Chamber Chatter: Crouchers earn yard of month award for July – Osage County Online | Osage County News

Chamber Chatter: Crouchers earn yard of month award for July

Even with the lack of rain and the hot days, many of the homes landscaping have been kept up with many hours of attention. Each month, the Chamber selects a yard to show appreciation of the beauty and hard work by the homeowners. The honorees receive $25 in Chamber Bucks to be used at an Osage City participating business. Announced as July’s winner was Gregg and Cheryl Croucher’s yard, at 834 Main St., Osage City. The beauty of their floral arrangements extends from the front of their home around to their back yard. The back yard includes a neatly kept garden, floral arrangements surrounding the house and out building. Gregg and Cheryl have lived in their home for 18 years.

Ribbon cuttings mark progress in area business community

The Osage City Chamber of Commerce has been busy in the last month with ribbon cuttings celebrating new business ownership, renovations and reopenings.

June 28, 2023, COF Training Services held a grand opening of its newly renovated facility, which updated accommodations for individuals served. Renovations included a kitchen, alternative day programing area, updated restrooms, laundry facility, arts and crafts, exercise areas and contract work area.

New owners Kent and Erin Schaper cut the ribbon at Osage Building Materials.

Under new ownership, Osage Building Materials held a grand reopening and ribbon cutting on June 29, 2023. Kent and Erin Schaper are new owners of the Osage City hardware store and lumber yard. They also own Arrowhead Hardware, in Baldwin City. Kent and Erin said they are excited to be a part of the community and look forward to serving customers throughout Osage County for years to come. The event included a discount off all in stock, in store merchandise, participants enjoyed ice cream, give aways, refreshments, special offers and balloons.

Henry’s Coffee House: Owner Nathan Willis, center, with Chamber members Roger Mersmann and Joe Humerickhouse.

The Osage City Chamber of Commerce held a ribbon cutting July 6, 2023, for its newest member, Henry’s Coffee House. Henry’s is not a brand new business, having been open at 413 Market St. for a little more than two years. Joining the Chamber marks a milestone in Henry’s efforts to expand its business and make itself a central gathering spot for the community. Henry’s has added more food items to its lineup and has expanded its hours to be open seven days a week, and has future plans to expand to a larger space.

From the director: ‘You’re never too old to learn something new’

I invited Chamber members to submit an interesting fact about their business for me to include in my “Did You Know” article for this month. I had several responses and look forward to sharing them with you.

  • COF Training Services Inc. provides over 500,000 miles of transportation to individuals served each year. COF first started providing services to adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities in October 1969 in Franklin County. After adding Osage and Coffey County community members to the Board of Directors in 1974, the organization expanded its services and opened a branch in Osage City in 1977. As a result of these developments, the organization’s name was changed from “Franklin County Rehabilitation Facility” to “Coffey, Osage, Franklin Training Services, Inc.” This October COF will celebrate 55 years.
  • CrossWinds Counseling and Wellness was originally founded in 1960 as the Mental Health Center of East Central Kansas, and is a private, non-profit organization. They provide services regardless of a person’s ability to pay and serve more than 3,500 people a year.
  • Mussatto Bros. Inc., now Flint Hills Beverage, opened for business in 1933 but didn’t sell Anheuser-Busch brands in the area until 1942, when they were appointed by Anheuser-Busch to replace 7-UP Bottling of Emporia.
  • In 2022 Resource Center for Independent Living’s free equipment loan program loaned 336 durable medical devices, such as walkers, wheelchairs, bath benches, and other equipment, to Osage County residents for a total savings of $26,305 to those individuals.
  • Do you know many offices Home Town Health Care operates? Answer: Eight, with room to expand. Do you know many counties Home Town Health Care operates? Answer: Home Town is approved in 45 Kansas Counties and is currently seeing patients in 30 counties. Did you know, Home Town Health Care is the largest privately owned home health agency in Kansas? Owned by Debbie Shinkle and ran by her daughter Jenessa Kleopfer, administrator, at Fredonia, and brother Jon Reed, chief operations officer, at Osage City. Home Town was rated in the top five most experienced home health agencies in the United States by Dexur a Medicare data analysis company.
  • United Way of the Flint Hills sends about 1,500 free books every month to enrolled children from birth to age 5. Parents can register at
  • Kansas Farm Bureau represents grassroots agriculture. Established in 1919, this non-profit advocacy organization supports farm families who earn their living in a changing industry. Kansas Farm Bureau stands up for its members through leadership development, agriculture education, legal defense, environmental advocacy, farm safety, risk management, rural development, and international trade.
  • Payne Financial Strategies is the only firm in Osage County with a certified financial planner professional, Joshua D. Payne, on staff. The business has served clients in 46 states.
  • Osage Garden and Produce grows more than 50 varieties of tomatoes and peppers. Around 300 tomato plants and close to 200 pepper plants are planted in the garden out back.
  • Henry’s Coffee House may call itself a coffee house, but only two of its five top-selling items are actually coffee-related. The best sellers are: Creme Caramel Frappuccino, smoothie, Henry’s Super Supreme Flatbread Pizza, biscuits and gravy, and latte.
  • Osage County News is a local online newspaper ( and has been in operation for more than 10 years. Over this time, most of the news website’s longtime banner advertisers’ ads have logged an average of about 650,000 impressions per year. (Impressions are counted as the number of times the ad appears in a web browser or app.)
  • Haskins Oil has been in business 90 years. In July, a new owner will take over.
  • In 2022, State Farm Insurance donated $54.2 million dollars in philanthropic grants.
  • The first fence on Rich Porter’s Porter Cattle Ranch was split rail from native trees. Legend says most of it was from oak and black walnut trees. Then hedge trees were planted every 16.5 feet, to fence the entire 5,000 acres. Once these trees were several feet high they served as “fence posts” to hold barbed wire. Several remnants of the hedge rows are on the original boundary line of the ranch.
  • In 2022, Edward Jones Financial celebrated its 100-year anniversary, and this year the Osage City office will celebrate 30 years of being in Osage City.

Information and photos thanks to Osage City Chamber of Commerce Director Jeanette Swarts.

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