B2 SUNDAY, MAV 6, 2001 GREAT PLAINS THE SAUNA JOURNAL A I nnl^ AktfVMtffl TKANSAS ECONOMY A LOOK fuieaa Revenue blues hit Main Street 6 Sunday • FUND-RAISER: Salina Public Library Bool< Sale. 1-3 p.m., 301 W. Elm. Hardbacks, 50 cents; paperbacks, 25 cents or 5 for $1. • PROGRAM: "Don't Call Me A Monkey," Is it a monkey or an ape? 3-5 p.m., Rolling Hills Refuge, 625 N. Hedville. All .ages. S3 for members and S5 for nonmembers. 827-9488, Ext. 17. • PROGRAM: Reception for tfie Kansas Wesleyan University Student Art Exhibition. 2-4 p.m.. The Gallery, Sams Hall of Fine Arts. • ABILENE: Presentation by textile artist and quilter Chris Wolf Edmonds. 2 p.m.. First Presbyterian Church, 1400 N. Cedar. (785) 263-3118. • CONCORDIA: Steven Elisha and Laura Kennedy cello and piano concert. 2 p.m., Brown Grand Theatre-. $5. (785) 243-2553. • ELLSWORTH: Central States Association Spring Fly-in. Ellsworth Municipal 'Airport. (785) 472-4113. • • GLASCO: Steven Elisha and Laura Kennedy cello and piano concert 5 p.m., Christian Church, S3. (785) 243-2553. . • HAYS: Big Band Reunion. 2-5 p.m., Hays Veterans of Foreign Wars, 22nd and Vine. (785) 282-6689. •LINDSBORG: MillfesL Noon io 5 p.m., McPherson County Old Mill Museum, 120 Mill. $2 for adults, $1 ages 6-12, under 6 free. (785) 227-2810. • LINDSBORG: Bethany College J-^andbell Ensemble. 3 p.m., BIrger Sandzen Memorial Gallery, 401 N, First. Free. (785) 227-2220. • LINDSBORG: Opening reception for Aaron Ratzlaff senior art exhibition. 24 p.m., Mingenback Art Center, Bethany' College. (785) 227-3311, Ext. 8122. • • McPHERSON: McPherson Gem and Mineral Club ninth annual Gem, Mineral and Fossil Sale and Swap. 4-H Grounds. Free. (620) 241-7003. • McPHERSON: McPherson County Historical Society presents "History of Aviation and Airports in McPherson County." 2 p.m., McPherson Municipal Center, • OBERLIN; Oberlin Arts and Humanities Commission presents the comedy and magic of Rex Getz. 2 p.m., Decatur County High School auditorium. Tickets at the door, $8 for adults and $2 for students. (785) 475-2473 or 4753557. •WILSON: "Celebrating 100Years." poast hog, sauerkraut and trimmings, 31 a.m.-l p.m.; dance to Dean Hansen, 2-6 p.m., Wilson Opera House. 7 Monday • EVENT: Carson and Barnes Circus. 4:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.. East Crawford Recreation Area. Tickets availabe at area Dillons Stores, $10 for adults and S5 for children. • PARENTING CLASS: "Positive Discipline." 6-8 p.m.. First Presbyterian Church, 308 S. Eighth. Free. 825-4493. • PROGRAM: 'The ABCs of Credit •Facts." 11 a.m.-noon. Consumer Credit 'Counseling Service, 1201 W. Walnut. S5 per family. For reservations, call 827-6731. 1 Hazard training Hazardous job training to be May 29 ABILENE — A Hazardous Occupation Training session for youtli in Saline and Dickinson counties will be 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.in. May 29 in Sterl Hall on the Central Kansas Fairgrounds. ,i The training is required by law for 14- and 15-year-olds to vvoi'k witii tractors and other farm macliinery on property other than that owned or operated by tiieir parents. Those who are 14 and com- . pletod the course last year do not need to take the course again. This is the only session this year that will be conducted by the Saline and Dickinson counties Extension offices. Each student is required to complete an assignment from course materials before the class. Those interested can enroll at their respective extension offices — in Saline County at the City-County Building, 300 W. Ash, Salina; or in Dickinson County at the Extension office in the Courthouse Annex. 712 S. Buckeye. The course materials cost $8 and must be picked up by May . 18. Name, address, birthday, PENTAX NOW ENROLLING at Church of the Cross 1600 Rush St. Call for more information or to visit the school. 825-5170 Ask for Stacey Ross. Social Security number and the name of a parent or legal guardian are required. For more information, call Dickinson County Extension at (785) 263-2001 or Saline County Extension at (785) 826-6654. Belay tor Lite Cancer society seeking participants Participants are needed for the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life, an overnight event through which people celebrate cancer survivors, remember loved ones and raise money for the fight against cancer. The event begins at 7 p.m. July 13 at Central High School's Salina Stadium. To register a team or to participate as a survivor, call Pam Ehlts at the Saline County American Cancer Society at (785) 452-7039. Sailplanes Slope Challenge slated for May 18-19 WILSON LAKE — The eighth annual Midwest Slope Challenge is scheduled for May 18-19 in the Lucas Park area. Radio-controlled sail planes will compete in races and combat at the park. The event is free and runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day Combat flights are Friday Up to 15 planes take to the air in a sort of aeronautical demolition derby Their operators try to knock each other's planes out of the air. Saturday is filled with racing, with two to four planes flying laps around pylons. "It's sort of like a stock car race with model airplanes," said Loren Blinde, Lincoln, Neb., of the Lincoln Area Soaring Society, which sponsors the Midwest Slope Challenge. The planes travel up to 60 miles per hour. "The stronger the wind is, the more you can put the nose down and the faster you can fly" Blinde expects 50 model airplane pilots from as far away as New York and California. Contestants must be members of the Academy of Model Aeronautics. From Staff Reports Retailers say farmers 'aren't spending like they did before' By CARL MANNING Tin: Associtiled /'/c.w OBERLIN — For those trying to figure out why state revenue estimates are in the tank, they need only to ask a few merchants in this corner of northwest Kansas. Like many retailei's along the wide brick main street of this High Plains farm town, Ray Ward has seen firsthand the results of a bad farm yean "They aren't spending like they did before. Our sales are down from a year ago. It's a farm economy around here, and last year has been tough on everybody," said Ward, parts manager at the Southwest Implement store on the town's thoroughfare. Perhaps politicians at the Statehouse in Topeka could take a lesson from some of the merchants when trying to explain the state's $206 million revenue shortfall. That figure is the difference between what the state expects to collect over the next 14 months in tax revenues and the spending legislators previously approved. Revenues from the state's 4.9 percent sales tax are the biggest part of the problem. For months, collections lagged behind estimates made in November In April, state officials and economists dropped their numbers — by $120 million, "If you can't afford it, you don't buy it. That's the bottom line," said Helen Gee, office manager at the Decatur County Area Chamber of Commerce. Decatur County is farming country, with wide open spaces ideal for raising such crops as wheat, corn and milo, but subject to the whims of the weather. Last year, the weather worked against residents. The wheat crop didn't live up to expectations. Additionally, drought crippled fall crops like corn and milo. "Everybody is saving where they can. They are waiting and watching to see how the wheat crop will be this year," said Gale Cook, president of the Gold Bank of Oberlin. "We had the drought last year and raised some of the poorest crops. That sure didn't help the cash flow any," he added. How poor were the crops? "It was a disaster," said Vince Carswell, manager of the local Farm Bureau Financial Services office, which writes crop insurance for grea farmers. "I would say we had a loss on every policy we wrote for fall crops," he said. "If farmers have a bad year, everybody has a bad year." He said the average corn yield in Decatur County is about 100 bushels per acre. Last year, it was closer to 30 bi:jshels. "That won't even come close to paying the expenses," Carswell said. At Southwest Implement, manager Lonny Brewer said the economy has meant delays in spending by many of his customers. "They're not coming in until they have to, and there have been more than the normal amount doing" that this year," he said. "This year, people are waiting until the last minute to repair anything." Gee said the story is much the same among many other merchants. "Across the board, sales are down. I don't think any of them are doing wonderfully," Gee said. "People aren't buying." Beyond the bad crop year. Gee also blames the harsh winter that struck northwest Kansas and higher-than-expected heating bills. "We had so much snow that it kept people from shopping, and many businesses had to shut down a few days or close early," Gee said. When it comes to heating costs. Gee speaks from personal experience. "It's taking everything I make and my husband makes. There is not any extra money," she said.- Another consideration, she said, is that Oberlin is about 30 miles south of McCook, Neb., which has bigger stores that can afford to sell for less. When people buy there, Nebraska gets the sales tax. T MEDICAL MIRACLE Foresight 20/20 for Olathe woman Future bright for 21-year-old who had her vision restored By The Associated Press OLATHE — In 20 minutes, Keri-Ann Ruemmler's world changed from a mostly dark place to one filled with astonishing sights and beautiful people. Ruemmler had been legally blind and profoundly deaf since she was born three months prematurely in July 1979. Ophthalmologists said they could not do much for her. "We had been told her sight would progressively get worse," said her mother, Sally Ruemmler of Olathe. Then a family friend suggested they consider laser eye surgery If it didn't go well, she would lose what little sight she had. Ruemmler, now 21, spent a month talking and praying about the decision before decid- SPECIALIZING IN PAINTLESS DENT REPAIR • Keep Your Factory Finish • No Paints or Fillers Used • Most Repairs in 24 Hours • Insurance Approved • Referrals Available SATISFACTION GUARANTEED Located at Z^ller Brake 662 S. Broadway 823-3715 Save '60 to '70 on Lane' Ceddr Chests!,, , A Graduation Gift That Makes The Grade. Saw On Gcmtiiw Lmie' Cedar Chests This Week Only! Say congratulations today with a cedar chest she'll treasure for all the years to come. Priced to make it easy to give! Now on $'J/lQ Sale From j£j\J^ Mon. - Fri. 9:00 -5 :30 Sat. 9:00 -5 :00 . Sun. 1:00 -5 :00 823-3971 ing to go ahead. The results were astounding. After the 20-minute procedure, Ruemmler reported all the things she could see in the operating room: a trash can, her Winnie-the-Pooh watch, the faces of her family "You are gorgeous," she told her mother, yvho was crying. She was surprised her father. Cliff, had gray hair. Then, for the first time, Ruemmler saw her face clearly in the mirror. She watched herself *smile. "I'm beautiful," she said. Lasik surgery is not without risk; a small percentage of patients report distorted vision afterward. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration warns on its Web site about potential outcomes, including "blinding complications." Dan Durrie, director of refractive surgery for Hunkeler Eye Centers in Kansas City, per formed Ruemmler's surgery Durrie recently did a routine checkup on her eyes, which are now both 20/20. Before the surgery, his goal was to improve her vision so that she could see OK without glasses. "She's exceeded my expectations," Durrie said during the examination Thursday Earlier this year, Ruemmler had a second surgery to eliminate halos of light she was seeing, Durrie said. After the original procedure, Ruemmler was anxious to meet people. That's when seeing things for the first time became a difficult adjustment. Before, she had not realized when other people were watching her. She quickly became self-conscious about her clothes and appearance. All the new things she could see overwhelmed and- overstimulated her. "This is too much. I can't stand it," she would say. In the first months after her surgery, she sometimes would close herself in her room and cry "She realized she had missed friends and a social life," Sally Ruemmler said. "Her deaf- blindness has kept the world away from her, and that's a good thing and a bad thing. We didn't know how to prepare her for all of this." Keri-Ann had already overcome severe disabilities by the time she regained her eyesight. She had open-heart surgery shortly after birth. Her left leg nearly had to be amputated because of an infection. Doctors said too much of an antibiotic caused her deafness. Cliff and Sally Ruemmler had a 9-year-old daughter and a 14-year-old son and desperately wanted another child. They decided to adopt Keri-Ann when she was 5 months old. SUPERIOR SCHOOL AND OFFICE OWNED BY KAN SANS, DEDICATED TO PROVIDING ^^^^^^ SUPERIOR SmVICEAHD SAVINGS Srr*"^— —TO YOU! 76% OFF SPR 01908 Sparco Fax Paper Regular Price $6.75 roll SALE PRICE $1.59 rod SPR 01750 Box Sealing Tape Dispenser Regular Price $16.95 SALE PRICE $8.99 MMM 37ia -2TI\I (Tan) 3710-2-TT (Transparent) Packaging Tape Regular Price $1.51 SALE PRICE 890 Sparco Colored Legal Pads 8 1/2 X 11, Ivory, Gray, Pink, Orchid, Blue Regular Price $2.80 ea. SALE PRICE $1.89 ea. 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