Category Archives: Regional News

Winners Announced at Nebraska Regional Braille Challenge

NEBRASKA CITY – Wednesday featured the Nebraska Regional Braille Challenge at the Nebraska Center for the Education of Children who are Blind or Visually Impaired (NCECBVI) and 15 winners were awarded following.

In the Apprentice Division, finishing in first was Frank Bomberger of Lincoln Public Schools, in second was Andrew Teidgen of Omaha Public Schools and in third was Abby Cool of Omaha Public Schools, as well.

In the Freshman Division, it was Dmitri Shaposhnikov that took first place from Millard Public Schools. In second was Damian Eby of Ashland-Greenwood Public Schools and in third was Pleh Meh of Omaha Public Schools.

Milla Krainak from Omaha Public Schools finished in first place for the Sophomore Division. Second place was awarded to Brady Gilfillan of Falls City Public Schools and NCECBVI. The third place finisher was  Summer Eby from Ashland-Greenwood Public Schools.

In the Junior Varsity Division, Dannielle Schutz from Syracuse-Dunbar-Avoca Public Schools finished in first, Maura Loberg of Wayne Public Schools took second and Samantha Bomberger from Lincoln Public Schools finished in third.

The Varsity Division was won by Brandon Peters of Lincoln Public Schools, with Alek Balaberda from Bellevue Public Schools in second and Emily Kozisek from NCECBVI in third.

Winter Musical ‘Pinkalicious’ To Debut At The Community Players Theatre

BEATRICE – This weekend will be the debut of the Community Players Theatre’s winter musical Pinkalicious.

Based on the children’s book series of the same name, Pinkalicious follows the story of a cupcake loving little girl with a joy for any and everything pink.

You can catch the play Friday, Saturday and Sunday over the next two weekends, with shows starting at 7:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and an afternoon show at 2 p.m. on Sunday.

Relay for Life ‘Jail and Bail’ Scheduled for February 19th

FAIRBURY- The Relay for Life Jail and Bail, sponsored by the local group, Caped Cancer Crusaders, will be held at the Stagecoach Mall Antiques and Tasting Room on February 19th from 9am – 2pm. According to team captain and event organizer, Diane Schutt, funds raised will go to Jefferson Country’s Relay for Life that will be held on June 17th at the Jefferson County Fairgrounds.

“We have several community members who agreed to be kidnapped and arrested by some local law enforcement people and they’ll have a set amount of bail they have to raise and we’ll have goodies down here for them.”

Interested parties can also have friends or family members arrested for a 20 dollar fee paid by Wednesday, February 17th. Relay for Life is a fundraising event for the American Cancer Society.

Beatrice BPW Discusses Rebate Program

(BEATRICE) – The Beatrice Board of Public Works has a decision to make, over whether to continue a form of the NPPD Energy Wise Rebate program that will be phased out.   The board and Beatrice City Council opted last year to seek wholesale electric power from another supplier at the end of the current contract with NPPD.

The district has capped the amount of funds Beatrice can use in the form of energy rebates, this year.   A large industrial application by Exmark Manufacturing for an LED lighting renovation will take all of the city’s rebate funds for this year.   BPW Manager Tobias Tempelmeyer says administration can put together a plan for the board to consider.

:21                  “for next year”

NPPD Energy Efficiency Manager Chad Podolak says the Energy Wise program begun nearly ten years ago, was designed to save energy and delay the need for additional power generation facilities.

Those who obtained the incentive in the past, see it as a rebate on their power bill.  In some years the city of Beatrice has exceeded the rebate amount budgeted.  In other years, not all of the funds have been used.  The past year, the city’s budgeted amount was $36,500.

Public works board member, Darrin Baehr, feels an effort should be made by the board to continue a similar program.

:12                  “some way, shape or form”

It’s expected the BPW would have to budget around $35,000 to $40,000 to continue a similar program.

BPW Board Chairman Dave Eskra says it make some sense to continue the program, for energy improvements such as LED replacement lighting.

:33                  “utilized for”

At least ten applications for the rebate program have been turned away since the start of the year, because of the cap on funds.   One of the decisions for the BPW is whether to honor applications through use of local budget funds, for the remainder of this budget year.

Homestead National Monument To Continue Speaker Series, Public Meeting

BEATRICE – Homestead National Monument of America will continue their speaker series in February by commemorating African-American history month.

UNL PhD student in history Christy Hyman will present at 2 p.m. on Monday, February 15.

“She worked at George Washington Carver National Monument, and so she is going to come out and tell us about George Washington Carver and his homesteading years.”

Bornemeier thinks the topic is interesting because of Carver’s prominence.

“George Washington Carver did a lot of amazing things during his life, and probably not very many people know that Carver also was a homesteader.”

Also coming up at Homestead National Monument is a public meeting to gain input from the community about changes or additions to the grounds or programs.

“Then to look further, is what we are already doing going to be viable into the future. Is it going to be attractive to the future generations. How can we build up that next generation of National Parks Service supporters.”

Bornemeier says surrounding communities have always supported Homestead National Monument.

“So the local community around here is very supportive of Homestead National Monument, and has helped us and had a lot of good ideas.”

That meeting will take place from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Education Center on February 25.

Maintaining and Repairing Fairbury’s Historical District’s Brick Streets

FAIRBURY –  The brick streets that pave the way for motorists in Fairbury have been used for many years and according to Laura Bedlan, Assistant Street Superintendent, maintaining and repairing these unique roadways, both downtown and elsewhere, differ from concrete and blacktop roads in many ways.

“Under the brick is actually concrete and sand so when you see the brick streets start to buckle, a lot of the times it’s because the concrete underneath is starting to collapse, so what you have to do is physically remove the brick, set it aside, then get underneath and repair the concrete and place sand and brick back in on top of that,” said Bedlan.

Bedlan also stated that salvaged brick is used to repair the roadways, especially the historic district, but that supply is running low.

“There have been some brick streets removed in the past and we do save that brick. It’s not your standard brick that we use in the streets. We save the historic brick and if we have an issue that we need to replace brick, we can go back to that pile.”

DART Raises Money For Flood Victims During Overnight Stay On Bridge

DeWitt – Tim Garrison spent 24 hours on a bridge outside of DeWitt to raise money for flood victims whose homes were damaged last May.

Spending time from 8 a.m. Saturday morning to 8 a.m. Sunday morning on January 30th and 31st, Garrison and DeWitt Fire Chief Shawn Wiese were able to raise $7,500.

Garrison says around 60 people showed up to show support, or donate in person. Luckily for Garrison and Wiese the weather cooperated and reached close to 50 degrees on Saturday afternoon.

The money will be distributed through DART, Dewitt Area Recovery Team, and will go directly to families still affected by flood damage.

Donations are still being accepted via PayPal at

Wednesday is “Alex Gordon Day”

(LINCOLN) – Governor Pete Ricketts has proclaimed this Wednesday, as Alex Gordon Day, in Nebraska.  At the urging of State Senator Dr. Roy Baker, of Lincoln, Ricketts issued the proclamation which honors the former University of Nebraska baseball player, who also played at Lincoln Southeast.

The leftfielder for the World Series Champion Kansas City Royals recently signed a contract to remain with the club.   Gordon was selected by Kansas City as the second overall pick in the 2005 Major League Baseball Draft.  He made his Royals debut in 2007.

The three-time all-star was the college player-of-the-year in 2005.  Gordon won his fourth consecutive gold glove in 2014 and was named the American League’s Platinum Glove winner, becoming the first outfielder to win the award.

Senator Baker commended Gordon for his role on the Royals and for his charity work.   Gordon has joined Royals Charities in support of Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation, raising money and awareness of childhood cancer causes, treatments and cures.  Gordon, his wife Jamie and son Max reside in Lincoln during the off-season.

Baker said Gordon is “an excellent ambassador for Nebraska and we are proud of the way he represents our state”.  The proclamation is being issued on Gordon’s birthday.imgres

Fairbury Residents Battle De-Icer And Salts On Roadways

FAIRBURY – Fairbury residence woke up to more than just snow Tuesday and  Wednesday mornings. A combination of ice and snow required the use of salts and other forms of de-icer and both drivers and their vehicles are feeling the positive and negative effects of using these methods. According to Kevin Trimm, owner of Splash and Dash Car Wash in Fairbury, leaving these solutions of your vehicle can damage metal and paint.

“It really gets into the nooks and crannies underneath your vehicle and once that sits in there, it starts corroding the metal and deteriorating it and eventually end up with rust pits, chips or eventually holes that wear right through completely.”

Trimm also explained that even though the automatic car wash is closed during colder weather, the self serve bays can be used to remove salts from vehicles.

“In the self serve bays, the wand you can spray up underneath the fender wells. You can actually spray in the nooks and crannies a lot easier in the self serve bays to get up into your fender wells really good.”


New Beatrice State Developmental Center Administrator Hired

(BEATRICE) – The head of the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services Developmental Disabilities Division today said a new administrator at the Beatrice State Developmental Center has been hired.  Courtney Miller told members of the Legislature’s Health and Human Services Committee during a briefing, Thursday, that Megan Gumbel will begin her new position, in March.

:17                  “and her references”

Gumbel was formerly an Indiana northeast regional director with Bethesda Lutheran Communities, a nationwide provider of services to persons with intellectual and developmental disabilities.   She was responsible for overseeing Bethesda operations in Indiana, Michigan, Ohio and New Jersey.

She formerly was Executive Director for MDC Goldenrod, a faith-based support organization for persons with developmental disabilities.

Gumbel holds degrees from Ball State University and Indiana Wesleyan University.