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News for 5/8/2019

Congrats to the Class of 2019!

On Sunday afternoon, May 5, 2019, Thunder Ridge High School held the graduation ceremony for the Class of 2019. Those students graduating included: Britt Bauman, Leah Bienhoff (Valedictorian), Raegan Boden, Dalton Christensen, Wysteria Corbett, Blaine Eller, Katelynn Fowler, Landon Gering, Brandon Grauerholz, Jeran Hale, Elizabeth Hardacre, Brice Hendryx (Salutatorian), Layne Pettijohn, Kenda Reimer, Matilyn Riley, Tharen Salner, Brandon Shaw, Destiny Shook, Mariah Stauffer, and Karen Torres Jovel.

Congratulations on your graduation from high school and wishing you all the best in your future endeavors.

“Chase your dreams, but always know the road that will lead you home again.” -Tim McGraw

Photos by Robin Billings.

Leah Bienhoff, the Valedictorian of the Class of 2019, delivering her speech to the audience.

Salutatorian Brice Hendryx giving his speech of the past and memories made.

Unrolling the traditional ribbon down the line. Pictured left to right: Elizabeth Hardacre, Jeran Hale, Brandon Grauerholz, Landon Gering, Katelynn Fowler, and Blaine Eller.

Unrolling the ribbon, pictured left to right: Mariah Stauffer, Destiny Shook, Brandon Shaw, Tharen Salner.

Ribbon cutting tradition conducted by class sponsors Kathi Boden and Otis Hendryx. (l-r) Landon Gering, Katelynn Fowler, Blaine Eller, Wysteria Corbett, Dalton Christensen, Raegan Boden, Leah Bienhoff, and Britt Bauman.

Class of 2019 receiving their piece of ribbon to remember where they’ve come from. Pictured (l-r) Kenda Reimer, Layne Pettijohn, and Brice Hendryx.

Pictured (l-r) Karen Torres Jovel, Mariah Stauffer, and Destiny Shook.

TR Middle School Students Recognized

Reading for AR points is a quarterly requirement for all students at Thunder Ridge. Each student is assigned a points goal they must reach to earn a grade, but some students go above and beyond and deserve recognition.

The Top Three Readers for the school year: 3rd place is Gianna Hoersdig (7th grade). 2nd place Cameron Cochrun (8th grade), 1st place Brillon McDowell (4th grade).

The Top 8th grade readers from 4th through 8th grade years combined:

6th Alexis Holling, 5th Jace Randall, 4th Cameron Cochrun, 3rd Sydni Rust, 2nd Ava Wiehman, 1st Max Loyd.

Mark Your Calendars

Celebration for Moms and Graduates- The United Church of Kensington plans to hold a special reception on Sunday, May 12, 2019 (Mother’s Day) at 9:45 AM in the church basement before Worship Service. Serving delicious muffins, fresh fruit, coffee and juice to honor our mothers on Mother’s Day and celebrate our graduates taking the next step in their life journey. Please join us!

KCS Potato Bar Fundraiser

As a quarterly fundraiser for the Kensington Community (grocery) Store, Wendy’s of Hays is sponsoring a Baked Potato Bar. Plan to join us at the American Legion Hall in Kensington on Sunday, May 19 from 11:00am to 1:00pm for a baked potato bar with all the fixings. Free will donations accepted.

*Please note there is a sign-up sheet at the store for dessert donations.

Alumni of Kensington and Thunder Ridge- The invites have been mailed out for the Annual Alumni Banquet. The banquet will be held Saturday, May 25, 2019 at the American Legion Hall in Kensington honoring all years ending in 4 and 9. If you are a graduate of West Smith County or Thunder Ridge High School and you have had a change of address, please contact Staci Foreman at the District Office to make your reservations and update your info. Call 785-476-2218 or email

Athol Homecoming Get Together

Athol Homecoming Get Together planned for Sunday, May 26, 2019 from 2:00-4:00 pm at the Athol Community Hall. If you haven’t been back to Athol for several years, you will be pleased to see how the Athol Community hall has been repainted, new windows installed, and see mementos of Athol history.

The Homecoming get together event will be a time for anyone who has Athol ties or attended Athol Grade School or High School to come to. It is not just for Athol High School Alumni as was the case with the get-together previously held every two years on Memorial weekend. We want to get the information out that everyone is invited to come to the open house.

Athol High School’s last graduating class was in 1955, making the high school graduates 82 years old or more. There are several of this “Grand Generation” of Alumni in the area who are pushing age 90 who still want to get together for a time of visiting and remembering Athol. This number is declining and is more difficult for them to help plan this event. For this reason, Donna Johnson (785-476-2691) and Dianna Rice (785-695-2399) agreed to help with the planning of this event.

Athol Grade School closed in 1966, so that graduating class would be 66 or more years old. There were still younger grade school students who attended Athol grade school until it’s closing in May, 1966. It is hoped that several of the Athol Grade School graduates and students would like to have a time together at Athol and be together as well.

A short program will be held at 3:00 pm to share memories with a special memorial ceremony for Athol graduates who have passed away since the last reunion in 2017. Refreshments will be served.

Please mark your calendars for Sunday May 26, 2019 from 2-4 pm to reconnect with your Athol friends at the Athol Community Hall. Please consider this your invitation to attend.

American Legion Menu

This week at the American Legion we will be having burger bundles baked in gravy (they are stuffed with dressing), crock pot corn, and mandarin orange salad.. We will also have Italian pasta salad and strawberries with angel food cake. Please let us know if you have extras in for Mother's Day weekend and we'll put tables together for you. Be sure to call us to fix your supper to go at 785-476-3204. We want to wish all the mom's a very wonderful Mother's Day.

Kensington Community/School Library Info

Dear Parents: Please plan for your child or children to attend our Summer Reading Programs at the Kensington Community/School Library. We will be exploring outer space and things out-of-this-world with “A Universe of Stories!” every Tuesday and Thursday in the month of June and the first two weeks in July. Stop by the library to sign your children up and get a copy of the calendar for our reading program this summer.

Weekly Inspiration

Sometimes in life you just need a hug. No words. No advice. Just a hug to make you feel better. - Unknown

Stop worrying about the past. Stop thinking about the future. Just live in the moment and be happy. - Unknown

If you really want to do something, you'll find a way. If you don't, you'll find an excuse. - Jim Rohn


Please get your news items to Erica no later than Monday morning at 10:00am. News submitted after 10:00am will be in the paper the following week. Send your info to Erica Barnes at with subject line: NEWS; or feel free to call 785-476-8185. To see the full, in color, version visit

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