Entertainment

Kearney Football Stadium To See New Improvements

After years of hearing from families and figuring out a way to pay for construction costs, the Kearney School District is moving ahead on plans for a high school stadium project. This comes after having selected Universal Construction Co. of Kansas City, Kansas, as construction manager, having worked with design firm DLR to forward initial designs and having purchased new bleachers.

“We needed to get out and get that lead time for the bleachers because they take about four weeks to fabricate,” Assistant Superintendent of Human Resources and Student Services Jeff Morrison said Monday, Jan. 14, of work completed on the project before school let out for winter break. “Hanson Sports (of Kansas City) came in under budget …” The total for the bleachers is roughly $844,000.

The phased-in project will replace home side seating, add landscaping and replace concession structures and restrooms at the high school, 715 E. 19th St.

Once complete, the project will create a promenade effect between the new high school gymnasium and the football stadium with new and improved pedestrian access with Americans With Disabilities Act sidewalks with handrails along better access throughout the stadium to the track.

There will also be an improved bowl and seating with better sightlines totaling a capacity of 2,590 seats, which includes ADA seating; a concourse level that provides a family restroom, elevator, storage and school merchandise store, state-of-the-art, custom press box with separate spaces for print, radio and television media; and coaches.

The press box area will also include a rooftop platform for broadcasting cameras for school and other media outlets.

“The goal is that by the first football game on Aug. 30, we have those home side seats done and the press box,” Morrison said.

The plan is being paid for with capital projects money in the budget along with money raised from future fundraising efforts.

“It’s important to note this is not bond dollars, but projects that have been saved up for over time,” Morrison said.

The bond, approved by voters in 2017, paid for other districtwide improvements previously made including the new gym, elementary schools’ playground equipment, pending added entryway security at the junior high school, added and improved high school classrooms and the Early Education Center project.

The district, the assistant superintendent said, is confident in the plan’s timeline and ability to add what has long been needed for additional seating and ADA-compliant access. The district is also happy with its choice of construction manager.

“Universal has done a lot of work like this. They did the Liberty and Liberty North projects,” he said. “… Right now, we are looking at honing down the design, which Universal will then take that and go out to bid.”

Before selection of Universal in December, school board Vice President Dan Weakley said he has worked with the company in Grandview and had nothing but nice things to say about the firm.

“They were good district partners,” he said.

*The Courier Tribune contributed to this article

102.7 FM Ready to Broadcast Bulldog Hoops

The Bulldog Radio Network and 102.7FM announce their first year as the broadcast voice of Kearney High School home basketball games for the 2018-2019 season.

KPGZ-102.7FM home-game broadcasts begin on December 17th as the Bulldogs take on the Smithville Warriors. Pre-game airs at approximately 7:40 p.m., or immediately following the girl’s game. Live, play-by-play broadcast begins at 8:00 p.m. Post-game interviews and analysis can be heard immediately after the game.

Listeners can hear the entire game on 102.7FM, online at www.1027fm.rocks or by downloading the Tune-In App and searching KPGZ.

“We are very excited to broadcast the Kearney Bulldog basketball games this year,” said Brian Watts, General Manager for the station. “We had great listenership with the football program this season and we look forward to expanding our sports broadcast efforts for Kearney High School and the community. We are proud to be the radio voice of the Kearney Bulldogs.”

The play-by-play announcer is Andy Martens, Kearney Fire and Rescue Protection District employee and volunteer for 102.7FM. Dan Hermon will assist with the color commentary during the broadcast. He is a coach and teacher at Hawthorne Elementary School.

If you have questions regarding the broadcast or are interested in game sponsorships, you can contact Brian Watts at 816-826-1111 or e-mail him at brian.watts@1027fm.rocks.

KPGZ 102.7FM to broadcast 2018 Kearney Bulldog Home Football Games

The Bulldog Radio Network and 102.7FM are ready to kick off their second year of broadcasting Kearney High School home football games for the 2018 season.

KPGZ-102.7FM home-game broadcasts begin on September 7th when the Bulldogs take on the Platte County Pirates. Pre-game airs at 6:45 p.m. Live play-by-play broadcast begins at 7:00 p.m. Post-game interviews and analysis can be heard immediately after the game.

Listeners can hear the entire game on 102.7FM, online at www.1027fm.rocks or by downloading the Tune-In App and searching KPGZ.

“It is an honor to broadcast the Kearney Bulldog games again this year,” said Brian Watts, General Manager for the station. “We are proud to be the voice of Kearney Football and serve as Kearney’s own community radio station.”

Play by play for the game will be handled by Jim Dickerson, who has hosted a number of radio and television shows and has been nominated for three Cable Ace Awards. He has served as an announcer at various aviation events, high school football play-by-play announcer for the WHB 810 Varsity Sports Network and as host of the Kansas City Alive television show.

Mike Davis will provide color commentary for the broadcast. He is an award-winning creative director, radio and television voiceover talent and the host of Kearney LIVE and Kearney Business Spotlight on 102.7FM.

        Jim Dickerson                  Mike Davis
 

The First Friday night game home game will feature the Kearney Bulldogs facing off against the Platte County Pirates. The broadcast can be heard starting at 7pm with pre-game activities starting at 6pm on both 102.7FM and on the web at 102.7fm.rocks as well as the Tune-In App.

Kearney Bulldog Football is on the Air!

Friday night lights and the roar of the crowd are nearly upon us. 102.7FM, The Bulldog Radio Network, will be broadcasting Kearney Bulldog home football games again this year. Kearney football broadcasts were ranked among our largest listening audiences last year. And this town loves Bulldog football. Your message will be heard by increased numbers of on-air and on-line listeners.

Download the Bulldog Radio Network rate sheet. There are sponsorships available at levels to suit any budget. Hurry, because slots are filling quickly. Don’t miss this opportunity to boost your business and support Kearney’s home town radio station.

Questions? Give Brian Watts a call at 816-826-1111 or simply fill out the information at the bottom of the rate sheet and mail it along with your check to: 102.7FM, 455 S. Sam Barr Dr., Suite 109, Kearney, MO 64060

Inaugural Opal Wapoo Gravel Grinder a Huge Success

The Opal Wapoo Gravel Grinder combined the best of both worlds – a challenging, scenic gravel route that started and ended in a town full of hospitality, Excelsior Springs. The race started and ends during the Waterfest, an annual festival celebrating Excelsior Springs’ mineral water heritage.  Riders were led out of town by a 1953 Johnny Popper (John Deere) tractor, and within a few miles they left pavement and hit the gravel roads and journey through the Missouri countryside.  Riders traveled down hilly, curvy, flat, tree-lined roads, past streams, possibly through streams in a low-water crossing, in an area where the terrain was ever-changing.  The ride continued through the Crooked Creek Conservation area and just as they got used to the rolling hills, the course took riders through the river bottoms past corn fields, down gravel that looked like it touched the horizon.  As they rode back into town, the party was waiting at the finish in the middle of the Waterfest, an annual festival in Excelsior Springs.

The riders were told to be prepared to be challenged – the hills were not for the faint of heart!  There was 5,000+ feet of climb on the 100-mile Wapoo race and around 4,000+ feet of climb on the 52-mile Opal race. These gravel routes mixed in long, gradual hills with short, steep hills.  But what goes up must come down, with an almost equal amount of descent!

The top Male Overall 100-Mile Wapoo finishers who grabbed a podium  blazed the course and even better – set the bar high for future course records. Rob Hall of Smithville, MO placed 1st Overall in 5:03:55. Scott Williamson of Lawrence, Kansas placed 2nd in 5:06:33 and Lawrence Simonson of Columbia, Missouri placed 3rd in 5:06:34.

Congrats to the top overall Female finishers in the Wapoo 100-Mile race! Podium spots went to 1st Place Mikayla Smith of Lenexa, Kansas in 6:48:31. 2nd Place went to Krissee Pitts of Kansas City, Missouri in 6:55:59. 3rd Place went to Nan Lueckert of Smithville, Missouri in 6:58:39.

 

For more race results visit facebook.com/opalwapoo.

June 23, 2018: The Inaugural Opal Wapoo Gravel Grinder

Gravel grinding enthusiasts take note: The Opal Wapoo Gravel Grinder combines the best of both worlds – a challenging, scenic gravel route that starts and ends in a town full of hospitality (and free beer at the finish!), Excelsior Springs. The race starts and ends during the Waterfest, an annual festival celebrating Excelsior Springs’ mineral water heritage.  You will be led out of town by a 1953 Johnny Popper (John Deere) tractor, and within a few miles you will leave pavement and hit the gravel roads and journey through the Missouri countryside.  You will travel down hilly, curvy, flat, tree-lined roads, past streams, possibly through streams in a low-water crossing, in an area where the terrain is ever-changing. Cars are few and far between, and folks will wave at your from their fields as you ride by.  You will ride through the Crooked Creek Conservation area.  Just as you get used to the rolling hills, the course will take you through the river bottoms as you ride past corn fields, down gravel that looks like it touches the horizon.  As you ride back into town, the party will be waiting for you at the finish in the middle of the Waterfest, an annual festival in Excelsior Springs.  The finish line will receive you with a free beer and a bite to eat provided by local businesses.  This of course will only wet your appetite for all the live music, great food and hospitality that Excelsior Springs and its annual Waterfest have to offer.

Be prepared to be challenged – these hills aren’t for the faint of heart!  There is 5,000+ feet of climb on the 100-mile Wapoo race and around 4,000+ feet of climb on the 52-mile Opal race. These gravel routes mix in long, gradual hills with short, steep hills.  But what goes up must come down, with an almost equal amount of descent!  Discover the hidden gems in the gravel roads of Ray County, which twist and curve their ways through classic midwest countryside.

For more details, visit https://www.opalwapoo.com/

102.7 FM Featured in I-35 North Magazine

102.7FM – KPGZ Welcomes the Great American Sports Show

102.7 FM continues to expand its programming schedule and has recently added the Great American Sports Show to the lineup.

Based out of Kansas City, Missouri, The Great American Sports Network was founded in 2014 by local sports personalities Clint Switzer and Noah Gronniger. The duo began doing their own sports and entertainment related podcasts in the fall of 2012, but soon found themselves on the radio airwaves doing their own 1-hour sports show on KPGZ, 102.7 FM.  Always forward thinking, Clint and Noah decided to launch their very own sports network that would provide high-quality programming, articles, interviews and inside information, free of cost, to fans worldwide. At the Great American Sports Network, they always look forward to bringing first-class guests in the world of sports and entertainment, as well as introducing their audience to a vast array of top-quality contributors. Clint and Noah want to personally welcome everyone to one of the most engaging and interactive online sports experience available today.

Clint Switzer has been involved in sports media for the last four years.  He started out as co-host for “The Sports Horn” which aired via internet from his home town of Clinton, MO. After moving to Kansas City in 2012, he helped form “The Outsiders Sports Show” with Noah Gronniger with heavy emphasis on local and national sports coverage. Some of his finest accolades include: covering Chiefs training camp, interviewing Jeff Pilson from Foreigner backstage at a concert and frequently rapping with former ESPN analyst Sean Salisbury on his podcast. Clint is the co-host of six shows on The Great American Sports Network and is also a senior writer. He specializes in covering SEC Football and the NFL.

Noah Gronniger became a Kansas City Chiefs fan in 1992 and in 1998, he became a Gonzaga basketball fan. He has been an avid fan of both teams and sports ever since. He teamed up with longtime friend Clint Switzer to start their own sports podcast in 2012. He had the idea of asking guests from the sports world to join them to add credibility. He thoroughly enjoys being able to talk to people in the sports and entertainment world that he’s looked up to.  His favorite moment happened when he covered the Kansas City Chiefs training camp in 2013 as part of the media and asked questions during the presser to Head Coach Andy Reid, Quarterback Alex Smith, and Wide Receiver Dexter McCluster. Noah is a senior writer for the Great American Sports network and is a co-host of its six shows.

The Great American Sports show airs every Saturday at 10am on 102.7FM and on www.1027fm.rocks.

Bill Teel Selected to Receive Hospitality Leadership Award.

The recipients of the Hotel and Lodging Association of Kansas City’s 2018 hospitality awards were announced at the December general membership meeting held at the Argosy Casino Hotel & Spa.  These awards recognize an individual’s exemplary leadership, service to the association and community, and their contribution to travel and tourism industry profession.

Bill Teel, Prime Business Group’s Vice President of Accounting and Finance and Executive Director of the Greater Kansas City Restaurant Association was selected to receive the prestigious Hospitality Leadership Award.

Teel is originally from Columbus, Kansas.  He earned both a Bachelor’s Degree and an MBA in accounting from Pittsburg State University.  He served as an officer in the US Navy, including two deployments to Vietnam.  After some years of public accounting, Teel joined the hospitality industry, first as CFO (and later CEO & President) of Signature Foods Inc. (franchisor of T.J. Cinnamons); COO of KC Masterpiece Restaurant Group; and co-owner of the Golden Ox Restaurant.  Teel serves as the Vice President of Accounting and Finance for Prime Business Group, is on the Board of Directors of the Navy League of Greater Kansas City, is on the Board of Directors of 102.7 FM in Kearney, and is an ambassador for the Mid-America Inter-Collegiate Athletic Association.

The awards ceremony will take place at the Recognition Dinner on Saturday, February 17th at the Argosy Casino Hotel & Spa.

102.7 FM KPGZ Appoints New General Manager

KPGZ 102.7FM and its board of directors are pleased to announce the appointment of Brian Watts as General Manager. Watts took over station management upon the resignation and departure of Ron Warner on November 20, 2017.  Warner elected to leave the station to pursue other interests.

Watts has been working as a producer, operations coordinator and board member at 102.7FM since July of 2017. He and his family have been Kearney residents since 2001.

“I’m honored to help 102.7FM grow with the city of Kearney”, Watts said.  “This position  gives my family and me a great opportunity to become more connected with local businesses and civic leaders. We are thrilled to provide Kearney residents with a voice to the community as well as a source for local news, sports and entertainment.”

Watts began his radio career in his hometown of Humboldt, Iowa while still in high school. He worked for 91.1 KTPR, a public radio station formerly based in Fort Dodge.  He also produced his own live radio show called Tin Pan Alley which featured tunes from American musical theater productions.

KPGZ 102.7FM broadcasts from the KC Coyote Studios located in Kearney, Missouri.  For more information on the station, please visit www.1027FM.rocks.

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