Kansas workers provide services and make things that improve life in our communities. They build equipment for safer neighborhoods. They inspire a deeper interest in learning, and create products for healthy fun with friends and neighbors.
Dynamic Discs and Exploration Place are two businesses featured in our latest commercial. Recently, they shared with us how the Emporia and Wichita communities played an important part in their establishments.
Dynamic growth in Emporia
Great Bend native Jeremy Rusco started Dynamic Discs in 2005 while attending college at Emporia State University. Although it started as a hobby, it quickly turned into a small business which now employs more than 50 people in Emporia.
In fact, according to Rusco, Dynamic Discs is the fastest-growing company in disc golf. He says the company’s future plans include bringing a portion of the disc production to Emporia, which would include a warehouse and manufacturing expansion and increased staffing. He also knows what that can bring to the Emporia community.
“Dynamic Discs and Emporia are host to the largest disc golf event in the world that has a multi-million dollar economic impact for the Emporia community,” he said.
As the sport continues to grow in popularity, Rusco is proud to not only be a leader in Emporia, but also worldwide.
“Drive through any of the seven disc golf courses in Emporia on almost any given day and you will see an active disc golf community that is proud to call Emporia the disc golf capital of the world. Emporia is becoming a true disc golf destination for disc golfers from across the state and even worldwide.
“If you haven’t picked up a disc and given the fastest growing sport in the United States an honest try, we encourage you to try it for yourself and see what all the craze is about,” he said.
Sparking Exploration in Wichita
The Wichita community was in mind as plans for a new, private, not-for profit institution were started by community leaders in 1989. After years of planning, designing and input from the community, Exploration Place opened April 1, 2000 in downtown Wichita.
It quickly became the state’s premier science center and today, serves more than 200,000 people each year with its dynamic STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics)-based education programs, permanent and traveling exhibits, dome theater shows, Explore Store and outdoor park/MiniGolf.
Christina Bluml, director of marketing at Exploration Place, explains that getting involved in the community is an integral part of the success of Exploration Place. It also gives staff members the opportunity to become more engaged.
“Our science center is beyond active in our community. We offer outreach programs, enjoy numerous partnerships, and work with various area professionals to help us develop some of our exhibits and programs. And our own staff is also involved in the community whether serving on boards and/or being a part of professional associations,” she said.
In fact, Exploration Place staff has spent the past few months developing its upcoming all-new permanent exhibit, Design Build Fly. Exploration Place knew it needed to rely on community experts to help craft the perfect display of engineering and manufacturing.
“We’ve talked with local aviation professionals and they told us the needs of the industry: more professionals such as engineers, technicians, pilots and more. So the exhibit focuses on sparking that interest in young children, who we hope, may someday pursue these careers. There have been countless meetings with these professionals, lending their expertise as we developed this exhibit from concept to design to fabrication. In other words, we are not Science Center U.S.A., but a science center here to help meet its community’s needs,” Bluml said.
Check out the Design Build Fly exhibit starting Dec. 2.