Murphy's Mercantile in Stark (Neosho County) will be the focus of a rural awareness series called “Bring Your Own Lawn Chair.” The public is invited to set up lawn chairs at 10 a.m. Saturday in front of the store to hear a personal perspective of running a business in a small town.


Murphy's Mercantile in Stark (Neosho County) will be the focus of a rural awareness series called “Bring Your Own Lawn Chair.” The public is invited to set up lawn chairs at 10 a.m. Saturday in front of the store to hear a personal perspective of running a business in a small town.

The Inman-based Kansas Sampler Foundation has chosen four rural communities to showcase in the series. Glasco (Cloud County), population 499, was featured on June 7. Morland (Graham County), population 155, will be featured on Sept. 13, and a barn near Dexter (Cowley County), population 350, will be the meeting place on Oct. 18. The mission of the Foundation is to preserve and sustain rural culture.

Murphy's Mercantile is an old-fashioned mercantile store. Rick and Portia Murphy will talk about how they created their destination business to survive in a city of 105. Shopping will be encouraged after the presentation. Lunch will be available in Murphy's and at the Cherokee Grill. People should have their lawn chairs set across from Murphy's Mercantile by 10 a.m.

Foundation director Marci Penner said, “State and community leaders, families and the interested public should attend to hear the difficulties and rewards of running this kind of business in such a small town. It will be enlightening and will educate people on the importance of supporting locally-owned businesses as well as the delights of exploring Kansas.”

Stark is located about 17 miles east of Chanute.

For more information e-mail marci@kansassampler.org, call 620.585.2374 or go to www.kansassampler.org.