February, 2014

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Crews continue healthplex construction

healthplex 1

By Traci Chapman

Crews are busy on concrete and steel work as they look to a December completion date for Mustang’s St. Anthony Healthplex.

Darin Miller with Miller Neff Development said Tuesday the 80,000-square-foot building was on track. With a target completing date of Dec. 15, officials hoped to open the complex in early 2015, Miller said.

Located at state Highway 152 and Sara Road, the healthplex will include a full-service emergency room, diagnostic imaging, breast center and suites for medical procedures. A second floor will house primary care and specialist physicians with St. Anthony Physicians Group, and additional space will be available for commercial lease, officials said.

Rendering courtesy Miller Architects, Inc.

Mustang’s complex will look similar to projects built by Miller Neff in east and south Oklahoma City, Miller said. His firm has worked with St. Anthony’s for several years but just became involved with the firm’s healthplex construction about five years ago, he said.

The healthplex design differs from traditional medical and hospital accommodations, Miller said.

“It gives a feeling more of a hotel than a clinical setting,” he said. “It really is a very updated kind of design, compared to an ordinary medical office or emergency room.”

The healthplex will be operated by SSM Health Care Oklahoma, which administers all of St. Anthony’s operations. The project was the culmination of several months of discussion and negotiation between SSM and Mustang city officials, they said.

“We have enjoyed working in collaboration with the visionary city officials in Mustang to develop a medical campus model that will provide accessible health care with attention to high levels of customer service to the community,” SSM regional president Joe Hodges said last year.

For their part, Mustang officials said they were excited about the services the healthplex would offer and appreciated the smooth progress of construction.

“A facility of this nature will have a significant impact on the quality of life and Mustang’s economy,” Mayor Jay Adams said. “It’s a very positive development for all of us.”

Miller and his partner, David Neff, worked from design stage to development on the project, and Jason Givens has worked as project manager for Miller Architects on the healthplex. Once concrete and steel work is complete, crews will turn next to the building’s plumbing and electrical components.

“For us it’s a project moving through its phases, but for the people in Mustang, the important thing to know is everything is going as planned,” Miller said.

 

Boys’ basketball seeks different outcome this year

Binky Colbert One

By Kyle Salomon,

Mustang boys plan on a different outcome in their regional than last season.

The Bronco boys basketball team was upset in the first round of the regional last year by Bixby at Jenks. This year, Mustang is a regional host, and they will take on Putnam City at 8 p.m. Friday at Mustang High School.

The two other teams playing in the Mustang regional are Norman North and Westmoore. The Timberwolves and the Jaguars will play at 6:30 p.m. Friday at the MHS gym.

Mustang will carry the No.1 seed in the regional. They are the No.4 seed in the west. Norman North will be the No.2 seed, Westmoore will be the No.3 seed and Putnam City is the No.4 seed.

“We are looking forward to the opportunity to host a regional here at Mustang,” Mustang head coach Terry Long said. “We have big goals we know we can achieve, and it starts on Friday night.”

The winners of the two Friday games will play in the regional championship game at 7 p.m. Saturday at Mustang High School.

The losers of the two games on Friday are done for the year.

The Broncos enter the regional with an 18-5 overall record this season.

Norman North sits at 13-7 coming into the regional. They are coached by Butch Roberts.

Westmoore comes into the regional with a record of 8-10 this season. They are coached by Scott Hodges.

Putnam City has an unusual record this season with a mark of 5-17.  They are coached by A.D. Burtschi.

The Broncos are 2-0 against Putnam City this year. Their first meeting was a 72-45 smack-down in December at Mustang. Their most recent clash was a little tighter for the Broncos as it took overtime to beat the Pirates 73-66 at Putnam City.

Mustang has not played Norman North or Westmoore this season.

Mustang was without sophomore guards Jakolby Long and Isaiah Hammons last Friday night against Putnam City North because of leg injuries. Both players will be on the court against Putnam City Friday.

Officials – Ordinance will make rebuilding easier

tornado

By Traci Chapman

Mustang residents who have suffered the loss of their home will now have the opportunity to stay on their property while repairs are completed.

The city ordinance change goes into immediate effect, thanks to a unanimous vote by city council Feb. 18. The new ordinance allows a resident who has suffered significant damage – such as fire, storm or other issues – to stay in temporary housing on their property while repairs or replacement of the original home are completed.

Ordinance No.1100 allows residents to permit a travel trailer for a limited amount of time, which would allow them to stay on their property – something that could help residents both financially and emotionally, City Manager Tim Rooney said.

The ordinance came about after Ward 6 Councilman Donal Mount was approached by Dale and Kim Duncan, whose house was damaged in a January fire. The couple attempted to stay in a travel trailer on their property, then learned it was against Mustang ordinances.

“These people are hurting and need some help,” Mount said. “I see a real need for something like this.”

Rooney said his staff and City Attorney Jonathan Miller looked at ordinances in Piedmont and El Reno. Robert Coleman, Mustang community development director, said El Reno passed a similar ordinance after a structure fire.

In the past, Mustang residents had to go through the city Board of Adjustment to put a travel trailer on their property.

“That can take a lot of time,” Rooney said.

Temporary occupancy permits are valid for up to a year, and city officials may extend the permit another six months, if needed. City council must approve any extension beyond that time, to a maximum of two years. Residents must fill out an application and provide site plans, photos of the travel trailer and a statement stating residents intend to rebuild a permanent home on the site, Miller said.

While the ordinance includes RVs, travel trailers – such as fifth-wheels and pop-up campers – it does not include mobile homes, the city attorney said.

The ordinance, which was passed with an emergency clause allowing it to go into effect immediately, would help people who need help after a disaster.

“This is a good thing, it’s a way for people to remain with their home and oversee the rebuilding effort, as well as defraying the expense of having to stay somewhere else,” Mayor Jay Adams said last week. “It’s difficult enough to deal with a situation like this – whether it’s a tornado, a fire or anything else like that.

“It’s good that we can help give our citizens some relief,” he said.

Boys’ basketball squeaks out victory on senior night

Austin Meyer One

By Kyle Salomon,

Mustang boys got 15 points and 20 rebounds from sophomore forward Austin Meyer in their 50-46 senior night victory against Putnam City North.

The Broncos finished the regular season with an 18-5 overall record with the defeat of the Panthers last Friday night at Mustang High School.

“I thought we got some good play inside against PC North,” Mustang head coach Terry Long said. “We were thin on the perimeter, so we wanted to really focus on getting the ball inside and letting our big guys go to work. Austin (Meyer) was really aggressive tonight. We need that from him.”

Mustang was without sophomore guard Jakolby Long and Isaiah Hammons. Long sat out of the game because of knee soreness and Hammons was resting an injured ankle suffered earlier in the week.

“Those guys are going to be fine for the postseason,” Long said. “It was more of a precautionary thing holding them out. We need them healthy and ready to go on Friday night.”

The Broncos and PC North battled neck-and-neck throughout the entire game. Mustang was able to use its full-court trap defense to force several Panther turnovers, which allowed MHS to get the victory.

Meyer was the only Bronco in double figures in scoring and rebounding on the night. The 20 boards brought down by the 6-foot-9-inch sophomore were his season high and the team’s season high this year.

Turnovers continued to be a problem for Mustang. They committed 22 on the night as a team and forced just nine against Putnam City North.

The Broncos brought down 44 rebounds and made 13 out of 16 free throws in the game.

“I am proud of the guys for gutting the game out,” Long said. “We could have just said we don’t care about this game and focused on the postseason, but our guys wanted to get this one, and they did.”

Students reach out to help others

Canadian Valley Technology Center students enrolled in Biomedical Sciences are also officers for the Health Occupations Students of America chapter at the Dr. Earl Cowan Campus south of Yukon. The students are collecting items needed at Bethany Children’s Center. Pictured (from left) are Amy Ferguson, Yukon, Jessica Adams, Mustang, Ashley Escobar, Home School-Calumet, Megan Gorrell, Mustang, Chance Hernandez, Yukon. (Photo/courtesy)

Student officers at Canadian Valley Technology Center’s Dr. Earl Cowan Campus are not content to just hold an office.

The five students elected to offices in Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA) this school year are collecting items needed at Bethany Children’s Center.

“There is no requirement for community involvement (by HOSA officers), so we decided to do something on our own to help kids,” said Chance Hernandez, a Yukon High School junior who is enrolled in Biomedical Sciences at CV Tech.

The Children’s Center provides long-term rehabilitative care to children with complex medical needs and rehab for children in short-term rehab who have experienced brain or spinal cord injuries.

Through March 7, the Cowan Campus officers are collecting items that range from non-nylon bristle hairbrushes to youth and adult socks.

“We’re not collecting money,” Hernandez said. “These children need specific things, and we’re going to do our best to collect as many of them as we can.”

Collection tubs have been placed inside the front entrance of the campus, 1701 S. Czech Hall Road (2 miles south of Interstate 40 on Czech Hall Road). Name brand items are requested, because children are used to them, Hernandez said.

Other items requested include:

  • Diapers (Pampers or Huggies only)
  • Pampers sensitive baby wipes
  • Burt’s Bees lip balm
  • Selsun Blue shampoo
  • Arm & Hammer deodorant
  • Kleenex
  • Neosporin Plus
  • Jersey cotton clothing (4T-adult small)
  • Pants with elastic waistbands
  • Pull-over shirts, short and long-sleeve (boys and girls)
  • Rubber-soled shoes or sneakers
  • Backpacks (toddler and teen sizes)
  • CDs (pop, instrumental, lullabies or kid’s music)
  • Audio books on CD (toddler through teen)
  • Batteries (AA, C, D, 9V)
  • Flash/zip drives
  • White washcloths and bath towels
  • Black foam board
  • Postage stamps

 

Boys’ basketball falls at PC West

Kejuan Frazier One

By Kyle Salomon,

Despite getting 23 points and nine rebounds from junior guard Terrell Williams, the Mustang boys suffered an 18-point beat-down at the hands of the No.1 team in the state.

Putnam City West throttled the Broncos 84-66 on Feb. 18 at Putnam City West High School. The loss by MHS made it a season sweep by PC West over Mustang. The Patriots handled the Broncos by double digits at Mustang earlier in the season.

Two other players were in double figures scoring-wise for the Broncos other than Williams. Sophomore guard Jakolby Long finished the game with 19 points and 11 rebounds on the night, and sophomore guard Isaiah Hammons closed out the contest with 12 points and 10 rebounds.

It was the first time this season three different Mustang players had a double-double in one game.

“Putnam City West just took it to us after that first quarter,” Mustang head coach Terry Long said. “We couldn’t do anything right offensively, and we couldn’t stop them on defense.”

The Broncos were able to keep the score close in the first period, trailing 21-20 after one, but the Patriots broke it open in the second frame as they extended their lead out to double digits before halftime.

Mustang kept the lead below 15 points for the majority of the third period, but Putnam City West extended it out to 20-plus in the fourth.

The Broncos completed the game with 42 rebounds on the night. They committed 19 turnovers and forced just seven against PC West.

MHS continued its struggling ways from the foul stripe, going 18-of-31 in the game.

“We have to do a better job of taking care of the basketball,” Long said. “If we don’t value the basketball better, we won’t accomplish our goals. I thought we played well in the first quarter, but after that we couldn’t get anything going.”

Water well negotiations continue

Close-up of Water Dripping from Water Faucet

By Traci Chapman

Work is going on behind the scenes to find an independent water source in Canadian County.

That was the word last week, when members of Central Oklahoma Water Resources Authority met to discuss the status of the organization’s Phase II – negotiating with landowners for test well sites, officials said.

Seeking to help member cities – Mustang, Yukon, El Reno, Okarche and Calumet – become water independent, COWRA officials said a $425,000 plan to locate sites for testing was on track. All of those municipalities, as well as Canadian County, take part in the water-hunting effort.

Phase II is a nine-step plan, which organizers hope will culminate in locating the well with the smallest level of salt in local water. Members have been studying the feasibility of treating the brackish water, rather than continue the dependence of many members on Oklahoma City for water. A source of water about 800 feet deep contains enough water to supply Canadian County for 100 years, some have said.

The first necessary step was to determine the test well location and then which of those wells was the most promising, Karl Stickley with Oklahoma City-based Guernsey said. The engineering and architectural firm was hired by COWRA and has worked with the organization’s consultant, Shawn Lepard, to move the project forward.

(Photo/file)

(Photo/file)

“This is the first step, and it’s an important one,” Stickley said. “Everything we do from here depends on this.”

Test wells have been proposed along SW 29th Street on the eastern border of the county, as well as a fourth well just west of U.S. Highway 81 between Union City and El Reno, Lepard said.

Being at Oklahoma City’s “mercy” for water gives local officials an uncomfortable feeling.

“What happens to us and the other towns if Oklahoma City decides it needs all its water,” El Reno City Manager Tony Rivera said recently.

“This is our effort to do something today that will help the county for years to come,” Yukon City Manager Grayson Bottom said.

Should the plan proceed to its conclusion, officials estimated the brackish water treatment plant could run between $60 million to $100 million to construct. An updated report concerning well site negotiations was expected at COWRA’s next regular meeting, scheduled for March 21.

Girls’ basketball is prepared for regional action

Madison Maxwell One

By Kyle Salomon,

Mustang girls are hitting their stride at the right time as they enter regional play at Norman North.

The Bronco girls basketball team takes on Lawton Eisenhower at 6:30 p.m. tonight in game one of the Norman North regional.

Mustang finished the regular season with an overall record of 9-14, but the Lady Broncos have won four out of six games entering the postseason.

MHS is the No.3 seed in the regional. Norman North is the No.1 seed, Lawton Ike is the No.2 seed and Edmond North is the No.4 seed.

“We are excited about the way we are playing entering the postseason,” Mustang head coach Kevin Korstjens said. “These girls have worked really hard and their play on the court the past month has shown that. We look forward to going out and playing our best basketball against Lawton Ike on Thursday night.”

Norman North and Edmond North will play at 8 p.m. following the game between the Broncos and Eisenhower.

The winners of each game will play in the regional championship game at 1:30 p.m. Saturday at Norman North.

The Broncos have not played Lawton Ike this season. They have not played Norman North, but they have played Edmond North twice as they swept the Huskies in district play.

Norman North is entering the regional with a record of 15-5. They are coached by Jeff Blough.

Lawton Eisenhower enters regional play with a record of 20-4. They are coached by Shawn DeIorio.

Edmond North is entering the regional with a record of 5-14.

“All that matters to us right now is that first game,” Korstjens said. “We all know if you don’t take care of business in game one, you are done. So that is our focus at this point. We will worry about the rest after Thursday night.”

United Way smashes records

UWCC Board of Directors and Staff

By Traci Chapman

United Way of Canadian County smashed all records for fundraising in 2013, making the campaign contributions the largest in the history of the organization.

“And not by a little bit,” county director Ashleigh Arnall.

Campaign Chair Dana Hall announced at the organization’s celebration luncheon contributions totaled $170,851 – far surpassing the $153,000 goal set last year. Funds raised will benefit social services offered to residents across Canadian County through United Way partner agencies.

Dana Hall and Canadian County United Way President Eric Anderson (Photo/courtesy)

Dana Hall and Canadian County United Way President Eric Anderson (Photo/courtesy)

United Way of Canadian County Board President Eric Anderson thanked and recognized numerous donors, companies, organizations, volunteers, and advocates for their support during the 2013 annual campaign, which is conducted primarily between Labor Day and Thanksgiving.

United Way of Canadian County allocates donated funds to programs administered by 17 local partner agencies, Arnall said. The entities agree to adhere to “higher standards of accountability” than other organizations and participate in an annual review process, she said.

“Through this partnership, United Way serves thousands of Canadian County residents each year,” Arnall said.

United Way of Canadian County maintains an administrative agreement with United Way of Central Oklahoma to provide accounting, fundraising, marketing and other services to United Way of Canadian County in order to keep overhead expenses at a minimum, Arnall said.

For more information, visit www.unitedwayokc.org or www.unitedwaycanadiancounty.org or contact Arnall at 405-523-3580.

Chocolate Festival set for March 7

chocolate

By Traci Chapman

A month later but not any less sweet, say the organizers of Mustang Library’s annual Chocolate Festival.

Set for Friday, March 7, the festival will feature tastings and chocolate treats for people to purchase for themselves or as gifts. There is still time for anyone wishing to participate in the festival as a vendor to get on board, said Nancy Keiser, Chocolate Festival event chair. Because of inclement weather, this year’s festival is being held a month later than its traditional early February scheduling.

“Businesses, civic groups and individuals who are interested in having a table at the festival should contact me as soon as possible,” Keiser said. “It is a fun community event that benefits the Mustang Public Library.”

Tables are provided at no charge, and Friends of the Mustang Library will provide tablecloths, Keiser said. The festival will be held in Town Center’s newly expanded banquet hall.

In addition to chocolate tastings and gifts, those participating will vie for awards, and a silent auction will be held to benefit the library.

“Awards will be given for Most Unique Chocolate, Best Tasting Chocolate and Best Decorated Table,” Keiser said.  “Winners will be chosen by popular vote and announced before the end of the evening.”

It is not too late to make a donation to the silent auction. To do so contact Tawni Phelan at [email protected], Keiser said.

“The silent auction will have all kinds of great prizes, such as limousine rides, hotel packages and more,” she said.

Proceeds from the festival will be used to purchase equipment and hire instructors for the library’s computer training lab, a part of the newly constructed education room, made possible by a recent bond election. Library computer classes are always free to the public, Keiser said.

“Over the years, the Friends have purchased public computer workstations, laptops for the computer training lab, software and books for the library,” Keiser said. “The community can come and enjoy a wonderful chocolate festival and support free, educational programming at the Mustang Public Library.”

The festival will be held from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. March 7. Keiser said in years past, $8 would purchase six treats; this year, $8 will pay for eight treats. Anyone wishing to use a credit or debit card in the silent auction or to buy tickets may do so, she said.

For more information about the festival, contact Keiser at 376-6071 or via email at [email protected].