BAXTER SPRINGS — Wednesday’s storm resulted in flooding on the Spring River in Baxter Springs, where Kiwanis Park and Riverside Park were almost completely underwater on Thursday, with waters continuing to rise.
Floodwaters had also risen near Military Ave., submerging Seventh Street and reaching the treads of the M60 tank on display at the Baxter Springs Heritage Center and Museum. While picnic tables located just north of the museum were completely underwater before noon on Thursday, however, the museum itself was unaffected by the flooding and remained open.
Local homeowner Linda Feagin said the floodwaters have reached higher levels in recent years, and during one flood in the mid 1990s they got significantly higher.
“They did call them like the 50-year floods, until 1995 or whatever, and then we’ve had two since then,” Feagin said.
The Spring River had reached 27 feet deep by early Thursday afternoon — 13 feet above flood stage — although it previously reached that depth and deeper in both 2015 and 2017, according to the National Weather Service. The water level was projected to continue rising to 29 feet deep by midnight, at which point it would be higher than it has been since 2015.
Feagin used to own another house nearby, she said, which would have been flooded on Thursday given the level the water had already reached before noon, but she was required by the city to tear it down after past flooding in recent years.