Column published in the Smith County Pioneer, June 5, 2014:

HOME ON THE RANGE
By El Dean Holthus

Even though I have not written a column for a couple of weeks Home on the Range activity continues both on and off site. We are working to dress up things a little bit for the dedication of our new flag pole by the Sarah Steward Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution. Plans are to meet at the Cabin on the afternoon of June 14 with the program, organized by by local chapter president Joyce Jones, scheduled to begin at 2 pm. The public is invited.

The 4 day Memorial week-end saw more than 100 registered visitors at the Cabin; 38 were from out side Smith County Zip codes, 47 from 13 states, two from Mexico and 1 from England. It continues to be a mystery as to the reason interest in the Cabin is inversely related to the distance traveled to visit. We encourage you who live close by to come and see what is developing in your backyard. Bring a group, with some notice we might be able to give you a tour.

Saturday, May 31, was a day of major activity as Marcus Allen with his chain saw cleared more of the nature walk of low hanging branches and fallen trees; he was assisted by his friend Caitlin from Omaha and after lunch by Skyler Campbell and Megan Haresnape. Earlier in the morning Marcus cut some needed planks for the foot bridges; we were a few short at the original time of construction. Austin Allen and Tanner Campbell installed these planks and some 2 X 10’s to provide a step up to the bridge deck. The bridges are now easily accessible by ATV and we hope by a power wheel chair. Austin, Tanner and I also set 4 of the posts that will hold the data for the information stations along the trail. Marcus cut these posts from a salvage utility pole. We are patterning these data stations after those along the walk leading into the Kansas Museum of Natural History in Topeka. The posts we set are for the Claude Allen family, Pete and Ellen Rust, Rotary/Dr. Grimes and the 4H Council. Mike Saft is working to find a supplier for a weather resistant material on which to print the data.

Tami Holthus of Basehor and Laura Holthus of Pittsburg state are collaborating to improve the HOR web site. Tami, wife of Mitch Holthus, has extensive experience in developing web sites and use of internet marketing in working with 5 golf courses in the Kansas City area. Laura, daughter of Lyle and Jan Holthus, is a senior majoring in computer programing and web page design both on and off campus. Tami is working to develop a Paypal or something similar so that donations to the Foundation may be made on line and also advance ticket purchases for events such as our re-dedication in October.

Kathy and I enjoyed the opportunity of attending the Alumni banquet in Gaylord on May 24; I was given the opportunity visit about the about the Cabin, our fund raising activities and security of its future ownership to include care and maintenance.

We are asking for some on site volunteer help during the Summer; we are seeking groups or individuals who would be able to spend time on site to greet visitors and answer questions. If any readers are interested give me a call at 785-695-347 or 785-476-5216 or Gerald at 785-697-2641 for details.

We praise the Lord for the rain a again we see again His promise fulfilled that seed time and harvest will not fail. It has been a struggle trying to get our new Buffalo grass started, now with this good soaking maybe we can gain a little.

Bring a group, come and see YOUR Cabin on the bank of the Beaver.