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April 28, 2016 issue

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Jewell County recipients of Hansen grants announced

Don Gregg retiring; closing both businesses in Jewell

Former Kansas Minerals real estate sells at auction

Bridge replacement project to begin on K-128

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The Superior Express & Jewell County News 28 April 2016


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Jewell County recipients of Hansen grants announced

The Jewell County Dane G. Hansen grant committee met March 6 at the Mankato city building to award money to Jewell County organizations through the generosity of the Dane G. Hansen Foundation.
Those receiving grants in March included Jewell County Fire District No. 6, $5,100 for firetruck improvements; City of Webber, $5,000 for a community storm shelter; Esbon Community Center, $2,327 for tables and chairs; Jewell County Memorial VFW Post No. 7830, $3,150 for flooring. City of Esbon, $5,000 for an emergency siren; Jewell County Burn Association, $5,000 for a slide-in unit and smoke masks; Jewell County Fair Board, $2,500 for bleacher seating; American Legion Post No. 368, $2,400 for a memorial display; Harmony United Methodist Church, $600 for pipe organ repair; Randall Senior Citizens, $3,000 for interior work on new community center; Jewell County Resource Council, $1,320 for the Dolly Parton Imagination Library.
City of Mankato, $1,125 for the Mankato Volunteer Fire Department; Mankato First Baptist Church, $1,778 for guttering and windows; Esbon United Methodist Church, $3,200 for a new furnace; Mankato Tree Board, $1,000 toward memorial trees; Formoso Public Library, $5,000 for a new furnace and air conditioner; Jewell County Sheriff's Department, $1,500 for the North Central Special Response Unit; Harmony United Methodist Church children's Sunday school, $1,000 for the Sunday school rooms.
The above grants total $50,000. In addition, there will be two more $50,000 grant rounds in 2016, one in June and one in November for a total of another $100,000. The application period will open soon. More info online at For questions or further infofrmation, contact Jenny at
At an event in Hays in March, the Dane G. Hansen Foundation announced a commitment to infuse up to $100,000 in new funds for 2016 in each of the 26 counties in its service area, including Jewell County. The funds will support immediate needs for local community grants and build or grow permanent funds for future community grants.
Along with a commitment to renew $100,000 in grants to each county, foundation trustees announced a new initiative designed to encourage the growth of permanent funds in each county. Each community foundation will select a particular month in which it will host a matching event or campaign.
The Dane G. Hansen Foundation then will provide a 100 percent match for every dollar raised for the participating community foundation's endowed, unrestricted community grant fund, up to a maximum of $50,000 per county. The date for the local drive for the matching grant is still to be announced in Jewell County.
The foundation's total commitment for this initiative will be between $2.6 million and $3.9 million. Funds will be disbursed in each county through its community foundation or grant advisory committee.
"We recognize that local communities are in the best position to recognize their own needs, and the Hansen Foundation is pleased to be able to provide the resources to assist them in meeting those needs," said Gary Poore, Hansen trustee.
The announcement of the additional grant dollars to community foundations took place March 16 in Hays at the foundation's first-ever Community Foundation Forum. More than 100 community minded people from across northwest Kansas gathered for the event. Attendees included representatives from community foundation boards, grant advisory boards, economic development professionals and other civic professionals from the Hansen Foundation's service area.
At the forum, trustees announced a commitment to renew $100,000 in expendable grants to each county for projects to be determined by local community foundations or advisory boards. In 2015, the Foundation made similar awards to community foundations: $50,000 was awarded in the spring and in the fall. 
Additional application dates in Jewell County will be in June and November 2016.

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Don Gregg retiring; closing both businesses in Jewell
Don Gregg, owner of Gregg Automotive and the Parts Pit, both located in Jewell, across the street from each other, will be closing the doors to both businesses on Saturday.
"It's time to retire, slow down some," said Don.
Don started the automotive business in April 1978 with the 30x30 portion of the present day building. In the 1980s he added a 40x45 portion onto the north side of the original building. Gregg Automotive has always been a full service shop with no body work.
Also in the 80s Don opened the Parts Pit across the street from his mechanic business.
"I thought there was a need for that type of business in this community and I was trying to bring another business into the area. I employed a full time person at the Parts Pit for several years," said Don.
Before Jewell High School closed, Don took care of a portion of the Jewell buses and other equipment. For 10 to 15 years, Don employed two other mechanics, but as the county population started to decline, so did business and the work load wasn't enough for three guys.
As the day and age of computers in vehicles developed, Don developed along by furthering his mechanics knowledge and enrolling in night classes at the vo-tech in Beloit, as well as taking some classes in Hays, Salina and the GM School in Kansas City.
Don said, "The majority of my work is service work like working on brakes, their replacement, air conditioners on all makes and models, just everything, cars, trucks, lawnmowers, ATVs, everything."
The automotive mechanic business is still changing today.
"Now there is more electrical being developed with the computers and other technology things that are changing ast, but I think the schooling, the classrooms are preparing students and mechanics for this change that is going on now. How long that knowledge will be good is a good question. Things are changing fast and I think they will continue to change. My advice to anyone going into mechanics is get all the education you can," said Don.
Don's plans for retirement are in six to eight months he will be moving closer to Topeka where his wife, Deanna, son ,Kevin, and three grandchildren live.
"My house, the automotive business and the Parts Pit are all up for sale," said Don.
Don has no intention of hanging up or selling his tools, though. They will be making the trip to Topeka with him. He is looking forward to many years of working on older cars.
"I've enjoyed serving the community and want to say thanks to everyone for their support," said Don.

Former Kansas Minerals real estate sells at auction

On Thursday morning, a public auction was held for the sale of real estate, equipment and parts at the former Kansas Mineral Building, 1886 Q Rd., located two miles east of Mankato, in Jewell County.
The real estate sold at 10:30 a.m. The legal description was: three acres in the SE1/4SE1/4 of Section 12, Township 3S, Range 8W. This consisted of a 73 foot by 60 foot and 125 foot by 100 foot building along with other attached buildings.
The successful bidder of the real estate was Rick and Sheila McEntee, Jr., for a price of $64,000.
The auction was conducted by Thummel Real Estate and Auction, LLC, Beloit.

Bridge replacement project to begin on K-128

A bridge replacement project will begin Monday on K-128 in Jewell County. The bridge is located .7 miles north of the K-128 and US-36 junction and carries traffic over Limestone Creek.
Traffic will be reduced to one lane and will be controlled by temporary traffic signals both north and south of the bridge. There will be a lane width restriction. Plans call for the project to be completed on or about Feb. 24, 2017, weather permitting. L&M Contractors, Inc., of Great Bend is the prime contractor for the project. Total cost of the project will be slightly more than $1.1 million.

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