Category Archives: Featured

WHS graduate Charlie Cunningham killed in shooting in Wichita

Charlie Cunningham

Sumner Newscow report — The Wichita Police Department has arrested 26-year-old Dalton Patterson of Wichita on a charge of possession of methamphetamine with the intent to sell, stemming from a Friday morning shooting in the death of a Wellington High School graduate.

At approximately 4 a.m., officers responded to a shooting call at a residence in the 4400 block of east Bayley. Upon arrival, officers located shell casings and two handguns.

Shortly later, 40-year-old Charles Cunningham of Wichita, a graduate of WHS in the 1990s, arrived at an area hospital with a gunshot wound to his body.

CultureCow: Joker – the Okay-est Movie to be Nominated for an Oscar

By Devin McCue, Sumner Newscow — Happy Friday. It wouldn’t be Oscar season if we didn’t kick it off with a weirdly political and unnecessarily antagonistic fight about an underwhelming film.  Last year, it was Green Book, the year before that it was La La Land, but this time around I’m shocked to say it came from a comic book movie.  From the moment I mentioned a controversy and the fact I’m a white man, you probably already figured I was talking about the newest offering from DC Studios; Joker.


Joker has come under attack from some for being irresponsibly dangerous in the era of mass shootings and hailed as the film of the year by others who see it as legitimate art.  No matter where you look, everyone has a hot take on Joker and like our political landscape, there appears to be no room for middle ground.  Instead of being just the latest diatribe on the film, I’d like to analyze it from a few perspectives.

1 – Rallying Cry for the Incels

Sumner County preview: Big weekend, but none bigger than for Belle Plaine

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — Week #7 is on deck, and there are some big games ahead for Sumner County teams. But none bigger than what Belle Plaine is playing.

Belle Plaine (6-0) at Eureka (4-2) — It used to be, like just a few years ago, that a battle against Leon-Bluestem for the right to not be winless was the big game of the season. Just three years ago, like in 2016, Belle Plaine was sporting a 31-game losing streak.

Now Belle Plaine is being featured as the K-Preps Game of the Week (see story here).

Belle Plaine is playing for its first district title since 1996. It’s been since 2011 since it had its first losing season. If the season was to unravel at this very point, the Dragons have accomplished more than anyone could have ever anticipated during the preseason. Just guessing, the Dragons aren’t about to hang on their laurels.

Garage Sale ads this weekend…

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — The following are the garage sales that we have for the weekend of October 18-19, 2019. If you still need a garage sale advertised just use the comment section below. Good luck with bargain hunting! 

Crusader preview: Wellington to battle Winfield with playoff implications on the line

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — What a difference a win makes.

After five weeks of trying circumstances, Wellington suddenly has renewed hope and vigor after a 21-0 victory at Labette County.

“Oh, geez,” sighed Wellington head football coach Zane Aguilar, in a gasp of relief after someone asked him how it felt to get his first win at Crusader Club the other day.

Trouble is, Wellington may be playing one of its best opponents this year when Winfield comes to town.

Linn Hibbs is back. His Winfield team is 5-1 and has some swagger. The Vikings are on a four-game winning streak, having won by 17 points or more in each contest.

Send-off rally for MaKayla Brownlee, singing competition contestant

Makayla Brownlee

by Amber Countryman, Sumner Newscow — Seventeen-year-old MaKayla Brownlee, daughter of Mark and Michelle Brownlee, has always dreamed of becoming a well-known musician. After passing the audition for open calls in Wichita, she went on to Chicago for more auditions for a nationally-known singing competition.

“I was really shocked, happy and proud,” Brownlee said about advancing past the first two auditions.

Now, Brownlee has advanced past auditions in Chicago, and will travel to Oregon, where she will perform in front of celebrity judges. If she advances past this audition, she will go on to perform in Hollywood, Calif.

“I don’t care what happens, not many people get to say that they got to perform in front of celebrity judges,” Brownlee said.

A send-off rally will be held to celebrate MaKayla’s singing competition advancement on Saturday, Oct. 19 at Meadow Lanes bowling alley in Wellington.

Held over! Addams Family playing at Wellington Regent for 2nd week

Playing at the Wellington Regent: Addams Family – Halloween.

Schedule: Friday at 7 p.m. Saturday – Sunday, 2 and 7 p.m.

Rated: PG (for macabre and suggestive humor, and some action)

Coming soon:

50 years ago Wellington won itself a Kansas high school football championship – the 1st of its kind

The 1969 Wellington High School football team. (Click on photo to enlarge)

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — When the 1969 Wellington High School football team is recognized tomorrow night at halftime of the Crusader football game, it will be another reminder just how steeped in tradition this program has been throughout its first 100 years.

Wellington has been at the forefront of two Kansas High School football milestones: the first night football game (see story here). And being one of first six schools to win a Kansas State High School football championship in its inaugural playoff season.

It seems hard to believe looking back now why it took Kansas so long to implement a high school playoff system. But it has defined every football season since. There have been a lot of state championships won over the past five decades. Wellington has won four of them itself: 1969, 1982, 2001, and 2002.

But like they always say: “ there’s nothing better than the first time.”

To put it in perspective, Wellington was the first Ark Valley League school to capture the state title. Its fiercest rival at the time Ark City wouldn’t get one until a decade later in 1979.

Council votes to make the City of Wellington the primary electrical supplier for VNA plant

by James Jordan, Sumner Newscow — The Wellington City Council denied a franchise agreement with Sumner-Cowley Electric Cooperative to serve the area that has been annexed by the city for the proposed VNA plant. 

Instead, the council unanimously approved that electricity will be provided by the city of Wellington. Kip Etter and Jennifer Heersche were not present for the meeting.

The plant, if built, will be located at the southeast corner of U.S. 160 and Seneca Road. The entire parcel was annexed into the city of Wellington on August 6, 2019. VNA is proposing to build a biofuel industrial complex that will convert wheat straw into compressed natural gas. 

The council followed the recommendation of Wellington City Manager Shane Shields, who stated: 

Police chase ends with arrest of Argonia woman Tuesday evening

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — Some people take late night strolls. Others just sit on the porch and look at the stars. For Amber N. Mays, 34, of Argonia her late night activity was getting into a police chase.

Mays was arrested, charged and confined after a 15-20 minute police chase that started in Wellington and ended at 40th St. and S. Ridge Road, southwest of Wellington.

According to a Wellington police report, at around 10:30 p.m., yesterday evening, Mays was driving a 2018 Kia Forte, westbound on U.S. 160 passed the Dillon’s Grocery Store when Wellington police officers stopped her for driving without her headlights operating.

She originally was stopped but gave the police officer a false identity. When the officers did a background check and discovered she was not telling the truth, she put on the gas and sped out of town.

Wednesday sports roundup: WHS volleyball, WMS Cross Country, C-Team scores, WMS scores

Wellington’s Mykiland French vs. Mulvane.


by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — The Wellington volleyball team finished up its home schedule by splitting in another triangular. The Crusaders lost to McPherson 25-14, 25-19, before defeating Mulvane 23-25, 25-19, 25-12 in the nightcap. McPherson defeated Mulvane 25-13, 25-16 in the middle match.

Wellington and Mulvane (8-26) was an entertaining match. This was the first time the two teams have met. After the Wildcats won the first set in an extremely entertaining hard-fought game, Wellington found itself digging out of a 6-0 deficit, only to comeback and win 25-19. Crusaders then rolled in the third set in dominating fashion. 

Sumner Newscow weekly poll: The worst President in U.S. History question

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — Last week we asked who was the greatest President in U.S. history (see poll here). This week we are going to ask who is the worst President in U.S. History. We are using the same presidents except we are substituting Jimmy Carter and Richard Nixon for George Washington and Teddy Roosevelt.


Who is the worst President in U.S. History?

View Results

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Wellington’s Trace Rusk, Payton Ginter named Big Cheese Athlete(s) of the Week

Trace Rusk

Payton Ginter

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — This week we are giving out two Big Cheese Athletes of the Week awards.

Trace Rusk, a 175-pound junior running back for the Wellington football team, had a huge game in the Crusaders 21-0 win over Labette County. He had 123 yards on 27 attempts to help give Wellington its first win of the season.

Then on Monday, Payton Ginter, a Wellington junior, did it again, qualifying for the Class 4A state golf tournament for the third consecutive year. She placed second individually for a 93 at the Class 4A Regional at Winfield’s Quail Ridge Golf Course.

For their efforts, Rusk and Ginter receive a free large delicious pizza at Big Cheese Pizza at 324 N. Washington. 

Wellington’s Payton Ginter does it again – heads to state in golf for 3rd consecutive year

Wellington team at Quail Ridge Monday afternoon. (Click on photo to enlarge).

Sumner Newscow report — For the third consecutive year, Payton Ginter has qualified for state in girls golf.

Payton Ginter

Ginter finished with a 93, second highest score in the Class 4A Regional at Quail Ridge golf course in Winfield. She shot a 93, 21 over par. Elly Bertholf of Winfield was the winner of the tournament, shooting a 90.

“Well, it was a long windy day at Quail Ridge,” said Wellington co-head coach Vanessa Sawyer. “Scores overall were pretty high due to the course just being in amazing shape.” 

Sumner County Sheriff Office weekly report: October 7 – 14, 2019

Sumner Newscow report — The Sumner County Sheriff Office report for October 7 through October 14, 2019 weekly jail bookings are as follows: 

Today is the last day to register to vote for upcoming city/school election

Sumner Newscow report — Below are some important dates for the upcoming city/school election.

10/15/19 — Voter registration closes 5:00 p.m.

10/16/19 — Advance voting by mail begins.

10/29/19 — Last day to request mail ballot.

Wellington Police weekend report: Friday, October 11 – Sunday, October 13, 2019

Wellington Police weekend report: Friday, October 11 – Sunday, October 13, 2019:

Friday, October 11, 2019

Wellington qualifies two doubles teams at Regional for Class 4A state tennis tournament

State qualifiers from left: Jensen Lynnes, Rylee Rusk, Kylie Aufdengarten, Calli Hatfield.

Sumner Newscow report — Four Wellington girls qualified for the Class 4A state tournament to be held in Winfield on Friday and Saturday, hosted by the Wellington school district.

Both doubles teams: Kylie Aufdengarten and Rylee Rusk, and Calli Hatfield and Jensen Lynnes, will be heading to state after competing in the Class 4A Regional at Wichita Collegiate on Saturday.

Singles players Olivia Brand and Natalie Henning were both eliminated.

Aufdengarten/Rusk placed second while Hatfield and Lynnes finished fourth. The top six entries in both singles and doubles. Brand and Henning were eliminated in the first round.



Sunday Blog: The case that participation trophies aren’t the reason our kids are soft

Commentary by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — A few weeks ago, I came up with a new way to package my more light-hearted opinions. I’m calling it: “Dumb Facebook things,” because, quite frankly, there are an infinite of wrong, misguided, miserably stupid opinions on social media. Let’s begin…

Ah, the participation trophy controversy. If only we didn’t hand out so many of these trophies after games our kids would be tough-minded, logical thinking, God-fearing, hard-working individuals who would bring this country to world dominance and unlimited prosperity… just like their parents and grandparents have done.

As this article points out, giving away the participation trophy has made our kids “soft” and “entitled.”

I find this argument stupid, for so many reasons.

First of all, who are getting these participation trophies? I’ve covered sports for about 30 years now. I’ve raised three children, who have participated in thousands of sporting/dance events, and I can’t begin to tell you how many high school games I have witnessed. I don’t remember ever once seeing a “participation trophy” being handed out – definitely a medal and a ribbon, but not a trophy. Maybe it is a California thing, but here in Kansas, I simply don’t see it.

Part of the reason is most sporting leagues and/or tournament organizers are poor. If they have any money at all, they are throwing it into upgrading their equipment or uniforms, not stupid trophies that don’t mean anything.

Belle Plaine takes down Fredonia on homecoming 13-6, Dragons are 6-0

Luke Baker scores from the 11 for the game-winning touchdown.

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — The Belle Plaine Dragons are 6-0, victors of their own homecoming and vying for a district championship.

Friday night they added another accomplishment to their resume. They are purveyors of the fourth-quarter comeback.

Belle Plaine defeated Fredonia 13-6 in a traditional ground-and-pound game harkening to yesteryear. Scoring was at a premium with the Dragons scoring their first and only touchdown with 2:41 to play in the fourth quarter.

It was a weird game, with one of the strangest scores you will ever see in football. Fredonia was holding a 6-4 lead going into the fourth. When is the last time you have ever seen a “4” in any football game at any level?

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