Jul 31, 2020 5:21 PM

Sunflower seeks community support for Stroll Around the Square

Posted Jul 31, 2020 5:21 PM

Even though the annual Pancake Feed has been canceled because of the global pandemic, Sunflower Diversified Services is planning a new event to raise funds for and awareness about the people it serves.

Sunflower, a non-profit agency, serves people with special needs in central Kansas.

Stroll Around the Square is set for 4 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 17, which coincides with the Art & Wine Walk and Farmer’s Market in downtown Great Bend.

“We are disappointed about having to cancel our popular Pancake Feed but the Stroll will be a great substitution,” said Connie Oetken, Sunflower’s director of development. “It provides another opportunity for our clients to be active participants in their community.

“We are already looking forward to this safe, outdoor activity,” Oetken added. “Yes, we want to raise some much-needed funds but we also want to support the community that supports us.”

Stroll Around the Square participants will walk around Jack Kilby Square as many or as few times as they want. The registration fee is $10 and t-shirts will be available.

“We are asking people in our community to sponsor a walker for $50,” Oetken said. “This provides donors the opportunity to participate even if they aren’t available to walk that day.”

The Sunflower Board of Directors and Foundation Board of Trustees are also being encouraged to be part of this new event.

Hot dogs, hamburgers and a drink will be available for sale; Sunflower staff will cook and serve. The number of servings is limited.

“We are hoping for a good turnout in support of the children and adults we serve with many services and programs,” Oetken commented. “Like many other non-profit

agencies, we had to cancel many events and a fundraiser this year. But the needs never stop.

“We also are excited about helping to attract even more people downtown to the Art & Wine Walk and Farmer’s Market,” Oetken added. “It promises to be a great evening for family and friends to gather and support one another.”

Sunflower will host the Sept. 17 Great Bend Chamber of Commerce Coffee. More information will be announced later.

Sunflower serves infants, toddlers and adults with intellectual disabilities and delays in Barton, Pawnee, Rice, Rush and Stafford counties. It is in its 54th year.