Faith news

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Christ the King Catholic Church, 53rd and Leavenworth Road, Kansas City, Kan., is planning its annual ice cream social on Saturday, Aug. 27, after the 4 p.m. Mass.

Holy Family Catholic Church
is celebrating Slovenefest 2016, on Saturday, Sept. 24. The celebration will be held at Holy Family Club, at the Monsignor Mejak Hall, Gym and School Grounds, at 513 Ohio, in Kansas City, Kan., and will run from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 24. All proceeds benefit Holy Family Church.

Judson Baptist Church, 8300 State Ave., Kansas City, Kan., will hold a Fellowship Hall picnic after the 11 a.m. church service Sunday, Aug. 7. Grilled hot dogs, potato chips, and desserts will be provided, along with a drink. Those attending should bring a salad to share. The church holds Sunday morning services at 11 a.m. on the first Sunday of the month, and at 8:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. on the other Sundays, and Sunday school is at 9:45 a.m. The church website is http://judsonbaptistchurchkck.com/.

Open Door Baptist Church, 3033 N. 103rd Terrace, Kansas City, Kan., http://www.opendoorkc.com/, holds Youth Group on Wednesday nights, and there is a meeting for children in kindergarten through sixth grade.

Risen Lamb International Church of the Nazarene, located in the Turner area of Kansas City, Kan., has announced the opening of the Risen Lamb Prayer Room and Retreat Center. On location at their church at 5301 Metropolitan Avenue, the prayer room and retreat center is open to the public for daytime retreats. All individuals or small groups seeking a quiet, sacred space to gather, pray, meditate, journal or read resources about prayer are welcome. The prayer room provides a peaceful space for solitude or can be scheduled in advance for groups of up to eight people. Guests seeking spiritual guidance may schedule a time of spiritual direction with one of the pastoral staff, and groups may inquire about scheduling a member of the pastoral team to lead or speak at a retreat. Donations accepted but not required. For more information, or to plan a visit, contact the Rev. Philip Friday at pobfriday@yahoo.com or call 913-287-9418.

St. Patrick Catholic Church, 1086 N. 94th St., Kansas City, Kan., is holding a Community Blood Center blood drive from 3 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. Aug. 8 at the parish center. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call 816-753-4040 or visit www.savealifenow.org.

Members of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 1300 N. 18th St., Kansas City, Kan., was the host of a reception for girls ages 8 through 18 who have spent the past two weeks in the Shakespeare Unbound camp. The Rev. Vicki Lovely Smith will be the guest clergywoman at the 10 a.m. service Sunday, July 31. The service in Spanish will be at 5 p.m. The parish will sponsor Vacation Bible School from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m. from Monday, Aug. 1, until Thursday, Aug. 4; “Jonah and the whale” will be the theme of the program for children in kindergarten through the fifth grade. Janice Mock, a member of the parish, will be in charge of arrangements.

Community calendar

The Wyandotte Daily News is interested in news of your community event in Wyandotte County. Send information to news@wyandottedaily.com or maryr@wyandottedaily.com and include your name and phone number. Please send in planned events about a week before the event if possible.

Back-to-school clothing drive July 30 at Legends
Legends Outlets Kansas City is joining with the United Way of Wyandotte County to collect donations for local students during a Back-to-School Clothing Drive from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, July 30. The event will feature prize giveaways, refreshments and entertainment including a Sporting KC player appearance from 1 to 2 p.m., kids’ activities and much more. Donation items must be new and may include all sizes of khaki pants, jeans, polo shirts, socks, underwear and shoes, toiletry items including deodorant, soap, toothbrushes, and toothpaste, and Legends gifts cards. Additionally, shoppers who donate at least one school-related item during the drive will receive an entry into a grand prize drawing for one $500 Legends Outlets gift card. The clothing drive is on the west side of The Legends Outlets, between T-Rex Café and Books-A-Million at 1843 Village West Parkway.

Author to speak at Main Library
Author Toriano Porter will speak from 2 to 3:30 p.m. Saturday, July 30, at the Main Kansas City, Kan., Public Library auditorium, 625 Minnesota Ave., Kansas City, Kan. Porter is an author, journalist and motivational speaker from the St. Louis area. His books, “James Cool,” and “The Pride of Park Avenue,” are about coming of age in St. Louis.

Junior roller derby planned
The Junior Warriors, ages 8-17, will have a roller derby bout on Saturday, July 30, at Memorial Hall, 600 N. 7th St., Kansas City, Kan. Doors will open at 3 p.m., with the first whistle at 4 p.m. Tickets are $8 for adults and $5 for kids 6 to 12. For more information, see http://www.kcrollerwarriors.com/junior-warriors1.html.

Live at Legends concert to be July 30

Big Time Grain Company is scheduled to play at the Live at the Legends concert at 5 p.m. July 30 at The Legends Outlets in Kansas City, Kan. Concerts are by the courtyard fountain, near the AMC Legends 14 Theatre. For more information, see www.legendsshopping.com.

Program planned on Leavenworth Road improvements

A program is planned from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. Monday, Aug. 1, on the Leavenworth Road modernization project. The program will be held at Davern Hall in Christ the King Church, 53rd and Leavenworth Road. Unified Government staff members are scheduled to have project information available about road improvements at the meeting. It will be in a “come and go” style. Refreshments will be available. Leavenworth Road is being improved from 38th to 63rd streets. According to the UG, there will be safety features for bicyclists, motorists and pedestrians in the improvements along Leavenworth Road. At this open house, residents may provide their opinions on the final design for Leavenworth Road.

Primary election to be Aug. 2
The primary election will be Aug. 2. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. For more information, visit http://wycovotes.org/.

Programs offered for Spanish-speaking women

Keeler Women’s Center, 2220 Central Ave., Kansas City, Kan., offers these programs for Spanish-speaking women: Grupo de mujeres: con lideres Maria Elena Rodriguez y Ana Maria Sauer, Los Martes, 2 de Agosto 10-11 a.m. For reservations or more information, call 913-906-8990.

Program offered to help parents keep children healthy and ready for school
“Back to School: 5 Ways to Keep Children Healthy,” will be offered from 1 to 2 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 2, with the Keeler Women’s Center, 2220 Central Ave., Kansas City, Kan. The program is offered in partnership with Mercy and Truth. The program will discuss ways parents can keep children healthy and ready for school. For more information, call 913-906-8990.

Night Out Against Crime to be Aug. 2
National Night Out Against Crime will be held from 5 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 2, at the National Guard Armory, 18th and Ridge, Kansas City, Kan. There will be a “Remembering Our Fallen” special tribute honoring Detective Brad Lancaster given by Police Chief Terry Zeigler. The first 100 adults attending who belong to a registered neighborhood group will receive a free T-shirt. There will be informational booths and activities at the event.

Pregnancy and infant loss support group to meet Aug. 2
A pregnancy and infant loss support group will meet from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 2, at the Keeler Women’s Center, 2220 Central Ave., Kansas City, Kan. The facilitated support group is for family members who have experienced miscarriage, stillbirth or infant loss. For more information, call 913-906-8990.

Program planned on ‘Optimizing Your Health’

“Optimizing Your Health” will be held on six Wednesdays from 2 to 4:30 p.m. through Aug. 17 at the Keeler Women’s Center, 2220 Central Ave., Kansas City, Kan. Topics will include reducing pain and fatigue, eating well, handling stress and exercising. The program is held in partnership with K-State Extension and will be presented by Nozella Brown and Lori Wuellner.

BPU scheduled to meet Aug. 3
The Board of Public Utilities is scheduled to meet at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 3, at the BPU offices, 540 Minnesota Ave., Kansas City, Kan.

Public meetings scheduled on sewer system
Public meetings are scheduled on the sewer system on Aug. 3 and 4 in Kansas City, Kan. The meetings are Aug. 3 at the Kane Community Center, 3130 N. 122nd St., Kansas City, Kan., and Aug. 4 at the South Kansas City, Kan., Public Library, 3104 Strong Ave., Kansas City, Kan. The meetings will begin at 6 p.m.

Turf to be discussed at gardening program Aug. 4
Turf will be a topic of the Master Gardener class from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 4, at the Wyandotte County Extension Office, 1216 N. 79th St., Kansas City, Kan. The hosts for the program are the Wyandotte County Extension Master Gardeners. Douglas County Extension Horticulture Program Assistant Stan Ring will discuss options for lawn turf, along with when to plant, how to maintain and how to deal with weeds, and he will be available to answer questions. Pre-registration is not required. A fee of $5 is payable at the door, and it is waived for currently certified Extension master gardeners. For more information call 913-299-9300.

Yoder to speak at Fairfax area meeting
U.S. Rep. Kevin Yoder, R-3rd Dist., will be the guest speaker from 11:15 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 4, at the Fairfax Industrial Association luncheon. The luncheon will be held at Central Solutions, 401 Funston Road, Kansas City, Kan. The cost of the luncheon is $15 for FIA members and $20 for nonmembers. Reservations are required by 5 p.m. Aug. 2 to execdir@fiakck.org.

Women writers to meet
A women writers’ group will meet from 1 to 2:15 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 4, at the Keeler Women’s Center, 2220 Central Ave., Kansas City, Kan. Those attending may bring their journal, stories and poems and work with other writers to share, critique and improve. For more information, call 913-906-8990.

Back-to-School Fair to be Aug. 6
The Wyandotte County annual Back-to-School Fair will be held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 6, at Kansas City Kansas Community College, Jewell Center, 7250 State Ave., Kansas City, Kan.

Grinter Place plans Summer Fest Aug. 6
Grinter Place, 1400 S. 78th St., plans a Summer Fest from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 6, on the grounds of the historic museum. The event will include food, games and tours. Vendors will be at the event. For more information, see https://www.facebook.com/Grinter-Place-Friends-Inc-560554977327335/.

KCK school board to meet Aug. 9
The Kansas City, Kan., Board of Education is scheduled to meet at 5 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 9, at the Central Office and Training Center, 2010 N. 59th St., Kansas City, Kan.

Town hall meeting planned Aug. 9
The Leavenworth Road Association will hold a town hall-style meeting on Tuesday, Aug. 9, at the Eisenhower Recreation Center, 2901 N. 72nd, Kansas City, Kan. Unified Government Commissioner Jane Philbrook will conduct the meeting. She is invited UG department managers and some other commissioners to be part of the program. A question-and-answer session is part of the program. There will be light refreshments, coffee and tea.

Spirituality based journaling planned
Spirituality based journaling program will be presented from 1 to 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 10, at the Keeler Women’s Center, 2220 Central Ave., Kansas City, Kan. No special writing skills are needed; there is an emphasis on self-understanding. The program is presented by Pat Callaghan. For reservations or more information, call 913-906-8990.

Nail program offered
Appointments to get nails done are available on every second and fourth Thursday of the month from 10 a.m. to noon at the Keeler Women’s Center, 2220 Central Ave., Kansas City, Kan. Appointments are necessary to 913-906-8990. Nails are shaped and painted by Ana Maria Price, volunteer.

UG Commission scheduled to meet
The Unified Government Commission is scheduled to meet at 7 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 11, at the Commission Chambers, lobby level, City Hall, 701 N. 7th St., Kansas City, Kan. An agenda may be posted in advance at www.wycokck.org.

Alcott to sponsor classical music concert on Aug. 13
The Alcott Arts Center Foundation is bringing Daniel Maltz to Kansas City, Kan., at 7 p.m. Aug. 13. The concert will take place at Trinity Community Church, 5010 Parallel Parkway, Kansas City, Kan. Maltz, an international concert pianist, will play Mozart, Beethoven, Chopin and Schumann in a solo recital. A young adult, he is based in Vienna, Austria, and was born in South Carolina. He regularly appears in concert in Europe and the United States, and will make his debut at Carnegie Hall in October 2016. Tickets are available online at www.alcottartscenter.org or at the Alcott Arts Center, 180 S. 18th St., Kansas City, Kan. For more information about the recital and his U.S. tour, visit the Alcott website at www.alcottartscenter.org. Maltz will teach special master classes and workshops at the Alcott while he is here. Anyone interested in participating may call the Alcott at 913-277-23787 or email alcott@alcottartscenter.org. Sponsorships are available.

Blood drive scheduled Aug. 24-25
The University of Kansas Medical Center, 3901 Rainbow Blvd., Kansas City, Kan., is holding a Community Blood Center blood drive from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Aug. 24 and 25 in the Hixson Atrium. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call 816-753-4040 or visit www.savealifenow.org.

Blood drive scheduled Aug. 26
Chiropractic Health Center, Harding and Associates, 8437 State Ave., Kansas City, Kan., is holding a Community Blood Center blood drive from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Aug. 26 in the parking lot. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call 816-753-4040 or visit www.savealifenow.org.

BPU charity golf tournament to be Sept. 10

The BPU Employee Charity Golf Corp. will hold its annual Charity Golf Tournament on Saturday, Sept. 10, at Dub’s Dread Golf Course in Kansas City, Kan. As part of its ongoing commitment to the community, BPU employees sponsor and hold this annual golf event which, to date, has raised nearly $500,000 for charities and nonprofits in Wyandotte County. The 2016 tournament kicks off with registration and a continental breakfast at 7 a.m., followed by a shotgun start at 8 a.m. The individual entry fee is $95, which includes greens fees, cart, a continental breakfast, refreshments on the course, and an awards dinner with prizes and free give-aways after the tournament. For player registration, contact David Mehlhaff at CharityGolf.Corp@gmail.com. The deadline for player registration is Sept. 2. There are also several opportunities for individuals or companies to contribute or donate to this charity event, including corporate sponsorships at various levels, in-kind donations of gift certificates, golf balls, tees, and other items for use in player goodie bags. For donation or sponsorship opportunities, contact a member of the Golf Tournament Committee: David Mehlhaff 913-573-9173 Jerin Purtee 913-573-6833 Jeremy Ash 913-573-9555 Donna Maskil-Thompson 913-573-9967 Steve Wolf 913-573-6824 Tony Coleman 913-573-9667 Sam DeLeon 913-573-6915 Jason Moe 913-573-9348.

Bishop Ward plans auction Sept. 24
Bishop Ward High School’s 38th annual auction will take place Saturday, Sept. 24, and will include a silent and live auction. Tickets are $60 per person and include food and entertainment. For more information, visit http://www.wardhigh.org/apps/pages/auction2016.

Counseling offered
Keeler Women’s Center, a ministry of the Benedictine Sisters of Mount St. Scholastica, 2220 Central Ave., Kansas City, Kan., offers individual and couples counseling to women and men who might otherwise not be able to afford counseling. Nothing is billed. Donations are accepted. Call 913-906-8990 for information or to do an intake and schedule an appointment.

Wyandotte County Museum
The Wyandotte County Museum, 631 N. 126th St., Bonner Springs, is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Mondays through Fridays, and 9 a.m. to noon Saturdays. It is closed on Sundays and holidays. For more information visit the website www.facebook.com/wycomuseum or call 913-573-5002.

Strawberry Hill Museum
The Strawberry Hill Museum at 720 N. 4th St., Kansas City, Kan., is open on the weekends from noon to 5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. Admission is $7 for adults and $3 for children 6-12. For information, call 913-371-3264 or visit http://www.strawberryhillmuseum.org/.

Grinter Place Museum
The Grinter Place State Historic Site, 1420 S. 78th St., Kansas City, Kan., is one of the oldest homes in the area, built in 1857. Admission is $3 for adults, $1 for students; and children 5 and younger free. It is closed on state holidays. For more information about hours and days it is open, call 913-299-0373 or visit http://www.kshs.org/p/grinter-place-plan-your-visit/15857.

Old Quindaro Museum
The Old Quindaro Museum is at 3432 N. 29th St., Kansas City, Kan. For more information about the museum, call 816-820-3615 or visit https://www.facebook.com/oldquindaromuseum/.

Amid Zika concerns, Kansas researchers seek mosquitoes that can carry the virus

by Abigail Wilson, Heartland Health Monitor

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently awarded Kansas more than $350,000 to support efforts to protect Kansans from Zika virus, a mosquito-borne disease. The money also will go toward eliminating adverse health outcomes that can result from Zika infection, including severe birth defects.

Now, state agencies are working to identify and monitor the two species of mosquito that transmit the Zika virus.

Mosquito season went into full swing when early rains and warm temperatures started the population with a bang this spring. But with rising concerns of Zika virus in the United States, the itchy welts that come from mosquito bites are no longer just annoying. They’re scary.

Trapping mosquitoes

In an effort to lessen fears and keep track of the prevalence of the tiny flying bugs, the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, along with specialists from the University of Kansas, conduct mosquito surveillance each year. Researchers trap and count the insects and identify them by species.

Christopher Rogers, with the Kansas Biological Survey, is one of the researchers tasked with mosquito monitoring in Kansas.

Just off the sidewalk at Chisholm Creek Park in Wichita near the Great Plains Nature Center, Rogers stands next to an interesting contraption. It looks a little like black paint bucket with a long, skinny bird feeder hanging from it. And while seemingly simple, this mosquito trap is a key piece of the puzzle for Kansans hoping to avoid mosquito-borne illnesses.

Of the 50 species of mosquitoes in the state, Rogers said only about half bite.

“And of those species that do bite, only the female bites, and she only bites when she needs to lay eggs,” he said.

In order to find someone or something to bite, the female mosquitoes look for our breath — or, more specifically, the carbon dioxide that we breathe out. Rogers’ trap simulates that using a bucket filled with dry ice, which puts off the gas as it melts.

The hanging contraption also has a small light near the top, which serves the same purpose that a lighthouse does for ships at sea. As the mosquitoes fly toward the carbon dioxide, they see the light and think it’s body heat. That’s how they identify their next meal, which, thankfully, this time, is not a person.

“They fly in,” Rogers said, pointing at the trap. “And inside of here is a fan, which sucks the mosquitoes down into the sleeve cage.”

The sleeve cage is exactly what it sounds like: a sheath of tightly woven netting that traps the mosquitoes. Rogers said it can hold anywhere from a few dozen to 7,000 mosquitoes, which he then puts on dry ice to knock them out so he can get to work identifying the insects down to a species level.

He says different varieties are distinguishable by the arrangement of veins in their fragile wings or the patterns found in scales, spines and hairs on their tiny bodies. The species he’s looking for are varieties of the Aedes mosquito: Aedes aegypti, which is native to Africa, and Aedes albopictus, which comes from Asia.

“These are the two that we’re most concerned about because they have the potential to carry the Zika virus,” Rogers said. “These are the two species that are carrying Zika virus in Central and South America, Puerto Rico, the Caribbean and whatnot.”

If either Aedes variety is found in one of Rogers’ traps, its body is sent to a KDHE laboratory.

“We look for the DNA of the virus in the mosquitoes. That way we can tell if the mosquitoes are actually transmitting the disease,” he said.

Eight cases in Kansas

The state of Kansas has been doing this kind of work — trapping, counting and identifying mosquitoes — for years in order to keep tabs on other mosquito-borne diseases like West Nile virus, which first showed up in the state in 2002. Rogers’ work helps state agencies like the KDHE determine where certain species of the insect are found and how dense the population is.

“By knowing what species of mosquitoes are coming into the traps, we can direct Sedgwick County in their efforts to control the mosquito larvae, and they know where to go look for habitat where the larvae may be coming from,” he said.

So, that begs the question everyone seems to be asking: Is it just a matter of time before Zika virus does show up in Kansas?

“Zika virus has shown up in Kansas in people who went to other places, got the virus and came here,” Rogers said. “Because there are people here who have Zika — and there’s very few — these mosquitoes, all they have to do is go and bite that person and now they’ve got the virus. So far, these people are doing everything in their power not to get bitten by these mosquitoes.”

Eight cases of Zika have been confirmed in Kansas, and none of those originated in the United States. In fact, according to the KDHE, there have been no local transmissions of the virus in the continental United States.

Rogers said the countries that have been inundated with cases of Zika virus tend to be tropical places where mosquitoes are out year-round. One thing in Kansas’ favor is the colder winter weather.

“As soon as winter comes, they’re all dead,” he said. “All that’s left behind is their eggs. Now, as far as we know, so far all the data shows that the mosquitoes are not passing the virus to their eggs.”

So that’s a good thing. But, Rogers said, next year, it will start over again.

“If Zika virus does show up in the mosquitoes in Kansas, it’s going to reset every single year,” he said. “And it’s probably not going to be as huge a problem as we’re seeing in more tropical areas. We don’t know. We honestly don’t know what we’re up against yet.”

But there are ways to reduce the chances of getting Zika virus, like using DEET, staying covered and avoiding places where mosquitoes are likely to be in large numbers, and especially where they breed.

Rogers said that doesn’t only mean roadside ditches and stagnant ponds. The species of mosquito that can carry Zika, Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus, actually nest in trees with rotten hollows or pockets between limbs that can hold water.

Aedes aegypti has mainly been found along the Kansas-Missouri border and as far west of that as Topeka, he said. Aedes albopictus has been found in Sedgwick County for quite some time. But according to the KDHE, the precise range of both species is unknown, and just because the mosquitoes are here, that doesn’t mean they’re transmitting Zika to Kansans.

“I’m running traps all across the state to figure out where it lives, why it’s there, how did it get there,” Rogers said.

And with that data, the KDHE should be able to assess potential threat levels should Zika virus ever show up in mosquitoes in Kansas.

— Abigail Wilson is a reporter for KMUW.

The nonprofit KHI News Service is an editorially independent initiative of the Kansas Health Institute and a partner in the Heartland Health Monitor reporting collaboration. All stories and photos may be republished at no cost with proper attribution and a link back to KHI.org when a story is reposted online.

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