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#1StudentNWI: Traditions and New Developments for Kouts


24/7 Students

As the summer months approach, students are often impatiently waiting for their release from the education system, daydreaming about the boundless fun they are going to experience with their new freedom. Vacations, sleeping in, and pool parties are all the rage during those final months of the school year. Some students, however, have other activities in mind.

Summer school seems like a daunting pastime that kids are subjected to unwillingly, but this assumed punishment oftentimes proves to be beneficial.

Summer school can be a great opportunity for students to get ahead in their studies, or to redo classes to raise their GPA. Impending futures are approaching our students quickly, and summer school can help relax those who are worried about their life after high school.

Ashlee Jordan, a soon-to-be junior from Kouts High School, spoke about the course she’s currently partaking in.

“I would definitely recommend summer school to others because it’s an easy way to get ahead at school and it's very rewarding in the long run,” Jordan said.

She plans on graduating a year early to pursue a career in veterinary work for large and exoitic animals. Due to her dreams of pursuing a medical degree, she has decided to complete two semesters worth of English. Jordan also talked about the other activities she enjoys doing which included volleyball, color guard, cheer, and her part-time job.

As demonstrated by Jordan, participating in summer school can help kids to develop a sense of responsibility, and help them to have a better grasp on work that they will be held accountable for when they leave high school and enter the workforce.

What’s Happening? A Place to Cool Down

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While Kouts does have a reputation for being quite small, the residents are pros at finding ways to occupy themselves. Family-owned businesses line the streets, including antique shops, a pizzeria, and a bakery. Regulars are often formed at said locations, with these customers being all ages, including parents with young children. These children have the opportunity to explore the items and tasty foods that these spots have to offer as a way to occupy their time.

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While there is a larger park for these kids to play at (Thomas S. Drazer Park, located just off W. Daumer Rd), Kouts has decided to add a new spectacle to the pocket-sized town. Workers have constructed a new gazebo and park area for the locals to enjoy at the intersection of Railroad St. and South Main Street, in the heart of the tiny town. Following the newly erected park, there will soon be a splash pad that will lie in the same location. The area will be flanked by Pop’s and Grammy’s, a smaller, pop-up version of The Depot that serves hot dogs, chips, nachos, and ice cream, as well as the Chase Bank.

With the summer months rolling along, and the area delving into hotter weather, the newly inhabited locality will provide Kouts citizens with a place to cool down, grab a bite to eat, and hang out with friends and family.

A Deserved Recognition: Kouts Volunteer Fire Department

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As the summer days continue to heat up, homes become more susceptible to fires. Luckily, Kouts is protected when these tragedies strike because of the selflessness of the Kouts Fire Department!

The Kouts Fire Department is located on the intersection of E. Mentor St. and S. Maple St., and is a volunteer facility that contains about 26 members. More recognition is needed for the effort shown, with there being anywhere between 280 and 300 emergency calls per year.

I was able to speak with the Chief, Jeremy Gettler, and talk with him briefly about a fundraiser they hold annually. As many Kouts residents know, the Pork Fest (a jamboree that consists of many festivities), is the highlight of the summer, and the fire department hosts a large dinner to show their appreciation for the community.

The dinner is held at the fire department itself, and for a cheap price, families with children of all ages come to enjoy tasty grilled meats and mouth-watering sides. The gathering allows the community to bond with the hard-working individuals of the department, and funds much-needed equipment such as protective personal gear and medical necessities.

“They come and enjoy themselves, and we really appreciate the community support,” said Gettler.

Obviously, the Kouts Fire Department is extremely grateful for the Kouts citizens, and those feelings are mutual, as citizens are eager to show support through the fundraisers that are held. Volunteer forms and more information can be found on their website, at www.koutsfire.com, and as always, thank you to the brave participants that keep everyone safe!

Upcoming Events: The Pork Fest is Coming!

For Kouts, August 25, 2018 marks the 42nd annual Pork Fest, a large festival that a majority of the town participates in. From 8 am to 5 pm, colorful and lively booths will line the street with music, food, and laughter flooding Kouts. Students from the local k-12 school come in groups with their siblings and parents, where they find places along the sides of the streets to place their lawn chairs and blankets to watch the annual parade. At 10:00 am, many groups including the fire department, classic cars, Shriners, the soccer team, and the Kouts High School band march enthusiastically up and down the streets.

Arts and crafts vendors allow children and adults to create their own souvenirs while other individuals sell clothing, food, jewelry, outdoor decorations, and so much more!

I talked briefly with the President of Kouts Festival and Events, Stephany Lockett, about some more of the events that will take place there. Events such as the Cornhole Tournament, the Pork Burger Eating Contest, and the Kiddie Tractor Pull are only some of the things that are going to occur throughout the day.

The fire department will also hold their annual cookout, where everyone sits together and eats delicious food that was graciously provided by the Kouts Fire Department.

More information about the events and times, as well as forms to apply to participate in the parade or as a vendor, can be found on their website.

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