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York County Landowners Win Injunction To Halt Eminent Domain For Pipeline


02/26/15 10:57 AM
York, NE — The District Court in York County, Nebraska on Thursday granted local landowners' motion for a preliminary injunction to halt TransCanada's use of eminent domain to take their land for the proposed Keystone XL pipeline.   CLICK THE HEADLINE ABOVE FOR COMPLETE STORY

Boating Safety Course Dates in Northeast Area


02/26/15 09:12 AM

NORFOLK-- Option B boating safety courses will be available in Columbus and Norfolk beginning in March. Nebraska law requires any motorboat operator (including personal watercraft) born after December 31, 1985 to complete a Boating Safety Course and be in possession of a course certificate. Operators must be 14 years of age to use a motorboat (including personal watercraft) in Nebraska.

Option B, the home study option, requires participants to download and study materials online before attending an Option B class, a 3-hour home study review/test-out session. Those looking to take the 6-hour Option A course can find additional classes on the Boating Education online calendar: http://outdoornebraska.ne.gov/boating/guides/boating/BGeducate.asp.

Courses in Norfolk will be offered at the Norfolk Police Department. Courses offered in Columbus will be held at the Loup Public Power District. Option B course dates are:
  • March 10: 6-9 p.m., Norfolk
  • March 22: 12-3 p.m., Columbus
  • April 2: 6-9 p.m., Norfolk
  • April 26: 1-4 p.m., Columbus
  • May 5: 6-9 p.m., Norfolk
  • May 11: 6-9 p.m., Columbus
  • June 9: 6-9 p.m., Norfolk
  • June 19: 6-9 p.m., Columbus
  • July 2: 6-9 p.m., Columbus
  • July 9: 6-9 p.m., Norfolk
To attend a boating safety course in Norfolk, register with Daryl Teter at daryl.teter@nebraska.gov or (308) 440-1863. To attend a course in Columbus, contact Donna Robinson at donna.robinson@nebraska.gov or (402) 416-3139. Fees may apply. If necessary, groups of 8 or more students may contact course instructors to arrange an additional session. In case of severe weather, please contact instructors prior to your class to confirm course status.

Option B students may download The Nebraska Boater Education Study Guide at http://www.boaterexam.com/usa/nebraska. For more information on Nebraska boating safety, please visit OutdoorNebraska.ne.gov.
 

Spring Turkey Hunting Workshops Scheduled


02/26/15 09:10 AM

LINCOLN – The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission will host six spring turkey hunting workshops across the state to help prepare hunters for the upcoming seasons.

The free, two-hour workshops are open to all turkey hunters, regardless of experience and will feature Game and Parks specialists covering strategies, equipment, biology and tips to becoming a successful turkey hunter.

“This is a great program for the new turkey hunter or those looking to learn more,” said Aaron Hershberger, a Game and Parks outdoor education specialist.

The workshops will take place March 7 near Gretna, March 17 in Lincoln, March 18 in Grand Island and Chadron, March 19 in North Platte, and March 28 in Norfolk. Visit HuntSafeNebraska.org for details and to register. Space is limited, and registration is required.
 

More Elk Collared in North Central Nebraska


02/26/15 09:05 AM


Nebraska Game and Parks Commission staff members Todd Nordeen and Justin Powell process a cow elk with helicopter crew members David Rivers and Donnie Wackerman. (credit: NEBRASKAland/Justin Haag)

BASSETT – The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission placed tracking collars on three elk near Bassett in north-central Nebraska on Tuesday, the latest installment of a multi-year effort to use real-time location data to determine populations, make harvest recommendations and monitor herd health.

Game and Parks contracted a helicopter wildlife capture crew to catch the elk and equip them with GPS tracking collars and ear tags. In addition, samples were taken from the three cows to obtain health and genetic information.

This is the third year of the collaring effort in the Niobrara River region between Valentine and Bassett.  The crews placed collars on 17 elk the previous two years -- 11 in 2014 and six in 2013.
 

O'Neill FCCLA Attends Peer Education Retreat


02/25/15 11:30 AM

front row: Haley Schmeichel, Marissa Lichty, Shelby Thomas
back row:  Emily Morrow, Amanda Brown, Allison Ludwig, Allison Becker, and Emma Krysl

 
The O’Neill FCCLA Chapter attended the annual State Peer Education Retreat held in Kearney on Monday, February 23.  There were over 300 FCCLA members and advisers from over 40 chapters in attendance. 

Allison Becker, Amanda Brown, Emma Krysl, Marissa Lichty, Allison Ludwig, Emily Morrow, Haley Schmeichel, and Shelby Thomas attended from the O’Neill Chapter.

The theme for the day was “Soar Up With Peer Education”.  The day began with introductions of the current Peer Officers who gave a brief overview of each National Program they represent.  Introductions of team finalists for the coming year recognized those students who will be vying for the three teams in April at State Conference. O’Neill students recognized included: Allison Becker, a finalist for Student Body; Allison Ludwig, a finalist for the Financial Fitness Team, and Emily Morrow, a finalist for the Families First Team.  The O’Neill chapter was acknowledged for completing a Financial Fitness and Families First Project during this school year.  Ariel Lichty was awarded a Families First Scholarship. 

Keynote Speaker for the day was Dr. Joanne Owens Nausler. She encouraged those in attendance to bring out their inner scout.  She shared a quote from Johnny Carson’s third grade teacher “it’s nice to be important but it’s more important to be nice.”  Dr. Jo encouraged those in attendance to be goal setters, to be sure their communication says exactly what they mean, and the more they learn the more they will earn.  The Peer Education Teams, Sally Bernard who spoke about funding your dreams, and the Bennett’s Taekwondo Academy who demonstrated some self-defense techniques presented other sessions.  

President Obama Vetoes Keystone XL Bill


02/24/15 03:03 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama has vetoed a Republican bill forcing construction of the Keystone XL oil pipeline.

The White House sent notice of the veto to the Senate on Tuesday, shortly after the bill was received at the White House. It's the third veto of Obama's presidency.

The move puts a freeze on a top GOP priority, at least for now. It also reasserts Obama's authority over a project that's become a flashpoint in the national debate about climate change.

Congressional Republicans may try to override Obama's veto, but have yet to show they can muster the two-thirds majority in both chambers that they would need. Sen. John Hoeven, the bill's chief GOP sponsor, says Republicans are about four votes short in the Senate and need about 11 more in the House.
 

Agritourism Landowners Hope To Save On Liability Insurance


02/23/15 02:46 PM
By Kelli Rollin, Nebraska News Service LINCOLN--Sarah Sortum and her family constantly worry. Sortum's family owns Calamus Outfitters, a recreational ranch in Burwell that offers hunting and river adventures among its activities. Sortum said the  CLICK THE HEADLINE ABOVE FOR COMPLETE STORY

O'Neill High School Students Perform In SYNE


02/23/15 02:17 PM

Pictured left to right: (back row) Madalynn Hohbein, Sable Davis, Hali Kloppenborg, Izabel Kleinburg, Mikyla Grenier, Alexandria Jensen,
 (front row) Katlyn Fonseca, Samuel Carstens, Melody Walton, Trista Strampher


Saturday, February 21, ten O'Neill 7th and 8th grade music students performed as part of the 2015 Singing Youth of Nebraska festival choir at Grand Island Central Catholic High School under the direction of Dr. Rhonda J. Fuelberth from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln.  160 students from 19 schools came together learn, laugh, make friends, and make music.  Congratulations on a fantastic musical event and an uplifting choral concert.  Thank you to the parents of these wonderful students for their continuing support of their children's music education.  

2015 St. Patrick Day Pins Go On Sale


02/19/15 04:41 PM
IF YOU DON'T HAVE A PAYPAL ACCOUNT CLICK BUY NOW AN CLICK ON 
PAY WITH CREDIT CARD.

 
Number of Pins
 
 





Number of Pins
1 Pin $7.50 USD
2 Pins $13.50 USD
3 Pins $19.00 USD
4 Pins $25.00 USD
5 Pins $30.00 USD




 

Holt County 4-H Enrollment Due March 1


02/18/15 06:33 PM

The deadline for 4-H enrollment in Holt County is approaching quickly.  All enrollment forms must be filled out and turned back into the Extension Office by March 1.  4-H is education for life that uses a learning by-doing approach.  Clover Kids are welcome to join the Holt County Clover Kid Program and must be between the ages of 5-7 before January 1st, 2015.  To participate in regular 4-H youth must be 8 – 18 years of age before January 1st, 2015.  Dues for each member are $10 + club dues.  Please visit the following link for more information: http://holt-boyd.unl.edu/HoltCounty4-HEnrollment
To learn how to become a 4-H member or volunteer leader in Holt/Boyd County, contact the Extension Office at 402-336-2760.

Proposed Bill Would Impact Rural Schools


02/18/15 06:26 PM
By Erika Stewart-Finkenstaedt, Nebraska News Service
LINCOLN--Sen. Al Davis is concerned about rural Nebraska.
The state senator from Hyannis introduced two bills in front of the Legislature's Education Committee Tuesday that would have a direct impact on small communities in the state.
LB595 would create a task force to examine issues of school construction, including infrastructure needs and how to provide funding.
"My hope is that we can enable the state to ensure that every Nebraskan is educated for success," Davis said at the hearing. 
The bill would reduce pressure on local taxpayers and give guidance to smaller communities that don't have expertise, according to Davis.
Kyle McGowan, superintendent of Crete Public Schools, spoke in favor of the bill.
It is "vital to maintain safe and secure locations to students and the general public who use them daily and year round," McGowan said.
Caroline Winchester, superintendent of Chadron Public Schools, also supported the bill.
Schools need information in order to make strategic choices when given limited funds, Winchester said.
Virginia Moon of the Nebraska Council of School Administrators said the task force would help provide a picture of what the needs are across the state.  According to Moon, since communities now only have one tool when it comes to funding--bonds--"the group would allow another set of tools to provide for schools."
The 10-member task force would be made up of two members of the Legislature, a capital construction specialist, and other members of the community.
No one spoke against the bill.
Also introduced by Davis, LB477 would change procedures relating to school districts with only one high school in the county.
Under current law, a high school with fewer than 25 students can contract with another school district for one year, and then change to Class I if enrollment is below 50.  LB477 would allow such a school to continue operating if it is the only public high school in the county and a majority of the district approves each year.
Taylor, the only town in Loup County, is currently the only town facing such a situation.
Wayne Ruppert, superintendent of Loup County Public School, testified in favor of the bill, stating that the transportation time needed when students attend schools outside the county cuts into time spent learning.
Robert Christensen, a member of the board of education for Loup County Public School, also supported the bill.
"We are working hard to provide students an exceptional education," Christensen said, "But we are facing multi-faceted difficulties."
When Sen. Sullivan, chairperson of the Education Committee, asked how the patrons in the district felt, Christensen said they want to keep the school.
The quality of education would be "no better if they join another school," he said.
No one spoke against the bill.

Tractor Relay Across Nebraska To Come Through Our Area This Summer


02/18/15 06:17 PM

With just three tractor rides under their belts, the Nebraska Antique Farming Association has set the route for the 2015 Tractor Relay Across Nebraska (TRAN).

Back in 2012, the antique tractor association planned for the first tractor ride, a nine-day excursion across the state of Nebraska from west to east. Now three years later, for the first time, the TRAN will travel through Northeast Nebraska.

The planned Itinerary for the 2015 Relay Across Nebraska is as follows: May 30, Harrison, NE to Chadron; May 31, Chadron to Gordon; June 1, Gordon to Cody; June 2, Cody to Valentine; June 3, Valentine to Springview; June 4, Springview to Spencer; June 5, Spencer to Crofton; and June 6, Crofton to Yankton, South Dakota for Tri-State Old Iron Association Show.

The TRAN organizers offer options when registering for the eight-day, 400-mile, 2015 TRAN ride. Antique tractor riders can sign up for the complete trip or any segment or day they desire. Some drivers only participate in the relay in the areas where they live.

Another aspect of the TRAN event is the support of Operation Comfort Warriors (OCW). OCW is an organization sponsored by the American Legion dedicated to raising funds for Disabled Veterans for comfort items not normally provided by the government. Items they supply include sweat pants, DVDs, puzzles, electronic devices, books, calling cards and much more.

Many times communities along the TRAN route, sponsor fundraisers for the OCW and the proceeds are greatly appreciated.

So if enjoying antique farming equipment and tractors is a hobby, check out http://www.antiquefarming.org/ for more information or 2015 TRAN registration forms, or call Donelle Moormeier, 402-429-2480, Relay Chairman or Howard Raymond 308-650-1527, NAFA Secretary.

Boaters Safety Class To Be April 18 In Clearwater With Limited Registration


02/18/15 05:38 PM

A Boater Safety Class will be held at the Clearwater Fire Hall, April 18th,6-9:00 pm.  This course will be Option B Home Study.  Materials for the class can be downloaded from www.outdoornebraska.org .  Click on Boater Education and go to Option B.  If you would like to sign up or have questions, please call Shelly Mlnarik at 402-340-5856.

Nebraska law requires any motorboat operator (including personal watercraft) born after December 31, 1985, complete a Boating Safety Course and be in possession of a course certificate when operating the boat.  You must be at least 14 years of age to operate a motorboat (including personal watercraft) in Nebraska. If you are 13 and will turn 14 during this boating season you will be allowed to take the test but will not be completely certified until you are 14.

Successful completion of a NASBLA approved boating safety courses certified or recognized by other states (South Dakota included) will be accepted for non-resident motorboat operators. Responsibility lies with the operator.

There will be a limit of 25 participants!

UNMC Announces Dean's List For Fall 2014 Semester


02/17/15 04:12 PM

The University of Nebraska Medical Center has announced its fall 2014 dean’s list for students enrolled in its nursing, dentistry, pharmacy, radiography, clinical laboratory science and nuclear medicine technology programs.
 
To qualify for the dean’s list, nursing, radiation science technology and clinical laboratory science students must be enrolled for 12 or more hours during the semester and have a grade point average of 3.75 or above.
 
To qualify for the pharmacy dean’s list, students must place in the top 20 percent of their class and maintain a grade point average of 3.5 or above. College of Dentistry students must be in the top 10 percent of their class.
 
The following is a list of students, their hometowns and the colleges in which they are enrolled.
 
UNMC College of Nursing Lincoln Division
O'Neill - Davida Smidt
 
UNMC College of Nursing West Nebraska Division (Scottsbluff)
Chambers - Julie Jordan
 
UNMC College of Nursing Northern Division (Norfolk)
O'Neill - Mckayla Armstead, Halie Gribble
Plainview - Paige Anderson
 
UNMC School of Allied Health Professions
Radiation Science Technology
Elgin - Jessica Heithoff
 
College of Pharmacy
Petersburg - Heath Faust

Entries Being Taken For St. Patrick's Day Parade March 14


02/17/15 03:47 PM

The World Famous Green Horse is one of the favorite entries in the O'Neill, Nebraska St. Patrick's Day Parade.

The 2015 O’Neill St. Patrick’s Day Parade will be held Saturday, March 14 in O’Neill.  If you would like to be in the parade please contact the O’Neill Chamber of Commerce at 402-336-2355 or e-mail your entry to oneill@telebeep.com  Please do this as soon as possible so the parade lineup may be made.  

Three Entertainers To Share the Stage At This Year's Cattlemen's Ball


02/16/15 11:55 AM

Lynch, NE – Three country music entertainers will be the spotlight entertainment for the 18th annual Cattlemen’s Ball of Nebraska, June 5-6, near Lynch. Aaron Tippin, Sammy Kershaw and Darryl Worley, share a combined 73 top county singles.

The Cattlemen’s Ball will be hosted by the Tom Herzog and Kim Schweers Family. The event’s theme, “Outlaw Cancer,” will bring out the local history of the area. In the days of the Old West, many outlaws, cattle rustlers, horse thieves, and conmen including legendary outlaws Doc Middleton and Kid Wade frequented what is now the Outlaw Trail.  Today’s Outlaw Trail is Highway 12, paralleling the Niobrara River, which provides a beautiful setting for the Ball. The ranch operations include a herd of registered Texas Longhorn cattle.

Co-chairs of the event are looking forward to everyone having a great time and being inspired by this event. C-chairs of the event are Stephanie Boettcher, Spencer; Kelly Kalkowski, Lynch; Deb Hilker, Scott Poese, and Nicole Sedlacek all of O’Neill.

“We want people to have a great time and we’re excited to showcase this part of Nebraska and Nebraska’s Beef and Agricultural Industry. But ultimately we want to raise money for cancer research and treatment,” said Sedlacek. “Cancer touches everyone. Everyone has a story about their own cancer diagnosis or that of a loved one. We want fewer of those stories, and we want every one of them to be a success story. That’s why we’re doing this.”

The Cattlemen's Ball of Nebraska, Inc. is established to promote beef in a healthy diet, to showcase rural Nebraska and to raise money for health care research.  To date, this event has raised over ten million dollars for the UNMC/Buffett Cancer Center in Omaha, Nebraska, while ten percent of these funds have been granted to local health care organizations in the communities that host the ball.

The two days include a variety of events including a golf tournament, art show, wine tasting, live and silent auctions, style show, a general store, airboat rides, helicopter rides, Native American Pow-Wow and more.

Nebraska’s beef will be highlighted at several events such as the Trail Boss Social, a private Champagne Reception, the Trail Boss Brunch and the Saturday evening dinner.

Tickets for the events are on sale now and are available at www.cattlemensball.com or at the Holt County Economic Development Office in O’Neill. To order your ticket by phone or for more information call 402-336-1504.

The website www.cattlemensball.com will have the most up to date details on the weekend’s activities.
 

Chambers FCCLA Beats Heart Disease


02/16/15 10:53 AM

Back row (L-R) Brant Pavel, Tanner Tracy, Kyra Farewell
Front row: Jacie Laetsch, Chyenne Burrell, Molly Lambert, Kacie
 
Chambers FCCLA recently completed a project to beat heart disease. The project began in December with a Red Out for the CWC/Ewing basketball games. All team members wore official Red Out shirts for warm-ups. At half-time of the boy’s game, FCCLA members presented a short program on “Heart Disease by the Numbers.” Members also passed buckets through the crowd for a “Minute to Give It” with proceeds going to the American Heart Association. In addition, an all-school change war was held with the fifth grade class bringing in the most cash for AHA. Finally, during FCCLA week, the chapter sponsored a “PJ’s and Caps for a Cause Day.” The total submitted to AHA for these efforts was $1113.
 
This project was chosen because of the shocking statistics about heart disease including that heart disease is the number one killer of women age 20 and older and it is largely preventable. Also, according to the American Heart Association, nearly 60 million Americans suffer from heart disease today.

Major Win for Nebraska Landowners: Court Places Hold on Eminent Domain Takings f


02/12/15 04:06 PM

Dave Domina, lawyer for plaintiffs in a lawsuit against TransCanada regarding eminent domain with the  Keystone XL pipeline, adresses the court in Holt County District Court in O'Neill on Thursday afternoon.
Photo Courtesy Jake Wragge, Norfolk Daily News 
Story Courtesy Bold Nebraska www.boldnebraska.org
Today, the Nebraska District Court in Holt County placed a hold on TransCanada’s eminent domain takings of Nebraskans’ land along the route of the proposed Keystone XL tar sands pipeline. This development is a major win for landowners, whose property will be temporarily protected from being seized by the foreign oil company.
 
The eminent domain takings are on hold until the Supreme Court hears the landowners case on the constitutionality of LB 1161, the siting law that gave TransCanada the power to use eminent domain to build their tar sands pipeline.
 
In January, though the majority of judges agreed that the law was unconstitutional, there were questions about the landowner plaintiffs’ standing in the case. Now that TransCanada has initiated eminent domain takings against the landowners, the legal issue of standing can be met and the merits of the case can be ruled upon. This process could take up to two years, and TransCanada will not be able to seize their land at least until it’s complete.
 
“TransCanada sees the writing on the wall,” said Jane Kleeb, Director of Bold Nebraska. “Nebraska landowners are not going to cave to their threats and we will now see them in our Supreme Court to finally get clarity on the legality of a foreign corporation using eminent domain for private gain.”

Neligh Earns Leadership Certification


02/11/15 08:13 AM
FEBRUARY 11, 2015 (LINCOLN, NEB.)—Neligh, Neb. (pop. 1,542) has earned designation in the Nebraska Department of Economic Development’s (NDED) Certified Leadership Community Program. It is the fourth community to earn certification, joining Tecumseh, Madison and Central City.
 
“Our primary focus is business retention and expansion, and we’ve seen ample capital investment as a result,” said Greg Ptacek, Neligh economic development director. “The city’s public-private partnership with a local developer has moved us toward solving our housing crunch. Neligh also is lucky to have local leadership that understands it takes a holistic approach to solve big problems. These leaders strive every day to reinforce Neligh’s motto “not too small to have it all’.”
 
“Three years ago, I had the privilege to work with a dedicated group of folks in Neligh to design a comprehensive approach to rural community and economic development,” said Caleb Pollard, former Valley County Economic Development executive director, and current co-owner of Scratchtown Brewery. “The ‘Neligh Dream Team’ desired to change the direction of the community…to put forth the planning, work and resources to change their trajectory. That’s exactly what they did. Nothing is more satisfying than seeing a rural community pull itself up by the bootstraps and put forth a self-determined plan of excellence. Years later they are reaping what they’ve sown…a positive rural future.”
 
“We believe vibrant rural people and places are essential to the fabric of American life. So, we try to partner with rural communities whose residents believe tomorrow can be better than today, and are willing to invest themselves in making it so. Neligh is just such a community,” said Chuck Schroeder, director of the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Rural Future Institute. “The folks there have consistently combined wishes with work, and created a community that is a best location for young people seeking a place from which to launch careers, build families, and engage in an environment where their values make a difference. We are proud to be associated with a town that models success economically, socially, culturally and environmentally in a way that inspires others across the region and around the country.”
 
IMG_0033(L. to R. Greg Ptacek, Director of Neligh Economic Development, Neligh Mayor Joe Hartz, and Dana Klabenes, Neligh City Clerk, accept the certificate during a Feb. 10 city council meeting. Kelly Gewecke, NDED program coordinator, presented the certificate and took the photo).
 
Neligh has recorded a significant amount of investment since grassroots economic development efforts were first started in 2012:
 
• More than $27.5 million in capital investment in Neligh
• More than $440 million in capital investment in Antelope County
• Welcomed 12 new businesses
• Transitioned 11 businesses to new ownership
• Developed “This is MY Neligh” community marketing campaign viewed more than 7,800 times in 48 states and 39 countries
• Leveraged public and private partnership to develop an 18-lot housing subdivision with seven lots sold in less than 15 months
• Established an innovative Healthcare Professional Attraction Program, leveraging more than $190,000 in student loan repayment assistance
 
NDED created the program in 2011 with the purpose of helping smaller Nebraska communities deal head-on with challenges and change. Communities must demonstrate having a solid planning and implementation process in place. Communities also must actively take advantage of technology, or be willing to learn to meet program objectives.
 
Applicant communities are evaluated in:
 
• Community involvement
• Strategic planning
• Community planning and zoning
• Business and technology development
• Incentives and implementation
 
For information about Neligh’s ongoing efforts, contact Greg Ptacek at 402-887-4447, or greg@neligh.org
 
For information about the Certified Leadership Community Program, contact Kelly Gewecke at kelly.gewecke@nebraska.gov, 308-627-3151, or visit http://neded.org/community/community-info/community-improvement/leadership-community

Ag Champions Contest Announced For Nebraska FFA Chapters


02/10/15 02:25 PM


LINCOLN, NEBRASKA
 – Championing for a cause is as important to Olympian Curt Tomasevicz as preparing for a bobsled race.  But this cause is agriculture. The Nebraska Corn Board (NCB) and Nebraska FFA, with the help of Curt Tomasevicz, spokesman for NCB, are partnering on a new program and contest for Nebraska FFA students called “Ag Champions”.

The purpose of the Ag Champions program is to build up FFA students to become “agvocates” (agricultural advocates) in their communities and amongst their peers. The program will provide a toolbox of resources and a contest to allow FFA chapters to submit a plan which would earn the top three winning chapters grants, based off of the budget in their agvocacy proposal. The Grand Champion winning chapter will earn the opportunity for Tomasevicz to be involved with their program.

“Through this project, we want to engage FFA members by developing a lasting impact through direct community involvement, as well as encouraging grassroots agvocacy,” said Anita Wollenburg, interim Nebraska FFA state advisor. “Through this plan, FFA chapters will determine an issue in their community, the audience they want to reach and expand on an agvocacy plan of defending agriculture along with education and communication.”

While this contest only provides three winning grants, the goal of the Ag Champions program is to create agvocates in the state’s communities and help put a realistic plan in place that can be used by the FFA chapters and students in any situation.

“As issues affecting agriculture appear too often, we are encouraging local FFA chapters to have a plan in place to defend their industry, while also putting agriculture on the offense,” said Kelly Brunkhorst, NCB executive director. “Education is key to important issues and could dispel many issues that arise when the foundation and basic understanding of an issue is in place.”

Tomasevicz is helping to spread the message about the Ag Champions program with a shout-out to FFA students on his YouTube channel. All Nebraska FFA chapters will be receiving information about the contest details from the Nebraska State FFA Officers on their chapter visits, but more information can be obtained on www.NebraskaCorn.org. Deadline for the Ag Champions plans to be submitted to NCB is May 15, 2015.

Area Schools Celebrating FCCLA Week Listen To Interviews Here


02/09/15 01:37 PM
The KBRX Studios were busy Monday morning (February 9, 2015) as three area schools had representatives from their FCCLA Chapters in to talk about FCCLA Week which is February 8-14.
O'Neill Public, West Boyd and Chambers schools were represented.  You can click on the link below each picture to hear the interviews from each different FCCLA Chapter.

O'Neill High School FCCLA Members Marissa Lichty (left) and Ariel Lichty dressed up for Pajama Day today at O'Neill High School.
CLICK HERE TO LISTEN TO INTERVIEW WITH ARIEL & MARISSA LICHTY

Chambers FCCLA Members Cheyenne Burrell (left) and Molly Lambert on the radio at KBRX
CLICK HERE TO LISTEN TO INTERVIEW WITH CHEYENNE BURRELL & MOLLY LAMBERT


(left to right) Carol Eilers and Kristen Mohr of West Boyd FCCLA with Marilyn Whitaker of Chambers FCCLA Chapter.
CLICK HERE FOR INTERVIEW WITH KRISTEN MOHR OF WEST BOYD FCCLA 
.  

Knights of Columbus District Free Throw Contest Held


02/09/15 11:24 AM
 

(front row left to right) Jett Kunz, Tate Thompson, Caeden Lech, Natasha Zeisler, Amelia Hoffman, Sydney Atkinson
(back row left to right) Jadyn Eby, Blake Benson, Jenny Goesch, Elle Schmaderer, Shay Nelson, Austin Wenner

On Sunday, February 8th the district level Knights of Columbus Free Throw Contest was held for girls and boys aged 9-14. The shooters came together from 4 separate districts and were allowed 25 free throws. The winners advance to the regional level competition, which is to be held in West Point on March 8th at the Guardian Angels Central Catholic Activity Center (GACC gym). The doors open at 12:30 p.m. and shooting begins at 1:00.

Winners from the district level were:
9 yr old girls - Natasha Zeisler
9 yr old boys - Caeden Lech

10 yr old girls - Amelia Hoffman
10 yr old boys - Tate Thompson

11 yr old girls - Jenny Goesch
11 yr old boys - Blake Benson
12 yr old girls - Jadyn Eby
12 yr old boys - Jett Kunz

13 yr old girls - Elle Schmaderer
13 yr old boys - Shay Nelson

14 yr old girls - Sydney Atkinson
14 yr old boys - Austin Wenner

 

Area Students Compete At District Livestock Judging At NECC


02/06/15 05:27 PM

Livestock Judging at NECC
NORFOLK – Northeast Community College’s Chuck M. Pohlman Agriculture Complex in Norfolk was the site of the FFA District Livestock Judging Contest. Four-hundred-sixty contestants from 37 schools participated in the recent event.
Mike Roeber, agriculture/livestock judging instructor at Northeast, said the team portion of the contest was set up slightly different this year as compared to past years; teams could have up to eight members, with the top four scores counted.
KBRX area Individual and team results include:
District 4 Juniors
Individuals:  1st Reece McFarland, Bloomfield; 2nd Cole Bruns, Bloomfield. Teams: 1st Bloomfield (McGwire Mackesprang, Cole Bruns, Garrett Alexander, Brandi Guenther, Leah Pope, Jackson Eisenhauer, Quinten Moles, and Reece McFarland); 2nd Verdigre (Clay Konopasek, Caay Drobny, Madisen Randa, Kevin Rudlof,  Haylee Klawitter, Brandon Asmus, Keith Rudloff, and Bryson Wessendorf).
District 4 Seniors
Individuals: 1st Katie Hanvey, Verdigre; 2nd Lily Steffen, Crofton. Teams: 1st Bloomfield (Amber Bruegman, Jacob Johnson, Rachel Knox, Chantille Schmit, Karly Jensen, Kyle Young, Travis Gillilan, and Delvin Johnson); 2nd Verdigre; (Austin Ruzicka, Katie Hanvey, Rachel Dather, Greg Rudloff, Chase Ruzicka, Schuyler Forman, and Ben Johnson.)

O'Neill Community Center Fills A Void In Town


02/06/15 09:57 AM
One of the O’Neill Community Foundation Fund’s most visible projects to date is their contribution to the O’Neill Community Center.  The Fund contributed $5,500 to the building of the center beginning in 2007.  The O’Neill Community Center has become a popular place for weddings, meetings, dinners and more since it was constructed in 2011. 
 
Community Center Coordinator, Tonia Seretta, commented, “The O'Neill Community Center has been a wonderful addition to the City of O'Neill.  It has been heavily utilized by the residents of O'Neill as well as surrounding areas.  In the past year, we have had 83 rentals, including weddings, fund-raising events, conferences, meetings and a monthly food pantry.  The community center is also being used annually for KBRX's Farm & Home Show as well as other yearly events hosted by local organizations.  By having this facility, many events have been brought to the O'Neill area that had previously been held elsewhere due to lack of space.  This in turn has benefited local businesses.  As the coordinator for the community center, I have enjoyed working with a variety of people and providing information to make their experience the best it can be.  We already have several reservations for 2016 and even have one event booked for the next 10 years.”
 
The O’Neill Community Center will have a lasting impact on our community.  To learn more about the O’Neill Community Foundation Fund and the opportunities they have invested in, visit their website at www.oneillcommunityfoundation.org

Alexandra Strampher Member of UNO Honor Choir


02/04/15 11:46 AM

Alexandra Strampher
Alexandra Strampher was selected by audition from over 900 students state-wide to sing in the 2015 University of Nebraska at Omaha BOCH (Band Orchestra Choir Honor) Festival Honor Choir.  This is quite an honor as the selection process is quite challenging.  Alex sang alongside students from across Nebraska on January 23rd-25th in intense rehearsals, sectionals and break-out sessions to prepare a musical extravaganza of a concert held in the Holland Center for Performing Arts in Omaha.  Congratulations Alex for your selection for and participation in this amazing musical opportunity!

Buller & Sitz Part of Doane College Honor Choir


02/04/15 11:42 AM

Brooke Buller (left) and Marie Sitz
Congratulations to Brooke Buller and Marie Sitz!  These talented ladies were selected to participate in the 2015 Doane College Honor Choir in Crete under the direction of Dr. Kurt Runestad.  On January 12th and 13th, Brooke and Marie worked and played tirelessly in making music with students from all across Nebraska to produce an enthralling musical concert experience on Monday evening.  Marie and Brooke represented O’Neill with flair!  Congratulations ladies for being selected for this honor! 

O'Neill High School Students Participate In UNK Honor Choir


02/04/15 11:36 AM

(front row) Brooke Buller & Aleigha Holz
(back row) Marie Sitz, Rahtaya Young, Alexandra Strampher & Makenzie Petersen
This last Monday, January 26th, six O’Neill High School students sang as part of the University of Nebraska at Kearney Band and Choir Festival on the UNK campus.  Brooke Buller, Aleigha Holz, Makenzie Petersen, Marie Sitz, Alexandra Strampher, and Rahtaya Young were selected by audition from nearly 1000 students to participate in the UNK mixed and women’s choirs.  After non-stop rehearsing starting at 8:45 am, 3 choirs and 2 bands performed their hearts out in a culminating emotion-filled concert in the evening.  These students represented O’Neill with dignity and style!  Congratulations ladies on this fine musical achievement!

West Boyd FCCLA Brings Home Awards


02/04/15 11:16 AM

West Boyd FCCLA members that competed at Junior Districts.

West Boyd FCCLA members that competed at Senior Districts 
West Boyd FCCLA STAR Events Results
Parli Pro Test  Kelsey Reiman, Silver and District Runner Up  and Samantha Hipke, Silver and District Champion                       
NE Family Challenges & Issues Melissa Sextro, Gold and District Runner-Up                      
NE Health & Wellness  Elsie Magwire & Sydney Atkinson  Gold and District Champions
Chapter Service Portfolio Becca Hiatt, Alyssa Ludwig & Kelli Mashino,Gold and District Runners-Up
Food Innovations Jerica Hilkemann & Casey Kuhl, Gold and District Runners Up
Interpersonal Communications—Jr.  Kelsey Reiman and Rhiannan Smalley, Gold and District Champions
Interpersonal Communications—Sr. Cheyenna Filips & Samantha Hipke, Gold and District Champions
Focus on Children Laura Ohri & Kristen Mohr, Gold and District Runners-Up
Illustrated Talk-Jr Jacey Hilkemann & Emma Stahlecker, Silver
Chapter in ReviewPortfolio    Layne Swanson & Janet Ahlers, Gold and District Champions
Family Challenges & Issues  Vanessa Reiser, Gold and District Runner-Up
Life Event Planning  Allison Sedivy & Kelsey Sextro, Gold and District Champions
NE Consumer Issues, Adrianne Bengtson & Emily Reiser, Gold and District Champions
Both the Senior High and Junior High were awarded the Runners-Up in total points.

All Districts Champions will go on to compete at State FCCLA STAR Events in early April                           

O'Neill Chamber of Commerce Banquet Hands Out Awards


02/04/15 10:57 AM
The 2015 O'Neill Chamber of Commerce Annual Banquet was held Saturday, January 31 at the O'Neill Community Center.  A nice crowd attended the banquet with the theme "How The West Was Won".  Along with awards, the passing of the gavel was held with Terry Miles of the Holt County Independent handing the gavel over to new president Bob Ogden of Ogden Hardware.
Here are the award winners from the banquet:

Community Service Award - O'Neill American Legion Riders


Customer Service Award - Carol Hammerlun (right) of Pinnacle Bank, presented by Paula Havranek


Ambassador Award - Mayor Bill Price (right) presented by Scott Poese



Retiring Chamber Board President Terry Miles (right) hands gavel over to Bob Ogden.

KBRX Valentine's Getaway Winners Announced


02/02/15 05:21 PM
KBRX Radio and participating businesses had the Valentine's Getaway Drawing on Monday, February 2. 
Our Grand Prize Winner is Juan Valdez of O'Neill who signed up at Radio Shack in O'Neill.  Juan wins 2-tickets to the Florida Georgia Line, Frankia Ballard and Thomas Rhett Concert on February 13 at Pinnacle Bank Arena in Lincoln and a night at the Courtyard Marriott in downtown O'Neill. 
Second Place winner is Paityn Wagner who signed up at DW's Pub in Ewing.  Paityn wins two tickets to the concert on February 13 in Lincoln.

Winners from the participating businesses are below and may stop at that store to claim their prize.

The Possible Dream, Butte - Beth Lechtenberg
DW's Pub, Ewing - Paityn Wagner
McKenny's Furniture, O'Neill - Rock Closson
Krotters Home & Auto Center, O'NEill - Dennis Wiehn
Fox's Food Plaza, O'Neill - Gary Stauffer
Taylor Made Printing, O'Neill - Travis Dougherty
Irish Spirits, O'Neill - Amy Greger
O'Neill Lumber & Trailer Sales - Patty Gokie
RF Goeke Variety, Atkinson - Brian Mlady
Something Special By Marilyn, Atkinson - Bart Cavaness
Lindy's Shear Creation, O'Neill - Andrea Dougherty
Pinnacle Bank, O'Neill - Deb Peter
The Clothing Company, O'Neill - Tarra Janzing
McIntosh Jewelry, O'Neill - MaryAnn Nissen
La Herradura, O'Neill - Connie Sheldon
Dairy Queen, O'Neill - Janette Hobbs
Radio Shack, O'Neill - Juan Valdez
Ranchland Auto, O'Neill - Lawrence Reiman
Pump & Pantry, O'Neill - Darrell Hamilton
Westside Restaurant, O'Neill - Nancy Hood
Sidak Feed & Trailer Sales, O'Neill - Dennis Schaaf
Tia Zia, O'Neill - Brent Bartak

O'Neill High School Band Members At Wayne Honors Band


02/02/15 12:37 PM

(left to right) Marie Sitz, Allison Ludwig, Corbin Dean, Logan Spencer & Vionne Trizila

 
On Sat. January 31, five O'Neill Band members traveled to Wayne State College to participate and perform in the 2015 WSC Honor Bands.
Playing in the Symphonic Band were: Marie Sitz (oboe), Vionne Trizila (french horn), Logan Spencer (trombone), Allison Ludwig (trombone), and Corbin Dean (baritone). The were under the direction of Brad Weber, percussion instructor at WSC. "A very fun day. Even though the concert was moved up 2 hours due to the weather, the musicians performed at a very high level" commented OHS Band Director Chad Dean.

 

Landlord/Tenant Cash Lease Workshops Available in Six Area Locations


01/29/15 04:50 PM
Submitted by Ruth Vonderohe, UNL Extension Educator

Nebraska Extension will be hosting Landlord/Tenant Cash Lease Workshops this February-March to help landlords and tenants put together a lease that is right for both parties and helps maintain positive farm leasing relations.

Landlord/Tenant Cash Lease Schedule
Feb. 9, 1 p.m. — Pierce, location TBD, 402-329-4821
Feb. 11, 1 p.m. — Hartington, Courthouse Annex Basement, 402-254-6821
Feb. 12, 1 p.m. — Center, Extension Office Classroom, 402-288-5611
Feb. 17, 1 p.m. — Norfolk, Northeast Community College, Life Long Learning Center, 402-370-4040
Feb. 25, 1 p.m. — Neligh, Fairgrounds, 402-887-5414
Mar. 10, 9:30 a.m. — Albion, Casey's Building, Fairgrounds, 402-395-2158

Topics will include:
  • Latest information about land values and cash rental rates for the area and state.
  • Expectations from the lease, including goal setting for the rental property.
  • Lease termination, including terminating handshake or verbal leases.
  • Lease communication, determining appropriate information sharing for both the tenant and landlord.
  • Alternative cash lease arrangements, flexible provision considerations for your situation.
  • Other topics, like irrigation systems, hay rent, pasture rental agreements, and grain bin rental will be covered as time allows.
Extension Educators Allan Vyhnalek, Jim Jensen, Monte Vandeveer, or Tim Lemmons will present on these topics and provide common sense tips during the presentation. It is helpful if the tenant and landlord, as well as their spouses, attend together.
This free workshop is sponsored by the Nebraska Soybean Board.  Refreshments and handouts are provided. Registration is requested; please contact the host county.

This workshop has been held extensively across Nebraska for the past two years with over 2,600 attending.  Both landlords and tenants have said they found the workshop to be helpful in improving communications, setting rental terms, and learning about the use of flex lease provisions.  As crop budgets tighten, it is even more important to attend and listen to the latest discussion about leasing issues.
 

O'Neill FCCLA Competes At District STAR


01/29/15 09:18 AM

Front l/r:  Marissa Lichty, Lauren Osborne, Ephraim Bunner, Julia Bauer, and Haley Schmeichel.
Back row l/r: Blair Langan, Amanda Pischel, Robyn Isom, Emma Krysl, and Tayte Jussel. 

 
Members of the O’Neill FCCLA Chapter traveled to Wheeler Central High School to compete in the District STAR competition on January 25, 2015.  They joined nearly 100 other FCCLA members from Ainsworth, Burwell, Central Valley, Chambers, Ord, West Boyd, West Holt, and Wheeler Central.
O’Neill results include:
Amanda Pischel, National Programs in Action, Senior division, District Champion, State Qualifier, and Gold medalist;
Lauren Osborne, Illustrated Talk, Senior division, District Champion, State Qualifier, and Gold Medalist;
Robyn Isom, Chapter Service Project, Senior division, District Champion, State Qualifier, and Gold medalist;
Emma Krysl, Environmental Ambassador, Junior division, District Champion, State Qualifier, and Gold medalist;
Marissa Lichty and Blair Langan, Promote and Publicize FCCLA, Junior Division, District Champion, State Qualifier, and Gold Medalist;
Haley Schmeichel and Julia Bauer, Chapter Service Project, Junior Division, District Champion, State Qualifier, and Gold medalist;
Ephraim Bunner, Illustrated Talk, Junior Division, Silver medalist;
Tayte Jussel, Nebraska Health and Wellness, Junior Division, Silver medalist.  

Legislature Proposes Numerous Property Tax Bills


01/26/15 10:49 AM

By Sophie Tatum, Nebraska News Service

LINCOLN--Gov. Pete Ricketts and state lawmakers seem to agree that addressing property tax issues are priority, and they'll have plenty of options to choose from based on the legislative bills introduced.

The state does not levy property taxes, which primarily support public schools and local government. But as farmland values have increased, rural taxpayers in particular have expressed widespread concern about the impact of those taxes.

Here is a compilation of notable property tax-related bills that have been introduced in the 104th Legislature.

LB 71, Introduced by Sen. Paul Schumacher of Columbus, would provide a tax relief for agricultural and horticultural land.  The relief would be credit that landowners would receive.

LB 178, Introduced by Sen. Dan Watermeier of Syracuse, would make agricultural and horticultural land a separate class of land for property taxes. This class of land would be valued at only 75 percent of its actual value, except for school district taxes. School district taxation would value the land even less starting in 2016 and would continue to decrease each year.

LB 186, Introduced by Sen. Kate Bolz of Lincoln, would adopt the Property Tax Circuit Breaker Act, revising the percentage of credit property owners would receive.

LB 259, Introduced by Sen. Mike Gloor of Grand Island, would make the first $25,000 of a taxpayer's tangible personal property exempt from taxes.

LB 260, Introduced by Sen. Mike Gloor of Grand Island, would give the Property Tax Administrator the ability to recertify values if an error is discovered within three years of the original tax distribution date.

LB 309, Introduced by Sen. Al Davis of Hyannis, would move $25 million from the General Fund to the Property Tax Credit Cash Fund.

LB 345, Introduced by Sen. Rick Kolowski of Omaha, would adopt the Property Tax Relief Act, which would provide property tax relief for property taxes on certain homesteads. It would also create the Property Tax Relief Fund to reimburse counties for revenues lost when they grant homestead exemptions.

LB 364, Introduced by Sen. Dan Watermeier of Syracuse, would move $60 million from the General Fund to the Property Tax Credit Cash Fund for the property tax credit program.

LB 398, Introduced by Sen. Burke Harr of Omaha, would exempt all tangible, personal property from property taxes. 

O'Neill Alumni Tournament Entries Are Now Open


01/26/15 09:35 AM

Sign up now for the annual O'Neill Alumni Tournament, which is coming up March 27-29. Three brackets will be set up, involving Men's Basketball, Women's Basketball and Women's Volleyball. Please enter your team by e-mailing Gary Hostert at ghostert@esu8.org or calling 402-340-2483.
 

St. Pat's Fun Run Registration is Now Open!


01/19/15 02:34 PM


The Shamrock Fun Run will again be one of the biggest St. Pat's Day events.

The 36th Running of the Shamrock Fun Run will be held on Saturday, March 14th. Participate in a 5 mile run or 2.5 mile run/walk. Come to the Irish Capital of Nebraska and take part in the 36th Annual Shamrock Fun Run! The event will start at St. Patrick's Church and end just north of the Shamrock Downtown.  

Awards will be give at the Blarney Stone following the race with a complimentary Irish Stew Buffet to all participants. Overall Female and Male will be awarded in both 2.5 and 5 Mile. Top 3 Male and Female in each group will be awarded medals.

Packet pickup will be at St Mary's High School (300 N 4th Street, O'Neill, NE 68763) Friday from 5:00PM-7:00PM and on race morning. The race will be held come rain, shine or snow! St Patrick's Day is always fun regardless of weather.

Please note there are changes to the registration prices, the earlier you sign up, the more money you'll save:
$15 registration fee until January 31st
$20 registration fee (February 1st through February 28th)
$25 registration fee (March 1st through March 13th)
$35 registration fee on Race Day

The price does not include the purchase of a shirt. A short sleeve T-Shirt may be purchased for an additional $10.00 or long sleeve T-Shirt for an additional $15.00. Shirts will not be available to order after March 6th, 2015.

Sign up online at www.oneillrotary.club.
 
   
Call KBRX at (402) 336-1612