Kansas community offers free land and lends cake pans

Ellsworth County, Kan., is among several small towns and counties in the state determined to attract new residents. To do so, they offer free land to people willing to build and occupy a house on the property, plus assistance with down payments and other incentives. Outsiders may wonder, however, what life is like in the city of Ellsworth (pop. 2,300), which lies at the center of this rural county. Some facts, drawn from various community sources, to help get the picture:
Grocery shopping: one supermarket and three convenience stores
Library: More than 20,000 books, plus loans decorator cake pans
Transportation: small airport and Union Pacific railroad
Special events: End of the Trail Ranch Rodeo, Spring Beef Show, Czech Festival, Ellsworth County Fair, Cowtown Demolition Derby
Geographic features: Rolling hills and bluffs on the north bank of the Smoky Hill River; near two state lakes
Misc.: new swimming pool and one of the best golf courses in central Kansas

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