Monster trucks pose no threats

Robert Smith rsmith@pawhuskajournalcapital.com

Osage County officials Monday morning gave assurances they believe there’s nothing to worry about in regard to a monster-truck event scheduled to take place outdoors Aug. 18 at the Osage County Fairgrounds.

“They will be digging nothing, contrary to social media,” said Kandy Jump, assistant to the county commissioners.

Moreover, the show is paying Osage County to come here, she said. Jump said she checked with the city of Shawnee, which told her that the monster-truck organizers left a venue there in better shape than they found it.

“Shawnee said they think Osage County will be happy that they came,” Jump said.

She said that she checked with Shawnee and one other place where the monster-truck event had been and did not discover any problems.

“Not everybody is a horse person,” Jump said, commenting favorably on the idea of playing host to different types of events.

District 1 Commissioner Jerry Howerton said the event planned for the Osage County Fairgrounds should not result in debris being left behind.

“This is not like a derby, where they are crushing [vehicles] and leaving parts in the arena,” Howerton said. There should also not be problems with leaks of engine fluids, he said.

Jump said flyers for the Aug. 18 event should be available soon.

“I wish I’d known before I sold my monster truck,” Sheriff Eddie Virden said with a laugh, causing general amusement in the boardroom. Asked after the meeting if he had really owned a monster truck, Virden confirmed that he had.

In other business Monday, County Clerk Shelia Bellamy told the commissioners that a project involving the digitization of some county records is coming to a conclusion. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has provided the labor and technical support for the project, while Osage County has given the church access to aging county documents.

“That has been a big help, because there’s no way I could have paid anybody to do that,” Bellamy said, referring to the records of her office that have been digitized. The office of County Court Clerk Jennifer Burd has also benefited from the project.