SVED holds December meeting in Beloit


Solomon Valley Economic Development held their December meeting on Thursday last week, December 20.

Solomon Valley Community Development Director Heather Hartman announced that the Kansas Agriculture and Rural Leadership executive board will meet at NCK Tech on Jan. 30. Hartman is a KARL program alum and speaks highly of the leadership training program at every opportunity.

Hartman also spoke about the Hays Career Fair which is sponsored by Nex-tech. At the previous event in Hays, over 600 kids participated. Experts from several career areas explain their work and offer hands-on activities for kids to experience. Each session lasts 45 minutes on a rotating schedule. The event gives students an opportunity for a taste of tangible experience with a possible future career field.

She also reviewed the summer internship program being headed-up by K-State. There are twenty-one intern positions available across the Dane Hansen service area. Organizations intent on securing a summer intern post a description of what they are looking for in in terms or work scope and field of interest for potential candidates.

The interns review possible placements and then apply to the organization(s) where they would have mutual interest fitting the company or organizations needs.

Include in those seeking interns are the City of Beloit and SVED. Juniors and Seniors attending state universities are available to apply for a position. Interns earn a stipend of $21 per hour plus a housing allowance for the summer.

The Western Kansas Department of Commerce will meet at the Technical College on Jan. 12. Hartman expects 20-25 people to attend the meeting. This is Beloit’s first time to host a meeting of this group.

Hartman said she staffed the Isle of Lights visitor’s center last Wednesday night. She offered a summary of the activities when she was there. Fifty-four cars containing 173 people drove through the park.

Lucille Heller reported on local tourism. Heller said that 2020 will be a busy one for local history. It will mark the 150th anniversary of the Santa Fe Trail and the 150th anniversary of Mitchell County. The committee will be working closely with Kyle Peterson at the Mitchell County Historical Society to plan events to celebrate the occasion.

Heller said the committee has submitted a $20,000 grant application to the Dane Hansen Foundation to repair the Waconda Springs Replica at the Glen Elder State Park. The liner that is supposed to hold a pool of water leaks to the point which no water is ever in the pool. Heller hopes that there will be money for signage to help explain the Waconda Springs phenomenon.

Julia Rabe, Executive Director of the Beloit Area Chamber of Commerce, gave an update of chamber sponsored activities in and around Beloit during the holiday season. The Jingle All the Way event was met with good success. A sizeable crowd attended the activities downtown. Bingo cards were available in the stores for shoppers to fill out and submit for the prize drawing. Seventy cards were turned in and seven winners were drawn.

The chamber will assume the sponsorship of the Fourth of July Fireworks this year. Rabe has recruited Jim Johnson to serve on the Chamber Board to take advantage of his years or experience with this popular summer festival.

Rabe announced to the group that the date of the annual Chamber Banquet will be Feb. 9.

Derek Nester
Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2021 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.

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