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Platte County’s Ben Ferrel Museum gets in the holiday spirit

Platte County’s Ben Ferrel Museum has a retro holiday vibe with a vintage Christmas display that includes boots, books, and other items that date to the 1800s.
Platte County’s Ben Ferrel Museum has a retro holiday vibe with a vintage Christmas display that includes boots, books, and other items that date to the 1800s. Photo provided

The Ben Ferrel Museum, 220 Ferrel Street in Platte City, has been decorated for the holidays, using traditional holiday decorations dating from the 1800s.

The Museum, which was built as a home in 1882 by Frederic Krause, will be open for a free tour from 5 to 7 p.m. on Nov. 22. Tickets for admission dates from 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Dec. 7, 8, and 9 are $5 for adults.

“This year’s décor ranges from garlands, lights and traditional baubles to silk flowers and cloth birds and, in the children’s room upstairs, an antique variety,” said Lisa Wittmeyer, museum curator.

The Platte County Historical Society operates the museum. Society member Sue Hurd VanAmburg oversees holiday decorating each year with a number of volunteers from the community.

Decorations include a 9-foot-tall tree placed in the same corner where the Krause family erected its tree along with vintage decorations and Christmas trees throughout every room.

The children’s room has been transformed with heirloom dolls and Christmas books among other vintage decorations.

“Through this room, we see Christmas as the Krause children might have experienced it,” said Joyce Taylor, a member of Heirloom Doll Collectors Club of Greater Kansas City.

For information call 816-769-9669.

Synergy director appointed to state board

Jennifer Vernon, Synergy’s Director of Child, Youth & Family Clinical Services, has been appointed by Gov. Eric Greitens to serve on the state’s Child Abuse and Neglect Review Board.

The Board provides an independent review of contested child abuse and neglect determinations made by the Children’s Division.

Vernon has been with Synergy since 1994. She works with families and children experiencing family violence, and has expertise in treating adolescent sex abusers. She also works with mental health first aid and expert witness testimony. She is a training and technical assistance consultant for the Federal Office for Victims of Crime (OVC).

“It’s an honor to be able to use my skills and experience to serve the children of Missouri,” Vernon said in a press release.

Synergy provides shelter and support services for those dealing with family violence. Services include emergency and transitional shelter, counseling and mental health services, and community programs to raise awareness of and prevent violence.

Arts Commission, Jewell team up for MLK celebration

The Liberty Arts Commission has awarded a $1,000 mini grant to the Harriman-Jewell Series to sponsor a performance Jan. 15 at the 34th Annual Northland Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration.

The world-renowned American Spiritual Ensemble will perform during the celebration at Jewell’s Gano Hall, 500 College Hill in Liberty.

The celebration will be free and open to the public.

The mini-grant is funded through Liberty’s Transient Guest Tax and coordinated through the Liberty Arts Commission.

North Star Band presents holiday concert Dec. 1

The North Star Community Band will present its 30th annual Christmas Benefit Concert at 7:30 p.m. on Dec. 1 at Oak Park High School Auditorium.

The 60-piece band will play “Winterfest,” “Minor Alterations,” “A Celtic Christmas,” Alfred Reed’s “Greensleeves,” and other Christmas music.

“This concert is for everyone,” band director Faye Rader said in a release. “From the ‘Christmas Pop Sing-a-Long’ to the traditional carols in ‘Christmas Favorites,’ the audience is sure to experience some hand-clapping and toe-tapping fun.”

Teresa Farley and Steve Lindsay assist Rader.

The concert is free to attend and guests are encouraged to wear their favorite Christmas shirt or ugly sweater. Children are welcome if accompanied by adults.

In lieu of an admission fee, the North Star Community Band will accept voluntary monetary donations or menswear, which will be donated to the Northland Christmas Store and Kansas City Lutheran Ministries.

For more information, visit to www.nstarband.org.

Bunco Mania for a good cause

Photos '17 YWV Bunco youth
Member of Youth With Vision hosted the annual Bunco Mania fundraiser Nov. 9 at the Gladstone Community Center. Photo provided

Members of Youth With Vision hosted their annual Bunco Mania fundraiser Nov. 9 at the Gladstone Community Center this month.

Youth With Vision is a group of Northland teens whose goal is to create drug-free, safe communities for youth. The youth serve on the advisory council for the Northland Coalition.

The members who participated in Bunco Mania (and the high school they attend) were: (Back row, from left), Taylor Neal, Heritage Middle School; Rachel Francis, Park Hill South; Jake Bohanon, North Kansas City; Jace Robinson, Smithville; Brian Purkaple, Winnetonka; Leo Ferrua, Smithville; Lilly Meier, Richmond; and Austin Thrasher, North Kansas City; (middle row, from left) Grace Johnson, Liberty North; Erin Rippy, Park Hill South; Aidan Robinson and Jordyn Walker, both Smithville; (front row, from left) Natalie Andrews, Excelsior Springs; Caitlynn Bohanon, North Kansas City; Emma Latz, Kearney; Anya Jeffries, Park Hill South; and Miranda Andrews, Excelsior Springs.

Holiday programs at library

David zum Brunnen will portray the 17 characters from Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol” during a performance at 7 p.m. on Nov. 27 at Mid-Continent Public Library’s Woodneath Branch.

Other holiday programs offered at Mid-Continent’s Northland locations include:

▪ ▪ Story time with Santa and Mrs. Claus: Parkville, 10:30 a.m., Dec. 9; Liberty, 2 p.m., Dec. 9; and Claycomo, 6 p.m., Dec. 14.

▪ ▪ Mr. Stinky Feet: Smithville, 10 a.m., Dec. 9; Boardwalk, 10 a.m., Dec. 16; Woodneath, 2 p.m., Dec. 16; and Parkville, 6:30 p.m., Dec. 18.

▪ ▪ Simple Strings Dulcimer’s Christmas Concert: Liberty, 7 p.m., Nov. 30; and Kearney, 2 p.m., Dec. 9.

▪ ▪ Christmas with the Cool Cats: Boardwalk, 2 p.m., Dec. 9.

▪ ▪ The Dicken’s Carolers: Smithville, 2 p.m., Dec. 6.

For a complete listing of holiday programs and to register for events, go to mymcpl.org/holidays. Seating is limited.

Northland choir to perform ‘Rutter Carols’

The Northland Community Choir will present “Rutter Carols by Candlelight” at 5 p.m. onDec. 3 at the Graham Tyler Memorial Chapel at Park University.

The concert, which will feature harpist Tabitha Steiner, is under the artistic direction of Paul Erickson.

Park University’s International Center for Music is the concert sponsor and the suggested donation for concert-goers is $10. Student admission is free.

For more information, visit to www.northlandcommunitychoir.org.

Parkville honors Eagle projects at sanctuary

Parkville’s Board of Alderman honored two Boy Scouts who performed their Eagle Scout projects at the Parkville Nature Sanctuary.

Quentin Worley of Troop 1314 and Peyton Cridlebaugh of Troop 1495 were recognized during the Nov. 7 meeting and presented certificates of recognition from Nature Sanctuary Director Joe Ryan and Mayor Nan Johnston.

Worley’s project involved clearing out brush from the cement pond and planting native plants outside the fence. The enclosure now serves as a plant nursery.

Cridlebaugh’s project included building two kiosks at the entrances to the White Tail Trail. The kiosks provide general information and news of special events in the Sanctuary.

“The Parkville Nature Sanctuary is a 115-acre natural area with 2.8 miles of trails that is maintained almost entirely by volunteers,” Johnston said. “With the help of Peyton and Quentin, we continue to improve the sanctuary. Their projects will be appreciated for many years to come.”

Eagle Scout is the highest advancement a Boy Scout can earn. Only 3 to 4 percent attain the ranking.

By Norma King, Special to The Star

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