Call Us: 580-765-3311 Ext. 114

Ponca City Information

Ponca City History

2002

The Ponca City Information website is not affiliated nor associated with the City of Ponca City, the website is provided by the Ponca City Publishing Company, Inc. as an information website for Ponca City, Oklahoma.

2002 — According to the Associated Press, the top business story of the year was the Conoco/Phillips merger.
 
Eastman National Bank earned a 5-Star Superior Rating, according to the nation’s leading independent bank analyst. The rating denotes the highest level of strength, safety and performance by a financial institution. This was Eastman’s 33rd consecutive 5-Star rating.
 
City Commissioner Dick Stone announced he would run for re-election.
 
Blake Wade, executive director of the State Centennial Commission, and Rep. Jim Newport surveyed the damage to the Pioneer Woman Statue and the base. Estimated cost of repair was $75,000.
 
Pete James filed for City Commission. He would be running against Stan Kistler and Sharon Allison for Post No. 3.
 
On January 24, the Oklahoma Capitol Improvement Authority voted unanimously to issue $5 million in revenue bonds to complete the dome on the State Capitol.
 
At the annual Chamber of Commerce banquet, Tom Quillin was named the new Chairman. Dan Gilliam was honored as outgoing Chairman. Tom Muchmore was Outstanding Citizen and Lana Jones was Community Volunteer of the Year. Other awards went to Quality Water and Head Country. Suzanne Zanardi was recognized as Ambassador of the Year.
 
Helene Schwartz, executive director of the United Way of Ponca City, received the Gus Shea Memorial Scholarship from the United Way of America.
 
On January 30, the ice storm of the century brought everything in the city to a standstill. Ice laden tree branches cracked and broke, falling on power lines. Some areas were without electricity for as long as ten days. There was a run on electric generators, lanterns, propane, flashlights and batteries. Tree trimmers from outside the area came to town to assist with the clean up. And, everyone had a story to tell.
 
The newspaper went out as usual, despite the lack of electricity. The News used generators to run the computers and lanterns to see the screens. The staff then transported all the copy to Stillwater where the NewsPress printed the paper. Most everyone received a paper that day, even if it was late.
 
The Oklahoma Secondary Schools Activities Association chose Dan Larson, band director for Ponca City public schools, Outstanding Music Educator for 2001-2002.
 
The Federal Emergency Management Agency and Oklahoma Department of Civil Emergency Management opened a disaster relief recovery center at Hutchins. More than 3,000 citizens applied for federal disaster aid.
 
Tim Burg was named new assistant director of Economic Development of the Ponca City Chamber of Commerce.
 
Wildcat wrestlers competed in the Class 5A regional tournament and came in second to Broken Arrow.
 
Elec Rains, director of advertising and assistant to the publisher, celebrated 50 years with the Ponca City News. Other long time employees included Everett Lockwood, 46 years, Ken Born, 41 years, Fred Hilton, 39 years, Louise Abercrombie, 34 years, Jerry Helems, 32 years, and Foster Johnson 31 years.
 
The Chamber hosted an Ice Storm Appreciation Dinner to honor city workers, volunteers and others who helped in the clean up of ice storm damage.
 
Lady Wildcat swimmers finished third in the state high school championship.
 
State Sen. Paul Muegge, Tonkawa, announced he was retiring from the Oklahoma Legislature after 12 years in office.
 
A Mathematics contest team from Po-Hi won first place in the State TEAMS (test of engineering aptitude, mathematics, and science) contest in the large school division and second in the overall standings. There were 26 teams competing.
 
Dr. E.C. “Curt” Yeary, longtime Ponca City physician, died on March 5. He had been a general practitioner for 50 years, and was honored as Outstanding Citizen for 1987.
Greg Wood was named executive director of Hospice of Ponca City.
 
Dick Stone and Stan Kistler were elected to the City Commission in March, and installed in April. Lyn Boyer’s last meeting was in April, as he had chosen not to run for re-election. Voters also approved an extension of the city’s half-cent street sales tax for another five years.
 
Jasper Lockett was named to the All-State Wrestling Team. He set a team record for the number of falls in the season and finished with a 37-2 record.
 
In mid-March, shareholders of Conoco Inc. and Phillips Petroleum Co. overwhelmingly approved the proposed $15.6 billion merger of the two companies.
 
The Oklahoma State Board of Health voted to ban smoking statewide in indoor public places, including restaurants.
 
In April, the Cimarron Broadband Project continued to move forward with the concept of forming a high bandwidth WAN(wide area network)in the North Central region of Oklahoma. The first grant was $4.5 million, funded by a federal grant administered through OneNet by the Oklahoma Regents for Higher Education. Gov. Frank Keating signed the first state broadband parity law in the country. SBC then announced it would invest $30 million to bring high speed DSL Internet Access Service to 137,000 more homes and small businesses in 62 Oklahoma communities.
 
The City of Ponca City took the first step in early April to preserve its water rights at Kaw Lake reservoir by approving a design engineering agreement for the construction of a water pipeline from Kaw Lake to the Ponca City water treatment plant.
 
As part of the Oklahoma FIRST! Initiative, SBC expanded Internet service access by building Neighborhood Broadband Gateways (NBGs), expanding the reach of DSL beyond the three-mile limit to serve more neighborhoods.
 
Via Christi announced a $4.2 million new medical office building would be constructed on the campus. They also reorganized the Emergency Room, adding two more rooms.
 
The Nature Conservancy honored Conoco with the Chairman’s Award for Conservation Excellence.
 
The Lady Wildcat tennis team finished a strong second to Tulsa Union in the east regional tournament at the Wally Smith Tennis Center, and advanced to the state tournament where they won the No. 2 singles title.
 
Kimberly Kulczycki of Halt at X Stables was selected by the International Academy of Equestrian Studies in Warendorf, Germany to participate in training at the Academy.
Carolyn Renfro was named by Gov. Keating to serve on the Oklahoma Historical Society.
 
In recognition of National Healthcare Volunteer Day, Jerry Rogers was named as the Via Christi 2002 Volunteer of the Year.
 
The themes of Taste and Tasteless, the annual fund raiser for the Poncan Theatre, were the impact of the city’s ice age, the Conoco/Phillips merger, and the new name for the hospital. One of the musical numbers featured the sound of chain saws. The crowd was on their feet when Richard Winterrowd sang his rendition of “Slow Down Tommy,” a spoof of Mayor Tom Leonard and his race for Corporation Commission and then State Senate.
 
District Attorney Mark Gibson announced his candidacy to retain his position in the 8th Judicial District.
 
The Pioneer Woman Museum received a $25,000 check from the Helmerich Foundation of Tulsa, which would help finish the restoration of the statue.
 
Golden Villa celebrated 15 years of care for the elderly and disabled in Ponca City.
 
Northern Oklahoma Youth Services announced plans for a $1.5 million capital campaign to build a new emergency youth home and family center. Lynda Clark was the chairman of the fundraising campaign. Dave May received pledges of $1,000 per pound for every pound he lost from May 1, 2002 to May 1, 2003. His goal was to lose 100 pounds, and raise $100,000.
 
Teresa Benson was named the 2002-03 Ponca City Teacher of the Year. She was a special education teacher at Ponca City High School.
 
All Ponca City Public schools were wired and on line with the popular ParentConnect program, which allowed parents to use the Internet to monitor progress of their children. The program tracks the student’s grades, attendance, discipline and assignments.
 
In May, Conoco embarked on the biggest refinery project ever. Mike Fretwell, general manager of the Continental Business Unit, and George Paczkowski, Conoco vice president/downstream technology, announced a $146 million investment for a low-sulfur gasoline project. The project would enable the refinery to produce gasoline that meets the EPA 2004 Tier 2 gasoline sulfur regulations and ensure that Conoco met the associated clean air EPA requirements.
 
It was announced that ConocoPhillips Corporate Headquarters would be in Houston, and Bartlesville would be the home of the global information technology center, global financial services and human resources support. Fretwell said the term “slight reductions in personnel” in Ponca City meant about 10 percent of the local force.
 
The Kmart store in Ponca City closed, one of 7 in Oklahoma.
 
The School Board reduced nine full-time teaching positions for the upcoming school year.
 
According to Supt. White, the budget would likely be reduced by $500,000.
 
The Marland Estate Commission approved $33,000 in improvements that would be funded by the Marland Estate Foundation. Carpeting on upper floors, timbers replacement at Lydie’s Cottage and UV film on the south mansion windows were included in the project.
 
Po-Hi principal Jerry Winkle accepted a position with Norman North High School, and left Ponca City at the end of the school year.
 
Tim Burg, asst. director of Economic Development at the Chamber, was named regional chairman for the North Central Oklahoma Workforce Investment Board. The region encompasses Stillwater, Enid and Ponca City.
 
During its first year as “Marland’s Grand Home,” instead of the less descriptive “Cultural Center,” many improvements were made to the historic building. Dwight Howe, local Ponca Indian, created Native American exhibits in several rooms on the second floor, utilizing artifacts from area Plains tribes that were already in the collection, but had been in storage for many years. Members of the 101 Ranch Old Timers enhanced the lower level with additional exhibits from the 101 Ranch and Wild West Show.
 
Mayor Tom Leonard and Skip Jump, president of the firefighters local union, signed a three-year collective bargaining agreement. The contract provided a 3% across-the-board increase in firemen’s wages for 2002-03 fiscal year.
 
Gov. Keating appointed George Paczkowski to the Northern Oklahoma College Board of Regents.
 
David Myers, Ponca City businessman, announced his candidacy for the District 20 State Senate.
 
Marland Estate Director Kathy Adams announced her resignation, effective August 30. She had held the position since November 1996.
 
Vernon Merrifield, president of Albright Abstract & Title Guaranty, received the Main Street Business of the Year award from the Oklahoma Main Street program.
 
OG&E completed the largest disaster restoration in the company’s 100-year history. The severe ice storm on January 30 knocked out electric service to more than 195,000 OG&E customers. The longest any of them were without power was 13 days, but it took over four months to completely repair the massive damage.
 
In June, Mike Fretwell was transferred to Hamburg, Germany as head of Europe’s Continental Business Unit. Nick Spencer was transferred to England to head the Humber Refinery.
 
Residents cleaned their sheds and garages of tons of hazardous materials and took them to Conoco to be disposed of correctly. The Cleanup Campaign collected more than 25 tons of material. The project was a cooperative effort of Conoco, City of Ponca City, and Ponca City Rotary Club.
 
June was the second worst hit month for bad weather when a massive rain, wind and hail storm attacked the city. In addition to damage of homes and businesses, schools and churches and public buildings were also victims of the storms.
 
Kay County Health Department held an open house at its new facility at 433 Fairview. Mike O’Connor, administrator for Kay, Noble and Payne County Health Departments was honored at the open house. He had retired after 30 years with the Oklahoma State Department of Health. During his leadership, new facilities had opened in all three counties.
Kevin LaRue, former Wildcat tight end, returned to the Po-Hi football team as assistant coach.
 
Lloyd I. “Jerry” Evans Jr. died on June 23 at Via Christi Medical Center. He was 74. Evans and Jim Throop co-founded the highway construction firm of Evans and Throop construction in 1960. In 1974, Evans purchased Throop’s stock and the company became Evans and Associates Enterprises, Inc.
 
The school board announced in mid-July that it would seek approval on a $16.5 million bond issue for a number of projects.
 
ConocoPhillips announced that the pipeline nerve center for the entire company would be located in Ponca City.
 
Lori Bivin, 1995 Po-Hi graduate, was featured as a soloist with Peter Nero and the Philadelphia Pops Orchestra.
 
City Commissioners approved the next phase of Hartford Avenue repairs, widening the street from just east of 14th Street to the west side of Fairview.
 
Kelsey Empting of Ponca City helped Oklahoma secure the national Freestyle Wrestling Duals championship. Empting and Daniel Morrison both received individual honors.
 
Jonathan Myers captured the Oklahoma Golf Association Junior Boys Championship at Enid.

A city mowing crew discovered thirty stalks of marijuana, ranging from two to nine feet tall, growing behind a vacant house in the 800 block of North Peachtree. The crew was on the property to cut down high grass and weeds, but they chopped down the marijuana stalks first.
 
First place winners of the Professionals Today Peppy Putting Party were Deanne Steele, Louise Abercrombie and Ann Bandy.
 
Keith Hufnagel and Karen Shiflet were both promoted to vice-president at Via Christi Oklahoma Regional Medical Center.
 
The City began work on the first step of a project to curtail severe erosion at the Lake Ponca Dam.
 
Jake McNiece, World War II hero, was selected for the Oklahoma Hall of Fame.
 
The Department of Environmental Quality approved the go-ahead for a low sulfur gasoline project at the Conoco refinery.
 
The merger of Conoco Inc. and Phillips Petroleum Co. took place on Friday, August 30, just hours after the companies received approval from the Federal Trade Commission to proceed with the $15.1 billion transaction. The merger created ConocoPhillips, the sixth largest oil and gas company in the world, and the third largest in the United States.
The combined company is now the country’s top refiner. It is also an enormous gas retailing entity with about 17,000 filling stations nationwide. Archie Dunham was named as chairman of the new company until 2004, when Phillips chairman Jim Mulva would take over as CEO.
 
On August 24, Pioneer Bank and Trust held their 100th Centennial Celebration at Lake Ponca Park. They invited the entire community to celebrate with them, and approximately 4,000 people attended the festivities.
 
On the first day of public school, all Ponca City sixth graders attended West Middle School. Construction crews had completed work on a five-room classroom expansion, extra lockers, and another science room to accommodate the additional students. There were a total of 870 sixth and seventh graders enrolled at West.
 
Teresa Benson, special education teacher at Po-Hi, was named the 2002-03 District Teacher of the Year. The honor was conferred for her previous year’s performance.
 
Drilling for oil and natural gas began August 20 on the front lawn of E.W. Marland’ Grand Home at 10th Street and Grand Avenue. The wildcat discovery well was an enterprise of John Warren, president of Warren Corporation of Oklahoma City. Warren commented, “It is my personal feeling that E.W. Marland wanted to drill in the middle of an abundance of local Permian gas wells at the highest point – which is exactly where our site is located today.” After drilling to 4,200 feet, Warren hit a dry well. He later discovered that a bad concrete job caused water to enter the porous Layton formation and defeated the attempt.
 
Bob Patterson, city editor for the Ponca City News, was the Grand Marshal for the 2002 101 Wild West Rodeo Parade on August 17. Bob had covered the rodeo event for the News for many years.
 
Local team roper winners, Tom and Red Nichols, won saddles from rodeo sponsor, 101 Beverage Company.
 
More than 10,000 persons, including riders, their families and friends, made their home for one week at the Grand National Motocross Track during the four-day national championship competition that the Ponca City Ambucs and the city had sponsored for the last 27 years. There were at least 2,300 participating riders, ranging in age from four to sixteen, from all over the United States.
 
At the annual Safety Banquet, the City awarded Chamber Bucks in amounts ranging from $25 to $400 to city employees who had demonstrated safe working habits for five consecutive years without a work-related accident. City Manager Gary Martin said that more employees than ever had gone for one year without an accident, even though they had worked two major storms that year.
 
In August, Linda Shindler departed for East China, Shandong Province, to teach conversational English to Chinese students and teachers.
 
Dr. Linda Powers was named new Ponca City High School principal, replacing Jerry Winkle who took a position at Norman North High School. Powers had been an English teacher at Po-Hi for several years.
 
The 2002-03 officers of the Po-Hi Student council were Lauren Cartlidge, president; Bradley Keim, historian; Halli Martin, vice president; Brittney Gilliam, secretary, and Aaron Wright, treasurer.
 
St. Mary’s School welcomed a new principal to its faculty. Shirley Zink returned to St. Mary’s from Newton, Kansas.
 
Shelly Kennedy, daughter of Worth and Louise Abercrombie, returned to Ponca City for a visit with her family after her first year of teaching on the island of Baharain in the Persian Gulf. Kennedy had taught 11 years in the Ponca City school system, two years at East, three years at West, and six years as a chemistry teacher at Po-Hi.
 
Scott Jackson of Boettcher, Ryan, Martin and Bishcher was the chairman for the United Way campaign. Their goal was $705,000.
 
Three Pioneer Tech educators were honored at the 2002 Career and Technology Education Summer Conference. Molly Kyler received the New Professional Award, Brenda Bennett received the “Pride Award,” and Mary Scott was recognized as “Special Needs Teacher of the Year.”
 
“Dedicated to the enduring spirit of women who see no boundaries, past, present, future,” read the inscription on new banners installed on six light poles around the Pioneer Woman Museum.
 
The average ACT score for Ponca City students in the 2001-2002 school year increased o.5 points to 22.1. The Oklahoma average is 20.5 and the national average is 20.8.
Raj Phansalkar, president of Ponca City Rotary Club, accepted the Presidential Citation from Irv Honigsberg, district governor for Rotary District 5750. The citation recognizes outstanding service, and was presented to only three of the 42 clubs in the district.
 
Kay and Noble Counties re-elected Mark Gibson as the Eighth Judicial District Attorney.
 
In the district Senate race, David Myers of Ponca City won the Republican primary for the Senate District 20 seat with 68% of the vote. Myers opponent was Ralph Meade of Nardin.
 
During the summer, Ashley VanHoesen completed a six-week internship in the Washington, D.C. office of Sen. Don Nickles.
 
The month of September began with the 126th Annual Ponca Powwow. The American Legion L.S. Buffalo Post 38 raised the American flag in honor of Delphine Cerre-Rhodd, who had served as an aerial photographer during World War II. This was the first time in the history of the powwow that a female veteran was honored.
 
America paused on Wednesday, September 11, to remember the unforgettable. In New York City, where the twin towers of the World Trade Center had once stood, the 2,801 names on the list of the dead were read, one by one. Many local churches also planned tributes to heroes, victims and survivors of the attack on America.
 
Environmentalists participated in Toxic Tour 2002 to bring attention to all corporate polluters, but especially to Continental Carbon. The company and PACE Union continued their labor dispute into its 18th month.
 
The Oklahoma Municipal Power Authority (OMPA) agreed to invest $30 million at the plant in Ponca City to install a gas turbine at the generating facilities.
 
The city approved the extension of Fifth Street from Prospect north to Knight, to tie into 14th Street. They also planned a turn lane on Prospect between 5th and 14th to help reduce accidents along Prospect.
 
The final phase of widening Hartford involved reducing the hill at 14th Street to Fairview and realigning Fairview at a right angle to make the area safer.
 
The city partnered with Cimarron Broadband to improve connectivity throughout the area. They planned to hang fiber on city poles up Waverly from South Avenue to the industrial park, so businesses could have high-speed internet connections. They were also working with the school system to get them connected. The city was able to place laptop computers in police cars, so officers could access information from the field about driver and vehicle identification. The fire department was now able to put floor plans of major buildings into a computer so when they are on the scene, fighting a fire, they will be able to identify hallways, storage areas, and flammable materials.
 
By September, restoration of the No. 1 Fire Station was completed and renovation had begun on the City Hall.
 
The ONEOK Inc. board of directors named former Ponca Citian Phyllis Worley the new president of Kansas Gas Service Company, a division of ONEOK Inc. Worley had been with the company since 1970 and had spent all of her career in the natural gas distribution segment.
 
Carl Renfro was elected chairman of Oklahoma Board of Regents of Higher Education.
 
Pat Evans and Sue Ann Rodgers were named to the Oklahoma Foundation for Excellence Board of Trustees.
 
The Ponca City Landmark Conservancy awarded two Preservation Certificates of Merit, recognizing outstanding efforts toward the preservation of historic sites in Ponca City. Marcia Davis, long-time preservation advocate, was honored for her years of continuous efforts to educate Ponca Citians about the city’s history and its many historic buildings.
Lori Young, owner of the historic Dr. Robertson House at 202 N. Sixth Street, was recognized for her outstanding hands-on preservation efforts.
 
Voters approved the school bond election, which would enable the district to renovate two elementary schools, make extensive improvements to three other schools, and purchase new buses. The election was the fourth bond issue to pass since 1995.
 
Four Po-Hi seniors were named semifinalists in the 48th annual National Merit Scholarship Program – Megan Baugh, Michael Gamble, Amanda Lewis and Shannon Muchmore.
 
David Keathly was named the new Executive Director of the Marland Estate.
 
The Medicine Bag Lecture Series featured three programs at Grand Central Station in September. The programs were “Preserving the Native American Heritage – Museums,” “Preserving a Language, Preserving a Heritage,” and “Preserving a Heritage through Traditional Dance Dress.”
 
In September, the regional cross country meet was held in Ponca City. The boys finished in 5th place, and the girls finished 4th. Both the boys and girls cross country teams qualified for the state meet.
 
On October 1, Mesa Airlines began operating flights from Ponca City to Denver and to Dallas-Fort Worth.
 
The Ponca City junior high boys’ cross country team won the state championship on October 17 in Oklahoma City.
 
Ponca City resident Stacie Schneeberger won the prestigious title of 2003 Miss Oklahoma Rodeo Scholarship Pageant.
 
Sarah Hodge was one of five finalists for the OU Sooner Homecoming court.
 
Chuck Waters was named the interim chief executive officer of the Via Christi Regional Medical Center, replacing Bob Edwards who resigned.
 
Raymond E. Ham, Ponca City police chief for the past 12 years, retired on October 14. He had served on the police force for 39 years. Chief Ham was honored at a retirement reception at the Marland Mansion. Major Clayton Johnson was named chief on October 28 to replace Ham. Captain Dwaine Vincent was named assistant chief of police.
 
An old city landmark, Pauline’s Supper Club, was renovated and re-opened in late October. Founded by the late Pauline Adams in 1955, it was now owned by her grandson Darren Nichols.
 
Continental Carbon Co. was notified that they would no longer be selling carbon black to Goodyear Tire and Rubber, reportedly its largest customer. The company had been embroiled in a labor dispute since terminating contract negotiations and locking out 85 employees in May, 2001.
 
Though plagued with injuries of three first team players, the Wildcats finished the football season with nine wins and only one loss.
 
On Election Day, November 5, Democrat Brad Henry defeated Republican Steve Largent. Henry won 50 of 77 mostly rural counties. Mary Fallin, incumbent Republican Lt. Governor, defeated Democrat Laura Boyd.
 
Ponca City Republican David Myers won the District 20 State Senate race with 42.8% of the vote. His opponents were Tom Leonard, Democrat, and Den Coates, independent. Republican Jim Newport was elected to a fourth term as State Representative for District 37, receiving 61% of the vote against Democrat Chris Hand. Conservative U.S. Senator Jim Inhofe defeated former governor David Walters with 57% of the votes.
 
The November election included a local proposal to extend the half-cent sales tax. Despite support by civic leaders, the issue was defeated by 383 votes.
After three months of meticulous work by conservator Patrick Rice of St. Louis, the Pioneer Woman Statue was restored to its original condition. Local citizens contributed $75,000 for the project.
 
In November, United Way donations reached $762,037, surpassing its goal of $705,000.
 
Via Christi announced it would reduce its workforce by 10%, potentially affecting 45 full-time positions.
 
At the Chamber board meeting on November 26, Jan Jarrett, head of the Chamber of Commerce and Economic Development Advisory Board, announced his resignation.
 
George Marland’s portrait was unveiled on December 4 at the Marland Mansion. Local artist Linda Kent Rous had been commissioned to copy the original oil painting from a picture since the original was not available. It was placed on the north wall of the ballroom, where the original had once hung. The portrait of Lydie Marland, George’s sister, was already hanging on the same wall.
 
Ponca City artist Jo Saylors was chosen as the Oklahoma artist to design a Christmas ornament for the White House Christmas tree. Saylors received two pages of instructions from the office of First Lady Laura Bush, telling the size and weight of the ornament and that it could be a flying or sitting bird that was native to Oklahoma. Jo chose the scissortail because it is Oklahoma’s state bird.
 
In December, there were 49 industries, businesses or services within the Ponca City Airport Industrial Park corridor, including the new speculation building built by the Economic Development Authority.
 
Ponca City Arts & Humanities Council board members collected more than 100 items for the annual silent auction at the Marland Estate Christmas Gala, held on December 7.
Gala attendees bid on the items in the mansion dining room throughout the evening. Proceeds from the Auction are divided between the Marland Estate Foundation, to help with restoration projects, and the Arts & Humanities Council, to continue bringing performers and exhibits to the community.
 
The Oklahoma Museums Association honored the Standing Bear Foundation with an award for the marketing brochure, “Standing Bear: A Dream to Share.”
Chuck Waters, who had been interim CEO of Via Christi Oklahoma Regional Medical Center since October 9, was named president and chief executive officer of the hospital in mid December.
 
Ryan Diamond, KPNC radio personality, spent a week living “homeless” on the corner of Fourth and Grand in front of Carlson Wagonlit Travel Agency. The stunt was to call attention to the need for a new Youth Shelter and Family Service Center in Ponca City. Vearl Caid, executive director of Northern Oklahoma Youth Services, announced that more than $10,000 in donations was raised on the street corner, and an anonymous donor had made a single contribution of $100,000.
 
Frankie Wood-Black, Director of Business Services Downstream Technology at ConocoPhillips, was appointed to the Economic Development Advisory Board, filling the vacancy left by Mike Fretwell, who was transferred to Europe. Wood-Black had transferred from Bartlesville to Ponca City, coming from the Phillips side of ConocoPhillips.
 
The Board of Education agreed to seek bids for an artificial surface for the football field at Sullins Stadium.
 
Homer Nicholson was hired as Property Manager for Ponca Plaza and Bowker Development. He had recently retired from ConocoPhillips after 38 years. In his new position, he was responsible for the management of 50 commercial leases as well as the development of other commercial and residential properties.
 
City Commissioners voted to make the sandpit area southwest of the Lake Road and Pecan intersection off limits to off-road vehicles.
 
Explorer Post 69, Troop 3, delivered 31 bicycles to the Salvation Army for Christmas distribution. According to J.D. Hanks, troop sponsor, Jeremy Ward organized and led the effort to raise funds and assemble the bikes to meet requirements for his Eagle Scout award.
 
The Po-Hi Student Council hosted the 35th annual Holiday Luminaries Dec. 18 on the high school front lawn.
 
Thousands of local shoppers turned out on December 19 for the $10,000 Ponca Bucks drawing. Claudia Otto won the grand prize.
 
Ponca City officials notified the State Department of Commerce that the city intended to remain an Oklahoma Main Street Community.
 
Steve Huston, longtime owner of Trout Funeral Home and Resthaven and Sunset Memorial Park, announced on December 31 that he had sold the businesses to Mike and Jo Phenix.
 
Ponca City calf roper Jerome Schneeberger, in his third season on the professional rodeo circuit, made his second straight appearance in the National Finals Rodeo on December 6. He qualified for the National Finals by placing 13th among the money leaders in calf roping. The former National Collegiate champion, Jerome earned $133,632 for the year.
 
Jarrod Adams was named to the 2002 McDonald’s East All-State football team. Adams, a 238-pound senior, was an offensive lineman.