Today's Poll

Blumenstock Awarded National Scholarship by Royal Neighbors of America

11/26/14 04:28 PM

Justine Blumenstock, O'Neill, NE, has been awarded an $8,000 Making A Difference scholarship by Royal Neighbors of America. A payment of $2,000 will be made to her college of choice and will be used to help fund tuition, room and board, and books. Justine is the daughter of Dr. Brad and Georgia Blumenstock of O'Neill.

Since its creation in 1961, the Royal Neighbors of America Scholarship Program has awarded more than $4 million to its members to assist with the costs of continuing education.  The annual program accepts applications from its beneficial members until March 1 each year. Details about the program are located at

Royal Neighbors of America, one of the nation's largest women-led life insurance organizations, empowers women to meet the needs of their families with annuities and life insurance products such as whole life, term, final expense, and universal life. Royal Neighbors' philanthropic efforts are dedicated to changing women's lives through its national programs, including the Nation of NeighborsSM Program, and through the Royal Neighbors Foundation, a 501(c)(3) public charity. Royal Neighbors is headquartered in Rock Island, IL, with a branch office in Mesa, AZ. For more information, visit or call (800) 627-4762.

Outdoor News: Big Game Meeting Planned for Ord; Zebra Mussel Found Near Yankton

11/26/14 04:22 PM

Big Game Meetings Scheduled Across Nebraska in December

LINCOLN – The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission invites hunters and landowners to attend a public informational meeting in December to discuss big game issues. Meetings are scheduled in each Game and Parks district.

Game and Parks biologists will explain and take questions on several topics, including deer management, deer damage and depredation permits, antlerless harvest, trophy management and diseases. Antelope and elk issues may be discussed at meetings located in areas where these species occur.

One such meeting will be held on Dec. 15 in Ord. It will begin at 7 p.m. at the Valley County Extension Building on the Fairgrounds (801 S St.). Other meetings will be conducted in Chadron, Omaha, Auburn, McCook, Oshkosh, Kearny and Columbus.

Invasive Zebra and Quagga Mussels Found in Two South Dakota Reservoirs

LINCOLN – On Nov. 14, a single live adult zebra mussel was discovered attached to a boat dock at the Midway boat ramp on the South Dakota side of Lewis and Clark Lake near Yankton, S.D.

South Dakota Game, Fish and Parks (SDGFP) staff inspected 11 additional boat docks and shorelines and found no additional zebra mussels in or near the lake. Several boats stored at a marina also were inspected and no mussels were found, though many boats already were power-washed for winter storage. SDGFP and the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission have sampled the lake yearly for zebra mussel veligers (larva) and all samples have been negative.

It is likely the discovered mussel came from a contaminated boat that launched near the site the zebra mussel was found.  As a result of this discovery, Lewis and Clark Lake is now classified as a “suspect waterbody” for zebra mussels and will remain that way for at least three years if no additional mussels are found.

In September, an invasive quagga mussel was found in Angostura Reservoir in southwest South Dakota. Nebraska has only one documented invasive mussel infestation, in the Offutt Air Force Base Lake in Bellevue. The lake has been closed to motor boats since 2006.

These newly-discovered quagga and zebra mussels in South Dakota increase the need for formal boat inspection programs in South Dakota and Nebraska to reduce the spread of invasive mussels to other water bodies. Both states have regulations intended to prevent the movement of invasive mussels into additional waterbodies, but both have limited funding to deal with invasive species and lack a formal program to inspect watercrafts at all high-risk reservoirs.

Staff from both states will discuss this issue and develop a future action plan for Lewis and Clark Lake.

For more information, visit the Nebraska Invasive Species Program at

O'Neill Boys Basketball Raffle Winners

11/26/14 10:46 AM

The OHS Boys’ Basketball team put on a raffle as a fundraiser this year, and the winners were drawn after practice last Friday by the senior team members. Winners were:

First Prize: 50” LG flat screen TV from Don’s TV
            Winner: Emily Possnecker
Second Prize: 4 Husker Men’s Basketball Tickets vs. Creighton from Stadium Sports
            Winner: Francisco Quintero
Third Prize: One pair of shoes up to $100 value from Stadium Sports
            Winner: Tony Emme

The OHS Basketball team would like to give a big thank you to the local businesses for their contributions and to everyone who bought a ticket or gave donations to their team.  They hope to see everyone on December 4th as they start the season at home against the Valentine Badgers.  Go Eagles!

Radon Test Kits Free at RC&D

11/26/14 10:15 AM

To promote radon awareness and make it easier for Nebraskans to test their homes for radon, the Northeast Nebraska RC&D has once again partnered with the North Central District Health Department to offer free radon test kits.  Winter months are an opportune time for Nebraskans to test for radon in their homes.  During winter, homes are closed up and can trap the toxic gas.  Radon is the leading cause of lung cancer for people who have never smoked. 

Radon is a radioactive gas.  You can’t see it, taste it or even smell it.  It comes from the decaying of naturally occurring uranium in the earth's soil and exists in varying amounts in most soils.  It enters the home through cracks or holes in concrete floors or walls, sump pits, and drinking water from private wells.  Once radon becomes trapped inside an enclosed space, it can accumulate. 

The free tests kits are a quick screening method which indicates potential radon problems.  They should be placed in the lowest livable level of the house.  North Central District Health Department does follow up with anyone who has a test result of 4.0 pCi/L or above which is a health standard set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

For more information on radon, radon test kits and radon mitigation, call North Central District Health Department, 1-877-336-2406 or visit the EPA's website at   North Central District Health Department serves Antelope, Boyd, Brown, Cherry, Holt, Keya Paha, Knox, Pierce, and Rock Counties.

Kits can be picked up at the RC&D office during business hours of 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday each week.

No Limits Fall Summit Gives Teens Tools to Fight Tobacco

11/26/14 10:03 AM

L to R: Keely Black (Lynch TNT- Trust No Tobacco), LaKeisha Wheeler (Butte), Keirsten Wheeler (Butte), Kevona Brown (Butte), Miguel Ochoa (O’Neill DTL- Done with The Lies), Shelby Castor (Ericson)

AURORA, Nebraska — More than 50 teens from across Nebraska came to Aurora this weekend to learn how to fight against the marketing tactics of the tobacco industry at the No Limits Fall Summit. The event, held at the Leadership Center in Aurora Nov. 22–23, was organized by No Limits, Nebraska’s youth-led anti-tobacco movement. Participants focused on the theme, “People over Profits.”

“Big Tobacco continues to introduce new products aimed at young consumers,” said No Limits Youth Board Co-Chair Leila Alohaid of Lincoln. “For tobacco companies, profits are more important than the health of young people. No Limits is sending a message that we’re fighting back in Nebraska.”

Youth in grades 7–12 traveled from across the state for hands-on training in activism tactics to encourage their peers to resist Big Tobacco’s marketing messages. On Sunday afternoon, participants organized a series of anti-tobacco activism events that they can use in their own communities.

“Tobacco use among Nebraska teens is headed in the right direction, but it’s still too high,” said Molly Kincaid, No Limits project coordinator. “According to the 2013 Youth Risk Behavior Survey, more than 16 percent of Nebraska high school students reported using some form of tobacco in the past 30 days. The training that No Limits members received at this summit will help them take on tobacco in their hometowns.”

Kincaid says No Limits members learn leadership skills that help them raise awareness of tobacco marketing tactics among their peers. Students from 12 communities in Nebraska attended the No Limits Fall Summit.

No Limits takes action to minimize the impact tobacco has in Nebraska. The group is open to all Nebraska youth in grades 7–12. To learn more, visit or contact Kincaid at 866-394-8336 or

Business and Office Closings For Thanksgiving

11/25/14 11:21 AM

Many businesses in O'Neill and the surrounding area will be closing up shop for the Thanksgiving, while some will also shut down on Friday as well. Others will remain open during the day or on a limited basis. Here is the rundown of who will be open and who will close:

All State and County Offices (including the Court House) will close Thursday and Friday
Government Offices (including the Post Office) will close Thursday

Closed Thursday
Torpins Rodeo Market
The Blarney Stone
Westside Restaurant
Dairy Queen
Tia Zia
Chesterfield West
McDonald's Restaurant
L Bar B in Clearwater
Michelle's Restaurant in Atkinson - serving a Thanksgiving meal Wednesday

Open Thursday
O'Neill Super Foods - from 8 am to 2 pm
Fox's Food Court - convenience store only, kitchen will be closed
Gokies Conoco Fast Mart
Pump & Pantry
Green Gables near Royal - open til 3 pm, but reservations are required

O'Neill Students Recognized by NSAA 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).

AseraCare of O?Neill Celebrates National Hospice Month in November

11/25/14 06:49 AM

AseraCare of O’Neill will join other hospice care organizations across the nation in celebrating National Hospice Month during November. The holiday recognizes the compassion and dedication of the caregivers who provide these important services.
This year’s theme is Moments of Life: Made Possible by Hospice. With this theme, we are reminded of how hospice makes more meaningful moments possible for patients, families and loved ones. Beyond the physical relief, hospice strives to help patients and families find emotional and spiritual comfort during this time.
Every year, more than 1.5 million patients receive hospice care in the United States. Hospice is a comprehensive, medically directed, team-oriented program that emphasizes pain control and symptom management rather than curative treatment for patients who no longer respond to routine medical care.
“Hospice treats the person, not the disease; focuses on the family, not the individual; and emphasizes the quality of life, not duration,” said Brooke Borer, Executive Director of AseraCare of O’Neill.
Holly Cole, AseraCare Liaison adds, “Hospice neither hastens nor postpones death, but rather it affirms life, emphasizes dignity, and enhances the quality of the remainder of a person’s life.”
AseraCare is one of the largest hospice providers in the United States. Hospice is not a place, but complimentary philosophy of care that provides clinical services, pain management, and emotional and spiritual support in a caring manner that places the patient and family at the center of care. An interdisciplinary team of medical professionals and trained volunteers deliver care with the wishes of the patient and family in mind.
“The impact that hospice, its programs, its employees and its volunteers make on the lives of their patients and families is truly remarkable,” said Angie Hollis-Sells, President of AseraCare. “I hope we all take a moment to recognize our local hospice employees and volunteers for the compassion and love they provide to their patients each and every day.”
For more information about AseraCare Hospice programs, services, and volunteer opportunities in O’Neill call 402-336-3988 or visit

Help Make Atkinson A Better Place To Live, Work And Play

11/24/14 03:11 PM
Atkinson, Neb. –The Atkinson Community Foundation Fund and Atkinson Mayor Paul Corkle  announce the dates of the 3rd annual Big Give Atkinson 24-hour giving event which will be held on National #Giving Tuesday which is December 2. The 24-hour giving period starts at 12:00 a.m. and ends at midnight. 

They encourage all Atkinson residents and fans of Atkinson to contribute to local nonprofits during this time to help make Atkinson a better place to live, work and play. The inaugural Big Give Atkinson event in 2012 had 73 donors contribute $17,220 to local nonprofits. The 2013 event raised $18,827 from 220 donors. 

The Atkinson Community Foundation Fund will offer an incentive for gifts made during the Big Give Atkinson event—a $500 prize will be given to the nonprofit with the most donors during the 24-hour giving event. Last year the St. Joseph’s Home and School Association won the prize. 

New this year to the Big Give will be a Bowl for Big Bucks event hosted at The Alley in Atkinson. Local nonprofits will gather co-workers, friends and family for a fun night of bowling in honor of their charity. 

“The Big Give is an amazing opportunity for us to come together and show how big hearted our community is.” said Monique Johnson, Chair of the Big Give Atkinson, Vice President of the Atkinson Community Foundation Fund, and the West Holt Medical Services Foundation Executive Director. Johnson continues, “The large city of Omaha held a 24-hour giving event i0n 2013 and raised $3.37 per capita. The 2013 Big Give Atkinson event raised $15.68 per capita. It is pretty amazing when Atkinson can outperform Omaha.” 

For the third year in a row the Atkinson Area Chamber of Commerce will be the Lead Sponsor for the event. Their financial support will help the Atkinson Community Foundation Fund pay the expenses to host the event, such as, promotional expenses. 

Designed to promote philanthropy in Atkinson, the Big Give Atkinson event will be 24 hours of online giving and other traditional means of giving, such as, mailing a check to the nonprofit or by stopping at the Giving Station at Braun’s Food Center in Atkinson. This event allows nonprofits to share their stories, attract new donors and raise substantial funds that will improve the community. 

Mayor Corkle shares, “I encourage everyone to donate any size gift during this unique event. Due to the generosity of your gift during the Big Give Atkinson event, countless lives will be impacted through your investment in nonprofits that improve the quality of life in our great town.” 

Mayor Corkle continues, “Our local nonprofits deserve our support for all they do to strengthen our community. I am confident this day will show the pride and compassion our residents have for our town and the nonprofits that enrich it.” 
For those wanting to donate during the Big Give Atkinson event, you will have three options for giving on December 2: 

1. Donate online at 
2. Stop at the Giving Station in Atkinson at Braun’s Food Center on Tuesday, December 2 from 7:30 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. 
3. Mail a check to your favorite organization or nonprofit 

It’s that simple! 

If you have questions, please contact the chair of the event at 402-925-1956 or and for more information visit the event’s website at

We have one BIG goal for this event—Make Atkinson a better place to live, work and play. 

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

Winners of O'Neill High Geographic Awareness Week T-Shirts Named

11/21/14 03:58 PM

(left to right) Derrek Babutzke, David Arroyo, Mikayla Marvin, Gloria Turpin, Decemberlyn Kilcoin & Lauren Osborne
Winners of the annual O'Neill High School Geographic Awareness Week t-shirt contest were:  Derrek Babutzke Ozark Mountains (geographic feature), David Arroyo Coahuila, Mexico soccer (sports franchise), Mikayla Marvin Mato Grosso, Brazil (unique place), Gloria Turpin Bali, Indonesia (greatest distance from O'Neill), Decemberlyn Kilcoin Inman, Nebraska (closest to O'Neill), and Lauren Osborne Stillwater, Oklahoma (most colorful).   Congratulations and thanks to all of the many O'Neill students who participated in the event. 

Atkinson's Nancy Kopejtka Named Clerk of the Year by USDA Rural Development

11/21/14 02:25 PM
Atkinson, Neb., November 19, 2014—USDA Rural Development State Director Maxine Moul today presented a plaque to Nancy Kopejtka, Atkinson City Clerk, for her excellence in performance.
“It is with great pleasure to meet the clerk who has helped her city complete a $3,550,000 project for a new wastewater treatment facility.  Thank you for your dedicated service,” said Moul.
The Central Nebraska USDA staff nominated Nancy for the award because she “is always very responsive to requests for information and documentation, at times even anticipating what was going to be needed before the staff asked for it.  Her friendly, positive attitude along with her motivation enabled the recently completed wastewater project to progress very efficiently.”
To find the nearest Rural Development contact for you in Nebraska visit  
For additional information on RD projects, please visit Rural Development’s new interactive web map featuring program funding and success stories for fiscal years 2009-2013. The data can be found at:         
President Obama’s plan for rural America has brought about historic investment and resulted in stronger rural communities. Under the President’s leadership, these investments in housing, community facilities, businesses and infrastructure have empowered rural America to continue leading the way – strengthening America’s economy, small towns and rural communities. USDA’s investments in rural communities support the rural way of life that stands as the backbone of our American values.

St. Anthony's Hospital Foundation Presents Check

11/21/14 02:11 PM

Pictured (l-r): Darcey Poese, Foundation board member, Barb Slaba, RN/Director of Chemotherapy; Ron Cork, President/CEO. 
Photo by Amanda Greger/Holt County Independent

The St. Anthony's Hospital Foundation Dinner Theater was a huge success. Thanks to ticket sales, silent auction items and numerous donations, the Foundation is now able to purchase five new infusion pumps for the chemotherapy department. These new pumps will provide the most up-to-date features to provide our patients with the optimal safe guards during their treatment. 

"We would like to thank the foundation for their generous donation. Your thoughtfulness is a gift  we will always treasure," said Barbara Slaba, RN/director of chemotherapy.

Area Librarians Participate In Technology 101 Classes

11/21/14 01:57 PM
Librarians from Rock County, Ainsworth, Atkinson, O'Neill and Creighton participated in a series of Technology 101 classes held at the Atkinson Public Library over the last three months.  Devra Dragos and Holly Woldt from the Nebraska Library Commission, and Extension Educators Amy Timmerman, LaDonna Werth, and Jay Jenkens presented sessions on social media, broadband, cloud computing, Word and Excel tips, general troubleshooting, etc.  This was offered as part of the Nebraska Broadband Initiative, and was sponsored by the University of Nebraska Cooperative Extension and the Nebraska Library Commission.   

St. Mary's One Act Wins NVC

11/21/14 01:43 PM
The Saint Mary's One-Act Cast and Crew competed in the NVC West competition  in Stuart, and came home with their fourth straight Conference Championship! Also, several actresses earned outstanding performance awards. The actresses were Molly Atkeson, Bridget Schneider, and Brittany Soukup. In addition, Logan Spencer received the NVC Best Male Actor Award. Not pictured: Noah Johnson, Paige Gaughenbaugh, and Kaylee Harvey. 

Logan Spencer of St. Mary's won the NVC Best Male Actor Award

Farm Bill Meetings Give Farmers A Chance To Learn About Coverage Programs

11/20/14 04:39 PM

The Holt- Boyd Farm Service Agency and UNL Extension Service is hosting a Farm Bill meeting on Thursday, December 11, 2014, at 9:00 a.m. at the Our Saviour's Lutheran Hall in Spencer and at 2:00 p.m. at the Knight’s of Columbus Hall in O'Neill. The meeting is free and open to the public. 

UNL Extension Service , will demonstrate the online decision-making tools that are available to producers to help make important enrollment decisions regarding the Agricultural Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC) programs. Learning more about ARC and PLC is extremely important for producers who must make a one-time decision about base and yield updates as well as ARC or PLC election and enrollment decisions. An FSA representative will be in attendance to answer any questions on ARC and PLC policy and procedure.

For more information about the meeting, please contact the Holt-Boyd County FSA Offices at 402-336-3796 extension 2.
Access to a full schedule of statewide Producer Information Meetings is available at or

Persons with disabilities who require accommodations to attend or participate in this meeting/event/function should contact the Holt-Boyd FSA office at 402-336-3796 extension 2 or Federal Relay Service at 1-800-877-8339

O'Neill FCCLA Members Recognized At State Capital Ceremony

11/20/14 01:44 PM

(left to right) Governor Dave Heineman, Emily Morrow, Allison Ludwig, Allison Becker and Dr. Matthew Blomstedt
On Monday, November 17, Allison Becker, Allison Ludwig, and Emily Morrow, members of the O’Neill FCCLA Chapter were recognized at the Commissioner’s Recognition Ceremony in the State Capital Rotunda.  They were acknowledged for their efforts during the National FCCLA Conference last summer when they competed in the STAR competition earning a gold medal and 99.4 % score.  They received their certificates from Governor Dave Heineman and Commissioner of Education Dr. Matthew Blomstedt.   On hand to observe the ceremony were their family members: Bart and Paula Becker, John and Cheryl Ludwig, Kevin and Drew Morrow, as well as O’Neill Superintendant Amy Shane and chapter advisor Ann Mann.

Tony Bosn Spends $1410.56 In 3 Minutes at Rotary Club Shopping Spree

11/19/14 02:40 PM

Tony Bosn did a little damage in 3 minutes!  $1410.56
The O'Neill Rotary Club recently sold tickets for a chance at a 3 Minute Shopping Spree at O'Neill Super Foods.  Tony Bosn of O'Neill was the lucky individual that won the drawing and Wednesday, November 19 had 3 minutes to fill his shopping carts at O'Neill Super Foods.  Tony, along with his wife Chris coaching him, filled over 3 carts with groceries and goodies and when he was done the dollar amount totaled $1410.56

Curt Shambram of O'Neill was the second place prize winner and received a $300 gift certificate to O'Neill Super Foods. 

The O'Neill Rotary Club would like to thank all that purchased tickets. 

Tony Bosn along with his wife Chris & O'Neill Rotary Members get ready to haul groceries out!

Tony Bosn along with O'Neill Rotary President Mike Hammerlun

Senate Votes Down Keystone Approval Bill

11/19/14 06:38 AM

Story Courtesy Bold Nebraska
The Senate voted today to reject a bill forcing approval of the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. 

“Today’s defeat of Keystone XL should send a strong signal to the incoming GOP-led Congress that farmers and ranchers will never back down to their oil soaked intentions. We call on Pres. Obama to stand up and reject Keystone XL now,” said Jane Kleeb of Bold Nebraska.

In spite of heavy pressure from the oil industry’s friends in Congress like Sen. Mary Landrieu, key Senators held strong against the dangerous project, recognizing that the pipeline would not be in our national interest because it would threaten our land, water, and climate while bringing no economic benefit to the American people.

Today’s vote is yet another blow to the pipeline’s prospects, as recent momentum has shifted against approval of the controversial project. Recent polling showed that as Americans have had more time to learn about the Keystone XL, support for the pipeline has waned. President Obama has also made it clear that he has serious reservations about the project, telling reporters last week that the pipeline would “[provide] the ability of Canada to pump their oil, send it through our land, down to the Gulf, where it will be sold everywhere else. It doesn’t have an impact on US gas prices.” The president has also reaffirmed his commitment to evaluating the pipeline based on its impact on climate, which experts agree would be significant.

Holt County Hometown Leadership Graduates Recognized

11/18/14 03:15 PM

2014 Hometown Leadership Graduates
(left to right) Brian Sedlacek, Joyce Miller, Kris Frederick, Tom Hoover, Jacque Kiser, Amanda Greger & Ashley Hipke
(Photo Courtesy of Holt County Independent)

The Holt County Economic Development Annual Banquet was held Sunday, November 16 at the O'Neill Community Center.  This year they celebrated ten years of the HomeTown Leadership Institute.  Since it's inception in 2005 over 100 graduates have gone through the program.  This years graduates are Kris Frederick, Amanda Greger, Ashley Hipke, Tom Hoover, Jacque Kiser, Joyce Miller, Makayla Oltjenbruns, Brian Sedlacek and Amy Westphalen.

For more information on how you can enroll in the next institute contact the Holt County Economic Development Office at 402-336-1504 or go to www,

KBRX Page News Reporter Charlene Ickes Passes Away

11/18/14 11:22 AM

Charlene Ickes
KBRX Radio is saddened to hear the news of the death of our longtime Page News Reporter Charlene Ickes.  Charlene has been reporting the news from the Page area for 30 years and always had a positive, bright and cheery way of delivering the news each Tuesday.  Charlene passed away Monday afternoon, November 17 at Avera St. Anthony’s Hospital in O’Neill.

Today, Tuesday, November 18, Charlene's daughter Teri Meyer reported the Page News with a special tribute to her mother.  Click here to listen to the Newscast and listen all the way to the end so you can hear Charlene sign off on the Page News one more time.

Memorial services for Charlene Ickes, age 83, of Page, will be Thursday, November 20, 2014 at 11:00 am at The United Methodist Church in Page, NE.  Burial will be at a later date in the Page Cemetery.  Memorial Visitation will be Wednesday, November 19, 2014 from 6 to 8 pm, with a 7:30 pm Prayer Service at Biglin's Mortuary in O'Neill.  Memorials may be made to the family for future designation.

O'Neill Christmas Closet Needs Your Help To Help Others

11/17/14 04:06 PM
After the Mobile Food Pantry at the O’Neill Community Center on Tuesday, December 9, we will continue to share the love of God for people in need. Participants can enjoy a soup supper provided by the American Legion, Sons of American Legion and the Legion Riders as well as pictures with Santa. Children and adults will be able to pick out a few nice, free gifts to re-gift to their loved ones. We need your help to make it a success.

We need donations of new or gently used items that would make nice gifts for people. Suggestions include toys, home decor, small kitchen appliances, and Christmas decorations. The only clothing we need are winter coats, hats, mittens and scarfs. Also, gift wrapping paper is appreciated as volunteers will be wrapping gifts
Drop Off your donations by December 4 to any of the following locations in O’Neill:
Bank First
Great Western Bank 
Pinnacle Bank
Tri County Bank
Most of the local churches

Volunteers are needed and appreciated!Work Days include Saturday, November 22 and December 6 at 9 a.m. at the Northeast Community College Gymnasium for cleaning and organizing. Several volunteers will be needed all day on Tuesday, December 9, at the community center. Contact Chrisy Yates at 402-336-6202 to volunteer or ask
questions. Sponsored by We Care, Inc.

Nathaniel & Christopher Jennings At Albion College International Piano Festival

11/17/14 02:42 PM

left to right  - Nathaniel Jennings,- Dr. David Abbott, Professor of Piano at Albion College - Christopher Jennings
November 7 through 9, 2014, Nathaniel and Christopher Jennings were invited to participate in the 7th Annual Albion College International Piano Festival held in Albion, Michigan.  Since its inception in 2008, the Piano Festival has grown in popularity and stature.  The purpose of this festival is unique – it offers a festival for pre-college pianists of all levels from beginner to advanced.  In addition to their performance, each participant is given the opportunity to play in a master class and take a private lesson from a member of the Albion College piano faculty.  The fundamental emphasis is on learning and celebrating the love of the piano and piano music. 
Students traveled from all over the state of Michigan, the Upper Peninsula, Nebraska and Indiana to participate.  This year’s festival clinicians and guest artists were Professor Edmund Battersby from the renowned Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, and Professor Kevin Chance of the University of Alabama.  Mr. Battersby has performed all over the world with major orchestras and chamber groups.  Dr. Chance has performed in Carnegie Hall, at the Lake District Music Festival, and with several orchestras across the United States. 
Nathaniel and Christopher attend O’Neill Public Schools and are the sons of William and Molly Jennings.  They study piano with Laurie Hacker of O’Neill and Patricia Will of Omaha.

Jace Stagemeyer Piece Featured at Celebration of Youth XXI

11/17/14 01:50 PM

Jace Stagemeyer with his PVC Lamp
The pvc lamp of Jace Stagemeyer of Page, Nebraska was showcased in the 21st annual Celebration of Youth in the University of Nebraska—Lincoln’s Department of Textiles, Merchandising & Fashion Design October 20 – November 8, 2014.  Items in the exhibition in the Robert Hillestad Textiles Gallery were selected from the thousands of exhibits in the Clothing, Fashion Show, Home Environment and Quilt Quest departments at the 2014 Nebraska State Fair. 
On November 8, the department hosted a day of workshops for the youth and their parents, culminating in the exhibition’s closing event on November 8.  Each exhibitor in the Gallery gave a short artist’s talk about their piece.  The program was followed by a final opportunity to see the exhibition in the Hillestad Gallery, and a reception hosted by the Friends of the Robert Hillestad Textiles Gallery.   

4-H Awards Presented at 2014 4-H Achievement Ceremony

11/17/14 01:34 PM
The 4-H Achievement Ceremony is held annually in the fall. This year, the ceremony was held Sunday, November 9th at O’Neill Lanes in O’Neill. 4-H Families were encouraged to attend for an afternoon of bowling fun and 4-H awards. A total of 47 4-H youth in attendance participated in bowling. A number of volunteers and youth were presented with awards. At this year’s ceremony, the Host 4-H Club included members of the Eagle Hustlers Club of Page. The Masters Of Ceremonies were: Travis Halsey and Tyler Beeks. Membership pins were presented to one, three, five, seven, nine, ten, and eleven year members. Leadership pins were presented to two, five, fifteen and twenty year leaders. Leaders receiving awards for two years of service include: Joel Coburn, Christy Deseive, Amy Gubbels, Ann Kurpgeweit, Christi Larby, Sherry Melcher, Katie Olson, Judy Tomjack, and Lee Woita. Leaders receiving awards for five years of service include: Michelle Haburchak and Kerri Klabenes. Leaders receiving awards for ten years of service include: Kevin DeKay and Lynn Nichols. Scott Moore received an award for twenty years of service. Thank you to all these volunteers who have so graciously donated much of their time to the Holt County 4-H program. Awards were given for youth who completed the 4-H Career Portfolio, Diamond Clover Application, and Camp Scholarships. Special awards were presented: Heart of 4-H Award – Mary Pospichal; Friend of 4-H Award – AgLand Electric Motor Service, Atkinson; Outstanding 4-H Alumni Award –Rick Doolittle, Outstanding 4-H’er Award – Lindy Woita. The afternoon concluded with a Holt County 4-H Council fund-raiser conducted by auctioneer: Travis Dougherty. 2014 Volunteers (l to r) Joel Coburn, Sherry Melcher & Kevin DeKay 1st Year Members Back Row (L to R): Matthew Koehlmoos - , Starlea Bowen, Jessica Green, Andrew Koehlmoos, Autumn Hoppe Front Row (L to R): LaShanna Werth, Elizabeth Olson, Zeke Klabenes, Miya Carey, Wade Krysl 3-5 Year Members Back Row (L to R): Cale Buss – 3 year, Lawrence Werth – 5 year, Levi Cronk – 5 year, Lucas Olson – 5 year, Tyson Stracke – 5 year, Tate Krysl – 3 year Middle Row (L to R): Ashley Pischel – 5 year, Emma Green – 5 year, Jordyn Laible – 5 year Front Row (L to R): Hannah Olson – 3 year, Ashley Melcher – 3 year 7, 9, 10, 11 Year Members Back Row (L to R): Leanne DeKay – 10 year, Javin Klabenes – 7 year, Lindy Woita – 10 year, Meagan Carr – 10 year, Dani Laible – 7 year, Andrew Koenig – 7 year Front Row (L to R): Joshua Klabenes – 7 year, Casey Coburn – 7 year, Jade Buss – 7 year, Travis Halsey – 7 year

Gov. Heineman Announces Members of 2015 Nebraska Ag Youth Council

11/17/14 11:40 AM

Kory Wagner of Creighton (back row, 4th from left) was selected to the NAYC.

(Lincoln, Neb.) Today, Gov. Dave Heineman and Department of Agriculture Director Greg Ibach announced the selection of the members of the 2014-2015 Nebraska Agricultural Youth Council (NAYC). The council is comprised of college-aged students from throughout the state who exhibit a passion for agriculture and promote the industry through educating others.

“It’s an exciting time to be involved in the agricultural industry, and each of these young adults has exhibited a passion for educating others about the importance of agriculture,” said Gov. Heineman. “These are the future leaders of our agricultural industry, and I am excited to see what these students accomplish during the upcoming year on the Nebraska Agricultural Youth Council.”

The NAYC is entering its 44th year with the installation of the new council members. Throughout the year, the council coordinates several agricultural learning experiences for Nebraska youth including: visiting elementary classrooms to discuss where food comes from, taking urban youth to experience farms and what a day in the life of a farmer is like and visiting with high school students from across the state. The primary focus of the NAYC is to coordinate the annual Nebraska Agricultural Youth Institute (NAYI), a five-day summer conference for current high school juniors and seniors.

This year’s council is comprised of 21 college-aged men and women.

The 2014-2015 NAYC leaderships includes: Johnny Ference, Ord, Head Counselor; Trent Mastny, Howells, Head Counselor; Larissa Wach, Wauneta, President; Morgan Zumpfe, Friend, Secretary; Samantha Schneider, Cozad, Vice President of the Communications and Social Media Committee; Hannah Gaebel, Ashland, Vice President of the NAYI Improvement Committee; Eric Wemhoff, Humphrey, Vice President of the Promotion Committee; Aksel Wiseman, Hershey, Vice President of the Sponsorship and Alumni Relations Committee; and Toni Rasmussen, Albion, Vice President of the Youth Outreach Committee.

Additional members are: Elizabeth Rice, Murray; Railen Ripp, Kearney; Dylan Dam, Hooper; Grant Uehling, Uehling; Haley Bledsoe, Blair; Kate Likens, Swanton; Kory Wagner, Creighton; Landon Swedberg, North Platte; Maggie Louthan, Smithfield; Rachel Ibach, Sumner; Rebecca Cornelius, Madrid; and Sarah Wollenburg, Beatrice.  

To learn more about the NAYC or NAYI, please visit the NAYI website at or search for Nebraska Agricultural Youth Institute on Facebook.

Deer Outlook Good For 2014 Firearm Season

11/14/14 10:02 PM

Rod Doggett with his buck taken last year
A good season of deer hunting is expected in Nebraska for the Nov. 15-23 firearm season.
“Most hunters should see more deer this year after two good years of fawn production,” said Kit Hams, the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission’s big game program manager. “The number of older bucks should also remain high as hunters have continued to be selective in their harvest.”
Hams estimated Nebraska deer harvest for all seasons may end up similar to 2013 and surpass 45,000. The deer population is recovering from a 2012 outbreak of epizootic hemorrhagic disease.
Game and Parks reminds hunters to make safety a priority this firearm season. View safety tips and requirements online.

Public Invited to Meetings In Our Area About Niobrara River Studies

11/14/14 09:56 PM

LINCOLN – The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission invites the public to attend informational meetings regarding studies completed on the Niobrara River.

Game and Parks will present information from the six studies it has completed about the function and values of the river. Those studies include the science behind the water levels in the river; the economic and social values of recreation on the river; the economic and social values of the river for agricultural, industrial and municipal uses; and the impact river flows have on fish and wildlife.

The meeting schedule is:

-- Dec. 8 – Chadron, Upper Niobrara White Natural Resources District, 430 E. Second St., 6:30 p.m.

-- Dec. 9 – Valentine, Niobrara Lodge, 803 E. U.S. Highway 20, 6:30 p.m.

-- Dec. 10 – Butte, Community Hall, 520 Thayer St., 6:30 p.m

-- Dec. 16 – Lincoln, Nebraska Game and Parks Outdoor Education Center, 4703 N. 44th St., 6:30 p.m.

Call KBRX at (402) 336-1612