Love chocolate, need ideas for Valentine’s Day and want to help a good cause?
Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street will host its annual Chocolate Crawl for a Cause, sponsored by Metropolitan Community College-Longview and The Kansas City Star, beginning at noon on Feb. 3 with numerous participating locations throughout downtown.
Participants are asked to bring a small donation — money, paper products or nonperishable food items — to benefit Lee’s Summit Social Services as a form of admission.
Donations should be dropped off and shoppers should check-in at GOT Art Gallery between noon and 2 p.m.
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The first 500 shoppers will receive a Lee’s Summit chocolate bar, along with a special heart-shaped necklace and a map of downtown.
The necklace provides special promotions and discounts at participating businesses, which are highlighted on the map.
For a full list of participating business, visit the Downtown Lee’s Summit Main Street website and search upcoming events.
Mid-Continent offers free Tax Help for Seniors
Through a partnership with AARP, seniors can receive free tax preparation at 19 Mid-Continent Public Library branches throughout Kansas City.
The service is free, but advanced registration is required by calling a local branch for the Tax Help for Seniors program, which kicks off Feb. 1 and continues through mid-April.
Tax-help sessions with AARP Tax-Aide representatives — who will answer tax questions and prepare returns (excluding farm returns and rental properties) — are available to taxpayers with moderate to low incomes, especially those 50 and older.
“AARP tax prep help is a tremendous value for our customers, and we’re proud to say we are continuing to offer this incredible service to our community,” Mid-Continent Public Library Community Programming Manager Dylan Little said in a release. “Navigating the choppy waters of the tax prep process can be frustrating and complex, but the help of our friends at AARP makes all the difference.”
Here are some options in Jackson County: Blue Springs South Branch (816-229-3571), Tuesdays and Thursdays; Colbern Road Branch (816-525-9924), Thursdays and Fridays; Lee’s Summit Branch (816-524-0567), Tuesdays and Wednesdays; North Independence Branch (816-252-0950), Mondays through Fridays; Raytown Branch (816-3353-2052), Mondays and Wednesdays; Red Bridge Branch (816-942-1780), Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.
More free tax help
Julia Hampton, a certified public accountant from Lee’s Summit, is teaming up again with the City of Lee’s Summit and the United Way to offer a series of free tax workshops, clinics and even some tax preparation.
There will be tax clinics for Earned Income Tax Credits and Property Tax Credits on Feb. 6, 13, and 20 at Lee’s Summit City Hall, 220 S.E. Green St., in the second floor ITS Training Room. Check-in is on the first floor and parking is available in the garage adjacent to City Hall.
Workshops run each Tuesday from 3 to 6 p.m. by appointment and from 6 to 8 p.m. for walk-ins.
Hampton and volunteers from City Hall, who have years of tax-preparation experience, donate their time and expertise to assist low-income and others in need of tax assistance.
“These clinics always prove to be a useful tool for those in need of help during tax time,” Hampton said in a statement. “Tax laws are always changing and can be confusing. If we can help people not only file correctly, but assist them in getting a positive refund, the time we spend here is more than worth it.”
More than 50 people, who received refunds totaling more than $100,00, took advantage of the program last year.
To schedule an appointment this year, call Hampton at 816-554-0394.
Bridge repairs begin along I-470
The Missouri Department of Transportation will begin preparations for a series of repairs to 15 bridges along Interstate 470 from Blue Ridge Blvd. to the I-70 interchange with work Jan. 29 to Feb. 2 at the Cedar Creek Bridge.
Crews will be working beneath the bridge along eastbound and westbound lanes, but no impact to traffic flow is expected aside from the potential for vehicles and equipment to be present on the roadside shoulders. All work is weather-permitting.
When the repairs begin in earnest this spring, drivers should expect severe impacts from lane closures and are encouraged to find alternate routes once construction begins.
For more information about the timing and scope of the bridge-repair projects, visit the MoDOT website at www.modot.mo.gov/kansascity, follow @MoDOT_KC on Twitter, or share posts and comments at www.facebook.com/MoDOT.KansasCity.