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Nebraska State Patrol Assists Boyd County Sheriff With Suicidal Subject

12/18/14 02:04 PM

​From Nebraska State Patrol

On Thursday, December 18, 2014 the Nebraska State Patrol assisted the Boyd County Sheriff’s Office with a suicidal subject barricaded in a residence in Naper.   The incident began in the early morning hours when the subject left a threatening message on his wife’s cellphone. He was taken into custody without incident around noon and will be lodged in the Holt County Jail on a charge of Terroristic Threats.  The individual is Matthew D. Bengston, age 54, of Naper.

Local Students Named To NCPA Academic All-State Team

12/18/14 10:47 AM

The Nebraska School Activities Association (NSAA) is pleased to announce the student recipients of the Fall 2014 Nebraska Chiropractic Physicians Association (NCPA) Academic All-State Awards. Since 2006 this NSAA Award Program has recognized students who meet the criteria for nomination by their school in the season of their activity.

Each year the NSAA and the NCPA recognize students during Fall, Winter and Spring Seasons who are nominated by their schools for their individual academic excellence, leadership and significant contributions in their NSAA activity.

Details about criteria for this award are also available on the NSAA website:

Ainsworth Boys Cross-Country Austin Harthoorn Alec Masters Girls Cross-Country Emma Good Heather Martin Football Dominic Henry Jayden Philben Girls Golf Kirsten Gilliland Vanessa Taylor Play Production Nathaniel Goodloe Laura Peters Volleyball Lydia Allen Ellie Carr
Bloomfield Girls Cross-Country Clair Trenhaile Football Eric Abbenhaus Play Production Mariah Fehringer Aaron Millikan Volleyball Karly Jensen Kristin Thompson
Boone Central Boys Cross-Country Thomas Hosford Andrew Rasmussen Girls Cross-Country Kendra Gonzalez Catherine Weeder Football Joseph Brugger Travis Kennedy Play Production Megan Frerichs Catherine Weeder Softball Brianna Brugman Jaclyn Frey Volleyball Kaitlyn Stuhr Whitney Wurdeman
Burwell Girls Cross-Country Molly Mares Samantha O'Neal Football Tyres Chaffin Keaton Klimek Play Production Rebekah Birch Samantha O'Neal Volleyball Breanna Dawe Shea Jeffres
Chambers Girls Cross-Country Kacie Gribble Football Levi Koenig Play Production Molly Lambert Tami Jo Marcellus Volleyball Tami Jo Marcellus
Clearwater-Orchard Football Zach Martin Play Production Antonio Cerda-Soto Cadrien Livingston Volleyball Mallory Cooper Briana Stelling
Creighton Boys Cross-Country Joshua Borgmann Garrison Hazen Girls Cross-Country Marissa Frank Football Connor Baldwin Grant Mathis Play Production Allison Morrill Jocelyn Sukup Volleyball Makayla Brockhaus Jessica Gragert
Crofton Boys Cross-Country Joshua Goeden Cole Steffen Girls Cross-Country Haley Arens Quinn Wragge Football Brock Mueller Girls Golf Katelyn Stewart Mariah Zavadil Play Production Cory Augustin Joshua Goeden Volleyball Allison Arens Maria Wortmann
Ewing Play Production Samantha Funk Katie Koenig Volleyball Samantha Funk Katie Koenig
Keya Paha County Boys Cross-Country Phillip Lewis Football Kevin Udd
Lynch Play Production Drew Purviance Mykah Strom  Volleyball Madison Rossmeier
Neligh-Oakdale Boys Cross-Country Michael Peinke Girls Cross-Country Kassidy Grosserode Courtney Pellatz Play Production Bryce Frey Chase Kallhoff Volleyball Kelsey Green Kristin Rice
Niobrara Football Jacob Johnson Play Production Ashley Guenther Trenton Guenther Volleyball Brittany Eisenhauer
O'Neill Girls Cross-Country Abigail Gillham Kadra Sommersted- Simmons Football Tyson Hostert Walker Liewer Play Production Bailey Krieger James Walton Softball Ariel Lichty Volleyball Natalie Brodersen Sarah Devall
Ord Boys Cross-Country Jackson Barnes Devon Vancura Girls Cross-Country Tori Beran Katherine Lansman Play Production Molli Hagge Kirby Sheets Volleyball Kenzie Drudik Jordan Kuck
Osmond Boys Cross-Country Cameron Moes
Pierce Girls Cross-Country Shannah Unseld Football Noah Fisher Matthew Penne Girls Golf Breanna Attema KimberLee Carlson Play Production Kristin Arens Kati Krueger Softball Briana Polt Rachelle Tucker Volleyball Jaci Brahmer Allison Koehlmoos
Plainview Football Turner Dahl Tyler Friedrich Girls Golf Morgan Hampton Stephanie Sorensen Play Production Darian Grof Ryan Pellatz Volleyball Tessa Steinkraus Nicole White
Pope John Football Seth Schumacher Volleyball Jenna Parks Taylor Schumacher
Riverside Girls Cross-Country Molly Berger McKayla Mogensen Play Production Jacob Pritchard Joel Scott Volleyball Brandy Herley Karen Schmeits
Rock County Boys Cross-Country Colin Erickson Girls Cross-Country Tori Davis Megan Erickson Football Chris Coulter Play Production Hollie Morton Jayde Shankland Volleyball Kara Bruns Hollie Morton
Spalding Academy Football John Bernt Bronc McKay Play Production Ashley Glesinger Alyssa Seamann Volleyball Johanna Glaser Ashley Glesinger
St. Mary's Boys Cross-Country Logan Spencer Football Jacob Crumly Josh Cuddy Play Production Emily Pongratz Brittany Soukup Softball Paula Zakrzewski Volleyball Krissy Krotter Bridget Schneider
Stuart Girls Cross-Country Rachel Kaup Football Conner Paxton Play Production Brittany Hanzlik Kelsey Kaup Volleyball Hailey Paxton Jaden Schafer
Verdigre Football Benjamin Johnson Play Production Kaitlyn Hanvey Alex Hollmann Volleyball Madisen Randa
Wausa Girls Cross-Country Hannah Nelson Football Jordan Burns Travis Gillilan Play Production Samantha Hennings Brianna Van De Walle Volleyball Torissa Clausen Claire Vanness
West Boyd Girls Cross-Country Morgan Harmon Football Matthew Reiser Zachary Sextro Play Production Kristen Mohr Volleyball Amber Bendig
West Holt Girls Cross-Country Emma Laible McKenna Young Football Viktor Jonseth Josiah McAllister Girls Golf Mackenzie Hale Paige Mitchell Play Production Alex Fritz McKenna Young Volleyball Taylor Deseive Caitlyn Nelson
Wheeler Central Boys Cross-Country Shay Weber Girls Cross-Country Kristin Mahony Football Brenden Pelster Volleyball Regan Dierks

Shop In O'Neill And You Could Get "Elfed"

12/17/14 02:37 PM

Ethel Hershiser gets Elfed while at Dairy Queen
Shopping in O'Neill is always good.  A'nd if you're caught shopping in O'Neill there's a chance you could get "Elfed". Santa's Elves are looking for people shopping in O'Neill and then rewarding them with Shamrock Bucks or Gift Certificates from local businesses.  

O'Neill FFA Give O'Neill Kids Chance To Meet Prancer & Dancer

12/17/14 02:31 PM
On Wednesday, December 17 the O'Neill FFA Chapter brought reindeer "Prancer" and "Dancer" to O'Neill.  Students from St. Mary's Elementary and O'Neill Public Elementary had a chance to see and pet the reindeer.  Dave Knabe transported the reindeer to O'Neill.

More Winners In Pinnacle Bank Shop O'Neill Drawing

12/16/14 11:19 AM

Pinnacle Bank in O'Neill announces their 2nd week "Shop O'Neill" winners:
Syliva Koci, Doris Filips, Pam Mitchell, Sue Kloppenborg, Tina Dougherty, Keith Palmer, Nancy Turpin and Dianne Shoemaker.  
A reminder that the final drawing will be this Friday December 19th.

Area Students To Graduate From UNK December 19

12/16/14 08:55 AM
KEARNEY - Graduate and undergraduate degrees will be conferred for 427 students at University of Nebraska at Kearney commencement exercises at 10 a.m. Friday (Dec. 19) at the UNK Health and Sports Center.

From the KBRX area these students will be graduating:                                      
Ainsworth - Bailie Hoover, bachelor of science in education, communication disorders            
Atkinson - Sierra Welsh, bachelor of science, exercise science                                       
Bassett - Derek Camp, bachelor of arts in education, elementary education
Burwell - Brian Bird, bachelor of science, biology wildlife
Chambers - Jaci Palmer, master of arts in education, curriculum & instruction-secondary education; Sarah Tomjack, bachelor of arts in education, health & physical education
Creighton - Mark Brady, master of arts in education, school principalship 7-12; Ryon Nilson, master of arts in education, school principalship 7-12
Long Pine - Danielle Thornton, bachelor of science in education, mathematics education, physical education, Cum Laude, Honors Program
O'Neill - Scott Leisy, master of arts in education, school principalship 7-12               

Governor Heineman Concludes Historic Radio Call In Show

12/15/14 03:00 PM

Rick Alloway and Governor Dave Heineman
(Lincoln, Neb.) Today, Governor Dave Heineman is signing-off on the final Governor’s Call-In Show of his administration. The monthly hour-long radio program is hosted and produced by the Nebraska Broadcasters Association (NBA) and carried by more than 25 NBA member stations creating statewide listening coverage. The show was the first of its kind in the United States and continues to be the longest-running program with a sitting United States Governor.
“I believe having an open door policy with the citizens of Nebraska since I was first elected, has helped me be the best Governor that I can be for our great citizens,” said Gov. Heineman. “The Nebraska Broadcasters Association has presented an opportunity to speak directly with citizens from throughout the whole state on a monthly basis. I’ve appreciated the opportunity to listen to their thoughts and ideas, and have always made a point to help resolve their questions. It has been a tremendously enjoyable experience that I have looked forward to every month. I especially enjoy hearing from James from Blue Springs our first caller every month. Thank you to the Rick Alloway and the KFOR broadcast team, Nebraska Broadcasters Association and their stations, and the citizens for creating this legacy together that has directly helped so many folks.”
During the broadcast, callers have had the chance to speak with Gov. Heineman directly to ask questions or to voice their opinion on a wide variety of topics. Today’s program marked the 119th consecutive interview with Governor Heineman, the longest on record since the inception of the program during its 24 year history. Since 2005, Gov. Heineman has fielded an estimated 3000 calls from listeners of the program.
“On behalf of the members of the NBA, I want to thank Governor Dave Heineman for his ‘iron man’ commitment to the Governor’s Call-In Show,” said Jim Timm, President/Executive Director of the Nebraska Broadcasters Association. “Governor Heineman never missed a show. With his final broadcast, he will have appeared on 119 consecutive shows. This underscores Gov. Heineman’s commitment to hear what’s on the minds of the citizens of Nebraska. We are very grateful for his support and have long considered him a friend of Broadcasters.”
The program first aired in August of 1991, during the annual Nebraska Broadcasters Association’s convention, held at the Cornhusker Hotel in Lincoln. Then-Governor Ben Nelson participated in the program during his tenure in office, and later hosted a similar program on a quarterly basis while serving as U.S. Senator. The Governor’s Call-In Show continued with then-Gov. Mike Johanns until he was named U.S. Secretary of Agriculture and Gov. Heineman has continued the program. Gov.-elect Pete Ricketts is expected to continue this tradition.
Originally the Governor’s Call-In Show was co-hosted by Charlie Brogan, at the time Program Director at KRVN in Lexington and University of Nebraska-Lincoln College of Journalism and Mass Communications professor Hubert Brown. Current KRNU General Manager and University of Nebraska-Lincoln Journalism Professor Rick Alloway took over the hosting duties in 1992. Due to illness, Alloway was unable to host Gov. Heineman’s final program. Brogan, currently with KFOR in Lincoln, hosted the program and thanked Governor Heineman for his long running support and involvement with the program. The program originates at KFOR and is uplinked to satellite courtesy of the IMG Husker Sports Network. 
The Nebraska Broadcasters Association is a non-profit trade association representing the interests of over 100 over-the-air radio and TV stations across the state. The NBA assists member stations in serving the communities the FCC has licensed them to serve.

Six Winners In Third Atkinson Chamber of Commerce Drawing

12/15/14 02:48 PM

The Atkinson Chamber of Commerce held their third Christmas drawing on Monday, December 15.  One winner was drawn to double their receipt up to $60 and then five additional winners were drawn each winning $50 in Atkinson Bucks.

The first name drawn was to double their receipt up to $60 and the winner is Jenna Dvorak of Stuart. Her receipt was from RF Goeke Variety and doubled amounted to $55.

The five winners drawn for $50 in Holiday Bucks were:
Deb Kerkman of Atkinson. Receipt from Lech’s Super Saver
Kami Hooey of Atkinson. Receipt from Michelle’s Restaurant & Lounge
Becky Alford of Naper. Receipt from Something Special By Marilyn
Brittany Malone of Atkinson. Receipt from Braun’s Food Center
Carol Miller of Chambers. Receipt from West Holt Pharmacy

The final drawing for the season will be on Monday, December 22 at 2 pm.  One winner will be drawn to double their receipt and then ten additional winners will be drawn for $50 each in Atkinson Bucks.  You can register by shopping at participating Atkinson Chamber of Commerce stores and signing your receipt. 

O'Neill Post Prom Committee Raffle Winners Announced

12/15/14 10:56 AM
The O'Neill Post Prom Committee, which sponsors the combined Post Prom Party for O'Neill Public and St. Mary's Schools in O'Neill, held their drawing today for a raffle.  

Winning the 40" HDTV was Montana Devries of Chambers and winning the $150 in cash was Gene Soukup of O'Neill.

The committee would like to thank all that purchased tickets to help support this years Post Prom Party in April of 2015.

O'Neill Men's Club Toys For Tots Envelopes Are Out

12/11/14 07:03 AM

The O’Neill Men’s Club Toys For Tots envelopes are out. This year over 70 families will be helped.  You can pick an envelope from one of the trees, which are at Bomgaars, Shopko and Alco in O’Neill.  Shop for the child or children on your envelope and then return the envelope and presents to one of the stores.  If you would like to make a monetary donation you can make a check to the O’Neill Men’s Club and drop it off at KBRX or mail it to KBRX, PO Box 150, O’Neill, NE  68763. They would like the gifts and envelopes returned to the stores by December 19.  Toys will be delivered December 23.

Deer Harvest Up Slightly from 2013

12/10/14 06:14 PM

LINCOLN – The Nebraska deer harvest is up slightly from 2013. As of Dec. 5, 44,379 deer have been taken in all seasons, compared to 42,562 by the same date last year.

The biggest change from last year is the mule deer buck harvest, which is up by 575 animals (9 percent). Whitetail antlerless harvest has increased by 944 (8 percent), and whitetail buck harvest is up 327 (1 percent). The mule deer antlerless harvest is down 14 (1 percent).

“The deer harvest is better than expected,” said Kit Hams, the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission’s big game program manager. “It’s nice to see an increase in mule deer buck harvest, too.”

The hunter success rate is 37 percent, compared to 35 percent last year. Success on Keya Paha Unit firearm permits dropped from 62 percent in 2013 to 53 percent this year. That area was hit hard by snow during the firearm season, which likely reduced success. Permits with significant reduction in whitetail harvest are the Buffalo, Platte, Republican and Sandhills units, where antlerless whitetail bonus tags were removed in 2014. Harvest success in five permit types remained about the same (plus or minus 1 percent) and success in 10 permit types increased.

Archery season opened Sept. 1 and continues through Dec. 31. Muzzleloader season ends Dec. 31, while the Late Antlerless season is Jan. 1-15, 2015.

Hunters with Statewide Muzzleloader permits are reminded that mule deer harvest is not allowed in the Buffalo, Platte, Republican and Frenchman deer units. Antlerless mule deer harvest is not allowed in the Pine Ridge Unit.

Atkinson Man Dies In One Vehicle Accident - Apparent Heart Attack

12/10/14 09:29 AM
The Holt County Sheriff's Department investigated a one vehicle accident on Tuesday, December 9, 201 at 5:11 pm.  Timothy Williams, age 52, of Atkinson was heading south on 480th Avenue.  Williams began to veer to the east at the intersections of 480th and 879th Road.  The vehicle went into the east ditch striking a fence and coming to rest approximately 61 feet east of 48pth Road.  Williams was pronounced deat at the scene of an apparent heart attack.

O?Neill FFA Chapter Finds Success at District Leadership Skills Events

12/10/14 06:50 AM

O'Neill FFA
On Wednesday, December 3, 2014, members of the O’Neill FFA Chapter traveled to Valentine High School to participate in District X Leadership Skills Events Contest.  Events are designed to help members gain leadership skills that can be used throughout their lives while gaining knowledge regarding today’s agricultural industry. Events included prepared speeches, extemporaneous speeches, ag demonstration, parliamentary procedure, and job interview. The district champion and district runner-up contestants or teams in each event will advance to the State FFA Convention in April, with 3rd place winners acting as an alternate.  CLICK ON THE RED HEADLINE ABOVE FOR COMPLETE STORY

Alyssa Sobotka Recipient of Mitchell Scholarship at UNK

12/09/14 08:53 AM

Alyssa Sobotka
KEARNEY — The next generation of broadcast journalists coming from the University of Nebraska at Kearney now have additional support for their education and training with a gift of more than $100,000 from the John and Mary Mitchell family.
The family established the Mitchell Family Scholarship Fund for Broadcast Journalism as a permanently endowed fund at the University of Nebraska Foundation to honor Kearney native John Mitchell’s contributions to the broadcast industry, which included the operation of radio stations across Nebraska.
Students studying journalism or multimedia in the College of Fine Arts and Humanities’ Department of Communication who have financial need and career interest in the area of radio, television or video production will receive first eligibility for the annual scholarship awards.
“The Department of Communication deeply appreciates the support of the Mitchell family by providing scholarships for our students preparing for careers in journalism, broadcasting and multimedia,” said Ralph Hanson, chair of the department. “Their gift will add to John Mitchell’s lasting legacy for the media industry in Nebraska.”
UNK journalism students Erin Cuddy of Lincoln and Alyssa Sobotka of O’Neill are the first recipients of the Mitchell Family Scholarship and were awarded $1,750 each by the college.
“I am extremely grateful for this award, and it will be a great help to me this school year,” said Cuddy, who graduated from Pius X High School in Lincoln.
“I was thrilled upon reading the news I’d been selected,” said Alyssa Sobotka who graduated from O’Neill Public School. “Thanks for this honor.”
Alyssa is the daughter of Woody and Lynn Sobotka from Inman. Alyssa also has worked at KBRX during her High School and College career.
Erin Cuddy is the daughter of Ken & Judy Cuddy from Lincoln and the granddaughter of Jerry and Viona Cuddy of O'Neill and niece of Gary & Stephanie Cuddy of O'Neill.
The gift from the Mitchell family also provides support to the university’s current fundraising initiative, the Campaign for Nebraska, which concludes Dec. 31, and includes a priority to increase giving for student scholarships.
The Mitchell family has enjoyed a history of philanthropic support for the university, including previous contributions to UNK’s Department of Communication for the Mitchell Communication Center and generous support for students and academic programs in the Department of Textiles, Merchandising and Fashion Design at UNL in honor of Mary Mitchell’s career contributions.
John C. Mitchell was born in Kearney in 1924 and graduated from Kearney State Teachers College, as did his sister and three brothers. While attending college, he developed an interest in and talent for broadcasting. He worked part-time seven days a week for four years as an announcer at KGFW radio station in Kearney before graduating in speech communications.
Mitchell then earned a law degree at Georgetown University before returning to Kearney to open a law practice. In 1953, he and his partners bought KGFW, which started his successful broadcast ventures.
In 1968, Mitchell and his family moved to Omaha where he established a law practice, managed his growing number of broadcast properties and started the Fort Calhoun Bank, as well as other businesses. He also enjoyed a long political career, serving or leading various public entities and Democratic Party organizations in and outside of the state.
John and Mary Mitchell were married for 62 years at the time of his death on February 28, 2014.

Pinnacle Bank Week #1 Shop O'Neill Winners Announced

12/08/14 11:07 AM
Pinnacle Bank would like to announce their first week “Shop O'Neill” winners:

Lew Pierson
Paulette Read
Gloria Ruegge
Claudeen Penry
Maureen Pischel
Wendy Devall
Terri Ruzicka
Congratulations to our winners and a reminder that we have two more drawings to be held on Friday December 12th and 19th.    Remember it does PAY to SHOP O'Neill.

Chambers One-Act Competes at NVC and Districts

12/08/14 10:47 AM

Front row:  Landon Crabtree, and Jacob Green:  2nd row: Molly Lambert, Devyn Thor, Travis Halsey, Dawn Klabenes, Jacie Laetsch, and Kenede Tomjack :  3rd row:  Bathsheba Doty, Alex Hoffman, Tami Jo Marcellus, Nicole Beed, Chyenne Burrell, and Dylan Macklem.

The One-Act play is an important high school tradition for many schools across Nebraska.  This year Stuart was the site of both the NVC West One-Act Conference held Tuesday, November 18th and the District D2-4 competition held December 2nd.  Nine schools from across the region competed for conference honors.  Young actors and actresses, crew, and coaches spent many long hours in preparation for the event.  Chambers finished NVC in 7th place.  The District competition consisted of 8 schools and Chambers came out 6th performing the play “The Snow Queen” by Hans Christian Anderson and adapted by Kathy Lemmer.

Outstanding actors and actresses from each school were selected to receive honorable mention awards.   Students from Chambers taking home honors at NVC were: Tami Jo Marcellus, Molly Lambert, and Nicole Beed.  Students receiving acting awards at Districts were: Tami Jo Marcellus, Molly Lambert, Nicole Beed, Alex Hoffman, Bathsheba Doty, Devyn Thor, Jacob Green, Landon Crabtree, and Travis Halsey.

The Chambers cast included: Nicole Beed, Alex Hoffman, Molly Lambert, Tami Jo Marcellus, Bathsheba Doty, Dawn Klabenes, Devyn Thor, Jacob Green, Jacie Laetsch, Kenede Tomjack, Landon Crabtree, and Travis Halsey.  Members of the crew were: Chyenne Burrell, Cindy Green, and Dylan Macklem.  Directors are Kathy Lemmer, JoLynn Cameron, and Barb Hubel.  The tradition of One-Act competition is alive and well in Nebraska.

Hubbard Feeds Donates $5000 To O'Neill FCCLA Project

12/08/14 07:44 AM

Rob Pischel of Hubbard Feeds recently presented a check for $5000 to O’Neill FCCLA members Amanda Pischel and Grace Bunner, Chapter advisor Ann Mann and O’Neill Elementary School Principal Dan Woodle.  The money is earmarked for the backpack program, which Amanda and Grace have spearheaded at O’Neill Elementary School. Hubbard Feeds is one of the leading feed manufactures in the North America.  Each year Hubbard Feeds donates 1% if it’s profits to charities across the United States

O'Neill fire Department Responds To Bale Fire Thursday

12/05/14 09:50 AM
The O'Neill Fire Department was called to a bale fire located 2 miles west of the drive in theater and 1 mile north  shortly after 12:00 noon on Thursday, December 4, 2014.  Upon arrival, a trailer and 30 big round bales were fully involved.  The fire burned four additional bales in a field.  It is believed the fire was caused by a spark from the truck's exhaust.  Fire personnel were on scene for five hours.   

FFA District X Leadership Skills Event Held In Valentine

12/04/14 03:21 PM
VALENTINE, NE – On Wednesday, December 3rd FFA Chapters from District X congregated with many of their members to compete in the annual Leadership Skills Event.  The Leadership Skills Event is held at the district and state level to promote opportunities for FFA members to develop skills in leadership, cooperation, and teamwork, as well as building a broader understanding of the abilities necessary for today’s agricultural leaders.  The district champion and district runner-up both qualify for state competition in April during the State FFA Convention.  The summaries and results of each contest are as follows:
            Creed Speaking: 
 The event is open to first year FFA members in good standing who are enrolled in their first year of agricultural education during one or both semesters of the school year, are in the ninth grade.  The objective of the contest is to develop the ability of interpretation and self expression of beginning FFA members.  The District Champion and State Qualifier was Marie Meis from the Elgin FFA, District Runner-up, also a state-qualifier, was Neleigh Gehl of the Wheeler Central FFA Chapter.  Taralyn Baum from the Elgin FFA stood third place, and Kelsey Reiman from the West Boyd FFA Chapter was fourth place.
            Cooperative Speaking:
The event is open to all high school FFA members who are enrolled in an agricultural education class in order to develop the ability of FFA members to competently express themselves and to provide an educational opportunity to learn about the cooperative method of doing business.  District Champion was Emma Good of the Ainsworth FFA Chapter with the Runner-up being Karissa Dicks from the Elgin FFA.  The third and fourth place cooperative speakers were Ethan Fisher and Ashley Kramer from Elgin, and Stuart respectively.
            Extemporaneous Speaking:
The event is open to all high school FFA members who are enrolled in an agricultural education class interested in developing the ability to express themselves on a given subject without having prepared or rehearsed its content in advance.  Twelve topics shall be prepared by the State FFA Staff. Topics will be from the following four areas:  Agriscience and Technology; Urban Agriculture; Food and Fiber Systems; or Agrimarketing and International Agricultural Relations.  Being crowned as District Champion was Jake Judge of the West Holt FFA Chapter.  Colin Erickson of the Rock County FFA Chapter was named district runner-up, with Chase Hoffschneider  of Wheeler Central and Justin Goesch of West Boyd being named 3rd and 4th respectively.
            Employment Skills
In an effort to provide FFA members the opportunity to demonstrate their ability in completing a job application form, writing a letter of application, preparing a resume, interviewing, and completing a follow-up letter the National, State, and District FFA promote the Job Interview or Employment Skills  competition. The District Champion was Tessie Harvey of the Valentine FFA Chapter, with Jaden Schafer of the Stuart FFA Chapter being the District Runner-up and also a state qualifier.   Tejlor Strope of the O’Neill FFA Chapter placed third and Zachary Haburchak placed fourth for the Chambers FFA Chapter.
            Junior Public Speaking
For members in ninth or tenth grade as an effort to develop the ability to competently express themselves as they assume the responsibilities of agricultural leadership.  Brent Lemmer of the West Holt FFA Chapter was crowned the District X Champion and state qualifier with Kelli Mashino of the West Boyd FFA Chapter also qualifying for state competition as the runner-up.  Placing third from the Elgin FFA Chapter was Elizabeth Selting while Rhegan Shankland of the Rock County FFA placed fourth.
            Public Speaking
In a national level contest designed to enhance leadership skills through confidence, speaking ability, and current agricultural research the FFA promotes the Public Speaking Contest to all members.  Crowned as District Champion was Katie Nolles of the Rock County FFA Chapter, the District Runner-up was Brittany Hanzlik of the Stuart FFA Chapter, both individuals will represent their chapter and District X at state competition in April.  Dylan Widger of the Elgin FFA Chapter placed third as an alternate to state with Maikayla Weiss of Ainsworth FFA placing fourth.
            Natural Resources
Another contest designed to develop competent speaking abilities within Nebraska FFA members and to increase the member's appreciation and knowledge of natural resources management. The top two speakers representing District X and their FFA Chapters at the state competition are Miles Stagemeyer of the O’Neill FFA Chapter and Aloise Warner of the Elgin FFA Chapter earning Champion and District Champion honors respectively.  Placing third was Zach Sextro of the West Boyd FFA Chapter, and Tressa Reiner from the Burwell stood fourth.
            Agricultural Demonstration
This contest was designated in order to develop the ability of FFA members to accurately explain a process through demonstration of the skills required while making a verbal presentation. To emphasize the importance of agricultural technology and the skills required for a changing industry. The top team was the Rock County FFA Chapter with their presentation on Social Media followed by the Wheeler Central FFA Chapter Fitting Demonstration.  The third and fourth place teams were the Burwell and Valentine Chapters respectively.
            Junior Parliamentary Procedure
An age-old contest that has rigor and relevance as it develops the ability of freshman and sophomore FFA members to improve their techniques in conduct of meetings by employing correct parliamentary law through the transaction of parliamentary abilities and answering questions on parliamentary procedure. Ainsworth FFA Chapter had the top team followed by the Stuart FFA Chapter team.  Both teams will enter into state competition in April at the State FFA Convention.  O’Neill FFA placed third and the West Boyd County FFA team placed fourth.
            Senior Parliamentary Law
Perhaps one of the more valuable contests in a high school student’s career may be the parliamentary procedure contests, as it teaches FFA members to be able to:
1. Demonstrate knowledge of parliamentary procedure to conduct an orderly/efficient meeting.
2. Transact business and present logical, realistic, and convincing discussion.
3. Record complete and accurate minutes. The Stuart team was crowned District Champion with the Ainsworth FFA Chapter being named the District Runner-up.  The O’Neill team placed third in the competition and West Holt garnished the fourth place finish.
            Junior High Quiz Bowl
The top four junior high teams in the quiz bowl competition were West Holt, Ainsworth, West Burwell, and Wheeler Central.  The junior high quiz bowl is based upon basic Agriscience knowledge and principles, as well as FFA facts and history.
            Discovery Speaking
A relatively new event to the district Leadership Skills Event is the Discovery Speaking event which is designed to emphasize public speaking and leadership skills to junior high agricultural students.  The discovery speech could be based on any agricultural topic and judging would be comparable to the junior public speaking event.  The top four Discovery speakers and the schools they represent are:  First Place, Trace Ebert, Rock County;  Second Place, Emma Hoffschneider, Wheeler Central;  Third Place, Bryson Abbot, Wheeler Central;  Fourth Place, Leighton Mlady, West Holt
            Agricultural Literacy Speaking
A new event to the district Leadership Skills Event in 2014 is the Ag Literacy Speaking event which is designed to develop the ability of young agricultural students to competently express themselves as they communicate agriculture “Farm to Fork” to a nonagricultural audience.  The ag literacy speaking event is open to all junior high student who have been or are involved in local agricultural education classes or FFA.  The top four Ag Literacey speakers and the schools they represent are:  First Place, Jace Stagemeyer, O’Neill; Second Place, Sam Wilkins, Ainsworth;  Third Place, Taya Rainforth, O’Neill;  Fourth Place, Gracie Pokorny, Wheeler Central.
            Chapter Sweepstakes
The Stuart FFA Chapter won the Sweepstakes plaque with Ainsworth earning the Runner-up plaque.  The District X FFA Chapters would like to thank all of the judges, sponsors, and the Valentine Public Schools for their time and efforts in making the 2014 version of the Leadership Skills Event a very educational and memorable event for all FFA members.

ICON Prepares For 9th Annual Convention

12/04/14 11:36 AM

It’s ICON Convention Time!!

Independent Cattlemen of Nebraska (ICON) will be hosting their annual convention in Brewster, NE, on Friday, December 19, 2014, 12 noon CST, at Uncle Buck’s Lodge.

The day starts at 11 a.m. with registration. A luncheon will be served at the Lodge at noon and followed by the afternoon activities. Up first will be a workshop with Paul Dorr of Copperhead Consulting who will talk about School Bonds and Property Taxes. Senator Al Davis of District 43 will host an Up Close and Personal conversation about what’s happening in the legislature. The last afternoon event will be a discussion with retiring Executive Director of the Brand Committee, Steve F. Stanec, and incoming Executive Director, Shawn D. Harvey. The day will conclude with an ICON business meeting.

The evening will start with a Social Hour at 6 p.m., Prime Rib evening banquet at 7 p.m., auction for Jim Hanna Scholarship and benefit of ICON and Willard Hollopeter and his 'Cowboy Poetry' as our evening entertainment.

Registration for the 2014 ICON Convention Registration is $50 and includes the noon luncheon. Guests accompanying a paid registration can register for $20. The evening Banquet with prime rib is an extra $25 per attendee. ICON membership dues for 2014 are $100 and if members have not paid, there will be a $10 discount at the convention.

ICON Convention registration can be sent to: ICON/Linda Wuebben, 55669 888th Road, Fordyce, NE 68736. For more information, call 402-357-3778 or visit ICON

            Rooms are available by calling the Lodge at 308-547-2210. Area Bed & Breakfasts have some rooms available including the Degroff Family at 308-547-2460.

Atkinson Big Give A Big Success

12/03/14 10:59 AM

The Atkinson Big Give day was held Tuesday, December 2 and was another success. As of midnight Tuesday night the unofficial amount raised was at $11,802.50 and have had a total of 213 donors. 
The Atkinson Community Foundation also awarded a $500 donation to the organization that had the most donors.  And the winner this year is St. Joseph Home and School.

There are still more donations that will be coming in and a grand total will be announced later.

They would like to thank all the volunteers that helped and a big thank you to all that donated.

Ewing High School One Act Team Qualifies For State

12/03/14 09:14 AM

Ewing One Act Team D2-4 District Champions
Photo Courtesy Linda Fry
The Ewing High School One Act Team has qualified for the 2014 Class D2 State One Act competition with a first place finish in the D2-4 District held Tuesday, December 2 in Stuart.  The play they performed is called "The Birds: A Modern Adaption". 

This is third year Ewing has qualified for State.  The first time in 2009 and also in 2013 in which they finished in 3rd place.

Ewing will compete in the D2 State Tournament on Wednesday, December 10, 2014 at 9:15 am at the Johnny Carson Theatre in Norfolk.  Other teams in the D2 field that have already qualified include Leigh, Shickley and Callaway.  Two more teams that win their districts will also compete.

"The Nebraska Project" Will Make You Proud To Be From Nebraska

12/02/14 03:55 PM
by Scott Poese

Brothers Kevin and Kelly Morrow of O'Neill are featured in this photo.

Want to feel proud about where we live?  Then check out The Nebraska Project website that has recently gone online.  Bill Frakes is a Pulitzer Prize winning photographer and shows through photography, video and sound why Nebraska is the best place to live. 

Among the many features on Bill’s website you will also see Nebraska people that you know:
Here’s what I would tell you to do.  Go to and explore.  You won’t do it in one sitting; you’ll have to check out the different videos, pictures and stories.  But to warn you in advance, you will smile, laugh and cry.  It will make you proud and glad to call yourself a Nebraskan.  This project is one that every resident of Nebraska should watch and I would encourage you to share it with your friends and family all over the world by e-mail, Facebook, Twitter and in person.

Lastly, to show your support of the hard work and many hours it took to photograph, edit and to capture the sounds of our great state, please consider making a donation to this project.  You can click here to donate.

Thank you to Bill Frakes and thank you to those that helped and contributed in any way to make this happen.  Now get to watching, learning and boasting about Nebraska by going to The Nebraska Project website.

There really is no place like Nebraska!

2014 4-H Achievement Ceremony Honors Local Business, 4-H Member, and Volunteers

12/01/14 03:23 PM
Special awards were presented at the 4-H Achievement Ceremony on November 9th.  Mary Pospichal Volunteers are the heart and soul of the 4-H program.  They give it life and have unwavering

Atkinson Chamber Of Commerce Holds First Christmas Promotion Drawing

12/01/14 03:07 PM

Pam Winer of the Atkinson  Chamber of Commerce gets ready to draw the first winner of the season!
The Atkinson Chamber of Commerce held their first Atkinson Bucks Christmas Drawing on Monday, December 1.  For the first drawing one customers receipt was drawn to double the amount of their receipt up to $60 maximum in Atkinson Bucks.  Pam Winer from the Atkinson Chamber of Commerce drew the first winner and it was Misty Carey of Atkinson who turned in a receipt from Braun’s Food Center that doubled amounted to a winnings of $55 in Atkinson Bucks.  Congratulations Misty Carey.

Here are the remaining drawing dates and what will be drawn for:

December 8: One customer will win double the amount of their receipt ($60 is the maximum amount) In Atkinson Bucks.

December 15: One customer will win double the amount of their receipt ($60 is the maximum amount) in Atkinson Bucks, and FIVE customers will win $50 each in Atkinson Bucks.

December 22: One customer will win double the amount of their receipt ($60 is the maximum amount) in Atkinson Bucks, and TEN customers will win $50 each in Atkinson Bucks.

Please note:
Winners will receive their Atkinson Bucks by mail.
Winners may win more than one prize, but not in the same week.
All receipts not drawn are kept and added to the next week’s drawing.

High Plains Friends Of NRA December Gun Winners Announced

12/01/14 11:52 AM
The High Plains Friends of the NRA have announced their gun winners for the month of December. The December gun is a Taurus 740 Slim handgun. And the lucky winner is number 209 and that belongs to Tim Fenton from Pierce. Also in celebration of Christmas they are giving away a Henry Golden Boy rifle and the winner of that is ticket number 60, Dana Kelly of O'Neill. Congratulations Tim and Dana, you may contact Tom at Boardman's Furniture & Pawn to claim your guns.

O'Neill Students Recognized as Academic All-State

11/25/14 09:41 AM

The NSAA recognizes up to two student athletes per activity who have excelled in the classroom and activity field.  O'Neill students receiving recognition in the fall of 2014 are:  Front row left-Abby Gillham (cross country), Ariel Lichty (softball), Bailey Kreiger (play production), Paula Zakrewski (softball), Natalie Brodersen (volleyball), Sarah Devall (volleyball), Kadra Sommersted-Simmons (cross country), Back row left-Logan Spencer (cross country), Walker Liewer (football), Tyson Hostert (football).  Not in picture: James Walton (play production).

Creighton Superintendent Jeff Jensen Accepts New Job At Central City

11/23/14 03:02 PM

Jeff Jensen

Jeff Jensen has accepted the position of Superintendent of Schools at Central City Public Schools.  His contract will begin July 1, 2015.  Jensen has been at Creighton Community Public Schools for the last fifteen years as a teacher, administrator, and coach.  The last three years, Jensen has been the district’s Superintendent and has been the Head Football coach since 2000. 

“I am very proud of the accomplishments of this district over the last fifteen years.  I have been blessed to work with great students, staff, and parents and the culture that we have developed in this district is second to none,” Jensen stated.  “Currently, our district is performing at remarkable levels in academics, activities, and athletics.”

Jensen will depart from a district of 300 students that is projected to be below 200 students over the next 10 years to a district of 700 students and three separate schools.  Central City Public Schools is a member of the Central Conference that includes schools like Aurora, Lakeview, Grand Island NW, Crete, York, and others. 

Jensen stated, “I am going to greatly miss the students, staff, and parents of the Creighton district.  This was a very difficult decision and I will always cherish the memories and friendships that we have developed in Creighton.  Creighton is a big part of my family’s life.  I will always have a void in my heart and will always bleed a bit of red and black.  I want only the best for the future of the students of Creighton and the Creighton Community.”

Creighton Community Public Schools has performed exceptionally on the State NeSA and NePAS rankings and has included multiple number one rankings on the exam.  Creighton High School has been above State and National ACT score averages for the last eight years.  The Bulldog Football team has been a consistent contender, reaching the state finals on two occasions under Jensen.

“I am very excited about the opportunity to work with the Central City Public Schools and for my children to be a part of expanded educational and activity opportunities, but I will forever have a strong, positive feeling about the people of Creighton.  I have been blessed to be surrounded by great people,” Jensen added. 

Jensen will formally render his resignation, effective June 30th, 2015, at the December Creighton Board of Education meeting.  Jensen began his duties as Superintendent on July 1st, 2012 and is currently under contract through June 30th, 2017.

Jasmine Phander Continues To Win Awards For Hawks Speech Team

11/23/14 01:54 PM

NORFOLK – The Northeast Community College speech team captured more trophies at its latest tournament – the Valley Forensics League Tournament at Southwest Minnesota State University in Marshall, MN.
Terry Nelson, Hawks coach, said every competitor on her squad took home at least one win.
On day one in duo interpretation, Drew Sempek, Stromsburg, and Jasmine Lee Phander, Ewing, placed third; Phander and Tim Browning, Bancroft, were fourth and Sempek and Joe Lose, Kansas City, MO, took fifth place.
In impromptu speaking, Musa Fofana, Serrekunda, Gambia, placed with fifth. He also took sixth place in extemporaneous speaking. Lose was sixth in prose interpretation.
On day two, Sempek and Phander placed third in duo interpretation; Phander was second and the top novice in prose interpretation and Fofana was third in extemporaneous speaking.

City of Atkinson Cuts Ribbon on New Wastewater Disposal System

11/22/14 10:23 AM
Atkinson, Neb., November 19, 2014—City of Atkinson officials, residents and USDA Rural Development State Director Maxine Moul toured the new lift station and mechanical treatment plant today.
“This project not only ensures quality drinking water but also makes sure sanitary water conditions meet regulatory requirements,” said Moul
“Due to the change in regulations, the Wastewater Treatment Plant did not meet compliance.  We are grateful to USDA for the grant/loan to build the new Wastewater Treatment Plant,” said Mayor Paul Corkle, City of Atkinson.
Rural Development funds of more than $2.6 million and grant funds of $1 million were used to correct inadequacies with the city’s current wastewater disposal system by constructing a new lift station and mechanical treatment plant. The existing system outlived its design life and was anticipated to exceed E. Coli and ammonia limits in the proposed 2012 National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit.
The project was funded through the Water and Waste Disposal Loan and Grant Program of the USDA Rural Development  For more information contact Roberta Mues at 308-237-3118 ext.1128.  To find the nearest Rural Development contact for you in Nebraska visit
Call KBRX at (402) 336-1612