Articles By: Joel Klaassen

Busy days won’t end very soon

I wonder what it would be like to have nothing to do. Can?t imagine it would even be possible. It?s been a whirlwind around here for the past week and it doesn?t appear that will change anytime soon. Amy and George have come and gone already but left the boys behind to stay with us until next week.

We sat down Sunday night to make a list of what we are going to do for nine days. It?s quite extensive.


At the fair, George and the boys took a liking to the animals in the 4-H barns. He thought it would be neat to have a goat to mow their hilly backyard in Atlanta and eat the leftovers from the restaurant. The boys thought it would be cool to have some bunnies for pets. I?m betting neither will get their wish.

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More proof that its a small world

Here?s one of those interesting ?small-world? stories. Via e-mail, daughter Amy described how she was riding on a shuttle with George and the boys at the Newark, N.J., airport to pick up a rental car. They were headed to George?s dad?s surprise 70th birthday party in eastern Pennsylvania.

On the shuttle was a family with a daughter who was wearing a KU shirt. Following initial conversation, Amy learned the family was from Newton and the dad had an appointment at a Hills?boro dentist this week.

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Sales tax for jail is a bad idea

Finally, we know the commissioner?s decision on how they plan to finance a new 72-bed jail-for-hire. They?ll ask us to approve a 1 percent county-wide sales tax on the November general-election ballot.

It?s no secret that I oppose this idea. It is my opinion that a 1 percent sales tax would put our businesses?and everyone living in the county?in peril.

Forget for a moment that the jail-for-hire concept is risky. I don?t think anyone could say that having the highest sales taxes in the state of Kansas would be a good thing. While it would harm big-ticket businesses in Hillsboro the most, it would have a negative impact on the entire county.

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We’re glad for a good wheat crop

We?re glad our friends on the farm have had a very good wheat crop at this juncture of the growing season, and with very good prices to boot. In these parts we?ve managed to avoid most of the bad weather that seemed to hit all around us.

Now on to the fall crops and even better prices. Who wouldn?t like a bumper crop of beans at more than $14 per bushel?


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Greensburg story still compelling

When I determined that we needed ESPNU to watch the Jayhawks last winter, we also received the Planet Green channel. It currently has a nine-week series featur?ing the rebuilding of Greensburg and how the town is attempting to go ?green? in the process. The theory: If they build it back like it was, it will just be another western Kansas town with nothing new to offer.

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Hospital news is big news here

The biggest news to hit town in a long while was the announce?ment of a brand-new hospital for our community. Even bigger news is that it will be on the tax roll and not subsidized by anyone except its users, which are expected to increase dramatically when it is up and running.

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Epic crash occurred 30 years ago

Thirty years ago this week a tragedy occurred at the Hillsboro airport that is permanently etched in the minds of those who were living here at the time, including mine.

It was Tuesday, June 20, 1978, when Hillsboro businessman and pilot Paul Rundstrom, 40, and his passengers Dennis Klassen and Blaine Briggs of Hillsboro Industries and Hillsboro Distributors crashed into a wheat field shortly after 8 a.m. just south of the hedge row opening at the then grass airstrip.

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‘Railroad’ a big hit for Marion

I?m not as familiar with Grand Funk Railroad as some of the other bands back in the day, but the verdict is in: The headliner concert at this year?s Chingawassa Days in Marion was another big hit, according to people with whom I spoke. I overheard law enforcement estimating the crowd at 1,800 to 2,000.

When GFR turned on its amps I about jumped out of my seat. The volume was working. Very well.

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Find every way to save gasoline

Hypermiling might be a new trend in driving with the high gas prices we
now have?prices that probably won?t be going down anytime soon.

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Reunion was great once again

The Hills?boro High School all-school reunion Saturday night was another blast. Max Hein?richs, who will become the new HHS principal in a few weeks, was the emcee and did a marvelous job hosting the event.

The food was great, the crowd was larger than last year and some of the stories were just plain hilarious.

It appears we don?t really get interested in coming back to a class reunion until about 20 years out, which has been the case for the past several years.

Mark your calendars for May 23, 2009, which is the date for the next all-school reunion at ?dear old Hillsboro High.?

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