The Hays Daily News from Hays, Kansas on December 24, 1976 · Page 1
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The Hays Daily News from Hays, Kansas · Page 1

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Friday, December 24, 1976
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« The Hays Daily News Our 48th Year— No. 37 HAYS, KANSAS (67601), FRIDAY EVENING, DECEMBER 24, 1976 12 PAGES IB CENTS Few Yule Lights HONG KONG (UPI) - In Peking's No.l department store, the English lettering on a package of multicolored electric lights reads, "For a bright and lively festival." In a Chinese apartment complex near Peking's San Li Tun diplomatic quarter, a single balcony is decked with strings of lights. These were the only signs of Christmas in the Chinese capital outside the diplomatic compounds, where most foreigners live. Inside the diplomatic areas, Christmas is being celebrated about the same way it would be at home. Judge Is Hopeful NEW ORLEANS (UPI) - Albert Vice usually spends Christmas in a city jail doing time for public drunkenness, but this year will be different. Vice, 55, is a regular at the city House of Detention, the minimum security jail for persons convicted of petty crimes. He was last sentenced in November and was scheduled for release Jan. 4. But Criminal Districf6durt Judge Eddie Sapir learned Vice had not spent Christmas out of jail for the last 25 years, so he reduced the sentence and set him free. "If he doesn't come back, God bless him," Sapir said. "That'll be the best thing for both of us." Vice, however, apparently didn't take his freedom in the same spirit it was given. "You know I ain't gonna stop drinking," he said. "I'll stop drinking when they stop making the stuff." Cheery News WASHINGTON (UPI) — The Pentagon had cheering holiday news for Sikorsky Aircraft Division Thursday: a military helicopter contract that could reach more than $3 billion. The Army announced it had chosen Sikorsky over Boeing Vertol for construction of the UTTAS (Utility Tactical Transport Aircraft System). Weather Reading at 11 p.m.: 48 Low this morning: 26 . Record high: 73 in 1955 Record low: -14 in 1924 Year ago today 42 and 25 Thursday's High 51 High today lower to mid SOs.i Cloudy tonight and much colder. Chance of light snow east. Low tonight teens west to lower 20s east. Sunny west and decreasing cloudiness east Christmas Day. Much colder. High lower to mid 30. areetinaA from th ana trlanaaernent of tkeJ4ay.A / f eu/4 World Festive By WILLIAM J. IIOLSTEIN United Press Intcrnntlohul People around the world nrc celebrating the Christmas holiday in a festive mood despite economic uncertainty, warnings of violence and, In some cases, government attempts to discourage religion. In Bethlehem, the birthplace of Jesus, thousands of pilgrims were expected today to attend n Midnight Mass at St. Catherine's Church, adjoining the fourth-century Basilica of the Nativity. A silver star in the Basilica marks the spot where Jcsils was born nearly 2,000 years ago. Italy is celebrating Christmas in the usual way — with two papal Masses, cribs in churches and a strike, this time the railroads. But shopping Is down and the atmosphere is less cheerful than in pervious years because of the nation's economic woes. Pope Paul Vl's Yule program includes a Christmas Eve midnight Muss in St. Peter's Cathedral televised live to more than 30 countries and a morning Mass on Christinas Day. Even nations that live under harsh governments are not immune from the holiday spirit. The South Korean government is lifting its midnight to 4 a.m. curfew and Chileans will not fuce a curfew for the first time since a 1973 military coup. In Argentina, the military government is warning citizens to beware of bombs disguised as Christmas gifts and distributed by "subversive criminals (who) have no feeling of Christian peace and may use the holiday to spread chaos." In Rhodesia, citizens have been warned against a predicted upsurge in black guerrilla activity over the holiday. "It's a turkey and guns Christmas for Rhodesia," said Jack Jocelyn, a white storekeeper near Salisbury. "We still go to the usual round of Christmas •parties but all people can talk about is whether we'll still be in Rhodesia next year." Yugoslavs are managing to celebrate Christmas despite the government's attempt to discourage the practice by replacing it with a two-day holiday for the New Year. Swedish families start feasting early Friday on dark raisin bread dipped in ham cooking juices, pale, meatballs, sausages, red cabbage, stout beer and lemonade. German, Dutch, French and British families also were gathering for traditional Christmas feasts. Wastewater Facility Study OK'd A preliminary study of wastewater facilities in Hays drew approval of Hays City Commissioners Thursday afternoon. The study, conducted by Black and Veatch Consulting Engineers, was begun last December in response to the Federal Water Pollution Control Act Amendments of 1972. Engineer Bruce Elms told commissioners the study showed the city's existing wastewater threatment facilities should be able to handle the matter at least through 1985 without major additions to the plant. Elms said that decision is based on the average daily flow of wastewater through the plant, which is estimated a 2.53 million gallons per day in a peak month. A peak flow during wet weather would be about 3.5 million gallons a day in 1985, Elms predicted. Add/f/ono/ City Story On Page 12 Elms said those figures were reached on an estimated service population of 20,900 persons in 1985. The preseqt facilities should handle a service population of slightly more than 21,000 people, he said. The service population is now about 17,900 persons, he said. Elms said the 198S service population was based on the projected actual population of Hays and the industrial growth and increased city sewer use by persons just outside the city. Elms said there are two major problem areas just outside the city, which perhaps should consider joining the city sewer system in the near future. Prairie Acres, just southwest of town, is presently served by septic tanks, and could ! eventually become a pollution problem. Added city growth along the Highway 40 bypass northwest of Hays could also become a problem, he said. Both areas are lower than the city's gravity-feed sewer system and would require lift stations to join the city system. Elms suggested that the city urge persons in that area' to form a " community-type effort" to study their wastewater treatment problems. Such an effort — perhaps a sewer district — might improve chances of getting federal Environmental Protection Agency funds to help cover costs of joining the city system. Elms said the city's treatment facilities are adequate, but suggested several new sewer trunk lines may be needed to move the wastewater to the sewer plant. Elms plans to present the final study to commissioners in early January. 81-Year-Old Gus Busy As Ever By CHRIS BELDEN Of The News Staff Two hospital stays this year didn't prevent Hays' Santa Claus from preparing hundreds of toys for Christmas delivery. Eighty-one year old August "Gus" Beckeler, 423 East 12th, was in the hospital twice for treatment of a back injury. He says the back brace he must wear "slows him down a little," but he repaired more than 1,200 toys during the year for Christmas delivery to Wichita's Institute of Logopedics and Kansas Neurological Institute in Topeka. He also repairs toys for both Hays hospitals, Anderson School of Hope in Victoria, and local children in his garage- turned-workshop. The. workshop, which is heated by a wood-burning stove when Gus is working, is packed full before Kansas National -Guard members come to pick up the toys. Gus says he receives more toys to repair every year for Project Hope, but the kinds of toys are changing. "We don't get many dolls or doll houses anymore," he said."Kids today don't want dolls, they want something big." He also doesn't get as many plastic toys, which are hard to repair, as he did several years ago. Gus is not too busy repairing toys to prepare his own home for a visit from the North Pole. He has a miniature wood village, patterned after a town he lived in on the East coast, set up next to his front porch and a church in his front yard. Windows, doors and latchs on the hotel, churches, stores and homes all work, and the buildings are equipped with appropriate furniture ~nrt dolls. The whole display is lighted every year on Christmas Eve. He has several fences around the village to keep out the stray cats and dogs in the neighborhood. Beckeler, 'who says he's "not old enough to get into a red suit and play Santa," is nevertheless Hays' answer to the unselfish gentleman from the North Pole who spends the year preparing children's toy for Christmas. Hays' Santa August "Gus" Beckeler, also known as Hays' £anta Clous, hardly has room to stand In his workshop this time of year. Toys on the shelves have been refurbished, and are ready for Christmas delivery to Kansas Neurological Institute in Topeka. No Christmas Cheer When Santa Not Here 'Twas a couple nights afore Christinas and scattered through town The kiddies were pleading, "Please! Let's see Santa while he's gonna be around!" So the folks donned their wraps and to The Mall turned their cars Pulled in and parked 'neath the tinseled blue stars. Throwing open the doors, they crossed the parking with a clatter . Zipped down the Mall's hall and there... went a-shattcr. For what the their astonished eyes should appear? Well, not a whisker of Santa, not even an ear. The scene now shifts south, to a point far elsewhere Where a Daily News reporter sat sipping Pilsner. The phone he answered when it jingled and clanged And a voice pierced his ear, all toughnails and fanged. "I'll tell the newspaper," the voice was aflame. "I'll tell the newspaper if you don't use my name.'' "Calm down, my dear madam," said the scribe with collection, "Tell the whole story and don't miss an inflection." "Let's quit this foolishness," she demanded, still atwitter. "The words might not rhyme, and the penta may dis- meter." "Fine," said the writer, jotting down more notes Then he rang off by saying, "I'll see if all this floats:" The facts float. Santa was gone. Parents were irate. And the Mall manager, Roma Schramm, has this to say: "We finished our Santa promotion on Wednesday, and finished our advertising in the paper last Sunday." In ine five Christmases The Mall has been in operation, she said, the Santa promotion always ended a few davs before Christmas. Mrs. Schramm cited a number of reasons for stopping the program before Christmas Eve. "Shopping drops off a little just before Christmas," she said. "It's not like in the bigger cities where you have big crowds right up to the end." Another reason this year, she said, was the way the promotion was handled. "In the past, we had photographers with 1'oloroicl cameras. This year we had a professional studio, Protralt Land, of Riverside, California. "They handled virtually all of the program, including salaries for the two Santas and three helpers, and providing the suits and so on," she said. The promotion, which began the day after Thanksgiving, ran from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily and 1-6 p.m. Sunday. "Both of the Santas were college students, and one was from out of town. He left for home early and left the bulk of the schedule for the other.''

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