s biggest problem is that, throughout the movie, Jackie is pretty much bowed down with grief and has to concentrate on keeping under control. This tends to produce a one-note performance by both character and actress. Especially toward the end, there is far too much concentration on “Camelot,” including the music from it. It’s hard to see how this relates to Jackie’s expressed insistence that her husband was a great man, and it fits too neatly with the theatricality of the funeral details, the visual aspects of which are emphasized. It’s probably my own problem that I couldn’t keep from remembering that Jackie was going to go on to a controversial marriage to Aristotle Onassis, with its rumored prenuptial agreement that I hope did not include everything I’ve read was in it. The continuation of some of JFK’s programs might have shifted too much attention to Lyndon Johnson, but the risk needed to be taken, if only to give more depth to Jackie’s concern. John Hurt is barely recognizable as a priest in the closing section, and he gets a little preachy. But it’s a relief when Jackie finally reaches the end of her tether and blows up at Billy Crudup. She never raises her voice, just turns it into steel as she tells him that she will walk with her husband in his funeral procession. We, and Portman, needed more of that sort of thing, and Portman proves she could have handled it. A lot of potential is wasted here, and as a long-time Portman fan, I rather resent it.
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Thursday, March 16, 2017 2 Sessions Jim Erickson
La Land” has a lot to enjoy. The ending may be too realistic for the rest of the movie, but it is neither pessimistic nor a mere loose end. There is a general spirit of optimism and good times, with the camera swooping and dancing almost as much as the characters do. The whole thing is visually gorgeous, from setings to costumes in solid colors. The endless succession of movie posters don’t always seem appropriate, but they do remind us that “La La Land” is not taking place in our real world, but rather in the world of Hollywood romantic comedy. Editing is sometimes playful, suitable to the general spirit. And you will almost certainly enjoy the musical more than I could. I don’t remember when a movie has been so often recommended to me as just plain fun; I wish I could have seen it that way. Matthew McConaughey’s “Gold” seems to have been seen by almost nobody but me, and is not worth many words. Its rags-to-riches and back again is repeated often enough to dilute any sense of an ending. It shares with Jennifer Lawrence’s “Joy” the implication that the good life can be lived only at the bottom of the economic heap, because the people get colder and more selfish the higher you climb. McConaughey’s character seems unable to lose his initial better qualities and harden himself the way Lawrence’s Miracle Mop inventor could. As an actor, McConaughey strains too hard to keep some heart in this cold-blooded world, and for once is not much fun to watch. “Gold,” even more than “La La Land,” is afflicted with false endings, and the chicaneries of the finacial world are more disheartening than enlightening. The whole picture is a bit of a downer.
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I’m glad people almost bullied me into going to see “La La Land,” because I think it’s a consistently interesting variation on the stereotype musical, and an artifact of its time. But I don’t see what all the fuss is about. Maybe the problem is mine: I don’t care about musicals or even about music as such. The numerous echoes of Gene Kelly I spotted persuade me that there must be a lot of references to other musical movies that went clear over my head, and I’m sure those who can recognize more will understand and enjoy more than I could. But the whole picture looked to me like a succession of episodes in search of a story, the segues and links of which were left to me to supply. The plot doesn’t puzzle, because it’s mostly the same old stock stuff we’ve seen over and over before; but the ending(s) suggest that there are serious matters to be concerned about that the bulk of the movie skips merrily over without giving us enough detail to let us feel along with the pretty-standard characters enough for emotional involvement. There’s no buildup to the serious matters to let us give a damn. Which is why I can’t join the chorus of praise for Emma Stone’s Oscar-nominated performance. She does extremely well with what she’s given to work with, but there isn’t enough there to make a real character, until the final section, which is too late. And, presumably in effort to include all the cliches they can think of, the moviemakers include half a dozen episodes we expect to be the end because they have been ends in other movies, which leads us to wonder whether this particular movie is ever going to end at all. All along, there are the currently fashionable red herrings, I suspect intended to suggest the complicated worldview we are all forced to take in the continual presence of smartphones and globalization, but in a little fluff of a movie like this, these are just distractions in need of development. Like the many airplane landings in “Sully,” they may be intended to remind us of things that could have or should have happened. If you’re not in thrall to old ideas, “La
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Movie review: ‘La La Land’
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Tastes and locations make food memorable Some meals leave an impression recognize her name – she was one of Cook’s Library on us. It may be because of the the contestants on Bravo Network’s food, the company or the circum“Top Chef.” The circumstances of stances. the dinner were amazing and the I still remember fondly the family food was out of this world. The dinners of my childhood. The dessert she served that night was a family stories were passed along rosewater pavlova with a pear and with the mashed potatoes. There cranberry chutney in a hibiscus was laughter and conversation and sauce topped with pistachio flavored a sense that this was just one mocream. Have you ever imagined those ment in a string of family gatherthings in combination? I had not, but Patsy Terrell ings that would stretch into infinity. it was just as delicious as it sounds. Of course, that was not to be - at I’m one of those people who least not with that cast of characters. will whip out my phone for a photo of the food if it’s We won’t get to have Mama’s coconut pie or Mrs. unusual and that was no exception. I was dining that Cooper’s coconut cake again. We might have the recipes, night with people far more sophisticated than me, but but we all know we never have things just right to bring eventually mine was not the only phone being used to back those particular tastes. Or maybe it’s the feelings capture the moment. I’m guessing there are a few dozen that are missing. photos of that dessert now in existence. Some meals are special because of the food itself. The Although it’s not exotic, I’m delighted to be sharing a first time I tasted fresh mozzarella was in San Francisco. recipe associated with many happy memories for me. I can put myself back in that restaurant with my friend, Teresa, and feel the creaminess of the cheese contrasted The first thing Patsy Terrell learned to cook was Cowith the crunch of the fresh basil. It’s as vivid as if it conut Pie. She’s still not sure if her Mama was teaching were yesterday. her patience or was just tired of doing all that stirring At other times, it’s a combination. I was recently invitherself. See more recipes and stories at cookslibraryed to a dinner cooked by chef Renee Kelly. You might withpatsy.com.
Coconut Pie (Mama’s recipe) 3 eggs, separated 3/4 cup sugar 1/3 cup flour 2 cups milk 2 Tablespoons butter 1 cup coconut Salt to taste Mix sugar, salt and flour together into saucepan. Add egg yolks, milk and butter and mix well. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until the filling is done. When you can stir and the bottom of the pan remains visible, it’s done. Remove from heat and mix in coconut. Pour into baked pie shell and cover with meringue while pie is still warm. Meringue 3 egg whites Up to 6 tablespoons sugar Vanilla to taste Beat egg whites until frothy; gradually add sugar, continuing to beat until stiff peaks form. Add vanilla or other flavoring. Spoon onto pie, spreading to crust edge to seal filling in. Bake at 325° for 15 to 18 minutes, until nicely browned. Sprinkle some coconut on top before browning if desired.
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SAVE the DATE! Watch for details next month!
March 12 – The 17th annual wheelchair game, 2 p.m. at Church of the Magdalen, 12626 W. 21st N. The Thunder, featuring Wichita Thunder hockey players, will take on the Plunder. Tickets are $5, kids 12 and under are free. Wheelchair Sports, Inc., will sell tickets at the March 3 and 4 Thunder home games at INTRUST Bank Arena, behind section 120. The team will be wearing special uniforms on Friday, March 3rd when the Thunder host the Tulsa Oilers. The team will then wear the jerseys during the Wheelchair game and will be auctioned off afterwards with the profits benefiting Wheelchair Sports, Inc. Last year’s auction raised over $6,500 for WSI. The Plunder is a group of wheelchair athletes from the area associated with Wheelchair Sports, Inc. WSI provides athletic opportunities for disabled individuals. For more information about
Upcoming events in and around Wichita
WSI, visit http://wsi.wcsports.org. March 14 – Wichita Rose Society, 7 p.m. at Botanica, The Wichita Gardens, 70-1 Amidon. Social meet and greet begins at 6:30 p.m. Rebecca McMahaon, K-State Extension horticultural food crops agent, will present “Basics About Soil,” defining the properties of soil and what can be done to provide the best growing environment in your home garden. Admission is free, guests are welcome. March 16 – Project Beauty monthly meeting, noon at Wichita Country Club, 8501 E. 13th N. Bob Gress, a naturalist, photographer and former director of the Great Plains Nature Center will
be the guest speaker. Lunch is $20. RSVP to Pat Whitney, 3222 N. Clarence Circle, Wichita, KS 67204, by March 13. Guests are welcome. March 17-26 – Voyage to Vietnam, Exploration Place, 300 N. McLean Blvd. Immerse yourself in Vietnamese culture with special dances, fashion shows, food, music, games and more featuring local Vietnamese organizations, groups and vendors. Plus, celebrate Tet, the Vietnamese New Year with the museum’s own re-creation of Tet Festival on March 18. More information at exploration.org. March 18 – Wichita Genealogical Society monthly meeting, 1 p.m. at Lionel Alford Library, 3447 S. Meridian. “Your Ancestor Mustered Out After the Civil War; What Happened to Him?” presented by Virginia Downing. The men mustered out and went back home, some to families, and some moved on west. The program will look at numerous family records created that may help you locate him and his family. The meeting is open to anyone and is free. More information is available at www.wichitagensoc.org.
wanted. At East Wichita News, we’re already working on feature stories for upcoming editions. If you know of someone whose face (and story) should appear on these pages, please let us know! firstname.lastname@example.org 316-540-0500 www.facebook.com/ EastWichitaNews
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March 4 – Mega Bonding Through Board Games, a free come-and-go event at Sedgwick County Extension, 21st and Ridge, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Bring your family and friends and connect over board games. For more information, visit www.sedgwick.ksu.edu.
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People Continued from Page 8
Lauren Capps, Anita Chua, Michael Cory, Emma Dougherty, Andrew Hammar, Joseph Hayes, Jordan Hernandez, Emily Hewitt, Yueyang Jiang, Griffin Jobe, Hannah Johnson, Maegan Johnston, Sydney Kaufman, Elizabeth Kirk, Landon Lawson, Jared Lenz, Kevin Mattar, Zachary McGrath, Riley Messina, Andrew Monroe, Brynley Orndorff, Bayli Palmer, Alexandra Passannante, Nathan Ralston, Anthony Raper, Jacquelyn Rech, Lindsay Redden, Kali Richardson, Ashley Teinert, Evan Uhlig, Sneha Verma, Chris Vuong, Mollie Walker, Hannah Wilson, Erin Woods, Leah Zarich, Sharad Richardet. From Eastborough: Jack Hane, Rachel Jordan. From Bel Aire: Tae Smith, Peter Ercolani, Shegufta Huma, Daniel Ozor, John Ward, Farrah Zonoozi, Dylan Cxrane, Sofia De Lo O’Villarreal, Noah Schneegurt. • Shannon Lauber has been hired to the position of deposit service manager at Credit Union of America. Lauber will be located at CUA’s main location at 711 W. Douglas. She has a degree in human resource management from Wichita State University and over 10 years of previous experience in the financial services industry. Melissa Gattenby is now serving as branch manager and Jeremy Holt is now serving as assistant branch manager of the West Douglas branch. Gattenby transfers from her role as deposit service manager, also at the West Douglas location. She has been with
Credit Union of America for 10 years. Holt transfers from the CUA branch located at 212 S. Ridge Road, where he had been serving as the assistant branch manager. He has five years previous experience with the organization. Brian Isham has been promoted to the position of assistant branch manager at 212 S. Ridge Road. Isham previously served as a financial service representative with Credit Union of America and has four years previous experience as a senior assistant manager. Tam Lively has been hired to the position of real estate loan officer. Lively joins the mortgage department located at Credit Union of America’s main location.
and Kayla West.
• Nearly 500 University of Dallas students were named to the fall 2016 dean’s list for earning a GPA of 3.5 or higher. The East Wichita students include John Duong, Thomas Hand, Chase Johnson, Matthew Nickel, Paul Patton and Molly Wierman.
• More than 200 Emporia State University students were honored at the first-year scholars reception on Feb. 14. East Wichita students included Ethan Anderson, Aaryn Bennett, Emma Dixon, Chasidy Eron, Damien Henderson, Taylor Lee and Madalynn Schmitz.
• Andover resident Zach Baker has been named to the University of Arkansas at Little Rock’s fall 2016 dean’s list. Students must have a GPA of 3.5 or higher.
• Kent State recognizes more than 8,700 undergraduate students who have been named to the dean’s list for fall 2016. Undergraduate students who obtain a 3.400 GPA or higher while maintaining 12 or more credit hours during the spring qualify to receive this honor. Eastsiders honored include Avery Niernberger of Andover, and Tatum Reusser and Mollina So of Wichita.
• Capital University has announced Hanna Ewart of Wichita was named to the president’s list for the fall 2016 semester. The president’s list indicates the highest level of academic distinction; students must have achieved a gradepoint average of at least 3.85. • More than 4,500 University of Nebraska-Lincoln students have been named to the deans’ list for the fall semester of the 2016-17 academic year. Eastsiders on the list include Artem Shukaev, Jack Nibert, Anna Kuhlman
• Kallista Knight of Andover excelled during the fall 2016 semester at Hofstra University, achieving a GPA of at least 3.5 to earn a spot on the dean’s list. • Colin Patrick Bourland of Wichita was named to The University of Alabama’s dean’s list. A total of 11,758 students enrolled during the 2016 fall semester at UA were named to the dean’s list with an academic record of 3.5 (or above) or the president’s list with an academic record of 4.0 (all A’s). The UA dean’s and president’s lists recognize full-time undergraduate students.
• Dean’s list recognition at The Citadel is given to cadets registered for 12 or more semester hours and whose grade point average is 3.2 or higher with no grade below a C. Local cadets earning honors are Mitchell List and Grant Schoonover, both of Andover. • Eastsider Addison Root was named
to the dean’s list at the University of Memphis for the fall 2016 semester. The list is composed of students who have earned 12 or more hours in either the fall or spring semester with a minimum grade-point average (GPA) of 3.5 on a 4.0 scale for that semester. Do you have a submission for People & Places? Email us by the 20th of the month at email@example.com.
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Anisia Brumley, a senior at Northeast Magnet High School, has won the 2017 Wichita State University Clay Barton Scholarship. She will receive $12,000 a year for four years to attend Wichita State. The $48,000 Barton Scholarship is one of the largest business scholarships in the state. Brumley plans to major in business and human resource management. While at Northeast, she has spent time as representative, vice president and secretary of the student council. She’s a member of the National Honor Society and the Principal Advisory Council and is president of Teen Heroes. In 1991, the late Rent-A-Center co-founder W. Frank Barton, who provided the naming endowment for WSU’s Barton School of Business, established a scholarship in his son Clay’s name. Clay Barton died from cancer in 1988 at the age of 20, cutting his promising life short. While the Clay Barton Scholarship does not substitute for Clay’s presence, it is a powerful legacy. The candidates face a rigorous set of challenges in competing for the Clay Barton Scholarship.
Anisia Brumley, a senior at Northeast Magnet High School, is this year’s winner of the Barton Scholarship at WSU. Contributed photo
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Wichitan wins $48,000 Barton Scholarship
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More than music
John Harrison is a fixture on the music scene in Wichita, from his role as concertmaster with the Wichita Symphony, to regular appearances at Chamber Music at the Barn. In addition to music, he invents and programs computers, and is a multimedia artist. Douglas Clay Hahn photo
Symphony concertmaster is an inventor, programmer and artist East Wichitan John Harrison is used to being called a “Renaissance man.” Well known locally as concertmaster of the Wichita Symphony Orchestra, he is also an inventor, a computer programmer and a multimedia artist. Yet Harrison says the idea of a Renaissance person is in need of an update. “The Renaissance person is a dated model, because there’s too many things to know now,” he said. “There was a time when it was a little more imaginable, but the depth of knowledge you need in order to be innovative in a certain field is so high. “Now there’s this idea of ‘Renaissance communities,’ where people have depth of knowledge in one area, and enough knowledge in other areas to communicate to people in other disciplines,” he continued.
As Harrison describes it, he has spent much of his life searching for, and creating, such communities. In childhood, he launched down a usually single-minded track, toward a life as a classical soloist. As a five-year-old boy in Boston, his parents started him on the Suzuki violin method. It quickly became clear that he had a prodigious affinity for the instrument. When he was 11 years old, he performed a solo with the Boston Pops Orchestra. “I somehow had an early talent for it,” he said. “That was both good and bad, because when I graduated high school, I was a really good violinist who didn’t really know why I was playing. I didn’t know that I even liked it, really. I went to college and figured it out there.”
He studied first at the Eastman School of Music, in Rochester, N.Y., before following his primary violin teacher to the Cleveland Institute, another top conservatory. Such institutions are characterized by the monastic devotion of pupils who spend nearly every waking hour studying music or practicing instruments. Harrison dove into musical discipline along with his classmates, but kept dual enrollment at conventional research universities – first the University of Rochester, then Case Western – where he studied computer science. A broader education allowed him to get better perspective on the violin pursuit that had filled his days since early childhood. “I think I probably would’ve quit playing (if not for that), because I wouldn’t have known what I See MUSIC, Page 18
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Harrison performs at home with his wife, Vanessa Whalen. Contributed photo
Douglas Clay Hahn photo
Harrison dons a Santa hat during a holiday performance with the Wichita Symphony.
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was doing and why I was doing it,” he said. He realized that the problems he worked to solve as a violinist were often not so different from those he hacked away at as an engineer. “This is where my brain works well; I have this hyper-focus,” he said. “I would just get obsessed with playing a scale, or obsessed with figuring out how to shift a fourth. Looking from the outside, it probably looks like I have a lot of discipline, but I don’t think it’s discipline – I think it’s obsession. Unsolved problems drive me insane.” After graduating college, Harrison launched a successful musical career, performing as concertmaster or soloist with ensembles across the U.S. In 1996, he moved back home to Boston, to be near family and to try for a place in the Boston Symphony, one of the world’s top orchestras. “I was lucky I was able to do that, and I regularly performed as a substitute with the Boston Symphony,” Harrison said. “But I found it wasn’t what I wanted. As performers, we were really disconnected. The audience came in one entrance, we came in another. We’d play the concert, the audience would clap, and we would all go home.” In 1998, Harrison saw a posting for the Wichita Symphony concertmaster job, which at the time was linked to a place on the music faculty at Wichita State. “I realized I wanted to be more part of a community where I could really contribute, so that looked like a ticket to me. I took that audition, and that’s how I ended up here,” he said. Harrison’s nearly 20 years in Wichita have been busy and varied ones. In 2004 and 2005, he took a leave from his posts with the symphony and Wichita State to get a masters degree from MIT’s Media Lab, famous as a center where artists and scientists conduct research and create new technology together. When he came back, he founded Wichita State’s Center for Research in Arts, Technology, Education and Learning, which explored “technology as an expressive element” from 2005 to 2008. And he was a founding member of MakeICT, Wichita’s collaborative “makerspace.” With 300 dues-paying members, MakeICT is
still going strong. On a recent Saturday, a welder in heavy protective gear barged past a cluster of textile artists, while electronics enthusiasts bent over exposed circuit boards in a corner. “That’s a really great example of a diverse community,” Harrison said. “There are artists there, engineers, woodworkers. Blue collar, white collar. You see the whole gamut, and everybody’s an equal. It really creates a place for innovation.” Harrison’s own projects bring a musician’s sensibility to electronic media. At MIT, he invented electronic toy blocks that, stacked in different combinations, create a large variety of digital sound manipulation effects. Later, two Wichita art installations, “Touch 1” and “Touch 2,” used infrared lasers, lasers and LED projectors to create moving images that viewers manipulated with their hands. Filimin, the startup company that now takes up much of the time he does not devote to classical music, likewise grew from his efforts to infuse emotional and tactile elements into technology. “My family, like many, doesn’t always get along,” Harrison said. “Christmas was coming up, year before last, and I was thinking, ‘What do I give them?’ “I thought, ‘What if we could just get rid of the words, just communicate and remember that we’re family, without any words?’ That’s why I came up with the idea of just a light to say, ‘I’m thinking of you.’” Filimin lamps are equipped with LEDs that can change color on command, and linked into networks of two or more via the Internet. “One person touches it, and they all light the same color,” Harrison said. “For my family, I made six. Before I sent them away, I showed them at a couple of MakeICT events.” He got such strong interest that he decided to turn to Kickstarter, the “crowdfunding” website, to get the money to make them on a commercial scale. On May 21, 2015, he and his collaborators hit their $50,000 goal, and the project was funded. “That’s when I started to learn that I had really no idea what I was doing,” Harrison said with a
What is a concertmaster? Wichita Symphony audiences see concertmaster John Harrison come on stage at the beginning of each half, take a bow, and give a signal that the oboist should play the note the orchestra will use to tune, before taking his seat in the first violin section, just to the left of the conductor’s podium. But there’s a lot more to the job of concertmaster than that, much of it behind the scenes, according to Harrison. “People usually notice that, in some weird sense, the strings are all choreographed, with bows going up and down together,” he said. “The concertmaster is ultimately responsible for that.” Harrison studies each piece on the orchestra’s program, then marks which direction bows should be traveling as the first violin section plays particular notes or passages. He passes his marks on to the principal second violinist, who uses them to determine bowings for her section, and so on for viola, cello and bass bowings. It’s not just for looks. Bow direction has a big effect on phrasing, and therefore on the overall sound of the strings. The concertmaster also complements the “big picture” efforts of the conductor, sometimes giving instructions about phrasing or technical aspects of a particular measure or passage. During a rehearsal for the symphony’s recent “Night at the Opera” concert, for example, Harrison demonstrated how a series of slight crescendos could help the strings stay together during a tricky arpeggio passage. Harrison also tries to lead by example, which explains why his body language often looks more animated than that of the rank-and-file musicians. “The other section leaders, we’re all watching each other, sort of like chamber music, and more or less trying to base our ideas on what we see and hear around us. When the conductor gives a downbeat, how does the orchestra play together? Some of it is what the musicians are sensing from leaders in the orchestra. It’s a negotiation that is constantly happening,” he said. On top of all that, Harrison is also responsible for learning and performing any violin solos that composers indicate for orchestral works, and he is frequently called upon to perform as featured soloist in concertos. “The symphony is a really important part of my life, and I’m always happy that I have that obligation,” he said.
“I think that the product adds beauty to the world, and that’s my goal. So where does that start? Does it start when the product is sold, or when it’s manufactured? I hired a friend of mine who’s just amazing at working with his hands, and we have worked together to build a jig and manufacture these things ourselves,” he said. Filimin went “viral” during the recent holiday season, and the lamps are now back-ordered through the summer. So far, 4,000 of the lamps have been created and sold. “Technology in general hasn’t been as meaningful for me as playing the instrument, but it’s been really fun,” he said. “I get the fun part, I get the purpose-driven part, and (Filimin) has been challenging in ways that are making me grow.”
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Harrison performs with the Wichita Symphony. Douglas Clay Hahn photo
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John Harrison, pictured at right, rehearses with Sarunas Jankauskas, left, and Jamie Knight, at Prairie Pines. Harrison is a regular at Chamber Music at the Barn.
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laugh. “Manufacturing is such a different process than anything I knew; this is by far the hardest thing I’ve ever done.” Harrison jumped into the deep end. A partnership with the Wichita Womens Initiative Network ended after demand for Filimin lamps outstripped what the nonprofit could handle. He then worked with a Chinese manufacturing companies to fine-tune a design that could be produced economically overseas. But Filimin is now trying to figure out how to bring the manufacturing and assembly back to Wichita again. Not knowing much about the lives of the Chinese workers who make the touch lamps “just doesn’t feel right,” Harrison said.
March 2017 - 20 FOCUS ON BUSINESS www.eastwichitanews.com
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Irlen Clinic of Wichita................... Page 20 Wichita Grand Opera..................... Page 21
The Irlen Method may be your vision answer Do you have headaches or dizziness that doesn’t seem to have a medical cause? Are you bothered with light sensitivity issues that make it difficult to concentrate? Are you having problems reading or learning at a desired pace? Is your depth perception making it difficult to drive or do other activities? You could be suffering from a problem that affects countless numbers of people, and the answer may be a unique approach to vision issues called the Irlen Method. Dr. Cathryn Hay, director of the Irlen Clinic of Wichita, knows from experience that the Irlen Method works. “I found out, somewhat by accident, that I had this problem,” said Dr. Hay, a certified Irlen diagnostician and a licensed clinical professional counselor. The former English teacher, who worked with gifted students, came across “all kinds of problems, and not just learning disabilities.” As she went back to school to earn her Ph.D. and become a counselor, she found she had vision issues that were hampering her
Dr. Cathryn Hay, Irlen Clinic Director.
abilities, as well. The Irlen Method corrects a unique visual perceptual processing problem, usually inherited, that can affect achievement, learning, and performance for both struggling and good readers. Nearly half of all people with
reading problems and learning disabilities can be helped, as well as individuals seen as underachievers or poor learners. Through careful and exacting tests, Irlen diagnosticians like Dr. Hay can recommend colored lenses for eyeglasses that can help with reading and learning issues, as well as headaches, light sensitivity, discomfort and fatigue, poor depth perception, and even autism and head injuries. “Recent research shows that concussions, traumatic brain injury, and other disease processes also can cause Irlen Syndrome and can benefit from Irlen spectral filters,” said Dr. Hay. Dr. Hay trained to become a diagnostician for the Irlen Method, and today is one of 25 clinic directors in the U.S. She incorporates the screening work into her counseling practice, and has seen remarkable results for herself, as well as her clients, because of the Irlen Method. “My niche market is helping people through the Irlen Method, and there are some amazing success stories,” she said.
The Irlen Method has been the subject of extensive research that legitimizes the process, and is based on science. Dr. Hay suggests the non-invasive Irlen Method as a good option to try before adding medications. The one-hour screening will show if Irlen Syndrome is present and able to be helped with spectral filters. For more information about the Irlen Method, contact Dr. Hay at 316-6894233. Her counseling practice and the Irlen Clinic of Wichita are located at 151 Whittier, Suite 1000-A. More information also can be found at www. irlen-wichita.com.
At the Irlen Clinic, Dr. Cathryn Hay uses tinted lenses across the light spectrum to individualize results for every client.
written to be performed in a sanctuary using a mix of professional and amateur singers, musicians and dancers. “He focused on a Biblical story that was familiar and beloved by his audience,” Bakardiev said. “And he invited the children and adults of the town to help tell it.” The audience that saw the premiere, at St. Bartholomew’s Church in Orford, came away knowing they had witnessed something special. “An unforgettable experience,” one critic wrote. Bakardiev has presented “Noah’s Flood” several times during his long career as an impresario, and he is looking forward to bringing it to the sanctuary of Holy Cross Lutheran Church at 8 p.m. Friday, June 9. A smaller core of professional singers and musicians will join forces with a larger cast of children and adults that were chosen through open auditions.
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When company founders Margaret Ann Pent and Parvan Bakardiev began working to launch an opera company in Wichita, more than 15 years ago, they could have settled on a name like “Opera Wichita.” Instead, they decided to join a handful of U.S. companies that highlight the word “Grand” in their names: Wichita Grand Opera. “Grand opera” is an important sub-genre within the broader world of opera, generally indicating works like “William Tell” and “Turandot” that deploy imposing sets and large performing forces to depict largescale emotions or moments of historical crisis. When Wichita Grand Opera named itself, it was making a bold claim that the company would gather the resources and community support needed to mount such operas. And it did, in the years that followed, performing both beloved and rare works of composers such as Verdi, Puccini and Gounod. But “grand” also has a broader meaning for the company. It means showing the Wichita and Kansas community a positive reflection of itself. Wichita Grand Opera’s first-ever spring season offers three unique opportunities for Wichitans to be part of “grand.”
Parvan Bakardiev said. “Every company, and most every performance, included both arts. That was our inspiration to promote and present this great Russian company.” The performance is a perfect start to a romantic evening, Bakardiev said, and children are always thrilled to meet a real prima ballerina at intermission or after the show.
Toast the town at Wichita Grand Opera’s Champagne Ball, May 6.
The first is the most familiar to Wichita arts patrons: Russian National Ballet Theatre continues its longstanding relationship with WGO by performing Tchaikovsky’s fairy tale ballet “The Sleeping Beauty,” April 23 at 6:30 p.m. “The Sleeping Beauty” is the most beloved of the classic Russian ballets, thanks to its combination of virtuosic dancing and glorious music. “In the so-called ‘golden age’ of grand opera, in 19th-century Europe, there was no separation between ballet and opera,” WGO president and CEO
An illustration of Noah overseeing animals boarding the Ark as the storm approaches in Britten’s “Noah’s Flood,” June 9 & 11.
“It’s miraculous that one of the best operas of the 20th century is also one where parents and children can make music together,” he said. “The productions I’ve been involved in are all ones I cherish.” Single tickets to “The Sleeping Beauty” range from $37 to $85, while general admission tickets to “Noah’s Flood” are $35. Individual tickets to the Wichita Grand Opera Champagne Ball are $200, a portion of which is tax deductible. Patrons can save up to 20 percent through season subscriptions or group orders. For more information about the 2017 Season, visit WichitaGrandOpera.org. For tickets, you can call the WGO Box Office at 316-262-8054, purchase online at SelectASeat.com, or buy them in person at the Century II Performing Arts Center.
Princess Aurora greets her suitors in Tchaikovsky’s “The Sleeping Beauty,” April 23.
Next will be WGO’s first-ever Champagne Ball, 6 p.m. Saturday, May 6, at the Hyatt Regency. The Opera Ball has long been a highlight of Wichita’s annual social calendar. This year, by making its ball part of its spring season, WGO aims to create a participatory event that will evoke such spectacles as the Vienna Opera Ball and the Met Gala. “You don’t have to go to Vienna or the Met,” Bakardiev said. “You can be part of that right here in Wichita. Dress to the nines, meet your friends and get an introduction to Wichita Grand Opera.” “A party without champagne is just a meeting,” the saying goes. In addition to quaffing the signature bubbly, ball-goers will enjoy a three-course dinner accompanied by champagne drinking songs, bid on a variety of luxury live and silent auction items, and dance to the music of Matt Johnston. The spring season concludes with another first for the WGO and for Wichita: a new production of Benjamin Britten’s lovable opera, “Noah’s Flood.” By the time Britten wrote “Noah’s Flood” in 1958, he had left his seaside English hometown behind. Operas such as “Peter Grimes” and “Billy Budd” had made him an international sensation. Yet he wanted to create an opera that would both connect with and ennoble villagers like the ones he grew up with. He came up with what he called a “church opera,”
21 - March 2017
WGO spring season offers three ways to be part of ‘grand’
March 2017 - 22
East Wichita News East Wichita News
HOME AND GARDEN GUIDE
A simple spring cleaning checklist (StatePoint) It’s the time of year to roll up your sleeves and do some spring cleaning. Experts point out that it’s helpful to streamline the tools you use to do the job and the tasks you seek to accomplish. “An all-purpose cleaner and a tough degreasing agent can be used in so many areas of the home,” says Jeff Devlin, a licensed contractor who’s appeared on several home improvement television shows. Devlin’s first tip: look to reduce the number of products in your cleaning arsenal. “Along with high-quality sprays and cloths, I use one all-purpose cleaner that also contains degreasing ingredients.” Devlin offers these different strategies for critical areas of your home. • Stove and range hoods: While you should be cleaning these areas regularly after food preparation, take this opportunity to conduct a more thorough cleaning. Spray cleaner directly on the mess for up to two minutes. Wipe clean with a sponge or cloth. Then rinse thoroughly with clean water. • Sinks and countertops: Sinks and countertops can be a trap for food, grease, grime and soap scum. Generously spray non-porous surfaces with your cleaner then rinse with clean water. • Stove exhaust filter: The grease buildup that col-
lects on the stove’s exhaust filter can be a tough nut to crack. In a sink basin, mix 8 ounces of a concentrated multi-surface cleaner and 1 gallon of hot water and submerge the filter. Place the filter in a sink or dishpan and pour in concentrated cleaner to cover. Allow the filter to soak for 30 minutes. Drain the dishpan and rinse thoroughly with hot water. • Floors: Give your floors a mopping. Mix 4 ounces of cleaning solution with 1 gallon of warm water. Apply with mop or sponge. • Garbage cans and diaper pails: Bags often leak nastiness into the bottom of the garbage can, which can easily be missed when quickly replacing the bag. Turn your cleanser’s nozzle to spray and generously cover the can. Wipe or brush any areas that have any residue. Rinse thoroughly with clean water. • Showers, tubs and tile: Use your cleaning agent at full strength and generously spray surfaces directly. Allow it to penetrate the soap scum for up to two minutes. Do not allow to dry. Wipe away with a coarse sponge or cloth. Rinse thoroughly with clean water. • Toilets: Let’s face it. This isn’t anyone’s favorite job but it has to be done. Turn that nozzle to spray and generously spray the outside of the toilet. Wipe clean with a paper towel, then give a quick rinse.
• Patio: For patios, outdoor furniture, concrete, vinyl fences and siding, use the same cleaner outdoors: simply spray, then wipe clean with a cloth or sponge and rinse surfaces with clean water. While you’re at it, consider removing grease and grime from tools, engine parts, tires, sports gear and lawn equipment. For efficiency, consider cleaning solutions that don’t require pre-cleaning.
A simple spring cleaning checklist can help you finish the job quicker.
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be necessary if services and facilities are available. The next step is to measure your furniture and see how it works with your new floor plan. It will be important to see what you actually have to work with in a smaller setting.You can experiment with graph paper or a CAD program to see what works best. Since you will be using less furniture, try to use pieces that can do double-duty if possible. A chest may need to multitask as storage. A dining chair may need to double as an occasional chair. And, if you have furniture sets, it’s okay to break them up and keep only the pieces you need. One area often neglected is the storage areas of the new place. These areas include closets and cabinets as well as the kitchen area. In the kitchen/dining area, you may not need all the pots, pans, and dishes if you are not serving for large groups. The same idea is true for linens. Using off-site storage is always an option but not usually convenient. You may just need to get creative or simply reevaluate what it is you actually need. Hanging on to too much can defeat the purpose of downsizing. Besides the step-by-step mechanics of downsizing, there is the more human side of the process. Downsizing can be both physically and emotionally overwhelming. Right or wrong, people get emotionally attached to their belongings. Getting rid of things that are full of memories or just things that you like having can be tough. The flip side is that divesting your home of unused and unneeded items can be very liberating as well. Downsizing equates to simplifying your lifestyle. It is a lot of work and it does require a certain mental toughness. The result will hopefully be a positive one with less stuff to keep track of and more time for things that are more important and enjoyable.
HOME AND GARDEN GUIDE
At some point in life, there may be a time when you will want to consider downsizing. We normally think of downsizing for retirees, but it is not exclusive to that group. Perhaps your living situation has changed or maybe you just want to simplify things. In a way, “downsizing” is just decluttering on a very major scale. The biggest challenge with downsizing is that over time we tend to accumulate a lot of stuff. For most, it’s much easier to accumulate than divest. But, there are limits to what a household can store, and if you are moving to a smaller home there may even be tighter limits. The goal is to go through the accumulated belongings and to figure out what items are most important to you now. The tricky part is when one speculates about the possible future need of an item. Let’s face it, we all find it difficult to get rid of something we MIGHT need later. The logical starting points are the storage areas: attic, basement, closets, sheds, and drawers. This is probably where you can shed the most unneeded items and really gain momentum on the whole downsizing project. Chances are, if you haven’t used it by now, you are not going to do so. This sorting project requires quick decisions about what to do with these items. Basically it’s a “stay or go” proposition and then what to do with the “go” items. There may be things that go straight to the dumpster. Other items you may like to pass on to family, friends, or charity. And there may be yet other things that you would like to sell. However you decide to part with these items, be sure you have predetermined stacks, boxes, or areas to sort as you go. Avoid having a “not sure yet” pile as you will end up getting bogged down and possibly duplicating your work. Once you get that rolling, you will need to assess your actual needs and current lifestyle as it relates to your day to day activities. Make note of what you actually use as opposed to what you might use in the future: items for hobbies you have yet to begin and restoration projects you plan to start “sometime” should be the first to go. Be realistic. Depending on your new living situation, you may not even need many items you are storing now. If you are moving to a community setting, many services may be provided.Yard tools and exercise equipment, for example, may not
23 - March 2017
The upside of downsizing
Replacement wood flooring is a big trend this year and porcelain tile that looks like wood.
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HOME AND GARDEN
Gross Tile and Custom Remodeling carries a full line of Armstrong solid wood flooring. The American Scrape flooring line offers high-quality, American-made options.
March 2017 - 24
Gross Tile tackles all home remodeling projects
Gross Tile and Custom Remodeling can handle all your home improvement projects, from floor to ceiling. Literally. With spring just around the corner, owners Mark and Cathy Gross already are well into a busy time of year. And right now, one of the big trends for 2017 is solid wood flooring as a replacement option for major remodeling projects. “You should see my warehouse,” said Mark. “It’s loaded up with wood flooring for the projects we have scheduled right now.” Gross Tile is busy with both residential and commercial jobs, and has opened a new showroom location in the Delano District. The new showroom provides an additional location that is convenient for clients from all across the city. Clients can now book
appointments with the Gross Tile team at the Delano Showroom, located at 1528 W. Douglas, by calling 316-7731600. Right now is the perfect time to launch that home improvement project you’ve been dreaming about. If it’s new flooring you’re wanting, Gross Tile carries one of the largest selections of wood, laminate, tile and carpet options in the city. “Solid, three-quarter inch hardwood flooring is the big trend right now,” said Mark. A popular option has been Armstrong’s American Scrape flooring, providing clients with a high-quality, American-made product that is both beautiful and cost effective. “This flooring will last forever, and will never go out of style,” said Mark. Cathy said clients are choosing hard-
wood flooring for a variety of reasons. “Some are doing it because this is the last go-around for remodeling for them, and they want to do it right,” she said. “Some are wanting to sell their home and increase its value. And some are trying to eliminate allergy problems.” In all cases, hardwood flooring is less expensive than tile, said Mark. And for customers who want other options, Gross Tile also carries wood laminates,
Gross Tile also is recognized as a leader in bathroom remodeling work, especially in the area of custom, curbless showers. Each year, Gross Tile designs and builds at least two dozen curbless showers, and the results are always dramatic. Curbless showers have become an industry standard, and the Gross Tile team has been designing and building shower systems with zero-grade entries for the past five years. With no ledge or edge to step over, curbless showers are easy to enter, can provide handicap accessibility, and are easier to clean and maintain. “We are able to build these one-of-akind curbless shower systems right into the home’s truss system, so we don’t have to raise the level of the flooring,” said Mark. “We take out the subfloor, rebuild the trusses and build the shower system from the ground up, so to speak.” Mark said every new curbless shower project is a challenge for him, and he loves the opportunity to help customers bring their dreams to life. Gross Tile also utilizes Schluter shower systems, which provide innovative and water-tight installation solutions for customers. “When you see the level of satisfaction that a custom-designed project can provide for a customer, it really makes you want to get right into the next job,” said Mark. “And it always means a lot when one project leads to another with our customers.” For more information about everything Gross Tile has to offer, call 316-773-1600, or stop by the main showroom at 10680 W. Maple, near Maple and Maize Road. You can also find more on the company’s website, www.grosstileremodeling.com, and on Facebook. And now, you also can book an appointment at the new Gross Tile Delano Showroom. Just call 316-7731600 to schedule a time to meet with a member of the Gross Tile team.
displaying them on walls. She points out that those embarking on indoor gardening should first evaluate the level of time they can commit. “Just remember that unlike other projects in the home, such as decorating and cooking, all gardening projects require some aftercare. So, if you have a busy schedule, choose crops that will tolerate less watering and feeding.” While your flower garden is likely a beautiful work of art in and of itself, you can spread the joy by harvesting your flora and bringing the beauty indoors. Floral arrangements add vitality to any interior space. “For me, every arrangement starts with the container. Think about what mood or style you want to evoke, and remember, anything can be a container as long as it can be made watertight,” said Rachel Siegfried,” author of “The Flower Book: Natural Flower Arrangements for Your Home,” which explores 60 flowers, bloom-by-bloom in portraiture, including quick-reference profiles and tips. Siegfried recommends that, when selecting flowers for your arrangement, pay attention to shapes, textures and colors to achieve good balance. Start with a primary focal flower and build out with a couple of secondary focals, a final flourish, and foliage. For her part, she relies on instinct. “I get a ‘buzz’ when I find a good combination,” she said.
From flowering bouquets to spicy pepper plants, apply creativity to your gardening this spring.
HOME AND GARDEN GUIDE
(StatePoint) Gardeners often focus on the science of their hobby: how much water and sunlight their plants need and how to improve soil quality and keep pests at bay. But there can be a lot of artistry behind the craft as well – from how you harvest and enjoy flowers to how you convert unused spaces of your home into a viable indoor edible garden. Put your creativity to good use this spring season by gardening with style. For those who don’t have an outdoor garden or yard, the dream of enjoying your own freshly picked fruits and vegetables may seem out of reach. However, the nooks and crannies of your home can be creatively rendered into productive growing zones. And experts say that nearly all homes can support indoor gardening. “Whatever the size of your home, there will be a selection of edible plants you can grow indoors, as long as you have some natural daylight filtering in,” said Zia Allaway, author of “Indoor Edible Garden: Creative Ways to Grow Herbs, Fruit and Vegetables in Your Home.” “The areas where plants will grow can be windowsills, beneath a skylight or even in a dark, unlit area if you install grow lights.” In “Indoor Edible Garden,” Allaway offers step-by-step directions for everything from creating suspended shelves and hanging jars for growing herbs to mounting edible orchids onto bark and
25 - March 2017
Creative gardening tips for spring
March 2017 - 26 HOME AND GARDEN GUIDE
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dates, and organize them so older foods are pushed toward the front and will be used first. “There are many types of stacking systems and shelves available, if you have wasted space above the canned foods or packaged goods in your cabinet,” she said. “Buy extra shelves, and fill up the empty space.” Another area Blakeslee recommends to clean in the spring is the refrigerator. The fridge can be a tricky appliance to clean because of all of the drawers and shelves. “Unplug your refrigerator first, and then take everything out,” she said. “If you can take the shelves and drawers out, that makes it a lot easier to clean. Always refer to your manual for your appliance to make sure that you’re using the right type of cleaning product for that appliance.” Blakeslee also recommends vacuuming dirt and dust from under and behind the refrigerator. While working in the fridge, remember to check the expiration date on baking soda, which can lose its odor control effectiveness over time. Also be sure to check expiration dates on all food items in the fridge, and discard those that are past the expiration date or not safe to consume. In addition to the refrigerator, it’s also
important to clean other appliances, especially ones that are used to cook food. “Don’t forget your oven and microwave,” Blakeslee said. “Clean these appliances as you go, because spills are going to get baked on and harder to clean.” Something that is often forgotten is the grill. Grills can collect a lot of food residue, and if not cleaned regularly, can affect the taste of food cooked on the caked surface. “Take a look at the inside of your grill. If you can take the grill plate off, you can soak it in some soapy water to try to get some of that burnt food off,” Blakeslee said. “After you’ve taken the food off the grill, let it burn a little longer, and that helps burn off the food residue. Use a wire grill brush to help clean grill grates.” Remember that spring cleaning activities don’t have to only take place in the spring. Spread these tasks out over a few weeks, she said. These suggestions are most effective when done regularly and not just in the springtime. More information about food safety in the home can be found online through the K-State Research and Extension Rapid Response Center or by visiting any local extension office in Kansas.
Working smoke alarms key for household fire safety practices
Warmer temperatures and greener lawns signal the arrival of spring, which means it’s also time for spring cleaning. This activity is dreaded by some and revered by others, but a large portion of Americans will participate in some form of spring cleaning. A 2013 study by the American Cleaning Institute revealed that 72 percent of Americans partake in spring cleaning annually. With so much to potentially clean, it can be difficult to decide where to start. K-State Research and Extension associate and food safety specialist Karen Blakeslee suggests a popular gathering area – the kitchen – as a good place get the spring cleaning underway. “I would suggest starting with the cabinets,” Blakeslee said. “Clean everything out. Look for packages that have any damage to them, that are leaking or spilled onto the shelf. Give them a good wipe down with a damp cloth.” Blakeslee added that if those spills are left unattended, there’s a good chance they’ll attract bugs. Once the kitchen cabinets are clean, homeowners and renters have an opportunity to reorganize their cabinets. Creating places specifically for canned soups or vegetables can help make cabinets much easier to navigate, according to Blakeslee. Check “use by”
wanted. At East Wichita News, we’re already working on feature stories for upcoming editions. If you know of someone whose face (and story) should appear on these pages, please let us know! email@example.com 316-540-0500 www.facebook.com/ EastWichitaNews
Working smoke alarms in Kansas households can be lifesavers. “You are at an increased risk if you have a home fire and don’t have working alarms,” said Kansas Commissioner of Insurance, Ken Selzer, CPA. He noted that roughly seven out of 10 home fire deaths happen because the home had no working alarms or no smoke alarms at all. One of the biggest smoke alarm problems that homeowners have, Selzer said, is that even if alarms are present in the home, they may not be in working order. “In fact, households with non-working alarms now outnumber those with no alarms,” he said. The Office of the State Fire Marshal continues to address this issue during 2017 with the “Get Alarmed Kansas”
Don’t forget to check your smoke alarms to ensure they’re working properly.
campaign to make sure alarms are working or replaced in Kansas homes. This smoke alarm program allows local fire departments to install smoke alarms free of charge in owner-occupied homes. To learn more about the program and the eligibility requirements, go to http://firemarshal.ks.gov/ getalarmed.
Selzer and the Fire Marshal’s office offered the following tips for ensuring installed smoke alarm safety: • Smoke alarms should be replaced every 10 years. • Make sure you know how old the smoke alarms are in your home. Look at the manufacturer’s date on the back of the alarms. • Test your smoke alarms once a month, and make sure your family members can recognize the sounds. “Smoke alarms in your home can also be a factor in lowering your insurance premium,” Selzer said, “and you should always check with your agent about that possibility. But the primary reason for having working smoke alarms is always to save your life and the lives of your loved ones if you ever have a house fire.”
This dramatic transformation by Kitchen Tune-Up provided an industrial chic look, with a feminine touch. Call and schedule your transformation today!
budget and then make the whole remodeling process as relaxing as possible,” said Rachel. “Great customer service is the cornerstone to our success. My clients know I will take care of them and their space won’t look like everyone else’s on the block.” For more information or to schedule a free consultation, call Kitchen Tune-Up at 316-558-8888. Be sure to check out the company’s extensive BEFORE/AFTER portfolio on Facebook! When you visit the local Kitchen Tune-Up Facebook page, be sure to ‘LIKE’ Kitchen Tune-Up, Wichita.
HOME AND GARDEN GUIDE
If you’re ready to transform your kitchen, it’s time to call Kitchen Tune-Up. Now that the New Year is in full swing, Kitchen Tune-Up has been busy freshening up the look of homes all across Wichita. With spring fast approaching, your home could be next. Kitchen Tune-Up owners Adam and Rachel Phillips offer a variety of renovation and remodeling services, and can create the space you’ve always dreamed about. On this recent project, the experts at Kitchen Tune-Up were able to give a timber homestyle a whole new direction with their take on an industrial chic look. Traditional knotty alder was enhanced with a new truffle color stain. Granite that is honed instead of polished gives the kitchen countertops a soapstone feel without the maintenance. “For more design interest, we used painted maple in bisque with a dark glaze so that it would contrast with the dark cabinetry, and also give the kitchen a feminine touch,” said Rachel. A solid granite sink and a copper hood are stunning accent features in this beautiful new kitchen. Storage abounds in the many cabinets, with accessories including the long buffet and wine storage in the adjacent dining room. Kitchen Tune-Up has set the standard for remodeled kitchens in Wichita since the local franchise was launched in 2005. The company’s services range from One-Day Restoration or “Tune-Up” of cabinets or any interior wood surfaces, to cabinet refacing projects to complete custom kitchens. Rachel and her husband Adam took over the business last year from Adam’s parents, continuing a family tradition of excellent service and fantastic results for kitchen spaces. “My goal for each customer is to design the most amazing space possible for the
27 - March 2017
New rustic kitchen has modern flair
Lawn mowing offers youth an opportunity to earn summer income, and an upcoming workshop will help provide basic knowledge and safety skills for youth considering this type of venture this summer. The Sedgwick County Extension Master Gardener Volunteers and K-State Research and Extension in Sedgwick County will host two sessions of a youth lawn mowing clinic on Wednesday, March 22, at the Extension Education Center at 21st and Ridge in Wichita. Session times are 9:20 a.m.-11:30 a.m. and 1:20 p.m.-3:30 p.m. The cost is $10
for advance registration through March 10, or $15 for those registering after that date. Youth in fifth through ninth grades may attend. The course will offer information to acquaint youth with types of lawn grasses and their proper care, as well as lawn mower safety, mower maintenance and business practices. Upon completion, each youth will receive an information packet, business cards and a certificate of completion of the clinic. Participants may register on line at http://sedgwick.ksu.edu, or call 316660-0100 for more information.
HOME AND GARDEN GUIDE
March 2017 - 28
Lawn mowing clinic teaches youth summer skills
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Ways to update your home décor this spring (StatePoint) Spring is the perfect time re-evaluate your home’s décor and color palette. After the long winter season, interiors often need a facelift. Get inspired to freshen up your home with these six 2017 décor trends from interior designer and DIY television personality, Taniya Nayak. 1. Add timeless touches. Tasteful updates can help create an elegant family room that will never go out of style. Display heirlooms and vintage-inspired items, such as traditional candle holders or a vase, and pair with a modern color scheme such as white or navy, to achieve a tailored and timeless look in your living room. 2. Apply modern morphing techniques. Morph a wide-open space together with bold colors and patterns that help bridge the gap between rooms. Accomplish this with a large piece of geometric artwork or by utilizing color-blocking techniques to paint an accent wall, which tricks the eye as to where one room ends and another begins. Before painting an accent wall, it’s important to tape off windows, doorways and trim to prevent splatter. One of the most important tools for any painting project is a premium painter’s tape to help ensure your work looks seamless and to deliver the sharpest transition lines between the newly painted accent wall and adjacent walls. 3. Interweave textures and bold patterns. Be bold and embrace this indie-meets-mid-century trend to add
character to a space. An easy way to attain this look is by pairing patterned pillows with deep, intense colors from an area rug. Or, take it one step further and create a wall design comprised of overlapping paint using rich shades such as blue, pink o red, for a truly authentic look. 4. Create luscious layers. Allow yourself to feel wrapped in luxury with this emerging trend. When creating a peaceful nest, immerse yourself in layers by integrating different textures and soft patterns in colors, such as blush pinks, creams and soft grays. Start by adding blankets and sheer drapery. Place a rug on top of carpet. Finish the look with ruffled pillows or a faux fur throw for a space that is cozy and chic. 5. DIY haute homemade projects. Elevate your home with handmade personal touches that bring comfort and warmth into a room. Go bold and paint stripes on an area rug, or give flea market finds a chic update with metallic paint. If you want to start small, try transforming an ordinary basic into a fun planter by painting the bottom with fresh white paint. 6. Incorporate nature’s influence. Integrate fresh flowers and surprising pops of color, like yellow or teal, with natural finishes, such as wood, to create an unexpected yet whimsical look. Or create a statement accent piece by painting a nature-inspired pattern like florals or feathers. All you need is paint and painter’s tape to DIY a look that brings nature’s outdoor influence inside.
You can take steps in your garden that will help protect birds.
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HOME AND GARDEN GUIDE
(StatePoint) You may not realize it, but the average residential property can be hazardous to local wildlife without proper precautions taken. An estimated 98 million birds are killed annually in the U.S. when colliding with windows, according to Western Ecosystems Technology, making your home a potential death trap during migratory season. However, there are steps you can take to not only protect the birds whose flight path traverses your yard and garden, but also offer them a safe place to rest and feed – adding natural beauty for your garden. Start by making glass visible to birds by applying safety decals to window exteriors every few feet. Remember sliding glass doors as well. To maintain the look of your home and your own view out the window, use decals that are unobtrusive to the human eye, but contain a component that reflects ultraviolet sunlight. They have proven in studies to be an effective visual barrier that only birds can see. “Everyone can help contribute toward making migration safer for birds,” said Spencer Schock, founder of WindowAlert, which manufacturers safety decals. Because the UV reflectivity may fade over time based on exposure, replace the decals every four months and reapply the liquid every three months. Schock also points out that if you want migratory birds to stay awhile, you may want to consider avoiding the use of pesticides that kill insects which are their natural food source. A strategically placed bird feeder – either within three feet of a window or over 30 feet away in order to prevent bird strikes – can provide nourishment and energy to hungry birds. Ideally, bird feeders will be placed well away from where prey may be lurking, such as bushes and trees. If you own cats, you should also be mindful of their danger to birds and monitor your cats’ time spent outdoors to ensure they are not hunting feathered friends.
29 - March 2017
Spruce up your garden with bird safety in mind
March 2017 - 30 HOME AND GARDEN GUIDE
Garden-to-table tips for growing and cooking your own produce (StatePoint) Nearly 50 percent of fresh fruits and 20 percent of fresh vegetables in the US are imported, according to FoodSafety.gov. This means that your food traveled long distances to get to your plate. To better enjoy fruits and vegetables, many families are now growing their own at home. Want to know exactly where your food is coming from and have the freshest possible flavors within arm’s reach? Bring “farm-to-table” dining into your everyday life by creating your own garden. Follow these tips to grow and harvest fruits, veggies and herbs at peak ripeness to enjoy in simple, healthful meals. When starting a garden, it’s important to have a plan. Find a spacious area with plenty of sunlight to help plants take root and flourish – whether that’s in your backyard or a nearby community garden. For cooler climates, raised garden beds are highly recommended. These allow fruits and vegetables the space needed to expand their roots and hold in water. For hot, arid climates, create an in-ground garden, as it holds in moisture better, requiring less irrigation. Selecting what to grow is your next challenge. Herb gardens are perfect for those with limited experience or limited space. Herbs like basil, cilantro and chives are easy to maintain. Most herbs can withstand changing climates, meaning you can cook with fresh herbs year-round, adding them to nearly any meal to increase depths of flavor and allow you to “play” with your food. Having access to a variety of fresh produce lets you expand your menu at home while keeping it healthy. Many items found in simple salads, like carrots, tomatoes, radishes, lettuce and other leafy greens are considered “beginner crops.” Certain berries are also easy to cultivate. If you’ve ever tasted a ripe, just-picked strawberry or a fresh, juicy tomato, you’ll know that it’s worth the effort to grow these items yourself! Having a high-quality blender can make transforming your harvest into vibrant meals easy. A good blender can be used to chop, purée or juice any ingredients that may come from your budding garden. Put new spins on old family recipes. Next time your kids ask for spaghetti and meatballs, try spaghetti with roasted vegetable sauce. Made with fresh, garden ingredients, including Roma tomatoes, carrots and fresh basil leaves, this robust sauce will become a staple in your weekly meal rotation. You might even want to try it on top of spaghetti squash or zucchini noodles to take advantage of more nutritious, fresh-grown produce. Try something new and create sweet potato soup with seared tomatillos using fresh jalapenos, poblanos and tomatillos from your garden. Or dress up a less-than-exciting salad with a brightly flavored strawberry vinaigrette, using fresh strawberries and herbs.
From clogs to backups: 3 simple DIY plumbing fixes (StatePoint) If the idea of doing-it-yourself where plumbing is concerned sounds intimidating, fear not. There are many simple fixes to common plumbing problems that just about anyone can take care of without professional assistance. More importantly, performing these simple maintenance tasks as they are needed can prevent larger problems from occurring. Not sure where to start? Try these quick plumbing tips from Jeff Devlin, a licensed contractor who’s appeared on several TV home improvement shows. • Hair clogs: If you are accustomed to calling the plumber or snaking the drain when your tub is clogged, consider a simpler solution. Hair clog removers, available at your local hardware store or supercenter, are formulated with specific ingredients that work to dissolve hair and clear a drain on contact. You can also help slow down the forming of new clogs by ensuring all of your drains have strainers to catch hairs and other debris. • Kitchen clogs: Grease, soap and food can get trapped in kitchen sinks – it happens in every home sooner or later. The easiest way to clear
these tough clogs is to use a solution designed specifically to cut through grease and food and open up a drain. Use 16 ounces and wait about 10 minutes before flushing with water. While a great clog remover can do wonders, you should try to dispose of larger amounts of grease in the garbage. Keep this in mind next time you are deep frying dinner. • Septic backups: If you have a septic system, know that anything poured down any drain in your home will end up in the tank. It’s very important to keep that system healthy. A septic system is not unlike the human digestive system – it contains bacteria and enzymes which help to eliminate waste. However, sometimes the good bacteria and enzymes get destroyed by the things that get dumped into drains. Just as you can add a probiotic to your personal digestive system to keep things in balance, in a septic system you can maintain balance by adding a septic treatment to your toilet. To avoid costly and messy backups, do this quick task once a month. “Performing simple routine maintenance can save you time, money and a headache down the line,” says Devlin.
Get ahead of allergies
Growing greens (plus reds, yellows, oranges, purples and blues) gives you peace of mind in knowing exactly where your meals come from, and the pride of nurturing something wholesome.
(NAPS)—Don’t wait for allergy season to arrive to do something to avoid the health problems that allergies can cause. There are several easy steps you can take to beat the sneezing before it starts. Here are some prevention tips: • Cut back on carpeting; instead, consider using tile and hardwood floors. • Use a vacuum with a HEPA filter. • Roll up your window shades and clean your drapes. • Have your HVAC system professionally cleaned. Dirty ducts can harbor pollen and other pollutants. Contaminants are
pulled into the HVAC system and recirculated several times a day. The buildup in the ductwork creates continuous exposure that only cleaning can address. A complete cleaning should include replacing the filter and cleaning the ductwork, from where the air enters the return duct, through the air handler (blower, coil, and head exchanger), to the exit, where the air is released to condition the home. This will remove builtup particulates and contaminants such as pollen, improving indoor air quality and maximizing system efficiency.
normally grown from plants. Lettuce can be grown from either a plant or seed. Upham said it’s best to select a plant that is stocky and healthy. When a plant grows tall and spindly, it usually suggests it has been grown under poor lighting. A stocky plant will withstand Midwestern winds more effectively. Once a garden is planted, with seeds, plants or both, make sure the soil stays moist and weeds don’t take over. “Once the soil gets warm, you may want to consider mulching the area around the vegetables to keep weeds down,” Upham said. For gardeners who plan to fertilize the soil before planting, it’s best to have a soil test done, add necessary nutrients and then till the fertilizer into the soil prior to planting. Sometimes, however, vegetables need to be “side-dressed” after planting, which involves giving a plant an appropriate amount of nitrogen down a narrow furrow alongside a row or around an individual plant as it grows, depending on its needs, he said. Tomatoes, for example, are typically sidedressed roughly two weeks before the first tomato ripens. Then a gardener would treat the plant two weeks after the first tomato ripens and finally a month later.
Consider how much space a plant will take up once planted and when it needs to be planted.
HOME AND GARDEN GUIDE
As spring arrives, many people turn their attention to the outdoors. Gardening is a pastime that can unite individuals in ways that they might not have imagined. Regardless if someone gardens for fun, for food, for a deeper connection with something or another reason altogether, it is important to get the most out of the experience. “Vegetable gardening is probably the most common hobby that we have nationwide as well as statewide,” said Ward Upham, horticulture specialist and Master Gardener coordinator with K-State Research and Extension. “This is something that not only is pleasurable but also can help reduce the food bill.” The first thing gardeners should consider when selecting what to plant is if they will eat what they plant. “After deciding you will eat what is in your garden, you should take into account what your family likes,” he said. “You also have to consider how much space you have. If you have a small garden, something like a watermelon may take up the whole garden.” Some plants take so long to grow that it is best to start them inside versus planting them as seeds directly in the garden. In some cases, if these plants were originally planted as seeds in the garden, by the time they produced, the growing season might be over. Examples of these kinds of plants are tomatoes and peppers. “The No. 1 plant nationwide, as well as in Kansas, is tomatoes,” Upham said. “Other things that we can grow well include peppers, some of the cool-season crops such as cabbage, broccoli and cauliflower, as well as radishes and peas.” However, cool-season crops should be planted early in Kansas because of the eventual heat of the summer, he added. Radishes, peas and beans are typically grown in home gardens from seeds. Onions, however, can be grown from either sets or young plants. Broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower are
31 - March 2017
Gardening: one activity, many benefits
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