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Kansas Young Professionals Achieved New Heights


Topeka's Fast Forward group hosted the third YP Summit on April 5.


The all day conference brought 325 professionals from across the state together to share ideas and foster relationships.


The summit offered multiple breakout sessions led by community members. These sessions were aimed to help the attendees improve personally and professionally.


The luncheon hosted a keynote speaker, Eric Alexander, a world record holding mountain climber and motivational speaker. He shared his experience of leading his friend on the first ever blind assent to the highest summit of Mt. Everest and the challenges he faced.


Alexander encouraged the professionals to strive for challenging goals and prove discouragers wrong. He also stressed the importance of overcoming one's fears to achieve new heights.


Governor Brownback was the  summit's closing speaker. He held an open discussion with the YP's about new programs, including ones to spur economic growth and bring young professionals to Kansas. 


Fast Forward won the bid to host the event in Topeka for 2012 and 2013. The summit began two years ago in Reno County and has been held in Hutchinson for the past two years, summits had roughly 250 attendees per year.


For more information on the YP Summit visit:

High School Students will Foresee Their Future
The City of Topeka Human Relations Commission and Highland Park High School will host 4C Summit, an educational summit and career expo this Saturday.
High school students will be exposed to career options, business culture and employer expectations. The $C Summit will be on April 14 from 9:00 a.m. -- 4:00 p.m. at Highland Park High School, 2424 Southeast California. 

A Community Health Fair will also take place on April 14 from 10:00 a.m. until Noon in the Cafeteria of the high school. Washburn University School of Nursing will conduct informational sessions and clinics on nutrition, obesity and diabetes; and also provide free and private HIV tests and blood pressure checks.

For more information on the Health Fair please call Monique Glaude at 785.817.0370 or Carla Crowder at 785.408.6183

Complete Streets Project Budget Approved


Last night the Topeka City Council voted to approve the funds for the Complete Street Program in Topeka.


Thirty community supporters wearing their bike helmets awaited the council's vote.


The Complete Streets Program aims to create streets that are more than just asphalt on the ground. It creates a network that is friendly to all forms of travel and includes sidewalks and bike lanes.


The priorities for the Complete Street Project are in the following order:
  • Building a 10-foot-wide trail, which would connect four current bike trails, along the north side of S.W. 37th Street between S.W. Randolph and Wood Valley.
  • Putting in back-in parking on the west side of the 600 block of S.W. Van Buren Street.
  • Providing pedestrian facilities across the east leg of N.W. US-24 highway at its intersection with N.W. Rochester Road.
  • Putting in a pedestrian crossing at S.W. 8th and Gage Boulevard.
  • Putting in a pedestrian crossing at S.W. 21st and College Avenue.
  • Installing signage along one Topeka bike route.

For more information on National Complete Streets Program, click here

Community-wide Dia de los Muertos Celebration


A Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) celebration will be held in a variety of venues in Topeka this November. 
The celebration is the first of its kind not only in Topeka, but the entire state of Kansas. Events will be held throughout October until early November.


The Tonantzin Society of Topeka, a group of community volunteers, are currently planning the celebration that will include rich arts, Latino culture, history and entertainment for all ages. 


The Dia de los Muertos celebration will include (as of April):
  • Art Exhibits in NOTO; 
  • Family Carnival in NOTO;
  • Concert reading of "The Bones of Butterflies," by Marcia Cebulska @ Topeka & Shawnee County Public Library and;
  • Sunny Birklund will work with young adults to create their own Dia de los Muertos puppet show.
 For more information on these events, click here
What is Day of the Dead?
Dia de los Muertos  is celebrated on the days of Nov 1st and 2nd. Traditionally in Catholicism these dates are celebrated as All Saints and All Souls Day.  Dia de los Muertos is a fusion of both old and new worlds.  There are intermixed elements of the indigenous Aztec people and the Catholic Spaniards. To the Aztecs life was learning to embrace duality, including life and death, and the importance of remembering and honoring the ancestors was sacred to the community.


For a complete history of Dia de los Muertos, click here.


Local Artists to be Honored at the ARTYs


The second ARTY Award winners were announced March 28 by ARTSConnect. Ten ARTY winners will be honored at a special ceremony, Wednesday, April 25. 

The ARTY Awards 
highlight and celebrate creative excellence,  exemplary talents and outstanding contributions among artists and those who support the arts in Topeka and surrounding communities.  
"The ARTYS help us draw attention to the outstanding artists, art organizations and art programs in our community,"  said Kathy Smith, executive director of ARTSconnect, "while at the same time honoring the individuals and organizations that make the arts possible in our community."


The ARTYs are a chance to celebrate and expose the power of the arts this years ten honorees are:
  • Distinguished Performing Artists: Dale Easton (posthumous)
  • Distinguished Visual Artists: Edward Navone
  • Distinguished Literary Artists: Thomas Fox Averill
  • Emerging Artists: Ad Astra Theatre Ensemble 
  • Non-Traditional Artist: Frank Schultz
  • Arts Organization: Topeka Symphony Orchstra
  • Volunteer: Betty McEnroe Casper
  • Business Patron: Warehouse 414
  • Individual Patron: Liz Stratton
  • Art Educator: Mulvane Art Museum's Art Education Department  
For more information about the ARTY Awards visit 
Kansas Hall of Fame Announces First Round of Laureates


On March 28, the Great Overland Station announced its first round of Kansas Hall

Great Overland Station Logoof Fame Inductees.  

At a news conference at the William Allen White State Historic Site, Beth Fager announced three of this years honorees:
  • William Allen White;
  • Cyrus Kurtz Holliday;
  • The Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe Railway

The honorees will be inducted into the Kansas Hall of Fame ceremonies in Topeka on June 15, 2012. 


The remaining Laureates will be announced at various locations in Kansas during the month of April.


The Kansas Hall of Fame Ceremonial Induction Gala will take place June 15 at the Great Overland Station Museum, 701 N. Kansas Avenue, Topeka. For more information, go to


North Topeka Arts District Opened Their Saturday Market


On Saturday April 6, NOTO opened its inaugural Saturday Market under the N. Kansas Avenue Bridge.  


Handmade jewelry, artwork, fine crafts, antiques and food products were among the merchandise sold at the North Topeka Arts District's (NOTO) first Saturday Market. 


At 9:30 a.m. the market held a ribbon cutting ceremony. Angela Broadhead, winner of the LOGO competition for the NOTO Saturday Market was presented with a $500 check for her winning entry. Sherry Glenn, market manager, was also introduced. 


The grand opening also included live entertainment: 

  • Clown and Colliope;
  • Ballet Folklorico &
  • Irie Tribal Dance Company.   SS 

With over half their vendor space filled, the Saturday Market Committee anticipates a wide variety of vendors to join them later in the season.


The Saturday Market will continue until November 3 and is open from 7:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. 


For more information about NOTO and the Saturday Market, click here. 

Do it downtown
 Visit them at:

Coalition of community members working to reduce crime and substance abuse to make Topeka the Safest Capital City in America
For more information on the Safe Streets,click here.
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Upcoming Events
  April 11 thru April 26:
@ Gage Park, Lake Shawnee & Old Prairie Town
10 a.m. to dusk
April 11 thru April 15: 
@ Mulvane Art Museum
Times Vary

April 11 thru April 15:
@ Mulvane Art Museum
Times Vary
April 11 thru April 28:
Exhibit @ SouthWind Gallery
Times Vary 
April  11 thru November:
Judicial Center Parking Lot
7:30 a.m. -- Noon
April 11 thru November: 
Veterans Park
7:00 a.m. -- 2:00 p.m.

April 14:
Topeka Performing Arts Center
7:00 p.m.

April 14:
Downtown Topeka
Noon -- 7:30 p.m.

For more information on these events and to find other events in Topeka

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