Category Archives: Haysville

Haysville has its defenders just like Gridiron

WICHITA — Have You Heard? shared some of the Facebook comments poking fun at Haysville residents who don’t want to be poked fun of anymore at Gridiron, so it’s only fair to share some comments in support of Haysville, too.

Wichita resident Vaughn Fox said via e-mail that he plans to boycott Gridiron if Haysville jokes continue, and he says he’ll support Haysville monetarily in its effort to fight being ridiculed.

Derby resident Bob Cropp says he can’t help but notice the similarities between the Haysville situation and all the PR people’s complaints about PR News making fun of the Shockers.

“I think a common thread to all that is bullying,” Cropp says.

When there’s teasing of any sort, he says, it says a lot in how a person or group responds when someone says a comment hurts.

“A defensive posture means you weren’t kidding,” he says. “That’s bullying. That’s what this is all about.”

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Haysville leaders and residents are weary of being ‘portrayed as illiterate bumpkins’

The Gridiron cast usually makes Haysville jokes as an aside, not a full skit. Still, the city is not amused by them.

The Gridiron cast usually makes Haysville jokes as an aside, not a full skit. Still, the city is not amused by them.

UPDATED — The joke’s on them, and Haysville leaders and residents are not amused.

“We request that you remove all jokes about Haysville and other area communities from Gridiron,” said Haysville Mayor Bruce Armstrong in a Thursday e-mail to several people involved with the show.

Gridiron is an annual satirical production put on by the local chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists to spoof the news and raise scholarship money for journalism students.

Armstrong said “compromising the well being of the citizens and businesses of Haysville with snide, hurtful and untrue remarks is not an acceptable means to securing the funds for those scholarships.”

Armstrong’s wife, Susan Armstrong of Armstrong Chamberlin Strategic Marketing, also wrote to “respectfully request that you reconsider any skits that portray an entire city–any city–as ignorant or toothless, or cheap. It’s the equivalent of bullying, and it shouldn’t be done.”

She said that “Haysville is growing weary of having our whole community portrayed as illiterate bumpkins. We are working hard to improve the awareness of all the wonderful qualities our city has to offer. Every time you mention Haysville at Gridiron, you hurt our efforts.”

John Burke, superintendent of schools for Haysville USD 261, wrote, “I find this counterproductive to our image campaign and am respectively requesting that you stop making fun of Haysville as part of your production.”

One resident wrote to invite those involved with Gridiron to visit Haysville for a tour – along with coming up with new material and giving Haysville a break.

Sedgwick County Commissioner Tim Norton, who regularly attends Gridiron and spars with the cast, says enough probably is enough.

“Well, I’ve always been a very, very good sport with the sarcasm, the innuendo, the poking and everything,” he says. Norton says, though, the joke is wearing thin.

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Haysville is getting a new Kwik Shop

WICHITA — At long last, Haysville is getting a new Kwik Shop.

It looked like a new store was going to open a few years back, but it didn’t happen.

Now, one is under construction at the northeast corner of Grand and Meridian. It will replace the current store at 424 W. Grand.

“Haysville has been under review for some time by Kwik Shop,” director of real estate Clay Brasher said in an e-mail.

“Kwik Shop is extremely excited about the current store project, and we feel that our customers will be as well. Kwik Shop has received a lot of feedback from our customers in the Haysville community suggesting an upgrade to our current facility and offering, and we are very happy to be able to provide just that.”

At more than 7,500 square feet, the store will be bigger than Kwik Shop’s other new stores at 37th and Maize Road and 13th and Woodlawn.

There will be an expanded grocery area with more fresh items.

Look for the new Kwik Shop to open in 2014.

Haysville mayor decides to let economic development group continue to meet at City Hall; future of group is uncertain

WICHITA — A few days have passed since Haysville Mayor Ken Hampton quit Haysville Forward Inc., the city’s economic development group, and he’s had time to reexamine the situation.

Not much has changed, although Hampton has decided he’ll allow the group to continue to meet at City Hall.

“We’re going to go ahead and allow them to meet where they have been meeting.”

He and the city’s other representative on the committee won’t be there, though, because of Hampton’s frustration over losing a March 1 vote to continue as the group’s president.

“So basically, nothing’s changed. … They’ll just have a little harder time making quorum,” Hampton says. “Sometimes we do have trouble getting enough people there to get a quorum in the first place.”

There have been 16 members, and it takes nine people for a quorum. Now, there are 14 members.

“It’s one of those unfortunate things, but it happened,” Hampton says.

“I agree with him on that,” says Tim Massey, director of the Haysville Chamber of Commerce.

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Haysville mayor quits economic development group and says he’ll cut off city funding of it

WICHITA — The mayor of Haysville has quit Haysville Forward Inc., the city’s economic development group, and says he’ll cut off any future city funding for it.

Ken Hampton made the announcement March 1 after he lost a vote to continue as the group’s president, which he’s been for the last several years.

“I was shocked, so I can’t remember the exact quote word for word, but it was basically he had the ability to shut down the committee, and as of now he considered HFI disbanded,” says Tim Massey, an HFI member and director of the Haysville Chamber of Commerce.

“I might have said it will probably end up being dismantled,” Hampton says. “What I told people … is we’re not going to give further support. I looked at the bylaws to see what we need to do as far as the city cutting ties.”

He says he’s still studying the bylaws.

Massey says HFI members weren’t sure what to think.

“After they got up off the floor? There was one person that asked if he had the authority to do that or did the City Council know he was doing that. He said that yes, he had the authority to do that.”

The city has given various amounts to the group over the last few years – from $5,000 to $10,000 on average. In the last few weeks, Hampton says the city gave HFI $23,000 from its transient guest tax.

He says he believes because of that money, whoever is mayor should be president of the group.

“I wasn’t going to say, ‘Hey, if you don’t vote for me, we’re not going to do this,’” he says of letting the group know how he felt before the vote.

“It wasn’t an anger thing, it was a principle thing in my opinion,” Hampton says. “If you don’t stand up for your principles, then why do anything?”

Massey says while he didn’t expect this outcome, he knew there was trouble.

“I’m like the guy after the tornado,” he says. “Yes, I saw it coming. I was sitting there in my trailer.”

Massey says not much economic development has happened in the last half year or so.

“The group just feels like we haven’t done anything,” he says.

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Haysville Community Expo has unexpected drop-off in booth rentals

WICHITA — The Haysville Chamber of Commerce is holding its 11th annual Community Expo April 16, but at a week out, there are only about half the booth rentals the chamber expected.

“Our committee is pretty baffled and pretty down,” says chamber director Barb Walters.

The expo started as a business expo and “has turned into an everything expo,” she says.

In addition to businesses, others with booths include schools, civic groups and government entities.

Last year, there were 54 booths. This year, the chamber hoped for 64 booths. Instead, there are 31.

“I don’t know if it’s the economy or if there’s other stuff going on,” Walters says.

She says some people have wondered if the expo simply has run its course.

“I don’t think that’s true,” Walters says.

She says exhibitors have indicated it’s a good forum to reach a lot of people quickly.

“I do think probably marketing dollars are down,” Walters says.

She says the expo isn’t a money-maker for the chamber but has always broken even.

Walters hopes to still attract exhibitors by Thursday — 8-by-10 booths are $100 — but the show will go on regardless of how many booths there are.

“We will not cancel,” she says. “We can’t cancel. No way.”