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Annual Polar Bear Plunge this weekend

The fifth annual Polar Bear Plunge and the first-ever Super Plunge will take place Friday and Saturday at Longview Lake, 11110 Raytown Road in Kansas City. The 24-hour Super Plunge will start at noon Friday with about 10 individuals who will plunge 24 times into Longview Lake within a 24-hour period.

The Polar Bear Plunge is open to anyone 10 years or older and day-of-event registration will begin at 9 a.m. Saturday. Each participant is required to raise a minimum of $50 to participate and will receive a Polar Bear Plunge commemorative sweatshirt.

Missouri’s law enforcement community will play host to the event because Special Olympics is law enforcement’s charity of choice. For more information about the Polar Bear Plunge, contact Jeremie Ballinger at ballinger@somo.org or call 913-789-0332.



Disposal program for flourescent bulbs

The city of Lee’s Summit offers a disposal program for compact fluorescent light bulbs and lamps. Because they contain mercury and phosphorous that can harm the environment and humans through direct contact or inhalation, CFLs should not be thrown away with household trash.

To make a disposal appointment, call 816-969-1805 or go online at www.lees-summit.mo.us and click “Services, Environment, Hazardous Materials.” Used, unbroken CFLs also can be dropped off inside each Home Depot store near the returns desk.



Lee’s Summit gets waste district grant

The Mid-America Regional Council’s Solid Waste Management District recently announced 11 grants to local governments, schools and community groups for local and regional waste reduction, reuse and recycling programs. The district serves as a regional solid waste planning agency for Cass, Clay, Jackson, Platte and Ray counties and works cooperatively with Johnson, Leavenworth and Wyandotte counties in Kansas.

Among the grant recipients is the city of Lee’s Summit, which received a $5,365 grant for downtown Lee’s Summit recycling.



Harvesters needs help with food bank

Help Harvesters “tackle” hunger in “Souper Bowl Weekend of Caring” Thursday through Sunday. Harvesters is asking the community to donate food, money and time to the food bank to help feed the hungry. The food bank’s goal is to host 1,200 volunteers and collect 15,000 pounds of food.

“We have seen a huge increase in the number of people who are hungry in Greater Kansas City and we need to do everything we can to make sure that we have food available when they turn to us for help,” said Karen Haren, president and CEO of Harvesters.

The volunteer blitz will have 1,200 volunteers sorting and repackaging donated food in two-hour shifts throughout the weekend. While numerous shifts have been filled, many remain. Each volunteer is asked to bring a minimum of 10 canned goods or $10 to help meet the weekend’s goal. The most-needed items are canned fruits, vegetables, soups and meats, as well as cereal and boxed meals.

Individuals, companies, places of worship and community groups are encouraged to host a traditional or virtual food drive or simply ask guests to bring canned food donations to Super Bowl parties. Donations brought to Harvesters through Feb. 7 will be included in the weekend’s total.

For information about volunteering or hosting a food drive for this weekend, visit www.harvesters.org or call 816-929-3090.



Boy Scout chili supper this Sunday

The third annual Boy Scout Troop 306 chili supper will be held from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday at North Spring United Methodist Church, 601 N.E. Jefferson Street, Blue Springs.

The menu includes chili with all the fixings, dessert and a drink. Cheesy potato soup and hot dogs will be served as an alternative. In addition, there will be pie auction at noon to benefit the outreach program of the church. Many of the pies are home-made by members of church.

Proceeds from the chili supper will be used to support the Boy Scout and Cub Scout programs at North Spring.

Tickets are $5 and may be purchased from any 306 Scout or at the door.



Groundhog Day at park Monday

A Groundhog Day celebration for children ages 2 to 5 years will be held from 1 to 2:30 p.m. Monday in the George Owens Nature Park Nature Center at 1601 S. Speck Road, Independence.

Activities include creating a groundhog (that may see a shadow), eating a groundhog “treat,” and hearing winter stories.

Groundhog Day has become a popular tradition throughout the United States, it is the day the groundhog emerges from his hole after a long winter sleep. If he sees his shadow, he hurries back into his underground home for another six weeks of winter and thus predicting bad weather.

If the day is cloudy and he is shadowless, he takes it as a sign of spring and stays above ground predicting spring is on the way.

This is a free event, and registration is required. For more information, call 816-325-7115.