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News for 11/2/2022

Veterans Day Celebration

Join us for our Veterans Day Celebration in Kensington on Saturday, November 12, 2022. There will be a Craft Fair at the American Legion and Scholastic Book Fair at the Library, both starting at 9:00am. The parade will begin with a special speaker at 11:00am. The FREE BBQ to follow; be sure to bring your own bowls or Tupperware.

In 2019, Kensington observed the 100th anniversary of its first Veterans Day celebration. Here is a little history behind the celebration.

On the 11th month, the 11th day, and the 11th hour in 1918 was the signing of the Armistice, which was not the actual end of the war, but the end of hostilities.

When the news came to Kensington, Kansas that November 11th, that the Armistice had been signed, the citizens of Kensington celebrated by holding an impromptu barbecue.

The following year, on November 11th of 1919, the veterans joined with the other citizens in sponsoring a like event. This was the first annual celebration of the Armistice of WWI held in Kensington. The Veterans went to the country and purchased critters, which were brought to town and butchered in Gene Wolfe’s Butchering House. Freddie Bierman, Vince Dilsaver and Douglas Dimond were part of this “critter” committee for many years. The celebration has been held nearly every year since as the Kensington Free Barbecue and Homecoming. Large crowds enjoy the free beef sandwiches, beans and coffee. The Legion Auxiliary furnishes pies for a pie stand, these pastries help complete the meal. The beans for this barbecue are sorted the night before and put to cook in huge pots when the meat is started to cook.

Kensington native, Darold Grauerholz, helps cook the beans each year. He says in 1967 he went to help but was turned away for being too young. He was told to come back next year and has helped every year since and has not missed. He has learned many tips and tricks for cooking the beans over the years and stated they use between 350-400 lbs depending upon the weather forecast and how many people they expect to attend. This November will be his 54th year on bean duty.

What later became known as Kensington’s Veterans Day Celebration has been held annually with the exception of at least three years locals say. The 1st year missed was due to a snow storm in 1923. One year was skipped due to WWII in 1942. The boys that were overseas found out that those back home did not hold the celebration. They wrote home to their parents requesting and insisting that the celebration continue on after this. Then again in 1957 there was a blizzard and the celebration was canceled.

In the early years, they had school kids collect dry wood along the creeks and stock pile firewood at the barbecue location/cook shack. In the 60’s, they changed from the trenches in the ground they had cooked food in and set up vats with briquettes for cooking. They felt this wasn’t working so well and in the 70’s started using old, used milk coolers heated with propane. The same recipes for the meat and beans have been used over the course of 100 years.

The American Legion Post #166 sponsors the parade. Local schools and organizations from both Smith and Phillips county would participate with numerous floats and bands. For many years a Football game was played in the afternoon. Following the free barbecue, Kensington high school would hold their school play before the football game was played and the band would provide a halftime entertainment. This was discontinued in the late 60’s. A memorial program also used to take place. Now, in recent years, a flag retirement ceremony is held.

For many years the ladies of the American Legion Auxiliary have made a quilt on which they sell chances and hold a raffle of the quilt. They also bake pies and various desserts and sell paper poppies. In more recent years, the SALS have provided a Gun Raffle with chances to win guns and various consolation prizes, such as half a hog and more.

TR Schedule of Events

Thunder Ridge will host Jetmore-Hodgeman County Longhorns at 6:00pm Friday, November 4, for Regional Football. Start time to take tickets will be 4:50pm.

A reminder that NO PASSES WILL BE ACCEPTED. KSHSAA Ticket prices will be $6 for K-12 students and $8 for adults. Cheerleaders in uniform will be admitted along with their sponsor. Dance team members will only have free admittance if in uniform and performing at halftime. Pep Band members are admitted free if playing.


Wed. 2- 3:15pm MS BB Pics

Thur. 3- KAYS Blood Drive from 9:00am - 3:00pm in HS gym; 4pm HS Scholars Bowl @ Natoma

Fri. 4- HS FB REGIONALS @ Home 6:00pm

Sat. 5- NW District KMEA Jr Honor Band/Choir & HS Honor Jazz Band @ Ft Hays

Mon. 7- TRHS Hosting League Vocal Clinic: Rehearsal begins at 1:00pm in the gym.

Students rehearse from 1-4:30pm and concert (open to the community) is at 6:00pm.

Tue. 8- MS BB @ Home vs Lincoln 4pm

Wed. 9- College Fair @ Osborne -All Juniors & Seniors, Leave @ 8:50am

Friday Night @ The Legion

This week at the Kensington American Legion we will be having a special of beefy noodle soup, roast beef salad sandwich, and a dessert. If you want you can swap the soup out for chili instead. We will have our regular menu items as well. Our kitchen is open from 6-8pm and you can call 785-476-3204 to have your order ready for pick up. We wish the area teams best wishes on the play off games. Hope to see you Friday!

We will be hosting the annual community Thanksgiving meal on Thursday, November 24th at noon. The meat, potatoes, green beans, bread, beverages, and tableware will be provided. Please bring a salad or dessert to share.

Weekly Inspiration

Starting a new month. Invest in yourself. Take time for you. Move your body. Eat real food. Drink water. Spend time in nature. Journal. Clear your mind. Listen to your heart. Rest. You are worth it! Believe that.

News items needed

Reminder: Please send your news to Erica at (put NEWS in the subject line please!) by SUNDAY afternoon. To see the full, in-color edition, visit the Kensington website online at


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