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Atchison County Fair time about ready to rock in Effingham
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Judge Mary Kay Nold asks Steven Rathert about his banana bread as his mother, Charlotte, looks on during one of the past fairs.

The Atchison County Fair season is fast approaching as 4-Hers and potential open class exhibitors are likely planning and preparing displays to show at the fair during the first week of August as potential fair goers make plans to socialize and take part in the traditional fun times in Effingham.

Fair week will begin Tuesday, Aug. 3 and will continue throughout the week from Saturday, Aug. 7 at the Atchison County Fairgrounds located in Effingham. The 2021 parade and fair theme is “Plant Your Roots in Atchison County.” Traditional fair week activities will be ongoing and are scheduled to pique in its final hours.

Friends, neighbors and fans come to welcome Erik Dylan & Friends as he returns home to take the entertainment stage at 8 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 7 to wind the week down. Erik Dylan, reared in Atchison County, currently resides in the Nashville, Tennessee area. Dylan, a musician and songwriter, graduated from Atchison County Community High School. His musical stylings are well known as he was a member of the teenage garage band Euphoria. Dylan communicated in an email to the Globe that he is excited to play at his home county fair in August. Dylan’s performance tops off day full of activities that include: the Knuckle Draggers Car Show at 9 a.m.; Bucket Calf Parade – 2 p.m.; Livestock & Mary Boldridge Cake Sale – 2:30 p.m.; and a BBQ Cook-Off Contest starts at 2 p.m. in the St. Ann’s parking lot.

At 7 p.m. Friday, Aug. 6 the Plant Your Roots in Atchison County-themed parade will start to roll along Main Street from its usual starting point at the Atchison County Community Elementary School. Following the parade Matt Snook will be front and center on stage to entertain the crowd. Snook, currently resides in the Kansas City area, is a native of Edgerton, Missouri and is a North Platte High School graduate. Post high school, obtained his degree from William Jewell College where he played basketball. Later, Snook was a contestant on NBC’s “The Voice” Seasons 7 and 8, landing a spot on Team Blake in 2015. Snook, as songwriter since his youth, had performed overseas multiple times to entertain U.S. Troops in Iraq, Kuwait and Afghanistan as a solo artist and annually performs at five-day holiday events for Gold-star families. His single “Poster Child” was released in 2019 and re-released in early spring 2020. Snook expects to release another single in 2021. Earlier in the day, Lions Club Sight Bus Check & More Health Checks will be present from 9 a.m. until 9 p.m. on the fairgrounds; Meat Goats and Sheep judging starts at 9 a.m., at 1 p.m. Round Robin Showmanship Contest and 3 p.m. Bucket Calf judging all to take place in the show arena. Lions Club Bounce House Fun opens late afternoon until dark.

Thursday, Aug. 5 offers a slate of activities from morning into nighttime hours: Swine judging starts the day at 8 a.m. in the Livestock arena, Mutton Busting starts at 7 p.m.; Horse Show starts at noon at Hawk arena, Grand Entry and Open Horse Show starts at 6:45 p.m. at the horse arena; judging of horticulture, crops and poultry judging will be during the afternoon hours; The Kiddie Pedal Power Contest is scheduled for 4 p.m. in the Shelter House — contestants required to register before the start of contest; Lions Club Bounce House Fun for youngsters begins in late afternoon hours and will continue until dark on fairgrounds –pre-purchase discounted wristband at Exchange Bank branches. The 4-H Fashion Revue takes place at 6:30 p.m. at the stage and Gary McKnight & Friends will follow to provide entertainment.

Wednesday, Aug. 4 starts at 8 a.m. with some livestock weigh-ins and judging of 4-H exhibits like rabbit, fiber arts, and flowers; Dairy judging at 2:30 p.m. 4-H and Open Class beef judging to follow. Exhibit viewing to open at 5:30 p.m. and will continue until 9 p.m.; later, on the fairgrounds stage — Atchison County FCE will present “Taking Control of Diabetes” at 6 p.m., 4-H Demonstrations at 6:30 p.m., 4-H Foods Auction to follow about 7 p.m. and entertainment starts about 8 p.m.

Tuesday, Aug. 3 the first day of the fair week kicks off with the opening of the traditional judging of some 4-H exhibits that include foods, foods preservation, rockets, home , environmental, welding, architectural, blocks, welding, woodworking, and a Consumer Judging Contest 2.

Atchison County Extension Agent Diane Nielson said there is a time change regarding the entries of Open Class exhibits.

The Open Class exhibits’ check-in will be during evening hours from 6-8 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 3 in the Blue Building. Beef weigh-in will be 6-8 p.m. inside the Livestock Barn. Open class entries’ exhibits will be on display until 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 7.

Like in previous years, there will be 4-H pre-fair judging for some projects exhibits will take place on the certain days according to the individual 4-Her’s schedule: Tuesday, July 27 – Fashion Revue Judging and 4-H Clothing judging; and Monday, Aug. 2 – Demonstrations; Banners; Arts & Crafts; Photography and Consumer Judging Contest.

Third man hears fate for 2018 home invasion
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A 22-year- old former Leavenworth resident is awaiting transport to serve more than 25 years in state prison in connection with his convictions for multiple crimes committed in 2018 within Atchison County boundaries.

Marcell Bailey was sentenced June 25 in Atchison County District Court to 32 months in prison for his second batch of convictions that arose from a Sept. 5, 2018 incident involving multiple shots fired near the LFM Park area. Bailey pleaded A 22-year-old former Leavenworth resident is in the Atchison County Jail awaiting transport to serve June 10 to felony charges that included criminal discharge of a firearm at an occupied vehicle, aggravated assault and aggravated battery.

Atchison County Attorney Sherri Becker prosecuted the cases against Bailey and issued a press release to the Globe.

District Court Judge Martin Asher pronounced the sentence is to run consecutive to the order that Bailey will serve more than 23 years for felony convictions that include aggravated robbery, kidnapping and aggravated burglary that related to a home intrusion that occurred Aug. 29, 2018 at a residence along the southern outskirts of Atchison City limits. Bailey was convicted of these crimes by way of a plea negotiation on April 27 in district court. Asher handed the sentences down on June 10, the same day Bailey entered his plea to the second case.

Concerning the home intrusion case, Bailey’s two co-defendants, Brandon Williams and Devan Newson had already been charged, convicted and sentenced previous to Bailey’s recent court proceedings.

Williams was convicted for aggravated burglary after he entered his plea Nov. 7, 2018. On Dec. 28, 2018 Williams was ordered to serve 41 months with Kansas Department of Corrections. Williams had not any criminal history prior to his arrest, Becker said.

On May 20, 2019 in district court, Newson was convicted after he pleaded to the aggravated robbery, Becker explained the conviction was based on an aid and abet theory. Newson was also convicted of conspiracy to commit aggravated burglary. Newson was sentenced July 12, 2019 to more than 12 years in state prison.

The cases against Bailey, Newson and Williams arose from one summer evening when Bailey and Williams entered the home without invitation where a family resided. Becker explained the facts of the case that indicated the uninvited men came towards the mother with a gun pointed in her face and asked for her husband who was in the bedroom. Bailey sought out the father. The mother managed to take the young daughter into the bedroom where the two females hid in the closet. William placed his arm around one to the boy’s neck and forced the other boy down the hallway and asked for all the cell phones in the house.

Bailey struck the patriarch with a handgun along the left side of his head, which caused the victim to fall onto the floor. Bailey demanded to know the whereabouts of a safe and its contents.

Authorities from the Atchison County Sheriff’s Office investigated the case that resulted in the arrest of Bailey, Newson and Williams, Becker said. The Sheriff’s Office authorities alleged Newson orchestrated a plan to break into the victim’s residence based on a belief there was a large amount of cash that was inside a safe. Newson, Bailey and Williams were driven to the residence. Bailey and Williams went inside the residence while Newson did not, but watched from a location nearby.

Authorities from Atchison Police Department investigated the incident that resulted in the second case against Bailey, Becker said. It originated Sept. 5, 2018 after APD received a call about a pickup truck that had been shot at multiple times in the LFM Park area.

Police interviewed the victims and determined the shots were the result of an ongoing dispute between an occupant inside the pickup and Bailey. One victim reported he had been grazed by a bullet and he sustained a mark consistent with the statement. Becker’s release indicated no other injuries were reported and none of the victims required immediate medical assistance. The victims identified Bailey as the suspect “who pulled a firearm, pointed it at them and began to shoot,” Becker wrote in the release.

An investigation ensued and the vehicle was processed, Becker said. Police determined there were five apparent bullet holes in the vehicle. Police recovered six spent shell casings at the scene on the following day near the LFM Park. APD subsequently arrested Bailey and collected a gun nearby that they alleged Bailey had discarded. After DNA testing was completed the Kansas Bureau of Investigation findings confirmed the defendant’s DNA was found on the grip, trigger and slide of the firearm.

Becker credited the law enforcement agencies for the work on the respective cases.

“The home invasion case was investigated by the Atchison County Sheriff’s Office” Becker wrote. “The shooting case was investigated by the Atchison Police Department. The KBI provided DNA testing. Both agencies did a great job in pursuing these investigations: following all leads, collecting evidence, processing scenes, and interviewing victims and witnesses,” Becker wrote.

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County sees rise in Covid cases
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Atchison County had zero cases of Covid-19 for almost a month until this past week with a total of 12 positive cases reported.

The county Health Department released a statement encouraging people with symptoms to get tested.

“We are hearing reports that some residents of the county are symptomatic and refuse testing,” the county said. “Please, if you are sick stay home and get tested. The testing is free and available here at the health department and many other places.”

On Monday, Governor Laura Kelly encouraged vaccinations to protect Kansans from the rapidly spreading Delta Variant.

“The Delta variant is rapidly spreading in neighboring states, and the best way to protect yourself, your community, and finally get our state back to normal is by getting vaccinated,” Kelly said. “Kansas is moving in the right direction, but we can’t let our guard down now. Visit www.kansasvaccine.gov today to find a vaccination site near you.”

According to the CDC, the Delta variant is 60% more transmissible than the B. 117 variant, which was previously the dominant strain. The new variant appears to be spreading most quickly in communities that have the lowest vaccination rates.

“The rapid increase of the Delta variant throughout the U.S. and in Kansas is of great concern to us,” Dr. Lee Norman, KDHE Secretary, said. “Vaccination continues to be the best defense in combating variants.”

Kansans are encouraged to take precautions to keep themselves and their loved ones safe, including getting vaccinated, following CDC mask recommendations, practicing physical distancing, good hygiene, getting tested if exposed to someone with COVID-19 or if experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, and staying home if ill.

The Delta variant first originated in India and has been found in more the 90 countries. A newly identified variant, Delta plus, has been recently identified in India and appears to be less responsive to monoclonal antibody treatment. High vaccination rates not only prevent the spread of COVID-19, they also prevent new variants from developing.

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New mayor to top Lancaster City Council business
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When Lancaster City Council members convene for their next meeting, one of the top agenda items will be to appoint a new leader to fulfill the post left vacant due to the unexpected death of Mayor Tim Callahan.

Callahan died June 19 at his home. Lancaster City Council members meet at 7:30 p.m. on the second Tuesday of each month. The upcoming meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, July 13 in the Lancaster City Building. Lancaster City Council members are Ron Myer, Emily Pruett-Bare, Erin Hager, Larry Myer and Matt Wilburn.

After consultation with the Kansas Secretary of State’s Office, Atchison County Clerk Michelle Phillips said Mayor Callahan’s term will be treated like a vacancy. This means the Lancaster City Council members will be appointing someone who meets the eligibility standards in accordance with Kansas statute, and applicable Lancaster home rule, if any on the city books, to fulfill Callahan’s unexpired term until January when the newly elected mayor takes the Oath to the office.

Whoever the city council members appoint will have to be sworn to office for the remainder of the unexpired term, Phillips said.

Callahan’s current elected 4-year term to the office was set to expire in January 2022. However, Callahan did not file for re-election to another term in office. No potential candidate filed for the open mayoral position in time for the June 1 filing deadline. This means the write-ins on the ballot will decide the mayoral election in November. Whoever garners the most write-in votes for mayor of Lancaster will be subject to take the oath of office for the 4-year term in January 2022.

Unlike the other four 3rd Class cities in Atchison County that elect a mayor and five city council persons every four years, the City of Lancaster adopted a resolution to stagger the terms of elected officials. On in addition to the names of Larry Myer, Emily Pruett-Bare and Ryan Hermreck, who all filed as city council candidates — there will be blank lines for write-ins for the city council seats as well as for Lancaster voters to decide the mayoral position on the Election Day, November ballot.

Lancaster City Council records indicate Callahan served on the council since 1982, and was appointed to serve as mayor May 8, 1990 with the exception of a four-year term when he did not file as a candidate for any council position.