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Spring Tea

Augusta Historical Society Fundraiser

Set against the backdrop of a bright sunny, blue sky, the Augusta Historical Society held their annual Spring Tea fundraiser on Friday, May 6th and Saturday, May 7th inside the historic C.N. James cabin.

C.N. James Cabin is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

This was the first time the event has been held since the pandemic began in 2020.

Tables were decorated by volunteers with their own personal china, linens and handkerchiefs to accompany the theme of “Grandmother’s Handkerchief.”  

Tables were decorated in the theme: Grandmothers’ Handkerchief.

The guests were dressed in florals and many wore hats for the festive occasion dined on finger sandwiches, and an array of desserts along with tea from the Spice Merchant.

Sierra Marie Bonn, Miss Butler County, welcomed guests and visited with them during the tea on Saturday.

      “We’ve been doing this for 25 years and we’re so excited to be back again,” said Priscilla Templin, Executive Director of the Augusta Historical Society and Museum. 

Priscilla Templin, Executive Director of the Augusta Historical Society, right, with Miss Butler County Sierra Marie Bonn.

The Haas family has been attending the tea party for 20 years and was glad for the event to return.

Chris Haas, left, enjoyed tea with her family. Pictured right is Ashley Haas.

“We first came when my daughters were 4 and 6,” said Chris Haas, mother to Abby, 24 and Ashley, 26. 

They, along with Chris’ mother-in-law, sister-in-law and niece have made the tea party an annual girls’ day ever since.

Funds raised through the Spring Tea will contribute to the overall goal of $40,000 needed to restore the C.N. James Cabin.

C.N. James Cabin estoration fundraising goal is $40,000

The cabin was built in 1868 by Chester (C.N.) James and his wife Augusta. The cabin was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1994 and is one of only two log cabins on its original site in the State of Kansas. It is the oldest building in Augusta and one of the oldest landmarks in Butler County.

Friends of the Library Book & Bake Sale

Semi-Annual Fundraiser

The Friends of the Library will be hosting their annual Book & Bake Sale, from Wednesday, April 27th – Saturday, April 30th at Bradford Memorial Library, downstairs in the Clymer Room. Hours are April 27th and 28th from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.  On April 29th, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and April 30th, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.  Books may be purchased for .50 cents per book or $7 per bag. 

The Book & Bake Sale is a semi-annual fundraiser held by the Friends of the Library group for the Bradford Memorial Library.  The Friends of the Library meet on the second Monday of every odd month. All meetings begin at noon in the Clymer Room. They provide financial support for library projects and special needs. If you would like more information about the Friends, call the library at 316-321-3363.

Making Memories

Egg-splosion at Walters’ Pumpkin Patch

Bracing against the windy, forty degree weather with colorful baskets in hand, families arrived  at Walters’ Pumpkin Patch for breakfast with the Easter Bunny. 

The Easter Bunny joined hundreds of families

Walters’ annual Egg-splosion was held on Saturday, April 16, 2022 at the farm located 10 minutes north of El Dorado on Highway 77. 

Egg hunters spent the morning finding colorful eggs filled with candy and toys.

After breakfast with the Easter Bunny, individual egg hunts were held divided by age groups.  Kim came all the way from Maize to join her granddaughter, Talia for the egg-splosion. They were in the 0-3 egg hunt age group. 

Visitor, Kim from Maize, with her granddaughter Talia, have breakfast with the Easter Bunny.

“We had a blast,” said Kim with Talia echoing her sentiment. 

“The drive was worth it to see the bunny,” she said.

Following the egg hunts, families gathered along the fence line of the large open field to watch the airplane egg drop and scramble to collect the eggs filled with candy and toys. 

The Easter Bunny acted as Air Traffic Controller to guide the plane down the “runway” in order to drop the eggs.

While Walters’ Pumpkin Patch is known for their fall festival which provides visitors with the opportunity to pick their own pumpkin, navigate a corn maze, and enjoy many activities, the farm transitions with the seasons to offer unique experiences for their guests.  Now, they are continuing the fun and changing perceptions with unique offerings throughout the year.

While Walters’ Pumpkin Patch has been known primarily as a fall destination, they are changing that perception with offerings throughout the year.

“Memories are the one thing we all have in common,” said Angie Day, the Events and Marketing Coordinator for  Walters’ Pumpkin Patch. 

“We harvest memories,” she said. “We are blessed to have multiple generations of families passing on the tradition of visiting Walters’ Farm numerous times throughout each year.”

The Easter Bunny welcomed guests with hugs and photos as they entered through the Pumpkin Patch gift shop.   The store’s backdrop highlighted the expansion of destination location offerings by Walters.

“Each event hosted at Walters’ Pumpkin Patch allows memories to be shared, remembered, harvested, and created,” said Day. 

“Walters’ Farm looks forward to creating additional events while honoring the traditions that have blessed many generations,” she said. 

Energy Education Center Groundbreaking 

Located at Butler County Historical Society Home of the Kansas Oil Museum

Board members of the Butler County Historical Society Home of the Kansas Oil Museum picked up shovels and hard hats for an on-site groundbreaking ceremony on Tuesday, March 29, 2022.  

El Dorado Chamber of Commerce Executive Director, Phil Benedict, left, Museum Executive Director, Tiya Tonn, center, and museum employee Tyler Melugin, right, welcome attendees alongside an artist’s rendition of the future Energy Education Center.

A crowd of supporters gathered to witness Phil Benedict, Executive Director of the El Dorado Chamber of Commerce,  the emcee for the event with Brad Nightengale, Senior Vice President of Vintage Bank, Caiden Bump, Sales Manager of El Dorado Building Systems, Bill Young, Mayor of El Dorado, and Loren Jack speak during the groundbreaking event.

Supporters excited to watch the Energy Education Center come to life were on hand to witness the groundbreaking ceremony.

“We are excited to share that it is for our new Energy Education Center,” said Jack.

The Energy Education Center, a new facility spearheaded by Loren Jack, Owner of Albert Hogoboom Oilfield Trucking and President of the Board of Trustees, will be an indoor event center equipped with exhibit showcases, tables, seating, a stage, technology for presentations, a kitchen with a service window, and a 14ft access door for special equipment. 

Pictured left to right are Executive Board Members/Building Committee Members President Loren Jack, Vice President Tim Myers, Board Member JR Hogoboom, and Treasurer Sean Maclaskey.

“This building will allow for interactive STEM activities that look to the future while honoring the museum’s mission to preserve the history of the oil industry,” said Jack.

The addition of the Energy Education Center will free up space in the Large Exhibit Hall to expand displays and add exhibit features from the Museum’s extensive historic collections.  The combination of these new features is estimated to bring 15,000 additional visitors per year to the Museum and El Dorado. 

To learn more about this project, visit www.kansasoilmuseum.org/energy-education-center

SWE Engineering Expo

The Society of Women Engineers (SWE) Wichita Section is hosting their annual Engineering Expo on Saturday, April 9, 2022 from 9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. in the Century II Performing Arts & Convention Center Expo Hall.

The expo is a free, fun-filled day of STEM activities sponsored by SWE and Spirit Aerosystems.  Each year, the Society of Women Engineers Wichita Section – SWE Chapter partners with local companies, educators, and more to provide kids K-8 with FREE activities geared to engage and encourage STEM education.

“Last year’s event was held virtually and those videos are online for all to view and enjoy,” said Sierra Marie Bonn, Miss Butler County 2022 and founder of Let’s Go Full STEAM Ahead! 

Rachel Schwante, left, and Sierra Marie Bonn, right, have fun coding with LEGOs during the virtual SWE Expo 2021.

She is one of the event volunteers who will be there teaching about Leonardo’s Bridge.

“Last year I taught Coding with LEGOs,” she said. “There are so many wonderful and virtual activities to utilize when engaging students with STEM/STEAM.  All of those videos are on the YouTube channel ‘Engie does STEM.’”

“Let’s Go Full STEAM Ahead! is an organization that promotes STEAM education and engagement to empower the next generation of innovators,” she said. “STEAM is used as a popular acronym in advocacy for an increase in STEAM education in schools.”

Bonn promotes STEAM education and engagement which lies at the intersection of science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics, through hands-on activities like those offered at the SWE Expo as well as her book Innovators: women in history who have made positive contributions to STEAM.