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A casual speakeasy-inspired evening of food, music, fun and fundraising will help CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) serve local abused and neglected children who are under court protection.

The Hops amd Barley Ball to benefit CASA of Johnson and Wyandotte Counties will be held from 6:30 to 10 p.m. Friday, Sept. 26, at the Dark Horse Distillery, 11740 W. 86th Terrace, in Lenexa, Kan.

The Prohibition Era-themed Hops and Barley Ball will feature an open bar of Dark Horse liquor, beer and wine; dining stations; live swing jazz music by Tim Whitmer and the KC Express; and a silent auction. There also will be a giving tree on site for guests to directly contribute to the program by sponsoring a CASA child.

The Hops and Barley Ball will raise funds to train and support more CASA volunteers to advocate for the dramatically increased number of abused or neglected children under court protection in Johnson and Wyandotte counties. Through contact with the child, family members, and other interested parties, a CASA volunteer provides critical information to the judge, so the best possible decisions can be made regarding where that child should live and what medical, educational, and therapeutic services they need.

Studies show that children assigned a CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) are far less likely to be re-abused and far more likely to find a safe, permanent home. For the past two years, 95 percent of children with a CASA volunteer had not re-entered the Johnson or Wyandotte County courts.

While 413 abused and neglected children had 170 special friends by their side as they navigated the child welfare and court system last year, that is only one-third of the children under court protection. CASA’s goal is for every child to have a CASA volunteer to serve as their voice and advocate in court.

Although each case is different, a CASA volunteer usually spends about 10 hours a month meeting with the child, speaking with others involved, and attending meetings or court hearings. Hours are flexible and can be completed within the limits of even the most hectic schedule. There is no need for any special skills or education – just a background check, training, and a heart for helping children.

Critically important to funding volunteer training, the Hops and Barley Ball is presented by Performance Contracting Group. Lead sponsors are Black and Veatch, Lentz Clark Deines, Lockton Companies, and UMB Bank. Additional sponsors include Arvest Bank, Country Club Bank, EnerSys, Financial Advisory Service, First National Bank, First Watch Restaurants, Grant Thornton, Greater Kansas City Kappa Alpha Theta Alumnae, KC Cause, Lee Jeans, Oldcastle Materials, Precision Printing, Schlimmer Law, Smith and Loveless, The Bessenbacher Co., and Village West Discount Liquors.

Tickets can be purchased at or by phone at 913-715-4035.

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Aug. 28
Burglary, 1300 block of North 5th, television, DVD player, Yudu machine, $880 value.
Burglary, criminal damage, 1900 block of North 25th, screen window, $25 value.
Attempted burglary, criminal damage, 400 block of North Thompson.
Theft, 300 block of North 13th, Ford Mustang, $3,000 value.
Theft, 5100 block of Locust, lawnmower, trailer, $2,000 value.
Theft, auto, 5600 block of Pitkin, vehicle, $3,000 value.

Aug. 27

Aggravated burglary, criminal damage, 1200 block of Shawnee, door jamb, $100 value.
Criminal use of financial card, 4700 block of Parallel Parkway, cash, $8 value.

Aug. 25
Criminal use of financial card, 8200 block of Parallel Parkway, cash, $402 value.

Aug. 24
Attempted burglary, criminal damage, 00 block of South 8th, door frame, $50 value.
Criminal use of financial card, 7700 block of Parallel Parkway, cash, $202 value.
Criminal use of financial card, 10800 block of Parallel Parkway, cash, $19 value.

Aug. 22
Identity fraud, 2200 block of North 40th.
Criminal use of financial card, 500 block of North 78th, cash, $400 value.

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Former Kansas Gov. John Anderson Jr., 97, died Monday, Sept. 15.

Anderson, a Republican from Olathe, served as governor from 1961 to 1965.

Prior to serving as governor, he was a Kansas state senator and Kansas attorney general.

Flags were ordered by Gov. Sam Brownback to fly at half-staff today through Friday, Sept. 19, to honor Anderson.

“I am deeply saddened to hear of Governor Anderson’s passing,” Gov. Brownback said. “He devoted many years to serving the people of Kansas, and we are grateful for his dedication to our great state. The lieutenant governor and I, along with Mary and Ruth, extend our heartfelt sympathies to Governor Anderson’s family and friends. They are in our thoughts and prayers during this difficult time.”

At the family’s request, all funeral arrangements will be private.