Businesses in Osage County won RedBud Awards from the Oklahoma Travel Industry Association two weeks ago. The Ben Ranch Cabins in Fairfax and the Pawhuska Chamber of Commerce each won the Merit Award.
The Ben Ranch Cabins won the award for outstanding lodging property and the Pawhuska Chamber of Commerce won for outstanding event of the year by putting on the National Indian Taco Championships. This was the third time in four years for the Pawhuska Chamber of Commerce to win that award. Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Joni Nash is proud of that accomplishment.
The competition was judged by tourism professionals on specific criteria such as media relations, creativity and marketing effectiveness.
As of 2 o' clock Wednesday afternoon, Director of Engineering for the City of Bartlesville, Micah Siemers, said water levels continue to slowly drop at the Caney River, along with Copan and Hulah Lakes.
Siemers did say the possibility of more rain tonight is the last thing we need to see.
The City of Bartlesville is part of the National Flood Insurance Program. As a result, beginning tomorrow they will begin checking structures located in the floodplain for damage.
All roads in Osage County are now open, but various roads are closed in Nowata and Washington Counties.
Earlier today, the Caney River was nearly 18 feet above normal. It is expected to crest at 19 feet around 7 o’ clock this evening, this according to the National Weather Service.
Road closures in the city of Bartlesville include State Highway 123 between Bartlesville and Dewey. Tuxedo Blvd. between Wyandotte and the Caney River are also closed, along with Silver Lake Road between Frank Phillips Blvd. and Tuxedo.
Director of Engineering for the City of Bartlesville said streets are already flooded north of Cudahy and in various other locations in close proximity to the Caney River and its tributaries. At projected water levels, additional streets could be closed.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers said earlier today that they are releasing 12,000 cubic feet of water per second from Hulah Lake and 3,000 cubic feet per second from Copan Lake. By the end of the working day, the Corps said they would increase the release of both lakes to a maximum release of 15,000 cubic feet of water per second. At that rate, the city of Bartlesville should hold steady around 16 feet. The corps plans to maintain this flow for the next seven days.
Area residents have raised money for projects and to buy equipment for the Bartlesville Police Department thanks to the newly-formed Bartlesville Police Department Foundation. City Councilman Paul Stewart said the foundation was formed to help police get the nice things that they might not otherwise have.
The Foundation was formed when City of Bartlesville Grant Coordinator Nancy Warring and Bartlesville Police Department Sergeant Detective Jim Warring saw a need for the organization. Nancy Warring was quoted as saying the following:
“I heard about cities with police foundations and wondered if it was something we could do here. It would be another source of funding besides grants and I imagined it would be well supported in a community like Bartlesville that values its law enforcement. Jim took the idea to the new chief. He supported it and then Jim rounded up some board members."
The Foundation formed in March and has met three times thus far. Any donations are tax deductible and will be received through the Bartlesville Community Foundation. Projects and equipment will be chosen based on requests submitted to the Foundation from the police department. For more information about the Foundation, call Nancy Warring at 918-338-4243. To make a donation, call the Bartlesville Community Foundation at 918-337-2287.
As the largest county in the state, Osage County Emergency Manager Jerry Roberts has been busy keeping the public safe and trying tokeep up with all of the floodwater.
Roberts says last night his team was making more water rescues because drivers decided to drive into flooded waters.
Roberts said there were two or three areas around the county that reported having seven and a half inches of rain in a five hour period. Roberts added that because we had received so much rain last week, there was no room for this heavy rainfall to go. Unless you have to get out and drive, Roberts advised that you remain indoors.
It has been a good month for Osage County Tourism Executive Director Kelly Bland. She graduated from Oral Roberts University in the first week of the month and most recently became a full-time county employee on Monday. Claude Rosendale with the Tourism Committee explains why she was so deserving of the promotion.
Commissioners Darren McKinney and Kevin Pasley were for the agreement, but Randall Jones did have some questions beforesigning off on the deal.
Bland let Jones know she has been staying plenty busy and that her $31.50 hourly rate would be money well spent.
Jones decided to approve the full-time contract as well. Bland's contract will take effect July 1.
The Board of Osage County Commissioners met Monday morning at the courthouse in Pawhuska and got a number of things accomplished before the severe weather hit the county.
After having time to review her contract, the county commissioners decided to make Osage County Tourism Director Kelly Bland a full-time employee. She also gave a tourism update where Bland let the commissioners know that The Ben Ranch Cabins won the Merit Award for outstanding lodging in the state of Oklahoma at the Redbud Awards Ceremony. Bland added that Discover Oklahoma will be doing a television show on the Oilman's Daughter, a B&B in Pawhuska.
Bland was also at the meeting asking for funding for various events across the county, including advertising dollars for the grand opening of the Ben Johnson Cowboy Museum on June 11. All of those requests were approved.
Sharon Wallace has been serving children in Osage County who have been abused or neglected for 30 years. She was at the meeting requesting four cattle stalls at the Clarence Brantley Indoor Arena because she believes equine therapy is a great way to cope with those issues. The County Commissioners elected to approve the item and waive the fees for Wallace. Her group will be able to use the Arena once a week for four hours at a time.
The next regular scheduled Board of Osage County Commissioners meeting will be held next Monday at 10 o' clock in the morning.
Pawhuska Huskie seniors celebrated their 2019 graduation Friday evening at Ormond-Beach Memorial Stadium. Thirty students accepted their diploma and Superintendent David Cash addressed the outgoing students and shared their accomplishments with the crowd.
Valedictorian Blake Allen saluted her classmates before they accepted their diplomas and said it was important to always stayfocused on your dreams.
We, at Bartlesville Radio, would like to congratulate the Pawhuska Class of 2019.
The Board of Osage County Commissioners will meet Monday morning at the courthouse in Pawhuska.
The County Commissioners will consider making Osage County Tourism Executive Director Kelly Bland a full-time employee. Bland will also give a tourism report for the county. Bland will also be requesting funding for various events, including advertising for the grand opening of the Ben Johnson Cowboy Museum and the Skiatook Pioneer Days.
There will be discussion and possible action taken to approve an agreement with the Oklahoma Tourism and Recreation Department to improve the culverts at the Osage Hills State Park.
The meeting begins at 10 o’ clock in the morning for those interested in attending.
The 66th annual Big Heart Days in Barnsdall will take place next weekend. Because of construction, there are a few changes to the three day festival, which starts on Friday, but President Claude Rosendale says there will be plenty to do, especially early in the morning on Saturday.
On Saturday, one of the things festival-goers will be able to partake inis a fishing tournament.
There will also be multiple vendors downtown Barnsdall throughout the day, along with a classic car drive in. There will be a Memorial Day parade and the grand marshals are three brothers who are all World War II Veterans. There will also be a fireworks display to close out the day.