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WASAC’s Take Back the Night

Posted on May 21, 2017 by under Community, Events, Things to Do.    

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These are pictures from our team building volunteer activity for the Wichita Area Sexual Assault Center‘s Take Back the Night event. My friend and coworker Alex is an avid volunteer for the agency and she arranged it so that we would man the Community Quilt Project station at the event.

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I don’t really know much about WASAC and their programs but I agreed to volunteer in support of Alex. She is always so generous with her time and volunteers for things at organizations that I’m passionate about so it was my turn to return the favor. There are no pictures of Brian because he didn’t want to do this event with me. It turned out all right because we had enough representation at the event. It would have been nice to have him there but it was okay that he wasn’t. There wasn’t much to the volunteer activity.

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We basically just talked with people at the event and encouraged them to participate in the Community Quilt Project. We had two tables with several blank fabric squares and colorful markers. We also had completed squares on display as examples. Each person’s contribution is an art work or saying on fabric square, which would then be incorporated into a big community quilt.

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I wanted to contribute to the Community Quilt Project so I designed a couple of patches also. Some people got really artsy and did drawings but I’ve never been any good at that so I just wrote a bunch of encouraging words down and decorated/colored them.

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I’d never been to one of these events before so this was my first. I’m not sure what the participation and attendance was like last year but this event was very well attended. I think it also helped that some awesome food trucks were there, including my friend’s truck Kamayan.

It was interesting to hear stories from survivors and supporters. I think it actually worked out better that Brian didn’t go because he would not have had the attention span for it. Please visit the WASAC web site to learn more about support groups, volunteer opportunities, advocacy, and other services.

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Arbor Day 2017

Posted on May 20, 2017 by under Events.    

For the first time ever, I had the opportunity to attend the local National Arbor Day celebration. In the United States, National Arbor Day is observed on the final Friday of April. That’s when it is celebrated here in Wichita; however, there are some states that choose to observe it on a different day.

This year Arbor Day fell on April 28. I just happened to be available that day so I jumped at the chance to join Alicia, Amy, Ron, Marsha, Kathie and the Westar In Motion trailer at O.J. Watson Park. Alicia and I worked for part of the morning and then we went to get coffee at Scooter’s down the street from the office before heading to the park.

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We noticed a bunch of people taking photos with the Wichita Eagle sign in front of the building. I think that was the very, very last day before everything was to be taken down since the newspaper moved to its new location in Old Town Square. Naturally, we did the same when we left the coffee shop.

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Upon arrival at the Arbor Day celebration site, the first thing I noticed were the huge bucket trucks. You can see the Westar In Motion trailer at the far end.

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While everyone was gathered and listening to the presentation, Kathie and Marsha were busy making popcorn in the trailer.

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Planting a tree is always one of the highlights of the event. City Arborist Gary Farris was on hand to educate everyone on the proper techniques for planting trees. The students were all very attentive.

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The kids also got to watch one of the tree experts climb a tree.

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This is the talking portion of it. I got some videos but I posted them on Facebook and I’m not sure how to get them on here. I did find a video from the event on YouTube (see below). Enjoy!

Here’s a selfie of our group with the trailer.

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Besides popcorn and water, we also got some delicious chocolate chip cookies from the local Double Tree hotel. We had the perfect weather and it was great to be able to spend the morning at the park. It was a nice break from work. I hope I get to tag along again next year.

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Bowl for Kids’ Sake 2017

Posted on May 14, 2017 by under Events.    

Here are some pictures from Bowl for Kids’ Sake 2017 at the Alley.

Big Brothers Big Sisters

Here’s a picture of our fundraising/bowling team, Power Strikes, with our team captain Faith. Our team consisted of Faith, Alex, Alicia, Mike, and me. Mike couldn’t make it that day; thus, he is missing from the photo.

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Tammie, who is someone I usually solicit for a donation actually participated in the fundraising action this year. She and her husband Leo were on the El Dorado Service Center team.

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Here’s a selfie of me and Sherii. She was on the same team as Lila, Kristen, Dorian, Reed, and Dylan. I had some serious team name envy with these guys because Lila came up with such a clever team name for them. They were the Alley Gators.

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Here’s a selfie of me and Alex.

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And another one with Alicia’s boyfriend Andrew who was Alex’ proxy.

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Here’s a photo of Josh and Brian. Josh bowled with the Bowling Stones. We let Brian bowl with us since Mike couldn’t make it.

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Faith was the winningest team captain in more ways than one. She actually won one of the fundraising raffles.

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Lucky for Alicia, Faith doesn’t like wine, so Alicia went home with the wine bottles.

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We got to bowl next to the Pink Ladies (Misty’s team). I didn’t take as many pictures this year as previous years because I actually tried to bowl. LOL.

We had a fabulous turnout this year. Last year we broke participation records when we had had 17 teams participate in the fundraising effort. This year we actually had 20 teams! We even had a couple of people who captained two bowling teams. Stacy Jones and Sam Salas both had two teams each.

We had employees from various areas of the company participate – El Dorado Service Center, Newton Service Center, Ark City Service Center, Substation Generation, Distribution System Operation, Customer Relations Center, Commercial & Industrial/Key Accounts, Customer Programs & Services, Real Estate, Operations, Corporate Communications, Revenue Assurance, Community Relations, Design, Network, Customer Field Services, and Wichita Line were all represented. It was wonderful to see all of these generous people come together to support Kansas Big Brothers Big Sisters.

Together we raised over $21,000 for the organization, which is $3,000 more than last year’s fundraising total. Our team, Power Strikes, raised over $4,000 and was the top fundraising team this year. With the team’s help, I managed to edge out Jimmy (Martinez) for the honor of top fundraiser.

My total this year was over $2,800. It’s the most I’d ever raised. EVER. Last year I think my total was only around $1,200. The Dance for Kids’ Sake Zumbathon® and our other fundraising events (Chipotle, Chick-Fil-A, and our raffle) really helped us out. We worked really hard to get support from local businesses and it paid off.

This year was my first time being part of the top fundraising team. Last year, even though I was the top fundraiser, Jimmy’s team was the top team because their team raised more money overall. Faith was with Power Strikes and I bowled with the Bowlerinas. This year, Faith and I decided to join forces.

Faith and I agreed to team up again next year with the goal of defending our title. Except, we will have a new team name. We already have a bunch of fundraising ideas planned. It’s going to be tough to exceed this year’s performance but we are going to try. We have a big, hairy, audacious goal of raising over $5,000 for Kansas Big Brothers Big Sisters next year.

Thank you to everyone who donated and helped make this year’s Big Brothers Big Sisters fundraising event successful. You are making a difference! We look forward to your help again next year.

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Milkfloat

Posted on May 14, 2017 by under Food and Drink.    

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Brian and I finally got around to trying Milkfloat, a cute little coffee and dessert place in Delano. Here are some pictures.

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While I’m sad that my work assignment in Kansas City has come to a screeching halt, I am grateful that I don’t have to spend most of the week there anymore because it means more time to explore our wonderful city with Brian.

There are some many new restaurants and businesses that have opened in the last few months. I feel like we are completely falling behind on checking all of these amazing places out and experiencing what each has to offer. Now that I’m spending all of my time in Wichita, I can’t wait to visit all of these new places that I haven’t been to yet – one place at a time.

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Pictures from Colors and Corks

Posted on May 8, 2017 by under Events.    

Brian and I had the opportunity to attend a United Way Young Leaders Association appreciation event at Mark Arts a couple of weeks ago. It was a very nice event. Here are a few pictures.

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