November 13, 2013

Kansas City Moose Lodge #10 of Sugar Creek Donates $2,500 to CCRC

Porky Woods (left) and Moose Governor Mark Swigart (right) of Moose Lodge #10, with Carolyn Moore of the CCRC
   On October 31st Bruce Morgan, Administrator of Kansas City Moose Lodge #10 of Sugar Creek, along with Moose Governor Mark Swigart and Legion President James Maxwell, Jr., presented a check in the amount of $2500 to the CCRC of Sugar Creek (Citizens Civic Relief Commission).  

   The donation came as a complete surprise, and at a really good time for the CCRC, which gives assistance to Sugar Creek residents in need.  The CCRC helps people with food, medicine, utility assistance, and provides other needed services.  The holiday season and coming of winter make the need even greater.  Moose Lodge #10 also pledged to donate $100 a month throughout 2014, knowing that as generous as their donation was, the CCRC still needs more help.  The month of November is the annual CCRC fund drive, and the Moose Lodge encourages others to follow their lead and donate to the CCRC.

    The Sugar Creek chapter of the Moose Lodge has been around for more than 100 years.  "That’s why we’re #10 out of all the Moose lodges in the world," Bruce Morgan said.  The organization raises money for charities both local and worldwide.  They host dances and dinners every Friday night, along with other activities during the week.

   For more information about the Moose Lodge, contact Bruce Morgan at (816) 254-4309.  The CCRC is located at the Gymnasium on Chicago Street. They are open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 2 p.m. to 3:30 if you need assistance or can make a donation.

Salva President of the CDC

  Former Mayor Stan Salva was elected President of the Sugar Creek CDC, which was created to manage and develop those properties purchased by BP as part of the refinery cleanup.

  Bill Haman accepted a position of the Board of Directors.

Go Sugar Creek Partners with CDC

   The community group Go Sugar Creek has partnered with the CDC help homeowners limited by income or health problems to make needed improvements through grants and donations, which are tax deductible.  The next Go Sugar Creek meeting is November 13 in the Police and Fire Training Room.  Visit  for more information.

Did you know...

…November 15 will be Sugar Creek’s 93rd birthday?  The town officially became a 4th class city on that day in 1920.

What Sugar Creek Means to Me

"I have the best neighbors ever, always there to lend a hand. I love my neighbors and their families."

-- Tammy Sammons

Wish List

"Community Garden"

 "New buildings on Sterling that are built to look like old buildings."

"Fix and maintain the bathrooms at the park!"

What do you think would make Sugar Creek better?

November, 2013 Obituaries

 Rest in Peace Rick Craven

     Like many in Sugar Creek, the staff of the Sugar Creek Herald was saddened to learn of the passing of Rick Lee “Fingers” Craven, who died at his home November 5 at the age of 62.

    Rick had just retired a little over a month ago from his job at the Clay County Correctional Center.  His true love was playing the piano.  Rick was widely known as a master pianist, and over the years played backup keyboards for Jerry Lee Lewis, Conway Twitty, and other nationally known recording artists.

   His family suggests donations to the Alzheimer’s Foundation.  The Herald staff takes comfort from the fact that Rick did not personally suffer from this disease.  His talent, wit, and friendliness will never be forgotten by those who knew him.

 Anna Berislavich Laid to Rest

   The City of Sugar Creek and the Herald staff offer condolences to the family of Anna (Pollo) Berislavich, who passed away at the age of 93.  She was a lifelong resident and a lifetime member of St. Cyril’s Alter Society, and she will be remembered and missed by all who knew her.  Her family suggests contributions to the Catholic Community Hospice in Overland Park.

 More Condolences

    We offer our condolences to the family of Julio Cruz Ramirez Sr., a Marine Corps Veteran of the Korean War, who passed away on October 23 at the age of 79.  He had been married to Marie (Zevecke) Ramirez for 50 years.

   We also offer our condolences to the family of Mary Shields, who passed away on October 17 at the age of 81.

What the He!! is This?

  By  Bill  Haman
If you have not been North of Kentucky on Vermont St. for a couple of months, you are in for a surprise.  Two huge tanks are being constructed at the location of the old asphalt area in the former BP refinery.  These two tanks are just one part of a large sewer improvement project that is just getting started.  Like many other cities, including Sugar Creek, Independence chose to route storm water into the sanitary sewers.  This was the cheapest way to dispose of the problem.  The Federal Clean Water Act was passed in the 1970’s to control the discharge of pollution in our waterways.

   The Independence sewage treatment plan on Rock Creek handles most to the sewage and storm water in Western Independence.  When heavy rain events occur this facility can not handle the combination of sewage and storm water.  This results in overflows that release raw sewage into the Missouri River and is a violation of the discharge permits.  Several years ago the EPA required Independence to develop a plan to correct this problem.  The two tanks on Vermont along with two more on Wilson Rd.  are intended to store excess flows until the treatment plant can handle the untreated water.

   There is also going to be a new sewer line that will be installed along Elizabeth St. from Forest to Sterling in the future.  During periods of high flow several of the manholes along Elizabeth blow their covers and release raw sewage along Elizabeth St.  The new sewage main should correct this problem.   

Outside Looking In

By Aimee Worley

   We all know November is an election month, unless you live in Sugar Creek.  We vote in April and August. As I see it, it's time to start looking for some civic minded people to get involved and send some change to City Hall.  The men who have been in office are out of touch. I often think they forget that they are supposed to represent all of us, not just a few.  We only see them in some neighborhoods when it's time for re-election.  They are nice enough men, but they do represent the old standard at City Hall. 

   We need fresh citizens with different views, and not afraid to say so.  There are some employees that need to be retired, fired, and remember that it's not a given. They have a job because it's a needed position and are they using their time and department wisely?

   Our police chief is elected also, and I often wonder if he remembers who voted him in.  When a citizen calls and leaves a message, return the call.  If your time is too little to stay in contact, the job must be too much.  Remember we are only a town of 3,000.  Make time for your citizens. They are the ones who gave you your job.

Mayor Carves Out Charity Money

   Mayor Matt Mallinson competed against mayors from eight surrounding cities and  Jackson County Executive Mike Sanders in the “Pumpkin Playoffs,” whereby each official carved a pumpkin, all of which were displayed at the County Courthouse.  Visitors were encouraged to vote on the pumpkins by donating money in the locked box by their favorite. Independence Mayor Don Reimel took the top prize, his donations going to the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Kansas City, with  Mayor Mallinson’s donations going to the CCRC.

River Jam/Picnic 2013

By Sandy Mikulich

   On October 5, Bill and Carolyn Haman hosted a River Jam and picnic at the scenic La Benite Park. It was beautiful weather and a great experience. Friends who liked music were invited but the Hamans also encouraged all Sugar Creek residents to join in the fun.

   Anyone who had an instrument and wanted to join in the music gathered at one of the two tents to jam. Some brought more than one instrument and shared them.  The jammers moved from instrument to instrument depending on the song. They were thoroughly enjoying themselves and were tireless. Those of us who were in the audience delighted in hearing favorites from the past and were impressed by the collective talents of the groups.

   Coincidentally the River Jam was the same day as the river cleanup project where Healthy Rivers Partnership and Missouri River Relief groups had planned their annual Missouri River cleanup of a 10-mile stretch in the Kansas City area. The cleanup was a day long affair.

   River Jam goers had the bonus of watching several boats on the river as well as seeing the park being used for a campground for the cleanup crew.  There were numerous tents of all sizes at the east end of the park and volunteers were sharing their food and experiences with each other as the evening was fading.

   It was such a delightful experience to see La Benite being utilized in such a positive manner and to see it full of people. There is great potential for La Benite. It was mentioned that La Benite would be the perfect site for a bluegrass festival. There is ample room, the ground is flat, and the location is scenic.

   The Hamans plan to have the River Jam again next fall and townspeople will again be encouraged to attend.  It is well worth the time to join in the fun and enjoy this resource so close to home.

Sgt. Onka Shot His Way to the Top

      It was the summer of 1966 and Sgt. Kevin Onka had just gotten out of the Army.  In the August 31 edition of the Kansas City Star, Kevin can be seen holding a shotgun and wearing a big smile, surrounded by trophies and awards.   

   He was 23 years old in the picture, and had been trap shooting since 1957 at the age of 14.  By 1959 he was a national champion.  The Army put his talent to good use and made him a member of the U. S. Army Trap and Skeet Team, where he competed in places like Switzerland, France, and Germany.  His team won a world championship in Santiago, Chile in 1965.  

   Photographs of Kevin Onka making it look easy were used to illustrate proper techniques and positions in an International Skeet and Clay Pigeon manual.
   When he wasn’t shooting clay targets around the world for Team Uncle Sam, Kevin was an instructor in aerial gunnery for pilots.

   By the time he got out of the Army in 1966, he’d collected around 300 medals and trophies.

Drag Racing at the River?

   A private investor will be meeting with Mayor Mallinson this month to discuss building an NHRA-regulation drag racing strip along the Missouri River in Sugar Creek.

   “It’s a perfect location,” says the investor, who asked not to be named in this article.  “The river and bluffs will muffle the sounds of roaring engines and screeching tires, and the scenery couldn’t be any prettier.”

   Sugar Creek has more riverfront acreage than any other city in Missouri other than St. Charles, and developing the land along the river has long been a topic of discussion among citizens and city leaders.  At least two riverboat casino deals have fallen through, and plans for an entertainment district have never materialized.  

   But a drag strip?

   “Missouri doesn’t have an NHRA track,” he said.  “The closest one is in Topeka.  The KCIR track (which the City of Kansas City took possession of earlier this year and closed down) brought tens of thousands of people a year to its events and the loss of it left a really big void, and not just for local racing fans.  People came from all around.”

   He cited revenue that could be generated from fuel sales and auto parts, from the jobs created during the construction and the track’s operation, and from the visitors it would bring to the area.  “It will bring more businesses to Sugar Creek and give people around here something fun to do.”  He also mentioned that it would be good for LaFarge. “We would need a lot of Portland Cement.”