Renowned filmmaker, D.C. Women’s March organizer to speak at Park University | The Kansas City Star

Paola Mendoza, a national organizer of the 2017 Women’s March in Washington, D.C, will speak March 26 at Park University as part of Women’s History Month.

The program, “Together We Rise: An Evening with Women’s March on Washington Artistic Director Paola Mendoza,” will be held at 7 p.m. in Graham Tyler Memorial Chapel on campus. Admission is free but reservations are requested at

Mendoza — a film director, activist and author — was chosen as one of the “25 New Faces of Independent Film” by Filmmaker magazine.

She is a co-founder and creative director of The Soze Agency — helping with campaigns for immigration reform, criminal justice reform, incarcerated mothers and women’s rights. She is also a co-founder and member of the Resistance Revival Chorus and author of “The Ones Who Don’t Stay.”

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Her presentation is part of Park University’s Year of Diversity series of events.

St. Patrick’s dinner at VFW

The Annual Billy Clark Memorial St. Patrick’s Day Dinner is from 4:30 to 7 p.m. March 17 at VFW Post 7356, 10125 Tom Watson Parkway in Parkville.

“Billy Clark is the person who organized the St. Patrick’s Day dinner, and she passed away last year,” said Cheryl Hainkel, a member of the South Platte Memorial Auxiliary, which hosts the event. “She was a real dynamo lady; she was 92 years old.”

The dinner menu is cabbage, Irish potatoes, carrots and rye bread.

Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for children ages 5 to 10 and can be purchased at the door or in advance by calling auxiliary president Anita Crowell at 816-550-1049. Kids under 5 years old eat free.

National authors to speak at Woodneath

Edgar Award winner John Hart will speak at 7 p.m. on at the Woodneath Library Center, 8900 N.E. Flintlock Road in Kansas City, North, as part of Mid-Continent Public Library’s Story Center Speaker Series.

Hart is the only author to win consecutive Edgar Awards for best novel. The program is free although registration is required

Other authors scheduled for the series are:

▪ Lisa See, 7 p.m. on April 4: Her latest book is “The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane.”

▪ Linda Spalding, 7 p.m. on April 9: Spalding is the winner of the Canada Council for the Arts Governor-General’s Literary prize for Fiction. Her newest work is “A Reckoning.”

▪ Alex Grecian, 7 p.m. on April 17: The New York Times bestselling author will talk about his new book, “The Saint of Wolves and Butchers.”

The speaker series is presented in partnership with Rainy Day books. A book sale and signing will follow each author’s presentation.

Coalition gives honors at Prevention Conference

The Northland Coalition recently honored prevention partners and volunteers at its 2018 Prevention Conference at the Pleasant Valley Baptist Church in Liberty.

The Outstanding Partner in Prevention Award was given to the Platte County Community Center South/YMCA in Parkville.

The Leader in Prevention Award was presented to Caitlynn Bohanon, a high school senior who is secretary of Youth With Vision.

The Exceptional Community Contributor Award went to Antioch Printing owners Jim and Julie Iverson for their support of the Northland Coalition’s outreach efforts.

Tom Mayfield was inducted as the fifth prevention pioneer into the Northland Coalition’s Prevention Hall of Fame. He has been a community prevention volunteer in the Excelsior Springs area since 1994.

The awards were presented by coalition chair Ron Cline and Northland Coalition founder Vicky Ward. Tri-County Mental Health Services provides administrative support for the coalition.

For information go to

Gladstone Walk ‘n’ Wag set for next month

Dogs and their owners can register now for Gladstone’s Walk ‘n’ Wag, a benefit for the city animal shelter, on April 7 at Happy Rock Park, 76th Street and North Antioch.

“People who have adopted dogs from the shelter get free entry and a special bandana so people can identify that their dogs have been adopted locally at Gladstone,” Recreation Supervisor Susan Blattner said.

The event kicks off at 8:30 a.m. with the walk scheduled to begin at 10 a.m. Visit or drop by the Gladstone Community Center to register.

The KC Disc Dogs will give demonstrations at the event.

The entry fee is $20 in advance or $25 after March 30. Entrants will receive a T-shirt and doggie bag.

For more information, call 816-423-4085 or send email to

Gladstone offers youth Ultimate Frisbee

Gladstone is offering an Ultimate Frisbee class beginning April 7 for youth ages 9 to 14.

Ultimate Frisbee combines elements of soccer, basketball and football. Classes take place at Happy Rock Park and will include a skills session, with input from Kansas City Ultimate, as well as a controlled scrimmage. Cleats are recommended.

“The kids will be learning techniques of Ultimate Frisbee and we’ll be providing the Frisbees,” Gladstone Recreation Director Susan Blattner said.

The classes, which cost $40, scheduled for 1 to 2 p.m. on Saturdays from April 7 to May 12.

Register at or at the Gladstone Community Center, 6901 N. Holmes. For more information, call 816-423-4200.

Egg hunt and Bunny Bash at Liberty Hospital

Liberty Hospital will host its Big Bunny Bash at 10 a.m. March 24 on the hospital campus, 2525 Glenn Hendren Drive.

Last year over 3,000 children and adults attended the Easter egg hunt.

“Liberty Hospital and Liberty Parks and Rec enjoy hosting this event together,” said Stacey Hamby, Liberty Hospital Community Relations Specialist. “It is a fun way to bring families in our community together.”

Children up to age 10 are invited to join in the search for 20,000 plastic Easter Eggs filled with candy and toys.

Egg hunt times are: 10:30 a.m. for ages 3 and under; 10:45 a.m. for ages 4-6; 11 a.m. for ages 7-10.

Also planned is an obstacle course, inflatables, games, face painting, on-hands activities and live bunnies for petting. Local law enforcement will have emergency vehicles on display.

Nearly New set to close

The Nearly New Shop, a Northland nonprofit thrift store at 4710 N.E. Vivion Road in Kansas City, North, will close its doors March 21.

The shop has served the community for more than 30 years, providing inexpensive clothing and goods, and donating more than $1.5 million to charities in Clay and Platte counties.

Due to declining sales the past two years, the board of directors decided to close the shop and dissolve its nonprofit status.

“Although we have discontinued taking in donations, our staff continues to stock the shelves with merchandise for purchase during special daily sales from March 1 through March 21st,” said Katherine Menefee, Nearly New board member and chair of the shop-closing committee. “We want to thank all the organizations and individuals whose generosity has helped sustain the Shop all these years.”

Due to many inquiries from customers, the shop is raffling off the full-sized Maxine and Floyd Hallmark dolls, which have been used in window displays for many years.

Compiled by Norma King, Special to The Star

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