News about what is happening in Blue Springs, MO

Tell Your Leaders What You Think

clock March 26, 2009 02:00 by author Jeff Quibell

DSC04405 I woke up Sunday morning to a beautiful day and decided to walk the wildlife habitat trail at Burr Oak Woods Conservation Area in Blue Springs. While exploring the trail, I noticed a sign near a rocky bluff that told how in April the foliage on the bluff would attract hummingbirds. Making a mental note, I plan to revisit that trail in April in hopes of seeing some of them.

The Heritage Philharmonic concert on Saturday evening was a joy to listen to, with Matthew Johnson of the Kansas City Symphony joining us. The audience was also treated to a surprise visit by Bryan Busby, as he delivered an autographed copy of a commemorative Len Dawson print to a member of the audience. As a member of the Philharmonic board, I extend my thanks to the hundreds of people from Eastern Jackson County who attended the concert.

We are very fortunate in Blue Springs to have great parks and a growing walking/bike trail system. Eastern Jackson County is blessed to have multiple outstanding symphonic orchestras, city theaters, and the list of arts organizations goes on and on. If you haven’t patronized one of these outstanding organizations, my hope is that you will consider attending their performances as a family. I guarantee you will not be disappointed. It is important to step out of our busy lives from time to time and enjoy the amenities that our communities offer.

I was reminded this week of the importance of engaging our elected officials in communication on issues that we as citizens feel are important. One of the blessings of living in a republic is that our elected officials are moderated by the rule of law and guided by their constituents. Each of us has a personal responsibility to communicate with our elected officials and share our vision with them.

While there will always be differing views on how to achieve the public vision, one thing is certain. Our elected officials should look toward the future and not dwell on the issues of the past. As with any organization, once a decision is made, it is incumbent upon the leadership to move forward with that decision, regardless of which way they voted on the issue.

Mayor Ross encouraged the City Council last week to leave the recent divisive issues behind. I applaud him for that, and add my voice to that sentiment. Now is the time for the council to again look toward the future and plan how our city will accomplish the public vision.

You can follow me on Twitter at To find me on Facebook, just search for Jeff Quibell. My blog, follows what is happening in Blue Springs.

Notification of Special Community Events – March 20 and 27 2009, Blue Springs, Mo.

clock March 22, 2009 16:04 by author Jeff Quibell

You won’t want to miss these “feel good” newsworthy events!


March with the Mayor: a free community - wide walking opportunity with Mayor Carson Ross of Blue Springs, Mo.


2 walks: March 20, 2009 (First Day of Spring!) and March 27, 2009

Both walks begin at 12:15 and last 30 minutes


March 20 Location: Begins at City Hall – walk route is approximately 1 mile through downtown Blue Springs

March 27 Location: Begins at Keystone Park, 2214 Keystone Drive


What started as a group walk of the Blue Springs Employees' “Biggest Loser” participants has blossomed into a community-wide event led by Mayor Carson Ross.  Members of Blue Springs F.I.T. as well as citizens, Chamber of Commerce members, and the Blue Springs School District will join the group for a 30-minute walk to emphasize daily activity for a heart-healthy lifestyle.  This event is expected to draw more than one hundred citizens, staff, elected officials and students from across the Blue Springs community.  Both walks will be a great media opportunity for print and television news coverage as well as for some great interviews from participants.

Scouts' good turn helps the city

clock March 19, 2009 01:07 by author Jeff Quibell

It seems like just yesterday when I went on my first scout camp out. I remember riding in an old school bus to Moberly, Mo., where we hiked 20 miles on what was then called the Missouri Woodlands Trail.  That evening we pitched tents and saw an unusually warm December day turn to snow and ice. We huddled around the campfire all night as we listened to trees falling over in the distance from the weight of the ice. Then I realize that experience was forty years ago.

The Boy Scouts of America programs prepare young men to be the leaders of tomorrow. Each boy who attains the rank of Eagle Scout must plan and lead a special project. Blue Springs is blessed to have several strong Scout troops with excellent leadership. Prospective Eagle Scouts Hayden White, Andrew Lynn and Chris Simmons are working with the Blue Springs Historical Society to plan a variety of renovation projects for the Dillingham-Lewis Museum.

The projects include demolition of an out-of-period room in the basement, construction of shelving, handicap-accessible sidewalk construction, construction of a pergola for the Heritage Garden and possibly a picket fence. The Historical Society is looking for donations of materials or money to help with the restoration efforts. If you would like to contribute or volunteer in any way contact Mary Potter, president of the Historical Society, at 816-797-4870.

Supporting community organizations is important, especially in these difficult times. This coming Saturday, the Heritage Philharmonic will be featuring Kansas City Symphony Cellist Matt Johnson performing the Dvorak Cello Concerto. The concert will be held at the Blue Springs High School Performing Arts Center and starts at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $10 each, but if you cut out or print this column and bring it with you to the concert you can get two tickets for the price of one. I hope to see you there!

Thank you to the many people who attended my pancake breakfast last Saturday in support of It was a great time for all, and I enjoyed the opportunity to reconnect with friends and to meet so many of you for the first time!

Heritage Philharmonic Performs with Cellist Matt Johnson of the Kansas City Symphony on March 21st

clock March 15, 2009 12:06 by author Jeff Quibell

The Heritage Philharmonic will feature Kansas City Symphony Cellist Matt Johnson performing the Dvorak Cello Concerto on Saturday March 21, 2009 at the Blue Springs High School Performing Arts Center starting at 7:30pm.  The video clip below is from one of the orchestra's Christmas concerts.  If you print a copy of this article and bring it with you to the concert you will get two tickets for the price of one.  I hope to see you there on March 21st!


City Leaders Need to Review and Plan

clock March 12, 2009 17:32 by author Jeff Quibell

I remember the first trip I took on behalf of the city after I was elected to represent District 1 in Blue Springs. The trip was to attend a National League of Cities conference in Charlotte North Carolina.

During my time in office I had the privilege to attend numerous educational seminars designed to help a city councilman understand issues facing communities all over the United States. Attending these continuing education seminars eventually lead to the honor of receiving a Bronze Leadership Fellow award from the NLC. These training opportunities are vital to the continuing education of our City Council, giving each of them the tools to make better decisions on behalf of their constituents.

I was pleased to hear that the City Council recently held a strategic planning retreat at the Elms Resort & Spa in Excelsior Springs Missouri. I read The Examiner’s editorial that delivered some criticism for the cost of the retreat, but I disagree. I would remind them that the entire council attended this planning session, and in light of all of the talk of being fiscally conservative from certain councilmen, I’m certain this junket was necessary. I commend all of the council in making strategic planning a priority.

It has been years since our City Council has undertaken a serious strategic planning effort, and I compliment Mayor Carson Ross for having the wisdom to undertake such a venture on behalf of our citizens. Combined with the promised review of the Comprehensive Plan, the city will soon be positioned to provide much needed guidance to the development community on their plans for the further development of our city.

According to The Examiner’s article about the meeting, the council spent 15 hours in discussion during the retreat. I share the desire of many of our citizens to hear and read the public report of progress and planning that occurred at this important meeting. I look forward to the presentation of the results at a future council meeting, which we can all watch on Comcast Channel 7 or download from the City Web site at

Don’t forget, this Saturday is the Community Pancake Breakfast at the Steamin’ Bean. Wanda and I are looking forward to seeing our friends and neighbors as well as some current and former elected officials at this event. 

Tickets are available for purchase in advance on-line at or just come join us from 8 a.m. until 11 a.m.

Exciting days ahead for Blue Springs

clock March 5, 2009 01:01 by author Jeff Quibell

DSC04409 I remember how I felt the first time I heard the city was building Adams Dairy Parkway. It was exciting to learn that the future of our city would include businesses with high-paying jobs that would allow our citizens to work, live and play in our own city. I could see the positive impact that this development would have for all of us in Blue Springs.

When I joined the City Council in 2005, I was excited about the prospect of helping realize that vision. The job required identifying existing obstacles and proposing solutions to move development forward and create an environment that would raise interest in this special asset that our city had created. To realize the vision that was Adams Dairy Parkway, we had to focus the City Council’s diverse interests and bring consensus to our goals.

Last week I attended the Blue Springs Economic Development Corporation quarterly luncheon. Brian Foster, provost of the University of Missouri-Columbia, was the keynote speaker. He talked about the plans the university has for the Missouri Innovation Park and painted a picture of how the park will be developed. The park will be a place where doctoral students can interact with cutting-edge research facilities to solve the questions of human and animal health and promote the field of life sciences.

The crowd sensed the excitement that the convergence of high-quality research surrounding the life sciences will bring to our community, the region and our state. Looking forward to thousands of new, high-paying jobs and their economic benefit cemented the feeling that we were now taking the right steps to bring prosperity to our community.

I congratulate Mayor Carson Ross for the active role he has played in bringing the Missouri Innovation Park plans together, and I urge all members of the council to be aware of the possible ramifications of their actions as they evaluate projects in and around this growing area. National developers and employers are already seeking information about this project, and it’s important that our city council representatives fully understand the project. I was encouraged to see that Councilmen Lauer, Edmondson, Reed and Shaver attended the luncheon to hear and experience first-hand the excitement surrounding this unique opportunity.

Today, as you drive Adams Dairy Parkway, the promise of progress surrounds you. The excitement of seeing our investment in the parkway finally realized brings a sense of accomplishment, as we look to the bright future that will include the Missouri Innovation Park in our community.

Our state Senate is considering legislation to help fund this project. Please contact Senator Matt Bartle at 573-751-1464 to encourage his support of the Missouri Innovation Park provisions of this important legislation.

Check Out Parkside Books Monthly Newsletter

clock March 4, 2009 09:28 by author Jeff Quibell

Check out our March Newsletter!

There's a great recipe for Chocolate Chip Cookies with Irish Cream. We tested the cookies here at the store and got rave reviews.

Beth King / Marilyn Miller

Parkside Books

208B N 7 Highway

Blue Springs, MO 64015