September 2021 Update
In an effort to keep everyone informed of the work RevitalizeYC is doing to serve the community, below are details of the current projects RYC is working on and the progress made so far.
Walmart Grant / Mural Project
RevitalizeYC is seeking funding for a community-wide engagement and revitalization Mural Project. The Mural Project will enhance community vibrancy, engagement, and pride.
The Mural Project will be: (1) administered by RevitalizeYC; (2) directed by a professional Kansas artist and (3) completed through the collaborative efforts of the Yates Center High School art teacher, art students, and community volunteers. Two large blank walls of strategically located buildings will be re-imagined into beautiful community focal points. RevitalizeYC’s mission is to facilitate, promote, and support the revitalization of Yates Center by fostering economic development, preserving community heritage, and enhancing civic pride. RevitalizeYC led the charge for Yates Center’s recognition as a Kansas PRIDE community. This Mural Project supports community revitalization, strengthens the local community through shared vision and effort, and leaves a lasting legacy of enjoyment for years to come!
Evergy Press Release:
The Board of Directors for RevitalizeYC received a significant contribution through Evergy's Community Impact grant. This grant will be used to support organizational capacity building, positively aligning with Evergy's strategic impact focus area of Community Vitality. The purpose of this grant, is to engage a Community Development Consultant to help complete a Strategic Community Development Plan that will support future organizational capacity building focused on the following activities:
This plan, in turn, will lead to a 3 phased approach with initiatives focused on: Workforce Development and Training, Business Retention and Expansion, as well as Entrepreneurialism and Small Business Development.
Secure vital partnerships with key business, health, and education systems leaders, to help facilitate change in the area.
Research & data collection will help identify the economic recovery needs for Woodson County, Kansas. The plan itself will serve as the conduit to acquire additional resources and build the capacity, thus serving as the catalyst for change in Woodson County, Kansas.
The long-term results will include acquiring additional funding sources, well established strategic partnerships, shared resources across the county, a fully restored and vibrant historic downtown, thriving businesses, and ultimately a transformed economy with demographics reflecting lower unemployment rates, higher median incomes, and overall better health outcomes for all residents.
New Board Members:
We are always looking for individuals who are passionate about Woodson County that are interested in joining our organization. If you're interested in joining our team, check out our Community Teams page and our Available Board Positions page. There's a simple online application - we would love to have you!
Earlier, in March of 2021, we had the privilege of hearing our First Impressions Report done by Nancy Daniels from K-State Research & Extension. One of the consistent comments from the “secret” visitors to our town, was the amount of dilapidated houses and general lack of beautification PRIDE throughout the town. RevitalizeYC has applied for a $2,000 grant from the Kansas PRIDE Program through K-State Research and Extension to help address this concern. At this time, we are waiting to hear back from the Kansas PRIDE program to see if we are awarded the money. When the details are assembled and ready to be published, we will share those with you. We know you will be excited to know what is coming!
High School Survey:
A survey was taken of our YCHS students regarding how they view Yates Center, and what they would like to see here. We as a group were excited to see the youth wanting to help restore and clean up our community. They were interested in volunteering time and energy to multiple projects. They are interested in new stores and shopping opportunities in their communities; store with hunting, fishing and clothing. Also, an Ice-cream store or places like this, where younger kids could hang out in a positive environment and have fun.
Collaborative Community Planning Workshop:
In November we will have a collaborative community planning first impressions workshop. Representatives from the city council, county commissioners and chamber of commerce will attend. We are excited to share information we have learned from the K-State First Impressions report. It is very informative and tells many pros and cons with suggestions addressing both sides.
Our mission is to share knowledge, and then brainstorm ideas with other city and county agencies to work towards embracing and improving our community on many levels. RevitalizeYC is excited to get to work with the city and county municipalities on this project. We hope we will be able to collaborate and develop a concrete plan of action to move our community forward.
Yates Center Elementary (PreK - 5th) Penny War:
RevitalizeYC has partnered with several businesses in the community to get Hometown Pride t-shirts into the hands of our youth. To determine the winner of the shirts, we are going to have a little contest. Students will bring in pennies to be collected at the elementary school. Each penny counts as points for their class. They can use silver coins or dollars to subtract from their peers' money. The class/classes with the most wins the Hometown Pride shirts. The money collected will be donated to the Friends for Life cancer organization in town. The contest will run from September 22nd - 29th, with the winners being announced on October 8th.
A huge thank you goes out to our sponsors for this event. They are:
- Piqua State Bank
- Still Waters Edge Retreat, LLC
- YC Dental
- Hardy Fence
- Light Hardware
Fall festival will start off on Friday night October 8th at 7:00 pm with a Hayrack Ride hosted by RYC. There will be a $5.00 charge for each rider, however children 10 years of age and younger will ride free. The hayride will pick up and let off in front of Health Insight. Trevor Hoag will be riding along, telling historical stories along the way. Starting at 8:00 pm a Country Western Dance will kick up its heels at Health Insight; there will be a entrance fee of $5.00 per person, with children 10 and younger free. RYC gives a huge Thank you to Health Insight for opening your doors and providing this floor stomping event.
Fall Festival continues Saturday, October 9th, 2021, Friends for life will have their annual walk and auction. RYC is in charge of organizing, hosting and executing family activities for kids of ALL ages on the square. We will have a scavenger hunt for youngsters; with prizes, a photo booth opportunity, lawn games, pumpkin decorating, fall crafts, live music, vendors, and a soup and chili competition. Vaqueros Mexican Restaurant will host an outdoor adult beverage garden. The square will be buzzing! COME ON OUT!!!
Chili & Soup Cookoff:
Come see us after the 18th Annual Friends for Life Breast Cancer Awareness Walk!
Sample various chilis & soups and vote for your favorite! Only participants entering chili or soup need to RSVP. Attendees just show up with a healthy appetite!
*ATTENDEE INFORMATION: $5 Tasting Kits: Includes a sample cup of each entry, a spoon, napkins, a bowl for a larger portion of your favorite, and tokens to vote for your favorite chili and soup entries.
Extra bowls are $3 each.
Bottled water will be available for purchase.
*CONTEST PARTICIPANT INFORMATION: Registration is FREE!!! All participants must register online at revitalizeyc.com by Wednesday, September 29th. You have a chance to win a cash prize!!!
To make this a success, we really need volunteers to signup for this event. Currently, we do not have enough support to make part of the Fall Festival move forward. We may have to make other arrangements. If you know anyone that likes to cook, please encourage them to sign up.
We are recruiting volunteers to help make this event successful. Volunteers can help with tasks such as: setting up and tearing down, running the check-in table, or assisting with the numerous events available and more. Would you like to get involved and help us out at this year's Fall Festival? You can contact Gary Morris at 620-496-5154 for more information, or you can sign up here!
Want to donate resources or funds instead? That's great, too! We have our sponsors and community members like you to thank for the success of the Fall Festival each year! Thank you for your support. With your help, we can make the event even better with each coming year. Use this link to donate directly to the Fall Festival.
RevitalizeYC wants to thank the community, the city, and the county for their continued support.