Week in Review

 

Monday

You can’t tell, but Sketch is furious with her for being in the sink. It’s become a game each morning between the two of them. He kept hitting her over the head.

I haven’t moved anything into my office yet. I simply haven’t had time.

This morning I met with Martha Buckman at the Good Samaritan Center, which made for a good way to start the week.

The Good Samaritan Center is hosting another summer art program. This time our friend Shino is offering a Japanese influence. Great opportunity for all the kids!

Do you know someone between the ages of 16 and 24 who is interested in obtaining a trade certification for FREE? If so, let me know!

The south campus for Job Corps is right along Brush Creek.

With the weather being cooler, it was nice being outside for a while today.

Stopped by to wish my friend Larry a happy retirement and thank him for his service to our City.

This girl is always forcing these cats to let her hold them!

Said hello to the Muddy Missouri on the way to roller derby.

Saw some of these earlier today

Rebel Cat is her roller derby name. I’m glad she’s enjoying something that challenges her so much!

“Peace rules the day where reason rules the mind.” ~ Collins

Just a couple of love birds

Pretty cool that this where they have their roller derby practices and matches!

Love this old church that sits across the street.

As S. Jason says, “At least there’s water somewhere.”

This brick walk.

We are these kind of people now

Helping timekeep

Love how many girls roller derby empowers.

The storms were rolling in to Kansas City as we were coming through. We tried to bring them over to Excelsior, too, knowing how much we need rain.

Tuesday

Just being on campus every morning inspires me.

There is a whole crew of students dedicated to this project in the parking lot. I love that everywhere you look on campus there is evidence of a student’s work surrounding you.

Made the mistake of walking across campus in heels but felt better when I saw this.

Met my friend Rhonda for lemonades and she filled my brain full of wisdom about my new position. Rhonda retired from Job Corps after working there for many, many years. She left me such great notes about everything I would need to do. I’m so thankful to her for all she has done for the program. Before leaving for my meeting, some of her friends wanted to send her some good vibes, and I was grateful to be the one to deliver.

Stop. Think for a second. Do you know a young man or woman in need who could use a hand up in life? An opportunity to earn a trades degree and then be earning a good living? There are so many fields to choose from like culinary, carpentry, welding, CNA, security, and more! Also, it’s tuition free!! Yes!! No catch!! Completely FREE!! Contact me for info!

I didn’t eat anything from this case at Panera because I was waiting on something for later in the day!

Stopped by the house and Sketch was exactly where I thought he would be.

The kitten was crazy-eyed with the thought of me being home. It drives her insane because she always thinks I’m going to take her out. She spends the entire time I’m home for lunch running to the back door while loudly meowing at me. She only does this to me, not anyone else. And she does it every single day.

Look, I know I’m a flower fanatic. Clearly it’s some kind of obsession that I must have. But if I’m willing to admit that I have a problem does that mean I really have a problem? I mean maybe all of you are just wrong and should start taking pictures of them, too. Yah, that’s what it is! I’m sure of it…

You’re a world traveler. What’s your next stop? Mine is obviously the coffee shop.

Weekly coffee (and donut) with my fellow Wonder Women

I love that when I’m downtown I really do feel like their place is my place. #shopsmall

Been thinking about this building a lot lately. I’ve always been drawn to it for some reason. When I was a kid, I would watch for tourists walking by and then lure them in with my little kid appearance to walk them through the Hall. I wanted them to feel the magic that I feel when I’m inside. Like you’re a part of something bigger, something great.

I’ve been consulting with the Butterfly Whisperer and today was my chance to put his words of advice to the test!

Taking off

This afternoon I joined the student leaders in welcoming the new students to campus. Each week there is an intake of students that start the program fresh. The length of the program is based on their trade but is self-paced.

The welding trades have created these amazing handrails with various designs decorating them. Love the celestial elements included by the culinary building.

Moths may be different from butterflies but they like nectar just the same.

This is what I came home to. Look at that smug look. Welcome home.

Got my edition of The Phunn from the Excelsior Springs Museum & Archives!!

This girl and her cats

Are you going to take me out?

My world

Eleven

A real laugh caught by S. Jason

S. Jason ’s up close view

Mackadoodle Morgan

People let me tell ya bout my best friends

Later gators!

S. Jason sent me this amazing pic. This is facing the east. The sun is setting behind him here.

Amazing how different the sky can look based on your angle anymore. Jason took this beautiful capture of the sky, too.

Cole Family Fun on the Boulevard

Billy Beale’s doggo came over to say hi!

Me and my mini me

Wednesday

Wet hair don’t care

Morning babe

Left the bathroom and came back to find him snuggled into the sink. Move it, Buster!!

I don’t take a second of these warmer seasoned days for granted. I love watching all the flowers face the sun each morning.

Felt so lucky to have gotten footage of a hummingbird moth on the boulevard yesterday. This morning on my way into work, there was another! Their wings flutter so fast! I’ll put videos in the comments for you to see!!

Surprisingly, he just lets her hold him like this. Then she walks him around for belly pets from Jason and me. He seems to love it.


She’s watching a cartoon in the upper left hand part of her screen and drawing in another app. Kids these days!!

This is the look your friend Maggie gives you when her mother has stopped giving you bits of apple fritters because it’s all gone and is kept talking so long that she forgets to keep handing you ice chips. And then this woman is not only keeping your mother much longer than she should but is now taking pictures of you in your confused state.

This is the smug look I’m given as a welcome home, I guess.

Morning view of the boulevard (please vote no on Prop A and yes on the museum tax)

Meow kitty sleeping against S. Jason this morning

Good morning, Boulevard!

Loved seeing all the love put into the goodies they had for all the families today at the Platte County Back to School Fair! There are people with such good hearts everywhere, which brings me so much joy!

Today my friend Rebecca and I went to a Back to School Fair in Platte County. We stood talking to hundreds of people ALL day! By the end of the day we had 75 people signed up for information on how to join the program. The benefits are so good, the program totally sells itself! Thanks Rebecca, for making this day so fun!


When I got home kitty was busy with a catnap.

Got a nice card of well wishes in the mail. Thanks for kind words, friend!

Evening on the boulevard (Please vote No on Prop A and Yes on the Museum Tax)

Friday


Mackenzie woke up early to ask me if I could put her hair in chopsticks for the day. She’s been attending art camp at the Good Samaritan Center and they’ve had a Japanese theme for the week thanks to our friend Shino. Mack is so interested in Japan. She loves it!

At our senior management meeting today the leadership students came in to give a report. I love that the students are always invited to our senior staff meetings to give us feedback from the students and hear what they’re planning. We’ve got great kids doing great things!

Our Center Director Bill Allen got a new Harley this week! Fancy!

This afternoon’s meeting with Kim called for a Carmelo iced coffee at The Mug.

Joined my friends at the Chamber for a Meet and Eat at Dari-B! Thanks for the shake, Tom! 

Couldn’t catch the monarch but was able to grab this little guy walking to my car!

This evening we got Chinese from Hunan. They’re the best around! They’ve even started saving their rice bags for S. Jason to make bags out of!

Tonight Mom and I have turned the dining room into a mini campaign headquarters. We feel passionate about our community’s history and the economic value that restoring that history can bring. Find more info at museumtax.com

Saturday

Usual scene around the Cole household, other than us having to run to a meeting or event of some kind. I slept until 10 and probably could have even longer.

I sat around the house in pajamas for as long as possible. S. Jason made us peanut butter chocolate chip pancakes.

This is how she likes to best pass the time.

What she was working on!

The kitten has now started sleeping in Sketch’s spot on the aquarium. She keeps challenging him. It’s no wonder he’s mad at her all the time.

I’ve been going to this gas station since before people had cell phones.

Crossing over to Kansas

They just don’t build them like they used to.

Greek architecture is so cool.

This is Mackenzie’s favorite team

My moon, my man.

I started to say “Break a leg,” but then realized that’s probably not best!

She got her new Roller Warriors jersey today and her team won the first bout!

Do you see the rainbow? I tried to grab it for you!

Mackenzie got to choose where to eat for dinner. This was no surprise.

My decals are peeling off on my yeti. What should the next sticker be that S. Jason makes me?

I commissioned the help of my two favorite people in putting together my office decor at work. I’m so glad that I have them to help me all the time.

I’ve seen some of the prettiest skies standing in this parking lot.

 Until next week, keep it real, y’all! 

Hall of Waters Tour

Today we held tours through both the Excelsior Springs Museum and the Hall of Waters downtown. On the August ballot there will be an opportunity for the public to vote for a property tax that will be dedicated to improving our historic museums in town. Both today and next Saturday at 6:00pm the public is invited to take a tour through the space, ask questions, and see firsthand the priorities that will be set with the money generated from the tax.

City Manager Molly McGovern and City Councilwoman Sonya Morgan look over the study of the space from 2014. In the plans, there is space planned for a lobby, circulation, leasable space, staff only space, mechanical, public space, and storage.

Hall of Waters Building Manager TR Kennedy walked us through the old woman’s spa that has been turned into a museum. Here he is demonstrating how the light boxes were once used.

This is probably the space most folks have a heart for and memories of. I brought a couple down to see it and the man told me he remembered taking water babies here. I was able to tell him that I did, too!

This is the boiler room. The boilers are literally from the 50’s and could go out at any time. The first priority for the Hall will be to fix the ventilation problems, including the HVAC from mold and other harmful airborne contaminants.

In the sub-basement there used to be a water tank attached to the base. They ended up torching the tank off the base to find a huge buildup of sediment from the mineral water underneath. It’s so heavy that it will probably never be removed.

In the tunnel that runs alongside the bottom sides of the swimming pool, you can see the corrosion around the columns. The iron underneath is reacting to the contaminants in the air causing the damage. A new ventilation system can help to stop it.

In the elevator. This is a relatively new floor, meant to match the other Mayan styled decor that exists throughout the building. It was paid for by ghost tour proceeds.

Under the front lawn is the well room where the original Siloam well is housed. You can see above the five pipes that were used to bring the Springs into the Hall.

On the wall, you can see the workers initials with the year 1937 (when it was built) etched into the cement. I wonder who they were.

Ceiling damage in the well room, underneath the front lawn.

The original well spring Siloam. You can see the red iron in the water coming out of the floor. The springs are healthy!

In the Solarium we have our Visitor’s Center, where the public can walk around the water-bar and learn some of our history.

I can’t imagine our community without the Hall of Waters. It’s the heart of the downtown and was built in celebration of our unique waters whose varieties can’t be found together anywhere else on earth. It would be such a disappointment to see it go. I hope everyone votes Yes on August 7th to restore it.

Visit www.museumtax.com for more information and details on this project.

5 Places to Volunteer in Excelsior Springs

Are you wanting to get involved and aren’t sure where to start here in Excelsior Springs? I get asked quite a bit how to get involved and who to contact. That’s why I’ve put together my Top 5 organizations that could use help consistently throughout they year in one blog post for you to reference! Thanks for your interest in getting involved! There can never be enough volunteers, it seems!

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Good Samaritan Center – Downtown – Contact: Martha Buckman, 816-630-2718
This organization helps those who are less fortunate.There’s a food pantry, thrift store, multiple deliveries throughout the week, landscaping, and office help needed daily.
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Excelsior Springs Museum and Archives – Downtown – Contact: Kathy Duncan, 816-630-0101
Giving tours, helping research, or setting up displays, the museum could use help throughout the week and on Saturdays.
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Downtown Excelsior Partnership – Hall of Waters – Contact: Lyndsey Baxter, 816-637-2811
The businesses of the downtown community came together to form a sales tax base to hire a director, provide funding for beautification, run the Visitor’s Center in the Hall of Waters, and allows downtown businesses to apply for facade grants. They also host events in the downtown every Second Friday and a festival or event each month of the year.
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Chamber of Commerce – Thompson Ave. – Contact: Tosha Jackson, 816-630-6161
The Chamber of Commerce hosts Waterfest, the city’s largest festival every third weekend in June. The committee meets monthly throughout the year to organize. The Chamber also owns the trolleys and could use volunteers to give tours.
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Excelsior Springs Educational Foundation – Downtown – Contact: Courtney Cole (me), 816-630-9200 x1110
The Educational Foundation works on behalf of the Excelsior Springs School District to support classroom projects that go above and beyond what is expected for our students. We are also working on establishing an alumni association. There are a number of opportunities throughout the year to get involved by helping with office work, fundraising dinner in December, and Alumni events during Homecoming.

 

Friday Walk Through Downtown Excelsior Springs

One of my favorite things to do is go on walks with my family in the evening through our downtown. I grew up in the downtown right on 10 Highway and have seen the dramatic changes that it has brought about in recent years.

Much of this is thanks to the businesses in the downtown coming together to form the Downtown Excelsior Partnership (DEP) that offers beautification, signage, and events each month in the downtown.

On every Second Friday of the month, you will find lots of fun things happening in each shop downtown in the evenings. Everyone extends their hours to 9:00pm and usually have live music, featured artists in studios, and sometimes a band in the pocket park during warmer seasons.

When I was growing up, almost all the business fronts were vacant. Now there are multiple restaurants, specialty popcorn, tattoo parlor, event venues, art studios, antique shops, a soap shop, clothing boutiques, fine jewelry store, and more!

If you’re interested in learning more about the downtown and for a full calendar of events throughout the year, click here to go to our community’s website visitexcelsior.com.

In the Path of Totality for the Solar Eclipse!

Here in Excelsior Springs, we are in the Path of Totality for the historic Solar Eclipse coming up on August 21st! To celebrate, we are having a Solar Eclipse Festival downtown on Sunday, August 20 and Monday, August 21! Fortunately, this happens to fall on the same weekend as our BBQ Festival that starts on Friday, so we will be have four days filled with fun going on in our downtown during this time. Click here for more information on the festival!

Our Excelsior Springs Post Office is excited about getting involved in the event and has ordered a special cancellation stamp to be made to coincide with our efforts. My husband, S. Jason Cole, did the design, which is featured below:

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Recently, we met with the Excelsior Springs Post Office, who has told us that the thermal effect stamps they just got in sold out in a heartbeat! They’ve ordered more and will have them available closer to the event date of August 20 and 21! They also plan to be at our festival and want to give it their support. They will have a booth there where they’ll be stamping the above image throughout that Monday!

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I had never been behind the counter of the post office, let alone into the post master’s office and sorting area! I took some pictures to document the occasion for you.

Here’s a work area where they sort all the mail into address order before loading into their postal bags. 


When I was in college I delivered all the mail for my residence hall. I can remember pulling the shelving unit away from the wall, loading all the mail, and then pushing it back against the wall, locking it. I always liked that job. 

Day in Downtown Excelsior Springs 

When friends come to visit we like to take them downtown and show off the things we love about living here. 


We started by dining downtown at Willow Spring Mercantile 


They have the largest selection of Missouri wines and you can enjoy your meal listening to live music in the wine cellar. 


Our friends the Bellis’s at Bliss gave us this cool Royal Grill sign from the old Royal Hotel! We were thrilled to have a piece of Excelsior’s history! Thanks Amy and Kurt! 


A trip downtown wouldn’t be complete without a stop at the coffee shop, The Mug! 


Showing off the Hall of Waters is a MUST! 


For more information on our little town, go to visitexcelsior.com 

7 Interesting Facts About Excelsior Springs

Here are seven interesting facts about our history here in Excelsior Springs, through the Hall of Waters building:

Fact #1

At its height, the Hall of Waters was the most completely outfitted health resort in the state and possible the region. Waters of ten main springs were piped into the longest mineral water bar in the world.

Photo by Kevin Morgan, kevinmorgan.com

Photo by Kevin Morgan, kevinmorgan.com

Fact #2

There are more groupings of mineral water in Excelsior Springs than anywhere else in the world.

Fact #3

The interior and exterior decoration incorporates Art Deco and Depression Modern styling with motifs of Mayan Indian tradition relating to water and Water Gods.

Photo by Kevin Morgan, kevinmorgan.com

Photo by Kevin Morgan, kevinmorgan.com

 

Fact #4

At the height of its popularity, over 10,000 people a day visited the Hall of Waters.

Fact #5

One of the most outstanding exterior features of the building is the decorative boiler stack tower for the original coal fired boilers, rising about 63 feet above the main roof.

Photo by Kevin Morgan, kevinmorgan.com

Photo by Kevin Morgan, kevinmorgan.com

 

Fact #6

Known as the ‘Great Bathing Pool’ the swimming pool in the basement was filled with saline water from the White Sulphur Saline spring.

Fact #7

Siloam Spring was the first of the mineral waters discovered in Excelsior Springs. It is the only natural supply of ferro-manganese mineral water in the United States and one of only five known worldwide.

Special thanks to Sonya Morgan for her time in research and providing this information.

Click here for more information about our history or to plan your next visit!

Photo by Kevin Morgan, kevinmorgan.com

Photo by Kevin Morgan, kevinmorgan.com